I saw Lew’s postings of Austrian 9x19mm Reichsadler-containing headstamps. Is there any other ammo/boxes with Reichsadler on them? This is the only one I have.


Vlad - I wont say that there are none other with a legitimate stamp, but they are few. The stamp on your box is absolutely correct. We had cases of that ammo at the store, and all boxes were identical to yours!

On auto pistol-caliber boxes, I only have one, and that is a 9 x 25 mm Mauser box, made for the Austrian Steyr MP34ö and holding 16 rounds in two Steyr Mod. 1912 Pistol stripper clips marked “H” in an oval, which also work with a built in clip-loading slot on the magazine housing of the MP34ö. The box label reads:

16 Stück
9 mm scharfe Mauser Pistolen Patronen

(Eagle with Swastika)
P635 II. 1939

The first two lines are superimposed over a big “M P” in red print.

P635 was the Hirtenberger factory (also later using code “am”) at the time it was renamed to Gustloff-Werke, Otto Eberhardt-Patronenfabrik, at Hirtenberg Niederdonau.

The headstamp on these cartridge is exactly the same as that you picture on 8 x 56R, except the Roman Numeral at 12 o’clock (representing the month) is IX. So cases, and likely the loading as well, on the 9 x 25mm rounds was September 1938.

The later 9 x 25 mm Mauser boxes from Gustloff-Werke, which have ammunition headstamp “P635” in the German fashion, also have German-style box labels, with loading lot number, powder description and case, bullet and primer manufacturing data. They also hold 16 rounds in clips.

John Moss

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The Reichsadler (Nazi Eagle) when associated with a Waffenampt (WaA) identification number like that on your box is not unusual on German ammunition and is generally identifies the inspection organization. Below is the WaA on a chamber gauge.
In this case the gauge was manufactured by a company using a GR symbol (but not George Roth) shown below.
and the WaA identifies the Government inspection activity. I am sure some of our other members can explain this more accurately.

These WaA stamps with the Reichsadler are often found on the wooden cases of German ammunition, and sometimes on the individual boxes, at least for P08 ammunition, particularly from early in the war.

I have never seen the Reichsadler by itself as a legit marking on ammunition when it is not accompanied by a WaA identification. In the US, the fake Reichsadler markings, like the one on the 9mmB box you mentioned, have for decades been used to increase the value of items. It even showed up on a Lahti pistol that was claimed to be used by the German military. Eventually the pistol was shown to have been in Swedish military possession until sold by the government into the collector market well after WWII. In fact, the Reichsadler marking has become a joke in the US and one well known gun dealer took great pleasure in having a CZ75 on his table with a prominent Reichsadler stamp.

Here in the US, a Reichsadler by itself is an instant caution warning, at least to me. Below is an example of a box with a Reichsadler marking without a WaA. I can’t guarantee it is a fake. The box is legit but I think the marking is questionable. Perhaps a Forum member can shed some light on this questionable (to me) marking.


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Lew, I am not an expert in WW2 Memorabilia, but it says LUFTWAFFE on the seal…but the eagle ist NOT the Luftwaffenadler, which looks different…and secondly, what should be -müchen
Someone forgot the n from München :-))

means the whole seal is faked !!!

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Interesting you should show the 8x56mmR Mannlicher box. About 6 or 7 years ago at a Missouri Valley Arms Collectors show a dealer had a number of these boxes prominently displayed on his table with a sign stating something to the effect “Rare Nazi Ammo”. The one thing that immediately caught my eye was a large fake Reichsadler stamped in red on the side of each box.


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I have different parameters than Lew on this. The discussion was basically on indiviudals boxes. I have, for example, about 105 German 16-round boxes for 9 mm, admittedly a small fraction of what Lew likely has, but out of those 105, I have one that has the German Eagle (Reichsadler) on it, and it is identical to the one Lew shows down to every detail of the information. That would be slightly less than 1% of my boxes with the eagle. To me, that makes this marking unusual on German cartridge boxes. Cases of ammunition may be a different story. I don’t have any of them, not even a removed label as far as I can remember. I have four of the German Tragslaufen, the cardboard containers with cloth handles that hold a mulitple of the 16 round boxes in the case of the 9 mm Parabellum, and none of the four has an eagle on it anywhere. Again, that is a small sampling, of course.

