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Sudetenland Occupation Parade

Updated: Sep 26, 2020

The Sudetenland medal detailed in the first picture is from the collection also!


The photographs show the streets of part of the Sudetenland that is lined civilians and notably young children to see welcome the German Forces parade. The medal seen in the first is a Sudetenland occupation medal and is detailed briefly. It will also be featured with its own post to show more detail!

The first photograph shows a closer photograph that the second, but also a more packed street, of people to watch the parade. As seen to the left in shot notably a significant amount of children can be seen waving little swastika flags as the parade goes past. A few can be seen peering over the heads of others to get a view of the parade. They are also seen to be holding a small rope that is acting as a barrier so that they don't run or get in the way of the parade. This is seen in comparison to the other civilians that cant be seen standing in crowds. Many also seen waving and saluting the arrival of the parade. The crowds can be seen gather primarily around these central buildings seen in the first photograph, both are taken from the same parade from the passenger seat of the staff car. It is possible these central buildings could be the village or towns main administrative building and that is why they are seen mainly around them. Among banners there can also be seen other tinsel style decorations hanging as decoration on the buildings and also up the welcome signposts in both photographs. The first photographs sign welcoming the parade through reads; "wir danken unserem Führer" this translates to "We thank our Fuhrer". This being in a statement that shows that the people of the Sudetenland are now happy that they are united with their former ally and are now incorporated into the Reich.

The second photograph shows possibly either the entrance or exit to the town or village in which the parade is on route through. Decorations can be seen around the sign that reads; "Sudetendeutschland grüßt seinen führer", this translates to Sudeten Germany gives our leader". Just like the first photograph there can be seen a motorcycle and sidecar leading as an escort through the newly occupied territories.

The Sudetenland was the Northern, southern and western regions of Czechoslovakia that were known to be the inhabited by what was known as "Sudeten Germans". Sudeten Germans were ethnic Germans that were living in bordering Czech lands. Adolf Hitler had a policy known as Lebensraum or "Living Space". This was a policy that stated that ethnic Germans living in neighbouring countries should be under German rule and Incorporated into the Reich. The occupation of the Sudetenland was on the 1st of October 1938, this meaning that the photograph was taken at some time around or even on that date.

The medal seen attached was issued to those both German and "Sudeten Germans" who were involved in the occupation of the Sudetenland. It was also issued to those who helped in the later occupation of the rest of Czechoslovakia in March 1939. The Sudetenland medal seen attached is also seen with a metal pin through the ribbon, this showing that it was once attached or in wear by the previous owner. Still in the same condition as when it would have been issued this mint condition medal is a medal that has been cared for by its previous owner and is well looked after in the collection.

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1 Comment

Simon Tierney
Simon Tierney
Jun 02, 2020

Another very significant pair of photos of the last pre-war territorial acquisition. The Sudetenland was assigned to Germany between 1 October and 10 October 1938. As you see here, it looks as if the local populace were enthusiastic about being Germans again, as they had been before 1919.

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