History of the German Steel Helmet: 1916-1945 by Ludwig Baer (Second
Reprinted and released in 2001, this book is considered by many
collectors as the definitive work (or classic "bible") for all
information on the subject of German steel helmets. The book's text and
photographs cover the entire history of the German helmet from inception
to the last version prototyped in 1944. The author is a noted German
historian who has researched more than 80% of what is known about German
to the reprint, the First Edition of this book commanded values of $125
to $150 for second hand editions. Most of these books were sold on
internet auctions. Following the reprint, the demand for the First
Edition dropped off considerably as well as the book's overall market
value. Older copies can now be purchased for around $50 US which
is the about the same price asked for the reprinted Second Edition.
Although the Second Edition was released in 2001, much to the surprise
of the collecting community the publisher reprinted the book without
changing or updating the text or photographs. Some confusion
resulted in the collecting community in 2000 when it was first thought
that Bender Publishing was releasing Volume II of this series.
However collectors quickly realized that the Second Edition was simply
identical to the First Edition with a new cover.
Although many collectors consider this book the "ultimate authority" on
German steel helmets, the book actually features a handful of historical
comments that are incorrect based on more recent work in this area.
In addition, several helmets photographed in the book have surfaced as
reported "fakes" that had not been previously detected by their owners.
Many of the helmets in the book are now in the collections of modern
collectors having been sold at high prices as a result of having been
pictured in this book.
possibly the best overall book on the subject, collectors should be
careful to consider any publication the absolute authority on any
subject matter. The errors in this book, although few, clearly
make this point true. Copies can be purchased online and directly
through the publisher who is one of the largest printers of World War II
subjects pertaining to collectables and their history.