The Purple Heart (Eng. " purple heart " ) is the only casualty award of the Armed Forces of the United States and also the world's oldest military medal still in use today. It is awarded to soldiers who were wounded by enemy forces in battle, and posthumously to fallen soldiers.
Originally founded in 1782 by George Washington in honor of soldiers in times of financial distress, the Purple Heart fell nearly 150 years in oblivion. Until 1932 it was revived on the occasion of the bicentenary of the birth of Washington by the U.S. War Department and retroactively awarded for wounds that have occurred since 5 April 1917.
For today's design of the Purple Heart, the U.S. Heraldikerin Elizabeth Will is responsible. The first specimen was designed in the largest American mintmark, the United States Mint in Philadelphia, by John R. Sinnock.
Stylish look and manner
The Purple Heart is composed of a gilt rim, violet metal heart showing the bust of George Washington and is attached to a purple ribbon. Both elements are connected by the coat of arms of the family coat of arms of George Washington (awarded in 1412 by the English king to Sir William of Wessyngton ). The back of the award has, in its upper half the spell FOR MILITARY MERIT ( For military merit ) to, among is usually engraved at the expense of Beliehenen his rank, name and the day of wounding.
The Purple Heart is worn on the left chest. On festive occasions, such as the Veterans Day or at state receptions, it is worn in original size, otherwise only as a band buckle. If the Entrusted again wounded after receiving the Purple Heart, a bronze oak leaf is awarded for the ribbon bar in place of Honour, which is applied centrally. After five awarded bronze oak leaves, a silver oak leaf and five silver oak leaf is awarded a gold, where gold has never before lent.
Purple Heart in his Verleihungsbox with appropriate Zivilpin (small) and Ribbon
Award of the Purple Heart to a member of the U.S. Army
Ceremony by the President of the United States Barack Obama in April 2009