Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

German campaigns and battles 1919-1945.

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Domen123
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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Domen123 » Wed Jan 07, 2009 3:15 pm

10 ID:
KIA: officers: 7, NCO and ordinary soldiers: 66 (sum is 73)
WIA: officers: 12, NCO and ordinary soldiers: 199 (sum is 211)
10. ID - 352 KIA, 76 MIA, 956 WIA [total - 1384]

The same figures are also provided by:

"Die Geschichte der 10. Infanterie-Division"

[There are also other figures which say about 352 KIA, 2 MIA, 956 WIA, total - 1310]
According to Alex Buchner, Der Polenfeldzug 1939. Leoni am Starnberger See: Druffel, 1989,

During the battle of Bzura this division lost 1535 soldiers KIA / MIA / WIA, this includes casualties of 85. Infanterie-Regiment - 394 soldiers - 1/4 of division's casualties (including 124 KIA, 5 MIA, 265 WIA).

1535 KIA/MIA/WIA - It is even more than the figure given by "Die Geschichte der 10. Infanterie-Division", and by the other one (the one which gives number of MIA for the whole division as only 2 - fewer than 85. Infanterie-Regiment alone had got :roll: ), not saying about your (and - according to you - also Elble's) funny statement...

So we have four different numbers of casualties for this division, which are - more over - reffering to different periods (the last one is allegedly reffering to the whole campaign):

1. - 1535 KIA/MIA/WIA (including Infanterie-Regiment 85. only - 394 KIA/MIA/WIA - 124 KIA, 5 MIA, 265 WIA)
2. - 1384 KIA/MIA/WIA (352 KIA, 76 MIA, 956 WIA)
3. - 1310 KIA/MIA/WIA (352 KIA, 2 MIA, 956 WIA)
4. - 284 KIA/WIA (73 KIA, 211 WIA) - allegedly during the whole campaign

:roll:

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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Michate » Thu Jan 08, 2009 2:28 pm

Either this book or you falsified Elble's statement. But I think it is you, not this book, unless you give proofs for your statements.
I have scanned the relevant pages of the book and attached the scans to this message.

Source is Rolf Elble: "Die Schlacht an der Bzura im September 1939 aus deutscher und polnischer Sicht" (=Einzelschriften zur militärischen Geschichte des Zweiten Weltkrieges 15), Freiburg/Br., Rombach, 1975, ISBN 3-7930-0174-1, pages 136-139 and 198-201.

Prize question: where on these pages can the statement from your source be found?

If someone has falsified Elble's statement, it is not me.
Elble_p_136_137.gif
source: Rolf Elble, Schlacht an der Bzura, page 136-137
Elble_p_136_137.gif (111.37 KiB) Viewed 4781 times
Elble_p_138_139.gif
source: Rolf Elble, Schlacht an der Bzura, page 138-139
Elble_p_138_139.gif (97.81 KiB) Viewed 4780 times
Elble_p_198_199.gif
source: Rolf Elble, Schlacht an der Bzura, page 198-199
Elble_p_198_199.gif (83.7 KiB) Viewed 4775 times
Elble_p_200_201.gif
source: Rolf Elble, Schlacht an der Bzura, page 200-201
Elble_p_200_201.gif (82.12 KiB) Viewed 4774 times

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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Domen123 » Sun Jul 12, 2009 2:30 pm

Do you realize that Rolf Elble provides some "Eintragung" :!: written on 19.09.1939 as a source for information about casualties of 10. and 24. Infantry Divisions - which clearly means that these are not causualties until the end of the campaign (as the campaign ended on 06.10.1939 and even the battles of Bzura and Puszcza Kampinoska ended on 24.09.1939) and which clearly means that almost certainly these are only casualties suffered during that one day - so on 19.09.1939 (considering that it is only Eintragung, that all other sources provide much higher casualties of these two divisions and considering how fierce fightings these divisions were involved in during the whole campaign). Casualties for any operations are not being provided in any "Eintragungs", especially written in the middle of these operations.

