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The French Croix de Guerre is the closest Allied award to the German Iron Cross.

The award documents handed out to the Croix de Guerre recipients are very often more decorative and detailed than those for the Iron Cross. In this section we shall post variations of the documents and do our best to describe the deeds of the recipients within their historical context.

Pictured here is the Medaille Militaire and Croix de Guerre awarded to Henri Chetou, killed on the 31st of September 1915.

A citation at Armee level for Captain Henri Barthelemy Carras of the 174eme R.I. fighting in the Champagne in September 1918. As a bonus a commendation certificate to one of his opponents.

A Verdun group to a stretcher bearer named Armand Detrus, he was killed on the night 8th to 9th of June 1916 while evacuating the wounded.

A Croix de Guerre awarded for the October 1917 reduction of the "Laffaux Ecke" to Grenadier Henri Cuillerier.

Some men are brave in the heat of battle, fewer are brave when they make a sober decision to sacrifice themselves. Charles Chedeville made the choice... and survived. The 101eme R.I. in front of Rheims, 15th July 1916.

The Croix de Guerre with four citations awarded to Paul Garron for his part in the fighting at Fleury and Thiaumont in July/August 1916.

The confusion in front of Thiaumont Farm in the second week of June 1916. The Documents to men who took part in the fighting and in the patrols, including a Croix de Guerre to Henri Hequette

On the 27th of June Soldat 2eme Classe Eugene Guillaume of the 5eme Compagnie was wounded at his post in Front of Souville at verdun. His was awarded the Croix de Guerre with a citation at Regimental level.

Jean Baptiste Aime, a messenger from the 4eme Regiment de Marche de Zouaves was awarded a citation for his Croix de Guerre during the Regiments sojourn on the Souville heights.  He counter attacked with his bayonet on the 5th of August 1916.

Jean Baptiste Aime won a citation for his Croix de Guerre while acting as a runner for the 4eme Batl. of the 4eme Zouaves during the 38eme Division d'Infanterie attack on Fort Douaumont on the 24th of October 1916.

Haucourt, the death of a Regiment. Soldat Maurice Richard was killed when the 69eme R.I. was annihilated while defending the road to Cote 304.

Liaison Runner Aime won a citation for his Croix de Guerre in the mid December 1916 offensive at Verdun. His Battalion suffered heavy losses at les Chambrettes.

 Few know that the first American to be awarded the Croix de Guerre, France’s highest honour for valour on the battlefield, was black. Here Prosper Keating relates the story of Henry Johnson and the ongoing struggle to have him posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honour almost ninety years after the epic hand-to-hand engagement that put Johnson amongst the top five American heroes of World War One.

Runner Aime won another of his Croix de Guerre's in the attack on the ruins of the Fort La Malmaison during Petain's limited offensive in October 1917.

Trench raids were usually short, bloody and merciless affairs. The objective of the raiders was to enter the enemy positions, take a handful of prisoners then kill and destroy as much as possible before returning to their own positions. The raiding parties had little means of handling large numbers of prisoners and those enemy soldiers who could not be taken back… could not be left alive either. Louis Ferrieux won a Croix de Guerre for a Raid in the Avocourt sector at Verdun as a Bombardier on a raiding party.

Sous Lieutenant Georges Picquet fought on the Mont Cornillet in the Champagne until he was wounded in April 1918.

 
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