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Jamie Cross

The German Army Honour Roll Clasp

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Jamie Cross

As you may remember Horst Kolrep was a holder of the scarce Honour Roll Clasp, with only 4,500 odd awards to the army. These clasps are scarcer than the award of the Knights Cross of the Iron Cross. 

A misconception of the Honour Roll clasp is that it is an  infill to the  Iron Cross  and is a bridge  between the Iron Cross 1st class and the Knights Cross,  (this gap was in fact filled by the German Cross in Gold ). The truth of the matter though is the Honour Roll Clasp is in fact a visible sign  for the Fuhrur`s  Roll of Honour for the German Army,  and the name`s of the soldiers were recorded on a list for  heroic deeds in battle, sometimes day by day, other times  week by week, (this is similar to the UK`s mention in dispatches). 

Shown is such a listing from 19th September 1943 notice Erich Gusts Name .

The original roll was started in July 1941 and each soldier whose heroic deeds were recorded was entered into this list. Originally, a citation was issued being a commendation certificate,   as well as  the listing of between two to thirty or so individuals on a document with the date of award. This second listing carried on but the Commendation Certificate was replaced with a more formal and ornate one for each individual soldier. The award document had a gold blocked  eagle holding a swastika to the top, and the soldier's name  in red ink, with the rest printed in black ink and finally the Fuhrer's signature ( a facsimile) in blue ink to the base.  On the left is an embossed eagle and swastika within a wreath. This document is about A 4 size. 

The document below translates roughly as  I express my special appreciation to Feldwebel Erich Gust for his outstanding achievements on the battlefield near Ssinjawino from 22.7 to 1.8.1943   Headquarters  given 10th September 1943 The Leader Adolf Hitler.

The document shown is the one that was presented to Erich Gust, who survived the war and was also awarded the following decorations:- Iron Cross 1st and 2nd class, Russian Front medal, DRL Sports Badge in Bronze, Silver Infantry Assault Badge, and the Close Combat Clasps in Bronze , Silver and Gold. He was also recommended for the German Cross in Gold, But the war ended before it was approved (as shown on his personal record of 1957).

On 30th Januarry 1944, Hitler announced that a visible token was needed and these small clasps were then instituted and awarded to all holders of the Honour Citations. 

The army clasp is a two piece constructed award with a solid swastika soldered within  a hollow wreath. The award is heavily gilded and has four round wire pins soldered to the reverse to affix it to the Iron Cross 1939 ribbon (though not part of the Iron Cross awards. The fact that to qualify you had to hold both the 1st and 2nd class Iron Crosses and the award was worn on the Iron Cross 2nd Class Ribbon, means that most people link it into the Iron Cross series of awards). The clasp is small in size and measures approx 26.5mm high by 24.5mm wide, 
Due to the scarcity of awards and the size and fittings used, this is one of the Third Reich's hardest awards to acquire. 


 

doc gust honour clasp.jpg

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erich gust honour.jpg

erich gust.jpg

 

 

honourpair.jpg

 

Edited by Jamie Cross
same pics

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Desert Rat

Hello Jamie,

That is beyond superb and all the other rare material with it, not for getting your great text and description..Excellent!

Many thanks for showing us on MCN.

Best to you....Desert Rat/ Ian

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