German WWII wound badges to front up the Michael Butler militaria collection

Hermann Historica is offering a spectacular range of edged weapons as part of its two week series of auctions starting on October 24. But for collectors specialising in Germany after 1919, there is a more spectacular auction on offer.

This is the Michael Butler collection, which contains some truly exceptional pieces including some extraordinary medals. Butler was born in Hertfordshire, England but then moved to the USA with this family, and had a passion for music sparked by lessons with the legendary jazz drummer Joe Morello.

Back in England he worked as a session drummer and opened the Total Music Percussion Centre shop in Brighton.

Black German WWII Nazi wound badge
A rare, well preserved black German WWII Nazi wound badge

Due to his collecting passion, Michael became a familiar figure on the London collecting scene in the 1970s and 1980s, attending not only the Militaria Market at The Angel, London every Saturday morning, but also other militaria fairs around the country.

The highlights include two 'wound badges' bearing the legend 20 July 1944. These are extremely rare and only 23 or 24 have been awarded in the three levels, gold, silver, and black.

The first is in black in its original case. An example of an award of a wound badge in black was to Hitler's Adjutant of the Kriegsmarine, Karl-Jesco von Puttkamer. Made from silver, it is partially patinated and polished. The patina has slightly worn off, but otherwise it is in outstanding condition.

The second is a gold example, again made from silver but partially gilded. Some of the gilding has worn off, but it is generally in outstanding condition.

Gold German WWII Nazi wound badge
An even rarer gold German WWII Nazi wound badge

The two awards are expected to be sold for €12,000 and €25,000 respectively in the October 29 auction.

The market for Third Reich militaria is a consistently strong one, albeit highly controversial (Hermann Historica has had to respond to newspaper criticism for holding the auction of this collection at all).

Winston Churchill memorabilia is at least as highly valued and far less controversial however, so collectors may be interested to know that we have a signed letter by the British Prime Minister available for sale right now.

Winston Churchill, letter to Air Commodore Whittle
Winston Churchill's letter to Air Commodore Whittle
(click to find out more)

His signature has increased in value by 128% since 2000 according to the PFC40 Autograph Index.


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