19 Infanterie-Division I/74 Rgt "Hameln"

 

Historical

The Infanterie-Regiment 74 was created the 12nd of october 1937 in Hameln. It was subjected to the Wehrkreis XI (military area of Hannover) and the 19 Infanterie-Division and was maked up of two batallions (I/74 and II/74). The régiment was reinforced by the création of a 3rd batallion (III/74) at the mobilization.

The 1st of february 1940, the II/74 became the I/517 and was assigned to the 295 Infanterie-Division.

The 26th of october 1940, the III/74 was assigned to the Schützen-Regiment 112

The 19 Infanterie-Division was converted to 19 Panzer-Division the 26th of october 1940 and was fitted with czech tanks PzKpfw 38(t). The Infanterie-Regiment 74 became Schützen-Regiment 74

19th Panzer division insignia, the Wolfsangel.

 

Route around the Netherlands, the Belgium and the France during may-june 40 campaign (clic on the picture to enlarge).

 

On the road of Blois, 20th of june 1940 (clic on the picture to enlarge).

Picture 1 : Near Chateaudun, some cyclists lead the way to the column, with in front, the fanfare.

The Infanterie-Divisionen are not motorized and this unit must walk 35 to 40 kilometers per day to follow the Panzer-Divisionen. It isn't a big disadvantage for this small theater, but on Russia in 1941, it will become.

 

Blois, 21st of june 1940 (clic on the picture to enlarge).

Picture 2 : The cyclists (Gefreiter V on the shaft) are riding the Truppenfahrrad (Tr Fa) in a destroyed unknow street of the town center.

The Tr Fa is also using to carry some weapon or ammunition box : machine gun MG34, light mortar 5.cm l.Gr.W 36, antitank rifle Pz.B. 39 fixed on the frame and the handle-bars !

 

Blois, 21st of june 1940 (clic on the picture to enlarge).

Picture 3 : The column, under the leadership of a officer wearing a Schirmmütze, is walking on Denis Papin street to Jacques Gabriel bridge (see the map), the front of the building on the right isn't much change in spite of the reconstruction.

 

Blois, 21st of june 1940 (clic on the picture to enlarge).

Picture 4 : The column on the Jacques Gabriel bridge (see the map). On the back, on the left and on the center, we can see the damages caused by the bombardment and the fire the 15th, 16th and 17th of june. The old Town Hall is locating just above the front of the column and it will transfer after the war in the old episcopal palace near the St Louis cathedral.

 

Blois, 21st of june 1940 (clic on the picture to enlarge).

Picture 5 : On the Jacques Gabriel bridge (see the map), some waggons fitted with tyres grosser Gefechtswagen Hf 7/11 are following the cyclists on their Tr Fa. The Hf 7/11 weight is 1040 kilogrammes and his load is nearly 700.

 

Blois, 21st of june 1940 (clic on the picture to enlarge).

Picture 6 : View of Blois south side of the Loire at Villebois Mareuil quay (see the map), the Jacques Gabriel bridge is the only one at this time and some french armored units are using it ( the 19th BCC fitted with D2 tanks and the 44th BCC fitted with R35 tanks notabily ) in their retreat.

 

Blois, 21st of june 1940 (clic on the picture to enlarge).

Picture 7 : The Gefreiter are getting round a bomber crater inside a civilian car is falling, in Blois-Vienne, Villebois Mareuil quay (see the map).

On the back, we can see the bridge arch destroyed by the french army to delay the german advance. A footbridge will provide the junction between the two banks of the Loire during the occupation. The germans will detroy the bridge new in the central part, in 1944, during their retreat.

 

Blois, 21st of june 1940 (clic on the picture to enlarge).

Picture 8 : The I/74, under the leadership of a mounted officer, is leaving Blois by the Villebois Mareuil quay (see the map) and is following the Loire for the Amboise town. We can see still the smokes of the fire between the Castle of Blois and the St Louis Cathedral.

 

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