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These "custom" EK documents are amazing, I can see how one could become obsessed with them. I have to disagree with the notion that there was no societal pressure to join the HJ, as my own family can attest to the contrary. The pressures to conform in a fascist state are all-pervasive and should not be dismissed.

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Chip   

Notice the overwriting on the year of the document. I also noticed that the NCO lace on the cuff had disappeared and the buttons from the earlier Swedish cuff were also gone. So, this must have been a rework of the original art for a subsequent printing in 1917.

Chip

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Hi,

Thanks Chip. do you know who owns this one?

I have seen the same style/picture but with different wording as a Generic/non unit specific Annerkennungs Urkunde. I think it was to the 73rd I.R.

I guess units could order it with whatever text they wanted.

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Chip   

Chris,

I wish I could remember who showed it, but I lifted it off of the Great War Forum a year or two ago. I went back to check my posts, but I have not been able to locate it yet.

Chip

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Chip   

Chris,

OK, I found it. Funny, you made several posts to this thread. A mind is a terrible thing to lose! :D The person who posted the document is Hinrich in Ostfriesland, who hosts this website - http://www.forum14-18.de/

Here is a further description of the history of this EK winner. "Johann Gruben was born in 1896 and joined the army in 1915. He got his training as a pioneer in the Ersatz Bataillon 35, which sent him off to Sturmbataillon 5. Verdun (May 1916 to March 1918), the "Gro?e Schlacht in Frankreich" (March-April 1918) and again Verdun (June-September 1918) were the locations, he was fighting with the Sturmbataillon Rohr. So, the date he was awarded the EKII is the Verdun period 1918 (in German= Stellungsk?mpfe vor Verdun), just before the "Gro?e Schlacht". On September 29th 1918 he was reported missing on hill 304 near Malancourt. He came back from captivity at the end of July 1919."

Chip

Edited by Chip

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This group was sold by Detlev, who kindly forwarded my begging letter to the buyer, who in turn sold it on to me. A bit of a round about way and the end price was somewhat hefty, but it was a have to have...

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I like that "awarded by ME" wound badge. :speechless1:

Also the Hessian Military Medical Cross rather than the usual General Decoration for Bravery is unexpected. :Cat-Scratch:

Now what was so exciting about this unit, anyway? :rolleyes:

:cheeky:

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Now what was so exciting about this unit, anyway? :rolleyes:

:cheeky:

Hi,

It was basically THE Sturm-Bataillon of the war. The Nr. 5 is because it was attached to the 5. Armee not because it is simply Nr.5 in a long list of others.

Rohr took over the Abt in 1915, turned it into a Bataillon, developed assault tactics with combined arms (Minenwerfer, Infantry canon, pioniers, flame throwers etc) and perfected these at verdun. Then a series of Sturm Bataillon for the other armies were created based on what Rohr had done in his own unit.

The men of Rohr rotated to the front for fighting, then to the rear to train other troops throughout 1916, beginning of 17, training many other units as assault troops and at the same time involved in really desperate fighting at verdun.

Towards the end of 1917, through 18 there were in heavy action (from Feb 18 as part of the 18. Armee for the German offensive. Then when thinngs began to collapse and the war came to an end they were whisked away to guard the Kaisers HQ.

Not only a nice print, but I would say maybe the elitest unit of the war? Being only Bataillon size (although Bataillon Rohr was a bit bigger than the other Sturm-bataillons) they are as rare as tits on a bull.

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I like that "awarded by ME" wound badge. :speechless1:

I'm not sure about Prussia (though I suspect Bavarian regulations mirrored Prussian ones), but Bavarian 1918 regulations state that the Wound Badge was an Abzeichen, not an Auszeichnung; thus, it wouldn't be an imperial or royal prerogative to award the badge. The regulations state that for soldiers in combat units, the award is to be made by the next highest superior with the disciplinary authority of at least a regimental commander:

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Technically, "verliehen durch" I suppose could mean "awarded through [on behalf of the Kaiser/King]", and the regulations would say "verliehen von" if they really meant purely "awarded by...", but given the clarification that it was a badge and not a decoration, I think docs could go either way.

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I'm not sure about Prussia (though I suspect Bavarian regulations mirrored Prussian ones), but Bavarian 1918 regulations state that the Wound Badge was an Abzeichen, not an Auszeichnung; thus, it wouldn't be an imperial or royal prerogative to award the badge. The regulations state that for soldiers in combat units, the award is to be made by the next highest superior with the disciplinary authority of at least a regimental commander:

That is correct,

It is like the Infantry assault and Panzer assault of the next war, if you had the points, the award was automatic and the regt commander could award it.

Ditto for wounds, it was, for want of a better expression, a clear cut thing... If you bledd, you get one.

It is sooooooo sad that they do not have the date of the wound... From the docs we see that he was there from at least May 1917 till the end. From the Sanit?ts Kreuz that he was in the 5. Sturm Kompagnie.

Assuming that units seldom give awards to the newly arrived, I am guessing that he was there quite a bit longer, especially as (have to hit the books here, I am running on memmory) the 5. Komp was formed in early 1916 from the Park-Kompagnie.

So I am guessing that old Schott took part in quite a bit of fighting at Verdun.

Best

Chris

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Thanks to everyone for posting these great documents. What eye-candy!

In addition to drooling over them, I have scribbled the unit and personnel information down and entered the info in my timelines and storm unit rosters. So far only my Garde=Reserve=Pionier=Regiment (Flammenwerfer) is of any size (app. 1200 men), but "great oaks from little chestnuts grow".

If Daniel Murphy is still tuned in, can I ask you to clarify the info on your neat EK II document. (My eyes are a bit dodgy.) It was "Grenadier Gustav Gron"? My grasp of his last name is debatable.

Additionally, reading signatures is often a real bear. Was the CO a Major Gentle? Again, the last letters in particular are debatable. Very few of the officers of these units were "regular" line officers, and the research tools like Ranglisten are usually almost useless. Willi Rohr, however, had a career in line units and can be traced. By the way (someone asked), I believe that he died in 1926, at quite a young age.

Bob Lembke

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Chip   

Chris,

Have you written the seller to get the particulars? The are too small to see on the webpage. I have asked, but have not gotten a reply yet.

Chip

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