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Discovering my family history


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#1 Pollux5

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Posted 16 January 2012 - 11:54 PM

A few weeks ago my grandmother died and i inherited the historical stuff cause I´m the one who is interested in history in our family.

And I learned that my grandfather was a member of the party and a member of the SS.
I knew that he died in the last weeks of ww2 but I never knew the circumstances and never knew about his political background.
When ever I asked my grandmother about my grandfather she always only told me that he was a tall pride man and that he had a good behaviour but died on the eastern front. She never mentioned that he was a member of the SS.

This is all what remained of him.

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I scanned some of his document which are remaining.
That is him.

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Edited by Pollux5, 17 January 2012 - 06:44 AM.

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#2 Pollux5

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 06:52 AM

His SS documents

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#3 Pollux5

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 07:00 AM

His SA documents

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Edited by Pollux5, 17 January 2012 - 07:08 AM.

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#4 Pollux5

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 07:06 AM

His NSDAP documents

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#5 Pollux5

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 07:17 AM

His last letter from the eastern front. I have much more. He must have died between March 45 and 24th April cause his Scharführer wrote to my grandmother that he is missing since 24th April after a soviet tank raid. His last function was that of a machine gunner.

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#6 Jonathan Ball

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 07:23 AM

It's an interesting set of papers you have posted here. Do you have an english translation of the letter?

Thanks

JB
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#7 Pollux5

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 07:36 AM

About his crimes I nearly know nothing.
I looked after his SS files in the Bundesarchiv but unfortunately the file was empty.
I only found a note in his Reichsbahnakte, that he was at the concentration camp Bruttig-Treis, France from March 44 till June 44 but I don´t know if he was there as a guard or as his function as a Reichbahndeputy. His normal function was that as a Reichbahn employer.
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#8 RosyRedd

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 07:37 AM

You have such a lot of information about him there to go on. Are you going to do further research? Thanks for sharing these items they are interesting to see.
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#9 Pollux5

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 07:43 AM

It's an interesting set of papers you have posted here. Do you have an english translation of the letter?

Thanks

JB


Unfortunately I even cannot read the letters in german. If some of the germans in this board maybe can help translate it into modern german I can translate it into english language.
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#10 Owen

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 07:59 AM

Fascinating.
Good luck with your research.
Interesting to see this 'from the other side'.
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#11 Jonathan Ball

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 08:02 AM

If some of the germans in this board maybe can help translate it into modern german I can translate it into english language.


Sounds like a job for Kate. :)
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#12 andy007

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 08:17 AM

What a fascinating set of documents Pollux5. It is this sort of thing that makes this forum (and the internet) such an amazing tool. Without them I doubt I would be able to see primary material from 'the other side' without huge expense in both time and money. So a big thank you to you and good luck with your research. :)
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Cheers,
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#13 dbf

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 08:44 AM

Pollux thanks for being so upfront and sharing.
Can I ask - how did you first feel when you made this discovery?
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#14 591-research

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 11:29 AM

What a treasure to inherit. I think you hit the jackpot receiving those in to your custodianship to keep for future generations. Thank you for sharing them with us too.

Time has moved on, and there is far less of a stigma attached to which side some one was attached to in WW2. There are plenty of lessons to be learned from individual cases on all sides, and I think it is a wonderful thing that your grandfather's family held on to all these papers all this time. They must have loved and missed him a great deal, and been proud of him too. I hope someone can volunteer to translate the letter for you.

..and don't assume just because he was in the SS he committed any 'crimes' as you put it. You have to apply the law(s) applicable at that time in the places that he served. He may have done things which we today would not approve of, but then most soldiers committed acts which today in peacetime would not be tolerated. That is the nature of war and politics. It still happens in conflict zones around the world now.

Edited by 591-research, 17 January 2012 - 11:40 AM.

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#15 Heimbrent

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 03:44 PM

Sounds like a job for Kate. :)



I'm on it - just give me a few hours.

@Pollux: Thank you for sharing all this info and material.
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#16 HA96

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 04:19 PM

Hi,
with the help of a local retired high school teacher, I could try to convert the text in modern German and translate it to English. I see him tomorrow anyway and ask him, because I could translate, but cannot read the German text either (I am too young).
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#17 Heimbrent

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 04:43 PM

x

Edited by Heimbrent, 09 December 2012 - 01:36 PM.

