The Order of Merit Awarded to Vienna Mayor
The Order of Merit Awarded to Vienna Mayor - Order of Merit, Grand Cross Set, comprising the Star and the Cross; Star, in silver and enamels, 85mm, unmarked, with motto on reverse “10.IV. ZA ZASLUGE 1942”; nicely toned star in extremely fine condition. Cross, in silver and dark red enamels, 56mm(w) x 60mm(h), mounted on a full length of original sash ribbon, set of fine quality manufacture, unmarked, nicely toned, in extremely fine condition. Both the star and cross are of typical manufacture by Braca Knaus, Zagreb; with an original (preliminary) award document, 21cm x 32cm, stating (the Leader Ante Pavelic) in the name of Croatian Nation, is awarding Order of Merit, Grand Cross insignia, to Ing. Hanns Blaschke, Mayor of Vienna (Wien); dated in Zagreb, 20. November 1943. Document is in very fine condition. Scarcely awarded set of insignia. Footnote: Hanns Blaschke (1 April 1896 in Vienna – 25 October 1971 in Salzburg) was the son of a revenue officer. He completed in Vienna his elementary school and high school. He enrolled in 1914 at the Technical University of Vienna to study electrical engineering, but later that year, he enlisted into Imperial Army after the outbreak of the First World War. He fought throughout the First World War and was awarded several times; after the War he was discharged as a reserve Lieutenant in the Army. Then he resumed his studies again, which he completed in 1922. From 1926 he worked as a practicing patent attorney. From 1931 he was an illegal functionary in the Austrian NSDAP (No. 614 686). After his involvement in the coup in July 1934, he was sentenced to life imprisonment, but released after two years (due to the provisions of the July Agreement). In 1938 he took part in the storming of the building of the “Fatherland Front” in Vienna. After the " Anschluss ", he joined the SS (No. 292,790). He was Assistant and councillor in Vienna, as well as head of the care center for “Old fighters” of the "Gau Vienna". First, as a third, then as the first deputy mayor he was responsible for Cultural Affairs. On 30 December 1943 he took over the office of mayor of Vienna from Philipp Wilhelm Jung, which he held until 6th April of 1945. In April 1944, he became the SS-Brigade Leader. After the War, in 1948, Blaschke was in tried in Vienna for treason, and sentenced to six years imprisonment; he faced confiscation of the property and also he lost the citizenship. This decision was reversed in March, 1958.