Product Description: This is one of the rarest of all German awards. The Reichsbahn Female Service Award (“Dienstnadel für deutsche Eisenbahnerinnen”) was introduced in August of 1944, with the first awards being made in October 1944. It was made in three grades: bronze for 3 years of service, silver for 6 years and gold for 10 years. It is believed that only the bronze and silver versions were awarded before the war ended. This Reichsbahn Female Service Award is a Bronze version, in excellent condition. Nearly all of the original bronze finish is retained, showing only minor aging. The reverse is flat, with a totally intact hardware setup, without repairs. A lovely example of a very rare Reichsbahn Female Service award, with a great finish.
Historical Description: During the Third Reich and WWII, the German national railway organization was called the Reichsbahn. This organization was tasked with a huge range of responsibilities, from the mundane transportation of people and civilian goods, to operating the supply lines that brought men and material to distant battlefields. The Nazis greatly expanded their national railroad, incorporating many state and private railways into the Reichsbahn. During the war, their logistical role was of immense importance. Reichsbahn personnel wore a myriad of uniform types featuring many different insignia patterns. Uniform insignia was used to denote rank and for various specialty purposes. Changing insignia patterns in the 1930s and 1940s led to a confusing situation as often, more than one of the various patterns were worn by personnel in the same place at the same time! In addition to special uniforms, Reichsbahn personnel had and used a huge variety of gear and equipment of all kinds, and many different kinds of passes and paperwork were issued to and by Reichsbahn workers. By the end of the war, it was a massive organization, deeply involved not only with the war effort but also with the most sinister aspects of the Nazi regime.
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