Welcome to the Special Offering Section of Wittmann Militaria. While we consider all of the items we offer for sale to be treasures, from time to time we do come across relics that can only be described as outstanding. It is in this section that we present to you those pieces deemed to be of exceptional quality, rarity, or historic significance.
This enlisted man's troddel was apparently submitted for approval through the appropriate sources before its design could be utilized by the Army. The troddel has textured, gray cotton strapping with a slide, stem, and cap ball of white color. The bottom ball with its yarn-like substances and matching strapping insert is gray color, matching the strapping. Accompanying the troddel is a most interesting submittal card. The cardboard card is attached to the troddel and the cardboard with a string, which is further permanently put in place with a wax seal. The wax seal has the open-winged eagle and swastika in the center. The stamping of the organization goes around the perimeter of the wax seal. On the accompanying card, is typed "Nachprobe/des/Sabeltroddels f. Mannsch". This typed phrase would translate to "sample submission of the sword troddel for enlisted men". Below this is a Berlin date of "6.7.1928", and then below that, is a further submission date "Munchen, den 1.4.38/Heeresbekleidungsant". There is a signature below this typing, and the rank of the signer, "Oberstleutnant". There are also number codes typed below this.
To me, this indicates that this style troddel was probably originally submitted in 1928, and further submitted to the German Army on April 1st, 1938, when it was accepted as attested by the signature of the lieutenant colonel. This is a very interesting accoutrement here, and probably marks the path of the necessary process it took to get the different color troddels approved by the Army for wear on enlisted men's swords and bayonets. A great item for those out there who collect bayonet knots.
Near Mint. $495.00
This unissued sword is one of a pair that I uncovered about fifteen years ago and sold to a collector. It is now on the market once again, and I must say it is quite a thrill to see this item in the same condition I sold it years ago. This unissued sword was apparently "liberated" from either a Carl Eickhorn store, or the factory, as it still has the retail price written in ink on one of the stickers. Apparently, the GI was fortunate enough to be able to acquire several blades, because if I remember correctly, other than the additional "Roon" pattern sword, there was also an Eickhorn made, Dutch sword, as well as an NCO variety. This hilt of this sword is in absolute perfect, mint condition, having 100% gild over the brass based surfaces. The hilt configuration on the "Roon" pattern is all stamped into the surfaces of the parts. The "P" guard and backstrap all feature beautiful, oak leaf motif along with acorns. The ferrule repeats the leaf pattern, and interestingly, the crossguard on both sides has acorns all in a row, stretching from the "P" guard bottom to the swirl at the quillon end. There are 9 acorns. The reverse langette is left plain, and the obverse features the half closed wing Wehrmacht eagle clutching a mobile swastika in his talons. There is a small age mark at the tip of the right wing, but I guess nothing this old could not show some kinds of signs of age somewhere. The beautiful celluloid over carved wood grip is in absolute perfect condition, and it is tightly wrapped with triple nickel wire, the center being twisted. The blade on this example measures almost 33". It is high quality construction with mirror nickel finish. The blade is easily in full mint condition. The reverse ricasso is stamped with the 1935-41 trademark. This consists of a squirrel seen from the viewer's left, holding a downward pointing sword. Above the squirrel is the quality word "Original", and below is the firm's name, and location, "Eickhorn/Solingen".
The scabbard of the piece, though, is where the real rarity occurs. These scabbards, when packaged for shipping, are carefully wrapped with wrapping paper around the entire length. The paper was kept in place with a form of packaging tape at the top, and also by applied labels which were put on at the center obverse area. These labels were a black and gold color. The top label shows the 1935 Eickhorn trademark on the obverse, and on the reverse, there are places left for the date and other particulars. There is nothing filled in on the reverse part. Below the Eickhorn logo, there is printed in black on a white line the Roon sword model number, "nr.1716". Below this, on the black surface of the paper, in gold printing, is a Wehrmacht style gold eagle, the same as the langette on the sword. Somewhat below, in a 45 degree angle, again with black paper and gold printing, is printed "Modell:Roon". In between these two factory papers, is a paper stamp-looking application, which has been written in ink, the first word I can't read, but beneath this is the date "10.4.40". Below this is the notation which looks like "216/102" and beneath this, another word that's illegible to me, and then the price of the sword "26.50". This would mean that the sword sold for 26 Reichmarks and 50 Pfennigs. This paper wrapping remarkably, is still 98% intact. At the areas where the sword body shows at the upper, the paint is a perfect, flat, black color. At the bottom of the scabbard, there is a little bit of the paper missing at the chape, and also about six inches up. Apparently some moisture got to this area, as there is rust on the metal parts that show in this area only. Other than this rust spot at the lower scabbard, and the tiny age spot on the langette, this sword remains in brand new, unissued condition.
