Maker: Otto Schickle
Product Description: This is a very appealing example of a Spanish Cross in Silver. The cross is made of Tombak and features a beautiful electroplated silver finish with burnished highlights. The cross is nearly perfect on the obverse side, and the burnished highlights give the badge a lot of eye appeal. The reverse of the Spanish Cross in Silver shows some minor loss to the silver finish from wear. The hardware is complete and functional, and features a wide pin. While the badge itself is unmarked, it is attributed to the firm Otto Schickle. The hardware and die characteristics are identical to other marked Spanish Crosses in silver from the Schickle firm.
Historical Description: The Spanish Cross (Spanienkreuz) was instituted on April 14, 1939, to recognize the achievements of German personnel who participated in the Spanish Civil War between 1936 and 1939. It was in the shape of a Maltese cross with a swastika in the center and Luftwaffe eagle emblems in the spaces between the four arms. The pin-backed award was issued in four classes: Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Gold with Diamonds. Bronze and Silver classes were made both with and without swords. Silver and Bronze awards without swords were for non-combatants and was issued to military and civilian personnel with three months of wartime experience in Spain, with the Silver version issued for merit. The Bronze award with swords was for combatants, the Silver award with swords was for soldiers who took part in decisive battles and who had considerable fighting experience, and the Gold award was for great merit. The highest grade. The Spanish Cross in Gold with Diamonds, was very rarely awarded and reserved for those who showed the greatest merit or who had high leadership skills in battle. There was also a version made for the next of kin of men who had been killed; this was a medal suspended from a ribbon, rather than a pin-on badge. Unlike most German awards, the Spanish Cross was worn on the right side of the uniform.
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