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Original German WWII Unit Marked DRK Red Cross EM/NCO Hewer with Scabbard & Frog - Deutches Rotes Kreuz

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. This is an excellent example of the German Red Cross (DRK) Enlisted Man / Non-Commissioned Officer Hewer, complete with scabbard and leather frog. The hewer has a blunt tip, and edge, as it was intended for combat medics, who would make more use of the Sawback blade, which could be used to cut wood for splints. The heavy blade could be used for chopping, similar to the U.S. Hospital corps "bolo" knives of WWI.

The hilt mounts have over 90% of the original nickel-plating still intact, with some overall speckling, but very little of the base metal alloy visible. This hewer shows little sign of use, with no dents on the softer alloy used for the hilt, and a lovely oxidized patina.

The crossguard features an oval boss on each side, with the obverse featuring an eagle with half-opened wings and a raised out mobile swas (hook cross) on his breast. The bird clutches a cross in his talons. The grip plates are bakelite, with the top plate being checkered, and the bottom plate being smooth. They are retained by the original screws and slotted bolts. The crossguard still has the original leather buffer washer around the blade. There is also a very nice unit marking on the side of the grip: 509 Leipzig, which we have not seen before.

The scabbard is in good condition, though it does show some age. It does not have any dents we can see, but the enamel finish has some crazing and checking, with a bit of flaking and light oxidation The nickel plated steel fittings are still present, with both screws on the chape, and one missing from the throat fitting. The plating is retained very well, with some speckling and oxidation on the chape, which is dent free.

The included frog is in very good condition, and looks to originally have been brown, and then dyed black. The stitching and rivets look to be intact, and the securing strap is still functional. It was however cut through on the top of the scabbard loop to allow the frog button easier access.

The blade of this hewer is the classic saw back type, and is in excellent condition. It has no signs of sharpening, and just a few tiny stains, with nearly full factory final polish cross grain. Really one of the best examples we have ever seen. Under the cross guard the blade is marked GES. / GESCHÜTZT, for Gesetzlich Geschutzt (Protected By Law), indicating that this knife was a trademarked design.

An excellent example of a WWII DRK Hewer, ready to add to your collection!

Blade Length: 10 1/2"
Blade Style: "Hewer" with Sawback
Overall length: 15 5/8“
Crossguard: 3”
Scabbard Length: 11"

History of the German Red Cross (DRK)

The DRK, "Deutsches Rotes Kreuz" (German Red Cross), a voluntary civil assistance organization originally instituted in 1864, was officially acknowledged by the Geneva Convention in 1929. In December 1937 it gained status as a legally recognized organization by the NSDAP. As with other essential services in Third Reich Germany, it came under control of the NSDAP in late 1938 under the auspices of the Ministry of the Interior's Social Welfare Organization.

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