Unit History Reviews

Book discussion and reviews related to the German military.

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Richard Hargreaves
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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by Richard Hargreaves » Thu Apr 23, 2009 1:49 pm

Well, there's a gap for a few divisions, then two volumes of 13 Pz (don't buy the early 70s one, but the more recent Magdeburger Division volume which is far, far superior), 14 Pz, 16 Pz, 19 Pz, 20 Pz, 21 Pz, 23 Pz.

The one I really want to complete is 3 SS Pz. I can dream. :D
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Jason Long
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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by Jason Long » Thu Apr 23, 2009 9:29 pm

Yeah, I've got 13-14, 18-25 on hand. Don't forget about Stoves' history of 22nd and 25th! Can't find a copy of 10th's history and don't have 11th because PzR. 15's history is much better. Never bothered with 16th's as it's pretty much a piece of shite. Be nice if somebody would do 2nd and 9th's histories. They both fought in the West so you'd think that there would be more interest in them. I know what you mean about TK, but I've been working it for a couple of years and only need IVb and V to finish it off.
Now you just need to branch out to the Panzer regiments and then the Motorized/Panzer Divisions. :evil: I've got 3, 10, 16, parts of 20, 25 and 29, one part of 36 and FHH. I really, really wish somebody would do 15, 18, and 90.

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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by Marc Rikmenspoel » Mon May 25, 2009 10:20 am

I'm pleased that the Rebentisch book doesn't skimp on the late war fighting. Sure, it has more coverage of the 1942 campaigns, but the last year of the war gets decent detail.

I eventually need to get my own copies of Vopersal's Va and Vb (or Va, Vb, and VI in the re-edited format). As I've mentioned before, I borrowed those two from friends years ago, but I need them for myself. However, at the moment I can't justify their massive cost, even if I would then have access to their massive detail. If he could find so much on the last months of the war, why can't other divisional historians?

From my collection, some books that DO provide good late war coverage include Guderian's 116. PD history, the Vincx/Schotanius volume on Brigade/Division Nederland, and Neumann's volume on the 4. PD 1943-45. Puntigam's Vom Plattensee bis zur Mur is almost a campaign history, while focusing on 16. SS-PGD RFSS in Hungary from February 1945 to the end of the war.

Vincx and Schotanius obviously had access to the divisional KTB, as they include orders of the day and such all through the spring of 1945. I think we have discussed on this site before how the last staff officers of the 17. SS-PGD GvB buried the KTB, instead of destroying it. Years later it was dug up and used to create the enormously detailed 3-volume divisional history (which I don't own), and the companion volume of items appended to the KTB (which I had a look through via a borrowed copy, years ago). I realize most authors don't have access to their unit's KTB, but Hubert Meyer and Lehmann/Tiemann were able to get decent late war coverage without one, and Tieke made the late war one of his specialties. Could it be that the Waffen-SS vets were more determined to tell as much of their unit's history as possible, or am I just more familiar with their historiography?

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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by Richard Hargreaves » Fri Oct 09, 2009 4:49 am

Is it really five months since we last visited this thread? Admittedly, my divisional history buying has rather slowed down as I have most of the ones I would like, excluding the ones which are obscenely expensive. :(

And so to a brand new history: Veit Scherzer, 46 Infanterie Division: Krim-Kaukasus-Kubanbrückenkopf-Isjum-Jassy (circa 60 Euros)

A few things you need to know. It's Scherzer. That's it really. :D Just as Kurowski is a name which says "avoid", Scherzer is a name which says "must buy" (you won't find me mentioning the two in the same breath again... :D )

It is everything a divisional history should be. Good narrative, good maps, and above all the voice of the men coming through loud and clear. Which they do, for the author has packed the book with diaries, letters and first-hand accounts over 650 pages. Photo reproduction isn't very good because of the quality of paper chosen, but for me words are far more important than images.

Ranks among the very best unit histories out there. With 76 ID, probably the best infantry unit history.

The only one of the Scherzer histories I don't have is 329. I think I'll be investing in due course. :[]
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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by Richard Hargreaves » Sun Oct 11, 2009 10:31 am

Alois Beck, bis Stalingrad (297 Infanterie Division)

Not a typical unit history, rather more like Kameraden unterm Edelweiss: Kriegsgeschichte der 2. Kompanie Gebirgsjägerregiment 100, an anthology of first-hand accounts from members of the division, mainly NCOs and officers, a few Landsers, edited by the division's Catholic priest, Alois Beck. These first-hand accounts make it a very useful source, but also make it different from the usual histories is that it contains a few colour images, some photographs, some paintings.

