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  • Sale! 1813-1814 OFFICIAL’S MILITARY MERIT MEDAL - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale


    SKU: 05-1587 XDG

    $695.00 $550.00

    This is a consignment item. It is a special medal that was issued to military officials during the 1813-1814 Napoleonic Wars. The circular medal, which measures 1 1/4 ” in diameter, features a rampant lion on the obverse. On the reverse we see König Maximilian’s initials and the dates for which the award was given. It comes on an original ribbon. It is a VERY rare medal.

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  • Sale! 1870-1871 FRANCO-PRUSSIAN WAR COMBATANTS SERVICE MEDAL - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale


    SKU: 05-1664 XDG

    $75.00 $60.00

    This is a consignment item. It is the combatant’s version of the War Service Medal that was awarded for the 1870-1871 Franco-Prussian War. [The latter provided the final piece in Imperial Germany’s unification puzzle]. Four years after the 1866 Austro-Prussian War, a militarily united Germany went to war with France. All its Kingdoms, Grand Duchies, Duchies, Principalities, and free States fought under Prussia’s command. When the war ended in 1871, Germany finally became politically united under its first Kaiser, Wilhelm I.
    As had been the case during its Napoleonic War involvement, Prussia melted down the captured French cannons into medals, then issued them to the war’s active combatants. As is the case with all similar medals, its authenticity is confirmed by the same information engraved on its edge.
    A replacement ribbon is attached to the original medal.

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  • Sale! ALLGEMEINES EHRENZEICHEN MEDAL 2nd CLASS - PRUSSIA - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale


    SKU: 05-1665 XDG

    $125.00 $95.00

    This is a consignment item. It is Prussia’s 2nd Class version of the Allgemeines Ehrenzeichen (General Honor Decoration). It was a civil decoration awarded for merit in peacetime. It is a large silver-toned medal that measures 2″ in diameter. It comes with a replacement ribbon.

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  • Sale! ANHALT - PICKELHAUBE - OFFICER  - INFANTERIE-REGIMENT NR 93 - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale


    SKU: 04-766 XKGJT

    $6,995.00 $5,995.00


    It has been some time since we have had the pleasure of offering a pickelhaube from the very small Duchy of Anhalt, Saxony’s neighbor. In 1900, the population of Anhalt was 271,963. Its capital was located in Dessau. Its final reigning Duke was Friedrich II, who ruled from 1904-1918. Anhaltisches Infanterie-Regiment Nr 93 was founded in 1807 during the Napoleonic Wars. Bataillone Nrs 1 and 3 were garrisoned in Dessau, while Bataillon Nr 2 was based at Zerbst. The regiment was assigned to the IV. Armeekorps.

    The pickelhaube’s leather body is quite pleasing. Though not perfect, the bulk of the helmet’s (minor) imperfections appear on its right side (from the wearer’s perspective). These are minor ripples rather than gouges in the leather. Its wappen is especially handsome. At first glance, it looks like a standard Prussian wappen. A closer inspection reveals the word “Fürst” (indicating the Duke) rather than “König” for Prussia’s ruler. Its gold eagle displays a lovely, gilt-fired finish. A silver sunburst containing a crowned shield with an “A” in its center is superimposed over the eagle. All of the helmet’s other exterior furniture is gold-toned, including the chin scales, trim, base, officers’ stars and its VERY tall spike. Its final exterior details are the correct officers’ State’s and Reich’s kokarden.

    The interior reveals a lightly-used, brown, leather sweatband, which is attached to a ribbed, rust-colored silk liner that is in fine condition. One hundred percent of the original hardware is visible under the silk liner. NO extra holes appear where the wappen is connected to the helmet’s leather body. It is one of the largest spiked helmets that we have encountered in quite awhile. Penciled on its interior is its size, “58 ½.” [We seldom see helmets larger than a “55”]!
    This very-fine, original helmet would make a fine addition to your collection.

