N036180 MOTHER'S CROSS IN SILVER ISSUE ENVELOPE.

BACKGROUND: Introduced by Hitler on December 16TH 1938 as part of a large propaganda campaign aimed at increasing the birth rate. The award was officially designated, Honor Cross of the German Mother, and was instituted in three grades to recognize and reward child bearing German females. The three grades consisted of the bronze cross for bearing four or five children, the silver cross for bearing six or seven children and the gold cross for bearing eight or more children. Criteria for the award included that the parents be of pure German blood, and that the mother was worthy of such an honor. On its introduction the cross had the impressed inscription to reverse, "Das kind adelt die Mutter", (The child ennobles the mother), but this was inexplicably changed sometime in 1939. Bestowal of the cross was accompanied by an award certificate, a cash incentive for each child born and a miniature cross for everyday wear, with the actual cross being reserved for formal or ceremonial occasions. Members of all youth organizations were required to salute wearers of the Mother's Cross.

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Blue, mid-weight, paper issue envelope with black printed Gothic script to front, "Ehrenkreuz der Deutschen Mutter Zweite Stufe". Envelope has a fold back triangular flap (tear to the reverse flap), which inserts into a horizontal slash on reverse. Reverse has black printed manufacturers name.

GRADE ****                             PRICE $69.00

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