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Just In From Germany

We notify our Newsletter subscribers when we update our online "Just In From Germany" Merchandise Page. In addition, you will receive early notification when we add new items to any clearance pages (currently under revision). More importantly, we notify our list members when we have a sale. These sales are NEVER announced on our web site. They are for our Newsletter subscribers ONLY.

  • PRUSSIA - PICKELHAUBE - OFFICER'S -1. GARDE REGIMENT zu FUß - ATTRIBUTED TO PRINZ ADALBERT. - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – PICKELHAUBE – OFFICER’S -1. GARDE REGIMENT zu FUß – ATTRIBUTED TO PRINZ ADALBERT.

    SKU: 04-715

    $14,995.00

    PRUSSIA – PICKELHAUBE – OFFICER’S -1. GARDE REGIMENT zu FUß – ATTRIBUTED TO PRINZ ADALBERT.

    This is a simply delicious 1. Garde Regiment zu Fuß officer’s spiked helmet. The regiment was the most elite among Prussia’s and Germany’s Infanterie Regiments. It was garrisoned in Potsdam with its Kavallerie Regiment counterpart, the Regiment der Garde du Corps. The regiment was loaded with denizens of Imperial Germany’s highest royal and noble families. Every Hohenzollern Prinz was invested in it, including all of Kaiser Wilhelm II’s sons, just as the Kaiser himself had been as a young man. The Kaiser also served as its Regimental Chef. The latter was a ceremonial post since every regiment that possessed a royal patron actually was run on a daily basis by its true commander, typically an Oberst or Oberstleutnant. [Please remember that the 1. Garde Regiment zu Fuß also was notable as one of only two Prussian Infanterie Regiments to retain the Mitre as its headdress for high dress occasions. The Mitre had been the Infanterie’s preferred headdress prior to the pickelhaube’s introduction in 1842. After that date, all the other regiments switched to a combination of pickelhauben, schirmmützen and mützen for their headgear].
    This particular 1. Garde Regiment zu Fuß officer’s pickelhaube once belonged to Prinz Adalbert, one of Kaiser Wilhelm II’s six sons. These six sons (and one daughter) were Kronprinz Wilhelm (1882 1951), Prinz Eitel Friedrich (1883 1942), Prinz Adalbert (1884 1948), Prinz August Wilhelm (1887 1949), Prinz Oskar (1888 1958), Prinz Joachim (1890 1920), and Prinzessin Viktoria Luise (1892 1980). Adalbert was the only son of Kaiser Wilhelm II to serve in the Navy rather than the Army. His career was NOT particularly noteworthy. During WW I, he served first on the battleship S. M. S. Kaiser. He then served as the commander of the S. M. S. Danzig (II), a Kleiner Kreuzer, from May 1917 to March 1918. His final command aboard the S. M. S. Dresden, another Kleiner Kreuzer, lasted from March 1918 to the war’s end in November 1918. [An interesting aside: the S. M. S. Dresden was the last major vessel that was commissioned during the war].

    The magnificent helmet’s body is quite pleasing. Its leather is generally supple with no major flaws to its surface. It is clean and in excellent condition for being more than one hundred years old. Its silver body furniture is correct for the 1. Garde Regiment zu Fuß, including the wappen, chin scales, base with pearl ring, helmet trim and spike. The fluted spike differs greatly from most pickelhauben spikes, lending it a very elegant look. The correct State and Reich’s kokarden are also present.
    The wappen, however, is the true star here and deserves special attention. First, we can tell that the helmet is correct for the 1. Garde Regiment zu Fuß. [PLEASE NOTE: The Regiment’s Battalion Nr 1 and Regimental Staff Officers wore “Semper Talis” bandeaux above the eagle. This helmet does not sport that bandeau, so either of the two princes was assigned elsewhere. (We do have a very fine pickelhaube coming up soon from Battalion Nr 1 of the 1. Garde Regiment zu Fuß that does display the “Semper Talis” bandeau)].
    The helmet’s wappen boasts a fine, heavy patina. Such a patina adds an extra level of beauty to an item. While it may not actually be .800 silver (although the Hohenzollern family certainly could have afforded it), at the very least it certainly is German Silver. Its massive eagle displays wings that extend PAST its kokarden. When you first look at the helmet, it seems as though these wings go on forever. The center of the eagle’s chest displays the Garde Star that decorates all Garde Regiment headdresses. This Garde Star exhibits a rich layering of red, white, black, and gold enamel. The Garde Star’s center displays a multicolored Black Eagle.
    The Order of the Black Eagle is the House of Hohenzollern’s highest order. Certain levels of this Order were invested to all its House’s young princes. [Also, at the discretion of the King or (later) Kaiser, others NOT born to the House of Hohenzollern could be awarded this special honor. It was more of a royal honor than a direct military award]. As not only Prussia’s, but Imperial Germany’s most elite Infanterie Regiment, the 1. Garde Regiment zu Fuß was packed from top to bottom with royals and nobles from all over Germany. Aside from those on active duty, more than twenty eight royals were assigned to it as à la Suite officers. Every House of Hohenzollern male was invested in it as a Leutnant at a young age. As they all grew older, they were promoted to higher ranks (depending on their individual situations). Kaiser Wilhelm II’s younger brother, Prinz Heinrich, in addition to being a Kaiserliche Marine Großadmiral, was a Generaloberst in the Rank of Generalfeldmarschall in the 1. Garde Regiment zu Fuß. Since this was the policy, Prinz Adalbert served in the 1. Garde Regiment zu Fuß.

    The helmet’s interior features a well worn beige/cream leather sweatband. It also displays what I believe are museum marks that could have been used for inventory purposes: “R21” and “Pb63.” The later number is crossed out, which indicates [to me] that the first number was the most current inventory designation. Another series of letters and numbers appears on the helmet’s back visor. Now we come to the proof that Adalbert owned this helmet. In the (again soiled) cream silk liner’s center is a black “A” beneath the Hohenzollern Crown, Prinz August Wilhelm’s cypher. The silk beneath the lower part of the cypher is shredding. Several other liner sections sport shredding, and the entire liner and sweatband exhibit soiling from what probably was a combination of sweat and hair oil. This helmet DEFINITELY was worn!
    Underneath that silk liner, we find that ALL of the hardware is 100% original to the helmet, extending to where the base, pearl ring, and spike are connected at the interior’s top. The same applies to the wappen’s securing hardware, which is original. Of course, NO double holes are present where it is secured.
    This is a fascinating helmet that once belonged to one of Kaiser Wilhelm II’s sons. It would make an excellent addition to any headdress or royalty collection. $14,995.00
    At Der Rittmeister Militaria, we strive to bring you the best in spiked helmets, or pickelhauben (plural for pickelhaube), one of Imperial German Militaria’s most interesting areas for collecting. While ORIGINALITY and AUTHENTICITY are of prime importance, please do not forget Der Rittmeister’s commitment to CONDITION and QUALITY. In this regard, we take special pride in offering you spiked helmets whose condition is at least well above average, if not excellent. I examine hundreds of pickelhauben to find the very few that fulfill all four criteria mentioned above. Upon receiving their new treasure, collectors who have purchased one of our pickelhauben often exclaim that their helmet looks even better than the photos we had displayed on our website. [We do use a high quality digital camera to photograph our items and upgrade cameras every two years, but enough with the Der Rittmeister Militaria commercial]! Just remember, dear friends, Der Rittmeister’s Four Critical Criteria for collecting pickelhauben: ORIGINALITY, AUTHENTICITY, CONDITION, and QUALITY.

    The pickelhaube was designed in 1842 by Prussia’s König Frederick William IV for use in the Prussian Infanterie. [The Prussian king might have copied similar helmets adopted by Russia’s military during the same time period. It is not clear whether this was a case of imitation, parallel invention, or if both were based on Napoleonic cuirassiers’ helmets]. The helmet style was soon adopted by Germany’s other states and kingdoms during the mid 19th Century, with Bavaria being the final principality to implement it in 1886. [The Bavarians always seemed to go their own way! Interestingly, Bavaria was also the last to authorize kugelhelme for their Artillerie Regiments in 1913]. In addition to Russia, spiked helmets were adopted by many Latin American countries. They were even worn by the USA’s armed forces from the 1880’s until around 1910.
    We also remind all pickelhaube enthusiasts about our good friend Jim Turinetti’s excellent reference books on the subject (click here to see DRM’s Imperial German Headdress Page Nr 3), available as spiral bound paperbacks or on CD. You cannot go wrong with them. I can safely state that Jim is the USA’s foremost authority on pickelhauben. Please support him. Dollar for dollar, these books are the best on the market, and reward you with an immeasurable return in value! [Remember, Jim receives any and ALL the profits from his works, Der Rittmeister Militaria just promotes them to help educate the collecting community].


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  •  PRUSSIA - KUGELHELM - GENERAL OFFICER'S - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

     PRUSSIA – KUGELHELM – GENERAL OFFICER’S

    SKU: 33-326

    $9,995.00

    PRUSSIA – KUGELHELM – GENERAL OFFICER’S.

    This is a first time offering for us at Der Rittmeister Militaria. It is a Prussian General der Artillerie’s kugelhelm. It is a very rare helmet since the number of Generals der Artillerie was significantly less than Generals der Infanterie or Generals der Kavallerie. Even among the old line units prior to WW I’s massive buildup, only about one third were Artillerie Regiments.
    Like a general officer’s pickelhaube, the helmet has a squared front visor. The black leather body is not quite as good as we prefer, with scattered cracking visible. [We have been treating the leather with extra leather conditioner to restore some moisture and prevent further issues]. Its exterior is attractively toned, however, with a fine patina. All of its furniture is gilt toned. The chin scales, cruciform, officers’ stars, pearl ring, trim and kugel are all in very fine condition.
    The helmet’s wappen is a piece of fine art. The Hohenzollern Eagle’s wings extend all the way to the kokarden’s center points on both sides.
    A beautiful Garde Star adorns the center of the Eagle’s chest. In turn, the Star’s center displays a fantastic combination of multicolored enamel dominated by the black and gold Eagle emblematic of the House of Hohenzollern’s nobility. The Black Eagle is encircled by the Latin motto “Suum Cuique” (To each according to his own merits). All of the multicolored enamel is in very fine condition.

    The helmet’s interior is well used. The helmet was worn, and worn often. [Although a general would have had more than one helmet, one for parades and one for daily usage, i.e., when he was not wearing a schirmmütze]. Both the leather sweatband and the silk liner show what is consistent with daily wear. The silk liner is complete but shows soiling where it met the general’s hair. No double holes show under the liner where the wappen is attached. Furthermore, all of the original hardware is in place.
    This is a 100% original helmet. Had it been a regular officer’s kugelhelm, I might have passed it up due to the leather body issues. However, since it was offered at a VERY reasonable price, I am passing the savings along to you! [These helmets’ are so scarce, one in the condition that we prefer would cost at least $15,000, instead of the following more reasonable rate]!

    At Der Rittmeister Militaria, we strive to bring you the best in the various helmets and headdresses that we offer, whether they are pickelhauben, or the Artillerie Regiments’ kugelhelme, specialized helmets that sported round metal balls instead of metal spikes. As with pickelhauben, while ORIGINALITY and AUTHENTICITY are of prime importance, please do not forget Der Rittmeister’s commitment to CONDITION and QUALITY. In this regard, we take special pride in offering you kugelhelme whose condition is at least well-above-average, if not excellent. I examine hundreds of kugelhelme to find the very few that fulfill all four criteria mentioned above. Upon receiving their new treasure, collectors who have purchased one of our kugelhelme often exclaim that their helmet looks even better than the photos we had displayed on our website. [We do use a high quality digital camera to photograph our items and upgrade cameras every two years, but enough with the Der Rittmeister Militaria commercial]! Just remember, dear friends, Der Rittmeister’s Four Critical Criteria for collecting kugelhelme: ORIGINALITY, AUTHENTICITY, CONDITION, and QUALITY.
    The kugelhelm was first introduced by the Kingdom of Prussia in 1843, following the introduction of the pickelhaube. [Both were designed by Prussia’s König Frederick William IV, who might have copied similar helmets adopted by Russia’s military during the same time period. It is not clear whether this was a case of imitation, parallel invention, or if both were based on Napoleonic cuirassiers’ helmets]. The kugelhelm’s use spread state-by-state and Kingdom-by-Kingdom after that date. The final Kingdom to implement the kugelhelm was Bavaria in 1913. [As usual, the Bavarians always seemed to go their own way]!

    We also remind all kugelhelme enthusiasts about our good friend Jim Turinetti’s excellent reference books on headdresses (click here to see DRM’s Imperial German Headdress Page Nr 3), available as spiral bound paperbacks or on CD. You cannot go wrong with them. I can safely state that Jim is the USA’s foremost authority on pickelhauben and other forms of Imperial German Headdress. Please support him. Dollar for dollar, these books are the best on the market, and reward you with an immeasurable return in value! [Remember, Jim receives any and ALL the profits from his works, Der Rittmeister Militaria just promotes them to help educate the collecting community].


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  • PRUSSIA - BUSBY - RESERVE OFFICER’S - 1. LEIB HUSAREN REGIMENT Nr 1 - WITH PARADE FEATHERS - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – BUSBY – RESERVE OFFICER’S – 1. LEIB HUSAREN REGIMENT Nr 1 – WITH PARADE FEATHERS

    SKU: 33-319

    $21,995.00

    A year or so ago, we had the great fortune to offer a Reserve Officer’s 1. Leib-Husaren-Regiment Nr 1 Busby. At the time I felt that it would years before I would find another to share with you. They are very scarce to say the least (it was only the second that I had ever turned up). So I was stunned when this example tumbled into my lap, especially considering its source. I cannot publicly name its previous owner, however, he is VERY well known in the collecting community and considered an expert. I will gladly share details of the collector’s identity with the busby’s buyer.
    This amazing reserve officer’s busby hails from Prussia’s legendary 1. Leib-Husaren-Regiment Nr 1. The 1. Leib-Husaren-Regiment Nr 1 was one of the Imperial German Army’s most fabled Kavallerie Regiments. It was founded in 1741, garrisoned at Danzig-Langfuhr, and attached to the XVII. Armeekorps. The regiment, along with its sister regiment 2. Leib-Husaren-Regiment Königin Victoria von Preußen Nr 2, was one of only two Prussian Army Regiments to display the Totenkopf on their wappens. Two other NON-Prussian Army Regiments displayed a different Totenkopf-style: the Duchy of Braunschweig’s Husaren-Regiment Nr 17 and Infanterie-Regiment Nr 92. These four were the only Imperial German regiments to display the Totenkopf on their dress headdresses, schirmmützen and mützen.
    Our busby’s body is covered with sumptuous possum fur that is in very fine condition. No fur loss is evident. The magnificent silver/German silver wappen, which immediately draws one’s attention, measures 2 ½” x 2 ¾.” The wappen’s silver boasts a scrumptious patina. The Totenkopf’s eyes and nose are backed with black velvet, giving it a sinister appearance. The chin scales are gold-toned, have their correct leather backing and are 100% correct for a Husaren busby. If we look at each individual scale, we can detect decades-worth of built-up dirt and gunk. This confirms it is an all-original busby (more confirmation follows). The chin scales are pinned-up in the classic Hussar manner (i.e., dropped underneath the chin and connected when needed). As is correct, only one kokarde is present (on the right from the wearer’s perspective). We can tell it is a post-1897 busby, as the single officer’s kokarde is for the Reich, NOT Prussia (as it was prior to 1897).
    Directly above the wappen at the busby’s front is the feldzeichen (field badge). We know it definitely is an officer’s-quality piece from the silver bullion wrapped around the feldzeichen. The badge’s center is made of black velvet. A correct Prussian reserve officer’s cross is attached to the feldzeichen’s center. A subtle difference occurs between Hussar feldzeichens and those used on tschakos. What, you ask? The Husaren feldzeichen is wider. While other feldzeichens may LOOK similar, our example is wider and plumper, (confirmed when I physically compared it to other feldzeichens).
    The busby’s red kolpak clearly identifies it as a 1. Leib-Husaren-Regiment Nr 1 example. [If it sported a WHITE kolpak, it would be correct for the 2. Leib-Husaren-Regiment Königin Victoria von Preußen Nr 2]. The kolpak reveals a couple of very small moth nips. They are in no way detractive to its overall presentation. The exterior’s final detail is the very rare, correct parade (heron) feathers in their special trichter.
    The busby’s interior reveals a fine, light-brown leather sweatband that is in excellent condition. A gray silk liner is attached to the sweatband. Some minor shredding appears at the liner attachment’s back. A busby’s liner is far different from that used on a spiked helmet. While the liner IS attached to the sweatband, it is NOT divided into two halves like a pickelhaube liner. Instead, it is fashioned from ONE piece of silk. The latter does not cover the busby’s entire interior, but sports a cutout in its center.
    This is a sensational busby from one of Germany’s most fabled regiments. Kaiser Wilhelm II, Kronprinz Wilhelm, and Generalfeldmarschall August von Mackensen all frequently sported this same busby when they proudly wore its regiment’s uniforms. [Von Mackensen had served in the regiment as a young officer during the 1870-1871 Franco-Prussian War. During that conflict he was awarded the 1870 Iron Cross 2nd Class]. The busby will make an amazing centerpiece for any collection, general or headdress.


