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Chris

Just had a chance to dig through some of my library and can give you an identification for the artillery piece shown in your posts 9, 11 and 23.

This weapon is the 10.5 cm Leichtes Feldhaubitze M98/09. This gun had a combat weight of 1.2 tons and fired a 28 pound shrapnel shell to a range of 6,300 metres. The gun elevated from -10 degrees to +40 degrees and traversed left and right 20 degrees. This weapon saw continuous use throughout the Great War after several modification and was still in use in the early stages of WW2.

Hope this helps and will see what I can find out for the other posts. :cheers:

Simon

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Regarding the weapon on the left of post 3 and in post 6 I believe this to be the 15cm Schwere Feldhaubitze SFH 13 with a combat weight of approximately 2.2 tons. The gun fired a 93 pounds HE shell to a range of 8,600 metres and the gun elevated from -4 degrees to +45 degrees with a traverse of 9 degrees left and right. :cheers:

Simon

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Not an expert here, but I will run at a few. I don't know the variants within a given caliber/gun type, like the models of the 15 cm schwere Feldhow.

# 1 - by the apparent shell diameter, I would say the light 10.5 cm field howitizer.

# 2 - The Fuss=Artillerie had 9 cm, 10 cm, 12 cm, 13 cm, and 15 cm Kanonen. All were classified as "heavy artillery". (The 10 cm gun did actually weigh more than the 15 cm heavy field howitzer.) In addition to German-made guns, they used considerable numbers of Russian and French guns, say in 12 cm, and the publications of the Reichsarchiv generally identify these in their tables of order of battle. Additionally, I was just reading Band VI of Der Weltkrieg 1914 bis 1918 yesterday, and it mentioned that in November 1914, when the ammunition stocks for the heavy guns in Flanders were running very low, they ordered that older models of guns of these calibers be rushed to the front, along with the plentiful supplies of shells on hand for these older guns, the guns arriving in about three weeks. Additionally, many fortress guns were taken from the forts, such as at Metz, put into some sort of carriage, if necessary, and rushed to the front. So the Germans were using many sorts of long guns from 9 cm to 15 cm. (Additionally the gunners of the Marine=Division and a few months later the Marine=Korps were also using naval cannon in land mounts; additionally one brigade of the 1. Marine=Division was naval gunners serving as naval infantry, but when Antwerp was captured they were used to man the guns of the captured Belgian forts.) So the Germans were using at least 10-12 models of guns of this general type, and I am not the guy to sort it out the details.

# 3 right - probably 15 cm Kanone.

# 4 - 15 cm schwere Feld=How. or possibly 21 cm Moerser.

But you need a gunner to sort out the details.

If this is useful I will poke thru the rest of them.

Bob Lembke

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# 9 - 75-77 mm mountain gun? Did any field guns have such a short barrel? Sometimes when a 75-77 mm field gun was converted to an "infantry gun" or "accompanging battery gun" (I have about 30 dictionaries, but unfortunately no English dictionary. When I was a "suit" I thought that I was a good speller, but I only had a good secretary.) the barrel was cut down for lightness, and smaller wheels fitted, as they were to be man-handled on the battle-field. Sometimes Russian 76.4 mm parapet guns, light to be man-handled about a fort, and captured in the forts in Polish Russia in 1915, were somewhat modified (e.g., better German sights) and made a good infantry gun (supposedly Sturm=Bataillon Nr. 5 (Rohr) liked them the most of the at least 5 models that they tried), but supposedly the Russian barrel steel wore out quickly. I think most captured guns used were long-barreled Fuss=Artillerie calibers. This allowed the firing off of the sometimes vast (e.g., Russia) amounts of Allied artillery ammunition captured early in the war.

#11 - Some mechanical details obscured, but almost certainly the same gun as # 9.

#12 - Is the shell bigger than 10.5 cm? Possibly something between 10.5 cm and 15 cm? Or 15 cm? But the gun seems, by size, not by detail, 77 mm to 10.5 cm. Perhaps the shell does not match the gun? The inscription suggests the West Bank of the Meuse at Verdun.

# 14 - See the comments on the Fuss=Artillerie in my earlier post. There is no person in the photo for comparison for sizing, but the barrel seems very thick, as well as long. Fuss=Artillerie 15 cm Kanone?

# 23 - 75-77 mm field gun.

# 24 - 21 cm Moerser.

Bob

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  • 4 weeks later...

Have no idea what this is/was..... but at least it amuses the infantry!

Looking at the guy on the left, I can't help noting the similarity of his uniform with that of my father in the attached 1916 photo- swedish cuffs, belt - and I have the field glasses with the exploding grenade engraved on the top! I am trying to discover in which unit he served and working hypothesis no.1 at this time is Feldartillerie. I know the litzen suggest he was an NCO, but could this uniform not have been that of a Faehnrich? He was just 20 and, in my view, mor likely to have been a (rather amatuer) officer cadert than a (tough, experienced) sergeant.....

Any comments greatly appreciated.

Herbert

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Herbert,

Any idea when this photo was taken? Do you know which state's army he served with (i.e. Prussia, Saxony, etc.)? With this combination of lace and the Portepee, he has to be a Fähnrich. A Sergeant would have had an NCO Troddel and the large Wappenknöpfe on the collar.

