Welcome to the WWII Forums! Log in or Sign up to interact with the community.

Hatten and Rittershoffen January 1945 Pictures and more infomation?

Discussion in 'Western Europe 1943 - 1945' started by JGarman, Apr 7, 2011.

  1. Alsa.se

    Alsa.se Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2012
    Messages:
    164
    Likes Received:
    65
    Hello Nordwind511,
    I guess the photo is from the book of Lise POMMOIS?
    This book is a bible for me about the Battle of Hatten-Rittershoffen.
    I post below this same picture with another showing the same picture but in 2012.
    Sincerely,
    Eric

    View attachment 15591
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Earthican

    Earthican Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2011
    Messages:
    743
    Likes Received:
    154
    What town is in the background? Which road is that(north south east west, NE, SE, SW, NW, ...)?

    I think I see a Maginot fort, left of center?

    And welcome, Alsa.se
     
  3. Alsa.se

    Alsa.se Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2012
    Messages:
    164
    Likes Received:
    65
    Earthican,
    The town in the background is Kuhlendorf. On the picture below you can see witch road it is.
    You can recognize the fort of the Maginot Line on the two images.
    It's a fort at the time was'nt completed due to time constraints.
    Eric

    View attachment 15606
     

    Attached Files:

  4. Nordwind511

    Nordwind511 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2010
    Messages:
    188
    Likes Received:
    34
    Yes Eric it´s from the book of Lise M. Pommois.

    Sincerely Michael (Nordwind)
     
  5. Taquil

    Taquil recruit

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2012
    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0
    My father was a medic in the 47th tank battalion of the 14th armored division. I have his yearbook and a diary of the 47th tank battalion. I am also reading a book about the 14th by Timothy J.O'keeffe. It is called Battle Yet Unsung. 2011 published by Casemate.
     
  6. Earthican

    Earthican Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2011
    Messages:
    743
    Likes Received:
    154
    Welcome, Taquil, this forum has been studying the HR battle in a couple of threads.

    I hope you will share some or all of the information you have. It might fill-in some details we have not examined.

    If you have questions about your father's unit, this battle or the Army in general feel free to ask.

    Regards
     
  7. rwattsp

    rwattsp New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2015
    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1
    I have been looking for info. on the 79-315th company H durning the battle of hatten france. My father Blaize Pascal Watts was a heavy machine gunner and was wounded badly on the 14th of january 1945. He lay in a cellar for 4 days before a black company found him and secured his safety. My father said they took and re-took this town 3 times before a black inf. co. took the town. this is the only thing my father said about the war.
     
    rkline56 likes this.
  8. Alsa.se

    Alsa.se Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2012
    Messages:
    164
    Likes Received:
    65
    To Rwattsp,

    I found this about the battle :

    On 10 January 1945, the 1st Battalion / 242nd Infantry, was relieved by the 2nd Battalion / 315 th Infantry, officially at 17:30. The situation was critical in the afternoon of January 11, 1945. The 2nd Battalion / 315 Infantry, was surrounded in Hatten. On the night of January 11 to 12, the Germans tried twice to force the positions of the 2nd Battalion / 315 RIUS to Hatten. A third attempt took place at dawn. It was imperative to raise the 2nd Battalion / 315 RIUS isolated in the Southwest area of Hatten. The night of January 12 to 13 was particularly terrible in Hatten for the Americans. The Germans attacked with spear-flames, mortars and artillery. Despite an attempted encirclement, the americans were posted on the right places to be able to destroy an entire German company. January 13 medical help finally arrived to the soldiers in Hatten. Contact was established with the 315th Infantry. A first aid station was installed in an unexposed area. Hatten could now be re-stocked. On January 19, an artillery barrage pounded Hatten. At least 10,000 shells fell on the village that day, killing and maiming soldiers and civilians without distinction. Many houses were affected and collapsed. The wounded were trapped with the dead under the beams. A house that served as CP, Company H, 315th Infantry, received a direct hit. She collapsed and caught fire. Several men were killed by the explosion. The close ammunition depot from the battalion, caught fire. General Devers had described the battle of Hatten-Rittershoffen as the greatest defensive battle on the western front. The 3rd Battalion / 313 Infantry, 2nd and 3rd Battalion / 315 Infantry and 310th artillery battalion were mentioned in the army order, for their defense of Hatten-Rittershoffen. The 315th Infantry had 288 casualties (killed, wounded or missing) for the 3rd Battalion. 168 for the 2nd Battalion. As to the first battalion, 104 men of 136, company B, were missing. Total losses for the americans are estimated at 1,200 men (officers and soldiers)

    (Sorry for the translation...)

