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No real point in listing all the various LDO and PK marks as these are widely available from numerous sources.

There does still seem to be considerable misconception about the exact purpose of these markings however.

The LDO mark ( with L/ prefix), more properly known as the Herstellerzeichen, was introduced on 1 March 1941.

The origins of the LDO lay in a meeting held at the Pr?sidialkanzlei where it was decreed that in order to maintain the quality and thus the prestige of military awards and decorations, their manufacture was to be controlled and licensed.

A subsequent meeting held in the Russischer Hof Hotel in Berlin on 15 July 1940 chaired by Dr Doehle and representatives from the orders manufacturing industry formally established the LDO as the central organisation for the control of the manufacture of awards for private retail. The address of the LDO was

Leistungsgemeinschaft der Deutschen Ordenshersteller, 27 K?rnerstrasse, Hagen-Westf. (Later moved to Eugen Richter Strasse 6)

A further notice on 1 November 1940 from the Pr?sidialkanzlei publicised the fact that the manufacture of orders and decorations for the private retail market was permitted only by Licensed firms.

Firms who failed to follow regulations could be and indeed on occasion did have their manufacturing licenses withdrawn (Petz and Lorenz and Otto Schickle of Pforzheim being two examples).

The actual LDO numbering was introduced on 1 March 1941 (ref. Uniformen Markt, 1.3.41) and required all awards from that date to be marked with the manufacturers LDO code.

There was actually a formal guideline as to where the mark was to be placed. For instance, the official correct place for an LDO mark on an EK1 is in the lower part in the centre. Note that ribbon Crosses, including the RK and Grand Cross were to be marked on the suspension loop. Thus the Zimmermann (L/52) and Godet RK which carry the mark on the loop are correct-but the Juncker L/12 and 2, Steinhauer 4 and Zimmermann 20 RK are, technically speaking, incorrectly stamped being on the frame. This of course just goes to show that regu;lations were often ignored

The original proclamation reads ""Jeder konzessionierte Hersteller erheilt soeben ein Kennzeichen (Herstellungsnummer) das von 1.3.41 ab auf den einzelnen Orden und Ehrenzeichen anzubringen ist, bei einseitigen Originalen und 16mm Verkleinerungen auf der R?ckseite, unten in der Mitte, bei doppelseitigen Originalorden und 16mm Verkleinerungen in Kreuzform (EK2, Ritterkreuz, Grosskreuz) wird die Zahl in den eingeh?ngten Ring eingeschlagen".

The regulations also covered the packaging in which the awards were supplied. These were to be clearly marked with the LDO logo and the underside of the case/carton was to have the manufacturers LDO number ink-stamped.

As far as Iron Crosses, for example, were concerned the following were specified.

?Full Case? (i.e. the good quality case with hinge, press stud etc).

Grand Cross, Knights Cross, Oakleaves, EK1, EK1 Spange.

?Half Case? (i.e. the cheaper type with paper hinge and no press stud)

EK2

?Carton? (i.e. the matchbox type with push out tray) in Gray

EK2 Spange.

Note that the regulations specify a case with LDO logo for the Grand Cross, RK and Oakleaves. It is well known that many wartime orders were not fully complied with, but, despite the fact that many have doubted the originality of RK or Oaks cases with the LDO monogram, original orders specified that these MUST be used for not only the RK and Oaks but the Grand Cross, confirming not only that these did exist but that the Grand Cross was available for commercial retail sales !

One thing which is perfectly clear from original wartime proclamations is that the LDO was NOT responsible for awards supplied to the military EVER, only for private retail pieces. This is important. Comments are often made on the quality of awards such as ?the LDO would never have allowed something like this to go out?.

Frankly, if the manufacturer supplied a poor quality award to the Pr?sidialkanzlei, the LDO couldn?t do a thing about it. Only the Pr?sidialkanzlei was responsible for official award pieces, the LDO only for restrikes/copies.

Even at the time (Uniformen Markt Issue 9, 1 May 1942) Dr. Dohle felt it necessary to publish an announcement making it clear the restrictions on the LDOs authority.

????..the LDO is ONLY responsible for the manufacture and quality of orders etc FOR PRIVATE RETAIL BUSINESS. Orders made through the Pr?sidialkanzlei for awards, and all associated technical matters are NOT to be dealt with by the LDO????.?

