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NVA "Cold War" Collection 1956 - 1990

Article about: Well, a short (or maybe long) introduction is on order... It's true... History DOES repeats itself. In the eve of the "Second Cold War" (started a few days ago in the Ukraine), I'v

  1. #41


    One final post tonight. This photo shows the parade uniform of an NVA infantry/motorized rifle major. The jacket has definite TR influences, kind of a cross between the Heer's parade jacket and semi-formal walking out jacket. The collar and sleeve cuffs are piped (but not the jacket front). Parade bars on the cuffs with infantry white trim in the center, an officer's parade dagger, hanger, and parade belt - all inspired by the traditions of the Wehrmacht. Once again, the underside of the collar has the TR style zig-zag stitching and a field dressing pocket in the interior.

    NVA officers who marched in parade formations normally wore helmets rather than visor caps (although visors were more often worn in the early years of the NVA.) Medals could be pinned individually to the uniform, but they were more normally won on Soviet-style brass mounting bars. The cloth ribbon portion of NVA medals were also shaped Soviet style rather than worn in the old traditional German style.
    NVA "Cold War" Collection 1956 - 1990

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  3. #42


    Around 1971-73 the NVA retired the Wehrmacht style black collar jackets that closed around the neck in favor of an open collar jacket worn with a dress shirt and dark grey tie. The new open collar jacket, shirt and tie combination were regulation for both enlisted, NCO's and officers. A grey shirt was worn with service jackets, while a white shirt was worn on parade. Also eliminated from the new style jacket was the internal field dressing pocket and zig-zag stitching under the collar - old TR/Wehrmacht uniform features. Finally, the green-grey color of the old black collar tunics changed to a stone grey color on the new open collar tunics.

    While the black collar jackets had piping around the collar and sleeve cuffs only on parade uniforms, the new style jackets had white piped collars and sleeve cuffs of ALL officer uniforms - both for service and parade functions. Enlisted career soldiers also wore white piping on their jackets, while non-career short term draftees wore plain jackets without piping.

    Cuff bars continued to be worn on parade dress with the new open collar tunics. A Wehrmacht feature reintroduced around 1970-71 was the parade shoulder cords or aguillettes worn by officers. (aguillettes were not worn between 1956 and 1970-71).

    Pictured below is the uniform of an NVA Lieutenant, circa 1976-1980, wearing the new open collar uniform in parade dress, with aguillettes, piped cuff bars, and the parade belt, dagger and dagger hanger, along with full medals displayed on the jacket. This uniform was worn by an officer of the Zivilverteidigung or Civil Defense branch of the uniformed NVA. The piping color is purple. The Zivilverteidigung also wore a cuff title above the left sleeve cuff. The medal bar includes both a Civil Defense service medal and three Army service awards. Most full time uniformed members of the Civil Defense branch had prior service with the Army or Police.
    NVA "Cold War" Collection 1956 - 1990

  4. #43


    The NVA had another class of uniform called the "gesellschaft" uniform - a social occasions uniform. This was worn for special social events such as officer school or military academy graduations or parties, social events with members of allied Warsaw Pact or other friendly countries, and similar social occasions where a service uniform was not deemed appropriate.

    Further, the gesellschaft uniform was worn in two different ways. There was "kleiner gesellschaft" occasions - or lesser social occasions where ribbons were worn instead of medals, but no other uniform adornments. There was also "grosser gelsellschaft" occasions - or greater social occasions, where full medals were worn, plus the addition of parade aguillettes and parade dagger. These social occasions might include formal events at embassies of friendly countries, or formal events at places like the East German Foreign Affairs Ministry or Defense Ministry.

    Most gesellschaft jackets seen today are the 2nd pattern, which were introduced in 1975 and remained in use until the end of the NVA. These jackets are easy to find and rather cheap. It is an easy way to add to an NVA collection.

