Author Topic: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban  (Read 521 times)

Offline Tim Bell

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Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« on: July 08, 2021, 05:12:40 PM »
I've just purchased this postcard on an auction site.  I'm hoping our resident linguist, Charlie, can tell me what it says when I have better images.  In the interim we can see it is a German Cemetery near Montauban.
The Body Density Maps (not correct title) identify a German Cemetery in Railway Valley south of the village and I think this is it, with railway sleepers littering the foreground and the trees over the sunken lane on the right.
On the other hand it may be north of the village, with the line of poplars near triangle point on the right and the orchards on the left - although I don't think a German Cemetery was here.
There are clearly German Infantry in the image, which makes me wonder when this was. Spring 1918 could work or maybe POWs in 1916.  I doubt a cemetery could have been made in Railway Valley prior to July 1916.
I need to check out the specific location of the cemetery on the WFA disc and hope to take a then & now shot when I next visit.
Cheers
Tim
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Offline Timberman

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Re: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« Reply #1 on: July 08, 2021, 07:32:04 PM »
 Hi Tim
 Is it possible that this is your German Cemetery, it says it was removed in 1924.
 The location to Montauban is right.

 Information found here
 http://www.zerohourzday.com/battlefield-sites.php


 CARNOY MILITARY CEMETERY:
 Location: The cemetery is located on the south-east of Carnoy village on the road leading to the D938 (Albert-Peronne Road).

 The cemetery was begun in August, 1915, by the 2nd King's Own Scottish Borderers and the 2nd King's Own Yorkshire Light
 Infantry of the 5th Division. The cemetery was a battlefield cemetery being only 1000m in rear of the British front-line from
 when the British arrived in August 1915 until 1st July 1916 when XIII Corps successfully advanced on the opening day of the
 Battle of the Somme. The cemetery is the final resting place of many men of the 18th and 30th Divisions. Across the road
 from the cemetery, if standing with your back to the cross of sacrifice, up the hill to the left is an embankment which borders
 the field. The embankment houses dugouts known as ‘Brick Lane’ which included an advance dressing station. After the
 advance on 1 July the cemetery continued to be used by Field Ambulances throughout the Somme campaign. A small German
 cemetery originally located near the gates was removed in 1924.

 Neil
« Last Edit: July 08, 2021, 07:34:46 PM by Timberman »

Offline charlie

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Re: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2021, 08:09:26 PM »
Tim,
Always happy to do the translation. Although the writing isn‘t clear enough to read properly, there looks to be a description of what is seen in the photo - don‘t build your hopes up too much though :)
One thing is for certain, it is a German postcard showing German soldiers when the area was still in German hands.
Charlie

Offline Tim Bell

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Re: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2021, 07:41:37 AM »
Thanks both. Map showing German Cem. attached.  The location in Railway Valley seems to fit with the view of Montauban on the hill, but the railway seems to be on the wrong side.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2021, 07:47:02 AM by Tim Bell »
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Offline mack

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Re: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2021, 08:47:17 AM »
nice find tim and in the link that neil posted is a picture of 8606 harry hayes,another picture for your 17th site

mack

Offline charlie

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Re: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2021, 08:54:35 AM »
Tim,
Just to heighten the suspense  ;D ;D The postcard is from 1915, Talus Boise German cemetery fits very nicely with the positions occupied by the senders regiment - right flank on the Montauban-Carnoy Rd and left flank in the Bois Favière. There is a nice little twist to this as well but I need to read the card and do some digging.
Charlie

Offline Tim Bell

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Re: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2021, 09:33:21 AM »
nice find tim and in the link that neil posted is a picture of 8606 harry hayes,another picture for your 17th site

mack
Thanks Mack,
Harry Hayes and Levi Kenyon were both originally buried in the gardens to the west of Maricourt and I suspect they may have been killed in the assembly trenches near Cambridge Copse or the early part of the advance.  I already had the image of Harry from Jon Porter's book-although I hadn't included it in my 1st - 8th July Roll until now.  It's a great project he did.  Wonderful images and almost as much depth as we share on here. It's very odd seeing my Grandad's quotes coming back at me again too.
Tim
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Offline charlie

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Re: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2021, 09:27:17 PM »
Tim
After having another look at the postcard and the body density map I am wondering if the depicted cemetery isn‘t Talus Boise German Extension cemetery but the original „Talus Boise“ cemetery. It would seem to me that the body count in square 4c is unusually high and could be the site of a lost cemetery. Also the railway is running through a cutting at that point which to me is the dark line running just below and roughly parallel to the horizon.

