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Remembered Today:

Marcin FELEDZIAK 1897 - Infanterie Regiment 171- Meuse- Argonne 1918


Martin Feledziak

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On 01/11/2019 at 14:05, Martin Feledziak said:

from page 102 "To Conquer Hell"

 

"Sweezey, the regiment's only unwounded officer, composed a message to division headquarters describing the attack's failure.

With the telephone lines cut and no runners available, he seized a pigeon, tied the message to it’s leg and let it go.

 

The bird flew up into a tree and stayed there all night."

 

 

Cher Ami he was not!

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Martin Feledziak
On 02/11/2019 at 16:16, helpjpl said:

page 171

 

Thanks JP

Nice to see they were using the same maps in the History of the 126th Infantry. Also amazing to see just how many soldiers went out to Germany after the Armistice.

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Martin Feledziak
On 02/11/2019 at 18:47, JOVE23 said:

Cher Ami

 

That was a bird which certainly did it's duty. flew 25 miles in 25 minutes to deliver the message which saved a good many men.

 

Bird.JPG.b9f0822bcca69cd5616e9ec93e6c6221.JPG

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  • Martin Feledziak changed the title to American 32nd Division Meuse Argonne 360 Ariel panorama with notations.
Martin Feledziak

The below image is from Greatwar 360.com.

If you follow the link it will open a 360 of the area which is also zoomable. There are notations and if you scroll down a large narative too.

 

https://greatwar360.com/meuse-argonne-american-cemetery/

 

Or browse from the main page.

https://greatwar360.com/

548152023_32ndDivision.jpg.bdfa21be3e0d535beeacb05ac5093fbd.jpg

 

 

Edited by Martin Feledziak
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  • Martin Feledziak changed the title to American 77th Division - Meuse Argonne and another reluctant pigeon
Martin Feledziak
On 02/11/2019 at 18:47, JOVE23 said:

Cher Ami he was not!

 

according to page 232 "To Conquer Hell"

 

Whittlesey decided to release his last pigeon in an attempt to stop a barrage from their own artillery.

"Our artillery is dropping a barrage directly on us. For heavens sake stop it"

 

initially as soon as the message was affixed to her leg Cher Ami also went up into  a tree and started preening herself.

Whittlesey and his men hurled debris at the stubborn pigeon but it was not too bothered.

 

Finally a private climbed the tree shaking the branches. The bird eventually took off circled two or three times then headed South.

 

 

Edited by Martin Feledziak
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  • 5 weeks later...
Martin Feledziak

I am going to suggest that this is my Grandfathers WW1 trunk. It stands to reason that all soldiers would need to have some personal items with them on the front line.

This is a family item which my Father used as a tool box. 

 

Both my Father and his Father are not around to ask.

 

I have added a 6 inch rule for scale.

IMG_5656.JPG

IMG_5658.JPG

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"Our friend" Fritz Limbach stated in his letters that he had to burn all the letters he received "because he couldn't lug them around all the time", and that all his belongings, on the front line, fitted into his rucksack.

Sorry to destroy a family-lore, but I don't think this trunk made it to the front-lines. Could well have been used to keep his stuff back at home, though.

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Martin Feledziak
57 minutes ago, JWK said:

rucksack

 

Greetings JWK.

 

that is exactly my thinking where did they keep their “stuff”. Clearly they would not be allowed to go into the front line trench with any personal bag, rucksack or case thing. That would be held in the reserve line, baggage train etc. I don’t know I am just floating a theory. 

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From what I understand a soldier's stuff was to be with the soldier himself at all times. There were no luggage-depots.

But then: where did they keep all those rucksacks in the forward trenches? In the dug-outs?

 

The trunk itself could have been used during training? There they were static for a given amount of time, and had "more" space to themselves.

Fritz writes on his last day of training:
 

Quote

 

"So tomorrow we will be really leaving. When and where to: nobody knows. We have all been completely kitted out, and will have roll call this afternoon in full marching outfit. So complete with the backpack with everything in it and hanging from it.

I find the weight of the backpack really not that back breaking as is always depicted. On the other hand I find the backpack very small. Still we have the bigger size you always see, not the small black one. So you will find that I send back a lot of things that you might think I could have taken with me easily. But it is really impossible to stuff anything more in. Even now two men have to sit on it in order to close it.

I will also send back the undergarments I took with me. The ones we got here are more useful and better quality. Very good stuff.  I’ll send you the suitcase tomorrow. The key is enclosed. "

 

 

Two snippets from that same letter of the 2nd February 1915:

Quote

I will give this letter to Mrs Mais, who is still here. She will take the letter with her to Barmen and post it there. An added advantage is that in this way I bypass the censor in Geldern, and can write you anything I like.

 

and

Quote

Please post the enclosed letters. I’d like to take advantage of this convenient opportunity.

 

Edited by JWK
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Martin Feledziak
19 hours ago, JWK said:

suitcase

 

Remember this was early in the war so logistics were still being worked out. I bet the suitcase which Fritz sent back would be something similar. I have seen other such cases. Certainly Egbert's Grandfather had a trunk in 1918  from the excellent " This is the secret of Granddads trunk" thread. BUT he was acting Officer so perhaps he had that privilege.

 

I just don't know - All guesswork on my part.

 

I found the below with random image searches.

 

1033704652_WoodensuitcaseofMichaelDraek(1).jpeg.05d5284ed82e119d440d91567d1d9301.jpeg

 

This one looks so much like ours but I think this is much later.

 

Wehrmacht-Soldaten-Koffer-Aus-Holz-Von-Ostfront-Russ.jpg.a4842fe9c6bebbfe580db590e658470f.jpg

 

 

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I rechecked what Fritz wrote: "Den Koffer werde ich Euch morgen zurücksenden.", and "Koffer" can be translated as suitcase or trunk.(or indeed suitcaseS or trunkS)

As for the logistics: mail service did well, they complained when it took three(!) days for letters/parcels to arrive.

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  • 1 month later...
Martin Feledziak

I have now read "To Conquer Hell"

The Battle of Meuse- Argonne 1918

by Edward G LENGEL.

 

A worthy read indeed.

Appears a good overview of the American Divisions and their roles.

Some fascinating individual accounts too.

 

1491394580_toconquer.jpeg.bb748acb3c49d4fde24cf0918c9242df.jpeg

 

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  • 2 months later...
Martin Feledziak

I am not a big user of Twitter - Someone sent me a link to a box.

 

A true flower story. In 2011, Clement was clearing out his Fathers flat after he died. He was surprised to find this old wooden box which had belonged to his Grandfather during war. Clement knew nothing about his Grandfather other than being wounded, captured & a prisoner in WW1.

 

EQPk4ByWkAAL9yt.jpg.7d9b558747d3e1c211f881e272ec36b0.jpg

 

 

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Wow!

 

PS for fellow readers: this is not just any old WW1 wooden box.

Click on the picture in the tweet for the whole story!

 

 

 

Edited by JWK
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  • 5 months later...
Martin Feledziak

The 5th October marks the day Max Polak was killed defending a position in Chen Sec Woods.

IR171 were in the environs of Robinette Farm- also known as Transvaal Farm.

 

 

340161823_october1918.JPG.a99bf465e654cbd4ddfc76b0039018ec.JPG

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  • 2 weeks later...
Martin Feledziak

Grandfather's Birthday was 14th October 1897. 

And so to celebrate his 21st Birthday in 1918 ( 102 years ago today )

 

He had to face the American 32nd Division.

 

631205130_October14th.JPG.71639ee605aa9cbb2471455374a6dce8.JPG

 

 

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