From the Donetz to the Volga with the 297. ID.

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From the Donetz to the Volga with the 297. ID.

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Hello to all :D; a review of the struggles...............................

From the Donetz to the Volga with the 297. ID. Excerpts from the war diary of the Advanced Detachment of the 297th Infantry Division.

(July 11 to August 2, 1942: three weeks without fuel)
Saturday July 11, 1942 (382nd day of the war): At 2:00 a.m. the march towards Belolutskaya on the Aidar began; hundreds of prisoners, deserters, tractor drivers with carts loaded with things; Pursuing the retreating enemy, at 7:00 a.m. we managed to reach their rear in Dontsovka. At 11:20 a.m., after reaching Kamenka, a radiogram indicated that large enemy forces, at least one tank regiment, were approaching. After the battle, the enemy retreated and 171 prisoners were captured (including 1 engineer officer of the tank forces, who gave important testimony and was immediately sent to the division), 1 anti-tank rifle, 2 trucks and many cattle. Losses: 1 soldier was slightly wounded.

Sunday July 12, 1942 (383rd day of the war): At 5:00 a.m. the march towards Krisskoye continues; Everywhere there is a retreat of scattered enemies and columns of tractors. Order to return to Novo-Nikolskoye: the deserter speaks of 20-25 tanks covering the retreat. Clouds of dust mark the enemy's escape routes. The Stukas attack retreating tanks and columns. With the onset of darkness, the blind terrain and darkness make continuation of the attack impossible; The bridge is also impassable. An anti-tank platoon set fire to a tank with a 3-inch gun (7,62 cm), as well as wagons with ammunition. Noise of movement until 2:00 a.m., motorized columns heading south. The vanguard assumes a perimeter defense. Losses: 1 soldier killed.

Monday July 13, 1942 (384th day of the war): At 3:10 a.m., 10 Soviet tanks tried to break through north of Novo-Nikolskoye; The 14th Company of the Infantry Regiment 524 shot down 1 tank and damaged 2 heavy tanks; others turned around. At 4:00 a.m. hours reconnaissance east of the stream: only scattered remains of the enemy; 5 new American trucks and 1 all-wheel drive vehicle. At 8:30 a.m., after reinforcing the bridge, the march continues towards Petrovsky. The roads were completely ruined after the rainy weather. Several tanks were sighted in the southeast as well as 3 heavy tanks at Berezovo as anti-tank guns fired on them, an enemy tank that suddenly appeared on the flank opened fire in response. The leader of the detachment, Major Oechsle, was seriously wounded by a tank shell and both his legs were torn off below the knees; Shortly after being evacuated to the main dressing post, he died from a blocked vein. His simple soldier's grave is located 300 meters west of the bridge near Novo-Nikolskoye. Oberleutnant Behrens took command of the detachment. The tanks turned southeast and left the firing range. Loot: approximately 700 cubic meters of rye, 400 cubic meters of wheat, 400 cubic meters of flax, 96 cubic meters of sunflower grains; approximately 35 cubic meters of oats, 14 cubic meters of barley, 5 small locomotives. Losses: 1 non-commissioned officer killed, 1 officer wounded and killed at the main dressing station (Major Gustav Oechsle *). 2 more troops were injured.

Tuesday, July 14, 1942 (385th day of the war): At 2:00 a.m. the advance detachment leaves for Mikhailovo-Alexandrovsky. There is no contact with the enemy. At 2:00 p.m. - continuation of the march towards Novo-Poltava.

Wednesday, July 15, 1942 (386th day of the war): division day of rest. 1. Squadron is raking forests east of Novo-Poltava. The 14th Company of the Infantry Regiment 524 took 96 prisoners. Exploration to the south.

Thursday July 16, 1942 (387th day of war): By order of the division, the march towards Kolodezi began at 3:00 a.m. The march is hampered by the poor condition of the roads, which were washed away by the rain.

* Kommandeur, Aufklärungs-Abteilung 297.

Sources: https://nordrigel.livejournal.com/124493.html#cutid1
http://www.stalingrad-feldpost.de/Trupp ... 97_id.html
https://www.amazon.de/Stalingrad-1941-1 ... 3924170002

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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Re: From the Donetz to the Volga with the 297. ID.

Post by tigre »

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

From the Donetz to the Volga with the 297. ID. Excerpts from the war diary of the Advanced Detachment of the 297th Infantry Division.

Friday, July 17, 1942 (388th day of the war): The march begins at 2:30 a.m. (according to the radiogram). The roads are clogged with columns of all kinds. At 12:15 p.m. the day's objective was achieved. The number of prisoners and deserters continues to increase. Many grains and livestock were captured. At 7:30 p.m. the task was received to conduct reconnaissance in Pervomaiskoye, although it was reported several times that the detachment was out of fuel. Loot: 360 prisoners, 835 quintals of rye, 180 quintals of wheat, 15 quintals of oats, several hundred pigs, many horses and cows.

