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German Field Mail - Translation

Article about: by johnhmcgary Woody and Kesha, Thanks to both of you, very interesting. Written in 41, things were going so well, turned around kind of fast. Was almost like being there. Thanks again, John

  1. #1

    Default German Field Mail - Translation

    Hi all,

    I've recently aquired a WW2 German field letter dated Nov 1941. Are there any German speakers in the forum who could possibly translate this letter for me?

    Kind regards,
    Lee

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  3. #2
    ?

    Default Re: German Field Mail - Translation

    Quote by WoodyUK View Post
    Hi all,

    I've recently aquired a WW2 German field letter dated Nov 1941. Are there any German speakers in the forum who could possibly translate this letter for me?

    Kind regards,
    Lee
    Yep... go on.


    Freundliche Grüße,
    Kesha

  4. #3

    Default Re: German Field Mail - Translation

    cool, thanks dude!

    I'll upload the letter now!

  5. #4

    Default Re: German Field Mail - Translation

    Ok, here's a scan of the letter!

    Cheers,
    Lee
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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  6. #5
    ?

    Default Re: German Field Mail - Translation

    Quote by WoodyUK View Post
    cool, thanks dude!

    I'll upload the letter now!
    ...Thank God it`s not written in Sütterlin!
    (Sütterlin - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)


    I´ll do my very best and get back to you asap,
    Kesha

  7. #6

    Default Re: German Field Mail - Translation

    Thank you so much Kesha.... Your a star!

  8. #7
    ?

    Default Re: German Field Mail - Translation

    Here we go...

    It wasn`t as easy as I thought. The author seems to be an officer at the Russian back area in November 41. His handwritting is sometimes hard to decipher and some phrases are quite old-fashioned. Had to read the letter several times to understand everything, except the name of the girl he`s writing to. Could be a pet name, "Kerlchen", "Cute little guy".
    The "Panje" carriage and "Panje" cottage can`t be translated. "Panje" is a kind of synomym for "typical Russian".


    Translation:

    In the field, 1.Nov.41

    My beloved little wife,

    it`s raining cats and dogs again, here at our place. Well, it`s a "wonderful" weather.
    You won`t even drive your dog out. The state of the streets is partly catastrophic.
    During the past days I ordered prisoners to build wooden piers through the mud, in
    order to make it possible to walk from one Panje-cottage to the other. The Soviets
    broke down a church in our village, so I ordered to use it`s bricks to build new
    streets now. You cannot imagine.-

    Yesterday and today I have ordered to bake bread. Two of my men are bakers, they bake
    faultnessly. My "Slave", a russian prisoner, arranged to mill the grain. It worked
    faultlessly. This guy is quite orderly at all. He "organized" a Panje-carriage and
    2 horses, and now he`s acquiring all kind of stuff. Potatoes, flour and whatever
    you need. Additionally, yesterday and today I butchered again, 2 pigs and a big
    cow. A part of the meat has been used to make soft sausages. Guess how much?
    150 pieces of big, long sausages! Tomorrow they will be smoked. They will taste
    good! Yes, what can be done over here with very limited means.
    As you can see, my beloved {Name illegible}, we don`t have to starve over here. Don`t
    worry and don`t be concerned.

    Besides that, there`s nothing new over here to tell you about. I`m still very healthy.
    Same for you, my {Name illegible}? Well, I`m very concerned about you. Because now it`s
    going to be Winter again and you have to make these long train journeys every day
    in those unheated trains-


    Page Two:

    -at cold temperatures. In addition, all these many and long train delays.
    I can see you so clearly, standing on the platform, frozen to the marrow.
    {Name illegible}, please take care of yourself and our future. Wouldn`t
    it be much better for your to stay in Hannover during Winter? That would be much
    better for you! Moreover, I wouldn`t have to be so concerned about you then. When
    you`ll finally have the intention to do so, there will be a way to do so. Please,
    my {Name illegible}, think about it thoroughly and you will agree that i`m right.
    Write me very soon how you`re thinking about this.

    Besides this, how are things at your home? As roads are quite bad now, the mail is
    arriving here slowly, sporadic and with very long intervals, so it`s hard to imagine
    how it`s at home. Is Kurt still staying in Germany? How about the condition of
    Elisabeth? When will the baby arrive? You didn`t write about her for so long.-

    Here, in spite of everything, things a looking good. The Russian is mostly running
    away. It certainly won`t take much more time until it`s over here. The success is
    enormous.-
    Please allow me to finish for today. I embrace you in dearly love and remain yours
    with a thousand affectionate greetings and kisses, your loving and adoring
    Spatzel
    {pet name, "small sparrow"}

    Please greet everyone at home.

  9. #8

    Default Re: German Field Mail - Translation

    WOW!!!
    That's a fantastic job you've done there Kesha!! Pretty poignant when you read it though isn't it! There's a good chance he never made it back to his wife and un-born child...

    Well done sir, Ned.
    'I do not think we can hope for any better thing now.
    We shall stick it out to the end, but we are getting weaker of course, and the end cannot be far.
    It seems a pity, but I do not think I can write more. R. SCOTT.
    Last Entry - For God's sake look after our people.'

    In memory of Capt. Robert Falcon Scott, Edward Wilson, Henry Bowers, Lawrence Oates and Edgar Evans. South Pole Expedition, 30th March 1912.

  10. #9

    Default Re: German Field Mail - Translation

    Kesha,

    That was amazing.... Thank you so much!!

    I intend on framing the original letter, and framing an English version too. It really quite moved me when the gentleman was talking of his concern for his lady, and (his?) children! It really does bring to light the torment of everyone involved in WW2!

    I can't thank you enough for taking the time to translate the letter for me.... I am very very greatful. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did! Thank you Kesha

    Kind Regards,
    Lee

  11. #10
    ?

    Default Re: German Field Mail - Translation

    @Ned and Lee:

    I appreciate your kind words... it was indeed quite interesting and also moving to read and translate his letter. It`s like a window into the past, and what we see is a normal man dealing with abnormal circumstances, trying to keep in touch with his old, normal life.

    To get this straight:
    He is refering to Elisabeth`s unborn baby, not his own.

    I thought the same as Ned did... He thought he would be home soon, not knowing that the worst was yet to come. Good chance he never made it back. Any chance you know his full name, Lee? Would be interesting to find out what happened to him.

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