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Serial numbers and silver marks


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Hoping someone can help with this. Out of the earlier DDR medals which ones would have either a serial number or silver mark? The only ones I know of for sure are the Verdienstmedaille der NVA and the Medaille f?r Treue Dienste - Nationalen Volksarmee.

Also were only the silver grades actually made of silver or were the golds perhaps silver and then gold plated? And if so could the silver marks also be found on the golds... or only on the silver?

I know some silver marks were put on the reverse of the medals but some were on the edge. For those on the edge is there any way to tell it's that type without seeing the edge... perhaps something else that was unique to those particular marked medals?

I have one of the refs on the DDR Orders and medals but of course it's all in German and I'm not quite that fluent to pick up all these points. Oh how I wish (and I know alot of others) that someone would do a good reference on these in English. Or at least a decent translation of those in German or other languages.

Anyhow I'd be grateful for any help on all this.

Many thanks! :beer:

Dan :cheers:

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Also... does anyone know if the DDR kept records whereby such serial numbered awards could be researched as with Soviet awards? I know alot of records were detroyed by the Stasi towards the end but would this have included regular military personnel records and such which is where I'm assuming such awards would have been recorded. And as such awards seem so hard to come by I'd assume there would not be that many of them comparatively.

Thanks again, :beer:

Dan :cheers:

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Dan,

Lots of interesting questions but I am not sure I can help a lot. I haven't studied medals as deeply as answering your questions would require. This sort of knowledge resides with some of the guys on the WAF DDR Forum though. I am not sure if I understand all of your questions but here goes for some answers which may prompt some specific questions that I can handle.

1-Also were only the silver grades actually made of silver or were the golds perhaps silver and then gold plated? And if so could the silver marks also be found on the golds... or only on the silver?

Some high end orders were originally made of gold. A good example is the Karl Marx Orden although the gold numbered ones were made in extremely small numbers. For example; the early numbered ones were marked 900 for an almost pure gold content. Later ones were marked 333 for a reduced gold content. My 333 marked KMO has an interim spange that is marked 725 so even the early one of these had a gold content. Eary VVOs were also made of gold and can be found marked 900 or 925. Numerous other high end awards were also made originally in gold. I don't remeber any particular medals that were made in silver and then gold plated but it is a possibility. It would be a long and complicated process to produce a list of medals, in English, that would address your question. The German sources will probably be all we will have for some time.

2-I know some silver marks were put on the reverse of the medals but some were on the edge. For those on the edge is there any way to tell it's that type without seeing the edge... perhaps something else that was unique to those particular marked medals?

There are some guys who could answer this for you but not me.

3-Also... does anyone know if the DDR kept records whereby such serial numbered awards could be researched as with Soviet awards?

This is a question that a lot of collectors would like to have answered. At this point-in-time the answer is "no". Nothing in this vein has come to light. Without the award document there is no way to trace a numbered award. There is always a hope that something like this will be turned up by a researcher digging through mounds of files. It took 40 years for a book to surface that listed the Third Reich manufacturing codes next to the names of the firms they identified. We may have a long wait for a list like this. It would not likely turn up in the STASI files. More likely in The Council of Ministers files as they decided who would be awarded what.

Regards,

Gordon

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Hi Dan,

"I have one of the refs on the DDR Orders and medals but of course it's all in German"

Which reference book is it?

To know that could be helpful for the answers.

For example serial numbered "Banner der Arbeit". There are two versions, with great price differences.

With Bartel, DDR-Spezialkatalog 1949-1990, edited 1998, you could not define the difference.

You can diffentiate it with Bartel, DDR-Spezialkatalog 1949-1990, Band I, edited 2003. But the definition for No. 6 a) is not correct, therefore it is difficult to say, it is No. 6 a) 1,000 Euro or 6 b) 200 Euro.

Gold plated versions have a different silver mark, compared with the silver version.

For example Treue Dienste NVA. In the Bartel catalogue from 2003 you can see the difference between class Silver (10 years), marked 900 and the class Gold (15 years), marked (900, with the added halfmoon.

Examples for the added halfmoon, but it is not complete, because you can find the later added halfmoon in the wrong direction: ) instead of (

Regards

Uwe

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Hi Uwe,

Many thanks to both you and Gordon for helping out on this. Still not totally clear on some of it. Will try to clarify in a sec... but for now here's the ref I have:

Okay... here are the two medal series that I've seen examples having either serial numbers and/or silver marks (on the silver ones):

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I recently obtained one with a serial number... my first and only so far... 044086:

Sorry for the pic quality... they're the best I have right now till I can sort out my basement again and get to my scanner.

