Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

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Darkhorse
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Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by Darkhorse » 24 Nov 2009 02:53

Hello all while this is not my first time on the board (weird how all my searches on in depth information on German WWII military questions bring me here) it is my first post.

Let me just start by saying I'm a big fan of the StuG III G. Big fan. Love em. I think they are one of those beautifully simple elegant killing machines, the working mans AFV of the German army. And when researching the units of StuG's I found not much at all, until I found a list of aces on this site and that shot me towards the 667.

That being said I am researching the Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667. Now I've found it hard to find out almost anything about them. I've got a rough track record of where they were during the war, on the Eastern front mostly before going to the Bulge. And I have the fact that they had 7 aces with over 250 kills between them. I have their unit symbol that fun unicorn on a shield, but other than that I've got nothing. What supported them? Anything on specific tactics or engagements. Nadda...

I will also put forward that I am using this information as I gather it to recreate the 667. for a table top game, and would like to as accurately as possible represent it on the table.

Any help at all would be great, from armor color schemes to what they liked for breakfast, I'll take whatever you have and thank you in advance for any help you can give.

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hucks216
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Re: Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by hucks216 » 24 Nov 2009 12:18

Sturmgeschütz-Batterie 667

Jul 40 formation completed at Zinna and transferred to France shortly afterwards
end 40 transferred to Döberitz
22 Jun 41 XXVIII Corps, 16th Army, Army Group North
19 Jul 41 X Corps, 16th Army, Army Group North
20 Aug 41 XXVIII Corps, 16th Army, Army Group North
1 Oct 41 XXVIII Corps, 18th Army, Army Group North
21 Nov, 8 Dec 41, 2, 12, 26 Jan 42 XXVIII Corps, 18th Army, Army Group North
end of Mar 42 withdrawn back to Zinna and later became 1./Sturmgeschütz-Abteilung 667

Sturmgeschütz-Abteilung 667
Sturmgeschütz-Brigade 667 (14 Feb 44)
Heeres-Sturmartillerie-Brigade 667 (10 Jun 44)

28 Jun 42 formed at Jüterbog (WK III) from Sturmgschütz-Batterie 667 with four (initally, five) batteries
end of Jul 42 transferred to the Rzhev area of Russia
6 Aug 42 2./ attached to 1st Panzer Division, XXXIX Panzer Corps, 9th Army, Army Group Center
8 Aug 42 XXXIX Panzer Corps, 9th Army, Army Group Center
19 Oct 42 XXVIII Corps, 9th Army, Army Group Center
25 Nov 42 2./ assigned to XXXIX Panzer Corps, 9th Army, Army Group Center
[Glantz: Rzhev 11/42]
Jul 43 3. Batterie withdrawn and replaced
[Niehorster: 4 Jul 43, 4th Army, Army Group Center with 3 short-barrel and 28 long-barrel StuG III on-hand]
[Spielberger: two Panzer-Batteries of Pz II added 6/44; officially withdrawn 11/44]
Jul 44 almost wiped out during the Soviet summer offensive
Fall 44 remnants consolidated with remnants of Sturmgeschütz-Brigade 245 and rebuilt
Sep-Oct 44 the Netherlands, assigned to Kampfgruppe Chill
4 Dec 44 LXXXIV Corps, 7th Army, Army Group B
[Mackenzie: 12/44 6th Panzer Army, the Ardennes with 5 StuG IIIs]
[Mackenzie: XXXIX Panzer Corps, Alsace-Lorraine 1/45]
E 300 Neiße (WK VIII)
SE: Aug I 42; Aug I 44, upgrade; Oct I 44, withdraw
SF: Oct I 44; West, Replacement Pool, Add.

Source: http://www.sturmvogel.orbat.com/stug.html

Darkhorse
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Re: Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by Darkhorse » 24 Nov 2009 16:55

Thanks for the help Hucks that is one of the few pages where I had found info on them. An interesting history of deployment that's for sure.

hero.
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Re: Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by hero. » 25 Nov 2009 01:32

Hello !

While the info by hucks216 is much more detailed, Tessin has some infos not mentioned yet:

>> In June 1944 Heeres-Sturmartillerie-Brigade 667 was under the 4. Armee,
the HQ of which was in the area of Orscha.

After refreshing, the unit was moved to Breda, Netherlands, on 14. Oct. 1944.

Dec. 1944: Battle of the Bulge, with the 6th Panzer-Armee.
Last mentioning 1945 : 1. Armee, area of Landau. <<

In the book of Nafziger : German OOB, there is given the composition of an
Heeres-Sturmartillerie-Brigade in June 1944.
I am not sure how reliable that is, but if you are interested I can list that here.

And if you are interested in the commanders, there is some info here :
http://www.lexikon-der-wehrmacht.de/Gli ... ung667.htm

That's all I could find at the moment.

