Product Description: This Private Forestry Official Buckle is a scarce piece. It is an early type, made of aluminum, and was intended for wear on a wide, officer type belt. The design is relatively simple, with a wreath of oak leaves surrounding a pebbled field. It shows almost no wear on the front, and has only minor toning from age. There never was any paint or other finish. The reverse of this Private Forestry Official Buckle is smooth and clean. There is some slight age patination to the fitting that at one time, affixed this to a belt. The catch for the belt hook is integral to the buckle, and a few wear marks near the catch are the only real indication that this buckle was actually worn by a Forestry official. Overall, the condition of this buckle is excellent. Few of these Private Forestry Official buckles were ever manufactured.
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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