I have other caliber boxes for pistol ammunition made during the 3rd Reich era, and none but those for the 9 x 25 mm Mauser cartridge have any rendition of the Reichsadler, with or without the WaA number.

Omitting bulk packaging (wood cases), I would say it is quite unusual for German SAA boxes to have the eagle on them. JMHO

John Moss

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I have also one of the 8x56R with the German eagle from 1938.
It was my opinion that this was the manufacturing sign for Hirtenberger Wöllersdorf.
But I might be wrong.

The Hirtenberger factory was in Hirtenberg, Austria and in post-1918 Austria functioned as the de facto government arsenal, so used the eagle stamp. It was not in any real sense related to the former arsenal in Woellersdorf, which had ceased to exist. Jack

John, here the only box 9mm Mauser with Reichsadler-marking on the outside of the box:

The later Boxes had no Reichsadler on the outside anymore: see here:

40 40

@sksvlad: you stated: "
I saw Lew’s postings of Austrian 9x19mm Reichsadler-containing headstamps…

I am not aware of 9x19 boxes or 9mm LUGER ammo with a genuine Reichsadler imprint or headstamp. I knew only 9mm Mauser (9x25) ammo with this markings…
There are acceptance seals with a rubberstamp on the outer (Tragebehälter) 9mm Luger boxes, but on single boxes they are suspicious for me…see pic from Lew in this post above with a fully faked stamp, as it is even by grammar not correct… Müchen instead of MÜNCHEN



Peter - thanks for posting pictures of those boxes. They are precisely the ones I mentioned and explained in my reply.

I agree with your observations. Other than on full cases (multiple boxes within each container) the Reichsadler is seldom found on regular single boxes. I am not sure if the 16 round 9 mm O8 box Lew showed. I wondered why he had a black and white picture of it, but now, on comparing the slant of the label, and blemishes on the label, I think it is a picture of the box in my own collection. I, personally, have always been suspicious of that stamp on the “va” box, but even if it is original, it is a very unusual exception. I will admit that under close scrutiny, it appears to be printed, rather than stamped from an ink pad, so it could just be an abberation of normal marking procedures.

John Moss

I know this box label also with cartridges loaded with Rottweil powder.

They only changed the Austrian eagle to the German one.
I have never seen a P635 stamped on an 8x56R round. No case production in 1939??
In 1940 they started with the “am” head stamp.

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Thanks for your assessment of the “LUFTWAFFE” seal on the P08 box. It is no surprise.

Thanks also for your post on the 9mm Mauser boxes. I should have recognized that the P 635 under eagle was the pre-WWI “P” code for Hirtenberger, and not a precursor of the WaA which only came about in about 1940 or so. Does anyone have a date for when the WaA markings were first introduced???

John, I agree, only a very small fraction of my 16rd boxes have the WaA markings and they all seem to be from va and am in 1941. Perhaps a misunderstanding of the instructions when they were first issued.

Here are some examples of the marking. Note the first is the same va lot (25 of 41) that we have but a different style marking.
Also Lot 27

And here are some others:

image image

Note that these are not all from my collection.

Perhaps some Forum members have other boxes with this mark.

I went through my file of photos of 4160 rd cases and 832 rd cardboard cartons and the WaA is on all the cases but I only found one 832rd carton with this stamp and this was on a 1943 dou carton.

There is even a WaA stamped into the wood of a P151 case.


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The markings on the larger Tragslaufen (832 rounds) and wooden cases doesn’t surprise me. The unusual format of the WaA and Eagle markings on the 16 round boxes does. There are more than I had thought, but they regardless, as I think you recognize, do not represent the norm for the markings on these boxes.

Thanks for the photos from Lew and others, and the added information. It is an interesting subject.