Saturday, July 18, 1942 (399th day of the war): The march towards Fomino, scheduled for 2:30 a.m., did not begin due to lack of fuel. Around noon the trucks with fuel arrived, after having traveled 270 kilometers. Once the fuel is distributed to all units, it will be enough for a trip of only 12 to 15 kilometers.

Sunday, July 19, 1942 (400th day of the war): Due to lack of fuel, the detachment had a day of rest.

Monday, July 20, 1942 (401st day of the war): At 04:00 - start of the march. Bad roads, narrow bridges, infantry units on the same route. After 21 km, at Derevyanschenskoye, due to lack of fuel, the 2. Anti-tank Company and the 3. Sapper Company had to be abandoned. The reconnaissance battalion tries, with the last remaining fuel, to reach the objective of the day: Selivanovskaya, and succeeds.

Tuesday, July 21, 1942 (402nd day of the war): Due to lack of fuel, the advance detachment is forced to stop...

Wednesday, July 22, 1942 (403rd day of war): The advance detachment never received fuel and remains in place. The detachment commander, Dr. Glate, has been recalled to his anti-tank detachment.

The war diary says that the reconnaissance battalion spent another whole week without refueling and received the first fuel only on July 29, which was enough only for one day, then stopped again on August 2.

Sources: https://nordrigel.livejournal.com/124493.html#cutid1
http://www.stalingrad-feldpost.de/Trupp ... 97_id.html
https://www.amazon.de/Stalingrad-1941-1 ... 3924170002

Cheers. Raúl M 8).
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Re: From the Donetz to the Volga with the 297. ID.

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

From the Donetz to the Volga with the 297. ID. The Chir Bridge is captured intact!
(Oberst Moritz von Drebber, C.O. of the 523rd Infantry Regiment).

As soon as our motorized units were able to get some fuel, at the beginning of August 1942 we struck at Nizhne-Chirskaya on the Don. It is located slightly south of the confluence of the Chir and the Don. The advanced battalions, advancing on foot towards the end, burst into the city, where they engaged in battle with the enemy rearguards. During this battle, our advanced units broke through to an intact bridge over the Chir, 300 m long, which was an example of craftsmanship and Russian construction art. This was especially lucky, since previously on all the rivers we had only encountered blown-up bridges. In fact, we managed to get ahead of the Soviet sappers, who were already ready to send the bridge into the air.

In the shortest possible time, the entire forward battalion was transferred to the other side. I received an order from the Corps Commander, General von Seydlitz, to be on the dominant heights west of Nizhne-Chirskaya and monitor the situation with our neighbors so as not to miss the opportunity to create a bridgehead north of Chir as quickly as possible. In the near future I also had to consider the possibility of strong Soviet counterattacks. I had an overview far into the territory still held by the enemy and I saw Soviet columns leaving for Verkhne-Chirskaya... I immediately decided to transport the entire regiment across the bridge; the enemy on the northern bank was still holding out in places in densely overgrown and obscured areas.

In the evening the bridgehead was already firmly in our hands. The next morning at 2.00 a.m. we launched an offensive, overcame the sleeping posts and broke into Verkhne-Chirskaya. Further advance was impossible - the Soviets met us with heavy machine gun and artillery fire from strong positions, so we had to go on the defensive. Although the troops were very exhausted, they did not waste a single hour, immediately beginning to dig positions that could give some guarantee that they could be held. In addition to the construction of fortifications, an appropriate fire covering system was organized. The enemy reconnaissance groups that soon appeared were repelled.

Three more days later, after powerful artillery preparation, masses of enemy infantry went on the attack, but were driven back. There were no reserves that could help me in such a situation. After about 10 days, we noticed that enemy tanks were taking up their starting positions and preparing to attack. Some of them broke through into the village of Verkhne-Chirskaya itself, but fortunately, the infantry accompanying them was cut off and stopped by fire. After that the tanks crawled back! An enemy breakthrough in a neighboring sector, due to which we were cut off for several hours, ended with the enemy infantry being destroyed or captured. The decisive role in this success was played by the blows of the “pieces”.

After repelling countless Soviet attacks targeting the bridge over the Chir, our artillery was significantly strengthened. Now we ourselves went on the offensive in a northeast direction. A few days later it became clear that the Soviets had managed to escape across the Don at Kalach and thus avoid a decisive battle west of the Don. Our breakthrough to the Don was successful.

After this, the day came for our troops when the 297th Infantry Division left the long-term subordination of the 6th Army and transferred to the 4th Panzer Army (Colonel General Hoth). We understood that the 6th Army would break through to the Volga by a direct route, trying to attack and capture Stalingrad from the west. Colonel General Hoth and his army had to cross the Don south of Nizhne-Chirskaya and break through to Stalingrad from the south, through the Kalmyk steppes.

Now the 297th Infantry Division marched south, crossing the Don on a pontoon bridge on August 15, 1942, while at the same time tanks were transported to the east bank on a pontoon ferry. At Potemkinskaya we entered the area between the Don and the Volga, where a decisive battle was to unfold, which determined the course of the Second World War...

