German Made U-Boat Short Denim Blouse
Without doubt one of the rarest, if not the rarest item of U Boat Uniform items to find is the short herringbone twill (or denim) Blouse. Despite an extensive search I have not been able to find another original available anywhere.
With the fall of France in 1940 and the evacuation of British forces, large quantities of equipment were captured by the Germans including stocks of the British denim fatigue Battledress.
The U Boat ace Otto Kretschmer was quick to realise the suitability of these blouses for use in the confined environment of a submarine and acquired numbers for use on U-99. Their popularity began to spread and when stocks were exhausted, the Germans began to manufacture their own. This is just such a Blouse.
This example is identical to that shown on page 34 of Torpedo Loss by Gordon Williamson. Manufactured in a sea green herringbone twill, the blouse is closed by five swill pattern plastic buttons with two pleated breast pockets, the waistband closed by a double friction buckle on the right side, differing from the British design.
No insignia has been applied but when used would have either had a machine embroidered eagle for enlisted men and NCOís or one of hand embroidered celleon thread for officers. Golden pin back eagles were also used. They were made without loops for shoulder straps but these were popularly fitted in the field.
Overall condition is excellent with no damage and no signs of use, the only point of note being the removal of the inside breast pocket. The usual Kriegsmarine clothing stamps would have been on this pocket so I imagine it was removed to prevent itsí detection as German military equipment. Tough penalties were in place in the early post war months for anyone found looting German material.
An exceptionally nice example of a German made U Boat Blouse and one which would be impossible to upgrade.
The cap is not included and is not for sale.