Positions of soviet 41 Rifle Corps in 1941

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marius.lupus
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Positions of soviet 41 Rifle Corps in 1941

Post by marius.lupus » 02 Dec 2011 23:46

Hi,

I´m trying to pinpoint detailed information on the different components of the russian 41st Rifle Corps, particularly in June and early July 1941. I´m interested in the dates the corps HQ and its different divisions where ordered to entrain, when they were assigned to the 11th Army, and the dates and location of its arrival in the Ostrov-Pskov area. So far, I´ve been able to track the different divisions and corps HQ in the following positions:

- 41 RC HQ, at Yaroslavl on June 22nd. It later shows up, composed by the 118, 235 and 111 Rifle divisions, in 11th Army on July 1st (according to the official Russian OOBs). In combat south of Pskov on July 6th.
- 111 RD at Vologda on June 22nd. Initially part of Archangelsk MD, but very soon assigned to 41 RC. Located just north of Ostrov on July 4th, just before the conterattack launched by the 3rd Tank Division that very day.
- 118 RD at Kostroma on June 22nd. Present north of Ostrov on July 6th, in combat with 41st Pz Corps
- 235 RD at Ivanovo on June 22nd. Present north of Ostrov on July 6th, fighting against 6th Pz Division

Sources:

Osprey, Army Group North
Glantz, Barbarossa & The siege of Leningrad
Official Russian OOBs
Armchair general web site

Any help will be greatly appreciated.

Cheers,

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Re: Positions of soviet 41 Rifle Corps in 1941

Post by Art » 04 Dec 2011 20:37

On 27 June 1941 the North-West Front received a directive signed by Zhukov saying that it will be reinforced with the 41 Rifle Corps (118 and 235 Rifle Divisions) concentrating in the region Pskov-Ostrov. The orders to entrain were most probably given on the same day or slightly later. As concerns arrival the morning report 3 July of the front's staff mentioned:
111 Rifle Division - 21 trains arrived, 4 en route, 8 remained
118 Rifle Division - 13 trains arrived, 20 remained
235 Rifle Division - one train en route
Corps HQ - 6 trains arrived, 1 en route, 13 remained

Morning report of 3 July:
Corps HQ -7 trains arrived, 13 remained
111 Rifle Division - 29 arrived, 1 en route, 3 remained
118 Rifle Division - 20 arrived, 2 en route, 10 remained
235 Rifle Division - 3 arrived, 2 en route, 28 remained

Morning report of 6 July:
Corp HQ - 7 trains arrived, 13 remained
111 Rifle Division - 32 trains arrived, 1 missing
118 Rifle Division - 28 trains arrived, 4 en route
235 Rifle Division - 19 trains arrived, 14 en route

Morning report of 7 July:
Corps HQ - 13 trains en route
235 Division - 13 trains didn't arrive
in 11th Army on July 1st (according to the official Russian OOBs)
That is wrong, I believe, it was under direct command of the North-West Front.
235 RD at Ivanovo on June 22nd. Present north of Ostrov on July 6th, fighting against 6th Pz Division
it was detaining at Opochka south of Ostrov.

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Re: Positions of soviet 41 Rifle Corps in 1941

Post by marius.lupus » 04 Dec 2011 21:56

Art,

thanks a lot for the info. Man, you have access to really detailed information!!

Regarding your comments:

1. In the official OOB for the Red Army 1941, 41RC is listed under 11Army on July 1st, along with 16RC, 90, 126 & 128Rds
2. I used the following map from Armchair general web site to get detailed information on the different divisions. I hope it is accurate enough...

Cheers,
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Re: Positions of soviet 41 Rifle Corps in 1941

Post by Jeff Leach » 04 Dec 2011 22:29

You might find some more information at http://rkka.ru/docs/spv/SPV8.htm. There is also a STAVKA directive of 29 June 1941 (Russki Archive 5-1 #18) which mentions the 41st Rifle Corps but it gives less detail than Art has already posted.

