War Volunteer Robert Unterwelz – (K.u.K. Kaiserjäger) – Schutztruppe GEA

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War Volunteer Robert Unterwelz – (K.u.K. Kaiserjäger) – Schutztruppe GEA

Post by Tanzania » 24 Sep 2020 10:16

War Volunteer Robert Unterwelz – (K.u.K. Kaiserjäger) – Schutztruppe GEA


I am looking for photo(s) and more information about Robert Unterwelz. The following is known:

Born: 1886 Friedberg / Steiermark - died: 1927 Porto Amelia / Mozambique. He comes from
a wealthy family and received in Austria-Hungary a military training from the K.u.K. Kaiserjäger (when?).
After termination off a medical degree, he travelled in 1911 to German East-Africa.

There initially works as a medical assistant in the construction of the Central railway. Later as a
recruiter for workers in the western area of the colony. There he leads hunting safaris and quickly
develops an intense sensitivity for the African bush.

At the start of the war, he immediately sign up to the Schutztruppe on the Bismarckburg station
as volunteer. As sniper he led several Combat patrols during the border fights of 1914-1916 in
GEA – BNR. Later he accompanied the 29th Field Company as leader of Hunting-Commandos,
as part of the Western troops, on their way to the Deep South of the colony, in 1917.

The War volunteer Robert Unterwelz becomes, next to Sergeant d.R. Ferdinand Jacquet, one
of the most experienced bush fighters of the whole campaign in East-Africa from 1914-1918.
In 1916 Unterwelz receives the Iron Cross, 2nd class.

(Currently I `fight´ with the helpful but somewhat complicated information of the link below to get
information about the time and location of the capture. Maybe one of you will has more luck?)
https://grandeguerre.icrc.org/en/File/S ... 0Unterwelz


After being imprisoned in Cairo, he returned to Austria in 1920. Colonel-General Paul von Lettow-
Vorbeck
becomes the godfather of his first son and writes introductions to the books of Unterwelz.
In 1924 he travelled to Mozambique with his family and the Austrian kayak driver Hans Friederich.
Both die there, completely emaciated in the bush of typhus and malaria.

Sources:

“Auf Safari”, Legendäre Afrikajäger von Alvensleben bis Zwilling,
Dr. Rolf Baldus - Werner Schmitz, Franckh-Kosmos Verlag, 2014

“Auf Wildpfaden“, Jagdskizzen aus Deutsch-Ostafrika, Robert Unterwelz, Leipzig 1922

“In Tropensonne und Urwaldnacht“, Robert Unterwelz, Stuttgart, 1923

Deutscher Kolonial Band 1916, page 263


Many thanks for any help in advance,
Cheers Holger
“Day by day and almost minute by minute the past was brought up to date. . . . All History was a
palimpsest, scraped clean and reinscribed exactly as often as was necessary” – G. ORWELL 1984

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