Summer - Ardooie and Koolskamp

Hitler's regiment rests in Flandern. The regiment staff and the 1st and 2nd batallion go to Ardooie. The 3rd batallion goes to Koolskamp.

July 13 – July 23 - Geluveld

The regiment returns to Geluveld where gasattacks occur on daily basis.

July 26 – August 1 - Hooge

The 1st batallion serves as reserve at Terhand (southeast of Beselaere).

The regiment staff spends the first night at a Bretterhüttchen, probably just a wooden shack.

After that the regiment staff goes to a Sanitätsunterstand at the Polygonwoods. (The post war Polygonwood Cemetery still is in that area).

The messengers, including Hitler, travelled between the front line at Hooge and the regiment building in the Polygon Woods.

The regiment also fights at the location of the ‘Nonneboschen’, woods that are on the other side of the highway from the Polygon Wood.

The French and British fought side by side in the third batlle of Ieper (July 31 - November 10), but the ambitious plans they had didn’t work out. They conquered the village of Langemark (Belgium), but they couldn’t capture the Geluveld (Belgium) area, where RIR 16 was stationed.

Location where Hitler was stationed
Location: Unknown
Hitler was stationed in Ardooie in the summer of 1917. He made a drawing of the church of Ardooie. Where he lived at is unknown, although there have been speculations about it. Another part of the regiment was stationed at Koolskamp. Historian Thomas Weber writes about this period that the regiment was resting and that it had a good time, but also that there wasn’t enough food and water for the troops.
Hitler’s drawing of the church of Ardooie, made in 1917
The church of Ardooie in 2009 (picture: the Hitlerpages, 2009)
There’s a WW1 war monument in front of the church.
(picture: the Hitlerpages, 2009)

ARDOOIE (BELGIUM)

House where Hitler was said to have been stationed
Location: Markt 18, opposite to the church, in 1940 known as Markt A317
Today: Still there
Hitler was said to have been stationed here in the first world war. He was also said to have been visiting this house in Ardooie on June 1, 1940. Both statements are not true. Read more about this here.

August 2 – October 13 - Elsaze (Alsace)

August 1 and 2 - Replacement

Replacement to Elsaze. The regiment leaves from Linselles and Tourcoing.

Locations batallions in the period after August 1/2:

1st batallion: Landser near Mulhouse

3rd batallion: Habsheim

Regiment staff: first in Schlierbach, later in Galfinge and Hochstatt (France, east of Mulhouse)

Other locations batallions:

1st batallion: Brunstatt

2nd batallion: Eschenzweiler (Eschentzwiller), Dietweiler and later on at Hochstatt

3rd batallion: Zillisheim, sometimes at Barmweiler and Oberspechdach

September 17 - Hochstatt, decoration

Hitler receives a Military Service Cross Third Class with Swords, for having been wounded in combat.

September 30 - October 17 - Brussels, Köln, Leipzig, Dresden, Berlin

Adolf Hitler and Ernst Schmidt are on a leave. They go sightseeing in Brussels, Köln, Leipzig and Dresden. After that Hitler goes to Berlin and Schmidt goes to Wurzbach.

 


Mulhouse and Rixheim weergeven op een grotere kaart
Locations of the Regiment Staff in August-October 1917
Location: All three villages are in the Alsace, south of Mulhouse
In August-October the batallions of Hitler’s regiment are stationed in a quiet area of the front in Germany (France today). The batallions are stationed near Mulhouse (Alsace) in the villages: Landser, Habsheim, Brunnstatt, Eschenzweiler, Dietweiler, Hochstatt, Zillisheim, Barmweiler and Oberspechdach (Spechdach-le-Haut). The regiment staff is in Schlierbach, Galfinge and Hochstatt. On September 17 Adolf Hitler is decorated in Hochstatt, for being woonded in combat.

SCHLIERBACH - GALFINGE - HOCHSTATT (FRANCE)

Oberspechdach in World War 1

(picture: Meijer, 1934)

Hitler’s whereabouts from September 30 - October 17
Location: Exact locations unknown
From September 30 until October 17 Adolf Hitler and Ernst Schmidt are on a leave. They go sightseeing in Brussels, Köln, Leipzig and Dresden. After that  Hitler goes to Berlin and Schmidt goes to Wurzbach.

