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Eisernes Kreuz 1st Klasse.

Article about: I found this among my late grandfather's belongings. He served in the US Army at a Texas POW camp during World War II. I assume this came from one of his charges. Does it appear to be authen

  1. #1
    Selym
    ?

    Default Eisernes Kreuz 1st Klasse.

    I found this among my late grandfather's belongings. He served in the US Army at a Texas POW camp during World War II. I assume this came from one of his charges. Does it appear to be authentic?

    Thanks!
    Myles
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    Last edited by Adrian; 05-10-2010 at 10:36 PM. Reason: Terminology changed, photos uploaded to server.

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  3. #2
    ?

    Default Re: Iron Cross First Class

    It's a well worn combat veteran but definately authentic. Possibly by maker Steinhauer & Luck. A nice cross with plenty of charater.

  4. #3

    Default Re: Iron Cross First Class

    Hi Myles
    Yes it looks fine. Is the centre made from brass? or is it magnetic? If it's brass then it's a naval one

  5. #4

    Default Re: Iron Cross First Class

    Nice EK1! It's a shame that it's bent, but the worn swastika and date give it a really nice look. Lucky find!

  6. #5
    ?

    Default Re: Iron Cross First Class

    Quote by John Brandon View Post
    If it's brass then it's a naval one
    I'm going to have to disagree with John on the above point.
    The myth that brass, copper or any other non magnetic material cored EKs were for naval personnel is a tough one to break because it's been around for a long time. Basically the theory is that these crosses were reserved for the Kriegsmarine to wear at sea and due to the materials used, wouldn't rust on exposure to sea/salt air.
    Non magnetic EKs are of early manufacture, prior to the establishment of the LDO in 1941 who standardised the construction of awards and disallowed any non standard materials.
    The myth can be dispelled by the fact that non magnetic EKs with provenance being awarded to Heer and Luftwaffe personnel and magnetic awards being awarded to Kriegsmarine sailors.
    When the awards were presented, there was no way of knowing which were magnetic and which weren't - unless they had been unpacked and tested by a magnet before bestowal, which could be considered highly unlikely.
    Another point worth noting is that some non magnetic crosses were made from zinc, tombak or buntmetal. These materials will corrode just as easily as iron.

  7. #6
    Selym
    ?

    Default Re: Iron Cross First Class

    Thanks, all! I wish my grandfather was still around to explain the origins of this piece. I'm not sure about the materials used, but I'd guess at least part of the medal is made of brass.

    Best,
    Myles

  8. #7

    Default Re: Eisernes Kreuz 1st Klasse.

    It's a nice cross Miles, hang on to it.






    Regards, Steve.

  9. #8
    Selym
    ?

    Default Re: Eisernes Kreuz 1st Klasse.

    Quote by Walkwolf View Post
    It's a nice cross Miles, hang on to it.






    Regards, Steve.
    Thanks Steve! I think I shall keep it.

    Best,
    Myles

  10. #9

    Default Re: Iron Cross First Class

    Quote by AdrianC View Post
    I'm going to have to disagree with John on the above point.
    The myth that brass, copper or any other non magnetic material cored EKs were for naval personnel is a tough one to break because it's been around for a long time. Basically the theory is that these crosses were reserved for the Kriegsmarine to wear at sea and due to the materials used, wouldn't rust on exposure to sea/salt air.
    Non magnetic EKs are of early manufacture, prior to the establishment of the LDO in 1941 who standardised the construction of awards and disallowed any non standard materials.
    The myth can be dispelled by the fact that non magnetic EKs with provenance being awarded to Heer and Luftwaffe personnel and magnetic awards being awarded to Kriegsmarine sailors.
    When the awards were presented, there was no way of knowing which were magnetic and which weren't - unless they had been unpacked and tested by a magnet before bestowal, which could be considered highly unlikely.
    Another point worth noting is that some non magnetic crosses were made from zinc, tombak or buntmetal. These materials will corrode just as easily as iron.
    Hi Adrian
    You are of course absolutely correct, I just couldn't write all of that info down, and make sense of it. To be honest, it's a myth that I thought was easier to just let go on. But you have given a good explanation. sometimes my tongue gets tied

  11. #10
    ?

    Default Re: Iron Cross First Class

    Quote by John Brandon View Post
    Hi Adrian
    You are of course absolutely correct, I just couldn't write all of that info down, and make sense of it. To be honest, it's a myth that I thought was easier to just let go on. But you have given a good explanation. sometimes my tongue gets tied
    Did that make sense?? Phew! My fingers get tied when I type - mainly due to a lack of co-ordination between them and my mind.

    As an additional point, the other myths surrounding non magnetic EKs concern the stories regarding the issue to U-boat crews. Apparently the non magnetic cores weren't supposed to interfere with the magnetic compass on board. The U-boats actually used Gyro compasses on which there would've been no affect. There are also similar stories about issue to Luftwaffe aircrew for the same reasons. If you consider how many branches of service used a magnetic compass while wearing helmets, sitting in or near tanks or other vehicles, being on a boat, carrying a gun or being close to any metal items it would seem that a small amount of iron in a cross would be a very minor influence.
    These tales are told by dealers hoping to score a few extra /$/.

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