    What surprised me is that your father was rescued by soldiers from a black infantry company? It seemed to me there were only black soldiers in an armored division in Hatten.

    Amicalement,

    Eric
     
    rkline56 likes this.
  9. rprice

    rprice Member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2012
    Messages:
    222
    Likes Received:
    59
    The African-American soldiers were probably from the 827th Tank Destroyer battalion. To my knowledge they were the only black combat unit in the vicinity of Hatten-Rittershoffen.
     
  10. RWP

    RWP New Member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2017
    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1
    Thank you for this information! Very interesting. My Father-in-Law was a Sergeant in "M" company of the 315th when on 12 Jan in Rittershoffen his action was recognized by award of the Bronze Star. Do you have any info on that company at this time or where I might find more info about this battle and/or the company/battalion throughout the remainder of time in the ET? Thank you"
     
    Alsa.se likes this.
  11. Alsa.se

    Alsa.se Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2012
    Messages:
    164
    Likes Received:
    65
    I'm sorry but I have no information about your question. But I wanted to say thank you to your father-in-law for his service. Good job.
     
  12. TD-Tommy776

    TD-Tommy776 Man of Constant Sorrow Patron  

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2011
    Messages:
    6,667
    Likes Received:
    980
    Location:
    The Land of 10,000 Loons
    Welcome to the Forums, RWP. You may want to try the 315th Regiment Association Facebook page. There may be someone there who can help or at least steer you in the right direction.
     
  13. Nordwind511

    Nordwind511 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2010
    Messages:
    188
    Likes Received:
    34
    Sorry, I have no clue of the structure of an US infantry-division ... If you serve in "M company" - which Bataillon is it? (I will try to find some informations about the "M-company"). During my research of the battle of Hatten/Rittershoffen I found several informations about M-company! I will look for them
     
  14. TD-Tommy776

    TD-Tommy776 Man of Constant Sorrow Patron  

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2011
    Messages:
    6,667
    Likes Received:
    980
    Location:
    The Land of 10,000 Loons
    Company M was the heavy weapons company of 3rd Battalion.
     
  15. Nordwind511

    Nordwind511 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2010
    Messages:
    188
    Likes Received:
    34
    OK-thank you for this information. It helped to search for the correct bataillon ...

    Here we are...
    On the evening of 9th of january the Germans were abele to push back the frontline at Hatten.

    With the aim to restore the situation, the 2. and 3. bataillon of 315th Infantryregiment were concentrated in Hatten and Rittershoffen. This happened during the afternoon of 9th of january.At 9 p.m. Under command of LTC Earl F. Holton, the second bataillon got the order to send 2 more companies to Hatten (company F and G and one platoon of company H. The E company and the rest of company H stood as reserve in Rittershoffen.
    LTC Holton thought that the tanks of 48th bataillon ware in position north and south of Hatten and he ordered that the companies should made contact with the 48th tank bataillon to built up a sturdy frontline.Captain Ralph Shrewsbury the chief of G-company, sent as a precaution first a scouting patrol of 20 men to get in contact with the tanks south of Hatten. These men ran into a trap near the railroad station and only 8 men came back. Shrewsbury sent a second scouting patrol to rescue the wounded other men of the frist scouting patrol. This patrol couldn´t fulfill his order and had to stay in the some houses in the south-west part of Hatten.
    The scouting patrols of company F under command of Captain Nordstrom weren´t able to find the tanks too. So the plans have to modified: the companies F and G should stay in Hatten in the western parts, southward the mainstreet of the village Hatten.

