Product Description: This SS Braunschweig Collar Tab is an rare and desirable piece of regalia. This pattern of collar tab was worn by personnel assigned to the SS Schule (SS School) at Braunschweig (Brunswick). The tab is made of a fine black wool, with beautifully hand embroidered S runes in bullion wire. Each rune is neatly executed over a typical cardboard Unterlagen (underlay), giving it a three-dimensional look. The tab is also adorned with a letter “B” in a Latin serif typeface, making this a first pattern piece. All of the bullion wire embroidery on this piece is neatly done, and intact, with only extremely slight age toning. The edge of the tab is adorned with twisted black and aluminum cord piping, indicating this insignia was intended for wear by officer candidates and enlisted members of the school staff (officers of the staff utilized aluminum piping). The edges of the tab also show traces of black thread stitching, showing where the tab was once hand stitched to a uniform. On the reverse, this SS Braunschweig Collar Tab shows a typical buckram backing. There is no RZM tag. This early, desirable pattern of SS collar tab is extremely hard to find. This one is in excellent plus condition, and would be very tough to upgrade.
Historical Description: Regulations for the SS Collar Tab went through quite an evolution in just a short 16 year period. The first SS Collar Tabs were introduced in 1929 by Heinrich Himmler as part of the newly introduced SS uniform code. Initially, tabs were worn by both lower rank SS men and their senior leaders. Lower ranks would wear a rank tab as well as a numbered unit identification tab, with senior leaders wearing their rank tabs on both collars. In 1933 the well known “SS” runic tab was adopted by Hitler’s personal body guard detachment, the “Leibstandarte” or “LAH”. The LAH used this runic tab in lieu of the numerical unit identification tab to identify them as members of the elite unit protecting the “Führer”. In 1934 the runic “SS” tabs were again adopted for use by the early “SS-VT” units. This adoption eventually led to the wide spread use of SS runic tabs by German Divisions; the later non-German volunteer units would not be permitted to wear the runes, and bore their own unit designed patch instead. SS Collar tabs can be found in an extraordinary variety of numbers, designs, and pipings depending on unit and rank, from hand-embroidered tabs worn by officers to mass produced embroidered and machine woven types that were used on combat uniforms.
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