Best regards,

hero.

Darkhorse
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Re: Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by Darkhorse » 25 Nov 2009 01:59

I would love to see the order of battle. Any info is more than welcome, every bit is a piece of the puzzle. I'm so bad at finding this stuff! I'm currently finishing my military training and so time for me to do research is limited but SOOO enjoyed. And the help I'm receiving here just blows me away.

Why I didn't just go to people who know way more than I do first I'll never know...

Martin Block
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Re: Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by Martin Block » 25 Nov 2009 13:42

Formed as Stu.Gesch.Abt. 667 on 19.6.1942 with
Stab
Stabsbatterie
1. Batterie (7 StuG III L/24)
2. Batterie (7 StuG III L/24)
3. Batterie (7 StuG III L/24)
This organization remained basically unchanged until January 1944 although the authorized number of guns per Batterie was increased to 10 and 1 gun was added for the Stabsbatterie by March 1943.

Later during 1942 the unit received some StuG III F/8 with the 7,5 cm L/43 gun. Number of StuG III with short barrelled 7,5 cm L/24 slowly but surely decreased. By the end of March 1943 the unit had 6 L/24 and 15 L/43 guns.
The first StuG III G with 7,5 cm L/48 gun arrived during early May 1943. At the end of the year 1943 the unit fielded 2 StuG L/24 and 19 StuG L/48 and L/43.

In January 1944 the formation of 3 additional batteries for Stu.Gesch.Abt. 667 was ordered:
4.(Stu.Gesch.Begl.) Batterie (lorried infantry)
5. and 6.(Begl.Pz.) Batterie (each with 14 Pz.Kpfw. II)
But it took until early June 1944 before these batteries were completed and joined the unit.

On 14.2.1944 Stu.Gesch.Abt. 667 was renamed to Stu.Gesch.Brig. 667
Authorized OoB:
Stab
Stabsbatterie (1 StuG III)
1. Batterie (10 StuG III)
2. Batterie (10 StuG III)
3. Batterie (10 StuG III)
4. Batterie (lorried infantry)
5. Batterie (14 Pz. II)
6. Batterie (14 Pz. II)

On 10.6.1944 Stu.Gesch.Brig. 667 was renamed to Heeres-Stu.Art.Brig. 667
Authorized OoB same as above.

In Aug/Sep 1944 H.Stu.Art.Brig. 667 was rebuild with
Stab
Stabsbatterie (1 StuG III G)
1. Batterie (6 StuG III G, 4 StuH)
2. Batterie (6 StuG III G, 4 StuH)
3. Batterie (6 StuG III G, 4 StuH)
4. Batterie (infantry)

This authorized organization remained unchanged until the end. In early Feb 1945 a few Pz. IV 70(A) were added to the inventory for additional firepower against heavily armored enemy tanks.

Martin Block

Darkhorse
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Re: Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by Darkhorse » 25 Nov 2009 23:21

Wow thanks Martin this is really cool. I'll be doing the 1944 structure with 10 StuG III G's. Now that I have this though I'm thinking I might do them before and after as well!

Forgive my ignorance but what is "Stab Stabsbatterie (1 StuG III G)" is that essentially the Company commanders StuG?

Also the lorried infantry, are those simply Panzergrenadiers or would those be more akin to the Begliet tank riders?

hero.
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Re: Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by hero. » 26 Nov 2009 02:42

Hello darkhorse and Martin Block !

I would like to make some remarks, deliver some links and
finally ask some questions of (hopefully general interest) :

1) I'm happy that Martin stepped in (and many thanks for the detailed info :D !) before I could cite Nafziger,
since this way you got the perfectly right information without any doubts (as I assume, he has the original documents), while that from Nafziger might be misleading.

2) According to your questions on Stab and Stabsbatterie, the following links should prove very useful.
They should provide you with the details of the organization in the mid of 1944. The KStN 448 has a later date,
and only 1 truck for a whole platoon, (and I hope for the poor grenadiers, that an earlier one had a
little more motorised (mechanized) transport :wink: , but at least the personal should be similar):

For Stab and Stabsbatterie :
http://www.wwiidaybyday.com/kstn/kstn4161jun44.htm
For the 3 StuG batteries :
http://www.wwiidaybyday.com/kstn/kstn446a1nov42.htm or
http://www.wwiidaybyday.com/kstn/kstn4461jun44.htm
For the Begleit-Grenadier-Battr. :
http://www.wwiidaybyday.com/kstn/kstn4481dez44.htm

3) For the actions at the westfront in Sept?/Oct. 1944, some search on the internet seems to point to
Kampfgruppe Chill as the formation H.Stu.Art.Brig. 667 was associated with.

4) @Martin Block :
I tried to find more infos on the general organization of the StuG-Abt./Brig.

