WW1 TURKISH/OTTOMAN EMPIRE PILOTS BADGE
The Turkish Army Pilot's badge was fashioned after German and Austrian qualification badges of the period. Established in 1914 by a French Officer, the Turkish Air Force came under the command of a German officer, Erich Sarno, after the outbreak of hostilities, and grew steadily during the war years thanks to an influx of German planes and pilots, as well as concerted efforts to train Ottoman pilots and observers. There was also a Navy Pilot and Observer's badge, of a slightly different design.The Turkish military did not have an Air Force, but had aviation units in both the Army & Navy. When WW1 broke out, Turkey had fewer than a dozen aircraft. Germany provided aircraft to Turkey and it’s aircraft numbers peeked at 90 in late 1916. There are various makers of the Pilots Badge with examples being made in Turkey (most of them of poor quality) and better examples made in Germany by the better known makers such as Maybauer.
This badge is all original and bears the German makers mark of MAYBAUER on the back. It is in excellent condition with the gilt finish remaining to the wreath and the blackened ribbon and wings with a brass star and moon emblem (Which is common with these badges) and has patina all over the badge, which gives it an appealing old look. On the back the pin is in a banjo shape with a barrel hinge and a C catch. Overall it’s Excellent.