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    SKU: 05-1701 XMB

    $450.00 $325.00

    AUSTRIA – SERVICE MEDAL – ORIGINAL PRESENTATION CASE. This is a consignment item. It is a simply gorgeous example of Austria’s Bronzene Militär Verdienst Medaille mit Schwerten (Bronze Military Service Medal with Swords). The order was first introduced in 1890 by Austrian Kaiser Franz Josef. It was originally intended for officers. In 1916, also under the Austrian Kaiser’s direction, swords were added to the decoration for wartime service. The medal measures 1 ¼” in diameter. Its obverse features a high-relief likeness of Franz Josef in profile. Information about the Kaiser circles the decoration’s outer edge. Its reverse proclaims “Signum Laudis” (Seal/Battle Standard of Glory/Merit/Approval). An orange and white tri-fold Austrian ribbon bearing a pair of gold-toned, crossed swords is attached to an articulated crown. In turn, the crown is connected to the medal.
    The decoration’s red presentation case has its name embossed on its outer lid. The case measures ¾” x 2 ½” x 4 ½,” and features the rounded lower edge indicative of Austrian cases. The case’s interior reveals a white silk upper lid with its manufacturer’s name embossed on it in gold as listed below.

    Zimbler, Wein VII
    K.u.K Hof-
    Burggasse 33

    Zimbler was one of the Austrian Kaiser’s House Jewelers (Rothe Neffe was another leading purveyor). Zimbler’s work was among the Austrian Empire’s finest. The case’s bottom half is covered in black velvet that has been elevated and fitted to properly display the decoration.
    This is a mint presentation of a rare decoration.

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    SKU: 31-128 XBS

    $995.00 $845.75


    This is a consignment item. The document group covers a German Southwest Africa (DSW) Schutztruppen member named Hugo Kleemann. His documents are chronologically listed below.

    1). Document for the Award of the 1914 Iron Cross 2nd Class. The document measures 6 ¾” x 10.” At this point Kleemann was an Unteroffizier. It is dated 15 May 1919, after he had been returned to Germany. The document’s left section depicts a standing enlisted man/NCO holding the German national flag (NOT the kriegsflagge) beneath a 1914 Iron Cross. The man is wearing the Schutztruppen’s well-known hut (hat) with its half-turned-up brim. The document is stamped in blue ink with the Schutztruppen unit’s identification “Kommando der Schutztruppen im Reichskolonialministerium” (Imperial Colonial Office Protection Forces Command) accompanying a scrawled official’s signature. The document clearly states that on this date Kleemann had received his Iron Cross 2nd Class.

    2). Ausweiß (Identity Transcript). The document’s obverse is dated 16 May 1919. It was issued in Friedrichshafen on the same date, and measures 8″ x 10 ¼.” It bears the unit stamp for the “Reichs-Kolonial amt Kommando der Schutztruppen” (an abbreviated form of Imperial Colonial Office Protection Forces Command). It also features a hastily scrawled Major’s signature. The document’s reverse states that Kleemann was honorably separated from the Schutztruppen effective 30 January 1919.

    3). Fifteen-Years Loyal Service Award Document. It is a first class award that bears the Schutztruppen’s unit stamp. It was signed by the same officer who signed Kleemann’s 1914 Iron Cross 2nd Class Award Document. The Service award’s date is 31 October 1919. It measures 6 ¼” x 7.”

    4). Kolonialabzeichen Urkunde (Colonial Badge Award Document). The award’s date was 22 March 1922. The document measures 7 ¼” x 8 ½.” Two of the sides display African motifs such as a native shield, spears and swords. A lion’s head decorates the document’s top. The phrase “Afrika, Kiautschou, and Südsee” is displayed at the document’s bottom enclosed within a wreath. The document was signed with the purple grease pencil often used by officers in the field.

    5). Hindenburg Cross for Combatants Award Document. This was awarded through the Hamburg police department (we later discover that Kleemann was a Hamburg policeman). The basic form date given for the preprinted document is 13 July 1934. It was signed and issued on 19 December 1934 by a police official. It measures 5 ¾” x 8 ¼.”

