Bavarian Silver Bravery Medal Recipient Hermann Heimann

This interesting Orden der bayerischen Tapferkeitsmedaille membership booklet was located in Montevideo, Uruguay.  On the back of the booklet is a translation of the contents of the booklet into Spanish.  At the bottom is written the following:

 

“Tarjeta de socio 830

DON HERMANN HEIMANN Comerciante

es posedor de la MEDALLA A LA VALENTIA

EN PLATA DE BAVARIA.

Foto del posedor: Luce sello oficial de la cofradia e imagen de la medalla que actualmente está en posesión del hijo Roberto, junto con las otras cinco que le otorgaron a su padre Hermann de 1914 al 1918”

 

A rough translation into English:

“Card of member 830

HERMANN HEIMANN Merchant

is owner of the MEDAL OF BRAVERY

IN SILVER OF BAVARIA

Photo of the owner: It shows official seal of membership and image of the medal that presently is in possession of the son Robert, along with the other five that were granted to his father Hermann from 1914 to 1918”

 

 

Figure 1: Front cover of the Orden der bayerischen Tapferkeitsmedaille membership booklet.  Image from author’s archive.

 

 

Figure 2: Inside of the membership booklet.  Image from author’s archive.

 

 

Figure 3: Close-up of Hermann Heimann wearing his lapel ribbons.  Image from author’s archive.

 

 

Figure 4: Reverse cover of the Orden der bayerischen Tapferkeitsmedaille membership booklet.  Image from author’s archive.

 

 

The following is the entry in Bayerns Goldenes Ehrenbuch regarding the action which led to the awarding of the Bavarian Silver Bravery Medal to Hermann Hiemann:

 

“Heimann, Hermann

Vizef. d. Ldw. der 7. komp. b. Res.Inf.Rgts. 6. Im Frieden Kaufmann in Nürnberg. Geb. 21. 3. 1885 zu Oberdorf in Württemberg.

Als zu Beginn der Sommeschlacht am 1. 7. 1916 die Engländer die deutschen Stellungen bei Montauban angriffen, wurde bei deren Abwehr der Vizef. Heimann der 7. komp. b. Res.Inf.Rgts 6 am knie und Ohr verwundet. Trotzdem blieb er bei seinem Zug und verteidigte, durch sein Beispiel die Leute anfeuernd, erfolgreich den Graben. Als der Vizef. Schraufstetter, der einen als Postenstellung ausgebauten Trichter gegen die übermächtig andrägenden Engländer verteidigte, die größte Mühe hatte, um noch Leute zur Verteidigung der Trichters vorzubringen, ging Hiemann trotz Verwundung einige Male mit Schraufstetter gegen den Trichter vor, und es gelang ihm durch sein eigenes Beispiel, die vorhandenen Leute zum tapferen Drausgehen anzuspornen. Durch Werfen von handgranaten beteiligte er sich selbst mit großer Tapferkeit am kampf und fügte auch seinerseits dem Gegner reichlich Verluste zu. Erst später ging Hiemann zurück, um seine Wunden verbinden zu lassen.”

 

A rough translation into English:

 

“Heimann, Hermann

Platoon Sergeant of the Landwehr of the 7th Company Bavarian Reserve Infantry Regiment 6. In peacetime a merchant in Nürnberg. Born March 21, 1885 at Oberdorf in Württemberg.

At the beginning of the Battle of the Somme on July 1, 1916 the English attacked the German positions by Montauban, during their defense Platoon Sergeant Heimann of the 7th Company Bavarian Reserve Infantry Regiment 6 was wounded in the knee and ear. Nevertheless he remained with his course and successfully defended the trench , and by his example men were encouraged.   As Platoon Sergeant Schaufstetter defended a crater developed as an emplacement against the overpowering forward-pressing English, he had the greatest trouble, in order to still bring forward men for the defense of the crater, Heimann in spite of being wounded several times went forward with Schaufstetter toward the crater, and he succeeded by his own courageous example in spurring on the available men to move thereupon. By throwing hand grenades he took part with great bravery in the fight and added also on his part to the opponent’s plentiful losses. Only later did Heimann return, to have his wounds dressed.”

 

 

Here is the Bayerns Goldenes Ehrenbuch entry for Schraufstetter who was awarded the Bavarian Golden Bravery Medal for the same action:

 

“Schraufstetter, Matthias

Vizef. der Res. der 7. Komp. b. Res.Inf.Rgts. 6.  Im Frieden Bahngehilfe in Nürnberg. Geb. 25. 10. 1885 zu Eichstätt in Mittelfranken.

