16:00 Hours 8th June 1944
Urgent message was received by 84th Army Korps sent by 8./G.R.916 stationed at Balleroy. It reported being under heavy attack by elements of 1st US Division. It had repulsed two attacks at company strength but only did so due to heavy artillery support, something the Americans were sure to counter. Reinforcements were urgently being requested. Elements of Panzer Lehr Division were on their way to plug the gap between the Schnelle Brigade 30 and the 352nd Infanterie Division.
Panzer Lehr moves to counter 1st US Division at Balleroy
14:00 Hours 8th June 1944
84th Army Corps is urgently requesting the presence of another HQ to help coordinate the battle as the number of divisions increase. Though I SS Panzer Corps has already been deployed in the theatre the bulk of the German divisions on the Invasion Front are Heer units. With Panzer Lehr already on the scene and the 77th Infanterie Division arriving, command and control issues are sure to arise. On the battlefront itself Canadian and British troops are converging on Caen. the 12th SS Panzer has already been engaged by British units in the vicinity of Capriquet Airfield
Page 3 of the Wehrpass held the personal information of the soldier, his place and date of birth and boxes 3 and 4. His nationality in box 5, more often than not it was Deutsch Reich (often abbrieviated to DR). However there are many cases of Volksdeutsch (people of German origin) Wehrpass holders that also have which country they hail from (I have a Wehrpass in my collection to a soldier whose nationality is DR Rom, ie a Volksdeutsch from Romania). Hans Meier was from Silesia in Prussia, now a part of Poland. Boxes 6 and 7 tell us his religion and marital status (Hans was a Lutheran and was single at the time of issue and if a soldier married this section was updated). Box 8 tells us what the soldier’s civilain occupation was and in Hans’ case he was an ‘Autoschlosser’, ie a car mechanic. This makes total sense with his posting in the motor pool of the 16th ID.
The soldier’s photograph was attached on page 2, normally stuck to the page and stamped at both corners. The soldier was also required to sign his photograph. Page 4 would detail the soldier’s education and any skills or qualifications obtained in civilian life. Being an auto mechanic (Autoschlosser in Box 8) Hans had a full drivers license and as such was issued with a military divers license that also came with this grouping. This were printed on seal paper and usually also carried the soldier’s photo, though not in this case.
The number you see on the stamp is the Feld Post Nummer of the unit he served in. Sort of a military postal address for correspondence, FPN 41944 belonged to :
(30.7.1941-28.2.1942) Kraftwagen-Werkstatt-Zug 550,
(12.3.1943-7.9.1943) Kraftwagen-Werkstatt-Zug 566,
both the units he served in as we shall see. This FPN can also be seen on the stamp of his Ost Medaille Urkunde.
Inside view. Photo would have gone on the right.
The word ‘verbrennungsmaschine’ means combustion engines, so he could drive petrol driven motorbikes, cars and lorries.
Wehrpasse were issued to all men of military age that were called up by their Wehrkries, a regional unit that controlled recruitment across the areas of the Reich. They managed the flow of replacements into the Ersatz und Ausbildung Battalions (Training Units) defore the recruits entered front line service. There are three types of cover for Wherpass. The early and pre-war Wehrpass had an stylised eagle with dropped wings. The mid and later war Wehrpass had a more military looking eagle with straight wings, The main difference is that the late war Wehrpass has the word ‘Wehrpass’ printed in Latin print rather than the Gothic used in the earlier versions. Hans Meier’s Wehrpass is of the Mid-War Type, an example cover is shown below.
In the small box occupying the top right hand corner of the pass the owners initial would be printed, this would aide clerks rifiling through filing cabinets at the units depot. The branch of service would often be stamped on or written in the alrge rectangle under the eagle. The words ‘Heer’ (Army), Luftwaffe (Air Force), Kriegsmarine (Navy), or Waffen SS (Armed SS) would normally be printed here but not all the time.
The first page would include the soldier’s Wehrnummer, that would be replicted in the Unit’s Stammrollen. His name as well as his ID Number (If applicable not in this case), his Workbook number (Nummer des Arbeitsbuches) and his dog tag number (Erkennungsmarke). In Hans’ case his dog tag was stamped Kw.Werkstattzug.550/5. The bottom half of the page held all the administrative information of the Wehrbezrikskommando.
Match corresponding to the League Cup, 4th Round. Aldershot play in League Two, ie three divisions lower than United as teams from all Leagues participate in this competition. Sir Alex Ferguson ends to shuffle his sqaud for these games and traditionally the League Cup has served as a blooding ground for young layers and it also serves as game time for those senior squad members not getting regular games for the first side. As such there were eleven changes from the debacle at Old Trafford against City on Sunday and there was a fair mix of youth and experience. The result was never in doubt though as United were clearly superior to their lower league opponents. Dimitar Berbatov, Michael Owen and Antonio Valencia scored United’s goals.
Manchester United Team
40 Ben Amos
51 Ezekiel Fryers
15 Nemanja Vidic
4 Phil Jones
20 Fabio Da Silva
32 Mame Biram Diouf
23 Tom Cleverley
13 Ji-Sung Park
25 Antonio Valencia (Goal)
10 Dimitar Berbatov (Goal)
9 Micheal Owen (Goal)
Paul Pogba for Tom Cleverley
Micheal Keane for Ezekiel Fryers
Ravel Morrison for Mame Biram Diouf