A year after the reinstitution of the draft Germany reinstated the long service awards (March 16th, 1936). All members of the Armed Forces were eligible for the award which was bestowed in four classes as listed above.
The four year service medal was mat silver and had on the obverse the Wehrmacht Eagle and the inscription "Treue Diesnste in der Wehrmacht" (Loyal Service in the Armed Forces). On the reverse it bore only the number 4 in the center surrounded by oak leaves. The twelve year award was the same design but slightly larger, in bronze, and with the number "12" replacing the "4" on the reverse.
|4 Year Service
|12 Year Service
Those who served eighteen years were presented a silver Maltese cross featuring the Wehrmacht eagle in the center obverse and the number "18" on reverse. The same design was maintained for the next and highest class, awarded to those veterans who served twenty five years. The cross in this instance was gold, larger, and naturally had "25" on the reverse. A special grade for 40 years of service was also approved; this was an oak leaves set which was worn on the ribbon of the 25 years award.
All levels of the award were held on blue ribbons with the appropriate branch of service attached to it. It was either the spread wing eagle for the Army and Navy or the flying eagle for the Air Force. Only two long service awards were to be worn at the same time. The 4 and 12 year classes were obviously to be worn together, but once the individual received the 25 year class, he would wear it with the 4 year class, and if the 40 year class were achieved then it would be worn with the 12 year class.
During its early years of existence the award was normally constructed of German silver and heavily plated, but from 1942 on it was made from gold or silver washed zinc. During the last year of the war, presentation of the award ceased.
|Service Awards Main Page|
|Occupation Medals||Cross of Honor 1914-1918|
|West Wall Medal||Spanish Volunteer Medal|
|Main Page||Iron Cross||German Cross||War Merit Cross||Wound Badges||War Badges|
|Campaign Awards||Service Awards||Axis Allies||Collectors Corner||Online Forum||Bibliography|