Germany - Third Reich: A very fine and scarce Russian Front Advance on Leningrad, Leningrad Front, retreat from the Narva Front and Holland September 1944 Casualty group of award documents to Unteroffizier Richard Niehuus, 7th Company, 220th Infan...

£345.00
Availability: IN STOCK
SKU: A1654
Description:

Germany - Third Reich: A very fine and scarce Russian Front Advance on Leningrad, Leningrad Front, retreat from the Narva Front and Holland September 1944 Casualty group of award documents to Unteroffizier Richard Niehuus, 7th Company, 220th Infantry Regiment, 58th Infantry Division, sometime 2nd Company, Divisional Combat School 158, and finally whilst recuperating from his fifth wound, 2nd Company, 16th Grenadier Replacement Battalion, 22nd Grenadier Replacement Regiment, 180th Division, who was wounded in action for the first time when in action on 22nd August 1941 near Kingisepp during the advance on Leningrad, served through the first Russian winter, and then fought continuously on the Leningrad Front through to 1944. During the very heavy fighting at the Volchov which ended in the defeat and destruction of the Russian 2nd Strike Army under General Vlasov he was wounded for a second time on 27th March 1942 and for a third time on 31st May 1942, the former date being when the 58th Infantry Division was involved in trying to cut off the supply route to the Russians in the “Erica Clearing”, something they finally achieved in early May 1942. Niehuus’s Iron Cross 2nd Class was awarded for the same period of fighting, it being issued to him in the field on 1st April 1942, and his awards of the Infantry Assault Badge in Silver and the Wound Badge in Silver caught up with him after his evacuation to Germany and treatment in hospital. Having returned to the front with the 2nd Company, Divisional Combat School 158, 58th Infantry Division, this being an unusual name and unit, and probably a Divisional replacement training organisation, which may have even been in place of the Field Replacement Battalion, Niehuus was serving with this unit when he was wounded in action for a fifth time on 20th April 1944 on the Narva Front during the retreat from Leningrad, and awarded the Wound Badge in Gold on 5th May 1944, and then evacuated to Germany. Niehuus was still undergoing treatment and recovery for his fifth wound when the Allied invasion of Normandy occurred, and one would have thought had already done his bit with 5 wounds to his credit, however he then found himself posted as an Unteroffizier to the 2nd Company, 16th Grenadier Replacement Battalion, 22nd Grenadier Replacement Regiment, a hastily formed unit which was then sent to the West to combat the Allied forces advancing through northern France, Belgium and Holland. His unit joined the 180th Division, and Niehuss was then unfortunately killed in action on 23rd September 1944 during the fighting to the souther of Erp, a village to the northeast of Eindhoven and southwest of Nijmegen in Holland, in a major German attack against American forces in order to cut the Allied corridor to Arnhem and the other bridges.

Comprising in order of award:

1) Wound Badge in Black Award Certificate, issued to: ‘Oberschützen Richard Niehuus, 7./Inf.Reg.220’, issued in the field on 6th December 1941, for a wound received on 22nd August 1941, signed in ink by a Hauptmann and Battalion Commander.

2) Iron Cross 2nd Class Award Certificate, issued to: ‘Obergefreiten Richard Niehuus, 7./Inf.Rgt.220’, issued in the field on 1st April 1942, signed in ink ‘von Graffen’ for Karl von Graffen as Oberst and acting GOC 58th Infantry Division, later a Generalmajor and recipient of the Knight’s Cross on 13th August 1942, and the German Cross in Gold on 24th December 1941.

3) Infantry Assault Badge in Silver Award Certificate, issued to: ‘Obergefreiten Richard Niehuus, 7./J.R.220’, dated 12th July 1942, signed in ink by the Oberstleutnant and Commanding Officer.

4) Wound Badge in Silver Award Certificate, issued to: ‘Obergefreiten Richard Niehuus, der 7./Inf.Regt.220’, issued in the field on 13th July 1942, for three wounds received on 22nd August 1941, 27th March 1942, and 31st May 1942. Signed in ink ‘Dr Grossmann-Doerth’ as Hauptmann and Battalion Commander, recipient of the German Cross in Gold on 7th April 1944. This is a rare A4 size variant of this award certificate printed in Neuruppin.

5) Wound Badge in Gold Award Certificate, issued to: ‘Richard Niehuus, Uffz., 2./Div.-Kampfschule.’, dated 5th May 1944, awarded for a fifth wound received on 20th April 1944, signed in ink ‘Kiesel’ as Oberleutnant and acting Commander of the Divisional Combat School 158. This is an unusual unit name is probably part of the Divisional replacement training organisation; this unit may have even been in place of the Field Replacement Battalion.

