Product Description: This Early Cased Blockade Runner set is incredibly well preserved. The badges are top quality, early examples, made of a brass alloy (Tombak). The set consists of both the full size and half size Blockade Runner badges, in the original case of issue. Both badges retain virtually all of the original finish on the obverse. The eagle on the large badge, which appears to be unworn, retains full original silvering and luster. The smaller badge has very light wear to the obverse and some discoloration to the eagle. The hardware on the large badge is intact, functional and unrepaired. The large badge is marked with the name of the designer, Otto Placzek, and also the manufacturer of this example, Schwerin in Berlin, a desirable maker. The reverse of the small badge shows some age patination and retains its original knurled pin. The badges rest on a correct blue flocked insert, inside the original blue issue case. The case is fantastic, with all of the original fabric covering totally intact. The hinges and push button closure of the case show slight age patina and remain intact and functional. This Early Cased Blockade Runner is in near mint condition overall and would be extremely hard to upgrade.
Historical Description: The Blockade Runner Badge (Abzeichen für Blockadebrecher) was instituted by Adolf Hitler on April 1, 1941. It was awarded to crews of German ships that were in other countries at the outbreak of WWII, and who managed to get through the Allied blockade and return home. The badges were made of Buntmetall or zinc. They were designed by Otto Placzek, and feature a German ship (the Bremen) with a national eagle and swastika emblem as the masthead, traveling at high speed through a chain that makes up the edge of the badge. In addition to the full size badge, there was also a smaller version intended for wear on civilian clothes by members of the Merchant Marine. To earn the badge, seamen had to be part of the crew of a German vessel that successfully eluded the blockade, or to have been on a ship destroyed by enemy action, or in other cases of special merit. This badge was issued in limited numbers and is scarce today.
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