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War Merit Cross Awards

War Merit Cross Awards

The War Merit Cross award was a decoration of Nazi Germany during the Second World War, which could be awarded to both military personnel and civilians alike. By the end of the war it was issued in four degrees; and had a related civil decoration. It was reissued in 1957 by the Bundeswehr in a De-Nazified version for veterans. (continued below)

War Merit Cross in Silver
Product ID : 0107-031-002
$18.00
Knights Cross of the War Merit Cross in Silver
Product ID : 0107-028-003
$25.00
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War Merit Cross Awards: Grades, Award Criteria & Design
The The War Merit Cross award was created by Adolf Hitler in October 1939, succeeding the non-combatant Iron Cross which was used in earlier wars (similar medal but with a different ribbon). The award was graded the same as the Iron Cross: War Merit Cross Second Class, War Merit Cross First Class, and Knights Cross of the War Merit Cross. The award had two variants: with swords given to soldiers for exceptional service "not in direct connection with combat", and without swords given to civilians for meritorious service in "furtherance of the war effort". Recipients had to have the lower grade of the award before getting the next level.

Knights Cross of the War Merit Cross Award with Swords
The ribbon of the War Merit Cross was in red-white-black-white-red; that was, the red and black colors being reversed from the ribbon of the World War II version of the Iron Cross. The ribbon for the War Merit Medal was similar, but with a narrow red vertical red strip in the center of the black field. Soldiers who earned the War Merit Cross 2nd Class with Swords wore a small crossed-swords device on the ribbon. The War Merit Cross 1st Class was a pin-backed medal worn on the pocket of the tunic (like the Iron Cross 1st Class). The ribbon of the War Merit Cross 2nd Class could be worn like the ribbon of the Iron Cross 2nd Class (through the second buttonhole). The Knights Cross of the War Merit Cross was a neck order and worn the same way as the Knights Cross of the Iron Cross.