As the Soviet Union used captured German uniforms

History 26/01/20 As the Soviet Union used captured German uniforms

the War is not without trophies, took out a winner. In antiquity and the Middle ages it was worth, becoming the prey of the individual soldiers, during world war II and the Great Patriotic war, as part of the game trophies were delivered on a regular basis.


In the first two years of fighting the red army if the German got trophies, then them a little bit. Usually it was about the light infantry weapons and military technology, which immediately go into action against their former owners. As for guerrilla and sabotage units, they are almost 100% was achieved precisely captured weapons. First – due to the fact that to provide them with the Soviet mainland was not always possible, the second to the sound of gunfire is not unmasked squad – hearing the familiar “Trilling” the Germans could have taken them for shooting their own soldiers.

In 1943 the situation began to change. In February of this year in the red army created the trophy brigade, whose task, based on the name, included the collection of trophies on the left enemy territory. Their actions are determined by GKO decree “On collection and removal of captured property and ensuring its preservation”. To business have approached seriously by creating a Central Commission for the collection of captured weapons and equipment, under the chairmanship of Marshal of the Soviet Union, Budyonny, and the Central Commission for the collection of ferrous and nonferrous metals in the front line, headed by Shvernik and the Office for the collection and use of captured weapons, equipment and scrap metal (in the Main logistics Department) — chief Lieutenant General Vakhitov. In the fronts, armies and divisions were created by the accounting departments of up to twelve people.

in April 1943 was reorganized, and instead of the above-mentioned structures were created by the Trophy Committee, under the leadership of Marshal Owltsogo Union Voroshilov. Was the reorganization of the trophy and army units. All this allowed to improve the collection of trophies, which was not only operating equipment, but also helmets, equipment, other tangible assets, down to the metal, heading to the smelter. However, the majority of German weapons suffered the same fate – from the red army already had enough of the domestic, often, better and more quality weapons, the need to use the trophy disappeared.

To collect trophies attracted to people of the former occupied territories, for example, for a steel helmet paid about 3-5 rubles. In the archival documents one can find references that after the war German tanks were used as towing vehicle or tractor, in agriculture, in particular – plowed land.

the Production of trophy teams during the war steel: 24 615 tanks and self-propelled guns, over 68 thousand guns and 30 thousand mortars, more than 114 million shells, mines 16 million, 257 thousand machine guns, 3 million guns, nearly 2 billion rounds of rifle and 50 thousand cars. Total weight of trophy metal delivered from front-line areas for secondary use, was about 10 million tons. Faulty weapons and ammunition was melted. However, savvy folk have figured out how to use helmets in the home and no melting, just with minor additions. In particular, produced a colander; a hole, a helmet was enameled, and fitted a handle for ease of use. Two more options associated with the disposal of waste products. The first is a chamber pot for children. Enameled helmet to fasten the handle, the pot is ready. More complex option suggested and still having the legs for stability. In the villages the helmets were prikladyvala holder for a cutting insert which is a design used for skimming the feces from public toilets.

Sure, except for ease of use German helmets for such purposes, in this manifestation and opnedelnoe attitude to an outfit recent invaders.

it is Worth saying that the Germans themselves after the war also allowed helmets in the course of using as blanks for dishes (plates, pots, colanders) – a helmet, was treated with pressure, giving the desired shape, were enameled and added the necessary details.

Household items

After winning the trophy the team methodically “vacuums” Germany, by lending the Soviet Union, which could be useful. In particular, in the war-ravaged country left 21 834 wagon glove and notation-an economic property; 73 493 carriage of building materials and “residential property”, including: 60 of 149 pianos and disharmony, 458 612 radios, 188 071 carpet, 941 605 pieces of furniture, 264, 441 thing wall and table clocks; 6370 cars paper and 588 wagons of dishes, mostly porcelain; 338 348 3 different pairs of civilian shoes, 1 203 169 women’s and men’s coats, 2 546 919 dresses 4 618 631 the subject of underwear, 1 052 503 hats; 154 wagon of furs, fabrics and wool; 18 217 carloads of machinery for the metals industry — 447 741 ton, that an estimated 1.38 billion; precious metals – more than 174 thousand kg; cereal — 2.3 million tons; meat of 430 thousand tons; fish — 10 thousand tons; fats — 30 thousand tons; oilseeds — 35 thousand tons; sugar — 390 thousand tons; tobacco — 16 thousand tons; potatoes and vegetables — 988 thousand tons; 20 million liters of alcohol; 186 cars fault… Work trophy teams, in particular, are thoroughly described in his memoirs of academician Chertok, who was in the ranks of a team in Berlin and the surrounding area.

However, allowed to have the trophies of the red army. Doctor of historical Sciences, leading researcher of the Institute of Russian history Russian Academy of Sciences Yelena Senyavskaya explains that the red parcels were not gold rings, and sewing needles, and other useful domestic objects down to make-up, without clothes and shoes. There was a special regulation with list of what was allowedabout to send to the rear, things were issued from the warehouses trophy property. Sending a parcel were allowed by special decision of the commander, confirmed on the form a special form. The soldier once a month could send a parcel weighing 5 kg, the officer – 10 kg, General 16 kilograms. In General, the situation was regulated by the order NKO of the USSR No. 0409 dated December 26, 1944 “On the organization of reception and delivery of parcels from soldiers, sergeants, officers and generals of the operating fronts to the rear of the country.”

Can be found in the stories of veterans a story about how someone brought from Germany a suitcase full of sewing needles and incredibly rich on selling. No evidence has been found, rather – it was just a joke.

German uniforms

POWs of the Wehrmacht, that the soldiers, that officers were not dressed in uniforms of prisoners, and they served time in Soviet prison camps in his own form, which they changed as decay – from captured stocks. The last prisoners of war returned home in the early fifties.

seized in the warehouses of uniforms has been different. The part was recycled as rags becoming a raw material for many useful things. The part was a form of the army of the GDR, of course, with unpicked Nazi insignia and tabs. And part of it remained lying in warehouses in Russia was already in the nineties as humanitarian aid from Germany. The newspaper of those years, often wrote about the patients of hospitals or mental hospitals, even dressed in the uniform of the Wehrmacht, sent compassionate Germans in Western Europe. In addition, a very small part of the uniforms after the war was the Soviet film Studio, where “played” in the movies about the struggle of the Soviet people against Nazi invaders.

Konstantin Baranovsky

© Russian Seven

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