BACKGROUND: The basis of the Reichsarbeitsdienst, (National Labor Service), dates back, at least, to 1929 with the formation of the AAD, Anhalt Arbeitsdienst, (Anhalt Labor Service), and the FAD-B, Freiwillingen Arbeitsdienst-Bayern, (Volunteer Labor Service Bavaria). Shortly after Hitler’s appointment as Chancellor, (January 30TH 1933), the NSDAP consolidated these, and other labor organizations into the NSAD, Nationalsozialist Arbeitsdienst, (National Socialist Labor Service), under the control of Reichsarbeitsführer Konstatin Hierl. On June 26TH 1935 the NSAD was re-designated RAD. In April 1934 Hierl developed a uniform including the distinctive "Robin Hood" style service cap. The design of the cap was based on a cross between a traditional style peasant cap and the traditional hunters cap. Originally the caps were issued with rank distinction piping with black piping for the EM/NCO ranks of Arbeitsmann to Truppführer, silver piping for company and field grade Officer’s ranks of Obertruppführer to Oberstarbeitsführer and gold piping for General Officer’s ranks of Generalarbeitsführer to Reichsarbeitsführer. In 1940 the use of the black piping for the EM/NCO ranks was discontinued but the silver and gold Officer’s piping remained in use until the end of the war.

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Early pattern, high quality private purchace, EM/NCO’ s service cap. Formed, starched, slightly greenish, brown cloth construction cap with side panels which gently slope downwards to front. Side panels have black rayon piping to top edge. Cap has two brown enamel painted metal ventilation grommets to either side just above side panels. Cap has the typical chocolate brown wool center band. Stamped, aluminum, male RAD insignia. The insignia consists of an inverted, pointed tip, spade head with a red painted outer border encompassing a central, black painted, canted swastika flanked by diagonally angled sheaves of wheat. Brown cloth covered visor with internal stiffener and a double row of reinforcement stitching near forward edge. Visor has a "U" shaped brown piping mid-way from forward edge. Full gold rayon lining and complete leather sweatband. Nicely maker marked to Erel. Roughly a size 60. Superb cap!     (Ex Philippe Gillain Collection)

GRADE ****3/4                             PRICE $800.00

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