Product Description: This KDF Armband is really neat and almost never seen. The Nazi organization “Kraft durch Freude” (Strength Through Joy) provided German civilians with leisure activities such as day trips, vacations, and structured daily leisure activities in accordance with National Socialist ideological principles. This armband is made of thin white cotton, and is stamped with an issue stamp for “NS.-Gem. ‘Kraft durch Freude,’ Gau Wien, Sportanlage Ottakring, Wien, XVI, Erdbrustgasse 4,” in Gothic lettering with purple ink. This stamp indicates issue by the KDF of the Vienna district, at the Ottakring sports facility. This KDF armband may have been intended for employees or official personnel at the sports facility, or it may have been for umpires or judges in competitions, or perhaps it had some other function. It is sewn together in the back, and does appear to have been worn. It shows very light soiling from wear as well as typical light age toning to the white fabric, and remains in excellent condition. It is an interesting and possibly unique KDF armband.
Historical Description: Nearly every military, civil, political and paramilitary organization in existence during the Third Reich used armbands. Armbands were worn on military and civilian uniforms and also on civilian clothes, from suit jackets to work clothing. They were used to denote membership in organizations, to indicate a specific role or function of the bearer, and as insignia of rank. Many organizations would change the design of their armbands over time, which added to the variety produced. These were manufactured in countless variations, ranging from simple printed bands to elaborately hand-embroidered pieces of the highest quality. Some Nazi armbands were worn by all members of large organizations and were made by the millions. Others were intended for use at a specific time and place and were unique. Many types were made in very limited numbers. Some bore metal insignia or special identifiers that indicated the wearer’s rank, unit affiliation, or nationality. Armbands were sometimes but not always marked with ink stamps by the issuing authorities.
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