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Stogieman, November 16, 2005 in Germany: Imperial: The Orders, Decorations and Medals of The Imperial German States
The medal bar in Heiko's post
is indeed in "Reichs" or "pure Prussian" precedence BUT-- as that was before 1920! This old retired officer or military official is wearing the Hindenburg Cross from 1934/35 and this medal bar reflects the confusion in regulations then.
By 1939 all "campaign" medals (even the stay at home steel Southwest Africa) would be moved into position behind the Hindenburg Cross, so instead of being 4th, it would be in 3rd place. This man was presumably a native Badener (the 1902 Jubilee Medal, the peacetime BZ3a for ranks = to Major-- and yet no Prussian medal bar grade Orders or WW1 Baden awards*), yet has chosen to "slight" his home state's Order (and a remarkably pretty one at that) for the routine 1897 Centenary Medal. His choice, as a personal fashion statement, regardless of regulations.
Retired military personnel coould and did wear things however they chose. The Nazi contempt for ALL pre-1914 awards led to some wild and crazy positioning of pre-war Orders and jubilee medals.
But this medal bar is a perfect time capsule of the mid-1930s, with regulations improperly understood-- and the wearer not really CARING about some new regulations changing things again.
* Whenever I see a bar like this, my first thought is that we are looking at a General's bar, with other Orders "moved up" to neck grades. A native Badener should have a WW1 Order with Xs-- so did he hold the Commander grade as an Oberst? And if he was a 1914 Oberst, where are his Prussian "routine" long service field officer Orders? ALSO... "moved up?" And if he was about 50 in 1914... he was in his 70s when the Hindenburg Cross was mounted and no Nazi kids were going to tell HIM how to wear his awards!!!!
Here is one that I don?t think we?ve seen yet - The 1870/71 Honor Cross for Volunteer Nurses.
Rick, thanks for your post (#127), it explains a lot.
Rick, I always have these "general feelings" too when I see a bar like this.... have you seen my medal bar from the running 70/71 thread???? What do you think about this one? (I know the owner... can you get him?)
Your 2 medals bars are quite nice.
The pure Prussian is hopeless to ID as long as no other info is available about the wearer.
The Baden one also screams "General" to me.
I can try my luck.
you want more information about the prussian one.... would a photo be ok???
Thank you very much for posts #130 and #132. They point up so well a situation that often arises - there is often more to the story than just what we see on the medal bar.
Not being very learned with regard to precedence of awards, I would like to ask for opinions of this group. It just strikes me that at least some of the awards present should be between the EK and the 25 yr. cross. Any opinions? Thank you.
Gentlemen,Not being very learned with regard to precedence of awards, I would like to ask for opinions of this group. It just strikes me that at least some of the awards present should be between the EK and the 25 yr. cross. Any opinions? Thank you.Wild Card
That is proper Prussian precedence. The DA-Kreuz took precedence over campaign medals. For Prussian campaign medals, precedence was:
- D?ppeler-Sturmkreuz 1864
- Alsen-Kreuz 1864
- Kriegsdenkm?nze 1870/71
- Erinnerungskreuz " K?niggr?tz," "Der Main-Armee 1866" or "Treuen Kriegern 1866" (only one could be worn)
- Kriegs-Denkm?nze 1864
- Hohenzollernsches Denkm?nze 1848/49
When the various colonial-era medals - Kolonial-Denkm?nze, S?dwestafrika-Denkm?nze, China-Denkm?nze - were added, they came after the KDM 1864 and before the
Nice bar WildCard and looks like a very proper early mounting!
Your bar with the BZ3a at the end fits to just 1 General;
Ludwig Heinrich Hermann von MERTENS, 1864-1945, 1914 Oberst und Kdr FAR 44, later GenMaj (18.04.1917 E) GArtK 2 and retired as GenMaj, odd that he got not a Character as LtGen for the retirement in 1919/20 but that happened. Decorated with RAO2X and KO2aX replacing his peacetime RAO4 and KO3, DA and BZ3a.
He seems to have been permanent in Badens Field Artillery, either FAR 66 or FAR 76 until he got the FAR 44 in 1913. So he would be easily have gotten a BRJM. Around 1905 he was in the Feldzeugmeisterei, a post where he in a good position to receive a SWA St.
Both medals, SWA St and BRJM do not appear in the ranklists and also the OAL 1908/09 does not help here.
But I think I have enough reasons to exclude all other suspects and it was really his bar.
The pure Prussian is clear now. Robert Koehne removed his Serbian Takovo in WW1.
Wild Card, Your bar is absolutely beautiful!!!! That can also easily be a Generals bar! All that campaigns and 25+ years without a Red Eagle or Crown... they are for sure around the neck.
thank you very much for Ludwig Heinrich Hermann von MERTENS !!! I never had the time to research this bar, little christmas gift for me
Thank you Stogieman and Daniel for the compliments. As you indicated Daniel, I have always felt that there was more to this group than what we have here. Unfortunately, we will never know.
With reference to your post #137, would you know if your man was the son of GenMaj Julius Herman von Mertens?
I dont know, but I can imagine. VON Mertens are not so much around.
For Your big bar I will have a look. It will be more difficult but I wil see.
I found two more Baden stragglers...
and the other
I found more Baden stragglers...
Some stragglers! Please send all cast-offs my way.
I just got this great one! Merit Cross of the Order of the Z?hringer Lion with Military-Karl-Friedrich Medal ribbon. It was awarded from 1915 on to senior NCOs like Feldwebelleutnant. Award numbers from 1915-1918 are just 556.
I wonder that this guy hasn't got a Long Service award or more.
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