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eMedals-Germany, Heer. A Document Group to Obergefreiter Bruns, 369th (Croatian) Infantry Division

Item: G41051

Germany, Heer. A Document Group to Obergefreiter Bruns, 369th (Croatian) Infantry Division



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Germany, Heer. A Document Group to Obergefreiter Bruns, 369th (Croatian) Infantry Division

The collection consists of: an accompanying letter for award of Iron Cross 2nd Class and Front Line Driver’s Badge in Bronze (209x150mm, very fine); a national ID card (104x151mm, fine); two letters (209x149mm, near extremely fine, and 149x209mm, very fine) from Bruns’ employer in original envelope (176x128mm, fair); a field hospital wound notice (64x140mm, poor); a small photo of a group of soldiers (75x51mm, very fine); a postcard from Bruns’ employer (147x103mm, better than very fine); an army anti-STD leaflet (154x218mm, fine); an Allied administered German army discharge certificate (202x297mm, fine); an apprenticeship certificate (148x209mm, better than very fine).

The award letter was issued by the Staff of the 2nd Group of Grenadier Regiment 369 (Croatian). It is dated to November 19, 1944 and states that Bruns has been awarded the Iron Cross 2nd Class by the Division Commander on October 30, 1944, and the Front Line Driver’s Badge in Bronze by the Regiment Commander on October 31, 1944. The issuer also wishes for Bruns to get well soon, due to his “serious injury”. Presumably, Bruns was awarded the medals for being wounded in action. The Driver’s Badge may indicate that Bruns was driving a vehicle when he was wounded. The letter is signed in pencil by a Lieutenant and Staff Leader, the name is illegible.

The ID card is dated to Hanover on December 16, 1939. It states that Waldemar Hermann Friedrich Bruns was born in Hanover on October 1, 1921. The photo is missing.

Of the two letters from Bruns’ employer, one is addressed to Bruns’ father, Heinrich, thanking him for conveying the information of Bruns’ being wounded. The sender tells him that he and Bruns will be supported by the company, Hanover Machine Engineering, Inc., previously HANOMAG. The letter is signed by apprentice supervisor Förster. The second letter is a transcript of a letter sent by Förster to Bruns, stating that once he has recovered and is ready to begin his civilian life again, he can count on the company for “help in word and deed”. Both letters are dated to November 27, 1944.

The field hospital wound notice is in two pieces. It lists Bruns as an Obergefreiter in the Grenadier-Regiment 369. The wound is listed as “fragmentation of the left lower leg”.

The photo presumably shows Bruns with members of his unit, however, this can’t be verified.

The postcard is dated to Hanover on September 21, 1944. It is signed and was sent by a man named Birnstein on behalf of Bruns’ employer, wishing him a happy birthday for October 1, and expressing the hope that Bruns will get a chance to write back soon, as he hasn’t in a while. The obverse shows German mountain troopers at the coast of the Arctic Sea.

The anti-STD leaflet is an official army warning to not weaken the German fighting capacity by contracting an STD. It begins with the claim that in the Balkans STDs are unusually prevalent, and instructs the soldier on how to prevent them and what to do if symptoms start to show.

The army discharge certificate is dated to June 1, 1945 and was issued by US III Corps.

The apprenticeship certificate states that Bruns learned to become an electrician between April 11, 1939 and February 9, 1942, and that the apprenticeship had to be cut short due to him being drafted for army service. It is dated to Hanover on March 31, 1942.


Footnote: The 369th (Croatian) Infantry Division was established in September of 1942. It consisted of German Wehrmacht officers and specialists as well as Croatian soldiers and was tasked with fighting partisans in the Balkans. However, Infantry Regiment 369 was also active on the Eastern Front. It was destroyed in Stalingrad in early 1943 and was then reformed as Grenadier Regiment 369.

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