WWII Photos and Documents

Discussion in 'General Military Arms & History Forum' started by SSMN, Jun 27, 2011.

  1. SSMN

    SSMN Member

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    Steve,
    Please feel free to do so. Here is more information about Rhula and Thiel. Also a photo of machines produced by Thiel, some of which no doubt were utilized in the manufacture of Walthers just a few miles away.
    Also an 1880's letterhead for the company.

    Attached Files:

  2. geds

    geds New Member

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    Steve - check your PM. I want to cite you and/or your sources as references in my document. Thanks again!
  3. geds

    geds New Member

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    I did a little research on Camp Callan, in La Jolla, California:

    Camp Callan was built in November of 1940 as a Coast Artillery Corps replacement training center for new inductees. Open for business in January of 1941, it was named for Maj. Gen. Robert Callan (1874-1936), a veteran of the Spanish American War and World War I. By 1942, the post had over 297 buildings, covered 23 blocks, had 5 post exchanges, 3 theaters and 5 chapels. About 15,000 men went through a 13 week training cycle with a strong emphasis on modern coast artillery and anti-aircraft defense weapons.

    On November 22, 1940, the War Department announced plans to create a replacement training center for Coast artillery units in the Torrey Pines Mesa area. Men inducted into the military under the Selective Service Program would be assigned to this new training center. The purpose of this training center was to teach trainees how to fire long-range weapons in the event the Imperial Japanese Navy tried to attack the West Coast of the United States. This training center was named "Camp Callan" in honor of Major General Robert Emmet Callan, a distinguished Coast Artillery officer.

    Construction of the base began in November 1940 and official occupation of the camp was marked by a military flag-raising ceremony that took place on January 15, 1941. Twenty officers and one hundred and twenty enlisted men were present. They were all members of the first unit of operations personnel at the new base. Brigadier General Francis P. Hardaway was the new camp's first commander. He spoke on the importance of the camp to the defense program at this ceremony. On February 24, 1941, the first large guns arrived at the camp. Nine of these guns were French-made 155 mm guns that dated back to World War I. Around five thousand trainees arrived at the camp between the last week of February and the end of March. They arrived by rail at a nearby reopened railroad station. The first trainees came mostly from Fort Ord and Fort MacArthur in California, Fort Sheridan in Illinois, Fort Missoula in Montana and Fort Vancouver in Washington. The first military review was held on April 2, 1941. Six thousand men passed in formation before Major General Joseph A. Green, Chief of Coastal Artillery. He congratulated them on the progress they had made in such a short time. Since the camp did not have its own military band, a 100-piece Marine Corps band provided music for this ceremony.
    A period of significant change for the camp began in March 1942. The military had seen the terrible damage the Luftwaffe had inflicted on the United Kingdom so they decided to place full training emphasis on anti-aircraft weapons rather than on a combination of seacoast artillery and anti-aircraft weapons. This change marked the beginning of a two-year period of peak activity for the camp. Approximately fifteen thousand trainees were going through their training during each thirteen week training cycle. Training ranges on the base included a 1,000-inch range, a 200-yard rifle range, a pistol range, an automatic weapons range and a 3-inch anti-aircraft gun range. The trainees learned to use 155 mm, 90 mm, 75 mm, and 40 mm caliber guns as well as the associated fire control equipment. Gun firing positions were established for this training. In addition to artillery gun positions and small arms ranges, a variety of other facilities and structures were built on the base. These improvements included barracks and cantonments, a 910-bed station hospital, offices, five Post Exchanges, three theaters, five chapels, support buildings, storage buildings and a landfill. In all, the developed part of the base covered twenty-three blocks and had over 297 buildings at this time. Various living amenities were provided for the health, general education and war training schooling of the trainees, much like other Army camps of the time. A weekly newspaper called The Range Finder and an annual pictorial review called The Callander were published at the camp. The camp eventually got its own 40-piece military band as well.

    The Anti-Aircraft training program was moved to Ft. Bliss, Texas, in 1944 and Camp Callan was declared surplus in November 1945. Most of the buildings were purchased by the city of San Diego and sold for salvage. Today, the site contains a variety of developments including: the Torrey Pines golf course, several private businesses and research facilities, a glider port and a section of the University of California at San Diego. A few foundations remain in the area to the north of the University of California Campus.
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2012
  4. Snafu-BE

    Snafu-BE New Member

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    April 6 1945

    During April 4, 5, and 6 1945, the Cavalry Command, under control of CCA, had been active on the mission of securing the Division’s south flank. Operating south of the heavy woods in the vicinity of Suhl, a line had been established from the outskirts of Themar through Bischofred to Schleusingen which was occupied at 1810 April 6 by a Rcn Tr, A Tk Plat, and a TD Plat.

    A change in troops occurred at 1645 April 6 when 58 FA Bn of 183 FA Gp reverted to Corps control. Coincidentally with this information a Ln O from Division visited the CP with a warning order calling for an attack by CCA on the town of Hildburghausen to commence 0700 April 7. At 1900 Division Operations Memorandum No. 51 arrived under the provisions of which Cavalry Command minus 1 reconnaissance troop reverted to Division control in place. CCA, besides attacking Hildburghausen, was to maintain contact with 26th Infantry Division on the north flank while remaining elements of the division passed behind CCA to take up positions to the south and advance parallel to the direction of our advance. A meeting of commanders was held at which troops for the projected operation were established on the following basis; three forces under the commands of Lt Col Ahee, Maj Shealy, and Lt Col Brady were to conduct the operation coordinated by the CG. Composition of these forces was as follows :

    Task Force Ahee
    A/63 AI Bn
    A/42 Tk Bn
    Plat A/41 Cav
    Plat A/56 Engr
    Support Wpns Hq 42 Tk Bn
    A Btry 490 FA Bn

