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WWII GERMAN CLOSE COMBAT BADGE - BRONZE -
This is a German WWII Close Combat clasp. This award was instituted on November 25th, 1942. There were three grades issued; Bronze, Silver and Gold. The physical appearance of the the badges was identical from class to class. The only difference was the color. Requirements for receiving the award of the Close Combat badge are listed below.









1. Soldier engaged in hand to hand combat while supported by armor.

2. Bronze badge - Fifteen days of close combat. Reduced to ten days if the soldier is wounded.

3. Silver badge - Thirty days of close combat. reduced to twenty if the soldier is wounded.

4. Gold badge - Serving fifty days in close combat. Reduced to forty days if soldier is wounded.

5. Russian front (1941) - Five close combat days represent eight months of service.

6. Russian front (1941) - Ten close combat days represent twelve months of service.

7. Russian front (1941) - Fifteen close combat days represent fifteen months of service.



Several manufacturers produced this badge and it was distributed in large quantities, making it one of the most common and readily available awards of the Third Reich. However, this has not proven to be a deterrent to the makers of reproductions. There are a lot of fakes out in the market.

Hitler had an affinity for the Close Combat badge. He was instrumental in the development of the award.

In the early days he reserved the right of awarding himself the gold class badge to any soldier who earned it.

The first set of awards issued by Hitler took place on August 27th 1944, where he gave them to fourteen members of the Waffen SS and army.

The Close Combat clasp was worn on the left breast of the tunic, above the ribbons. This sample is nicely marked with raised lettering.

The badge was designed by Ernst Wilhelm Peckhause. He was an artist from the city of Berlin.

By the end of the war a total of 403 Gold Close Combat badges were issued to armed forces personnel.


Close Combat Badge design
The shape of the badge is long and thin. The center is a square that has a single, long laurel leaves shooting out to the left and the right. Each leaf then splits into three at the tip. To the top and bottom of the single leaf there is what appears to be part of a square structure with seevral grooves cut into the surface and facing the away from the center.

The center portion of the badge has a crossed K98 bayonet and stick grenade . A small eagle clutiching a swastika sits on top of both pieces. The background is a completly separate piece. A black square that provides a 3-D look to the center of the badge.

This page is a recognition and identification guide for WWII German badges and awards. Multiple detailed photos of a specific sample are provided. Descriptions point out clearly defined points that should be noted.

One of the most commonly asked questions is "How much is my WWII German badge worth?". A price guide is included here to address this question. The value of the badges and awards is reviewed over a period of several years. A trend can be observed. The present worth of the German badges in the collector's market is illustrated.

This service is provided free of charge to the visitor/enthusiast courtesy of MilitaryItems.com, a company dedicated to the preservation of military history and to providing quality military antiques and collectibles to museums, institutions and the general public.

WANT TO LEARN MORE?
  1. FAQ's
  2. Close Combat Badge Anatomy
  3. Identifying fakes and reproductions
  4. RZM manufacturing codes
  5. LDO manufacturing codes
  6. Construction materials
  7. Pins, hinges and other
  8. Perspective view
  9. Purchasing a WWII German badge






The German Close Combat Badge

The "Military minute" is a series of instructional videos created by MilitaryItems.com for the purpose of providing basic information about military collectibles. The idea is to expose people to the exciting world of military collectibles.

The video presentation coupled with detailed photographs and written information, including a military collectible's price guide, and anatomical breakdown of each piece enhances the visitor's experience.

Whether you are a long time collector, a beginner or simply have an interest in the history and value of each collectible, we hope that you find the information presented here useful.











The German WWII Close Combat badge physical properties
The physical properties of a badge are a very important aspect to consider when determining the authenticity of a badge. The information provided here covers the badge shown on this page. It is important to note that there are variations among manufacturers.

The measurements shown here apply to the badge made by the JFS company.




Becoming familiarized with the physical properties of the badge are key to become knowledgeable regarding German awards. Learn the way in which each badge is put together. Pay attention to the construction materials.



By the Numbers
It is hard to determine the exact number of Close Combat bages that were produced. However, thanks to the record keeping maintained by the Wehrmacht, it is possible to find how many shields were actually issued.


There were over 20,000 Bronze and Silver Close Combat badges issued during the war.

Only 403 Gold class were issued.

The Close Combat badge was issued along with an award document. Not all documents were identical. variations can be found from unit to unit. A few things that all documents would have in common are the signature of the officer who awarded the shield and the state seal.



Collecting Third Reich Badges
Collecting Third Reich memorabilia is a field that has been growing since the days the GI's rummaged around Europe bringing back military souvenirs. German soldiers wore many of their awards on their uniforms when they went to battle. Once the soldier was killed or captured, the American soldiers would take the awards as war trophies. Eventually all these pieces came back to the United States where military history enthusiasts began to collect them.

"I am trying to figure out if I should get into collecting Close Combat badges."

Determining which military badges to collect can be a challenging decision. The combination of availabiilty and cost will often set the pace of what can be collected.

The adjacent table outlines some of the advantages and disadvantages of collecting the Close Combat badge.



THE GERMAN WWII CLOSE COMBAT BADGE

The Close Combat badge was produced by several manufacturers and in different configurations. It is a good idea for a collector to be familiarized with as many versions as possible. This practice will help you distinguish between real or reproduction. The following section displays some of the different types of badges that were produced.




CLOSE COMBAT BADGE - 1 - This is a bronze class badge. The back shows a separate dark color plate located in the center. One side near the hinge shows the manufacturing markings. - Coming soon


CLOSE COMBAT BADGE - 2 - This is a Silver class close combat badge.of pin-back construction. Small manufacturing marks found in the back just above the catch. - Coming soon


CLOSE COMBAT BADGE - 3 - This close combat badge was manufactured by F & B. L. Silver color. Black square insert.


CLOSE COMBAT BADGE - 4 - This is a close combat badge. Bronze type. Manufactured by the JFS company.




CLOSE COMBAT BADGE - 5 - This is a close combat badge. Silver type. Manufactured by the FEC.W.E PEEKHAUS company from Berlin.


CLOSE COMBAT BADGE - 6 - This is a close combat badge. Silver type. This is the second model manufactured by the FEC.W.E PEEKHAUS company from Berlin.


CLOSE COMBAT BADGE - 7 - This is a close combat badge. Silver type. Manufactured by the FEC.W.E PEEKHAUS company from Berlin. Broken catch.







This award is currently being reproduced. It is becoming more difficult to be able to tell the fake ones from the real ones because the quality of the reproductions is improving. The collector must become familiarized with the construction style and materials employed in the manufacturing of this badge. Attention to the details is critical in order to be able to determine the authenticity of the badge.



If you have an interest is seeing other badges and awards of the Third Reich, you can do so by going to our WWII German Badges and Awards identification guide. Where we cover Heer (Army), Navy (Kriegsmarine) and Air Force (Luftwaffe) items.




PRICING GUIDE INFORMATION

The value for WWII German Combat badges and other military antiques and collectibles is provided as a means to educate the collector community and individuals who have a general interest on the field. The following is an estimated value. Prices may vary in every state and every country. This service is provided courtesy of MilitaryItems.com. The source for military antiques and collectibles in the web.

Year 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015
Value $500.00 $550.00 $570.00 $580.00 $550.00 $530.00
Availability Rare Rare Rare Rare Rare rare
Invest Grade A A A A A A


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