BRUSSEL - KÖLN - LEIPZIG - DRESDEN - BERLIN (BEL/GER)


Ieper: Geluveld weergeven op een grotere kaart

GELUVELD REGION (BELGIUM)

Area of Hooge
Location: Meenseweg (going towards Ieper it’s right before the Bellewaertsestraat)
Today: Remains of the first World War are still there.
Hitler's regiment was in this area in July of 1917. The regiment was located in Terhand. Hitler and the regiments staff are at a so called ‘Bretterhütchen’ for one night. After that the regiment headquarters were at the Polygon Woods. The regiment history says that messengers like Hitler travelled between Hooge and the Polygon Woods in this period. The Polygon Woods were behind the German line.

HOOGE (BELGIUM)

A picture of a so called Meldeläuferposte. Because Hitler delivered messages this could be a place where he has been. But where this post was or if he’s been here is unknown.


Battle of Arras weergeven op een grotere kaart

A map of the region with the German and English lines (1917)

(Solleder, 1932)


Douai weergeven op een grotere kaart

DOUAI AND REGION

The street to Izel, May 1917

(picture: Solleder, 1932)

A windmill at St. Vaast

(picture: Solleder, 1932)

The road between Fresnes and Gavrelle in May 1917. The Germans transport English soldiers away from the front. (picture: Solleder, 1932)

Soldiers receiving decorations after the Battle of Arras in the village of  Lallaing (picture: Solleder, 1932)

ROEUX (FRANCE)

Station

Location: Rue de la Gare

Today: There’s still a station buidling in Roeux. It could even be the original one.

The regiment staf was located at the staion of Roeux. Hitler and Meyer brought messages from the station to the north and south wing of the regiment. There seem to be some remaining trenches in the area. British cemeteries are still there.

The station of Roeux is on the right side of this picture.

April 9 – May 16 - Battle of Arras

Hitler's regiment fights in the Battle of Arras, near Arras (France) and in the Arras-region Artois (France) from April 25 until May 19. The Battle of Arras was an offensive of British and Canadian troups on a front that was about 23 kilometers wide. The Canadian army took the Vimy Ridge. After the Great War a Canadian monument was built there. Hitler visited the monument in 1940. Hitler’s regiment stayed in the area of La Bassée until it was transported to Douai on April 25.

April 25 - Douai

The regiment is replaced. It goes to Bauvin-Provin and then by train to Douai.

April 26/27 - Douai

The regiment stands reserve at Douai.

April 28 - Douai region

The regiment is placed behind the ‘Motan 1 Stellung’, as reserve troops, at different, changing locations.

April 30 - Corbehem and Douai

Hitler's regiment went to Corbehem for a rest. In the morning they went back to Douai.

May 3 - Klein (Petit) Vitry and Roeux

The regiment is located at Klein Vitry (near Vitry-en-Artois) and in Roeux near the front, the 1st batallion in the second line.

May 5/6 - Douai

Replacement. The regiment goes to Doai to serve as reserve troops. On some ocassions they go to L’Homme (southwest of Douai).

May 11/12 - Vitry and Roeux

The regiment replaces troops at the front. The first batallion is at the frontline, 1500 meters north of the railroad track between Vitry and Roeux. Shelter in Vitry-en-Artois, in a castle-like building. After WW1 only 5 buildings were still standing in the village, so the castle must be gone.

May 19 - Lallaing and Anhiers

The regiment rests at Lallaing and Anhiers.

First days of June - Oppy

The troops of RIR 16 are south of Oppy in the trenches. The ‘Regimentsgefechtsstand’ is south of Izel (Izel-les-Equerchin) and later in Quiéry-la-Motte.On the leftflank near a windmill are the English troops.

After June 12 - Montigny and Pecquencourt

The regiment is replaced. It travels to Montigny and Pecquencourt. There it rests for ten days.

In 1917 Hitler’s regiment was in Vlaanderen and French-Vlaanderen and in the Oberelsass (Alsace). The end of 1916 and the beginning of 1917 Hitler spent in Germany, because he got woonded at Le Bargue. He joins his regiment again on March 5, 1917. In September and October 1917 Hitler is said to have been in Spital in Austria but that is not true. He went to Berlin to stay with the parents of a fellow soldier. After that Hitler joined his regiment in the south and north of Ailette. Hitler was also stationed in Ardooie (Belgium) for a while.

