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Saarland Commemorative Medal


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Some time ago I added this strange medal to my collection.

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Description:

diameter: 30 mm

ribbon: silk, 23 mm, with equal stripes black-white-blue with white borders (1 mm)

material: bronze(d)

text obverse: ITALIA / SVERIGE / ENGLAND / NEDERLAND

picture obverse: four busts of soldiers of the four counties

text reverse: VOLKSABSTIMMUNG SAARGEBIET / 13. JAN. / 1935

picture reverse: a rising sun behind a hand putting a ballot sheet into a ballot box

maker: unknown

issued by: unknown

Does any of you gents have an idea of the story behind this unofficial commemorative medal?

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Edited by Odulf
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The Saarland Plebiscite Medal shows soldiers of the Netherlands, Sweden, England and Italy, who oversaw the plebiscite and return of the Saar to Germany; the reverse depicts a hand dropping a ballot into a box and “Volksabstimmung Saargebiet/13 Jan 1935”. The black/white/blue ribbon reflects the colors of the Saar flag. In January 1935, over 90% of the voters in the Saar Plebiscite elected to return to German control, having been under Allied and neutral control since 1918. These seem to appear mostly in the UK, because the British provided a large of the troops involved (and they couldn't wear it).

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The Saarland Plebiscite Medal shows soldiers of the Netherlands, Sweden, England and Italy, who oversaw the plebiscite and return of the Saar to Germany; the reverse depicts a hand dropping a ballot into a box and "Volksabstimmung Saargebiet/13 Jan 1935". The black/white/blue ribbon reflects the colors of the Saar flag. In January 1935, over 90% of the voters in the Saar Plebiscite elected to return to German control, having been under Allied and neutral control since 1918. These seem to appear mostly in the UK, because the British provided a large of the troops involved (and they couldn't wear it).

Yes, the international force was commanded by the British Major-General Brind and it consisted of 1500 British, 1300 Italian, 250 Dutch and 250 Swedish troops. The Dutch contingent numbered 234 marines and 16 men of the Corps of Transport with their lorries for transportation. No official decoratios or commemorative medals were issued to these Dutchmen.

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