So, do you know your Koenig from your Fuerst ?

tony v

Well-known member
Hi,

This question has always confused the hell out of me,,,,,,,,,,and when you delve deeper it doesn't necessarily get any clearer !

When I started collecting the first question was why do some helmets have different plates ? Ok that's because they represent different states...reasonably easy to grasp but why then do some have different mottos, some different coat of arms, some different cockades and sometimes all three together whilst being in the same Infantry Regiment !

Well hopefully for future reference here is a very simplified version of the "non-independent contingents" of the Army supplied by the various Duchies that aligned themselves to Prussia during the last part of the 19th Century.

First glance at the line up......................middle shelf.............

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tony v

Well-known member
Going from left to right... These are all regiments supplied by the Thuringian states.

Firstly all the Pickelhaubes have the Prussian Line Eagle and motto across the Eagle. They also all sport a Star on the breast and overlaying that a coat of arms. Each one is different and were negotiated at the time of their joining.

Oldenburg 1871 pattern helm with re-issue 1891 fittings and dated 1881 OIR91 12 C I. Plus owners name label corresponding to unit stamps.
Note the motto is for Koeing und Varterland. This appears to have been a negotiating cock up and once the error recognised it was too late to change the motto but the eight pointed star was added with coat of arms as shown in the picture below. The state cockade was blue poppy red and blue.

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tony v

Well-known member
Infantry Regiment 94 was supplied by the state of Saxe Weimar Eisenach and they negotiated the motto with "Gott mitt Fuerst" which depending on your preferred translation basically means they are with God, for their Prince as opposed to being "for their King", but everyone is in it for the Homeland !

This Regiment also had the eight pointed star which showed their heraldic roots back to the Saxon Nobility and their own coat of arms in the middle. One extra twist to look for is that the coat of arms is surrounded by laurels on the left and oak leaves on the right ! Sadly damaged.
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tony v

Well-known member
Next up Infantry Regiment 93 supplied by the State of Anhalt. Again it sports a Prussian Eagle, Prince motto with star and coat of arms. Coat of Arms is surrounded by two laurel branches.

Helmet marked AIR 93 1905.

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tony v

Well-known member
Here's the mind blower............Infantry Regiment 96 was designated the 7th Thuringian Regiment but each of it's three battalions was supplied by different states (plus they also had Prussian recruits but I'm not going there in this post...see Regt 153) and yep, they all had different helmet plates. The Regimental quarter master must have been having kittens trying to ensure the right helmets got to the right heads !

IR96 I battalion troops supplied by Saxe Altenburg and sports the Star with the Coat of Arms surrounded by two laurel branches. Just when you thought this was actually quite a straight forward one....the same helmet was worn by troops of IR 95 6th Thuringian, supplied by Saxe Coburg and Gotha and Saxe Meiningen.

Here is the 1867 version of the helmet and could be attributed to any of the above as it is not unit marked.

20220409_192146.jpg


II Battalion hail from that well known state Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt , which is not to be confused with the one featured in the film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang .

Again Fuerst Motto, unique cockade of blue with white ring and it's own coat of arms on the Star surrounded by laurel branches.

This example has the bonus of being a Reserve Officer's so no motto on the Eagle but on the silver cross instead.
 

tony v

Well-known member
III Battalion supplied by Reuss. Same formula with Eagle, motto and star but of course their own coat of arms.

Indistinct markings on the helmet sadly means can't make out the regiment but army korps stamps correct for IR96.

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tony v

Well-known member
Hoped that's cleared it all up. Any questions then please don't ask me a sI'm now more confused than before..............o_O:ROFLMAO:
 

tony v

Well-known member
Bonus Quiz Question...

close up's of the coat of arms........... can you name them correctly and attribute their unit?

Answers on a postcard. Winner will be notified by USPS sometime.........20220409_193811.jpg20220409_193815.jpg20220409_193819.jpg20220409_193828.jpg20220409_193834.jpg20220409_193845.jpg Usual terms and conditions apply.
 

Sandmann

Well-known member
Nice helmets Tony, thank you for you efforts and explanations (y)

If I remember right the Motto „FÜR KÖNIG“ or „FÜR FÜRST“ was not a mistake. This has to do with the wars of unification and Prussia's support in founding the empire. Prussia needed the support of the other sovereigns to get their votes for the German Emperor and that was part of the basis of the negotiations. But Oldenburg was already under Prussian influence, so the Grand Duke could not claim this special right here.
 

tony v

Well-known member
Thanks for clarification. German Unification was part of our History curriculum at school but I don't remember them telling us that ! :oops:


Tony
 
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