Stug III at MOUEN - 29 Jun 44

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Tom from Cornwall
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Re: Stug III at MOUEN - 29 Jun 44

Post by Tom from Cornwall » 03 Apr 2020 13:16

Thanks for that, interesting.

Edited to add: Reading through Sam Wren's post I must say that this seems to me to identify the most likely option and tallies with Meyer's reporting that 21 Pz Div's support to the resistance against EPSOM around MOUEN involved a Pz Coy and an assault gun company. :thumbsup:

And also edited to add: Just checked in Zetterling's latest edition of Normandy 1944 and the attachment of a Funklenk coy to 21 Pz Div isn't mentioned. Strange though that Pz Lehr reported their attached Coy in the 1 June 44 Status Report to Inspector-General of Panzer Troops whereas 21 Pz Div apparently didn't (Zetterling references these reports in the respective sections). Which maybe supports Sheldrake's cynicism about 21 Pz Div's strength returns! :idea:

Regards

Tom
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Michael Kenny
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Re: Stug III at MOUEN - 29 Jun 44

Post by Michael Kenny » 03 Apr 2020 13:45

Checked the JJF book and both (fkl) 315 & (fkl) 316 have a spare wheel and length of track on the Stug superstructure side and the 2 nose-plates covered in track

Tom from Cornwall
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Re: Stug III at MOUEN - 29 Jun 44

Post by Tom from Cornwall » 03 Apr 2020 13:48

Michael,

"Checked the JJF book"?

Can you let me know the title - if there are any out there, that would keep me busy during these days of lockdown!

Regards

Tom

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jpz4
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Re: Stug III at MOUEN - 29 Jun 44

Post by jpz4 » 03 Apr 2020 14:23

Tom from Cornwall wrote:
03 Apr 2020 13:16
And also edited to add: Just checked in Zetterling's latest edition of Normandy 1944 and the attachment of a Funklenk coy to 21 Pz Div isn't mentioned. Strange though that Pz Lehr reported their attached Coy in the 1 June 44 Status Report to Inspector-General of Panzer Troops whereas 21 Pz Div apparently didn't (Zetterling references these reports in the respective sections).
I wouldn't read too much into that. Units seem to have had different ideas on their responsibility when it came to reporting on attached formations. Some provide great detail, others don't seem to bother at all. This can also be related to how strongly connected units were and if things were expected to change in the near future. When was the company ordered to become part of Pz.Abt.302 (Fkl)? (Zetterling mentions the order but does not include a date).

As for the book, I suppose that's this one: https://www.jjfpub.mb.ca/product/funklenkpanzer/
Last edited by jpz4 on 03 Apr 2020 14:26, edited 1 time in total.


Tom from Cornwall
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Re: Stug III at MOUEN - 29 Jun 44

Post by Tom from Cornwall » 03 Apr 2020 14:28

Thanks to you both. Off to look in my piggy bank!

Tom from Cornwall
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Re: Stug III at MOUEN - 29 Jun 44

Post by Tom from Cornwall » 03 Apr 2020 14:42

I found this mention in the war diary of 1 Corps DDME (WO171/274):
26 Jun
Instructions given to CREME 51 (H) Div to recover a GERMAN Remote-Controlled Eqpt type B4 from CRE 51(H) Div and back-load to G(Tech)2 Army. This eqpt is approximately the size of a Bren carrier, and is driven by a driver who dismounts when near his objective and then directs the eqpt forward by remote control. Explosive is dropped and the eqpt withdrawn from the scene under remote control.

27 Jun
DADME visited 153 Inf Bde Wksp and inspected the German Remote-Controlled Eqpt B4 referred to in yesterday’s War Diary.
The latter date matches with this IWM photo taken by Sgt Mapham:
IWM B6023 - Remote Control - 27 Jun 44 - Mapham - not MOUEN.PNG
So clearly being used in and around the 21 Pz Div area. I'll look out for any mention of them from EPSOM Int Sums.

