Wednesday 12 August 2015

DLI Other Ranks Army Numbers 1939-45

I've now done a major revamp on the DLI Army Numbers section of the website and added a consecutive listing of known DLI fatal casualties, POWs and gallantry awards for DLI Other Ranks who were assigned the eight figure, 14200001 and upwards, Army General Service numbers, which were introduced in mid-1942. This section begins here:

Consecutive General Service Durham Light Infantry Numbers, Fatal Casualties, Prisoners of War and known Gallantry Awards, 1942-1947.

I've also updated the landing page for the DLI Numbers section of the site and added a series of new links to existing sections, which should make it easier for novice DLI researchers to put a specific DLI World War Two Other Ranks Army number in context. The new landing page is here:

Other Ranks WW2 Consecutive DLI Numbers

Saturday 16 May 2015

16th Bn DLI Old Comrades’ Association, 1945, Name and Address List

I've now transcribed the 1945 16 DLI Old Comrades' Association name and address booklet which was printed in Austria in 1945 and which contains the names and home addresses of over 600 officers and men who were serving with the 16th DLI in the immediate aftermath of WW2. I've also cross-referenced this with the two later editions of the booklet,1946 & 1947, which add many further names, into one unified listing.

Many of these names also feature as part of various photo captions elsewhere on the site, but many more do not.

Help in matching these names to photographs already on the site and any and all further information about these soldiers gratefully received.

I am especially keen on placing more men who were with the battalion from the start in 1940 and also those who joined as reinforcements from other DLI battalions in 1943-44.

The booklet index page starts here:

16 DLI Guestbook, Missing in Action

The 'Freebok' guest book I have been using for my 16 DLI and 16 DLI POWs websites since 2004 has suddenly disappeared as of 3/15. I'm considering installing a replacement, but in the meantime, any interested parties can contact me direct with any 16 DLI queries and comments at:

Or leave a comment on this blog.

Thursday 30 April 2015

Bad Schmiedeberg, April 30th 1945

It's now exactly 70 years since American and Soviet forces simultaneously arrived in the town of Bad Schmiedeberg. The US troops were a fighting patrol consisting of two tanks and one truck load of infantry from the 2nd Battalion, 413th Infantry Regiment of the 104th Infantry Division and Company B of the 750th Tank Battalion. The Soviet troops were from the 118th Ukrainian Division.

My father, Pte Thomas Tunney, ex-16th Battalion, Durham Light Infantry and his friend, Driver Benny Lewis of the Royal Army Service Corps, were the only two British prisoners of war left in the town by this time and witnessed their arrival and subsequent celebrations in the town square.

I had hoped, over the 11 years this website has been functioning, that somebody out there might have further detailed memories or even photographs of this event.

This hasn't proved to be the case thus far--I still live in hope! However, back in 1998, I did hire a researcher in Washington DC to find the requisite After Action Reports of the 104th Infantry Division for this day and this information, plus my father's eyewitness account, can be read beginning on this page of the site:

This is the exact quote from the 30/4/45 After Action Report which is also on the website:


‘The division assumed responsibility for an additional sector to the south, relieving elements of the 69th Infantry Division. All regiments patrolled east of the Mulde River, and contact with the RUSSIAN Allies was continued on the Elbe River. The division defended its sector, checked rear areas and conducted training, maintenance and rehabilitation.’

413th Infantry

‘Continued to maintain defensive position; 1st and 2nd Battalion patrolled in platoon strength motorized to Elbe River. 2nd Battalion contacted RUSSIANS, 118th Infantry Division, at BAD SCHMIEDEBERG (4554). 1st Battalion contacted RUSSIAN outposts at DOMMITZSCH (5650). No resistance going out or coming back.’

750th Tank Battalion

‘2 tanks from each platoon of Company B supported patrols from 1st and 2nd Battalions, 413th Infantry.’