Sources: https://nordrigel.livejournal.com/124493.html#cutid1
http://www.stalingrad-feldpost.de/Trupp ... 97_id.html
https://www.amazon.de/Stalingrad-1941-1 ... 3924170002

Cheers. Raúl M 8).
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Pontoon bridge and ferry at Potemkinskaya...................................
Pontoon bridge and ferry at Potemkinskaya...................................
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Re: From the Donetz to the Volga with the 297. ID.

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

Across the Don to the Kalmyk steppe.

Hitler first wanted to seize the oil fields in the Caucasus, since at the beginning and summer of 1942 he and his entourage understood that the German Wehrmacht needed more fuel to successfully complete the war. For this purpose, the former Army Group South (Field Marshal von Bock) was divided into two army groups:

1) Army Group "A" (Field Marshal List) - was supposed to capture the oil fields of the Caucasus, primarily Maykop and Grozny;
2) Army Group "B" (Field Marshal von Bock, from July 15 - Colonel General von Weichs) - after eliminating the Soviet bridgeheads west of the Don, must cross the river, from the Kalmyk steppes reach Stalingrad, occupy it and the western bank of the Volga.

From the German armed forces on the Don to the borders of former Germany there were already almost 2,500 km, supply problems were already creating difficulties in the area between the Donets and the Don, where the 6th Army was forced to stand without fuel for two weeks. Supply was carried out only from remote unloading points from the railway in Kharkov, Stalino and Donbass. It has already been described dramatically how the advance detachment could not continue the pursuit of the randomly fleeing enemy, since the motorized units of the division had no mobility. For the exhausted troops, in fact, the real goal was the elimination of Soviet bridgeheads west of the Don and the organization of defense for the winter along its high western bank... However, for the “superman”, as Hitler believed, who thought that he knew the art of war better than his generals, this it wasn't enough.

On July 29, 1942, Hitler sent his personal adjutant, General Schmundt, to Paulus. For Hitler, the issue of capturing Stalingrad was a matter of prestige, just as for Stalin it was a matter of honor to hold the city named after him... Paulus told Schmundt quite clearly: “The 6th Army is too weak to attack Stalingrad!” The request to send additional divisions was rejected.

On July 30, Hitler changed his previous plan - first of all to seize the oil fields of the Caucasus, and sent the tank corps of Colonel General Hoth through Elista and the Kalmyk steppes to the north. At that moment, Hoth's tanks were already stationed just 100 km from the Caspian Sea. Such a “hunt for two birds with one stone” (as Stalin once ironically remarked regarding Hitler’s “commandership”) was Hitler’s gravest mistake. Due to the disagreement of the Chief of the General Staff Halder and Field Marshal List with the withdrawal of tanks from the Caucasus, they were both removed from their posts.

So on August 4, the tank corps of Hoth rushed in an accelerated march in the direction of Aksai and by August 6 was already on the railway to Stalingrad, at the Tinguta station, just 37 km from the city on the Volga. There he encountered a very stubborn defense. The Soviets transported numerous half-finished tanks from their tank factory in Stalingrad on special trucks, dug them around this station, supplied them with a good number of shells and held the defense in them until the last grenade... In addition, the Soviets transferred here three fresh and well-equipped divisions (381st, 126th and 204th) from Stalin’s reserve east of the Volga and two new tank brigades, which were hit by a German attack at Tinguta. Subsequently, the divisions remaining at Stalingrad constantly received reinforcements at night across the Volga, while in the German units, despite the high military professionalism of their commanders, the actual combat strength of the companies dropped to 40-50 people, and the supply of ammunition, food and fuel did not work normally. On August 6-8, 1942, Hoth fought near Tinguta only with his own forces, since the 6th Army from August 7 to 14 was completely occupied with the destruction of part of the Soviet bridgehead west of the Don.

Before August 14, the 6th Army managed to encircle three Soviet armies with attacks from the south to Kalach and the north to Kletskaya and force the Soviets to flee across the Don. In this last successful encirclement battle for the Wehrmacht on the Eastern Front, 57,000 prisoners were taken, 1,000 tanks and 750 guns were destroyed or captured, but strong Soviet formations were able to escape and retain several small bridgeheads west of the Don - there was no force to eliminate them.

On the day of the Ascension of the Virgin Mary (August 15, 1942), after the successful end of the battle at Kalach, the 6th Army crossed the Don in four places, over four pontoon bridges there, each about 350 meters long. The 297th Infantry Division crossed the Don at Potemkinskaya and entered the Kalmyk steppes. Today this village does not exist - it and many more square kilometers of the Kalmyk steppe are covered by the wide (35 km wide) Tsimlyansk reservoir, a continuation of the Volga-Don Canal.

Sources: https://nordrigel.livejournal.com/124493.html#cutid1
http://www.stalingrad-feldpost.de/Trupp ... 97_id.html
https://www.amazon.de/Stalingrad-1941-1 ... 3924170002

Cheers. Raúl M 8).
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Soviet tanks destroyed at Tinguta station..........................
Soviet tanks destroyed at Tinguta station..........................
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Serás lo que debas ser o no serás nada. General José de San Martín.
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