Glossary

Awards and medals

1939-45 Star (bronze metal). Photo Impressed on reverse with recipient's details. The medal was awarded for six months service in specified areas of Army operational command, overseas from Australia, between 03/09/1939 and 02/09/1945. AWM id no. REL27262.002

Africa Star (bronze metal). Photo Impressed on reverse with recipient's details. AWM id no. REL27262.003

Australia Service Medal (nickel silver alloy). Photo Impressed around edge with recipient's details. AWM id no. REL27262.007

British Empire Medal (BEM). Photo

British War Medal 1939-45 (cupronickel alloy). Photo Impressed around edge with recipient's details. AWM id no. REL27262.006

Defence Medal (cupronickel alloy). Photo Impressed around edge with recipient's details. AWM id no. REL27262.005

Distinguished Service Order (DSO). Photo

Mentioned in Despatches (MID). Military award for gallantry or otherwise commendable service (certificate issued to the soldier).

Military Cross (MC). Photo

Military Medal (MM). Photo AWM id no. REL30220.002. Example citation.

Order of British Empire (OBE). Photo

Pacific Star (bronze metal). Photo Impressed on reverse with recipient's details. AWM id no. REL27262.004

Victoria Cross (VC) (bronze metal). Photo The Victoria Cross is the highest award for acts of bravery in wartime. It was instituted in 1856 by Queen Victoria and made retrospective to 1854 to cover the period of the Crimean War. It is possible for any serviceman to obtain this award. The Victoria Cross is designed in the form of the Maltese Cross: in the centre of the medal is a lion guardant standing upon the Royal Crown. The words "For valour" are inscribed below. The Victoria Cross is suspended from a bar by a red ribbon. On the reverse of the cross the date of the act of bravery is inscribed, along with the name, rank, and unit of the recipient. AWM id no. REL27262.001

Service bar. Photo Cloth bar worn on uniforms representing awards and medals earned by the wearer. Medals are typically worn only on ceremonial occasions such as ANZAC Day. id no. C_SANDELL_97
C_SANDELL_3650.jpg
Medal issued by the Australian Government to mothers (front). The number of stars on the suspended bar corresponds to the number of children on active service. Photo courtesy of C. Sandell (grandson of VX73689 C. A. R. Douglas). id no. C_SANDELL_3650

C_SANDELL_3651.jpg
Medal issued by the Australian Government to mothers (back). The number of stars on the suspended bar corresponds to the number of children on active service. Photo courtesy of C. Sandell (grandson of VX73689 C. A. R. Douglas). id no. C_SANDELL_3651