World War I







1923, Cast bronze, Satirical medal, 58.0mm, 67.00g., Rim-punch, "K•GoeTz".


Obverse:  Hitler is shown mounting the stage, with gun in hand, to where von Kahr is making a speech and then pushing the Bavarian Commissioner aside. A Munich citizen sits in the foreground drinking beer. To the left of Hitler is a backward swastika. Below, "Hittler Putsch" (Hitler Coup). Rim inscription, "National gen National" (Nationalist against Nationalist). Dated November 8, 1923. KG bisected by poster.


Reverse:  Three very young Nazis on the stage of the Munich Theater; one carries a gallow, one a Nazi flag with backward swastika, and the third, raising his right hand in a feigned Nazi salute and his right foot, with boot and spur, resembling an aerial bomb. Behind the curtain is von Kahr with a cannon. Between the two parties a Social Democrat joyfully dances and points to the two participants, the Nazi's and von Kahr. Inscription on poster below, "Etzte Vorstellung - Auf nach Berlin" (Last Performance - On To Berlin). Dated, November 9, 1923.



Adolf Hitler, supported by Ludendorff and other Bavarian leaders, planned to march on Berlin, declare the President and Chancellor out of office, and take over Germany. The first stage was executed in Munich, in a
beer hall, the Biirgerbraukeller, where a large assembly of the Bavarian cabinet was present. The National Socialists (Nazis) took over the meeting by force with Hitler firing a shot from his handgun into the ceiling to attract attention. Hitler declared the President and Chancellor dismissed, pronounced himself the new President and Chancellor, and gave General Ludendorff the office of the Minister of the Army.


On November 9, 1923 the Berlin government declared Hitler's actions as treason. The army was set into motion against Munich to suppress the Putsch. During a demonstration march through the streets of Munich, Bavarian police and troops acting under the orders of Prime Minister von Kahr, broke up the march and aborted the Putsch. Hitler fled, was captured two days later, and stood trial.


By his actions, von Kahr had actually double-crossed Hitler since he had agreed to go with him the evening before. Eleven years later Von Kahr paid with his life for this switch. He was found beaten to death in a swamp near Munich as a victim of the Röhm-revolt in 1934.




The image of Hitler on this medal is the first known to have appeared on a medal or coin. The description on the reverse is not flattering to Hitler's image. Additionally, lampooning Nazi's as young hooligans, backward swastikas, and the intentional misspelling of Hitler's name made such a creation potentially very damaging to Goetz in, and after, 1933 when Hitler was in complete power of Germany.


Legend has it that Karl Goetz traveled all over Germany in order to purchase back as many of these medals as he could in order to destroy them. Hence their rarity.





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