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Netherlands Anti-Aircraft Artillery badge


USNRet-Bob
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USNRet-Bob

Can someone provide background information on this badge?  The significance of the badge, criteria for award, contribution made to the Netherlands to receive this badge, etc.  It is from my Grandfather's memorabilia.  

Anti_Aircraft_Artillery,_Netherlands_Army.jpg

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Tonomachi

As you know this beret badge was worn by a member of the Royal Netherland Army Anti-Aircraft Artillery Regiment.  I'm not an expert on these beret badges but I found the following information on the Internet.  The design of this particular style crown is based on the crown worn by Queen Wilhelmina of Netherland as these beret badges came out in 1947 while she still reigned as queen (1890-1948).  You can see her initial "W" cipher below her crown at the base of each cannon.  They refer to the rear most design that all of these beret badges share as a large W buckle again having something to do with Queen Wilhelmina.  These beret badges were made or minted by different manufactures the first being Koninklijke Begeer from Voorschoten.   There was a fire at the Begeer factory where all of their dies melted so the government was forced to contract out with other insignia companies like Parree and van Veluw. There are supposedly various ways of dating these badges by their rear fixings.  The first badges had rear lips or tabs that bent vertically.  These broke off easily so they changed them to horizontally bent tabs which also broke off quite easily.  Sometime between 1949 and 1950 they replaced these tabs with eyes or lugs that were soldered directly to the back of the badge.  These were also found to be fragile as they broke off so sometime between 1950 to 1951 they added feet (elongated tabs) to the eyes or lugs.  You can also date these badges by the way these badges were attached to the beret.  They used a simple split pin or cotter pin until 1972.  From 1972 through 1985 they switched to an oblong spring wire washer.  They currently use a flat plastic washer which they refer to as a NATO closure.  

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Perfect explanation Tonomachi.

 

The older badge are of real copper, the newer ones are made of plastic coated copperish metal. 

 

Regards 

Herman 

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