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  • BADEN - PICKELHAUBE - RESERVE INFANTERIE OFFICER’S - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    BADEN – PICKELHAUBE – RESERVE INFANTERIE OFFICER’S

    SKU: 04-755

    $4,495.00

    BADEN – PICKELHAUBE – RESERVE INFANTERIE OFFICER’S

    The Grand Duchy of Baden is one of our favorite states for pickelhauben and kugelhelme, partially due to their handsome wappens that feature the Duchy’s emblematic griffin. Their gorgeous state’s kokarden also is spectacular, as we will detail further along in this description.
    Our offering today is a Baden Reserve Infanterie Officer’s spiked helmet. Its leather body is in exceptional condition, with a buttery-smooth surface. It is virtually flawless, which is amazing in a more than one-hundred-year-old leather helmet. All of this marvelous helmet’s furniture is gilt-toned, including the wappen, chin scales, officers’ stars, spike-base, pearl ring, spike, front and rear visor trim and its back strap. The only silver-toned piece is the Reserve Officer’s Cross that sits high on the Baden Griffin’s chest, displaying the motto “Mit Gott für Fürst und Vaterland” (With God for the First [their leader’s title] and the Fatherland). The wappen itself sports an extremely gorgeous, frosted and fire-gilded facade. It is absolutely amazing, ranking among the finest Baden wappens that I have encountered.

    The pickelhaube’s spike is removable. Both the state’s and the Reich’s kokarden are present. The Baden kokarde displays a style employed by Baden, Württemberg, Saxony, and Hesse Darmstadt, while the Reich’s kokarde’s follows the more commonly-used pattern employed by Prussia. Baden’s very elegant kokarde resembles a round fan that has been painted red and gold. The Reich’s kokarde is missing some paint. The helmet’s interior features a high-quality, gently-used, leather sweatband that is very close to mint condition. Its ribbed silk liner is rust-colored. It also is in mint condition, as I can find no tears, rips, or running that often plague silk liners. Peeking under the liner, we see that 100% of the original hardware is present AND it all matches. Needless to say, NO double holes appear in the spiked helmet’s front where the wappen is attached. A paper label is pasted inside the helmet’s front that indicates its size is 55 ½. This same information also appears on a small gilt button attached to the metal back strap’s end where it clasps the rear visor’s interior.
    If you are seeking to add a Baden Infanterie pickelhaube to your collection, you need look no further. This helmet will NEVER need to be upgraded. I am very excited about this pickelhaube and believe that you will feel the same way.


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  • PRUSSIA - PICKELHAUBE - NCO - GARDE-GRENADIER-REGIMENT OR GARDE-REGIMENT ZU FUß - PRIVATELY-PURCHASED NOT DEPOT-ISSUED - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – PICKELHAUBE – NCO – GARDE-GRENADIER-REGIMENT OR GARDE-REGIMENT ZU FUß – PRIVATELY-PURCHASED NOT DEPOT-ISSUED

    SKU: 04-743

    $2,995.00

    PRUSSIAN – PICKELHAUBE – NCO – GARDE-GRENADIER-REGIMENT OR GARDE-REGIMENT ZU FUß – PRIVATELY-PURCHASED NOT DEPOT-ISSUED.

    This is a high-quality, privately-purchased NCO’S pickelhaube from either a Garde-Grenadier or Garde zu Fuß-Regiment, which include the regiments listed below.

    2. Garde-Regiment zu Fuß
    Kaiser Alexander Grade-Grenadier-Regiment Nr 1
    Kaiser Franz Garde-Grenadier-Regiment Nr 2
    Königin Elisabeth Garde-Grenadier-Regiment Nr 3
    Königin Augusta Garde-Grenadier-Regiment 4
    Garde-Grenadier-Regiment Nr 5

    As you can see, these are very elite regiments. Officers’ examples for these regiments can be quite expensive (we currently have one lovely example available for purchase). As a rule, I do not offer enlisted men/NCO’s pickelhauben unless they come from smaller states. I am quite pleased, however, to share this fine helmet with you.
    The helmet’s leather body is exceptional, or even beyond that. It is smooth and amazingly clean and clear, not marred by damage due to age or other circumstances. Its condition far exceeds what we often see on officers’ helmets. The rear visor shows signs of shrinkage, which is common in a one-hundred-plus year-old helmet’s leather body.

    The helmet’s furniture presents a lovely Garde wappen. Its brass eagle features ultra-wide, outspread wings. They are so wide, in fact, that each wingtip extends to the respective Reich’s and state’s kokarden center points. A silver Garde Star provides a fine contrast against the brass eagle’s chest. The remaining furniture is also brass, including the flat chin scales (remember, Infanterie pickelhauben should have flat rather than convex chin scales), the cruciform, the detachable spike, as well as the front and back visors’ trim. The obverse’s final details are the correct NCO’s state’s and Reich’s kokarden.
    The helmet’s interior is every bit as clean inside as it is outside. The enlisted/NCO style leather liner is magnificent. Every tongue is in place and an extra-long sizing thong is present. Under the leather liner, ALL of the original hardware is present, with NO double holes. No depot marks show on the rear visor, confirming its status as a privately-purchased helmet rather than an army depot issue. This NCO had a lot of pride in his regiment. He took excellent care of his gear, as evidenced by this helmet’s condition.
    The helmet is in amazing condition. If you want something a bit different for your collection, this will fill the bill. It would also make a fine companion piece to an officer’s helmet. [If you have an interest in the helmet, and our equally well conditioned officer’s example on offer, we can offer you a very attractive price on the pair].

    At Der Rittmeister Militaria, we strive to bring you the best in spiked helmets, or pickelhauben (plural for pickelhaube), one of Imperial German Militaria’s most interesting areas for collecting. While ORIGINALITY and AUTHENTICITY are of prime importance, please do not forget Der Rittmeister’s commitment to CONDITION and QUALITY. In this regard, we take special pride in offering you spiked helmets whose condition is at least well above average, if not excellent. I examine hundreds of pickelhauben to find the very few that fulfill all four criteria mentioned above. Upon receiving their new treasure, collectors who have purchased one of our pickelhauben often exclaim that their helmet looks even better than the photos we had displayed on our website. [We do use a high-quality digital camera to photograph our items and upgrade cameras every two years, but enough with the Der Rittmeister Militaria commercial]! Just remember, dear friends, Der Rittmeister’s Four Critical Criteria for collecting pickelhauben: ORIGINALITY, AUTHENTICITY, CONDITION, and QUALITY.
    The pickelhaube was designed in 1842 by Prussia’s König Frederick William IV for use in the Prussian Infanterie. [The Prussian king might have copied similar helmets adopted by Russia’s military during the same time period. It is not clear whether this was a case of imitation, parallel invention, or if both were based on Napoleonic cuirassiers’ helmets]. The helmet style was soon adopted by Germany’s other states and kingdoms during the mid-19th Century, with Bavaria being the final principality to implement it in 1886. [The Bavarians always seemed to go their own way! Interestingly, Bavaria was also the last to authorize kugelhelme for their Artillerie Regiments in 1913]. In addition to Russia, spiked helmets were adopted by many Latin American countries. They were even worn by the USA’s armed forces from the 1880’s until around 1910.
    We also remind all pickelhaube enthusiasts about our good friend Jim Turinetti’s excellent reference books on the subject (click here to see DRM’s Imperial German Headdress Page Nr 3), available as spiral-bound paperbacks or on CD. You cannot go wrong with them. I can safely state that Jim is the USA’s foremost authority on pickelhauben. Please support him. Dollar for dollar, these books are the best on the market, and reward you with an immeasurable return in value! [Remember, Jim receives any and ALL the profits from his works, Der Rittmeister Militaria just promotes them to help educate the collecting community].


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  • TRENCH ART - ARTILLERY SHELL VASE - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    TRENCH ART – ARTILLERY SHELL VASE

    SKU: 10-884

    $75.00

    TRENCH ART – ARTILLERY SHELL VASE.

    Trench art was a unique art form that emerged during WW I. While it is true that some examples of trench art were produced during the Napoleonic Wars on a very limited basis, but they hardly approached the scale of trench art pieces produced during the Great War.

    WW I trench art was produced by three basic groups: soldiers, sailors, and home front organizations. The first group was the soldiers at the front who gathered castoff military items that they refashioned into various artifacts. The second was wounded soldiers and sailors who also re purposed military castoffs as part of their recovery rehabilitation. The third group was POW’s who whiled away their hours in their prison camps. [A fourth category included Imperial German companies that fashioned bits and pieces of front line castoffs into patriotic jewelry such as pins and rings]. The shared theme among the first three groups was that its members all had time on their hands. Producing trench art was a means to keep busy, show their creativity, and turn discarded waste into beautiful objects de art that were sought-after back home. I find the endless creativity that was displayed fascinating.
    Today we are offering an artillery shell casing that has been converted into a useful vase. While I have offered some very elaborate examples of trench art shell casings in the past, this is a far more simple example. The shell/vase stands 9” tall. Its diameter at the lip is 4,” while the diameter at the base is 3 ½.” The shell came from a 77mm (7.7cm) German Field Cannon, the most commonly-used of its type during WW I. The example was fabricated in March 1917 and displays numerous hallmarks on its base.
    The designs on the shell casing’s side were applied with a small hammer. The vase’s upper band features approximately ten inverted triangles circling its circumference. Below this band is an oval area that measures 3” x 11 ½.” Again, a hammered, dimpled design encircles the vase. The shell casing’s top features scalloping around the entire rim.
    This reasonably-priced vase would look lovely displaying an arrangement of flowers anywhere in your home.


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  • TRENCH ART - ARTILLERY SHELL VASE - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    TRENCH ART – ARTILLERY SHELL VASE

    SKU: 10-885

    $75.00

    TRENCH ART – ARTILLERY SHELL VASE.

    Trench art was a unique art form that emerged during WW I. While it is true that some examples of trench art were produced during the Napoleonic Wars on a very limited basis, but they hardly approached the scale of trench art pieces produced during the Great War.
    WW I trench art was produced by three basic groups: soldiers, sailors, and home front organizations. The first group was the soldiers at the front who gathered castoff military items that they refashioned into various artifacts. The second was wounded soldiers and sailors who also re purposed military castoffs as part of their recovery rehabilitation. The third group was POW’s who whiled away their hours in their prison camps. [A fourth category included Imperial German companies that fashioned bits and pieces of front line castoffs into patriotic jewelry such as pins and rings]. The shared theme among the first three groups was that its members all had time on their hands. Producing trench art was a means to keep busy, show their creativity, and turn discarded waste into beautiful objects de art that were sought-after back home. I find the endless creativity that was displayed fascinating.

    Today we are offering an artillery shell casing that has been converted into a useful vase. While I have offered some very elaborate examples of trench art shell casings in the past, this is a far more simple example. The shell/vase stands 9” tall. Its diameter at the lip is 4,” while the diameter at the base is 3 ½.” The shell came from a 77mm (7.7cm) German Field Cannon, the most commonly-used of its type during WW I. The example was fabricated in July 1917 and displays numerous hallmarks on the base.
    The designs on the shell casing’s side were applied with a small hammer. The vase’s upper band features approximately ten inverted triangles circling its circumference. Below this band is an oval area that measures 3” x 11 ½.” Again, a hammered, dimpled design encircles the vase. The shell casing’s top features scalloping around the entire rim.
    This reasonably-priced vase would look lovely displaying an arrangement of flowers anywhere in your home.


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  • BOOK - THE GERMAN EMPEROR AS SHOWN IN HIS PUBLIC UTTERANCES BY CHRISTIAN GAUSS - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    BOOK – THE GERMAN EMPEROR AS SHOWN IN HIS PUBLIC UTTERANCES BY CHRISTIAN GAUSS

    SKU: 12-826 XES

    $30.00

    BOOK – THE GERMAN EMPEROR AS SHOWN IN HIS PUBLIC UTTERANCES BY CHRISTIAN GAUSS.

    This is a consignment item. The hardbacked book was published in 1915 by a Princeton University professor. It was published very early in WW I as an attempt to educate and/or create propaganda. [You, the reader, will need to decide which is which]! The book covers Kaiser Wilhelm II’s speeches from 1889 into early 1914. The last speech, in June 1914, was at Hamburg and echoes the famous quote made by the Iron Chancellor, Otto von Bismarck, at the Reichstag on 6 February 1888: “We Germans fear God, but nothing else in the world.” [At that time Wilhelm II was still a Prinz (not yet the Kronprinz), as Wilhelm I did not die until March 1888. Wilhelm’s father, Friedrich III then ruled Germany for a mere ninety nine days. Then, in June 1888, Wilhelm II took to Germany’s throne, the last of his line to do so]. Von Bismarck’s quote echoed forward through time until the German Empire fell in 1918.
    The book contains more than 300 pages. Two images of Kaiser Wilhelm II, which measure 4 ½” x 7 ½,” appear at the book’s end. The book’s binding is in poor condition, so care should be taken when handling and/or reading it. It contains some great material and insight into Wilhelm II’s character.


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  • BOOK - PRINCIPLES OF PRUSSIAN ADMINISTRATION BY HERMAN GERLACH JAMES, PHD AUTOGRAPHED BY THE AUTHOR - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    BOOK – PRINCIPLES OF PRUSSIAN ADMINISTRATION BY HERMAN GERLACH JAMES, PHD AUTOGRAPHED BY THE AUTHOR

    SKU: 12-827 XES

    $50.00

    BOOK – PRINCIPLES OF PRUSSIAN ADMINISTRATION BY HERMAN GERLACH JAMES, PHD AUTOGRAPHED BY THE AUTHOR.

    This is a consignment item. The hardbacked book was first published by a professor at the University of Texas in February 1913. The book deals with the scope of Prussia’s government and administration. It speaks of the role of the civil government and the monarchy in Germany.
    The book is nearly 300 pages in length and was an attempt to inform Americans about the ways in which the Prussian government operated. It was published about four years before the U.S. entered WW I with the Allies against Germany in 1917. The book is autographed in black ink by the author on its fly leaf. The dedication dates from March 1913, a month after the book was published. The book’s overall condition is good, with sturdy binding. The book displays a stamp indicating that it once belonged to Alabama’s Auburn University.


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  • BOOK -  LIBERTY’S VICTORIOUS CONFLICT A PHOTOGRAPHIC HISTORY OF THE WORLD WAR - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    BOOK –  LIBERTY’S VICTORIOUS CONFLICT A PHOTOGRAPHIC HISTORY OF THE WORLD WAR

    SKU: 12-829 XES

    $50.00

    BOOK –  LIBERTY’S VICTORIOUS CONFLICT A PHOTOGRAPHIC HISTORY OF THE WORLD WAR.

    This is a consignment item. The book was published in 1918, shortly after WW I’s end. It is a large format book that measures 11” x 14,” and was published in Chicago. It is mostly from the American perspective. The book contains two very helpful pages at its front that serve as a time-line for the Great War from 1914 through 1918. While it concentrates on American contributions from 1917 1918, it also supplies details about the Allies. It shows many of WW I’s innovations, including airplanes, submarines, and the tank. I have not counted the photographs (which are of a variety of sizes), but they easily number more than one hundred.


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  • CIGARETTE CARD ALBUM - WELTKRIEG 1914 /1918 - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    CIGARETTE CARD ALBUM – WELTKRIEG 1914 /1918

    SKU: 12-830 XES

    $100.00

    CIGARETTE CARD ALBUM – WELTKRIEG 1914 /1918

    This is a consignment item. It is one of the very popular cigarette card albums that were published in Imperial Germany. It was common for cigarette manufacturers to include a cigarette card with a pack of cigarettes as a premium. Many people had an interest in collecting the entire series of cards, so complete albums were offered to the public. Generally, an interesting story about the subject accompanied the cards.
    This album is quite different in that the cigarette cards were far larger than those we normally see. It contains eighty five cards that measure 3 ½” x 4 ½.” The album itself measures 10” x 11 ½.” Its cover displays the legend “Weltkrieg 1914 1918,” and an oversized Iron Cross. The war’s time frames and theaters are featured throughout the album. It includes sections concerning von Hindenburg, von Mackensen, and Ludendorff. On the naval side we find Graf Spee, and Admiral Scheer, who commanded the High Seas Fleet at the Battle of Jutland and later headed the Kaiserliche Marine. Sections are also featured on the U Boot ace Otto Weddigen, and Generalmajor von Lettow Vorbeck, the hero of East Africa who did not surrender until after WW I had ended.

    All cards are in place, along with some interesting maps and diagrams at the back. [One final factoid: when this album was published it cost .90 Reichs Marks]!


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  • SHIP’S MESSENGER LAMP - KAISERLICHE MARINE - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    SHIP’S MESSENGER LAMP – KAISERLICHE MARINE

    SKU: 13-1048 XKA

    $1,995.00

    SHIP’S MESSENGER LAMP – KAISERLICHE MARINE.

    This is a consignment item. Here is one of the more interesting items for you naval enthusiasts, a messenger lamp from aboard a Kaiserliche Marine ship. Officially christened a Petroleum Schiffslampe (Petroleum Ship’s Lamp), Kaiserliche Marine, Messing mit Glas (Brass with Glass), it dates from approximately 1900. It is made of a combination of brass and glass. The handle at its top swings up and down, allowing it to be carried by hand. The lamp’s body is constructed of the highest-quality brass, as was required aboard a navy ship (brass being preferred, since it resists rusting). With the handle extended the lamp stands an impressive 22” (55.88 cm) tall. The circumference at the widest point measures 21 ” (53.34 cm). A vertical bracket/handle at its side, which measures 12”tall (30.48 cm), allowed the lamp to be attached to a bulkhead in a fixed position via a rivet or other metal attachment. The lamp weighs approximately 5 lbs. and 8 ounces, overall. [NOTE: I have seen only one similar lamp, but it was considerably smaller, standing 30 cm tall instead of this lamp’s impressive 55.88 cm].
    As previously mentioned, the lamp used a petroleum-based fuel. Several mesh areas built into the brass allowed the heat and gas to escape. A brass cage encases a clear white glass section from which the gas flame’s light was emitted. As a matter of fact, it comes with a second glass section in case its original glass cover is shattered.
    How do we know that this item was actually from a Kaiserliche Marine vessel? We return to the previously mentioned long vertical bracket/handle attached to its side. The three engraved lines that appear on the handle’s interior side (listed below) attest to that fact.

    Line 1: “M” beneath a Kaiser Crown, the symbol for Kaiserliche Marine.
    Line 2: An “AW” or “AN” followed by a “W.”
    Line 3: The numeral “12.”

