Relics from the Front Since 2010
  • German M42 steel helmet with some green paintwork remains,burnt in a fire used by soldier of the 708th Volksgrenadier Division recovered near Mackenheim in the Culmar Pocket of early 1945 in France

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    This is a German M42 helmet belonging to solider of the 708th Volksgrenadier Division. The helmet is in relic and rusty condition with a large rust hole in the front there is original green paintwork that can be seen very well it has been burnt in fire properly during the battle it is still very solid it is not braking up or falling apart at all. The helmet has no liner or chin strap but has been nicely cleaned it is still very solid and is perfect for display or any collection.The helmet was recovered near Mackenheim which was the area defended by the 708th Volksgrenadier Division which were part of the 19th Army so we assume this helmet belonged to a soldier of the 708th. Mackenheim is a Town which was in the hart of the fighting in the Culmar Pocket the battle of January-February 1945 in France on the German border.

    Apart from Normandy, the areas of France most bitterly defended by the Germans were Alsace and Lorraine. This occurred in part because the Allied surge across France in 1944 was slowed down by logistical difficulties as the Allies reached the easternmost extent of France, but the primary reason for the stout German defenses of these regions is that Alsace and Lorraine were claimed as part of Germany and would be defended as strongly as any other German soil. This perception informed Hitler's decisions of 24 November and 27 November 1944, that committed General Siegfried Rasp's 19th Army to a do-or-die defence of the region around Colmar. The Battle of the Colmar Pocket began December 15, 1944, and by February 19, 1945, all German units have been pushed to the west of the Rhine in the southern region. The Germans bitterly defended the areas of Alsace and Lorraine. After the Alsace campaign, the Americans had around 29.000 casualties, among them 7.000 K.I.A's. On the German side were roughly 23.000 casualties, among them up to 3.450 dead as well as 6.800 M.I.A's.