Attached is a copy of the proclamation relating to this.

Edited by Gordon Williamson

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On the subject of the actual markings themselves, during the Third Reich period anyone who had lost their award could obtain a free "official" replacement through the Pr?sidialkanzlei, purchase an additional piece "officially" or buy one at their own expense via the LDO retail outlets, ( these LDO marked pieces were in the terminology of the time referred to as Copies , Replicas or Restrikes).

Note that this facility to obtain official replacements does not just relate to awards instituted during the Third Reich. A soldier for example, who possessed the 1914 Iron Cross First Class and lost or had his award damaged, could obtain an official replacement, and this would be appropriately marked with a Pr?sidialkanzlei Lieferant number, such as "4" for Steinhauer.

If he elected to purchase his own privately just because he wanted an extra example, it would be marked with the LDO number.

How many recipients would wish to pay for an over the counter copy when they could obtain an official relacement free? LDO pieces were considered restrikes, copies or replicas, not proper awards. Original period manufacturers catalogues attest to this

As far as dual marked crosses are concerned, as the LDO marks predate the Pr?sidialkanzlei marks, it is likely that these were initially LDO marked then had the PK number added when they were used to complete an order from the Pr?sidialkanzlei.

Attached is a declaration relating to LDO markings from a 1941 Steinhauer catalogue. Note the reference to the L-16 LDO number being used on "Nachbildungen" (i.e. Copies or Reproductions)

In 1941 the retail sale of high grade decorations such as the Knights Cross and above was forbidden. Retailers were allowed to retain only display samples and all others had to be handed in to the Ordenskanzlei, the manufacturers being compensated appropriately. These LDO marked pieces ( like Juncker L/12 Knight's Crosses, L/50 marked Godet Oakleaves etc) were subsequently used as official award pieces.

There is no evidence that any lower grade LDO marked pieces such as War Badges, EK1s, KVKs etc were ever used as formal award pieces.

Edited by Gordon Williamson

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Hi

Could it be possible to find LDO mark with the "/" in the other way such "" ?

jacques

Edited by jacques

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Hi Jacques,

Interesting. I don't know whether the slash can go the other way, but on the two L/52 boxed stamped markings I have, the slash is a typical "/". Both stamped markings are slightly different though, one on a screwback EK1 and the other on a Silver Wound Badge, so two separate punches were used imo.

Regards

Mike K

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Hi Jacques,

Interesting. I don't know whether the slash can go the other way, but on the two L/52 boxed stamped markings I have, the slash is a typical "/". Both stamped markings are slightly different though, one on a screwback EK1 and the other on a Silver Wound Badge, so two separate punches were used imo.

Regards

Mike K

Hi,

I alsa have two other Spanish crosses marked L/52, but this one presents all the details required for a genuine cross of this manufacturer, except the "". May be the stamper was tipsy...

jacques

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Hi Gordon,

Thanks for a very informative thread. However there are still a couple of things that are not clear to me and perhaps you can help me out.

I hadn't seen any info on when the Lieferanten-Nummer (commonly known as PK-number) came into existence, until I read about in Frank's book and I quote:

".... the by-law of 1st July 1937 designated Hitler as the sole authority in bestowing official decorations and awards. From here on, the Präsidentialkanzlei des Führers, and it's subsidiary branch, the Ordenskanzlei, exercised strict control over the creation and production of decorations, and selected the various companies that would be awarded goverment contracts. Located in Berlin, this institution was led by Ministerialdirektor Dr. Heinrich Doehle. Manufacturers, after being chosen for the production of actual award pieces, were assigned a Lieferanten-Nummer."

Next quote:

"In Juli 1940, the Leistungsgemeinschaft Deutscher Ordenhersteller more commonly known as "LDO", was founded and put under the direction of its general manager and NSDAP member, Schürmann."

Is it fair to assume that 1937 was the actual date for the introduction of the PK numbers? Also, the control of official awards was conducted by the Ordenskanzlei, led by Doehle, but was the LDO a sub-branch to the Ordenskanzlei, thus giving him superiority over Sch?rmann?

Is it known what date Otto Schickle's license was revoked?

