Product Description: This 1957 Reissue Knight’s Cross is an outstanding, near mint set, that would likely be impossible to upgrade. This piece is of the 1957 pattern, authorized by the German government to be worn by veterans who had earned the award in WWII. This one was likely made in the 1960s. The cross itself is gorgeous, and near mint. The original paint on the core is clean and pristine, with a slight hint of metal peeking through at high points. The frame shows great shine and only minimal age toning. On the reverse, the frame is stamped below the eyelet with “800,” indicating the silver content. The original suspension loop is intact, and is also marked with “800,” as well as “65,” which was the wartime PKZ number for the manufacturer, Klein und Quenzer, a maker who also produced Knight’s Crosses before 1945. The correct ribbon is unissued, and crisp, with bright original color. The case is pristine, with nearly all of the original exterior surface intact. The hinge and closure work as they should. The black velvet insert displays the cross nicely, and the artificial silk lid lining is very clean. This set is complete with the seldom seen original carton, which bears the designation of the award as well as a Klein und Quenzer maker mark. The carton is complete, and largely intact, with only one small tear on the bottom edge of carton, that does not go all the way through, and is not easily seen. This is a lovely 1957 Reissue Knight’s Cross with great eye appeal, produced by one of the original manufacturers.
Historical Description: The German Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross. Instituted on September 1st, 1939, the Knight’s Cross has come to be known as one of the most recognized awards of World War Two. Awarded for acts of extreme bravery during combat, or successful leadership resulting in extraordinary success, the Knight’s Cross and its subsequent grades was among Germany’s highest military decorations. The Knight’s Cross was worn around the neck, suspended by a black, red, and white ribbon. Every member of Germany’s armed forces was eligible to be awarded the Knight’s Cross, provided the requirements of awarding had been met. The awarding process, determining whether or not a soldier was worthy of the award, began as a recommendation at the company level. This recommendation was then reviewed and either approved or denied. Upon approval, it would continue up the chain of command and end with Adolf Hitler, himself, making the final judgment. The Knight’s Cross was awarded 7,364 times during the war. It is estimated that approximately 20,000 Knight’s Crosses were produced between September 1939 to May 1945.
The Knight’s Cross was constructed of three separate pieces, a core and two outer frames. The core, made of iron, zinc, or brass, was placed between the two outer silver frames and delicately hand soldered together. The Cross was then suspended by a large loop through the frames top eyelet. A ribbon of black, white, and red was then threaded through the suspension loop. The production of the Knights Cross was strictly regulated. Only the companies granted approval by the government were legally allowed to produce the Knight’s Cross.
Known Manufacturers: Juncker, Steinhauer & Luck, Klein & Quenzer, Otto Schickle, C.F. Zimmermann, Gebruder Godet, Unknown “3/4 Ring”.
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