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Need help with picture of my great-grandfather


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Hello everyone. I was wondering what you could tell me about this picture of my great-grandfather from Germany. I was curious as to what position/rank he held. The jacket is pretty plain except for what appear to be pins on each side of his collar that are:

"IV" and "21".

I don't know exactly when the photo was taken, but judging by my great-grandmother's clothing/hairstyle, I'm thinking early 1900's or maybe WWI era at the latest.

Thank you,

Alexandra

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Taken during the World War. That is the insignia for Landsturm Battalion 21 of the IVth Army Corps.

he is an ordinary private-- Landsturmmann. The tunic is a simplified version with turn-back cuffs, but retaining the pre-war buttons front and front/collar piping-- so probably circa 1915.

He was lucky to get such modern, up to date gear, since they usually made due with outdated cast-offs.

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Taken during the World War. That is the insignia for Landsturm Battalion 21 of the IVth Army Corps.

he is an ordinary private-- Landsturmmann. The tunic is a simplified version with turn-back cuffs, but retaining the pre-war buttons front and front/collar piping-- so probably circa 1915.

He was lucky to get such modern, up to date gear, since they usually made due with outdated cast-offs.

Thank you for your help! I appreciate it very much!

Alexandra

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Alexandria;

A few more observations. The IV. Armeekorps was from the Magdeburg area, central Germany. Does that jibe with your information?

As a Landsturmmann, he would have been between 35 and 45 years old, unless he was somewhat disabled and he was medically deemed unable, for example, to keep up with the marching tempo of units of units at a higher level of fitness, like reserve units, or line units. Landsturm units usually did not see combat, except possibly on the Eastern Front, but more likely guarded POWs in Germany or guarded lines of communication in occupied France or Poland.

Does the above jib with your information?

If there is handwriting on the reverse, or on other items (postcards are especially informative), there are people haunting this Forum who can read that stuff.

Bob Lembke

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Alexandria;

A few more observations. The IV. Armeekorps was from the Magdeburg area, central Germany. Does that jibe with your information?

As a Landsturmmann, he would have been between 35 and 45 years old, unless he was somewhat disabled and he was medically deemed unable, for example, to keep up with the marching tempo of units of units at a higher level of fitness, like reserve units, or line units. Landsturm units usually did not see combat, except possibly on the Eastern Front, but more likely guarded POWs in Germany or guarded lines of communication in occupied France or Poland.

Does the above jib with your information?

If there is handwriting on the reverse, or on other items (postcards are especially informative), there are people haunting this Forum who can read that stuff.

Bob Lembke

Hello Bob,

You are absolutely correct about Magdeburg. My family has deep roots there, and in a neighboring town called Quedlinburg. I have several family members still living in those towns. My great-grandfather was born in 1874 in Magdeburg, so he would have been around 40 years old in the picture. I don't know exactly what he did during the war, but your information has been very helpful and interesting! Thank you! :D

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  • 4 weeks later...

The exact nomenclature for the battalion is:

3.Ldst.-I.-Ers.-Btl. IV A.K. (IV. 21)

Formed in August of 1914, the unit was assigned to general support of fourth Army Corps.

This article might give you some more info on Landsturm.

http://www.pickelhauben.net/articles/Landsturm.html

I hope this is somewhat helpful.

Thank you for helping me with this! The Landsturm article was very informative - I'm definitely bookmarking it to refer back to again. Very cool website also!

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