    6). Police Department Long-Service Award Document. This is a very fancy velum document attesting to twenty-five years of long service to the police department. The document is signed in Berlin with a deeply embossed eagle and swastika. It is dated 26 September 1938, and is signed at the bottom with a reproduction signature for “Der Führer and Reichskanzler Adolf Hitler.” The document measures 8 ¼” x 11 ½,” and is four pages long, only one of which was used. It is a very impressive document that was presented in the name of the German people.

    This most interesting document group celebrates a man’s service during and after WW I. You may wish to purchase both the group and the book on Iron Cross awards in German Southwest Africa, which would make a fine companion for the documents.

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  • Sale! BAVARIA - PICKELHAUBE - GENERAL - ADJUTANT OR WAR MINISTRY - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale


    SKU: 04-772 XJT

    $7,995.00 $7,500.00


    In keeping with our offering of Generals’ pickelhauben, we present the pickelhaube of a Bavarian General who served either as an Adjutant or at the Bavarian War Ministry. While its basic shape and leather are good, patches of leather are missing between the cruciform’s four arms. Some settling of the crown has occurred at the point where the cruciform is attached, which is a frequent occurrence on helmets that sport large cruciforms. For some reason, we see this occur more on Bavarian helmets than we do on helmets from other states that display similar cruciforms. Its front visor is squared.

    The helmet’s furniture features a superb, frosted-gold wappen that displays the traditional, twin, rampant, Bavarian Lions. A stunning, unblemished, oval, red, gold, black, and blue enamel shield appears between them. This shield was first introduced to Bavarian General Officers’ helmets in May 1914, just a few months before WW I began in August. All of the helmet’s other metal details, including the chin scales, trim, cruciform, and officers’ stars, are gold-toned. Its very tall, elegant spike is fluted. The exterior’s final detail is a fine pair of State and Reich Officer’s kokarden.

    The spiked helmet’s interior shows a topnotch leather sweatband. The sweatband is a very dark brown, which is a bit unusual. The back visor displays a gilt button that indicates the helmet is a size “57,” which is on the top limit of average (55-57). [Anything below those dimensions was a Small. Anything above it was a large. That said, the largest pickelhaube that I have encountered was a size “60,” which belonged to a General.

    Clearly, Generals had more brains than anybody else and consequently their larger heads needed larger helmets]! A brown, ribbed, silk liner that shows very moderate wear and is in good condition is attached to the liner. ALL of the original hardware for the officers stars and the wappen is in place.

    The helmet DOES feature one oddity that we must share with you. If you look directly below the most forward officers’ star’s hardware, you will see an old, period patch. When one presses on the patch, one can feel a depression that contains a hole. Frankly, I found this very puzzling since the hole is in an odd place. It is nowhere near where the wappen holes appear. All I can theorize is that when the manufacturer was building the helmet he made a mistake in where he drilled the hole for the officer’s star. No other logical explanation exists. [Please remember this is a VERY old patch, and NOT a recent event].

    I feel very confident about this spiked helmet. Its consignor has allowed me to offer it at a very reasonable price for such a piece. It is a real looker that will display most attractively. This is a consignment item.

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  • Sale! BAVARIA - STATUE - RAMPANT LION - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale


    SKU: 26-27

    $1,495.00 $1,395.00

    It is an oversized statue of a rampant Lion of Bavaria. It is made of base metal which has a coating of gilt over it. The Lion stands 10 1/2″ tall from its base to the tip of its mane. The Lion is mounted on a wooden base which is a further 2 1/4″ tall so the overall height of this presentation is 13″. The Lion is attached firmly to the base. The consignor tells me that this piece was used as a finial at a castle and displays the might and bravery of Bavaria. It weighs a whopping 9 ½ lbs. and is very well made with excellent detail. Due to the weight and the size additional shipping may be required depending on to where it will be shipped.

