Original German WWII Partial Ground Ernst Röhm Signature SA Dagger by Carl Eickhorn with Scabbard & Hanger

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. Prior to his "unmasking" as a traitor, Ernst Röhm was the leader of the Sturmabteilung (SA). In 1934, he distributed approximately 100,000 SA daggers with his personal inscription on the reverse blade. These daggers were to honor individuals who had served with the SA prior to December, 1931. Other than the inscription, these pieces were identical to the standard M1933 SA dagger. After the Röhm purge, the inscription was ordered to be removed, and failure to comply would be considered treason. Some were simply ground in the field by whatever means were available. Many other examples were returned to the factory or arsenal for grinding and refinishing. Examples will occasionally be encountered with remnants of the original inscription remaining on the blade, but mostly none will remain. Some blades exist with an intact inscription, exhibiting only the removal of the Röhm signature. Very, very rarely is an example seen with a full, untouched inscription, as the holder would have surely risked a charge of treason.

The front side of this blade is in excellent condition, with almost all of the factory final grind cross grain, and just a bit of runner wear. This texture is iconic, and is the definitive identifying characteristic for a real WWII German Blade. The acid etched Alles für Deutschland motto is beautifully executed, and still retains about 75% of the original factory darkening.

However, the rear shows a much rougher crossgrain pattern, with scratches and grind marks consistent with having the signature removed. Sighting down the blade confirms variations in the surface and loss of material. We also can clearly see portions of the original "In Herzlicher Freundschaft Ernst Röhm" (In heartfelt friendship Ernst Röhm) inscription. These are mainly the edges of the etching, showing the bottoms and tops of the signature. Comparison to an intact original confirms that this is indisputably a ground Röhm dagger. This looks to have been an arsenal level modification, as the work is too good for field work, but definitely not the level you would see at a cutlery factory.

The reverse ricasso is etched with the 1933-35 Eickhorn trademark logo: a double oval surrounding a seated squirrel with a notched tail holding a sword, with CARL EICKHORN / SOLINGEN surrounding the squirrel trademark. Per J. Anthony Carter's book GERMAN KNIFE AND SWORD MAKERS, this is one of several similar trademarks used during the period, and is exactly what would have been used on early SA, NSKK, and SS daggers signed by Röhm.

This legendary company was founded in 1865 by Carl Eickhorn, and is arguably the most famous of all Solingen makers. Not only could the family trace their history back 500 years, but they could also demonstrate involvement in the hardening and grinding industries for the same period. Truly the nobility of Solingen Edged weapon dynasties. Eickhorn edged weapons are the most desirable of all makers. They were a known maker of the Röhm daggers, and we have handled other ground examples from this maker before with identical maker marks.

The brown hardwood grip has no chips or major damage, just the usual wear from age and use. There is only a tiny crack between the insignia and the pommel guard. The solid nickel-silver eagle is crisp with a perfect fit, and just a bit of oxidation. The SA roundel also has a good fit and retains all of the enamel, though there is a bit of verdigris around the edges.

Both guards are solid Nickel alloy, and really in great shape. They have a lovely lightly worn patina, with no flaking or bubbling, showing that they are indeed solid alloy. The pommel nut is present, with just a bit of rounding from tightening. The reverse crossguard is faintly on the left side Gruppe/Gau marked Ho, for Hochland (Highlands) a district in the far South German mountains, with the principal city being München (Munich).

The steel scabbard shell is the early-war style, with a brown "anodized" finish on the steel, originally covered by a lacquer protective coating. The steel body is straight, and dent free, however the lacquer coating is only still present near the fittings. The rest of the body has had the anodized coating wear away a bit, but it is still clearly brown. The upper and lower fittings are solid nickel silver, and have a nice polished patina, with some dents and scratches showing typical wear. Unlike most we see, the bottom fitting is not seriously dented, even though it is made from the softer nickel alloy. The top mount and throat throat nicely matches the cross guard, and all dome headed screws are present and unturned.