Nach achttägigem schweren Artilleriefeuer beschossen die Engländer am 1. 7. 1916 gegen 5 Uhr morgens die Stellung des b. Res.Inf.Rgts. 6 bei Montauban als letzte Angriffsvorbereitung mit schwersten Geschützen und Minenwerfern.  Bei dieser Gelegenheit zeichnete sich der Vizef. d. Res. Matthias Schraufstetter der 7. Komp. b. Res.Inf.Rgts. 6 ganz besonders aus.  Als bei Beginn des englischen Infanterieangriffs zwei Gruppenführer kamen und meldeten, daß ihre Leute bereits tot und die Engländer im anschließenden Abschnitt eingedrungen seien, munterte er sie mit den Worten auf: “Leute bleibt bei mir. Solange wir noch handgranaten haben, geben wir uns nicht verloren.”  Scraufstetter selbst drang mit enigen Leuten gegen einen als Postenstellung ausgebauten Trichter vor, säuberte ihn vom Feinde und verteidigte ihn so lange, bis ihm die letzte Patrone und Handgranate ausgegangen war.”

 

A rough translation into English:

 

“Schraufstetter, Matthias

Platoon Sergeant of the Reserve of the 7th Company Bavarian Reserve Infantry Regiment 6. In peacetime a railroad assistant in Nürnberg. Born October 25, 1885 at Eichstätt in Mittelfranken.

After eight days of heavy artillery fire, the English bombarded the position of the Bavarian Reserve Infantry Regiment 6 at Montauban with their heaviest guns and mine launchers (mortars) in final preparation for an attack. On this occasion, Platoon Sergeant of the Reserve Matthias Schraufstetter of 7th Company Bavarian Reserved Infantry Regiment 6 particularly distinguished himself. When, at the beginning of the English infantry attack, two Group Leaders came and reported that their men were already dead, and the English had penetrated into the subsequent section, he cheered them with the words: “Men stay with me. As long as we have hand grenades, we cannot lose.” Schraufstetter with some men penetrated toward a forward crater developed as an emplacement, cleared it of enemies and defended it until the last cartridge and hand grenade had run out.”

 

 

Figure 5: Obverse of an example of a Bavarian Bravery Medal in Silver of the type awarded to Hermann Heimann. Image from author’s archive.

 

 

Figure 6: Reverse of an example of a Bavarian Bravery Medal in Silver of the type awarded to Hermann Heimann. Image from author’s archive.

 

 

As listed in the book “Haben die Juden in Bayern ein Heimatrecht” (Do the Jews in Bavaria have Rights of Citizenship?) published in 1928, Hermann Heimann was one of the thirteen (13) Jewish recipients of the Bavarian Bravery Medal during the World War (1914-1918).  There were two (2) Gold Medal recipients and eleven (11) Silver Medal recipients.

 

 

Figure 7: Cover of publication “Haben die Juden in Bayern ein Heimatrecht?” summarizing the wartime deeds and awards of Jewish Bavarian officers and soldiers.  Image from author’s archive.

 

 

Figure 8:  Entry for Hermann Heimann from “Haben die Juden in Bayern ein Heimatrecht?”.  Image from author’s archive.

 

 

At some point prior to 1942 Hermann Heimann left Germany and was scrutinized to see if he qualified for entry to Uruguay under their quota system. It appears as though his Orden der bayerischen Tapferkeitsmedaille membership book was provided to immigration authorities in Uruguay as proof of his valor during wartime in order to support his application for acceptance. Hence, one sees the type-writtern translation in Spanish pasted to the rear of this booklet.

Also located in Montevideo, Uruguay, was this large photograph of Hermann Heimann and his four brothers.  The photograph is a montage made up of individual images of Hermann and his brothers.  The heading “Fünf Söhne von Herrn Julius und Frau Mina Heimann/ Inhaber der Firma H. L. Heimann, Nürnberg” translates as “Five sons of Mr. Julius and Mrs. Mina Heimann/ Members of the firm H. L. Heimann, Nürnberg”.  The combined awards of the Heimann brothers and their various ranks are listed.  In the photo, Hermann Heimann is wearing an Army Wound Badge (Verwundetenabzeichen für die Armee) in “silver” (mattweiß) for three or four wounds.  The parents of the Heimann brothers were obviously very proud of their son’s military service and this photograph was probably displayed at one of their company offices.  From left to right are: Albert Heimann, Leopold Heimann, Nathan Heimann, Hermann Heimann, and Max Heimann1.  The textile firm H. L. Heimann was located at Celtisstraße 7, Nürnberg in 1930.  The firm also had an office in Dresden and a store in Bopfingen, Württemberg.