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  • Sale! BLOCK - EIGHT STAMPS - SPAIN - ZEPPELIN - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale


    SKU: 21-154

    $25.00 $21.00

    This is a block of eight stamps, featuring a zeppelin from Spain. All are attached and a part of a unit.

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    SKU: 04-779 XKGJT

    $9,995.00 $8,995.00


    One of the most popular pickelhauben is for the Duchy of Braunschweig’s Infanterie-Regiment Nr 92. This popularity stems from their use of massive Totenköpfe (Death’s Heads) that appear superimposed over their Prussian-style wappens. [PLEASE NOTE: the Totenkopf appeared on only four regiments’ headdresses. These were the 92’s sister unit, Husaren-Regiment Nr 17 (also from Braunschweig), along with the Kingdom of Prussia’s Husaren-Regiments Nr 1 and Nr 2]. This Totenkopf had NOT always appeared on all Braunschweig pickelhauben. Up until 1912, one of the regiment’s Bataillone (Nr III) had employed a beautiful, enameled wappen that featured the profile of Braunschweig’s iconic horse, while Bataillone Nr II and Nr III displayed the Totenkopf. After 1912 all Braunschweig Bataillone converted to the Totenkopf. [Many of these earlier helmets converted their “horse” wappens into Totenköpfe, which is why so few “horse” wappens still exist. That said, we have a simply gorgeous 92nd Infanterie-Regiment “horse” wappen on offer elsewhere].
    This particular helmet dates back prior to 1897. Its exterior surface is very clean and supple. The few scuff marks present are quite modest. As the helmet is a MINIMUM of one-hundred-twenty-years-old, its leather exterior is simply gorgeous. The bulk of its furniture is brass, including its wappen, chin scales, front and rear trim, base, officers’ stars, and spike. [The spike is especially tall, which leads me to believe its owner was quite well-off]. The only NON brass item is the silver Totenkopf that bedecks the brass wappen. It features black velvet behind its eye sockets, which lends it a sinister appearance. A light, gold-toned, Reserve Officer’s Cross sits below the jaw. As this spiked helmet is for a Reserve Officer, its wappen lacks the legend “Für Fürst und Vaterland” that would be present for regular Army Officers. The Reserve Officer’s Cross is one of the finest I have ever seen (as is correct, the “Für Fürst und Vaterland” legend appears here). The exterior’s final details are the State’s and Reich’s Kokarden (I find the Braunschweig kokarde’s combination of blue and gold particularly pleasing).
    The interior features a leather liner with the squared-off petals that were worn by officers until the late 1890’s (when silk became the fabric of choice for officers’ helmets). I date the helmet to the 1893-1897 period. The interior’s hardware reveals NO double holes. The hardware is all original, with the exception of one mismatched washer.
    While I have offered several officers’ helmets over the years, this is only the second that I actually have owned. The other was for a Hauptmann attached to Berlin’s War Ministry, who happened to be the brother of IR 92’s WW I regimental commander. In retrospect, I realize the helmets were VERY similar, except for their liners. This helmet is a good ten-to-twelve-years older than the first, but its condition is more than its equal. Other pluses include this helmet’s Reserve Officer’s Cross, and a spike that is a bit taller than the other. In the final analysis, this helmet is in better condition.
    We are quite excited to offer you this helmet. [We again refer you to the IR 92 Bataillone Nr I Officer’s helmet that we currently have on. If you are interested in the pair, please contact us. We can offer you a VERY special price]!

