Spanish Cross in Silver without Swords

Spanienkreuz in Silber ohne Schwerter

Spanish Cross in Silver without Swords

The Spain Cross was given for outstanding service during the Spanish Civil War from 1936 to 1939. It was only lend on the 6 June, 1939. On this day the Legion Condor paraded in front of Hitler in Berlin. The Spanish Cross was awarded in all classes a total of 26,117 times. The highest class, the Spanienkreuz mit Schwertern in Gold mit Brillanten was given only 29 times mostly for pilots like the later aces Galland, Mölders and Oesau. The Spanish Cross was awarded in four classes with swords and two classes without swords:

Spanienkreuz mit Schwertern in Gold mit Brillanten

Spanienkreuz mit Schwertern in Gold

Spanienkreuz mit Schwertern in Silber

Spanienkreuz mit Schwertern in Bronze
(Spanish Cross in Gold, Silver, Bronze
with swords and diamonds)

Spanienkreuz in Silber ohne Schwerter

Spanienkreuz in Bronze ohne Schwerter
(Spanish Cross in Silver and Bronze
without swords)

Spain Cross in Silver with swords

More than 50 U-boat men wore the Spanish Cross, but most of them earned the Cross not on U-boats. So received for example Kaptlt. Gerhard Bigalk his Spanish Cross with Swords for 31 sorties on a reconnaissance aircraft. Also a lot of Crosses were awarded for duty on great ships like the Deutschland, Admiral Scheer and several torpedo boats.

A few U-boats took part on this prewar incidents during the so called operation Ursula. Only a handful of U-boat men were decorated for service on U-boats in Spanish waters. The officers from the following boats received on 6 June, 1939 the Spanish Cross in Bronze without Swords:

U-25   Kptlt. Günther Frauenheim
U-31   Oblt. Claus Korth
U-28   Oblt. Fritz-Julius Lemp
U-27   Oblt. Wolfgang Lüth
U-33   Kptlt. Wilhelm Schulz
U-26   Fähnr. (Ing) Erich Zürn

Kptlt. Lemp wearing on the left side his
Spain Cross without Swords

It had been said, that the commander of U-34 Kptlt. Harald Grosse sank on the 12th December, 1936 the Spanish Republican submarine C 3 and therefore became the only German Navy officer to receive the Spanish Cross in Gold with Swords, but I have no confirmation for either fact.

A Spanish Cross document

Decorations ordered by last name

See this list sorted by date

Commander and rankAgeCrewDate  U-boat Command(s) held *
Kptlt. Ambrosius, Wilhelm36266 Jun 1939  U-28, U-21

Oblt. Bopst, Eberhard +25336 Jun 1939  

Kpt. Friedeburg, Hans-Georg von +43IV/146 Jun 1939  U-27

Oblt. Rosenstiel, J├╝rgen von +26336 Jun 1939  

4 U-boat Commanders decorated with Spanish Cross in Silver without Swords (Spanienkreuz in Silber ohne Schwerter) located.

+ Indicates the Officer died in the war.
* Commands held indicates the U-boat commands held by this officer before award date. In some cases the officer had not taken command his first boat yet or was not even in the U-boat force yet.

Note: This listing is still being compiled and some recipients might be missing.

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