Esztergom 1944

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Sauvant
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Esztergom 1944

Post by Sauvant » Wed Jan 31, 2007 12:20 pm

Hello people,
do you know wath german division defended the hungarian town of Esztergom (Gran) in late december 1944 ?
Many thanks in advance for your help.
Kindly regards

Sauvant :D

Kamen Nevenkin
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Post by Kamen Nevenkin » Wed Jan 31, 2007 1:18 pm

It is very difficult to tell. I'm sure that even the German command wasn't sure which units were engaged. The chaos that followed the Soviet breakthrough of the Margit line was complete and only an approximate picture of the Axis side could be established. You can put here the elements of the Hung Assault Gun Battalions 16 and 24, (eventualy) part of the Hung. 23.Res.D, part of the 271.VGD, some armor of Group Pape (6. and 8.PD). The town itself was captured after a five-hour street battle.

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Post by Abel Ravasz » Wed Jan 31, 2007 3:20 pm

The 23. Hungarian Reserve Division evacuated the town through the Mária Valéria bridge at 06.30 on the 26/12/44. One hour later, German engineers then blew up the bridge between Esztergom and Párkány on the other side of the Danube - the bridge was not repaired until the 1990s.

From the Soviet side, the 18. Tank Corps were engaged in the five-hour long battle.

Divisionsgruppe Pape arrived at Tata - Tatabánya to guard the approaches through the Vértes mountain only between 24-26/12/44.

That's all I have managed to gather from a multitude of sources.

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Esztergom 1944

Post by Sauvant » Thu Feb 01, 2007 11:25 am

Hi Kamen and Abel,
thanks a lot for your very precious information. I know the soviet 18. TC had in its strenght the 110., 170. and 181. TBs and the 32. RMotB, but I don't know wath unit fought really along the railway Dorog-Esztergom and later inside the town. Have you some data about it ?
Regards

Sauvant

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Post by Abel Ravasz » Thu Feb 01, 2007 11:45 am

Sure,

24/12, the 110. TB and the 32. MRB cut all the roads leading to Budapest from the west. The 170. TB (Colonel N.P. Chunikhin) pushed forward towards Mány-Sárisáp.

25/12, the 170. TB reached Tata. The brigade then turned north, but suffered a loss of 4 T-34s and was halted at Dorog by a German Flak and some Hungarian assault guns, but managed to capture the town by 19.30, also capturing several supply trains. Also during the day, Sárisáp, Tokod and Tát was captured by other parts of the corps.

26/12, at 01.00 Esztergom-Tábor (suburb) was reached by the 170. TB and elements of the 32. MRB, and by the early morning began their attack on siege. The Hungarian 23. Reserve Division (General Géza Fehér), in town, contemplated a voluntary surrender to the Soviet, but finally did not have the guts to do so and crossed the river to Párkány through the Mária Valéria bridge. In a few minutes time, at 07.30, the bridge was demolished by German engineers. After five hours of battle, Esztergom was totally captured by the Soviet.

That's all I have from both Hungarian and Soviet sources.

Abel

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Esztergom 1944

Post by Sauvant » Fri Feb 02, 2007 12:04 pm

Hi Abel,
many many thanks.
Regards

Sauvant :D

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Post by Kamen Nevenkin » Fri Feb 02, 2007 3:08 pm

24.12.1944
- By 16:00 (Moscow time), after eight hours of intense combat, 18 Tank Corps captured Bicske; all four brigades were involved. The following losses were inflicted to the enemy:
destroyed: 39 tanks, 20 guns, 3 APCs, 21 machineguns, 188 motor vehicles, 4 aircraft, 548 soldiers and officers.
captured: 1 ammunition dump, 108 motor vehicles, 2 tanks, 4 guns
Own losses: 8 T-34S, 1 SU-85, 1 76-mm gun. Further 1 T-34 and 2 SU-85s were damaged.
Personal gratitude from Stalin. (!)

- At 18:30 110 TBr captured Tinnye, where an enemy column coming from Budapest was destroyed. 2 tanks and 4 guns were captured. Several more columns were ambushed and destroyed by the early hours of 25.12.

