Flak towers and U bahn pics?

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Max
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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby Max » 19 Apr 2009 01:40

crolick wrote:Were those monsters efficient?! I mean - did they prevent centres of Vienna and Berlin from being bombed? Anyone know how many bombers were downed by Flakturme?!


Flak towers (German: Flaktürme) were large anti-aircraft gun blockhouses used by the Luftwaffe to prevent overflights of key areas in certain cities in World War II. They also served as air-raid shelters for tens of thousands of people and to coordinate air defence. With concrete walls up to 3.5 metres thick, these towers were considered to be invulnerable to attack with the usual ordnance carried by Allied bombers, though it is unlikely that they would have withstood Grand Slam bombs which successfully penetrated much thicker reinforced concrete. Aircraft generally appeared to have avoided the flak towers.

http://www.german-architecture.info/GERMANY/TEN/TEN-NS.htm

Max

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Adam Carr
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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby Adam Carr » 21 Apr 2009 06:33

They certainly didn't prevent the centres of Berlin, Hamburg and Vienna being bombed. Berlin and Hamburg were virtually flattened and Vienna heavily damaged (it was a much longer flight from England). The towers may have prevented as many bombers successfully delivering their bombs on their targets as would otherwise have been the case. There was a marked tendency for bombers to drop their bombs early in order to get out of the flak as quickly as possible. This led to the pathfinders dropping their flares further along the flight-path to compensate for this tendency. But in the last few months of the war the German defences were simply overwhelemed by the scale of the Allied attacks. The last great attack on Berlin, the 4 February 1945 raid that destroyed Wilhelmstrasse, was virtually unopposed.

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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby Alanmccoubrey » 21 Apr 2009 17:16

Adam, Did we not bomb Vienna from Italy, in which case it was quite a short trip.
Alan

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crolick
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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby crolick » 22 Apr 2009 22:56

Thanks Max for interesting link :)

Adam - do you know any books or articles on Vienna Flakturme?

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Adam Carr
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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby Adam Carr » 23 Apr 2009 06:00

Alan, I assume they bombed Vienna from bases in Italy, but I don't know for certain. Vienna was certainly not as badly damaged as Berlin and other German cities. Maybe by late in the war they had decided to lay off Austria because Austria was going to be detached from Germany and not treated as an enemy state, but that's only speculation.

Crolick, no I don't sorry. I didn't see any in Vienna but then I didn't really look.

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crolick
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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby crolick » 23 Apr 2009 09:46

Adam Carr wrote:Alan, I assume they bombed Vienna from bases in Italy, but I don't know for certain. Vienna was certainly not as badly damaged as Berlin and other German cities. Maybe by late in the war they had decided to lay off Austria because Austria was going to be detached from Germany and not treated as an enemy state, but that's only speculation.

Crolick, no I don't sorry. I didn't see any in Vienna but then I didn't really look.
As for the first part - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombing_of ... rld_War_II
I know that this is wiki but at least gives point to start with :wink:

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Adam Carr
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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby Adam Carr » 03 May 2009 12:29

This interesting photo shows the Berlin Zoo flaktower some time after the surrender in 1945. It seems to have taken more than one attempt to demolish this tower. This was certainly the case with the Humboldthain tower, which the French tried to blow up several times.
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robc22
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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby robc22 » 03 May 2009 23:45

Vienna was a popular target for U.S. 15TH AF bombers flying from italy. oil refineries and depots as well as axis airfields were the usual targets. The flak towers were a real pain in the butt to allied authorties after the war. It took repeated attempts to remove them.I believe they didn't completly get rid of the berlin zoo tower untill the early fifties. They used all the rubble from the tower in some public works project.

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dmeephd
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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby dmeephd » 04 May 2009 12:59

There is an excellent book on the subject of FlaK Towers.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0764303988
David Martin, Ph.D.

ramms
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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby ramms » 19 Jul 2009 16:25

Adam Carr wrote: Berlin Zoo flaktower

Image

Mikeo1938
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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby Mikeo1938 » 16 Aug 2009 23:10

The lead article in issue No. 124 of After the Battle carries an article entitled GERMAN AIR RAID SHELTERS by Michael Foedrowitz. This is a detailed investigation into the varied and unusual types of air raid shelter constructed in Germany using those in Hannover as an example.

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Mikeo1938
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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby Mikeo1938 » 16 Aug 2009 23:17

Forgot to mention that the article describes what it was like to be in such a bunker during a raid ... how people ran to the bunkers carrying their bags but would throw them away if they realised they had to get inside fast. Sometimes the doors would be slammed shut, leaving unfortunate people to the mercy of the bombs. People would stand shoulder to shoulder ... when the ventilation broke down, the walls would run with condensation from their bodies.

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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby schwarzr » 08 Sep 2009 19:33

to Simon K, I believe the architect was Frederick Tamms

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Annelie
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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby Annelie » 08 Sep 2009 21:04

Watched an old black and white movie made in 1950......called The Big LIft 1950

http://www.answers.com/topic/the-big-lift-1

There is a scene in which the Zoo Flak Tower is shown and also the Brandenburg Gate, Aldon Hotel and lots of recognizable buildings around Berlin. I wondered how they could possibly film in such devastation but it certainly was filmed on location in Berlin.

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Re: Flak towers and U bahn pics?

Postby schwarzr » 12 Sep 2009 13:37

An interesting book is " THE FLAK TOWERS IN BERLIN, HAMBURG AND VIENNA 1940-1950" by Michael Foedrowitz. isbn number 9780764303982


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