Thx for that info.

I checked the List of WaA-People at work during this time.
As the stamps where personell (means each Person had ist own ident-number and he took his stamp with him, if he was sent to other places…

WaA 836 was given to a Person in the Nürnberg area, checking elelctronic meters, Radios and communications, and also va…but his stamp is only known on 2cm ammo CASES at Kabel&Metallwerke Neymayer, Nürnberg (where the shown boxes with that stamp where coming from)
Still. a stamp on single boxes is suspicious, as the person in Charge stamped the “Abnahmepapiere” and maybe the bigger outer boxes, to show, that they where approved.
A single box stamp makes no sense here, as millions of boxes leaving the factory every week…

And about the socalled 9mm Lugers made from 9mm Mauser cases…i dont eat that…
i HAVE NOT SEEN ANY AUSTRIAN 9mm ammo with casemouth seals…and sofar as I knew, Gustloff or HP has not used any in that time period…
Can you may check your original austrian ones (not made from other cases), if they have a cms or primer seal??

I dont have any in my collection, but I am curious now…


PS: Too many fakes have shown up from the east…
I remember, after a list from Lew for a Special HS had shown up, the wanted headstamp was “found”…
but was a Remake…I have one of this…Lew knews, which one i think about :-))

Many new printed Labels coming up every week or month, even on egun.
Some with Errors, some very good made…and for a good worker it is not very hard work, to rework a cartridge (in the inside/there are Special reloading Tools to do that work)…
a little acid and Sulfur-liver will do the aging process. to hide new “toolmarkings”
They do many things for Money or for joy only…

Very Interesting Peter. So the WaA is correct for va, but stamping each box is a lot of work! I wonder if others have these va and am lots without the WaA markings. The 1941 va 27 box shown above I have had since before 1983 when I put my collection on a computer. The 1941 am 4 below it I obtained in the last 5 years in Europe. I can’t make out the number on the WaA stamp. It appears to be 6 (or 8) ? 1
Do we know the WaA number used by am?

It is interesting that they were all stamped in the upper right hand corner.

I doubt these were done in the East based on the date I got my va.

Thanks for the information.


Mine is different, the Reichsadler stamp is reversed, though dated the same year.
Am I reading Dec 1938 on yours, and Nov 1938 on mine?
Is “Rottw”, Rottweil, and “B” is…?

I think it is the gun powder ID.

Forensic - I am offering this as an observation only, concerning the 9 mm Para rounds made from shortened 19 / IX / 38 / (Reichsadler)-headstamp 9 x 25 mm cases. I have no opinion at this time as to whether or not they are fake. If “correct” than I believe they are commercially done, perhaps in Europe, to salvage for sale something from a quantity of 9 x 25 mm Mauser ammunition.

I have one of these converted rounds in my own collection, with the 1938 headstamp mentioned above. It is a very professional conversion in appearance, and uses the original primer (no primer seal) and a GMCS FMJ bullet. There is a dark red case mouth seal, and definitely applied to the bullet while in the case, as the seal is present on the top of the mouth of the case as well. Now, I also have a Wöllersdorf .7.65 mm Browning round which I believe was loaded later, perhaps much later, than the 1922 headstamp would indicate, since it has a GMCS bullet. Original loadings more contemporary to the date generally have a CN bullet. The color of the primer seal and the case mouth seal on that cartridge is IDENTICAL to that of the coverted 9 x 25 mm case. It is an unusual shade of red, by the way.

One of the odd thing about my 9 x 19 mm converted cartridge is that the overall cartridge weight is 167…1 grains (10.82 Grams) which would seem to indicate the bullet is of the m.E. type (97 to 101 grains). The light weight could not be explained even if the powder charge was not present. I don’t want to rip it apart.

Again, just observations. I will continue to keep my 9 x 19 round in my collection until it is proved a fake, even though, again, I am uncertain myself about it being a purpose-driven conversion, other than the purpose of fakery.

John Moss

B is Blumau, location of the principal Austrian small arms propellant facility of that period. Jack