The wound badge (Verwundeten-Abzeichen)
Was originally established on 3 March 1918 by King Wilhelm II to recognize the sacrifice of those wounded during WWI. The badge was instituted in three classes, of black, silver and gold with the class bestowed reflecting the number or severity of the wounds received. On 22 May 1939 Adolf Hitler re-instituted a slightly modified version of the wound badge with the addition of a swastika to the WWI pattern badge for award to German volunteers who had been wounded supporting Franco in the Spanish Civil War. (July 1936- March 1939). With the outbreak of WWII, on September 1st 1939, Hitler once again re-instituted another slightly modified version of the wound badge by altering the WWI pattern helmet on the badge to the newly designed M35 style helmet. The badge was awarded to both military and uniformed non-military personnel and later, (March 1943), to civilian personnel who received wounds as a result of enemy actions. The silver wound badge was awarded for three or four wounds, or if the wound was very severe, ie: loss of limb, blindness.Model 1939, injection-molded alloy construction, solid plaque.