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GOETZ: K-484 Reimage


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Another beautiful and rare piece. AD was replaced by ADOLF since AD indicates a postumous image. Are the flat spots on the reverse shield in the casting or the result of cabinet friction?

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Another beautiful and rare piece. AD was replaced by ADOLF since AD indicates a postumous image. Are the flat spots on the reverse shield in the casting or the result of cabinet friction?

 

No, not a speck of cabinet friction on this piece although the image might indicate as such. The shield is as designed.

 

The AD you mention Bill is in reference to Hindenburg on this medal. The AD fiasco you mention was created on the medal previous to this one, K-483 "Germany Awake".

 

That isn't to say that this design wasn't up to Nazi standards either. Goetz submitted this medal to the Brown House (the Nazi Party headquarters for all of Germany) for approval and after long months of waiting the request was refused. Their reasons? Goetz was not a Party member and the reverse did not display a swastika.

 

A subsequent model was made with a swastika on the shield and the design was then approved, reduced for minting in 60mm and 36mm, and struck.

 

This piece is among a very few early pieces cast before the design was changed.

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The AD you mention Bill is in reference to Hindenburg on this medal.  The AD fiasco you mention was created on the medal previous to this one, K-483 "Germany Awake".

 

You are right. Its a shame to get old and forgetful. The AD was associated with 483, but I still believe the AD on 484 refers to Adolf Hitler once again. Hindenburg did not die until 1934 (and AD means retired, not dead--again my error). I believe the AD is meant to balance the VONs in front of Hindenburg and Pappen (and maybe a subtle dig at his social stature)? It also might have been Goetz's subtle dig at the previous controversy. 484 was eventually changes so that a swastika appeared in the upper part of the shield. In check Kienast, I see the shield is soft in the same areas as your piece (assuming yours is not the plate coin, but then it wouldn't surprise me if it was).

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Bill, I'm not sure if I caught what you meant by the term "plate coin". If you are indeed talking about the size being about equal to a plate then I guess this example at 138.5mm and 610 grams would qualify as such.

 

For the most part, my collection is comprised primarily of the initiall, large, cast bronze pieces 60mm and larger.

 

Below you will find my canned narrative I had on my computer for this medal....

 

 

K-484 WITH HINDENBURG FOR GERMANY, 1933, Cast AE, 138.50mm, wt. 610grams, Edge incuse punch “KGoeTz” at 6:00 o’clock. RRR in this size

 

On the occasion of President Hindenburg nominating Hitler to the chancellorship of Germany and von Papen to vice-chancellorship.

 

Obverse shows three conjoined busts right of Hindenburg, Hitler, and von Papen with their names., Hindenburg’s followed by “A.D.” indicating retired.

 

Reverse shows soldier with slain two-headed dragon and the “National Front” shield of the old German flag. Inscription on the reverse “With Hindenburg for Germany.”

 

Although von Papen’s title was vice chancellor, at this stage of development, he still held the political power. Eight of the cabinet members were allied with him as opposed to only three with Hitler and it was von Papen, not Hitler, who had the ties to Hindenburg. This is an important and imposing medal which catalogs Hitler’s path to power. This medal was banned by the Nazi’s and only pieces with the swastika on the shield could be distributed. Goetz did little to assist in this request.

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Hindenburg was re-elected Reichs President in 1932 and held the position until his death in 1934. Von Papen negotiated the appointment of Hitler as chancellor (with himself as vice chancellor) with the intent of blunting and ultimately limiting the electoral power (not enough for a majority, but a plurality that allowed them to block any political initative) of the N.S.D.A.P. Hitler out manuevered them all with the burning of the Reichstag (likely a Nazi plot, but never proven) and the passage of emergency laws to protect the state. (Hmmm, no comment on current political events and justifications for executive powers.) Von Papen's cabinet majority became meaningless when the March 23, 1933 Enabling Act gave the chancellor control over limits to personal freedoms, the press, the right to assemble, the privacy of postal and telephone communications, warrents for searches and siezures, etc. for four years. When Hindenburg died in 1934, Hitler used his authority to abolish the position of president and declared himself Fuhrer and Reichs Chancellor. He used the Reichstag to renew his emergency powers every four years.

 

The other Goetz medal in this group shows Hitler shaking Hindenburg's hand at the Potsdam Garrison Church on March 21. I don't have an image in front of me, so I don't know if there are other subtle tricks in that piece as well. That hand shake was meant to assure the German people that Hitler could be trusted.

 

So, I believe your notation about AD refering to Hindenburg is incorrect. What is portrayed are the three legal offices of the moment, Reichs President, Chancellor, and Vice Chancellor. It was a commissioned piece if I remember correctly, as was 483. Like all of the Goetz medals, there are many stories that can be spun from a seemingly simple chunk of cast bronze.

 

 

By "plate" I meant the piece pictured in the Kienast catalog. It clearly shows the soft spots on the shield, the designs meant to portray the colors of the flag. Its likely a deliberate part of the design to indicated the billowing flag now that I think about it. Goetz paid careful attention to detail as your images so beautifully portray. Goetz seems to be playing it close to the line with the medals of 1933 (proably the most realistic portraits of Hitler on any of the medals produced at the time). Not only did the party object to the lack of a swastika, I don't believe they liked his image of Hitler either. Almost all Hitler portraits are highly stylized to convey the heroic image of the leader. The pre-1933 election tokens are the other exception to the heroic portrait and that is likely due to the mass production values and the finances of the party still struggling to grow into power.

 

Thank you. Your posts are forcing me to recall the research I did years ago when cataloging Hitler medals. Some of its actually coming back!

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Here is the example of the K-483 we have been mentioning. Karl Goetz's descriptive narrative about the medals in Kienast I is confusing regarding the K483/K484 as he confuses the two medals while discussing the situation surrounding their creation.

 

This is also a cast example which are far and few between. I also have an artist proof of the reverse that you can see on my web gallery.

 

Goetz didn't get approval from the "Brown House" for this one either and the Party was a bit miffed about Hitler's less than stylized appearance. With that in mind, this image of him is probably much truer to his appearance than most of the other medals created at the time.

 

If anyone is interested, I have two or three more Goetz/Hitler medals I could show you.

 

K%20483a.jpg

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