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American Military Patches, Other Insignia and Decorations of World War Two by Dr. Howard G. Lanham c.2002

Common Medals of the Second World War

Silver and Bronze Star

Silver Star Bronze Star
Silver Star Bronze Star

The Silver Star was authorized as a medal on August 8, 1932. Prior to that a small silver star was worn on the service ribbon of a campaign medal to indicate that the wearer had received a citation for gallantry in action. The decoration itself is bronze and is set with a Silver Star that is a facsimile of the Silver Star previously worn on the campaign ribbon. Those who had received a citation in prior conflicts could apply for the medal retroactively. Subsequent awards to members of the Army were indicated by oak leaf cluster and the Navy by gold stars.

The bronze star was authorized on February 4, 1944 and awarded to those who distinguished themselves by heroism or meritorious achievement. The award was not given for any participation in aerial flight.

In the U.S. Army Bronze Star awards were approved on a regimental level, while Silver Stars were approved on a division level.

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