- The Online Reference Guide to World War II German Helmets 1933-1945

    Schutzstaffeln: SS-Verfügungstruppe - SS Special Detatchments

The Double Runic Symbol of the Early SS-VT

SS Special Detatchments

On 24 September 1934 a special SS military group was formed with men who had previously trained in units known as SS Special Detachments (SS-Sonderkommandos). Many of these men had served in Headquarters Guard (SS-Stabswache) units in the early days of the National Socialist Party.  This new group was to be trained as combat ready infantry according to Armed Services (Wehrmacht) regulations.  The unit was officially designated SS-Special Purpose Troops (SS-Verfügungstruppe) and was described as neither police nor Armed Forces but military trained men at the disposal of the Führer in war and peace. 

Official announcement of the existence of the SS-Verfügungstruppe (known as SS-VT) was not publicly declared until 16 March 1935.  The SS-VT trained along side Hitler’s personal body guards, although the SS-Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler (LAH) continued to serve exclusively as a personal protection unit1.

Elements of the SS-VT served with the Wehrmacht during the occupation of the Sudetenland, Austria, and Czechoslovakia, and participated in the invasion of Poland along with the campaign against the Allies in the West. From the various regiments that formed the SS-VT sprung the Waffen-SS (Armed-SS) Divisions that fought in all theaters during World War II. Units comprising the SS-VT were not known as the “Waffen-SS” until a speech by Adolf Hitler in July 1940. In 1941 the Division SS-Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler joined the combined field units of SS-VT thereafter known as the Waffen-SS.

1 The LAH independently fielded combat troops during the campaign against Poland.  Elements later joined the SS-VT prior to the invasion of Russia in 1941.


Each section of is divided into separate Information Tracks that outline important details, facts, and historical notes pertaining to steel helmets used by the German Armed Forces during World War II.  

Information Tracks are organized by subject matter and their content is directly related to the service arm or organization to which each topic is related.  Topic areas that bridge one subject matter to another are cross linked within each Information Track.

This Information Track provides historical facts pertaining to steel helmets worn by the SS Special Detachment groups (SS-Verfügungstruppe) from 1934-1940.  Individual links related to this subject are outlined below.

    Primary Topics

Helmet Types 1934-1935

Helmet Types 1935-1937

Helmet Insignia

Helmet Photos

Period Photos

    Related Topics
    Protection Units


SS-Heimwehr Danzig / Danzig Polizei

SS-Leibstandarte (LAH)

SS-Sicherheitspolizei (SD)

SS-Verfügungstruppe (SS-VT)


Waffen-SS  - The Online Reference Guide to World War II German Helmets 1933-1945

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