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PRUSSIA – ARM CHEVRON – ONE YEAR VOLUNTEER – KAISERLICHE MARINE

SKU: 13-638

$150.00

This is a One-Year-Volunteer’s arm chevron from the Kaiserliche Marine. As we have chronicled elsewhere, the One-Year-Volunteer (OYV) entered the German military service on a different program from the men doing two-year mandatory service. After most men completed their two-year service, they entered the reserves. They only were called to active service when additional man power was needed. This was the situation, of course, when WW I began. Most reserves were called back to active duty. Returning to the OYV, when entering the military, they essentially paid all of their own expenses. That is, the government did not pay for their equipment (uniforms, headgear, etc.). They were expected to supply their own gear, just as officers did. Since these men provided their own gear, they were allowed a certain amount of latitude in their uniforms and headgear. Men who enlisted in the OYV program were generally from the German middle class or higher. They had more money to spend on their uniforms than say farmers who came into the service. Many OYV’s bought their uniforms and headdress from the same purveyors that the officers did. They were allowed to mimic many officers’ headdress characteristics. For example, they were not allowed to purchase a pickelhaube EXACTLY like an officer’s, but they could get VERY close. At least ONE of the details had to be different from an officer’s. It is common to see a silk liner and officer’s leather liner on an OYV’s pickelhaube. This was one of the extra allowances that OYV’s were allowed to make. They also were allowed to wear a special trim on their shoulder straps that clearly indicated they were an OYV, not a normal enlistee, or even an NCO. I cannot state with authority that Navy OYV’s wore the trim on their shoulder straps. This device, however, serves the same purpose. It was worn on the sleeve. Each “V” shaped arm measures 3 1/2.” Woven into the patch is a design of red, black, and white. This is the first time that I have run across one.

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Description

This is a One-Year-Volunteer’s arm chevron from the Kaiserliche Marine. As we have chronicled elsewhere, the One-Year-Volunteer (OYV) entered the German military service on a different program from the men doing two-year mandatory service. After most men completed their two-year service, they entered the reserves. They only were called to active service when additional man power was needed. This was the situation, of course, when WW I began. Most reserves were called back to active duty. Returning to the OYV, when entering the military, they essentially paid all of their own expenses. That is, the government did not pay for their equipment (uniforms, headgear, etc.). They were expected to supply their own gear, just as officers did. Since these men provided their own gear, they were allowed a certain amount of latitude in their uniforms and headgear. Men who enlisted in the OYV program were generally from the German middle class or higher. They had more money to spend on their uniforms than say farmers who came into the service. Many OYV’s bought their uniforms and headdress from the same purveyors that the officers did. They were allowed to mimic many officers’ headdress characteristics. For example, they were not allowed to purchase a pickelhaube EXACTLY like an officer’s, but they could get VERY close. At least ONE of the details had to be different from an officer’s. It is common to see a silk liner and officer’s leather liner on an OYV’s pickelhaube. This was one of the extra allowances that OYV’s were allowed to make. They also were allowed to wear a special trim on their shoulder straps that clearly indicated they were an OYV, not a normal enlistee, or even an NCO. I cannot state with authority that Navy OYV’s wore the trim on their shoulder straps. This device, however, serves the same purpose. It was worn on the sleeve. Each “V” shaped arm measures 3 1/2.” Woven into the patch is a design of red, black, and white. This is the first time that I have run across one.

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