Original German / Prussian WW1 Long Service Cross for Officers for 15 Years’ Service, IN VERY NICE CONDITION, IN GENUINE RIBBON, NICE DETAILED EXAMPLE, ATTRACTIVE FINISH
HISTORY OF THE AWARD:
Prussian 15-Year Military Long Service Cross (15 Jahre Dienstauszeichnung) was instituted in 1913 to replace the Militär Dienstauszeichnung Schnalle 2. Klasse. It was awarded to military active duty NCO's and enlisted personnel for 15 years active service and required the recommendation of their Commanding Officer. Awards of this Cross continued until the 3rd Reich introduced a series of new medals. These are very often found in WWI German medal groups and helps identifying the recipient as a Prussian. Originally, only one long service award could be worn, so this Cross could not be worn with any other (as well as any of the Landwehr long service awards). It's important to remember that the Prussian Landwehr had a similar award which is often confused with this one. During the 3rd Reich era, the wearing rules were changed which allowed for the wearing of 2 long service awards. The 15-Year Long Service Cross was made of a metal similar to a bronzed brass (the exact metal alloy was varied but the finishing techniques left a flat golden colour) with a flat ring loop soldered on for the suspension ring (which is often of a dissimilar metal) through which a blue silk woven ribbon (UV-negative, usually 32-35 mm wide) is worn. The Cross size varied over the years at around 35 mm's and the centre was relatively thick at slightly over 2 mm. Both sides of the Cross have a small double border near the cross edges. The obverse had the Prussian crown centered within a double circle in the middle of the Cross. The reverse carried only a XV within a double circle, which represented 15 years. It is very rarely hallmarked with any type of identifying information. Much of the data available on this Cross is quite confusing since many confuse the various classes and military vs. Landwehr awards.