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Post  OVERLORD on Mon Mar 26, 2018 1:12 pm

I live not far from the coast and I do a lot of hiking. Often I come across concrete remnants of the Atlantikwall built during the war. Most common are watch posts but some are real bunkers that had guns.

This watch post is at the beach, so at sea level in Etretat.

Atlantikwall buildings P2173411

Atlantikwall buildings P2173410

And a wartime photo

Atlantikwall buildings Etreta10

Further north, in Eletot, This watch post can be found near the edge of the cliffs in the middle of the fields surrounded by high grass. The entrance is shielded off by a separate wall. The outside is covered with bullet impacts.

Atlantikwall buildings Imgp6112

Atlantikwall buildings Imgp6111



This is the view the Feldwebel must have had in the summer time.

Atlantikwall buildings Imgp6110

Atlantikwall buildings Imgp6113
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Post  Admin on Mon Mar 26, 2018 1:33 pm

They are very cool yet scary. It is interesting how the Germans were able to build so many of those bunkers, many in difficult areas and rough terrain.

If you haven't see these guy's videos yet, you should check them out. They explore many of these WWII tunnels and bunkers across Europe. https://www.youtube.com/user/HistoricDepths

Thanks for posting!

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Post  fredvon4 on Mon Mar 26, 2018 1:58 pm

I am so disappointed with our loss of decades of photos from our time in Germany...many many different trips to most all the "must see to believe" historical areas

Wife and I have been in vast under ground airplane hangers and factories, all of the concentration camps, Hitlers bunkers and fortresses

Not known if still done to this day ....but as we got more and more senior, with each successive assignment to Germany, the opportunity to attend NCO leadership Training seminars during the 70 to 90s was pretty extensive..Free tours of many sites with a historical lesson on why this place was relevant

Over my 15 years assigned to Germany I, and later my wife, took advantage of every one.

In combat a time or two being shot at..... BUT no where near the intensity or hardened areas like Liven shows...I shudder at the thought of the pucker factor involved in approaching such an obstetrical and trying to neutralize it

I had seen the movie Guns of Navarone and was disappointing when I asked for a tour, to find it was fictitious....BUT they did film it at a real bunker.... the story takes place within the real historical context of the Dodecanese Campaign, the Allies' campaign to capture the German-held Greek islands in the Aegean Sea in 1943----never seen by me

All the French and other European American grave yards are as much a somber moment as any visit to Arlington

Even with all the effort wife and I took over the years to be educated in the history and area....Liven, and Balogh, and some others I forget have done a great job of education fill in ....sincere thanks



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Post  Kim on Mon Mar 26, 2018 2:45 pm

Yes, thank you! And please feel free to continue this thread with additional photos you might have.

I've never really had a desire to travel internationally, except for locations like these. I would like to walk these, actually see Omaha Beach, and the White cliffs of Dover.

Seems like Nitroplanes posted some photos from the English side of the channel, AND readjusted my visual fantasies about the WWII air bases there that have since built over with housing (which make total sense, of course).

The scope of this struggle is just too vast to comprehend, at least for me, as the more I learn, the broader the whole deal seems to grow.

Thank you again,
Kim
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Post  rsv1cox on Mon Mar 26, 2018 3:23 pm

Awhile ago I got caught up in youtube videos showing the locals (and others) digging up rusty WW2 artifacts, especially small arms. They intrigued  me just like a worst of the worst castor baked lump of a model engine does today.  And, like this lovely example of an early MG Midget that turned up on my computer this morning.  Looking into it....But I digress.

Atlantikwall buildings Mg_19610

I can't see the logic behind those observation bunkers though.  Why not just paint them day glow orange and put up a sign saying "Here I am, bomb the heck out of me."  I figure one 16" round from any Cruiser or Battle ship through the slot would do it.  Better to just put up an out house with a half moon in the door and stick old Klaus in there.

