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Purchased from the recipient's son and never available on the market before! German Cross grouping to Leutnant Paul Salewski awarded on 26.12.1941 serving with 1./Infanterie-Regiment 371 as an Oberfeldwebel.
A nice 9cm x 13cm portrait photo as a Leutnant wearing his badges including the same German Cross in Gold which is still part of this grouping.
One photo of a Christmas party in 1941 shortly after he was awarded the German Cross. He is wearing his newly awarded badge on the photo.
An earlier photo showing Salewski and an NCO.
His well worn "combat seen" German Cross in gold made by Godet, Berlinl. 72 g. Chipped to the center of the enameled swastika due to extensive wear in the field. Great patina! Never cleaned. The catch is slightly bend so the pin does not open. It is possible to bend it back.
A rare chance to purchase an untouched German Cross available ont he market for the first time!
German Cross in Gold
DATE OF INSTITUTION
28. September 1941 as a military order in two grades. A special grade, the German Cross in Gold with Diamonds was planned and prototypes were made.
The golden grade was awarded for multiple exceptional deeds of bravery or leadership and the silver grade for exceptional deeds in troop leadership. The award of the Iron Cross 1. Class, the Spange 1. Class , or the War Merit Cross 1. Class was a pre-requisite for the awarding of the German Cross. The German Cross was located above the Iron Cross 1. Class and War Merit Cross 1. Class but below the Knights Cross of the Iron Cross, respectively the Knights Cross of the War Merit Cross.
The German Cross was awarded by the decision of the supreme commanders of the three army branches.
The German Cross was produced by five known manufacturers and maybe one or two not yet known companies. The known manufacturers are Deschler & Sohn, who designed the cross, Gebrüder Godet, C.E. Juncker, C.F. Zimmermann, and Otto Klein.
Early crosses are unmarked and from the end of 1942/early 1943 onwards, the crosses were marked with the Präsidialkanzlei numbers of the companies.
Due to the heavy and slightly bulky nature of the award, a cloth version was authorized in June 1942. The cloth version can be found with eight different cloth backing colors: field gray (army), dark blue (navy), blue-gray (LW), black (tank forces), stone gray (assault gun), olive (Africa Heer), light khaki (Africa LW), and white (summer uniform).
Accurate numbers are not known but the closest estimation based on surviving documents are 25,964 for the gold grade and 2,471 for the silver grade. A known total of eleven soldiers were awarded both grades.
The crosses were mainly stored and registered at the Präsidalkanzlei and were given out by this office. It is possible that smaller numbers were stored at the personnel offices of the three army branches.
The Heer issued preliminary award documents in the format A5, followed by a larger (356 mm x 254 mm) formal document. The Luftwaffe and the Kriegsmarine never issued any preliminary documents, only the formal ones in the same size as the formal document of the Heer.
The German Cross was worn at the right side of the uniform on the breast pocket.