This is an M-1867 enlisted man’s kugelhelm that was correct for one of the three following Feldartillerie-Regiments (FAR): Feldartillerie-Regiment Prinz August von Preußen (1.Litthauisches) Nr 1, 1. Pommersches Feldartillerie-Regiment Nr 2 (excluding Batterie Nr 1), or Feldartillerie-Regiment General Feldzügmeister (1. Brandenburgisches) Nr 3 (excluding Batterie Nr 6). It is the earliest kugelhelm we have ever offered. FAR Nr 1 was founded in 1772. It was garrisoned at Gumbinnen-Insterburg, where it was attached to the I. ArmeeKorps. FAR Nr 2 was founded in 1808. It was garrisoned at Kolberg-Belgard, where it was assigned to the II. ArmeeKorps. FAR Nr 3 was founded in 1816. It was garrisoned at Brandenburg a. H., where it was attached to the III. ArmeeKorps. It is almost a certainty that the kugelhelm was used in the 1870-1871 Franco-Prussian War, in which all these regiments served.
The helmet’s leather body is in very fine condition, especially when one considers it is 130-years-old. I have seen countless pickelhauben and kugelhelme produced during the 1900 to 1914 period that do not even approach the splendid condition of this helmet. All of its furniture is gilt. It boasts a marvelous set of chin scales. Please note the wappen, which is quite different from all other FAR wappens. The front, and especially the rear, visor is longer than those on M-1897 helmets. The shape is a bit different as well, although it remains close to what the helmets’ final incarnation. A single Prussian kokarde appears on the helmet’s right side. It is correct for the era.
Inside the helmet is an absolutely complete leather interior. All of the tongues are present. The original sizing cord and all of the original hardware are attendant. A paper label identifies the owner as “Kanonier Wilke I.” His Waffen Number (Nr 60) also appears on the tag. The rear visor displays the depot markings “9.B. I.”
It is a charming early helmet that would make a fine addition to any collection and could contrast the differences in kugelhelme over a thirty-year-period.
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