Product Description: This M43 Heer Trapezoid Eagle Insignia is a nice, unissued example of this late pattern German Army cap insignia. This is a machine embroidered version, with a gray German eagle and swastika emblem and national colors cockade inside a gray border, on a thin field gray rayon backing. This pattern of insignia likely appeared in 1944, and was factory applied on enlisted issue M43 caps. This one was never sewn to a cap, and remains factory fresh, with zero wear and only extremely slight age toning. There are no tears, stains or other damage. The reverse of this M43 Heer Trapezoid Eagle Insignia shows the typical “snowy” look from using white bobbin thread. This eagle would be perfect for restoring a stripped late war cap, and also displays well in its own right. The condition of this piece is near mint.
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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