- Following the capture of Bicske, 181 TBr was replenished with both fuel and ammo and at 24:00 advanced to Zsámbék.

- 170 TBr was replenished too and before midnight captured Many.


25.12.1944
- At 6:00 181 TBr captured Szomor and two hours later - Dág

- At 12:00 110 TBr captured Pilisvörösvár, the mountain pass and two tunnels, thus cutting the main road leading from Budapest to the NW. During the day the brigade, using ambushes, destroyed 3 tanks, 4 guns, 50 motor vehicles and more than 50 soldiers. Another 3 tanks, 5 guns, 20 motor vehicles and 100 men were captured. On that day the brigade suffered no loses.

- At 13:00 181 TBr unsuccessfully attacked Dorog from the south and lost 3 tanks in process. After the arrival of 32 mot.Rifle Brigade and 363 HvySPArtReg the attack was resumed and by 20:00 the settlement was cleared from the enemy, who left there 6 tanks, 8 guns, 3 APCs and 150 soldiers destroyed or killed. Brigade's own losses amounted 4 tanks.

- 170 TBr (with 1438 SPArtReg), having encountered virtually no resistance, managed to capture Sárisáp and Tokod and by 17:00 the brigade's forward detachment reached Tát, where was halted by the enemy. After regrouping, at 18:00 the brigade resumed the attack and by 20:00, after intense street fighting, captured the settlement. 1 enemy gun was destroyed, more than 100 soldiers were killed and another 250 were taken prisoner. Thus the Danube was reached and the IX-SS GebK was blocked from the west.

26.12.1944

- In the early hours of 26.12. 181 TBr, with 32 MRBr, 363 HvySPArtReg and 292 Mort.Reg attacked Lager Esztergom, which was taken by 03:00.
At 8:00 the same group began the attack on the city of Esztergom, where it encountered fierce resistance. The assault was over by 13:00. The following enemy loses were claimed: 8 tanks, 2 guns, 2 APCs and more than 300 soldiers. Moreover, the corps reported the following booty:
15 tanks, 5 railway freight trains cramped with military goods, 200 motor vehicles, 60 motorcycles, 600 bicycles, 8 locomotives, 187 railway wagons, 3 stores of military equipment. 120 officers and men became POWs.

The German documents, (KTB HGr Süd, in particullar) give very brief description of the battle. Nevertheless, they make it clear that on 26.12. Esztergom was defended by the troops of LXXII AK and confirm the destruction of the Danube bridge, which took place at 07:30 (CET) on 26.12.
Abel Ravasz wrote:Divisionsgruppe Pape arrived at Tata - Tatabánya to guard the approaches through the Vértes mountain only between 24-26/12/44.
The Pape Group didn't arrive - it was rather mustered. It emerged on 22 Dec when various troops engaged in the area west Budapest were placed under single command authority - that of General-Major Pape and the his small staff, the Ia-Staffel of Panz.Div Feldherrnhalle supported in the terms of communication by half of the divisional PzNachrAbt. On the next day the Panzerkampfgruppen of 6. and 8.PzD were placed under Pape.

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Post by Abel Ravasz » Fri Feb 02, 2007 5:00 pm

Hi Kamen,

many data seem to be the same in our sources, nice post.
Kamen Nevenkin wrote:The Pape Group didn't arrive - it was rather mustered. It emerged on 22 Dec when various troops engaged in the area west Budapest were placed under single command authority - that of General-Major Pape and the his small staff, the Ia-Staffel of Panz.Div Feldherrnhalle supported in the terms of communication by half of the divisional PzNachrAbt. On the next day the Panzerkampfgruppen of 6. and 8.PzD were placed under Pape.
That is only partially true. KG Pape was formed as PzKG FHH on 23/12/45 when elements of the PzGren Div FHH were pulled out from Budapest to counter the Russian forces advancing to capture the city from the west. Generalmajor Pape assembled the Führungsstaffel, I./PzGren Reg FHH, 2 companies of the PzAbt FHH, 2.,3. batteries of PzAR FHH, a company of PzPi Bn FHH, a company of PzJg Abt FHH, and moved towards Bicske with 12 Hummel, 12 Wespe, some 10-15 Panzers and 100 SPWs. By night, the unit was ordered to pull back to Budapest but only managed to recapture Törökbálint and was separated from the city; II./PzGren Reg 93 from 13. PzD also joined the grouping. Oberstleutnant Helmut Wolff, commander of PzGren Reg FHH, took over command of the parts of PzGren Div FHH trapped in Budapest.

