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H027775 COMMEMORATIVE MEDAL OF 1ST OCTOBER 1938.(Medaille zur Erinnerung an den 1 Oktober 1938)
BACKGROUND: The Commemorative Medal of 1ST October 1938 was the second of the "Anschluss", (Union/Annexation), medal series and was introduced on October 18TH 1938, for award to civilians and military personnel who participated in the "return" of the Sudetenland to Germany. The award followed the same design as the earlier, "13TH März" medal, that commemorated the annexation of Austria into Greater Germany. The Sudetenland, with over three million German inhabitants, was a section of Bohemia that had been awarded to Czechoslovakia in 1919 by the treaty of Saint Germain en Laye signed between Austria and the allies at the end of WWI. Hitler claimed that the Germanic Sudetens were being persecuted by the Czech’s as the main premise for the annexation of the area into greater Germany. Hitler also contended that the Sudentenland would be his final territorial claim in Europe. At a meeting in Munich on September 29TH 1938 between Britain’s Chamberlain, France’s Daladier, Italy’s Mussolini and Hitler, without Czechoslovakian input, it was decided that the Sudentenland would be "returned" to Germany and German troops marched into the region on October 1ST 1938. Of Note: On May 1ST 1939 Hitler extended award of the 1ST October 1938 medal to personnel who had participated in the creation of the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia. Personnel who participated in the creation of the Protectorate, and who had already been awarded the 1ST October 1938 medal were awarded the Prague Castle bar which was to be attached to the ribbon of their 1ST October 1938 medal.
PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Roughly, 32mm diameter, bronze washed, die struck alloy construction medal features two embossed figures symbolically breaking the chains of bondage with an unfurled national flag in the background and a high relief national eagle to the bottom of the obverse. The reverse features embossed Latin script to the center,"1 Oktober 1938", encompassed by additional script, "Ein Volk, Ein Reich, Ein Führer". (One People, One State, One Leader). The ribbon suspension ring and medal loop are both intact and the award comes complete with a piece of original ribbed, rayon ribbon.
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