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Help Needed! Translation Polish Military records

Article about: Hi all! I am translating polish military recods to gain more information about my family friend. This part is quite important because this contains information about his supposed time in the

  1. #1

    Default Help Needed! Translation Polish Military records

    Hi all!

    I am translating polish military recods to gain more information about my family friend. This part is quite important because this contains information about his supposed time in the german army. He stated in an interview that is was transported to a labour camp in russia, but the papers of the Ministry of Defence in Northolt stated that he was serving in the german army. I think this is quite contradicting, because I think it was not easy to just switch sides in the middle of a war. He later received a war medal for his impeccable service under the british command.

    I hope you can help me with the translation of the below. Thanks in advance! Kind regards, Bianca

    Help Needed! Translation Polish Military records

  2. #2

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    Hello Bianca,

    May I be the first to welcome you to the Forum, with regards to Otto Sonnenberg, he did serve in the 3rd Carpathian Rifle Division Heavy Machine Gun Battalion under the pseudonym Ryszard Jankowski, Born in 1925, Army Number (also found on His ID Tags) : 1925-186-III.

    The Service record states that he served in the German Army between 25th August 1943 and the 16th May 1944, more than likely he lived in Silesia and when the germans annexed the area into the reich. He became eligible to be conscripted into the german army.

    By the end of the war, there were a number of ex german army soldiers serving in the 2nd Polish Corps, but on the whole these never served on the front line,

    I have just checked the Index of victims of soviet repression there is only one Ryszard Jankowski born in 1924 listed and he was repatriated in 1945.

    We may never know the full picture about Otto Sonnenberg ps. Ryszard Jankowski.

    Perhaps some of the other Forum members can add to this for you Bianca.

    Best wishes

    Andrzej

  3. #3

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    Translation :

    first line :

    From 25/8 1943 until 16/5/44 served in German army by His own testimony.

    second line : its difficult, I will try to decipher it later.

    Looks like on 16 May 1944 he got either captured or surrendered to the Allies. And later joined the II Corps.
    NIE ZAPOMNIJMY O KRESACH.

    TAK BEDZIE JAK BOG DA.

  4. #4

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    And as far as these soldiers serving on Front lines here is a picture of former unterfeldwebel in Wehrmacht decorated with Iron Cross First Class, also he won a KW in Italy.
    Help Needed! Translation Polish Military records
    NIE ZAPOMNIJMY O KRESACH.

    TAK BEDZIE JAK BOG DA.

  5. #5

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    Hi Andrzej,

    Thank you for your help. I am figuring out the polish language myself, but sometimes it is very hard and the handwriting is just to blury to figure it out.

    He was born in Karloszeki (community Biala, district Plock). This is located in the southwest of poland - corresponding with the Silesia you mentioned.

    The Ryszard Jankowski you mentioned is indeed probably another one. My family friend never went back to his home country and passed away in the Netherlands.

    You mentioned that there were some ex german army soldiers serving in the second polish corps. I have also found some information, but this is not very clear in why and how this was possible. Do you maybe know how this was possible? I could not imagine that it was easy to just change sides in the heat of the moment.

    I think you are right.. it is a shame that some documents from polish soldiers went missing during the war and therefore i probably cannot say with a 100% certainty what happend. But as a journalist i am hoping to come close to the 90%. I am planning to go to poland and monte cassino to find some additional information about this family and see the surroundings where he fought and crew up.

    Again thanks for you help!

    Kind regards,

    Bianca

  6. #6

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    Hii!

    Thanks for your reply! Looking forward to your follow-up!

    According to the interview he gave, we was in a labour camp and was released in russia. Later he joined the second corps of Gen. Anders in the middle east. However the documents i have do not contain information about this period of time. I hope you translation of the second line could shed some light on this matter.

    Thanks again for you help!

    Kind regards,

    Bianca

  7. #7

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    Line 2 :

    First 3 words are : " Przed wcieleniem opinia… " "before joining up opinion .."
    NIE ZAPOMNIJMY O KRESACH.

    TAK BEDZIE JAK BOG DA.

  8. #8

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    In Three languages : German, polish and Italian. Safe Conduct Pass.

    Soldiers would often surrender waving these...

    Help Needed! Translation Polish Military records
    Help Needed! Translation Polish Military records
    NIE ZAPOMNIJMY O KRESACH.

    TAK BEDZIE JAK BOG DA.

  9. #9

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    Propagada leflets for Polish troops in Wehrmacht.

    Help Needed! Translation Polish Military records

    Help Needed! Translation Polish Military records
    NIE ZAPOMNIJMY O KRESACH.

    TAK BEDZIE JAK BOG DA.

  10. #10

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    Another one : to Poles in Wehrmacht.

    Help Needed! Translation Polish Military records

    Help Needed! Translation Polish Military records
    NIE ZAPOMNIJMY O KRESACH.

    TAK BEDZIE JAK BOG DA.

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