Sergeant Treptor, a Pascha I Artillery NCO



Photo Roy Williams


This is a photograph of an artillery NCO wearing the tropical uniform as worn by the Asienkorps and other German troops in Palestine. On the back of the photograph is written "Sergeant M....? (possibly Mobus) Treptor, Mai 1916". That date would probably make him part of the Pascha I Expedition which was formed in March 1916.

He wears the 1916 khaki tunic, with plain khaki stand and fall collar, cuffs and shoulder straps. It has six wartime dull metal buttons down the front (and probably on each hip pocket) each bearing the Prussian crown. His rank, Sergeant, is shown by the use of wartime dull grey lace around the collar edge and a button towards the rear of his collar (just visible on his right side).

The trousers look like they are of thicker material, probably wool and are piped down the outside seem in black for artillery. From these details it would seem they are probably field grey trousers (or riding breeches). The puttees as well are most likely field grey issue as worn in Europe.

The headdress is the 1900 Bortfeldt Tropical Helmet originally issued to the German East Asian troops in China. It bears the same yellow metal imperial eagle and arm of service colour hatband (in this case black edged with red for artillery) as worn by the East Asian troops. It cannot be seen from this angle if he is also wearing the large imperial cockade on the right hand side. He does however wear the issue khaki neckshade.

He wears a leather belt with a wartime Prussian other ranks belt buckle made of dull grey metal in one piece. Prussian belt buckles bore the Prussian crown surrounded by laurel leaves and the motto "Gott Mit Uns".

1900 Bortfeldt Tropical Helmet
(see Imperial War Museum Collection Page)
Photo by C Dale

Artillery Sword
(See Swords Page)
Chris Wood

  The curved sword is that worn by mounted other ranks in the artillery. This is curious as the only artillery units that I know of in the Pascha I Expedition were foot artillery and trench mortar battalions. Around the sword grip he has a Prussian NCOs sword knot, a leather strap with a wool knot in black and white threads.  

  Two close ups of the photograph. Note the imperial eagle on the helmet, the NCO lace and button on the collar, the Prussian crowned buttons and belt buckle and the artillery sword and NCO knot.

Please respect the generosity of Roy Williams in sharing this photograph with us by not reproducing it without prior permission. 

Please contact me here if you have other photographs of the German colonies or the soldiers and sailors that served there. I am especially keen to hear from people with family photograph collections and am always happy to try to assist in identifying uniforms, units, places and dates for family history research.

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