01-09-2010, 04:23 PM
Here are images of a cap works, to include the handiwork phase of affixing insignia and chin straps and "fourniture" as well as the steaming and ironing to give same the nice shape we cap-lunatics fuss about.
It is surely not the BMW factory in Leipzig, but it is also the truth.
This nice woman here: a.) knows whether the "prongs" went through the cap lining and b.) whether the SS used echtsilber "sculls." If she is still alive and someone can ask her, we would all be the richer for it.
Seldom do things unfold in such a simple way.
Then some of our hobbbyists would have to dream up another question as to how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.
01-09-2010 04:23 PM
01-09-2010, 04:25 PM
The finished product with some suitably Nazi captions.
If you behave, I will translate them, or someone else here can.
01-09-2010, 04:26 PM
Scenes from a larger textile exhibition with the wares of the cap industry and trade proffered by the association of the German cap makers.
This image is from 1936.
01-09-2010, 04:31 PM
UM did a series of articles in 1936 on the cap making industry and trade which is remarkable. The question here was always: how to account for the huge increase in demand, which was nonetheless cyclical, while keeping the business within the cartel like structure of a few leading firms or also the estates/guild organization, how to kick the crap out of the Jews, and how to follow regulations while nonetheless making an attractive product that in many cases was optional. That is, the distinction was between the contract made caps bought with state/party monies and the cap bought by Tommy Tent Peg the soldier or Stormtrooper and all the ups and downs of the latter. And these were much more than we think, since what is left in most cases to us likes are exactly these Extramuetzen.
I have learned a lot of remarkable stuff from these articles, I can tell you.
01-09-2010, 04:35 PM
The storage of said extra cap was done in cellophane. Or white officers' caps of the Luftwaffe.
01-09-2010, 04:38 PM
In our fevered dreams we imagine ourselves being able to shop in such locales. Of course, they would not let me in, nor you, either. And were the shop keepers to be aware of today's prices for this junk, they would likely have sold it out the back door.
01-09-2010, 10:17 PM
F-B, I am simply stunned into silence--these are the kinds of pics I have been looking for (without success) for years! In this little thread, you have posted more information on the manufacture, regs, and distribution than has been posted (or written) about anywhere else! I had never seen the inside of a Muetzenfabrik before, despite endless dead-end searches. If I was to ever go back for the PhD, it would be on the manufacture and retail of these items, with a focus on the guilds themselves.
Do the articles discuss how long it took (on average) to become a Meister?
If I recall correct, in the mid-1960s the last Meister test was given--the problem was that there were no hatmakers left to administer the tests, so regular tailors had to do so(!)
01-09-2010, 10:20 PM
The Muetzenschau also depicts one of the very rare Olympic Team visors. There has to be more pics of this show somewhere---perhaps in some former Hatmakers photo album....
01-09-2010, 10:31 PM
Thanks again FB for all this wonderful stuff. I keep going back to it time and time again and cursing my woeful German.
Thanks too as well to Chris: I was racking my brains to think of what organisation that white cap represented.
01-09-2010, 10:31 PM
Dear Chris, thanks. Go learn German and I will help you write the book. I have less than no time, and I have wasted all week screwing around with this, when I have multiple assignments to finish of a fairly vital nature. I believe that an apprenticeship in tailoring was eight years, and I imagine in the cap trade it would not be different to be a Meister. There were other stages, of course. There was a whole hierarchy. I have more pictures in hand, but will post them later.
You can still be trained as a headwear maker. I know the places in Bavaria where you can go, but the training is for women's fashion mostly, but the skills are not unlike the old ones. But the uniform trade, of course, is mostly dead in Germany for obvious reasons.
I am always interested how German society is put together, since I am engaged in it professionally to a very high degree, also in Austria. Hence, these kinds of details are compelling and exciting, but they are also very foreign in a world where the transition from the trades and crafts to the industrial age is quite alien amid the digital age, the service economy, and the general debasement of work via globalization.