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christerd

My Finnish Collection 1918-1945

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Since about 8000 Swedish fought along their Finnish comrades in the winter war , there is natural that some medals was made in Sweden to remember the war and maybe more to honor the almost forgotten ones , the civilians and the children.

Here is a Heavy Bronce table medal made in Sweden and given to those who among other things helped children from Finnland during the conflict .

Although is not Finnish I think it is connected to a collection of Finnish awards during the war years

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And the backside of this medal , lettering in Latin !

Anyone skilled in Latin ? .... I think it means something like together humanity in memory for Finnland ?

ahh

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This plaque was given to the volunteers from Sweden , the text on the fron is in Swedish and says approx

For Nordic Freedom and Swedens Glory . These plaque was awarded about 8000 times

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And the backside with the text : Swedish Voluntary Force , War Service Finnland 1940

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And here is the other version of the plaque , this is more rare then the first one.

These was probably awarded in numbers like 1000-2000.

The front is the same as the former but the on the backside the text reads : Work for Swedish Voluntary Force 1939-1940

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After the war in January 1945 come a new medal from Finland for outstanding service in charitable activities.

it is a quite simple one with a woman and a child on the front and the words Pro Benignitate Humana on the back-

worn on a blue ribbon with white stripe in the middle , you can sometimes see this medal in Swedish medal bars ,

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I showed earlier in this thread a winter war medal awarded to a Lotta , a female organisation 1920-1944

Here is one of the two special made awards for Lotta Svärd members : The Lotta Svärd medal of merit it was awarded about 2600 times so its quite rare to find, the Cross of merit wich is the higher grade is even rarer only about 400 was ever awarded...

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This is a membership badge for Lotta Svärd, these where made in Silver and are numbered, I don´t know if there is any exicisting archive in Finalnd covering these badges but at least you can see by the silver marks from what year it is .

this badge is marked E6 wich means 1934 .and number 62768 about 200 000 woman was member at the Lotta Svärd in 1944, 287 died during service among them 113 KIA.

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There was also a smaller badge for 10 years of membership and another one for 20 years .

Both made in silver and numbered , here is the 10 year compared with the ordinary badge

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And the back , the 10 years badge is numbered 29 962 but no silver year marking so I cant say how old it is more than it should be between 1930 , earliest awarded and 1944

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Here is a empty memebership card for the badge , it´s printed in October 1941 and would probably been used with a photo, I have never seen a used one.

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This card was membership No 355 to Marjatta Topivaara in village Lohja ,

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Super collection !

Finland certainly had some of the most attractive designs for their awards. They certainly deserve more appreciation by collectors.

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A picture of Lotta Svärd members , at least one in the front row has the scarce Merit medal , and all has the bade on the neck collar

some othe small badges are for different duties and merits. They look rather tough don´t they ?

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Thanks Gordon , I totally agree with you the Finnish awards are underrated I think , probably because the language ? and lack of good reference littrature...

Now some ribbon bars !

First out is the most common ones for a soldier during winter war and maybe war 1941-1944

First a single winter war with swords for front duty

Then a typical one Liberty Cross 4th class and Winter war medal

next is one is trickier since the ribbon dont tell you when the crosses were awarded

from the right : Winter war medal wo swords ( means mostly behind front duty) Liberty Cross 4th class w swords could be 1939 but I guess 1941 , and Liberty Cross 3rd class 1941 probably a captain who was uniform 1939 but didn´t saw any action then leutnant/Captain in 1941 and partcipated in fighting.

A real nightmare sometimes to read this ribbon bars without the real awards :cheeky: But sometimes you can guess quite well

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This pic is more to show you the different types of Finnish ribbon bars

On older bars you can often see the with screws and nuts but in the period 1939-1944 these are the types you will most see

top , just sewn together and made to sewn on the uniform (This ribbon bar was given to a Swedish volunteer , he had the Swedish Civil Defence merit + Swedish Red cross merit + Liberty Cross 4th cl + Winter war medal )

second is the normal one with a needle pin back

third is a high quality type with a more broad needle that is not sharp.

The small devices for awards were often sewn in place because the small fasteners broke (sometimes even glued ! )

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Here is four different ribbon bars all showing a different story ....

At the bottom a two award bar with Liberty Cross 4th class civilan and winter war medal wo swords

could be anyone working behind lines during the winter war .

Next is a first row of two to someone well decorated a Liberty Cross 4th 1941 or 1939 , then a 4th class oakleaf 1941 and then a 3rd class cross. He would probably have a second row with some bravery medal, Winter war and maybe even a 1918 medal ?

third from bottom is a half size type of bar often reffered to as Navy bar , this guy was very well decorated and probably quite high ranking in Finlands rather small navy .

He has the winter war wo swords , Liberty Cross 4th 1941 (I guess) Liberty Cross 3rd class 1941 and Liberty Cross 3rd class oakleafs

1941 wich is a real high decoration , meaning that he got two 3rd classes. There was only 1394 awarded in this class.

I have the names of 152 recipients so far.

The last on top is also a officer in both winter war and 1941-44 war probaly a Captain or Major even LeutCol could look like this .

from the end : Winter war med, Bravery 2nd class 1939 ? ,Liberty Cross 4th class w oakleafs (could mean that he got 1939 cross and later 1941 cross , and the 3rd class 1941 ( even these were quite scarce about 9000 awarded)

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Now here is some more colourfull ones :)

At the bottom a Lotta Svärd ribbon bar wich is very unusual

Liberty Cross 4th class non fighter 1939 ? Order of the white Rose Knight (a civilian award ) Lotta Svärd merit Cross (400 awarded) , and winter war
The liberty cross could mean that she was wounded during war. The 4th class was often awarded to wounded soldiers.


Next one is a typical behind the front worker , maybe in air raid service or firefighting
Bravery medal 1st class, Air Raid service , medal for homefront duties , and winter war.

The last one we can place in unit thanks to the third ribbon , Finland has a lot of Unit medals , divisions , regiments and likely

Here we see first a Bravery medal ´since there is no 1939-40 medal must be a 1941 , then the com medal for 1941-45 awarded in mid fifties
and the Coastal artillery medal , last the blue cross a veteran medal given in the sixties to veterans.

Edited by christerd

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Here a n rather unusual style of ribbon bar , it looks almost american .

First the medal for war 1941-45, then medal for Olympic games 1952 , Civil defence medal and last a Swedish Order of the Sword ?

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And the front of the ribbon bar

Edited by christerd

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