German WW2 war dead memorials

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Adam Carr
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by Adam Carr » 06 May 2012 13:01

Those are interesting photos of the memorial at Szczedrzyk / Sczedrzik. The Poles were assiduous in removing all traces of German culture from the areas such as Silesia annexed in 1945. In Breslau they even destroyed the German cemeteries. Yet this memorial survived, and was even added to after 1945. Why was this? The answer is that Sczedrzik is just east of Oppeln / Opole, which is the centre of the so-called Wasserpolnisch (Rozwodnieni Polacy), a people of mixed German-Polish culture who speak a local German dialect. These people were held to be "autochthonous Silesians" by the Poles and allowed to stay. They are still 3% of the population of Opole, and elect a German-speaking member to the Sejm. This website (http://www.denkmalprojekt.org/2009/scze ... 1u2_os.htm) gives a list of the names on the memorial, and it can be seen that many of them are Polish names, event though they served in the German Army. And what of Hitlersee (Hitler Lake)? This was an artificial lake created between 1933 and 1938, presumably as a make-work project for the unemployed. Today it's called Jezioro Turawskie (Lake Turawa). Sczedrzik was renamed Sczedrzik-Hitlersee in 1934, so this memorial must have been erected (or perhaps altered) after that date.

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henryk
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by henryk » 06 May 2012 20:27

The controversy about the monument was the use on it of the last German name of the village,Hitlersee. Polish papers viewed this as evidence of pro-Nazi/Hitler attitudes of the local German minority:
http://opole.gazeta.pl/opole/1,35086,741401.html
http://opole.naszemiasto.pl/archiwum/30 ... 001bc5478c
The latter article, dated 15 March 2002, states the name was on the memorial for two years, before being removed. I infer the memorial was put up after the war.
The article states (polished google translation):
The name Hitlersee originated in 1934, from a local Nazi activist, who wished to pay tribute to the leader of the Third Reich and also to erase the memory of a large group of people from Sczedrzika (the name of the village since time immemorial), who participated in the Silesian Uprisings
I suspect the soldiers, named on the memorial, were impressed in the German Army.

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Adam Carr
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by Adam Carr » 07 May 2012 02:13

No-one would have erected a monument in Poland (or anywhere else in Europe for that matter) after 1945 with the name "Hitlersee" on it. It must date from the 1930s, with the World War II names added later.

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henryk
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by henryk » 07 May 2012 18:59

How do you explain the "two years", and the fact that the leaders of the German minority denied knowledge of the word being there. Also why a outcry by the Polish media, if the word was no longer there.

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Paul Warzecha
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by Paul Warzecha » 07 May 2012 20:17

Sczedrzik war memorial with (Hitlersee) removed.jpg
From what I have found out about the Sczedrzik war memorial is that it was erected in the 1930's for the soldiers who died in World War 1, and it had the name Hitlersee on it. Then when the Russians invaded Silesia during World War 2, they wanted to blow it up, but the people said it was a religious monument because it had Saint Georg on it, so they did not destroy it. However they were made to cover over the name Hitlersee. Then later when they were cleaning it the cover fell off and the name Hitlersee became visible, and it caused a big controversy because the name Hitlersee was visible for over two years, so they had to carve it out completely.
What I don't understand is why telling the Russians it was a religious monument saved it, because the Russians were communist and against religion anyway, so they should have wanted to destroy it twice as much.
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German War Memorial in Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://i.imgur.com/l3v8Rcl.jpg
Old Postcard of Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://www.ozimek.pl/static/img/k01/not ... nnik_2.jpg

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Adam Carr
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by Adam Carr » 08 May 2012 14:31

St George is one of the patron saints of Russia.
But I still the real the monument survived is that it was connected with the Wasserpolen community of Opole, who were not classified as Germans by the Poles when all the Germans were expelled after 1945.

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Paul Warzecha
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by Paul Warzecha » 08 May 2012 15:47

Sczedrzik WW 1 names (with blacked out bars above WW 2 names).jpg
Here is a picture of the Sczedrzik war memorial that shows where they had to black out something on the tablets that were added for the WW2 names. I would like to know what was written on the tablets that they had to cover up?
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German War Memorial in Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://i.imgur.com/l3v8Rcl.jpg
Old Postcard of Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://www.ozimek.pl/static/img/k01/not ... nnik_2.jpg

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henryk
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by henryk » 08 May 2012 20:50

Here is another news article, my translation. It was really hard to translate. Paul Warzecha or anyone, you are welcome to provide corrections.
Gazeta Wyborcza.PL
http://wyborcza.pl/1,76842,7746359,Spra ... html[quote]
Sprawa Hitlersee
jon
2010-04-09, last modified 2010-04-08 16:42

To nazwa nadana miejscowości Szczedrzyk pod Opolem przez nazistowską administrację w latach 30. XX w. W tym czasie powstał tam też pomnik poświęcony poległym w I wojnie światowej, właśnie z nazwą z czasów hitlerowskich. Po wojnie zniknął, stanął znów w latach 90., ale nazwa Hitlersee (Jezioro Hitlera) została na nim zakryta.

Jednak pewnego dnia ktoś ją odsłonił, co nagłośniły media. Zarzucono MN, że chce powracać do dawnych symboli. Władze organizacji się od tej nazwy odcięły. Jednak niektórzy lokalni działacze przekonywali, że nazwy z lat 30. są historyczne i należy je zostawić na pamiątkę.