    These engravings are quite clear, as you will note from the photographs that accompany this description. This is a most impressive display item. [Due to its size and weight, extra shipping charges will be necessary].


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  • PRUSSIA - TUNIC - MAJOR’S - REGIMENT der GARDES du CORPS - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – TUNIC – MAJOR’S – REGIMENT der GARDES du CORPS

    SKU: 15-706 XAS

    $3,495.00

    PRUSSIA – TUNIC – MAJOR’S – REGIMENT der GARDES du CORPS.

    This is a consignment item. The Regiment der Gardes du Corps (GdC) was the most elite of all of the Prussian cavalry regiments. It was garrisoned in Potsdam which is today considered a suburb of Berlin. Back in the day by horse or carriage it was a good half day’s ride. Most of the very elite Garde Regiments were based in Potsdam rather than Berlin. Like all Garde Regiments, it was a part of the Garde Korps and was assigned to the 1. Garde Division. It should also be noted that it was founded in 1740 during the reign of the Great Prussian King, Frederick the Great.

    The GdC was a Küraßier Regiment. This type of regiment was considered heavy cavalry as they wore a küraß (breastplate). The latter protected the wearer from sword and (to a lesser extent) lance slashes. However, they offered little protection against the rifle and pistol shots that rapidly became more common AFTER the regiment’s foundation. In addition, the men of the regiment wore a metal helmet that also offered greater protection against sword slashes. The GdC’s helmet also offered an extended rear visor (called a “lobster tail”) that afforded the neck extra protection.
    After 1815’s conclusion of the Napoleonic Wars, it was realized that the role of heavy cavalry was changing and lighter, nimbler cavalry units were in order. After 1815, no further Küraßier Regiments were formed. Indeed, with the exception of one Prussian Husaren Regiment that was raised in 1866, no expansions of the cavalry occurred after 1815. [Dragoner, Ulanen, and Jäger zu Pferde Regiments were formed instead]. After the 1870 1871 Franco Prussian War’s conclusion, the powers-that-be realized that the days of cavalry charges were nearing an end. WW I’s early days saw the Kavallerie perform some limited scouting, but as trench warfare set in, their horses were either sent home or used by artillery transport units. Most military supplies were moved by wagon rather than trucks once they arrived by train from Germany.
    Before and during WW I, the GdC was the most visible among the troops surrounding Kaiser Wilhelm II during parades at home and in the field. This was primarily due to the gold toned helmets topped by massive Hohenzollern Eagles that they wore during parades. It was common to see the Kaiser reviewing his troops while a GdC member (adorned with his eagle topped helmet) stood behind him brandishing the Kaiser Standarte (Standard/Banner).
    The tunics worn by the GdC (known as Kollers) were just as impressive as their parade helmets. Since the GdC was a Küraßier Regiment, these tunics sported totally different collars that were shared only by Jäger zu Pferde Regiments. [PLEASE NOTE: Jäger zu Pferde Regiments also wore the same helmet style. The reason for this remains unknown to me, since all of these regiments were created in the early 20th Century. I imagine it was a matter of style and appearance].

    The white tunic is constructed from the highest quality wool available. Its rounded silver bullion collar (with some red highlights) extends further down the center of both tunic halves. One of the tunic’s most interesting features is that it displays NO exposed buttons or buttonholes. Instead, the tunic is secured with a system of hooks and eyes alternating down its interior’s two halves. When these are secured, a very clean and smooth appearance is presented. The tunic’s cuffs display a combination of the silver bullion tape AND two silver bullion litzen, again with red highlights. A large silver button adorns the silver bullion litzen.
    The Major’s shoulder boards are of the slip on variety and display a series of silver bullion “ropes” adorned with the black chevrons that confirm them as Prussian. They sport dual layers of trim directly below the obverse. The layer closest to the obverse is red, with another white layer extending out a bit directly beneath it. A small silver toned button secures each shoulder board to the tunic’s shoulders. Since this officer was a Major, we know him to be a senior regiment member, either a Bataillon Kommandeur (one of three), or serving on the Regimental Kommandeur’s staff as his deputy. [In such a prestigious regiment, this chap was a big deal]!
    His status as a senior officer is further confirmed by the tunic’s sewn in award loops. A massive set of five different horizontal loops appears on its upper left breast. The latter extend from the bullion tape near the tunic’s center almost to the red trim near the armpit and measure a whopping 6 ½” in width. Clearly, this officer had been awarded a significant number of decorations. Based on the loops’ size, I would not be surprised if he had nearly ten ribbons on his bar! The tunic also boasts a total of three significant, vertically sewn in loop sets. Two sets of loops are about 3 ½” in apart on a horizontal plane. Below and centered between those first two pairs is another that measures 1 ¼” in length. Again, since the officer was a Major with a substantial number of awards on his ribbon bar, it is quite probable that at least two of the loop sets are for breast stars. I estimate that the tunic dates from 1895 to around 1910. If so, one of the pairs could have been for an 1870 Iron Cross 1st Class. [Again, this is a leap on my part. If he was NOT awarded the 1870 EK 1, then possibly all the loop sets were for breast stars. If any of you good readers see other possibilities, I would appreciate hearing from you]!
    The tunic’s reverse sports red piping that extends from its shoulders down to its skirt. A vent on the skirt’s reverse provides an opening for more comfortable seating when riding a horse. Each skirt flap displays three large, silver toned buttons. The tunic’s exterior exhibits several areas with moth nips and moth blooms, which are scattered on about the obverse, reverse, arms, and so on.

    The tunic’s interior presents a fine, white, silk liner. It is complete, although it shows some minor separation at the top near its wool collar. A number, “557 2,” has been penned onto the collar. I am going to make an assumption that this is either a museum’s or a private collection’s catalog number.
    Here is an opportunity to obtain a high quality, rare tunic from what is arguably Germany’s most elite regiment. You can be sure that the original owner of the tunic was of either royal or noble birth. One did NOT get to be a Major of any Imperial German Regiment without being from Germany’s elite, particularly a regiment that had so much exposure to Kaiser Wilhelm II! If you have a GdC helmet or visor cap, this would help create an unbelievable display on a mannequin.


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  • SAXONY - SHOULDER BOARDS -  GENERALFELDMARSCHALL’S -KING FRIEDRICH AUGUST III - INFANTERIE-REGIMENT NR 101 - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    SAXONY – SHOULDER BOARDS –  GENERALFELDMARSCHALL’S -KING FRIEDRICH AUGUST III – INFANTERIE-REGIMENT NR 101

    SKU: 20-346

    $7,495.00

    SAXONY – SHOULDER BOARDS –  GENERALFELDMARSCHALL’S -KING FRIEDRICH AUGUST III – INFANTERIE-REGIMENT NR 101.

    König Friedrich August III (1865-1932) was the final King of Saxony, one of the four Imperial German Kingdoms. Saxony’s royal house was the House of Wettin. In 1877 Friedrich August, then twelve, was enlisted as a Leutnant in the Saxon Army. He advanced through the various levels of rank and military responsibility, becoming appointed Generalmajor (1894), then Generalleutnant (1898), then General der Infanterie (1902). Between 1902 and 1904, Friedrich August assumed command of the Saxon XII. Armeekorps. He became Saxony’s King that same year (1904), then managed to achieve the rank of Generaloberst while he was King.
    Ultimately, he was promoted to Generalfeldmarschall on 9 September 1912. Today we are offering a pair of exceedingly-rare Infanterie-Regiment Nr 101 shoulder boards that were King Friedrich August III’s personal property. [Kaiser Wilhelm II was the unit’s Regimental Chef. Regimental Chef was an honorary position, with the Chef serving as the regiment’s honorary Oberst. The regiment also had a true Oberst who led the regiment on a daily basis]. As the head of the Saxon state, King Friedrich August III also wore the regiment’s uniform on special occasions.

    Königlich Sächsisches 2. Grenadier-Regiment Nr 101, Kaiser Wilhelm, König von Preußen (as it was officially known)was one of the Saxon Army’s elite regiments. Garrisoned in the capital city of Dresden, it was founded in 1670. The regiment was assigned to the Saxon XII. Armeekorps. [Please Note: it was named for Kaiser Wilhelm I, Kaiser Wilhelm II’s grandfather]. The shoulder boards measure 2 ½” x 4.” Each shoulder board features alternating rows of gold and silver bullion ropes. The silver bullion displays green chevrons indicative of a Saxon Regiment. The obverse is decorated with three metal devices, as well as a plain gold button that allowed the shoulder board to be slipped onto a tunic. A brass crown appears at the top, just below the button. It is followed by Kaiser Wilhelm I’s brass royal cypher. Directly below the cypher is a gorgeous pair of crossed silver Generalfeldmarschall’s batons. The last are highly-detailed and very special, indicating the rank Friedrich August III achieved in 1912.
    The shoulder board’s reverse displays a white felt backing, a further indication of his royal status. It also confirms it as the correct shoulder board for Königlich Sächsisches 2. Grenadier-Regiment Nr 101, Kaiser Wilhelm, König von Preußen. Also present are the slip-on attachments that enabled the boards to be removed and reinstalled onto the tunic in a matter of moments.
    Shoulder boards for royalty have seen a sharp spike in prices during the last few years. Shoulder boards for any of the royals who were also Generalfeldmarschalls is surely a plus. It is common to see Wilhelm II shoulder boards to fetch $15,000.00. It should also be noted that Friedrich August III shoulder boards are seen in far fewer numbers than those of Wilhelm II. Having said that, the shoulder boards represent a fine value.

    These gorgeous shoulder boards were previously owned by and featured in Michael A. Kelso’s recently released reference book Under Arms for the Kaiser: Shoulder Insignia of the German Army’s Regiments 1871 1918 on page 522. Having a piece of militaria that has been featured in a reference book (particularly one as fine as this) is a real plus, and seriously increases their value. We strongly recommend that you acquire this book while you can. The first edition is nearly sold out. As is the case with any reference book, a second edition is NOT guaranteed. Mike, who is a longtime friend, put his heart and soul into this book to help his fellow collectors. PLEASE support him and our other recommended authors: Jim Turinetti with his superb books on Imperial German headdresses, and Jeff Judge, who recently produced the first book of a three volume set about the Kaiserliche Marine. These men have poured a lot of sweat and tears into their works, all of which are worthy of inclusion in your library.


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  • STAMP - GERMAN COLONIAL - GERMAN EAST AFRICA - 2 ½ HELLER - POSTMARKED DAR ES SALAAM - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    STAMP – GERMAN COLONIAL – GERMAN EAST AFRICA – 2 ½ HELLER – POSTMARKED DAR ES SALAAM

    SKU: 22-108

    $10.00

    STAMP – GERMAN COLONIAL – GERMAN EAST AFRICA – 2 ½ HELLER – POSTMARKED DAR ES SALAAM.

    This is a canceled postage stamp from German East Africa (Deutsche Ostafrika), the largest of Germany’s colonies outside of China. The capital of German East Africa was Dar es Salaam. This particular stamp is in the amount of 2 ½ Hellers. The stamp has been cut from the envelope or postcard on which it was originally mailed.
    The stamp’s theme is Kaiser Wilhelm II’s royal yacht, the S.M.Y. Hohenzollern. The Kaiser spent a great deal of time on his yacht. Its opulence and strength projected the German Empire’s power. The stamp is brown in color.


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  • STAMP - GERMAN COLONIAL - GERMAN EAST AFRICA - 4 HELLER - POSTMARKED DAR ES SALAAM - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    STAMP – GERMAN COLONIAL – GERMAN EAST AFRICA – 4 HELLER – POSTMARKED DAR ES SALAAM

    SKU: 22-109

    $10.00

    STAMP – GERMAN COLONIAL – GERMAN EAST AFRICA – 4 HELLER – POSTMARKED DAR ES SALAAM.

    This is a canceled postage stamp from German East Africa (Deutsche Ostafrika), the largest of Germany’s colonies outside of China. The capital of German East Africa was Dar es Salaam. This particular stamp is in the amount of 4 Hellers. The stamp shows cancellation in Dar es Salaam.
    The stamp’s theme is Kaiser Wilhelm II’s royal yacht, the S.M.Y. Hohenzollern. The Kaiser spent a great deal of time on his yacht. Its opulence and strength projected the German Empire’s power. The stamp is green in color.


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  • STAMP - GERMAN COLONIAL - GERMAN EAST AFRICA - 7 ½ HELLER - POSTMARKED MUHESA - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    STAMP – GERMAN COLONIAL – GERMAN EAST AFRICA – 7 ½ HELLER – POSTMARKED MUHESA

    SKU: 22-110

    $10.00

    STAMP – GERMAN COLONIAL – GERMAN EAST AFRICA – 7 ½ HELLER – POSTMARKED MUHESA.

    This is a canceled postage stamp from German East Africa (Deutsche Ostafrika), the largest of Germany’s colonies outside of China. The capital of German East Africa was Dar es Salaam. This particular stamp is in the amount of 7 ½ Hellers. The stamp shows cancellation in Muhesa (now Muheza).
    The stamp’s theme is Kaiser Wilhelm II’s royal yacht, the S.M.Y. Hohenzollern. The Kaiser spent a great deal of time on his yacht. Its opulence and strength projected the German Empire’s power. The stamp is red in color.


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  • STAMP - GERMAN COLONIAL - GERMAN EAST AFRICA - 15 HELLER - POSTMARKED TANGA - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    STAMP – GERMAN COLONIAL – GERMAN EAST AFRICA – 15 HELLER – POSTMARKED TANGA

    SKU: 22-111

    $10.00

    STAMP – GERMAN COLONIAL – GERMAN EAST AFRICA – 15 HELLER – POSTMARKED TANGA.

    This is a canceled postage stamp from German East Africa (Deutsche Ostafrika), the largest of Germany’s colonies outside of China. The capital of German East Africa was Dar es Salaam. This particular stamp is in the amount of 15 Hellers. The stamp shows cancellation in Tanga.
    The stamp’s theme is Kaiser Wilhelm II’s royal yacht, the S.M.Y. Hohenzollern. The Kaiser spent a great deal of time on his yacht. Its opulence and strength projected the German Empire’s power. The stamp is blue in color.


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  • STAMP - GERMAN COLONIAL -  GERMAN EAST AFRICA - 20 HELLER - POSTMARKED LOSSA - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    STAMP – GERMAN COLONIAL –  GERMAN EAST AFRICA – 20 HELLER – POSTMARKED LOSSA

    SKU: 22-112

    $10.00

    STAMP – GERMAN COLONIAL –  GERMAN EAST AFRICA – 20 HELLER – POSTMARKED LOSSA.

    his is a cancelled postage stamp from German East Africa ( Deutsche Ostafrika). This was the largest of the German colonies outside of China. The capital of German East Africa was Dar es Salaam. This particular stamp is in the amount of 20 Hellers. The stamp shows cancellation in Lossa.
    The stamp’s theme is Kaiser Wilhelm II’s royal yacht, the S.M.Y. Hohenzollern. The Kaiser spent a great deal of time on his yacht. Its opulence and strength projected the German Empire’s power. The stamp is yellow in color.


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  • STAMP - GERMAN COLONIAL  - GERMAN EAST AFRICA - 30 HELLER - POSTMARKED DAR ES SALAAM - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    STAMP – GERMAN COLONIAL  – GERMAN EAST AFRICA – 30 HELLER – POSTMARKED DAR ES SALAAM

    SKU: 22-113

    $10.00

    STAMP – GERMAN COLONIAL  – GERMAN EAST AFRICA – 30 HELLER – POSTMARKED DAR ES SALAAM.

    This is a cancelled postage stamp from German East Africa ( Deutsche Ostafrika). This was the largest of the German colonies outside of China. The capital of German East Africa was Dar es Salaam. This particular stamp is in the amount of 30 Hellers. The stamp shows cancellation in Dar es Salaam.
    The stamp’s theme is Kaiser Wilhelm II’s royal yacht, the S.M.Y. Hohenzollern. The Kaiser spent a great deal of time on his yacht. Its opulence and strength projected the German Empire’s power. The stamp is red in color. $10.00

    If you purchase the set of six Deutsche Ost Afrika postage stamps, which total $60.00 ($10.00 each), then we can offer them to you for $50.00!


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  • PRUSSIA - SHOULDER BOARDS - MAJOR'S -1. GARDE-REGIMENT ZU FUß  M-1915 - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – SHOULDER BOARDS – MAJOR’S -1. GARDE-REGIMENT ZU FUß  M-1915

    SKU: 23-511

    $695.00

    PRUSSIA – SHOULDER BOARDS – MAJOR’S -1. GARDE-REGIMENT ZU FUß  M-1915.

    These shoulder boards come from the MOST elite of all Imperial German Infanterie Regiments, the 1. Garde-Regiment zu Fuß, which was founded in 1688. It was garrisoned in Potsdam, along with the Prussian Army’s most elite regiments. Like all Garde-Regiments, it was assigned to the Garde-Korps AND the 1. Garde-Division. A Major from this regiment was either a Bataillon Kommandeur or on the Regimental staff as the Regimental Kommandeur’s deputy.
    These M-1915 shoulder boards were worn on a feldgrau tunic. They measure 1 ¾” x 4.” The subdued-silver, rope-like surface sports alternating rows of black and white chevrons that confirm its status as a Prussian Regiment. The silver bullion extends out slightly past the shoulder boards’ edges. This silver trim is mounted on a white underlay that serves as the shoulder boards’ reverse cover. Feldgrau straps are attached to the white material, allowing the shoulder boards to slip onto a tunic.
    The shoulder boards are in excellent condition and would make a fine addition to any collection.


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  • PRUSSIA - SHOULDER BOARDS - MAJOR'S - FOUL WEATHER/CAMOUFLAGED RESERVE INFANTERIE REGIMENT NR 2 M-1888. - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – SHOULDER BOARDS – MAJOR’S – FOUL WEATHER/CAMOUFLAGED RESERVE INFANTERIE REGIMENT NR 2 M-1888.

