Recommended Reading

Discussions on all aspects of WW1, WW2 and Inter-War Era reenactment.
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Drew Maynard
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Recommended Reading

Post by Drew Maynard » 07 Dec 2006 15:13

Gentlemen, Ladies:

This thread is an area for members to recommend books and other works they've found especially useful or interesting on Second World War reenactment.

The reference should include a brief summary of the work, and why you think other readers would find it useful.

Once it starts to fill up, I will adjust it into a large post and make it a sticky.

If you buy through the below links you not only get the books you want but you also support the forum while shopping!
* (UK, Germany, France, Canada)
* Abebooks
* Barnes & Noble

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Post by craigob » 07 Dec 2006 15:17

Personal Effects of the German Soldier in WWII

Note from CRAIGOB:

So you think the brown paper wrapped food with inkjet printed labels and repro condom wrapper will do?.. check out this book and see what was carried by all branches of the service, This will open your eyes and can only add to your own personal impression

German soldiers, sailors and airmen of World War II went to war with a fascinating variety of personal effects in their pockets and knapsacks. Chris Mason’s new book explores this most personal, private, and often poignant aspect of military history, through a study of the small items German soldiers used in the barracks and in the trenches for work, hygiene, eating, relaxation, and survival. This study of these small personal items, presented with hundreds of full-color and period photos, provides a remarkable window into the daily lives of men caught in the maelstrom of history.


Binding : Hard Cover
Publisher : Schiffer
Author : Chris Mason
Illustrations : over 320 color and b/w photographs
Size : 9" x 6"
Pages : 176 ... ductId=553

Its also on ebay if you look for it
Last edited by craigob on 07 Dec 2006 16:18, edited 2 times in total.

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Drew Maynard
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Post by Drew Maynard » 07 Dec 2006 15:23

Camouflage Uniforms of the Waffen-SS, by Michael Beaver
ISBN: 0887408036

this book, a beautiful hardcover compendum with over 1,000 period photos of examples of camouflage and their deployment, is a must, for comparison of reproduction items for the Waffen-SS reenactor.

Uniforms of the Waffen-SS, by Michael Beaver
Volumes 1 to 3 cover pre-war to 1945 of all branches of the combat branch of the Waffen-SS, a standard reference for uniform enthusiast.

Soldat: The World War II German Reenactor Guide and Combat Uniform & Equipment Reproductions Volume XIC, by Cyrus Lee

Soldat Volume 3; Equipping the German Foot Soldier in Europe: 1944-1945, by Cyrus Lee


All three of these pocket books are invaluable for examples and reference points of period original and reproduction standards for reenactors.

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Post by moses » 09 Dec 2006 08:03

this has to be my favorite: ... 23-2285515

German Army Uniforms of World War II
by Wade Krawczyk
Hardcover: 128 pages
Publisher: Crowood; New edition (November 24, 2002)
Language: English
ISBN: 186126268X

It's a photo study of many different original uniforms on modern models, not too much text, but lots of fun to look at. Presented in two-page sets with the theme of "this is what a soldier doing this job in this year would have looked like" with a description of his uniform components and accessories.
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Post by Appleknocker27 » 26 Sep 2007 19:54

On the German Art of War: Truppenfuhrung
Condell, Bruce & Zabecki, David T.

For those of you who aren't familiar, this is the English reprint of the German Army's doctrinal manual. It's paramount to read this as a cornerstone to your understanding of the WWII German Army thought process. Simply put- Doctrine is how an Army thinks and acts. A clear understanding of the basic priciples in this manual will put you light years ahead of the average reenactor and into the mindset of a WWII Deutches Heer soldat. When reading it understand this:
Manual = Guide
Regulation = Law

Regulations are written for wear of the uniform, code of conduct, etc. and are not written for field operations, that's what manuals are for and they are guides, not templates.

Truppenfuhrung H.Dv.300 was the Heer's keystone manual in WWII. You need it to understand the branch specific manuals it supports (Infantry, Panzer, Artillery, etc.) because it defines the language and terms used in them.

Lone Sentry also has a huge wealth of useful information:

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Post by metzger76 » 26 Dec 2007 23:40

Along a similar line as that of Appleknocker, I found these books to provide the reader with an excellent grasp as to the tactical and operational philosophy of war the German 'brought forth unto the world'.

German military theory of WWII actually can trace it's roots back to WWI (and even further) and I find these give a good idea on why the Germans were so much better at the tactical and operational level of war.

Stormtroop Tactics by Bruce Gudmundsson
A break-down of how the Germans learned and developed their response to trench warfare. In other words, why the German developed tactics rather than tanks to defeat their enemies.

Command or Control? by Martin Samuels
A comparison of German and British tactical philosophies on the Western Front. The Germans were adroit and flexible, the Brits were slow and plodding. Sound familiar?

The Roots of Blitzkring: Hans von Seeckt and German Military Reform
Insight as to how Hans von Seeckt prepared the German Army to expand beyond the 100,000 Reichswehr and why it helped the German officer corps transform itself for WWII.

The Breaking Point by Robert Doughty
This is the Western Front again except in 1940 at Sedan. It describes how the Germans, using Manstein's Fall Gelb and the organizational flexibility of the Wehrmacht exploited the breakthrough at Sedan to defeat the the Top-down, HQ-oriented paralyzed French Army in 1940. A great look into the epic clash between the schools maneuver and firepower.

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Dare Furor
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Re: Recommended Reading

Post by Dare Furor » 24 Apr 2008 19:03

Stein, George H., The Waffen SS: Hitler’s Elite Guard at War: 1939-1945, Cornell University Press, Ithaca and London, 1984.

ISBN (International Standard Book Number): 0-8014-9275-0

While helpful for the Waffen SS re-enactor, it is even more so for those of us who do not choose that portrayal. I found this book invaluable for a basic understanding of what the Waffen SS was and was not. ... 0801492750 ... if5A&hl=en

Dare Furor
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Cherokee Blue
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Re: Recommended Reading

Post by Cherokee Blue » 10 Oct 2008 17:47

Here's one that started out as a TM issued by the War Department in 1945;
Handbook on German Military Forces.
635 pages
ISBN: 0-8071-2011-1
dtd: 1995
Louisiana State University Press
available through Amazon.
Excellent reference.


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Re: Recommended Reading

Post by dog green 1 » 11 Feb 2009 00:58

Feldbluse: The German Army Field Tunic, 1933-1945 A superb insight into the tunics used by the German Army and the many variations and changes it went through. Every re-enactor and arm chair general should own one, especially when people start the whole 'Your tunic doesn't look like an original because.....'

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Re: Recommended Reading

Post by KodeBlau » 13 Dec 2009 17:02

Infantry Tactics of the Second World War by Stephen Bull & Gordon L. Rottman
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Krieg ist Frieden
Freiheit ist Sklaverei
Unwissenheit ist Stärke

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Re: Recommended Reading

Post by jtemple507 » 08 Feb 2013 13:21

Can we get some reference on Allied reenacting, too, please? -Jeremiah
Shooting 'em down in flames!

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