Military Archive Research
by Dr. Stuart C Blank
Member of the Orders and Medals Research Society (OMRS)
Member of the Royal Air Force Historical Society (RAFHS)
Member of the Naval Historical Collectors and Research Association (NHCRA)
Member of the Nautical Archaeology Society (NAS)
Member of the International Bank Note Society (IBNS)
Member of the International Bond and Share Society (IBSS)




Review of
Uniforms of the German Soldier
An Illustrated History from 1870 to the Present Day
By Alejandro M De Quesada
Frontline Books (
ISBN 9781848326934
RRP GBP £45.00


Collecting German uniforms is a well-established hobby and interest for many militaria collectors. Although the Third Reich period is particularly popular many others collect Imperial German uniforms whilst the post-war German uniforms receive less attention than those for pre-1945.

Germany was unified in 1870 and became Imperial Germany rather than a loose collection of individual states. Hence the author uses this date as a “starting” point. The book has over 800 photographs which offer an unparalleled analysis. Every image has a detailed caption explaining the pertinent aspects of each soldier’s uniform, insignia and equipment.

The German Empire was at its height in 1870 and its army used the very famous Pickelhaube – the iconic spiked leather helmet. Included are descriptions on the uniforms of the colonial troops in Africa, Asia and the Pacific. The field-grey uniforms of the World War 1 German Army are discussed. The inter-war uniforms of the Reichswehr are also given detailed treatment and so too are those for the Freikorps.

Perhaps the most popular chapters will be those on the Wehrmacht which existed between 1933 and 1945. The post—1945 uniforms of the West German Bundeswehr and the East German Nationalen Volksarmee are comprehensively examined. The book concludes with a consideration of the Bundeswehr in Afghanistan which was the largest deployment of German troops since 1945.

There are numerous categories of readership to which this volume will appeal. There are the uniform collectors, re-enactors, researchers for television and film productions, museum personnel, students of this era and military historians. It is a well written volume with ample images which make it a very interesting book to read. It certainly achieves the goal of documenting German Army uniforms from 1870 to the present day and it is bound to become a standard reference book on this topic. Finally the author deserves a “Well done!”.

December 2013