A direct European sourced flea market find and example of a bronze grade “Bandenkampfabzeichen” in bronzed zinc with a vertical banjo-style magnetic pin-back closure and barrel hinge and a flat wire catch. Measuring 49.95mm x 50.06 mm with about half of its original bronze finish lost through age and wear. It weights exactly 34.5 grams and is in overall in very fine condition and with great detailing. I tried to price the piece very fairly and realize that some dealers are asking a lot more however anytime I've seen them sell in a live auction which is supposed to be the best indicator of fair market value they seem to be going for about $2000 - $2500 plus commission. Silver and gold versions go for a lot higher obviously.
I am offering a 7 day inspection period on this as German medals are really somewhat out of my wheelhouse.
They say you should never believe the story but only the object and this is no exception. I encourage you to ignore the story I'm about to tell you even though it's the truth and trust your gut instincts instead. This badge actually came from my brother who is a history buff and part time picker living in an area called Wedding a suburb of Berlin. He went there some 20 years ago to pursue his DJ career and never looked back. Unfortunately for him the rest of the world also seems to be in Berlin pursuing their own music and DJ careers making it almost impossible for anyone to make any real money out there. My brother likes to go picking in the dozens of outdoor flea markets in Berlin every Saturday and Sunday as would I if I was living there. He's a huge history buff but strangely only collects WW2 ephemera i.e. paper documents, letters, and photos related to Nazi Germany. He thinks that what he collects is far cooler than what I collect but I think he's just created a huge fire hazard in his small flat. All his years of picking he has yet to find me a single all original helmet though proving what I've been saying for years that most of the best German helmets are already over here in North America. Every helmet he's been offered has post war BGS or not even German at all. Then one day he finds this hunk of metal which he only paid 20 euros for. It was sold to him by a woman at a flea market selling mainly costume jewelry, rings, silver ware, vintage hand mirrors etc. She had it marked with a tag as a "Schlangenräumung" or translated to snake broach. My brother bought it because he thought is looked evil and menacing not because he had any idea of what it in fact was. When he showed it to me I told him what it was and bought it off of him for half of retail so we were both happy. Appears to have come in it's original green box though not a military box with some old German papers with writing on them keeping the badge secure. I am not an expert on these but I do know that the fakes always get the skull eyes wrong as with this one the originals should appear like goggles and not just sunken in. The weight and measurements are also spot on from my research and at the end of the day why sell a fake one for only 20 euros?
This War badge is unique in the fact that it is the only war badge to be instituted by the SS/Police and not the Wehrmacht and as such, it was introduced by the Reichsführer-SS Heinrich Himmler on 30 January 1944.
The award was intended to recognise those who had taken part in combating the growing Partisan menace which was causing so much disruption in the areas occupied by the German armed forces along with her Allies.
The badge is usually associated predominantly with battles against Soviet Partisans in the Eastern Europe and with Tito and Yugoslavia. But was of course intended for all those who had seen action against Partisans on all the fronts. Although this was an SS and Police award, it was open to all those who had fought against the Partisans and fulfilled the appropriate criteria listed. Thus it was also awarded to members of the Army, Navy, and Luftwaffe personnel as well as to SS and Police units. Authority to bestow the award lay with the High Command of each branch of the Armed Forces and with the local Höhere SS - und Polizei Führer in the case of Waffen-SS or SS and Polizei awards.
The badges design consists of a vertical oval wreath of oakleaves. The lower part of the obverse shows a writhing multi-headed serpent (Hyidra), representing the Partisans, or "Bandits" as Hitler insisted they be called. Plunged vertically into the serpents is a broad bladed sword featuring a "Sonnenrad" or mobile Sun-Wheel Swastika on its cross guard. At the base of the wreath is the deaths head emblem of the SS.
The reverse of the badge features a vertical hinged pin and hook fitting soldered to the badge. The vast majority of original examples seen of the Anti-Partisan War Badge are in a semi-hollow backed style. This version exists with both flat and needle pins.