are confronted with the dilemma of attempting to explain or identify a
rare or unique helmet. People interested in historical artifacts
of any kind are familiar with this aspect of collecting. Most collectors come to the quick
conclusion that any thing that is not "textbook" by their collecting
standards or knowledge must therefore be a "fake or reproduction."
Unfortunately this is not always the case
as over the years a number of rare or unique helmets (to include
insignia) have surfaced that are in fact original, but do not have any
historical information that might suggest what the helmet was really
used for. These items are truly unique in the sense that they
may in fact be the last remaining versions of their kind. Often
times no information is available to assist with an accurate
identification or plausible explanation behind the item.
Today many fakes are indeed created
with this concept in mind. However some things can not be faked
and there do exist helmets that seem to defy the normal types of Wehrmacht or Waffen-SS helmets. These can include unknown
variations worn by foreign volunteers, Wehrmacht helmets bearing
unique unit crests, shields, or decals, or simply odd helmet shells
that seem "one of a kind" in their own right.
This section of German-Helmets.com is
dedicated to the controversial and sometimes unknown variations
that seem to go unexplained within collecting circles. While collectors often dismiss
these helmets as "counterfeits" without first making a historical
investigation, this section of the website will attempt to propose
reasonable explanations that might fit candid hypotheses as to why
these variations exist.
Readers are encouraged to submit
photographs of their helmets in the event they truly meet the
definition of "rare and unusual.". When possible, reader
submitted photos and information will be shared in the hopes of
creating dialogue within the collecting community. Please contact
the webmaster for
further information in the event you have a rare or unique helmet that
you feel might fit the context of this section of German-Helmets.com.
The Waffen-SS helmet
depicted above appears to have been a smooth finished double decal M1940
helmet to which a layer of camouflage was applied. The camouflage
was then removed and afterwards a new set of decals
applied on top of the original decals that had worn away. Both decal
sets are Waffen-SS. Helmets of this type often defy the well-known
collectors' myths that abound within the hobby. This helmet was
found on a battlefield in Russia.