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Chris Boonzaier

Bavarian Bravery Medal stats... pretty astounding.....

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I counted up the number of Bavarian Bravery medal awards for each Active and reserve infantry regiment.... I must say, this astonished me. Of course, we need to take into account when some of the regiments were formed, but the 12 Reserve Infantry Regiments 1st place really astounded me....

45 - b.R.I.R. 12

38 - b.I.L.R.

36 - b.R.I.R. 10, 11

30 – Bavarian Jäger Regt (1. b.J.B. 19, 2. b.J.B. 9, 2. b.R.J.B. 2)

26 - b.R.I.R. 3,

24 - b.R.I.R. 17

23 - b.I.R. 3, 18

20 – b.I.R. 19,

19 – b.J.Btl. 1

18 - b.R.I.R. 20

17 – b.I.R. 7, 13, b.R.I.R. 4, 8,

16 - b.I.R. 1, 2, 4, b.R.I.R. 14, 16, 21

15 – b.I.R. 6, 10, 11, 15, b.R.I.R. 1, 13, b.R.J.B. 1

14 – b.I.R. 8, 16, 21,

13 – b.I.R. 23, b.R.I.R. 22

12 – b.I.R. 9, b.R.I.R. 7,

11 – b.I.R. 5, 14, b.R.I.R. 6,

10 – b.I.R. 17, b.R.I.R. 15,

9 - b.R.I.R. 2, 19, b.J.Btl. 2

8 – b.I.R. 12, 20, 22,

7 - b.R.I.R. 18, 23

6 – b.I.R. 24, 25, b.R.I.R. 5,

5 – b.I.R. 26,

3 – b.I.R 28,

2 – b.R.J.B. 2

1 – b.I.R. 31

0 – b.I.R. 27, 29, 30, 32

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And now the silver.....

89 – b.I.L.R.

88 - b.R.I.R. 3,

76 - b.R.I.R. 12

69 – b.I.R. 1,

65 – b.I.R. 12

63 – Bavarian Jäger Regt (1. B.J.B. 22, 2.b.J.B. 21, 2. B.R.J.B. 20)

61 – b.I.R. 9,

60 - b.R.I.R. 10

59 – b.I.R. 15, b.R.I.R. 2

56 - b.R.I.R. 4

53 - b.R.I.R. 15, b.R.I.R. 52

50 – b.I.R. 18

46 – b.I.R. 2, 8, 11, b.R.I.R. 16,

44 - b.R.I.R. 11,

42 – b.I.R. 4,

41 – b.I.R. 10, 16 b.R.I.R. 18,

40 – b.I.R. 24

39 - b.R.I.R. 7,

38 - b.R.I.R. 8,

36 - b.R.I.R. 19

35 – b.I.R. 3, 20, b.R.I.R. 17,

34 – b.I.R. 25,

33 – b.I.R. 23,

31 – b.I.R. 17, b.R.I.R. 31

30- b.I.R. 13, 22, b.R.I.R. 1, 30,

29 – b.I.R. 19

28 - b.R.I.R. 22

27 - b.R.I.R. 13

26 – b.I.R. 7,

25 – b.I.R. 5,

22 – b.I.R. 22, b.J.B. 1

21 – b.J.B. 2

20 – b.R.J.B. 2

19 - b.R.I.R. 5

16 - b.R.I.R. 20

15 – b.I.R. 15, b.R.I.R. 14

12 – b.I.R. 6, 26,

11 – b.I.R. 27

10 – b.R.J.B. 1

9-  b.I.R. 31

6 - b.I.R. 30, 32

5 - b.I.R. 28

2 - b.I.R. 29

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I think if you correlate the actions each regiment was in you would likely see a pattern in the awards.

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Posted (edited)

Here is a break-down for the Ritterkreuz of the Militär-Max-Joseph-Orden. The ILR is at the top of the list. After that, the regular and reserve infantry regiments, as well as Jäger, are pretty mixed.  It's a bit surprising that only 2 of 140 awards went to Landwehr infantry regiments.

Infanterie/Jäger (140)
Sonstiges u. höhere Stäbe (57)
Feldartillerie (25)
Fliegertruppe (11)
Kavallerie (7)
Fußartillerie (4)
Kaiserliche Marine (4)
Pioniere (4)
Nachrichtentruppe (1)

