Camp near Siegberg Germany?
#11

Hello,

 

I have looked for more information concerning the POW camp Hoffnungsthal:

 

There were 1500 POWs, 187 of them American soldiers when the camp was freed, most of them captured after "Market Garden".

Here you can find a German text with an aerial view of the camp in March 1945, on the roof of one of the buildings you can read "POW". These pages seem to come from a book of a local history association in Rösrath.

 

There is a memorial exhibition with a model of the camp, photos etc in a chapel near the camp, perhaps I can visit it this year.

 

This camp is also mentioned in a new book about the Wahner Heide (heathland), I'll try to translate a paragraph:

On 04-11-1945 the first American tanks came from Spich. The camp was already left and marauded. Some few German paratroopers still offered resistance for three days, then the Wahner Heide and the camp were taken without bigger defense.

 

I will try to get that book I have mentioned and contact the association and the exhibition whether they have lists of the prisoners or other useful information.

 

Christoph

 

Edit: Here another link with a photo of the remaining barack today and the Polish Marshal Kerlikov visiting the exhibition.

 

After reading the timeline I am quiet shure that the camp Hoffnungsthal is the one Mary Durst is looking for. The last link mentions also Italian prisoners.

The monastery in Siegburg is still a monastery (but no hospital), but the last 7 friars will leave this year.

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#12

Good work. I'm sure Mary will be pleased with the results.

:armata_PDT_01:

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"
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#13

Do not praise too early...

 

Looking at the dates, he was perhaps in the camp in Bonn-Hardthöhe/Hardtberg), which was freed on the 8th. This camp was much bigger with ten-thousands of POWs. The area was later (1955)used for the German Department of Defense. There is also a memorial stone:

Secretary of defense inaugurating memorial stone

 

The next POW camp to Siegburg was in Rösrath: Stalag VI G Arb-Kdo 281. Concededly this camp was freed not on 8 but on 12 April 1945, by taskforce Delnore of the 46th Tank Battalion,

 

Christoph

 

Christoph,

 

The camp at Bonn-Hardthöhe/Hardtberg was liberated by the 1st Infantry Division between 7 and 10 March 1945, not April. This action eliminated German resistance west of the Rhine in the First Army area of operations.

 

The 46th Tank Battalion was organic to the 13th Armored Division. Any task force of an armored division was made up of the combined arms. To clairfy, this means the liberators of Rösrath: Stalag VI G Arb-Kdo 281 included units of the division other than the 46th Tank Battalion. Any attempt to determine the specifics of the liberation would require an examination of the reports and journals of those units, as well as the 46th Tank Battalion, and the combat command to which it was attached. Since CCB was refitting and reorganizing in the Dunnwald area on 11-12 April, the liberating parent unit was most likely CCA.

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#14

Christoph,

 

The camp at Bonn-Hardthöhe/Hardtberg was liberated by the 1st Infantry Division between 7 and 10 March 1945, not April. This action eliminated German resistance west of the Rhine in the First Army area of operations.

 

 

:(:wacko: Of course

 

The 46th Tank Battalion was organic to the 13th Armored Division. Any task force of an armored division was made up of the combined arms. To clairfy, this means the liberators of Rösrath: Stalag VI G Arb-Kdo 281 included units of the division other than the 46th Tank Battalion. Any attempt to determine the specifics of the liberation would require an examination of the reports and journals of those units, as well as the 46th Tank Battalion, and the combat command to which it was attached. Since CCB was refitting and reorganizing in the Dunnwald area on 11-12 April, the liberating parent unit was most likely CCA.

 

I've found my information here:

History of the 46th Tank Battalion

For me it is not so clear whether the 67th Armored Infantry Battalion or the 46th Tank Battalion lost its A, B and D company and whether Task Force Sheffy and Task Force Feldman were parts of Taskforce Delnore or separate Taskforces. And I'm also not sure whether this is caused by the quality of the text or by my English.

 

Christoph

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#15

:(:wacko: Of course

 

 

 

I've found my information here:

History of the 46th Tank Battalion

For me it is not so clear whether the 67th Armored Infantry Battalion or the 46th Tank Battalion lost its A, B and D company and whether Task Force Sheffy and Task Force Feldman were parts of Taskforce Delnore or separate Taskforces. And I'm also not sure whether this is caused by the quality of the text or by my English.

 

Christoph

 

Hi Christoph,

 

Thanks for the link. The History of the 46th Tank Bn. is typical of those written by units of armored divisions. Since we know CCB was busy, we are talking about CCA. The Order of Battle for CCA, as described in the History of the 46th Tank Bn. is as follows.

 

The primary combat units of Combat Command A are the 67th AIB, 46th Tank, and apparently the 498th AFA Bn. Two task forces were created, each built around the headquarters of the 67th AIB and 46th Tank. CCA and its task forces also had Cavalry (Mechanized) Armored Engineers, AAA units, Medical Detachments, Trucking Companies, Service Companies, etc. which are not mentioned in the history.

 

Task Force Satt was built around the headquarters of the 67th AIB, and consisted of A and B Companies of the 46th Tank along with A and B Companies of the 67th AIB.

 

Task Force Delinore was built around the headquarters of the 46th Tank and included: C Company 67th AIB and C Company 46th Tank, along with additional units of the types listed above.

