German Railways in the East

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TheMarcksPlan
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Re: German Railways in the East

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 03 Apr 2020 23:05

GregSingh wrote:Here is a photo of Rostov-on-Don railroad bridges
Thank you! Do you know when the replacement bridge opened?

Wonder why they built a whole new bridge when it looks like 2/3 of the old bridge was still usable? Probably the roadbed of the remaining parts was also destroyed?

IIRC the practice was usually for the Ostheer to build over destroyed bridges, as at least the piers remained.

GregSingh
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Re: German Railways in the East

Post by GregSingh » 04 Apr 2020 01:47

Smaller bridge was opened in Sep/Oct 1942, October the 1st was the "official" date.

Three-span bridge was only looking promising, it was beyond repair, as it was a drawbridge with vertically rising middle truss to allow vessels to pass).
Last edited by GregSingh on 04 Apr 2020 09:34, edited 1 time in total.
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TheMarcksPlan
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Re: German Railways in the East

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 04 Apr 2020 08:07

GregSingh wrote:
04 Apr 2020 01:47
Smaller bridge was opened in Sep/Oct 1942, October the 1st was the "official" date.

Three-span bridge was only looking promising, it was beyond repair, as it was a drawbridge with middle part turning sideways to allow vessels to pass).
Thanks. Do you know whether the Germans had a rail ferry in operation between July and October? Did they ever use rail ferries?

GregSingh
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Re: German Railways in the East

Post by GregSingh » 04 Apr 2020 08:21

Not in Rostov, there was one in use in Cherson.
In Rostov they used road transport over pontoon bridge.
South of Don river Germans managed to get railroads up and running to Saretschnaja (Заречная).
Once railroad bridge was in place it took only 5 minutes to get from Saretschnaja to Rostov Hbf. according to timetable.

Pontoon bridge in Rostov on Don, 1942.
Rostov 1942 06.jpg
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TheMarcksPlan
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Re: German Railways in the East

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 08 Apr 2020 21:09

GregSingh wrote:
04 Apr 2020 08:21
Not in Rostov, there was one in use in Cherson.
In Rostov they used road transport over pontoon bridge.
South of Don river Germans managed to get railroads up and running to Saretschnaja (Заречная).
Once railroad bridge was in place it took only 5 minutes to get from Saretschnaja to Rostov Hbf. according to timetable.
Thanks again for sharing your knowledge - would have responded earlier but must have missed the notification.

Any info on the rail ferry in Cherson?

Where is Заречная? Nearest result Google maps gave me is in Bryansk Oblast. Judging by the time and German difficulties with Mag-Lev and teleportation tech, it can't be far from Rostov. That's not as far as the line went south/east of Don, is it?

Was it standard practice for the Germans to publish timetables for lines in the SU? I wouldn't have thought they'd be providing common-carrier-type services...

GregSingh
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Re: German Railways in the East

Post by GregSingh » 09 Apr 2020 00:03

We had some photos and maps earlier in this topic about Cherson ferry, use search function.

Train station Заречная is just on the other side of the Don river - 47°12'16.6"N 39°42'14.8"E
I meant railroads were operational from Zarechnaya all the way down south to Caucasus, but Zarechnaya was as far as you could reach by rail traveling north from Caucasus, until the bridge was built over Don in Rostov.
So in case of supplying armies near Caucasus, they used road transport all the way from Rostov train station (over pontoon bridge) down south to Caucasus or trucks loaded at Rostov train station were unloaded to trains in Zarechnaya / Batajsk and goods were transported down south by railroads.

Yes, it was a common practice to publish timetables, although for obvious reasons those for general use did not contain any info about strict military transports. For these you needed service timetables, I think we uploaded an example earlier in this topic as well.
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TheMarcksPlan
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Re: German Railways in the East

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 16 Apr 2020 21:40

Greg Singh wrote:I meant railroads were operational from Zarechnaya all the way down south to Caucasus, but Zarechnaya was as far as you could reach by rail traveling north from Caucasus, until the bridge was built over Don in Rostov.
So in case of supplying armies near Caucasus, they used road transport all the way from Rostov train station (over pontoon bridge) down south to Caucasus or trucks loaded at Rostov train station were unloaded to trains in Zarechnaya / Batajsk and goods were transported down south by railroads.
Thank you. That makes so much more sense.

I am really interested in exactly this topic: whether the Germans were able to maintain railroad operations on the far side of a river before the reconstruction of a railroad bridge.

Here you're indicating that the Germans ran trains in the Caucasus before the completion of the Rostov railroad bridge. Do you know whether the pre-bridge Caucasus railroad ops used German or Russian gauge and equipment? If German, then they must have had some way to ferry/carry rolling stock to the far side. That's why I'm interested in the topic of rail ferries. If Russian, it was probably a low-capacity operation improvised by the Army Group.

One reason I'm very interested in this topic is the contrast between the '41 trans-Dniepr advance by AGS and its '42 trans-Don analogue. In '41 it appears that AGS was unsupported by rail east of the Dniepr until very late in the year. Creveld mentions that AGC had to send 5,000 tons of Grosstransportraum to AGS in late September, just ahead of the critical Taifun offensive that lacked sorely for truck transport. AGS apparently experimented with running captured Russian stock east of the Dniepr during this period.

If the Germans were running Germans stock/gauge south of the Don prior to the Rostov bridge reconstruction, it demonstrates a significant logistical capacity deployed in '42 that wasn't in '41.

Tom from Cornwall
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Re: German Railways in the East

Post by Tom from Cornwall » 07 May 2020 14:57

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
16 Apr 2020 21:40
whether the Germans were able to maintain railroad operations on the far side of a river before the reconstruction of a railroad bridge.
It might be of interest that 21 Army Group did exactly this in September 1944 across the Seine. Obviously wasteful in terms of unloading and loading of railway to/from motor transport in terms of labour, time and transport resources, but certainly achievable.

Regards

Tom

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