H016080 BOXED AND CASED IRON CROSS 1ST CLASS, 1939. (Eisernes Kreuz I Klasse mit Etui)

BACKGROUND: On March 10TH 1813, Prussian King Friedrich Wilhelm III established the Iron Cross as a temporary award for bestowal during times of war. Originally the Iron Cross was introduced in three grades with a Grand Cross intended for award to Senior Commanders for successfully leading troops in combat and the First and Second classes for award to all ranks for bravery or merit in action. The Iron Crosses were re-instituted by King Wilhelm I on July 19TH 1870 for award during the Franco-Prussian War and again on August 5TH 1914 by King Wilhelm II for award during WWI. On September 1ST 1939 Hitler once more re-instituted the Iron Cross series of awards in the First and Second Classes and established the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross. The first class medal was for award to personnel who performed three to five acts of bravery in combat, and had already been awarded the Iron Cross 2ND class.

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Die struck, three piece, iron and nickel/silver plated alloy construction Patté style cross with a single piece iron core and a two piece alloy frame. The obverse of the award features an embossed, central, canted swastika with the re-institution date, "1939", to the bottom arm. The swastika is in nice high relief while the date is somewhat lower. The plain reverse has a solid, soldered hinge, a broad, tapered, vertical pin and catch all intact. Nicely maker market L/19 for Ferdinand Hoffstätter, Bonn/Rhein Postfach 161. The cross comes housed in its wood and pressed cardboard construction issue case with a simulated black grained leather covering. Also included is most of the original cardboard protective cover. Rare maker and super nice!

GRADE ****1/2                             PRICE $1,295.00

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