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bodies of 21 german soldiers buried alive found

Article about: Excellent writeup on this dig-terrible circumstances, but it looks like the French are doing a good job with sound science and the dignity this deserves. I saw on the French archaeology pare

  1. #21

    Default Re: bodies of 21 german soldiers buried alive found

    Excellent writeup on this dig-terrible circumstances, but it looks like the French are doing a good job with sound science and the dignity this deserves. I saw on the French archaeology parent site there was at least one picture of work in progress-a technician with a cooler and water bottle, small trowel, etc and what appeared to be a body upright on a bunk.

    Is anyone aware of more photos that may be available of this dig?

    And yes, I agree that the "unidentified item" is a pouch with coins, but someone posited elsewhere those might be fuses of some kind?

  2. #22

    Default Re: bodies of 21 german soldiers buried alive found

    In french and quite short,sorry..
    Even for us,details of this frightening history are not easy to collect.

    Alsace: découverte des restes de soldats allemands - YouTube

  3. #23

    Default Re: bodies of 21 german soldiers buried alive found

    I really hope that the French decide to preserve and protect this site, it is a unique time capsule. The state of the wood preservation inside the tunnel is quite astonishing.

    German soldiers found entombed in a perfectly preserved World War One shelter - Telegraph

    This on moment of history that has to be saved. Surely common sense says "save this place"!

    The report speaks of a large detonation above ground that caused the shelter to become entombed, can anyone take a guess as to what sort of munition this might have been? That fact that some of the dead soldiers were found still in a upright seated position sounds as if that meant instant death, not a slow death as a result of lack of oxygen. One report spoke of an aerial mine, such as was used in the second world war. Did such a weapon exist in the first war?

  4. #24

    Default Re: bodies of 21 german soldiers buried alive found

    There were many huge underground caverns, secretly dug beneath German trenches
    that were carved out by Royal Engineer Sappers and Miners. They were then filled
    with 'Amatol' explosive and detonated in concert with planned attacks against
    German positions. Some of these caverns have not yet been uncovered to
    this day, and are very unstable. I believe one was set off by an electrical
    storm in the 1970's or 1980's. Not sure if this was one such 'mine'.

    Hard to say exactly what may have caused the collapse, but if a large enough
    bomb were exploded close by, or on top of a weakened or
    unstable structure.........
    Regards,


    Steve.

  5. #25

    Default Re: bodies of 21 german soldiers buried alive found

    I have just watched this clip, rather interesting. Sorry, I do not speak French {Shamefully typical British!!!} This excavation must have been going on for some time, as I see that some areas that have been dug out have green weeds growing, noticeably at the start of the tunnel section {or covered part of the trench} Also, I see that beside the bell, the sides of the trench, the wood seems very splintered suggesting that this is the impact area of the munition that may have caused the cave in and destruction of the trench.

    In France, is there any interest in preserving this location as a historical site? Will the artefacts be preserved and become museum pieces? Please post any further photos or video that might be available from the French media. This is such fascinating discovery, and I mean that with complete respect to the poor soldiers who died here, in yet another senseless war.

  6. #26

    Default Re: bodies of 21 german soldiers buried alive found

    Hey Steve

    I know what you are talking about with the mines dug below enemy lines {the Germans also dug them below Allied lines}, but I do not think that this is a result of French mining operations, there is no crater, and it would have been a huge crater if it had been a subsurface mine. The view of the excavated trench system, see attached link

    German soldiers found entombed in a perfectly preserved World War One shelter - Telegraph

    does not show any sign of big time cratering, suggesting a direct artillery hit or some kind of aerial explosion.

    The mine that you refer to that was set off during a storm occurred during a thunderstorm on 17 June 1955, that resulting in killing a cow in the field! It was one of 22 mines laid under the German lines at the Battle of Messines. Of the 22 mines, one was discovered by German counter mining operations, and destroyed. Of the remaining 21 mines, 19 were detonated. The remaining 2 mines near Ploegsteert Wood were not exploded as they were outside the planned attack area. These mine's precise location were mislaid by the British following the war, but the remaining unexploded mine location has recently believed to have been pinpointed. Nothing as of yet has been done to do anything to this "time bomb".

  7. #27

    Default Re: bodies of 21 german soldiers buried alive found

    Thanks for the clarification Rudi. I was only referring to them because
    of the immense size these underground mines had been.

    I suppose a direct hit must have caused the cave in - but there are
    likely several unknown factors possible, such as moisture content
    of the soil, etc. Sad end for these poor boys, all the same.
    Regards,


    Steve.

  8. #28

    Default Re: bodies of 21 german soldiers buried alive found

    When they blew the mines in battle of Messines, the flash lit up the sky and was Seen and Heard as far away as London. 10,000 German soldiers died almost instantly and the total casualties were well over 23 thousand.
    William

    "Much that once was, is lost. For none now live who remember it."

  9. #29

    Default Re: bodies of 21 german soldiers buried alive found

    Something similar already happened on our soil...
    I used a google translator,so,please don't laugh,héhéhé...