And this force was moved to the Vértes on 24/12 and only there did it assume command over the splintered elements of 271. VG, several Panzer Abteilungen (I./11, I./6, I./130), Alarm units, Panzers originally planned for the 8. SS and the 13. Pz and so on.


Abel

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Post by Kamen Nevenkin » Sat Feb 03, 2007 12:19 pm

Abel Ravasz wrote:Hi Kamen,
KG Pape was formed as PzKG FHH on 23/12/45 when elements of the PzGren Div FHH were pulled out from Budapest to counter the Russian forces advancing to capture the city from the west. Generalmajor Pape assembled the Führungsstaffel, I./PzGren Reg FHH, 2 companies of the PzAbt FHH, 2.,3. batteries of PzAR FHH, a company of PzPi Bn FHH, a company of PzJg Abt FHH, and moved towards Bicske with 12 Hummel, 12 Wespe, some 10-15 Panzers and 100 SPWs. By night, the unit was ordered to pull back to Budapest but only managed to recapture Törökbálint and was separated from the city; II./PzGren Reg 93 from 13. PzD also joined the grouping. Oberstleutnant Helmut Wolff, commander of PzGren Reg FHH, took over command of the parts of PzGren Div FHH trapped in Budapest.

And this force was moved to the Vértes on 24/12 and only there did it assume command over the splintered elements of 271. VG, several Panzer Abteilungen (I./11, I./6, I./130), Alarm units, Panzers originally planned for the 8. SS and the 13. Pz and so on.
Abel
There is not so much truth in that. My sources are primary archival materials, namely KTB HGr Sued and the after-action report of 18 TK, so I doubt that one could find better alternative to them.

The decision to form the Pape group was taken on 21 Dec 44 and was forced by the need to bring the leaderless Panzergruppen of 3., 6. and 8.PzD under a single command authority. This is what KTB HGr Sued says on the subject:

KTB HGr Süd, 21.12.1944, s. 8

Hinzu komen [kommen] die geringe Wendigkeit und Unentschlossenheit einzelner außerhalb des gewohnten Divisionsverbandes auf sich allein gestellter Führer und infolge Wegfalls der an die Ipolyssag-Front abgezogenen Pz.Div.Stäbe Schwierigkeiten im Führungsapparat. Die H.Gr. sah sich daher veranlaßt, Kdr. und Stab der Pz.Gren.Div. Feldherrnhalle aus dem Brückenkopf Budapest herauszuziehen und zur einheitlicher Führung der Panzer-Kräfte einzusetzen.


KTB HGr Süd, 21.12.1944, s. 15 (19:35 phone conversation between von Grolman and Gaedcke)

Die Pz.Gruppen haben keine ausreichenden Nachrichtenmittel. Daher sei oftmals keine einheitliche Führung gewährleistet. Das habe der heutige Tag gezeigt. Die Armeegruppe bitte daher, eine Führung für die Pz.-Gruppen aus den Kdren. und dem Stab der Pz.Gren.Div. “Feldherrnhalle” zu bilden, während die im Brückenkopf eingesetzten Teile der Pz.Gren.Div. “Feldherrnhalle” der 13.Pz.Div. unterstellt werden sollen.

On 22 Dec 1944 the leaderless troops of PzD “Feldherrnhalle” were subordinated to 13.PzD:

KTB HGr Süd, 22.12.1944, s. 8

Unterstellungen und Gefechtsstände:

…………….
13.Pz.Div.: Pz.Gren.Div. “Feldherrnhalle” unter Bildung der Div.Gruppe Schmidthuber der 13.Pz.Div. unterstellt.


