BACKGROUND: As with almost all nations the Germans had a National Postal Service that was originally established in 1495 by Franz von Taxis. With the unification of the separate Germanic states in 1871 the postal service was reorganized as the Kaiserliche Post und Telegraphenverwaltung, (Imperial Postal and Telegraph Administration Service), and remained as a state run organization until the end of WWII when it was abolished and replaced with an Allied controlled postal service. Besides basic postal service the DRP was also the responsible authority for other types of communications including telephone, teletype and telegraph services. During the Third Reich period the DRP, Deutsche Reichspost, (German National Postal Service), was under the governmental control of the Reichspostministerium, (National Postal Ministry), which was originally commanded by Paul Freiherr von Eltz-Rübenach as the Post-Master General until he was replaced in February 1937 by NSKK-Obergruppenführer Dr. Karl Wilhelm Ohnesorge, an avid supporter of Hitler and the NSDAP, Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei, (National Socialist German Worker’s Party). With it’s mandate of supplying and administrating the civilian communication system through-out greater Germany the DRP must be considered one of the most important public services. Even prior to the war the DRP had utilized female personnel classified as, Helferin, (Female Auxiliaries), in assorted secretarial and clerical positions as well as switchboard operators and postal clerk and delivery positions. With the outbreak of WWII and further man-power requirements needed for military service, additional females were drawn into service with the DRP. Uniforms for the DRP female employees were introduced in 1940 and consisted of a coordinated dark blue jacket and matching skirt or pants and a beret. Insignia utilized by female DRP employees consisted of the national eagle and orange piping on the headgear and an identifying sleeve badge.

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Nice quality, navy blue wool construction, female postal employee’s beret with a single piece, circular crown, a two piece body with vertical machine stitched seams to each side and a single piece, narrow, lower, horizontal forehead band with a single, vertical machine stitched seam to the reverse center the forward edge of the crown is trimmed in bright, orange wool piping. The front center of the beret has an alloy national eagle pinned to it. Blue rayon lining is very nicely marked and dated for 1940. Complete original leather sweatband. Size marked "54 ½ ". Scarce female DRP employee’s beret.    (Ex Philippe Gillain Collection)

GRADE ****1/4                             PRICE $800.00  (Or Best Offer)

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