What is the 1. SS "Leibstandarte",1. Regiment, 2nd Pioneer Kompanie?
The 1. SS "Leibstandarte",1. Regiment, 2nd Pioneer Kompanie is an organization of German armed force re-en actors for World War II Events. We portray German Waffen SS troops assigned to the task of combat engineer. We represent the Axis forces when performing weapon demonstrations and while doing public events. We provide the Allies with an "enemy" to better show the whole story of World War II. The 1. SS Division "Leibstandarte",1 Regiment, 2nd Pioneer Kompanie also supports and portray the 12th U-boat Flotilla, U-181. Each group represents two elite elements of the German armed forces of World War II. These two units are not a Nazis organization nor does either unit support in any way shape or form the ideas or ideals of Nazis National Socialism. Both units are not in any way a
What is living history?
This is the general name given to a hobby that involves dressing out in period clothing (in our case WWII) and either participating in weapons demonstrations, historical re-enactments or tactical battles using the skills technology and methods of that time period. This is an emersion into a different time where we try to look and act as close, and try to be as authentic to the period as possible. This is done by creating an impression.
What do you mean when you say an "impression"?
This is a simple term used to describe ones costume or uniform for re-enacting. It is the package if you will that you use to become the character in the unit you are a part of. There are thousands of possibilities for a person when it comes to who you want to be while being in WWII Re-enacting. Many individuals chose a unit and their "impression" will be based on that unit. Some people wish to become an individual from history such as a member of a specific unit or a leader whatever. The impression is the way you represent the character you portray as a WWII re-en actor.
What is a "Tactical" and why is it normally done with no public allowed?
Tacticals are like training events for re-en actors. They will normally spend several days in an approved location simulating a WWII camp environment. Re-en actors will live, eat, and simulate battles in this environment for the purpose of learning and training members in the ways of armies in the 1940s. Believe me this is a great way to learn about how an every day soldier from all sides of the war had to live. Battles are often the center point of a tactical event and this will include the use of infantry as well as mechanical tactics. Firing of blanks as well as approved pyrotechnics is also done during the simulated battles of a tactical event.
If a tactical is a simulation of war how do you know who is shot and who is not?
Many rules govern the art of simulated warfare, in fact too many to explain here, but generally the honor system is used to determine if a hit is scored or not. In general if you hear a shot look up and see someone looking at you over the sight of their rifle, then you can say you were hit. If you run into an open area and a machine gun opens up a good chance can be assumed that you got hit. Referees are usually assigned to monitor the situation and assist in making quick calls in the field. (Generally calling out shots is looked down on).
If I join will I be yelled at and expected to do physical labor and be treated like a recruit in the real military?
No, we have rules and regulations that are provided for the safety of all members and spectators. We will not tolerate people disrespecting or yelling at one another. We will expect all members to act appropriate and with common respect. This is after all a hobby and all members are truly volunteers. There is however a rank system and members are expected to pitch in and help as needed and follow instructions provided as required from time to time. I can’t speak for all units but for ours, officers, NCOs and enlisted work well together and pitch in as one to get things around camp done.
What is a demonstration or a public battle?
These are events planned for public viewing they are choreographed to provide the public with a chance to see our weapons fire and our various combat tactics. They have a predetermined out come and each member has a role to play. You will find these to be a lot of fun as you will be able to show the public what you know about WWII and the soldier who fought it. Often following a battle the general public will have a lot of questions to ask as well as plenty of requests for photos. All and all it’s a great way to honor veterans of all wars and share our knowledge of WWII with the public.
How dangerous is this hobby?
Well it is very safe in fact. The key is following safety rules. Each event will have specific rules which you will be given before and simulated combat or weapons demonstration is started. You are dealing with firearms and gunpowder so paying attention and listening to instructions is key. Like with any other hobby that involves physical activates you must be careful to not get injured remember you will be running, jumping, crawling and other physically challenging stuff so you must know your own limitations and protect yourself. Keeping these things in mind and asking questions when you have them, and this hobby is quite safe.
When I join, can I pick my rank?
Unfortunately, no. If we allowed that we may have 5 officers and 1 enlisted guy which would not be very accurate of the true nature of unit integrity. The truth is we are trying as nearly as we can to portray the common soldiers of WWII and we are in units that at one time truly existed on the battlefield so it is important to follow the military rank structure as close as we can. You will likely start as a private or recruit.
How do I get promoted?
This is a big topic in that many units do this in different ways. To save time and space I will not go into too much detail here but I will say if you visit ours or other unit web sites you can get a genral feel for what the promotion system is they have in place. We have a section called awards, this section gives you the requirements for earning awards in the unit as for rank, the tried and true method stands,(those that work to help the unit will be looked at for promotions).
When and where should I buy my gear?
This will depend on how quick you want to jump in. It is advised that you talk to unit members and particularly the unit leaders to determine what you will need first. It is rare to see someone go out and buy all the gear before a first event but you should start right away getting things like tunic, shirt, pants, boots, belts and a helmet. Some things can be loaned to you temporarily but these items listed are usually expected to be on you. Oh and do not forget the weapon. As to where you should shop, stop by our links page and take a look.
What does it cost to get the gear and uniforms?
Like some hobbies this one can be expensive. The uniform and equipment can cost around $1,800.00 the basic k-98 is around $300.00. It is best to shop around and be thrifty if you find a vendor selling an item for one price shop around, trust me you will most likely find it cheaper. Get with a member, they have the experience of buying from these exact same vendors. Talk to other re-enactors, it can save you a lot of money! Many people have gone before you, wasting time and money on inaccurate gear, and have ended up replacing it. You can avoid repeating those mistakes by finding out where and how they got their better things. Don't rush out and order junk from a catalog just because it looks "pretty good" and is readily available. RESEARCH, learn what is right, and make the effort to do things right the first time. You won't regret it trust me. You will find that the Waffen SS gear is more expensive then the l
Can I keep my beard or mustache?
The simple answer is no. Except if you are doing a dedicated Kriegsmarine U-boat impression with the 12th U-boat Flotilla U-181. Soldiers generally shave once a day. Professional soldiers do not appear with beards and mustaches. Units ensure that soldiers maintain cleanliness at all times as a matter of personal hygiene; part of that routine is a daily shave. While no one would have expected the soldier to shave while bullets were flying, or in our case while caps are blowing, but part of the "after operations" cleanup would have been a return to normal standards. Again, while some folks would find the gruff, unshaven look "manly," A few day stubble is considered acceptable while in the field during tacticals.
Why would anyone want to re-enact Germans?
We get this question a lot. The fact is without German units to portray the "enemy" how well could a