This is a privately purchased Waffenrock. That makes it a bit more difficult to positively identify the Schulterklappen. The piping appears to be white. So we can guess that if he was in the field artillery that is was from an army corps that had white as the corps strap color. If you have any more clues, we might be able to narrow it down a bit more.

Chip

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Herbert,

Any idea when this photo was taken? Do you know which state's army he served with (i.e. Prussia, Saxony, etc.)? With this combination of lace and the Portepee, he has to be a Fähnrich. A Sergeant would have had an NCO Troddel and the large Wappenknöpfe on the collar.

This is a privately purchased Waffenrock. That makes it a bit more difficult to positively identify the Schulterklappen. The piping appears to be white. So we can guess that if he was in the field artillery that is was from an army corps that had white as the corps strap color. If you have any more clues, we might be able to narrow it down a bit more.

Chip

Chip,

Many thanks for picking up on this so quickly.

The photo was taken in 1916 - in Hamburg where he lived. The Schulterklappen piping indeed appears/is white, which ties in with his Hamburg residence to suggest the Prussian army. A privately purchased Waffenrock?? such vanity...... although I guess that by 1916, they were issuing all kinds of unattractive stuff and Dad was always a bit of a sharp dresser.

So glad you came down on the Faehnrich option. (he just looks to me more like a wet-behind-the-ears officer cadet than a seasoned NCO).

Looking at likely feldartillerie regiments brought up FAR 9 [General-Feldmarschall Graf Waldersee (Schleswigsches)] as probably the closest to Hamburg being quartered in Itzehoe. That would have put him in the 18th Division. Alternatives may be FAR 45 (Lauenburgisches) based in Altona/Rendburg and the Feldartillerie-Ersatz-Abteilung Nr. 45 (Ersatz-Abteilung/Feldartillerie-Regiment Nr. 45) <LI>Feldartillerie-Ersatz-Abteilung Nr. 60 (Ersatz-Abteilung/Feldartillerie-Regiment Nr. 60) of the 33 Gemischte Ersatz-Birgade that I understand was drawn from Hamburg and Bremen.

I guess I need to explore army lists of these units. If he was indded an officer cadet and he survived the war, then he was probably commisiioned and should appear in records somewhere. Do you have any idea as to how I can get access to such docs?

In any event, I am taking up too much of your time and I just want to thank you for your explanation of his uniform as his rank was a real puzzle to me!

Best wishes

Herbert

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Herbert;

If he had become an officer pre-war he cound be found in Ranglisten, but the vast majority of officers created during the war were some sort of reserve officer, and are generally not found in published references. Some but not all units published unit histories after the war and typically an officer can usually be found in them. Unfortunately the Prussian Archives were burned in a fire raid in 1944 or 1945. You might want to give us his full name (did you?), someone might have a useful source.

Chip is an outstanding expert and collector on uniforms and especially shoulder straps from various units and hopefully he can figure something more out.

My paternal grand-mother lived in Hamburg and I have her address (there were family problems that made her not too active in family life), and I made a "cold call" (actually an e-mail) to the Hamburg City Archives and they were extremely helpful and looked up useful information I did not know. But their records from, I think, 1926 to 1944 were destroyed in the great Hamburg fire bombing. There was an annual city directory and possibly it might mention something about his military service; possible, not likely, like the 1917 edition mentioning his unit or rank.

Bob Lembke

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Herbert;

If he had become an officer pre-war he cound be found in Ranglisten, but the vast majority of officers created during the war were some sort of reserve officer, and are generally not found in published references. Some but not all units published unit histories after the war and typically an officer can usually be found in them. Unfortunately the Prussian Archives were burned in a fire raid in 1944 or 1945. You might want to give us his full name (did you?), someone might have a useful source.

Chip is an outstanding expert and collector on uniforms and especially shoulder straps from various units and hopefully he can figure something more out.

My paternal grand-mother lived in Hamburg and I have her address (there were family problems that made her not too active in family life), and I made a "cold call" (actually an e-mail) to the Hamburg City Archives and they were extremely helpful and looked up useful information I did not know. But their records from, I think, 1926 to 1944 were destroyed in the great Hamburg fire bombing. There was an annual city directory and possibly it might mention something about his military service; possible, not likely, like the 1917 edition mentioning his unit or rank.

Bob Lembke

Bob,

Thank you for your suggestion. I will certainly have a go at the Hamburg City Archives.

Herbert

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  • 2 years later...

Hello Chip, Bob and other uniform connaisseurs;

2 more pieces of the jig-saw in my search:

1) I found a pair of chromed spurs, of the "permanently fixed" variety i.e. a spike/nail designed to be driven into the boot heel and screw holes at the end of each "arm" of the spur, again, to fasten into the boot, and

2) Another photograph, in which I imagine that I can see those very spurs.

The original posting of my father's 1916 portrait drew a hypothesis that the uniform (NCO but without collar buttons) might indicate Faehnrich rank. Could the new photo attached - taken somewhat earlier - be that of an officer cadet??

Your thoughts on this appreciated.

Herbert

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  • 2 weeks later...

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