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Alan

Militär-Dienstauszeichnung / Long Service Awards

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Hello Everyone,

Having nearly finished EK equivalents for Junior Officers,I just need a Saxe-Meiningen Medaille "Für Verdienst im Krieg" mit Krone in Bronze not Zinc (Medal for Merit in War with Crown) if you have one...,

I thought I would try a put together a wee collection of long service awards (not the Landwehr) from the Imperial German States.

This is what I have so far...

Edited by Alan

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Now so far its been pretty straight forward as each state had a fairly distinct design and cypher for their respective award.

The questions I have at the moment pertain to the awards from the Grand Duchy of Hesse-Darmstadt.

Firstly, for each states a standard ribbon was used for each of the 9.12.15 year awards. For example Blue for Prussia, Blue and White for Bavaria etc.

As far as I know Hesse has a Red and White ribbon. The 12 year I have has move of an orangy brown. Is this just simply faded or did Hesse have a different colour between 9 and 12yr awards? I have seen the same color on ribbonbars

How can you tell the difference between a Hessen and a Prussian 9yr as I belive the are both made of Argentan and the crown and inscription appear to be the same. Are they?

As a comparison I have a Hessen and Prussian 12yr. I really can't see a great difference. What are the differences between these states if any in relation to their long service awards?

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Hi,

I tried for a minute or so to see subtle differences in the crown, but cannot....

Hi Chris,

I thought the same thing and came to the same conclusion. There is nothing obvious to me

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Hello Everyone,

Having nearly finished EK equivalents for Junior Officers,I just need a Saxe-Meiningen Medaille "Für Verdienst im Krieg" mit Krone in Bronze not Zinc (Medal for Merit in War with Crown) if you have one...,

I thought I would try a put together a wee collection of long service awards (not the Landwehr) from the Imperial German States.

This is what I have so far...

Dear Alan (or any GMIC friend), during the nazi years the use of these medals on medal bars was restricted to one or two medals, only under certain combinations. In the case of Prussian Extended Service medals, how were officially displayed on medal bars when a soldier had more tan one medal? Do you put only the most senior? Could you put two or three simultaneously?

Thank you very much for your answers.

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If you mean how were Imperial long service awards worn with Third Reich ones-- say an Imperial XV and a Nazi 25 years Treudienstkreuz or Polizei long service award... normally the Imperial one was worn before the Third Reich one.

However here is a former Mecklenburg NCO in the Third Reich Polizei who couldn't decide WHICH way to wear his two long service awards!

Sometimes--with ribbon bars--it is not possible to tell. On this bar, the 1938 25 years Treudienst precedes a plain blue Imperial Prussian/navy long service--but which one WAS it?

In THIS case it is easier to guess-- a plain Prussian/navy long service, 3rd Reich 40 years Treudienst, and another plain Prussian/navy which was certainly a Reserve/Landwehr 2nd Class:

If a regular army/navy long service was earned and then the Imperial NCO went on to earn an LD2, both could be worn--different "time" counted differently.

Quite INCORRECTLY, around 1936, due to a MISTAKEN interpretation of the irrational "TWO Wehrmacht long services" system, some old veterans decided that this meant that THEY could wear two of the OLD "Wehrmacht" long service awards:

That was COMPLETELY WRONG... but quite common.

BTW-- Congratulations on the ZINK SMK, Alan. Far scarcer than the nice chocolate bronze ones. And I've never been able to tell a Hessian from Prussian long service apart from the ribbon, either.

Edited by Rick Research

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Hello Rick.

I was asking about the wearing of the three long service prussian medals for soldiers and NCOs during the imperial years, I wondered if an NCO who had more than one (cross of 15 years and medal of 12 years, or medals of 9 and 12 years, for example) could show them on his medal bar or ribbon bar, Or if there was any restriction as it was in the Third Reich with Wehrmacht Long Service medals (only 2 medals or crosses on a medal or ribbon bar, and only in some combinations).

Thanks.

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In Imperial times not only did a higher grade long service award replace the lower--the lower one had to be returned. The wearer got to keep the award documents only. Just ONE Imperial long service for active duty could be worn--but IF a Reserve/Landwehr award was also earned for separate service, both of those could be worn together.

In the 1920s they did whatever they felt like doing--nobody to stop them!

No, he should NOT be wearing THREE!!!!

Santa Claus here had this photo taken on his 70th birthday in 1932:

You will notice that his IX Medal (upgraded to M1913--he obviously earned the old M1825 brooch in his day) is worn WITH an LD2 M1913 which would be proper--except where on earth did he get an LD2 that was the same size as a IX????? :o

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OK Rick, all is now clear.

Thank you so much.