Regards

Tom
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Richard Anderson
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Re: Stug III at MOUEN - 29 Jun 44

Post by Richard Anderson » 03 Apr 2020 15:33

jpz4 wrote:
03 Apr 2020 10:30
I think this settles the matter: the StuGs are probably from Pz.Kp.315 (Fkl). They were in the area and the footage supports that this unit's use of spare tracks and spare wheels on the side of the superstructure matches that of the wrecks.
Good call! I had forgotten completely about the FKL. It fits in with the probable strength of the company too, since it and 317. had four between them on 10 June. I suspect that was operational strength since they were supposedly issued ten each in August 1943. See also this excellent post from Timo almost exactly eighteen years ago! :D viewtopic.php?p=10249#p10249

If the company lost both of its operational StuG in this engagement it also explains why so little is heard of them...the remnants probably were withdrawn soon after since they reformed in Germany beginning 19 August.
FWIW, Sam also notes that Zetterling does not mention this company except once under Panzerabteilung (Fkl) 302, writing simply that the company was supposed to become part of the battalion together with Kp.317 and 4./301. This makes it easy to miss its service under the 21.Pz.Div. Zetterling's book tells very little about actual operations and is not supposed to do so. Something to keep in mind when trying to link units and vehicles to specific battles. ;-)
Exactly, and like my order-of-battle for "6 June" it is a snapshot of one point in time during a period of very dynamic movements and re-grouping.
"Is all this pretentious pseudo intellectual citing of sources REALLY necessary? It gets in the way of a good, spirited debate, destroys the cadence." POD, 6 October 2018

Richard Anderson
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Re: Stug III at MOUEN - 29 Jun 44

Post by Richard Anderson » 03 Apr 2020 19:33

In re-reading this and the various sources I realized that something is odd about Niklas' account. Check me on this, but this is what I have, based upon the records and some assumptions.

Pz.-Abtl. (Fkl.) 301. at Avesnes. Strength as of 31 May was 1,095, with 2 Pz.-III, 32 Stu.G.-III, and 146 B-IV, not including the 5 Tiger II and 3 Tiger I, with 4. Kp. 1.-3. Kp. were ordered to the Eastern Front on 3 June, but the order was cancelled upon the Allied invasion. 3. Kp. remained with 21. Pz.-Div. and fought with it in Normandy. 4. Kp. remained attached to Pz.-Lehr-Div. and fought with it in Normandy. It was intended to use 2., 3., and 4. Kp. in the formation of Pz.-Abtl. (Fkl.) 302., but that plan was dropped on 2 July until late in July when they finally moved to join Pz.-Abtl. (Fkl.) 302. Probably 2 B-IV held in reserve.

1. Kp. (Pz.-Kp. (Fkl.) 312.) Probably 7 Stu.G.-III, assuming 6 with 2. Kp., 10 with 3. Kp., and 9. with 4. Kp. Probably 36 B-IV like the other companies.
2. Kp. (Pz.-Kp. (Fkl.) 311.) The strength of 2. Kp. as of 1 June was given as 2 Pz.-III, 6 Stu.G.-III and 36 B-IV. The 2 Pz.-III were likely part of the Abteilung Stab reported with company. Niklas somehow figures this was the strength of 4. Kp., which is obviously incorrect.
3. Kp. (Pz.-Kp. (Fkl.) 315.) (ten Stu.G.-III) (attached to 21. Pz.-Div.) at Sassy, which fits attachment to 21. Panzer. Probably also 36 B-IV like the other companies.As of 22 June redesignated as 2./Pz.-Abtl. (Fkl.) 302. AHA (Stab I (1) No. 2720/44 geheim, 22 Juni 44. Pz.-Kp. (Fkl.) 315. was engaged with 21. Pz.-Div. in June (see: http://www.network54.com/Forum/47207/thread/1226235232/
4. Kp. (Pz.-Kp. (Fkl.) 316.) (attached to Pz.-Lehr) The company was equipped with 5 Tiger II, 3 Tiger I, 9 Stu.G.-III, and 36 B-IV remote-controlled demolition vehicles. The Tiger II were left at Chateaudun where they were destroyed in August and it is unclear whether or not the Tiger I were taken to Normandy. As of 1 July still had 7 Stu.G.-III operational. It was withdrawn late in July to join Pz.-Abtl. (Fkl.) 302.

