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Are there any regulations on all the other non-regulation knives? We all know that tons of stuff was worn that was strictly forbidden by regulations but yet continued.
As far as photgraphic proof. There are lots of items that are real but a period photo has never surfaced. How many photographs of all the "varients" have shown up? Few if any. I remember seeing a photo of a kid wearing a buck knife!
Personally I had never heard of a "BDM knife" until about 5 years ago, and they were all new in the wrapper. I do believe they were labeled BDM to help sales, but are they 3rd Reich era? I don't know. The term DJ knife I believe was added simply to explain why the knife was smaller than normal, with some jumping to the conclusion that Hj got the big one, DJ got the small one. I know of several advanced (and old) dagger collections that have then in thier collections. I have seen one that was abused, broken, and rusted. The collector said he bought it as an example of how roughly treated some daggers were.
Jury still out in my opinion.
Yes Paul. The regulations I mentioned do contain a reference to other types of knives. I really should have put more effort into my first post :)
There were boys who continued to wear the knives they had worn in the youth organisations which were swallowed up by the HJ and the regulations dated 1936 and 1938 were introduced to combat this. They expressly forbade the wearing of any other type of knife other than the standard HJ knife. Hunting knives are mentioned in the regulation as being a forbidden type.
For me this proof sufficient that there was no other type of official knife made for and worn by the HJ otherwise it would be mentioned. No specific DJ knife of a different pattern is mentioned anywhere. The clothing regulations in this book from 1942 always show that the DJ wore the same knife as the HJ. The BDM clothing regulations do not specify a knife.
The only thing which prevents me from saying that this is conclusive proof that 'DJ' knives were not made during the period for issue to the DJ is that I have no regulations after 1942 and I guess that this leaves a very small window open. However - the fact that not a single photograph has yet been discovered showing a DJ boy wearing a small knife would seem to close even that small window.
Last edited by Garry; 13th June 2009 at 02:36 PM.
Paul, I'm with Garry all the way on this. The DJ was a huge organisation. If the knife was authorised for wear, why don't you contact Johnson and ask him for a copy of the "authorisation" he suggests in his book? He has never produced it and it has not come to light and never will, because there wasn't one.
Also, if it was authorised, it would be a sanctioned TR item, requiring manufacturing guidelines, and most likely RZM approval and stamping. Therefore, there would have to be a place to buy the item from, requiring a shop or factory outlet. Therefore requiring some form of advertising or catalogue to let the boys know where to get it from. Therefore, there should be some chain of documentation available somewhere.
All period documentation, regulations and catalogues state that the HJ knife was to be worn by both organisations. There is no mention of the small un-attributed knife anywhere. Until period proof surfaces showing this knife in regulations or catalogues, it's still an unattributed knife in most people's eyes. Believe the dealer hype if you wish and pay for such an over-priced item if you wish, but you are buying the story, not the item.
The small window of opportunity that Garry mentions from 1942 is indeed very small. Edged weapon manufacturing was focussing more on combat bayonets. Do you really think a new knife would be introduced at this late stage for a bunch of boys to wear when the HJ-DJ Fahrtenmesser was still in production?
Did you see the bogus attempt at trying to legitimise these on one major dealers site? I don't know if it's still there, but the scabbard was RZM stamped right under where the diamond had "fallen" off in transit. It would take a serious knock for the diamond to "fall" off, however the diamond was in pristine condition, no damage. Also, why place an RZM stamp in a place on a scabbard that cannot be seen unless the diamond is removed? No maker number, just an RZM stamp. So, are we supposed to believe from this garbage, that these are correct? Even the sanctioned HJ scabbard is not RZM marked, and it is an official sanctioned item. Something to think about.
Last edited by RussellM; 13th June 2009 at 09:52 PM.
Also, just going back to Johnson's book for a moment, he describes the Hitler Youth knife as the "Standard Youth Knife, authorised for HJ candidates as an award for passing a series of proficiency tests and worn by all subordinate ranks of both the Hitler Youth and the German Young People...." He does not give the knife the correct name, as well documented from period sources as, the Fahrtenmesser für die Hitler-Jugend und das Deutsche Jungvolk. Maybe because the title of the "DJ" knife on the next page wouldn't make sense.
I have never read Johnson's books. But in thirty years of collecting no serious collector ever called it the DJ knife for all DJ boys to wear. That is a new concept, something I have just heard on forums and dealers trying to hype up the item. Same thing with the BDM knife. Most called it the DJ knife simply to have a short description of a variant. As time goes by others hear this, add there own bit to the story and pass it on by saying "DJ knife for all of the DJ." Sort of like the telephone game, or gossip.
Here is my logic flow.
Some experts tell of this knife being around from the 60's on the collectors market. Some say they picked em up from veterens. (and I am not talking about the BS artists).
Many old large collections have them. People who have written books on daggers, studied the construction of daggers, have them. If they change their minds that would wiegh in heavily.
The construction is consistant with period construction. To my knowledge the manufacturing quality is high and does not vary like a repo that is made from different sources or time periods. A souval fake war badge has an evolution to it as dies wore out and material changed. Some can say which decade the fake was made.
Regulations and photographs are nice, but does no spell everything out. Everybody has something in thier collection that is good, but does not follow or is contradictory to regulations. Look around at shoulderboards, unforms, patches etc. Like Garry's noted printed armband discussion. Are they against regulations? Yes. Were printed armbands plausable? Yes. Do clear no doubt photos exist? No. Do I personally believe they were made? Yes. Were fakes made of these? Yes. a bunch in the 70's. So the jury is still out on a printed armband. IMO
Did the daggers follow the typical route that repos take? Did hundreds of them hit the market at one time? Did the shady dealers pump them up and push them out with a "recently discoved inside a wall in Solingen" story, like that totally BS story floating around about the HJ rings?
To me I would say the odds that they are era produced 50%; made in 1945-1948 as a souviner 40%; totally fake made in the basement of a notorious swindler 10%. Again that is my opinion. I am not a dagger person. Everyone is entitled to there opinion and that is mine. What is scarry is that we might have a simular argument in 30 years about those HJ rings.
Good reply Paul. The only problem I have with these knives is that they are falsely labelled as DJ-BDM knives without any proof backing up the label. That is an un-deniable fact at this time. As you have said, many older collectors may have these in their collections and don't give them such a label, however the myth appears to have been perpetuated by authors, and carried on by dealers so newer and younger collectors will believe it, and hey-presto - they're accepted as correct and original without period proof. With pricing to match. As you say, the same with rings and no doubt other pieces as well - time and repetition of the label becomes the level of acceptance for these things - no proof required.
Johnson states they were authorised, so I still wait to see the authorisation...
Regarding the printed armband, I think there was a period pic of one in wear shown on the old HJ forum - hopefully that will come to light again.
Last edited by RussellM; 15th June 2009 at 08:47 PM. Reason: spelling, correction
seen this pic before and it shows clearly that the dj members are bening awarded the standard hj dagger
FYI - Empire Military Auctions has one of the 'DJ knives' listed right now. If you are unsure about what this thread is about please check out their site.