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War Medals For School Children

It’s not that unusual to issue medals to school children that commemorate the end of a war or on the anniversary of a great battle like Waterloo but why did the medal illustrated below get pinned on the pupils? Awarded by the twin cities of Saarbrucken and St. Johann, one side which maybe the obverse, commemorates the Peace Celebration after the end of the Franco-Prussian War which is normal enough. The other side however commemorates the German victory in the battle of Spichern August 6, 1870. My first thought was that maybe some of their local units fought in the battle but as far as I could find out none of the locals were involved in that battle which was fought not far from the twin cities. For Saarbrucken the victory at Spichern must have been very sweet because when France declared war, French units quickly crossed the border and captured and occupied Saarbrucken until the French troops were forced to retreat. The retreat ended at Spichern and thus we have a medal commemorating both a peace celebration and victorious battle.

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