A wonderful opportunity here to start out a Field Marshal collection, and hope that you can acquire the rest of the swords in this condition (no way!), or you may just love to have a sword in this condition to have in your own collection. What better way to advertise your top-of-line-taste! A very rare opportunity here to acquire the best of the best.
This beautiful bayonet is one of the finest examples I have seen in forty years of collecting. The bayonet was most likely a private purchase example by a NCO who also fought in the Great War winning the Iron Cross. The hilt of this example is of finest nickel-plated surfaces. The nickel plating is outstanding throughout and remains in bright mint condition. Fitted to this beautiful hilt is a most impressive set of genuine stag grip plates. The stag on the obverse has a fine antique rich look to the grains being very enticing. The reverse plate is somewhat more brown but still is quite beautiful with good high grains. These grip plates are retained by matching nickel rivets with spanners on the reverse. Usually we see this installation with Pack bayonets only in this case apparently the Pack hilt was used by the Alcoso company. Perhaps the original owner liked the looks of the offset treatment and elected to go with this particular hilt. The mortise button and lock still work and the rifle slot has the original red felt in it. There is some minor signs of moth tracks but not much.
The scabbard is a typical short type being straight throughout and having extremely fine bright black factory paint. The reverse of this scabbard is still perfect other than some minor spidering and the obverse has a couple of carrying signs and a little wear to the lower edge and also to the ball but it is still about 95%. The scabbard is equipped with a rich brown frog which is still in near full mint condition. This beautiful frog is the style that is stitched throughout and on the reverse it has a field green felt covering. There is some mothing to the felt mostly in the area behind the belt loop but the felt still remains at about 80-85%. A fine scabbard here.
Accenting these outstanding mounts though is an extraordinary blade. This blade is forged with the stepped end having a narrow fuller design. The blade is forged of hand Damascus and it is in the “Band” pattern. The original patterns are still completely crisp and literally “jump” off of the blade. It is a very exciting thing to take this bayonet out of the scabbard! The obverse blade has a raised World War I Iron Cross positioned at about the center area. The cross has most of its original blackening on the four legs. The nine o’clock position leg does show some wear to the black which was caused by the scabbard runners. The twelve o’clock leg has a Prussian crown with the Kaiser’s initial “W” in the center and the date of the Great War at the six o’clock leg, “1914”. The reverse of the blade seems to “jump” even more than the obverse. In the center area is a two line dedication having the name of the original owner and most likely the date he won the Iron Cross, “Walter Ronski / 2.12.1917.”. I don’t know whether it’s possible to research this man since he would have been an NCO. I’m sure it would be difficult. Nonetheless with the professional researchers we have today it would be worth a shot for the next owner to give it a try. This beautiful blade is protected by a brown leather washer which nicely matches the frog. The spine of the Damascus blade has the maker name and location raised out, “Alexander Coppel Solingen”. Just a remarkable thing here and a great opportunity to purchase a head turning bayonet that will always be a highlight of any collection.
Mint Minus. $12,500.00
SPO #34377C Lot of Forestry related Collar Tabs and Insignia in Original Packaging
This set of Forestry elated insignia comes from the wire making factory of "Thiele & Steinert" that was based in Berlin. This company made the wire stitching for collar tabs and I must say they did beautiful work with the images on these tabs.
There are many different sets of collar tabs for forestry ranks, as well as some sleeve emblems, and also a cap emblem. Many of the tabs have the original factory metal string sales tags which are marked "T & S Berlin" as well as having paper tags which list in handwritten ink the rank of each tab as well as its factory number and the date that it was packaged. These cellophane wrapped tabs were also stored in their original envelopes, which are also printed with the factory name and then ink marked with the model number for each tag, the name of the rank for each tag, as well as the date the items were processed for sale. Each envelope also has a rubber stamping of the image that is contained inside.
