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Good day,

I just picked up this nice pair - I understand both are probably some of the most commonly awarded but I like the simplicity. 

The Hindenburg Cross has the maker mark for Paul Shultze & Co. of Lubeck.

Without any long service award, what would have been the likely circumstances of this veteran? A reserve soldier or from a state without long service awards? Is it safe to assume the veteran came from the Hanseatic States based on the proximity to the maker of the Hindenburg Cross? I understand it is impossible to know for sure but just interested in a likely scenario for this veteran. Any thoughts appreciated.




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I would call it more probable that the hindy in not correct.  It indicates he was a frontline soldier yet didn't earn anything else the entire war?  And no long service medal?  You would see lots of bars like this for the 1870/1 crowd but not for the WW1 guys.

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It is unusual for WW1 bars, but it could be that over the last 100 years such bars have just been taken to pieces for parts as they were unsexy.

If a guy had "old Yella" he may have been too old to serve at the front... he just needs to have spent the war in Germany with a short spell in occupied Belgium, far from the guns... and already this would be possible.

As Don Says... you almost automatically think 1870... but could also be a hindy from the combination... the bar hooks on the back make me think 1870, but I am no mounting expert...

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Thanks Don and Chris for the replies - your observations about the hooks leaning more towards 1870 intrigued me so I did a cursory search of past topics - hooks do seem consistently present on 19th century groups, however I did notice similar hooks and ribbon mounting styles also stood out on a fair number of Bavarian groups, including some post WW1 mounted.

I'm not familiar with the various mounting styles according to different regions but I find it a very interesting topic I will definitely try to research more.

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My gut says it's meant to be the Hindy, the button hole ribbons look and feel contemporary and help corroborate. 

Is it also possible the veteran could have simply done a stint in the army during the late 19th century,  got out then recalled again in 1914? Could he have been a support trade at the front, or even still a rifleman and one of the 2/3 or so of Germans without an EKII or other award?

I would imagine the majority of German soldiers came home with no awards, and then only if they applied in 1934.

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It's fine as it is - plenty of German soldiers served in the Great War and received no recognition for it. He could have been a recalled veteran or even a long-serving soldier who chose to retain the old brooch style of long service award. 

I have never understood this argument that any Cross of Honour with swords on a medal bar with no other WW1 awards should be called into question - there are innumerable examples of genuine medal bars like this. I myself used to have a two-place medal bar with a Bronze China and Cross of Honour with swords - perfectly original.

Plus, the mounting style, while indeed hook-back, is not in the common pre-WW1 - if anything the ribbon furlings make it look Bavarian, as jeffskea noted.

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Thank you for your comments.

It makes sense too that this set is not as common because we are more used to seeing EKII/HC combos - with over 5 million EKIIs and over 6 million Honour Crosses to combattants - combattant veterans without any award, even still over a million, do become the minority -and those with late 19th century service even more so comparitively.

I would imagine that whoever the veteran was who took the time to have these two medals mounted with an accompanying ribbon button for civilian wear was proud of their service and rightly so. 

I'm still interested whether any pattern or connection can be made between where the Makers were located and where the veteran applied for their award or whether all makers sent their lots to a depository in Berlin for mass distribution regardless of geographic location.

An interesting discussion for two seemingly mundane medals, I appreciate everyone's input.


Edited by jeffskea
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