In St.&L.'s add from 1941, the articles Dienstauszeichnungen der NSDAP, verkleinerungen, anstecksnadeln, decorationen etc are mentioned. A recent thread on this forum featured a NSDAP LS miniature with the RZM number M11/1, which should be correct for NSDAP LS decorations. When was the sub-group M12/... founded (NSDAP LS miniatures). I know that RZM numbers are a totally different ballgame, but it would be interesting to know, especially since I can't find St.&L. amongst the M12 firms in any reference book.

KR

Peter

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I haven't seen any original source documents which refer to the date of the introduction of the Lieferant number for the PK. It would make sense that whenever official government contracts began to be issued for awards, that a numbering system would have begun around the same time. Of course the military awards only began to appear after the outbreak of war so if the numbers were introduced in 1937 there wouldn't have been much use for them other than on Political awards.

I think the real question is not so much a case of when the numbering system was introduced but one of when the use of these numbers to mark the manufacturers products was mandated. Generally speaking these numbers tend to appear on late war pieces however there are a number of exceptions - for instance Steinhauer & Lück's KVK1 are often found in early quality silver plated tombak, but with the PK number "4".

So, I think the numbers may have been around for quite some time,possibly even before the LDO and certainly some early pieces may be found with PK numbers, but that these numbers were only widely used (in the sense of being stamped onto the awards) in the second half of the war.

As an organisation, the Ordenskanzlei was certainly superior to the LDO which was only concerned with regulating the quality of copies of awards made for the commercial market, and had nothing to do with the official awards.

Otto Schickle gained their licence in March 1941 and lost it soon afterwards. There is an entry in the July 1941 Schwert und Spaten indicating that Schickle had been given permission to sell off existing stock. Perhaps it may have just been a temporary revocation of their licence though for some misdemeanour ?.

Afraid I can't help on the RZM numbers. I have no interest in Political awards and so have never made any attempt to study these numbers. I'm sure there will be some evidence or other in the pages of Schwert & Spaten/DUZ.

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Thanks Gordon,

The abovementioned type of KVK was actually on of the reasons for my inquiry. I'm still not clear about some aspects, but I'll stand down for the time being and see if I can figure out a way to put words to these complex questions.

KR

Peter

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Just for the sake of it a basic list which might save doing some looking up.

Prasidialkanzlei Numbers.

