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German WW11 Boot Knife


bsweeney
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Hello bsweeney,

I believe what you have is a Nahkampfmesser knife of the stlye produced after 1935. This is a lot like the WW I knives but the scabbard has a steel spring clip for attachment to the belt or on the side of the boot, this was not a feature of the WW I knives. From the name I guess it is obvious that it is a German knife.

There is a famous photo showing a Waffen- SS soldier with one of these types projecting from the lapel of his motoring coat. Frederick J. Stephens' book "Fighting Knives, An Illustrated Guide to Fighting Knives and Military Survival Weapons of the World" , Arms and Armour Press, Fortress Publications, Ontario is a good source of information on these and other fighting knives.

By the way, great specimen.

Cheers :cheers:

Brian

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There is a famous photo showing a Waffen- SS soldier with one of these types projecting from the lapel of his motoring coat.

Cheers :cheers:

Brian

I believe you are talking about this photo, one of the more recognised photos from the Battle of the Bulge.

That is a very nice looking knife BTW.

Regards;

Johnsy

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Hi Johnsy,

That's the photo I was talking about. I was writing my post while my wife was trying to get me out of the house to visit her family. I wanted to scan that photo but though better of it when she went out and actually started the car and sounded the horn. :speechless1: I know when I've pushed the issue too far and this was one of those times. Thanks for posting it.

That's an interesting mark on the knife. Luftwaffe you say? That's interesting. I've seen Lftwaffe weapons before but, I have been told that Canadian Airmen, and I would suspect, British as well were discouraged from carrying weapon. This is Bomber Command, Fighter Command may have been different. The theory was that if shot down and captured they (the Germans) would go easier on you if you were unarmed. Many purchased weapons privately and had them with them while on missions. My father once said that they were not really sure what they would have done with these weapons if shot down but it gave them a feeling of security while on their missions.

:cheers: Cheers

Brian

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Hallo Gents, :cheers:

the use of a knife is obvious even for air-crew, to cut parachute shroud lines, especially if landing in water

and to use as a survival item.

The picture shown of the soldier above comes from part of a well known propaganda movie shot by the Germans

in the Battle of the Bulge event, of course all the troops and equipment carried were the real deal.

Kevin in Deva. :beer:

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Hallo Gents, :cheers:

the use of a knife is obvious even for air-crew, to cut parachute shroud lines, especially if landing in water

and to use as a survival item.

The picture shown of the soldier above comes from part of a well known propaganda movie shot by the Germans

in the Battle of the Bulge event, of course all the troops and equipment carried were the real deal.

Kevin in Deva. :beer:

Hi Kevin,

The use may seen obvious to us today but from what I have been told by a former RCAF officer the practise was discouraged among the Canadian Bomber Command. Cutting the parachute lines was not considered as important as getting out of the water as the North Sea is, as you know, quite cold and the survival time is very limited. The use of a knife for survival didn't seem too important either though they did provide each Airman with a photo that could be used on a fake passport. This I find strange as why would you (as a government) provide means for the Resistance to make a fake passport and yet not arm the airmen. I can find no supporting documentation for my claim, I am only going by the word of several former RCAF crew. Actually a phoned my father to confirm this on the weekend.

Another thing I find odd was that the Candaian Airforce installed a sort of hatchet tool near the wireless station on the Lancaster. The idea being that if you crashed and survived that, but were trapped inside the aircraft, you could chop your way out with this hatchet. I have seen these for sale at shows but never purchased one. When I asked my father and his crew members about this they said that they didn't even know there was one available and then more or less quoted their two rules for surviving a bomber crash.

Rule one, survive the crash.

Rule two, there is no rule two because you won't actually get past rule one.

Somehow they found this quite amusing.

Cheers :cheers:

Brian

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