    SKU: 23-512

    $495.00

    PRUSSIA – SHOULDER BOARDS – MAJOR’S – FOUL WEATHER/CAMOUFLAGED RESERVE INFANTERIE REGIMENT NR 2 M-1888.

    This is one of the most interesting pairs of shoulder boards that I have ever offered you. If I said they were rare, that would be an understatement! To begin, they are the M 1888 model. What makes them so special is that each is housed within a foul weather/camouflaged COVER. [You will remember that virtually all forms of Imperial German Headdress (pickelhauben, kugelhelme, etc.) had canvas covers that served to protect them helmet from foul weather AND provided as camouflage. Beginning in 1915, all shoulder boards placed into service were required to display subdued cloth exteriors. In many cases, they also sported subdued rank pips, subdued regimental designations, and even subdued royal cyphers]. These foul weather shoulder board covers are constructed of light linen or canvas. They have been stitched into place, so (for obvious reasons) we will not remove them. [We also urge their future owner to leave the covers in place]. Through the covers we can see and feel the “2″ that stands for Reserve Infanterie Regiment Nr 2. I do NOT feel any officer’s pips, but from the feel of the bullion underneath the cover, I believe them to be for a Major.
    The shoulder boards have a slightly curved shape that proves they were mounted onto a tunic. If we look at their reverse, we can see the cotton thread stitching that keeps the covers in place. Protruding through the cover is a white strap that served as the mounting point for the slip-on shoulder board. [This provides an additional clue that the shoulder boards are for a Major rather than a Leutnant. Junior officers tended to have their shoulder boards sewn into their tunics]. We can also see a bit of the white underlay if we peek under the cover.

    This is a definite first for Der Rittmeister Militaria! These gorgeous shoulder boards were previously owned by and featured in Michael A. Kelso’s recently released reference book Under Arms for the Kaiser: Shoulder Insignia of the German Army’s Regiments 1871 1918 on page 20. Having a piece of militaria that has been featured in a reference book (particularly one as fine as this) is a real plus, and seriously increases their value. We strongly recommend that you acquire this book while you can. The first edition is nearly sold out. As is the case with any reference book, a second edition is NOT guaranteed. Mike, who is a longtime friend, put his heart and soul into this book to help his fellow collectors. PLEASE support him and our other recommended authors: Jim Turinetti with his superb books on Imperial German headdresses, and Jeff Judge, who recently produced the first book of a three volume set about the Kaiserliche Marine. These men have poured a lot of sweat and tears into their works, all of which are worthy of inclusion in your library.


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  • Sale! PRINZENGROßE 1870 IRON CROSS 2ND CLASS WITH ORIGINAL PRESENTATION CASE - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRINZENGROßE 1870 IRON CROSS 2ND CLASS WITH ORIGINAL PRESENTATION CASE

    SKU: 09-1001 XLL

    $1,995.00 $1,550.00

    This is a consignment item and an absolute first-time offering for Der Rittmeister Militaria. The term “Prinzengroße” means prince-sized, and refers to medals that run from two-thirds to three-quarters the size of an original decoration (most often an Iron Cross or Pilot Badge). They came about from the desires of 18th and 19th Century noble and aristocratic fathers to outfit their young sons in exact replicas of their own military uniforms, complete with matching headgear, weapons and medals. Since these uniforms had to be tailored down to fit the youths’ smaller proportions, the accouterments had to follow suit. Eventually, the smaller decorations came to be favored by some of the adults, particularly from the Napoleonic era forward. By the time WW I arrived, Prinzengroße Iron Crosses had become quite a popular affectation among certain officers of noble and royal lineage.
    Today we are offering an incredibly rare Prinzengroße 1870 Iron Cross 2nd Class with its original presentation case. The Iron Cross measures 1 ½” x 1 ½.” Attached to the cross is the loop where the ribbon was placed when the medal was displayed on a tunic. While the Iron Cross itself is noteworthy, the presentation case is what makes it so rare. This is the FIRST time I have seen an Iron Cross 2nd Class’s case! I had seen the case for the 1st Class award occasionally, but NEVER before beheld one for the 2nd Class – until now. The leatherette case measures ¾” x 3″ x 3.” A gold trim design graces the exterior cover’s edges. Although its top has a blackish cast, the leatherette is a dark burgundy in color. Its interior reveals a burgundy silk-covered upper lid, while its bottom half is covered with dark burgundy velvet. The bottom half is fitted to hold the Iron Cross and its jump ring. Some scrapes and minor damage affect the upper half’s silk. The Iron Cross itself is in very fine condition. The paint on the obverse and reverse is excellent.
    The entire presentation is superb. It would make a fine addition to any Iron Cross collection.


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  • PRUSSIA - SHOULDER BOARD - OFFICER’S- FIRE BRIGADE - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – SHOULDER BOARD – OFFICER’S- FIRE BRIGADE

    SKU: 23-514

    $95.00

    PRUSSIA – SHOULDER BOARD – OFFICER’S- FIRE BRIGADE

    This is a single Fire Brigade Officer’s shoulder board that measures 1 ¾” x 4.” Its obverse is subdued in a similar pattern to an M 1915 Imperial German Army shoulder board and sports a subdued “F,” as well. The obverse also features white and black chevrons that confirm its Prussian origin. The board’s reverse has a feldgrau backing. The shoulder board is of the slip-on variety, and is in excellent condition.


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     BAVARIA – SHOULDER BOARD – INFANTERIE  – REGIMENT NR 16 LEUTNANT’S M 1915

    SKU: 23-515

    $95.00

    BAVARIA – SHOULDER BOARD – INFANTERIE  – REGIMENT NR 16 LEUTNANT’S M 1915.

    This is a single Infanterie Regiment Großherzog Ferdinand von Toskana Nr 16 Leutnant’s shoulder board. The regiment was raised in 1878 and garrisoned at Passau and Landshut. It was attached to the Bavarian I. Armeekorps. The Grand Duke Ferdinand of Tuscany was its Regimental Chef. It measures 1 ¾” x 4” and sports Bavaria’s blue and white chevrons against a feldgrau background. The button on the obverse displays an interesting dark patina, as does its subdued gilt Nr 16. Its underlay is light gray. It is in excellent condition.

    This wonderful shoulder board was previously owned by and featured in Michael A. Kelso’s recently released reference book Under Arms for the Kaiser: Shoulder Insignia of the German Army’s Regiments 1871 1918 on page 152. Having a piece of militaria that has been featured in a reference book (particularly one as fine as this) is a real plus, and seriously increases their value. We strongly recommend that you acquire this book while you can. The first edition is nearly sold out. As is the case with any reference book, a second edition is NOT guaranteed. Mike, who is a longtime friend, put his heart and soul into this book to help his fellow collectors. PLEASE support him and our other recommended authors: Jim Turinetti with his superb books on Imperial German headdresses, and Jeff Judge, who recently produced the first book of a three volume set about the Kaiserliche Marine. These men have poured a lot of sweat and tears into their works, all of which are worthy of inclusion in your library.


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  • PHOTOGRAPH - ORIGINAL BLACK AND WHITE - GERMAN TROOPS IN CHINA - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PHOTOGRAPH – ORIGINAL BLACK AND WHITE – GERMAN TROOPS IN CHINA

    SKU: 40-681

    $75.00

    PHOTOGRAPH – ORIGINAL BLACK AND WHITE – GERMAN TROOPS IN CHINA.

    This original black and white photograph measures 5” x 7 ¼.” It is mounted on a piece of paper (non period) that states “Shanghai Volunteer Corps, um 1902 Deutsche Kompagnie.” The photo shows a number of the volunteers either standing or seated on the ground. A small group of Chinese is seated to the troopers’ right. The men are attired in a wide variety of uniforms and headdresses. The uniforms vary in color from dark-blue to the lighter khaki that was worn in Imperial Germany’s colonies. Their headgear ranges from pickelhauben to mützen. Photos such as this are NOT easy-to-find. It provides a fine uniform study of German troops in China.


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  • CUSTOM-FRAMED NAVAL ADMIRAL PATENT & PHOTOGRAPH SIGNED BY PRESIDENT THEODORE ROOSEVELT. - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    CUSTOM-FRAMED NAVAL ADMIRAL PATENT & PHOTOGRAPH SIGNED BY PRESIDENT THEODORE ROOSEVELT.

    SKU: 19-283 XKG

    $4,995.00

    CUSTOM-FRAMED NAVAL ADMIRAL PATENT & PHOTOGRAPH SIGNED BY PRESIDENT THEODORE ROOSEVELT.

    Theodore Roosevelt is among the most revered United States Presidents. He served in many governmental roles, such as the Assistant Secretary of the Navy in 1897. When war broke out with Spain in 1898, he resigned and formed the Rough Riders in concert with Col. Leonard Wood. [Wood had won the USA’s Medal of Honor for action against the Apaches, and later served as the U.S. Army’s Chief of Staff]. The Rough Riders were (also known as the 1st U.S. Volunteer Cavalry or 1.U.S.V.). During the campaign Wood, its founding regimental commander, assumed the Brigade’s command after its assigned commander fell ill. Roosevelt then was promoted to colonel, took command of the regiment, then led it on the famous charge up San Juan Hill.

    [PLEASE NOTE the following side notes: the 10th U.S. Cavalry regiment was a flanking regiment consisting of African-American troopers under white officers. Also known as “Buffalo Soldiers,” they had fought Indians in the American West, with John J. (“Black Jack”) Pershing as one of their officers. Pershing later commanded U.S. Army troops in France during WW I. Theodore Roosevelt finally received the Medal of Honor in 2001 from President Bill Clinton for his actions during the Spanish-American War. Roosevelt had been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1906. Both his Medal of Honor and Nobel Peace Prize are enshrined in the White House’s “Roosevelt Room.” Finally, Roosevelt’s son, Brigadier General Theodore (Ted) Roosevelt, Jr. (1887-1944) received the Medal of Honor for his actions during the 6 June 1944 Invasion of Normandy. He went ashore with the first wave of American troops onto Utah Beach. Just thirty-six days later he died of a heart attack].
    Following the Spanish-American War’s end, Roosevelt returned to New York and became its Governor. He was elected Vice President to William McKinley when the latter ran for his second term. McKinley won the election but was assassinated in 1901, resulting in Roosevelt becoming the 26th U.S. President. He filled out the balance of McKinley’s second term, then won a full term of his own in 1904. Roosevelt was a reformer who pushed for change and became well known for his battles with monopolies formed by the U.S. banking, steel, and oil companies. He gained the nickname of “Monopoly Buster” for these hard-fought bitter battles.
    Roosevelt was also a proponent of making the U.S. a world power. At the time, the U.S. and Japan were both emerging powers of increasing influence when compared to Europe’s powerhouses Great Britain, and Germany, followed by France and Russia. Following the 1898 defeat of Spain, the U.S. had acquired foreign possessions in Asia. Roosevelt now implemented his “Big Stick” diplomacy in order to project the USA’s naval and political power. To that end, Roosevelt sent the U.S. Navy’s strongest ships (the “Big Stick”) on an extended worldwide cruise. The fleet (essentially the Atlantic Squadron), went on what turned into a fourteen-month, 43,000 nautical mile voyage, with some 14,000 American sailors aboard sixteen battleships. This became known as the Great White Fleet (since the ships had been painted in their normal white Summer livery with gilt, red, white, and blue accents at their bows). They were a pre-dreadnaught variety, but a powerful fleet nonetheless.
    The fleet was assembled in December 1907 at Hampton Roads, Virginia, then proceeded to the West Coast for refitting before launching the Asian portion of the journey. The original commander of the fleet was Rear Admiral Robley D. Evans. Due to ill health, he was replaced on the West Coast by Rear Admiral Charles S. Perry. The fleet was broken down into four Divisions of four ships each. The commander of the 3rd Division, Captain Nathan E. (Kossuth) Niles (1849-1913), sailed aboard the U.S.S. Louisiana (BB 19). [The U.S.S. Louisiana was one of the fleet’s more modern ships and part of the Connecticut Battleship Class (the U.S.S. Connecticut was the Great White Fleet’s flagship). The U.S.S. Louisiana was commissioned in 1906 and stayed active until 1920, when she was struck from the list of Navy ships. The Louisiana was scrapped in 1923].

    Since the U.S.S. Louisiana was one of the fleet’s modern ships, she was commanded by one of the Navy’s more experienced captains, the acting Commodore of the 3rd Division. Niles first joined the Union Army (yes, Army) during the Civil War in 1864 as a member of the 142nd Illinois Volunteer Infantry Regiment. The following year he was posted to the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland as a cadet. His naval career extended from 1865 until 1911, when he reached the mandatory age of retirement. He was buried at Arlington National cemetery following a fatal heart attack at a New York book store in 1913.
    The Great White Fleet’s cruise consisted of four legs. Earlier legs had included stops in the Caribbean, South America, Australia, and Japan. The cruise was intended to particularly impress Japan that the U.S. was a major world player with an impressive naval force that should be treated respectfully in the Pacific. The fleet made port at Yokohama where it was received hospitably. The fourth and final leg began at in Manila at the USA’s Subic Bay naval base. The fleet arrived on 7 November 1908, then departed on 1 December 1908. It made port in Ceylon, Egypt (exiting through the Suez Canal), then Gibraltar, before returning to Hampton Roads. During the stop in Manila, Niles received word that President Roosevelt had promoted him to Rear Admiral.
    It is THIS very promotion document (termed a “patent” in Imperial Germany) we are offering today. Such documents were extremely ornate during that period. The document was prepared on 12 November 1908. Niles’ actual promotion from Captain to Rear Admiral, however, occurred on 27 November 1908, just days before the fleet began its homeward leg. Thus, before the fleet’s departure on 1 December, Niles was confirmed to Flag rank. The actual document was waiting for him upon his return to Hampton Roads.

    The patent measures 15″ x 17.” It was folded at some point, and the fold remains visible. That said, the document is in excellent condition with no foxing, tears, rips, or etc. It is as handsome as it was more than one-hundred-years ago when it was issued and signed by Theodore Roosevelt. Roosevelt’s name appears atop the preprinted document in large letters. The document states that Niles was promoted to Rear Admiral effective 12 November 1908. Theodore Roosevelt’s very bold signature appears at the document’s bottom. The document is countersigned by the Secretary of the Navy, Victor H. Metcalf (1853-1936). He served in that capacity from 1906 through most of 1908. Metcalf officially retired effective 1 December 1908, so this was one of his final acts as Secretary of the Navy. The document is also countersigned by the Registrar of the United States. A blue foil seal bearing the U.S. Navy’s Coat-of-Arms appears on the document’s lower left side above the latter two signatures.
    Flanking the document is one of Theodore Roosevelt’s most famous photographs. He stands with his hand on a massive world globe exuding a world leader’s stern confidence. His policies placed the USA firmly on the path to political and military dominance. With the election of Theodore’s cousin, Franklin D. Roosevelt, in 1932, the U.S. continued its rise to the pinnacle of world leadership by the conclusion of WW II.
    [This document was framed for my personal enjoyment, so we spared no expense on the project. Due to the frame’s size and the level of materials that I requested, it cost me nearly $1,000 to complete. I wanted to pay homage to the man I consider one of the greatest American Presidents. I felt that such an incredible piece of American history deserved nothing but the BEST. We accomplished the feat at a premiere framer in our area after spending more than hour selecting every detail of what you see presented in the accompanying photographs].

    The overall frame measures a whopping 28″ x 35.” It requires a good-sized wall to properly display it! The frame’s molding is made of richly sumptuous burlwood instead of the gilt that often appears on high-end framing jobs. We wanted to evoke the ambiance one might have expected to find in the Captain’s cabin aboard the U.S.S. Louisiana. When properly polished, the burlwood simply glows the way a fine cigar does when lit and enjoyed.
    The promotion document and Teddy Roosevelt’s photograph are double-matted inside two separate windows within the frame. The double-matte’s top layer is made of pale beige suede material imprinted with a slightly darker brown pattern that mimics that on the burlwood frame. As previously noted, the promotion patent measures an impressive 15″ x 17.” Roosevelt’s photograph measures 7″ x 10.” Each item is once more outlined with more burlwood trimmed on all sides with thin strips of elegant, black wood. Often matting is just colored cardboard, but that simply would NOT do for this presentation. When he finished the project, the framer begged me to allow him to display it in his store!
    I have enjoyed this piece for many years. I was especially proud in 2008 when the 100th anniversary of the document’s signing came to pass. I am including some copies of photographs that will enhance the document’s history, which I have described below.

    1. A group photograph of Captain Niles and other senior officers from the cruise of the Great White Fleet in their full-dress uniforms, complete with their fore-and-aft caps (Zweispitzen).

    2. Another photograph of several Great White Fleet officers. They are posed in regular-duty uniforms and headdresses. It provides a closer look Captain Niles.

    3. A photograph of a large group of officers at a garden tea party, including Captain Niles, held in Tokyo in 1908. A Japanese officer is in the front row.

    4. A photograph of the U.S.S. Louisiana (BB19) as she appeared on the Great White Fleet’s cruise.

    5. A photograph of Secretary of the Navy Victor Metcalf, whose signature appears on the document along with those from Teddy Roosevelt and the U.S. Registrar.

    This magnificent presentation is ready for a new owner to enjoy. [Due to its size and weight, we will have it professionally packed in a custom carton to ensure its safe arrival to its new owner. Shipping costs will be quoted when you are ready to order].


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  • Sale!  SHOULDER BOARDS -NAVAL SEE-BATAILLON LEUTNANT’S. - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

     SHOULDER BOARDS -NAVAL SEE-BATAILLON LEUTNANT’S.

    SKU: 23-447 XLL

    $1,050.00 $575.00

    SHOULDER BOARDS -NAVAL SEE-BATAILLON LEUTNANT’S.

