Africans in the Imperial German Navy and Army.

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Peter H
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Re: Africans in the Imperial German Navy and Army.

Post by Peter H » 20 May 2009 08:56

Interesting pic here : http://gmic.co.uk/index.php?s=be46ea0b7 ... opic=36749

Warsaw of all places,poster Deruelle
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Eric Brothers
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Re: Africans in the Imperial German Navy and Army.

Post by Eric Brothers » 24 Jan 2011 14:56

The black soldier above being captured by the French may be Kwassi Bruce. In a letter he wrote in the early Nazi years, he mentioned that he served in the German military and was a prisoner of war for two years. I have been unable to locate any photos of Bruce that show him clearly as an adult. I saw one of him as a child sitting at a piano in Berlin. He was in the "Africa Show" in Nazi Germany but I haven't found a photo of him in it. I wrote an article about blacks who served on the German side in World War I. I got the idea for the article from reading the posts on this board. Here's a link http://www.suite101.com/content/black-a ... -i-a324213

Please take a look if you'd like. Thanks!

Eric

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Chris Dale
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Re: Africans in the Imperial German Navy and Army.

Post by Chris Dale » 24 Jan 2011 15:29

Great article and thanks for the information on Kwassi Bruce...

Cheers
Chris

Eric Brothers
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Re: Africans in the Imperial German Navy and Army.

Post by Eric Brothers » 09 Feb 2011 04:44

My pleasure, Chris. I'm always on the lookout for interesting and different stories to write about. The Axis History Forum has been giving me lots of inspiration for articles and I enjoy sharing them with everyone here.

Eric

Eric Brothers
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Re: Africans in the Imperial German Navy and Army.

Post by Eric Brothers » 18 Feb 2011 12:14

I found some new information about Afro-Germans during Nazi Germany and Holocaust. I posted two videos on my blog:

http://propaganda-history.blogspot.com/ ... y-and.html

The first video is an interview with an Afro-German survivor of Buchenwald, but alas it is only in German with no subtitles. I understood barely half of it. The second one is a documentary in German (with English subtitles) that was recorded directly from a TV. Thus it is a bit distorted but fascinating. It is primarily a series of interviews with Afro-Germans whose black father was killed or "taken away." It also discusses the Afrika-Schau, which is difficult to find information about. Please take a look if this interests you. If any of you are teachers or know teachers, this would be a good piece to show students for Black History Month.

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Peter H
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Re: Africans in the Imperial German Navy and Army.

Post by Peter H » 02 Mar 2012 13:38

From: http://desert-column.phpbb3now.com/view ... f=8&t=1132

Poster hans vogel

"20th Saxon Hussars Regiment, at Bautzen 1915"
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Chris Dale
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Re: Africans in the Imperial German Navy and Army.

Post by Chris Dale » 20 Mar 2012 22:53

Thanks for posting that one Peter, so it seems there's more African soldiers in the Kaiser's army that we didn't know about out there...

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Chris

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Mischa
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Re: Africans in the Imperial German Navy and Army.

Post by Mischa » 03 Jul 2012 06:26

Hi,
I think I've seen the photo in the Russian tsushima.su forum. It is, if I remember correctly, a Saxon regiment. When I re-embarking there today, I still love the photo, hopefully.
Regards
Mischa

ErichvN
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Re: Africans in the Imperial German Navy and Army.

Post by ErichvN » 17 Dec 2012 03:47

I don't think anyone is still watching this post but I should point out that their was no standing Imperial army, each city state (or colony) maintained its own fighting force, some officers were exchanged but that was the limit. The only national force were the navy and the attached marines, it might be worth checking if either of those had African troops.

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Chris Dale
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Re: Africans in the Imperial German Navy and Army.

Post by Chris Dale » 17 Dec 2012 15:37

Hi Erich,

I'm sure there's a few of us still checking this interesting thread!

You are of course right in that Prussia, Bavaria, Saxony and Wuerttemberg maintained control of their own armies to some extent in peacetime and smaller states had varying limited control. The title Imperial Army is an unofficial broad collective noun that was also used in Imperial times.

I've not seen Africans or Asians in photos of the navy or marines, but some might perhaps turn up one day!

Thanks for your input.

Cheers
Chris

schutzearsch
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Re:

Post by schutzearsch » 09 Aug 2015 23:08

Olivier Palardy wrote: Deutsch-Sũdwestafrika (German South West Africa)
This was a particular case. There was no blacks in the Schutztruppe. All troops were german. This was due to fact that the Germans had many problems with the biggest tribe (Herero people) facing many revolts crushed with great brutality.
I know this post is 13 years old.
But as far as I know the main reason there where (almost) not blacks in the German South West Afrika Schutrtruppe was that the two biggest and most dominant tribes in Namibia the Herero and the Nama were bitter enemies. And it wasn't possible to recruit to recruit large numbers of Askari from one tribe withoit offending the other and vice versa and loyality might be an issue as they couldn't know if ones loyality for his tribe is greater then for the Schutztruppe.
While the Schutztruppe consisted of german officers and NCOs and mostly german troops (though not all were german there were some Austrians and even a few Boers and Afrikaners. The Schutztruppe used large numbers of african auxilaries. In fact the Herero fought along the Germans againt the Nama in the first Nama rebellion and then the Nama fought alongside the Germans against the Herero. It was indeed part of the peace treaty between The German Empire and the Nama after the 1st Nama Rebellion. They also had the so called Baster Kompaniethat company of Rehobot-Basters (the Basters where sons born to (black) Nama women and (white) Boer men). This Baster Kompanie might have been the closed thing to an african regular Schutztruppe Unit (at least until the Cameroon Kompanie) since they where issued standard Schutztruppe clothing and equipment. But it seems to me tha they where an infantry unit and not a mounted unit. Since they wear their trousers over their boots and their rifles (look like Jägerbuchse 71 to me) have straight bolts. (But I'm just gessing here weather they where mounted or not)

Here is a pic from german colonial uniforms

http://s400910952.websitehome.co.uk/ger ... aster2.jpg

However an unwelcome side effect of the use of african auxillaries during 1st Nama and Herero wars where that the africans learned a lot about german weaponry and tactis. So as a results after the Herero rebellion was crushed. All African Units (including the Baster Kompanie) where disbaned.

Until 1914 when the great war broke out. Ther Germans again formed a Company of Baster, a mounted half company of Nama and a Company of former Cameroon Schutztruppe Soldiers which had been exiled to South West Africa after a muntiny in 1910 they where promised that in exchange for their service they could return home.
None of these African units however saw front line action they all where second line units which purpuse was to free up german troops for front line duties. All african units where disbaned before the end of the campaign.
However the Germans kinda could keep their promise on the cameroons, they where allowed to return home in 1917.

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Renner aus Schlesien
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Re: Africans in the Imperial German Navy and Army.

Post by Renner aus Schlesien » 25 Nov 2018 08:59

Bringing an old thread back to life. I came across a black African from Togo who fought (and died) in Europe - Karl Atiogbe. I found him on the Verlustlisten and then a google search revealed his life in Germany before the war and his letter to the Berliner Tageblatt in 1908 (links below). Sounds like a very interesting man.

http://des.genealogy.net/search/show/4590139

https://blackcentraleurope.com/sources/ ... 08-german/

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