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Thoughts on this officer and the huge badge or breast star he is wearing.


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I just got this in the mail today and am puzzled as to who this might be and what the massive breast badge or star is on his chest. No identification as to the photographer but an old handwritten inscription notes this is "Uncle Otto Mentzel."  Image is a late 19th century cabinet card format. 

Image (1).jpeg

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Some kind of Musikmeister , he wears swallows nests on the shoulders and the fringes denotes his rank . the oakleaves on the collar and the horn buttons denotes a possible Forestry Music unit . he also carries a Stichdegen , with silver swordknot 

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Hello Wyomingguy ! Possible colour scheme :  Grey green Jacket with dark green cuffs collar and piping. the swallow nests in dark green also with silver stripes and fringe , horn buttons ,mixed colour ivory and light brown as the Stag antler , slate grey trousers . About the breast star ,I have no thoughts

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Any thoughts on what the large star is? 

 

Pretty darn showy 

 

Thanks for the information on the color scheme. That is the one challenge that older photographs have in not seeing the colors. 

I have a challenge as well when folks ask about the age of the subject. I have dated photographs of my great grand parents and I would never have guessed their age in looking at them. The world was tougher and harsher and faces aged for sure. So the subject in this image could be 40's, 50's, 30's?

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GreyC , If you lives in Germany you surely knows at least one Schuetzenverein . perhaps the Breast Star is somekind of internal award , as the fourragere , the last one a clear badge in Germany for the Schuetzen .

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  • 2 weeks later...

I believe the huge star represents the award of Schuetzenkoening... the title given to the top marksman in a shooting club for a particular year.  The center medallion was typically engraved "Schuetzenkoenig" followed by the year the title was given-out, which unfortunately cannot be seen on the photograph.

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Hi Peter,

I suspected that the inscription on the center medallion might be impossible to make-out on an old photograph.

Here is a picture of a typical late 19th century Schützenkönig breast decoration.  Sometimes, these things were the size of small hubcaps and were featured in several different designs that varied from club to club.  Here is a link to an interesting gallery of Schützenkönig awards starting from the 17th century going right up into the 20th century.  Simi.

https://www.schuetzenverein-dolberg.de/orden/   

Schützenkönig.jpg

Edited by Simius Rex
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The breaststar is definitly a sign for the schützenkonig. I found a similar photo while doing some research for my coming book on the orders and medals of the kingdom of Hannover. Take a look at what this Gentleman wears. 

The photo shows a Schützenkönig from Hannover, amazing how he wears the other order, the ribbon looks like a ladies ribbon folded like a bow. 

Boots Hannover.jpg

Edited by BlackcowboyBS
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