Original German WWII Kriegsmarine Minesweeper War Badge by Rudolf Karneth of Gablonz
Original Item: Only One Available. This is a very nice example of the German WWII Kriegsmarine Minesweeper War Badge, made by prolific manufacturer Rudolf Karneth. The company's R. K. initials are on the back of the award at the top of the "water splash". The company was based in Gablonz, which today is Jablonec nad Nisou in the Czech Republic. During WWII it was considered part of the "Sudetenland",and after the war most of the German population was expelled.
The badge is in very good condition, with a functioning pin back, and the silvering on the central portion still retained very well. It also still has much of the gold wash on the outside wreath, something we rarely see! The medal itself is constructed of tombak. The front design consists of an oval oak leaf wreath, topped by a Wehrmacht eagle clutching a mobile swas (hook cross), with a central depiction of an exploding mine on top of detailed waves. The reverse is solid, with a standard pinback attachment.
A very nice example of a hard to find award!
The Minesweeper War Badge or Minesweepers, Sub-Chasers and Escort-Vessel War Badge (Kriegsabzeichen für Minensuch-, U-Boot-Jagd- und Sicherungsverbände) was instituted on August 31, 1941 by Kriegsmarine leader Grossadmiral Erich Raeder. The purpose of this award was to recognize the achievement and experience of the sailors on the German Navy’s minesweeper vessels. In this unnerving duty, sailors faced exposure to the elements as well as constant danger from mines, submarines, and airplanes. The Minesweeper Badge features a representation of an exploding sea mine, surrounded by a wreath and surmounted by the German national eagle and swas emblem. It was designed by Otto Placzek and was made in tombak and zinc, with most later examples being the zinc type. The award could be ordered by leaders of minesweeper boats, patrol boats, and special units, and by superior Kriegsmarine commands. To qualify for this badge, a sailor had to make three operational sorties, be wounded on a sortie, show exemplary conduct over a six-mionth period, participate in an especially dangerous mission, serve on escort duty for 25 days or more, or be on a ship that was sunk by enemy action- the badge could be awarded posthumously.
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