Men at arms


The Monarchy had to fight against Italy on high mountain terrain. This was a serious challenge for the soldiers in all seasons, but especially in winter conditions. As a lowland person, I can’t even imagine how to get from one place to another in difficult mountain terrain. Especially not in deep snow. It’s true, I can’t even ski. So I have little idea of ​​the fighting style of the soldiers deployed in the Alps. The constant danger of avalanches, the fact that it was not possible to move on built-up ski areas, but “through ditches and bushes”, all made the execution of the tasks unimaginably difficult.

The units were equipped with skis, which made progress easier. Austrian soldiers who could already ski were ordered to the affected front sections. Soldiers for whom this sport provided a civilian experience and delight. This feeling is also transmitted to the layman from the picture chosen for the post. A soldier patrolling on skis in the majestic snowy landscape. Two types of badges depicting skiers were made during the Great War. These are quite common. The badge presented here is a product of the Brüder Schneider company. The title is a little funny to me: “Schneeschuhtruppe” literally means “snowshoe troop”.

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