Commemorative Medal for the Return of Memel (Memel Medal), by Unknown Maker: possibly Förster & Barth

SKU: 02.GTR.0222.101.03

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  • Commemorative Medal for the Return of Memel (Memel Medal), by Unknown Maker: possibly Förster & Barth Obverse
  • Commemorative Medal for the Return of Memel (Memel Medal), by Unknown Maker: possibly Förster & Barth Obverse
  • Commemorative Medal for the Return of Memel (Memel Medal), by Unknown Maker: possibly Förster & Barth Reverse
  • Commemorative Medal for the Return of Memel (Memel Medal), by Unknown Maker: possibly Förster & Barth Obverse

Attributes

  • country
    Germany
  • date of institution
    May 1, 1939

History


The Memel Medal was instituted on May 1st, 1939, in commemoration of the bloodless transfer of the Memel district from Lithuania to Germany. In the aftermath of the First World War, the 1924 Memel Convention authorised the transfer of the district with its majority German population from East Prussia to Lithuania. Once Hitler had seized power, he demanded the immediate return of the district to Germany, and the Lithuanian government acquiesced without a struggle.

The Memel Medal was the last of the commemorative annexation awards, also known as the “Flower War Medals”, and therefore the obverse of the medal features the same design as that of the Anschluss and Sudetenland Medal. The award was conferred upon army personnel who participated in the annexation of the Memel land on March 22, 1939. The Medal was also conferred upon political and civil servants whose efforts made the annexation possible.

As of December 31st, 1940, the award had been conferred 31,322 times. No further awards were issued after this date.

Most medals are made from either tombac or bronze, but a few other materials, including zinc or magnetic alloys can also be found.

Medals of the so-called Slanted G Type feature the letter G in the word “Erinnerung” with a stem that slants to the left. These medals are of high quality and are almost all made of tombac.

Medals by one of the Unknown Makers is suspected to be made by the company of Förster & Barth. However, the evidence for this is not entirely convincing, since it is solely based on the find of one of these medals with F&B’s PKZ number “10” on the ring. These medals are very close in design to the Hauptmünzamt Berlin medals, to the point that they could be made by this maker. Medals by this maker are considered scarce.

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Versions

  • Price

    $300 USD

  • Composition

  • Inscription

    Rev: ZUR ERINNERUNG AN DIE HEIMKEHR DES MEMELLANDES 22. MÄRZ 1939

  • Size

    32mm

  • Maker

  • Version Remarks

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