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12 th SS Hitlerjugend ID disc

Article about: hello Guys Annoyed from this ads?   We find this ID disc from a member of the 12Th ss Hitlerjugend...matter of fact we find the whole soldier...in the Norray sector in Normandy he is pr

  1. #31

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    If it is true that these War Graves Commissions' are not interested in associated artifacts found with fallen soldiers then of course war-grave digging will attract collectors motivated by trophy hunting as their primary reason for being involved. As the driving force behind the wholesale destruction of battlefield sites in order to discover their fallen (and the justification given by diggers) it seems to me that the Volksbund must bear some responsibility for this increasing problem.
    I collect, therefore I am.

    Nothing in science can explain how consciousness arose from matter.

  2. #32
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    Quote by slados28 View Post
    The facts concerning discarded items from ww2, as I see it, is that there's no real interest in general and that most of it is considered rusted out junk/nazi junk -- I see no large scale interest in digging up artifacts from these wars from the official side as there's so much war loot intact in museums already. As time goes by, items deteriorate and given the immense scale of this conflict there's no reason to believe anything else than that if not for "amateur" detectorists a lot of the items would have been lost to time and never recovered. As a conscientious collector I always do my best to record any and all info I can find on the items that I collect and as such I have no qualms about it. Of course, bad people also populate this hobby as they do any other popular pastime or profession/part of society and it goes without saying that discarding human remains for simple item recovery is an appalling act but the fact that some do terrible things like that should not automatically reflect upon the rest abiding with sound general moral guidelines...

    The strange thing is that most people do not seem to even care about "our collective past" revolving around ww2 and neither does the official side. I see this all the time here in Norway, the government tears down buildings of historical ww2 significance while us supposedly "amoral" and "selfish" collectors protest to no avail. Most items acquired from families have often been with them since the war and as such they too represent a link to the past that would have been lost if it was not for collectors searching out and preserving them for the future. The lack of general interest in our collective past is surely visible by looking at how much is simply discarded by private households.

    My main point is that with the current perceived lack of care from the official side/people in general (with regards to strictly material finds) coupled with the absolute benefits of licensed VOLUNTEERS searching the fields and deep forests of Europe for those left behind I cannot fault anyone for digging and possibly, in return, keeping a few artifacts if they would have been discarded anyway or are not of particular significance. You could always argue that every single item found represents a tiny bit of the whole picture but thinking that handing everything over to the official side would result in them keeping and preserving or even caring about every rusted out helmet shell or canteen is, to put it lightly, borderline naive...
    Everyone is opposed to destroying history, but that often does not apply to Nazi-era monuments or historical buildings, which are regularly destroyed or desecrated. In other words, history should always be preserved, unless there's a swastika on it.

    Of course historic battlefields and cemeteries should not be disturbed, but much of Europe was a battlefield during the war. People died everywhere and their remains were simply discarded, either due to purposeful neglect or the haste of war which prevented his comrades or enemies from providing a proper burial. Sure, they could be left alone, but if it were my relative, I'd rather have him returned than left to rot in some foreign field. If the excavator follows protocols (why should we assume that he hasn't?), no historical information will be lost, and it may be possible to return the bodies to the families, or at least to an appropriate grave site.

    Consider this: steel ID tags rust, and the longer they are left in the ground, the more they rust. If this fellow were exhumed 30 years ago, it probably would have been possible to read his entire tag and possibly identify the man himself. Leave them to rot and the relics and bodies will only further disintegrate. There are not enough 'professional' excavating crews to find every man who was killed in action in Europe, and even if there were, would they necessarily be any more respectful than a private individual, such as the one who began this thread? Maybe I'm just opposed to a sort of elitist thinking, but if it were my relative, I'd rather have him returned by an 'amateur' than never returned at all.

  3. #33

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    I never claimed that professional bodies would, could or do keep all the items recovered from excavations as the quantity recovered would have very quickly overwhelmed the storage capacity of such organisations.

    You talk the talk and sound like a good and conscientious detectorist or supporter of such, but again what is the justification for disturbing these sites? Again it still sounds like the main reason for detecting is to fulfill yours and others desire to obtain relics from the past. I know about and here the oft repeated claims that digging the items before they succumb to the natural process of decay is enough of a justification, but sooner or later many detectorists will run out of storage space and will themselves face the same problems as long established museums, with ever increasing quantities of finds and limited space and budgets to store correctly such items. Leather needs proper treatment as does ferrous items, all of which if done properly cost money. Though of course detectorists have the option of selling their finds, but in the end how many rusty helmets shells can you sell and is that the best way to record our collective past.
    Regards,

    Jerry

    Whatever its just an opinion.