    The attached photo is the 2nd pattern gesellschaft uniform of a Lieutenant Colonel in the NVA Air Force, or Luftstreitkraft - the East German successor of the Wehrmacht's Luftwaffe, circa 1975 - 1990. This jacket is worn in the kleiner or lesser occasion style. The collar tabs reflect the Luftwaffe heritage of a flying eagle inside a silver wreath. However, NVA Luftstreitkraft collar tabs did not add extra eagles to denote higher ranks. Also, the old Luftwaffe waffenfarbe color of yellow was dropped for a medium blue waffenfarbe color - similar to the branch color of the Soviet Air Force.

    NVA "Cold War" Collection 1956 - 1990

  5. #44


    Here is the 2nd pattern gesellschaft uniform worn in the grosser style, with full medals, parade dagger, and aguillettes.

    The photo on the right is that of a STASI colonel assigned to the Wachregiment Felix Dzierzynski. The STASI Wachregiment was a ceremonial regiment of the Ministry of State Security. However, this regiment also received combat training and military weapons and equipment, and could serve in a combat role if required. This separated the Wachregiment from the rest of the STASI, which served mostly intelligence or administrative functions.

    In 1985 a regulation was issued limiting the wearing of medals on the gesellschaft jacket to only the highest four decorations awarded to that individual.

    The photo on the left is that of a Navy (Volksmarine) Captain wearing a white Navy gesellschaft jacket in the grosser style. He wears his dark blue service trousers with the white jacket, and a white-topped visor cap. On the left breast he wears a Soviet Navy Higher Academy badge. NVA officers with the rank of colonel or full captain (Navy) who were being groomed for general or admiral rank were sometimes invited to attend Soviet military higher command schools.
    NVA "Cold War" Collection 1956 - 1990NVA "Cold War" Collection 1956 - 1990

  6. #45


    Hi All!

    I've been slacking on this thread in the last few months - didn't really get any new NVA items...but today I got this lot for 10 EU (incl. shipping)
    I know, not rare items, but I didn't have any of these yet, and when I saw them all thrown together, and almost for free, I figured I might as well get 'em...

    Only have this seller's pic - but the list looks like this:

    - probably a civillian (but maybe used by motorcycle troops as well) motorcycle goggles
    - folding shovel with holder
    - a bit salty looking mapcase
    - some kind of rain camo back-pack
    - rain camo water canteen/cup
    - some kind of trouser holder belt (?)


    edit: 'just talked to the seller, I'll be getting unissued stuff (the photos are just illustrations), so the mapcase won't be "salty" etc.

    NVA "Cold War" Collection 1956 - 1990NVA "Cold War" Collection 1956 - 1990NVA "Cold War" Collection 1956 - 1990NVA "Cold War" Collection 1956 - 1990
    Last edited by Fabe; 09-02-2015 at 06:54 AM.

  7. #46


    Did Ya get all this in Mate?

  8. #47


    Quote by reneblacky View Post
    Did Ya get all this in Mate?

    Yup! Probably my cheapest find here... I didn't take more photos, for these are quite common items.

  9. #48


    The motor cycle googles look interesting fabe ive not seen this type before ,the E tool looks to have an earlier holder ,does this have any ink stampings at all

  10. #49


    Quote by James C View Post
    The motor cycle googles look interesting fabe ive not seen this type before ,the E tool looks to have an earlier holder ,does this have any ink stampings at all
    no inkstamps - the holder is artf. leather - like so many NVA things...

    the googles: made of light plastic material, again like other NVA items.

    I've been slacking a bit with my NVA collection - seems I alwasy find some other German or Hungarian WW2 items - and those are still a bit more exciting to collect.
    see my recent threads here:

    Relic Helmet from Hungary
    my very first cable drum
    my very first grain(?) sack

    also been getting some Hungarian cold war stuff in the last few months, but never got around to take pics.

  11. #50


    Thanks fabe , even though it seems sometimes showing your cold war items generates little interest aside from a few individuals ,im always keen to view your latest items so please keep posting as regular as you can ,we all feel a little dejected sometimes at the lack of interest and its a sure fire way of losing good members like yourself from the forum ,stick with it mate

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