Jump to content

Recommended Posts

  • Replies 1.9k
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

And here's Bernhard Reddemann in the background, the big guy with a notebook and pencil, his overcoat on his shoulder. The flamethrower is the Kleif M.1914. Notice that he doesn't have a Totenkopf sle

IR92 tankard lid............

Brunswick HR17 flask...............(with Prussian skull !!)

Posted Images

If the FW troops felt that a totenkopf should be adopted by them as early as 1914, maybe the later 'approved' insignia just happened to be the Prussian type because of its old associations with the Crown Prince and his Leibhusaren.

In other words, the KP was 'rubber stamping' what the FW troops wanted, using his own preference of TK.

That's the theory of the Webmaster. Personally, I don't think the chalk signboard in question refers to the troops' preference for a symbol. For example, there are lots of chalk signboards with drawings of pistols, grenades, horseshoes, trench guns, etc. The flamethrower pioneers had their dedicated unit since October of 1914, but they didn't received the sleeve badge until July of 1916. That's quite a long time to go without having any special insignia, particularly since hand-grenade throwers and shock troops had been wearing their own informal badges since late 1915 or so.

I think when the Crown Prince recommended the Totenkopf to the Kaiser, the two of them were making an extremely Prussian statement about their own patronage of this regiment. I think the Prussian Totenkopf represented the elite status of the unit rather than its dangerous missions. On the other hand, I think the chalkboard Totenkopf drawn by the men of Flammenwerfer-Abteilung Reddemann is the equivalent of a skull-and-crossbones on a jar of rat poison or a sign on a minefield.

I have lots of photos of flamethrower pioneers taken prior to the awarding of the Prussian Totenkopf. You'd think that if they wanted to be identified with a Totenkopf at least a few of them would have put one on before July of 1916, especially since so many other assault troops were wearing unofficial badges by then. But so far the 1914 photo is the only one I've seen associating flamethrower pioneers with a Totenkopf before the official badge was awarded.

Link to post
Share on other sites

That's the theory of the Webmaster. Personally, I don't think the chalk signboard in question refers to the troops' preference for a symbol. For example, there are lots of chalk signboards with drawings of pistols, grenades, horseshoes, trench guns, etc. The flamethrower pioneers had their dedicated unit since October of 1914, but they didn't received the sleeve badge until July of 1916. That's quite a long time to go without having any special insignia, particularly since hand-grenade throwers and shock troops had been wearing their own informal badges since late 1915 or so.

I think when the Crown Prince recommended the Totenkopf to the Kaiser, the two of them were making an extremely Prussian statement about their own patronage of this regiment. I think the Prussian Totenkopf represented the elite status of the unit rather than its dangerous missions. On the other hand, I think the chalkboard Totenkopf drawn by the men of Flammenwerfer-Abteilung Reddemann is the equivalent of a skull-and-crossbones on a jar of rat poison or a sign on a minefield.

I have lots of photos of flamethrower pioneers taken prior to the awarding of the Prussian Totenkopf. You'd think that if they wanted to be identified with a Totenkopf at least a few of them would have put one on before July of 1916, especially since so many other assault troops were wearing unofficial badges by then. But so far the 1914 photo is the only one I've seen associating flamethrower pioneers with a Totenkopf before the official badge was awarded.

You could be right, Thomas.

It's just interesting to see the use of the TK by FW troops verified as early as 1914.

There could be other photos lurking around showing similar (even black!) TK use by them pre- the official TK.

Link to post
Share on other sites

This type of skull as on the chalk board was also associated with the military pre-1914. Not just a danger sign.

Yes, but the flamethrower detachment had no connection to any of the units that had used the Totenkopf before the war.

Link to post
Share on other sites

There could be other photos lurking around showing similar (even black!) TK use by them pre- the official TK.

Absolutely. I just think that the specific context of this Totenkopf is "BEWARE! POISON! DANGER!" rather than a connection to any other unit or tradition, especially since it's such a sloppily drawn image.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I just think that the specific context of this Totenkopf is "BEWARE! POISON! DANGER!" rather than a connection to any other unit or tradition, especially since it's such a sloppily drawn image.

And they were still drawing the 'official' version sloppily in 1917 !! :)

Link to post
Share on other sites

Every single photo except for one is mine. That's okay. Public forum and all that. I'll bet Chris Boonzaier did it.

I would have put better music......

Its irritating, but I always see it as follows.... the guy who did this this is a ######, you can see that right off the bat, secondly, although choosing a really crap song, he is probably not german "Fuhrer" ?? The problem (for me) is not that he scammed the photos, but to be associated with an idiot like him.

But... its like advertising, if nothing is done to bring outsiders in and interest them in our parts of the hobby, then in 10 years time it will be the same 5 of us interested in this kind of stuff sitting here measuring willies.

Maybe a complaint to youtube will get it erased? His screen name should be enough. How did you find it??

Link to post
Share on other sites

How did you find it??

I've got my own private thread going here:

http://1914-1918.inv...howtopic=175244

I was searching YouTube for WWI flamethrowers and up popped that video with all my photos. And a photo of your original Totenkopf badge.

It has less than 100 views, so in a sense YouTube has already taken it down.

Edited by Thomas W
Link to post
Share on other sites

By the way, since this is the Flammenwerfer-Totenkopf thread, in case anyone is interested I recently discovered that I have in my collection a photo of the father of one of the people who sometimes comments here, Bob Lembke.

Bob confirmed that this is indeed his father, Pionier Georg Lembke, 2. Kompagnie, Garde-Reserve-Pionier-Regiment. I never forget a face, and Bob had sent me an image of his father years ago. My photo shows Bob and the 1st Platoon of his company about to go into battle at Verdun, very likely on December 28, 1916, the day Bob's father was terribly wounded on the Dead Man.

My photo is on the left, and Bob's is on the right, taken two years later.

Edited by Thomas W
Link to post
Share on other sites

I've never seen a TK camo helm before ................ but anything is possible.

What's the one on the right? I have a card that has a similar design on a placard. My photo was taken in 1916.

Edited by Thomas W
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Blog Comments

    • Sounds great other than the Orange & Mango squash only because I prefer cran-pomegranate juice.
    • "(...) disgusting herbal concoction (...)" I took note of this description, to enrich my otherwise limited, English "Wortschatz"...
    • At work the standard indian tea such as PG tips is referred to as chimp tea. This goes back to the days when we had a Spanish girl working for us whose command of the English language was extremely limited. One lunch she said she was going to the shop could she get anything. I asked if she could get a pack of tea bags. She returned with some disgusting herbal concoction. I tried to explain what was required but without success. I then remembered PG tips had a picture of a chimpanzee on the packe
    • When I read Lapsang Souchong i decided to post something about these Tea . Many years ago I dont  know about Lapsang until I read James Michener book Centennial and the description of the savour of the Lapasang as a mix of tar and salt & smoked made me proof . It was exact ! and i liked it since then .
    • I have been known to drink Lapsang Souchong and Tea, Earl Grey, Hot... both "without pollutants". I normally have one mug of coffee in the morning, then spend the rest of the day drinking Orange & Mango squash (by the pint). Then evening comes and it's a pint, followed by red wine with dinner and sometimes a drop of Laphroaig afterwards.
×
×
  • Create New...