STRATEGIC MOVEMENT BY RAIL IN 1914.

First World War 1914-1918 from the German perspective.

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STRATEGIC MOVEMENT BY RAIL IN 1914.

Post by tigre » Sat Aug 22, 2015 11:26 am

Hello to all :D; a new interesting topic I found over there...........................

STRATEGIC MOVEMENT BY RAIL IN 1914. By Major F. During. Infantry.

TRANSPORTATION PROBLEM AT THE OUTBREAK OF WAR.

For a Continental power the outbreak of war involves three principal categories of military movement:

(a) Mobilization.
(b) The establishment of covering forces on the frontier.
(c) The strategic concentration.

It is important, however, to remember that during the days immediately prior to and following a declaration of war, other movements is taking place:

(d) The maintenance traffic of the armies during mobilization, and concentration (small in comparison with other movements).
(e) Civil traffic, which cannot be entirely suspended; and the evacuation of refugees and material from frontier districts exposed to invasion constitutes a special problem.
(f) Technical movement, i.e., movement in order to place the technical service itself upon a war footing.

THE GERMAN CONCENTRATION.

Till 1913 alternative plans of concentration East or West were worked out in detail, but from that date a major concentration was envisaged only on the Western Front. Four periods may be distinguished during the critical days of July and August, 1914:

(1) Up to 12:00 noon, 31 July, preliminary measures were .quietly taken as political tension developed into the certainty of war.
(2) From the "war imminent" warning order issued at that hour to the order for general mobilization at 5:00 PM, 1 August, measures of security and preparations for war were openly pushed.
(3) The mobilization period till 6 August.
(4) The strategic concentration during 6-7 August.

By 1914 Germany, like other European powers, had developed an organization for coordinating military requirements with technical possibilities. The Chief of the General Staff was in close touch with the Imperial Railway Bureau, the central organ of the civil railway administration. The galvanic body was, however, the Railway Section of the General Staff, the personnel of which was drawn from the most intelligent stratum of staff officers-and commonly regarded as approaching lunacy! The head of the Railway Section was responsible for the coordination of all measures of preparation for war, e.g., new strategic construction, mobilization and concentration programs, and arrangements for assuming control of the civil railway system. The collection of technical information and the work of movement plans devolved largely upon "Line Commissions comprising one military and one technical member with a mixed office staff!. Of these commissions there were twenty-six in Germany, with their headquarters at important railway centers and their spheres of action corresponding generally to the operating divisions of the State railway system.

During the war control was centralized at General Headquarters, the head of the Railway Section becoming Director of Railways under the Quartermaster General. His duty as Chef des Feldeisenbahnwesens was to coordinate all transportation resources for war purposes, and his sphere of authority embraced all railways of military importance without exception, both at home and in the theater of operations. The Line Commissions (Linienkommandanturen), supplemented later by additional appointments in occupied territory, now assumed responsability for the technical execution of military requirements under instructions from the Director of Railways, who was also represented by liaison officers (Bahnbeauftragte) from his Section, acting as technical advisers at all Army and Line of Communications Headquarters. For the repair, equipment, and working of lines in occupied territory the rector of Railways had at his disposal operating and construction companies amounting in all to over 30,000 men.

Source: Abstracts - Foreign Articles. RML Nº 58. Sep 1935.

More follows. Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: STRATEGIC MOVEMENT BY RAIL IN 1914.

Post by tigre » Sun Aug 23, 2015 4:24 pm

Hello to all :D; something more...........................

STRATEGIC MOVEMENT BY RAIL IN 1914. By Major F. During. Infantry.

THE GERMAN CONCENTRATION.

General mobilization was ordered at 5:00 PM on 1 August. During the first two days of mobilization (1M and 2 M days) peace timetable were still in operation. Though freight service was suspended, passenger services were carrying an enormous trafic. Line of communication protection troops were being established; and the railway itself was in process of transition from a peace to a war footing. Nevertheless the movement of reservists and remounts to the frontier corps was superimposed upon this burden. Individuals and small parties travelled-by normal trains, larger parties by supplementary and special trains (Militärbedarfzüge and Militärsonderzüge)-the former had been worked out in peace; the latter (700 trains during 1 M and 2 M days) were ordered by arrangement between the military and technical authorities.