This is some terrific stuff here, and obviously must have been found in a store basement somewhere, that specialized in this type of insignia or the making of forestry uniforms. This grouping would be a real treasure trove for the right collector. There are thirteen envelopes, all of which contain insignia, some with two insignia as opposed to one. A most interesting grouping here.
SPO #34155C Period Letter Opener with Damascus Blade
This period letter opener is about ten inches in overall length. The grip appears to be made of a black celluloid material, having an interesting rounded pommel shape, that transcends into an eight-sided, handheld grip below. The obverse panel of the grip contains an edelweiss flower with stem and leaves. The flower is cut into the celluloid and is colored white. It is a most attractive decoration, probably meant for female consumption. The crossguard and ferrel are a nickel material, the ferrel having raised serrated decoration, and the crossguard being short with ball-like quillons on each end. The scabbard is a black leather shell, having twin line decoration on the edges of each side, and sewn up the middle. It has a plain nickel upper mount, and probably had a matching one at the bottom, but this lower mount has gone to time.
The attention, though, of the user is immediately focused when the blade is pulled from the scabbard. This beautiful 5 3/4" blade has a double fuller design on both sides, running about 2/3 of the way. The blade is forged of a remarkable patterned Damascus. This Damascus has maidenhair style on the right side of the blade and the left side of the blade has a series of small roses. It is really a fantastic mating of patterns. There are also some lines that run perpendicular down through the blade, breaking up the patterns of maidenhair and roses. I do not know how a pattern like this was achieved, but it is extremely beautiful and unbelievably impressive. The tip is still needle-like, and the blade remains in mint condition. The letter opener is held together with a screw-like pommel at the tip of the grip. This does not seem to want to turn, so I am hesitant to take this piece apart in order to see if there is a Damascus smith named on the tang. I guess it doesn't really matter, because whoever made this blade was a true genius of the trade. A remarkable artifact here, and something that you will get great enjoyment out of each day if you use it on your desk to open letters. Absolutely beautiful piece of Damascus here!
SPO #33892C The Hunting Hirschfanger of Frederich Der Grosse
Frederick the Great was king of Prussia from 1746 through 1786, and is regarded as one of the most remarkable and best rulers of all time. While expanding his kingdom, mostly with wars with Austria, he became recognized as a military genius. Napoleon once remarked that "if Frederick were still alive, I would never have existed". A great friend of Voltaire, Frederick encouraged fairness, education and freedom of religion, all keys to the betterment of his people and country. His domestic reforms modernized Prussia to the admiration of all of Europe. He encouraged the arts, architecture and music. Being a musician and composer himself, he found the time to write 100 sonatas for flute (with he played) and also several symphonies. In addition to his native German, Frederick spoke French, English, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese. He was the builder of the famed, Sans Soucci, located in Potsdam, (his favorite palace), where Frederick is buried today. Frederick left a legacy of absolute devotion to the fatherland that continued to shape German history into the 20th century.
This classically designed, spectacular Hunting Cutlass is believed to have once been the personal property of Frederick the Great. It surfaced at a MAX Show a few years ago through a Florida dealer specializing in quality daggers and assorted military weapons of 18th and 19th century Europe and America. The weapon is 26 inches in length. The one-piece grip is of singular beauty, composed of heavily hand-carved, solid ivory. The carvings, worthy of a king, are the best and most detailed that we have seen to date on a weapon. The ivory pommel features a pair of male lions, standing upward to flank the Prussian crown, seal and cypher of Frederick the Great. The seal contains the cypher, FR, meaning Frederich Rex. The twin lions have highly detailed heads, manes, bodies, tails and paws. They are a marvel to study. The cats are standing on royal robes draped over a pedestal. The folds and hems of the robes are expertly portrayed in the carving. Below the robes are a series of wave-like lines and curled designs in relief. The lower grip ends with edges having six sides. The edges have smooth borders and fluted center accent lines. The ivory is age-toned to a golden hue. There are some mild surface cracks in a few areas, but no splitting or damage.