1914 - 1915 - 1916 - 1917 - 1918

FIRST WORLD WAR 1917
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HISTORICAL HITLER SITES

While Hitler was in Germany in the beginning of 1917, his regiment was located at:

The Vimy Höhe, 1st batallion: Aniche, 2nd + 3rd batallion: Somain, Biache (1st batallion: shelter at Mancourt and Hendecourt; 2nd batallion: shelter at Fampoux and Gavrelle; 3rd batallion: shelter at Fampoux and Roeux), Aniche.

 

March 4 - La Bassee

1st and 3rd batallion go to Beauvin-Provin by train and by foot to Groß-Hantay.

March 5 - La Bassee

Hitler returns to his regiment in this period.

The 1st batallion goes to the ‘right flank’, the 3rd batallion goes to the left one.

March 6 – April - La Bassee

Regiment commander at Abschnitt E, near La Bassee. The 2nd batallion is located at Groß Hantay.

LA BASSÉE (FRANCE)

Regiment Staff
Location: West of La Bassée
Today: Unknown
According to Adolf Meyer Hitler had to bring messages (from and) to the regiments staff that was located west of La Bassée.
Route Hitler took to bring messages
Location: The road between Canteleux and La Bassée
Today: Rue de Canteleux
According to Adolf Meyer Hitler had to bring messages to the regiments staff that was located west of La Bassée. He had to take the very dangerous road between La Bassée and Canteleux, what must be the Rue de Canteleux now. The front line was west of it: at Givenchy les La Bassée and Chuinchy. Meyer met Hitler here, at the Canteleux Unterstand, when he was on his way to the front line. The Rue de Canteleux can be found back at the map of the La Bassée area.
Canteleux Unterstand
Location: Canteleux - Rue de Canteleux
Today: Rue de Canteleux
According to Adolf Meyer Hitler had to bring messages to the regiments staff that was located west of La Bassée. He had to take the very dangerous road between La Bassée and Canteleux, what must be the Rue de Canteleux now. The front line was west of it: at Givenchy les la Bassée and Chuinchy. Meyer met Hitler here, at the Canteleux Unterstand, when he was on his way to the front line. The Rue de Canteleux can be found back at the map of the La Bassée area.

Between Fournes and La Bassee weergeven op een grotere kaart

A 1917 map of La Bassee

(Solleder, 1932)

The brewery of La Bassee

(picture:Meijer, 1934)

The channel near La Bassee

(picture: Meijer, 1934)

The channel near La Bassee

(picture: Meijer, 1934)

The station of La Bassee

(picture: Meijer, 1934)

La Bassee

(picture: Meijer, 1934)


La Bassee weergeven op een grotere kaart

Another picture of the station of La Bassee, March 1917. Max Amann (a wartime friend of Hitler and the publisher of Mein Kampf) is the man on the left.

(picture: Joachimsthaler, 1989)

The second batallion of RIR 16 in the Schlosspark of La Bassee at a  divine service outdoors in 1916

(picture: Solleder, 1932)

Soldiers of the regiment at rest in Hantay in 1917 (picture: Russel, 2006)

Hantay, April 1917. Hitler is the first man on the left. (picture: Russel, 2006)

HANTAY - PETIT HANTAY (FRANCE)

Resting place

Location: Unkown

In the beginning of March Adolf Hitler returned to his regiment. It was resting by then near La Bassée at Hantay of Petit-Hantay. Hitler was in Hantay too in 1917.

BAUVIN-PROVIN (FRANCE)

Station Bauvin-Provin/ Gare de Bauvin-Provin

Location: Place de la Gare

Today: Still there

On April 25 Hitler’s regiment was replaced. It marched to the station of Bauvin-Provin, near La Bassée. From there the regiment was transported to Douai by train.

An old postcard of the station Bauvin-Provin (postcard: nosanciens.free.fr)

The station is still there.

(picture: wikipedia)

Douai station/ Gare de Douai

Location: Place de la Gare (Boulevard de Liège)

Today: The old station was ruïned in 1918. There’s a new station in Douai.

