Become our sponsor and display your banner here
Results 1 to 5 of 5

1957er Ballonbeobachterabzeichen

Article about: Here's the latest addition to my collection of 1957er awards, the Ballonbeobachterabzeichen in Gold [Balloon Observer Badge in Gold]. This badge is one of the rarest 1957ers. A bit of histor

  1. #1

    Default 1957er Ballonbeobachterabzeichen

    Here's the latest addition to my collection of 1957er awards, the Ballonbeobachterabzeichen in Gold [Balloon Observer Badge in Gold]. This badge is one of the rarest 1957ers.

    A bit of history:

    The Ballonbeobachterabzeichen was instituted by a Hitler decreee of 8 July 1944 "in recognition of the efforts of the balloon observers" and "as an achievement badge for observers in tethered balloons who had proven themselves in action at the front". Award criteria were announced by the General der Artillerie beim Chef des Generalstabs des Heeres [General of the Artillery with the General Staff of the Army] - in whose name the badge was to be awarded - on 15 July 1944, both of which were published in the Allgemeine Heeresmitteilungen [General Army Announcements] 1944, vol. 18, page 236 under no. 419.

    Officers, NCOs and other ranks serving as balloon observers on active frontline duty were eligible for this badge. It came in three classes graded on the basis of a points system. The 1. Stufe [1st level] (bronze) was for 20 points, the 2. Stufe [2nd level] (silver) for 45 and the 3. Stufe [3rd level] (gold) was for 75 points. Points were recognized as follows:

    1. Flawless spotting of tactically relevant targets
    a) that are of particular significance to the command authorities (such as stagings and major concentrations of troops, transport movements of every kind etc.) - 1 point per target
    b) that were combated by heavy weapons (artillery or air force) (such as firing positions, groups of tanks, ammunition dumps etc.) - 1 point per target
    2. Successful direction of adjustment fire - 1 point each
    3. Balloon ascents on the frontline - 1 point per every 4 hours
    4. Observation despite incoming fire from enemy aircraft or artillery
    a) if no losses or damage were incurred - 2 points
    b) if damage to the balloon or the ground station was incurred - 3 points
    5. Emergency parachute bail-out from the balloon
    a) first jump - 10 points
    b) every subsequent jump - 5 points each

    The badge was to be bestowed with an award certificate and to be worn on the left breast of the uniform. If the recipient held an assault badge, the Ballonbeobachterabzechen was to be worn to its left.

    Awards of the badge (at least of the 1st grade) were made on paper, but it is unknown whether it was actually manufactured and physically bestowed prior to the end of the war. (Most likely it wasn't.) The final edition of Dr. Heinrich Doehle's period standard reference Die Auszeichnungen des Großdeutschen Reiches includes the badge and lists the above criteria, but with a note that an illustration was not yet available when the book went to press (which was in late October 1944, so we know for sure that the badge hadn't yet been produced by that time).

    The Ballonbeobachterabzeichen was re-authorized for wear in de-nazified form along with the other wartime combat-, service- and achievement badges of the German armed forces by the Ordensgesetz of 26 July 1957. Its modified design - which eliminated the Wehrmacht eagle found on top of the wreath in the original design - along with those of all the other "1957er" awards, was regulated in the decree of the Federal Interior Minister and its accompanying manufacturing regulations of 1 February 1958, published on 28 February 1958.

    Here is the badge now. It's an early piece made by Steinhauer & Lück:


    1957er Ballonbeobachterabzeichen

    1957er Ballonbeobachterabzeichen


    As always, all comments are welcome.

  2. # ADS
    Circuit advertisement 1957er Ballonbeobachterabzeichen
    Join Date
    Always
    Location
    Advertising world
    P
    Many
     

  3. #2

    Default

    You did really good getting this one, rare as hen's teeth..... What's next on your list my friend?

    Regards,
    Nick

  4. #3

    Default

    Quote by Nick Hessens View Post
    You did really good getting this one, rare as hen's teeth..... What's next on your list my friend?
    Ideally, the bronze and silver grades of the badge. But seriously, I have no "shopping list"; I'll just see what crosses my path next...

  5. #4

    Default

    Another great find Andreas! I have always wondered about this one, the wartime version at least. I heard it was fantasy, it wasn't and on and on. Any idea on how many actually were awarded? If I had to guess, I would say not very many at all.
    A great addition to your collection!

  6. #5

    Default

    Quote by carpediem View Post
    I have always wondered about this one, the wartime version at least. I heard it was fantasy, it wasn't and on and on. Any idea on how many actually were awarded? If I had to guess, I would say not very many at all.
    A very few awards of the bronze grade (the earliest known one being on 12 December 1944) are confirmed by period documents.

    The total number of awards and whether the silver and gold grades were ever awarded at all are unknown.

    Between the badge's late-war institution, the limited circle of potential recipients and the award requirements, It is safe to say, though, that the number was very low indeed.
    Last edited by HPL2008; 09-15-2018 at 08:20 AM.

Similar Threads

  1. Fake alert! Ballonbeobachterabzeichen Fantasy award

    In Orders & Decorations of the Third Reich
    09-13-2018, 04:43 PM
  2. 1939er or 1957er?

    In 1939 Eisernes Kreuz forum
    03-25-2015, 05:05 PM
  3. New 1957er ribbon bar

    In Bundeswehr forum
    02-20-2015, 04:11 PM
  4. New 1957er EK2

    In Bundeswehr forum
    12-01-2012, 04:49 PM
  5. Question Ballonbeobachterabzeichen des Heeres in Silber...value 6k is it real?

    In Orders & Decorations of the Third Reich
    03-29-2012, 02:31 AM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •