Original German WW1 Hessen Warrior League Badge, VERY NICE CONDITION, THE RIBBON IS GENUINE, MAKER MARKED: "L. SCHMIDT - RAUCH - DARMSTADT", full size with the ribbon: cca 9 cm, VERY NICE DETAILED EXAMPLE WITH METAL FRINGES, RARE VETERAN BADGE
HISTORY OF THE ASSOCIATION:
Deutscher Kriegerbund (German Warrior League) was a War Veterans' and reservists' Association in Germany. It was established in April 1873 in Weißenfels. Its origins lie in a Warrior Association established in 1786 by fusiliers of Frederick II of Prussia's army in Wangerin/Pomerania. The original purpose of the War Veterans' Associations was to provide their members and former soldiers with proper burial arrangements. Former soldiers felt the need of commemorative tombs that would preserve the dignity of their former comrades-in-arms and honor them even after their death. This type of association received a considerable boost after Prussia's victorious battles against the Danish (1864), Austrian (1866), and French armies in 1871. A number of these veterans' associations established the "Deutscher Kriegerbund" by joining efforts for a common cause in 1873. In April 1897 the Deutscher Kriegerbund became the "Prussian Country's Warrior League" (Preußischer Landeskriegerverband). Its former name "Deutscher Kriegerbund" was kept, however, for certain economic and social dealings. In this form it was a forerunner of later German military social welfare provisions, like the NSKOV. Since it was initially dominated by groups of soldiers of the former Prussian army, local veterans' associations of Bavaria, Saxony, Württemberg, Hessen and Baden preferred to remain out of its circle. The Deutscher Kriegerbund began the efforts to build a memorial that would honor and represent the German warriors in 1888. This monument, located on top of the 473 m high Kyffhäuser mountain was finally inaugurated on the 16th June 1896. The building of the memorial pleased and inspired the other German war veterans' associations, who had been reticent to join the Deutscher Kriegerbund. As a result of this change of attitude, the steps to form a wider organization were taken in 1900 and the Kyffhäuserbund was formed. This inclusive organization integrated the formerly scattered German war veterans' associations, which had been one of the main aims of the Deutscher Kriegerbund.