German WW2 Photo Album 21st Artillery Regiment Poland France Russia
Here is a photo album of a German NCO in the 21st Artillery Regiment. It has a full color unit specific cover with an Army Eagle.
Looking through the photos is it clear the album was started in 1936 owing to the date on the cover but it depicts his time in Poland, France and Russia as well. Early photos depict servicemembers without ribbons and awards. The later photos show decorated men.
This Regiment was assigned to the 21st Infantry Division. The unit was formed in 1934 in East Prussia. They were part of the invasion of Poland (first wave), France and Russia. They fought on the Russian Front for four years as part of the 18th Army – Army Group North. Some members of the Division eventually escaped by sea to Schlewig-Holstein.
It is named to Hans Holtkamp. In our 10 minute research thus far, we found only one Hans Holtkamp who was born in Germany in 1912. He married in 1937 and survived the war. A photo we found of what we think is his wife in the album appears similar to the wife we found on-line; but we and not experts. We are contacting the family to see if this is the same man.
The approximately 156 un-published photos depict all types of activities of a prewar and wartime German soldier. There are photos of Paris including the Eiffel Tower, a photo of a bunch of Russian POWs running past the photographer, destroyed buildings, artillery pieces, barracks life, field gear photos, bunkers, many different graves and memorial ceremonies for fallen comrades, train embarkations, troop train travel, a wedding, his friend or family members in the Luftwaffe and Army posing with rifles, etc.
From the photos he visited Caen and Paris; plus one photo shows him posing under a statue of Lenin in Russia.
These photos are in remarkable condition. Perhaps the wax paper between the photos and paper pages preserved them. The back of the photo album is marked Large Picture Binder Hesse and Becker Leipzeig.
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