Anschluss Medal
The Anschluss Commemorative Medal (Die Medaille zur Erinnerung an den 13. März 1938) was a decoration of Nazi Germany
Nazi Germany
Nazi Germany , also known as the Third Reich , but officially called German Reich from 1933 to 1943 and Greater German Reich from 26 June 1943 onward, is the name commonly used to refer to the state of Germany from 1933 to 1945, when it was a totalitarian dictatorship ruled by...

 awarded in the interwar period
Interwar period
Interwar period can refer to any period between two wars. The Interbellum is understood to be the period between the end of the Great War or First World War and the beginning of the Second World War in Europe....



Instituted on May 1, 1938, the medal commemorated the return of Austria
First Austrian Republic
The Republic of Austria encompasses the period of Austrian history following the signing of the Treaty of Saint-Germain-en-Laye of September 1919, the settlement after the end of World War I which put an end to the Republic of German Austria, continuing up to World War II...

 to the German Reich. The move was the first in Hitler's quest for Lebensraum
was one of the major political ideas of Adolf Hitler, and an important component of Nazi ideology. It served as the motivation for the expansionist policies of Nazi Germany, aiming to provide extra space for the growth of the German population, for a Greater Germany...

, and it strengthened German flanks while weakening those of Czechoslovakia. German troops crossed the border on March 12, 1938, without meeting any resistance. The stage had been set by a series of "incidents" provoked by members of the NSDAP in Austria, and diplomatic pressure and ultimatums set forth by the German
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

 government. This first action, while perhaps raising suspicions, did not cause general alarm in the world community, as it seemed to be done by choice of the Austrian people who spoke German.

The medal, known as the "Anschluss medal", was awarded to all those Austrians who contributed to or participated in the annexation as well as the members of the Austrian NSDAP. It was also awarded to German State officials and members of the German Wehrmacht and SS who marched into Austria.

It was awarded until December 13, 1940. In all 318,689 medals were awarded.


The round, highly detailed, die-struck medal was based on the 1938 Party Day Badge and designed by Professor Richard Klein
Richard Klein (artist)
Richard Klein was a German artist, known mainly for his work as a favoured artist of the Nazi regime. Klein was director of the Munich School of Applied Arts and was one of Hitler's favourite painters....


On the obverse of the medal, symbolic of Austrian adhesion to the German realm, a man holding the Nazi flag stands on a dais bearing the emblem of the “Third Reich”; he assists onto the dais a second man, on whose right hand a broken shackle still may be seen. On the reverse is the inscription "13. März 1938" (March 13, 1938), the date of the Anschluss; the date is surrounded by the words, "Ein Volk, Ein Reich, Ein Führer" ("One People, One Empire, One Leader").

The edges of the medal are smooth. It is suspended from a red ribbon with white-black-white stripes at the edges of the ribbon and is made of brass or tombak bronze with a silvered matte finish.

External links

See also

  • Anschluss
    The Anschluss , also known as the ', was the occupation and annexation of Austria into Nazi Germany in 1938....

  • Interwar era
  • German Occupation Medals
    German Occupation Medals
    The German Occupation Medals were a series of awards, also known as the "Flower War medals", created to commemorate the annexation of Austria, Czechoslovakia and the Memelland by Nazi Germany in the interwar period...

  • Sudetenland Medal
    Sudetenland Medal
    The The Sudetenland Commemorative Medal was a decoration of Nazi Germany awarded in the interwar period.-Description:...

  • Memel Medal
    Memel Medal
    The Return of Memel Commemorative Medal was a decoration of Nazi Germany awarded in the interwar period, and the last of the series of Occupation Medals.-Description:...

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