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varifleman

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  1. Here for your perusal is WWI Remington UMC .45ACP US Army Model 1911 pistol serial number 3345 which was shipped in October 28 1918 serial number range 511-4657 per report "Serial Numbers of .45 Colt Automatic Pistols Manufactured Under Contract # P4537-3338Sa, Remington Arms-UMC to Major Lee O. Wright, Ord. Dept. USA, July 26, 1923. Remington UMC received two contracts to produce 500,000 Model 1911s during WWI but the contract was cancelled after the Armistice was signed on 11 November 1918 and Remington-UMC delivered 21,677 through May 1919
  2. I just found his obituary which notes that he served in the German Cavalry. was captured in Romania, was a POW in Russia and returned to Germany after the war ended.
  3. Translation of service record: Andreas Gerber, identification tag EM-File recorded -17-1./SS-K.R. 18 Born on 19.6.20 in Apatin/Hungary Name and address of the person to be notified: Father: Andreas Gerber Apatin - Hungary, Kossuth Lajosstr. 394 Unit: 1. SS - K.R. 18 Rank: Rottenführer* Nationality: Hungary Ethnicity: yes pers.85: 147 Front Avenue, Brentwood N. Y. 11717 USA 17.2.48 On 13.9.44 near Sceulia missing in action Vermißt Meldung der Truppe = Missing Report from the unit, Nr. 26357. 12.6.48 Same Report from Lt.U.V.K 16/9-Vorr.II Std. W. S 297/12 13.11.85 VI/2 VII:Dsb leung 1/1 { 6.12.85 III P4 Dgd.: Rank, TT: Inf. R. 18 Date of registration 20.10.45 Age: 19 years 6.12.85 W2 VII: Please check the missing person's report (1/1) 6.12.85 VII/4 Ke. Orders fom 17.2.48 and 16.6.48.checked and supplemented 1/1 10.12.85 VI/2 bibl. Inquiry from 29.11.85 neg(ative) 16.12.85 VI/2 III/A to co-examination (1/5) 17.Dez.1985 Ref III Kgf. A.** - No record - R. Ga.25.2.85 VI/2 G a. Antr.v.31.10. and 1.11.85 Dzb. about. (s. V.) Kr. Ga.8.9.86 VI/25 LVA Rheinprovinz Düsseldorf a. Antr. v.10.7.86, Az.:13 190626 G 032 -V975-. Dzb. wir vor übers. (s. V.) RK (signature) __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ _______ * Within the Waffen-SS, a Rottenfuhrer was equivalent to an Obergefreiter in the Wehrmacht, in other words, a Corporal. ** Kgf most likely means Kriegsgefangene = prisoners of war
  4. After further research it turns out that my uncle was a member of the SS Cavalry Regiment 18 of the 8th SS Cavalry Division Florian Geyer which was a Waffen-SS cavalry Division during World War II. Per Wikipedia It was formed in 1942 from a cadre of the SS Cavalry Brigade which was involved in anti partisan operations behind the front line and was responsible for the extermination of tens of thousands of the civilian population. About 40% of the division were Danube Swabian from Siebenbürgen (Transylvania) and Banat (Serbia). The Training and Replacement Battalion of the 8th SS Cavalry Division was involved in suppressing the 1943 Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.In March 1944, it was named after Florian Geyer (1490–1525), the Franconian nobleman who led the Black Company during the German Peasants' War, while veterans from the division formed the core of the 22nd SS Volunteer Cavalry Division Maria Theresia, following the latter's creation on 29 April 1944. The Division was destroyed during the fighting in the Siege of Budapest in early 1945. The newly created division was soon sent back to the Eastern Front and fought in the Rzhev and Orel sectors in central Russia until the spring of 1943. The division was then moved to the area around Bobruisk, on internal security and anti partisan duties until September 1943. In September the division was moved again to the Southern front and took part in the German retreat to the Dnieper river. The division was then sent to Croatia but many new recruits were Shwoveh drawn form Hungary in March 1944. In April 1944, they returned to Hungary and took part in the fighting in Transylvania after the Romanian front collapsed.[2]The Division was trapped in the Siege of Budapest with the IX SS Mountain Corps when the Russians and Romanians surrounded the city in December 1944. The 8th SS Cavalry Division was then involved in the fierce fighting to hold the city often engaged in hand-to-hand combat and fighting house to house. The Division was destroyed in the fighting for Budapest and by the end of the siege of the 30,000 men of the SS Corps only about 800 survived to reach the German lines.