If you can read Russian check the online Defense Ministry records http://www.podvignaroda.ru/, which is probably your best bet for finding more information than Art has already given.

I would like to urge some caution about whether the 41st Rifle Corps was part of the 11th Army or a front level asset of Northwestern Front on 1st July. The answer can be so confusing that, depending on the source, that both answers are correct. This has to do with speed at which information travels up and down the chain of command or the difference between the time a change is actually made and when it is officially recognized. Also be aware that the BSSA list of 1st July 1941 is NOT the actual Soviet OOB on that date. It is a composite made from strength returns (there are quite a number on the online database) made from on and around the 1st of July, perhaps modified by information from other documents.

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Re: Positions of soviet 41 Rifle Corps in 1941

Post by Art » 05 Dec 2011 19:01

marius.lupus wrote:thanks a lot for the info. Man, you have access to really detailed information!!
It's all available online, in Russian though:
http://tashv.nm.ru/SbornikBoevyhDokumen ... sue34.html
1. In the official OOB for the Red Army 1941, 41RC is listed under 11Army on July 1st, along with 16RC, 90, 126 & 128Rds
It's a good question, where it came from. By 1 July 1941 there was no documents assigning 41 RC to the 11 Army, and as far as real situation is concerned the corps wasn't under command of the Army and did't even start to arrive to the region of destination. In fact the Front's directive of 30.06.1941 said that upon arrival and occupation of defense along the Pskov-Ostrov line the 41 Corps is to be subordinated to the 8 Army's commander. This directive wasn't carried out in this point anyway. Worth to add that on 1.07.1941 there was no working communication between the staff of the North-West Front and the 11 Army HQ, and the first was completely unaware of whereabouts of the Army and its formations. It was on 8 July only when a new directive ordered 11 Army HQ to take command of units in the Pskov region, including the 41 RC.
2. I used the following map from Armchair general web site to get detailed information on the different divisions. I hope it is accurate enough...
The map I believe is based on the same collection No.34, that was quoted here. Front-level documents are not particularly detailed concerning location of elements of divisions, moreover signal communication functioned very poorly. Divisional documents must be more detailed but they are not available.
Addition: according to the evening report of 2 July by 18.00 arrived:
11 trains of the 111 RD, 13 trains of the 118 RD plus 3 en route, 6 trains of the corps HQ.

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Re: Positions of soviet 41 Rifle Corps in 1941

Post by AMVAS » 05 Dec 2011 21:43

Art, I have no opportunity to search myself for this corps right now. There must exists some TsAMO maps showing position of this corps. NW front and NW direction are represented in podvignaroda site rather good for the 1941

regards
Alex

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Re: Positions of soviet 41 Rifle Corps in 1941

Post by AMVAS » 06 Dec 2011 20:00

Image

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TsAMO f. 249 op. 1544, d. 36

July 11 1941
Last edited by AMVAS on 07 Dec 2011 11:42, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Positions of soviet 41 Rifle Corps in 1941

Post by AMVAS » 07 Dec 2011 11:01

Art wrote: The map I believe is based on the same collection No.34, that was quoted here. Front-level documents are not particularly detailed concerning location of elements of divisions, moreover signal communication functioned very poorly. Divisional documents must be more detailed but they are not available.
I'd say divisional/regimental level documents are not available for free access online.
But if they exists they can be received from TsAMO.
Right now we performs some research for the year 1941 and I can say it's a lottery to find anything significant. You either can find all what you need, or to find an empty folder...

Regards
Alex

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Re: Positions of soviet 41 Rifle Corps in 1941

Post by Art » 07 Dec 2011 18:03

AMVAS wrote: I'd say divisional/regimental level documents are not available for free access online.
But if they exists they can be received from TsAMO.
Yes, that is what I meant. There are no maps with situation before 10 July, at least I can't find them.

