Mr. Wyeth: For the record, I am a collector and a history teacher of the old school who has used this site as an experiment in social media, which, in the main, I regard at best as a moderate failure. I am not a militaria dealer. My work here is to use my collection as a means to inform others about militaria. My work here has alsoo been to share my professional knowledge about the past, i.e. primary sources and their use, for the benefit of beginning collectors. I have also tried to attract other leading researchers.
by N.C. Wyeth
I am surely in no position to deprive other people of their property or to influence the market other than to show what a real piece looks like versus what is found in the internet, which is usually junk. And, as I have noted, this market has already collapsed. And my property is quite worthless.
As is that of Mr. Hritz, I guess.
As regards the social media experiment in the study of the past, I have found that the elements of rage, jealousy, ignorance and whatever are too amplified, not the least by impatience and with a wrong headed notion of speed.
I have also found that the circle of persons interested in the same goals, means, ends, etc. as myself is too small to warrant the huge effort required to buck the trend. Some of us spend more time upholding antiquated notions of decorum in the 21st century than discovering and interpreting new insights from new sources about regalia. This mental time tax each day grows more onerous and futile.
None of this is, I think, a manipulation of the market, especially via some nefarious means to some selfish ends. The militaria dealers seek my historical knowledge on a daily basis, but I have no influence on their work other than the sharing of knowledge. I recently sold an SS cap at a loss, which confirms my contention that it is all pfui. Otherwise, since 1968, I have generally made a modest or even handsome profit on those things that I have sold, but such is not the center of my effort at all. I was interested in this material when it was still considered to be junk and long before it became an investment or commodity of speculation.
Last edited by Friedrich-Berthold; 08-03-2014 at 10:54 PM.
08-03-2014 09:30 PM
Well, FB . . . not certain what to say about your use of the forum as a social experiment, nor as a test of one's propriety . . . but often, I do you find your commentary consummate, and your collection rather beatific - be it mastering or not.
Thank you. I find most things about the 21st century unsettling, alien and troubling, actually. If I have cornered the market through this site, then that has not been my goal. I do not understand the militaria market,
as I am not really a figure in it. Nor am I aware in any single instance that a purchase by me has deprived someone of an object that they sought at the same time to buy. If such is the case, I would like to know.
I am aware of dealers who buy material and then do not put it all in the market as a reflection of supply an demand, but I am a skeptic about conspiracy theories that are otherwise the stock and trade of most other
The second world war shows no signs of ending, and the impact of war in memory and society seems as intense as ever, even more so. A person here connected to Hollywood
has written a movie about US soldiers and it was featured prominently in the New York Times. How does this aspect factor into this issue?
It is my understanding that the leading figure who invented the glamor militaria market is disposing of his collection due to age and ill health.
My aim is to share what I have, since I had nothing of this type in the 1960s, other than a few photographs.
Further, I find the method of historical inquiry as some of us do it here a refreshing and exciting process.
I especially am grateful that those more skilled at such research share here and make us all much smarter.
Last edited by Friedrich-Berthold; 08-04-2014 at 06:27 PM.
Now now Krisse :-)
They were bloody expensive when I started buying them and they continue to be! :-)
I think it's rather difficult for a collector to manipulate the marketplace on items found in collectible quality and available in some quantity, and to that end one would have be quite well heeled and probably would make a better living off of the avails of their 9 to 5 job than the hoarding of helmets. Ergo the hobby collector with some quantity of quality items probably is not invested in them for any more than the purpose of study and satisfaction of ownership.
Bravo. Well Said. Mr. Doug here has worked very hard to share his collection and offered knowledge to us all that I consider quite remarkable.
Such is the goal of this site. Knowledge is the most precious thing, far more so than the over priced dagger or whatever. Or the over priced black SS officer's cap or tunic.
Let me say that I am very alive to the economic and social forces of the moment, which I see also in historical terms for their dangerous potential.
What is happening in the last decade and echoes in these spaces I originally thought would happen in the early 1970s, with the oil crises. It took a generation longer, but the upheaval is here.
War is a constant and problematic feature of human kind, of the political world, in which we are all both interested, and some have taken part.
There are many confusing things about war, as Clausewitz reminds us with his distinction between war in theory and war in fact, and we work
towards war, soldiers, their equipment, and weapons in fact as well as in theory in the reality of the past, i.e. the theory that arises from a source, a photo, something that
endures from the past. We all are fixated on these pieces of the past and what they do or do not say to us. And the question of whether such a thing is authentic or a fake is the very least question to ask these silent things that can nonetheless say so much to us, if only we can understand them.
My social media experiment with history which I have performed on you here has arisen from the push by market mad educators to rationalize the study of the past through technology and
thereby drain, for me at least, all the personal joy I have from the give and take about learning about the past. I normally use the Socratic method, but I am not sure it works here because of all
the internal friction. The pictures work and the pictures can be very powerful, if we add the text to them they need.
I have tried here to adapt what I do elsewhere to this place, because Adrian has embraced a similar goal, and I have never even met him face to face. Mr. Doug has also done so, as have many others
whose collective learning here is more than astonishing and a source of frequent joy to me. Adrian is a deeply creative man with patience and many civic virtues that I admire anew each day, especially
as he has adapted them to this venue. It is no small feat.
I am grateful to Adrian and to the others here who share what they have, especially when they have more than most, and have done so according
to the categorical imperative so it is worthy of emulation.
Apropos "beatific," as Mr. Wyeth uses it: I find beatitude in learning, in the way that many bits of knowledge accumulate through a collegial, united effort for the improvement of all of us.
Full Definition of BEATIFIC
: of, possessing, or imparting beatitude
: having a blissful appearance <a beatific smile>
— be·atif·i·cal·ly adverb
See beatific defined for English-language learners »
See beatific defined for kids »
Origin of BEATIFIC
Latin beatificus making happy, from beatus happy, from past participle of beare to bless; perhaps akin to Latin bonus good — more at bounty
First Known Use: 1640
Rhymes with BEATIFIC
anaglyphic, calorific, colorific, felicific, frigorific, hieroglyphic, honorific, scientific, soporific, South Pacific, sudorific, tenebrific
The SS were the badest of the bad. The elite of the super race. And one has to admit that their uniforms and insignia were some of the most attractive of any military or para-military unit. Combine these two and desirability and hence price sky rockets.