Together with the following:

6) Newspaper cutting announcing that Unteroffizier Richard Niehuus has been killed in action in the West on 23rd September 1944, the names of his family, a wife and three children, mother and father-in-law are named, dated 9th November 1944.

7) A short typed letter issued in the field on 14th July 1942, sent from Niehuus’s Company (7/220) and sent to the Doormat Local Hospital enclosing an Infantry Assault Badge in Silver with its award certificate and a Wound Badge in Silver, requesting that the Hospital authorities present these items to Obergefreiter Richard Niehuus in a worthy manner and furthermore enter the awards in his Soldbuch.

8) An official typed letter from 1. Field Hospital 572 to the recipient’s wife, enclosing the Infantry Assault Badge in Silver with its award certificate and a Wound Badge in Silver, since her husband has been discharged from the hospital on 3rd July 1942 to his Replacement Battalion - probably 220th Infantry Replacement Battalion in Roskilde, WK X, and requesting she forward the said items to her husband. Dated 27th July 1942, Feldpost No.12,239.

9) A typed letter to Richard Niehuus from his old Company, the 7th, informing him of his promotion to Unteroffizier as from 1st April 1943 and congratulating him on this promotion. Sadly there is no address to where the letter was sent. Issued him in the field on 12th May 1943.

Richard Niehuus was born on 5th April 1912 in Neuenkirchen in Kreis Steinfurt, and was most probably called up for military service just prior to the beginning of the Second World War. Having seen service quite possibly in France in 1940, he then saw service out on the Eastern Front in the invasion of Russia and the advance on Leningrad as part of Army Group North as an Oberschützen with the 7th Company, 220th Infantry Regiment, 58th Infantry Division, and was wounded in action on 22nd August 1941 near Kingisepp during the advance on Leningrad, being awarded the Wound Badge in Black in the field on 6th December 1941.

His regiment fought continuously on the Leningrad Front through to 1944, and Niehuus was awarded the Iron Cross 2nd Class ‘in the field’ on 1st April 1942. Having been wounded for a second time on 27th March 1942 and for a third time on 31st May 1942, both wounds occurring during the very heavy fighting at the Volchov which ended in the defeat and destruction of the Russian 2nd Strike Army under General Vlasov. The date of the 27th March 1942 is reflective of when the 58th Infantry Division was involved in trying to cut off the supply route to the Russians in the “Erica Clearing”, something they finally achieved in early May 1942. Niehuus’s Iron Cross 2nd Class was awarded for the same period of fighting. As a result of his third wounding, Niehuss was evacuated to Germany for treatment at the Doormat Local Hospital, known officially as the 1.Field Hospital 572, and was treated there till discharged on 3rd July 1942, and posted most probably to his replacement battalion, the 220th Infantry Replacement Battalion at Roskilde.

During his time in hospital and his subsequent discharge from hospital and movement to the replacement battalion, news came through his his award of the Infantry Assault Badge in Silver on 12th July 1942, and the Wound Badge in Silver on 13th July 1942. Both awards with their certificates were sent by his company to his in hospital with a specific request for an appropriate presentation at the hospital, however by then he had been discharged from the hospital and the awards having been sent there, were then forwarded on by the recipient to his wife, Else on 27th July 1942. At the time she was living in Itzehoe near Hamburg with their three children, Hans-Egon, Giesa and a little boy.

Niehuus was then posted as an Unteroffizier to the 2nd Company, Divisional Combat School 158 within the 58th Infantry Division, this being an unusual name and unit, and probably a Divisional replacement training organisation, which may have even been in place of the Field Replacement Battalion. Niehuus was serving with this unit when he was wounded in action for a fifth time on 20th April 1944 on the Narva Front during the retreat from Leningrad, and awarded the Wound Badge in Gold on 5th May 1944.

Clearly posted back to Germany after his fifth wound, with the Allied invasion of France, Niehuus than found himself posted as an Unteroffizier to the 2nd Company, 16th Grenadier Replacement Battalion, 22nd Grenadier Replacement Regiment, a hastily formed unit which was then sent to the West to combat the Allied forces advancing through northern France, Belgium and Holland. His unit joined the 180th Division, and Niehuss, who one would have thought had already done his bit with 5 wounds to his credit, was then unfortunately killed in action on 23rd September 1944 during the fighting to the souther of Erp, a village to the northeast of Eindhoven and southwest of Nijmegen in Holland. It is almost certain that he would have been technically recuperating from his fifth wound when he was then killed in action during a major German attack against American forces in order to cut the Allied corridor to Arnhem and the other bridges. The recipient’s death notice further confirms his entitlement to Eastern Front Winter War Medal, with all of his other awards checking out