Finnish Awards

    Finnish Military Awards

    The Finnish awards were also rendered to Swedish and German Nationals.

    Finnish Awards

    The Winter War Medal

    The Commemorative "Winter War" medal of 1939-1940 was rendered to those who served during the Winter War campaign. This Order is made of dark zinc type metal. The obverse shows a Finnish soldier wearing winter clothing shooting a rifle in the center surrounded by Finnish Coat-at-Arm shields. The reverse has the inscription "KUNNIA ISANMAA." The ribbon is black with two red stripes in the center. In addition,this award has a campaign bar "KOTIJOUKOT" mounted on the ribbon.

    The ribbon bar in the top center shows the colors of the following awards: The Cross of Liberty with swords attached, the bronze Freedom Medal and the Winter War medal.

    The Medal of Liberty

    The Medal of Liberty comes in two classes; silver medal with light blue ribbon with narrow white stripe on each edge and bronze 2nd class with red ribbon with two yellow broad stripes on each edge. The Medal of Liberty 2nd class shown is a 1939 Winter War type that was awarded only in wartime for gallantry in the field. The obverse in the center shows the Finnish coat-of arms a Lion brandishing a sword surrounded with the Finnish inscription "UR HEUDESTA FOR TAPPEHET" (FROM THE NATION FOR BRAVERY). The reverse in the center the inscription "SUOMEN KANSALTA 1918" surrounded by a wreath.

    Finnish Award Finnish Award

    The silver 1st class Medal of Liberty known as the "Freedom" medal was awarded to SS-Unterscharführer Heinz Lebek who served with the "Finnische Freiwilligen Bataillon der Waffen-SS."
    On the reverse bottom side of the medal there are four different silver hallmark characters. Notice that the suspension ring is not original they were often replaced to suit German awards. The ribbon for the silver 1st class award is light blue with narrow white stripes on each side.

    Finnish Award

    Picture of the recipient SS-Unterscharführer Heinz Lebek from the collection of Mr. Torsten Belger.

    Finnish Cross Finnish Cross

    The Cross of Liberty

    The Cross of Liberty award was instituted in March 1918 and re-commission in 1939. There were various grades from the Grand Cross to the 4th class Liberty Cross. The award shown is a 4th class Liberty Cross black enamel with a silver Finnish style swastika and a white rose in the center. The reverse is black enamel cross with "1941" date in the center. This Order has "swords" on Military Division ribbon. The Finnish swords represent the two arms brandishing a sword shown on your left and a scimitar on your right surrounded by a wreath. The Military Division ribbon in form of a semi-bow is red with two white stripes placed centrally. The Cross of Liberty Orders are consider Finland´┐Żs highest military distinction. It was also given as a Unit Citation.

    The Commemorative Northern Cross

    Finnish Cross

    The Finnish Commemorative Northern Cross shown on the bottom left side was awarded to all those who served and fought in Finland. There were three similar crosses manufactured. The first two commemorated the Northern Front while the third the Lapland Region. All three crosses show the center face with a different enameled color (black or white) surrounded by a golden wreath. Below the face it shows a golden engraved inscription "POHJOISRINTAMA-DIE NORDFRONT" written in Finnish and German while on the top is the year date. The dates shown were 1941-42, 1941-43 and 1941-44. The background shows an enameled blue or black cross and the arms of a silver swastika with the inscriptions of Finnish regions. The back of the cross is concave and is attached by means of a small screw.


    Northern Cross

    Rare photo illustrating members of the Norwegian 2nd Police Company from the collection of Mr. Øvind.
    Notice that they all seem to wear the Finnish Northern Cross.

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