The Colonel Farnes Collection

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Date of Auction: 8th May 2019

Sold for £480

Estimate: £300 - £400

A Second War Iron Cross attributed to M.A. Obergefreiten G. Mucke, a One-Man Torpedo Operator with K-Flotilla 364, German Kriegsmarine

Germany, Third Reich, Iron Cross 1939, Second Class, silver with iron centre, suspension ring marked ‘23’, mounted for display purposes along with a metal cut-out of his torpedo-craft, and plate below stamped ‘K. Flott. 364’, nearly extremely fine £300-£400

Footnote

Sold with the bestowal document for the Iron Cross, named to M.A. Obergefreiten Gerhard Mucke, dated Tromsö, 17 September 1943, and signed by Vice-Admiral Nordmann, Admiral Commanding the Norwegian Polar Coast.

Note: The display item illustrates the early, one-man, motorised torpedo craft, which carried a larger live torpedo underneath. Once fired, the operator retuned to base in the smaller upper carrier craft. Such craft were pioneered by small battle units of the Kriegsmarine’s elite K-Force. Given the date of Mucke’s Iron Cross, and the fact that it was awarded in Tromsö, where experimentation and training for K-Boat operations were undertaken, it is likely that he was awarded the Iron Cross for his role in the dangerous early experimentation and development of the one-man torpedo, rather than for an actual operation.