The Van Bosstraeten Auction


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I had my eyes on a 71/98 artillery bayonet for a while, but even before the auction I felt that it wasn't worth the minimum 800 euro bid (= 1,000 euro + shipping) as the scabbard didn't look 100% correct, so I just enjoyed the auction without bidding :)


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Some items were actually reasonable and sold for less than I thought they would bring. An assortment of items actually sold at or below a retail value before commission in some instances in many of the auction item categories. So yes, there were some reasonable "bargains" to be had. But there were many items sold at mind blowing incredibly high prices. The advertising department of Hermann Historica did a fantastic job of promoting this auction to the entire collector world. Was there any collector who did not know about this auction or watch it, lol?

It was interesting for me to watch the 2-bayonets towards the end of the auction sell, that I traded to Karel a few years back. One sold for what we agreed to in trade, and the far rarer example sold for 100 Euros less than what we had agreed to in trade value. I was able to acquire a spectacular condition 100th Lieb Reg't private purchase enlisted helmet with a little cash added for Karel on top of the trade, as he had two examples of this type of helmet at the time. He graciously let me pick which ever of the two I wanted that he had. The one he kept sold on the auction.

Many of the stahlhelme did extremely well; several of the camo examples sold very high, as did many of the factory issue painted stahlhelme. Lot # 4269: a stone mint felt residue camo exterior M18 ear "cut-out" or "telephone talker" helmet sold for a staggering 8,200 Euros, or 10,250 Euros with commission. The new owner quite arguably has the finest M18 ear "cut out" example in the world for their collection. An unusual camo pattern M18, #4261, hammered in at 4,800 Euros.

Lot 4086 Brunswick Infantry Reg't 92 officer helmet of Duke Johann Albrecht of Mecklenburg garnered 22,000 Euros. And the grand prize was Lot 4110: Garde du Corps Officer helmet with spike in stunning condition, along with the storage case, the pristine eagle, and the storage case for the eagle. That beautiful set brought 64,000 Euros before commission.

Some enlisted pickelhaubes that stunned me: 2,700 Euros for an M15 Line Uhlan enlisted tschapka? That makes for a 3,375 Euros tschapka with commission. And 2,300 Euros for a beautiful M15 Wurttemburg e.m.? (That was a similar price to the Baldwin collection black lacquered felt example that sold several years earlier.) The green painted Prussian kit helmet with 1914 date went for 3,200 Euros.

Three of Karel's four body armor examples brought very high prices and astonished me.

Some of the rare ersatz bayonets and trench knives went for very strong prices.

This was truly a world class collection of Imperial German items, never to be duplicated again in any of our lifetimes most likely. I think that all of us here lift a toast to Karel for having such an amazing collection and being such an incredible, truly fine gentleman in this world.
As stated a world class collection and a once in a lifetime chance to try and obtain something
from it .Maybe I will have a glass of Champagne tonight or Saturday night for sure .
A sign that the collecting world is strong and going well if the items are there
Prices in Europe IMO are stronger
and they don't pay the exchange rate that we in USA do


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I got one nice JzP helmet. Might have overpaid a little but I don't mind. The day before they had a firearms auction and I was able to get an 1871 cavalry carbine marked to the 13th Uhlan Regiment. Very excited for that!
Ahhhhh, so you were in my way , ha,ha ! ;)...enjoy it, its a Whopper....I'll find another one some day..they're out there ( the 4104 )


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I got one nice JzP helmet. Might have overpaid a little but I don't mind. The day before they had a firearms auction and I was able to get an 1871 cavalry carbine marked to the 13th Uhlan Regiment. Very excited for that!
Did you get the Probe J z P ??


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Tried the Oldenburg artillery officer, lot 4088, but unfortunately did not get it.

In the end I was successful with 4127.

At least something to remember Karel.

4127 very nice Jager Batl officer 1 ; 2 or 3 with the old style Grenadier eagle .


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Collecting is not regulated, everybody should do it in their own way. Whether you enjoy bargain hunting or collecting high-priced items, it's important that you follow your passion and enjoy your collection 🙃
Sandy ;
I have been thinking about what a collector friend once told me ;
told me ;
Steve , I do NOT regret the deals that I have done
I only regret the deals that I didn't do


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It seems that Amy thought the prices were O K
with a purchase of 20 helmets !
Hmm,I did a spreadsheet input all prices, my min and max bids before the auction and I bid accordingly to my spreadsheet. There are 3 items that I went €100-200 above to win them. So not that much of impulse buying.
I am in Singapore where I do not have much avenues to buy spikes. I bid on ebay and buy from age of Kings. I seldom bid on auction house. I didn't even bid on MB stuff years back. I bid this time round on items that I would like to have within my budget :)


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Yes, Amy is a smart collector to use this strategy, and a smart business woman in doing this.

Several of the enlisted, as well as some of the officer helmets actually sold for reasonable prices.

I've done the same exact thing with auctions in the past: doing a spreadsheet or even a hand-written list with minimum and maximum bids that I've taken to live auctions I have attended in the past. That way it keeps me "under control" and not impulsive which can happen easily with the adrenaline in an auction situation and wanting to get something. It's the best thing to do with keeping yourself under control. I figure if I get something in my price range, good for me, and if not, there's always something else that will come up for sale in the future.

It's exactly how I was able to get all those kokardes and some other items in that auction a few years back, and it's what Chip did as well when we formed our strategy and got what we were able to win from the estate auction of the contents of the trunk from the WW1 US doughboy from Pennsylvania. We had to submit written bids ahead of time, since there was no online aspect to the auction. It was either attending live, which we did not do, or leaving absentee bids with the auctioneers.

Congratulations Amy!

Best Wishes,

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Ha,ha,...don't be sorry...that's the way it goes with never know who you're bidding against. I'm glad it will go to a good home..I'ved bought the M15 Bavarian Cavalry helmet to go with my M1909/15 Chevauleger tunic...So I'am also a "happy camper";)
Congrats on the M15 Bavarian Cavalry helmet.

You'll have to show us what the depot markings are on the underside of the back visor. I could only scarcely see an issue marking on the helmet. I wasn't sure exactly what the unit mark is. I couldn't tell if it was a Field Artillery or a Cavalry issue marking. Unfortunately Hermann Historica did not properly show the unit mark on this helmet, as they did on several of the other enlisted helmets.

Best Wishes,



I also liked this one very much Lot # 4105 … who got it?


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I particularly liked this one here, too: Lot # 4022

Helm für einen Fähnrich im 1. Badischen Leib-Grenadier-Regiment Nr. 109, um 1900​

Schwarz lackierte Lederglocke mit runden Schirmen und versilberten Neusilberbeschlägen. Verschraubtes Emblem in Form des badischen Greifs mit aufgelegtem Hausorden der Treue, Teller mit vier Rundkopfschrauben, Perlstabfries und glatter, versilberter Schraubspitze (berieben, gedunkelt). Flache, belederte Schuppenketten aus vergoldetem Metall an Steckrosetten und lackierten Blechkokarden. Beiges Seidenripsfutter, ockerfarbenes Lederschweißband, rot und grün unterfütterte Schirme, in der Glocke die alte Größenangabe "56 1/2". Trage- und Altersspuren. Schöne Erhaltung.

Zustand: II


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