On April 25 Hitler’s regiment was replaced. It marched to the station of Bauvin-Provin, near La Bassée. From there the regiment was transported to Douai by train.

An old postcard of the station of Douai in 1900 (postcard: wikipedia)

The ruïned station in 1918  (picture: grande.guerre.pagesperso-orange.fr)

The station today  (picture: wikipedia)

CORBEHEM (FRANCE)

Resting place

Location: Corbehem is southwest of Douai

On April 30 Hitler’s regiment went to Corbehem for a day. It returned to Douai on the same day. If Hitler was in Corbehem too, is unknown.

KLEIN VITRY / PETIT VITRY (FRANCE)

Petit Vitry

Location: West of Vitry-en-Artois

On May 3 Hitler’s regiment went to ‘Klein Vitry’ and Roeux. Where Hitler was, is not clear.

L’HOMME (FRANCE)

L’Homme

Location: Southwest of Douai

According to the regiment history Hitler’s regiment went to L’Homme every once in a while. If Hitler went there too, is not clear.

VITRY-EN-ARTOIS (FRANCE)

Castle-like building

Location: After the war there were only five houses left in Vitry-en-Artois. The castle doesn’t seem to be there anymore.

On May 11/12 Hitler’s regiment went to Virty-en-Artois. There they found shelter in a castle-like building. The first batallion was at the front line, between Vitry and Roeux.

An old postcard of a ‘castle’ in Vitry-en-Artois. If this is the right one is unknown. (postcard: delcampe.net)

LALLAING & ANHIERS (FRANCE)

Resting place for the regiment

Location: Unknown

On May 19 the regiment is pulled back from the battle. The soldiers are resting in Lallaing and Anhiers.

 

Soldiers receiving decorations after the Battle of Arras in the village of  Lallaing (picture: Solleder, 1932)

OPPY & IZEL-LES-EQUERCHIN & QUIÉRY-LA-MOTTE (FRANCE)

Regiment Headquarters

Exact locations: Unknown

In the beginning of June the regiment is in the trenches south of Oppy. The regiment headquarters are south of Izel and later in Quiéry-la-Motte. Adolf Hitler was at those headquarters.

 

The street to Izel, May 1917

(picture: Solleder, 1932)

MONTIGNY & PECQUENCOURT (FRANCE)

Regiment location

Location: Unknown

After June 12 Hitler’s regiment is replaced. It goes to Montigny and Pecquencourt. Where Hitler was, is unknown.

 

Polygon Wood / Polygonebos
Location: Northeast of Geluveld, inbetween the Oude Kortrijkstraat, the Lotegatstraat and the Lange Dreve. On the Lange Dreve is the Polygon Wood Cemetery. On the other side of the highway A19 is the recreational domain Nonnebossen.
Today: The woods and some bunkers are still there. On the edge of the wood is the Polygon Wood Cemetery.
The regiment headquarters are said to have been at the Polygon Woods. Hitler must have been there. A Bretterhütchen (a wooden shack) is mentioned as a temporary shelter for the headquarters for one night before that. The regiment also fought at the ‘Nonneboschen’. The map below shows the front line on July 31, 1917.
Historian Thomas Weber writes that right before the English attack that was going to take place, two of the three batallions of the List-regiment were taken back from the front. The second batallion and the regiment headquarters, including Hitler, were not that lucky. Before they were taken out of the fight, they had to endure the attack of the British Army. Weber nuances the statement of Adolf Meyer (Hitlers fellow messenger) that they nearly escaped death.

POLYGON WOODS (BELGIUM)

The front line on July 31, 1917. The Germans still seem to have occupied the Polygon Woods. The Nonnebosch is inbetween lines. (source: users.telenet.be/blindganger/derde_slag)

October – November –

Hitler joins his regiment that’s in action at the Chemin des Dames, south and north of Ailette (a river north of the Aisne, France) on October 17 or 18.

October 13 – 26 - Champagne - Chemin des Dames

October 13 -  Rixheim

The regiment goes to Rixheim to leave to the region of Champagne.