Infanterie/Jäger (in order of number of awards)
11 - ILR
8 - 3.b.IR
7 - 4.b.IR
6 - 1.b.IR
5 - b.RIR 18
4 - 11.b.IR
4 - b.RIR 1
4 - b.RIR 12
4 - b.RIR 2
4 - b.RJB 1
3 - 16.b.IR
3 - 18.b.IR
3 - 2.b.JB
3 - 10.b.IR
3 - 24.b.IR
3 - b.RIR 10
3 - b.RIR 13
3 - b.RIR 5
2 - 1.b.JB
2 - 17.b.IR
2 - 19.b.IR
2 - 22.b.IR
2 - 23.b.IR
2 - 6.b.IR
2 - 9.b.IR
2 - b.RIR 15
2 - b.RIR 20
2 - b.RIR 21
2 - b.RIR 22
2 - b.RIR 23
2 - b.RIR 3
2 - b.RIR 6
2 - b.RIR 7
2 - b.RIR 8
2 - JägR 3
1 - 13.b.IR
1 - 15.b.IR
1 - 2.b.IR
1 - 20.b.IR
1 - 21.b.IR
1 - 26.b.IR
1 - 27.b.IR
1 - 31.b.IR
1 - 32.b.IR
1 - 5.b.IR
1 - 7.b.IR
1 - 8.b.IR
1 - b.BrigEB 5
1 - b.JägR 1
1 - b.LIR 1
1 - b.LIR 2
1 - b.RadfBtl
1 - b.RIR 11
1 - b.RIR 16
1 - b.RIR 17
1 - b.RIR 19
1 - b.RIR 4

Infanterie/Jäger (in regimental order)
ILR (11)
1.b.IR (6)
2.b.IR (1)
3.b.IR (8)
4.b.IR (7)
5.b.IR (1)
6.b.IR (2)
7.b.IR (1)
8.b.IR (1)
9.b.IR (2)
10.b.IR (3)
11.b.IR (4)
13.b.IR (1)
15.b.IR (1)
16.b.IR (3)
17.b.IR (2)
18.b.IR (3)
19.b.IR (2)
20.b.IR (1)
21.b.IR (1)
22.b.IR (2)
23.b.IR (2)
24.b.IR (3)
26.b.IR (1)
27.b.IR (1)
31.b.IR (1)
32.b.IR (1)
b.LIR 1 (1)
b.LIR 2 (1)
b.RIR 1 (4)
b.RIR 2 (4)
b.RIR 3 (2)
b.RIR 4 (1)
b.RIR 5 (3)
b.RIR 6 (2)
b.RIR 7 (2)
b.RIR 8 (2)
b.RIR 10 (3)
b.RIR 11 (1)
b.RIR 12 (4)
b.RIR 13 (3)
b.RIR 15 (2)
b.RIR 16 (1)
b.RIR 17 (1)
b.RIR 18 (5)
b.RIR 19 (1)
b.RIR 20 (2)
b.RIR 21 (2)
b.RIR 22 (2)
b.RIR 23 (2)
b.BrigEB 5 (1)
1.b.JB (2)
2.b.JB (3)
b.RJB 1 (4)
b.JägR 1 (1)
JägR 3 (2)
b.RadfBtl 3 (1)

I should also add that Lt.d.R. Joseph Ritter v. Steiner of the b.3.IR received the Kommandeurkreuz as well, albeit posthumously. This was the only award of that class to an officer below division-level, and the only award of that class other than that to Oberstlt.i.G. Hans Ritter v. Hemmer to an officer below the rank of general/admiral.  

Edited by Dave Danner

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Posted (edited)

Below are casualty numbers for the Bavarian RIRs given in Busche's Formationsgeschichte der Deutschen Infanterie.  Bay. RIR 12 seems to have had significantly more casualties than the others. 

b.RIR 1 - 53 Offz., 2700 Uffz. u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 2 - 61 Offz., 3211 Uffz. u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 3 - ?
b.RIR 4 - 49 Offz., 2824 Uffz. u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 5 - ca. 3200 Offz., Uffz. u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 6 - 60 Offz., 2348 Uffz. u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 7 - 63 Offz., 2622 u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 8 - ca. 2350 Offz., Uffz. u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 10 - 61 Offz., 3075 Uffz. u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 11 - ?
b.RIR 12 - 178 Offz., 9688 Uffz. u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 13 - 84 Offz., 4600 Uffz. u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 14 - ?
b.RIR 15 - ?
b.RIR 16 - 78 Offz., 3676 Uffz. u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 17 - 38 Offz., 3676 Uffz. u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 18 - 41 Offz., 2232 Uffz. u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 19 - 27 Offz., 1730 Uffz. u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 20 - ?
b.RIR 21 - 74 Offz., 3600 Uffz. u. Mannsch.
b.RIR 22 - ?
b.RIR 23 - 37 Offz., 2138 Uffz. u. Mannsch.

Edited by Dave Danner

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I am going to go out on a limb here and say I think he made a copy error.

