On 28 April 1945 Major-General A.B. Matthews, commander of the 2nd Canadian Infantry Division, was instructed to advance towards Oldenburg with all three brigades. While the 5th continued to exploit north of Hude, the 4th and 6th approached Oldenburg from the east and south respectively.
The weather was cloudy and cool with much rain. The brigades advanced steadily against light opposition. Propaganda leaflets, printed in Delmenhorst, were fired into Oldenburg urging the futility of further resistance. The end came as something of an anti-climax. On 3 May the 4th and 6th Brigades entered the city only to find that the defenders had fled.
On the following day firm contact was established with the 4th Canadian Armoured Division; and in the last hours of the campaign the 2nd Division pushed north of Oldenburg, prepared to clear the Butjadinger "thumb", between the mouths of the Jade and the Weser.
📸 Picture: Then and now photo of a British Churchill tank at the Cäcilienbrücke in the German city of Oldenburg on May 5, 1945.
4 days ago
The 6th of December 1944 was red-letter day in the active service history of the Canadian Fort Garry Horse regiment. "We gave a Christmas party for the Dutch children of Balgoij and Nederasselt, the two villages in which our troops were quartered. At first the children arrived in twos and threes; then they came in tens, and soon there were nearly two hundred of them, excited and smiling, eager to see what their Canadian soldier friends were going to do, and bubbling with eagerness to see St. Nicholas. Soon St. Nicholas sat himself down and gave his gifts - gifts which had been made or donated by the soldiers each of which was wrapped separately. There were enough for all, and as the children filed out of the door and away to their homes, it was certain that the day had been worthwhile."
Source: Vanguard, The Fort Garry Horse in The Second World War. Picture: Jan Van Noord makes friends with Captain Saunders at the Christmas Party given by the 18th Light Fd. Ambulance.
1 day ago
The commander of the 44th Lowland Brigade, 15th Scottish Infantry Division, Brigadier General Henry Cumming-Bruce, came up with an ingenious plan to capture Blerick. In the night of 1 to 2 December 1944, he played gramophone records with sounds of tanks and vehicles, so that the Germans thought that allied units were congregating in certain places. These areas were promptly shelled by German artillery, allowing the Scots to locate and target the German artillery.
This trick was repeated several times. With patrols north of Blerick, the Scots also gave the impression that the attack would come from that direction and not from the west as planned. Operation Guildford started on 3 December 1944 with an artillery barrage of 384 guns. The Royal Scots attacked from the west as planned and overran the German defenders. Within a day Blerick was captured and 250 German soldiers were taken prisoner. The battle for Blerick would be known as the 'perfect battle'. This photo shows British soldiers from the Royal Scots Fusiliers hunting for German snipers in the streets of Blerick.
The Gentaro Takahashi collection is new to the Densho Digital Repository, documenting Takahashi’s life from his arrival in the United States in 1907 to the 1970s. He and his family were incarcerated in Minidoka, then resettled in Michigan. Takahashi attempted to reclaim “contraband” and personal effects taken at the time of internment, and also worked with Senators and the Japanese American Citizens League to pass a personal law allowing him to remain in the United States.
1 - Crayon drawing of Minidoka by Kinji Takahashi. Courtesy of the Gentaro Takahashi Collection, Densho.
2 - Japanese family pose for a photo outside with their dog, 1928. Courtesy of the Gentaro Takahashi Collection, Densho.
3 - Watercolor of Minidoka, 1942. Courtesy of the Gentaro Takahashi Collection, Densho.
4 - Portraits of Gentaro Takahashi in a suit and in a kimono, C.1920-1920. Courtesy of the Gentaro Takahashi Collection, Densho.
5 - Gentaro Takahashi and his three children, Tokiko, Yoshiko, and Kinji, c. 1930s. Courtesy of the Gentaro Takahashi Collection, Densho.
Did you know the first public performance of the song "White Christmas" was by Bing Crosby on his NBC radio show, The Kraft Music Hall, on Christmas Day, 1941, a few weeks after the attack on Pearl Harbor?
The recording was later released in 1942. It brought comfort to so many soldiers who were fighting far away and their loved ones back home during World War II. This year, we may be dreaming of the Christmases we used to know, but can take comfort in knowing our country has been through hard seasons during the holidays before.
Learn more about the history of the song on my Facebook page.