Question about the Molotov Cocktail

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Laurance.Robinson
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Question about the Molotov Cocktail

Post by Laurance.Robinson » 24 Sep 2019 14:05

Currently writing an entry for Tanks Encyclopedia looking at the Molotov Cocktail.

I have seen the date 3rd/4th and 7th of December being cited for when the first official manufactured Molotovs arriving on the battlefield.

Does any one of which date is correct?

Regards as always,

Lare

Mangrove
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Re: Question about the Molotov Cocktail

Post by Mangrove » 03 Oct 2019 15:07

Laurance.Robinson wrote:
24 Sep 2019 14:05
I have seen the date 3rd/4th and 7th of December being cited for when the first official manufactured Molotovs arriving on the battlefield.
According to Olli Vehviläinen's "Rajamäen tehtaat 1888-1963", the first empty 0.5 litre bottles were ordered "a few weeks" before the start of the Winter War. This would suggest the first hand made bottles were ready when the war started. According to Olli Kauppila's "Rajamäen tehtaat 1888-1988", ALKO shipped 20,000 empty bottles to the front on 9 December 1939. 10,000 bottles were sent to Hiekka station (II Corps at Viipuri), 5,000 bottles to "Sairaala" station (sic!, III Corps at Sairala, Kirvu) and 5,000 bottles to Alattu station (IV Corps at Suistamo). ALKO did not start to manufacture Molotov cocktails until late December 1939.

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Laurance.Robinson
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Re: Question about the Molotov Cocktail

Post by Laurance.Robinson » 06 Oct 2019 21:16

Mangrove wrote:
03 Oct 2019 15:07
Laurance.Robinson wrote:
24 Sep 2019 14:05
I have seen the date 3rd/4th and 7th of December being cited for when the first official manufactured Molotovs arriving on the battlefield.
According to Olli Vehviläinen's "Rajamäen tehtaat 1888-1963", the first empty 0.5 litre bottles were ordered "a few weeks" before the start of the Winter War. This would suggest the first hand made bottles were ready when the war started. According to Olli Kauppila's "Rajamäen tehtaat 1888-1988", ALKO shipped 20,000 empty bottles to the front on 9 December 1939. 10,000 bottles were sent to Hiekka station (II Corps at Viipuri), 5,000 bottles to "Sairaala" station (sic!, III Corps at Sairala, Kirvu) and 5,000 bottles to Alattu station (IV Corps at Suistamo). ALKO did not start to manufacture Molotov cocktails until late December 1939.
Thanks

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alpinoinMT
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Re: Question about the Molotov Cocktail

Post by alpinoinMT » 07 Oct 2019 04:30

Were all these bottles 0.5 litre ? or were there any other sizes?
a reporter once asked me, after an awards ceremony
"are purple hearts for soldiers & bronze stars for officers?'

Mangrove
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Re: Question about the Molotov Cocktail

Post by Mangrove » 07 Oct 2019 17:33

alpinoinMT wrote:
07 Oct 2019 04:30
Were all these bottles 0.5 litre ? or were there any other sizes?
The ones ordered from ALKO in November and at least in early December were all 0.5 litre bottles.

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Re: Question about the Molotov Cocktail

Post by Seppo Koivisto » 08 Oct 2019 18:54

According to Sotahistoriallinen aikakauskirja 24 (page 137) first Molotov Cocktails filled by Alko were delivered to 2nd Army Corps on 4th December 1939. In the beginning of December Minister of Defense Juho Niukkanen had ordered Alko to mass produce Molotov Cocktails. In December Alko filled 201 887 bottles and over half million during the Winter War. (There is a summary in English from page 150.)
https://www.sshs.fi/pdf/Sotahistorialli ... 202005.pdf

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Juha Tompuri
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Re: Question about the Molotov Cocktail

Post by Juha Tompuri » 09 Oct 2019 07:04

Thank you Seppo!
Very interesting reading.

Regards, Juha

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Laurance.Robinson
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Re: Question about the Molotov Cocktail

Post by Laurance.Robinson » 10 Oct 2019 12:43

Seppo Koivisto wrote:
08 Oct 2019 18:54
According to Sotahistoriallinen aikakauskirja 24 (page 137) first Molotov Cocktails filled by Alko were delivered to 2nd Army Corps on 4th December 1939. In the beginning of December Minister of Defense Juho Niukkanen had ordered Alko to mass produce Molotov Cocktails. In December Alko filled 201 887 bottles and over half million during the Winter War. (There is a summary in English from page 150.)
https://www.sshs.fi/pdf/Sotahistorialli ... 202005.pdf
Thanks Seppo, I second Juha's words. Very interesting indeed.

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Harri
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Re: Question about the Molotov Cocktail

Post by Harri » 27 Oct 2019 00:14

As a curiosity it is worth mentioning that when industrially produced Molotov Cocktails were delivered and Soviets captured these their producer "Alko" in Rajamäki became one of Soviets' primary aerial bombing targets. The reason was that no-one had noticed that in the bottle top was a clear text: "ALKO Oy Alko Ab Rajamäen tehtaat" or something like that (the same as in an ordinary alcohol bottle).

There are still three original Molotov's Cocktails in Finland (only in Finnish):
https://www.is.fi/kotimaa/art-2000001159984.html

The contents of this bottle seems to have more alcohol and petrol than tar. And it has been opened.

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