On the same day a decision was taken to form a Panzergruppe using the armor of “Feldherrnhalle”, with the task to reinforce the 8.SS-KD:

KTB HGr Süd, 22.12.1944, s. 15 (18:45 phone conversation between Grolman - Gaedke)

Die 8.SS-K.D. solle, sofern ihre Herauslösung aus dem Brückenkopf Budapest genehmigt werde, mit Unterstützung von Panzern and SPW aus dem Raum nördlich Tordas zum Angriff antreten…


On 23 Dec 1944 the Panzergruppen of 6. and 8.PzD finally were placed under Pape (in the sector of III PzK) while the Panzergruppe of the “Feldherrnhalle” division was ordered to join the Kesseoe group (IX-SS GebK). (Panzergruppe of 3.PzD and Panz.Abt I./6 were never subordinated to Pape):

KTB HGr Süd, 23.12.1944, s. 6

Unterstellungen und Gefechtsstände:

…………….
6. und 8.Pz.Div.: gep. Gruppen der K. Gr. Pape (Div. Stab der Pz.Gren.Div. Feldherrnhalle) unterstellt.

………………

Pz.Gren.Div. Feldherrnhalle/ gep. Gruppe: Gruppe Kesseoe unterstellt.


On the same day the Pz-Gruppen of the Pape group were deployed as follows:

KTB HGr Süd, 23.12.1944, s. 9

Die gep. Gruppen, jetzt unter dem Befehel des Kdrs. der Pz.Gren.Div. Feldherrnhalle, Gen.Major Pape, stehen mit 25 Pz. 5 km süd südostw. Csakvar, mit 18 Panzern in Acsa und mit 25 Panzern in Tatajd [?].


By midnight the IX-SS GebK received the following instruction:

KTB Tagesmeldung, 23.12.1944

Verhinderung eines Feindvorstosses nach Nordosten und Osten durch bewegliche Kampfführung der gep. Gruppe Pz.Gren.Div. “Feldherrnhalle” im Raum Bia.


On 24 Dec 1944 the Panzergruppe of the “Feldherrnhalle” division was finally engaged in combat on the western bank of the Danube:

KTB HGr Süd, 24.12.1944, s. 9

Bei IX.SS-Geb.A.K. drang von zahlreichen Pz. Unterstützter Feind aus Etyek vorstoßend, in Bia und Budakeszi ein u. erreichte mit vordersten Teilen die Wegegabel 5 km nord-ostw. Budakeszi. Ein Gegenangriff der gep. Gruppe Pz.Gren.Div. Feldherrnhalle und von Teilen der A.A. 8.SS-K.D. wurde angesetzt.


It failed to check the Soviet advance towards Buda and was forced to fall back. On the next day the group found itself trapped in Budapest where it was annihilated with the reminder of the “Feldherrnhalle” division.

The strength of the Panzergruppe/Div.“Feldherrnhalle” during the engagement on 24 Dec is not known, but one thing is certain - it had no Wespe SP guns, simply because neither “Feldherrnhalle” nor 13.PD had any of them. II./93 was never a part of the Panzergruppe - on 23 Dec 1944 it was subordinated to LXXII Army Corps

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Post by Abel Ravasz » Sun Feb 04, 2007 5:37 pm

Hi Kamen,

I have always respected the high quality of your posts, including your last one. Still, I don't agree in some points.

Related to Gr. Pape, I relied on secondary sources, Norbert Számvéber's Erőd a Dunán and Krisztián Ungváry's Budapest Ostroma. Both are well researched monographies relying on a high number of original documents, as well as interviews etc.

(1) According to Ungváry, Pape left Budapest on the 23/12. This is not in conflict with your KTB Süd documents 21/12 s8, 21/12 s15 as they never mention anything about Pape actually taking command at the sector on 21/12.

(2) FHH was indeed subordinated to Schmidhuber, but it was not leaderless - its leader was Obstl Wolff. This is confirmed by "A német 13. páncéloshadosztály és a "Feldherrnhalle" páncélgránátos-hadosztály heti állományjelentése a IX. SS-hegyihadtest-parancsnokságnak, 1945. január 7. .", an original document available at Budapest HL (13. Pz Div, folios 9 to 10) quoting

Feldherrnhalle pcgr-ho. (pk.: Pape vezérőrnagy, Ia: Schöneich vk. alez., a hop. megbízottja: Wolf alez.)

