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Headgear -
WWII Nazi German Police Schutzpolizei NCO'S Shako Tschako
Item #: FRJ162
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Nice quality, private purchase, 1936 pattern, Shutzpolizei, (Protection Police), NCO’s Shako consisting of a molded, black vulcanfibre body with a police green wool covering to the exterior. The body of the Shako has an extruding, humped curve reverse with black lacquered, downward sloping front and rear vulcanfibre visors and a circular "coffee can" style top. Both the front and rear visors are secured to the Shako by a narrow horizontal strip of blackened leather which is machine stitched all along the bottom edge. The circular, black lacquered vulcanfibre, "coffee can", style top is also secured to the Shako by a row of horizontal stitching running through small evenly spaced puncture holes. Each side of the Shako body has two, small, screened ventilation holes situated just below the crown seam, with internal, sliding, vent closure panels permitting the forward vent to be closed. The front center of the Shako has a large, high relief, stamped, natural aluminum, second pattern wreathed Police eagle emblem. The eagle shows nice detailing and is nicely convexed to fit the contours of the Shako. The eagle and wreath are still quite clean and bright. The eagle is secured to the Shako by two, small, screw threaded, retaining post being inserted through two small holes in the body with retaining nuts that are visible in the interior. The front center of the Shako also has a small, stitch reinforced, horizontal slash to accommodate the national tri-color cockade retaining wires. The Shako has a stamped alloy, vertically oval, national tri-color cockade, with five, silver washed, simulated twisted rope outer edge encompassing a single, black painted, simulated twisted rope inner edge, a single silver washed, ribbed, inner trim and a red painted recessed centerpiece. The bottom edge of the cockade has an extended wire loop to secure it to the Shako. The Shako has a blackened leather chinstrap with dual, natural aluminum, sliding length adjustment buckles and natural aluminum retaining rings. The retaining rings are secured onto extended, M1891 pattern, natural aluminum, chinstrap side posts which are positioned on each side of the Shako’s body. The interior of the Shako has a nine finger, natural tan leather construction liner with ventilation perforations to the front forehead section. The leather to the liner is still quite supple and the original leather tie string is still intact. The interior crown of the Shako has a printed manufacturers label that includes the manufactures name and location, size marked 54 1/2. Nice clean example.
The origins of the distinctive Shako has been somewhat shrouded with the passing of time with some military historians accrediting the French with its development in the 1780's, based on the design of the civilian top hat, while others acclaim that it was based on the Austro-Hungarian or Bavarian Casquette headgear that was introduced at roughly the same time. It is known, however, that the Shako was originally adopted by the Prussian army as a experimental model in 1801 and was the standard headgear utilized by Jäger and Schützen personnel during the Napoleonic Wars. The 1801 pattern shako went through numerous modifications and in March 1854 a new pattern was officially adopted by Jäger and Schnelle Truppen, (Light Infantry and Mobile Troops). Further minor modifications to the Shako occurred in 1860, 1888, 1891, 1892, 1895, 1897, and 1915. On June 17TH 1936, Reichsführer-SS Heinrich Himmler was appointed to the newly created position of Chef der Deutschen Polizei im Reichsministerium des Innern, (Chief of the German Police in the National Ministry of the Interior), effectively giving him full control of all police agencies within Germany. As a result of this appointment and the restructuring of all the separate German state police into a single national police force new regulations were instituted to bring about uniformity in dress for all police through-out the country. One of the new dress regulations introduced a slightly modified version of the Shako for wear by all civil police personnel with minor variations.
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