Not an easy book to find; copies sporadically pop up on Bookfinder and on eBay; there's currently one going for over 100 Euros on Amazon. :shock: It's not worth that much. I was lucky in finding a copy for 40 Euros, which is a far more reasonable price. :[]
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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by Alex Dekker » Sun Oct 11, 2009 11:56 am

Infanterie-Regiment 497 by O.L. Engelbrecht, very hard to find, since it was privately published. This A4 booklet contains a lot of first hand information about the regiment 497 of the 267. I.D. A diary written during and shortly after the campain against France, a diary of the first few weeks of Operation Barbarossa, a few maps (one of them is the route of the 267. I.D. 1941 - 1942, the others point out where fallen soldiers of the regiment were buried.) and, last but not least, a list of men who received the Iron Cross in Januari 1943. The whole book is a nice adition to Rolf Hinze, Bug Beresina Moskwa. I bought my copy years ago at ebay, for €30,-. First and the last time I saw this great book.
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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by sniper1shot » Sun Oct 11, 2009 3:29 pm

Was this one in English or are all of these in German text??
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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by Richard Hargreaves » Mon Oct 12, 2009 12:24 am

All in German. :[]
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drGreen
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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by drGreen » Tue Oct 27, 2009 5:25 am

Ow joy,
My wife bought 'Standartenführer Johanes Mühlenkamp - Kommandeur des SS-Panzerregiments 5 "Wiking" - Teil 1' for my birthday :[]

8)

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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by Jan-Hendrik » Tue Oct 27, 2009 5:46 am

My newest one:

Erinnerung an die Tiger-Abteilung 503: Die schwere Panzerabteilung 503 an den Brennpunkten der Front in Ost und West

by Rubbel/ von Rosen/ Lochmann/ Sichel

Published by Felchsig 2009

On 688 pages in XXL format you find nearly everything you might desire to see in an unit history: plenty of personal reports, both wartime and postwar plus exerpts from personal diaries. Hundreds of pictures, maps, documents. Even an annex with portrait pictures of every Soldier they found a picure of!

Absolutly outstanding Volume!

Amazon

:[]

Jan-Hendrik

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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by drGreen » Thu Dec 10, 2009 12:31 am

drGreen wrote:Ow joy,
My wife bought 'Standartenführer Johanes Mühlenkamp - Kommandeur des SS-Panzerregiments 5 "Wiking" - Teil 1' for my birthday :[]

8)
I've finished reading the book and it's a true masterpiece, I have ordered part 2 rightaway 8)

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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by Helmut » Fri Dec 18, 2009 5:54 pm

Servus,

I am just finishing up Reicicke's 5 JAEGER DIVISION. A lot of information an first person accounts early in the war until spring '44. From April '44 until the end is covered in 40 pages. A little briefer than I would have liked but still a good book. No pictures though.

Regards,

Helmut

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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by Harry64 » Sat Jan 02, 2010 12:38 pm

As the history of the 16. Infanterie-Division (mot) later "Windhund-Division" is not longer available, only in determined libraries.
Perhaps it can help someone: he can order the history as a CD in pdf-format with over 2000 sides on the "Windhund" internet site. Price is 19 Euro plus shipping cost for outside Germany.

http://www.windhunddivision.de/

If someone has interest on a good biografie of a former member of this Division, have a look at here:

http://www.germania-verlag.de/index.html

Harry

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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by Richard Hargreaves » Wed Jan 06, 2010 3:37 am

Gottlob Bidermann, und litt an meiner Seite [132 ID], 1995 edition

English readers will probably know Bidermann from his excellent memoir In Deadly Combat. It's based on the original edition of und litt an meiner Seite which was revised in the mid-90s. From what I can tell, this second edition is an edited version of his memoir, mixed with quite a few extracts from the division's official papers, especially surrounding the fighting in the Crimea. On top of that there are numerous images provided by former 132 ID comrades and a comprehensive section on various personalities/award winners.

A couple of things which will surprise you: one is it's oversize, the other that it's in colour and B&W. It's very nicely produced (text over two columns - take note Helion...) and copies go for as little as £25. Well worth it. :[]
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Re: Unit History Reviews

Post by drGreen » Fri Jan 08, 2010 12:45 pm

drGreen wrote:
drGreen wrote:Ow joy,
My wife bought 'Standartenführer Johanes Mühlenkamp - Kommandeur des SS-Panzerregiments 5 "Wiking" - Teil 1' for my birthday :[]

8)
I've finished reading the book and it's a true masterpiece, I have ordered part 2 rightaway 8)
Finished reading vol.2 and I must say it's great reading these 2 books. I have started reading Klapdor's book "Mit dem Panzerregiment 5 im Osten" and I hope it's just as easy to read as Paul Oosterling's books.

:[]

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