11-30-2015 09:24 PM
All I can say is the first photo is pre-war , and the last photo he appears to be a Lieutenant ( Oberleutnant )
NCO stands for non commissioned officer , he looks to be army . I'm sure someone will be able to fill you in more .
Welcome to the forum
As has been said above, the uniforms are those of the Heer (army).
In the first photograph, he is an NCO (note the rank Tresse [braid] on his shoulder boards and collar), apparently an officer candidate. It's a photograph from the early-Third Reich period; the men are already wearing the Feldbluse [field blouse] introduced in 1933, but not yet the breast eagle introduced in 1934.
In the second photograph, he is already an officer (we can tell from the field cap, cross-strap and belt buckle), but the exact rank can't be made out.
Various details tell us that it's almost certainly a pre-war photograph or perhaps one from the very earliest days of the war.
In third photograph, he is an officer ranked Oberleutnant [1st Lieutenant] as identified by his shoulder boards. He is wearing a tailored officer-quality field blouse.
The man on the left is a medical NCO ranked Unteroffizier [Corporal] (note shoulder board rank insignia and trade badge on the lower sleeve).
It's not really possible to tell your great-grandfather's branch from the photographs with certainty. Infantry had white branch color piping. To me, his shoulder board underlay appears to be of a dark color, but then again, maybe those are just shadows.
Unit affiliation can't be told from the photographs, either, as no distinctive unit insignia (like shoulder board cyphers or cuff titles) are visible anywhere.
So helpful, many thanks
If infantry piping is white and his piping possibly black what part of the heer would it make him? I think artillery was red and cavalry was yellow?
Does the piping have a proper name?
Black was for Pioniere [engineeers]. The proper German name for branch color is Waffenfarbe.
That's the word. Again thanks
I'll try to speak to my oma to see if she can confirm any details and report back. Hopefully he was an engineer, that would make 4 generations!
I managed to find another picture of him.
His NCO visor looks to have a white waffenfarbe but the shoulder boards look black?
Is there any more info to be gained?
Latest photo again appears to be pre-war or very early. You can see some of the Mannschaften have two decals on their helmets. This was later eliminated. The lack of awards - even just a ribbon or two - indicates no battle experience yet. Uniforms all look like pre 1940 style. The Waffenfarbe of the soutache on the side caps looks very light - ruling out Pionere or Artillerie most likely. One tip, if you can find any war time letters they will have a unit mailing number. That could identify his area of service. NH
Many thanks everyone.
Ahh this is so frustrating. Wish I could find more close-up mid war pictures.
All these pictures have come from such small photographs.
Don't give up. See if you can uncover any war time letters. Bundesarchiv might be helpful but you will need as many details as possible. NH