    La tragedie du mont Cornillet


    The exhumation of the Mont Cornillet The extraordinary history in the first world war, these German soldiers who found themselves really trapped in the mountains ... Flashback In Champagne, the entire mass of Moronvilliers the morning of May 20, the artillery preparation shakes the earth and upsets the enemy lines from which then a vigorous response of fire and steel. This surge of shells of all calibres must stop the German resistance, while the deadly fire starts, will land in a tunnel impregnable fortress that houses real galleries in four German battalions. Since April 17, Mount Cornillet, one of the seven hills with the mountains Champagne Blonde, Top, Perthois, the helmet, the Teton and the No Name, is the object of incessant attacks and bombardments have killed thousands of French soldiers. Only the conquest of the mountain which rises to 209 meters should allow to overcome enemy defenses installed in the innermost recesses of the massif. In the afternoon of May 20, a German soldier surrenders, followed by a detachment whose haggard men say that the tunnel Cornillet is invaded by gas. Around 4:30 p.m., ignoring the barrage, the soldiers of the 1st Zouaves, commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Poirel, after hurtling down the slopes north of Cornillet and "cleaned" the field, discovering that all the tunnel entrances are unavailable, blocked by the effects of the bombing. In the night, a few Germans were taken prisoner when they come out of an excavation, revealing the existence of the main entrance of the tunnel ... Their explanations provide some additional items on the state of the tunnel. In the morning a French 400 mm artillery shells destroyed a ventilation shaft of the main gallery and caused the collapse of the tunnel; gas shells fell on the inputs. It seems that the garrison perished asphyxiated, walled-in maze of corridors and dormitories. The first troops to enter the tunnel discovered a horror show. A pile of corpses is offered to them and, despite the danger, officers and soldiers venture into the corridors; the German infantry, to escape rushed to the exits've fallen and died, asphyxiated, some on other galleries at the ends. An officer estimated the German losses at more than 600 soldiers. Not knowing exactly the extent of underground, the assault troops moving away Cornillet and then cleared the entrance is walled up. Around the Mount, the fighting continues and the French troops have a lot to do with a German army whose loss of the fortress is not slowing down the heat. As the front moves in the offensive of July 15, 1918, the French armies leave the mountains of Champagne but not before blowing up the tunnel Cornillet now part of history. Nearly 60 years after ... June 1973 Sector workers vital military Chalons-sur-Marne discover the opening of a vent of the Mont Cornillet. By expanding this opening they manage to get off and lead 12 meters below in the gallery of the south slope of Mount and discover countless bones, weapons, equipment ... September 1973 Alerted German authorities turn to prospect the tunnel where there are still weapons, ammunition and the remains of soldiers who have not been extracted from their shroud of earth and stones during the first excavations in 1933 at that time, fumes gas from barrels of mustard gas in poor condition and some international tension had prematurely ended the exhumations. The search operations at Mount Cornillet Conservation of the remains in plastic boxes before burial in cemeteries around July 1974 35 Engineers Regiment of the German Engineering Education searched Kehl Mount Cornillet. Substantial equipment is rented on site and the French army ready heavy equipment release: grasshopper, bulldozer, excavator ... A hundred skeletons emerged from the rubble and extracts; unfortunately, the galleries have been looted, only 20 bodies were identified. The German engineers, supported by volunteers from the French army, attacking a gallery which are supposed to find the bodies of five officers. Time is short. In late August, the firing of artillery practice must regain the territory camps Marne. When the excavations continue, 241 bodies were removed the first two galleries, totally unobstructed; the release of the third is half done. These German soldiers of the 476th RI Wurtenburgeois had little more than ten years and nine were "blue" while ignoring the atrocities of war. Before leaving the site, the German and French authorities to attend a moving ceremony before the coffins containing the remains of German soldiers in 1917. June 1975 Under the Cornillet, excavations began again; 25 sappers of Instruction Engineering Regiment in Munich and eleven French soldiers stationed in the 33rd Engineering Kehl continued release of the third gallery where they hope to find traces of the fifteen officers supposed to be meeting at the collapse of the tunnel. The discovery of the first skeletons took long hours of digging in the rubble, landslides, and it is with enormous efforts that the military come to the briefing room. They were quick to realize that the tunnel, true underground cemetery was desecrated and the remains were stripped of any thing to their identification. A total of 80 bodies are excerpts of that gallery and reverently placed in plastic boxes awaiting final burial. The total represents 321 exhumations body. They will be buried in the military cemetery of Warminster.

    2 pics:what the french troops saw when entering the cave+ a relic buckle from the place..
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture 69985757.jpg   post-7723-1206563464.jpg  


  10. #30

    Default Re: bodies of 21 german soldiers buried alive found

    It reminds one of the famous "Bayonet Trench" at Verdun. Sadly, filthy looters have now stolen all but one of the bayonets-and it is broken off to a stub...
    William

    "Much that once was, is lost. For none now live who remember it."

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