PRUSSIA – KUGELHELM – OFFICER – FELDARTILLERIE – WITH SPECIAL WAPPEN.
Prussian Feldartillerie kugelhelme sported three very different wappen-types that represented three vastly different regiments. The most common of the three wappens was intended for Line-Artillerie Regiments. [It was also shared with Line-Infanterie Regiments]. Its bandeau proclaimed “Mitt Gott Fur Koenig und Vaterland,” with the initials “FR” directly underneath. The second wappen-type was used by Garde-Regiments and featured an impressive Garde Star that was displayed on ALL headdresses used by the various Garde-Regiments. The third wappen-type was used by only FOUR old-line, very elite regiments that were only slightly less prestigious than the Garde-Feldartillerie-Regiments: Feldartillerie-Regiment Prinz August von Preußen Nr 1 (founded in 1772), 1. Pommerisches Feldartillerie-Regiment Nr 2 (founded in 1808), Feldartillerie-Regiment General Feldzügmeister (1. Brandenburgisches) Nr 3 (founded in 1816), and Feldartillerie-Regiment von Peucker (1. Schlesisches) Nr 6 (founded in 1808). This wappen displayed an oval shield/device that featured the King’s cypher under the bandeau rather than the “FR.” Their low regimental numbers were an indication of their importance, as well as how early they were founded.
The helmet’s leather body is in excellent condition. It received superb treatment from its original and successive owners for more than one-hundred years. Its leather is clean, clear, and supple. The beautifully-frosted gilt wappen is a delight to view. Its fire-gilding is excellent. All of the other furniture, including its chin scales, trim, base, officer’s stars, and kugel, is also gilt. The final exterior details are the correct Reich and State officer’s kokarden.
The helmet’s interior features a brown leather sweatband in magnificent condition. The rust-colored silk liner is complete and in excellent condition. The original hardware and fittings can be seen under the silk liner. NO double holes are present, a vital testament to the originality of any headdress.
The helmet comes to us from the collection of a very serious and knowledgeable longtime collector who has a sharp eye for quality, condition, and (of course) authenticity. I can say with complete honesty that its condition is EXCELLENT. I have not seen a kugelhelm in better condition than this example for a long time. You would be hard pressed to find a better helmet. It is fairly-priced and represents a solid value.
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 pickelhauben: 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].