This is a German leather E type shovel holder solid leather relic used by soldier in the SS Totenkopf Division. The holder is in relic condition but still solid condition not braking up or falling apart and still retains most of its black colour and has some hand written marks on the inside of it done in pencil and white stamped marking on the outside it is perfect for display and a rare one for any collection in this condition. The holder was recovered inside an old German SS dugout in the Demyansk Pocket in Russia the battle was from 8 February to 21 April 1942. A lovely piece of iconic battle history from the this most famous battle on the Eastern Front. The relic comes with A5 laminated information card.
The Demyansk Pocket in Russia was the name given to the pocket of German troops encircled by the Red Army around Demyansk (Demjansk), south of Leningrad, during the war on the Eastern Front. The pocket existed mainly from 8 February to 21 April 1942. A much smaller force was surrounded in the Kholm Pocket at the town of Kholm, about 100 km (62 mi) to the southwest. Both resulted from the German retreat following their defeat during the Battle of Moscow.
German Forces trapped in the pocket were the 12th, 30th, 32nd, 123rd and 290th infantry divisions, and the SS Division Totenkopf, as well as RAD, Police, Organisation Todt and other auxiliary units, for a total of about 90,000 German troops and around 10,000 auxiliaries. Their commander was General der Infanterie Walter Graf von Brockdorff-Ahlefeldt, commander of the II Army Corps.
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German SS soldiers in the Demyansk Pocket