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  1. #1

    Introduction of the Jungmädel achievement badge (Jungmädel Leistungsabzeichen)

    I've been trying to nail the date of introduction of the Jungmädel Leistungsabzeichen for a couple of years now so I thought I'd open this thread so that we can pool our sources/resources and try to establish the exact date.

    The HJ and BDM achievement badges were introduced by von Schirach in 1934 and the DJ achievement badge a year later in 1935. The JM achievement badge was introduced at a later date and in his 1940 book 'Das kommende Deutschland' Günter Kaufmann gives that date as 1940 but this information conflicts with earlier sources. Anyway, here's what I have come up with so far:

    The JM Achievement badge is mentioned as having existed (or indeed not existed) prior to 1940 in the following sources:

    1st of April 1936
    The magazine Das deutsche Mädel clearly states that the JM did not have an achievement badge at this time. There were two Jungmädelproben (Jungmädel tests) with one being taken in the first year of membership at age 11 or 12 (Jungmädelprobe) with the second (Jungmädel-Leistungsprobe) being due one year later at age 12 or 13. The reference clearly states that there were no badges for these tests and that their purpose was purely to act as preparatory stages on the way to the award of the BDM achievement badge in bronze once the Jungmädel had moved up to the BDM.

    14th of January 1938
    I have a Gebietsbefehl from Gebiet Ruhr-Niederrhein dated the 14th of January 1938 entitled 'Gesundheitsappel der deutschen Jugend' which gives an exact run-down of all achievement badges. It does not list the JM achievement badge and instead lists the two Jungmädelproben mentioned in the 1936 reference above so it is clear that the JM achievement badge did not yet exist at this point.

    October 1938
    In the publication: Die Jungmädelschaft. Blätter für die Heimabendgestaltung der Jungmädel (see attachment) issued on the above date there is a reference to the JM achievement badge in the index. I don't have the publication myself so can't tell whether the badge was being awarded at this point or whether the article concerns itself with the very recent introduction of the badge. It is clear though that the badge existed at this time.

    March 1939
    Another period reference from March 1939 (Das deutsche Mädel) acts as further confirmation that the badge definitely existed prior to 1940: "....the aim of each Jungmädel is the award of the Jungmädel-Leistungsabzeichen before she joins the BDM". Further: "...it is only natural that the older Jungmädel has the desire to achieve more and this wish is accommodated by the Jungmädel-Leistungsabzeichen which the Reichsjugendführer created for the 12 to 14 year old girls'.

    From this point on you can find any number of references to the badge.

    It seems then to be the case that the Jungmädel achievement badge was introduced in mid-1938. If anyone has more information (period or modern) to narrow this down even further please post it here. It would be much appreciated.

    Edit:

    During the course of this thread we established that the introduction for the Jungmädel Achievement Badge (Jungmädel Leistungsabzeichen) was indeed in mid-1938.

    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
    Anyone? What do the modern reference books (Angolia etc) give as the introduction date (I'm guessing that they will say 1940)?

    The OB for 1938 shows the attached picture which I think must be a mistake. The information in post 1 above indicates that the JM achievement badge was introduced in 1938 and the appearance of a badge for the Jungmädel in the 1938 OB seems to confirm this. However, the configuration of the JM badge as shown is incorrect when compared to the JM badge we all know. The BDM bronze/silver shown on the illustration is also incorrect because the BDM achievement badges had a red/white/red cloth backing as we know and not red as shown on the illustration. I am certainly unaware of the existence of BDM achievement badges with a red-only cloth backing but information to the contrary would of course be welcome.

    In conclusion then: the 1938 OB would appear to confirm that the JM achievement badge was introduced in 1938 (as indicated by the information in post 1 above) but it is incorrect as far as the construction and appearance of the badges as we know them is concerned.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  3. #3

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    David Littlejohn: The Hitler Youth, page 226:
    "Bdm and JM profiency clasps
    A clasp for proficiency ind the BDM and JM was instituted on April 28, 1934."


    Angolia: The HJ, vol. 2, page 162:
    "Young Girls Proficiency Clasp (Jungmädel leistungsabzeichen)
    The exact date of introduction is not known. Dr. Doehle does not discuss the clasp until his 1943 publication; however the first official regulations relating to the clasp were dated 1940."


    ../henrik

  4. #4

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    "Verordnung zur Ausführung des Gesetzes über Titel, orden und Ehrenzeichen" (Regulations implementing the law on titles, orders and decorations) of 14 november 1935 only mentions HJ and BDM Leistungsabzeichen.

    ../henrik

  5. #5
    Many thanks Henrik

    Certainly as far as Littlejohn and Angolia are concerned then, their sources are incorrect*. I can't find a regulation which introduces the JM achievement badge but the October 1938 and certainly the March 1939 reference above show that it existed prior to 1940. I can't understand why the introduction date is proving so difficult to nail down. If I could only get a look inside that October 1938 copy of "Die Jungmädelschaft. Blätter für die Heimabendgestaltung der Jungmädel"......


    * Unless, of course, the older Jungmädel leaders were eligible for the BDM achievement badge (as happened with the older DJ leaders who were eligible for the 'HJ silver achievement badge and the HJ shooting badge). The reference would make sense then.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Garry View Post
    ... If I could only get a look inside that October 1938 copy of "Die Jungmädelschaft. Blätter für die Heimabendgestaltung der Jungmädel" ...
    Well, I'll have a look in the near future

    ../henrik

  7. #7
    Ah, sounds good Henrik. Might you have a copy tucked away somewhere?

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Garry View Post
    Ah, sounds good Henrik. Might you have a copy tucked away somewhere?
    No, but I should be on the way.

    .

  9. #9
    Excellent :)

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by cemifor View Post
    No, but I should be on the way.
    It was in the mail today.

    "Der unbekannte SA Mann
    Die Jungmädelschaft. Blätter für Heimabendgestaltung der Jungmädel. Berlin. Oktober 1938. Folge 1. Ausgabe B."
    (64 pages)

    There are 30+ pages about the conditions on how to get the Jungmädel Leistungsabzeichen, but no date when it was introduced. The rest is about the history of SA.

    .

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