This is a perfect, original Austrian shovel with German carrier. The shovel was found in Bulgaria and used in Bulgarian army during the WWI and WWII. As a German ally the country was supplied almost entirely with German and Austrian equipment. Such is the case with these shovels – before the WWI Bulgaria ordered army shovels made in Austria and German leather carriers for them. After the wars shovels were kept as iron rations in a military store house where their metal parts were covered with some kind of black pitch, obviously for better preservation.
The shovel here is made by the Austrian company "Bleckmann Murzzuschlag", as shown at the steel stamp where we also see the year of production - 1915. This instrument was part of Bulgarian Royal army equipment, that's why stamped with the royal sign of Kingdom of Bulgaria. The oxidized metal part is of its original top cover. At some places only are seen black spots of the conservation pitch that could be easily cleaned.
In 1862, in Muerzzuschlag Johann Heinrich Bleckmann had created the Phoenix steel plants and built up a company of worldwide reputation in the 19th century. During the WWI it was involved and worked for producing military tools and shovels. After the war Bleckmann made moguls and engines. In 1924 he was joined by Schoeller fabrics and the company merged to the Schoeller-Bleckmann Stahlwerke AG.
On the wooden part of this particular shovel can be noticed a stamp indicating the year: "1915". At the upper end of the shovel's wooden handle can be noticed dot-like traces placed at a one-centimeter distance. These marks are typical for the shovel models of the beginning of 20th c. By means of their help the precise size of the trenches that were to be dug out is defined.
Shovel completes with original leather carrier made , manufactured in Germany. There were two main German models – one is to attach the shovel to the haversack with the handle pointing upward; the other one is to suspend the shovel on the soldier’s belt with handle downwards (we have both models on stock). The leather case here is of second type. Marked by Artillery Workshop Dresden -"AWDR. 18 16" and the German factory - "Ernst Scherrler Chemnitz 1916".
Shovel measures: 20,5 inches / 52 cm
All in authentic, GREAT condition! Unique almost century old army equipment that could be used for another 100 years !