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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here is a photograph I borrowed from Garfield. It shows a Prussian Eagle mark on the front triggerguard of a Mauser 1914. I know this Prussian mark is also found on the front magwell of C96's:

Download Attachment: Garfields 1914 Prussian Eagle.JPG
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Below is a photo from another forum. It shows two Eagle stamps found on a 1915 Luger (toggle and receiver) that are identified as "Erfurt Proofs":

Download Attachment: Beanstrungs 1915 Luger.JPG
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Are the Prussian and Erfurt Eagles somehow related or are they just coincidentally similar?

Thanks for any help,
Jack
 

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Hi Jack,
I believe the Prussian Eagle was a government issued and required stamp. Erfurt was the government arsenal. So they would probably be the same stamp. Government inspectors were posted at the facilities to accept or reject each weapon as it was finished. Much the same as US inspectors accepted or rejected 1911s,etc.

Ron
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
quote:Originally posted by Ron Smith

Hi Jack,
I believe the Prussian Eagle was a government issued and required stamp. Erfurt was the government arsenal. So they would probably be the same stamp. Government inspectors were posted at the facilities to accept or reject each weapon as it was finished. Much the same as US inspectors accepted or rejected 1911s,etc.

Ron
Thanks for the quick reply!

OK, I think I got it... all Erfurt Eagles are Prussian Eagles... but not all Prussian Eagles are Erfurt Eagles.

Thanks again Ron,
Jack
 

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Jack,

The Imperial marking requirements for Lugers require "a heraldic eagle" to be stamped as power proof marks. The two eagles you show from the 1915 thread are actually different, the receiver eagle is the style usually associated with the Erfurt armory and the breechblock eagle is the style usually associated with DWM.

The Prussian eagle, as seen on the trigger guard, is a heraldic eagle, as well.

--Dwight
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Dwight,
Thanks for the info. The 1915 Luger in question is a mismatch and does in fact have a DWM toggle.

One more question:
Does the Prussian Eagle on non-Erfurt arms represent a "power proof", or is it merely a property stamp that happens to be a heraldic eagle?

I can see the Erfurt "power proof" and the Prussian Eagle are similar in that they seem to have "stick-type" legs, whereas the DWM toggle eagle has a rounded, more "turkey-type" leg.

Here's the thread in question in case anyone is interested:
http://p077.ezboard.com/fparallaxscurioandrelicfirearmsforumsfrm18.showMessage?topicID=908.topic
 

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Jack,

I will be out of my depth if I talk about proof and inspection marks on anything other than Lugers. I think that one could be guided by the placement of such stamps, power proofs are associated with parts which are subjected to firing pressure--receivers, barrels, etc.

"Property stamps" are difficult. The only marks which might properly be described as such are Imperial Army and Navy unit marks, Police unit marks, and the Weimar 1920 receiver stamp. There are examples of eagles stamped on German arms, the Prussian eagle you example above is one, an Erfurt-style eagle shows up occasionally on trigger guards of pistols, but the purpose of these is obscure. Jan Still has started a couple of discussions of these marks in these Forums.

Sam Costanzo, in his encyclopedic Luger marking tome, documents variations of the DWM eagle. If you do a search on proof eagles, or associated words, you should find discussions about the differing styles of heraldic eagles and their likely meaning. In short, variations of eagle styles are more likely to be varied interpretation by die carvers of the "heraldic eagle" requirement and any examples provided as examples for their work.

One question which I don't believe has been addressed is, where were these dies produced? Did the Erfurt arsenal have a die shop, DWM with their own as well? Or, as the inspectors were assigned by the Spandau arsenal, did Spandau provide all the stamps? This might have a bearing on why the distinct eagle styles.

--Dwight
 

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Jack
The following is from a previous post on the trigger guard eagle. "Reference is German Small Arms Markings" Gortz page 129.
Jan
* 1913 DWM, SN 5776, PRUSSIAN EAGLE Jan C Still
------------------------- http://www.gunboards.com/luger/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=1120

Figure 6. 1913 DWM, serial number 5776, showing details of the trigger guard eagle. It is identical to an Erfurt style Luger test eagle.

According to orders dated 23, July 1918, auxiliary pistols were to have an Imperial Eagle applied to the front of the trigger guard. (Close reading of the orders indicates that the application was already in process before the orders were published) The purpose of the trigger guard eagle was to identify Imperial property and prevent its theft. “All Army high commanders etc are asked to take the necessary steps that all pistols being currently in use by troops and not verifiably held in private ownership, are additionally marked by military armorers with this same marking”

This trigger guard eagle stamp is found on Mauser M1914 and Red 9, Beholla, Sauer 1913, Bavarian Steyr Hahn, 07 Dreyse, FL Selbstlader, P08, LP08 and commercial Lugers(see page 54 Imperial Lugers, page 46 Volume I, and page 129 Gortz and Bryans). In general the trigger guard eagle is scarce to rare and is mostly confined to the later wartime produced pistols. Four styles of eagles have been identified and more probably exist.

The trigger guard eagles are very rare on Lugers. They have not yet been reported on unit marked Lugers. Two 1913 DWM’s serial numbers 5776 and 6414, have been reported with identical Erfurt style trigger guard eagles. This might suggest that in a few cases the trigger guard eagles were applied to new pistols at the factory during manufacture. This may have been for the same identification purposes indicated in the 23 July 1918 orders (above) or for some other military identification purposes.
I would like to research the style of trigger guard eagles found on Imperial Pistols. Photographs of the trigger guard eagles found on the various pistols listed above and the pistol details would be most helpful.
 

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Jack
Sorry for making the answer more complex that it really is. On P08's the eagles found on the left receiver, barrel and breech block are definitely test proofs. The trigger guard eagle stamp found on the Mauser M1914 and Red 9, Beholla, Sauer 1913, Bavarian Steyr Hahn, 07 Dreyse, FL Selbstlader, P08, LP08 and commercial Lugers is definitely a type of property stamp. The fact that the property stamp eagle is identical or almost identical to the test proof eagle makes it confusing to collectors today. To add to the confusion, it appears that some of the property eagles may have been applied at the factory.
Jan
 
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