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Hitler Bust presentation piece

Article about: Dear Sir, I came across this desk set or paperweight or mantle piece or ... I was wondering if someone could tell me something about this piece (and maybe what it's worth, if that's OK accor

  1. #1

    Default Hitler Bust presentation piece

    Dear Sir, I came across this desk set or paperweight or mantle piece or ...

    I was wondering if someone could tell me something about this piece (and maybe what it's worth, if that's OK according to the forum rules). The bust is signed MH Ley, but it's not bronze. The bust was cast from a non magnetic white metal (kinda feels like silver, but I have not tested it).

    Also, do eagles indicate Luftwaffe connection? What represents the silver plaque below the bust?

    I tried to perform general internet search and was unable to find any similar pieces.

    Thank you for your help,

    Vlad
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  3. #2
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    Default Re: Hitler Bust presentation piece

    Vlad - Heres my humble opinion based on the pictures and your discription - the bust is probably zink alloy(pot metal) and looks to be period - looks like the bust was added to the rest of the desk/paperweight post -45 to embellish the total piece.
    The emblem(soldier head) on the marble base was usually found on time in service or Heer award plaques -
    What does the bottom of the base look like, is it covered with some material i.e. felt etc??can you see how the pillars etc are attached??
    Horst
    Last edited by Horst; 11-27-2012 at 12:28 AM.
    "He who hesitates is lost - is not only lost but miles from the next exit"

  4. #3

    Default Re: Hitler Bust presentation piece

    Thank you. I added two more scans of the bottom of the piece. Hopefully this helps.

    http://i77.photobucket.com/albums/j7...125_132947.jpg
    http://i77.photobucket.com/albums/j7...125_132952.jpg

  5. #4

    Default Re: Hitler Bust presentation piece

    Thank you. I added few more scans of the bottom of the piece. Hopefully that helps. I know that Ley did a number of busts in bronze, but it looks like she also did them in zinc alloy. What about the eagles, are they luftwaffe or just generic eagles?

    http://i77.photobucket.com/albums/j7...125_132947.jpg
    http://i77.photobucket.com/albums/j7...125_132952.jpg

  6. #5
    ?

    Default Re: Hitler Bust presentation piece

    2 different types of marble

  7. #6

    Default Re: Hitler Bust presentation piece

    srh11293: I agree with Horst that the bust is probably pot metal and the base unit with the twin columns and eagles is 1920's or 30's vintage. And Colt45 is correct that the marble base on the bust is a different marble than that used on the older, larger base unit. It looks to me that someone has used a desk pen and pencil set from the 20's or 30's, removed the pen and pencil holder, which would have been between the two columns, and replaced it with the bust. I agree with Horst, that the assembly was probably done postwar. I think that the presence of the silver soldier's head & wreath on the face of the block beneath the bust increases the probability that this item was created postwar. I say that because, as Horst has said, they were found on award plaques, which leads me to believe the head & wreath were removed from such an award plaque, something that was unlikely to have been done while the plaque was still an honor to have and display. The eagles have nothing to do with the Luftwaffe and were there on the original desk pen & pencil holder. Though I am pretty sure what I have posted here is correct, it's still just an opinion. Dwight

  8. #7

    Default Re: Hitler Bust presentation piece

    Thank you very much for your opinions. They helped a lot. One more question, the bust is signed H.M. Ley , is there a reason to believe that it was cast by her? Is there a reason not to believe that? The bust seems very similar to this piece, also done in zinc/pot metal - Adolf Hitler Desk Bust- H.M Ley (moderators, please remove the link, if it violates forum rules).

    It is likely that during the war, due to increased need for bronze, busts like this were make out of pot metal?

    Thank you

  9. #8

    Default Re: Hitler Bust presentation piece

    srh1293: The fact that the bust you have is signed L.M. Ley would lead one to believe that it is an example that she did, but it could be a well executed knock-off. Yours and the one shown in the link you provided appear similar if not identical. I am certainly not an art expert, but it would be easier to make a comparison if the photos you provided were taken from the same straight-on angle Third Reich Arts used for for their photos, rather than the oblique angle yours have. There must have been hundreds of those busts made and sold in the early 1930's, so it's quite possible that someone adapted one of them to the desk piece you have. I still think it's a postwar creation in its present form, but, again, that's just an opinion. Dwight

  10. #9

    Default Re: Hitler Bust presentation piece

    I agree with Horst and everyone else that the bust and the marble inder it do not match the marble with the two columns with eagles. It looks like someone used a period ink well and attatched the Hitler head by Hedwig Maria Ley that was on a marble bade already. I thing the solider was also attatched to the marble on the Hitler base. Looks like it is Bronzed washed zinc white metal or known as pot metal. I have owned many HM Ley Bust over the years as I liked her work . There is a 1933 publication in which she is pictured doing the larger then life clay sculpture that all Ley bust of Hitler were made off of. I have a Half life size presented Bronze bust by HM Ley that is also foundery marked that was presented in 1934 to an officer in my collection. From the photos it looks in my opinion that it is an original late war HM Ley bust of Hitler with the rest of the base being added post war just for a good look. I like the looks of the piece and I don't think this was altered to deceive anyone but maybe put together by a veteran after the war for the look. Enjoy your item. Best Wishes Don Boyle

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