Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

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Juha
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by Juha » 25 Apr 2019 19:53

Hello headwest

According to Kurt Meyer Wittmann's Tigers were before they moved to attack "standing ready behind a hedge east of Cintheaux".

DC North West
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by DC North West » 25 Apr 2019 20:29

headwest

If you are interested in the scientific analysis of the Normandy combat I have attach the Canadian location for 3 scientific papers produced during and after the war. The first is by the operational scientist which followed the battles and analysed the results of combat. Professor John Buckley and Stephen Napier books use these plus other factual information. As Mark explained it goes challenge and put into perspective a lot of the memoir narratives.

http://lmharchive.ca/the-ronnie-shephar ... cientists/
This does challenge the perception and myths of the troops. The key tank reports are 12 and 17. 12 is interesting, given the troops were sure they were hit by the 88mm when they were hit by a 75mm. Also their conclusion supported the 21 Army Group strategy if adding weight fit the biggest gun available eg Firefly Challenge, Comet and ultimately Centurion, than add extra armour the eg Jumbo. The 88mm like the 17 pounder could destroy a Tiger, eg 503 Company 3 lost 2 to an 88mm blue on blue, during Goodwood. So the approach was big gun, manoeuvrability then armour. I think it may go into the practice of adding Tracks Sandbags and additional amour, whilst psychologically it may have helped, practically had little effect other than add weight and stress the transmission.


http://lmharchive.ca/wp-content/uploads ... Europe.pdf
This was produced after the war in May 1952, publicly published around 1988. It is an analysis of the performance of German armour against the 21 Army Group. It destroys the Tiger myth of 5:1, indeed the Tiger had the worst combat performance of all the German Tanks and Forces. AT guns and SP had the best performance. 21 Army Group required 1.9 Tanks to destroy a Tiger. However, it took 1.4 Tigers to destroy a 21 Army Group Tank. The Panthers were the hardest work at 2.1:1 again it required 1.5 Panthers to destroy a 21 Army Group Tank. I recall a German General wrote a report recommending bin the Heavy and Medium Tanks, and build Loads of SP and anti tank guns, given the Wehrmachts problem was logistics for everything I am not sure that could have worked.

http://lmharchive.ca/wp-content/uploads ... alysis.pdf This is the earlier analysis by the then Major Gee, and discusses effectiveness of combat ranges.

https://youtu.be/JKPqokTxUJY This is the last interview with David Render, with Dan Snow. He lead 5 troop A squadron Sherwood Rangers Yeomanry at the age of 19 from Day, worth a listen.

Regards DC

headwest
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by headwest » 26 Apr 2019 13:53

Thank you Juha and DC!

always great info here and I appreciate your help and patience.

@juha - i used Michael Kinny's awesome Throwback Map of France he linked to, and in 1947 I cannot find ANY trees or hedgerow or bushes really east of Cinthieux. would they have been close to the town? or could they have been some miles distant?

Juha
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by Juha » 26 Apr 2019 15:30

Hello headwest
I noticed the same and tried to look an aerial photo taken during USAAF bombing raid on August 8 1944 but some clouds and haze and dust obviate Cintheaux and its surroundings almost completely, there might have been some hedges then but the darker lines might well be just that different plants were cultivated.

According to Szamveber's Waffen-SS armour in Normandy "The Panzer VI tanks took positions on the northern outskirts of Cintheaux, adjacent Einheit "Gash" (7./SS-PzR 12) on the right..." Maybe more logical position.

headwest
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by headwest » 26 Apr 2019 16:44

cool Juha, thanks and will check that out!

headwest
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by headwest » 26 Apr 2019 16:47

yep. there is a whole sections of trees and brush just north of the town in 1947 and that lines up with that report and makes a lot more sense

DC North West
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by DC North West » 26 Apr 2019 18:17

headwest

I tried to attach the key files to the message but too big apparently. This is the Canadian view, has Eindhoven has explained the engagement was a complex series of events. The only certainty is it was a Sherman of some type was involved and 5 of the Tigers involved were lost, after that it gets very foggy, whether it was the Northamptonshire Sherman Firefly or the Sherbrooke Sherman 75mm debate has raged for over 30 years and will continue no doubt.

