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Leistungsabzeichen der Deutsche Grenzpolizei

Article about: Good morning gents, This is one of my Christmas goodies I couldn't find a thread re this type so maybe it is something a little unusual. If anyone has similar please add it here for referenc

  1. #1

    Default Leistungsabzeichen der Deutsche Grenzpolizei

    Good morning gents,

    This is one of my Christmas goodies

    I couldn't find a thread re this type so maybe it is something a little unusual.
    If anyone has similar please add it here for reference.

    This is the earliest incarnation of the the performance badge of the DGP which evolved into the later Grenztruppen.

    I was pleased to find this one as not only is it numbered (later badges were not) but the serial number is only two digits. Being issued in 1954 (I think that was the year of introduction) it surely numbers amongst the very earliest awards and given the tendancy in the DDR to present awards "en masse" at significant parades it might even be from the very first ceremony who knows?

    Also, the recipient being in the rank of Oberfeldwebel I imagine he may well have been a veteran of WWII?

    As usual, all comment or opinion is most welcome.

    Regards

    Mark
    PS The Urkunde is a rather small A6 size.

    Leistungsabzeichen der Deutsche GrenzpolizeiLeistungsabzeichen der Deutsche GrenzpolizeiLeistungsabzeichen der Deutsche GrenzpolizeiLeistungsabzeichen der Deutsche Grenzpolizei
    Last edited by Watchdog; 01-07-2020 at 01:00 PM. Reason: ps
    "War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing he cares more about than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature with no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."

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  3. #2

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    Some of these very early badges and awards have rather simplistic designs. But still a very rare piece of history! Especially if it is indeed among the first to be issued.

    -Joel

  4. #3

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    Indeed, it is exactly as the wording indicates. The only symbology being the typical use of the oak wreath to symbolise strength.

    I think this badge is the inspiration for the nickname "Grenz Ei" or "Border Egg" which carried over to the GT Leistungsabz.

    It is a very simple badge but with the weight of the brass metal from which it is made and the patina of age it has a surprisingly forceful "presence" in hand.

    Does anyone else have another to compare?

    Regards

    Mark
    "War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing he cares more about than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature with no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."

  5. #4

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    Great gift, very nice original piece.

  6. #5

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    Very nice... one that I don't have yet, and I know that they don't come cheap either. Santa was very good to you!

    Cheers,
    Steve
    Author of... 'Belfast Diaries: A Gunner In Northern Ireland'... 'A Tough Nut To Crack: Andersonstown.. Voices From 9 Battery Royal Artillery In Northern Ireland'... 'An Accrington Pal: The Diaries of Pte Jack Smallshaw, September 1914 To March 1919'.... 'A Salford Pal: Pte Thomas Jay.'

  7. #6

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    Quote by HARRY THE MOLE View Post
    Santa was very good to you!
    Yep, with just a little guidance he got it dead right
    "War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing he cares more about than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature with no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."

  8. #7

    Default Another DGP Leistungsabzeichen for comparison

    Here is a comparison of two DGP Leistungsabzeichen.
    The first with serial number 53 is the one at the top of this thread and it is a very nice example, possibly the best I have seen for overall condition and patina.
    The other one I also obtained from Germany. However, I have real issues with it in terms of authenticity.

    The seller disagreed with me but agreed to take it back immediately so I can’t fault him there. He suggested that they are just by different makers and that he has seen similar issues with TR period items. That was the comment that heightened my concern even more as we all know the implication of that parallel.

    So as not to influence opinion I would be grateful for input from collectors who specialise in only TR items just as much as DDR/NVA before I give my reasons for doubting it.

    Regards

    Mark

    Leistungsabzeichen der Deutsche GrenzpolizeiLeistungsabzeichen der Deutsche GrenzpolizeiLeistungsabzeichen der Deutsche GrenzpolizeiLeistungsabzeichen der Deutsche GrenzpolizeiLeistungsabzeichen der Deutsche GrenzpolizeiLeistungsabzeichen der Deutsche Grenzpolizei
    "War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing he cares more about than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature with no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."

  9. #8

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    The serial number '1888' looks relatively fresh when enlarged, and it isn't that crisp either. In all honesty that is all I can pick up on, but maybe the 'iffy' one is slightly shorter - although you have only measured the width. My German reference book gives the size as: '41.5 mm hoch und 34 mm breit.'
    Author of... 'Belfast Diaries: A Gunner In Northern Ireland'... 'A Tough Nut To Crack: Andersonstown.. Voices From 9 Battery Royal Artillery In Northern Ireland'... 'An Accrington Pal: The Diaries of Pte Jack Smallshaw, September 1914 To March 1919'.... 'A Salford Pal: Pte Thomas Jay.'

  10. #9

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    Quote by HARRY THE MOLE View Post
    The serial number '1888' looks relatively fresh when enlarged, and it isn't that crisp either. In all honesty that is all I can pick up on, but maybe the 'iffy' one is slightly shorter - although you have only measured the width. My German reference book gives the size as: '41.5 mm hoch und 34 mm breit.'
    Thanks Steve, those are two of my points. The "good one" is near as as you like to 34mm wide whilst the other is near enough 1mm less. The same is true of the height. 1mm less all round is a common characteristic in casts from an original. The serial number is in a totally different (and I believe incorrect) font. As for my other points; the suspect is about 3g lighter, the detail is soft by comparison and the texture of the surface particularly on the reverse is rough rather than smooth. Further typical characteristics of a casting from an original as opposed to a die forged item which has a smooth surface and far better definition even when allowing for the effects of ageing.

    It is not so clear in the pics but in hand the dark colouration looks like a soot deposit, a characteristic of chemical ageing.

    I was surprised to see all these red flags in a badge like this as I have not seen pieces of this period faked before although perhaps one should not really wonder.

    As soon as I had them side by side in hand they looked and felt so different that it had to go back!

    I would still like to hear the thoughts of others.

    Regards

    Mark
    "War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing he cares more about than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature with no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."

  11. #10

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    In all honesty I couldn't really notice any difference in the crispness of the lettering, although the texture on the back did register with the grey matter. But as you will be aware from having them, this can look different in hand. The size difference really stood out for me, as did the numbers.
    Author of... 'Belfast Diaries: A Gunner In Northern Ireland'... 'A Tough Nut To Crack: Andersonstown.. Voices From 9 Battery Royal Artillery In Northern Ireland'... 'An Accrington Pal: The Diaries of Pte Jack Smallshaw, September 1914 To March 1919'.... 'A Salford Pal: Pte Thomas Jay.'

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