Research & pet projects - what are you doing; how's it progressing?

Discussion in 'General' started by dbf, Oct 5, 2016.

  1. Flyinggeek76

    Flyinggeek76 Member

    Thank you, I will surely look into this one. So far I've been sidetracked by a very interesting documentary on Aussie pilots flying Beaufighters out of Port Moresby. Also been fascinated by George Beurlings antics over the island of Malta. Very interesting stuff...
     
  2. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles

    I got lucky last night and won a photo album and a bundle of paperwork that belonged to an ex-gunner who was with 26 Field Regt. R.A.

    I say lucky as I won the auction at my maximum budget with seconds to spare.

    The album, from the previews and description, contains over one hunded pictures mainly taken in and around Tampin in Negri Sembilan (Malaya) in the early '50s (he was discharged in '52). My grandfather's battery: 54 (Maharajapore) Bty was detached from 25 Fd Regt R.A. in Hong Kong and attached to 26 Fd Regt in Malaya at this very time, and as the paperwork has piled up I've been aching to see some contemporary pictures of the place. I previously bought a set of pictures belonging to a RAMC man who was with 26 Fd a year or two earlier, but this set matches the time-frame perfectly, and there's even a chance that Gnr Newman himself may feature.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2019
    Chris C likes this.
  3. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    Some folks have already noticed what I've been doing recently under the Bde of Gds sub-forum. I intend to create a thread for each and every name on Nominal rolls and then link them back in both the alpha and nominal threads for each regiment.

    Apart from a post-war GSM Roll, IG has been completed; WG is almost done and a tentative start has been made on SG.

    I've been PM'd a few times so just reiterating this on open forum: If anyone has info on any Guards individuals, please feel free to add it & if there isn't thread already please start one. Cheers

    Grenadier Guards: Reference Thread
    Coldstream Guards: Reference Thread
    Scots Guards: Reference Thread
    Irish Guards: Reference Thread
    Welsh Guards: Reference Thread
     
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  4. Chris C

    Chris C Canadian researcher

    Continuing to plug away at my Archer book. I remember a published author gave me advice to pick a word limit and stick to it. I say "fie, fie to that"--apparently. I don't know if everything I write will go into the book - for instance, I don't know if there will be room or interest for a précis on every regiment with Archers and what they did in the war. But maybe I can put that on a website.

    Of late I've been working on a physical description of the vehicle - engine, ammunition, etc. That came about because I started writing about user modifications to their vehicles and I wondered whether certain bits should go in that sort of chapter, or in a descriptive chapter. For instance, some units made up their own windscreens from talc because the vehicle didn't come with one. So, right now I am trying to provide a good description about each of the crew positions in the vehicle to give the reader an idea of what it was like there. I got the idea from the Osprey book about the Valentine, which did a good job of that for the tank.
     
  5. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Chris it would be good to include in the book

    regards
    Clive
     
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  6. Chris C

    Chris C Canadian researcher

    Well, thank you for your feedback!

    I do have a bit of a bee in my bonnet about the anti-tank regiments: I think the men in them go somewhat unrecognised. Histories of the artillery concern themselves only with field artillery; histories of operations may make little mention of them.
     
  7. Chris C

    Chris C Canadian researcher

    I finished the chapter describing the Archer. I am glad to have finished it (as I found it a bit more difficult for some reason) but I still have lingering doubts about what is really the best way to organise the material. Descriptive chapter, then faults chapter? Combined, so that the description of the driver's position is followed by the faults discovered with it, then on to the next sub-topic? (These are rhetorical questions, but feedback is always appreciated.)

    I hope anyone else writing is able to press on in these uncertain times. I am working from home now but it is still good to turn my mind away from those matters and back to my documents and 1945.
     
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  8. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

    Hi Chris,

    Not writing from the point of view of a book, but I am determined to complete the last of my larger updates for my website. I have written 350ish major stories for individual soldiers and have just one more to plan. After this is done any new material will come only from new family contributors who get in touch, or any additions I might stumble across through reading or copying files at our Archives. It feels quite liberating to finally clear the decks.

