Lot 652

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A trio of fine relics, the green wool Tyrolein hunting coat and two pairs of trousers used by Sperrle during his hunting jaunts in Bavaria. The approx. size 50 (U.S.) coat is beautifully made and of top quality. It features a green wool body with green felt trim at the collar, shoulder, cuffs, and belt. Buttons throughout are made of carved horn, as one would expect. Two pins remain attached to the garment, one 1 in. in diameter with a ribbon trim showing a man in a shooting pose, the other resembling the emblem of the Deutsches Jagerschaft, 2 in. tall in green enamel with gold letters,m issued by the "Landesjagdverband Rheinland-Pfalz", a state hunting association still in existence today. The coat is fully lined within and has an interior pocket on the left breast. That pocket bears a slightly worn printed gold ownership label: "FM HUGO SPERRLE". Just above it, the garment's label also bears Sperrle's unique "H S" monogram seen on many of his other personal possessions. A green cotton armband marked "L 280" was found in a jacket pocket: it was likely used by Sperrle as a judge or competitor in a Landesjagdverband Rheinland-Pfalz competition. The jacket is accompanied by two pairs of heavy hunting trousers. One pair is crafted of exceptional gray leather with matching belt, zipper fly, and snap top closure. There are deep slash pockets on either side, and the pant legs end with adjustable width ankles, although some of the bright steel fitting are missing. Like the jacket, the rear of the pants bear his name "FM HUGE SPERRLE" in gold letters, though these are heavily worn. The pants are also marked with his unique "H S" initials, ink stamped inside the waist at front, as well as inside of the belt. The pants have two small whitish surface stains which would probably clean easily. The second pair of trousers, gray wool, is fabricated in much the same way. The waist has been let out at least twice to accommodate the field marshal's increasing girth. These pants bear a bit more wear, and they also bear Sperrle's initials inked inside along the waistline. All of these garments were recovered by Sgt. Rollo G. Rice, Co. E, 506th P.I.R., 101st Airborne, a late 1944 replacement and apparently attached to a headquarters company. Co. E is one of the most notable groups of soldiers of World War II, made famous in the book "A Band of Brothers" and the television series of the same name. Rice was with the 506th at Berchtesgaden. He may have obtained his Sperrle relics at Sperrle's residence near Munich while en route to Berchtesgaden, or perhaps at the office of Gen. KARL BODENSCHATZ, who served as Adjutant to Field Marshal Hermann Goring. Rice's very early post-war map of the area about the Berghof (copy and photos included) shows Bodenschatz's office circled. As Sperrle had to flee Paris only hours before the arrival of the French and American liberators, and in light of the fact that his own home was in the path of American invaders, he may have elected to hide his possessions with his close fellow officer in the mountains of Bavaria. Our consignor purchased the Sperrle lots nearly a decade ago from Rice's widow, who confirmed their provenance. Our consignor's letter of provenance is included. See similar lots in this sale for additional provenance. HUGO SPERRLE (1885-1953) German Field Marshal in the Luftwaffe during World War II. Sperrle joined the Imperial German Army in 1903. He served in the artillery upon the outbreak of World War I and then joined the Luftstreitkr�fte. He was given command of the Condor Legion in November 1936 and his force became known for their ruthless bombing of towns and cities. Sperrle was used during the Anschluss and Czech crisis by the Nazis to threaten other governments with bombardment. With the invasion of Poland, Sperrle played a crucial role in the Battle of France and Battle of Britain, and in 1941 he directed operations during The Blitz. Through 1941-43 he became more involved in air defense, until his forces were depleted. His meager squadrons were totally ineffective in Normandy, and he was dismissed.

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July 14, 2020 11:00 AM EDT
Chesapeake City, MD, US

Alexander Historical Auctions LLC

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Bid Increments
From: To: Increments:
$0 $99 $10
$100 $499 $20
$500 $999 $50
$1,000 $1,999 $100
$2,000 $4,999 $250
$5,000 $9,999 $500
$10,000 $19,999 $1,000
$20,000 $49,999 $2,500
$50,000 $99,999 $5,000
$100,000 + $10,000