Italian Semoventes in service with german Fallschirmjägers

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him.rudkjoebing
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Italian Semoventes in service with german Fallschirmjägers

Post by him.rudkjoebing » 25 Apr 2008 20:23

Hi everybody.

I hope someone might be able to shed a little light on a possibly somewhat sticky subject. In vol. 15 of Battle Orders, "German Airborne Divisions: Mediterranean Theatre 1942 - 45" by Bruce Quarrie, published by Osprey on page 35 there is mentioned a Sturmgeschütsbrigade 11 (or maybe II in roman numerals) attached to 1. Fallschirm-Korps, mainly eqipped with italian selfpropelled anti-tank guns. Its first action was in the fierce battle for the bridgehead at Anzio in january 1944.

Try as I might, I have been unable to find further information on this unit (including Lexikon der Wehrmacht and "Panzer Colours III" with its special section on Sturmgeschütz units), so I hope someone in this forum might help me with info, possibly photos, of the equipment of this unit including a possible marking.

I am eagerly and hopefully looking forward to any information.

Kind regards

Henrik

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Alain Verwicht
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Re: Italian Semoventes in service with german Fallschirmjägers

Post by Alain Verwicht » 26 Apr 2008 05:32

Hello Henrik
No Semoventes for the Fallschirmjäger's units, only italians armoured cars.The Fallschirm-Panzerjäger-Abteilung 1 had '' Marder '' self-propelled guns ( II and III M )
In Italy, Semoventes was used by HG-Division, StuG.-Brigade 314 and several big units of the Heer.
Best regards.
Alain Verwicht

Martin Block
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Re: Italian Semoventes in service with german Fallschirmjägers

Post by Martin Block » 26 Apr 2008 20:33

Alain,

that's not correct I'm afraid!

a) Just recently a very interesting article about Fallsch.Stu.Gesch.Brig. 11 has been posted on this forum, see here:
http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic. ... 2#p1202682
With regard to what has been written in the first chapter about Italian StuG I can confirm that from my available documents.

b) The 1. Fallsch.Jg.Div. did have Italian StuG available in the spring of 1944!

According to the monthly reports of the Höh.Pz.Offz. of A.O.K. 10 he held a first meeting with Hptm. Veth (or Voth?) the CO of Stu.Gesch.Abt. 1. Fallsch.Jg.Div. on 3.3.1944. On the next day the full unit arrived (possibly coming from Pz.Ausb.Abt. Verona, but that is not exactly clear) and was based in a village named as S. Benedetto at first. On 11.3.1944 the Höh.Pz.Offz. inspected the unit to check its combat readiness and on 17.3.1944 it arrived in the sector of the 1. Fallsch.Jg.Div.. The divisional 'Kriegsgliederung' dated 1.4.1944 shows that it did not become part of Fallsch.Pz.Jg.Abt. 1 but was directly subordinated to divisional HQ. The vehicle type is just given as StuG (ital.) 7,5 cm without further specification.

The unit had arrived with 14 StuG (ital.) 7,5 cm but between 11.3. and 15.3.1944 it was reduced to 13. Since it was still behind the front at that time I assume that this had technical reasons. 1 replacement - or the same repaired gun - arrived between 29.4. and 3.5.1944.

Between 17. and 24.5.1944 the Stu.Gesch.Abt. 1. Fallsch.Jg.Div. lost 5 StuG (ital.) due to enemy action and 2 more until 31.5.1944. Another 4 were lost between 7.6. and 10.6.1944 and the remaining 3 between 11.6. and 17.6.1944. Thus ended the short career of Stu.Gesch.Abt. 1. Fallsch.Jg.Div.. The unit was not established again.

In early 1945 again 2 StuG (ital.) show up with the 1. Fallsch.Jg.Div. in Pz.Lage overviews compiled by the Gen.Qu., but since they cannot be confirmed in the divisional reports from the same time period these may be just wrong entries.

Martin Block

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Alain Verwicht
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Re: Italian Semoventes in service with german Fallschirmjägers

Post by Alain Verwicht » 27 Apr 2008 04:07

Hello Martin
Afraid ? Sorry...
Thank you very much for these precisions on the short '' story '' of the Fallschirm-StuG.-Abteilung 1.
For the Fallschirm-StuG.-Brigade 11 ( and many others ) Fallschirm is only an '' honorific '' name...
Best regards.
Alain Verwicht

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Peter H
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Re: Italian Semoventes in service with german Fallschirmjägers

Post by Peter H » 27 Apr 2008 06:56

From Purnell's History of the Second World War.

Cassino sector
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Alain Verwicht
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Re: Italian Semoventes in service with german Fallschirmjägers

Post by Alain Verwicht » 27 Apr 2008 07:05

Hello Peter
Thank you.
Please, have you the unit of this 10,5 Semovente ?
Best regards.
Alain Verwicht.

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Peter H
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Re: Italian Semoventes in service with german Fallschirmjägers

Post by Peter H » 27 Apr 2008 08:50

Alain,no idea.

However the famous Stug III dug into the Coninental Hotel at Cassino was part of Sturmgeschuetzabteilung 242.

Photos here from vonder: http://www.zweiterweltkrieg.org/phpBB2/ ... php?t=1110

Image

Image

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Peter H
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Re: Italian Semoventes in service with german Fallschirmjägers

Post by Peter H » 27 Apr 2008 09:33

From Marco, wehrmacht-awards.com

Semovente destroyed by Polish II Corps,May 1944
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Alain Verwicht
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Re: Italian Semoventes in service with german Fallschirmjägers

Post by Alain Verwicht » 27 Apr 2008 09:41

Yes Peter. Ok for this unit...
I have a german card ( a copy of BA-MA of course ) with positions of the 1. Fallschirmjäger-Division the 26 April 1944.
With two StuG.'s units : the 3. / Sturmgeschütz-Abteilung 242 and Sturmgeschütz-Abteilung 1046.
For me, the well-camouflaged Semovente M 43 105 / 25 belong to this unit. A Battterie of the Panzerjäger-Abteilung 46 ( 44. Reichsgrenadier-Division '' Hoch und Deutshmeister '' )
But, it's a suggestion :)
Best regards.
Alain Verwicht.

Martin Block
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Re: Italian Semoventes in service with german Fallschirmjägers

Post by Martin Block » 27 Apr 2008 16:02

That could be correct because the Stu.Gesch.Abt. 1046 (Inf.Div. H.u.D.) had been equipped with 8 Stu.Gesch. 7,5cm lang (ital.) and 12 Stu.Gesch. 10,5cm kurz (ital.) in January 1944. The Stu.Gesch.Abt. 1. Fallsch.Jg.Div. didn't have Stu.Gesch. 10,5cm kurz (ital.) and Stu.Gesch.Brig. 242 had German StuH 42.

BTW Stu.Gesch.Abt. 1046 was an interesting unit since in addition to the Italian Stu.Gesch. it also included a platoon with 3 German StuG III L/48 until late April 1944.

Martin Block

him.rudkjoebing
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Re: Italian Semoventes in service with german Fallschirmjägers

Post by him.rudkjoebing » 29 Apr 2008 07:53

Hi again.

Thank you all for the abundance of reaction to my question. It seems that the question indeed was a rather sticky one, and that my doubts were wellfounded.

Kind regards

Henrik

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