Order of the Red Banner of the USSR, Type IV (7th award)
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This is the oldest Order of the Soviet Union. Existing first as an Order of the Russian Federation (established on September 16, 1918), it was converted into an Order of the USSR on August 1, 1924. The statute was not established until January 11, 1932. It was discontinued in 1991.
It was conferred for self-sacrifice, courage, and bravery in defending Russia. It was awarded to Army, Navy, Border Guard, and Internal Security personnel, as well as KGB employees and military ships. It may also be bestowed upon foreigners. The Order was awarded for especially significant feats in combat with an obvious risk of life; outstanding combat leadership of military units displaying special bravery and courage; special bravery and courage displayed in accomplishing special assignments; special courage and bravery displayed in support of the state of security of the country and impenetrability of the state border of the USSR in situations involving the risk of life; the success of military unites and ships despite stubborn enemy resistance for being victorious over the enemy resistance, for being victorious over the enemy despite heavy losses or unfortunate circumstance; significant achievements in training and also for feats accomplished on duty with a clear risk of life.
The first award was conferred upon Civil War hero V.K Blukher on September 30, 1918. By 1933, the order had been awarded 16,762 times. Over 305,000 Orders of the Red Banner were awarded during the Great Patriotic War. By 1990, over 581,000 decorations had been awarded.
Type IV or "Oval, five-sided suspension" is more oval in shape. In the 1950s, production of this Order was moved from the Leningrad Mint to the Moscow Mint, resulting in a slight change in size and shape. There are no major design changes and therefore no variations. The mint mark Monetny Dvor is struck in two lines and is located at the lower center on the reverse. Serial numbers range from 349,000 to 552,000.
The obverse Russian inscription translates to: "Proletarians of the World, Unite!"
The Order of the Red Banner is the most faked Soviet decoration. Most fakes are modified five-sided suspension pieces that have been converted to screwback decorations. Original screwposts were soldered with silver solder, however most fakes are soldered with lead solder and present a blackish residue. Ensure the enamel is red and not orange in colour to be authentic. Subsequent awards are heavily faked because of their rarity and value.
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