Eintragung = note, minor note, and written on 19.09.1939 - not even casualty report :!:

Also do you realize that when it comes to casualties of 30. Infantry Division, Rolf Elble writes:

"Da entsprechende Angaben fur die 30. Inf. Div. dem vorhandenen Archiv-material nicht zu entnehmen waren, wurde hierfur das Erinnerungsbuch der Division herangezogen: Breithaupt, S. 62."

And I checked Hans Breithaupt - "Die Geschichte der 30. Infanteriedivision 1939-1945" - page 62 - and he also does not provide any primary source for these numbers. :[] So these numbers are not reliable if there is no any primary source.

Another thing is that Hans Breithaupt writes in explanations to his casualty figures of 30. Inf.Div. in Poland:

"In der Verlustberechnung fur Polen ist die Aufkl.Abt.30 nicht erfasst."

While surprisingly it seems that Aufkl.Abt.30 could be completely destroyed in Poland - just read this :[] :

If not completely destroyed, then at least it "disappeared" somewhere:

Image

And if it comes to casualties of 30. Inf.Div., Lexikon der Wehrmacht says that only in period 13.09.1939 - 20.09.1939 (so yet after the greatest beating at the Bzura) just one battalion from Infanterie-Regiment 26. lost 39 KIA, 87 MIA and 58 WIA - while neither Elble nor Breithaupt provide any number of MIA for 30. Inf.Div. Only Bethell writes that more than 500 soldiers from this division were recognized as MIA after the end of the Polish Campaign - and no of them ever returned.

And if you had ever carefuly studied the whole battle road of these two divisions - 10. and 24. - in Poland in 1939, you would have known that both of them were involved in a lot of very fierce combats. The same refers to Mr. Rolf Elble.

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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Domen123 » Sun Jul 12, 2009 3:11 pm

Domen123 wrote:(considering that it is only Eintragung, that all other sources provide much higher casualties of these two divisions [...]
And these "all other sources" are "Die Geschichte der 10. Infanteriedivision", "Die Geschichte der 24. Infanteriedivision", "Der Polenfeldzug 1939" by Alex Buchner and WW2 Day by Day. Casualty datas from "Die Geschichte der 10. Infanterie-division" and "Die Geschichte der 24. Infanteriedivision" are basing mainly on Tagebuchauszüge, Kriegstagebücher, Gefechtsbericht, Erlebnisberichten, Notizen, Orig. Karten, Veröffentlichungen, Tagesbefehle - all of which and each of them are far more reliable primary sources than one, single, poor "Eintragung" written on 19.09.1939 by the way. :roll:

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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Jan-Hendrik » Sun Jul 12, 2009 11:56 pm

all of which and each of them are far more reliable primary sources than one,

Not all. Domi, as those books are no primary sources at all, but secondary ones...but whom do I try to explain the basics of historical work? :roll:

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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Domen123 » Mon Jul 13, 2009 1:38 am

Domen123 wrote:While surprisingly it seems that Aufkl.Abt.30 could be completely destroyed in Poland - just read this :

If not completely destroyed, then at least it "disappeared" somewhere
It was dissolved on 25.09.1939 according to Tessin - so yet destroyed. Remnants of 1. and 2. Schwadron were used to form (1.) or reinforce (2.) other units.
Jan-Hendrik wrote:as those books are no primary sources at all, but secondary ones
And Elble's book is a primary source? Of course no, it is as secondary as those books or even more.

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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Jan-Hendrik » Mon Jul 13, 2009 1:53 am

And Elble's book is a primary source?
Who did claim so? The only one claiming that books are "Primary sources" is you :D
it was dissolved on 25.09.1939 according to Tessin - so yet destroyed. Remnants of 1. and 2. Schwadron were used to form (1.) or reinforce (2.) other units.
Another claim....maybe you have noticed that not only AA 30 was disbanded, but the AA's of 3.,7.,8., 14..17., 21. and 28.ID...all ^"destroyed" according to your logic?? Most of the Divisions of 1.Welle even lost their FEB...all destroyed....no, only used to for newly raised formations..

