Product Description: This Infantry M34 Heer Overseas Cap is a great example of this desirable field cap style. The body of the cap is made of a typical field gray (Feldgrau) wool, in a greenish shade that is common for early wartime production. The wool shows only minimal wear and retains the original surface nap. The front of this handsome cap is adorned with a complete set of insignia, which is original to the cap. The eagle and cockade are the 1939 pattern, with a dark green background, and both are factory hand sewn to the cap. The white soutache indicating the Infantry (Infanterie) branch, is correctly applied, factory machine sewn. The insignia shows a light, pleasant patina. Inside, this Infantry M34 Heer Overseas Cap is lined with a cotton twill fabric, which shows some light, honest wear. It’s well marked, with the name of a maker in Kaiserslautern, the year “1941” and the size “57” all stamped in black ink. This is a choice example of an early war, factory made, enlisted issue field cap, that would be tough to upgrade. It’s got wonderful visual appeal, and is in excellent plus plus condition.
Historical Description: The “side cap” was a part of the uniform worn by nearly all military, paramilitary, political and civil organizations in the Third Reich. It was a narrow hat that could be folded flat and tucked into a belt or haversack. This was, at the time, a very stylish type of uniform cap; in the German Army, it replaced the round “pork pie” style of field cap used in the Great War. The German name for this cap, in most organizations, was “Feldmütze”- field cap. Despite the name, it was often worn as a daily service cap by postal workers and other personnel who would never be deployed to the field. The men and women who wore the side cap gave it the nickname “Schiffchen,” meaning little boat, due to its shape. The side caps were made in the same type of fabric as the uniforms, in the uniform color particular to each organization. The side caps were adorned with branch-specific insignia, usually bearing some form of the German eagle and swastika national emblem. Many side caps also bore red, white, and black national cockades. The insignia were usually embroidered or woven, but metal devices were used on some caps as well. Officer caps generally were distinguished by silver braid along the top edge and/or on the upper part of the flap at the front of the cap and were often custom tailored from fine fabrics. The German military, and many other organizations, had broadly replaced the side cap with a new, more practical cap featuring a brim, by 1943. But the side cap continued to be worn by some troops until the end of the war.
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