I often think, what if Der Fuhrer just before he kicked Poland's door in had second thoughts.  Hey, maybe this isn't the best way to go about this.....and instead directed his evil genius toward technology, manufacturing, and making the world a better place to live.  

I hope the fellow presently residing in the top drawer of the Kremlin takes notice.

But then, we know that war stimulates progress. Sort of.  

But yes, I enjoy this post Lieven. Continue.

Bob

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Post  OVERLORD on Tue Mar 27, 2018 4:25 am

Glad you like those pics guys!!

Admin wrote:They are very cool yet scary. It is interesting how the Germans were able to build so many of those bunkers, many in difficult areas and rough terrain.

If you haven't see these guy's videos yet, you should check them out. They explore many of these WWII tunnels and bunkers across Europe. https://www.youtube.com/user/HistoricDepths

Thanks for posting!

The Atlantikwall coastal defense was a project the Germans came up with in 1942. However, all buildings were made by French companies and mainly by the collaborating Lafarge company that is still a major cement company in France. The building industry turnover in France went up from 16 million French francs in 1941 to 671 million FF in 1942.

I took these pictures last weekend in the village of Yport. On top of the plateau, South of Yport and just outside the village,6 guns were located of which 2 were in bunkers. They are stiil there.

Atlantikwall buildings P3254010

One is still in use as a sheep stable.

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Next to the second one, empty, the telephone company erected a cell phone mast.

Atlantikwall buildings P3254012

Atlantikwall buildings Hkb_yp10

This bunker is of the type 679. The building plan looks like this, with an arrow stating "feindwärts", direction of the enemy, just to make sure...:

Atlantikwall buildings 67910

Inside there is still the eye for lifting the cannon on a heavy steel half circular strip

Atlantikwall buildings P3254013

This is the view from up there. Yport is on the right and in the background, the city of Fécamp.

Atlantikwall buildings P3254016


Last edited by OVERLORD on Wed May 23, 2018 7:50 am; edited 1 time in total
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Post  rsv1cox on Tue Mar 27, 2018 7:44 am

Wonderful pictures Lieven.  I had to google Yport to find it's location.  Looks like it's just North of the invasion beaches perhaps explaining why the bunkers are mostly untouched.  

The last picture reminds me of our old Florida home.  Looks like France has it's fair share of Gophers and Moles too.  Also England doesn't have the only "White Cliffs."  But, The White Cliffs of Yport just doesn't convey the same sentiment as........................

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hqtaoz4QFX8

and................

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YUx3MU9iM6c

Bob
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Post  getback on Tue Mar 27, 2018 8:53 am

Interesting post , i am not much on history i guess i was to busy building airplanes or something but i did enjoy the reading and pictures , Thank You !!
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Post  66 Malibu on Tue Mar 27, 2018 11:24 am

Lieven,
Ditto what everyone else said...great photos.....amazing effort put forth by the Nazis.
Seeing your post reminded me of some of the things my Dad told me about various enemy targets in Europe.
He was on a B-24 Liberator crew in the US 15th Air Force which hit many French targets.
He told me he was astounded when they hit the German U-Boat pens in France from 5 miles high with 2000 lbs "Blockbuster Bombs" and he could see them bounce off the concrete tops like jelly beans on a concrete floor.
As far as he knew they were never breached.
The bombs with that weight from that altitude must have been close to super sonic speeds when they struck the target !!!
I recall he also mentioned another French target that looked from above like farmland with cows and sheep that made an unbelievable blast shock wave at their altitude.
Later he asked "What they the H... was that?
He was told it was a German rocket fuel factory .....
Just some things Dad with reluctantly tell me from time to time ...
Steve............
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Post  OVERLORD on Fri Mar 30, 2018 5:32 am

Great memories Steve. I know of 1 underground liquid fuel factory in France, that is in Caumont near the river Seine. Before the war, it was a mine for extracting chalk and silex. I never read about bombing of the site during the war. In fact, the factory was never in use and the project was abandoned in July 1944.

