On a volunteer basis Prussian soldiers had decided to wear identification tags in the Austro-Prussian War of 1866. However, many rejected dog tags as a bad omen for their lives. So until eight months after the Battle of KÃ¶niggrÃ¤tz, with almost 8,900 Prussian casualties, only 429 of them could be identified. With the formation of the North German Confederation in 1867 Prussian military regulations became binding for the militaries of all North German member states. With the Prussian Instruktion Ã¼ber das SanitÃ¤tswesen der Armee im Felde (i. e. , instruction on the medical corps organisation of the army afield) issued on 29 April 1869 the identification tags (then called Recognitionsmarke; i. e. literally recognition mark) were obligatorily to be handed out to each soldier before marching afield. The Prussian Army issued identification tags for its troops at the beginning of the Franco-Prussian War in 1870. They were nicknamed Hundemarken (the German equivalent of "dog tags") and compared to a similar identification system instituted by the dog licence fee, adding tags to collars of those dogs whose owners paid the fee, in the Prussian capital city of Berlin at around the same time period.
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