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Identification Help: Nazi Memoribilia SS Service Medal

nazi memorabilia ss medal

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3 replies to this topic

#1 bkk2nite



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Posted 26 May 2009 - 11:10 PM

Hello all,

I need help identifying the following medal I recently got a hold of. I know it's SS service medal. I think it is silver (plated?) although the silver is wearing off. The back of the medal "fur treue dienste in der ss". Comes in a black box in good condition. I googled all over the internet but can't find anything like it. The closest has wreath on the medal but this one does not.

Any help/comment is appreciated.

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#2 WotNoChad?



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Posted 27 May 2009 - 12:39 AM

Looks like it's a gold rather than a silver finish to me which would make it a 25 year SS service medal. It's had the wreath, which was cast seperately, removed.

I've superimposed the wreath in close scale, within 2mm, and marked the solder marks.

Posted Image

Whether it's genuine or not I couldn't say.

pip pip

Posted Image

#3 AndyPants



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Posted 27 May 2009 - 12:56 AM

hello bkk2nite,

in answer to your question, the medal you have is an SS 12 year long service cross in silver with ribbon.

"This award was was instituted on 21st October 1938 and bestowed after 12 years loyal service in the SS."

you have the version "Without oak", the ones you saw on the internet with a wreath is the version "With oak"

I hope this is helpfull if you would like to know more (and like to read :)), below is an article from the web:

article written by Drew Maynard:

SS Dienstauszeichnungen: The SS Long-Service Award

In the prewar years, consideration and final approval was given to the fledgling wing of the Armed Forces, the Schutzstaffel, to produce an award for their militarized units: The ‘SS-Dienstauszeichnungen’ or SS-Long-Service Award. However, these awards were not widely distributed and Waffen-SS men became eligible to receive the standard Wehrmacht long-service awards after the outbreak of the war.

Photographic evidence of men being awarded these SS long-service awards are almost non-existent and only one Waffen-SS officer is shown wearing the 12-Year long-service award during the war, Otto Kumm. Indeed, Reichsführer-SS Heinrich Himmler is shown in some photographs wearing a court-mounted 12-Year long-service award, however, he had no entitlement to it, never actually having served prerequisite time in the military SS.

Issue Dates
The bestowal of the 12 & 25 year SS long-service Award was suspended “until further notice” in January 1940 but the 4- & 8-Year awards continued to be awarded after this date. The implementation criteria had, however, changed somewhat for the 8-Year award, in so much as, service time in the armed forces and Police was no longer to be credited in the reckoning of SS-Dienstzeit. A minimum of 4 years service in the SS-Verfügungstruppen & SS-Totenkopfverbänden was to be mandated.

On January 30. 1938 the SS-Service Award was established “as an acknowledgement of loyal, unblemished, SS-related service time in the SS-Verfügungstruppen, SS-Totenkopfverbänden and SS-Junkerschulen.”*

“The Regulations on the Establishment of the SS-Service Award, As of 30. January 1938” pp. 68:
“Reckoning of Service Time”

(1) Reckoning of Service Time is calculated by the Active Service Time in the Wehrmacht and the Landespolizei, including Reservist Training and the Service Time in early, approved Volunteer Units.
(2) A double counting of Service Time is not permitted.”**

As to the worthiness of an individual for bestowal of the SS-Service Award, “The having of one criminal conviction does not implicitly rule out the bestowal of the SS-Service Award, if the offence is not particularly severe and was not a dishonorable discharge conviction, or if it was already a long time ago and the offender has, since that time, behaved in a perfectly obedient manner.”

Indeed, no one man in the SS actually qualified for the 25-year award, and there is no photographic evidence that 4- or 8-Year long-service awards were ever worn on parade-mounted format.

The January 1938 ‘Reichsgesetzblatt’*** states in its Statute of the SS Service Award, under Article 3 - ‘Form and Manner of Wearing the Service Award’ “All four grades are worn with a cornflower blue ribbon on the left breast, in the buttonhole or on the large medal bar.**** The ribbon of the 1st and 2nd grade is woven with the Sigrunen.”

An order on October 21st, 1938, approved a design of machine-embroidered runes on to the SS ribbons, and 200m of this 35mm ribbon was ordered from the firm of Karl Loy, based in Munich, intended for the 4- and 8-Year awards. The runes were machine-embroidered in light gray cotton, as opposed to the hand-embroidered silver/gold bullion for the 12 and 25-Year Awards- however this ribbon was never issued and remained a prototype only.

