Original U.S. WWI US Marine Corps Rim Numbered Good Conduct Medal and Victory Medal With Aviation Clasp and Commendation Star Grouping - 6 Items
Original Items: Only One Grouping of 6 Available. This is a lovely little American Expeditionary Forces, WWI Medal and Insignia grouping. The tradition of awarding medals to America’s military men and women dates to the American Revolution. On Aug. 7, 1782, General George Washington established the first authorized US military decoration—the Badge of Military Merit. It was a piece of cloth in the shape of a heart. The nation used it to recognize unusual gallantry or extraordinary fidelity.
The medals in this collection:
- U.S. WWI Victory Medal With Aviation Clasp and Navy Commendation Star: This is a lovely, worn condition US WWI Victory Medal which features a total of 1 Battle Clasp and 1 Star. The World War I Victory Medal (known prior to establishment of the World War II Victory Medal in 1945 simply as the Victory Medal) was a United States service medal designed by James Earle Fraser of New York City under the direction of the Commission of Fine Arts.
Award of a common allied service medal was recommended by an inter-allied committee in March 1919. Each allied nation would design a 'Victory Medal' for award to their military personnel, all issues having certain common features, including a winged figure of victory on the obverse and the same ribbon.
The Victory Medal was originally intended to be established by an act of Congress. The bill authorizing the medal never passed, however, thus leaving the military departments to establish it through general orders. The War Department published orders in April 1919, and the Navy in June of the same year.
The front of the bronze medal features a winged Victory holding a shield and sword on the front. The back of the bronze medal features "The Great War For Civilization" in all capital letters curved along the top of the medal. Curved along the bottom of the back of the medal are six stars, three on either side of the center column of seven staffs wrapped in a cord.
The top of the staff has a round ball on top and is winged on the side. The staff is on top of a shield that says "U" on the left side of the staff and "S" on the right side of the staff. On left side of the staff it lists one World War I Allied country per line: France, Italy, Serbia, Japan, Montenegro, Russia, and Greece. On the right side of the staff the Allied country names read: Great Britain, Belgium, Brazil, Portugal, Rumania (spelled with a U instead of an O as it is spelled now), and China.
The medal itself is in good condition but does exhibit tarnishing. The ribbon is faded, worn and stained but attributes to the beauty of the award.
The Clasp and Device Present:
- Aviation: Service involving flying over the Atlantic Ocean. Awarded between May 25, 1918 and November 11, 1918
- Navy Commendation Star: The Navy Commendation Star to the World War I Victory Medal was authorized to any person who had been commended by the Secretary of the Navy for performance of duty during the First World War. A 3⁄16 inch silver star was worn on the World War I Victory Medal, identical in appearance to the Army's Citation Star. Unlike the Army's version, however, the Navy Commendation Star could not be upgraded to the Silver Star medal.
- WWI Rim Numbered US Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (No. 30836): This is a fantastic rim numbered example of the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal. The Good Conduct Medal is one of the oldest military awards of the United States Armed Forces. The U.S. Navy's variant of the Good Conduct Medal was established in 1869, the Marine Corps version in 1896, the Coast Guard version in 1923, the Army version in 1941, and the Air Force version in 1963; the Air Force Good Conduct Medal was temporarily discontinued from February 2006 to February 2009, followed by its subsequent reinstatement.
The criteria for a Good Conduct Medal are defined by Executive Orders 8809, 9323, and 10444. The Good Conduct Medal, each one specific to one of the five branches of the U.S. Armed Forces, is currently awarded to any active duty enlisted member of the United States military who completes three consecutive years of "honorable and faithful service". Such service implies that a standard enlistment was completed without any non-judicial punishment, disciplinary infractions, or court martial offenses. If a service member commits an offense, the three-year mark "resets" and a service member must perform an additional three years of service without having to be disciplined, before the Good Conduct may be authorized.
During times of war, the Good Conduct Medal may be awarded for one year of faithful service. The Good Conduct Medal may also be awarded posthumously, to any enlisted service member who dies in the line of duty.
The Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal was established on 20 July 1896. The medal was originally a ribbon and medal suspended from a clasp bearing the words "U.S. Marine Corps". The clasp was eliminated after 1935 and the medal has remained unchanged in appearance since that time. Since its inception in 1896, the name of the recipient was engraved by hand on the reverse side of the medal until stamping the name on the medal began during World War II (numbered on the rim) and was done completely by 1951.
Prior to 10 December 1945, four years of honorable creditable enlisted service was required in the Marine Corps for award of the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal. After 10 December 1945, the required period of service was reduced to three years. Since that latter date, members of the Marine Corps must have three consecutive years of honorable and faithful service in order to be eligible for the medal.
In 1953, the Marine Corps adopted bronze and silver 3/16-inch service stars to denote additional awards of the Good Conduct Medal, replacing enlistment bars showing each honorable period of service.
- x2 WWI/WWII Hand Sewn Ribbons:
- Inter-Allied Victory Medal Ribbon: This was an unauthorized device worn by many service members.
- Silver Star: This is either “WWI” or a WWII example. The Silver Star Medal (SSM) is the successor award to the "Citation Star" (3⁄16 silver star) which was established by an Act of Congress on July 9, 1918, during World War I. On July 19, 1932, the Secretary of War approved the conversion of the "Citation Star" to the SSM with the original "Citation Star" incorporated into the center of the medal. Awards of the Silver Star Medal to heroes of World War I is an issue that is - and likely will remain - beyond resolution. The Silver Star was not established as an individual medal until July 19, 1932. At that time, veterans of World War I who had been credited for "gallantry in action" and awarded the medal was, based on specific criteria, authorized to request the issuance of the Silver Star Medal in lieu of the earlier ribbon device.
- USMC “M1912” Marksman Bar: Lovely condition but is a non-engraved type on the reverse.
- WWI Honorable Discharge Lapel Device: Much like the encountered “Ruptured Duck”, this device served the same purpose.
A lovely group of items that come more than ready for further research and display.
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