Kappenabzeichen on postcards

Red Cross pin and card

Not only regiment badges and army badges appeared on postcards printed during the Great War. The Office of Military Aid also issued postcards decorated with badges of the Office. Today, it is difficult to imagine the gigantic size of post traffic of the time, as mailboxes have run out and post offices are slowly running out. Instead of writing a letter, there’s the phone, there’s the electronic message. For a long time, I wrote Christmas greeting cards for my friends. I have already stopped also this today. During the Great War, however, correspondence was the only form of contact between the front and the hinterland. That is why so many postcards have been published.

The card and the badge that are the subject of the post are also a publication of the Office of Military Assistance. The two together also shed light on the background of the badge. We do not see an inscription next to the red cross on the pine twig. That is, the badge was not made for a specific health care institution, but for those involved in the treatment of sick or wounded soldiers in general. The caption on the postcard clearly states, “Love heals the plagues of hatred.” This quote is from one of the poems of the Austrian monk and poet Ottokar Kernstock. You can read more about Kernstock here. His name was presumably known at the time, and has now been forgotten.

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