Skip to content

Kaiserliche Schutztruppen G98 – for the German Camel Corps

Cool Forgotten Weapons merch!

Germany established their colony of German South West Africa (Deutsch-Südwestafrika, now Namibia) in 1884, as part of its late attempt to become a colonial power to rival the United Kingdom. The soldiers deployed to protect German interests t here were the Kaiserliche Schutztruppen, and they were few in number and armed with a variety of rifles. Most had Mauser 1871 Jager rifles, single shot black powder arms. The best off, however, were outfitted with new Mauser 98 rifles when the German military adopted the G98. A special batch was made for these colonial troops, with a few distinctive features – a bent bolt handle and sights calibrated down to 200m. And yes – they were used by troops mounted on camels!

When World War One broke out, the fighting in Namibia ended fairly quickly, with the German forces soundly defeated by South Africans under General Jan Smuts in the summer of 1915. Fighting in the other German colonies (especially German East Africa, now Tanzania) would last much longer.

A slight correct to the video: 10,000 of these rifles were actually in German South West Africa by 1908, but 8,000 of them were destroyed by the German forces prior to surrendering in 1915. The German armed force was small, but extra troops had been deployed to the area in response to the Herero Wars in 1904, and they left their rifles behind when they returned to Germany afterwards.

If you enjoy Forgotten Weapons, check out its sister channel, InRangeTV!

Leave a Reply