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1254th Engineers


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#1 Walt's Daughter

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 07:38 PM

Attached File The Bailey Bridge.pdf 18.44K 117 downloads
Starting this topic for a new member. Am posting his letter and my initial reply. Already found some info and will post it here too, shortly...



Quote

Hello,
I was researching Gilbert M. Bush, Co. H, 2nd Battalion, 313th Regiment, 79th Infantry. I found correspondance on your web site. I wanted to ask a question about a Bailey Bridge that appears in a photograph of my father-in-law (also 313th - taken sometime between 1944 and 1945 in the European Theatre. The bridge has a sign on it that says, "CATFISH BUILT THIS." I've learned that CATFISH was a name for the 1254th Engineer Combat Battalion. There is a large circular sign about the Corp of Engineers sign that has the number "40" on it. I am wondering if the number "40" refers to the bridge itself or if it is a highway sign. My interest is to identify where this particular bridge was located.

Thanks for any help you can offer.
Ken Brown
Linden, Michigan

Hello Ken:

Nice to chat with you.

First off, "40" refers to the load bearing of a bridge. Most common types which you'll run by are "40" and "70". Please see attachment for further clarification.

I will start a topic on the forum, and you can join in. I will post whatever I find on it, so you and everyone can benefit from the research.

Warmly,
Marion
Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon

There's "No Bridge Too Far"
Marion Chard

#2 Walt's Daughter

Walt's Daughter

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 07:41 PM

Yes, they were referred to as Catfish.


History of the 1254th Engineer Combat Battalion

http://www.xixcorps....s_(ND)_ENGR.htm

http://www.fallennot...thADhistory.htm
Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon

There's "No Bridge Too Far"
Marion Chard

#3 Walt's Daughter

Walt's Daughter

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 07:56 PM

An obit for one of the engineers from this unit

Here's another link to the 8th Armored, for the 1254th were attached to this division.

http://www.vetfriend.../?member=726510

They were also attached to the 95th Inf Div

http://www.twofortyforth.org/9thto.htm

Here's another obit - John (Jack) Robert Gulbranson - scroll three down...
Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon

There's "No Bridge Too Far"
Marion Chard

#4 Walt's Daughter

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 02:00 PM

Quote


Hello Marion,

Thanks for the bridge information. I sure won't be looking for "route 40" all over Europe!
I've attached two images, the catfish image is a map of the area of operation for the 1254th ECB. The second is the bridge in question. The men on the bridge are from H company, 2nd Battalion, 313th Regiment, 79th Infantry Division. Time and place are unknown other than sometime between 1944 and 1945.
Thanks for all your help.

Ken Brown
Linden, Michigan



================

Hello Ken:

Nice to chat with you.


First off, "40" refers to the load bearing of a bridge. Most common types which you'll run by are "40" and "70". Please see attachment for further clarification.


I will start a topic on the forum, and you can join in. I will post whatever I find on it, so you and everyone can benefit from the research.


Warmly,
Marion
Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon

There's "No Bridge Too Far"
Marion Chard

#5 Walt's Daughter

Walt's Daughter

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 02:06 PM

Quote

Hello Marion,

Thanks for the bridge information. I sure won't be looking for "route 40" all over Europe!
I've attached two images, the catfish image is a map of the area of operation for the 1254th ECB. The second is the bridge in question. The men on the bridge are from H company, 2nd Battalion, 313th Regiment, 79th Infantry Division. Time and place are unknown other than sometime between 1944 and 1945.
Thanks for all your help.

Ken Brown
Linden, Michigan

Attached Thumbnails

  • catfish bridge.jpg
  • catfish1.jpg

Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon

There's "No Bridge Too Far"
Marion Chard

#6 Walt's Daughter

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 02:11 PM

Ken, make sure you get in touch with "angelabchristian" on our forum. She's the one who posted all the info on her father, Gilbert, whom you speak of above. If you are logged in, simply click on her username, and send her a PM. I know she is looking forward to talking with you.
Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon

There's "No Bridge Too Far"
Marion Chard

#7 johnkhurley

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Posted 16 May 2014 - 03:02 PM

CEB

Here's a link to a nice article about the 1254th's participation with the "Monuments Men" during the war:

http://www.cecildail...88f672b664.html

Separately, speaking of Bailey bridges, you might like to know that the 1254th CEB received a unit citation for their successful construction of the first TWO-WAY, double-carriage Bailey bridge.  This bridge was capable of simutaneously carrying traffic to/from both sides of the river.  My dad and I found this out when we visited the national archives building in Maryland to review the unit history of the 1254th.  He had forgotten about the citation, but remembered it when we saw a copy of it in the unit history.  My dad, Cpl. John F. Hurley, was from Brooklyn, NY and was with the 1254th from basic training through the end of the war.

