Posted 5 years ago
It is not often that I run across a German medal that I have never heard of and can not find listed in any reference book. These Hagen Notopfer medals of 1949 are one of those medals. Hagen is a German city in the Rhineland 30 miles north-east of Dusseldorf. The reason that they are not listed in my military medals books is that these are most certainly fund raising medals. As far as I know there was no disaster in the city of Hagen in 1949 but there was a national effort to raise money to aid the sick and starving citizens of West Berlin during and after the Soviet blockade of 1948-49 made so famous by the Allied Berlin Airlift. This must be the reason for the issue of these medals too. Each medal depicts a nursing sister supporting an emaciated male figure with two buildings in the background above the divided date 19-49 which forms a cross shape reminding one of the Red Cross. All within the legend “NOTOPFER DER STADT HAGEN.” The reverse has a modern style squared oak tree which is the Hagen city coat of arms. The wide v shaped loop probably means that the medal was intended to be worn on a neck chain. The medals I have are in 34mm and 50mm diameters and are in bronze and silver washed bronze. Hagen was probably not the only city to have issued such medals.