Product Description: This Steel Kriegsmarine EM Buckle is a buckle variant that is relatively scarce. It’s a wartime type. This was originally coated with a dark blue paint, often associated by collectors with Kriegsmarine use, though these dark blue buckles were also worn by German Army soldiers late in WWII. This is one that was obviously worn, but still retains about 40 percent of the original blue paint on the front. The bare steel shows wear as well as a typical, dark age patina. The reverse of this Steel Kriegsmarine EM Buckle still retains nearly all of the original smooth paint finish. The spot welded catch, and the steel roller bar and prong assembly, are all intact and functional. On the edge near the catch, the reverse of the buckle is stamped “B & N 43” indicating manufacture by Berg & Nolte (a known manufacturer of these blue buckles) in 1943. This remains a complete and very sound example of the Steel Kriegsmarine EM Buckle.
Historical Description: The belt buckle was an important part of the regalia worn by all uniformed military, civil, political and paramilitary organizations during the Third Reich. The belt (“Koppel”) was part of the uniform, and would always be worn while on duty. The belt buckle (“Koppelschloss”) was generally specific to each organization, with many organizations having separate belt buckles for officers and for enlisted personnel, sometimes with different colors and finishes to further denote specific purposes. The buckles were adorned with various mottos and designs specific to the organizations for which they were intended. Many designs used the German national eagle emblem, in a variety of forms. Belt buckles were worn with uniforms ranging from finely tailored officer parade uniforms, to the issue uniforms of enlisted soldiers in combat. Generally speaking, most German belt buckles of the Third Reich were made with two prongs on the reverse, to allow the buckle to be worn and adjusted on a belt. The buckle had a catch that would mate with a hook on the belt, when worn. The earliest Third Reich buckles were often made of brass, or nickel silver. Later, aluminum became very common, and was used on private purchase as well as enlisted buckles of the German military, with or without a painted or plated finish. After WWII began, most enlisted military buckles were steel. Nazi belt buckles were popular souvenirs for Allied troops who served in Europe. Some types were made by the millions and remain quite common today. Others were made in limited numbers and are very rare.
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