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John Kettler

King Tigers in Paris (Summer 1944)

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Posted (edited)

Have seen still and moving imagery of all sort of AFVs in Paris in this period, including a CV-33 and a recaptured Char B heavy tank with FFI stenciled on it in huge size, but this is one I never knew of before today. This is the blown up version of the pic. Wonder what the locals thought as these ground shakers came through. Note the guy on his bicycle based cart between the two monsters.

Regards,

John Kettler

king-tigers-in-paris-summer-1944.jpg

Edited by John Kettler

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Posted (edited)

And riding with typical French aplomb, as if his very manner says “bah! These metal monsters do not impress me, monsieur.” Great shot. Bresson’s decisive moment.

Edited by Bud Backer
Adding élan...

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1 hour ago, Warts 'n' all said:

It looks like Stalingrad to me. but I can't read the street sign. And I can't find an exact match for that flight of stairs, bloody modernisation.

You think you are funny. You are not. You are very tiresome. Just refrain from commenting if you have nothing to say. I'm sure  that will reduce the number of your annoying posts at least by half.

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Posted (edited)

Nice pic, John. Thank you! I think I once saw this picture in a book about the German intervention in Budapest/Hungary in 1944.

Edited by Aragorn2002

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Stalingrad ([stalinɡʁad]) is a Paris Métro station on the border between the 10th arrondissement and the 19th arrondissement at the intersection of lines 2, 5, and 7, located at the Place de la Bataille-de-Stalingrad, which is named for the Battle of Stalingrad.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stalingrad_(Paris_Métro)

Obviously not called that in 1944 though. 

 

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Let's get this bit out of the way first.

Dear Adolf, you keep telling everyone that you are going to put me on your "Ignore" list. PLEASE do so as it will spare other forumites from having to read your tiresome complaints about me. Dank u wel.

Now to those of you who's opinions I care about. @John Kettler has only been able to tell us that the picture was taken in Paris. I haven't been able to find a more detailed caption online. I'm giving Stalingrad as the location because it is a Metro station on the elevated section on the Right Bank, and it stands on one of the few places where the line does such a sharp left hand turn. I don't know it's pre-war name, in the same way that don't know the original name of Bir-Hakeim, a station on the left bank that takes it's name from a WW2 battle. If anyone knows their wartime names please tell us.

The only Kompanie from 503. to be equipped with King Tigers was 111.Kompanie which took delivery of them at Marly-le-Camp in early August. From what I can glean they didn't make it to the front in Normandy, and weren't actually able to make it to the Left Bank at all.

As previously stated the area has undergone extensive modernisation, the building on the left no longer exists, and the flight of stairs have gone. I have tried to find another set of stairs at another station on that are on that alignment but without success. There are mature trees near the station now and one of them matches the young tree in the picture.

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3 minutes ago, Pete Wenman said:

Stalingrad ([stalinɡʁad]) is a Paris Métro station on the border between the 10th arrondissement and the 19th arrondissement at the intersection of lines 2, 5, and 7, located at the Place de la Bataille-de-Stalingrad, which is named for the Battle of Stalingrad.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stalingrad_(Paris_Métro)

Obviously not called that in 1944 though. 

 

I really need to type faster.

 

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Posted (edited)
33 minutes ago, Warts 'n' all said:

Let's get this bit out of the way first.

Dear Adolf, you keep telling everyone that you are going to put me on your "Ignore" list. PLEASE do so as it will spare other forumites from having to read your tiresome complaints about me. Dank u wel.

 

I did put you on my ignore list for a while, but that didn't stop you from attacking me with your cheap insults. So, no, I'm not going to ignore you anymore. For the sake of this forum I will keep it civil, but man, do I have a low opinion of you.

Dear Adolf? Really? So, you compare me with a mass murderer and fanatical nazi? And that's allowed on this forum?

Edited by Aragorn2002

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These tigers are unlikely to belong to s / pza 503.
They arrived in Normandy in early July without having passed through Paris.
They are engaged against the British east of Caen.
The first is destroyed by Lieutenant Gorman of the 2nd Irish Guard who spurs it (!) On August 18 the first day of Operation Goodwood
A second is destroyed by 5 DCLI of 43eme ID on August 7 after a 2 inch mortar rocket was shot down on the supply vehicle which parked next to the tank.
Finally the others were lost during the retreat, abandoned and scuttled by their crew none seem to have reached Paris on this occasion
You probably have to look more on the side of the 1ss Pz division

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2003281249084035.jpg

Eisenhower the 23 august close a tiger 2 on the road between Trun to Vimoutier

200328124853800496.jpg

tracks tensioner hatch used as an anvil that I recovered in 1996 at Nécy between Falaise and Argentan

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That is somewhat confusing as my search threw up the name 503.

