Introduced late in WWII, the "Kriegsmodell" (War Model) 98k was designed for easier and faster production, increasing the number of stamped components while eliminating some features. This particular 98 was produced in the "t" suffix range, placing it very late in the war. Fitted with a hooded blade front and tangent rear sight, with "Mod.98/bnz45" on the receiver ring. Matching numbers are present on the bolt. Smooth pistol grip stock with a laminated hand guard and a cupped steel buttplate. The proof stamps on the right side of the stock are partially covered by a brass plaque, which is engraved "CAPTURED BY/11th ARMORED/AT/LINZ, AUSTRIA/1945/FROM JOHNNY TO AL". Having arrived at Normandy in December of 1944, the 11th Armored Division fought it's way through Belgium, through Germany, and into Austria, liberating the Mauthausen Concentration Camp 4 days prior to the formal end of the war in Europe. To get to Mauthausen, as well as connect with the Soviet Army, the 11th needed to fight their way past Linz; while not specifically noted, this rifle was likely taken as a trophy during the advance. Neither Johnny nor Al have been positively identified.
Excellent, with 90% plus original phosphate finish, showing some areas of brown or lighter gray patina, mild spotting and light handling marks. The blued bolt components retain 85% of the original finish, showing bright wear and mild handling marks. The stock is very fine, with some dents and scuffs. Mechanically excellent.
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