  5. After my Uncle Andrew was reported missing on 13 September 1944 he was captured by the Soviets and spent several years as a German POW working in Stalin's GULAG in a Siberian salt mine. My grandparents when they lived in New York sponsored his immigration to the USA in 1949. He spent the rest of his life working as a mason and passed on at the ripe old age of 81 in Lafayette Indiana in 2007. I met him on numerous occasions and remember when I was a student at the Army Language School in Monterey CA 1970-71 he spoke fluent Russian (I guess he learned to survive in Siberia). Here's a photo he sent to my Grandparents as a momento. On the first card I think the Nr 26357 may be the Felpostnummer (FPN) of the unit from which he went missing.
  6. I'm looking for help in interpreting this service card of my uncle Andreas Gerber who was an Ethnic German from Apatin Hungary and I think served as a Rottenfuehrer (Squad Leader) in the 18th SS Volunteer Panzergrenadier Regiment Horst Wessel and is listed as having gone missing on 13 September 1944 near some location I can't yet decipher. The 18th SS Division consisted primarily of Ethnic Germans from Hungary. Attached Images
  7. Here for your viewing pleasure is my Webley-Scott .455 1913 MK1 Navy automatic pistol serial number 3800. This pistol (serial number 3800) was 1 of 1919 (serial numbers 3691-5609) delivered to the Royal Navy in December 1914. It served through most of WWI. Close-up photos show the (19)14 acceptance date above the Crown/GR on the frame and breech-block, the serial number, the broad arrow property mark on the grip and a 7-pack of .455 ammo dated January 30, 1919 and individual round to show 1918 headstamp.
  8. Hi Chris, thanks for your coments. 1st LT Wilkins probably obtained this pistol as a private purchase in the UK or France. Such pistols sold commerically by the London Armoury Agency were private purchases by British or to other officers who initially had to purchase their own firearms. Since there are no British military proof, view or property marks on this pistol it was not an official British military issue pistol. Since officers did supply their own weapons this may have been a private purchase. The US did not have enough ships to transport forces to France, and this lack was a major obstacle to the war effort. After lengthy discussions in early 1918, the British agreed to transport infantry, machine gun, signal, and engineer units for six divisions in their ships. Upon arrival in France, these units were to train with the British. The British executed the program in the early spring of 1918, eventually moving the 4th, 27th, 28th, 30th, 33d, 35th, 77th, 78th, 80th, and 82d Divisions. The 39th, 40th, 41st, 76th, 83d, and 85th Divisions served as depot organizations. Shortly thereafter Pershing revised the replacement system for the AEF. Instead of relying on a replacement and school division and a base and training division for each army corps,The depot division processed casuals into the theater, and the replacement battalions forwarded them to the units. Both the 41st and 76th served as depot/replacement divisions and 1st Lt Wilkins served in both. Yes, I think the British proofs add to the uniqueness of this pistol.
  9. Here for your viewing pleasure are photos of my WWI British-proofed .45ACP Colt Government Model pistol C 13731 which was 1 of 300 shipped to the London Armoury Company on November 18 1914. The London Commercial proof and view marks (Crown/V and Crown/intertwined GP) are visible on top of barrel and on left side of slide above Rampant Colt and left side of frame below thumb safety. The accompanying US Model 1912 holster is marked 1st LT G C Wilkins. The owner of this pistol was 1st Lt George Carl Wilkins, a 1918 Harvard Graduate. He entered Officers' Training Camp at Plattsburg NY in May 1917; commissioned 1st Lt Infantry August 15; assigned to 301st Machine Gun Battalion, 76th Division and sailed for France July 8, 1918. He was transferred to the 146th Machine Gun Battalion, 41st Division on November 9 1918 and returned to the U.S. on February 25, 1919. He t ransferred to the 153rd Depot Brigade, Camp Dix on 27 February and was discharged on 25 May 1919.
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