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Early Israeli Army Hitelmacher hat with chin-cord, c. 1948-1951
Item code: 0133868

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Price
Sales price $600.00
Description

Rare khaki first version of the Israeli Army 'Hitelmacher' hat with leather chin-cord, circa. 1948-1951. Of the two major varieties produced, this is the earlier, American-made issue in khaki denim, produced as a shipment of donated military hats specially for the new Israeli Army by the American-Jewish hat makers' union (whose Yiddish title "hitel-macher" - hat-maker - became the Israelis' coined name for these uniquely designed pieces of headwear). 

 

The IDF quartermasters' symbol (the Hebrew letter 'Tzadi' in a circle) is stamped on the inside crown of the hat. On the inside rim is the key and significant characteristic of this first issue of hats - the maker's mark: a stamp in transliterated Yiddish spelled in Hebrew letters, reading: "Ai Matana Von Americaner Hitel-Macher Durch Der Initziation Von Trier Union Komitet Fur Histadrut" ('A present of the American hat-makers through the initiative of the Union Committee of the Histadrut' - the Histadrut is the Zionist labor union in Israel).

 

Though rare to find, when seen in photographs, these original Hitelmacher hats are usually seen with the chin-cord, but without the IDF's metal emblem, hence the estimated dating of this item from 1948-50 (as opposed to the similar but earlier-dated item 0133867).