    This is a consignment item. The See-Bataillon was Imperial Germany’s version of the USA’s Marine Corps. Its members filled a number of roles: serving aboard large naval vessels, providing security at German embassies in foreign countries, etc. (e.g., the entire See-Bataillon Nr III was based in China to oversee Germany’s colonial interests). These shoulder boards are of the sewn-in variety and measure 1″ x 4.” Each displays a large Hohenzollern Crown on its obverse. Half-black/half-red-and-white chevrons are interwoven into the boards’ silver bullion, indicating the See-Bataillon’s status as a national entity (rather than coming from a particular state or kingdom). The reverse sports a white fabric backing.
    The shoulder boards are in excellent condition.


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  • Sale! IRON CROSS - 1ST CLASS - 1914 - VAULTED .800 SILVER HALLMARKED WITH GLASS-COVERED PRESENTATION CASE - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    IRON CROSS – 1ST CLASS – 1914 – VAULTED .800 SILVER HALLMARKED WITH GLASS-COVERED PRESENTATION CASE

    SKU: 09-1002

    $695.00 $500.00

    IRON CROSS – 1914 – 1ST CLASS – VAULTED .800 SILVER HALLMARKED WITH GLASS-COVERED PRESENTATION CASE.

    This is a consignment item. It is a very high quality 1914 Iron Cross 1st Class that is housed in one of the most unusual presentation cases I have ever seen. It is a privately-purchased example. It is vaulted, which (in my opinion) always makes for a special Iron Cross. The paint on the obverse shows some toning on the arms. I rate the paint at 95%. The frame has a fine patina on the silver, as evidenced by its mirrored finish on the reverse. Its magnetic center was made of iron before it was painted.
    Its reverse reveals a flat pin. It is also hallmarked for .800 silver near the catch. The reverse’s mirrored finish features black writing that appears to read either “7G/9 10Z” or “20/6/02.” It looks as though this was written in black ink of some sort, but rubbing my fingers across it does NOT make it disappear. I leave it to its new owner to decide whether to leave or remove it.
    The most interesting thing about the item is its presentation case. It measures 1″ x 2 ¾” x 2 ¾.” The upper lid is made of glass, which allows for the viewing of the cross WITH the case closed. The case’s exterior is made of red leatherette. Its fitted bottom is a dark red/maroon in color. The closure button operates easily.

    Another surprise on the case is an easel that folds away into the case’s bottom, then opens up, allowing the case to be displayed. It provides an arresting display of a fine Iron Cross 1st Class.


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  • Sale!  IRON CROSS - 2ND CLASS - 1870 - PRINZENGROßE WITH ORIGINAL PRESENTATION CASE - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

     IRON CROSS – 2ND CLASS – 1870 – PRINZENGROßE WITH ORIGINAL PRESENTATION CASE

    SKU:

    $1,995.00 $1,550.00

    PRINZENGROßE 1870 IRON CROSS 2ND CLASS WITH ORIGINAL PRESENTATION CASE.

    This is a consignment item and an absolute first-time offering for Der Rittmeister Militaria. The term “Prinzengroße” means prince-sized, and refers to medals that run from two-thirds to three-quarters the size of an original decoration (most often an Iron Cross or Pilot Badge). They came about from the desires of 18th and 19th Century noble and aristocratic fathers to outfit their young sons in exact replicas of their own military uniforms, complete with matching headgear, weapons and medals. Since these uniforms had to be tailored down to fit the youths’ smaller proportions, the accouterments had to follow suit. Eventually, the smaller decorations came to be favored by some of the adults, particularly from the Napoleonic era forward. By the time WW I arrived, Prinzengroße Iron Crosses had become quite a popular affectation among certain officers of noble and royal lineage.
    Today we are offering an incredibly rare Prinzengroße 1870 Iron Cross 2nd Class with its original presentation case. The Iron Cross measures 1 ½” x 1 ½.” Attached to the cross is the loop where the ribbon was placed when the medal was displayed on a tunic. While the Iron Cross itself is noteworthy, the presentation case is what makes it so rare. This is the FIRST time I have seen an Iron Cross 2nd Class’s case! I had seen the case for the 1st Class award occasionally, but NEVER before beheld one for the 2nd Class – until now. The leatherette case measures ¾” x 3″ x 3.” A gold trim design graces the exterior cover’s edges. Although its top has a blackish cast, the leatherette is a dark burgundy in color. Its interior reveals a burgundy silk-covered upper lid, while its bottom half is covered with dark burgundy velvet. The bottom half is fitted to hold the Iron Cross and its jump ring. Some scrapes and minor damage affect the upper half’s silk. The Iron Cross itself is in very fine condition. The paint on the obverse and reverse is excellent.
    The entire presentation is superb. It would make a fine addition to any Iron Cross collection.


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  • Sale! PRUSSIAN - BUSBY - OFFICER - HUSAREN-REGIMENT NR 12 - FULL PARADE CONFIGURATION INCLUDING PARADE FEATHERS - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIAN – BUSBY – OFFICER – HUSAREN-REGIMENT NR 12 – FULL PARADE CONFIGURATION INCLUDING PARADE FEATHERS

    SKU: 33-334 XRP

    $11,995.00 $10,195.00

    PRUSSIAN – BUSBY – OFFICER – HUSAREN-REGIMENT NR 12 – FULL PARADE CONFIGURATION INCLUDING PARADE FEATHERS.

    This is a consignment item. It is a Thüringisches Husaren-Regiment Nr 12 officer’s busby (pelzmütze) in full-parade-configuration with its very rare parade feathers. The regiment was founded in 1781, and garrisoned in Torgau from 1901 until WWI’s end. It was attached to the IV. Armeekorps. It was an old-line Prussian regiment that participated in conflicts spanning from the Napoleonic Wars to the German unification wars of the 1860’s through the 1870-1871 Franco-Prussian War up to WW I, when it fought as dismounted cavalry in the trenches on both the Western and Eastern Fronts. It had been among the leading German units in WW I ‘s early days, when it still functioned as mounted cavalry. It was directly involved in the invasion of Belgium.
    Officers’ busbies are among the most elegant and beautiful Imperial German headdresses. The busby’s exterior is lined with very soft, plush otter fur. Near the top, facing the observer, is the very handsome silver-frosted wappen in the form of a bandeau that proclaims “Mitt Gott Für König und Vaterland” (With God for King and Fatherland). The pelzmütze had evolved from Hungarian cavalry regiments, as had the attila, the unique tunic worn by Husaren-Regiment troops. Slipped in behind the wappen is the officer’s feldzeichen (field badge), constructed of silver bullion with a black velvet center that denoted the Kingdom of Prussia. The convex gold chin scales are mounted in the “up” position behind the feldzeichen. A single officer’s Reich’s kokarde appears on the busby’s right side. A white kolpak covers the busby’s top (it is removable) and hangs down over its left side. The kolpak’s color and the silver-toned wappen enable us to identify it as an officer’s busby from Thüringisches Husaren-Regiment Nr 12. The busby’s cap lines (essentially a rope-like silver bullion arrangement) hang down from the back. They were primarily for decoration, although the cap lines could be loosened and attached to the wearer’s attila to prevent the busby from flying off his head while his horse was at a gallop.
    The exterior’s final detail is its very rare parade feathers. The combination of black and white heron feathers is attached to the busby by a metal clip inserted behind the feldzeichen.

    The busby’s interior is every bit as impressive as its exterior. It boasts a very handsome brown leather sweatband that shows little evidence of wear or staining. The liner is typical for that found in officer-style busbies. It actually consists of two pieces of light-beige silk fabric. The first section lines the roof of the interior, while a lower section of gathered fabric extends up several inches from behind the sweatband to a cutout center that allows the wearer’s head to poke through.
    I am very impressed with this busby’s originality and condition. In all honesty, it is as fine an example as I have ever seen. The officer who originally purchased this knew (and demanded) superior quality. He also had the means to afford it. No detail or cost was spared in the busby’s construction. This is a complete busby in full-parade-configuration, including the marvelous cap lines and very rare officer’s parade plume. It dates from 1900 to 1910, meaning it is over one-hundred years-old. Whoever purchases it will be getting the best of the best. It will never need to be upgraded.


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  • TUNIC - PRUSSIA - IDENTIFIED - GENERALLEUTNANT VON WISSENDORF

    TUNIC – PRUSSIA – IDENTIFIED – GENERALLEUTNANT VON WISSENDORF

    SKU: 15-697 XAS

    $5,995.00

    This is a consignment item from the collection of a very experienced, longtime collector who has an appreciation for unusual, seldom-seen items that are in excellent condition. Today we are offering, on his behalf, a parade tunic that belonged to a Prussian Generalleutnant named von Wissendorf. The tunic’s consignor informs us that he was assigned to the Prussian VII. Armeekorps, which was based in Münster.

    The pre WWI dunkel-blau (dark-blue) tunic dates from approximately 1887 and is made of the finest wool that was available at the time. It obviously came from a skilled tailor’s workshop, since it is quite a masterpiece. A total of twelve unadorned gold-toned buttons runs down the tunic’s center. Its collar design is quite striking, and displays the tremendous gold bullion used in the pattern by the period’s General officers (BEFORE bullion kragenspiegel (collar patches) came into use post-1909 – this design dates from 1856 up to 1909). [I personally think the earlier form was a much more elegant way to display a General officer’s rank]. The gold bullion’s design features oak leaves interspersed with gilt-toned, bullet-shaped acorns against a red background. The acorns’ gilt coating has worn away over the years, so that they now appear to be silver-toned.

    The tunic exhibits an amazing combination shoulder board/aiguillette on its right shoulder. It is fashioned from rich, gold bullion and features a single Generalleutnant’s silver pip. [The silver pip usually indicated that its owner was an à la Suite officer (an honorary rank), since gold pips were for use by Generals who were tactical commanders rather than à la Suites]. The aiguillette’s color also confirms its wearer was a line-officer, NOT an à la Suite. The aiguillette consists of two one-inch wide, gold bullion braids attached to four one-quarter-inch wide gold-toned bullion ropes. All of these sections are intricately looped together and attached to two more short, one-quarter-inch, gold-toned bullion ropes whose ends are covered by elaborate, sliding, cylindrical, tapered, metal, three-inch-long extensions. Each extension is topped by a Prussian Hohenzollern Crown, which fits into, but is not attached, to the rest of the elegant, tapered cylinder. It is all extremely attractive.

    The tunic’s other shoulder sports a far different type of decoration. It is a five-inch-long intertwined coil of approximately one-quarter-inch, originally silver-toned, metal disks that have tarnished to a dark, gold-toned color. The tunic’s regulations refer to it as “made of two rolled silver wire bullion cords twisted together.” [Quite frankly, the device reminds me of something that one might have find on a Christmas tree]! It is attached to the inner point of the shoulder by a gold-toned brass button.

    The tunic’s cuffs display the same design featured on its collar. They are quite large, measuring 3.5″ wide. The heavy gold bullion oak leaves are repeated, as are their “acorns.” Each cuff also sports two large gold-toned buttons. The tunic’s reverse once again repeats the same bullion oak leaf design on each of the vent’s two halves, along with three large gold-toned buttons. The tunic’s front displays NO loops for sewn-in medal bars, breast stars, or the like. The exterior’s overall condition is very fine, with very little mothing (just the hint of a small moth nip or two). No tears or other major issues are present beyond the expected signs of age.
    The tunic’s interior features a very heavy, padded, red silk lining. Some small scattered areas of mothing are present, as well as some of the shredding commonly seen on aging silk. When one considers that it is MORE than one-hundred-twenty years-old, the damage is quite limited. A small pocket appears on the interior’s left side. No indication is given of the original owner’s name, nor of the tailor who designed it.
    This tunic is an amazing piece of history that speaks to the elegance of its time. It would make an excellent addition to any uniform collection.

     


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  • ORIGINAL PAINTING BY JACK D. HUNTER - "GEBRÜDER VON RICHTHOFEN" - THE FOKKER DR. 1 TRIPLANES OF MANFRED AND LOTHAR VON RICHTHOFEN

     ORIGINAL PAINTING BY JACK D. HUNTER – “GEBRÜDER VON RICHTHOFEN” – THE FOKKER DR. 1 TRIPLANES OF MANFRED AND LOTHAR VON RICHTHOFEN

    SKU: 14-452 XKG

    $2,995.00

    We fondly remember Jack D. Hunter, author of The Blue Max and its two sequels: The Blood Order and The Tin Cravat. Jack was a dear friend, as well an inspiration. When I discovered The Blue Max (both the movie and the novel) as a teenager in the 1960’s, it sparked a lifelong love of WW I in general and its Air War in particular. I first met Jack in the 1980’s, and he remained my dear friend until his death (continuing as my friend today in spirit). In addition to being a talented author, Jack was also a very talented artist. When The Blue Max was first published, it was he who did the dust cover’s artwork! He was told by his publisher that since he was a first-time author, they would not pay for color art on its dust jacket. Jack stepped in and said “I’ll do it!” and he did!
    Jack continued to paint mixed media pictures throughout his life as a hobby. He had a keen eye and the ability to bring WW I airplanes to life on canvas. Part of this talent was his attention to detail. He had an extensive aviation library in which he conducted detailed research about the pilots and airplanes he wanted to portray. From that information, he worked up rough pencil drafts of the airplane. He wanted to ensure that details such as the guy wires, turnbuckles, engine cowl, machine gun placement, etc., were correct before he began to paint.
    The last painting that Jack did for me was really quite unusual. I wanted something that involved Manfred von Richthofen. He groaned and said “Oh, please, not another red Triplane with Roy Brown chasing him or the Baron chasing Wilfred May (who almost became Der Rote Baron’s 81st victim)!” I said “OK, surprise me.” And he did. Years before he did a painting for me that depicted the two von Richthofen brothers flying their red Albatros D. V’s or D. Va’s. It centered on a mission in April 1917 (eventually known as “Bloody April”) where their father Albrecht was visiting them at Jasta 11’s airfield. Each brother was successful that day (they both happily reported to their father that they had shot down Englishmen).
    So I was stunned when Jack presented me with the painting that I am offering today. He titled it “Gebrüder von Richthofen” (The Von Richthofen Brothers), a simple and elegant name for a painting. The subject’s aircraft study was more than I could ever have hoped for. It shows two Fokker Dr. 1 Triplanes in wing-to-wing level flight.

    [PLEASE NOTE: Manfred von Richthofen flew at least EIGHT different Fokker Triplanes. Many people who have not studied him are unaware of this. They often erroneously believe that the only Fokker Dr. 1 he flew was all red. The machine that he flew on his death day, 21 April 1918, a Fokker Triplane 425/17, WAS primarily red. It was the most vibrantly-painted of the Fokker Triplanes that he had at his disposal. That being said, he did fly several other machines. Below is a list of the various Fokker Dr. 1 Triplanes flown by the Red Baron.

    Fokker Triplane 152/17 (remember this number)!
    Fokker Triplane FI 102/17 (an early prototype)
    Fokker Triplane 127/17
    Fokker Triplane 114/17
    Fokker Triplane 477/17
    Fokker Triplane 454/17
    Fokker Triplane 425/17 (his death plane)

    Aside from 425/17, the other seven airplanes featured significant amounts of camouflage splashed with red. [Younger brother Lothar von Richthofen’s machine sported the same camouflage splashed with yellow. Lothar displayed yellow on his plane because prior to joining the Imperial German Air Service he had been a Kavallerie Regiment Dragoner and yellow was an important color to Dragoner-Regiments]. Of the eighty victories that Manfred von Richthofen achieved, the bulk was achieved in aircraft other than the Fokker Dr. 1 Triplane. In fact, only eighteen of his confirmed victories came in the Triplane. The other sixty-two came in a combination of the Albatros D. II., the Halberstadt D. II., and the Albatros D. V. and D. Va. aircrafts. Some sources claim that Fokker Dr. 1 152/17 (the subject of this painting) was used in either two or three of von Richthofen’s victories in March 1918. The Baron’s 79th and 80th victories on 20 April 1918 (the day before he died) were in the Fokker Dr 1 425/17 had. I find it most amusing that the Red Triplane, the source of so much admiration for the Red Baron, only saw the final two victories of his career!
    What became of Fokker Triplane Dr. 1 152/17? After von Richthofen’s death, it was sent to Berlin’s Zeughaus Museum. I have read two stories on its fate. One is that it was destroyed in the Allied bombing of Berlin. A second story is that it was moved East to avoid destruction in Berlin and that freezing peasants burned it to stay warm. Both interesting stories, but we will never know for sure.

    The painting is housed in an ultra high-end custom frame that measures 24½”x 29,” and features a handsome burled wood (a personal favorite) sandwiched between two bands of ridged black wood that accent the smooth burled brown wood. As an integral part of the framing, we specified that a triple matting that accentuates the painting’s various colors: two thin mattes of red and blue with a broader mottled-silver matt. It is very striking and extremely elegant! The work was done at a high-end frame shop that uses the best of the best in terms of materials and labor.
    The painting itself measures 18″ x 13.” We see two Fokker Triplanes in level flight, wing to wing. Manfred von Richthofen is in the foreground while his brother, Lothar, is in the back. Their scale and power immediately seize one’s attention. They loom large on the canvas. They are not, however, the blazing red Fokker Dr 1’s one might expect. Instead, we see the great areas of camouflage canvas that were consistent with these airplanes’ actual appearance.
    Consider Lothar von Richthofen’s Triplane in the background. It displays red cowling, red struts, red undercarriage legs, and the red wheel disks that represented Jasta 11. It sports a yellow fuselage from its Iron Cross area back to the tail, acknowledging Lothar’s personal attachment to his former Dragoner-Regiment. While no aircraft number is visible due to the wing placement, the aircraft is most certainly Fokker Triplane Dr 1 454/17.

