Thank you FB, I did not know that about the Wehrmacht removing war damage, but it does not surprise me in the least. My thoughts about the word "Reinigung" and a sinister meaning were related to the preceding paragraph and the word "Mischungen" which is not quite "Mischlingen", but to my mind relates somewhat. I do hope however that he was only talking about rubble. One sentence in this chaps favor is his sense of humor: "Was soll ich Dir lieber Leser noch von Belgrad schreiben?" or "Dear reader, what else should I write about Belgrade?" I think the rest of it will be an interesting read.
Thank you Ben, but it is not overwhelming so far I have yet to do any heavy lifting, the preceding page was transcribed by a nice old lady in Tutzing Germany.
Awesome piece, Eddie! I love it long time!!!
A scholarly account of the mass murder of Jews and German army occupation policy in Serbia is this work.
The handwriting in your diary is pretty clear so far as it goes. Some others are hard to decipher, but this man wrote clearly.
The whole history of war from the bottom up thing is a huge undertaking now, especially in Germany and there are many fine books to read that employ these sources, as well as the interrogation of prisoners as concerns the real face of war in south eastern and eastern Europe.
Nazi Germany also began mass tourism with the KdF, whereas wars in the modern age also led huge numbers to see Europe in a way that was unimaginable before. Hence, there also followed a kind of travel narrative to much of the campaigns of the Wehrmacht, often to substantiate the ideology of the regime along the cultural gradient theory (i.e. eastern Europe is not as good as us, pp.) but also as manifest of the enduring interest in southern Europe, Orientalism, etc.
Belgrade is a very nice place, with its mixture of empires, as well as excellent food and beautiful women. I am very fond of south eastern Europe. With the time ones spends on the Danube, this posture is automatic.
Thanks for adding an interesting and challenging object to what often becomes pretty dull hereabouts.
When I was writing my master's thesis, before most here were even born, I forced myself to write constantly in Suetterlin, though my penmanship would have gotten my caned in a German school of the early 20th century. I never had good penmanship, of course, being ill disciplined and poisoned by too much atmospheric nuclear testing in the early 1950s. By writing it every day, I learned it, more or less, and it was enjoyable. My German friends are always flummoxed by it, but I still use it. I also had gone to pro Seminare in German university, where the study of the sources had a long and gloried tradition, and wherein the knowledge of these things was mandatory.
Thank you FB, I will look for this book, I really appreciate the suggestion. His handwriting is fairly clear in the passages that I posted, it is not always so though. I have no problem admitting that despite the relative clarity of his handwriting I still have trouble reading it. I rarely read anything handwritten, and my generation has mostly read/written electronically, so if I don't have experience reading a person's handwriting I have trouble with it. That is the unfortunate truth for me. I appreciate the passage about KDF, I had never considered the influence of the KDF program on the albums/diaries of the Wehrmacht, though I had always noted an air of adventure and touristy curiosity in the photo albums I have had the chance to flip through. It's of course my pleasure to share this diary with people who appreciate the history.
Here is an image of Eicke's own handwritten account of his life from his personnel file.
This kind of document was mandatory of persons in said era. Such a thing was a standard part of any application for a position of responsibility and the clarity of one's German and the excellence of penmanship were all criteria for such a position.
Looks like you've got quite the interesting project on your hands! These are definitely some of the most interesting, not to mention personal, items to collect where ww2/TR is concerned --- such an opportunity to see and get a feel of what some of these soldiers etc. went through/felt and thought back then.
I've got one going all the way from 1940-45 --- having it fully translated is another matter entirely, evidenced by this thread. Damn that Suetterlin ---stuff!