Działo się to niemal w samym środku batalii o kształt przywracanych po wsiach poniemieckich pomników. Przy wojewodzie opolskim powstała specjalna komisja, w której polska i mniejszościowa strona wypracowała zasadę, że pomniki można stawiać czy odnawiać, ale bez żadnych militarnych emblematów i bez nawiązań do czasów nazizmu, czyli także bez nazw ustanowionych za rządów Hitlera.

Spór toczył się również o Żelazny Krzyż, który jest niemieckim odznaczeniem już od czasów wojen napoleońskich, ale który Polakom kojarzy się z nazizmem. Ustalono, że Żelaznego Krzyża w kontekście II wojny światowej umieszczać się nie powinno.

Większość pomników na Opolszczyźnie została przystosowana do wymogów komisji, choć nie wszystkie.[/quote]
The Hitlersee Affair

This is the name given to the village, Szczedrzyk, near Opole, by the Nazi administration in the 1930's, At this time, there was also a monument to the fallen in World War I, with the place name of the Nazi era. After the war, it(ed ?) disappeared, returned in the 90's, but the name Hitlersee (Lake Hitler) stayed hidden on it.

But, one day, someone uncovered it, which was publicized in the media. MN charged that a return to the old symbols was wanted . The authorities of the organization removed the name. However, some local activists argued that the names of the 30's are historical and should be left in remembrance.

This happened almost in the middle of the battle for the character of the restored monuments in former German villages. The government established a special commission in the Province of Opole, in which Poles and the minority party developed a requirement that monuments can be erected or renewed, but without any military emblems and no references to the Nazi period; also without names originating during the rule of Hitler.

The dispute was also about the Iron Cross, which is a German award, ever since the Napoleonic wars, but which Poles associated with Nazism. It was found that the Iron Cross in the context of World War II should not be allowed.

Most of the monuments in Opole region have been adapted to the requirements of the commission, but not all.

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Paul Warzecha
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by Paul Warzecha » 09 May 2012 17:14

This is a website with some pictures of the German war memorials in Upper Silesia, that were put up by the German minority.http://www.lechnijakowski.com/mniejszos ... _foto.html The one in Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik-Ringwalde) has my distant relatives Josef Warzecha, Paul Mehlan, and August Mehlan, on it.
German War Memorial in Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://i.imgur.com/l3v8Rcl.jpg
Old Postcard of Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://www.ozimek.pl/static/img/k01/not ... nnik_2.jpg

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Paul Warzecha
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by Paul Warzecha » 10 May 2012 20:21

This is the website that has the names of the German soldiers from the Upper Silesian village of Kadlub Turawa (Katlub-Turawa or Fichten O/S) who died fighting in both WW1 and WW 2. It is very near the village of Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik-Ringwalde), so the soldiers Paul Warzecha and Theophil Warzecha, listed for WW2, could be distant relatives of mine.http://www.denkmalprojekt.org/2010/katl ... 1u2_os.htm
German War Memorial in Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://i.imgur.com/l3v8Rcl.jpg
Old Postcard of Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://www.ozimek.pl/static/img/k01/not ... nnik_2.jpg

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henryk
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by henryk » 10 May 2012 20:30

There are a lot of Warzecha in present day (2002) Poland: 7042
http://www.moikrewni.pl/mapa/kompletny/warzecha.html
Geographical distribution by county (powiat).
And about 1900 in Germany:
http://www.verwandt.de/karten/absolut/warzecha.html

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Paul Warzecha
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by Paul Warzecha » 11 May 2012 00:08

This is the German war memorial in the Upper Silesian village of Stare Siolkowice (Alt Schalkowitz-Alt schalkendorf). It has the name of Max Warzecha, listed on it.http://www.denkmalprojekt.org/2010/alt_ ... wk1_os.htm
German War Memorial in Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://i.imgur.com/l3v8Rcl.jpg
Old Postcard of Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://www.ozimek.pl/static/img/k01/not ... nnik_2.jpg

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Paul Warzecha
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by Paul Warzecha » 31 May 2012 19:49

Biestrzynnik War Memorial Names.jpg
Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik-Ringwalde) War Memorial.jpg
This is a list of the names on the German war memorial in the Upper Silesian village of Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik-Ringwalde). Josef Warzecha, Paul Mehlan, and August Mehlan were distant relatives of mine. The names of the two women and three men listed under "Ermorde (Murdered) 1945", were civilians who were killed by the Russians when they invaded the village, near the end of World War 2.
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German War Memorial in Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://i.imgur.com/l3v8Rcl.jpg
Old Postcard of Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://www.ozimek.pl/static/img/k01/not ... nnik_2.jpg

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Paul Warzecha
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by Paul Warzecha » 06 Aug 2012 18:27

This is my revised list of names on the German war memorial in the Upper Silesian village of Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik-Ringwalde). I found a better picture of the names and had to change a few of them, on my transcribed list.
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German War Memorial in Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://i.imgur.com/l3v8Rcl.jpg
Old Postcard of Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://www.ozimek.pl/static/img/k01/not ... nnik_2.jpg

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Paul Warzecha
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Re: German WW2 war dead memorials

Post by Paul Warzecha » 30 Oct 2012 20:32

Pictures of the German war memorial in the Upper Silesian village of Szczedrzyk (Sczedrzik-Hitlersee), the village my ancestors from Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik-Ringwalde), were baptized and went to church. :milwink:
http://eksploratorzy.com.pl/viewtopic.php?f=216&t=15124
Image
German War Memorial in Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://i.imgur.com/l3v8Rcl.jpg
Old Postcard of Biestrzynnik (Biestrzinnik/Ringwalde)http://www.ozimek.pl/static/img/k01/not ... nnik_2.jpg

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