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Dear fellow collectors,

would anyone be able to help me with this officer? I came across this picture on the internet, his rankboards indicate 2nd lieutenant, but his awards are pointing towards a hauptmann rank. Did he perhaps have a higher rank in civilian life, or has he been demoted?

Kind regards, and thanks in advance, Laurentius

post-2876-1244395321.jpg

post-2876-1244395330.jpg

Edited by laurentius

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He is wearing an imperial crown badge on his sleeve. 

Does that mean he was a member of the Freikorps Heydebreck when this photo was taken, or was this crown also the sleeve-badge of the volunteer automobile corps before the end of WW1? 

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Very interesting thread.  I had never heard of these civilian volunteers who agreed to provide transportation services to the army during the war.  

I guess we now know where Freikorps Heydebreck got their sleeve-badges... Automobilkorps surplus!     

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Hi!

Before the war they provided automotive support during manoeuvres, as the army lacked cars. See postcard from my collection (1909). They were recruited from the Imperial Automobile Society (it says "hostile horsepower"). The 2nd photo from my vaults shows a member in fieldgrey as member of a divisional HQ.

GreyC

1652833844_xKaiserlichesAutomobilkorpsPKKlein.thumb.jpg.ac92d47fad56a2147601c9217a465a07.jpgxKaiserlichesAutomobilkorpsIIkl.thumb.jpg.50894abd30ac5b6e5e2e92bc50392f40.jpg

Edited by GreyC

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40 minutes ago, GreyC said:

1652833844_xKaiserlichesAutomobilkorpsPKKlein.thumb.jpg.ac92d47fad56a2147601c9217a465a07.jpg

Thank you for posting this, GrayC. It is always a delight to see a Fritz Schönpflug cartoon/caricature - and this is a new one to me.

For anyone who is not already familiar with his work, he was always amusing in the way he showed up German and Austrian military foibles as well as being pretty much 'spot on' with uniform detail. A search of Google Images using his name will be well rewarded!

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Hi Trooper-D,

thank you for pointing this out.Didn´t know he was Austrian.

For those of you intersted in these sort of units: There was a British equivalent and the Germans also had similar units for private motorboat and for plane-owners that volunteered their machines for service in the German forces. Some of them even brought their own crew. Those were given the rank of NCOs in the German Army/Navy.

GreyC

Edited by GreyC

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