Hi - I have no idea re how rare or forged these signs might be, though I should think every town in Germany had an Adolf Hitler Place or Street at one point? So also maybe not that rare? However, I did collect enamelled signs for many years and this does look like a period sign to me – The whole point of these signs is that they were very hard wearing and did not fade or rust (unless damaged) - Which is why why they are so sought after today! This looks to be a standard continental street sign, the colour looks OK, the font seems correct and the convex surface. The damage is not from a grinder, it is as SteveR says, slivering or chipping of the glass coating and look absolutely right for a sign that has been clumsily pulled from a wall without undoing its fixing screws – as the metal bends, the glass flakes off just like this – I should think many of the Nazi inspired street signs could not be removed fast enough after the war, by residents wanting to distance themselves from the defeated regime.
I have seen many reproduction signs too – enamelling of large and awkward shaped signs is not a corner shop process as it requires temperatures close to 1000 degrees to fuse the enamel – so most modern signs are quite small and reproductions of advertising signs tend to be quarter scale or smaller. They are also all now on steel, whereas the older signs I collected were on sheet iron – the backing of steel signs is a tell-tale very dark blue/black, but iron signs tend to be grey – I think steel took over in the late 1920s though, so that doesn’t really help here. France and Sweden are two countries I know that still have a thriving enamel sign industry and certainly the former still makes street signs this way, though again the ones I have seen are significantly smaller than the one shown – usually featuring two lines of text rather than being long and thin, as required for one line as here. In France this vintage style of house numbers are for sale everywhere, so are obviously produced industrially and I have seen many orientation maps etc on monuments that are quite large and enamelled, so obviously larger signs are still made.
The convex surface would make me inclined to think it could be possibly genuine as this would be very expensive to reproduce today and would not mean anything to most people anyway. Though if it is expensive as you state I would want more proof too. Many signs have small makers names or letter in a corner or on the edge – often with a date or date code as well. As virtually all German equipment I have come across has manufacturer’s marks or codes, I would be surprised if their street sign didn’t have the same?
To My eye,anyway,the corners where the "removal damage" to the enameling is don't show much-if any-Bending of the metal itself. If you've ever seen an old sign from,say,a railroad or such,it will almost invariably show creasing and bending where it was pried from it's post or building-and this sign just doesn't seem to show anything like that. Like others have said,the "damage" looks artificial-there's no round "popped off" areas in the enamel,such as you would expect to see from broken enameling on a sign that's been flexed. The colors are extremely bright,also,which doesn't suggest much weathering despite it being out in the sun,rain,snow,etc 24/7 for some many years. Just My opinion,though. William
I don't want to hi-jack the thread, however today I bought a couple of enamel signs, one of which I think goes well with this thread, a house number sign - Adolf Hitler Str.5 - measures about 18cm x 16cm has convex form, white raised lettering, I'm fairly certain its genuine, here's five pictures of it. What are members opinions.
I think the original is shown in this video, and is a little different: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=592Z...etailpage#t=66
NickW mentions: Many signs have small makers names or letter in a corner or on the edge – often with a date or date code as well. As virtually all German equipment I have come across has manufacturer’s marks or codes, I would be surprised if their street sign didn’t have the same?
During the research for my book about enameled signs these signs were often marked in some ways. BUT, those with street names, being in the Gothic or Latin script, hardly ever were. From all observed ones only one was with a manufacturer's marking. This sign was a privately manufactured sign for an office at a Horst-Wessel-Strasse.
Street signs are covered briefly over the pages 388 through 401. Eight photos show the positioning of a sign or the removing!
Those with the Adolf Hitler or Hermann Göring indications are known to have been reproduced for sure. They were given a "used treatment" and occasionally are difficult to identify as that. In Germany a few persons are qualified in making excellent reproductions! A real expert hardly is able to tell it is a fraud. From lots of signs it is easily to see on the contrary however. They lack quality!
AlecH: yours lacks the dashes between the words: Adolf-Hitler-Strasse or Adolf Hitler-Strasse. It gives me no good feeling.
Both photographs are from the Daniel Draux-collection.
Part from a page from a manufacturer's cataloque
Courtesy: Philippe Gillain.
"Wir sollen auch unser Leben für die Brüder lassen" (1.Joh.3.16):
zum Gedächtnis Wilhelm Schenk. Er starb fürs Vaterland am 13. Juni 1916