    Let us now turn to Manfred von Richthofen’s aircraft. It also displays the red cowl, red wheels, red struts, red undercarriage legs, and red wheel disks. Where Lothar’s plane was yellow aft of the Iron Cross, Manfred’s is red. Significant portions of camouflage remain, however. [It certainly is NOT the pure red airplane we so often envision when contemplating Manfred von Richthofen]. The aircraft also displays “Fok. Dr. 1 152/17” on its side. If you look at the list of the various Triplanes he flew, you will see that 152/17 is at the top of the list. He actually flew this aircraft more than 425/17! [Here is one small detail about these airplanes. Their Iron Crosses were of an earlier style. The Balkan Cross was introduced after March 1918. The planes depicted, then, were flown in late Autumn 1917 or early Winter 1918. By the time Manfred von Richthofen flew in 425/17, the plane sported an up-to-date Balkan Cross].
    This painting captures an amazing moment in WW I aviation history. It has been in a place of honor in our home for many years. Now, it is time to share it with a new owner. [We want to remind you that we also are offering an example of Manfred von Richthofen’s signature, as well as a small piece of AUTHENTICATED fabric from 425/17. If you are interested in a combination of any of these items, we will gladly offer you a handsome discount].


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  • PRUSSIA - PICKELHAUBE - RESERVE OFFICER’S - LINE DRAGONER-REGIMENT NRs 7, 8, 11, 13, AND 14 - WITH PARADE BUSH AND SPIKE - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – PICKELHAUBE – RESERVE OFFICER’S – LINE DRAGONER-REGIMENT NRs 7, 8, 11, 13, AND 14 – WITH PARADE BUSH AND SPIKE

    SKU: 04-754

    $6,995.00

    Today we are offering a fine reserve officer’s pickelhaube that would have been suitable for FIVE different Prussian Line Dragoner-Regiments (Nrs 7, 8, 11, 13, and 14). All of them featured gold-toned brass fittings, in contrast to Dragoner-Regiments Nrs 4, 5, 6, 9, 12, and 15, which featured silver-toned fittings. Dragoner Regiments were part of the Prussian Army’s Kavallerie, along with the Husaren, Ulanen, and Küraßiers. The first Prussian Dragoner-Regiment was formed in 1689. Another was formed in 1704. More were formed in the early 19th Century during the Napoleonic Wars. The bulk of the line Kavallerie Regiments were formed around 1860, prior to the 1864 Danish-Prussian, the 1866 Austro-Prussian, and the 1870-1871 Franco-Prussian Wars.

     

    By the time the Franco-Prussian War arrived, it was becoming evident that the cavalry’s future in modern warfare would be limited. This was partially due to bolt action rifles that permitted more accurate, rapid firing than the old muzzle-loaders, and other advances in artillery. The situation was further heightened by the introduction of machine guns late in the 19th Century, which rendered cavalrymen equally as tasty targets as the infantry. During WW I’s early months, the cavalry’s role was quickly reduced, since charges against entrenched positions became futile. At best, the cavalrymen were used as scouts, or more often dismounted to fight in the trenches alongside the infantry. Their horses were sent home, used to move artillery, or (later) eaten. The era for the cavalry had ended.

    The helmet’s leather body is high-quality, with an excellent finish and condition. [Please note that Dragoner pickelhauben feature squared front visors in contrast to Infanterie Regiments rounded ones]. Some very minor areas are lightly scarred, but the leather exhibits NO major blemishes. The leather is solid and was well preserved over the one-hundred-plus years since its original owner purchased it. It definitely is a pre WW I-quality pickelhaube that I date to the 1900-1910 period. As mentioned earlier, its furniture is all made of brass with a handsome gold tone, with one small exception. The Iron Cross-shaped reserve cross in the center of the wappen’s eagle is silver-toned. The date “1813” appears in the cross’s center. [I want to point out that locating a reserve officer’s pickelhaube for this type of regiment is quite a “find.” Dragoner-Regiment pickelhauben are much scarcer than Infanterie Regiment examples. Prior to WW I, approximately one hundred-eighty Infanterie Regiments were in existence, compared to a mere twenty-five Dragoner-Regiments. Added to that, far fewer reserve officers’ pickelhauben existed than those from the regular army].

    Also please note that the cruciform base on this helmet differs from the rounded base used on Infanterie Regiment pickelhauben. The helmet’s spike is also EXTRA tall, very much like the spikes favored by the Saxons. This style is quite unusual for a Prussian helmet, which demonstrates its original owner’s sense of style. Also included is a very full parade bush and gilt-toned trichter. Our resident expert on parade bushes, Miss Alore, has curry-combed it so that it looks quite smart. We are quite pleased to include the parade bush AND spike. The correct officers’ State’s and Reich’s kokarden are present.

    The interior features a lightly-used, brown leather sweatband. The leather is in very fine condition, as is its attached light-brown silk liner. Although it exhibits a few light spots of perspiration, NO signs of running or shredding are evident. Underneath the silk liner, all of the original hardware is in place. NO double holes appear where the wappen is attached the leather body. A lightly pencilled-in “55” is present on the leather interior. It is an average size for a German from the era. It remains a 100% original and correct pickelhaube that is in excellent condition, complete with both parade bush/trichter and service spike.

    At Der Rittmeister Militaria, we strive to bring you the best in spiked helmets, or pickelhauben (plural for pickelhaube), one of Imperial German Militaria’s most interesting areas for collecting. While ORIGINALITY and AUTHENTICITY are of prime importance, please do not forget Der Rittmeister’s commitment to CONDITION and QUALITY. In this regard, we take special pride in offering you spiked helmets whose condition is at least well above average, if not excellent. I examine hundreds of pickelhauben to find the very few that fulfill all four criteria mentioned above. Upon receiving their new treasure, collectors who have purchased one of our pickelhauben often exclaim that their helmet looks even better than the photos we had displayed on our website. [We do use a high-quality digital camera to photograph our items and upgrade cameras every two years, but enough with the Der Rittmeister Militaria commercial]! Just remember, dear friends, Der Rittmeister’s Four Critical Criteria for collecting pickelhauben: ORIGINALITY, AUTHENTICITY, CONDITION, and QUALITY.

    The pickelhaube was designed in 1842 by Prussia’s König Frederick William IV for use in the Prussian Infanterie. [The Prussian king might have copied similar helmets adopted by Russia’s military during the same time period. It is not clear whether this was a case of imitation, parallel invention, or if both were based on Napoleonic cuirassiers’ helmets]. The helmet style was soon adopted by Germany’s other states and kingdoms during the mid-19th Century, with Bavaria being the final principality to implement it in 1886. [The Bavarians always seemed to go their own way! Interestingly, Bavaria was also the last to authorize kugelhelme for their Artillerie Regiments in 1913]. In addition to Russia, spiked helmets were adopted by many Latin American countries. They were even worn by the USA’s armed forces from the 1880’s until around 1910.
    We also remind all pickelhaube enthusiasts about our good friend Jim Turinetti’s excellent reference books on the subject (click here to see DRM’s Imperial German Headdress Page Nr 3), available as spiral-bound paperbacks or on CD. You cannot go wrong with them. I can safely state that Jim is the USA’s foremost authority on pickelhauben. Please support him. Dollar for dollar, these books are the best on the market, and reward you with an immeasurable return in value! [Remember, Jim receives any and ALL the profits from his works, Der Rittmeister Militaria just promotes them to help educate the collecting community].


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  • BAVARIA - PICKELHAUBE - RESERVE OFFICER’S - CHEVAULEGERS OR SCHWERES-REITER-REGIMENT

    BAVARIA – PICKELHAUBE – RESERVE OFFICER’S – CHEVAULEGERS OR SCHWERES-REITER-REGIMENT

    SKU: 04-752 XKA

    $4,995.00

    This is a fine Bavarian Reserve Officer’s pickelhaube from a Chevaulegers or Schweres-Reiter-Regiment. The helmet would have been correct for any of the regiments listed below.

    2. Schweres-Reiter-Regiment
    1. Chevaulegers-Regiment Kaiser Nickolaus con Rußland
    3. Chevaulegers-Regiment Herzog Karl Theodor
    5. Chevaulegers-Regiment Erzherzog von Österreich
    7. Chevaulegers-Regiment Prinz Alfons

    Each of these five regiments used gold-toned furniture. As these Chevaulegers-Regiments were all “odd-numbered” regiments, their even-numbered counterparts (Chevaulegers-Regiment Nrs 2, 4, 6, and 8) used silver-toned furniture. The 1. Schweres-Reiter-Regiment also used silver-toned furniture.
    The helmet’s leather body is in fine condition, generally. Some small imperfections and shrinkages in the front and rear visors are present. The quite typical settling of the leather where the large cruciform is attached is not as pronounced on the leather body’s top. All in all, it is a lovely leather body. Like all Bavarian officers’ pickelhauben, it has a squared-front visor rather than the Prussian-style rounded front visor (except for Prussian Dragoner-Regiments and General officers’ spiked helmets). All of its furniture, including the wappen, chin scales, cruciform, officer’s stars, trim and tall, fluted spike (capable of being dismounted for the attachment of a trichter and horsehair bush) are made of brass.
    The wappen features a pair of rampant Bavarian Lions holding between their paws a shield on which the reserve officer cross appears. While the shield is brass, the oversized cross is silver-toned. Mounted on the cross’s center is a smaller shield displaying the Bavarian state flag’s checkerboard design. The chin scales are convex, differentiating it from an Infanterie spiked helmet. The exterior’s final details are the correct officer’s State’s and Reich’s kokarden, which both exhibit some chipping to their paint.
    The helmet’s interior displays a dark leather sweatband that has seen moderate use. An unusual light-green silk liner (in excellent condition) is attached to the sweatband. All of the correct hardware is present beneath the silk liner. NO double holes are present.
    This is a well-preserved Kavallerie officer’s pickelhaube that was produced prior to WW I and remains in fine condition.


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  • PRUSSIA - PICKELHAUBE - OFFICER’S - GRENADIER-REGIMENT NR 7 - WITH PARADE BUSH

    PRUSSIA – PICKELHAUBE – OFFICER’S – GRENADIER-REGIMENT NR 7 – WITH PARADE BUSH

    SKU: 04-747 XKA

    $6,995.00

    This is a first time offering for us at Der Rittmeister Militaria: an officer’s pickelhaube from the very elite Grenadier-Regiment König Wilhelm I. (2. Westpreußisches) Nr 7, with its parade bush. The regiment was founded in 1797. It was garrisoned at Liegnitz (now Legnica, Poland) and attached to Prussia’s V. Armeekorps. Its Regimental Chef was none other than Prussia’s König (later Kaiser) Wilhelm I. [The regiment was founded the same year, 1797, as Wilhelm I was born, the importance of which we will share with you shortly].
    The helmet’s leather body is most appealing. Its only flaw shows up on the helmet’s right rear three-quarters, where two small gouges appear very close to one another. They are not overly noticeable, because the parade bush masks the small flaw quite well, unless the bush is lifted up for inspection. Its wappen features a very attractive Grenadier-style eagle whose outspread wings extend greatly from its body (in direct contrast to a Line-Infanterie-Regiment’s closed-wing eagle). This wappen-style was used not only on Grenadiers’ helmets but for the various Garde-Regiments. The eagle’s wings extend almost to the kokarden’s midpoint.

    The Grenadier-style wappen is only part of what makes this helmet so special. Near the eagle’s base it sports a wonderful bandeau that proclaims “22 März 1797,” König Wilhelm I’s birth date. [This bandeau was unique among other German helmets. Bandeaux typically were awarded as battle honors for major battles or campaigns in which a regiment had participated. During the Imperial Period, most bandeaux were worn by regiments whose battle honors had been restored to them in 1897 by Kaiser Wilhelm II. Most of these regiments had been absorbed into the Prussian Army following the 1866 Austro-Prussian War. The battle honors primarily dated from the Napoleonic Wars. Wilhelm II’s 1897 gesture allowed the regiments (including some from Hannover, Braunschweig, and Nassau) to regain some of their former states’ prestige. Grenadier-Regiment Nr 7, as well as Füsilier-Regiments Nr 34 and Nr 35 were the only regiments whose bandeaux celebrated monarchs (the two Füsilier-Regiments acknowledged the Swedish Queen)].
    All of the helmet’s furniture, including the wappen, chin scales, trim, etc., is gilt-toned. [PLEASE NOTE: Officer’s pickelhauben chin scales often are attached to the helmet by devices called rosettes. A special rosette boasting Kaiser Wilhelm II’s cypher was available as an option on this regiment’s helmet. It was the only regiment to be so honored, since it saluted the first Kaiser, along with a nod from his grandson Wilhelm II. This particular helmet does NOT have those rosettes. It remains ENTIRELY correct, despite the fact that many helmets in reference books sport the rosettes. Remember, the rosettes were an option and were NOT mandatory for Grenadier-Regiment König Wilhelm I. (2. Westpreußisches) Nr 7’s pickelhauben]! The helmet’s parade trichter is also gilt-toned, and sports a marvelous, soundly-attached, full, black bush. NO spike comes with the helmet, just the trichter and parade bush. The correct State’s and Reich’s kokarden are attached.
    The helmet’s interior features a high-quality, light-brown leather sweatband, with an attached, ribbed, light-beige, silk liner. A couple of small tears appear on the silk liner, but no major damage. It is in much better condition than the major shredding we often find. The hardware is all original, with the exception of one nut that does not match. The latter securely fastens the helmet officers’ stars. What is most important, NO double holes are present where the wappen is attached.
    It is a fine pickelhaube in parade configuration from an elite regiment and would make an excellent addition to your collection. Its condition rates as very fine.

    At Der Rittmeister Militaria, we strive to bring you the best in spiked helmets, or pickelhauben (plural for pickelhaube), one of Imperial German Militaria’s most interesting areas for collecting. While ORIGINALITY and AUTHENTICITY are of prime importance, please do not forget Der Rittmeister’s commitment to CONDITION and QUALITY. In this regard, we take special pride in offering you spiked helmets whose condition is at least well above average, if not excellent. I examine hundreds of pickelhauben to find the very few that fulfill all four criteria mentioned above. Upon receiving their new treasure, collectors who have purchased one of our pickelhauben often exclaim that their helmet looks even better than the photos we had displayed on our website. [We do use a high-quality digital camera to photograph our items and upgrade cameras every two years, but enough with the Der Rittmeister Militaria commercial]! Just remember, dear friends, Der Rittmeister’s Four Critical Criteria for collecting pickelhauben: ORIGINALITY, AUTHENTICITY, CONDITION, and QUALITY.
    The pickelhaube was designed in 1842 by Prussia’s König Frederick William IV for use in the Prussian Infanterie. [The Prussian king might have copied similar helmets adopted by Russia’s military during the same time period. It is not clear whether this was a case of imitation, parallel invention, or if both were based on Napoleonic cuirassiers’ helmets]. The helmet style was soon adopted by Germany’s other states and kingdoms during the mid-19th Century, with Bavaria being the final principality to implement it in 1886. [The Bavarians always seemed to go their own way! Interestingly, Bavaria was also the last to authorize kugelhelme for their Artillerie Regiments in 1913]. In addition to Russia, spiked helmets were adopted by many Latin American countries. They were even worn by the USA’s armed forces from the 1880’s until around 1910.
    We also remind all pickelhaube enthusiasts about our good friend Jim Turinetti’s excellent reference books on the subject (click here to see DRM’s Imperial German Headdress Page Nr 3), available as spiral-bound paperbacks or on CD. You cannot go wrong with them. I can safely state that Jim is the USA’s foremost authority on pickelhauben. Please support him. Dollar for dollar, these books are the best on the market, and reward you with an immeasurable return in value! [Remember, Jim receives any and ALL the profits from his works, Der Rittmeister Militaria just promotes them to help educate the collecting community].


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  • PRUSSIA - CARTRIDGE BELT AND BOX - OFFICER'S - KÜRAßIER-REGIMENT - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – CARTRIDGE BELT AND BOX – OFFICER’S – KÜRAßIER-REGIMENT

    SKU: 15-676 XAS

    $850.00

    This is a consignment item. It is an excellent example of a Küraßier-Regiment officer’s silver-toned belt and black leather cartridge box. The belt sports an oval-shaped, silver-toned buckle. The belt’s tip and its keeper are also silver-toned. The belt’s front displays gray and silver bullion, while its back is red. The belt measures 50″ in length, and the cartridge box measures 3 ½” x 5.” Its leather is in fine condition. The box front sports a brass royal cypher beneath a fine brass Prussian Crown. It would make an excellent addition to a tunic or as a collection display piece.

