MEXICAN REVOLUTION ERA GERMAN ARMS DEALER’S ADVERTISING
PAPERWEIGHT PICTURING A MGO8 MAXIM MACHINE GUN – UNIQUE
Recently surfaced from a very old collection of material
related to the Mexican Revolution of the early 20th
Century, this bakelite paperweight featuring a brass
relief of the famous MG08 Maxim Machine Gun was an
advertising “gimme” from that historic period.
The barrel of the
machine gun is etched with the name “MILIMEX”, probably
the name of the parent company in Mexico. The side of
the paperweight is embossed with the name of the dealer
or salesman and his address in Mexico City.
The arms trade
into Mexico, both legitimate and clandestine, to the
government and all the of the factions in rebellion was
a booming business in the first two decades of the 20th
Century, attracting representatives from around the
world, including Asia, Europe and North America.
The name of the
dealer, Bruno von Rosendal, is obviously German which
coincides with the manufacture of the MG08 Machine Gun
and the known supplies of arms that involved German
manufacturers and shipping companies. The most famous
of these shipments became known as the “Ypiranga
Incident”, occurring in 1914 when a steamer of German
registry carrying a consignment of arms destined for the
Mexican Federal Government was detained in Vera Cruz by
U.S. troops who had only recently occupied the city.
The arms were eventually delivered to the Mexican
government, including twenty “rapid fire” machine guns,
the make of the guns not specified in the records.
Nonetheless, the Maxim was a well respected machine gun
of the era and that one is featured on this paperweight
would have made an impressive statement about the
dealer’s ability to deliver modern arms to the
measuring 5 ¼” long, 2 ¾” wide and ¾” thick, is made of
black bakelite, an early form of plastic. The figure of
the Maxim Gun is fashioned from 1/8” thick brass plate
and there is a considerable amount of detail
highlighting the features of the gun.
definitely a one-of-a-kind piece from the exciting
period along the U.S. – Mexican Border, and one that
would fit nicely into a Mexican Punitive Expedition or
Mexican Revolution collection.