Prinz Eugen crew photos mystery...

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Mak Los Mien Schnitzel
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Prinz Eugen crew photos mystery...

Post by Mak Los Mien Schnitzel » 28 Aug 2003 22:29

Well, I got the shock of my life one day when I won an ebay auction for a single button, and it turned out to be from a guy who crewed on the Prinz Eugen during the fateful voyage with the Bizmarck.

The guy sent me a CD with pictures from the legacy sale that included the button and they included pictures of/from the button's owner : Alois Söberl

I was intrigued by two things, there are some RAF aviators that were picked up from the sea after apparently being shot down by AA crew?

Also there is a senior figure (an Admiral) in these photos that was apparently giving a speech, can anyone tell me who that is?
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Mak Los Mien Schnitzel
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Post by Mak Los Mien Schnitzel » 28 Aug 2003 22:38

Blenheim Pilots...who are they?
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Post by Mak Los Mien Schnitzel » 28 Aug 2003 22:46

More pics of his ship and crewmates.
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Post by Christian Ankerstjerne » 28 Aug 2003 22:49

Interrestingly enough, one of the survivers from Bismarck was called Alois...

Christian

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USAF1986
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Post by USAF1986 » 02 Sep 2003 03:50

Actually, I think the first photo shows Kapitän zur See Helmuth Brinkmann, the commander of the Prinz Eugen from 1 August 1940-4 August 1942. He received the DKiG on 12 March 1942.

Also, the same photo showing the the RAF airmen disembarking appears in the book Heavy Cruisers of the Admiral Hipper Class (Geoffrey Brooks, translator; Greenhill Books, London/Naval Institute Press, Maryland, 2001) by Gerhard Koop & Klaus-Peter Schmolke. The book describes them disembarking at Kiel on 18 May 1942 after being shot down while attacking the Prinz Eugen while she was en route to Germany from Norway (see background info below).

On 21 February 1942, the heavy cruisers Prinz Eugen (Kapitän zur See Brinkmann with Vizeadmiral Ciliax aboard) and Admiral Scheer (Kapitän zur See Wilhelm Meendsen-Bohlken) and five destroyers departed Germany for Operation “Sportpalast” (Sport Palace), a transfer of naval surface forces to Norway. On 23 February 1942, the British submarine HMS Trident torpedoed the Prinz Eugen off Norway nearly severing her stern. Brinkmann managed to get his badly damaged ship to Trondheim where she remained under temporary repair until mid-May 1942. While en route to Kiel for permanent repairs, the Prinz Eugen and the destroyers Z 25 and Paul Jacobi and the torpedo boats T 11 and T 12 were attacked on 17 May 1942 off Egersund by British torpedo-carrying Beauforts of Nos 42 and 86 Squadrons of Coastal Command as well as Hudson bombers and Beaufighters. The German ships and their four Bf 109 fighter escorts claimed to have shot down at least eight British aircraft. The German ships suffered no damage. Note: The transfer of the Prinz Eugen and her four escorts (all of which were going home for drydocking) from Norway to Kiel, 16-18 May 1942, was codenamed Operation "Zauberflöte" (Magic Flute).

Regards,
Shawn

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waffen
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great photos

Post by waffen » 02 Sep 2003 08:32

:D love too see the photos all the site members have posted my favourite site 4 sure. well done third reich forum. 8)

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Mak Los Mien Schnitzel
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Post by Mak Los Mien Schnitzel » 02 Sep 2003 19:27

Hey! I think you are right about the identity of the Vice admiral, here is another picture I found on google of him:

http://www.specialcamp11.fsnet.co.uk/Vi ... nkmann.htm

Interesting that the pictures of the blenheim pilots are in a book, the seller claimed the pictures were real, perhaps, they used his pictures in the book? Does the book have any credit for who submitted the photos (look in the biblography) ?

Thank you very much!

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Post by USAF1986 » 03 Sep 2003 01:07

In the preface to the book, author Gerhard Koop notes virtually the entire official wartime collection of Prinz Eugen photos was given by a crewmember (possibly the ship’s war correspondent) to a German photographer employed by the Allies at Wilhelmshaven. Obtained from the mystery crewman on 26 May 1945, the photographer kept the photos hidden for several decades before giving them to Gerhard Koop.

As noted in several other threads (see links), photos taken by a war correspondent were often times duplicated in large quantities for the men of the ship or unit in question. As a result, many copies of the same photo often appear in many different photo albums. I would think something as unusual as capturing RAF airmen at sea would elicit quite a few requests from the ship’s crew for individual copies of the photos for their albums.

Regards,
Shawn

P.S. Here are the links to great information courtesy of Christoph regarding German wartime photographs. This best explains why there are probably multiple copies of the Prinz Eugen photos floating around.

http://www.thirdreichforum.com/viewtopic.php?t=29617

http://www.thirdreichforum.com/viewtopic.php?t=29763

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Post by USAF1986 » 03 Sep 2003 01:19

Another indicator (other than the overall quality) that many of these were taken by an official photographer is the Brinkmann photo. Since this is clearly a formation in progress, I doubt the seaman who owned these photos would have been permitted to break ranks to snap a pic of his commander! I must say this quite a fantasic batch of real historical photos you've got there!

Regards,
Shawn

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Post by Mak Los Mien Schnitzel » 03 Sep 2003 18:32

thank for the complement...that has motivated me to post some more!
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Post by Mak Los Mien Schnitzel » 03 Sep 2003 18:55

Some action pics this time...
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Post by USAF1986 » 03 Sep 2003 23:37

Great photos! I suspect photo Dscf0241 was taken during Operation "Cerebus," better known as the "Channel Dash." Taken from Prinz Eugen, the last in line, the photo shows the Scharnhorst in the lead followed by the Gneisenau.

Also, a photo in the same sequence as the "Bismarck in tow" picture appears in the Koop & Schmolke book Pocket Battleships of the Deutschland Class (Geoffrey Brooks, translator; Greenhill Books, London/Naval Institute Press, Maryland, 2000). This is actually the heavy cruiser (ex-armored ship or "pocket battleship") Admiral Scheer. The photo was taken during Operation “Sportpalast” as the ships were en route to Norway (see previous post) and prior to the torpedoing of the Prinz Eugen.

Regards,
Shawn

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Post by USAF1986 » 04 Sep 2003 02:16

BTW, these four photos are also in Koop and Schmolke’s Heavy Cruisers of the Admiral Hipper Class:

Dscf0239 – Crewmembers undergo quick-loading practice handling 8-shell cases at “D” turret.

Dscf0242 – Looking down from the bridge at the 2cm quad Flak on “B” turret as gun crew undergoes training.

Dscf0249 – Ar 196 prepares for launch.

Dscf0244 – Luftwaffe maintenance crew at Ar 196 hangar.

Regards,
Shawn

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Post by Mak Los Mien Schnitzel » 06 Sep 2003 12:59

Cool!!

I wonder who the lucky guy is then who actually bought all these orginial photos! I only ended up with the button dammit. :( :)

The photo with the red cross on it is Alois Söberl BTW.

He got the EK2 for something, I'm not sure whether the whole ship got one, or whether it was a particular act that distinguished him for it. I'll attach the pic of it.

Can anyone tell me what the other one is? Is it a crew certificate or something?
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Post by USAF1986 » 06 Sep 2003 17:53

Hi! The second one is his award document for the High Seas Fleet War Badge:

http://www.skalman.nu/third-reich/awards-high-seas.htm

Brinkmann can be seen displaying this badge in the first photo.

Regards,
Shawn

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