On October 27, 1944 the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR adopted the first Decree “On awarding the honorary title of ‘Mother Hero’ to mothers of many children”.
The decorations for mothers of many children were established by the Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR of July 8, 1944 ‘On increasing of state subsidies to pregnant women, mothers of many children and single mothers, strengthening of maternity and child protection, establishing of the highest decoration – the title of ‘Mother Hero’ and the Order ‘Mother Glory’ and the ‘Maternity medal’.
The establishment of the state awards for mothers increased their social authority, demonstrated the regard of society for the maternity and indicated that children upbringing in our country equaled to the state and social merits.
The first awarding of the honorary title ‘Mother Hero’ was made by the Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR of October 27, 1944. The awards were presented in Kremlin on November 1, 1944. Among 14 women that were conferred by this decree on the title ‘Mother Hero’ the Order Mother Hero N 1 and the Deed of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR was awarded to Aleksakhina Anna Savelievna, a habitant of the village of Mamontovka of Moscow region, who brought up 12 children. During the Great Patriotic War eight of her sons went to the front, four of them were killed.
After that the awarding of the honorary title ‘Mother Hero’ and the presentation of the Order were made monthly according to the lists of 30-40 people.
The title Mother Hero was the highest decoration. According to the Statute it was awarded together with the Order to the mothers who had given birth and brought up 10 and more children when the last of them achieved the age of 1 year and under the condition that other children of this mother are alive. The honorary title Mother Hero was also awarded to those mothers whose children were killed or missing while defending the USSR or attending other duties of their military service, or while saving a human life or protecting a socialist property or a socialist law and order, as well as adopted ones.
The last awarding of the title Mother Hero in the history of the USSR took place on November 14, 1991 by the decree of the President of the USSR. From 1944 to 1991 the order Mother Hero was presented to about half a million women.
Lit.: Аверьянова А. К. Почётное звание «Мать-героиня» [Электронный ресурс] // Видеопортал. 1996-2015. URL: http://www.a-z.ru/women_cd2/15/i8_1462.htm; Колесников Г. А., Рожков А. М. Ордена и Медали СССР. М., 1983; Куценко А. Н. Ордена СССР. Донецк, 1994; Музалевский М. В. Ордена и медали СССР. Тиражи, разновидности. Справочник. М.,1996; Шишков С. С., Музалевский М. В. Ордена и медали СССР: Тиражи и разновидности: Справочник. Владивосток, 2000.