Luftwaffe Cloth Version German Cross in Gold
Bridging an obvious gap between the Iron Cross First Class and the Knights Cross, the German Cross in Gold was instituted in 1941.
Because of the size and weight of the metal Cross, it was felt a cloth version should be available for wear with combat clothing making, in my view, the cloth version more interesting. They were produced with a Luftwaffe grey backing as we have here, a field grey for the army, dark blue for the navy and black for Panzer. Approximately half the number of the Cross were awarded to the Luftwaffe as to the army.
This example follows the standard pattern,72mm wide hand embroidered, featuring a double overlaid eight point sunburst pattern with the top inner layer sunburst in a matt, brownish/grey cotton thread, and the bottom outer layer in bright silver/aluminium wire threads.
The cross has a gilt washed circular stamped alloy wreath with embossed laurel leaves and “ribbons” and a small banner with the impressed introduction date, “1941”.
Identical in appearance to the wreaths utilized on the metal crosses, the inner edge of the alloy wreath has a red thread border with an additional silver/aluminium thread border to the outer edge.
The wreath encompasses an embroidered, canted, black swastika with a silver/aluminium thread outer border on a white rayon ribbed backing.
Mounted on a cut-out, Luftwaffe grey wool base indicating the service branch of issue and clearly removed from a uniform, the Cross is in generally very good condition whilst showing signs of light service use such as would have been encountered during wear on a Fliegerbluse.
Approximately 50% of the paper backing remains, beneath which the manufacturer’s stamp is still visible.