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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I need some help from the German-speaking members of the forum.

Several months ago, I posed the question “What does ‘R’ mean?” on both Luger forums in an attempt to better understand the meaning of the term Revierhauptmannschaft used to refer to certain Prussian police. As a result of those discussions, I accepted the translation “precinct main force” used by Görtz & Bryans. This I understood to mean a particular, perhaps elite, group of police officials within a police precinct (Revier).

However, in researching Weimar police unit marks, I have learned that the governmental structure of the state of Saxony was divided into five (later four) districts known as Kreishauptmannschaften and that these were further divided into Kreise. From what I can deduce, the Saxon Kreishauptmannschaften were comparable to the Prussian Regierungsbezirke (administrative districts). I concluded that the term Kreishauptmannschaft must refer to an association or grouping of Kreise.

The similarity of these two terms makes me believe that they should be understood similarly. If Kreishauptmannschaft means a group of Kreise, then Revierhauptmannschaft must mean a group of precincts. This is quite different from a group of men within a precinct.

I have been unable to find either of these terms in any German-English dictionary. Any comments on my interpretation will be appreciated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Martin,
I did not intend to imply that a Kreis and a Revier were the same size or even type of governmental unit. My contention is that, since they occupy the same position in two otherwise identical words, they should be interpreted similarly i.e., "grouping of Kreise" and "grouping of Reviere." Of course, this would mean that "-hauptmannschaft" would have to mean the same thing in both words.

Patrick,
It is very clear from at least two reliable sources of information on the Weimar period (one of which is the University of Mainz) that Kreishauptmannschaft refers to a governmental district and not to a military, police or other "team." This was the reason that I began to look for another way of interpreting the term than a literal decomposition, Revier - haupt - mannschaft.

Having said this, I realize I am in a lousy position to be trying to tell Germans what a German word means!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Martin and Patrick,

Thank you both very much for taking the effort to research this. As a result, I am more confident that, in the 1920s, the suffix "~hauptmannschaft" was used to indicate an organizational level superior to that indicated by the prefix. Therefore, "Kreishauptmannschaft" referred to a government organizational level superior to several (a group or team?) of Kreise. Similarly, I believe "Revierhauptmannschaft" referred to a Prussian police organizational level superior to several Reviere. I suspect this was the level that either became known as or was replaced by Inspektionen sometime during the 1920s.

This is a bit more than of academic interest to me as it is important in my interpretation of the police unit marks with "R." Thanks again for your help!
 
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