October 15 – 19 - Villers (Hitler rejoins his regiment on October 17 or 18)

Batallion 1: lager Asfeld la Ville

Batallion 2: Proviseux (Proviseux-et-Plesnoy)

Batallion 3: Villers (Villers-Devant-la-Thour)

October 19 - March to the next location

October 20 - Ebouleau

batallion 1: Pierrepont

batallion 2: Goudelancourt (Goudelancourt les Pierrepont)

batallion 3 and regiment staf: Ebouleau

October 23 or 24 - Chemin de Dames

Regiment goes to Vivaise, Besny (Besny-au-Loizy), Aulnois (Aulnois-sous-Laon), Faubourg de la Neuville de Laon (road in Cormicy of village La Neuville?)

October 25 or 26 - Molinchart, Montbavin, Montarcène

The regiment goes to Molinchart. The Regiment Staf is located in a hole in the mountains of Montarcène and after that at the Plesnoy-Ferme.

October 25/26 - Anizy and Lizy

The regiment goes to the trenches at Anizy and Lizy, they stay at the Barackenlager at Chateau Rocher (could be east of Anizy-le-Chateau).

November and December - Anizy and Lizy

The regiment is building defense lines.

December 17 - Anizy and Lizy

The regiment takes over the ‘rightflank’ of the division: from the ‘Rudolfbrücke’ to 100 meters west of the ‘Lieschenbrücke’

Winter 1917/1918 - Chemin des Dames

Shelter at: Gercy, Houry, Prisces, Gronard and Burelles. Christmas 1917 was spent on a farm near Laon.

 

 

 

 

CHEMIN DES DAMES (FRANCE)

A map of the Chemin des Dames in April-May of 1917
(© Sheffield, 1914-1918, Het Westelijke Front in de Eerste Wereldoorlog)

Chemin des Dames

Location: Region between Soissons and Reims, just above the river Aisne

Hitler was stationed here in 1917. Hitler's WW2 Führerhauptquartier Wolfsschlucht 2 was in the same area, a litlle north of Soissons.


Chemin des Dames weergeven op een grotere kaart
Church Montbavin
Location: Place de la Marie
Today: Still there
After the Battle magazine found out the picture of Hitler in front of a church shown here was made in front of a church in Montbavin. The picture was made in 1940. Why the church was important to Hitler, is not known. Reading Adolf Meyers book I found out that Hitler's regiment was in this area at the end of October, 1917.
Hitler in front of a church in Montbavin
(picture: Heinrich Hoffmann)

MONTBAVIN (CHEMIN DES DAMES, FRANCE)

The church is still there
(pictures: the Hitlerpages, 2009)

MONTARCÈNE (CHEMIN DES DAMES, FRANCE)

 

Montarcène Mountain Hole

Location: Unknown

The regiment staff of Hitler’s regiment was located at a Kreidehöhle on the Gebirgsstock at Montarcène. Hitler was there too. A Kreidehöhle must be a hole in a mountain of pretty soft stone. The surroundings of Montarcène and Montbavin are full of this kind of holes inside the small mountains. The picture below was taken near Mons en Laonnois, near the Fort de Laniscourt.

 

This picture, showing an exemple of a small hole in the mountain, was not taken in Montarcène, but in the same region, near Mons en Laonnois.

(picture: the Hitlerpages, 2009)

 

Plesnoy Ferme

Location: Unknown

The regiment staff was located at a Kreidehöhle at Montarcène. After that the regiment staff went to a farm called the Plesnoy-Ferme, which might or might not have been in Montarcène.

LANISCOURT (CHEMIN DES DAMES, FRANCE)

 

Fort de Laniscourt

Location: Between Molinchart and Montbavin, near the villages of Laniscourt and Mons en Laonnois.

Today: Still there

Hitler's regiment was located in both Molinchart and Montbavin in 1917. The fortress near Laniscourt is in between those two places. As far as I know there´s no source that says that Hitler was here in 1917, but he visited the Fort de Laniscourt in June 1940. That must mean that he had memories of it from the First World War. Klick here to go to the June 1940 page for pictures of Hitler at the Fort de Laniscourt.

 

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ANIZY LE CHATEAU (CHEMIN DES DAMES, FRANCE)

Bridge acros the Canal de l’Oise à l’Aisne

Location: Between Pinon and Anizy le Chateau, rue du 7e Bca

Today: There’s a new bridge there.

