You and me both, Mike. Only ours were a little bigger, as we were feeding a crew of about a thousand (total crew, less officers and chiefs, who had their own messes) on the command communications cruiser. Ours were about the size of a washing machine. And, come to think of it, operated like the modern ones that have no agitator. The tub was lined with a carborundum-like compound, which is what did the peeling.
I never knew it had a name other than potato peeler. Actually, according to the chief commissaryman, it was "that f.....ing peeler." But I do remember one time dumping a 50 pound bag in and forgetting that it was running. We wound up with every spud the same size, and perfectly round. So changed the menu from mashed to pan roasted to take advantage of the mistake.
I recently saw a new product listing in one of the magazines for a home-kitchen sized version. Personally, I couldn't think of a more useless gadget. But I'm sure they sold a bunch of them.
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling