Updated: Sep 26, 2020
The Kar98k pouch featured alongside is also in the collection and its shown to give context and more detail to the photograph in the collection!
The Photograph here shows a crisp Pre War Heer Kompagnie parade photograph through a town or city. Taken on a Leica camera as the reverse details. Location is unknown Date is suggested to be 1936. The photograph shows the detail and smartness of the Heer A Soldaten in the parade. Seen smartly wearing M34 Waffenrocks, seen marching in step and synchronised. Looking to the left as the march past the crowd where the photographer is taking the photo from. The Soldaten seen smartly dressed with Kar98k Pouches in wear on their belts, (As detailed below in this post) whilst carrying the Karabiner 98K (Kar 98k) over right shoulder. They are also notably seen wearing Stahlhelms M35 Stahlhelms that completes the classic look of the Soldaten. Seen at either end on the rows are officers of the Kompagnie. They are seen notably with awards, all on either side are seen with Schützenschnur, a German Marksman award. The award being a lanyard that was first issued and awarded in 29th June 1936 and was awarded for accuracy and proficiency with a rifle or machine gun. This can be seen in wear that only adds to the smartness of the Soldaten. Another award also seen in wear on the smart M34 Waffenrocks is the Wehrmacht-Dienstauszeichnung or Long Service award. The Long Service award was first awarded on 16th March 1936, seen here in this photograph is the Heer variant. The officers seen to the left in shot are also seen marching along with the regiment, they can notably seen with swords as they march past.
Just to the right of the photograph there can be seen buildings of the town or city in which the Kompagnie is parading through. Banners can be seen hanging out of the windows of the buildings, also notably seen are the occasional civilian in the windows as they see the Kompagnie parade past their houses. In addition to this there can be seen a Musiker (Musicians) performing as the Kompagnie parades past. The atmosphere would be ecstatic, the sound of the Kompagnie marching past as the music from the band is played among cheers from civilians whilst the Kompagnie parades past.
The pouch seen alongside the photograph and also detailed briefly in other photographs is a 1938 dated Kar98k pouch. The pouch itself is dated 1938, made just two years after the suggested date of the photograph. The pouch seen attached was originally a Brown and has been darkened on the back and blackened on the front. These were likely originally used by a Paramilitary force such as the Freikorps or Reichswehr forces. The Kar98k pouches were used in WW1 and the pattern (M1909) with three compartments that are split in half by dividers. Both pouches would allow for 60, 7.92 rounds to be held (30 in each). This pouch is in very good condition and all the original stitching and fastenings can be seen. There will be a more detailed and specific post for this piece in the collection soon! The pouch seen here also has a manufacturers mark, as seen in the attached photographs that show the reverse and a close shot showing the mark to read "Karl Brath" which is the manufacturers name with the words "Waldbröl". Waldbröl is a town in the southern part of the "Oberbergischer Kreis" (Rural district circling state) in North Rhine-Westphalia in Germany. Whilst the pouch is not from the actual photograph it is an exact copy (minus the later manufacturer date) that provides context to the photograph. The pouch would have a pair and as seen in the photograph it would be worn on the belt. As the war would begin in 1939 more would be produced. In 1941 Y-straps would become in widespread use, the metal D - loop would allow for the attachment of them.
There is another pouch also in the collection but is dated 1941, it is not featured as the date of the featured pouch is closer to the suggested date of the photograph.
The photograph is a crisp example of a Pre World War 2 parade that shows the discipline and smartness of the Wehrmacht. The smartness of the M34 Waffenrock being seen here as the Kompagnie parades past the photographer and through the town or city.
A strong personal favourite of mine in the collection