(my translation: FHH PzGren Div (comm. GenM Pape, Ia Obstl i.G. Schöneich, deputy of the comm.: Obstl Wolf).

This is a translated version of an original FHH radiotelegram. On the other hand, Ungváry's personal correspondence with Wolff also confims his command.

(3) The fighting strength of PzKG FHH on 24/12/44 is Ungváry's fiction, so most probably you are right about no Wespen in the unit.

(4) The II./93 is my mistake - it was indeed at LXXII. AK (originally detached to the 2. Hu Pz Div).

(5) According to Számvéber, Pape left the city together with bulk of the staff, elements of the PzGren Reg FHH, one PzPi and one PzJg company for Velence (the area of Gr Kesseő) on 23/12 to act as a "Sperrverband". So according to him on 23/12 staff FHH was with PzKG FHH.

(6) This grouping was ordered back to BP by night on the same day but never got further than Törökbálint, and remained outside of the Kessel. Some elements, which were also joined by a battalion from 13. Pz Div, did break through to the Kessel to the north of this sector. This combat is briefly described in Ungváry.

I do know that original documents are by far the "strongest" source but what you have written is in total conflict with what i've so far met in contemporary hungarian literature.

Best regards,

Ábel

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Post by Kamen Nevenkin » Mon Feb 05, 2007 2:15 pm

(1) According to Ungváry, Pape left Budapest on the 23/12. This is not in conflict with your KTB Süd documents 21/12 s8, 21/12 s15 as they never mention anything about Pape actually taking command at the sector on 21/12.
I hope that the KTB HGr Sued quoted in my previous post, makes it clear that on 23 Dec Pape was already in charge of the Pz-Kampfgruppen of 6. and 8.PD. Meanwhile, I found the following in the history of the "Feldherrnhalle" division:

As the commander of the I./Pz.Art.Reg. Feldherrnhalle, Hauptmann Erich Klein recounts, on 21st December, several days before the siege was consolidated, Generalmajor Pape had appeared in person in the Battalion's Command Post and, using the red combat telephone, had ordered that the Divisional Staff prepare to march to the Balaton where it should take charge of a Kampfgruppe. In this way neither the General, nor his staff would be with the Division during the fateful days that were drawing near
2) FHH was indeed subordinated to Schmidhuber, but it was not leaderless - its leader was Obstl Wolff. This is confirmed by "A német 13. páncéloshadosztály és a "Feldherrnhalle" páncélgránátos-hadosztály heti állományjelentése a IX. SS-hegyihadtest-parancsnokságnak, 1945. január 7. .", an original document available at Budapest HL (13. Pz Div, folios 9 to 10) quoting

Feldherrnhalle pcgr-ho. (pk.: Pape vezérőrnagy, Ia: Schöneich vk. alez., a hop. megbízottja: Wolf alez.)

(my translation: FHH PzGren Div (comm. GenM Pape, Ia Obstl i.G. Schöneich, deputy of the comm.: Obstl Wolf).

This is a translated version of an original FHH radiotelegram. On the other hand, Ungváry's personal correspondence with Wolff also confims his command.
I know about Wolf. I called the division "leaderless" just to explain why it was subordinated to 13.PD. Anyway, point taken.

(5) According to Számvéber, Pape left the city together with bulk of the staff, elements of the PzGren Reg FHH, one PzPi and one PzJg company for Velence (the area of Gr Kesseő) on 23/12 to act as a "Sperrverband". So according to him on 23/12 staff FHH was with PzKG FHH.

