Original German WWII 1942 dated HJ Knife with Scabbard by Anton Wingen, Jr. - RZM M7/51/42
Original Item: Only One Available. This is a very good 1941 dated example of the classic later pattern HJ fahrtenmesser (trip knife), complete with its original scabbard. It was produced by the rare maker Anton Wingen Jr., Stahlwarenfabrik (Steel Wares Factory), based in Solingen, the legendary "City of Blades" in Western Germany.
Founded in 1888 and registered with Solingen Authorities in 1901, this company first became popular during WWI when their high quality hunting and combat knives became popular with the troops. The company continued operation after WWII, stopping production in 1995, and closing in 1997. They manufactured HJ knives during WWII, first with their trademark and later with RZM code M7/51, per J. Anthony Carter's excellent book GERMAN KNIFE AND SWORD MAKERS. It comes complete with its original scabbard.
These knives were given to boys who were educated in the paramilitary organization, which they often continued to carry into their military service. Unlike the early pattern knives, these have a thicker blade with a raised ricasso, which significantly strengthened the blade. They also do not have the HJ motto etched on the blade, and often are marked not with a maker, but a German RZM Code.
The hilt of this example was is nickel plated steel, and the original finish is very well retained. There is some light oxidation and a few small flakes on the edges, but overall it is one of the best we have seen recently. The grip plates are the black checkered bakelite variety and are in very good condition, with light wear, and definitely no cracking. They are retained by alloy rivets with dressed obverse heads, which show light oxidation. The HJ grip insignia has almost full enamel, and the brass borders between the panels still show some of the original plating. It is a bit sunken in and loose in the grips, caused by the bakelite shrinking over the years, which also confirms authenticity.
The blade of this example is in very good condition, showing moderate use, and no major rust issues or other damage. It has been cleaned several times, and now is bright and shiny, which has left some speckled areas where surface oxidation was removed. The blade has been sharpened several times, but still has the correct blade shape, and is relatively sharp. The reverse ricasso of the blade is clearly stamped with an ((RZM)) circle to the left of code M7 / 51 / 42. The original leather blade buffer is still in place against the crossguard.
The Reichszeugmeisterei, or RZM, was based at the Brown house in Munich and NSDAP party headquarters in Berlin. The RZM ensured that the manufacturers of military items were consistent in design, quality of materials and other characteristics of the items. It also defined standards of design, manufacturing and quality and published an authoritative color chart for textiles. The M7 in the code stands for knives/daggers, with Anton Wingen, Jr. of Solingen being contractor number 51.
The scabbard is completely straight throughout with no dents, however it has lost most of the original black enamel finish on the front side of the scabbard. The rear of the scabbard probably has about 90% remaining, with areas of wear and scratching. The belt loop is brown leather, and is in very good shape, with all rivets and snaps intact, and supple leather.
A very nice German WWII HJ Knife from a rare Solingen maker!
Blade Length: 5 1/2"
Blade Style: Single Edged Knife.
Overall length: 9 5/8”
Crossguard: 1 7/8"
Scabbard Length: 5 3/4”
HJ believed German youth to be the future of his 3rd Reich. The HJ (jugend) was formed officially in 1935, and with the exception of NSDAP ideology indoctrination was very similar to the Boy Scouts. Beginning at about the age of ten years, both boys (jugend) and girls (Bund Deutscher Mädel) were enlisted in the Party-run organization. The boys only were given HJ Knives after having passed minor exams. The knives had nickeled hilts with black checkered grip plates. The obverse plate was fitted with an enameled HJ swas insignia. Through 1937, these knives were etched with the motto of the organization, Blut und Ehre! (Blood and Honor!). Examples produced after this date were made with plain blades usually bearing an RZM marking.
The HJ Leaders were professionals in charge of the training and NSDAP education of the German Youth. They wore a special dagger consisting of silvered hilt fittings with blue-black leather-covered scabbard. The grip was composed of tightly wrapped silver wire, over a wood base. The pommel cap featured an HJ diamond on top, complete with swas. The upper scabbard fitting portrayed an open-winged HJ eagle with swas cut into the bird's chest. The blade was etched with the HJ motto, Blut und Ehre!
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