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Re: Positions of soviet 41 Rifle Corps in 1941

Post by Art » 08 Dec 2011 20:08

A map of unspecified origin with situation as of 7.07.1941:
http://www.bilder-hochladen.net/files/big/b5iu-1t.jpg
The square flag with 468 number must be 468 Rifle Regiment/111 Rifle Division

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Re: Positions of soviet 41 Rifle Corps in 1941

Post by AMVAS » 08 Dec 2011 21:01

Art wrote:A map of unspecified origin with situation as of 7.07.1941:
http://www.bilder-hochladen.net/files/big/b5iu-1t.jpg
The square flag with 468 number must be 468 Rifle Regiment/111 Rifle Division
It's TsAMO map. but unknown details. Probably from inside of some dossier

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Re: Positions of soviet 41 Rifle Corps in 1941

Post by Art » 10 Dec 2011 10:11

AMVAS wrote: It's TsAMO map. but unknown details.
It can be a captured map, I think.
Some more maps from the web:
Pskov, Ostrov and Sebezh fortified regions (strongpoints with concrete fortifications are shown as shaded areas):
http://vif2ne.ru/rkka/forum/files/Badik ... sk._UR.jpg
A more detailed scheme of strongpoints of the Ostrov fortified region:
http://www.fortification.ru/uploads/ostrovmap_all.jpg
As can be seen the position formed a bulge north-west of Ostrov. By 4 July the 41 RC occupied positions along the front of the Pskov and Ostrov FRs with two forward divisions: 118 (north) and 111 (south), while 235 Division was still in transfer. According to the morning report of the SZF's staff of 6.07.41 118 Division was defending the line Korly, Vasilyevo, Palkino (i.e. the position west of Pskov and the northern part of the bulge), 111 Division - Samokhvalova, Kreshevo, Ritupe station, Kruyki (i.e. the southern part of the bulge and position south-west of Ostrov to Velikaya River. That was apparently a planned assignment of defense sectors rather than actual positions on that day, because Ostrov was already captured by German XXXXI Corps. V. Goncharov (based on VIZh No.3, 1993 as far as I can see) gives a somewhat different information. As he says 118 Rifle Division defended the Pskov fortified region along the front of 26 kilometers with two regiments (463 and 527 Rifle). 111 Rifle Division defended the bulge north-west of Ostrov along the front of 44 kilometers, having two regiments (399 and 532) in the first line, and the third regiment (468) in reserve. A composite battalion formed of remains of the 62 Rifle Regiment/10 Rifle Division was inserted between these two divisions. Finally the remaining regiment of the 118 Division (398 Rifle Regiment) was on the left wing at Peskovo, Kholmatka across the road leading to Ostrov from the south-west. That regiment was subject to the the initial German attack on 4.07.1941 which resulted in the capture of Ostrov with its bridges across Velikaya. On 5.07 the reserve regiment (468 Rifle Regiment) with elements of 3 Tank Division started a counterattack from the north east of Velikaya River, which failed ultimately. At the same time the other two regiments of 111 Division were in action holding the bulge north-west of Ostrov against 36 ID (mot) most probably. Still there is a question whether any further changes were made in this disposition and when and where the 235 Rifle Division was committed to action.
Goncharov's article:
http://libhistory.ru/book.php?book=248934&page=45
Map of the Pskov area (NO 35-9):
http://www.lib.utexas.edu/maps/ams/eastern_europe/

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Re: Positions of soviet 41 Rifle Corps in 1941

Post by Jeff Leach » 25 Dec 2011 09:06

I made a statement
Also be aware that the BSSA list of 1st July 1941 is NOT the actual Soviet OOB on that date. It is a composite made from strength returns (there are quite a number on the online database) made from on and around the 1st of July, perhaps modified by information from other documents.
You can look through TsAMO f. 249 op. 1544 d. 23 (Northwestern Front) to get an idea of what kind of documents the BSSA lists were probably constructed from. It contains a number of organizational charts and strenght returns, some of which are quite detailed. I notice one that listed by regiment the type and number of plans for the Northwestern Front VVS, there were also a number that listed the tank strenghts and types by unit.

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