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Vacation Finds

Imp. German Police Helmet right side

Imp. German Police Helmet right side

 

My wife and I just got back from five days of bumming around the western half of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. It was a pleasant trip including a tour of an abandoned copper mine which was very cold and dark plus a cruise on Lake Superior which was also quite cold but still impressive. As a collector I am always looking for antique shops to visit and surprisingly there are a number of them in the U P. I even found a coin shop in Bessemer. It was really more than just a coin shop since it also had medals, paper money, comics and sports cards plus two French bayonets from the late 1870’s and a British India presentation sword of some sort. Among the items I found and kept on our trip were a 1905 Michigan legislative Manual in nice condition which contains a listing of the Michigan National Guard units and their officers. An 86th Division History of WWI including complete rosters! A pair of WWII army dog tags with some personal papers. I could do a nice write up on this lot alone but since the man is still alive I would want to clear it with him first. How do I know he is still with us? His name was not on the Social Security Death Index so I did a White Pages search on the name which turned up an address and phone number! I left a message and hope to hear from him soon. If not I will mail him a letter. I really would like to find out how some of his dog tags and papers ended up in an antique mall. My best buy of all was in Northern Wisconsin near the Michigan border where I found a spiked German helmet that pre-dates the First World War. This little gem is not military. My guess is that it is some sort of police or customs helmet which I will illustrate here. I have also posted the pictures on the Wehrmacht Awards site in the hope that the experts there can id. It for me. And you thought that I only collected medals!

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