“The SS-Service Award will be awarded as follows;

4th Grade on all SS-NCO’s and Enlisted Men after completion of 4 years service time, whether he is retiring or he intends to re-enlist.

3rd Grade on all SS-Officers, NCO’s and Enlisted men, taking into account their membership in the Party and its organizations. A minimum of 4 years membership in the SS-Verfügungstruppen and the SSS-Totenkopfverbänden must hereby be mandatory. The service time in the Armed Forces (the Old Army also) as well as the Police will, in accordance with the verbal order of the Reichsführer-SS, not be credited.”

In summation, the 4-year award was for NCO’s & other ranks only, whereas the 8, 12 & 25-year decorations were to be awarded to all ranks (which mirrored the service periods of SS men as Enlisted grades who typically signed on for 4-year periods, NCO’s for 12 and Officers for 25 years’ service.)

Additionally, as opposed to the NSDAP, Luftwaffe and Wehrmacht long-service awards, only one SS long-service award was to be worn on a ribbon or medal (‘court mounted’ bar, with the higher grade being worn, as mentioned in the Reichsgesetzblätt: “On bestowal of a further SS-service award, “the higher grade supercedes a lower grade.” (Berchtesgaden, 21. October 1938.” (Reichsgesetzblatt 1938, page 1540))

Historical Notes
The 12 and 25-Year Awards were the first Third Reich Decorations that used the swastika as the focal point of the award’s design.

In March 1939, the 4 grades were designed by Karl Diebitsch and produced by the firm Deschler in Munich and the firm Petz & Lorenz in Unterreichenbach. The awards closely mirror the Dienstauszeichnungen of the Wehrmacht.

Below are the 4 ‘devices’ used on period-era ribbon bars- Ribbon bar devices: all 4 ‘grades’ of the SS long-service awards had ‘devices’ placed on the ‘cornflower blue’ ribbons, commonly used for the long-service ribbons of the military units of the Third Reich.

4-Year Details: Black washed design (painted). No case, only available in private purchase. Brown paper packet with award. Manufactured by Deschler and Petz & Lorenz.
8-Year Details: Bronze washed design (anodized), circular in form. Manufactured by Deschler and Petz & Lorenz.
12-Year Details: Silver plated medal, 50mm wide ribbon, teardrop suspension ring- unique to SS style. Silver washed design, with inscription on reverse: Für treue Dienste in den SS. Manufactured by Deschler.
25-Year Details: Gold plated medal. 50mm wide ribbon with teardrop suspension ring to the ribbon. Gold washed design, with inscription on reverse, as above, Gold hand embroidered runes in the ribbon. Manufactured by Deschler.

*Members of the Allgemeine-SS were not entitled to them, as their SS service counted towards grades of an NSDAP Dienstauszeichnungen.
**Common theory alludes to double time for the ‘Kampfzeit’, which is proven here to be incorrect as noted.
***The ‘Reichsgesetzblätt’ were published leaflets (bound, either every 6 months of yearly, depending on the amount of laws passed that year) that covered laws and regulations passed in the Third Reich and its protectorates to include Rules and Regulations for matters from awards, traffic rules, pensions, signage, uniform rules and insignia, union and organizational standards and are incredibly if not overtly zealous and detailed.
****Officially, the only awards to be worn in the buttonhole format in addition to the SS long-service award, are the Iron Cross 2nd Class, the Ostfront Medaille, the West Wall Medal, Eastern Peoples, Romanian Anti-Communist and Finnish Continuation awards.

Sources: Reichsgesetzblatt, January 1938 / November 1938; Verordungsblatt der Waffen-SS, January 1940; Orden und Ehrenzeichen im Dritten Reich von Heinrich Doehle, 1939 / 1940; Medals of Hitler’s Germany, Robin Lumsden.


All the best,


All the Best,


"people who are not themselves are nobody" - General George S. Patton

#4 AndyPants



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Posted 27 May 2009 - 01:01 AM

good looking there WNC, i did notice the "solder marks" and taught for a minute the wreath had been taken off, but then just taught it might be the 12 year medal.........someting fishy alright
All the Best,


"people who are not themselves are nobody" - General George S. Patton

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