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WW2 German Ankle "Low" Boots
Research & photos provided by Manny from Militaria Forum.

The model 37 schnurschuh
This version was derived from the low boots that were issued to the MG Abteilungen's personnel during the First World War, is a low boot which has a hooks and eyelets fastening and which has been produced from 1937 to 1945.They were issued to the soldiers with the Drillichanzug since their introduction in the late 30s and were worn mainly for barracks duties. Photographic evidence shows that they began to see the battlefield quite early in the war;  I've seen a photo last night of a German soldier wearing them in Russia in July 1941.In the book "God, Honor, Fatherland" written by McGuirl & Spezzano you'll find quite a few photos showing lowboots and gaiters in use during the 1942 campaigns while the tropical version of both lowboots and gaiters was issued to DAK troops in 1941!  Shoe laces for these usually consisted of thin cloth laces with metal tips (small cloth ones were easier to pass through the hooks).

(Click images below for a larger view)

1942-dated, chrome-dyed mod 37 boot


1945-dated mod 37 boot

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The model 44 schnurschuh  
At the beginning of 1944 a new(ish) model was introduced; it only had eyelets and was produced in a few variants which differed only in little details along with the Mod37 (which remained virtually unchanged except for the leather which wasn't dyed anymore at the factory since 1944) until the end of the war.  Shoe laces for these were more commonly made of leather, but some like the example below still have cloth laces.

Early M44 boot

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As you can see in this early M44 boot, it is basically the same as the Mod. 37 except the hooks have been replaced with the standard eyelets.


1944-dated, M44 boot

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A mint pair of 1944 dated M44 lowboots in one of their many variants. They have a felt band identical to the one found on the gebirgsjaeger bergschuhe and they're interesting in that they're lined inside with the "innenfutter" of a pair of bergschuhe stamped with the very same numbers we find stamped outside bar the lot # and the size, which are different!  There are seven eyelets for the laces and the leather laces are original to the shoes.

The sewing thread used on these shoes is the black, animal-fiber thread so typical in the late years of the conflict and it's very thin yet extremely strong. The soles don't have the second layer of leather and the nails (the seldom encountered 8 sided ones) are driven directly into the main sole which in return is somewhat thicker.  Imo is worth of noting the German habit of making the shaft of the lowboots with the smooth side of the leather facing outwards and the raw one on the inside while it's the other way round for the vamp.  It was made like that to have more grip inside the rear part of the shoe while avoiding blistering on the front at the same time!

The heels have the typical horse-shoe shaped reinforcements (Stamped L19 and R19) and the leather inside the latter is here replaced by Buna (Synthetic rubber)


Late M44 boot

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(Toecaps are rounded due to the fact that they were REINFORCED INTERNALLY!)


Italian made M44 German lowboots

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Apart from being 1945 dated and from having three different RBNr stamps (two on the side of the shoe and one on the sole), these Italian made M44 boots are also stamped "SS" on the inside of the heel where the heel rests.  The heels are nailed in a way which is nearly identical to the one usually found on Bergschuhe but the soles have a nail pattern peculiar to the Knobelbecher and to the M37/M44 Schnurschuhe. This example was found in Austria, close to the Italian border.

NOTE: When viewing "original low boots" take a look at the inner leather tongue.  See if it's made of two pieces of leather sewn together....this is one of the details that help and ascertain whether a pair of shoes could be WW2 German or not!  Tongues made of two pieces of leather are very rarely encountered on very late, last-ditch mod 44 lowboots and Bergschuhe!



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