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H049476 FELDGENDARMIE/RECRUITING EM/NCO'S VISOR CAP. (Schirmmütze)

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. 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 German army were allocated a specific, identifying, waffenfarbe, (Branch of Service Color), with orange being chosen for Feldgendarmie, (Military Police), personnel which was displayed as piping on the shoulder straps. Of Note: Originally personnel serving with the army recruiting service were also allocated orange waffenfarbe until it was altered to white in 1942. Officers 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.

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Nice quality, issued, visor cap with a field-grey wool and rayon blend body and crown and a blue/green badge cloth centerband with orange wool waffenfarbe to the crown edge and both the top and bottom edges of the centerband. The front center of the cap has a silver washed, stamped aluminum, second pattern, national eagle. The front center of the centerband has a second pattern, stamped, polished natural aluminum, oak-leaf wreath encompassing a three piece, high relief, national tri-color cockade. The cap has a blackened patent leather chinstrap intact with two, black painted, rectangular, sheet metal retaining clips and two black painted, vertically oval, sliding length adjustment buckles. The chinstrap is secured to the cap by two, small, smooth finish, black painted, magnetic sheet metal buttons. The cap has an extended, black lacquered vulcanfibre visor with a subtly raised lip at the forward edge. The interior of the cap is fully lined in orange, issue quality, cloth. Sweatshield is complete. The interior of the cap also has a complete original leather sweatband. Sweatband has two tears. Few small moth holes. Size marked 56 1/2. Maker marked and dated 1937 on the reverse of the sweatband. Very scarce orange waffenfarbe!

GRADE ****                             PRICE $1,000.00

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