Decorations of WWI

Military awards and decorations given to Austrian soldiers during WWI were recorded in alphabetical card indexes for 1914-1918, and printed in personnel gazettes for the Common Army, Austrian Landwehr, and Hungarian Honvéd.

A very important record group, even though – like the wartime losses records – difficult to navigate. The applications for decorations were sent from the army in the field to the decorations section (Belohnungsgruppe) of the High Command. They are one of the major sources for personal details about soldiers in the First World War.


WHY were they collected? Evidence of decorated soldiers
WHEN were they collected? 1914-1918 (years of birth 1865 - 1900)
WHO collected the records? Ministry of war
WHAT information can be found?

Surname, first name, rank, unit, company, type of decoration, reason for recommendation by superior officer,
date of decoration; from late 1917 on there are often mentions of year of birth, home town, and year of entering military service

In which ARCHIVES are they held?

War Archive in Vienna

In which archive FILES can they be found? Neue Belohnungsakten (NBA) (1914 - 1918)
LANGUAGE of records German
AVAILABILITY Good, separate records for officers and other ranks.
What must be KNOWN before getting started? The wartime decoration cards are arranged by phonetic alphabet, so the name, surname, date and place of birth is sufficient
German expression Belohnungsakten des Weltkrieges (BA)