It seems to me, the major organizational changes were in spring 1943 :
- Each Battr. of a StuG.Abt was authorized 10 StuG (instead of 7) ( +1 StuG was added to the Abt.Stab)

- The renaming of StuG-Abteilungen to StuG-Brigaden in Feb. 1944 (but I don't know if this
corresponded with certain organizational changes ?)

- According to Tessin, those StuG-Brigaden, that had a Begleit-Grenadier-Battr.,
were renamed Heeres-Sturmartillerie-Brigaden in June, 1944 (and should be equipped with Schützen-Pz.Wg.)
All this seems to be in accordance with the changes, that occured within the StuG-Abt./Brig 667.

But what I would really like to know :
(If you find the time to answer one of the following questions, I would really appreciate that 8-) !)

- From the comparisons of KStN, I was not able to find, if there was a certain time from when on
the StuG.-Abt. where expanded from 31 to 45 pieces. (Or was it simply another case of beeing different for
each and every unit ?!)

- The KStN 446 from June 1944 mentions 1 platoon of 3 Sd.Kfz.142/2 (StuH 42, 10,5cm), resulting in a composition
of 7 StuG III 7,5cm L/48 and 3 StuH 42 10,5cm for each battery. (And this compostion is also mentioned as the
typical one on the sturmvogel link given above and by Nafziger (Nafziger claims that to hold also for the 667th,
which obviously is an error).
Is the Gliederung of 667th StuG-Abt./Brig. an exception from the rule (and also the 2 additional "batteries" of Pz II ?)
Or is the 667th more typical and the existence of StuH 42 was the exception ?

- Nafziger mentions the existence of Flak-Platoons within the StuG-Abt./Brig. After comparing with other infos,
it seems to me, that he mixes up Gliederungen of Heeres-StuG-Abt./Brig. with those StuG-Abt assigned to the
Pz.Div. or Pz.Gren.Div. Were there any Flak-units integrated within Heeres-StuG-Abt./Brig. ?

I'd be really happy, if you could answer at least some of my questions, and thanks again for providing that
interesting informations on StuG.Abt. 667 :D !

Best regards,
hero.
Last edited by hero. on 26 Nov 2009 17:17, edited 1 time in total.

Martin Block
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Re: Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by Martin Block » 26 Nov 2009 17:16

hero,

Orders to raise the number of guns in a Stu.Gesch.Abt. from 21 to 31 were issued by OKH/GenStdH/Org.Abt. on 2.3.1943 and 10.4.1943. From then on new units were generally formed with either 10 StuG III 7,5 cm lg. or 7 StuG III 7,5 cm lg. & 3 StuH 42 while already existing units were upgraded as soon as production capabilities permitted that.

A general increase from 31 to 45 guns was never ordered, only a few selected units like H.Stu.Gesch.Brig. 209, 242, 259, 278, 303, 341 were individually authorized to increase to this strength at various dates during 1944.

Regarding the changing of unit designations within the Sturmartillerie during 1944 I would like you to have a look at this link (Sorry, German language only). It might be able answer a lot of your questions!

http://www.lexikon-der-wehrmacht.de/wbb ... #post26518

Regarding the additional Pz. II batteries: Except for the two with H.Stu.Art.Brig. 667 one such battery each could be found with H.Stu.Art.Brig. 236 and 239 during the summer of 1944.

Regarding the 4 instad of 3 StuH per battery: During the fall of 1944 the H.Stu.Gesch.Brig. 243, 249, 325, 600, 667, and Fallsch.Stu.Gesch.Brig 12 were issued with 19 StuG III Ausf. G and 12 StuH 42 instead of the usual 22 StuG III Ausf. G and 9 StuH 42. Can't tell if there was any special reasoning behind this.
Otherwise the presence of StuH within the Sturmartillerie units was commonplace. Basically all brigades had them sooner or later.

Regarding Flak-platoons in H.Stu.Gesch.Brig.: No, to the best of my knowledge they were never authorized to have any.

Martin Block

hero.
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Re: Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by hero. » 26 Nov 2009 22:33

Hello Martin !

Thank you very, very much for the perfect and comprehensive explanations !
You cleared up all my questions on size and composition of those StuG-Abt./Brig.
(and the reliability of Nafziger) in a very exemplary way :D !

And indeed, the link you provided, answers a lot of my other questions
and even some additional ones, I wasn't really aware of !
(e.g. the renaming of the StuG-Brig. in Heeres-Sturmgeschütz-Brigaden)
I bookmarked it as reference 8-) .

Now there is only one final point, which is still unclear to me :
If I read it correctly, in June 1944 there were only 3 StuG.Brig., which received
a Begleit-Gren.-Batterie and were therefore renamed Heeres-Sturmartillerie-Brigaden.
Then another 4 in Nov./Dec. 44 and then several more in 1945.