Yesterday, I was in Heuqueville, north of Le Havre. Just west of the village, there was a battery of four 105mm guns with a bunker for a machine gun, observation bunkers and a command bunker.

When leaving the village by the west, after a right turn in direction to the cliffs, you meet the German welcome committee in a bunker with a machine gun, now on the land of a farmer. The low long opening was for the machine gun to stick through.

Atlantikwall buildings P3294011

Atlantikwall buildings P3294010

A few meters further on the right, between the last houses of the village, there is a big observation bunker, maybe 4 or 5 meters high. The slot is mostly overgrown by plants.

Atlantikwall buildings P3294015

Atlantikwall buildings P3294016

Atlantikwall buildings P3294012


Then, on the other side, in the field, a concrete circular construction indicates where a gun was located.

Atlantikwall buildings P3294019

Atlantikwall buildings P3294018




A view from above.

Atlantikwall buildings Heuque10

Walking down towards the cliffs, there is second circular structure for another gun. This one is in the middle of a field. The way leads then to the observation and command bunker at the cliff edge. The observation bunker hangs over the edge. I think this is caused by erosion. The command bunker is underground.

Atlantikwall buildings P3294013

Atlantikwall buildings P3294014


A view from above:

Atlantikwall buildings Heuque11
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Post  ticomareado on Fri Mar 30, 2018 7:13 pm

No tourist photos from Calais?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UrE1aZRgo2M
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Post  akjgardner on Sat Mar 31, 2018 2:19 pm

COOL PICS ...Thanks for posting
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Post  OVERLORD on Thu Jul 26, 2018 2:35 pm

Yesterday, I was at « Le point du Hourdel” in the region of Picardy, north of Normandy. The village is located at the estuary of the river Somme. On the beach, you can find this casemate. In the eighties, the casemate was still in the dunes where it was built but due to erosion it glided onto the beach. The casemate was built to defend the Somme estuary.

The business end with the flanking wall and gun hole

Atlantikwall buildings P7250711

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The entrance opening at the back

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The casemate type is Regelbau nr 612. It was provided with a French 75mm gun. On one side is the flanking wall to protect against fire from sea. Inside there are 2 small chambers for grenades.

Atlantikwall buildings 61210

Below an allied reconnaissance picture taken on 24 August 1942 with the casemate highlighted.

Atlantikwall buildings Photo_10

Some other concrete blocks are buried and also a circular ruin that came to light in the 2000’s.

Atlantikwall buildings P7250716

Atlantikwall buildings P7250715

Atlantikwall buildings P7250717
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Post  Kim on Thu Jul 26, 2018 3:18 pm

Man, that is something. I have never really wanted to travel outside my country, but this makes me want to. I'd love to someday see the White Cliffs of Dover, the Normandy Beaches, and the hedge row French country side that the allies had to battle through.

Don't know if it'll ever happen, but surely appreciate your first-hand posts here!

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Post  getback on Fri Jul 27, 2018 9:25 am

Thats pretty wild , i have never seen so much rock on a beach , and with that casemate out on the beach tops it for me . Cool history though ! Very Happy
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Post  fredvon4 on Fri Jul 27, 2018 11:02 am

Fascinating stuff, Thanks
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Post  KariFS on Fri Jul 27, 2018 1:58 pm

Great photos and places Lieven! Fascinating how people casually just go and sun-bathe around those (to me) grim reminders of the not-so distant past.

That R612 is an interesting concept. Kind of like in some older fortresses where some of the cannons were set up to shoot along the walls of the fort. Or that’s how I figured it, since the arrow in the plan points toward where the enemy is expected to attack from Huh...

I looked at another version of the layout, it said that one of the ammunition compartments holds 500 grenades and the other 500 ”cartouches” for the 75mm gun. I wonder how long it would have taken to shoot off the entire stock of 500 shots?

