Product Description: This Kriegsmarine Officer’s Fore & Aft Cap is a gorgeous example of a desirable and scarce piece of headgear. It’s an early, almost certainly prewar production piece, made in very high quality, with a great look. The body of this handsome hat is made of black beaver skin with a few small areas of stress. The black rayon band is intact, with only light rubbing on the very edge of the cap’s top portion. The silver bullion on the front and rear of the cap’s visor portions shows light patina. This impressively built cap retains all of the nice gold bullion braid on the wearer’s right side. The national Kriegsmarine eagle and swastika emblem is made of brass, with vibrant fire gilding. Inside, this cap is lined with fine white rayon, with an intact black leather sweatband. A small piece of what looks to be the original price tag still remains on the sweat band. This Kriegsmarine Officer’s Fore & Aft Cap is complete with its original, sturdy carrying case. The case is made of leather and lined with yellow cotton twill fabric. The exterior shows typical storage and handling wear, with most of the original surface still present. The leather closure straps remain intact. We don’t know if the lock works, and since we don’t have a key, we aren’t going to lock it. This is a wonderful set. The condition rates as excellent.
Historical Description: The German Navy has a long, rich history. Its modern era began in 1948 with the formation of what was then called the Reichsflotte. The early German Navy participated in a number of conflicts and battles, such as the Second Schleswig War of 1864 and the Austro-Prussian War of 1866. The North German Confederation of 1867 took over the Prussian Navy, and used this in the Franco-Prussian War. The build up of the German Navy in Imperial times was slow, but the years prior to WWI saw an intensive buildup of modern craft including large torpedo boats, submarines, airships, Naval flight units and large ships of the line to rival the British Dreadnought class. Despite this, and in part due to the supply situation, the German Navy was unable to achieve decisive victory against the British Navy in WWI. The Treaty of Versailles after the defeat of 1918 permitted Germany to retain only a small Navy, the Reichsmarine. Strength of the Reichsmarine was limited to 15,000 men. The rearmament of the German Navy began in 1933 with the Nazi rise to power. In 1935, the Reichsmarine became the Kriegsmarine, and plans began to equip this force with vessels including aircraft carriers, battleships and many submarines. These plans were interrupted in 1939 by the start of WWII, in which the Kriegsmarine was involved from the first moments at the outbreak of hostilities. After a series of early losses of battleships, the Kriegsmarine in WWII increasingly focused on the U-Boat war. Despite many successes, which resulted in a supply crisis in the United Kingdom, the U-Boats were unable to prevent the Allies from retaining naval superiority in the war. The final great action of the Gertman Kriegsmarine was the evacuation by sea of refugees from the Soviet Red Army- the largest evacuation in human history.
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