Would you mind to look at the body density map and see if there is another German cemetery in or around square 11 (Bois Favière) or an unusually high body count.
Charlie

Offline Tim Bell

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Re: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« Reply #8 on: July 11, 2021, 10:16:34 AM »
Hi Charlie,
This is a view of Montauban from Glatz Redoubt - about square 4c, including my Dad's shoulder.   https://17thmanchesters.files.wordpress.com/2013/05/montauban-from-blatz-redoubt.jpg
This is south of Railway Valley and you can see the dark band of the railway track crossing the road at the bottom of the hill.  It looks like this image is to the right (east) of where the PC pic was taken to me.
I'm afraid I don't have the full body density maps for 62C so can't show more at Bois Faviere.
Tim
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Offline charlie

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Re: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2021, 07:34:35 PM »
Thanks Tim. I agree the PC is further west.
Charlie

Offline Tim Bell

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Re: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« Reply #10 on: July 12, 2021, 06:24:37 PM »
Here's a view from the northern most position of the British lines facing Montauban, at the tip of Talus Bois.  Noting that the church spire can't be seen like the image and the former railway embankment remains visible with the lane running down the hill from the village.  I've been looking at various maps and think the cemetery in the image must have been lost in the British bombardment.  It must have been out of view from where this photo was taken in a safe position from sniper fire a little to the east, behind the shoulder of the valley.  I've been down the lane a few times and recollect the height is consistent with the level of the track bed we can see with the sleepers strewn over it.
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Offline charlie

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Re: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« Reply #11 on: July 12, 2021, 09:17:51 PM »
Tim
I broadly agree with your opinion as to where the cemetery was, I‘ve marked my opinion on the map. I disagree though with your opinion of where the railway line is on the PC. I think it is more towards the top of the photo see the attached.
As I date the photo to 1915 (I‘ll give my reason tomorrow) I think it is much too early in the war for it to be an „Extension“ cemetery, therefore I agree it was lost at some point.
Charlie
« Last Edit: July 12, 2021, 09:20:22 PM by charlie »

Offline Tim Bell

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Re: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« Reply #12 on: July 13, 2021, 06:53:54 AM »
Morning Charlie,
You may be right about the railway being behind the cemetery and the timber is just dumped on a path. I'll wait for the big reveal later.
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Offline charlie

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Re: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« Reply #13 on: July 13, 2021, 09:23:43 AM »
Hi Tim
I hope the big reveal isn‘t a big disappointment.
Fortunately Montauban was defended up and till the Somme for most of the time by Bavarian regiments so I have been able to find a bit more about the writer. As he has a one off name in the casualty lists and service records I‘m 99% + certain I have identified him correctly.

His name was Lorenz Heigermoser, born 18.07.1891 to Lorenz and Maria who lived in Gerating in Bavaria. He worked on his father‘s farm and his education, judging by how he wrote the card, must have been pretty rudimentary - his father was illiterate. When war broke out he was completing his national service with the No.1 Coy 1. Königlich Bayrisches Infanterie Regiment (Royal Bavarian 1st Infantry Regiment). He had been called up on 21.10.1913 and was mobilised on 07.08.1914. His regiment was in Montauban between 23.03.1915 and 07.10.1915. As he was wounded in the left arm and shoulder by a shell splinter near Fort Douaumont on 11.06.1916 and never returned to active service the postcard can only be from 1915. After treatment in a succession of hospitals he was discharged as no longer fit on 17.04.1918. He married Elisabeth Maier on 23.01.1923 and seems to have spent the rest of his life on the farm in Gerating. His brother Josef was killed by artillery fire on 27.04.1918 at Mt. Kemmel.

The translations (at last  :) )
The front - the X X on the left are captioned Laufgraben - communication trench,  those on the right Unterstände vom Bajon - the battalions dugouts.

The reverse
Nordfrankreich, Andenken aus dem Feindesland von Deinem unvergeßlichen Freund Lorenz Heigermoser.
Northern France, a souvenir from enemy territory from your unforgettable friend Lorenz Heigermoser

Oben ist die Ansicht Monauban (sic) aber blos lauter Bäume sieht die Häuser alle Kabut sind von 60 Stück nicht ein einziges unbeschädigt blieb nicht einmal die Kirche.
Roughly - Above is the view of Mon(t)auban or what is left of it. All the houses are in ruins not one of the 60 has been left undamaged, not even the church.

While researching his regiment‘s movements I came across this entry in the Regimental history.
„At last on the 14.08.1915 after many unsuccessful attempts a patrol was blessed with success. 11 men of No.5 Coy under the command of Leutnant Mahr (+10.06.1916) went out against the listening post in Maricourt Park. After the wire had been cut Infantrymen Reich and Wiesbacher jumped into the trench and overpowered the sentry who defended himself vigorously, and dragged him back to our lines. The rest of the patrol suppressed the trench garrison and covered the patrols return. The prisoner was an Englishman  from Manchester Regt No.4 (sic) who had relieved the French 3 days before“

The prisoner can only have been 3013 James Hollingworth of the 2nd Bn. The incident is confirmed by the 2nd Bn‘s WD entry for the 15th.

Charlie

Offline Tim Bell

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Re: Talus Bois German Cemetery, Montauban
« Reply #14 on: July 13, 2021, 09:57:26 AM »
Many thanks Charlie,
Lots to digest later today.
Tim
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