The after action report for the Sherbrooke Fusiliers, for all the Normandy Campaign they were on the East side of the road.
http://lmharchive.ca/wp-content/uploads ... iliers.pdf

Canadian Armour in Normandy: Operation “Totalize” and the Quest for Operational Manoeuvre by Roman Johann Jarymowycz
https://scholars.wlu.ca/cgi/viewcontent ... ontext=cmh
Roman Jarymowycz is a famous Canadian Historian, It covers the events of the 8th, and the Tiger engagement including why they counter attacked. His research is excellent it comes with detailed references.

This is the complete Canadian History site https://scholars.wlu.ca/cmh/ it is an excellent site, worth a search has they internet is your friend when used sensibly.

For Kurt Knispel, look out for The Combat History of GERMAN TIGER TANK BATTALION 503 IN WORLD WAR 11 EDITED By FRANZ-WILHELM LOCHMANN, RICHARD FREIHERR VON ROSEN, AND ALFRED RUBBEL

Regards

DC

Michael Kenny
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by Michael Kenny » 26 Apr 2019 21:55


DC North West
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by DC North West » 26 Apr 2019 22:49

Michael

Fascinating blog, particularly the description on how the landscape had changed significantly, the photograph on page 13 is interesting with them sitting on the Tiger, do you know was this one of the Tigers from the engagement, because it does look bazaar with the turret facing over the rear right quarter.



Regards
DC

Michael Kenny
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by Michael Kenny » 26 Apr 2019 23:23

DC North West wrote:
26 Apr 2019 22:49
the photograph on page 13 is interesting with them sitting on the Tiger, do you know was this one of the Tigers from the engagement,
Its not a Tiger from August 1944. I got in touch with the author of the article back then (1990s) and he explained the history of the pic. It is actually a Fehrmann Tiger from 1945.

DC North West
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by DC North West » 27 Apr 2019 10:41

Michael

Thank you, a question, did any member/members of the 5 Tiger crews survive the engagement. I had thought not, but the blog suggested some had.

Juha
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by Juha » 27 Apr 2019 21:23

Yes, for starters Höflinger and his crew. Also Dollinger, his driver, the artillery observer, his second radio operator, the medium-wave radio operator and bow machine gunner Alfred Bahlo, all survived wounded but his ultra-short-wave radio operator and loader Schott was fatally wounded. Dollinger was the communication officer of the battalion and his Tiger was a command version. This is from Agte, I don't know was the artillery observer also the gunner in Dollinger's Tiger.

Michael Kenny
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by Michael Kenny » 27 Apr 2019 23:07

This is an air view for June 15 1944. It shows the ground before it was disturbed. The hedge enclosure at top centre is Robert Mesnil and the bottom RH corner is Cauvicourt. Bottom LH corner diagonal line just cutting in is the main road Caen to Falaise.
400 0240 (3065)vvv.jpg
400 0240 (3065)h.jpg
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DC North West
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by DC North West » 28 Apr 2019 09:22

Juha wrote:
27 Apr 2019 21:23
Yes, for starters Höflinger and his crew. Also Dollinger, his driver, the artillery observer, his second radio operator, the medium-wave radio operator and bow machine gunner Alfred Bahlo, all survived wounded but his ultra-short-wave radio operator and loader Schott was fatally wounded. Dollinger was the communication officer of the battalion and his Tiger was a command version. This is from Agte, I don't know was the artillery observer also the gunner in Dollinger's Tiger.
Juha
Thank you, so of the western group Kisters, Iriohn, Dollinger and Wittmann only members of Dollinger’s Crew survived the engagement.

Tactical did they always lead with a command tank, I would have thought to the centre or rear of the formation would have been better.

headwest
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Re: Michael Wittmann starting Point Aug8 1944

Post by headwest » 14 May 2019 19:07

Hi Again

I have somewhat moved my research to the battle of Bourguebus ridge and Tank 231/Boldt and operation Goodwood in trying to find the location of the tank in 1946, picture provided by MK

There are now 2 locations I am very interested in trying to find although they are set quite a few weeks apart

1) The ruin of tank 231 and probably location where Gunter Boldt was wounded

2) there is a very famous picture of Michael Wittmann driving tank 205 to Normandy, he is in the turret on a twisting road. has anyone ever found a NOW of this location?

Also I am trying to pinpoint MW and the 101st SS at Bourguebus on 18-21 July

thanks so much!

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