Original German WWII SA Political Leader Gorget with Chain by Frank and Reif of Stuttgart - RZM M1/102
Original Item: Only One Available. Gorgets hold an interesting place in history, as they are a throw-back to the days of knights, when suits of armor included a neck protection device called a Gorget. They have been used since that time to identify membership or function in various military and police organizations, and Gorgets were thoroughly used during the Third Reich.
This is a very nice example of a German mid-WWII style Sturmabteilung (SA) Political Leader's Gorget. These would be worn at meetings and even in the field, to make it clear who was of a higher rank. Similar gorgets were used in other parts of the NSDAP organizational structure.
The gorget is constructed of bronze and bronzed aluminum, with a large NSDAP Reichsadler (Party Eagle) in the center, and bordered on the outside with an oak leaf motof. It is marked with the RZM (Reichszeugmeisterei) insignia and maker marked M1/102 for Frank and Reif of Stuttgart on one of the two clips on the reverse. Complete with the green felt protective liner on the back, though it does have some small moth nips.
The Gorget is hung on a bronzed and gilt aluminum chain, with alternating wreathed swastika and eagle insignias on the panels, again marker with the RZM insignia and maker marked M1/102 on the reverse of both end panels.
Overall condition is excellent with a few areas of wear on the front of the plate. These are among the hardest to find examples of German World War Two Gorgets. Ready to display!
The Sturmabteilung, literally Storm Detachment, was the Nazi Party's original paramilitary. It played a significant role in Adolf Hitler's rise to power in the 1920s and 1930s. Its primary purposes were providing protection for Nazi rallies and assemblies, disrupting the meetings of opposing parties, fighting against the paramilitary units of the opposing parties, especially the Red Front Fighters League (Rotfrontkämpferbund) of the Communist Party of Germany (KPD), and intimidating Romani, trade unionists, and, especially, Jews – for instance, during the Nazi boycott of Jewish businesses.
The SA were also called the "Brownshirts" (Braunhemden) from the color of their uniform shirts, similar to Benito Mussolini's blackshirts. The SA developed pseudo-military titles for its members, with ranks that were later adopted by several other Nazi Party groups, chief amongst them the Schutzstaffel (SS), which originated as a branch of the SA before being separated. Brown-colored shirts were chosen as the SA uniform because a large number of them were cheaply available after World War I, having originally been ordered during the war for colonial troops posted to Germany's former African colonies.
The SA became disempowered after Adolf Hitler ordered the "blood purge" of 1934. This event became known as the Night of the Long Knives (die Nacht der langen Messer). The SA continued to exist, but was effectively superseded by the SS, although it was not formally dissolved until after Nazi Germany's final capitulation to the Allies in 1945.
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