(6) This grouping was ordered back to BP by night on the same day but never got further than Törökbálint, and remained outside of the Kessel. Some elements, which were also joined by a battalion from 13. Pz Div, did break through to the Kessel to the north of this sector. This combat is briefly described in Ungváry.
Wrong. Stab Pape and Pz-Kampfgruppe Feldherrnhalle were two different things and were created for different purposes. Számvéber usually is reliable, but definitely he is not a "holy cow" that cannot be touched upon.
A document exists in the files of GenInspPzTr, namely RH 10/139, that says which units of the Feldherrnhalle division were entrapped in the cauldron and which were left outside. The report in question, dated 29.1.45, makes it clear:

outside:

- DivKdo/PzD "F"
- II./Pz.Gren.Reg. "F"
- 10. (s.Inf.Gesch.) and 11.(Pi)/ Pz.Gren.Reg. "F"
- 3.(gep)/PzPiBtl "F"
- part of Pz.Na.Abt "F" (30% of 1.Kp and 50% of 2.Kp)
- part of Nach.Truppen "F", part of San.Truppen "F"

Of these:
- the Div.Kdo and the Pz.Na.Abt were employed as Stab Pape;
- II./Pz.Gren.Reg. and the (10.) Infantry Gun company were shipped from Danzig to Komarno on 2 Jan 1945. By 8 January these units were assembled in the vicinity of Esztergom where they subordinated to Kampfgruppe "Philipp";
- Nach.Truppen "F", part of San.Truppen "F" were purposely withdrawn to
the rear before the closing of the ring
- 3.(gep)/PzPiBtl "F" was eventually detached from its parent division already before the Soviet offensive - according to the KTB HGr Sued on 16 Dec it was ordered to assign to Gruppe “Rintelen” (357.Inf.Div.)

BTW, I have neglected the following entry in the KTB HGr Sued:

(27 Dec 1944) The armored group of Panzer-Division “Feldherrnhalle”, Group “Kesseoe” and part of 271.Volksgrenadier Division are subordinated to 8.SS-Cavalry Division “Floryan Geyer”

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Post by Kamen Nevenkin » Mon Feb 05, 2007 3:33 pm

An update on my previous post:

(from the history of the Feldherrnhalle division)

Even before the siege was completely closed, the command had decided to group together the remnants of the tank regiments from the both divisions and self-propelled Hummel cannon from their artillery regiments into a rapid intervention force which was highly mobile and could call on significant firepower. Thus on the night of 23rd-24th December, these elements had abandoned the sectors which were defended by their respective divisions and, under the denomination of Panzergruppe Feldherrnhalle, crossed the Danube making their way to the south-east [south-west] of the city, where the principal assault forces of the enemy were concentrated at that time. While their comrades celebrated Christmas Eve 1944 in the austerity of their trnches to the east of the Danube, the soldiers of the Panzergruppe would be enveloped in an inferno to the west of this river. Thanks to the notes of the commander of the Hummel battalion of the Panzer Division Feldherrnhalle, were [sic] are able to reconstruct in some detail that tragic Christmas Eve.
During the course of its progression from the southern suburbs of Buda, the Panzergruppe reached Törökbálint, where it came across Russian positions which it destroyed without too much difficulty. During the afternoon, the primary encounters occured in the hills to the north of Budaörs. Here the entry into action of the Feldherrnhalle armored units allowed them to confront a large enemy attack. After a few hours, the Russians retreated, leaving on the battlefield a score of tanks and almost a thousend men. Thanks to this local success, the Germans were able to organise the defence of the sectoras they wished.
Very soon, the solidity of the new positions would be tested. During Christmas Eve, the Russians again went on to a general attack; the German trenches were once again the scene of terrible hand-to-hand fighting. In spite of all this, the enemy was forced to retrace his steps without having achieved his goal. Nevertheless, the feeling of victory did not last long, for on Christmas morning, the Soviet artillery concentrated its attack on the tenacious soldiers of the Panzergruppe; those who had once thought of stopping the completion of the siege of Budapest with their few weapons now witnessed the enormous superiority of the Red Army reaffirming the unreality of their fleeting hopes.
The action unleashed by the Soviet artillery on that day had not only affected the sector defended by the Feldherrnhalle Panzergruppe, but had extended, with greater or lesser intensity, to the whole area under siege.

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Post by Abel Ravasz » Mon Feb 05, 2007 3:34 pm

Hi Kamen,

I take it that Pape left Budapest on 21/12, so both Ungváry and Számvéber missed the point here.

