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Before my permanent move here, this nice little sew on ribbon bar was "identified"-- or so I thought! blush.gif


But research is ongoing and eternal! This was stripped off a uniform by a proudly idiotic eBay seller who thought the Bavarian Military Merit Order and Hessian Bravery Medal ribbons frayed from flexing didn't look nice-- thus denying the latest owner of the previously sold Ulanka the ability to ever ID the original owner, and making years of unnecessary work for me, chasing down blind alleys. speechless.gif

A variety of new information has come in, and I can now definitively identify the CORRECT original wearer. This is a "process" thread to illustrate what sorts of references are out there and how the research pieces come together.

The key in this case is the last ribbon-- the Marianerkreuz of the Austro-Hungarian "High and German Order." Granted (almost) exclusively to nobles for work (theoretically) in the Order's hospitals, that told me I was looking for a "von Somebody" in the Bavarian army. There were very few "DRm" (abbreviation in rank Lists of the Marianerkreuz) awards listed in the Bavarian army (and no other Imperial German state army or the navy LISTED these-- at all!), and those were clustered in the cavalry.

Only pre-1918 non-Bavarian awards gazetted in the Personalnachrichten solved THIS puzzle, because there was no pre-war "DRm" match-- and my Prime Suspect among the dozen pre-war holders turned out NOT to have the WW1 Hessian Bravery Medal.

There were FOUR wartime bestowals of this cross to Bavarian officers before 1918. ONE of them received the Hessian Bravery Medal.

He was Oberleutnant Franz von Brentano di Tremezzo of Bavarian Uhlan Regiment 1.

Not that this is obvious from his 1913 position-- when he held only the 1911 Luitpold Jubilee medal (4th ribbon on the bar):


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Nor does the secret 1916 Bavarian Rank List help, since at that time he shows only the 1st, 2nd, and 4th ribbons--though it showed ALL awards held:


The 1918 Bavarian Seniority List is even less helpful, since the ONLY awards listed were Bavarian Orders!--


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BUT!!!! Thanks to a friend with access to the Personalnachrichten data, it is confirmed that Oberleutnant Franz von Brentano di Tremezzo received the Hessian Bravery Medal-- gazetted on 27 May 1916...

and the "DRm" as one of only four during the war... gazetted (whew!!!) 22 December 1917, JUST before "foreign" awards ceased being listed altogether!

Now the Marianerkreuz remains a mystery. NONE of the recipients seem to have ever "done" anything to have "earned" it-- it was simply a Social Gong apparently at the personal disposal of the Grand Master, who handed them out--though sparingly--to equestrian noblemen who were almost invariably--as he was-- a Royal Chamberlain. There was a veritable "nest" of these in the 1st Heavy Cavalry Regiment of the Bavarian army.

And why the Hessian award?

Because Franz was BORN in Hesse, where his father had been Hessian Minister of the Interior and Justice, Member of the Hessian Landtag, Member of the Reichstag, and Hessian Representative on the Imperial Reichsrat-- the noble "Senate."

From ? Starke Verlag's Adelige H?user, Volume 1 (1954) we find that Franz served during WW2 as a Major (zV) and he was still alive-- the West German Consul in Lille, France!


And his family coat of arms:


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Franz was the 2nd of 6 children. His older brother was West German Ambassador to Italy in 1954, and a younger brother (portrait in the volume) was a member of the West German Bundestag. Married to a Baroness, with her parents listed also, Franz's son was a senior lawyer, and his daughter and son in law lived in Pala Alto, California, of all places!

As noted, he was confirmed as a member of the nobility by Bavaria 29.4.08. Apparently this paperwork was needed when teenagers were officer candidates, since it shows up in many entries for people at the same age.

His father, Otto Rudolf von Brentano di Tremezzo (1855-1927) was confirmed as a member of the ancient Italian nobility (1282) by Rome in 1885, and was thus allowed to add "von" by Hesse-Darmstadt in 1888. Descendants of his marriage to Lilla Schwerdt (1863-1948) are all listed, and the entry goes back one more generation to

Jakob Gustav Brentano di Tremezzo (1816-1884) and Auguste Hofmann (1821-1902) and THEIR descendants, with earlier generations back to the 13th century in northern Italy cited in earlier genealogical works:


Not bad at all for an anonymous eBay find! And as a West German consular official, I am sure that Franz's death date will turn up in a post-WW2 edition of "Wer Ist's?" someday.

Not bad for an eBay scrap, at all!

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Gaawd! What must it be like to be Rick Research? Men stand in awe, women hurl themselves at you. You must be constantly mobbed by Rick Research groupies and innundated with fan mail from women who want to have your baby.

Sometimes the price of fame can be a real burden. Cat Scratch.gifCat Scratch.gifCat Scratch.gif

Edited by Bob Hunter
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Don't snicker...... that's the last known (read that as allowed) photograph of Rick research known to exist. Immediately after this was taken, he leapt from the chair and beat the photographer to death using his false teeth wrapped up in the newspaper....... However, Massachusetts being what it is, the judge let him off with "House Arrest" for 12 years........ sigh, such is life in the COM

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The we come to the tragically ill-fated (arrested by the Soviets by mistake-- looking for a COUSIN) Curd J?rgens lookalike Erwin von R?mer, one of Saxony's most obscure aviators of WW1:

As Luftwaffe General just before WW2, ? Biblio Verlag 1992


And as Kid #6 on this list of siblings ?Starke Verlag 1954. Brother #4 also died in Soviet mistaken captivity.


There are SO MANY "lines" of von R?mers, for so long (16 generations shown in this volume, cousins married into cousins wacko.gif like me trying to keep track of my innumerable Capetian kinships-to-myself speechless.gif )

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HE is extra special because not only do I have a ribbon bar of his, but I have THE ribbon bar he is wearing in the photo portrait above--

note the already-fading Luftwaffe blue ribbons and the shapes and positions of the Xs on his ribbons



Bob knows why he has Reuss ribbons on there, don't you Bob?

And of course, the von R?mer arms


Two hurricane-tossed palm trees (Motto "The (coco)nuts don't fall far from the tree") with the crossed shish-kabob skewers of the Master Barbecuers Guild (ahem) impaled. ninja.gif

OK, I made THAT part up. tongue.gif

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And not to overlook the Inspector of Infantry Small Arms, Wolfgang Freiherr zu (not von!) Innhausen- und Knyphausen, whose names were so long he used Wolf Freiherr zu Inn- und Knyphausen for short. ohmy.gif


Where else but ? 1959 Starke Verlag ( fantastic jumping.gif amazing jumping.gif terrific jumping.gif "H?user Handb?cher") could we find the lineage of char. Generalmajor aD Baron Inn-- one branch of whose family seems to have somehow (or other) made it to "Prince" (see THAT volume!) and the fact that his only daughter was married to an adopted nobleman, with no grandchildren?


What I NEED now are FACES for all these people! Cat Scratch.gif

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