Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Hungarian M49/82 Camoflage Zeltbahn - Poncho, Updated Research Information

I was contacted by a former member of the Hungarian Army  a few days ago regarding my camo zeltbahn.  He served as a Regular Army Engineer until 1994.

He commented that the zelt was the first piece of equipment that was issued to the new conscripted soldier.  He said that as an Engineer, his unit had larger walled tents with aluminum frames whereas, the conscripted soldiers serving their compulsory time, were required to used the zeltbahn tents. I guess it paid to be a regular soldier in Hungary and not a conscripted one!

This veteran referred me to an amazing Hungarian website that documents the old Hungarian uniforms and equipment up to 1945.  In the center of each subject page, there is a window where you can select the translation language.  I know that my zelt dates to the late 1980's, but much of the photos and information on the site still applies.  I highly recommend this site! 



 Here are a few pictures from the site showing how the zeltbahns were rolled for storage and attachment to the field pack:

Additionally, here are the links to my original M49/82 Camoflage Zeltbahn blog postings:




Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Zoll Photos, Post-War 1940's to 1980, Wenland Archive

For today's posting, I'll be revisiting the Wenland Archive of photos to show off a batch of very unique German Zoll (BundeszollverwaltungFederal Customs Police) photos.  The photos show some very seldom seen shots of uniforms from the early post-war years, and some very rare early color photos.

These officers were assigned to areas directly on the border.  They lived and worked in their assigned area, very much like a US Resident Deputy Sheriff would.  They manned the border crossings and patrolled the immediate border, often with their iconic Zoll Dogs.  They were Germany's "eyes and ears on the border".

Here is a link over to the Wenland Archive website:  http://www.wendland-archiv.de/

One of the photos shows a Zoll officer leaning against a bicycle.  The photo is dated 1959.  The photo description says that the officer is saying goodbye to family before returning to the border.  The interesting thing about this bicycle, is that it is nearly identical to my early BGS bicycle.  The most distinct similarity is the rear rack...... identical to mine!  My BGS bicycle has 1949 dated hubs and a 1960 saddle......this Zoll photo is dated 1959...... I don't know if the bicycle in the photo is a private bicycle or a service bicycle, but it certainly confirms that my BGS bike fits that early post-war service time frame!  I suspect that the bicycle in the photos is a Zoll Dienstrad, (Customs Service Bicycle).

Here are a couple of comparison photos of my BGS bicycle.......the green color of my bicycle would also be correct for Police or Zoll.

I'll let the photos speak for themselves........ enjoy:


Monday, January 23, 2012

Bundesgrenzschutz Photos 1963 and 1952, Wenland Archive

While doing my usual internet searching for more photos and information about the early Bundesgrenzschutz, I stumbled on this German archive of photos from the Wenland region of Southern Germany.  The online photo database is HUGE and contains an enormous amount of photos that cover everything from daily life, to fire departments, Zoll, and other agencies.  You can search the site, or just start at the beginning and start "thumbing through" the piles of photos!

Here is a link to the photo database:   http://www.wendland-archiv.de/

Here are a few photos dated 1952 or 1953, and a few from a  Bundesgrenzschutz photo album dated 1963 that were scanned into the Wenland Archive.  The first photos is quite interesting.  It is dated 1952 or 1953, and if you look closely, you will see that the trooper on the right is wearing a non-regulation neck scarf!  Interesting stuff........... enjoy:

Here are some of the photos out of the scanned 1963 BGS album:

If you look closely at the unit designator emblem on the front fender of the BGS Truck, you will see that it is the letter "A" in a triangle.  This signifies that the truck is assigned to the education department.  This is the same emblem that I have on my BGS bicycle, except mine has the red background.

Friday, January 20, 2012

18th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion Pin, "We Forege Ahead"

This morning I'm showing off a pin that I picked up this last October.  I found the pin in the pocket of an old US Army uniform shirt that I picked up at the local Goodwill store.  I immediately fell in love with this pin......... how could I not?  It's a Thor's Hammer!!!!!!!!

The pin is the unit crest for the US Army's, 18th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, that is garrisoned in Germany.  Here is the link to the battalion home page, and Facebook page, where you can read all about the units assigned to this group:


I just love it when such unique pins and emblems pop up in the US services!  Very Viking !!!!!!!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Snow Ride in Port Townsend!

Winter is definitely here in Port Townsend!  We had a solid 4+ inches of new snow on the ground last night and this morning, with a forecast of the biggest snow storm since 1985 looming on the horizon.......... the forecasters are calling for up to 18 inches of new snow tonight and tomorrow!  Now that is REAL winter weather!

I took advantage of the new snow to take the Giant Trance 2 bike out for my work commute.  It was an amazing ride through the woods by headlight and and then back home this afternoon by daylight......... there is nothing like cutting the first tracks in the new fallen snow.  It could get interesting tomorrow after everything re-freezes and we get another foot or more of snow dumped on top................

Anyway, here is my "virtual commute" home this afternoon.  Enjoy the snowy beauty of Port Townsend from your very own cozy and warm home:

Looking at the Larry Scott Trail, with Port Townsend in the background.
The Larry Scott Trail...... our local "Rail-Trail".
Port Townsend in the background.
Looking across the bay at the Indian Island Bridge.
Port Townsend Paper Mill.