EAST GERMANY GST Ernst Schneller silver medal


GERMANY, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC, GST (Society for Sport and Technology), Ernst Schneller medal, silver, no date (1961-89), 32mm,for outstanding contribution, the organization provided training in conjunction with the military, XF

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Ernst Schneller was an early member of the German Communist Party, a member of the Saxon Parliament, imprisoned by the Nazis, irregularly executed in 1944.

GST was one of the youth groups that offered training in various subjects that could be useful in military situations.

One of the interesting features of communist governments during the cold war was that there were all these official organizations that had ranks and structures, and military style awards. You didn’t have to join any of these organizations, but it was considered a good idea it you did. They really liked to give out awards in East Germany. The society was poor in material stuff, give them a badge so they can feel better about the way they used their time.

Medals, awards, decoration, insignia, documents, equipment, of military, police, private, and irregular military style organizations. We sometimes sell small weapons but we do not sell working firearms. If a thing happens to be military but is hundreds of years old I stop thinking of it as a military thing and start thinking of it as a relic or an antiquity. I suppose that means that “militaria” really starts around the middle of the 19th century or so, when uniforms became normal. Does that seem right to you?

Over the decades I’ve been selling collectibles my market has been about 97% coins, 2% paper money, 1% everything else.