1 Deschler & Sohn, Munchen

2 C.E. Juncker, Berlin

3 Wilhelm Deumer, Ludenscheid

4 Steinhauer und Luck, Ludenscheid

5 Hermann Wernstein, Jena-Lobstedt

6 Fritz Zimmermann, Stuttgart

7 Paul meybauer, Berlin

8 Ferdinand Hoffst?ter, Bonn am Rhein

9 Liefergemeinschaft Pforzheimer Schmuckhandwerker

10 Forster und Barth, Pforzheim

11 Grossmann & Co., Wien

12 Frank und Reif, Stuttgart

13 Gustav Brehmer, Markneukirchen

14 Lauer, N?rnberg

15 Friedrich Orth, Wien

16 Alois Rettenmaier, Sch?bisch Gmund

17 Schwerin&Sohn, Berlin

18 Karl Wurster KG, Markneukirchen

19 E. Ferd. Wiedmann, Frankfurt an Main

20 C.F. Zimmermann, Pforzheim

21 Gebr. Godet & Co., Berlin

22 B?rger & Co., Berlin

23 Arbeitsgemeinschaft f?r Heeresbedarf

24 Arbeitsgemeinschaft der Hanauer Plakettenhersteller, graveur und ziselierung, Berlin Hanau am Main

25 Arbeitsgemeinschaft der graveur

26 B.H. Mayer?s Kunstprageanstallt, Pforzheim

27 Anton Schenkl?s Nachfolger, Wien

28 Eugen Schmidthaussler, Pforzheim

29 Hauptmunzamt, Berlin

30 Hauptmunzamt, Wien

31 Hans Gnad, Wien

32 W. Hobacher, Wien

33 Friederich Linden, Ludenscheid

34 Willy Annetsberger, Munchen

35 F.W. Assmann, Ludenscheid

36 Bury & Leonhardt, Hanau

37 Adold Baumeister, Ludenscheid

38 AG MuK, Gablonz

39 Rudolf Berge, Gablonz

40 Berg & Nolte, Ludenscheid

41 Gebr. Bender, Oberstein

42 Bindermann & Co., Oberkassel bei Bonn

43 Julius Bauer Sohne, Zella Mehlis

44 Jacob bengel, Idar/Oberstein

45 Franz Jungwwirth, Wien

46 Hans Dopller, Wela Oberdonau

47 Erhard & Sohne A.G., Schw?bisch-Gmund

48 Richard Feix, Gablonz

49 Richard Feix Sohne, Gablonz

50 Karl Gschiermeister, Wien

51 Eduard Gorlach &Sohne, Gablonz

52 Gottlieb und Wagner, Idar/Oberstein

53 Glaser & Sohn, Dresden

54 Gebr?der Wegerhoff, L?denscheid

55 J.E. Hammer & Sohne, Geringswalde

56 Robert Hauschild, Pforzheim

57 Karl Hensler, Pforzheim

58 Arthur Jokel & Co., Gablonz

59 Louis Keller, Oberstein

60 Katz & Deyhle, Phorzheim

61 Rudolf A. Karnethz & Sohn, Gablonz

62 Kerbach & Osterhelt, Dresden

63 Franz J. Klami & Sohn, Gablonz

64 Gottlieb Fr. Kech & Sohn, Pforzheim

65 Klein & Quenzer, Idar/Oberstein

66 Friederich Keller, Oberstein

67 H. Kreisel, Gablonz

68 Alfred Klobloch, Gablonz

69 Alois Klammer, Innsbruck

70 Lind & Meyrer, Oberstein

71 Rudolf Leukert, Gablonz

72 Franz Lipp, Pforzheim

73 Franz Mohnert, Gablonz

74 Carl Maurer Sohn, Oberstein

75 Franke&Co,L?denscheid

76 Ernst L. Muller, Pforzheim

77 Bayrische Hauptmunzamt, Munchen

78 Gustav Miksch, Gablonz

79 Matthias Kutsche, Attendorn

80 G.H. Osang, Dresden

81 Oberhoff & Cie., Ludenscheid

82 Augustin Prager, Gablonz

83 Emil Peukert, Gablonz

84 Carl Pellath, Schrobenhausen

85 Julius Pietsch, Gablonz

86 Paulmann & Crone, Ludenscheid

87 Roman Palme, Gablonz

88 Werner Redo, Saarlautern

89 Rudolf Richter, Schlag bei Gablonz

90 August F. Richter KG, Hamburg

91 Josef Rossler & Co., Gablonz

92 Josef Ruckert & Sohn, Gablonz

93 Richard Simm & Sohne, Gablonz

94 Ossenberg-Engels, Iserlohn

95 Adolf Scholze, Grunwald

96 Robert Klein Wien

97 AE Kochert, Wien

98 Rudolf Souval, Wien

99 Schwertner & Cie, Granz-Eggenberg

100 Rudolf Wachtler & Lange, Mittweida

101 Rudolf Tam, Gablonz

102 Philipp Turka, Wien

103 August G. Tam, Gablonz

104 Heinrich Ulbricht?s Ws, Kaufing

105 Heinrich Vogt, Pforzheim Schwanenstadt/Oberdonau

106 Bruder Schneider AG, Wien

107 Carl Wild, Hamburg

108 Arno Wallpach, Salzburg

109 Walter & Henlein, Gablonz

110 Otto Zappe, Gablonz

111 Zierner & Sohn, Oberstein

112 Argentor Werke Rust & Hetzel, Wien

113 Hermann Aurich, Dresden

114 Ludwig Bertsch, Karsruhe

115 Richard Sieper&S?hne, L?denscheid

116 Funk & Bruningshaus, Ludenscheid

117 Hugo Lang, Wiesenthal

118 August Menze &Sohn, Wien

119 Alfred Stubbe, Berlin

120 Franz Petzl, Wien

121 Imme&Sohn, Berlin

122 J.J. Stahl, Strassburg

123 Bech, Hassinger & Co., Strassburg

124 Rudolf Schanes, Wien

125 Eugen Gauss, Pforzheim

126 Eduard Hann, Oberstein

127 Mortiz Hausch AG, Pforzheim

128 S. Jablonski & Co., Ludenscheid

129 Frits Kohm, Pforzheim

130 Wilhelm Schroder & Co., Ludenscheid

131 Heinrich Wander, Gablonz

132 Franz Reischauer, Idar/Oberstein

134 Otto Klein & Co., Hanau

135 Julius Mosersen, Oberstein

136 J Wagner & Sohn Berlin

137 J H Werner Berlin

138 Julius Maurer Oberstein

139 Hymmen & Co Ludenschied

140 Schauerte & Hohfeld Ludenscheid

141 Sohni Heubach & Co Oberstein

142 A D Schwerdt Stuttgart

LDO Leistungs Gemeinschaft der Deutscher Ordenshersteller Numbers.