The chased polished steel cross guard is below the grip. The grip's ferrule is built-into the cross guard fitting. It is six-sided and perfectly butts the lower grip shape. The center block area is rounded, having a raised crest. The crest is divided into quadrants, the upper and lower opposite designs matching. They portray a standing lion, and the depiction of two stars, each one located on either side of a ribbon. The cross guards have rounded outward flowing arms. The ends depict teardrop quillons rising upward at the left side, and downward at the right. The cross guard arms feature raised floral designs. The backgrounds of the cross guard designs are pebbled and have gilded surfaces. The clam shell device below, portrays a centered large floral design. It is surrounded by gilded arabesque ornamentation in relief.
The scabbard shell appears to be made of a carved wood base, covered with fine-grained, green leather. Amazingly, the leather shows little age, remaining in a near mint state. The steel scabbard mounts are finished in a smooth surface. On the reverse of the mounts, there is one line decoration on the lower area of the fitting, and a mixture of line and floral motif on the upper mount. The obverse upper mount features raised arabesque floral designs with gilded, pebbled backgrounds matching the hilt. There is a carrying lug with matching decoration. The lower mount has more of the same, and tapers to a ball-form lower button.
The 19 inch long steel blade is forged with a short ricasso area, and is shaped having a double edge, featuring a flat center ridge. The surfaces of the quality blade have turned slightly gray with age, but they are free of rust or pitting. Engraved into the blade's center ridge of both sides, (in the French language) is, Vivat Friedrich, a standard, but fitting greeting rendered to all kings. No doubt the cutlass would have been a gift to the king from one of the Prussian hunting societies. A beautiful, historic, museum piece!
Excelllent Plus. $75,000
SPO #33876C The Adalbert, Prince of Prussia, Falconry Cutlass
This cutlass is easily one of the most elegant weapons I have seen in my 40 year career. It is spectacular and truly a work-of-art remaining in a full mint state. The cutlass reflects the best design and craftsmanship available during the Kaiserzeit years of splendor. The cutlass was produced to reflect the image of the aristocratic sport of falconry. It was a gift from Kaiserin Augusta Viktoria for her third son, Adalbert Ferdinand Berengar Viktor, Prinz of Prussia. Although the presentation date is unknown, the Art Nouveau style of the cutlass reflects the time period of about 1905 through 1910. The cutlass was ordered through the prestigious Berlin-based firm, "M Neumann". This firm used the title Hoflieferant, a term meaning "supplier to royalty". We know of many existing outstanding weapons that came through this highly respected house. Neumann would supervise the production, but hired the necessary blade, casting and engraving firms to accomplish the completion of the weapon, once an approved design was accepted by the commissioning patron of the royal family.
Falconry was a sport normally only open to royalty and associated wealthy aristocrats. It required a falcon master who trained the birds, made sure that they were well-nourished and ready to hunt at short notice.The Kaiser and his family were active hunters and maintained a hunting lodge, Romintin, located in East Prussia. Adalbert would have participated in the royal hunts and the gift of this glorious cutlass by his mother must have made a more than suitable sidearm to decorate his falconry uniform. One can only imagine the splendor of such times and the honor of being invited as a participant.
I have done my best to describe this cutlass. I hope that the description will do some justice to its magnificence.The weapon within the scabbard measures 20 1/2 inches overall. The impressive deep green color pommel is in the form of a falcon's head, carved in genuine jade, and looking to the viewer's left. The carving is stunning reflecting the pointed curved beak of the bird, its raised brow and upward-tipped feathering at the back of the head. The neck area is tapered, reflecting feathered images throughout the jade. The bird's eyes appear to be the type used by taxidermists to produce a life-like image. The jade pommel is nested within a gilded grip, tapered in the center and slightly flared at each end. The grip is heavily chased with feathered images throughout all surfaces. The upper and lower borders of the grip are decorated with raised beaded images and cross banding. The gilded cross guard below features center blocks of an ellipse-shape, having raised borders with curled designs at the top. The center area features a plain surface. The quillon cross guard arms are chased to simulate bird scales. Each arm ends in a clutched claw, the left example pointing upward and the right extended downward. Below the cross guard is a matching gild clam shell device which repeats the feathered design of the grip. The clam shell border is smooth, providing a contrast to the centered feather designs. The eloquent style and proportions of these hilt mounts represent the mastery of German design.
