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Thread: Help Identifing photos

  1. #1
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    Default Help Identifing photos-Taken From German POW

    Hi,

    Attached are scans of photos from my dad's WWII collection. He served in an Engineering company. I believe it's the 74th. These photos appear to be taken in Germany. My assumption is they are from a German POW but it's really a mystery. Any info is appreciated.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	6247  

    Last edited by Bobs1812; 03-13-2012 at 02:35 PM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Help Identifing photos

    All I can say offhand is that firstly, the 2 U boat photos are WWI and the last photo is of The Place Vendōme Column in Paris.
    Last edited by Ealdwita; 03-13-2012 at 04:02 PM.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Help Identifing photos

    Pic 4 is showing a typical make-shift POW camp in Germany at the end of the war.
    "I just ran out of ammo. I will ram this one. Good bye, we'll meet in Valhalla." - Major Heinrich Ehrler, April 4, 1945

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Help Identifing photos

    Quote Originally Posted by Ealdwita View Post
    All I can say offhand is that firstly, the 2 U boat photos are WWI...
    I am certainly not an expert concerning submarines but I dare to disagree here.
    If I'm not mistaken photo 2 shows U-2 and U-4, both Typ II A models, flying the old German naval flag which was used until 1935 officially. In common pre-war manner the boats' ID's were displayed on the turret.

    In photo 3 the later naval & war flag (incl. swastika) can be seen on at least three boats in the front row.
    Last edited by flamethrowerguy; 03-13-2012 at 05:15 PM.
    "I just ran out of ammo. I will ram this one. Good bye, we'll meet in Valhalla." - Major Heinrich Ehrler, April 4, 1945

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Help Identifing photos

    I'm no naval expert either, but those U-boats are definitely not WWI vintage, but are prewar or WWII...

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Help Identifing photos

    Photo one looks like a manipulated photo.

    It would be an extraordinary occasion for so many weapons to be firing tracer from so many positions and a photographic miracle for it to be captured at exactly the same moment with even the best of the low light lenses available during WWII while still managing to capture any definition of the building lower right. I say this from my ancient experience in photography of the black and white film with negative type which is this sort of photo.

    Moreover, most of the tracer trajectories are fairly low and not consistent with a bomber attack which has been attributed to this photo:
    "21 juli 1940: The intense flak faced by aircraft attacking German warships (Admiral Scheer) in Wilhelmshaven on the night of 20-21 July 1940. No.61 Squadron lost three Hampdens during this raid." http://www.dagelijksestandaard.nl/20...orlog-21-juli/

    Clearly there is no flak in the picture while the fireworks are at least 10,000 feet below the minimum likely range for flak.

    It may be that this photo was a postcard or stock photo given or sold to German troops from whom your father obtained it, or one given or sold to Occupation troops like your father rather than one taken by him or his mates.

    Unless, perhaps, and it's a very, very slim perhaps, this was a major, major, major yippee shoot by Allied troops after the surrender.
    Last edited by Rising Sun*; 03-14-2012 at 09:11 AM.
    ..
    A rational army would run away.
    Montesquieu

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Help Identifing photos

    It would be an extraordinary occasion for so many weapons to be firing tracer from so many positions and a photographic miracle for it to be captured at exactly the same moment with even the best of the low light lenses available during WWII while still managing to capture any definition of the building lower right.
    Might it be a time-lapse photo?
    "...we have met the enemy and he is us." -- Pogo (Walt Kelly)

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    Default Re: Help Identifing photos

    Great feedback.
    Photo 1 does look like a stock photo. There is writing in German on the back dated 1940. I have always assumed that some (just a few) of the photos in my fathers collection came from the belongings of a German.
    I also have other items ie. a Nazi swastika that are gathering dust in a closet. Creepy to me. We were never told about the origins of how these were acquired.

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    Default Re: Help Identifing photos

    Quote Originally Posted by Ardee View Post
    Might it be a time-lapse photo?
    I think you might mean a time or long exposure photo, being in this case one taken in low light with the shutter left open for a long time which, for example, if pointed at a clear night sky will show the stars leaving trails as the earth moves, like this http://www.flickr.com/photos/blyzz/4133624072/

    Time lapse is used for movie rather than still film. It's when frames are taken at intervals to show changes, such as the petals of flower opening in a few seconds rather than the hours or days it took in real time.

    The photo could be a time exposure one, but it seems manipulated to me if only because, as I mentioned earlier, the 'tracer' in the lower third of the picture is horizontal and much of the rest isn't much above horizontal. It's not what one would expect in a night air raid when bombers would be considerably higher.
    Last edited by Rising Sun*; 03-15-2012 at 09:04 AM.
    ..
    A rational army would run away.
    Montesquieu

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Help Identifing photos

    German National War Flag 1933 pattern (Reichskriegsflagge)

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	H002359full.jpg 
Views:	291 
Size:	76.0 KB 
ID:	6248

    http://www.germanmilitaria.com/Heer/photos/H002359.html
    IN the days of lace-ruffles, perukes and brocade
    Brown Bess was a partner whom none could despise
    An out-spoken, flinty-lipped, brazen-faced jade,
    With a habit of looking men straight in the eyes
    At Blenheim and Ramillies fops would confess
    They were pierced to the heart by the charms of Brown Bess.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Help Identifing photos

    Quote Originally Posted by flamethrowerguy View Post
    I am certainly not an expert concerning submarines but I dare to disagree here.
    If I'm not mistaken photo 2 shows U-2 and U-4, both Typ II A models, flying the old German naval flag which was used until 1935 officially. In common pre-war manner the boats' ID's were displayed on the turret.

    In photo 3 the later naval & war flag (incl. swastika) can be seen on at least three boats in the front row.
    I stand corrected. My apologies.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Help Identifing photos

    German National War Flag 1933 pattern (Reichskriegsflagge)

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	H002359full.jpg 
Views:	291 
Size:	76.0 KB 
ID:	6248

    http://www.germanmilitaria.com/Heer/photos/H002359.html
    IN the days of lace-ruffles, perukes and brocade
    Brown Bess was a partner whom none could despise
    An out-spoken, flinty-lipped, brazen-faced jade,
    With a habit of looking men straight in the eyes
    At Blenheim and Ramillies fops would confess
    They were pierced to the heart by the charms of Brown Bess.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Help Identifing photos

    I think you might mean a time or long exposure photo,
    Works for me! I'm not a camera guy. ;-)
    "...we have met the enemy and he is us." -- Pogo (Walt Kelly)

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Help Identifing photos

    Why don't you post the German from the back of the pictures as well?

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