Four brothers named Senft

I recently was able to acquire something that I think is fairly one of a kind: A grouping to four German brothers from Potsdam who all served in the Heer.

As best I can tell, two of them survived the war (one for sure as you’ll see) and two perished. One in the fighting at Stalingrad and the other seemingly in an accident at the base in Peenemünde (site of the V2 rocker program among others).

I think to keep my presentation organized and clear, I will make a separate post for the parts of the grouping that apply to each brother. There is much depth I could go into with each of them, but I’ll try to keep it to a bit of a concise overview.

First post is a photo of the entire Nachlass and the portion that pertains to Feldwebel Gustav Senft .

Gustav Senft served with the signals platoon of Aufklärungs-Abteilung 3 in the Afrika Korps. This was part of the 5th Light Division which drew A-A 3 and Panzer Regiment 5 both from the 3rd Panzer Division and sent them to constitute some of the earliest units of the Afrika Korps. Gustav won the EKII and it is signed by the commander of the 5th Light Division Johannes Streich who was later sacked by Rommel for failing to take Tobruk. Interestingly the back of his EKII certificate contains a narrative on how he earned the award. It reveals how he kept a communications network intact for 5 solid weeks of fighting even while under enemy artillery fire. It appears that Gustav avoided the fate of the Afrika Korps due to medical evacuation. His Wehrpass shows him authorized to wear the Afrika cuff title. He was assigned to Versuchskommando Nord in October of 1942. That was the (in)famous Peenemünde where Hitler’s "miracle weapons" were developed. Appears that he was actually quartered in the neighboring village of Karlshagen. Unfortunately Gustav died as a result of an accident - details unclear as I cannot read what might be a couple key words - on 19 October, 1944.

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