The 12th bavarian RIR was in the 1st bavarian Reserve Div until mid late 1916, the Division average was just above 3000 KIA during the war, then to the 5th bavarian reserve Division where it joined the 7th and 10 bRIR... whose average was under 3000 KIA during the war... I dont have the history for the 12th bRIR, but I am guessing the 9688 number was the wounded?

Lets assuming the Regiments within a division were rotated and unless the 12th was on everyones shtlist, they would have spend as much time in the line as anyone of the other regiments, under similar conditions...

That also begs the question, the amounts of medals to other regiments it served with ... they must have had the same amount of time in the line...

Unit -gold bravery - silver bravery - MMMJ

12th bRIR - 45 - 76 - 4

7th bRIR - 12 - 39 - 2

10 bRIR - 36 - 60 - 3

1 BRIR - 15 - 30 - 4

2 BRIR - 9 - 59 - 4

3 BRIR - 26 - 88 - 2

Another point that confuses me.... how can the proportions of gold:Silver medals vary so much.... of course, sometimes there is a spurt of bravery that will a single unit the edge over others in the "hero" category, but this over the whole period of the war... I think the proportions are interesting

 

Gold:silver

12bRIR 1:1,6

7bRIR 1:3,25

10bRIR 1:1,6

1bRIR 1:2

2bRIR 1:6,55

3bRIR 1:3,38

Somehow I get the feeling that the numbers of awards were severly influenced by the willingness of a Regt Commander to send in a request for the award.

Unless the members of a regiment were inheritasntly braver than those of another unit, the proportions Gold:silver should be similar?

 

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Posted (edited)

According to a footnote, the casualty number for b.RIR 12 was "Gem. Mitteilung v. Herrn .v. Stein vom 30.4.1998". There are 8281 entires in the Verlustliste database for the regiment. Taking into account that units were not listed in the Verlustlisten from December 1916 to December 1918, you are likely correct that this was total casualties including wounded.

Regarding the ratios, small sample size could play a role.  How many gold MVM recipients were previous recipients of the silver MVM? If ten or a dozen or so silver MVM recipients in a particular regiment were killed before they had a chance to be considered for the gold, that would throw the ratio off. Maybe see how many of the 59 silver MVM recipients in b.RIR 2 were KIA?

Edited by Dave Danner

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Hi,

The (almost) unique thing about the Bavarians is that there is absolutely no prerequisite for the baravey medals... not the EK2, EK1, MVK that the prussians had.

A guy could get the Golden Bravery medal as his first award in August 1914 and no further award until the end of the war. I am unaware of any silver and gold recipients, but if they exist I would love the group!!! :-)

But given the fact that silver and gold were awarded from the outbreak of the war, with no prerequisite needed to get an award... I think we can assume the ratio must depend on a certain extent to what the commander put in for.

Lets also not forget, the level of bravery is often not related to the size of the battle. A daring trench raid in a quiet sector could have just as much chance as a defensive action in the middle of the Somme.

In some cases units in quiter sectors may have had more chance to have men put in for awards as there was less fog of war...

Also a thought... one of the main reason the Leib Regiment introduced the "leiberring" was because the officers thought that the Leiber (and other hard charging regiments) were getting the same awards as regiments in Quiet zones, and that it had become rather difficult to judge someones contributions by the amount of medals they had... maybe this was some sour grapes because the 12 bRIR was ahead of them on the table.

I remember reading something about Vietnam, where some units had a papermill, churning out medal applications, while in others it was done more conservatively

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Hello,
ther are 27 double awardings, but Franz Geiger from the 2. Res. Jägerbataillon got only the golden medal.
He was named in the Bayern Goldenes Ehrenbuch for both medals.
The most famous was Max von Müller, he got both medals, the golden württemberg medal, the blue Max and post mortem the MMJO.
 

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Hi, the 1st regt lists 8 MMJO?

  • 28. August 1914: Hauptmann Balduin von Winckler (gefallen am 6. September 1917)
  • 2. Oktober 1914: Leutnant Kurt Hopffer
  • 25. Oktober 1914: Oberleutnant der Reserve Karl Gruny
  • 28. Juni 1916: Leutnant der Reserve Otto Lang (gefallen am 12. Juni 1916)
  • 27. Mai 1916: Oberleutnant Wolfgang Eder (gefallen am 13. März 1916)
  • 1. November 1916: Leutnant der Reserve Joachim Hitzen (gefallen am 13. Oktober 1918)
  • 23. März 1918: Major Eugen von Schobert
  • 21. Oktober 1918: Major Johann Schmidtler

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Posted (edited)

Karl Ritter von Gruny received the order as a Lt.d.R. in bay. RIR 1. He was promoted to OLt.d.R. on 16.1.1917. Joachim Ritter von Hitzen's was awarded posthumously as a Lt.d.R. in bay. RIR 18.
 

Edited by Dave Danner

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