BACKGROUND: In August 1929 the SS, Schutz Staffel, (Protection Squad), incorporated the wear of rank collar tabs on the left side of the collar of the service tunic. The SS collar tabs were originally adopted from the earlier rank collar tabs as utilized by the SA, Sturm Abteilung, (Storm/Assault Detachment). The SS collar tabs remained in usage through-out the war with a couple of minor alterations. Originally EM/NCO’s collar tabs for the ranks of SS-Schütze to SS-Hauptscharführer inclusively were piped in twisted white cord from their original inception, (Rank tabs, August 1929/Runic tabs, May 1933), until October 24TH 1934 when the piping for EM/NCO’s was modified to alternating twisted black and silver/aluminum cord piping. The final modification, in August 1940, eliminated all piping from EM/NCO’s collar tabs. Officer’s ranks collar tabs from SS-Untersturmführer to SS-Hauptsturmführer utilized alternating twisted black and silver/aluminum cord piping from their inception until October 24TH 1934 and silver/aluminum cord piping from October 1934 until the end of the war while the ranks of SS-Sturmbannführer to SS-Reichsführer utilized the silver/aluminum cord piping from August 1929 to May 1945. With the arrest and imprisonment of Italy’s Duce Benito Mussolini on July 25TH 1943, Italy immediately became embroiled in a virtual civil war between the pro and anti-fascist elements within the country. On September 8TH 1943 Italy officially ended hostilities with the allies and four days later Mussolini was rescued by the Germans and set up the puppet Republica Sociale Italiana, (Italian Social Republic), government in northern Italy. In October and November of 1943 the Germans began to enlist pro-fascist Italians and formed the 1. Italienische Freiwillingen Sturmbrigade Milizia Armata, (1ST Italian Volunteer Assault Brigade of the Armed Militia), in southern Germany. In January 1944 the Brigade returned to Italy and participated in the battle of the Anzio beachhead in the spring of that year. Originally Italian personnel of the brigade wore red collar patches with a silver fasces but in recognition of their service in the Battle of Anzio a black collar tab with a silver fasces was introduced for wear on June 15TH 1944. Of Note: In September 1944 the Brigade was upgraded to divisional status and eventually evolved into the 29. Waffen-Grenadier-Division der SS (italienische Nr.1). In March 1945 the division was allocated the numerical designation, "29", long after the disbanding of the same numbered Russian division.

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Black wool construction, right hand side, unit designation collar tab features a machine embroidered, fasces in silvery/grey rayon threads with a small, red, thread accent. The collar tab is mounted on a tan buckram backing. The collar tab is in overall excellent condition.

GRADE ****1/4                             PRICE $199.00

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