Les Alliés (The Allies) postcard
In February 1915, at the request of General Joffre, the Ministry of War decided to equip combatants with a steel helmet to better protect them from the many head wounds suffered since the beginning of the war. Quartermaster Adrian’s proposal was adopted on 21 May 1915. On 5 June, an order for 1.6 million helmets was made, and very quickly production accelerated. In total, more than 20 million Adrian helmets were produced.
The shell of the helmet was made of four parts, cast in 7-millimetre steel and assembled: the skullcap, which was attached to the visor and neck guard, and the crest, which was attached at the top by four aluminium rivets. The leather chinstrap and head cover were attached inside the shell. The helmet was painted in blue-grey, to match the “horizon blue” uniforms. Finally, a steel insignia, representing the branch or service, here an infantry grenade, was fixed to a metal bracket at the front of the helmet.
1915 “Adrian” helmet, steel, leather, plant fibres, 15 x 28.5 cm Inventory no.: 2006.1.162