    Task Force Shealy
    B/42 Tk Bn
    B/63 AI Bn
    Plat A/41 Cav
    Plat A/56 Engr
    Support Wpns Hq 63 AI Bn

    Task Force Brady
    Plat 41 Cav
    C/63 AI Bn
    C/42 Tk Bn
    Plat 56 Engr Bn
    Plat 705 TD Bn
    490 FA Bn (-)

    The remainder of the artillery was directly under 183 Gp control. Plan of operations was for the three forces to operate on separate routes, TF Ahee to proceed initially to capture Themar on the right flank, TF Shealy to capture Schleusingen on the left flank, and TF Brady to use a central route of advance followed by all other elements of the command in a direct attack on Hildburghausen.
  5. bobski

    bobski Former Guest

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    my father in law snapped this one. island hopping 1944. captured jap stash of ammo. look closely. see the g.i.'s walking up the side? THAT is lot of ammo.
    [​IMG]
  6. Joschibald

    Joschibald New Member

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    WOW!
    Thank you for the Fotos.
    This is my hometown on the pictures! (Gallneukirchen)
    The field looks today still like at the pictures!

    Have you more Pics from this Village?

    Thank you for sharing!

    Wonderful!

    nice greetings from Austria
    Joschi
  7. Joschibald

    Joschibald New Member

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    Hello,
    thank you for sharing the Pics from 1945 of Linz and around. Gallneukirchen is my hometown. It´s on the three Pictures were the First Prisoner Camp was.
    Is it possible to send me or post more fotos from this time and town? Also from the nearly KZ Mauthausen?
    Thank you for your answer.
    mfg
    Josch
  8. SSMN

    SSMN Member

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    Hello Josch,
    Yes... I am sorry for not doing so before this. I will soon post more photos. I will need to go through those already posted to confirm that I am not posting the same photos twice. It has been a while since I posted these.

    Steve Stepan
    Author of "SS Walther PP/PPK Identification & Documents"
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2013
  9. JMustarde

    JMustarde New Member

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    Thanks a million for this narrative and photos. I just completed the whole thread and I am very glad to have seen these photos and comments.

    My dad, Robert G. Mustarde, was with the 11th Armored all the way from the beginning muster. He drove a tank, and for years after the war had a minor disability due to frozen feet suffered at the Battle of the Bulge.

    For some years during his retirement he was active in the 11th Armored reunion group, attending their scheduled events, and he was elected president of that group for one term of service.

    He passed away still a proud member of the 11th Armored, despite all the intervening years. One highlight was when he visited an army base and because of his former service was allowed to slip into the drivers seat of an Abrams tank. Oh what a difference, Abrams to Sherman!

    I would like to get a more original copy of the two After Action Report maps if possible, and I would be glad to pay. If you are able to point me in the right direction to get those maps I would appreciate it.

    Thanks again for your excellent post and for the fortitude and time it took to complete it.
  10. SSMN

    SSMN Member

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    The photograph attached to this post was originally attached to post #138.
    At the time of that post, the photo was very cloudy and unclear. Since that time, I published the second edition of my book on SS PP/PPKs and as a final statement in that book, I included this photo. At no small expense, I sent the photo away for enhancement. It came out so well that I've attached it here once again. Please make sure that you click on this photo three times until it fills the whole screen. The detail is wonderful.

    In addition to the Navy Luger that Sundown carried on his web belt, you can now clearly see the pintle mounted fully loaded Browning M1919 medium machine gun, an M1 carbine vertically mounted between the seats and an M3 .45 cal. "grease gun" tucked behind the jerry can and next to the medic kit. Sundown and Towhead III were well armed. All are within easy reach of the prisoner, an SS officer, according to the inscription on the back of the photo. But he appears to have no interest in escape or resistance. By the time of this photo, he had long since surrendered his SS marked PPK to John.

    It was common practice to transport prisoners on the hood or fender where they could be observed at all times. In this case, this method of transport may have been the first of many indignities to come for this young SS officer. It appears that the fight had gone out of him. He is still wearing his rucksack with another laying on the hood next to him.

    Notice the blown-out windows, the tired looking M37 three-quarter ton truck and the water point sign in the background. (Water Battalion? Point)

    I believe this photograph which clearly shows the rigors undergone by "Towhead III", the SS officer and even the civilian in the background, provides a fitting final statement to the struggle and sacrifice by US soldiers who secured freedom and peace for a world at war.

    Steve Stepan
    Author of:
    "SS Walther PP/PPK Identification & Documents"
    "Sundown at Dawn"...a novel.
    glenmoreresort@earthlink.net

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Dec 23, 2013
  11. frow blucher

    frow blucher Member

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    SSMN/Steve....i just finished the entire thread, can't believe I missed this until now. I'm thankful for the work you did archiving all your uncles memories (Sundown). Unforgettable. Thanks very much.
  12. SSMN

    SSMN Member

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    Thank you Frow,
    Please check back here. I'll be adding more photos soon.
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2013
  13. SSMN

    SSMN Member

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    A forum member, Joschibald, has requested more photos of Gallneukirchen, his hometown. So I will post more of his town and more of Linz also as requested. These first photos show the field outside of Gallneukirchen. The large field was still mostly empty in the morning. By the end of the day and in following days, the field filled with thousands of PW's.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Dec 22, 2013
  14. SSMN

    SSMN Member

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    More of Gallneukirchen. PW's milling about and a good view of Gallneukirchen across the valley before the prisoners arrived.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Feb 2, 2014
  15. SSMN

    SSMN Member

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    Beyreuth civilians. Once civilians understood that we were no threat to them, they became curious and bold.

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    Last edited: Dec 24, 2013
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