It is probably just a typo but Goodwood began on 18th July. And whilst I cannot find any record of 1. or 11. Kompanies being withdrawn from the front, 111. Kompanie did go back to Marly and did attempt to return via Paris.

That however doesn't mean that these KT's have to be from 111. Kompanie. And hopefully John Kettler will be able to furnish us with more info as to where he found the picture, and it's original caption the next time he is on.

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Posted (edited)

I tried to find the picture in Bundesarchiv but none of the Paris 1944 pictures are this one. I’m really intrigued!

The shot is on Pinterest:

https://www.pinterest.ca/pin/304274518554402208/

source appears to be Getty.

https://www.gettyimages.ca/detail/news-photo/in-august-1944-german-tiger-ii-tanks-of-503rd-panzer-news-photo/121507401

Edited by Bud Backer

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I correct what I said before
The 3rd company of 503 received tanks at Mailly late
It does not reach the Normandy front and retreats while crossing Paris
These are KT henschel
In the photo it's a tank from the 3rd company (331)

40 minutes ago, Warts 'n' all said:

 

It is probably just a typo but Goodwood began on 18th July.

yes of course

i don't understand 111 kompagnie there is only 3 compagnie in 503 !!

29 minutes ago, Bud Backer said:

I tried to find the picture in Bundesarchiv but none of the Paris 1944 pictures are this one. I’m really intrigued!

The shot is on Pinterest:

https://www.pinterest.ca/pin/304274518554402208/

source appears to be Getty.

https://www.gettyimages.ca/detail/news-photo/in-august-1944-german-tiger-ii-tanks-of-503rd-panzer-news-photo/121507401

I think it's a French civil photo can be resistance
taken from a window, the risks to take this kind of shot was death

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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, Falaise said:

i don't understand 111 kompagnie there is only 3 compagnie in 503 !!

 

Sometimes they are written as 1. 11. 111. instead 1 2 3, sorry for the confusion.

Edited by Warts 'n' all

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Posted (edited)

King Tiger tanks of schwere Panzer-Abteilung 503 having just been transported by rail from Mailly-le-Camp and de-trained at Gare de l'Est, Paris can be are seen turning from Rue d'Aubervilliers into Boulevard de la Villette on their way to Mantes-la-Jolie *

https://www.pinterest.com.mx/pin/431078995567859884/

maybe a connection here

http://tank-photographs.s3-website-eu-west-1.amazonaws.com/king-tiger-tank-fontenay-saint-pere.html

* This is a photo of a King Tiger Tank turret in France. He said that this and other King Tiger Tank parts were found in 2001 near Mantes-la-Jolie, France, This Tiger 2 tank, from the 101 SS.s.Abteilung, was lost in a crater near Fontenay-Saint-Père on 26 August 1944.

And restored

'According to an article from the Musée des Blindés French Tank museum's magazine n° 54, this King Tiger tank, which now carries the turret number 233, is believed to be tank number 123, which belonged to the 1st Company, 101 SS Panzer Abt in August 1944. It is believed to have been abandoned by its crew on 23 August 1944, due to engine problems, at Brueil-en-Vexin, near Mantes-la-Jolie. It was salvaged by the French Army in September 1944, and then stored at the AMX Tank factory at Satory before being transferred to the museum in 1975.'

http://tank-photographs.s3-website-eu-west-1.amazonaws.com/tiger-II-heavy-tank-Konigstiger.html

 

'In August 1944, German Tiger II tanks of 503rd Panzer leaving Paris for the Normandy front.'