A drawingthat is said to be made by Adolf Hitler shows the blown up bridge near Anizy le Chateau. It’s hard to say if the drawing is really made by Adolf Hitler himself. There are a lot of Hitler drawings on the internet, but a lot of them are not really made by him. This drawing is dated 1916, but I haven’t found proof Hitler was in Anizy in 1916. He was there in 1917 and 1918. The drawing could be misdated.

This drawing that is said to be of Adolf Hitler shows the bridge near Anizy le Chateau.

A picture of the bridge in almost exactly the same perspective. The drawing and the picture are so much alike that it’s possible the drawing was made from the picture.

Hitler rejoins the regiment after a leave
Location: Exact locations unknown. The villages are east of Laon.
After Adolf Hitler had spent half a month in Germany, he came back to France on October 17/18. The regiment was stationed near Villers at several locations from October 15 until 19. The regiment history doesn’t say where the regiment headquarters were, but the batallions are located at:
Batallion 1: lager Asfeld la Ville
Batallion 2: Proviseux (Proviseux-et-Plesnoy)
Batallion 3: Villers (Villers devant la Thour)
On October 19 the regiment marches to the region of Ebouleau.
Ebouleau
Location: Exact locations unknown. Adolf Hitler was at Ebouleau.
Adolf Hitler’s regiment was replaced to the region of Ebouleau on October 19. The regiment headquarters and the batallions are located at:
batallion 1: Pierrepont
batallion 2: Goudelancourt (Goudelancourt les Pierrepont)
batallion 3 and regiment staf: Ebouleau
On October 23/24 the regiment was replaced to the Chemin des Dames.

EBOULEAU region (FRANCE)

Vivaise, Besny (Besny-au-Loizy), Aulnois (Aulnois-sous-Laon), Faubourg de la Neuville de Laon
Location: Exact locations unknown. The villages are northwest of Laon.
On October 23 or 24 Hitler’s regiment went to the Chemin de Dames. The regiment was located at the places:
Vivaise, Besny (Besny-au-Loizy), Aulnois (Aulnois-sous-Laon), Faubourg de la Neuville de Laon. (The location of Faubourg is unknown, it might be a part of Laon now.)

CHEMIN DES DAMES (FRANCE)

Molinchart, Montbavin, Montarcène
Location: Some exact locations are known. The villages are southwest of Laon.
On October 25 or 26 Hitler’s regiment was at Molinchart, Montbavin and Montarcène.
The regiment went to Molinchart. The Regiment Staff was located in a hole in the mountains of Montarcène and after that at the Plesnoy-Ferme. For Molinchart I could not find any information about Hitler’s presence.

CHEMIN DES DAMES (FRANCE)

LANISCOURT (CHEMIN DES DAMES, FRANCE)

 

Fort de Laniscourt

Location: Between Molinchart and Montbavin, near the villages of Laniscourt and Mons en Laonnois.

Today: Still there

Hitler's regiment was located in both Molinchart and Montbavin in 1917. The fortress near Laniscourt is in between those two places. As far as I know there´s no source that says that Hitler was here in 1917, but he visited the Fort de Laniscourt in June 1940. That must mean that he had memories of it from the First World War. Klick here to go to the June 1940 page for pictures of Hitler at the Fort de Laniscourt.

 

ANIZY and LIZY (CHEMIN DES DAMES, FRANCE)

Area of Anizy and Lizy

Location: Southwest of Laon, near chateau Rocher

On October 25/26 Hitler’s regiment went to Anizy and Lizy, where the regiment went to the trenches. It is stationed at the Barackenlager at Chateau Rocher (could be east of Anizy-le-Chateau). In november and december the regiment is building defense lines in the area. On December 17 the regiment takes over the ‘rightflank’ of the division: from the ‘Rudolfbrücke’ to 100 meters west of the ‘Lieschenbrücke’.

Gercy, Houry, Prisces, Gronard, Burelles and Laon
Location: The villages are northeast of Laon.
The regiment stays at the Chemin des Dames for the winter 1917/1918. They find shelter at: Gercy, Houry, Prisces, Gronard and Burelles. Christmas 1917 was spent on a farm near Laon.

CHEMIN DES DAMES (FRANCE)

VILLERS region (FRANCE)