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Original Magnificent Rare German WWII General Officer's Schirmmütze Visor Cap by EREL in size 58cm - Double Marked - Formerly Part of the A.A.F. Tank Museum

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Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. This cap is a magnificent example of a very rare German WWII Wehrmacht Heer Generäle Schirmmütze (Army General Officer Visor Cap), made by Robert Lubstein under their very desirable EREL brand, a very well-known maker of headwear during the war. This company was a "Top Five" maker during the WWII period, up there with Wilhelm Welhausen and Peküro, which makes any cap made by them desirable. However this cap was also made under the EREL SonderKlasse "Private" (Special Class "Private") designation, only available to the absolute top, as would befit an officer of General rank.

Generäle Schirmmütze are among the most desirable of all German Visor caps, and this only one of a few that we have ever seen. It is also in fantastic condition considering the age, and could easily become the crown jewel of any collection. We have had this examined by several experts and compared it with period examples, and we can find no discrepancies with the construction.

This wonderful German General's visor cap came to us from the American Armoured Foundation, Inc. Tank and Ordnance Memorial Museum. The AAF Tank Museum was a living memorial dedicated to the Tank and Cavalry soldiers of the world. Before 1981 some of the artifacts that make up the AAF Tank Museum was a private collection belonging to Mr. William Gasser. Mr. Gasser felt that his collection would be beneficial in educating present and future generations to the sacrifices made and the technologies gained during war. Therefore, in 1981 the AAF Tank Museum was established as a non-profit charitable organization, and Mr. Gasser's donated his private collection to the Tank Museum. Mr. Gasser is still active as Volunteer Director and Curator of the Tank Museum and his knowledge of military history has been a great asset to the museum. Unfortunately after 20 years of operation it had to close its doors, which is when this cap was acquired.

The visor cap features the correct feldgrau (field gray) "doeskin" wool construction with a flaschengrün (dark bottle-green) "badge cloth" band and a traditional high forward crown. It still does retain the crown stiffener, but it is curved to give it a lovely "saddle form" shape that is considered highly desirable, and looks great! As a General's cap, it features matching gold bullion piping along the top edge and flanking either side of the band. It features the correct gold bullion chinstrap, indicating a General officer, and there is a small size tag in the name tag slot, indicating a size of 58.

It is decorated with a very nice gilt aluminum eagle insignia on the peak and and an open stamped gilt aluminum wreath surrounding a metal tri-color cockade on the band, correct for a General. The painted red mesh insert on the cockade is still present, and both insignia show just almost no wear at all. There is however some oxidation on the silver plated portion of the cockade, which has tarnished.

The chin strap is attached with the correct gilt pebbled buttons on either side of the cap. The vulcanfibre visor has a smooth black leather-look upper, exhibiting very light wear along the edge and is tan on the underside. It is still attached firmly to the cap, and there is little to no checking or crazing from deterioration of the black enamel coating.

The cap is lined with lovely light aqua rayon faux silk, and still retains the full celluloid diamond sweat shield in the crown. It still bears a clear and unmarred makers mark underneath, for the highest level of production from one of the best makers of the time:


The cap also has an embossed stamp over the left ear on the sweatband: EREL PATENT / STIRNSCHUTZ, which refers to the "Forehead Protection" of the sweatband design. This means that the sweatband was never replaced, making this a "double marked" example. The sweatband itself is in very good condition, with fully intact stitching and only light staining from age and use.

The visor cap is in fantastic condition, with just a few very minor moth nips, and spots of minor fraying on the bullion piping. The gold bullion chinstrap has oxidized a bit, which is impossible to prevent, and proves that it is not a replacement item.

A 100% totally correct Heer Army Generals Visor Cap in simply magnificent condition. This is an offering the likes of which we have never had before, and will almost certainly not have again. This is your chance! Very impressive and ready to display!

The German Schirmmütze Visor Cap:
The visor cap (Schirmmütze) was an important part of the headgear worn by German uniformed military, civil, paramilitary and political organizations during the Third Reich. This was the standard cloth headgear worn as a part of the service uniform. Visor caps were worn outdoors as well as indoors, and were often required to be worn by all personnel on duty. Visor caps were made in versions specific to each organization and were often further differentiated through the use of insignia, colored piping, or style of chin cord, to indicate rank, role or branch. The insignia used on these caps ranged from simple stamped metal emblems, to elaborate hand embroidery. Visor caps were issued to enlisted soldiers and NCOs in the military and in some other organizations. Officers had to purchase their own hats, and lower ranks could choose to purchase caps that were of a higher quality than the rather basic, issue examples. The private purchase caps were generally made in very high quality, with fine materials. A wide variety of fabrics were used, from Trikot and doeskin, to heavy wool, or even lightweight white fabric for summer wear. In the military, issue of these caps was generally suspended shortly after the outbreak of the war, but they continued to be worn by some troops until the end of the war.

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