E. Reitz Uniformwerke
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Some documents related to the E.Reitz Uniformwerke
Legitimation card ( Arbeitsausweiss or Werkpas )
All employees working in one of the many factories of the E.Reitz Uniformwerke had to be in the possesion of their legitimation card or "Arbeitsausweis" in German "Werkpas" in Dutch.
On the left is the legitimation card of Eulalie Huys who worked at the E.Reitz factory in Gent. She had the employee number 138 and probably wore an armband with the same number. On the right is the legitimation card of Josée Jacobs, emloyee number 16 of werk II, which is the factory in Merksem. On the back of the card are stamps with the date until when the card is valid. And they are signed by the "Personalleiter". Nowadays we would call him the Human Resource Manager. For july and august 1944, this was Herr Ritter and for september 1944 it was Herr Richter. Of interest is to know that Antwerp was liberated on september 4th 1944. But the front line was the Albert Canal ! So merksem wasn't liberated untill a month later. Of course all work in the factory ceased as of that date. Although Josée's card remained valid for work untill the end of september...
Each factory that want's to do a lot of business, has to put itself on the market. The Reitz brothers already paid for advertisements in the "Uniformen Market" magazine in the early years of the war. At that time their uniform factory was still located in Wuppertal and the logo was still E. & W. Reitz - Uniformwerk.
The E & W Reitz - Uniformwerk logo in an edition of Waffenjournal
When Erich Reitz became the only manager of the factory, he changed the logo and he also paid for advertisements in the local press. On the right the logo of the E.Reitz uniformwerke is very prominent in this advertisement in DeVlag magazine 1943.
Erich Reitz was very concerned of his image and the propaganda value of his factory. One of the things he intended to do was to make the working conditions for his employees better of that of similar employees working for other factories in the Antwerp area. So it happened that during the night shift music was played for the workers, plants were put on the work floor and hot soup was available during lunch break. When an employee came to work on his anniversary, he or she received a propaganda booklet from the famous Hoffmann series. These booklets portrayed various aspects of Hitler, all of course in a very optimistic and propaganda like way. On the first page of such a booklet a dedication was attached, bearing the signature of Erich Reitz.
When someone married, the newly wed couple received a Dutch version of Mein Kamp, bearing a hand written dedication and an original signature of Erich Reitz himself.
A female stitcher working in the Reitz factory wearing her armband.