Domi, you have still more than enogh to learn, especially when it comes to formation histoy :!:

:[]

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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Michate » Mon Jul 13, 2009 9:24 am

Elble's book clearly is based on a good number of relevant primary and secondary sources. Which does not mean it may not include errors.
And these "all other sources" are "Die Geschichte der 10. Infanteriedivision", "Die Geschichte der 24. Infanteriedivision", "Der Polenfeldzug 1939" by Alex Buchner and WW2 Day by Day. Casualty datas from "Die Geschichte der 10. Infanterie-division" and "Die Geschichte der 24. Infanteriedivision" are basing mainly on Tagebuchauszüge, Kriegstagebücher, Gefechtsbericht, Erlebnisberichten, Notizen, Orig. Karten, Veröffentlichungen, Tagesbefehle - all of which and each of them are far more reliable primary sources than one, single, poor "Eintragung" written on 19.09.1939 by the way.
The problem with at least some of those sources i(I have seen the books on 30 ID by Breithaupt and the book on 10 ID), that they do not clearly reference their sources. Elble however always does, which enables to verify or falsify.

BTW, Breithaupt mentions that a lot of scattered troops had evaded cpativity, that the division participated in counterattacks and mopping up on 13 September and the following days, that IR 46, III/IR 6, the engineers and the artillery continued in the attack after the Bzura battle, and that overall losses in 30 ID's infantry + recon battalion at the time of their transfer off Poland were roughly 1,800 men.

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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Domen123 » Wed Jul 15, 2009 4:08 am

Breithaupt mentions that a lot of scattered troops had evaded cpativity
Yes, and he must be right. Certainly some scattered soldiers from destroyed battalions (for example III./I.R.26, vast majority of I./I.R.26, III./I.R.46, parts of II./I.R.46 or elements of I.R.6 and Pi.Btl.30 encircled in the forest north-west of Gieczno and destroyed on 11 IX and 12 IX resulting in 350 POWs and corpses) managed to evade captivity and were blundering around behind enemy lines for few days, until the Polish offensive was stopped and German counterattack started.

But in total during the battle of Bzura Poles captured several thousands of German soldiers - mostly from 30. Infanterie-Division. Major part of these POWs was of course recaptured by Germans yet after several days from being captured. But over 3,000 of them were transported by Poles to the POW camp near Iłów. They were released from this POW camp during the very ending stages of the battle and they were directed towards Sanniki, were German soldiers mistakenly fired at them.

"Od Borów Tucholskich do Kampinosu" by Stanisław Sławiński also claims that these released German POWs were mistakenly bombed by Luftwaffe several times.
and that overall losses in 30 ID's infantry + recon battalion at the time of their transfer off Poland were roughly 1,800 men.
Remember that this number most probably includes only KIA, MIA and possibly / maybe also seriously WIA who were released from service in the division. That's because slightly wounded were not being released from service in the division and I suppose that some part of them already managed to return to their units.

But anyway - here once again Breithaupt does not clearly reference his sources, so I wouldn't boundlessly believe in credibility of this number.

And for example Bethell writes that there were 500 MIA from 30. Infanterie-Division (he claims that Poles murdered them after they were captured), other sources say about between 117 and 617 missing - maybe 117 MIA later recognized as missing during combat + these 500 claimed by Bethell as murdered in captivity?

If it comes to wounded - the number of wounded given by Breithaupt (794) is strange considering how big were numbers of KIA and MIA. There should be much more wounded (around 1,5 - 2,5 times more than KIA and MIA). Maybe Breithaupt only mentions the number of seriously wounded?

