Figure 1: Tyrolean National Defense Commemoration Medal, obverse. Image from the author’s archive.

Introduction:

The Tyrolean 1866 National Defense Commemoration Medal (Tiroler Landesverteidigungs Denkmünze, 1866) was issued to commemorate the faith and bravery of the citizen defenders of the Tyrol while defending their homeland and Vorarlberg. The medal was awarded for outstanding services to the emperor and defense of the land from its enemies during the war of 1866.

Date Issued: September 17, 1866

Reason Issued: This medal was issued to commemorate the faith and bravery of the citizen defenders of the Tyrol who in 1866, had served in the Landschutzen, Landsturm, and certain formations of the Tyrolean Landesgranze on the Italian front while defending their homeland and Vorarlberg. The medal was awarded to members of the aforementioned organizations who had rendered outstanding services to the emperor and defended the land from its enemies during the war of 1866

Classes or Types: One

Interesting Facts: The obverse of this medal and that of the 1866 Prague City Militia Commemorative Medal are the same.

· The Provence of Tyrol was awarded this medal

Hallmarks: None known

Design: A round medal with an attached ball shaped eye

Figure 2: Tyrolean National Defense Commemoration Medal, obverse. Image courtesy of Dorotheum.

Obverse: Inside a raised rim is a bust of Emperor Franz Joseph I facing to the viewers right and wearing a laurel wreath tied at the bottom with a ribbon in his hair.  Around the edge of the bust and around the emperor’s head is inscribed FRANZ. JOSEPH I. KAISER VON.OESTERREICH. Translation: Franz Joseph I Emperor of Austria. Below the neck of Franz Joseph’s bust is the name of the engraver, Tautenhayn (Josef Hermann Tautenhayn).

Figure 3: Tyrolean National Defense Commemoration Medal, reverse. Image courtesy of Dorotheum.

Reverse:  Inside a raised rim is a wreath composed of oak and laurel, which is tied at the bottom with a bow. Inside the wreath is an inscription in five lines. The inscription reads MEINEM/TRUEN VOLKE/ VON/TIROL/1866. Translation: My faithful people of Tyrol 1866

 Weight: 15 grams

Size:  31 mm in diameter and 2 mm thick

Type of Material: Silver

Variations: 

· Type I = As described above

· Type II = As described except that there is no date on the reverse

 Designer: Josef Hermann Tautenhayn

Manufacturer: The Vienna Hauptmunzamt (Mint)

Number Issued: Unknown

Case: Unknown

Figure 4: Tyrolean National Defense Commemoration Medal ribbon. Image from the author’s archive.

Attachments: None

Figure 5: Tyrolean National Defense Commemoration Medal, miniature. Image from the author’s archive.

Miniature: Silver 18 mm and 2.4 grams

 

Figure 6: Feldzeugmeister Phillip Graf Grunn Wearing the Tyrolean National Defense Commemoration Medal. Image from the author’s archive.

Hope you enjoyed this blog. Until next time, I hope you find joy in our shared interest.

Rick

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6 Comments
  1. Thank you for sharing this report. A very interesting medal.
    here my little 1866 collection.
    Regards Andreas

  2. This battle was on the 14th of July 1866 in my hometown Aschaffenburg.

    • Andreas
      From what I understand the battle was very fierce and that there were a large number of Austrian causalities. I also understand there is a monument in the town commemorating the Austrian defense and the heroism and sacrifice of the Austrian defenders.

      Rick

  3. This is the “Austrian Monument”. It used to be seen from afar, now it is embedded in a part of the city.
    https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%96sterreicher_Kolonie

    • Andreas
      This is extremely interesting. I think the memorial in its simplicity really captures the ambiance of the times. Thank you for sharing.

      Rick

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