L/10 Deschler & Sohn, Munchen

L/11 Wilhelm Deumer, Ludenscheid

L/12 C.E. Junker, Berlin

L/13 Paul Meybauer, Berlin

L/14 Friedrich Orth, Wien

L/15 Otto Schickle, Pforzheim

L/16 Steinhauer & Luck, Ludenscheid

L/17 Hermann Wernstein, Jena Lobstedt

L/18 B.H. Meyer?s Hofkunstprageanstalt, Pforzheim

L/19 Ferdinand Hoddstatter, Bonn

L/21 Forster & Barth, Pforzheim

L/22 Glaser & Sohn, Dresden

L/23 Julius Maurer, Oberstein

L/24 Frits Zimmermann, Stuttgart

L/25 A.E. Kochert, Wien

L/26 Klein & Quenzer, Idar Oberstein

L/50 Gebr?der Godet, Berlin

L/51 E. Ferdinand Wiedmann, Frankfurt a. M.

L/52 C.F. Zimmermann, Pforzheim a. Main

L/53 Hymmer & CO., Ludenscheid

L/54 Schauerte & Hohfeld, Ludenscheid

L/55 Rudolph W?chtler & Lange, Mittweida

L/56 Funcke & Bruningshaus

L/57 Boerger (B?rger) & Co, Berlin

L/58 Rudolf Souval, Wien

L/59 Alouis Rettenmaier, Schwabisch-Gmund

L/60 Gustav Brehmer, markneukirchen

L/61 Friederich Linden, Ludenscheid

L/62 Werner Redo, Saarlautern

L/63 G.H. Osang, Dresden

L/64 Asmann & Sohm, Ludenscheid

L/65 Franke & Co. KG, Ludenscheid

L/66 A.D. Schwerdt, Stuttgart

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I have an incuse PA makers mark on the back of a Blockade Runners' award. Any ideas ?

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Just for the sake of it a basic list which might save doing some looking up.

Prasidialkanzlei Numbers.

...

17 Schwerin&Sohn, Berlin

...

38 AG MuK, Gablonz

...

54 Gebr?der Wegerhoff, Lüdenscheid

...

75 Franke&Co,Lüdenscheid

...

94 Ossenberg-Engels, Iserlohn

...

96 Robert Klein Wien

97 AE Kochert, Wien

...

115 Richard Sieper&Söhne, Lüdenscheid

...

121 Imme&Sohn, Berlin

...

133 Otto Schickle, Pforzheim

...

...

This list from Chairman is very interesting but puzzling. In other listings of PFL numbers from other sources, all of the above numbers are listed as 'unknown' whereas here there they are all assigned to various makers, including, I see, Richard Sieper as 115. (I deleted the other non-questioned numbers from the quoted list to highlight the ones in question.)

What is the reference for this list? Is there any proof for the above assignments? This would be an important question to clear up.

Best regards,

---Norm

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Hello! I just wanted to know, it's not exactly makers marking, but I want to ask about Hindenburg Cross I've collecting. In the front of the medal, there's years marked. And according to maker, the number/numeral comes with different FONT sizes. My question is, like Mayer&Wilhelm comes with 11pt? sizes. Twer&Turck comes with 8pt sizes. Are the FONT sizes set for each makers?

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Pls excuse me, I have another question regarding Hindenburg maker marks. I sincerely hope? that I will be.... Anyway, I have a Hindenburg Cross, combatant, and it is without maker mark behind. Is it considered fake? Also I suspect there are over hundred different maker markings. May I suspect that this is due to the fact that there was 121 battles during WW1? I really imagining, is it? Looking forward for your.....answer.

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