Keep the trivia coming.  Until my brother-in-law sent me the link to this site, I've had a great deal of difficulty finding much info on the battalion outside of a unit history book that I have a copy of.  Shelby Stanton's book on the order of battle in the ETO during WW2 lists some critical dates for the unit and some division attachments.  Among the few things that my dad told me about his experiences with the 1254th was that, on V-E day, he was billeted in a churchyard in the german village of "Zoest" (I believe that was the name).  In 1999, he and I traveled to europe to retrace some of the units marches and to visit other battlefields that neither of us had seen.  Unfortunately, he and I never made it to "Zoest' because he was feeling poorly and the weather was lousy.  I'll never know whether or not he would have recognized the churchyard, but if anyone else has a relative that might have also been there, please post your contact info.

John
John K. Hurley
Burke, VA
johnkhurley@aol.com

Son of Cpl. John F. Hurley of Brooklyn, NY and the 1254th Combat Engineer Battalion.

#8 Walt's Daughter

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Posted 16 May 2014 - 03:43 PM

John, so nice to have your here. Glad you found this site and the info within. Thanks for sharing the stories about your dad and the 1254th.

Ya, it's too bad the two of you didn't make it to the churchyard. I'm sure it would have brought back so many memories for your father. But at least you got to go to Europe together. How I would long to do something like that with my dad, had he lived long enough to do so.

All the best,
Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon

There's "No Bridge Too Far"
Marion Chard

#9 Walt's Daughter

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Posted 16 May 2014 - 03:49 PM

Ah, just read the article. That was a cool perspective on the war. Really enjoyed reading it. Hope our readers will take the time to do so, also. :pdt12:
Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon

There's "No Bridge Too Far"
Marion Chard

#10 johnkhurley

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Posted 18 May 2014 - 04:21 PM

Here are a couple of files that I found interesting.  Two of the files contain maps.  One was of the 1254th in the ETO.  Another copy of this was posted previously, but I think this one has better image quality.  The second file is a map of 1254th positions in the Ruhr pocket close to the end of the war.  Another file discusses Major R. W. Crump' assumption of command of the battalion.  He was the vet that was feature in the "Monuments Men" article I posted previously.

My father was in 3rd squad, 1st Platoon of A ("Able") Company.  One of the files contains an image of an autograph page created at a 1254th reunion at some point.  My dad's signature ("John Hurley") features prominently in the dead center of this page for "A" Company.  My dad chuckled when commented to me that he got that spot because he was the first member of Company A to sign the page.

I have the entire 1254th history in a scanned PDF file.  However, it's 66mb and I don't know if it's too big to upload.  I'm going to try and see if it works in a subsequent post.

Attached Files


John K. Hurley
Burke, VA
johnkhurley@aol.com

Son of Cpl. John F. Hurley of Brooklyn, NY and the 1254th Combat Engineer Battalion.

#11 johnkhurley

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Posted 18 May 2014 - 04:24 PM

Looks like the file of the complete 1254th CEB history was too big to upload.  Probably to big to e-mail as well.  If anyone wants a copy, feel free to suggest how I might get it to you.

John Hurley
Burke, VA
571-237-9481
John K. Hurley
Burke, VA
johnkhurley@aol.com

Son of Cpl. John F. Hurley of Brooklyn, NY and the 1254th Combat Engineer Battalion.

#12 johnkhurley

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Posted 18 May 2014 - 04:41 PM

Here are some more photos of T/4 John F. Hurley of the 1254th CEB.  In the football photo, dad is the center with the ball.

Attached Thumbnails

  • Cpl John F Hurley - Co A - 1254th CEB - Portrait 2.jpg
  • Cpl John F Hurley - Co A - 1254th CEB - Portrait.jpg
  • Cpl John F Hurley - Co A - 1254th CEB - Relaxing.jpg
  • Cpl John F Hurley - Co A - 1254th CEB.jpg
  • Cpl John F Hurley - Co A - 1254th CEB - Football.jpg

John K. Hurley
Burke, VA
johnkhurley@aol.com

Son of Cpl. John F. Hurley of Brooklyn, NY and the 1254th Combat Engineer Battalion.

#13 CaptO

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Posted 18 May 2014 - 11:14 PM

Is it just me or does Mr Hurley have more than a passing resemblance to Colin Hanks:
Posted Image

John, very cool pictures! Thanks for sharing!
Maj Todd O.
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#14 Walt's Daughter

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Posted 19 May 2014 - 11:52 AM

Great posts, once again. I have an idea for the HUGE file. You can email it to me on a CD and I will upload it to the site for you.

Marion J Chard
PO Box 147
Alger, MI 48610-0147

Many thanks!

Sorry for short reply, but I have an appointment this morning, so must head out the door shortly, but wanted to take the time to comment.
Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon

There's "No Bridge Too Far"
Marion Chard

#15 johnkhurley

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Posted 19 May 2014 - 04:32 PM

Colin Hanks?  Yeah, while I never considered it I can see why you say that, Todd.

