BACKGROUND: Visor caps were a standard item for all personnel during the Third Reich period and regulations dictated the form of dress they were to be worn with based on the individuals rank. Officer and certain senior NCO ranks were responsible for purchasing their own caps and as a result were allotted a clothing allowance through the army’s Kleiderkasse, (Clothing Account), system. The Officers and certain senior NCO’s could choose to purchase their caps from the armed forces clothing depots or to privately purchase visor caps of higher quality. Although enlisted personnel were issued their caps from government supplies they were also permitted to purchase privately tailored caps although the price may have been restrictive. Originally the insignia worn on the visor caps consisted of the Weimar Reichswehr pattern oak-leaf wreath and cockade and a blackened leather chinstrap for all ranks. In February 1927 new chin cords for Officer ranks were introduced with silver cords for the ranks of Leutnant to Oberst and gilt cords for the ranks of Generalmajor to Generalfeldmarschall. On March 14TH 1933 the Reichswehr’s oval black, red and gold cockade was replaced with a circular cockade in black, white, and red and on February 17TH 1934 the Third Reich pattern national eagle for the army was officially introduced for wear on the visor cap. In March 1935 a new, more detailed, pattern wreath and cockade and a second, larger pattern national eagle were also introduced for wear and in late 1935 regulations altered the Reichswehr era field-grey colored centerband to a dark blue/green coloration which was utilized until the end of the war. Further regulations of February 26TH 1936 also permitted senior NCO’s who were Officer Candidates to wear the Officers twisted silver/aluminum chin cord on their visor caps as opposed to the standard EM/NCO’s leather chinstrap. The different branches of service within the army were allocated a particular identifying waffenfarbe, (Branch of Service Color), with light blue being chosen for Transport personnel which was displayed as piping on the visor cap. Of Note: Although the Transport branch of service may sound like a mundane assignment it was of the utmost importance as they were the personnel responsible for the control of all supplies to the forward troops including all vehicle fuel, and lubricant requirements as well as ammunition, animal feed and rations.

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Nice quality, private purchase, visor cap with a field-grey wool and rayon blend body and crown with a blue/green badge cloth centerband with light blue wool waffenfarbe piping to the crown edge and both the top and bottom edges of the centerband. The front center of the cap has a stamped, second pattern, natural aluminum, national eagle. The front center of the centerband has a hand embroidered oak-leaf wreath in silver/aluminum wire threads encompassing a low relief, three piece, national tri-color cockade mounted on a cut-out, blue/green badge cloth base. The national tri-color cockade consists of a fluted black alloy base, a silver washed alloy roundel and an inserted red felt centerpiece. The roundel has lost its silver wash and reverted to the coppery tone of the base alloy. The wreath and cockade are neatly handstitched to the cap. The cap has a bright, twisted silver/aluminum chin cord which is secured in place by two, small, silver washed, pebbled, alloy buttons. The cap has a black lacquered vulcanfibre visor with a raised lip near the forward edge. The interior of the cap is fully lined in golden yellow rayon. The interior crown lining has a clear celluloid sweat diamond fully intact. The interior of the cap also has a tan ersatz paper sweatband stitched in place. The cap is in overall very good condition with minimal age and usage toning, and retains almost all of its original nap. The cap is roughly size 56.

GRADE ****1/4                             PRICE $1,495.00

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