    (I will edit more soon)
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2017
    Alsa.se likes this.
  16. Nordwind511

    Nordwind511 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2010
    Messages:
    188
    Likes Received:
    34
  17. Nordwind511

    Nordwind511 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2010
    Messages:
    188
    Likes Received:
    34
    For RWP I marked the post of M bataillon at Rittershoffen. The battle at Rittershoffen started in the morning of the 11th of january by an attack of these German elements:
    Kampfgruppe I: 25. Panzergrenadierdivision with elements of 1./PzGrenRgt 119 and PzAbtl. 5
    Kampfgruppe II: 25. Panzergrenadierdivision with elements of 1./PzGrenRgt 119 with PzJgAbt. 200 of 21. Armored Division (with 20 Jagdpanzer IV) and 4 tanks IV of PzRgt. 22 also of 21. Armored Division. The attack was launched at 05:00 am on 11 of january 1945.
    (Nowadays the post of M company would be between an Triangle od these streets: Rue Principal -Rue de Nains - Rue de Montagne)

    more details tomorrow
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2017
  18. Nordwind511

    Nordwind511 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2010
    Messages:
    188
    Likes Received:
    34
    The battle group of Luck (Panzergrenadierregiment 125) was to follow the two combat groups and should take over the local combat in Hatten.
    To the north, in direction of the road Rittershoffen-Leitersweiler, the I. Panzergrenadierregiment 192 under the command of Hauptmann Lenz, was used as flank protection for the attack.
    The group "Pröll” remained with the Panzerregiment 35 , II./ Panzergrenadierregiment 119 of 25th Panzergrenadierdivision, I. / Panzergrenadierregiment 125 and the Panzerpionierbataillon 220 – in addition of some Tank IV (Jagdpanzer Hetzer) -remained for the combat in Hatten.
    When the US get to know that the Germans would launch an attack, the American artillery began a harassing fire on Hatten. By using also phosphorus grenades lots of houses were set on fire. The artillery fire on the the German march for combat readiness caused great difficulties for the Germans in the narrow streets,illuminated by fire of the burning houses and light parachutes.
    After the necessary organization of the assault groups, the battle groups, supported by whitewashed Panzer IV, the Germans attacked from the northern part of Hatten westward at 5:00 am on January 11, 1945 –still in complete darkness.
    The weather on this morning was lightly foggy and slightly forst (some degrees minus celcius). The orientation was very difficult because of the darkness and the ground fog in the intermediate ground between Hatten and Rittershoffen.
    Especially the German tankdrivers needed comrades who lead them. Nevertheless this help several SPW and tanks drove into shellholes or trenches and got stuck. Fortunately the artillery fire was very inaccurate due to the lack of visibility at this moment.
    At a commanding height north of Rittershoffen, an observation bunker of the Maginot Line could be taken by the Germans. Shortly before dawn, the "armored group" of the 25th Panzer-Grenadier Division reached Rittershoffen, broke into the town from the north and fought towards the road Rittershoffen-Leiterswiller.
    The American defenders soon resisted in a hard fight. The Germans fought the American positions with the help of Drillings-canons. In a tough struggle from house to house the attackers succeeded the advance up near the road to Kuhlendorf - Hohwiller. The Americans were pushed back to the western part of Rittershoffen.There they were able to held their positions and brought the assault to halt.

    - I hope my english is good enough for describing what went on. The next part will describe what happened during the day - especially when 68th Armored Inf. Bataillon and 48th Tank Bataillon of CCA 14th Armored Division reached Rittershoffen for a counterattack
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2017
    George Patton and rkline56 like this.
  19. rkline56

    rkline56 USS Oklahoma City CG5

    Joined:
    May 8, 2011
    Messages:
    1,190
    Likes Received:
    210
    Location:
    CA Norte Mexico, USA
    Your English is great Nord. Thanks for a great account!
     
  20. Katy Turek

    Katy Turek New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2017
    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    3
    I'm new to this forum and I recently found out about my great uncle's story. In the picture included is a fairly detailed description of his experience. Although this is not related specifically to what you're looking for, just thought I'd see if anyone here may have someone in the same division. Anyway, thanks to all whose family served.
     

    Attached Files:

    TD-Tommy776, Alsa.se and Slipdigit like this.

Share This Page