    When I find the muse is not with me for the major writing or planning, I revert to smaller more manageable objectives.
     
  9. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles

    I've finally managed to 'process' some of the notes I've been making on the defence of Hong Kong 1949. I've gathered a lot of raw material from a lot of places, but as far as I have seen nobody has gone the extra step to making any of it easily intelligible. I find topographic descriptions without an accompanying map next to useless, so I'm making my own by annotating scans of the originals.

    This, for example, is just one sheet of several in its earliest stage for Plan Decapitation: the defence of the New Territories against the People's Liberation Army: I've a lot more to add in the way of tasks, patrol routes, vital and vulnerable points, internal security, demolitions, AA Sites, camps etc.

    HK Defence 1949.jpg

    One by-product of this work is that it's changed my perspective on the chances of Hong Kong having been held if the balloon ever had gone up. When you read that the Chinese had 700,000 troops milling about in the south of the country, and that the British had a single (admittedly reinforced) division to hold them, you're inclined to conclude 'game over', but the geography is such that the Chinese could probably only utilise two to three of their divisions in a single offensive, and these would be 'funnelled' down through a series of valleys, plains and passes with the British holding not all, but almost all of the high ground, with modern tanks, artillery, air support and naval bombardment on call. From what I've read of the Battle of the Imjin River in Korea, the Chinese 'human wave' tactics went a long way towards negating the superiority of British training, support and equipment, but in Hong Kong the geography offered comparatively slight potential for infiltration or encirclement, even if fifth columnists and sabotage were a threat.

    I reckon they had a fighting chance.
     
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  10. ltdan

    ltdan Nietenzähler

    Deployment, commitment and destruction of the "Clausewitz" armoured division

    Unfortunately no documents survived from this formation, so I had to do something like reverse engineering:
    9 years of research, thousands and thousands of pages of original documents of three allied Corps, nine allied divisions down to bataillon level, Army Group Vistula, Inspector General of the tank troops and so on and so forth
    in addition reports of contemporary witnesses, numerous publications and so on and so forth
    All that effort for a forlorn hope who barely existed for 18 days - detail fetishism can be a punishment :banghead:
    The good news: The manuscript has a good 200 pages
    The bad news: The publisher wants a maximum of 160 pages
    So now I have to agree with my co-author on what will be cut......
    If we haven't killed each other over this, the book may be published in a year - finally, because I'm getting a bit fed up with it
     
  11. JDKR

    JDKR Member Patron

    Hi Itdan - This rang a bell. Seven years ago I helped Olli Eicke with some information on Clausewitz from Kew. Is he your co-author?

    When I made an approach to a first publisher with my manuscript I was told it was too long. This was just on the basis of word count. I therefore found another publisher! Cutting from 200 pages to 160 is pretty harsh and, unless you are very wordy, not easy.

    The main point of my contacting you is to let you know that the father of a very good friend of mine took part in the action against PzDiv Clausewitz and I have seen photos of knocked out Stugs etc. Would you be interested in seeing these photos?

    Best wishes
     
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  12. ltdan

    ltdan Nietenzähler

    Hahaha...no John, that´s me
    And for the pictures: Yes, I am very much interested in that! How many liters of blood do you want from me? :lol:
    regards
    Olli
     
  13. JDKR

    JDKR Member Patron

    Well I’ll be damned!

    No blood needed! I’ll ask my friend if he would be happy for the photos to be copied to you. Any chance of your book being published in English as well as German? My book has been delayed by Covid - hopefully it will eventually get published. I mention PzDiv Clausewitz but only peripherally as it was not in my area of interest either in terms of time or geography. Anyhow, good to be back in touch with you!
     
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  14. JDKR

    JDKR Member Patron

    Olli - Trying to send you a PM but it says it doesn’t recognise ‘Itdan’. Would you message me and we’ll see if we can get in touch.
     

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