walter schulze-mittendorff bio 11

Walter Schulze-Mittendorff

11. Commemorative Coin For Elsa Brandström
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In 1920 the German government assigns Walter Schulze-Mittendorff with the design for a memorial coin in honour of Elsa Bandström, as an expression of the German peoples’ gratefulness. The Swedish Red Cross Nurse had selflessly ministraded to German war prisoners in Siberia, and had courageously raised her voice for better conditions in the Siberian camps. By her selfless efforts the pains and sufferings of thousands of German war prisoners were alleviated, and many of them were spared from a certain and agonizing death. After the war, Elsa Brandström had lived in Germany from where she emigrated to the USA in 1934, because she had realized that in her current homeland all hopes for humaneness were lost. In America she supported the refugees, who were driven out by the Nazi terror, in their efforts to settle in a new life. In 1945 she collected money and donations in kind for the children of the devastated Germany. Her words bore witness to her love and devotion: "The greatest waste of our life is love not given"

On January 17, 1921, Walter Schulze-Mittendorff receives a letter of thanks from The Ministry for Foreign Affairs, with the following words: 
“The German delegate in Stockholm presented the insignia you crafted to Miss Brändström on the second day of the Christmas Holiday. As the envoy has informed us here, Miss Brändström was visibly moved, and has asked to convey her heartfelt thanks to all who took part in this high distinction.
In transmitting these thanks to you as well I take the opportunity to congratulate you most sincerely on your artistical success.”

Berliner Illustrierte Zeitung, .January 9th, 1921
„The medal that was given to the Swedish Elsa Brandström on behalf of the German Reich Government. The medal (by sculptor Schulze-Mittendorff) bears the inscription: ,In dankbarer Verehrung das deutsche Volk. Unvergesslich bleibt ihr Wirken für die Deutschen Kriegsgefangenen in Sibirien.‘ (,In grateful reverence the German people. Unforgotten is her work for the German prisoners of war in Siberia‘)“

Tägliche Rundschau, edition for Greater Berlin,
evening-edition, December 29th, 1920

Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung, January 11th, 1921
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