The history of the WWII German RLB Dagger -
The RLB This was the National Air Defense League. Enacted on April 29th 1933. Its mission was to develop civil defense
forces among the population.
The RLB adopted two daggers for use in 1936. One was known as the subordinate dagger and the other as the
leader dagger. another modification to both daggers was introduced in 1938. These became known as Second
1st PATTERN 1936 SUBORDINATE DAGGER
The First Pattern Enlisted Man Dagger Model 1936 was
one of the first daggers approved to be worn by members of the RLB. The design of the dagger consuisted of a
rounded silver pommel followed by a wooden or ebony handle. The sample shown here is of brown color. An insert
with the RLB logo is placed at mid-point on one side of the handle.
The scabbard of the RLB First pattern was of metla construction. The main body is painted black. A silver
fitting is placed at the tip. A rivet is found near the throat. A triangular suspension bracket is present on
one side. A leather strap is riveted in place using a metal fitting. A spring loaded silver clip is found
at the opposite end of the hanger.
The crossguard is composed of an squarish shaped eagle facing to the right. The wings are extended and make up
each extension of the crossguard. The design is reminiscent of the art deco style. The feet of the eagle are
clutching a wreath containing a swastika in the center.
The blade is of double edge construction. Stiletto style. With a central ridge running the entire length of the
blade. Plain design. No motto was applied. Due to the short length of the blade it was initially considered to
be a knife instead of a dagger.
1st PATTERN 1936 LEADER DAGGER
The First Pattern 1936 RLB Officer dagger was approved for use in 1936. The dagger was issued to the leaders of
the organization. The design of the dagger was very similar to the Subordinate model. One difference was the
overall length of the dagger. The Leader's model was longer by over 1 inch.
The pommel was of oval shape with a slightly reaised center section. The handle was made of a wood base covered
with black or dark blue leather. The RLB starburst logo is placed at about mid point. The crossguard consists
of an art deco eagle with the wings fully extended to make the guards themselves. The eagle is clutching a wreath
with a swastika in the center.
The scabbard is of metal construction. It has two metal fittings. One at the throat and the other makes up the
finial. The center panels are covered with the same type of leather as the handle. A suspension ring is attached
to one side where a basic leather strap is used as a hanger.
All the fittings were made of silver plated metal.
The blade was of double edge construction. Plain design without a motto applied to it.
2nd PATTERN 1938 SUBORDINATE DAGGER
The Second pattern Subordinate RLB dagger was autthorized
for use in 1938. It was issued to enlisted personnel. The design was basically identical to the previous
subordinate model with the exception of the metal logo applied to the center of the handle.
The pommel is of round metal construction, silver color. The lower portion extends beyond the perimeter and forms
a thick ring. The handle is made of wood or ebony. The metal logo was changed from a silver starburst with large
RLB initials and a small swastika at the bottom to having a large enamel swastika instead.
The scabbard of the Second pattern RLB Subordinate dagger was of metal construction. Painted black with a silver
The blade is of double edge construction. Stilleto type. It has a center ridge that covered its entire length.
Very plain design. No organizational motto was applied to it.
2nd PATTERN 1938 LEADER DAGGER
The Second Pattern 1938 Leader dagger was authorized for wear in the year 1938. This dagger was issued to the
leaders of the RLB. The design of the dagger remained close to that of its predecessor. However, there were
some differences which are discussed here.
The pommel is of oval shape. Metal construction with a raised center. The handle has a wooden base covered
with black or dark blue leather. A metal starburst insignia is placed at the center of the handle. The
original design with the large RLB letters and a small swastika at the bottom was replaced by the elimination
of the letters and the use of a large black enamel swastika.
The scabbard is of metal construction. The center panels are covered with the same type of leather as the
handle. Fittings are placed in the throat and finial areas. One more fitting is added to the center area.
This is an exclusive characteristic of the 1938 leader's model. suspension rings are found in the upper and
middle fittings. The hanger was attached to the dagger via the use of these rings.
The blade is of double edge construction. Stilleto design. A center ridge runs the entire length of the
blade. It is of plain appearance without any ornamentation. No organizational motto is found.
The following is a list of some of the companies that manufactured the SA dagger during WWII.
|| Unique Makers
|| C. Gustav Spitzer
|| Prancing lion inside a circle. Name above, city below.
|| ACS scales only
|| Arch script text with ACS scales. 1939 - 1940
|| Arched non-script text with ACS scales
|| Sideways Name with "ACS" scales. 1940-1941
|| Sideways Name "AWS" Post 1941 Scales
|| Ernst Witte
|| "Kroneck" and crown and "W" in diamond
|| Paul Weyersberg
|| Sword with wreath in oval
|| E & F Horster
|| Sword piercing "HHS" in oval
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