The scabbard shell is produced of fine grained leather having a most-pleasing tan color. The leather is decorated with twin lines cut into the edges of both sides. The reverse is seamed in the center and retained with matching thread. The leather remains new-like, retaining its full original shape. The scabbard upper and lower mounts are gilded to match the hilt. Both mounts are rendered with reptilian-style scales to simulate the talons of a bird of prey. Each mount is open in the area meeting the leather, providing a fine view of the leather surface in the center. The upper mount is parallel-fitted on the edge with a matching gilded plain eyelet and carrying ring. The ring positions would indicate that the cutlass was suspended from vertical hanging straps.
The hand-forged massive Damascus blade is literally breath-taking, measuring 13 inches in length. The Damascus pattern is best-described as a "Maiden-hair" design, mixed with random "Large Roses". The pattern remains highly distinctive being in as-new condition. The blade has a raised ricasso extended 3 1/4 inches in length. The blade design is single-edged with a false edge at the spine with a length of about 4 1/2 inches. The obverse ricasso presents the royal cypher of the Kaiserin. The cypher depicts the Kaiserin's distinctive crown positioned over her intertwined monogram, AV. (Augusta Viktoria). The relief is gilded. The reverse ricasso depicts the cypher of Prinz Adalbert in relief, being the letter A, with the crown above, representing the Prince of Prussia. This cypher has matching gild applied to the relief. The upper spine is deeply stamped, M. Neumann Hoflieferant Berlin. The original green felt protective blade washer is in place showing little age.
I have done my best to describe this treasure. It is a great honor for me to offer this important artifact to the collecting community. By rights, this historic artifact, belonging to a member of the German Imperial family, really ought to be in the Klingen Museum in Solingen. They have the Kaiser's Honor Sword of Solingen made in 1898, as well as the Honor Sword given to Bismarck commemorating the Iron Chancellor's 85th birthday. Maybe the day will come when a future owner will be able to make a gesture of this significance with this falconry cutlass.This is the second piece once belonging to Prinz Adalbert to come to the attention of the collecting community. The other being the famous Prinz Adalbert Naval Heavy dirk gracing the cover of the Johnson-Wittmann authored reference, "Collecting the Edged Weapons of Imperial Germany". Prinz Adelbart died in 1948. Having survived the abdication and exile of the Kaiser after the Great War, and then, the terrible tragedy of Hitler's World War, Adalbert justifiably became disillusioned with Germany. After WWII, he sold privately many of his uniforms and edged weapons in shame. Today, these artifacts are largely privately owned. As they will continue to surface, I firmly believe they should be donated to a proper museum that will care for and feature the treasurers of the 19th and early 20th century Hohenzollern's. Given the value of these things, I know that this would be difficult for must of us to even think about. But for now - for the right person - here is the opportunity! I had the chance to purchase this cutlass at auction a few month's ago, but due to a mistake in my phone bidding process, I lost it when I thought the bidding went beyond my means. Well, although it is of little consolation, at least I have the pleasure of handling it now for the winner and consignor - and, believe me, it is a distinct pleasure. Just to hold this beautiful thing makes you tingle inside.
Mint, Mint, Mint. $95,000
SPO #31532 Elaborate Shooting Prize Chain from Prince of Prussia Shooting Guild of Schoeneck Stemming from 1850
This elaborate Shooting Chain is done all in silver using many silver five mark coins to act as links throughout the chain. The chain appears to come from the Prince of Prussia Shooting Gild of Schoeneck. There is a lower medallion which is extremely beautiful showing a Prussian eagle with smaller Prussian eagles surrounding the crowned bird. In the border around the depiction it has the following engraving, “PRINZ VON PREUSSEN DER SCHÜT. ZENGILDE ZU SCHOENECK 1850”. At the top of this medallion is a beautiful detailed Prussian crown. Attached to the crown above is a further medallion which refers to the Bavarian city of “Aschaffenburg”. All of the coins are very interesting having silver wreaths surrounding them and then the connecting chain links in the style of other shooting gild chains that I have seen. Also spaced around the beautiful chain are enameled city crests. These crests could probably be looked up to determine which cities they come from. Probably these were the participants with the normal shooting even each year. This chain would require some research to ascertain its full importance. It appears to be a chain that was used through the imperial period probably up through the Weimar time. One of the coins does have a date of 1930 on it. This chain is of highest quality and is a fantastic antique. For those not familiar with these chains each year a town, village or group of villages sponsored shooting events. These events usually lasted for three days and involved not only participation of the town’s shooters but also the town citizens as it was also a great beer drinking time and celebration. The shooting events tended to bring the citizens of a town together each year. They were very important and even today still are important events. Because of its quality and beautiful look I would think that this was the chain that the main town kept on display in city hall and was probably taken out for wear only once a year during the shooting event. A beautiful antique which could take on much more value once the history of its towns are researched.