Julius and Mina Heimann were originally from Oberdorf, Württemberg and had at least ten children.  The Leo Baeck Institute, Inc. has extensive documentation regarding the plight of the Heimann family2.  According to their records, Albert, Leopold, Hermann, and their family members were successful in fleeing Germany and they relocated in Montevideo, Uruguay.  Max, Nathan, and members of their families however were deported to Izbica, Poland3 in 1942.  They did not survive their ordeal.

 

 

Figure 9:  Photograph of Hermann Heimann and his four brothers.  Image from author’s archive.

 

 

Figure 10:  Detail of photograph showing Hermann Heimann.  Image from author’s archive.

 

Thank you for your interest regarding this article.  Comments are welcome.

– Lorin

 

Literature:

Bearbeitet vom Bayerischen Kriegsarchiv. Bayerns Goldenes Ehrenbuch. Verlag Joseph Hyronimus, München, 1928.

Eckstein-Bamberg, Dr. Adolf.  Haben die Juden in Bayern ein Heimatrecht?  Philo-Verlag GMBH, Berlin, 1928.

Annotations:

  1.  http://digital.cjh.org/R/VJB8HVEIK6EM74129VIJJ9CF5EYIFTUL59XV4F87QFAL5211AP-04014?func=search-advanced-go&file%5Fformat%5Fcode=WEX&LOCAL%5FBASE=GEN01&mode=1&find%5Fcode1=PAC&request1=AR-11011&find%5Foperator=AND&find%5Fcode2=WTY&request2=photographs&find%5Foperator2=AND&find%5Fcode3=WRD&request3=&adjacent=Y&media%5Ftype=ALL&selected%5Fotype=&selected%5Ftag=0&pds_handle=GUEST
  2. http://search.cjh.org/primo_library/libweb/action/display.do?tabs=detailsTab&ct=display&fn=search&doc=dedupmrg152708032&indx=2&recIds=dedupmrg152708032&recIdxs=1&elementId=1&renderMode=poppedOut&displayMode=full&frbrVersion=&vid=lbi&mode=Basic&vl(162909862UI0)=sub&tab=default_tab&dscnt=0&vl(freeText0)=%20Heimann%20%2C%20Julius&vl(162909863UI1)=all_items&scp.scps=scope%3A%28LBI%29&dstmp=1505138028242
  3. http://www.holocaustresearchproject.org/ghettos/izbica/izbica.html

For more information regarding the battle at Mountauban:

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capture_of_Montauban
  2. http://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/battles/battles-of-the-western-front-in-france-and-flanders/the-battles-of-the-somme-1916/the-capture-and-defence-of-montauban-1-13-july-1916/

 

 

 

 

15 Comments
  1. Servus Lorin,

    You are showing a very interesting and well-prepared article about Heimann. Only the picture of the medal you should exchange. It shows a very late medal, which was marked with a new stamp. Recognizable by the outstretched tongue of the lion. I once asked a collector friend if he could send me more information about Heimann, which I would then hire here.

    Best regards
    Walter

    • Servus Walter,

      Guten Rutsch!

      Thank you for the information regarding the Silver MVM/TKM in the photo. I knew that this was a less-common die-variation, but I did not know that it was from late in the World War. I will change the photo in the near future.

      Thank you for all of the fantastic information regarding Hermann Heimann and the H.L. Heimann company.

      MfG,

      Lorin

      • Hello Lorin,

        I know only sets with this variant, which were issued by the so-called “Abwicklungsamt” after the war.

        Best regards
        Walter

        • Servus Walter,

          I have now added photos of an earlier coinage of the Silber MVM/TKM of the type that would have been awarded to Hermann Heimann. This coinage has the reverse die without the lion with his tongue extended.

          Best regards,

          Lorin

    • Please note that the H.L. Heimann firm is listed on Page 24 under “Manufakturwaren/Großhandlungen”.

  2. Here again 2 parent roll extracts (Stammrollenauszüge)

    Best regards
    Walter

    • Servus Walter,

      This is very interesting information. This page shows that he obtained the rank of Leutnant der Reserve. I also see a “M.V.K. 2 Kl m (Schwerter)”, “P.E.K.2.”, “S.M.V.M”, and “Ritterkr 2. Klasse der Friedrich Ordens” entries on this page. So, he was awarded the Bavarian Military Merit Cross 2nd Class with Swords, the Prussian Iron Cross 2nd Class, The Bavarian Silver Military Merit Medal (Bravery Medal), and the Württemberg Knight’s Cross 2nd Class of the Friedrichs Order. He therefore received a field-grade promotion to Reserve Lieutenant and was awarded the Friedrichs Order thereafter.

