Monday, July 2, 2007

The TENO Dagger


Technical Emergency Corps - (Technische Nothilfe) TENO or TN

Organizational Facts. The Technical Emergency Corps (TENO) was formed on September 30, 1919, to assist the German population during times of crisis and disaster resulting from natural catastrophies. It functioned under the pre-Nazi Weimar Republic as a society of technical volunteers who were called to duty in the event of a public disaster. The Corps provided essential services during emergencies with its personnel being highly trained in fire fighting, decontamination, etc.

TENO men were distributed throughout the cities, industrial centers, and major traffic hubs for the repair and maintenance of public utilities. The Nazis realized the potential value of the TENO and reorganized the Corps in 1939 as one of the main Party formations under the auspices of the German Police. The commander of the TENO prior to World War II was SS Gruppenfuehrer Schmelcher.

Subsequently, he was placed in charge of technical affairs of the SS and was succeeded by SS Gruppenfuehrer Weinreich. The services of the Corps were required extensively after the outbreak of war in army rear areas and occupied territories, thus freeing army engineers and personnel for other tasks. During the conduct of the war the TENO became an almost integral part of the Waffen SS.

Type. Subordinate Hewer. Awarded to selected full-time subordinate members of the TN. The hewer could only be purchased through official TN channels.Year Adopted. 1938.

Description. This massive sidearm was intended for actual use in emergencies as an axe or hacking knife. The sole manufacturer of the TENO sidearms was the Carl Eickhom firm of Solingen. The hilt and scabbard metal fittings are nickel plated. The two white or orange celluloid grips, each marked on the inside with a small Eickhorm squirrel trademark (note: the reproductions are missing this feature), are retained in place by two countersunk bolts. The TENO cogwheel device is incorporated into the pommel, and the TENO eagle and swastika emblem appear on the crossguard. The heavy steel blade is bolo-shaped and intended for field use. A shallow fuller appears on each side of the blade. The large metal scabbard is painted lacquer. Each hewer was numbered for issue, with the number appearing on the blade underneath the langet and the corresponding number on the upper lip of the scabbard throat.

Length. 40 cms (15.8").

Blade Motto. None.

Accouterments
a. Hanger, a black leather frog permanently attached or clipped to the top of the scabbard fitting.
b. Portepee: a series of portepees were available for wear with the hewer, depending upon the type of duty. The most common TN portepee being a silver acorn with purple top and orange stem, indicating stand-by service.

Collector Availability. Rare

Johnson & Ormsby: "Daggers of WWII Germany", Clay Communications Group, 1980

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1 Comments:

Blogger dblmed said...

Quite an EXCELLENT general write up regarding the TeNo / TN Hewer (and other TN information)!

As a dedicated TN Collector, I would respectfully like to add the following:

(1) Regarding ..."The Nazis realized the potential value of the TENO and reorganized the Corps in 1939 as one of the main Party formations under the auspices of the German Police."

Correct, except for the date. The TN was one of the VERY Few pre-33 organizations to continue into the TR. As early as 1934 the TN was designated as a "Hilfspolizei." Then in 1936, with Himmler in total control of the Polizei, the TN became a part of ORPO. So, the TN & Polizei connection was early on.

<(2) Regarding> ..."The commander of the TENO prior to World War II was SS Gruppenfuehrer Schmelcher." This is incorrect - the right man, but the wrong date, and sequence of service.

Hans Weinreich was the Chef der TN until 1943. He was then replaced by SS Gruppenfuehrer und Chef der TN Willy Schmelcher. (Weinreich left in disgrace & was tried and demoted to SS-Mann status due to an open affair with a prostitute.)

<(3)TN Subordinate Hewer - superb write-up!!!>

<(4-A) RE :Accouterments>
a. Hanger, a black leather frog permanently attached or clipped to the top of the scabbard fitting.

Comments- Research has shown that there were actually 3 Hangers:
i) Black leather - as described
ii) Brown Leather - v. Rare.
iii) Cloth Hanger - specific to the TeNo / TN.

ALL of the Hangers had the 'classic' TN Cogged Wheel Motif used as the Center Adjustment Devices.

<(4-B) RE :Accouterments -> Portepee's. Recent literature (Littlejohn's "Defending the Reich" has Correctly noted that there were eight (8) TN NCO/EM Portepee's. (Previously, only six - 6 - had been identified.

I am 'hopeful' that a great deal of this information will become available to the Collecting Community with the publication of "Police-Vol. 2" by J. Angolia and Hugh Taylor, sometime in late summer of 2008.

Dave/dblmed

May 20, 2008 9:13 PM  

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