Italian CSIR Russian Front “Snow Cross” Commemorative Medal
Italian C.S.I.R. award was probably instituted in August 1942 and rendered to those troops that participated in the initial campaign of Operation Barbarossa. The cross is made of silver zama – a zinc alloy. The obverse is off-white paint surrounded by a metal border outline. The reverse has the names of the Russian regions and the years that the Italian troops fought. In addition, the manufacturer’s name and address is posted on the lower right side. The Ribbon is original and in white and black.
Notice that the reverse shows the names of the Russian regions and the years that the Italian troops fought. On top of the cross is the inscription “DNJEPR, DONETZ” and on the bottom is the dates “LUGLIO 941, LUGLIO 942.” Perpendicular to the cross from left to right the inscription “BUG” and “DON.” In the center it shows the “C.S.I.R.” in large size letters. In addition just below the date it shows in small letters the manufacturer’s name and address “LORIOLI MILANO ROMA, A PICOZZI MILANO.”
Appears that a cleaning was attempted to the manufacture name obscuring it some, but it is still present and undamaged. There has also been some touch-up to the original paint, appears to be period as there is no florescence to the paint or ribbon. This is very common as the paint on the cross was very prone to chip away immediately after issue.
Post-production badges exist probably made and purchased for veterans. The post-war crosses are missing the manufacturer’s name and address.
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