Product Description: This LDO Style Krim Shield is an attractive example of this campaign award. It is made of stamped steel, and retains fine original detail, including the feathers on the eagle and the stippling to the field behind the representation of the Crimean peninsula. Nearly all of the original bronze finish is present on this piece, with beautiful light golden tones. The steel base metal is visible in a few small areas. This award is of the variant style known to collectors as the “LDO” type, believed to have been made and sold without the backing plate or wool backing fabric usually found on the issue type awards. The reverse of this LDO style Krim shield has some typical patination. All four of the original prongs are still present, with no indication of ever having been bent to be affixed to a uniform. There is no manufacturer marking. This Krim Shield is an eye-catching example, in excellent condition.
Historical Description: The Krim Shield was a combat award of the German Wehrmacht, used to recognize the troops who fought on the Crimean Peninsula, on the Eastern Front, between September 21, 1941, and July 4, 1942. Crimea had been taken by the German Army Group South, specifically the 11th Army led by Generalfeldmarschall Erich von Manstein. The shield was officially instituted by Adolf Hitler on July 25, 1942, by a proclamation stating that the award would recognize the “heroic battles” in Crimea. The shield depicts a German national eagle and swastika emblem as well as a map of Crimea, along with the word “Krim” and the dates 1941 and 1942. It was worn on the left upper sleeve of the uniform. To qualify for the award, soldiers had to have participated on one of eight specific battles that were a part of the campaign, to have been wounded in action, or to have served 3 months, without interruption, in the Crimea region. Members of all branches of the Wehrmacht, including the Luftwaffe and Kriegsmarine, were eligible for the award. The shield was made from steel, and later from zinc, and was issued affixed to a backing cloth that allowed it to be stitched to the uniform. Between 200,000 and 300,000 shields were awarded.
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