Original German WWII USGI Bring Back in Box - 139th Gebirgsjäger (Mountain Troop) Regiment Officer Peaked Cap and Shoulder Boards
Original Items: One-of-a-kind. 139th Gebirgsjäger (Mountain Troop) Regiment was part of the 3rd Mountain Division (German: 3 Gebirgs-Division) was a formation of the German Wehrmacht during World War II. It was created from the Austrian Army's 5th and 7th Divisions following the Anschluss in 1938. The division took part in the Invasion of Poland 1939 as part of Army Group South, but was transferred to garrison the West Wall before the end of the campaign. In 1940 it joined the invasion of Norway, most famously sending its 139th Mountain Regiment under General Eduard Dietl to seize the ice-free Arctic port of Narvik. The Allies briefly managed to take the town back, but abandoned it to the Germans after the invasion of France.
In 1941 the division moved into Lapland to participate in Operation Silberfuchs, the attack on the Soviet Arctic as part of Operation Barbarossa, but failed to capture Murmansk. The division was withdrawn to Germany for rehabilitation at the end of the year, but left its 139th Mountain Infantry Regiment behind to operate independently.
In the spring of 1944 the 139th Mountain Regiment, which had been left in Lapland by the 3rd Mountain Division when it withdrew at the end of 1941, was reinforced to become Divisionsgruppe Kräutler. In September it received the additional designation of 140th Special Purposes Division, and as a result is mentioned once in late-war documentation as "Div.Gr.K (Div.z.b.V.140)". On May 6, 1945 the OKW issued an order re-designating it as the 9th Mountain Division, but the order came so late that it is not actually listed as such on any situation maps or other official records. The unit had withdrawn from Lappland into Norway as German fortunes in the Arctic waned, and surrendered to the British at the end of the war. (Some documentation from the post-war period further confuses matters by referring to this unit as the 10th Mountain Division.)
This is history in a box! A true USGI bring back set still in the original shipping box used in 1945. The box still retains the original shipping labels, stamps and March 1945 postmark. Pfc James Murphy sent these items in this box to:
5705 S. Hermitage Ave
Chicago 36, Illinois
Miss Muhr then sent it to the GI himself at the following address:
New York, New York
Once can easily see where the original address labels from Europe to the USA were covered over and readdressed for shipment forwarding. The visor cap and shoulder boards have been inside the box since 1945 and therefore are custom fit to the box! However, the cap still retains that iconic saddle shape!
This wonderful condition German Gebirgsjäger Officers peak visor cap has a diamond celluloid labeled in gold as follows:
The Panzer peak visor cap has the finest field grey cotton doeskin crown, with dark green wool cap-band and light green piping. The peak visor cap retains a silver bullion embroidered eagle and swastika, plus a fine set of silver bullion oak leaves. You can see where the small cap Edelweiss was on the front of the cap below the eagle. A specialist who has been collecting Gebirgsjäger militaria for over 30 years noticed the faded material and the two holes where the Edelweiss was attached to the cap at first glance. The edelweiss badge must have been removed or fell off on this example.
The peak visor lining is black silk with full celluloid diamond bearing the gold LOTTO WEIN name. The tan leather sweatband is fully intact. The hat size is approximately a 7 3/8 US or 59cm. This Gebirgsjäger Officer peak visor cap is in very good condition and free from any moth or any notable damage.
The Gebirgsjäger shoulder boards (Schulterstücke) are those of a Lieutenant. Officers' shoulder boards were constructed from "Russia" braid, an aluminum-thread double piping. Company-grade officers (Lieutenant through Hauptmann/Rittmeister) wore epaulettes constructed by wrapping two side-by-side lengths of braid around the buttonhole and back, giving the appearance of eight parallel cords; the whole was sewn to an underlay (Unterlagen) of Waffenfarbe badge-cloth. The boards are in very good condition and bear gold numbers 139 which signifies 139th Gebirgsjäger (Mountain Troop) Regiment. They even still have the original uniform buttons! Clearly the USGI cut them from the German uniform from which they came.
A wonderful set of true Gebirgsjäger material with provenance to match.
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