The KStN (1.11.1944) on the wwiidaybyday site for this type of unit has only 8 trucks/lorries for it.
3 of those were used for the equipment of the engineers, 2 for supply, leaving only 3 trucks,
1 for each platoon (with 5 NCOs and 38 enlisted men). So I'm just curious, if at least
some the early formed brigades were equipped with more trucks than that, for better mobility ?
(Or maybe even some Sd.Kfz. 250/251 (?!), as mentioned by Tessin ?)
Or were the Grenadiers expected to ride on the StuG as their means of transport ?

But that is just a point of my personal curiosity :roll: , you already provided all
the important information in such a short time and that is really fully appreciated :D !

Big thanks and best regards,

hero.

Martin Block
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Re: Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by Martin Block » 27 Nov 2009 00:13

hero,

Yes, the 236, 239 and 667 were the first ones to be renamed to H.Stu.Art.Brigaden. Actually in the spring of 1944 there had been a bit back and forth because there had been plans plans to add the Pz. II and Grenadier batteries to brigades 311, 905 or 322 before they finally ended up with brigades 236 and 239 for good.

Unfortunately I do not have the K.St.N. for the early version of the Stu.Gesch.Begl.Bttr. and thus I am unable to tell you exactly how many trucks it was supposed to have to transport the grenadiers.

During the spring of 1944 suggestions had been made to form some Stu.Gesch.Begl.Bttr.(gp.) [gp. = gepanzert = armored] for Sturmartillerie units but on 21.6.1944 these suggestions were finally rejected by the Gen.Insp.d.Pz.Tr. and OKH/GenStdH/Org.Abt. due to "aus grundsätzlichen Erwägungen heraus und auf Grund der SPW-Lage, sowie der zahlreichen noch nicht erfüllten Vorhaben" (because of basic considerations and SPW production shortages as well as the many other projects that have still not been completed).
Suggested organization for such a Stu.Gesch.Begl.Bttr.(gp.) was:
Gruppe Führer with 2 Sd.Kfz. 251/3
1.(2 cm) Zug with 4 Sd.Kfz. 251/17
2.(2 cm) Zug with 4 Sd.Kfz. 251/17
3.(Pi) Zug with 7 Sd.Kfz. 251/7
But as already said this remained just theory. In actual combat during 1944/45 the grenadiers of the Begleit-Bttr. remained restricted to accompany their assigned Sturmgeschütze on foot or sometimes ride on them. Trucks were only used for long distance transport from one combat area to another.

Martin Block

Darkhorse
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Re: Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by Darkhorse » 27 Nov 2009 03:09

So then just to make things clear for the new guy here(me), the 667 had begleit? And if they did when did they start having these escort boys follow them around? Would that be 14.2.44?

In 44 the role of the PZ II's was pretty much simply acting as heavy recce for the Germans was it not? Was this then the purpose for putting them in with the 667? Or did they serve another purpose?

Darkhorse
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Re: Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by Darkhorse » 27 Nov 2009 03:13

hero. wrote: The KStN (1.11.1944) on the wwiidaybyday site for this type of unit has only 8 trucks/lorries for it.
3 of those were used for the equipment of the engineers, 2 for supply, leaving only 3 trucks,
1 for each platoon (with 5 NCOs and 38 enlisted men).

hero.
Were Engineers or pioneers organic to the 667 or are these divisional assets that were allocated?

Martin Block
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Re: Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by Martin Block » 27 Nov 2009 11:54

Darkhorse,

No, although already ordered to be formed several months earlier the 4th (infantry), 5th and 6th (Pz. II) batteries did not join the brigade at the front until June 1944 after formation and training had been completed. During the following summer battles the brigade was almost destroyed and when it was reformed later only a new 4th (infantry) battery was raised again.

Battlefield reconnaisance had to be provided by the higher command the brigade was subordinated to. The 5th and 6th (Pz. II) batteries were not used for recce but simply for fire support. Together with the 4th (infantry) battery they were supposed to eliminate all possible flank threats - except tanks - to the Sturmgeschütze whith their limited arcs of fire, i.e. smother enemy positions with machine gun and 20 mm rapid fire to keep away enemy infantry trying to attack with any close combat a/t weapons and keep enemy a/t crews from properly operating their guns etc.

The brigade had a Pionier-Zug in the 4th (infantry) battery, that's all.

Martin Block

Darkhorse
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Re: Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 667.

Post by Darkhorse » 27 Nov 2009 13:16

Wow... Martin thank you for this. This info is just amazing and I can say with out a doubt I never would have found out any of this on my own.

I had never even seen Panzer II's being allocated before to a StuG Brig so that was just an awesome surprise...

Thanks again.

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