  4. #34

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    Quote by Erno View Post
    Of course historic battlefields and cemeteries should not be disturbed, but much of Europe was a battlefield during the war. People died everywhere and their remains were simply discarded, either due to purposeful neglect or the haste of war which prevented his comrades or enemies from providing a proper burial. Sure, they could be left alone, but if it were my relative, I'd rather have him returned than left to rot in some foreign field. If the excavator follows protocols (why should we assume that he hasn't?), no historical information will be lost, and it may be possible to return the bodies to the families, or at least to an appropriate grave site.

    Consider this: steel ID tags rust, and the longer they are left in the ground, the more they rust. If this fellow were exhumed 30 years ago, it probably would have been possible to read his entire tag and possibly identify the man himself. Leave them to rot and the relics and bodies will only further disintegrate. There are not enough 'professional' excavating crews to find every man who was killed in action in Europe, and even if there were, would they necessarily be any more respectful than a private individual, such as the one who began this thread? Maybe I'm just opposed to a sort of elitist thinking, but if it were my relative, I'd rather have him returned by an 'amateur' than never returned at all.
    How many holes do you need to dig to find these missing remains? I know full well that objects decay if left in the ground and the sooner they are dug the better preserved they will be, but again is that really a good enough justification for digging holes all over Europe just on the off chance that some remains will be recovered, bearing in mind that many of these remains have already lost the things that would have ID'd them.

    This not about being elitist and I resent that comment as a professional archaeologist with 20 years experience digging sites of all ages and after having to spend 4 years studying to be able to allow me to call myself that. If you think it is OK for anyone with the money required to purchase a detector to just be allowed to run loose digging holes in any piece of land they can get permission to do so then you really have no idea what you are talking about and your bias based on the allure of the objects makes you sound just like any grave robber or treasure hunter with no regard for our collective history.


    Another issue that you mention is that he follows the "protocols", but the problem is in many cases they do not and even if they do the "protocols" were not fully thought out and mostly revolve around the protecting of precious items and give little or no protection to military remains such as most detectorists like to find. The laws are out of date, poorly thought out and do not in many cases protect the historical record now or for the future.
    Regards,

    Jerry

    Whatever its just an opinion.

  5. #35
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    Holy cow- how did this all become so ridiculous? I don't see long debates about the moral validity of detecting in numerous other, some long-lived, threads by other detectorists- so why here? And if the concern about the 'rules' for posting were the real issue, all it'd have taken would have been a simple PM to the original poster asking him to clarify the details- but no, it started with veiled accusations, and just spiraled down from there. Nice.

    Well I'm done with this thread- if I can be of any further assistance blaksaussa, or you learn anything new that you'd care to share, please feel free to PM me. Man, I expect this kind of thing on other fora and it's why I no longer visit them; but the WRF was always pleasantly free of it- now for the second time lately this kind of thing happens and I find myself wondering if what used to be a nice place to come and help out is just going to be no fun anymore...
    Ohhhhh- pillage then burn...

  6. #36

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    I notice that the thread starter has stopped posting on this thread since he was asked to provide evidence that he is working using the approved protocols.

    Also, just because until recently the interest in much of this material has not been there among the archaeological community, but that was partly due to the fact that it was largely ignorant of the scale of the detecting and digging that was taking place and this has now changed and the laws will also change.

    Maybe in the future all these semi official diggers will shift their focus to the US and loot your unknown historical sites prior to the undoubted uproar that such action would provoke and see the legislation that follows it. You obviously think that Europe is fair game to looting under the name of the chance finding of human remains to be returned to their relatives, which of course with many remains they are already too far gone to be ID'd, but hey why let facts get in the way of finding some cool items for the display or to get on ebay.
    Regards,

    Jerry

    Whatever its just an opinion.

  7. #37

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    Now you're just getting offensive with your insinuations, Jerry. Count me out, I'm done with justifying others actions to someone that's decided that all of these people are either gravediggers or amoral people with nothing but greed on their mind anyway --- how sad, it's an interesting discussion.

  8. #38
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    Quote by Anon View Post
    How many holes do you need to dig to find these missing remains? I know full well that objects decay if left in the ground and the sooner they are dug the better preserved they will be, but again is that really a good enough justification for digging holes all over Europe just on the off chance that some remains will be recovered, bearing in mind that many of these remains have already lost the things that would have ID'd them.