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  • PRUSSIA - DRESS KOLLAR AND SASH - OFFICER'S - KÜRAßIER-REGIMENT Nr 4 - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – DRESS KOLLAR AND SASH – OFFICER’S – KÜRAßIER-REGIMENT Nr 4

    SKU: 15-675 XAS

    $2,495.00

    This is a consignment item. It is an officer’s Küraßier-Regiment von Driesen (Westfälisches) Nr 4 dress tunic (koller), which was worn at formal affairs and parades. The regiment was founded in 1717 and garrisoned at Münster, where it was attached to the VII. Armeekorps.
    Küraßier and Jäger zu Pferde’s dress tunics were unlike those of all the other troops, even those from other Kavallerie Regiments (the Ulanen’s ulankas and the Husaren’s attilas). The difference lies in the Küraßier and Jäger zu Pferde’s collar design and the way its decorative trim is arranged. The trim (in regimental colors) is used on the koller’s front, collar and cuffs, and is referred to as borte (border). When you look at the photos that accompany this selection, you will note that the collar and its trim are rounded from the collar’s upper section to the midpoint where it flows down into the borte decorating the koller’s front. You will also notice that the koller has NO visible buttons on its front. Instead, the borte conceals a hook and eye system beneath it so that the tunic front presents a smooth appearance once everything is secured. It is an extremely elegant design.
    The koller is made of fine white wool. The each tunic half’s front sports the previously-mentioned, regimentally-correct, red and silver bullion borte running from collar-to-bottom down its center edge. Furthermore, the same borte adorns each cuff, along with two silver-toned buttons on each sleeve.
    The koller comes with two correct, very fine epaulettes. Each epaulette sports a silver and black bullion passant across its tongue where it attaches to the half-moon. [A passant is the small shoulder strap that runs parallel to the tunic’s shoulder seam to attach an epaulette to the uniform]. The latter may indicate that the wearer retired from the regiment as a Leutnant der Reserve. The metal fittings (moons) are silver-toned, while the epaulettes’ centers display the same unadorned white wool as the tunic. The epaulettes’ backing is red. The epaulettes are in excellent condition. Thin red piping traces a design on the koller’s reverse that descends from the shoulder seams down the back to the waistline, then onto the vent area to accent the six plain silver buttons on display. The same red piping accents each sleeve back from the shoulder seam to the cuff’s borte.
    The tunic’s interior displays a rather unusual padded design covered with silk. This silk has suffered some shredding, especially in the top center. A bit more shredding is visible in the vent area. Some black numbers and letters are visible on the interior tunic sleeve and just below the shredding in the top center. [I believe these are postwar costume house marks. Many Great War tunics made their way into costume houses for the theater and burgeoning film industries in Europe and the USA. I once had a tunic that was marked for a Los Angeles, California costume house, including a six-digit telephone number! (U.S. telephone numbers did not convert to the current seven digits until after WW II)].
    A silver-toned brocade dress sash (in very fine condition) is included with the koller. The tunic’s overall condition is quite pleasing. Even though white material often does not age well, this tunic has NOT suffered extensive soiling. It is an excellent representation of its kind.


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  • PRUSSIA - KÜRAß -OFFICER’S REGIMENT LINE-KÜRAßIER - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – KÜRAß -OFFICER’S REGIMENT LINE-KÜRAßIER

    SKU: 15-674 XAS

    $6,495.00

    This is a consignment item. It is a high quality officer’s küraß for a Prussian Line-Küraßier-Regiment. Küraßiers were considered the German Army’s heavy cavalry. They harkened back to when cavalrymen dashed madly across battlefields to fight enemy cavalry and infantry units. The Küraßiers heyday reigned from the 18th Century through the early 19th Century’s Napoleonic Wars. Their usefulness gradually diminished as firearms and artillery became more sophisticated and the 19th Century evolved into the 20th. The same was true of Germany’s other Kavallerie units, which included Ulanen, Dragoner, Husaren, and Chevauleger Regiments. While their tactical usefulness diminished, their ceremonial value greatly increased with the German Empire’s 1871 formation. The Küraßier Regiments took pride of place during this time, particularly Prussia’s Regiment der Gardes du Corps (GdC) and Saxony’s Garde-Reiter-Regiment, both of which displayed elaborate uniforms and headdress.
    Five Prussian Army Line-Küraßier-Regiments wore küraßes like the example we are offering today. It features a simple silver-toned finish along with certain gold-toned fittings such as bolts, circular adornments, and the nipple posts to which its securing belts are attached. The securing belts are particularly important, and are attached to the shoulder tops of the küraß’s back section. [The belts themselves greatly resemble an officer’s pickelhaube chinstraps with their individual, overlapping metal scales]. A high-relief ornamental lion’s head within a shield appears just behind the actual attachment device. Once they are secured by the attachment device, the belts are then laid over the wearer’s shoulders to be secured to the corresponding posts on the küraß’s front section. The belts sport very ornate attachment plates with “keyholes” that are secured around the front section’s nipple post attachments. Laurel leaves adorn the attachment plates in very elegant patterns.
    The interiors of the küraß’s two sections are lined with padded white cotton for extra protection and comfort. The cotton also helped absorb perspiration. [One can well imagine that wearing a wool koller under a küraß would make its wearer VERY warm in summertime, in addition to the metal pickelhaube with its long lobstertail protecting his neck! At least a Line-Küraßier-Regiment officer did not have to wear the GdC’s heavy eagle on top of his helmet, which would have added more weight to the equation].
    All in all, it is a fine example of an officer’s küraß. The küraß’s front sports two areas of tarnish/patina from decades of NOT being cleaned (as an officer’s aid would have done). These appear near the gold-toned nipple post attachments. Another small defect turns up about three inches above the left nipple post (from the wearer’s standpoint). It looks like the küraß was struck by something heavy enough to damage a bit of the silver-toned surface. The actual damage is diagonal and about one inch in length. The küraß’s rear half does not display any damage, but does sport a substantial patina from age. We are very pleased to share this handsome piece with you today. [Here is one final bit of information to share with you. The consignor is a longtime, very experienced collector. His collection still houses other küraßes, including a black spring-parade GdC küraß. He tells us the Line-Küraßier-Regiment küraß is absolutely the largest one that he has ever encountered. Due to its weight and value, extra shipping costs will be necessary].


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  • Sale! PRUSSIA - BELT WITH ORIGINAL STORAGE CARTON - OFFICER’S - HUSAREN REGIMENT - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – BELT WITH ORIGINAL STORAGE CARTON – OFFICER’S – HUSAREN REGIMENT

    SKU: 15-670

    $2,395.00 $1,795.00

    PRUSSIA – BELT WITH ORIGINAL STORAGE CARTON – OFFICER’S – HUSAREN REGIMENT

    This is a consignment item. Today we are offering a wonderful Prussian Husaren Regiment Officer’s parade belt. It is a very hard-to-find accessory worn by Prussian Husaren officers on dress occasions. The belt features stone-mint brown leather attachments at either end for securing the belt. The belt itself consists of many thin braided silver and black-chevroned bullion strings that are threaded through three sets of braided silver bullion tubes. [The tubes, which number five per set, are securely threaded together]. An aiguillette-like section is attached by its braided rosette between two of tube sections. The “aiguillette” itself consists of two thicker silver bullion cords that encircle the looped-together strings near one of the leather fasteners. The aiguillette’s OTHER end features two portépée-like devices made of bullion and coiled silver-toned tinsel, which hang down from the rosette opposite to the aiguillette’s cords. A white silk lining is attached to the belt’s reverse behind the tube sets and the aiguillette’s rosette. It is intact, but shows some minor soiling. The belt measures 30 ½” when fully lengthened.
    The belt has been housed in its original storage carton over all these years. The carton measures 8″ in diameter. Both carton halves are in excellent condition. Its original one-hundred-year-old tissue paper lines the carton’s bottom. This explains the belt’s superb condition!
    It is a mint-condition Husaren officer’s belt. You could search for years and find none better. Even in a lesser condition, it is an accouterment that seldom turns up. [As an extra incentive, we will add a handsome discount on any Prussian Officer’s Attila in our inventory if you purchase the pair together].


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  • Sale! PRUSSIA - PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPH WITH OVERSIZED FRAMED  - ENLISTED MAN/NCO’S - REGIMENT der GARDE du CORPS - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPH WITH OVERSIZED FRAMED – ENLISTED MAN/NCO’S – REGIMENT der GARDE du CORPS

    SKU: 50-53

    $195.00 $150.00

    PRUSSIA – PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPH WITH OVERSIZED FRAMED – ENLISTED MAN/NCO’S – REGIMENT der GARDE du CORPS

    This is a consignment item. It is an oversized photograph of an enlisted man/NCO wearing the Regiment Garde du Corps dress koller. The koller was the special tunic worn by the officers and men serving in Küraßier or Jäger zu Pferde Regiments. The uniforms worn by these regiment types boasted unique collars that were unlike any others within the Imperial German Army.
    The GdC’s parade (dress) koller was white with red trim. For a special effect, the photo has been enhanced with hand-painted colors. Its subject sports a (red) Supravest, a garment unique to the Regiment der Gardes du Corps, pulled over his tunic. A large, predominately white Garde Star decorates the vest’s front. He is wearing a red and white sash, and sports three red chevrons for the highest lance proficiency on his sleeve. The young trooper even boasts a Kaiser Wilhelm II style mustache!
    The silver-toned frame measures 9″ x 11 ½.” The photo within the frame measures 5 ¾” x 8 ¼.” This is gorgeous depiction of a proud young man from Imperial Germany most elite regiment.


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  • Sale! PRUSSIA - SCHIRMÜTZE - NCO’S -REGIMENT der GARDE du CORPS - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – SCHIRMÜTZE – NCO’S -REGIMENT der GARDE du CORPS

    SKU: 50-50

    $750.00 $625.00

    PRUSSIA – SCHIRMÜTZE – NCO’S -REGIMENT der GARDE du CORPS

    This is a consignment item. It is a Regiment der Garde du Corps NCO’s schirmütze. Instead of a tall peaked look, this man preferred the cavalry’s popular “crusher” style. The latter was accomplished by removing much of the cap’s interior stiffening. Some officers removed all of it so they could roll their cap up and stick it in a jacket or back pocket. Manfred von Richthofen did so (I have held one of his schirmützen in my hands, and that was how it looked). The cap is prewar, so its body is made of top-quality white wool (NOT feldgrau). A wide red trim band measuring 1 ¾” sits above the black visor, which has a crusher’s crinkled appearance. The cap front’s center features the correct Reich and State officer’s kokarden. A single narrow red trim band encircles the cap’s top. The exterior displays some scattered moth nips and moth tracking (NOT a large amount). The latter are not detractive to the cap’s overall appearance.
    The interior reveals a gently-used brown leather sweatband. Its interior visor displays a great deal of staining. Its rough silk liner is ivory in color. The initials “A. E. N.” are stamped on the silk liner beneath a crown.

    This is the first GdC NCO’s schirmütze that I have offered, and it has a wonderful appearance. The man wearing it must have looked jaunty!


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  • Sale! PRUSSIA -  SCHIRMÜTZE - OFFICER’S -REGIMENT der GARDE du CORPS - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – SCHIRMÜTZE – OFFICER’S -REGIMENT der GARDE du CORPS

    SKU: 50-49

    $950.00 $850.00

    PRUSSIA – SCHIRMÜTZE – OFFICER’S -REGIMENT der GARDE du CORPS

    This is a consignment item. It is a Regiment der Garde du Corps officer’s schirmütze. It is the tall elegant prewar style (NOT feldgrau). Its body is made of a superior-quality white wool. A wide red trim band measuring 1 ¾” sits above the black visor. The latter shows some signs of wear and some breaks in the black lining material. The cap front’s center features the correct Reich and State officer’s kokarden. A single narrow red trim band encircles the cap’s top. The exterior shows some signs of minor soiling and age, with some very small moth tracks. They have not bloomed into full-blown moth nips. One must look carefully to see them.
    The interior reveals a well-used brown leather sweatband that shows some cracks. The interior visor is brown. The cap’s golden/wheat-colored liner is a treated fabric (oilcloth) that repels moisture and lessens hair oil stains.

    This is a decent visor cap, although not a great one. It is still quite attractive and desirable coming from such an elite regiment.


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  • Sale! COMMEMORATIVE SILVER PLATE - POST WW I  FOR  NCO - REGIMENT der GARDES du CORPS - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    COMMEMORATIVE SILVER PLATE – POST WW I FOR NCO – REGIMENT der GARDES du CORPS

    SKU: 50-38

    $295.00 $195.00

    COMMEMORATIVE SILVER PLATE – POST WW I FOR NCO – REGIMENT der GARDES du CORPS

    This is a consignment item. It is a lovely silver plate to a Regiment der Garde du Corps Wachtmeister. The plate is dated 1.10.1927, some nine or ten years after his service in the regiment. The plate measures 11″ in diameter. The edges are scalloped to give it character. In the center is a crowned cypher that appears to be GdC (not what they used during the Imperial German Period, but by 1927, who knows?). The date appears directly below it. Text circling the plate’s outer section reads “Dem letzten etatmäßigen Wachtmeister des Regts. Gardes du Corps” (The last regular Watch Master of the Regiments [der] Gardes du Corps) across the top, “Die Traditions-Schwadron” (The Traditional Squadron) across the bottom.
    The obverse displays a number of problem areas, with a great deal of small scratches scattered across its surface. Several distinct smudges also affect the plate’s bottom third. The plate’s reverse features the half moon and Hohenzollern Crown silver hallmarks as mandated by Kaiser Wilhelm I in 1885, as well as a .800 silver hallmark. These are followed by a hallmark for the jewelry firm that produced it, “D. GADEBUSCH.” [The Potsdam jewelry firm was founded in 1844. It was moved to Cologne (Köln) after WW 2, where it remains in business to this day].
    While the condition is not quite what we prefer, please remember that it is nearly ninety-years-old and has been through a lot before coming to us. The subject matter is interesting and the plate still displays well.

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  • Sale! FLAGPOLE TOPPER FOR REGIMENT der GARDE du CORPS VETERANS’ GROUP - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    FLAGPOLE TOPPER FOR REGIMENT der GARDE du CORPS VETERANS’ GROUP

    SKU: 50-37

    $1,995.00 $1,695.00

    FLAGPOLE TOPPER FOR REGIMENT der GARDE du CORPS VETERANS’ GROUP

    This is a consignment item. Veterans’ groups played a large part in the lives of veterans after they had completed their military service. Sometimes these groups were organized on a regional or citywide basis to include ALL veterans regardless of the regiment in which they had originally served. It comes as no surprise, then, that the most well known and elite veterans’ organization was that for the Regiment der Gardes du Corps.
    Veteran groups had flags produced to represent their regiments/groups. At the meetings, the banner for their regiment/organization was proudly displayed. The banner was attached to a flagpole that usually had a topper attached it. The flag/banner along with the personalized topper (often an Iron Cross was part it) completed the presentation. It was featured at the front of the room, or displayed at the head of the group when they were on parade.
    As the Regiment der Gardes du Corps was the Imperial German Army’s most elite regiment, it was only fitting that the topper for THEIR banner was the emblematic crowned Hohenzollern Eagle with outspread wings. When mounted on a gleaming golden helmet, these Eagles made for a very impressive sight.
    Our offering is that same Hohenzollern Eagle, but attached to a ball. It weighs 3 lbs., 9 oz. and is 10 ½” tall. The ball’s bottom has a pipe extending down that allowed it to be slipped into a flagpole. The Eagle looks fairly close in size to the Eagles used on their helmets, however, its detailing is NOT as crisp as those Eagles. So, PLEASE do NOT try to use it on a helmet! The results will be totally UN-satisfactory.
    Do remember that this almost a one-of-a-kind item that would make an important and very useful addition to any collection.


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  • Sale! BOOK  - GERMAN LANGUAGE- REGIMENT GARDES du CORPS 1740 - 1890 - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    BOOK – GERMAN LANGUAGE- REGIMENT GARDES du CORPS 1740 – 1890

    SKU: 50-27

    $125.00 $95.00

    This is a consignment item. The small book details the Garde du Corps’ history from 1740 until 1890. In addition to a brief regimental history, the book even lists officers who served from 1745 to 1890. [The latter information was taken from the GdC’s official Ranglisten over those years]. The book goes even further, listing the Regiment’s enlisted men and NCO’s, as well as casualties from conflicts. I even saw a list of decorations from 1807 (BEFORE the Iron Crosses 1st and 2nd Class) extended though the 1870-1871 Franco-Prussian War. It is a fine, compact book that will be helpful for researching the regiment’s history, as well as those of the men who served in it.


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  • Sale! PRUSSIA - SHOULDER BOARDS -  LEUTNANT’S  - REGIMENT der GARDES du CORPS - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – SHOULDER BOARDS – LEUTNANT’S – REGIMENT der GARDES du CORPS

    SKU: 50-22

    $895.00 $495.00

    This is a pair of Regiment Gardes du Corps leutnant’s shoulder boards. The Regiment was founded in 1740 by Friedrich der Große. It was garrisoned in Potsdam and attached to the Gardekorps. These boards are of the slip-on variety, which is more unusual for a leutnant. They were typically found, however, on coats such as the waffenrock or litewka. More commonly, they came in the sewn-in type board. The boards sport the Regiment Gardes du Corps’ double underlay of red and white. They display prewar silver bullion tops with Prussia’s black chevrons. The pair was tied together in storage. The board that was stored on top shows darkened areas on the bullion where the string was attached. Otherwise, they are in very good condition.


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  • Sale! PRUSSIA - SHOULDER BOARDS - LEUTNANT’S  - REGIMENT der GARDES DU CORPS FELDGRAU M-1910 - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – SHOULDER BOARDS – LEUTNANT’S – REGIMENT der GARDES DU CORPS FELDGRAU M-1910

    SKU: 50-24

    $995.00 $695.00

    PRUSSIA – SHOULDER BOARDS – LEUTNANT’S – REGIMENT der GARDES DU CORPS FELDGRAU M-1910

    This is a rare pair of Regiment der Gardes du Corps leutnant’s M-1910 feldgrau shoulder boards used during WW I. The regiment was founded by Friedrich der Große in 1740. It was garrisoned in Potsdam and attached to the Gardekorps. These boards are of the sewn-in variety. The boards sport the Regiment Gardes du Corps’ double underlay of red and white. They display Prussia’s wartime (M-1910) grey tops with black and white chevrons.


