Guide to the German World War II Russian Front Photograph Album
Processed by Edward C. Fields
Department of Special Collections, Davidson Library© 2006
University of California
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-9010
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Title: German World War II Russian Front Photograph Album
Date (inclusive): 1928-1929; early 1940s
Collection number: Bernath Mss 190
Extent: .2 linear feet (1 half-size document box)
Repository: University of California, Santa Barbara. Library. Department of Special Collections
Santa Barbara, California 93106-9010
Physical location: Del Sur
Language of Material: Collection materials in English
Copyright has not been assigned to the Department of Special Collections, UCSB. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Head of Special Collections. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Department of Special Collections as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which also must be obtained.
German World War II Russian Front Photograph Album. Bernath Mss 190. Department of Special Collections, Davidson Library, University of California, Santa Barbara.
The album is primarily the record of a German soldier serving on the Eastern front during World War II. There are 131 black and white photos with some captions handwritten in pencil (in Sütterlinschrift) identifying various locales and activities of the unit. Captions indicate that the photos were taken in Berlin, Hungary, Poland and the Soviet Union. Interestingly, the photographs are pasted into an archival register (presumably looted from an occupied area), книгa записeй aктов гражданского состояния ([Book of the] Office for Registration of Civil Acts, a governmental department which still exists in present day Russia where it is often known by the acronym ZAGS This register contains the death certificates (dated 1928-1929) of approximately 100 Soviet citizens ranging in age from several months to 101 years old. The forms are filled out in handwritten Russian. Most information (names, dates, age at death) is legible although some is obscured by the placement/pasting of the photo.
The photographs show members of what appears to be German mechanized army unit en route to and stationed at the front engaged in various activities, mostly not of an immediate combat nature: traveling, bivouacking, posing by destroyed armaments and downed aircraft (and a few German military graves). There are a number of shots of various towns, municipal buildings, churches and a few photographs of what appear to be members of the local populace, some identified as prisoners, in area strewn with rubble.