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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Michate » Wed Jul 15, 2009 5:09 am

But in total during the battle of Bzura Poles captured several thousands of German soldiers - mostly from 30. Infanterie-Division. Major part of these POWs was of course recaptured by Germans yet after several days from being captured. But over 3,000 of them were transported by Poles to the POW camp near Iłów. They were released from this POW camp during the very ending stages of the battle and they were directed towards Sanniki, were German soldiers mistakenly fired at them.
Sources?
And for example Bethell writes that there were 500 MIA from 30. Infanterie-Division (he claims that Poles murdered them after they were captured), other sources say about between 117 and 617 missing - maybe 117 MIA later recognized as missing during combat + these 500 claimed by Bethell as murdered in captivity?
Are you talking about "The war Hitler won"?
If it comes to wounded - the number of wounded given by Breithaupt (794) is strange considering how big were numbers of KIA and MIA. There should be much more wounded (around 1,5 - 2,5 times more than KIA and MIA). Maybe Breithaupt only mentions the number of seriously wounded?
WIA and MIA figures are unrelated to each other.

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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Domen123 » Fri Sep 04, 2009 6:39 pm

But in total during the battle of Bzura Poles captured several thousands of German soldiers - mostly from 30. Infanterie-Division. Major part of these POWs was of course recaptured by Germans yet after several days from being captured. But over 3,000 of them were transported by Poles to the POW camp near Iłów. They were released from this POW camp during the very ending stages of the battle and they were directed towards Sanniki, were German soldiers mistakenly fired at them.
Sources?
Stanislaw Slawinski, "Od Borów Tucholskich do Kampinosu", Warsaw 1977
Waldemar Rezmer, "Armia Pomorze w kampanii polskiej 1939 roku: bitwa nad Bzurą", 2004 (ISBN 8389962004)

But Rezmer contrary to Slawinski writes about over 2,700 POWs instead of 3,000.
WIA and MIA figures are unrelated to each other.
After the end of the Polish Campaign a great number of soldiers remained listed as MIA.

Later all of them except 320 were judged (verified) by the MIA Commission as dead by 30.11.1944. While these 320 remained listed as MIA even on that date.

So after a victorious campaign, during which all POWs were eventually recaptured and almost all MIA were judged KIA; WIA and MIA figures are related to each other.
Are you talking about "The war Hitler won"?
Rather yes - I am talking about Nicholas Bethell. But I'm not sure which of his books it is, I was informed about it by my friend, I must ask him for the exact source.

Although most probably it is about "The war Hitler won: The fall of Poland, September 1939".

------------------------------------------------

If it comes to the breakdown of German casualties in Poland in 1939:

Here is the list of casulaties of individual German units in the Polish Campaign (some numbers are estimated but in major part of cases such estimations are based on partial data - e.g. losses for some period / losses of some parts of the division - or on the number of KIA officers from our list on AHF - sometimes on both):

Explanations and notes are in Polish - maybe later I will translate it to English and post also here:

http://www.dws.org.pl/viewtopic.php?f=5 ... 0#p1392687

Wehrmacht Zentralstatistik report dated 30.11.1944 (BA-MA RH 7/653) gives the losses of Heer in the Polish Campaign as 16,843 KIA and 320 MIA (17,163).

My calculations result in a slightly higher figure - 17,729 KIA and MIA (plus 36,473 WIA). Plus of course LW (549 KIA / MIA + 407 WIA) and KM (80 + 115).

Some divisions of AOK 3 could have had bigger losses than according to my count (I was basing on the number of KIA officers from these divisions from our list, that's why I had to be fair and make proportional counts - while in fact some infantry divisions lost relatively few officers, suffering high losses among NCOs and men - e.g. 21. Inf.Div., which lost at least 278 killed including only 6 officers or 28. Inf.Div., which lost 579 killed - including 16 officers).

By the way:

My first count resulted in 18,930 KIA & MIA (Heer only), but I decided that maybe I overestimated or misinterpreted something and thus I decided to lower my estimations where only it was reasonable, just in order to get closer to the official data of Wehrmacht Zentralstatistik (although it should be noted that even this data may be incomplete).

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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Domen123 » Sat Sep 05, 2009 2:25 pm

Are you talking about "The war Hitler won"?
Rather yes - I am talking about Nicholas Bethell. But I'm not sure which of his books it is, I was informed about it by my friend, I must ask him for the exact source.

Although most probably it is about "The war Hitler won: The fall of Poland, September 1939".
"The war Hitler won", page 95.