  3. The second

    • Servus Walter,

      And here there are more interesting entries! I see that he was in the hospital often at the end of the War. From August 22, 1918 until November 9, 1918 he was at a Reserve-Lazarett due to ailments that I cannot read and “Gas Erkrankung” (gas sickness). Here the date January 25, 1915 is associated with the Prussian Iron Cross 2nd Class. The date January 25, 1917 is associated with the Bavarian Military Merit Cross 2nd Class with Swords. Also, the date May 29, 1917 is associated with the Bavarian Silver Military Merit Medal (Bravery Medal). Their is also a listing for the Württemberg Knight’s Cross 2nd Class of the Friedrichs Order written as “Ritterkreuz 2. Klasse der Friedrichs Orden = WF5”. There is some writing and the date October 30, 1933 associated with this entry. Further there is a “MV4 b. m. Schw.” entry and an associated date of May 30, 1918, and a notation written on December 12, 1933. This was most likely a notation for the awarding of a Bavarian Military Merit Order 4th Class with Swords. There are also many listings of famous battle locations and unit assignments. Some of the entries are difficult for me to read however.

  4. Servus Lorin,

    I’ll try it in German:

    Preußisches Eisernes Kreuz 2. Klasse am 25.1.1915
    Militärverdienstkreuz 2. Klasse mit Schwerter 25.1.1917
    Silberne Militär-Verdienstmedaille 29.5.1917
    Ritterkreuz 2. Klasse des Friedrichsordens
    Militär-Verdienstorden 4. Klasse mit Schwerter

    1.7.1916: Leicht verwundet bei Montauban (Streifschuss am rechten Ohr und Kinn durch Artillerie-Beschuss????)
    7.10.1916: Verwundet bei Fromelles (Minensplitter linker Oberschenkel, Rauchgasvergiftung)
    21.4.1918: Gaskrank bei Montdidier
    23.4.1918: Kriegslazarett 13 Carignan???
    11.5. – 6.6.1918: Reservelazarett Dillingen: Briefkastennummer??? 8 (Magenkatarrh???)
    6.6. – 17.7.1918: Lazarett II Nördlingen, Entlassungsbefund am 17.7.
    22.7. – 18.8.1918: Erholungsurlaub nach Straßburg und Landstuhl in der Pfalz
    22.8. – 9.11.1918: Reservelazarett Nürnberg III/Sebastian Spital zur Begutachtung auf Gaserkrankung
    11.11.1918: Entlassen
    25.11. – 27.12.1918: Zur Wiederherstellung der Gesundheit nach Nürnberg

    …in English:

    Prussian Iron Cross 2nd Class on 25.1.1915
    Military Merit Cross 2nd class with swords 25.1.1917
    Silver Military Medal of Merit 29.5.1917
    Knight’s Cross 2nd Class of the Order of Frederick
    Military Order of Merit 4th class with swords

    1.7.1916: Slightly wounded at Montauban (grazing on the right ear and chin by artillery shelling ????)
    07.10.1916: Wounded at Fromelles (Minensplitter left thigh, smoke poisoning)
    21.4.1918: gas tank at Montdidier
    April 23, 1918: Military Hospital 13 Carignan ???
    11.5. – 6.6.1918: Reserve hospital Dillingen: Mailbox number ??? 8 (stomach catarrh ???)
    6.6. – 17.7.1918: Infirmary II Nördlingen, dismissal on 17.7.
    22.7. – 18.8.1918: Relaxing holiday to Strasbourg and Landstuhl in the Palatinate
    22.8. – 9.11.1918: Reserve hospital Nuremberg III / Sebastian Spital for evaluation on gas disease
    11.11.1918: dismissed
    25.11. – 27.12.1918: To restore health to Nuremberg

    The silver medal for bravery he has earned after my documents (Bavaria’s golden book of honor) on 1.7.1916. Why in the root role the date is 25.10.1917, I do not know. I suspect that Heimann received the permit or the deed on this day and this was noted in the root role.

    Always interesting to follow the career of a Bavarian soldier.

    greetings from Bavaria
    Walter

    • Servus Walter,

      Thank you for listing all of this information. It is very interesting. I see that his wound badge (Verwundetenabzeichen für die Armee) is not listed here. They were issued late in the War, so the award process was possibly somewhat less formal and on a local (Unit) level only.

      Best regards,

      Lorin

  5. Servus Lorin,

    The wounded badges were not always entered in the root roles after the war, even if he of course would have one. I have to mention that a very good collectors friend from Aschaffenburg has sent me the Stammrollenauszüge. Unfortunately, I do not have access to Ancestry.

    Best regards
    Walter

    • Servus Walter,

      Thank you for the information regarding wound badges. My sincere thanks also to your friend from Aschaffenburg for providing the Stammrollenauszüge. This information has provided the remainder of the story regarding Heimann’s military career.

      Best regards,

      Lorin

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