The document I quoted above ("A német 13. páncéloshadosztály és a "Feldherrnhalle" páncélgránátos-hadosztály heti állományjelentése a IX. SS-hegyihadtest-parancsnokságnak, 1945. január 7. ") also contains a report on the units of FHH outside of the kessel, but that list is different in several cases

"leadva: a ho-pkság. a vezetési osztaggal
pcgr-e./I.
a pco. két százada
a tü.e./I. 2. és 3. üt-e
az 1. pcgr-e. 2. és 3. szd-a"

detached: staff with Führungsstaffel (sorry i don't know the english equivalent)
- I./PzGren Reg
- 2 companies of the PzAbt
- 2. and 3./I./Art Reg
- 2.,3./PzGren Reg

Can you explain this? Bear in mind this is an official document from HL Budapest. Anyways, the same detached units are repeated at the report from 14/1/45.

You say II./PzGren Reg FHH was outside of the Kessel... On 7/1/45, II./PzGren Reg is reported with 280 men at Budapest, 14/1/45 down to 205 men of course still at Budapest. Both reports from 13. Pz Div folder, HL.

Ungváry (if he is still of any relevance) reports that the supply elements were pulled from Budapest 24/12 (eyewitness reports confirm them at Hüvösvölgy -suburb- on the same day).
(27 Dec 1944) The armored group of Panzer-Division “Feldherrnhalle”, Group “Kesseoe” and part of 271.Volksgrenadier Division are subordinated to 8.SS-Cavalry Division “Floryan Geyer”
That's as puzzling as ever to me. AFAIK Gr. Kesseő was not trapped at Budapest - at least its none of its sub-components were (1. Flak Brig, 8. Art Abt, 15. Art Abt, 88. Art Abt, 152. Wer Abt, 153. Wer Abt, VIII. Flak Abt, 105. Flak Abt, 204. Flak Abt -all Hungarian-, Solt Reg, 8. SS Pol Reg, 23. Res Div). The grouping's commander called it quits on 19/12 (de facto deserted) and in turn the sector was subordinated to the 271. VG but the group never ended up in Budapest. So why the command transfer on the 27/12???

Thanks for your patience :D

Ábel

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Post by Abel Ravasz » Mon Feb 05, 2007 3:54 pm

Just noticed your last post, this clears up a lot of mess!

I have to apologize myself to both you and Mr. Ungváry, as I have misinterpreted his words. Here is a verbatim translation of the combat at Törökbálint from his book:
Also during that night (23/12), the armoured group of the FHH (Panzer Division Feldherrnhalle) was sent to Buda, which by the next morning reached Törökbálint and recaptured it from the Soviet troops. The lack of tanks was doctored with the Hummel self-propelled guns of the artillery regiment, these albeit only had a weak armor from the frontside. Another part of the grouping (2 battalions, 1 artillery battalion), which was also joined by a battalion from the 13. Pz Div, attacked towards the north and managed to pass through the Soviet lines.
Because of this "pass through the Soviet lines" part I always thought that this engagement happened after the assignment to Velence and towards Budapest - but indeed this attack was in W direction out of Budapest. So how come "another part of the grouping" passed through the Soviet lines (in original the term "managed to go through" is used), including a bn of the 13. Pz Div? AFAIK the 13. Pz Div was missing its 93/II. and its F-E Bn. I'm beginning to lose it totally.

Sorry for the confusion! :oops:

Ábel

Sauvant
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Esztergom 1944

Post by Sauvant » Tue Feb 06, 2007 11:16 am

Kamen, Abel,
after 3 days of absence I found an huge number of information :shock: . Many many thanks! I read whit great interest your posts and particularly your discussion about the KG Pape. I declare beforehand that my sources about this battle are very little, but according to Fieldmarshall Friessner's "Verrantene Siege", the 3., 6. and 8. PDs (57. PK) were transferred on 18.12.1944 through the Komaron bridge on the northern bank of the Danube and till beginning of January they fought in the Ipolseg area (at E of Ipel river) and follow on the Gran.
Are perhaps they only Kampfgruppen?
Regards

Sauvant :D

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