 

D Company 46th Tank was probably not in CCA "Reserve," but were used as flanking units and security operations withing the combat command's interior line of communications. Why? Because D was a light tank company which was poorly suited to act as any sort of reserve, but perfectly capable of carrying out the types of missions I mentioned. Besides no commander worth his salt would keep a company of light tanks as the reserve for a combat command.

 

The 498th AFA Bn. belonged to CCA headquarters, and Armored Force doctrine and tactics required batteries of the supporting AFA Bn. to travel far forward in each column with other batteries farther back.

 

On 10 April, TF Delinore received A Company 124th Armored Engineer Bn. and a platoon of the 630th Tank Destroyer Bn. Task Force Delinore was then broken down into two sub-task forces, TF Sheffey and TF Feldman. A few days later we see TF Delinore augmented by the return of two tank companies, A and D, and A Company of the 67th AIB.

 

These were combined arms units in the purest sense, and were tailored by higher headquarters to best fulfill the mission given them. So as you can see, it is not possible for any individual unit of CCA to honestly claim credit for liberating any camp they may have come across.

 

Hope this helps.

 

Jim

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#16

Today I’ve found another short but interesting text concerning the POW camp Hoffnungsthal in the book „I must be a part of this war – a German American’s fight against Hitler…“ by Patricia Kollander and John O’Sullivan:

 

"As Korf and his men made their way north toward Düsseldorf, they liberated POW Camp Hoffnungsthal. They found close to 800 prisoners, 177 of whom were Americans captured during the Battle of the Bulge. Though Americans had been generally treated well at German POW camps, Hoffnungsthal marked an exception to the rule. Korf was prepared for the fact that wartime shortages could account for the poor condition of the inmates. But what he saw went beyond shortages. He described conditions as “gruesome”. He learned that prisoners had been wantonly abused. An American pilot who had shattered both legs parachuting from his plane was forced to walk to the camp and denied medical treatment. They also found thirty-three cases of dysentery. The prisoners were evacuated immediately."

 

Very interesting the description of the pilot, you remember the one Walter B Brinegar has described in the timeline file?

 

Moreover, Lt. Col. Delnore’s daughter has published his father’s letters from the war in the book “Victor’s war”, parts are shown by google books, but hte letters are very personal and don't describe any military yction.

 

Regards,

Christoph

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#17

And another one:

The Pharos, see pages 16/17: Captain Burnett, another captured pilot in Hoffnungsth)al!

 

Christoph

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#18

Hello! I found this web site last night because I was Googling to see if there was anything on Siegburg, Germany. It has been awhile, ( I did not realize how long), since I was struggling to find out more on Siegburg and the German Military Hospital there. I was stunned to find this entry and one on a gentleman, Pfc Jim Norton of Sheridan, Wyoming, who was interviewed by the Casper Star Newspaper on May 29, 2011.

 

I have contacted the Newspaper Newsroom and one of the ladies who is working on the project of which Jim Norton was a part. I have asked them to contact Mr. Norton and see if he will allow me to speak to him and I would like to go meet him and talk to him in person.

 

My Dad was at the Siegburg German Military Hospital (Michaelsburg Abbey) from approximately mid October to approximately mid March.

 

While talking about the War was basically forbidden in my youth because of the nightmares and behavioral problems it caused in my Dad, as we both got older he was able to tell me stories which included his time in Siegburg. He was very frustrated that the records in St. Louis were burned.

 

My Dad was in the 4th Division, 22nd Regiment, and was a Medic. His nickname was Moose.

 

I am currently overwhelmed with the care of my Mom who is frail and requires round the clock care. I will write more later but wanted to introduce myself and say Thank You for making a web site like this available.

 

Jean D. Jacobson

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#19

Dear Jean:

 

Welcome to the forum. So glad you found us and I'm glad you have the ball rolling. Hope you heara from Mr. Norton!

 

You can get a copy of your dad's discharge papers (most likely) from his local VA (STATE). Simply contact them via phone, email or letter and if possible, they will send you a copy of his discharge papers. This is how I acquired my father's.

 

http://www2.va.gov/directory/guide/vetcenter_flsh.asp

 

Please see our RESEARCH section for further help and suggestions

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"
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#20

Hello Walt's Daughter!

 

I do have discharge papers and I really appreciate your kindness to offer the suggestion.

 

At some point,I will look through all of the items you refer to as possible sources for material.

 

The Newspaper said it could take them a few days before they have a chance to contact Mr. Norton.

 

Also at some point, I would like to talk to W.B. Brinegar's daughter. Our conversation might cause her to remember other things about Siegburg. Mr. Norton might also have an idea as to where Brinegar might have gone after Siegburg.

 

I am curious about which historians she talked to in or about Siegburg. I had a little luck finding someone to help me, but little is about it.

 

After 67 years, I now am aware of 4 men by name that were actually at that German Hospital: Mr. Norton, Mr. Brinegar, Gidrie (from Louisiana somewhere), and my Dad. The correspondence my Dad sent back from the Hospital shows an address of Stalag 6 G and Siegburg. But the Hospital was in a totally different place than the Prison Camp Stalag 6G.

 

Thank You again,

Jean J

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