Here we have a beautiful early cased 1st Class War Merit Cross without Swords by Karl Gschiermeister. It was awarded for meritorious service behind the lines. It is constructed out of a die struck nickel-silver base that has been silver washed. The obverse depicts a centrally placed mobile swastika that is surrounded by an oak leaf wreath, which is tied together at the top and bottom, and is above a pebbled Maltese style cross. The full back reverse shows a nickel-silver soldered on block hinge, soldered on flat wire catch and coke bottle pin. The pin is maker marked: “50” (Karl Gschiermeister, Wein). The silver wash looks beautiful and it retains crisp detail! It measures approximately 1 15/16 inches wide and tall. The award comes housed in a beautiful LDO marked case. The case is constructed out of a wood and pressed cardboard base that is covered in a simulated, grained, black leather. The very top features an impressed silvered 1st class war merit cross without swords. The interior top lid is lined in pearl satin which is marked with a golden rectangular/oval bordered “LDO” and has an underlying pad. The bottom interior of the case is made out of pressed cardboard that is covered in a black felt material and outlines the pin, hinge and catch assembly. To the front of the case is a gilded steel round spring loaded closure button and the back shows a steel barrel hinge. Both continue to work well! The case is in superb condition! Minor soil to the top interior yet the leather is just awesome! It measures approximately 2 11/16 inches wide by long by 13/16 of an inch thick. Normally we like to see a private purchase maker mark on the award with an LDO case. A beautiful assembly!
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