There is not much fortifications left here in Finland as a lot of them were just dug in the ground and reinforced with logs, long since rotten. And a lot of them obviously were left in the enemy’s side. There is one large system left, called ”Salpalinja”, it was built behind the lines as the last resort, and it was mostly made of concrete, since there was an opportunity build it without getting constantly shot at. The system is longer than the Great Wall of China, and much like its more famous counterpart, the Salpalinja did not see much real action. But it was an asset to reckon with by the Soviets, and it probably had some preventive effect. It was semi-secretly maintained until the ’80s I think.

Here’s a wiki link: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salpa_Line
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Post  fredvon4 on Sat Jul 28, 2018 1:30 pm

While I tend to think my Parochial school education from 1962 to 1973 was pretty very good and I did attend various colleges during my career   but no US or Europe or world History courses

I am sadly astounded at how much of world history I do NOT know   especially the World Wars

the 15 years in Germany as a US soldier had us focused specifically on Soviet and Central Europe a wee bit on Eastern Europe and absolutly nothing on Norther Europe

You guys are educating me and sparking my own interest several times a year...

I belong to many forums...not only is CEF most Polite, it is also the MOST Educational...Sincere thanks
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Post  rsv1cox on Sat Jul 28, 2018 5:27 pm

My WW2 library approaches 100 books. Heck, the Band of Brothers and Pacific collections alone exceeds 10 after all the guys chimed in.

I'm just finishing up Krauthammers "Things that Matter" and will shortly start on this:

Atlantikwall buildings Taifun10

Guess what word on the cover brought me to it.......... Smile $5.00 shipped.
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Post  OVERLORD on Tue Jul 31, 2018 6:40 am

rsv1cox wrote:  
Guess what word on the cover brought me to it.......... Smile  $5.00 shipped.  

TAIFUN

Atlantikwall buildings Hurric10
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Post  OVERLORD on Thu Jan 17, 2019 8:03 am

On Monday, I was in the port of Boulogne -Sur-Mer. During the war, there was a Schnellboot base in Boulogne. There were concrete "garages" said to be made for submarines but used for these fast torpedo boats.

Schnellboot

Atlantikwall buildings Schnel11

The base at Boulogne

Atlantikwall buildings Schnel10

Aerial reconnaissance picture after bombing. Boulogne received several Tall Boys.

Atlantikwall buildings Schnel10


The base itself is gone now. However, the torpedo storage bunker, on the bottom of the above picture is still there.

Atlantikwall buildings Imgp5110

It's a massive bunker with a 2m thick roof and with an overhang above the doors. There are 2 doors on the dock side and 2 doors on the street side. On the street, there is a railroad spur with an unloading Platform. The "cargo" was transferred to a narrow track train or wagons that drove directly into the bunker by one of the doors. The other door has a ramp for vehicles.

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At the dock side, similar doors are present. The narrow track train can drive out of the bunker with the torpedos and by means of a switch, can drive on a track parallel to the moored Schnellboot. I suppose, there was a crane on the quai to load the torpédos on board.

Atlantikwall buildings Imgp5219

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Atlantikwall buildings Imgp5218

Atlantikwall buildings Schnel12

The bunker could be closed with big steel doors on rollers and rails.

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Atlantikwall buildings Imgp5223

Atlantikwall buildings Imgp5221

Atlantikwall buildings Imgp5224

Atlantikwall buildings Imgp5225
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Post  rsv1cox on Thu Jan 17, 2019 8:40 am

Great pictures Lieven.

The Germans called the "E" boats, raised hell with the Allies off the coast of England when they caught them practicing for the D Day invasion. Sunk a lot of ships and men.

Das Boot........Good book, better movie. Shot of the pens.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7pzKyeIex2Y
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Post  getback on Thu Jan 17, 2019 8:51 am

Did you visit there Lieven ? man that is some Terrifying looking scenes , i could not image what was going through those young men's minds affraid i haven't watched a war move in years i use to love to but things changed as i grew older . Neutral
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Post  Kim on Thu Jan 17, 2019 8:53 am

Yes, fantastic photos !!!!!!!
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