K004475 OBERMAAT'S SHOULDER BOARDS. (Schulterstücke)

BACKGROUND: Although military ranks and rank designations can be traced back to the mercenary armies of the 17TH century it wasn’t until the creation of standing armies in the early 18TH century that distinguishing insignia of rank began to be developed. Originally the shoulder straps were functional items designed to secure the saber and ammunition shoulder cross straps and the larger, metal trimmed epaulettes were a throw back to the protective shoulder pieces worn on medieval armor. With the formation of the Imperial Prussian Navy in 1848 Senior NCO’s and Officer ranks adopted a series of rank identifying shoulder insignia for the traditional blue and white uniforms. With the later introduction of the brown tropical uniform and field-grey uniforms for land based personnel the wear of shoulder rank insignia was utilized by all ranks, but only on these specific uniforms. The Imperial Prussian Navy rank, shoulder insignia remained in use through the Weimar, Reichsmarine, (National Navy, Circa 1919-1933), era and on into the Third Reich with minor variations. Kriegsmarine, ({War} Navy), field-grey uniforms were first introduced as early as 1921 for issue to land based personnel and the design of the uniform was based on the army pattern with minor variations. Enlisted ranks shoulder straps indicated the ranks of Matrose, Matrosengefreiter, Matrosenobergefreiter, Matrosenhauptgefreiter and Matrosenstabsgefreiter inclusively with the specific rank determined by the wear of the appropriate rank chevron on the upper left sleeve while specific NCO’s ranks were distinguished by the addition of gilt tress and rank pips on their shoulder straps.

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Pointed tip, "pass through" style shoulder boards in navy blue wool with ribbed gilt aluminum tress to all outside edges. Shoulder boards have a transverse small wooden dowel sewn into the "pass through" end of each to secure them to a tunic. Near mint.

GRADE ****1/2                             PRICE $99.00

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