The Prague Militia Medal 1866

During the Austro-Prussian War of 1866 the citizen of the Bohemian capital Prague raised three volunteer corps (Bürgerwehren) to support the regular army, similar to the inhabitant of the Tyrol, the Bürgerscharfschützen, the Städtische Garde and the Bürgerliches Polizeischarfschützenkorps. These volunteers organised their uniforms and equipment at their own cost and were recruited from citizens who were not called to army duty, mainly veterans, policemen and other civilian officials. To honor the members of these militias and to give them a sign of commemoration, Kaiser Franz Joseph I introduced the so-called "Prager Bürgerwehrmedaille von 1866" on the 25th of October 1866.

This 31 mm wide, silver medal was designed by the famous Josef Tautenhayn senior (1837-1911) and worn on a 40 mm half white and half light-red typical triangle ribbon. The obverse was similar to the Tyrolean medal for 1866 and depicted the head of Kaiser Franz Josef I with a laurel-wreath looking to the right surrounded by the inscription "FRANZ JOSEPH I. KAISER VON OESTERREICH". On the reverse at the centre is the underlined year-date "1866" surrounded by a wreath constructed of oak leaves and bound on the bottom with a ribbon. Finally 1080 medals were awarded.

Obverse Reverse

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