Product Description: This embroidered SS Sleeve Eagle is an attractive and very desirable piece of insignia. This pattern of sleeve eagle is an issue style, that was factory applied to uniforms worn by enlisted men and NCOs. Typically these were neatly trimmed around the embroidered design. This one was cut from a roll or sheet, with much more of the backing fabric than is normally encountered. The construction of this eagle is textbook, with the distinctive SS eagle and swastika emblem embroidered in silver-gray thread on a black wool badge cloth backing. It was never trimmed and never sewn on to a uniform. The embroidery is perfect, and there is no mothing or other damage to note. The reverse of this SS Sleeve Eagle shows the typical off-white bobbin thread. This very appealing eagle remains in near mint condition, with only extremely slight age toning. It would be hard to find a nicer one.
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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