By the way, in the second photo Santa Claus seems to wear a Militär Ehrenzeichen 2nd Class with non-combattant ribbon, isnt't it? Do you know if it was necessary or mandatory to win the 2nd Class for obtain the 1st Class, like the Iron Cross? I remember seeing medal bars with only the 1st Class cross, but now I'm not sure.

Greetings from Spain.

Edited by Cartaphilus

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No that is the standard General Decoration (Allgemeine Ehrenzeichen) in Silver on the "Red Eagle Order" ribbon--for minor civil servants. I can't read his name correctly on back of the photo to learn what he earned it for, from the Orders Lists.

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BTW-- Congratulations on the ZINK SMK, Alan. Far scarcer than the nice chocolate bronze ones. And I've never been able to tell a Hessian from Prussian long service apart from the ribbon, either.

Thanks Rick, I finally found a nice bronze SMK but wouldn't you know it lost in transit. Hopefully it will turn up.

Also a big thanks for all your work ( and the gnomes ) I've been following the ribbonbar threads for the last wee while and its great to see so many names being attributed.

Edited by Alan

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I have a question I can't find the answer about long service awards:

Smaller German states (Hessen, Mecklenburg, Baden, Hanseatic ...) were part of Prussian army (only kingdoms have their own armies), right? What a member of those smaller states got for his long service - prussian one or their own state one? Who/why/when/how got the long service decorations of those smaller states? It's obvious before 1871, but what after? There are ribbon/medal bars with these smaller states LS decorations that were surely earned after 1871, like the Mecklenburger bar shown in this post by Rick. Was the difference active vs. landwehr service?

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For officers, the Prussian award was given, as all officers in the Prussian Army were considered Prussian officers. This applied to active, reserve and Landwehr officers. Officers of the local Gendarmerie, however, could continue to receive the state award.

For NCOs and enlisted men, as I understand it, it depended on the state. Typically, NCOs and enlisted men in state contingents continued to receive the state award.

But there were exceptions, especially among the smaller states. For example, after 1867 Schwarzburg-Sondershausen only awarded its Dienstauszeichnung to the Gendarmerie, so an NCO in I./IR 71 would receive the Prussian award. But Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt continued to award its Dienstauszeichnung to both the Gendarmerie and to NCOs and men of III./IR 96. But in a further twist, NCOs of I./IR 71 could receive the silver Ehrenmedaille after 12 years' faithful service.

Similarly, Lippe-Detmold dropped its Dienstauszeichnung for NCOs and men after 1867 while Schaumburg-Lippe kept its until 1918.

This is a topic I don't really understand fully, since my focus has been on combat decorations, so I would also welcome any corrections or additional information.

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I have a question...

I can't seem to find mention or even a pic of a 15 year DA for Sachsen-Weimar-Eisenach. Does it exist at all? Does anyone have one to show?

Can anyone help me fill the gap?

Edited by Alan

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                      80,55,30    
On 9/29/2013 at 00:08, Dave Danner said:

For officers, the Prussian award was given, as all officers in the Prussian Army were considered Prussian officers. This applied to active, reserve and Landwehr officers. Officers of the local Gendarmerie, however, could continue to receive the state award.

 

For NCOs and enlisted men, as I understand it, it depended on the state. Typically, NCOs and enlisted men in state contingents continued to receive the state award.

 

But there were exceptions, especially among the smaller states. For example, after 1867 Schwarzburg-Sondershausen only awarded its Dienstauszeichnung to the Gendarmerie, so an NCO in I./IR 71 would receive the Prussian award. But Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt continued to award its Dienstauszeichnung to both the Gendarmerie and to NCOs and men of III./IR 96. But in a further twist, NCOs of I./IR 71 could receive the silver Ehrenmedaille after 12 years' faithful service.

 

Similarly, Lippe-Detmold dropped its Dienstauszeichnung for NCOs and men after 1867 while Schaumburg-Lippe kept its until 1918.

 

This is a topic I don't really understand fully, since my focus has been on combat decorations, so I would also welcome any corrections or additional information.