These two days were, in fact, those of maximum strain upon the railway system as a whole. At midnight 2/3 M day the military timetables came into operation. For the next three days mobilization movement continued at maximum intensity. From 6 M day it dwindled, to revive only after completion of the strategic concentration. Altogether 20,800 mobilization trains were worked out in peace for the period 1 M-20 M day, carrying 2,070,000 men, 118,000 horses, and 400,000 tons of supplies.

The concentration program prepared by the Railway Section of the General Staff and revised yearly took final shape in two forms:

(a) Movement lists (Fahrlisten) for the technical service, showing for each section of the railway system and for each M day the units to be moved, strengths, rolling stock required, and time for entraining, etc.

(b) Movement tables (Fahr-und Marschtafeln) for military commanders, showing for each division or equivalent command the allotment of units to trains, time and place of entraining and detraining, stops for watering animals, etc.

For 1 M to 4 M days both movement lists and tables were printed during peacetime and circulated under secret cover on a minimum distribution list. For movement subsequent to 4 M day they were printed after mobilization, etc.

The concentration programs distinguished three categories of movement:

(1) Troops immediately available for frontier, coast, and line of communication protection.
(2) Units mobilizing with exceptional rapidity.
(3) The general strategic concentration.

Source: Abstracts - Foreign Articles. RML Nº 58. Sep 1935.

More follows. Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: STRATEGIC MOVEMENT BY RAIL IN 1914.

Post by ljadw » Sun Aug 30, 2015 5:38 am

:up: :up:

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Re: STRATEGIC MOVEMENT BY RAIL IN 1914.

Post by tigre » Sat Sep 05, 2015 8:08 am

Hello to all :D; thanks for your support ljadw :up:. Now something more...........................

STRATEGIC MOVEMENT BY RAIL IN 1914. By Major F. During. Infantry.

THE GERMAN CONCENTRATION.

Movements under category (1) were worked out verschiebbar, i.e., time to be determined by agreement between the Line Commandant (Linienkommandant) and the civil railway administration. The latter accepted responsibility to provide the necessary rolling stock on short notice.

Urgent troop movements under category (2), taking precedence of mobilization movement, comprised:

(a) Advanced echelons of headquarters.
(b) Six reinforced infantry brigades with siege artillery and engineers, detraining during 1 M-3 M days in the Aachen-Eupen-Malmedy region for the coup-de-main against Liege.
(c) Seven mixed infantry brigades, detraining during 2 M-3 M days along the frontier, as covering troops for the strategic concentration.
(d) Four cavalry corps (ten cavalry divisions) detraining and brought up to strength during 2 M-7 M days.
(e) Railway troops and supply detachments for preparatory work in concentration areas.

In all there were 1,440 trains, of which 340 were special trains during 1 M and 2 M days, when peace timetables were still in operation.

The invasion of Luxemburg was authorized at 12:45 AM, 2 August. Part of the 16th Division, in immediate readiness, under escort of an armored train, was routed straight through to Luxemburg where it was joined by marching columns during the forenoon. The Luxemburg railway system, important for the subsequent concentration, thus passed intact under German control.

The concentration against Liege was more serious, and was difficult technically because, for reasons of secrecy, details were withheld during peacetime, and the railway authorities received only a few hours notice.

The main strategic concentration commenced on the evening of 5 M day (6 August). Timetables included a 4-hour break (Tagespause) each day for the purpose of making good irregular running or delays, the break being designed to occur at night west of the Rhine, where congestion was most likely.

Source: Abstracts - Foreign Articles. RML Nº 58. Sep 1935.

More follows. Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: STRATEGIC MOVEMENT BY RAIL IN 1914.

Post by tigre » Sun Sep 06, 2015 5:46 am

Hello to all :D; something more...........................

STRATEGIC MOVEMENT BY RAIL IN 1914. By Major F. During. Infantry.

THE GERMAN CONCENTRATION.