Colourised version

tumblr_pf68v5P38z1xwynh4o2_1280.jpg

 

 

Edited by Wicky

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wikki answered all of our questions !!!
the photo was taken by Robert Doisneau one of the greatest French photographer
known in particular for this photo

200328051822134405.jpg

which was undoubtedly the most common poster in the French student room at the end of the 80's

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Wicky said:

King Tiger tanks of schwere Panzer-Abteilung 503 having just been transported by rail from Mailly-le-Camp and de-trained at Gare de l'Est, Paris can be are seen turning from Rue d'Aubervilliers into Boulevard de la Villette on their way to Mantes-la-Jolie 

'In August 1944, German Tiger II tanks of 503rd Panzer leaving Paris for the Normandy front.'

tumblr_pf68v5P38z1xwynh4o2_1280.jpg

 

 

Oh well done, Wicky. I got the right Metro station, but the wrong end of it. A mistake I wouldn't have made if I'd been able to read the street sign. Just in case people think we make this rubbish up here is a view from inside the modern station... 

stalingrad-metro-plaque.jpg

Edited by Warts 'n' all

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1 hour ago, Falaise said:

wikki answered all of our questions !!!
the photo was taken by Robert Doisneau one of the greatest French photographer
known in particular for this photo

200328051822134405.jpg

which was undoubtedly the most common poster in the French student room at the end of the 80's

I'd like to pretend that I first saw this at an exhibition. But, I didn't. The first time I saw it was on the front cover of a Tracey Thorn single.

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Outstanding work, guys! Here is what might've been news before I saw this research extravaganza. You'll note a name I believe to be the author of a bunch of Panzer and Wehrmacht books.

 

Just passing through! King Tigers in Paris, France (Summer 1944) https://dailyarchives.org/…/king-tigers-in-paris-summer-194… Image expands when clicked.

safe_image.php?d=AQAyaCxKpg6pQERW&w=372&
DAILYARCHIVES.ORG
 
 
 
Comments
 
  • Steve Miller It's a bug out....
    Hide or report this
    • John Kettler
      John KettlerjC78Rnw2Q2h.png Don't think so, for were that the case, they would've been covered with infantry. Have seen StuG IIIs carrying so many I wondered why they didn't overload the suspension. Also, note the complete absence of the Panzer bush look. To me, these factors mean they're moving administratively, not fleeing in retreat.
      1
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  • George Kettler
    George Kettler6zTRlzzrMzf.png interesting that the crew are in BLACK this late in the war vs Cammie.
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  • Truscott Trotter
    Truscott Trotter When are driving King Tiger you could wear a basque and no one would argue.....😉
    5
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  • Chris Cornwell
    Chris Cornwell Interesting, looking up the movements of the very few Tiger IIs units that went to Normandy, they all appear to have de-trained WEST of Paris, so wouldn’t have driven through the city. Schwere Pzr Abt 503 did have 14 of them en route in early August from Mailly which arrived very late (didn’t fight at Falaise), so it might be them
    2
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  • Ignacy Kurowski
    Ignacy Kurowski According to an article I read recently, these are tanks of the 3rd company of schwere Panzer-Abteilung 503, which drove through Paris as a display of power. One of them broke down during that drive.
    2
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  • Ian Hemingway
    Ian Hemingway At least they would have been safe from air attack
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    • Ian Black
      Ian Black Ian Hemingway I was wondering about that. Otherwise by Summer 44 very risky for paneers to move during daylight.
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    • Chris Cornwell
      Chris Cornwell Ian Black they would be fine in the city, impossible to spot, and no allied jabo would risk flying over the amount of potential flak in a city anyway. They spend their days cruising up and down railway lines. That’s what my old dad did.

       

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John Kettler, 

I saw this on a Tiger site. The dates are a bit off from the picture, but some may have left for Paris early. Seems 3. did not fare so well in Normandy. At least they saw Paris.

18 July 1944---- 3./ is bombed during Operation Goodwood, but only two Tigers are lost, one burnt out and the other was flipped over by a near miss. 13 Tigers lost during the day to all causes

20-29 July 1944----3./ ordered to Mailly-le-Camp for re-equipment with Tiger IIs

12 August 1944----3./ entrains for Paris

mid-August 1944----Most of 3./ destroyed by Allied fighter-bombers, all of the rest of the Abt. is destroyed during the retreat from Normandy, only 2 Tiger IIs of 3./ on strength

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If not said before, Panzer-Lehr-Division (with attached Funklenk-Kompanie 316) used some of the earliest Tiger II (I think, 5 or 6 tanks of this type).

These Tigers all had the „Porsche“-Turret. Most of them were abandoned in the Paris-Area due to mechanical defeat while retreating from the Allies in August 44.

None of these Panzer-Lehr Tigers ever fired any shot at the enemy.

 

Regards

 

 

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