Allgemeine SS Auslands-Organisation Trade Insignia
Image courtesy of Angolia, "Cloth Insignia of the SS"
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The SS adopted career & trade badges in the early 1930s to distinguish personnel who had successfully completed SS-affiliated training courses and had reached a certain level of proficiency in a trade, skill, or function. In addition, a similar insignia could also signify that an individual had previously been a member of a different organisation.
The majority of career and trade badges were worn by both the Allgemeine-SS and the Waffen-SS, although there are examples that were worn by only one branch.
The trade insignia are in the form of black, diamond-shaped cloth insignia. Officer grade diamonds were embroidered with aluminium wire, while Non-Commissioned Officer (NCO) and Enlisted Men (EM) diamonds were embroidered with silver-grey thread. Some examples of Officer grade sleeve diamonds are piped with twisted aluminium cord.
The insignia were worn on the lower sleeve and they were placed 3.5 cms above the cuff title.
The Auslands-Organisation (AO) (foreign office) insignia was introduced on September 25, 1936, and it was worn by former members of the NSDAP Auslands-Organisation that were assigned to the SS.
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