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#18 La-de-da-Gunner Graham

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 05:49 PM

Very interesting collection of items. Like many, I have never seen anything like it before. What are the book of stamps in post 4?

Keith
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#19 Kbak

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 06:03 PM

Great collection of stuff you have,

thanks for sharing

Regards

Keith
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#20 Drew5233

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 06:51 PM

Many thanks for sharing a piece of history that doesn't get shown very much on here and well done Kate for the translation - I await the English version :)
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#21 Rich Payne

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 06:54 PM

Pollux5, thank you for your courage in posting this information.

Based on my reading of your earlier thread relating to the murder of captured RAF aircrew, I suspect that if anyone can deal with the issue of their Grandfather's past and make sense of it, then you probably can. I hope that there are no more nasty shocks in store for you but based on his apparent enthusiasm for the apparatus of the Nazi machine, I fear that there may well be.

It is natural to be interested in one's family history and I'm acutely aware that those of us from the UK can investigate from a generally safe perspective and feel nothing but pride in our ancestors' achievements. I can't quite imagine how it feels when guilt comes into it.

I hope that your research will perhaps shed some more light on what the circumstances are that can cause a family man with normal cares, worries and pleasures to commit himself so wholeheartedly to such a monstrous project. It is something that continues to escape me.
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#22 591-research

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 07:24 PM

Oh how sweet, he talks of becoming a father for the first time, so he must have just received a letter from his wife telling him of the birth of a son... No wonder such a letter was kept. I hope some one can manage a full translation. My Deutsch is sooo ropey.
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#23 Smudger Jnr

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 07:38 PM

Many thanks for posting.

Regards
Tom
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#24 Aixman

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 07:45 PM

Keith,

according to the typewriting these 'stamps' are obviously 'Beitragsmarken', the proof of having paid the (weekly or monthly) fee to the (NSDAP) party.
Aixman
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#25 Aixman

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 07:53 PM

About his crimes I nearly know nothing.
I looked after his SS files in the Bundesarchiv but unfortunately the file was empty.
I only found a note in his Reichsbahnakte, that he was at the concentration camp Bruttig-Treis, France from March 44 till June 44 but I don´t know if he was there as a guard or as his function as a Reichbahndeputy. His normal function was that as a Reichbahn employer.


Pollux,

I might explain that Bruttig (today: Bruttig-Fankel) and Treis (today Treis-Karden) are villages in the Cochem Region, some miles lying upstream and downstream at the river Mosel. Cochem is and was a German city, today lying in Rhineland-Palatinate, not France.

Aixman
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#26 La-de-da-Gunner Graham

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 08:02 PM

Pollux5, thank you for your courage in posting this information.

Based on my reading of your earlier thread relating to the murder of captured RAF aircrew, I suspect that if anyone can deal with the issue of their Grandfather's past and make sense of it, then you probably can. I hope that there are no more nasty shocks in store for you but based on his apparent enthusiasm for the apparatus of the Nazi machine, I fear that there may well be.

It is natural to be interested in one's family history and I'm acutely aware that those of us from the UK can investigate from a generally safe perspective and feel nothing but pride in our ancestors' achievements. I can't quite imagine how it feels when guilt comes into it.

I hope that your research will perhaps shed some more light on what the circumstances are that can cause a family man with normal cares, worries and pleasures to commit himself so wholeheartedly to such a monstrous project. It is something that continues to escape me.


I have to second Rich's comments. Thanks Pollux for posting this.

Aixman, Thanks for your help. My German is next to nothing.

Keith
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#27 BFBSM

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 08:07 PM

Pollux5,

Thank you for posting.

Mark
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#28 Aixman

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 08:10 PM

Keith,

no worries.

Don't hesitate about German, my German is better than my English ...
;-)

Aixman
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#29 Heimbrent

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 08:25 PM

x

Edited by Heimbrent, 09 December 2012 - 01:37 PM.

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#30 RosyRedd

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 08:32 PM

Weren't letters censored for German troops? I see he mentions locations.
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