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Distance Judging

The ability to judge distances is essential to military shooting where targets may appear at many different and varying distances. While there are too many marksmanship awards and qualifications to list here there are very few awards for distance judging. Distance Judging may have been considered such a basic part of marksmanship that it was covered by the marksmanship awards and did not rate an award on it’s own. One exception to this oversight was the Wisconsin National Guard’s Holway Diamond Badge (1905-1913) which was a privately funded award for the winners of an annual competition in estimating distances limited to officers only. At about the same time someone in Germany also felt that this skill should be rewarded in medallic form resulting in the medal illustrated below. It is a silver generic medal made by Oertel of Berlin. Such medals were common in Imperial Germany with the standard Kaiser portrait and legend obverse and a wreath on the reverse with the center left blank for the appropriate inscription. In this case the inscription translates “For good achievements in judging distances.”