BACKGROUND: The German army had a tradition, dating from the 1700's, of maintaining a separate branch of Administrative Officials attached to the army to oversee all administrative functions, thus freeing up active army Officers and allowing them to concentrate on actual military matters. The Officials were responsible for a wide variety of administrative tasks from Court Martial, Librarian, Supply, Technical and Meteorological Services, to School, Barracks, and Hospital administration. Most Officials careers consisted of four varying grades, of high, elevated, medium and low grade with slightly differing identifying insignia for each grade. The grade of the career was determined by the education and/or experience of the individual. During the Reichswehr, (National Defence Force, Circa 1919-1933), era the Officials were divided into military and civilian personnel until December 22ND 1934 when the German High Command did away with the differentiation and consolidate all the officials into the newly formed Wehrmachtbeamte-Heer, (Armed Forces Officials-Army). Originally only the civilian Officials utilized the distinctive, "HV", shoulder board cyphers indicating, Heeres Verwaltung, (Army Administration), until the regulations of December 22ND 1934 stipulated that the "HV" cyphers were to be worn by all Officials with a couple of exceptions. Regulations of March 12TH 1937 reorganized the Officials and instituted the new Beamte auf Kriegsdauer a.K., (Wartime Officials for the duration of the war), to be activated in times of mobilization. Originally the uniformed Officials were allotted identifying, dark green waffenfarbe, (Branch of Service Color), with a nebenfarbe, (Secondary Color), to indicate their actual career. Of Note: Regulations of March 21ST 1940, replaced the assorted nebenfarbe colors with a secondary color of light grey for all Officials regardless of career or function. In January 1944 the Army instituted a new career for Officers and certain Officials, entitled, TSD, "Truppen Sonder Dienst", (Special Service). This new career used light blue waffenfarbe and did away with secondary colors as worn by Officials in the other careers. On May 1ST 1944 all high grade career Administrative Officials were transferred to the TSD and utilized the Caduceus, (Dual serpents entwined on a Mercurian staff), cypher.

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Roughly 1" tall fire gilted, die stamped, alloy cypher consisting of dual serpents entwined on a Mercurian staff. They cypher retains over 95% of its original gilt finish and is very clean and bright. The hollow reverse of the cypher is a mirror image of the front that has both soldered prongs intact. The cypher has no visible manufacturer’s markings.

GRADE ****1/4                             PRICE $30.00

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