But in that same series of medals as well as the others I showed I've seen the silvers (and in this case the bronze) with serial numbers so I'm assuming any of the levels of those series of medals could have serial numbers, correct?

I've also seen "silver" examples of both with the silver marking... sometimes on the reverse and sometimes on the edge. At times this is on a serial numbered example and at times not.

And since these are the only "medals" I've seen with them so far those are the ones I've been keeping an eye out for with examples of serial numbers and/or silver marks.

So again I'm assuming that "only" the silver grade/silver content awards were silver marked but that all grades could be serial numbered, and at times serial numbered as well, if both were on a silver grade medal with silver content.

Hoping I've got this right. As far as valuations on either of these types with serial numbers and/or silver markings I've no idea. I just know they're rather tough to find... at least on this side of the pond.

Dan :cheers:

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Okay... now reading through the link you gave me (many thanks Uwe! :beer: ) I see a few things. The last one I pictured is, it seems, a Type 1 (1956-1959) of the five year medal.

I also see that there were indeed "silver" medals that were gold plated, etc., for the higher levels (15/20 year). I also see that serial numbers were discontinued in 1959 and as the bronze level (5 years) of this award was the only one in existance for this particular award prior to 1959 with the 10 year and up awards coming post 1959 the only examples in this particular series with serial numbers would be the bronze 5 year medal.

I also found answers to several of my questions on the Medal of Merit. Sure wish they covered all the Orders, medals and badges on that site. But I'll definitely be printing these out and putting them with my other reference materials. Great stuff!!!!

Many thanks!!!! :beer:

Dan :cheers:

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Hi Dan,

a collector of DDR orders and decorations need Bartel catalogues like this:

DDR Spezialkatalog 1949-1990, Band I Staatliche Auszeichnungen, 3rd edition 2003

http://www.verlag-frank-bartel.de/pageID_3540623.html

Some more specific questions?

Uwe

Hi Uwe,

Not that I can think of off hand. You and Gordon have been most helpful. And that link you gave for the pieces in English was a tremendous help. I've seen the Bartel's and heard them talked about but again, from what I've seen they're all in German. I'm sure the same details are in those and probably even in the reference I have... but again I'm not quite fluent enough to pick them out. So having them in English is WONDERFUL!!!! :jumping::jumping:

Also I just managed to add my first silver marked piece: :love:

Again pics are sellers... it'll be a bit before it arrives as I just now won the auction, but once it gets here I'll do up better scans and repost.

With the help of that link I find this one to be a Type 3 - (1962-63). :jumping:

Again thanks so much for all the help in all this. Gives me a much better idea of what I'm looking for. :beer:

Dan :cheers:

Edited by Hauptman
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Dan,

Uwe's book suggestion is the one that will give you the answers that you want. The reference book you posted pictures of will not. The German in Bartels is simple and not as wordy as your reference book. It focuses on the different issues of a specific award or badge, years it was awarded, serial number information, material the award was made of. Exactly the information that you are asking about. I would be lost without my copy of Bartels.

I need to buy some of the later copies, as Uwe has suggested a few times, as I only have the early edition from 1998/99.

I've attached pictures of a couple of pages from my copy of Bartels to illustrate what I mean. A dictionary and on line translators will give you familiarity with the terms used in the Bartels fairly quickly. It is really only a very limited vocabulary that you would need to use Bartels. I often start a small dictionary of my own, when dealing with foreign language material, that I can refer to in the future. That way you only have to thumb through a large dictionary once or twice for that term.

Regards,

Gordon

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Here is my Verdienstmedaille der NVA in silver.

nvameritmedalinsilverback5mh.jpg

nvameritmedalinsilvermm4wk.jpg

as you can see it's numbered on the back and marked 900 on the edge. since the medal number is quit low (00225) I think it's safe to assume it's an early produced medal. however I saw example of this medal where the "900" mark is stamped on the reverse side of the medal.

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I put this Wikipedia page together in 2007 when I had simular questions to Dan's It's based on all of the reference material I had available at the time. To see more on the Medal For Faithful Service in the National People?s Army go to this thread I started on the WAF forum which shows several examples of medals in my possession:

http://www.wehrmacht-awards.com/forums/sho...ad.php?t=260430

Kevin

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