Ranks & Insignia > U.S. Marine Rank Insignia (World War II)

U.S. Marine Rank Insignia (World War II)

By Brendan Matsuyama, Editor

The following were the U.S. Marine Corps Rank Insignia of World War II. The ranks of the time were familiar to what we know today, but not identical.

For the Marine Corps ranks, World War II was a transitionary period between the World War I and Interwar-eras when different service branches (e.g. Ordnance, Quartermaster, etc.) had distinct ranks and rank insignia versus the Modern era where the rank structure is much more consolidated.

 

The Marine Corps rank structured was split into Officers, Warrant Officers, and Enlisted. The Warrant Officers included Commissioned Warrant Officers and Warrant Officers after 1943, while the Enlisted category also includes Non-Commissioned Officers.

Contents:

  1. Officers

  2. Warrant Officers

  3. Enlisted

  4. Video

  5. Sources

 

  Officers  

 General (as of March 1945) 

General

 Lieutenant General (as of Jan 1942) 

Lieutenant General

 Major General 

Major General

 Brigadier General 

Brigadier General

 Colonel 

 Lieutenant Colonel 

Colonel

Lieutenant Colonel

 Major 

 Captain 

Major

Captain

 First Lieutenant 

 Second Lieutenant 

First Lieutenant

Second Lieutenant

Warrant Officers (1941)

 

 Chief Warrant Officer Grades 

Chief Marine Gunner (Left)

Chief Quartermaster Clerk (Centre)

Chief Pay Clerk (Right)

 Warrant Officer Grades 

Marine Gunner (Left)

Quartermaster Clerk (Centre)

Pay Clerk (Right)

Warrant Officers (1943)

 

 Commissioned Warrant Officer 

Commissioned Warrant Officer

 Warrant Officer 

Warrant Officer

      Enlisted (1941)      ​​

Grade 1

Sergeant Major (Line)

Master Gunnery Sergeant (Ordnance)

Master Technical Sergeant (Aviation; Engineering; Communications; Special Staff; Mess; Music)

Paymaster Sergeant (Paymaster)

Quartermaster Sergeant (Quartermaster)

 

Grade 2

First Sergeant (Line)

Gunnery Sergeant (Ordnance)

Technical Sergeant (Aviation; Engineering; Communications; Special Staff; Mess; Music; Quartermaster; Paymaster)

Drum Major (Music)

Supply Sergeant (Quartermaster)

Grade 3

Platoon Sergeant (Line; Ordnance)

Staff Sergeant (Aviation; Engineering; Communications; Special Staff; Mess; Music; Quartermaster; Paymaster)

Grade 4

Sergeant (Line; Ordnance; Aviation; Engineering; Communications; Special Staff; Quartermaster; Paymaster)

Mess Sergeant (Mess)

Chief Cook (Mess)

Field Music Sergeant (Music)

Grade 5

Corporal (Line; Ordnance; Aviation; Engineering; Communications; Special Staff; Quartermaster; Paymaster)

Mess Corporal (Mess)

Field Cook (Mess)

Field Music Corporal (Music)

Grade 6

Private First Class (Line; Ordnance; Aviation; Engineering; Communications; Special Staff; Quartermaster; Paymaster)

Assistant Cook (Mess)

Field Music First Class (Music)

Grade 7

Private (Line; Ordnance; Aviation; Engineering; Communications; Special Staff; Quartermaster; Paymaster; Mess)

Field Music (Music)

      Enlisted (1943)      ​​

 

Grade 1

Sergeant Major (Line)

First Sergeant (Line, Feb 1943 to Feb 1944)

Master Gunnery Sergeant (Ordnance)

First Sergeant (Line, as of Feb 1944)

Master Technical Sergeant (Aviation; Engineering; Communications; Special Staff; Commissary; Steward; Music)

Paymaster Sergeant (Paymaster)

Quartermaster Sergeant (Quartermaster)

Grade 2

Gunnery Sergeant (Ordnance)

Technical Sergeant (Aviation; Engineering; Communications; Special Staff; Commissary; Music; Quartermaster; Paymaster)

Drum Major (Music)

Supply Sergeant (Quartermaster)

Steward First Class/Cook First Class(Steward)

Grade 3

Platoon Sergeant (Line; Ordnance)

Staff Sergeant (Aviation; Engineering; Communications; Special Staff; Commissary; Music; Quartermaster; Paymaster)

Steward 2nd Class/Cook 2nd Class(Steward)

Chief Cook(Commissary)

Grade 4

Sergeant (Line; Ordnance; Aviation; Engineering; Communications; Special Staff; Quartermaster; Paymaster)

Field Cook (Commissary)

Steward 3rd Class/Cook 3rd Class (Steward)

Field Music Sergeant (Music)

Grade 5

Corporal (Line; Ordnance; Aviation; Engineering; Communications; Special Staff; Quartermaster; Paymaster)

Assistant Cook (Commissary)

Steward's Assistant 1st Class (Steward)

Field Music Corporal (Music)

Grade 6

Private First Class (Line; Ordnance; Aviation; Engineering; Communications; Special Staff; Quartermaster; Paymaster)

Steward's Assistant 2nd Class (Steward)

Field Music First Class (Music)

Grade 7

Private (Line; Ordnance; Aviation; Engineering; Communications; Special Staff; Quartermaster; Paymaster; Commissary)

Steward's Assistant 3rd Class (Steward)

Field Music (Music)

      Sources      ​​

 
  • "United States Marine Corps Grade Insignia Since 1775" by Preston B. Perrenot

  • "United States Marine Corps Ranks and Grades 1775-1969" by Nalty, Strobridge, Turnbladh & Gill

  • "USMC Enlisted Rank Insignia of World War II" by Uniform-Reference.net

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