AUSTRIA – AWARD DOCUMENT – GENERALFELDMARSCHALL – HERMAN von KÖVESS
This is an award document to Hermann Kövess von Kövesshazà (1854-1924). He was the final general to be promoted from Generaloberst to Generalfeldmarschall in the Austrian army. His rise within the army was steady and impressive. By the time he was promoted to Oberst he was the youngest colonel in the Austrian army.
When WW I began he was close to retirement. However he was placed in command of the Austrian XII. Armeekorps. In 1915 he was placed in command of the III. Armee under Generalfeldmarschall August von Mackensen (1849-1945) in the Serbian campaign. Later von Kövess commanded the VII. Armee in the campaign in Galicia.
On 5. August 1917 he was promoted to the rank of Generalfeldmarschall and was the final general to achieve that rank during WW I. This came during the reign of Emperor Charles (1887-1922) who assumed the throne in November 1916 after the death of Emperor Franz Josef (1830-1916). In fact in 1918 Emperor Charles asked von Kövess to lead Austria after he abdicated. This offer was declined and von Kövess went into quiet retirement until his death in 1924.
Typed is the endorsement that von Kövess was thus promoted effective 5. August 1917. Below this statement is the true autograph boldly signed by Emperor Charles of Austria. Aside from the historical importance of this document is the signature of the Emperor. I have done a small amount of research and cannot find an example of his signature for sale.
I did find a sample of his signature to confirm that this signature was indeed his. A true treasure!