Posted 5 years ago
Germans are joiners and there are large directories of the many Germanic groups that the German immigrants formed here in America. Most were cultural and mutual aid societies but there were also a lot of military veterans groups primarily for veterans of the German military. Since the civil war Germans who served in the U S military were also eligible for membership which usually also required that members either had to be U S citizens or be in the process of becoming citizens. They may have been Germanic in their habits but they wanted to leave no doubts about their loyalty to their newly adopted homeland. Almost all these Germanic groups issued their own medals and badges. I collect only those issued by the military veterans groups like the one illustrated here which I recently snagged on ebay. The clasped hands brooch indicates that this was also a mutual aid based group. The ribbon colors are the Imperial German flag and the cross shape of the medal is obvious. The date 1893 is the founding date and the initials M K V stand for Militaer (I think) Krieger Verein. The LaX at the bottom stands for La Crosse Wisconsin. This may have been an early group which eventually became the La Crosse Deutscher Soldaten Unterstuetzungs Verein (German Soldiers Aid Association) in the early 20th century.