Attached to the scabbard is a very nice black leather belt hanger, which has the correct early war nickel fittings. Only the spring on the clip is magnetic, being made from spring steel. The hanger is completely unmarked, but that is not unusual. It is in very good condition, showing just a bit of cracking in the leather, and the spring clip is fully functional.

A great opportunity to get a partial ground Röhm SA Dagger by the most famous of all Solingen makers in wonderful condition, partly "sanitized" after the Night of the Long Knives! Ready to add to your collection and display!

Blade Length: 8 3/4"
Overall length: 13 3/4”
Crossguard: 3”
Scabbard Length: 10”

The SA or Brown Shirts, were a private political formation which Adolf AH and the NSDAP used to maintain order at organized Party meetings and demonstrations. The group was formed in 1921, and grew to a huge force of nearly 3,000,000 men by the later 1930's. To instill esprit de corps, as well as create employment for the Blade City of Solingen, it was decided each SA man would carry a dagger with his Brown Shirt uniform. Huge quantities needed to be produced to accommodate the demand. The dagger initially was produced of hand-fitted nickel mounts with attractive finished wood grip and brown anodized (a bluing process) finished scabbard.

The blade was etched with the SA motto, Alles für Deutschland. Examples produced prior to 1935 were stamped with the German sector of the SA group on reverse lower crossguard. Later examples underwent standardization through the RZM ministry. These pieces were produced of cheaper plated zinc-base fittings and scabbards were simply painted brown.

The Night of the Long Knives, in June 1934, saw the wiping out of the SA’s leadership and others who had angered AH in the recent past in NSDAP Germany. After this date, the SS lead by Heinrich Himmler was to become far more powerful in NSDAP Germany. For all the power the Enabling Act gave AH, he still felt threatened by some in the NSDAP Party. He was also worried that the regular army had not given an oath of allegiance. AH knew that the army hierarchy held him in disdain as he was ‘only ‘ a corporal in their eyes. The Night of the Long Knives not only removed the SA leaders but also got AH the army’s oath that he so needed.

By the summer of 1934, the SA’s numbers had swollen to 2 million men. They were under the control of Ernst Röhm, a loyal follower of AH since the early days of the NSDAP Party. The SA had given the NSDAP’s an iron fist with which to disrupt other political parties meetings before January 1933. The SA was also used to enforce law after AH became Chancellor in January 1933. To all intents, they were the enforcers of the NSDAP Party and there is no evidence that Röhm was ever planning anything against AH. However, Röhm had made enemies within the NSDAP Party – Himmler, Goering and Goebbels were angered by the power he had gained and convinced AH that this was a threat to his position. By June 1934, the regular army hierarchy also saw the SA as a threat to their authority. The SA outnumbered the army by 1934 and Röhm had openly spoken about taking over the regular army by absorbing it into the SA. Such talk alarmed the army’s leaders.

By the summer of 1934, AH had decided that Röhm was a ‘threat’ and he made a pact with the army. If Röhm and the other SA leaders were removed, the rank and file SA men would come under the control of the army but the army would have to swear an oath of loyalty to AH. The army agreed and Röhm’s fate was sealed. On the night of June 29th – June 30th 1934, units of the SS arrested the leaders of the SA and other political opponents. Men such as Gregor Strasser, von Schleicher and von Bredow were arrested and none of them had any connection with Röhm. The arrests carried on for 2 more nights. Seventy seven men were executed on charges of treason though historians tend to think the figure is higher. The SA was brought to heel and placed under the command of the army. AH received an oath of allegiance from all those who served in the army. Röhm was shot. Others were bludgeoned to death. The first the public officially knew about the event was on July 13th 1934, when AH told the Reichstag that met in the Kroll Opera House, Berlin, that for the duration of the arrests that he and he alone was the judge in Germany and that the SS carried out his orders. From that time on the SS became a feared force in NSDAP Germany lead by Heinrich Himmler. The efficiency with which the SS had carried out its orders greatly impressed AH and Himmler was to acquire huge power within NSDAP Germany.

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