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Super panzer group with von Thoma signature on the Silver PAB document. WIA at Kursk northern pincer.
Nice officer's breast eagle. Eagle wingspan = 3 1/2"
Simply an unbelievable grouping for a soldier that started off in a Heer Flak Bn. When the Flak Bn. was finally disbanded he transferred into a Flak Co. of the 2nd Panzerjager Bn that was part of the 12th Panzer Div. True premium grouping.
Nice Wreath w/Cockade for an EM/NCO's Visor Cap. Great detail. 2 prongs are missing.
General Assault Badge Document for Stabsgefreiten Paul Hiller. His unit was the 18th Panzerjager (Anti-Tank) Bn. in the 18th Panzergrenadier Division. At the time he was awarded his badge his unit was involved in the defense of east Prussia against the Soviets and was armed with Sturmgeschutz III G Assault Guns (essentially a tank mounting a 75mm gun without a turret). He received his award on the last day of 1944.
Nice signed pencildrawing card of Generalmajor Hirschfeld. An extremely interesting officer and holder of the Knights Cross with Oakleaves as well as the German Cross in Gold. Another Gebrigsjager, he spent most of the war with the 98th Gebrigsjager Regiment. Though considered a very competent officer, sadly his name is linked to responsibility for the massacre of nearly 5,000 Italians on the Greek island of Cefalonia. They had been disarmed when Italy quitted the Axis cause. Apparently the Germans took offense to the Italian Division's (Acqui Division) celebration at it's departure from the war. He eventually rose to command one of the most interesting Infantry Divisions in the German Army. The 78th Sturm Division was a unique experimental unit. It was organized especially for assaults coordinating heavily armed infantry with heavy direct fire artillery. It achieved a reputation for being able to tackle especially tough positions. It was destroyed at Orsha along with most of Army Group Center in the Soviets summer offensive in 1944. It had such a reputation that the Germans reformed it (largely at Himmler's urging) as the 78th Volks Sturm Division. Von Hirschfeld was chosen to command the division in December but was killed on 01/18/45 at the Dunkla Pass.
Great signed photocard of Dietl. Also a letter from his Adj. about 5 months before the general was killed in a plane crash. Generaloberst Dietl was one of the most well known Gebrigsjager officers. He held the Knights Cross with Oakleaves and Swords. His name and the fighting in Northern Norway and Finland created a legend. Possibly his greatest moment came when commanding the 3rd Mountain Division at the battle of Narvik in 1940. By the narrowest of margins the division (less it's 138th Regiment) eventually drove the British and French expeditionary forces from Narvik.
Good grouping for a German Soldier, Unteroffizier Helmut Mader of the 2nd & later 6th Komp. 385th Infantry Regiment, 223rd Infantry Division. It contains an EK2, Infanterie Sturmabzeichen & Verwundetenabzeichen in Schwarz award document.
Unteroffizier Mader's division was generally composed of older men and spent the beginning of the Russian Campaign in the southwest of France at Bordeaux. They were sent to meatgrinder near Leningrad in November 1941. Mader was wounded and received his Iron Cross in April of 1942. He received his Infantry Assault Badge 6 months later in October. Several interesting things about this grouping. The EK2 document is hand signed by Generalmajor Baron Siegmund von Schleinitz (holder of the Knights Cross Of The Iron Cross and the German Cross In Gold) using the stamp of the 96th Infantry Division which he later commanded. Both of the other documents are hand signed by the Regimental Commander of the 385th. Apparently the 385th was at this point attached or at least under the control of the 96th Division. Both divisions were in the same Army Corps so not an uncommon occurance in the heat of battle. Another interesting thing revealed by the documents is that Mader switched from 2 Komp. in April to 6 Komp. in October. Because of significant manpower loss, in June 1942 the 1st Bn of each of the 385th sister regiments (344th & 425th) were disbanded. The 1/385 (Mader's Battalion) was not thought to have formally disbanded until the winter of 1942 when the Division was officially reorganized. This would at least make one wonder if Mader and at least some of the soldiers in his battalion were reorganized to flesh out the 2nd Battalion prior to December. A really neat collectable group.
A really neat and unusual little group. This soldier served with the Railroad Engineers on the Russian Front. These units had a dramatic and often unknown effect on the German war effort on the Russian Front. Especially in the early days of the invasion, the depth of the German penetrations was governed by how quickly the captured Soviet railroads could be placed back in service. When the Germans captured Soviet territory they often had to repair the tracks and rail yards that were damaged in the fighting or by the retreating Soviet soldiers. More importantly the German Railroad Engineers had to re-gauge almost all of the track they captured. The Soviets used a wider gauge (the iron rails were farther apart) so before it could be used by the German engines and railcars the rails had to be reset to the narrower gauge. Without rail transport of supplies the Germans simply could not sustain their massive penetrations of Soviet territory. This soldier, whose name is unfortunately not recorded, received both the War Merit Cross 2nd Class and the Russian Campaign medal for the winter of 1941/42. In addition the group includes his dog tag which notes his unit, his Sleeve Grade Insignia (Oberschutze) and his photo. One last interesting thing to note is that in the photo he is missing part of his left index finger.
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