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    SKU: 04-758 XKGJT

    $11,995.00 $9,995.00

    This is a consignment item. Today we are offering a definite rarity, an Infanterie-Regiment Nr 92 Officer’s Pickelhaube. I know you are more used to seeing Infanterie-Regiment Nr 92 helmets displaying the Totenkopf (Death’s Head), but another version was used earlier by the regiment’s Bataillon Nrs I and II. After 1912, the entire regiment switched to the wappen sporting the Totenkopf. The earlier examples are seen far less often. Although many collectors prefer the Totenkopf wappen, this beautiful helmet deserves equal consideration, primarily because the wappen’s center features enamel on it.
    [PLEASE NOTE: the presence of enamel on wappens is rather unusual (IF you discount Prussia’s Garde-Regiments). Only SIX Imperial German Army regiments incorporated some form of enamel into their wappens. They were 1). Braunschweig’s Infanterie-Regiment Nr 92, 2). Baden’s Leib-Grenadier-Regiment Nr 109, 3). Hesse-Darmstadt’s Leibgarde-Infanterie-Regiment Nr 115, 4). Prussia’s Dragoner-Regiment Nr 2, 5). Württemberg’s Dragoner-Regiment Nr 26, and 6). Prussia/Hannover’s Ulanen-Regiment Nr 13. The latter’s tschapka featured a Prussian Garde Star along with various Hanoverian bandeaux above a Prussian Eagle, thus resembling a Prussian Garde-Regiment wappen with attached bandeaux].
    Braunschweig’s Infanterie-Regiment Nr 92 had a long and proud history. It was raised in 1809 and fought extensively in Spain under the command of Field Marshal Wellington during the Napoleonic Wars, suffering substantial casualties. It was garrisoned in Braunschweig’s capital city and assigned to the X. Armeekorps along with other Hanoverian regiments. [The Duchy of Braunschweig was a vassal state of the Kingdom of Hannover. Both were absorbed into Prussia following the Austro-Prussian War, in which they had backed Austria’s losing side. Prussian Prince Albert administered Braunschweig until his death in 1906. Ultimately, Ernst-August (1887-1953) assumed the throne as Duke. He married Kaiser Wilhelm II’s only daughter, Viktoria Luise (1892-1980). This resulted in greater freedoms being granted to Braunschweig].
    The end result is that this is a rare spiked helmet. It sports a very fine leather body that is relatively problem-free, exhibiting only the barest hint of a blemish or two. Its brass wappen is similar to a Prussian Infanterie wappen. As it is for an officer, it features an open (voided) crown. A silver sunburst in the wappen’s center contains an eight-pointed, blue, enamel cross emblazoned with a brass, running horse’s profile. Crowns appear at the cross’s 12 o’clock and 6 o’clock points. The reserve officer’s cross appears directly below the running horse emblem. [PLEASE NOTE: an elite regiment like this one contained far fewer reserve than regular army officers]. All of the helmet’s other furniture is brass-colored, including the (correct) flat chin scales, the base, the pearl ring, the trim, the officers’ stars, and the tall, very elegant spike. The helmet’s final exterior details include the correct officer’s State and Reich’s kokarden. The rosettes that attach its chin scales use the later style M-91 side posts. [Personally, I think it was a matter of the original owner’s sense of style, and an adjustment that he made during the period. As their pickelhauben were privately-purchased, officers had a great deal of flexibility with their headdress].
    The helmet’s interior reveals a fine leather sweatband that is complete, although obviously used. A couple of wear spots show on the sweatband’s leather. A fine, ribbed, silk liner is attached to the sweatband. It is an unusual dark-green in color and in excellent condition. Furthermore, ALL of the original hardware is in place, with NO double holes where the wappen is attached. It is a complete AND original pickelhaube in top condition. This spiked helmet would serve as an important part of your collection, especially if you have an Infanterie-Regiment Nr 92 helmet with the Totenkopf wappen.

    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, 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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  • Sale! BRONZE PRINZ LUITPOLD JUBILEE MEDAL (1854-1904) FOR K.u.K CORPS-ARTILLERIE REGIMENT Nr 10 - BAVARIA - Imperial German Military Antiques Sale


    SKU: 05-1611 XDG

    $595.00 $475.00

    This is a Prinz Regent Luitpold Jubilee Medal in bronze. It celebrates K.u.K. Corps-Artillerie Regiment Nr 10’s 50th anniversary. The medal measures 1 ½” in diameter. The medal is extremely scarce. Its obverse sports a high-relief profile of the Prinz Regent. The reverse features information about the regiment and the award’s significance. An original blue and white ribbon is attached to the decoration.

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