Germany (1933-1945, German Reich)

Translation: Infantry Assault Badge
Number of awards in the database: 1122
Total awarded for WW II: unknown

Recipients A-Z
This decoration was instituted on December 20th 1939 by the Oberstbefehlshaber des Heeres, Generalfeldmarschall von Brauchitsch. It could be awarded to members of non-motorised Infantry units and units of the Gebirgsjäger that had participated in Infantry assaults, with light Infantry weapons, on at least three days of Battle in the frontline as from January 1st 1940. When a counter offensive led to fighting’s at short distance, they could also apply. Award of the Infanterie Sturmabzeichen was authorised at regimental command level or above. The first two Awards were given to an officer and a enlisted soldier on a special occasion on May 28th 1940, by von Brauchitsch himself.

The design came from the firm C.E. Juncker in Berlin and consisted of an oval wreath of Oak leaves with the "Wehrmacht-eagle" with folded wings and the Swastika in its paws, at the top. From the upper left to right downwards there can be found a rendition of the Mauser K98k, the German standard Infantry weapon. The normal measures are 6.3 cm in height and 4.9 cm wide. At first they were made from messing (Buntmetall), but later they were produced from Tin (Feinzink). The finish was silver and had a vertical pin on the back. The badge was produced in very many quantities and by many firms. This resulted in badges with and without markings, hollow or flat and with many different pins on the back.

The institutional rules of the decoration was adjusted on June 1st 1940, when a second version was introduced, the Sturmabzeichen in Bronze. The silver Infanterie-Sturmabzeichen was meant for soldiers as when the first version was introduced, together with heavy units of Infanterie- and Gebirgsjäger Regiments (Machinegun, Infantry Artillery and Anti-tank guns). The new bronze version was to be awarded to members of motorised Infantry and Gebirgsjäger Units. At the same time it was decided that the badge could also be awarded to members of the Waffen-SS. It could also be awarded to members of the Ordnungspolizei from November 12th 1942. There was never introduced a Infantrie Sturmabzeichen with numbers. This was not necessary because from October 1942 the Nahkampfspange was introduced for Sturmangriffe.

With the institution of the "Ordens-Gesetz" of 1957, it was German military permitted to wear de-nazified versions of German decorations. Also the Infanterie- Sturmabzeichen was produced from 1957 as a de-nazified version in Silver and Bronze, without the eagle and the Swastika.

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Picture source:   - Hermann Historica
Information source(s):   - Michaelis R., Deutsche Kriegsauszeichnungen 1939-1945 Heer-Waffen-SS-Polizei, Michaelis Verlag, Berlin, 2003
- Williamson G., World War II German Battle Insignia, Osprey Publishing, Oxford, 2002
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