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Battle of Kemmel 23 April 1918 info sought


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I am researching an EK2 award document to a Gefreiter of Fussartillerie Battalion Nr. 156 awarded on 23 April 1918.

This artillery battalion was part of 10th Ersatz Div, which has campaign credit for the Battle at Mount Kemmel. Other than overview articles of the battle, I have found nothing specific on the activities of 10th Ers. Div on 23 April (it would be a long shot to find something specific to FussArt. Batl 156).

Any info concerning specifics of the 10th Ers. Div or the Fussartl Batl. 156 on 23 April 1918 would be sincerely appreciated.

Newspaper accounts of the day (NY Times Archive) constantly talk about the heavy artillery activity from both sides.

Any general info regarding the use of German artillery / tactics during the Battle of Kemmel would also be appreciated.

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Hi,

the 10th ED joined the battle on the 15th, so the award could have been earned anytime between then and the 23rd.

Theoretically even earler, but more likely during that period.

Chris, thanks for the reminder that the date on the document isn't necessarily the date of action. Based upon 251 Divs, I would agree that this was from 15-23 April - during the Battle of Lys.

Quite a bit of artillery was being fired during this period, prepping the German offensive actions. And of course, lots of Allied counter-fire. A lot going on that could have earned an EK2.

This is my first award doc research; so, I have no expectations. Would just like to come up with a general - yet plausible - story.

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Is all you have the single "loose" EK document?

10th Ersatz Division was the most jumbled composite division I have encountered for the First World War, with components from alllll over. 1914 right through 1918, always a mess of mixed units for truly bizarre award combinations.

There is always a chance he might have been a native of Sachsen-Meiningen, so post your document here. I should get there in the SMM Rolls about... June or July this year.

Edited by Rick Research
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I would hazard a guess that the Fuss Arty of the 10th ED was detached and serving as fire support independent of their division. Following the 10ED would for this reason would probably take you in the wrong direction.

It is the curse of Fuss Arty docs.... soooo often they are not where they should be.

You would need a lucky mention in the XX Bavarian Divisions history "...and the XX Foot Arty fired support for us..."

In the book of the heavy artillery there are 2 articles from other foot arty units, both are detached from their parent divisions...

Field Atry is soooo much easier.

I have a couple of 10ED docs, can you post this one to see?

best

Chris

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Actually, this reminds me of a number of age old "curse the foot artillery" threads we have had in the past.... along with other detached units the most difficult and frustrating to research. Field Arty is a whole different ballgame.....

I suspect you are right about the foot artillery being somewhat independent from the division at this point. From the published sources and from newspaper accounts of the time, artillery of all calibers were firing almost continuously during Lys. And with Bruchmueller involved, there likely was some centralized plan. Giving the volume of firing from anecdotal accounts, artillery almost certainly was not held in reserve and it is likely that all batteries were engaged regardless of what their division was doing.

On the other hand, it is my opinion, that positioning of batteries likely followed some relative connection to division sectors. I don't have evidence of this, but it makes some sense, at least to me... So, following the 10. ED might be a blind hole, but it's a starting point.

I really am only looking for a general story regarding artillery during Lys; since finding out what Gefreiter Euen himself and 3. Batterie, Fussartl Bn. 156 were doing is rather a long shot.

In this case, the search is as instructive as the potential result. If I can get even half good at the foot artillery, imagine how easy the field guns will be... :catjava:

I will try to get the doc posted later tonight; unfortunately, I don't have an Epson (yea, yea, yea :whistle:) and don't intend to go that route until I move back to the US. For now, I am dependent upon my wife and her camera. :banger:

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Ok, I admit I am quickly becoming confused... :speechless:

I think 10. ED was part of IV Armee, but can someone confirm this...

Stupid easy question: Was 10. ED part of IV Armee or VI Armee? :unsure:

Edited by IrishGunner
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