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    Oberleutnant shoulder boards to ID

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    51 minutes ago, Simius Rex said:

    For anybody interested in what kind of services flash spotters (Licht-Messtruppen) provided to the artillery, here is a description from Chris Boonzaier's website, "The Kaiser's Bunker".


    Flash spotters base their survey methods on simultaneous fixes on the gun flashes of the enemy cannon from posts that are from one to three kilometers distance from one another. They make note of a large number of land marks in their observation zones, drawing upon earlier plottings and fixed designations. These landmarks are coordinated with sector surveys for easier location. Besides enemy artillery, the flash spotters have to plot other targets for possible future use. So, for example, they plot trench mortars from the glare of the flash, searchlights from their being switched on, blast furnaces by their flickering glare and troop encampments by bivouac fire and smoke.

    Thank you so much, really interesting!

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    I doubt it...

    The light measuring troops were only introduced in 1917. Their shoulder straps were then those of the foot artillery with crossed barrels, Latin letters LM and a number.
    Gothic letters were actually only used for Landwehr inspections. There, however, there was always only one letter, but no I or L.

    I also think I see an LW. But that makes no sense to me. The Landwehr had no such letters. Note the shown german gothic letters. The W is "closed" at the top and bottom, while the M is "closed" only at the top.

    We also have to look at the blue base colour. If it is a shoulder board before the reunification in 1915, the colour refers to the VII, VIII.AK, or parts of the XVIII.AK, XX,.AK (IF Infantry or field-artillery! Foot-Artillery had a white base) or to the Train.

    After 1915, officers only wore blue in certain dragoon regiments, in the Guard and Provincial Landwehr Cavalry or in the Train.

    But corresponding numbers were also worn by the Ldw.Kav.


    So I only can make my guess, what it´s NOT (at least not officially), but I can´t tell, what it is... strange situation...?



    To the structure of "Lichtmeßtrupps":
    They belonged to the heavy artillery. First, in September 1915 there were 101 "Artillerie-Meßtrupps".  (in 1916 there were 129 and in 1917 there were 177 "Trupps"). In 1916 a second kind of Meßtrupps were introduced, the "Schallmeßtrupps".

    So, end of 1917 they were divided in those both different Meßtrupps.

    We had "Artillerie-Meßtrupps" (since November, 8, 1917, called "Lichtmeßtrupps"):

    29.9.1915: 1-101

    1916: 102-123; 126-129

    19.2.1917: 124, 125, 130-177 and Bavarian N°.1



    25.1.1916: 1-51

    until October 1916: 52-96

    9.1.1917: 97-129 and Bavarian N°.1


    A Lichtmeßtrupp had 5-6 measuring points and one measuring planning point.

    The planning point consisted of the leading officer, two lieutenants, 27 NCOs and other ranks. One single measuring point had 11 men.


    In May 1918, a third kind was raised; the so-called "Erdmeßtrupp" (Ground-measuring-troop), a combination of Licht- and Schallmeßtrupps.

    3 Licht and 5 Schallmeßtrupps became one "Richtungshörer-Zug". There were only three of those platoons (N° 501-503).


    According to the "Vocabulary of German military terms (July 1918),

    the correct translations were:

    Artillerie-Meßtrupp: Artillery Survey Section or Observation Group

    Lichtmeßtrupp: Observation Group

    Schallmeßtrupp: Sound Ranging Section

    Richtungshörer: Direction Finder (sound)

    Erdmeßtrupp: not yet mentioned in July 1918


    Unfortunately I don´t have a photo of those shoulder boards, but a photo of a "Richtungshörer":



    I only have two photos of "AM" (Artillerie-Meßtrupp):







    and a stamp of Schallmeßtrupp 100:



    Edited by The Prussian
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    Thank you all so much for your opinions! To make our life easier I made bigger scan.


    And honestly said, I tend to agree with Andreas, I see W not M. Look a the 3rd vertical bar, or how it's called, it's shorter in lower part comparing to other two, as it is shortened in all W letters in all gothic scripts I've ever seen. You can't find it in M letters.

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    1 hour ago, Simius Rex said:


    If this is the case, what you are left with is a pair of Prussian shoulder boards onto which somebody has stuck an "L" and a "W" for unknown reasons. .... 

    ...long time ago :) You're right, just another mysterious item in this hobby. I'm fine with that, may be we can solve it later.

    Thanx everyone for their help!

    Edited by Destruction
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    4 hours ago, The Prussian said:


    What about an imperial shoulder board, used in the post-war era by a shooting-club of a german town like Limburg, Lemgo or anything else with LM?

    Hi Andreas,

    Out of curiosity, are there any examples when imperial shoulder boards were used like this? 

    Might be an option.

    Another assumption--some unofficial/half official post war Bund/Verein/military organization ? Again, should it happen that anyone know/have examples of such a use? 




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    • 1 year later...

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