Perhaps the most sought after antiques are WWII antiques. A WWII antique can be defined as anything relating to World War II that is authentic in nature and/or used during the war. WWII was a turning point in our nation’s history and left us with a very broad range of collectibles to choose from. Medals, badges, uniforms, weaponry, photographs, planes and even large artillery are considered to be valuable from this time period especially if they are in good condition. Once reference material became available in the 1960’s, collectors were able to place value on their artifacts and their collections gained financial value. This is when the hobby really took off.

WWII Antique Weapons

Antique weapons have always been popular collectibles.  WWII antique weapons have become some of the most valuable.  The term weapon refers to wwii-antiquesany WWII item that can be used in combat.  In most cases people assume we are only talking about guns but there are many other items that are considered to be great antique weapons of WWII.  Some of these items include:

  • WWII handguns
  • WWII antique Rifles
  • WWII Anti-Tank Equipment
  • WWII Howitzers
  • WWII Rifles

We could honestly add some larger items to this list, but the fact is, you should come and visit The Armed Forces History Museum and see them all first hand in the Firearms & Ordance exhibit.

WWII Antique Firearms

Some of the most popular antiques of WWII are hand guns.  In some cases they have become so popular that companies have created life-like items that are not made to fire. Authentic antique WWII guns are not easy to find and can be very expensive.  The good thing is antique gun collectors have a lot of weapons to choose from. Here is a list of some of the most sought after antique guns of WWII.

  • Browning M1917wwii-antique
  • Browning M1918 (BAR)
  • Browning M1919
  • Browning M2HB
  • Colt M1911
  • Colt M1903 Pocket Hammerless
  • Enfield Rifle
  • French 75mm
  • Ithaca M37 Featherlight
  • Johnson M1941 LMG
  • Lahti L-39
  • Lebel Model 1886
  • M1 Carbine, .30 Cal
  • M1 Garand, .30 Cal
  • M1 / M1A1 Flamethrower
  • M1 Thompson (Tommy Gun)
  • M1917 Enfield (American Enfield)
  • M2 (M2-2) Flamethrower
  • M3A1 “Grease Gun”
  • Marlin M1917/M1918
  • Reising Model 50 Submachine Gun
  • Smith & Wesson 0.38/200 Revolver
  • Smith & Wesson Model 67
  • Springfield M1903
  • UD M’42 Submachine Gun

The majority of the items listed above, and countless others, can be viewed at The Armed Forces History Museum in the Firearms and Ordnance exhibit.

WWII Antique Helmets and Head Gear

Antique helmets and head gear of WWII are also great collectibles.  The value in most cases depends on the condition they are in.  Paint loss, flaking and other characteristics can have a great affect on what a particular helmet is worth.  There are so many different kinds of WWII helmets worn during the war it is almost impossible to list all of them.  The most popular Antique helmet is the WWII US Army M-1 Fixed Bale Helmet.  These helmets make great collectibles and are also turning into incredible investments.

WWII Antique Posters

WWII posters are very hard to find in good condition.  This has made them amazing collectibles and wonderful investments.  WWII Antique posters are becoming even more popular as they can be framed and placed on display for others to see.  Each WWII antique poster has its own personal story to tell.  Finding authentic posters in good condition are getting harder and harder to find.  WWII posters range from recruiting posters to those selling war bonds. Each one is unique in its own way.

Please come and visit the Armed Forces History Museum to see all the WWII antique items that we have on display.


2 Responses to WWII Antiques

  1. Charles Mitchell says:

    My grandfather was a Merchant Marine officier in WWII. When they were at a port he got off the boat and walked onto a battlefield and collected a German Officier’s bayonet. I would like to authenicate the bayonet to see if I should have it insured.
    The bayonet is 26in long made of steel with what looks like a pewter handle.
    On the handle there is a D 114.
    On the site line there are the numbers 456281
    The sheeth is 21in long
    On the sheeth the numbers are harder to read but it looks like 38914
    The blade is 20.25in long, in the shape of an x and has no visable numbers, only a small manufacturers mark on the bottom near the handle
    Any infomation you can provide my family on this item would be apperciated

    • alon2392 says:

      Hi Charles- at this time AFMM is not able to appraise items and collections. Please contact the American Society of Appraiser in Washington, D.C. at 1-800-272-8258 or

      If we can help you with anything else, please let us know. Thank you for your comment.

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