Loyal Service decorations for NCO and Soldiers award during World War 1(1913-1921)
State Jorg Nummergut   Von Hessenthal    
Anhalt 15,12,9 Gendarmerie only     15,12,9 Gendarmerie Only      
Baden 15, 12, 9       15, 12,  9        
Bavaria 15, 12, 9       15, 12,  9        
Braunschweig   no       no        
Bremen no       no        
Hamburg no       no        
Hessen 15, 12, 9       15, 12, 9        
Hohenzollern no       no        
Lippe-Detmold   no       no        
Schaumberg-Lippe   21, 15, 9 Schnalle(1850-1918)     21, 15, 9 Schnalle(1850-1918)      
Lubeck no       no        
Mecklenburg-Schwerin   15, 12 no  9 year medal?     15, 12, 9 9 not listed but in text of 12 year      
Mecklenburg-Sterlitz   15, 12, 9       15, 12, 9        
Oldenburg 18,12,9 Gendarmerie only     18,12,9 Gendarmerie      
Prussian 15, 12, 9       15, 12, 9        
Reuss 15, 12, 9 Cross/Medal 1917/18     15, 12, 9 Schnalle(1869-1917)   Cross/medal 1917/8  
Sachsen, Kingdom   15, 12, 9       15, 12, 9        
Sachsen-Weimer   15, 12, 9       15, 12, 9        
Sachsen-Altenburg   no       no        
Sachsen-Coburg   no       no        
Sachsen-Meiningen   no       no        
Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt/Sonderhausen   15, 12, 9       15, 12, 9        
Waldeck-Pyrmont   no       no        
Wurttemberg 15, 12, 9       15, 12, 9        
Edited by chuck
corrections

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Did anybody ever give an official answer to Alan's original question??   Other than matching the medal with a different colored ribbon, did Hesse and Prussia use the exact same medals for the 9yr, 12yr, and 15yr Long Service Awards.  I've compared photos of Hesse and Prussian Long Service Awards and I can't seem to tell a difference between them.

Edited by camelneck

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The crowns are slightly different, although you would have to look hard to tell.  The dimensions and weights are slightly different as well, but again not by much. According to Nimmergut:

Preußen:
D1 - Kupfer vergoldet, 36,0 x 35,0 mm, 12,44 g
D2 - Bronze rötlich, 30,0 mm, 14,13 g
D3 - Argentan, 30,0 mm, 14,9 g

Hessen:
HD1 - Weißmetall vergoldet, 35,0 x 34,5 mm, 11,57 g
HD2 - Bronze hell, 30,0 mm, 15,07 g
HD3 - Argentan/Neusilber, 30,0 mm, 14,49 g

These may be from examples which Nimmergut or others weighed and measured, so there could still be variations depending on the maker or even depending on wear.  If someone did swap ribbons and medals over the last century, I doubt most anyone would have noticed.

 

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Thanks for the information, Dave.  About 2 months ago, I compared photos of a Hessen and a Prussian 12yr Long Service Medal and I was able to notice some very slight differences in the crown.  However, the differences were so slight, that I thought it might be due to different manufacturers or even wear and tear.  About 2 weeks ago I compared photos of a Hessen 9yr and a Prussian 9yr and I couldn't tell any differences in the crown.  But maybe, the Hessen medal was actually a Prussian medal on the wrong ribbon or vice versa. 

According to the website Ehrenzeichen Orden, there were 3 different versions of the Prussian 15 yr cross based upon their composition:  1) copper (perhaps they meant gold-plated copper), 2) gold-plated white metal (Weißmetall vergoldet), and 3) tombac bronze.  This explains why many of the Prussian 15 yr LS crosses have a reddish (copper/bronze) appearance and why others have a golden appearance.  (Both of mine are made are made of gold-plated white metal and they can be scratched very easily.)

As of last night, this thread has taken on new meaning.  The ribbon loop on one of my 12-yr Prussian medals broke off from the medal.  I decided to take it to a jeweler and see if he could reattach it.  Although all of the information I can find regarding the Prussian 12-yr medals says it is made of bronze, the jeweler thinks that the broken medal is only bronze-plated. If it is pure bronze he can fix it.  If it is a bronze-plating, he is afraid the heat will damage the plating.. 

Thus, I'm in a bit of a dilemma.  If it wasn't a piece of history I'd just tell him to put the torch to it and see what happens.  Does anybody have any advice or possibly some other ideas on how it might be fixed?  s if there are bronze-plated 12 yr medals please let me know..

On ‎3‎/‎9‎/‎2017 at 10:42, Dave Danner said:

The crowns are slightly different, although you would have to look hard to tell.  The dimensions and weights are slightly different as well, but again not by much. According to Nimmergut:

Preußen:
D1 - Kupfer vergoldet, 36,0 x 35,0 mm, 12,44 g
D2 - Bronze rötlich, 30,0 mm, 14,13 g
D3 - Argentan, 30,0 mm, 14,9 g

Hessen:
HD1 - Weißmetall vergoldet, 35,0 x 34,5 mm, 11,57 g
HD2 - Bronze hell, 30,0 mm, 15,07 g
HD3 - Argentan/Neusilber, 30,0 mm, 14,49 g

These may be from examples which Nimmergut or others weighed and measured, so there could still be variations depending on the maker or even depending on wear.  If someone did swap ribbons and medals over the last century, I doubt most anyone would have noticed.

 

 

Edited by camelneck

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I had another discussion with the jeweler.  He thinks he can use a soldering iron and some gold solder to reattach the loop to the medal. 

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