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Gentleman's Military Interest Club


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Everything posted by bolewts58

  1. The biggest red flag IMO is the use of all caps. A knowledgeable typesetter/engraver would know better than to use all capital letters with this font. It's simply never done and a huge design error.
  2. Why is this posted here? Shouldn't it be posted on one of the Third Reich forums?
  3. Thanks for the information. I stand corrected in that they existed and were used in Spain. But, as I said they are very often sold on German eBay as German and that's from where I drew my incorrect conclusion.
  4. Sorry. Not even close. I'm not sure what this weird, distorted, ugly ape-like skull is or if it's even German. It certainly isn't Freikorps. If German, it could be some sort of comical carnival piece. I can't see it being German military. The Freiwilligen-Kompagnie Elisabeth skull is basically a large version of the Brunswick skull (like the one on the left in the comparison photo on the black background). Also, as an aside, the two skulls looking at each other in the second from the bottom photo are fantasy pieces. These turn up all the time on eBay as either Freikorps or Minenwurfer sleeve badges. But, no such badge ever existed in either WWI or during the Freikorps period IMO. Given the popularity of skulls, all kinds of fakes, fantasies and general crap are saturating the market.
  5. It's true that Plakette can mean badge or sign in certain cases. But, it's not a common military usage of the term and I don't think it was used that way 100 years ago. The medal has the word "bewährten" (proven, guard or preserve). The phrase Ihrem bewährten MITKÄMPFER für GESETZ u. RECHT which literally means "Your proven campaigner for law and right" probably should be translated as "Your defender of law and the legal system". I think this supports the medal being Die Bewährungsmedaille or The Defence Medal of the Deutsche Schtuzdivision. In any case, I don't know that we're going to solve this until either this medal shows up in a group with this document or vice versa the Erinnerungsplakette shows up in a group with the document. Such is the problem with having a very incomplete record with regards to Freikorps awards and insignia and the fact that even with existing references there are mistakes. For example, Haarcke's catalogue and Bichlmaier and Hartung's catalogue, both of which are used as bibles by dealers and less experienced collectors have several mistakes in each. Even von Salomon's Das Buch vom deutschen Freikorpskämpfer has mistakes.
  6. The Erinnerungsplakette was awarded to both Deutsche Schutzdivision and Landesschützenkorps because they both joined together when Reichswehr-Brigade 25 merged into Reichswehr-Brigade 4 in October 1919. That's when the Plakette was proposed and they began to issue it starting in November or December 1919. I think they put the dates 1919 1920 anticipating it would be awarded throughout the coming year. But, go ahead and ask if the medal can be called a Plakette. I highly doubt it. Plakette as far as I know means plaque and nothing else.
  7. Ok. I surrender. I'm always open to some new information. There are lots of things Verkuilen didn't know as he was active at a time when there was a lot less information available. I don't think the document is for this medal. This is "Die Bewährungsmedaille", not the Erinnerungsplakette. I still think the most likely candidate is the large zinc table plaque.
  8. If it's real, I believe it is a hat badge for the Askari colonial troops in Africa. Here's an Askari fez from the Imperial War Museum with the same badge.
  9. bolewts58

    G.K.S.D. collar tab

    Very nice. Not only Garde cavalry, but an officer. You're right that one seldom finds any Freikorps collar badges sewn on the original collar tab. I have a few and consider that their scarcity pretty well doubles the value of the badge.
  10. The badges like yours and Eric's that I've seen and handled are all die-struck: some from zinc, some from tombac, some from some sort of white metal. It's the details which I have already described above which I don't like. But one detail I forgot to mention is that the sword hilt on originals is longer and tapers more gradually down to the ball tip. On yours, Eric's and the other two you posted, the hilt is fatter and shorter. The badges that the Club first sold in the mid-2000s were just like yours and Eric's. It's surprising that the ones they are selling now are of significantly poorer quality. But, that's also true of a lot of the other stuff they sell. The quality has gotten worse. IMO, there's no reason that this badge would have ever been made with a pin. They certainly weren't worn as a collar badge that way. There are two types: either with prongs or drilled holes for sewing (2 in the lower crossguard and 1 in the tip of the sword). They were likely only produced once and both came from the same die - a different die than the one your badge comes from. In 50 years of collecting Freikorps, I have never heard of them being struck again from another die or issued as any sort of commemorative. So, I guess at this stage, we're going to have to agree to disagree unless a photo shows up with the badge being worn as a pinback that matches yours. In any case, I would really like to own that document. It's very cool.
