On 10,11 and 12 November, I attended the Wannemacher Gunshow at the Tulsa Exposition Center. This show is advertised as the largest gun show in the world with around 4,000 vendor tables. This show has been promoted by Joe Wannamacher since the late 1950’s. After Joe passed away several years ago, his family has continued this tradition. I have been attending this show off-and-on since the mid-1970s. In those days, it was the show that you saved your money for as there were so many great military items being offered for great prices.
I often say this is the most difficult show that I attend. It is challenging because the cost of the tables is $200 each. So, I am over $500 in the hole before I sell anything. I agonize over what merchandise I should bring but realize that I do not sell anything there that I do not sell at every other show. Over the years, we have witnessed many dealers that attend the show. However, after attending a couple of times, realize that they cannot drive the distance, pay the high table fees, and make any money. So, the tables routinely turn over. The reason I go is that there are over ten thousand people that attend and they sometimes bring unique items that they are looking to sell. My goal is to set-up a nice display of original military items that attract other quality military items. This time I had great success in attracting many great items.
Left Image: A rare and desirable WWII German Knights Cross. This example was either made by Juncker or Klein & Quenzer. Middle Image: The cross and ring are marked 800 which is the mark for its silver content. Right Image: The KC came in an old Chesterfield Cigarette tin with some items that hint that these were brought back by a medic in the 79th Infantry Division.
I have collected for over 40 years, and this is the first Knights Cross that I have been able to own. It was sold by a very nice gentleman who found it at a Metropolitain Tulsa Tag Sale. He also sold me a very rare National Socialist Political Education Academy (NPEA) Student Dagger. The NPEA school system provided political education to the future Third Reich Leadership. This is the first NPEA dagger that I have managed to own.
Left Image: The dagger is very similar to the SA and SS dagger and was copied by those worn during the Roman Empire. Right Image: The wooden handle does not have the SA/SS button or the national eagle.
Left Image: The acid etched motto on the blade roughly translates into ” Be More Than You Appear to Be” a great goal for any school. Right Image: This dagger was made by several companies. Karl Burgsmuller had two different Trademarks one with Berlin and the other with Berlin and the Charlottenburg 5 address.
There are several factors involved in creating success at this show. First, you have to pay the ante to sit at the table. Second, you must have the available capital to invest. Most importantly, you must have a good knowledge of the items being offered to know their value, as well as their authenticity.