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Casques a Pointe et Coiffures de l`Armee Allemande 1842-1918

Lacarde, Jean Louis, Vol.1 and Vol. 2, Jacques Grancher, Paris, 1983

Nice pictures and considered by many to be a bible. Vol. 1 is real hard to come by. Vol. 2 is available from time to time. It is written in French. Unlike my bilingual Canadian friends, French escapes me. I struggle though parts but prefer German. English is best but …. Alright but this is a WONDERFUL set of books. It is no wonder some consider it a bible. If only I read French better..

Volume 1 is about the Infantry helmets. Chapter 2 goes on the best explanation of reserve and landwehr helmets I have seen. Again language creates a barrier for me but 7 pages of text and good pictures. A short chapter on general pickelhaubes and then a chapter on Mitres. Not my interest but a detailed explanation with pictures. The next chapter is on cockardes. Now I cannot get all of the information out of this chapter and it is only three pages mostly pictures so I cannot think this is exhaustive. Chapter 6 is 50 pages of a state by state explanation. Quite good, super pictures and diagrams and coverage of flugel adjutant plates. I'm impressed. On page 84 there is a picture of an 1868 Mecklenburg-Schwerin OR helm. Unique helmet. Nice picture! Now if only I could get the Landwehr 1895 one .... there is then a chapter on M1915 and ersatz models. In the ersatz there are pictures you see nowhere else. Really different helmets. Chapters 8-10 are details on shakos and engineer helmets. There are then 4 annexes. Annex one is a detailed explanation of depot marks. I know of no other source that explains these. Annex 2 is on fakes. Annex 3 is terminology and 4 is the 1914 OB data.

Volume 2 Is supposedly about cavalry but includes artillery and train as well. The index and the page numbers are way way off. It is so bad you cannot use the table of contents for page numbers. Things are in the right order. The first 7 chapters are on all the cavalry helmets and it is a grand layout. Chapter 6 is on reserve helmets and actually lists all of the reserve cavalry formations in 1914. Not the landwehr ones but Lacarde does great work here. Chapter 8 is on specialty troops and includes those Lieb Gendarmes with wonderful photos. Chapter 9 (one chapter) is on artillery. All artillery and this is too short a treatment. All the Prussian, various states and reserves in one chapter. Nice pictures though. Chapter 10 is on train helmets and includes two pictures of Hessian Train helmets. There is a chapter on Haus Doorn and an annex on the 1914 OB.

So I say nice pictures. Others swear by this and I have used magazine articles by this guy in the past. Big language problems for me. Prices on these have been doing the yo-yo drill. Used to be volume 2 went for less than $100. Just saw one go for over $200. I'd still buy Stubbs BUT Stubbs has mistakes and holes in the photo lexicon. Most older collectors refer to these volumes because that was all there was in the 80's and 90's. Times have changed. Lacarde knows his helmets. These are great source books. Now the language?????? The biggest problem is the lack of footnotes. While he seems always correct you cannot re-create many of his statements. He gives a bibliography but no footnotes.

One of the largest advantages of these books are there workable size. These are much more user-friendly than anything produced by the extremely high quality and extremely unwieldy books by There is a qualitative difference between the books published by Verlag Militaria and other publishers. These are so much higher quality. The books by Schiffers  are attractive but do not contain the quality in the narration, pictures, or research provided by Verlag Militaria. It is true that the Kraus books can be less burdensome but these are really quite nice.

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