  11. 'abschiedszeichen' in this case means more or less what you said in brackets: gesture/sign/token of farewell and IMO simply refers to what the Plakette represented - basically a "thank you for your service" commemorative. The document only refers to one award, which as I've stated is the zinc plaque. At the risk of being too dogmatic, I also stand by my opinion that all the badges except the pair I posted are fake. I no longer have those as I traded them a long time ago for something rarer. I believe Weitze currently has the same pair for sale. I've just bought another single. When it arrives, I'll attempt to weigh it. Although I'm not sure how accurate my scale is.
  12. Yes, you're right. I initially thought it was just the Kyffhäuser-Denkmünze für 1914/18. But, the ribbon is not the same. But looking at it again it is correct for the Awaloff Cross. The last ribbon I believe is for the Gallipoli Star. The ribbon bar is upside down in the frame.
  13. The center faded ribbon is for the Baltic Cross. The stripes should be a medium blue color.
  14. Lots of Germans got this cross as they made up most of the Russian West Army. He possibly might have flown with one of the Freikorps Flieger Abteilung (FA 427 or 429) in The Russian West Army. But, as there are few records available except concerning which German air aces were in what Freikorps, I might only be able to find out his squadron, if I knew what unit he was in during WWI by doing some cross-referencing and a bit of detective work, which I'm happy to do. But, it's a long shot unless you have some paperwork.
  15. As I thought. This is quite a nice example of the Maltese Cross of the Russian West Army, which is much rarer than the Randow Cross. This is consistent with his Baltic service and much more interesting than if he had just been in Detachement von Randow. Here's a picture of Pavel Bermondt-Avalov wearing the same cross.
  16. I'd like to see a better picture of the Randow Cross as I think it may not be a Randow Cross, but the Maltese Cross of the Russian West Army. They are very similar. But, the Russian West Army Cross is thicker in the middle and has a wider silver frame.
  17. I think it's the same, just newer. Anyway, the important thing is that document. I love it.
  18. Ok. I'll wait and see.
  19. Yours and Eric's are both of the type sold by "the Club", as I bought one from them when they first started peddling them that was exactly the same with the safety pin. When I had it in hand, I knew immediately that it was fake. The second one you showed above is a poor cast of one of the fakes. Maybe "the Club" is selling these as well now. I'm sorry to be so dogmatic about this, but nothing is going to convince me that the one you show with the document is genuine or that this type of badge went with the document. It's illustrated on the document because the collar badge remained the symbol of Reichswehr-Brigade 25. Whether it came from reliable sources or not, this is a case of believe what the badge tells you, not the story. Genuine collar badges were quite large which is obvious when you see them in wear. The pair of badges I showed above are 70 mm long. As you can see in this photo the collar badges were actually larger than the oval sleeve badge (with two crossed rifles above two oakleaf sprigs). The Erringerungsplakette which I am 100% sure goes with your document came in some different finishes I've seen. But, all are zinc based. The one I used to own was almost black. I've seen them with a slightly black bronze finish or simply in oxidized zinc. Weitze has one for sale at the moment that's like this. I've never seen one in silvered zinc. I very rarely disagree with you and I respect you incredibly for your in-depth knowledge on Freikorps. But, in this case, I think you're mistaken.
  20. The document is fantastic with the facsimile signature of Generalmajor Georg Friedrich Hugo Louis von der Lippe, commander of Reichswehr-Brigade 25 from June 1919 to May 1920. But, I don't believe the Deutsche Schutzdivision badge is genuine. Nor does it belong with the document. It's typical of the stamped fakes that "the Club" has been selling over the last 10 years or so. While the details are good, these badges are flatter than originals. Originals have a more domed wreath and hilt and the reverse stamping is deeper with sharper detail overall. if you compare the 2 oakleaves that cross the sword blade at the top, you'll see that on originals these are quite raised and appear to be angled down towards the blade on either side, top and bottom, while on the fakes they're flat and badly defined against the blade. The central medallion of the cross-guard on the fakes only has 2 dots. Originals have 4 dots. Badges that were sewn on the collar had the 2 lower dots drilled out. But, those with reverse prongs retained the 4 dots. The original finish is frosted silver with burnished highlights that tend to dull with age. Fakes either have no finish as in the case of the badge with the doc, or a dull, flat silver wash as in the better quality fake belonging to Eric Stahlhut at the top. Under no circumstances were these ever issued with a pinback. Originals of this collar badge have become harder to find as the market seems to be flooded with the fakes. The "Plakette" to which this award document refers is the blackened, bronzed zinc commemorative plaque (Erringerungsplakette) shown here. This plaque was proposed in October, 1919 after Reichswehr-Brigade 25 (formerly Deutsche Schutzdivision) merged with Reichswehr-Brigade 4 (formerly Freiwillige Landes-Schützen-Korps) and was awarded from December 1919 to December 1920 when Reichswehr-Brigade 4 was disbanded.
