WW2 Stein

This topic contains 15 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by  Ron 6 days, 3 hours ago.

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  • #52723 Reply

    Peter Smith

    My late Father’s small collection of steins has recently been unearthed and amongst them one that, though heavily researched, the internet gives no insight.
    It has a story but whether this be true or not, I’m hoping one of you experts can shed light. For background, my Father served in the RAF during WW2 and in 1954 was posted to Hanover to open Langenhagen as a Master Air Traffic Control Airfield for the British Zone and to train and include German staff. The majority of these being ex-Luftwaffe.
    The story goes that one of the German staff, an ex-Luftwaffe bomber pilot was given a stein, along with all the other airmen, to celebrate the opening of the bomber offensive against England in 1940. Knowing of my Father’s interest in steins he gave him this particular stein but most unfortunately had the original lower script removed thinking it might be offensive. Mt Father had this redone but to my eye not very professionally, you can be the judge. A composite photo can be seen at this link
    https://photos.google.com/search/_tra_/photo/AF1QipPnJHOS6ihsEzJHu9X83mluaQnsBd5FwcsO2I8A
    I would most appreciate comment on the veracity of the story and if there is any value attached should insurance cover be needed.
    As for the others I will research those as best I can, and thanks in advance,
    Peter Smith

  • #52726 Reply

    Ron

    Peter,

    We can’t get in to view your photos.

  • #52727 Reply

    Peter Smith

    Apologies, familiarity with internet photo sites sadly lacking. Please try this one

    https://photos.app.goo.gl/dwW1ZHxo38CbRjhU6

    Peter Smith

  • #52728 Reply

    Ron

    Peter,

    The top of your stein says War Christmas. There are other examples of steins being given at Christmas. Eventually you may be able to find a duplicate for your stein. I can see the bottom phrase has been repainted, but do we know it is the same as the original? It now says We’re going against England. The stein is a common 1/2 L stoneware Bavarian stein that could have been made by a number of firms. Is it marked on the bottom? Keep searching the top phrase on ebay and google, especially in Germany.

    You can use The Beer Stein Library (see Reading section of this site) to search your other steins. Just enter the mold number or some of the German words and you may get a hit.

    • #52731 Reply

      Ron

      Peter,
      The Iron Cross and Oak Leaf are signigicant. They would only be put on steins of an airman that received the award. Millions of Iron Crosses were awarded in WWII, but considerably less Oak Leafs were awarded. If you had the airman’s name, you could try to look up records on the award. The Oak Leaf award originated in 1940.

  • #52732 Reply

    Peter Smith

    Ron,
    Many thanks for the reply. To reply to your points, there are no markings at all on the base (had there been I would have included another photo) and yes you are quite correct that without proper documentation or another identical stein the authenticity of the lower script remains in doubt.

    I was hoping that amongst the members of this forum there would be ownership of another of these steins, or at least there would be knowledge of their existence. One would assume that with about twenty bomber squadrons involved then possibly over one hundred were given to the crews flying on “Adlertag”. This would then prove or disprove authenticity.

    As regards the donor there is no hope. No name on the stein, if he had been twenty years old then he would now be one hundred, he gave it to my Father in 1954 in Germany and I now live in South Africa.

    However your response has been helpful and I still hold hope that this posting will attract other members in the future who can add information.

    • #52735 Reply

      Ron

      Peter,

      Gary Kirsner has two books on German Military steins. Both show the same stein you have with Kreigsweithnachten Above the Iron Cross over an Oak Leave with 19 on the left and 40 on the right.
      The unit is shown below as 1. San. Komp. 179. Gary identifies it as first aid. See https://www.team-militaria.de/Bierkrug-Steinkrug-1San-Kompanie-179. That site doesn’t provide any further information. The Oak Leaf was added to the award in June 1940. Why it would appear on these two steins is a mystery, but there must be some significance. You could also try looking for German WWII photos which might show members with their steins. Try searching “Kreigsweithnachten 1940 bierkrug foto” on ebay.de or google.de.

      Good luck on your search. If you find the answer, let us know.

    • #52736 Reply

      Ron

      Peter,

      I posed the question to our two German chapters as to why an Iron Cross over an Oak Leaf would appear on these two steins. Hopefully they will have an answer for us.

  • #52737 Reply

    Peter

    Wow that is some response! I’ve ordered both Kirsner’s military steins and his beer steins books and wait their delivery. I will follow up on both your suggestions.

    I have sent a short e-mail to Gary Kirsner in the hope that he may be able to give me further avenues to explore.

    Thanks again,
    Peter

  • #52878 Reply

    Peter Smith

    Apologies for such a late follow up, our Summer holidays are over Christmas. I have also been doing further searches when time allowed and have studied the ‘artwork’ more closely and am now of the opinion that the ‘original’ stein to be genuine and issued to the German Military early in WW2 but given to my father by not necessarily a Luftwaffe bomber pilot. The phrase of the lower inscription was probably given by the German and the actual inscription by my father, as on closer study the work is too amateurish to have been done by a professional.

    The book I ordered on Military Steins was unable to be sent to South Africa and I’m not too distressed as I think, with your help, the origin of the military stein has been resolved. The other book, the encyclopedia of Steins, has just arrived and I shall have great pleasure in trying to identify the other Steins in his small collection.

    Thank you and kind regards,
    Peter Smith

    • #52885 Reply

      Ron

      Peter,

      I knew Germany restricted certain WWII military items, but I didn’t know South Aftrica was banning books. Gary is a dealer and not a collector. I doubt if he could give you much more information. Check the Internet Archive every once in a while, they might get a copy on line. They have Gary’s Beer Stein Book, but not the German Military Steins. Gary and I belong to the same Chapterin Arizona, so I will check with him the next time I see him.

      Some things we will never know about our steins, like the motive behind the changes on your stein. The obvious motive would be to deceive to get a higher price, but the stein was given to your father. Perhaps he just wanted to keep in his good graces. We don’t know if the phrase appears on any other steins, but we do know it was popular and that might be where the German got it.

      Keep in mind the prices in any book will be out of date as the prices took a hit in 2007 and have not recovered. Membership in SCI is down and members are aging. Younger people are not collecting like we did. Another place to review your steins is The Beer Steiin Library. You can search for matches to your steins by entering a mold number or a portion of the German phrase. When price ranges are given, they are estimates for items in mint condition sold in stein auctions. About 1/3 of that price goes to the dealer. If you sell on ebay, the price will be at the low end or less. I doubt there are many collectors in South Africa. Shipping out of country can get expensive. Unless you have a very rare stein, most people will not want to pay top dollar plus high shipping cost too.

      Good luck.

    • #52888 Reply

      Ron

      Peter,

      You may be able to download a copy at Goodreads if it is not blocked in your country, https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/4454274-german-military-steins. I can’t guarantee it is legal for you to do or that you won’t be considered an enemy of the state.

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