Again, the 1 June strength report Niklas assumed was for 4. Kp. cannot be, since it in no way matches what 4. Kp., attached to Lehr, had.

The question is, was 301. minus its detachments actually attached to 2. Panzer as Niklas assumed? Or was only 2. Kp. (311.) and the two Stab Pz-III reported by 2. Panzer on 1 June actually attached? Was 1. Kp. (312.) actually attached somewhere else?

Otherwise, as I see it, Pz.-Abtl. (Fkl.) 302 was at Vouziers, but did not begin organizing until 22 June and was intended to comprise 4./Pz.-Abtl. (Fkl.) 301. (Pz.-Kp. (Fkl.) 316.), Pz.-Kp. (Fkl.) 315., and Pz.-Kp. (Fkl.) 317. viz.:

1. Kp. (4./Pz.-Abtl. (Fkl.) 301. (Pz.-Kp. (Fkl.) 316.))
2. Kp. (3./Pz.-Abtl. (Fkl.) 301. (Pz.-Kp. (Fkl.) 315.))
3. Kp. (Pz.-Kp. (Fkl.) 317.) (ten StuG-III)
4. Kp. (2./Pz.-Abtl. (Fkl.) 301. (Pz.-Kp. (Fkl.) 311.))

Or am I reading too much into scant data?
"Is all this pretentious pseudo intellectual citing of sources REALLY necessary? It gets in the way of a good, spirited debate, destroys the cadence." POD, 6 October 2018

Michael Kenny
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Re: Stug III at MOUEN - 29 Jun 44

Post by Michael Kenny » 03 Apr 2020 20:42

The book has only a sentence on (fkl) 315 and EPSOM saying the unit operated with 21 PD and 12th SS on 26-27-28 June 'in the area around Mouen'. The Stugs all seem to have 2 large boxes on (either side of) the engine deck-just like the wrecked Stug.
fkl 315 ..Stug .jpg
Stug M ..,.jpg
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Michael Kenny
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Re: Stug III at MOUEN - 29 Jun 44

Post by Michael Kenny » 03 Apr 2020 20:58

Boxes shown here
MAR2020010.jpg
MAR2020009.jpg
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Michael Kenny
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Re: Stug III at MOUEN - 29 Jun 44

Post by Michael Kenny » 03 Apr 2020 21:28

This is what Dan Taylor says about the Stug photo:

StuG III. Caption says that it was knocked out whilst attacking B Sqn. War Diary implies this must have been in the action on 28 June near Mouen.

B Squadron 3CLY is the Unit.

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jpz4
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Re: Stug III at MOUEN - 29 Jun 44

Post by jpz4 » 03 Apr 2020 22:23

Sounds like a fairly clear ID. Better quality photo could show if it has holes/attachments for the debris cover above the Kastenblende. Without it we can probably rule out the Pz.Brigades. Question remains if the caption came with a date....? Without out I guess we could look for a much longer period and wider area.

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Re: Stug III at MOUEN - 29 Jun 44

Post by Michael Kenny » 03 Apr 2020 22:56

jpz4 wrote:
03 Apr 2020 22:23
. Question remains if the caption came with a date....? Without out I guess we could look for a much longer period and wider area.
The film is dated 29/6/44 . The still photo is from The Sale Collection, photos taken by Major sale CO of 3rd CLY. Dan Taylor is the curator of The Sharpshooters collection and though Sale did not date the photos you can work out the dates/sequence they were taken. It would be a stretch to say the photo was taken on a specific date but we know it was in a 2-3 day window and with a caption from the CO of the Unit claiming the kill.

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