Very good condition maker marked German navy Minesweeper badge. Good mid war constructed piece, retaining much of the original gold and silver wash overall. Marked R.K. to reverse denoting manufacture by Rudolf Karneth of Gablonz. Correct barrel hinge brass pin assembly and hook. A well presented piece.
The award was made through the ships commander. The following requirements were necessary to receive the badge:
Participation in three operational engagements
Excellence for performance over a six month period (if other criteria not met)
Hazardous duty in a mined area
25 days of escort duty
Awards could also be presented to soldiers, who were wounded during the course of action, sailing on a ship that was sunk in action, or if the operation was exceptionally successful. The Commander-in-Chief of the Kriegsmarine, Grand Admiral Raeder to recognised the dangerous and successful operations of the minesweepers, escort vessels, and sub-chasers and instituted the Mine Sweepers badge on August 31, 1940. The Minesweeper Badge was designed by sculptor Otto Placzek of Berlin and featured a large silver water funnel in the centre of the badge. A gold wreath of oak leaves surrounds the water funnel with the national emblem at the top, wings outspread clutching a swastika. Examples of the Minesweeper Badge can be found in both tombak and zinc. It is not uncommon for zinc examples to lose their finish overtime, which results in a dull grey appearance. Pin attachment style varied by maker but examples can be found in both vertical and horizontal configurations.