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  • Sale! PRUSSIA - PREWAR SLEEVE DEVICE/PATCH FOR KÜRAßIER KOLLER  - REGIMENTAL FAHNENTRÄGER - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    PRUSSIA – PREWAR SLEEVE DEVICE/PATCH FOR KÜRAßIER KOLLER – REGIMENTAL FAHNENTRÄGER

    SKU: 50-09

    $2,295.00 $1,525.00

    PRUSSIA – PREWAR SLEEVE DEVICE/PATCH FOR KÜRAßIER KOLLER – REGIMENTAL FAHNENTRÄGER

    One of the most honored positions within any regiment was the assignment to carry and maintain its regimental standard. All of the European armies, (including Germany), had fascinating traditions with regimental standards. In Germany, regimental banners or standards were authorized and issued by the König, or Kaiser. It had a true pageantry to it. In addition to the actual standard/banner, regiments brandished flagpoles adorned with streamers proclaiming the year of the regiment’s establishment, the regiment’s collective battle honors, and brass identification rings. Depending on the regiment, the pole might be topped by a Grand Cross of the Iron Cross. The men fought with great pride under these flags. For a regiment to lose its flag in battle was a horrible event. It rained dishonor on ALL the men attached to the regiment, from its regimental commander down to the lowliest private.
    The man assigned to maintain and carry the regimental banner was highly-regarded by his officers and NCO’s. He bore the standard, carrying it in a special case when it was not unfurled. He was expected to protect the banner with his life. The sight of the banner waving, even in battle, was a rallying point for the regiment’s men. If the color bearer fell during battle, another man immediately snatched-up the banner to show that the regiment was still in the fight. Naturally, a man so honored as to carry the regimental colors was awarded a special sleeve patch designating him as the regimental color bearer. In addition, he wore a shorter sword to lighten his load and to give him more flexibility marching and in battle.
    It is easy to see that the number of German Army color bearers was very limited, as was the very special sleeve patch. This particular patch was worn on a küraßier’s pre WW I white/cream-colored, kersey wool, dress koller sleeve. The shield-shaped patch measures 3 ½” x 5.” It sports a pair of crossed regimental flags, beautifully done in yellow, white, and black thread. Between the flags is a Hohenzollern Crown made of yellow, white, and red thread. Kaiser Wilhelm II’s yellow royal cypher appears at the patch’s bottom. It is very elegant and quite rare, as only ten (eight plus two Garde) Küraßier-Regiments existed in the German Army.
    [As an aside, regimental banners are greatly prized by collectors. Prices BEGIN at $20,000 for these beauties, WHEN they come on the market. Some examples fetch in excess of $50,000. They rarely become available. Many of them were taken to Russia at WW II’s end, and not released until thirty to forty years later]. This patch is an amazing piece of history.


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  • Sale! ENLISTED MAN’S PRIVATELY-PURCHASED KÜRAßIER-REGIMENT Nr 2 KOLLER - PRUSSIA - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    ENLISTED MAN’S PRIVATELY-PURCHASED KÜRAßIER-REGIMENT Nr 2 KOLLER – PRUSSIA

    SKU: 50-05

    $3,195.00 $1,995.00

    It is an enlisted man’s Küraßier-Regiment Königin (Pommersches) Nr 2 “koller” (the regimental tunic for Prussian Küraßier or Jäger zu Pferde units). Küraßier-Regiment Königin (Pommersches) Nr 2 was among Prussia’s most-elite Küraßier-Regiments. It was founded in 1717, garrisoned at Pasewalk, and attached to the II. Armeekorps. Its Regimental Chef was the Kaiserin, Augusta Viktoria (1858-1921), who was also Königin of Prussia. [The Kaiserin’s eldest son, Kronprinz Wilhelm, was associated with the regiment as an à la Suite officer, as he was with 1. Leib-Husaren-Regiment Nr 1 and 1. Garde-Regiment zu Fuß]. The regiment displayed special emblems on its gilt-toned küraßes pertaining to battle honors granted it from a key battle in the 1745 War of Austrian Succession, 4 June’s Battle of Hohenfriedberg. [Frederick the Great led his Prussians against a large force of Austrians and Saxons at Hohenfriedberg. It was a total rout]. In addition to displaying the special devices on their küraßes, the regiment boasted bandeaux on their spiked helmets with the battle’s name and date. [The device featured a Hohenzollern Crown surrounded by regimental flags representing the sixty-seven Austrian and Saxon flags/standards captured at Hohenfriedberg.
    As indicated above, the “koller” tunic style was worn ONLY by Küraßier and Jäger zu Pferde Regiments. The term referenced their tunics’ uniquely-shaped collars. [Another connection between the two regiment types was their extended-rear-visored metal helmets, which were designed to protect their wearers’ necks]. While the Gardes du Corps (GdC) was considered to be the Imperial German Army’s top-of-the-line unit, the Garde-Küraßier Regiment, along with the Leib-Küraßier-Regiment Großer Kurfürst (Schlesisches) Nr 1, and Küraßier-Regiment Königin Nr 2, were all close behind. The tunic is made of fine white wool and features the special “küraßier collar.” A double row of red trim bands extends down the tunic’s center from its collar to its hem. A fascinating feature of küraßier tunics is that they do NOT employ buttons to close their tunic fronts. Instead, a series of hooks and eyes are concealed beneath the central trim bands, joining the tunic’s two halves underneath a smooth exterior.
    The koller’s cuffs display red trim bands accented with white litzen, each of which boasts a silver-toned button. The white shoulder straps are trimmed in red, and feature a crowned royal cypher (“L”) on each strap. The tunic’s right sleeve sports an inverted red “V,” indicating that the wearer had qualified for Lance Proficiency 3rd Class. Outlines of two former “V’s” are still present, probably from earning other, lower proficiency awards.
    The tunic’s reverse displays red trim bands extending down to the vent flap. The vent flap itself is decorated by six silver-toned buttons. No depot markings are evident inside the tunic, meaning it was privately-purchased (even enlisted members of elite regiments frequently did this). The liner is made of white silk that is in excellent condition. A name is very faintly penciled into its collar, but I cannot decipher it.
    Overall, the tunic is in very good condition. Some scattered moth tracks and moth nips show on its front and back. Due to its white color, some soiling is present. It remains a VERY difficult-to-find tunic in more than acceptable condition.

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  • Sale! HERZOG ERNST AUGUST’S HUSAREN-REGIMENT Nr 17 GENERALMAJOR PALETOT (OVERCOAT) - BRAUNSCHWEIG - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    HERZOG ERNST AUGUST’S HUSAREN-REGIMENT Nr 17 GENERALMAJOR PALETOT (OVERCOAT) – BRAUNSCHWEIG

    SKU: 50-02

    $3,995.00 $2,750.00

    This is a “paletot” (a loose or fitted overcoat, originally a medieval French term, later used in 19th Century Germany) once owned by the Duchy of Braunschweig’s Herzog Ernst August (1887-1953). Ernst August was Braunschweig’s final Duke, who married Viktoria Luise (1892-1980), Kaiser Wilhelm II and Kaiserin Augusta Viktoria’s only daughter. [Braunschweig was the Kingdom of Hannover’s vassal state, until both were absorbed into Prussia following their defeat in the 1866 Austro-Prussian War. Braunschweig’s ducal succession was rather confused at the time. Otto von Bismarck stepped in to block the purported Hannover/Braunschweig next-in-line from ascending the throne. Instead, Prussia’s Prinz Albrecht (1837-1906) was named as Braunschweig’s regent, a role in which he served from 1885 to 1906. (Albrecht’s father was Wilhelm I and Friedrich Wilhelm IV’s brother). Prinz Albrecht had been a military officer, serving as the Hannover-based X. Armeekorps’ commander prior to his regency. Another Prussian took over the regency after Albrecht’s 1906 death. Following Ernst August’s 1913 marriage to Viktoria Luise (THE year’s social event and the European crowned heads’ last major gathering before WW I), Ernst August was allowed to become Braunschweig’s final Herzog. Braunschweig was then afforded greater independence, but remained a Prussian vassal state.
    The Braunschweigisches Husaren-Regiment Nr 17 was founded in 1809. The regiment was garrisoned in the capital city of Braunschweig, and assigned to the X. Armeekorps. Braunschweigisches Husaren-Regiment Nr 17 possessed a fabled history. Among the battles and campaigns in which it participated were: the Peninsula Campaign (Spain and Portugal) with Wellington, Waterloo (again with Wellington), and Mars La Tour, during the 1870/71 Franco-Prussian War. The regiment, along with Infanterie-Regiment Nr 92, and a single artillery Bataillon, constituted the Duchy of Braunschweig’s entire military. Young Ernst August was the Regimental Chef for his Duchy’s Husaren-Regiment Nr 17, a well as Infanterie-Regiment Nr 92.
    Our offering today is that very Duke’s Braunschweigisches Husaren-Regiment Nr 17 paletot. We are very excited to offer a general officer’s rank coat that once belonged to a German HEAD-OF-STATE (the Kaiser’s son-in-law, no-less). The tunic is made of light-grey ultra-high-grade doeskin wool. It has the classic paletot’s double breasted front with two rows of six tombac buttons. A black turn-down collar with red underlay and beautiful general’s shoulder boards with black underlay denote Braunschweigisches Husaren-Regiment Nr 17. A generalmajor’s sewn-in shoulder boards are sewn-in on one side, and attached by a small, gilt-toned button on the other. The coat possesses false barrel cuffs with two deep flap pockets. The coat’s reverse features a short horizontal half belt with one connecting button. Below that, two vertical pockets with scalloped flaps on either side are decorated with six silver (three per side) buttons. The coat’s interior features a fine, champagne-colored, heavy-gauge silk liner with interior pockets. The coat itself shows aging and mothing (tracks and minor holes), mainly to its lower front section. Otherwise, it is in good condition.
    This coat, along with the feldgrau overcoat above (also belonging to Ernst August) came from the Royal House of Hanover sale that was conducted by Sotheby’s Auction House at Schloss Marienburg, Germany, in 2005.


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  • Sale! HERZOG ERNST AUGUST’S FELDGRAU INFANTERIE-REGIMENT Nr 92 GENERALMAJOR MANTEL (OVERCOAT) - BRAUNSCHWEIG - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    HERZOG ERNST AUGUST’S FELDGRAU INFANTERIE-REGIMENT Nr 92 GENERALMAJOR MANTEL (OVERCOAT) – BRAUNSCHWEIG

    SKU: 50-01

    $4,995.00 $3,395.00

    This is a mantel (overcoat) once owned by the Duchy of Braunschweig’s Herzog Ernst August (1887-1953). Ernst August was Braunschweig’s final Duke, who married Viktoria Luise (1892-1980), Kaiser Wilhelm II and Kaiserin Augusta Viktoria’s only daughter. [Braunschweig was the Kingdom of Hannover’s vassal state, until both were absorbed into Prussia following their defeat in the 1866 Austro-Prussian War. Braunschweig’s ducal succession was rather confused at the time. Otto von Bismarck stepped in to block the purported Hannover/Braunschweig next-in-line from ascending the throne. Instead, Prussia’s Prinz Albrecht (1837-1906) was named as Braunschweig’s regent, a role in which he served from 1885 to 1906. (Albrecht’s father was Wilhelm I and Friedrich Wilhelm IV’s brother). Prinz Albrecht had been a military officer, serving as the Hannover-based X. Armeekorps’ commander prior to his regency. Another Prussian took over the regency after Albrecht’s 1906 death. Following Ernst August’s 1913 marriage to Viktoria Luise (THE year’s social event and the European crowned heads’ last major gathering before WW I), Ernst August was allowed to become Braunschweig’s final Herzog. Braunschweig was then afforded greater independence, but remained a Prussian vassal state.
    Young Ernst August was the Regimental Chef for his Duchy’s Husaren-Regiment Nr 17, a well as Infanterie-Regiment Nr 92. The Braunschweigisches Infantry Regiment Nr. 92 was founded in 1809. The regiment was garrisoned in the capital city of Braunschweig, and assigned to the X. Armeekorps. Braunschweigisches Infantry Regiment Nr. 92 possessed a fabled history. Among the battles and campaigns in which it participated were the 1808 Peninsular War (Spain and Portugal) against Napoleon under the Duke of Wellington, the battles of Waterloo and Quatre-Bras in 1815 (again with Wellington), and Mars La Tour during the 1870/71 Franco-Prussian War (attached to the 20th Division under General von Kraatz-Koschlau). During World War I, the 92nd Infantry Regiment fought at the battles of St. Quentin and the Marne on the Western Front and on the Eastern Front in the Gorlice-Tarnow Offensive and the Brusilov Offensive. The regiment, along with Hussar Regiment Nr. 17 and one battery of Feldartillerie Regt. von Scharnhorst (1. Hannoversches) Nr. 10,constituted the Duchy of Braunschweig’s entire military.
    Our offering today is that very Duke’s feldgrau overcoat for Infanterie-Regiment Nr 92. We are very excited to offer a general officer’s rank coat that once belonged to a German HEAD-OF-STATE (the Kaiser’s son-in-law, no-less). The tunic is made of ultra-high-grade feldgrau wool. The coat is large and single-breasted, with a six-gilt-crowned button front and barrel cuffs. It features large, beautiful, generalmajor’s sewn-in shoulder boards (with red underlay) attached to the shoulders. They are sewn-in on one side, and attached by a small, crowned, gilt-toned button on the other. Its collar is a beautiful green on the inside and feldgrau on the outside. The overcoat’s reverse displays five small, burnished-gold buttons WITHOUT crowns. They can be fastened to the other side. A flap covers the buttonholes so they cannot be seen when buttoned. The coat’s interior displays a heavy, green, tufted-silk liner, with a small interior pocket on the right breast. The coat comes with the original wood hanger as it originally arrived from the auction (straight from Ernst August’s valet). The wood hanger retains the original sash hook. Its underside has the crowned initials “EA” branded into the hanger.
    Both the interior and the exterior are in near-mint condition. It is in astounding condition for being more than one-hundred-years-old, with minor wear and a few minor moth nips. As mentioned with Ernst August’s paletot, listed below, the coat comes from the Royal House of Hanover sale that was conducted by Sotheby’s Auction House at Schloss Marienburg in 2005.


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  • Sale! REGIMENT der GARDES du CORPS M-1904 KETTLE DRUM BANNER & BACKING PAD - PRUSSIA - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

    REGIMENT der GARDES du CORPS M-1904 KETTLE DRUM BANNER & BACKING PAD – PRUSSIA

    SKU: 50-04

    $95,000.00 $65,995.00

    This ultra rare banner was draped around the Gardes du Corps regimental band’s kettle drum. The very ornate item is the rarest article Der Rittmeister Militaria has offered, to date. The following anecdote reveals even more about the stunning “pièce de résistance.”
    On Monday, 30 May 1904, Kaiser Wilhelm II ordered the Imperial German Army’s premier cavalry regiment, the Gardes du Corps, to report to him prior to its Annual Spring Parade behind Potsdam’s Neues Palais (New Palace). The regiment formed up on Kurfürsten Street around six in the morning. Everyone was clad in their dress uniforms, including their kollers (tunics), Hohenzollern Eagle-topped metal helmets and Spring-Parade-ONLY black küraßes. [The latter originally were presented to the GdC by Russia’s Tsar Alexander I in appreciation of his Prussian allies’ efforts against Napoleon in 1815]. Led by their kettle drummer, Master Sergeant (Vizewachtmeister) Gommelt, the regimental band (conducted by its famous director, Louis Lehmann), and the rest of the formation moved out toward the Neues Palais. Gommelt was a large, knightly figure (then weighing 265 pounds), and the only soldier in the army permitted the high honor of wearing a full beard. As the regiment reached historic Mopke Platz [the parade grounds located between the Neues Palais and the Communs, two buildings that housed the GdC, other palace staff, and guests], they shifted into a “pass-in-review” formation. It was here that the Kaiser ordered Gommelt to enter the Neues Palais, where Wilhelm received him in a friendly, jesting manner. The Kaiser who greeted Gommelt with “Well, chubby, how are you doing?” followed by “How much are you weighing these days?”
    After a brief conversation, the Kaiser informed Gommelt that he had a surprise for him. The surprise presented to Gommelt is one of the finest militaria items ever created: the final Regiment der Gardes du Corps’ kettledrum parade banner. It is one of TWO banners presented that day by the Kaiser to the German Army’s preeminent regiment (the other is in a private collection). The banner was created by Berlin’s famous royal embroidery firm, P. Bessert & Nettlebeck. The latter enjoyed a worldwide reputation as an exceptional uniform, church and artistic decorations producer. [It was equally well known for producing military flags and banners]. The drum banners were designed by Hermine Unterstein and stitched by Rudolf Thiele.
    Our banner is approximately 60 inches wide and 14 inches high. The five upper panels are made of exquisite, poppy-red velvet, while the four lower and two half panels are made of white silk. Each panel is separated by embroidered, silver, arabesque designs that feature red tassels suspended by silk cords through an opening at their base. Each of the two outer panels displays a Prussian Eagle against a silver shield topped by a silver crown, and surrounded by an Order of the Black Eagle collar. [The Black Eagle Order is so expertly embroidered that at first glance one could mistake it for a true version of the order]! The embroidery is exquisitely detailed and the end panels’ use of color is simply incredible. The eagles’ wings are expertly shaded to suggest feathers and flight. A masterfully-rendered scepter and orb are accented by a yellow crown, as well as the eagle’s yellow talons and beak.
    The next inner panel sets display large, beautifully-embroidered, highly-detailed Black Eagle Orders (Garde Stars) in their centers, with magnificent oak leaf clusters at the base. Their silver bullion is so expertly woven that the Garde Stars appear to be made of metal. The central panel features the Kaiser’s FWR (Friedrich Wilhelm Rex II) cypher. The cypher is embedded with small silver-toned beads/stones and topped by a silver crown, as are the other panels.
    The banner is backed by poppy-red Moroccan leather, with Russian leather attachment straps. A deluxe pad that protected the banner when it was attached to the kettle drum is also included. The pad has straps to secure it (and the banner) to the kettle drum’s exterior.
    This banner has been in private collections since it was offered by Berlin’s Oskar Scharbow auction firm in 1960. Once it is sold, the chances of it coming to light again within the next 50+ years are fairly slim. This ONCE-IN-A-LIFETIME offering crosses the collecting fields of Kaiser Wilhelm II and Garde-Regiments, specifically the Regiment der Gardes du Corps.


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Just In From Germany - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale

We are proud to feature works and art by Jack D. Hunter Author of The Blue Max

Our good friend Jack D. Hunter passed away on 13 April 2009, at the age of eighty-seven (he would have been eighty-eight in June). I miss him. He remains an extremely important influence on my life, as well as for many WWI collectors and readers.