Thirteen lndependent double-track roads carrying 660 trains daily, were available for the movement of 34 corps. Of these, three detrained east of the Rhine (XIV and XIV R at Freiburg, IV R at Dusseldorf), while the remainder (VIII and VIII R) entrained at Cologne, XXI at Strassburg and Saarbrucken; so that 28 corps (550 trains daily) actually crossed the Rhine by one or another of the fifteen railway bridges.

Most corps were allotted 20 (a few 30) trains daily, both divisions moving simultaneously, i.e., by trains at 2-hour intervals, excluding the 4-hour break, from the divisional entraining station. The order of movement was: advanced parties; engineer and supply detachments; cavalry; headquarters; infantry and field artillery mixed; medium artillery and services (Kolonnen und Trains): in all about 140 trains for an active corps, 85 for a reserve corps, and 31 for cavalry divisions, plus supply trains included in the concentration programs.

Most of the double-track roads carried two, a few three, different corps simultaneously; but in general a maximum of 50 trains each way daily was observed. The heaviest traffic was through Cologne, where 60 troop trains daily crossed the South bridge (double track) and 2,150 mobilization and troop trains passed over the North bridge (4-track) moving west during the period 2-18 August at an average interval of ten minutes.

The fighting troops and first echelon of services completed detraining on 14 August, the second echelon following till 17 August. The whole concentration was executed according to program without serious mishap.

The concentrations in the East and on the northern frontier were relatively simple. In all 11,100 troop trains carried some 3,120,000 men and 860,000 horses.

Source: Abstracts - Foreign Articles. RML Nº 58. Sep 1935.

More follows. Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: STRATEGIC MOVEMENT BY RAIL IN 1914.

Post by tigre » Fri Sep 18, 2015 9:25 pm

Hello to all :D; something more...........................

STRATEGIC MOVEMENT BY RAIL IN 1914. By Major F. During. Infantry.

THE GERMAN CONCENTRATION.

The readjustment of personnel, locomotives, and rolling stock to place the railways on a war footing involved considerable movement during the first few M days; e.g., 180 locomotives had to be dispatched to the Saarbrucken district, 150 to Ludwigshafen,etc.-530 in all during 1 M -4 M days. The eastern districts in particular required additional rolling stock; e.g., 2,300 freight cars were needed at Konigsberg, 1,850 at Bromberg, etc.-in aU 8,650 cars = 173 trains during 3 M-9 M days. Meanwhile the railway administration executed their allotted program of rolling stock conversion to military uses and the provision of additional ramps, platforms, waterpoints; and arrangements for the supply of troops en route.

Begining 10 M day the accumulation of a rolling stock reserve at the disposal of the Director of Railways for strategic troop movements started. This reserve of empty trains, held on their return from concentration detraining stations and sufficient to move seven corps, was distributed so as to facilitate the rapid initiation of troop movements behind the western front. On 11 August sufficient stock to move two corps was behind the left wing in the Karlsruhe and Stuttgart districts; on 16 August enough for three corps on the middle and lower Rhine; and on 21 August for two corps farther back in the Münster and Kassel districts. In addition, on 13 August rolling stock for one division and a proportion of corps troops was held in each of the forward districts-Cologne, Saarbrücken, Ludwigshafen, and Strassburg-so that the forward Line Commandants were in a position to execute tactical troop movements from their own resources and to meet the first requirements of large strategic moves without delay.

Source: Abstracts - Foreign Articles. RML Nº 58. Sep 1935.

More follows. Cheers. Raúl M 8).
Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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Re: STRATEGIC MOVEMENT BY RAIL IN 1914.

Post by tigre » Sat May 14, 2016 10:23 am

Hello to all :D; something more...........................

STRATEGIC MOVEMENT BY RAIL IN 1914.

THE GERMAN CONCENTRATION. German soldiers in a railway car on the way to the front in August 1914.

Source: http://c8.alamy.com/comp/B5MPDJ/9-1914- ... B5MPDJ.jpg.
https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... r_Bahn.jpg

Cheers. Raúl M 8).
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Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.

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