    This not about being elitist and I resent that comment as a professional archaeologist with 20 years experience digging sites of all ages and after having to spend 4 years studying to be able to allow me to call myself that. If you think it is OK for anyone with the money required to purchase a detector to just be allowed to run loose digging holes in any piece of land they can get permission to do so then you really have no idea what you are talking about and your bias based on the allure of the objects makes you sound just like any grave robber or treasure hunter with no regard for our collective history.


    Another issue that you mention is that he follows the "protocols", but the problem is in many cases they do not and even if they do the "protocols" were not fully thought out and mostly revolve around the protecting of precious items and give little or no protection to military remains such as most detectorists like to find. The laws are out of date, poorly thought out and do not in many cases protect the historical record now or for the future.
    Maybe it is different in Europe (I've never been there), but what if the owner of the property wants to build a shed on his property? If the property is not registered as an important historical landmark, is he forbidden from building a shed on the off chance that doing so might cover some sort of war grave? If not, then no different consideration should be given to a proper excavation. We don't know that blaksaussa is being respectful and following all appropriate protocols, but he has stated that he is, so anyone who says otherwise is accusing him of lying with no evidence to support it. That is an inappropriate accusation for any forum member to make against another.

    The fact is that untold numbers of historical monuments and buildings have been destroyed since the war with little or no interest from the archaeological establishment, simply because they were above the ground and offended people. Those things were part of our shared culture, too, and they weren't just destroyed immediately postwar, which would be understandable given the necessary era of denazification; they are still being desecrated today, defaced like the faces of the Pharaohs from a limestone relief.

    Beyond that, there is the unintentional desecration by neglect caused by leaving other potentially historically or sentimentally important relics to decay in the ground while they are protected from the 'grave robbers' who should be so uppity and presumptuous as to assume that they, too are capable of processing these things and returning the war dead to their proper resting places.

    The fact is that careful, respectful and historically minded amateur archaeologists are capable of saving these things from rotting to nothing. They are the only people who can put a name to an individual, lest he rot in the ground until some future point when he is excavated by a tenure professional who is only capable of labeling his find as 'unknown corpse number 5235.' There is a big difference between grave robbers and true amateur archaeologists and historians.

    For the record, I own a metal detector, but I have barely used it at all, except in my own lawn and at the beach. I would not metal detect in area which I know contains human remains, because I don't judge myself capable of handling it properly. But that does not mean that no one else can, and in fact, I believe that many of them do very good work and ought not be judged and automatically condemned for their work.

    Edited to add one extra point:

    You mention that it is not justifiable to 'dig holes all over Europe' on the chance that one might encounter war dead. If there is nothing in the hole, then I'm not very clear on what exactly is harmed by the digging of it. If you're saying that it's harmful to dig because things besides war dead might be found, then you'd be ignoring the discoveries made in England alone by private individuals. A noted Anglo-Saxon hoard comes to mind. Maybe an archaeological excavation, fully equipped with tenured professionals, would have been conducted in that field at some point. I guess it would have been better just to wait until then.

  9. #39

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    Quote by slados28 View Post
    Now you're just getting offensive with your insinuations, Jerry. Count me out, I'm done with justifying others actions to someone that's decided that all of these people are either gravediggers or amoral people with nothing but greed on their mind anyway --- how sad, it's an interesting discussion.
    Well if I come over as offensive, that is not my intent but trying to explain why allowing anyone with the money to buy a detector to dig anywhere they want is not a good idea, then I get heated about this subject, but by the same token it is obvious that the other contributors to this thread have their own ideas on the subject and would rather take offence than offer a cogent and fully formed argument as to why such activity should continue, then that is of course their choice.

    I merely have expressed my strongly held opinions about why I think it is wrong that that metal detecting should only be allowed in special circumstances and then only by fully qualified operators. Am I not allowed to express my opinion on this subject on this forum? Perhaps not or so a few of you would appear to have it. Obviously I am not alone in my opinion.
    Regards,

    Jerry

    Whatever its just an opinion.

  10. #40

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    Depending on the size on the shed one might local authority planning permission first in England, by way of example. Further, there are many instances of building extensions on homes in certain areas that require the presence of a local authority archaeologist to be on site to inspect for anything of archaeological interest that might be uncovered during the building works. That is how it works in England.
    I collect, therefore I am.

    Nothing in science can explain how consciousness arose from matter.

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