  21. Pages from a Militärpass belonging to Battle of Jutland (Skagerrakschlacht) veteran, Obersteurmannsmaaten (Chief Engineering Officer) Konrad Salb. During the Battle Jutland, Salb as a Signal Petty Officer served on the dreadnought battleship SMS Thüringen, which was heavily engaged during the battle, including the sinking of HMS Black Prince and heavy damage to HMS Turbulent. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SMS_Thüringen Interestingly, Salb served on Thüringen up to the end of the war, including the crew revolt on the Thüringen as part of the High Seas Fleet revolt in October 1918. As he went on to serve in the Bavarian Freikorps during fighting against the Munich Soviet, it's very likely that Salb was one of the officers who did not support the revolt on the Thüringen. Salb, who entered the Imperial German Navy in 1908 at 17 in the Schiffsjungen-Division received the EKII and BMVK with Crown and Swords. As a Bavarian, Salb went home and fought against the Communists as a member of the scarce Marine infantry Freikorps unit, 1. Bayrische Matrosenkompagnie Nürnberg, Bataillon Krauss, which later merged with Wehr Bataillon, Nürnberg-Fürth.
  22. They were all at the Battle of Jutland (Skagerrakschlacht) and were all heavily damaged (SMS Luetzow was eventually scuttled).
  23. This medal was awarded in 1926 only to members of Sturmfahne Teja of Freikorps Oberland and is actually quite rare. Very high-quality fakes from Russia have flooded the market in recent years and thus have caused most collectors to steer clear of this medal as it's too difficult to tell fakes from originals. I think this one is ok. But, unfortunately, it would be difficult to sell for the actual value of the medal.
  24. Basically yes. Artillerie -Flieger Staffel 101 was part of FA427. I have a Militarpass to this unit. I was mistaken. The Awaloff-kreuz only had 3 classes and yours is a 3rd class without skull. There were many variations of these made and handed out by Bermondt-Awaloff during the 1920s and 30s. Given the number handed out, it's amazing that there are so few real ones on the market. Konstantin Nikolaev writes extensively about this award in his book on Baltic awards. I'll have to struggle through the Russian and see what he says about the classes. By the way, it's also possible that your guy was a staff officer with the Freiw. russische Westarmee. But, unless the documents show up, or a photo with the bar being worn, I don't think it will be possible to identify him otherwise, even though it's a pretty unique set of awards. Brian
  25. Firstly, that isn't a Deutschritterkreuz 2 Kl. on your bar, but the far rarer Avalovkreuz 4 Kl.. The Deutschritterkreuz 2 Kl. was for NCOs and enlisted men. This is clearly an officer's bar. An officer would get the pinback Deutschritterkreuz 1 Kl. Also, the ribbon for the Deutschritterkreuz 2 Kl. is plain watered black silk. Your ribbon is the Avalovkreuz black ribbon with red, white and black stripes for Germany and white, blue and red stripes for Russia on the edges. Originals of any class of the Avalovkreuz are nearly impossible to find. So, you have something pretty unique, more so because it's on a bar. Secondly, there wasn't a Baltenkreuz 2 Kl., but a semi-official version of the one-class only pin-back cross with suspension ring for wear on the medal bar. As far as I know, von Randow never received the Saint Stanislaus awarded by Bermondt-Avalov to officers of the Russische Westarmee or the St. George medal both of which are scarce to Baltic Freikorps fighters. Nor, as far as I know did he receive the SSVK medal. The black enameled Maltese cross with swords that von Randow is wearing is actually the Diebitsch-kreuz 2 Kl. Your bar is far more spectacular than the one von Randow is wearing as it's specific to both the Eiserne Division and the Russische Westarmee . It's pure speculation. But, given the two Luftwaffe long service medals and the number of Freikorps awards, it's possible the recipient of this bar was originally a Freikorps flier or at least attached in some capacity to a Freikorps squadron. The Eiserne Division had several Flieger-Abteilungen (FA 424, 426, 427, 429 and Artillerie-Flieger Detachment 101) consisting of 140 planes that transferred to the Russische Westarmee and joined the Russian 3rd and 6th Don Airforce.