Excellent Plus. $3,995.00
SPO #31570 Elaborate Schützen King Shooting Necklace
I have had a number of shooting necklaces over the years, but this example certainly takes the prize as far as one with the most medallions on it, and also for the most magnificent appearance. This necklace has about 35 different medallions and they are all connected professionally and strung properly so that the necklace can hang in an arch form to look its best. The necklace is currently mounted in a beautiful handmade oak box with glass opening and a black velvet background. It is all set for hanging on your wall, and I can tell you it will make one great looking appearance. The necklace stems from the first shooting medallion in 1898 and runs up to 1939. So, this fine artifact actually covers three periods of German history, being The Imperial Times, The Weimar Period, and also The Nazi Period right up to the beginning of World War II. At the top portion of the necklace there a beautiful medallions that are produced of green background enamel, having an eagle positioned over a target with crossed rifles. This enamel scene is circular and the details are in gold. These circular shooting medallions are mounted in a silver background and there are 9 of these that make up the upper section of the necklace. All 9 are connected with matching silvered chain. The medallions encompassing the necklace are all connected to the bottom portions of this dual chain. The shooting medallions are all different and some of them are really quite elaborate. Many feature silver star-like backgrounds with applied hat over shooting target with wreath around the depiction. All have the dates that they were won, as well as the name of the town and the name of the shooter. The way these shooting contests worked, each year a town or group of towns would get together and have a target shooting contest. The winner of the contest would receive a medallion with his engraved name, date, and city, and the medallion would be applied to the shooting chain necklace which normally would have been established over the years. It was then the honor of the current “shooting king” to wear the necklace either for a brief time, or in some cases, he could keep it until the following year. These shooting contests were traditional events, some stemming back 400 and 500 years. They are very important to the towns that sponsor them, and normally the contests will bring out the entire village for support. Needless to say, it is also a great time for good fellowship and good beer drinking! At any rate, on this necklace there are names, dates, and towns on the reverse, as I stated above, and I’m going to give you as many as I can practically transcribe so that there is a record of what’s on the necklace and it would be easier on the next owner. The below are some of the names, towns, and dates engraved on the medallions.
T. Schulz Schanardou 1898, T.Glutte Bredenbock 1912, Wilh. Ottels Metzingen 1936-37, H. Schul Schmellau 1907, H. Barge Govelin 1910, O. Schulze Tellendorf 1927, Herm Glühe Tellendorf 1935-36, Otto Müller Tellendorf 1923, W. Wettsaok Metzingen 1931/32, A. Stallbohm 1926, Johann Lange Metzingen 1932/33, W. Schutz Larckem 1930/31, Heinrich Brahms Tellendorf 1934-35 A.Schoop 38/39, W. Grützmaihen 1929/30, Wilhelm Carstens Tellendorf 1905, Willi Grutzmacher Tellendorf 1908, H. Schröder Betten 1914.
There are additional names, dates, and places that I may have missed, but I think I’ve got most of them. There is also in the center a really great looking Hitler portrait, which is a large medallion bigger than a silver dollar. On the reverse of it, it is named to the person I mentioned above, “Johann Lange”. There are also swastikas on two of the shooting medals. I can’t overestimate how great looking this necklace is, and really how historically important it is too, because it makes a permanent mark of an event that truly was important to this particular area that encompassed these towns. A great piece of history here as well as a very spectacular view to add to your collecting room.
Near Mint. $5,495.00