Product Description: This SS Marksman 1st Class Sleeve Diamond is an unissued and nearly pristine example of this piece of SS insignia. This patch features a vertical black wool diamond base with a hand embroidered “target” consisting of three concentric circular rings, positioned above two crossed oak leaves. The target and oak leaves are neatly hand embroidered in aluminum wire bullion. All of the embroidery is intact. On the reverse, this SS Marksman 1st Class Sleeve Diamond has a backing of black paper. The original paper backing is mostly intact, with a couple of small tears that show the back side of the hand embroidery. Remnants of a white paper SS RZM tag are still present on the paper backing. This diamond shows no stitch holes or any other indication of having been affixed to a uniform sleeve. There is only minimal age toning to note. This piece has a great look and would be tough to upgrade. The condition rates as excellent plus.
Historical Description: The German Armed Forces (Wehrmacht), as formed in 1935, and as they existed until the end of World War 2, consisted of the Army (Heer), the Air Force (Luftwaffe) and the Navy (Kriegsmarine). The Waffen-SS fell under the command of the Wehrmacht during the war. Each of these branches of service had a unique eagle design that was worn on both the formal dress and parade uniforms, and the field uniforms, of the members of that branch. These eagles were worn on soft headgear, including service and field caps, as well as on the uniform jacket. In the Heer, the Luftwaffe, and the Kriegsmarine, this eagle was worn on the chest of the tunic; collectors have termed these “breast eagles.” The Heer and the Luftwaffe generally used the same eagle style, though variations in color of the eagle or the backing distinguish between the two. The Luftwaffe used their own flying eagle emblem. The Waffen-SS sleeve eagle (and cap eagle) had wings that came to a distinctive tapered point. The cap, breast and sleeve eagles used by the various military branches were manufactured in many variations. There were machine-woven and machine embroidered versions, usually used by officers and NCOs. Hand-embroidered bullion wire eagles were typically for officers. There were metal eagles, for caps, or for uniforms that were intended to have detachable insignia. There were even eagles embroidered on camouflage fabric, intended for use on special field uniforms. There were also eagles in specific colors for use on tropical uniforms. Some of these eagles were mass-produced and are still common today. Others were, and are, very rare.
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