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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Domen123 » Mon Apr 19, 2010 3:52 pm

If it comes to German losses during the first phase of the battle of Bzura:

From the Volksbund database (entries include surnames, etc. - and are based on Verlustmeldungen) we can see that there was a considerable increase of German daily losses during the period of the Polish offensive at the Bzura (09.09.39 - 12.09.39):

1 - 3 IX (battle of the border) = 650 KIA daily
4 - 8 IX (in between) = 486 KIA daily (change to the previous period: - 164)
9 - 12 IX (Polish Bzura offensive) = 945 KIA daily (change to the previous period: + 459)
13 - 14 IX (after the Polish retreat) = 645 KIA daily (change to the previous period: - 300)
15 - 18 IX (until the Soviet invasion) = 846 KIA daily (change to the previous period: + 201)

From the VB database we see, that 18 September was the bloodiest day of Polenfeldzug for the Wehrmacht (1134 KIA).

Losses in period 9 - 12 IX were 95% higher than in period 4 - 8 IX and 50% higher than in period 13 - 14 IX. This increase of losses cannot be accidental. Assuming that daily losses in other parts of the frontline remained the same during the period 9 - 12 IX as during the previous one (I would say, that they even decreased; but that's for another thread), losses resulted from the Polish Bzura offensive would have been around 1850 KIA (or 463 KIA per day).

Moreover, places such as Piatek and Leczyca have got a lot of death entries in the database.
I just checked the number of death entries for these 4 major towns marked on this map:

1) Piatek = 192 entries with Todesort given as Piatek *
2) Leczyca (including nearby Tum) = 146 + 34 entries with Todesort given as Leczyca + Tum
3) Lowicz = 100 entries with Todesort given as Lowicz
4) Ozorkow = 76 entries with Todesort given as Ozorkow

* Note that majority of over 6500 Todesorten for September 1939 have only 1 or few entries assigned.

This gives ca. 550 KIA within the area of these 4 small towns alone. And we must note, that:

- the Volksbund database is not complete
- there are many entries without Todesort given

So probably real losses in these places were even higher.

Image

This also proves that Elble's figures concerning losses of those divisions that he listed - are wrong. For example 24. Inf.Div. lost 100 KIA in the town of Lowicz alone, so it could not lost 135 KIA during the entire campaign (and having the full Volksbund database, I can easily prove this - by checking entries listed by VB in other place where only this division fought).

Buchner's figures from divisional histories turn out to be much more correct than Elble's figures.

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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Domen123 » Mon Sep 20, 2010 2:40 am

All the truth about casualties of 10. Infanterie-Division in Poland:

http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic. ... 4#p1509204

So Elble is wrong as I wrote before.

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Re: Breakout of the German casualties in Poland 1939

Post by Domen123 » Sun Oct 24, 2010 3:21 pm

In papers of 8. Armee (from German records microfilmed at Alexandria) there is "Bericht über die Kämpfe der 24. Division in Polen 1939" and part of this "Bericht" is the report "Gesamtverluste der Division im Polenfeldzug", which confirms Elble is wrong and divisional history is correct. It says about 390 KIA, 82 MIA, 1017 WIA suffered by 24. ID in Poland.

Bericht über die Kämpfe der 24. Division in Polen 1939,
Gesamtverluste der Division im Polenfeldzug:

offz.: 20 gef., 33 verw., 1 verm.,
uffz.: 45 gef., 86 verw., 4 verm.,
mann.: 325 gef., 898 verw., 77 verm.,

insgesamt: 389 gef.*, 1017 verw., 82 verm.

*(the difference between the summ of 390 gef. and 389 gef. is in original - not my mistake)

So also in this case "Eintragung" from 19.09. quoted by Elble doesn't say about losses in entire campaign.

Elble was simply too lazy to check this. Or really believed losses of such heavily engaged Div. could be so small.

And strangely historian writing that "Geschichte" must have had access to Alexandria microfilms!

Contrary to what was claimed numerous times when I asked about it here or there.

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