Original German WWII Panzer Medal and Insignia Grouping with EKII, Panzer Assault Badge & War Merit Medal
Original Items: Only One Set Available. This is a very nice collection of German WWII Insignia & Awards, which was brought back from the European theater by a USGI after the war was concluded. It includes some lovely Luftwaffe Insignia, including two Luftwaffe Eagles, a Paratrooper Badge, and some Sergeant chevrons. There are also three medals: An Iron Cross 2nd Class 1914, an Iron Cross 2nd Class 1939, and an Eastern Front Medal.
This lovely set includes:
- One German WWII Iron Cross 2nd Class 1939 (Eisernes Kreuz II. Klasse 1939) with Ribbon. This fine example is in very good condition, with an excellent condition rayon tri-color ribbon.
- One German WWII Silver Grade Panzer Assault Tank Badge by A. D. Schwerdt of Stuttgart. This example is a "semi hollow" back, and still retains much of the original silvering. It has however had the pin break off at the hinge and the clip is broken off as well. Just below the hinge is the Intertwined A S in a Triangle logo of A. D. Schwerdt of Stuttgart.
- One German WWII 1939 War Merit Medal (Kriegsverdienstmedaille), complete with the original ribbon, in very good condition. There is a bit of oxidation on the back, but it has only caused discoloration.
- One German WWII Panzer Bullion Embroidered Breast Eagle. In excellent condition, fully hand embroidered. Features silver bullion thread retained by silver thread. This has black fabric backing, which could be a uniform cutout. It does look to have been attached to a uniform at one point.
- One German WWII Panzer Bevo Embroidered Breast Eagle. In very good condition, it features a white eagle embroidered on a black background. The edges are somewhat frayed, so we cannot tell if it was just cut out of the backing, or whether it was cut off a uniform.
- One Set of German WWII Tropical Pith Helmet Badges. The set consists of the correct Wehrmacht Shield and National Tri-color badges, made of painted non-magnetic white metal. These are the hollow back versions, and both still have all three attachment clips present.
- One German WWII Bevo Eagle Insignia. Offered in very good condition, this eagle is the blue green color used on caps throughout the war.
A wonderful totally genuine grouping perfect for the WWII Panzer German collector.
There is no more iconic German military award than the Iron Cross. The long history of this order began during the Napoleonic Wars. King Friedrich Wilhelm III of Prussia instituted the “Eisernes Kreuz” (Iron Cross) in March of 1813. The award criteria changed somewhat with time, but generally speaking, Iron Crosses could be awarded for individual acts of bravery, or for leadership achievements on the battlefield.
The final reinstitution of the cross came in 1939. For this version, the front of the core for both grades bore a swas and the date 1939. The oak leaves, crown and royal initials were removed from the reverse, with only the date 1813 remaining as a reminder of the legacy of this award. In WWII, hundreds of thousands of Iron Cross First Class awards were bestowed, and four and a half million Iron Cross Second Class awards. Iron Crosses were made by a large number of authorized manufacturers. Some variants of these awards were mass produced in huge numbers. Others were made in very limited quantities.
Please also note the edge seam for authentication, which is not present on reproductions. Iron crosses were commonly constructed from an iron core sandwiched in a surrounding two part silver frame, normally the seam of these two silver parts is visible around the edge of the cross as is seen on this fine example.
The War Merit Medal (Kriegsverdienstmedaille) was a World War II German military decoration awarded to recognize outstanding service by civilians in relation to the war effort. It was instituted on 19 August 1940 and usually awarded to those workers in factories who significantly exceeded work quotas. The War Merit Medal was awarded only to Germans and non-Germans civilians, to men and women. An estimated 4.9 million medals were awarded by the end of the war in Europe. It was closely related to the War Merit Cross, which could be awarded to military personnel and civilians alike for outstanding service to the war effort.
The medal was designed by Professor Richard Klein of Munich. It was a circular bronze award bearing the design of the War Merit Cross on the front (obverse), and the inscription "For War Merit 1939" (Für Kriegsverdienst) on the reverse side. It was suspended from a ribbon colored similar to the War Merit Cross, except for a thin red vertical strip added to the center of the black portion. When worn, it was either as a medal ribbon bar above the left breast pocket (soldiers who had earned the medal as civilians could wear it on their uniform), or with the ribbon only through the second buttonhole of a jacket. Since this was a non-combat award, the medal never incorporated swords. After 15 May, 1943, the award of this medal to foreigners was superseded by the Medal of Merit of the Order of the German Eagle.
The Panzer Badge (Panzerkampfabzeichen) was a World War II German military decoration awarded troops in armored divisions. The Panzer Badge was introduced on 20 December 1939, in order to recognize the achievements of Panzer personnel who took part in armored assaults. It was designed by the Berlin firm of Wilhelm Ernst Peekhaus, and was instituted by order of Generaloberst Walther von Brauchitsch. On 6 June 1940, a separate class of the badge, in Bronze, was added in order to recognize the crews of armored vehicles other than tanks. The award document that came with it was the common type that had the particulars of the recipient (rank, name) and the authorizing signature of an officer. The Panzer Badge was worn on the left tunic pocket. The bronze version of the Panzer Badge was authorized for armored personnel and Panzer grenadier units equipped with armored vehicles. It was also to be presented to members of armored reconnaissance groups and rifle battalions of Panzer divisions. The authorization of these badges was usually done at a regimental or divisional level.
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