John
John K. Hurley
Burke, VA
johnkhurley@aol.com

Son of Cpl. John F. Hurley of Brooklyn, NY and the 1254th Combat Engineer Battalion.

#16 johnkhurley

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Posted 19 May 2014 - 04:37 PM

Marion,

I'd be happy to send to you if you want to send me your address.  Alternatively, someone suggested Google Drive.  Do you have a google account?  I can upload the file and you can download it at no cost.

John
John K. Hurley
Burke, VA
johnkhurley@aol.com

Son of Cpl. John F. Hurley of Brooklyn, NY and the 1254th Combat Engineer Battalion.

#17 johnkhurley

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Posted 19 May 2014 - 04:38 PM

I don't know what I was looking at but I failed to notice that you put your address in your post.  Sorry.  However, it would be faster to do the cloud thing if you would like.

J
John K. Hurley
Burke, VA
johnkhurley@aol.com

Son of Cpl. John F. Hurley of Brooklyn, NY and the 1254th Combat Engineer Battalion.

#18 Jean Jacobson

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Posted 19 May 2014 - 07:43 PM

What great information and great stories - enjoyed reading about Ralph Crumb in both articles and because the Easton article is recent - I do so hope he is alive!

What great men!

Thank you for sharing all of this with us.  Who knows when people doing research will turn to this forum...

Jean

#19 Walt's Daughter

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Posted 19 May 2014 - 10:41 PM

Yes, I do have a google account, so we could go that way. I will send you my private email addy via a forum PM. :pdt12:
Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon

There's "No Bridge Too Far"
Marion Chard

#20 Walt's Daughter

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 10:20 AM

Here's the link to the upload. It's been placed on the Engineer History page on the main site:

http://www.6thcorpsc...y - 144 DPI.pdf

Thanks for taking the time to share that with all of us. You will be helping a lot of people who are interested in the history of the unit. :pdt12:
Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon

There's "No Bridge Too Far"
Marion Chard

#21 johnkhurley

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 12:40 PM

Just an FYI on the book that was scanned and posted.  If you look at the photo that accompanies the previous article about Major Crump, he's seen holding a book in his hand.  That's the same unit history book that was scanned.  Simply entitled, "Catfish".

Full disclosure: I have to give credit to my brother-in-law, George Sisson, for scanning the entire book.  The only thing I did was convert from a bunch of single jpeg files for each page to one large PDF file for easier browsing.

John
John K. Hurley
Burke, VA
johnkhurley@aol.com

Son of Cpl. John F. Hurley of Brooklyn, NY and the 1254th Combat Engineer Battalion.

#22 Walt's Daughter

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 12:54 PM

If you ever need a PDF streamlined, just let me know. I have the full blown version of Adobe PDF and do this all the time. I should probably make your file smaller too, so it will be easier for others to download.
Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon

There's "No Bridge Too Far"
Marion Chard

#23 johnkhurley

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 05:12 PM

Thanks, Marion.  That could be a big help.

Just an FYI to other readers.  I have a book called "World War II Order of Battle: An Encyclopedic Reference to U.S. Army Ground Forces from Battalion through Division, 1939-1946", by Shelby Stanton.  It's great for finding out historical data about just about every unit, battalion size or higher, in the Army during WW2 with regard to certain critical dates and attachments to other units.  I'm happy to look up information, scan it and forward to anyone who has an interest.  The book is also on Amazon ("Prime" eligible, BTW) for about $67.  Great reference book for the money.

John
John K. Hurley
Burke, VA
johnkhurley@aol.com

Son of Cpl. John F. Hurley of Brooklyn, NY and the 1254th Combat Engineer Battalion.

#24 Walt's Daughter

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Posted 10 June 2014 - 11:59 AM

Hi:  A new friend who found our site this week, is actually looking for a physical copy of the book. I explained it would be a tough search, since these books are rare, but thought I'd put out the word for him. So...if anyone happens to come upon a hardbound copy, please let me know and I will pass along the info to the gentleman below.


Quote

Dear Marion
I just tonight discovered your wonderful site…, a great labor of honor and love certainly!  I just became aware of the existence of the book “Catfish, The history of the 1254th Combat Engineer Battalion”….do you know where I can purchase an original? I would like to offer it as a gift to a friend who’s father was in the 1254th.Many thanks for your kind help.
Sincerely
Phil Vallerand

Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon

There's "No Bridge Too Far"
Marion Chard

#25 johnkhurley

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Posted 10 June 2014 - 10:57 PM

I am not aware of where you can find an original copy of the book.  Our family has an original copy that was the source of the scanned copy that Marion was so kind to upload here.  I did find a site that had information to the fact that a copy had sold on eBay last year, but I could find no more listings for the book on EBay today.  I'll keep my eye out for a copy and, if I locate one, I'll post a notice here.

John
John K. Hurley
Burke, VA
johnkhurley@aol.com

Son of Cpl. John F. Hurley of Brooklyn, NY and the 1254th Combat Engineer Battalion.