In todays world doing research on the internet often delivers great info. This happened when I was looking into some photo’s of Captain Swoboda who was an engineering officer in the Austro-Hungarian army in WW1.
While his main task was building bridges and such there were also some photo’s of monument for a military cemetery in the group. He built these in the city of Berezhany (today in Ukraina) after the city was captured by Austro-Hungarian forces in 1916 from the Russians that had invaded the city before.
Searching for the cemetery on the internet I found some recent photo’s on Wikipedia with the current situation of these monument so here is a quick comparison – then and now:
Also the central cross still being built in 1916 and how it looks today:
And as the last one a grave for an officer (Oberleutnant Franz Volbrecht of KuK IR Nr 75) that still exists today:
This group is now for sale as it is to far out of my collecting focus. If interested please contact me.
In a local auction I saw to my surprise some German pre WW1 and WW1 related items that came directly from the family that lived locally in the Netherlands in more recent years it seems.
As it happens in an auction most items were spread over different lots and with many bidders (unexpected) it was impossible to get everything but I chose to buy some items that at least keep the history and name of the original owner together with these items.
With some help on a German WW1 forum I was able to get a good overview of the career of this German officer from a noble family with an Italian background.
The 137th Infantry Regiment was located in the Alsace which has a history linked both to Germany and France (to which country it belongs currently). The small silver badge was given to then Captain Brentano by the officers of the 137th IR upon his leave to another regiment.
The group has two set of shoulder board for a 2nd lieutenant of this unit where he started his career in 1883 and he was promoted to 1st lt in 1892 so these would come from exactly that timeframe. He would leave the unit in 1899 which dates the silver plaque.
I was also able to buy a group of photo’s that belonged to him which helped to put a face to the name Karl Brentano.
This photo made it possible to put a face to the name which I then again found on some of the other photo’s in the items I bought!
His rank at the beginning of WW1 would be major and he would be commander of a part of Infanterie Regiment 75 (II/IR75 ) where he remaind for most of the war. In 1918 he wat promoted to colonel and received command of the 172nd Infantry Brigade and finishing his career as the commander of IR 75 in 1919 until the unit was dissolved. He would retire as General Major.
Some private items like these silver serviette rings also came in one of the lots. With the initials of Karl Brentano and his wife Paula.
The group has several pre-war photo’s but of the wartime nothing came to me and very little was in the auction at all.
So another surprise grouping out of my focus area but interesting and researchable!