WWII GERMAN CROSS IN SILVER -
The award featured here is a German Cross in Silver. It was introduced on September 28th 1941. Opertation Barbarossa
had stated a few short months beforehand. The German forces were achieving significant progress in the Eastern front.
The assault on Moscow (Operation Typhoon) starts two days after the German Cross on Silver is instated. plenty of
soldiers would have the opportunity to prove themselves as leaders managnig the war effort.
DIFFERENT TYPES OF CROSSES
The following is a list of the different models in which the German Cross in Silver was manufactured and issued.
1. German Cross in Silver
2. German Cross in Silver cloth version - Air Force Blue
3. German Cross in Silver cloth version - Navy Blue
4. German Cross in Silver cloth version - Field Gray
The cloth version of the badge was created purely for use in the field.
The German Cross in Silver was a coveted award. It was issued in recognition of the following actions:
Issued to a soldier for significant acts of leadership.
Assisting in conducting the war.
GERMAN CROSS ARCHITECTURE
The construction of the German Cross is very imposing and complex. The award was designed by professor Klein of Berlin.
An eight pointed star provided the base of the award.
A black enameled swastika was placed at the center. The swastika was fairly large in size and rested on top of a
silver bed. a thin red line is found around the perimeter.
The design includes a wreath of Silver made up by a series of laurel leaves. They are bound together by a silk lace.
This is placed above the red lines. The base has a rectangle with the year 1941 in the center to indicate the
date in which the award was issued.
A series of rays eminate from the wreath and cover all eight points of the star. A chemical treatment was applied
to the rays to darken their appearance. A secons set of rays was placed beneath the first. This last set protruded
beyond the original and gave the cross an overall three dimensional look.
The year 1941 is placed at the bottom of the wreath of the badge. These photos show different views of the date.
This page is a recognition and identification guide for WWII German badges and awards. Multiple
detailed photos of a specific sample are provided. Descriptions point out clearly defined points
that should be noted.
One of the most commonly asked questions is "How much is my WWII German Iron Cross worth?". A price
guide is included here to address this question. The value of the badges and awards is reviewed
over a period of several years. A trend can be observed. The present worth of the German
badges in the collector's market is illustrated.
This service is provided free of charge to the visitor/enthusiast courtesy of
a company dedicated to the preservation of military history and to providing quality military
antiques and collectibles to museums, institutions and the general public.
This section of the site offers several views of the hinge that was used for the German Cross in Silver. It is
important to take a look at the front and back sections of the award. Close inspection reveals the hinge is
attached to a rectangular section which is then secured to the body of the cross.
GERMAN CROSS MARKINGS
Not all of the German Crosses were marked with the
manufacturer identification number (LDO).
the example shown here is marked with the number 20 on the inside of the pin. This number indicated
the cross was made by the Zimmermann company.
BY THE NUMBERS
It is hard to determine the exact number of German Cross badges that were produced. However, thanks to the
record keeping maintained by the Wehrmacht, it is possible to estimate how many medals were actually sent out. The number
stands under 2 thousand as many soldiers qualified for this badge.
Even though the German Cross in Silver was not a combat award it is more valuable because it was not produced or issued
in as large of numbers as the German Cross in Silver.
The actual number of German Cross badges produced is greater than the number that was issue. It must be accounted that
the armed forces would have a stock in hand so it could replace lost ones and issue new awards. In addition the factories
were likely to have warehouses with inventory at hand.
COLLECTING GERMAN CROSSES
Collecting Third Reich memorabilia is a field that has been growing since the days the GI's rummaged around Europe
bringing back military souvenirs. German soldiers wore many of their awards on their uniforms when they went to battle.
Once the soldier was killed or captured, the American soldiers would take the awards as war trophies. Eventually all
these pieces came back to the United States where military history enthusiasts began to collect them.
"I am trying to figure out if I should get into collecting German Cross badges."
Determining which military badges to collect can be a challenging decision. The combination of availabiilty and
cost will often set the pace of what can be collected.
The adjacent table outlines some of the advantages and disadvantages of collecting the German Cross.
This award is currently being
It is becoming more difficult to be able to tell the fake ones from the real ones because the quality
of the reproductions is improving. The collector must become familiarized with the construction style
and materials employed in the manufacturing of this badge. Attention to the details is critical in
order to be able to determine the authenticity of the badge.
If you have an interest is seeing other badges and awards of the Third Reich, you can do so by going
WWII German Badges and Awards
identification guide. Where we cover Heer (Army), Navy (Kriegsmarine) and
Air Force (Luftwaffe) items.