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693rd Field Artillery Battalion

Discussion in 'Information Requests' started by 693FA, Dec 27, 2010.

  1. 693FA

    693FA Member

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    Does anyone know of any books or unit histories that may have some information on this unit and/or activities in the ETO? I have found only limited info online which has showed them attached to various Divisions such as the 90th and I think 45th....also had found a contact person listed for the unit but the phone number was disconnected so at this point I am not sure his mailing address would be good either.....any help would be appreciated.

    Regards
    Clint
     
  2. Slipdigit

    Slipdigit Good Ol' Boy Staff Member WW2|ORG Editor

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    Field artillery battalions (FAB) were either divisional or nondivisional, meaning they were were permanently part of a division or were not permanently part of a division. The 693rd was a non-divisional FAB, as you may have deduced.

    US Divisions were self-contained, standardized formation of troops, made up of various combat arms, including FABs and numbered between 10 & 20,000 men, depending on the type and attachments. The next higher command above division was called corps (pronounced "core"). A corps was essentially a command unit, to which other units were attached for command and control purposes only. These units could be as large as a division or as small as a company (100-200 men) and these units were assigned for operations as needed. Regularly FABs under command of a corps would be temporarily attached to a division for specific need, to provided additional artillery firepower.

    Finding much specific info on the unit will be very difficult.

    693rd Field Artillery Battalion
    8 Aug 1943 activated Ft Sill OK, from the 4th Battalion/18th FA Regiment
    11 Feb 1944 Departed Boston Port of Embarkation
    23 Feb 1944 England
    14 Jul 1944 France - European Theater of Operations
    28 Mar 1946 - NY P of E
    29 Mar 1946 Deactivated Camp Kilmer, NJ

    They fired 105mm howitzers that were towed by trucks

    Attachments (chronological)
    90th ID 31 Jul 44-17 Aug 44
    45th ID 1 Dec 44-3 Dec 44
    44th ID 12 Feb 45-14 Mar 45
    3rd Infantry Division (ID) 14 Mar 1945 - 20 Apr 1945
    42nd ID 20 Apr 1945 - 29 Apr 1945
    3rd ID 29 Apr-7 May 45
    45th ID 20 Jan 45-7 Feb 45

    Looking at what corps the infantry division above were attached to, I think I can safely say that the 693rd was part of the US XV Corps, which was commanded by Wade Haislip. Initially the XV Corps was in the 3rd Army, then was transferred to the 9th Army and ended up in the 7th Army in late 1944, where it stayed for the remainder of the war.

    They saw a lot of action.
     
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  3. Buten42

    Buten42 Member

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    693FA, I looked at Stanton's Order of Battle and found that the 693rd was "Non Divisional" meaning they wasn't assigned to any one Division but used as needed.
    They fought in the following campaigns, Ardennes-Alsace, Central Europe, Normandy, N. France and Rhineland.
    The 45th Division was credited with Rhineland, Central Europe, and Ardennes-Alsace. The 90th Division was credited with the same five campaigns as the 693rd but it doesn't show they were attached. So they may have fought with them on a temp-duty basis. The contact below may be the one you tried, but it might be worth sending Mr. Knudsen a letter and see what happens. If he's no longer the contact person I'd guess you will learn who is.
    I'll poke around the net and see if I can't find out something on this Battalion. Dave

    693rd Field Artillery Battalion
    Mr. Bud Knudsen
    N8171 Gorman Avenue
    Willard, WI 54493-8620
    (715) 267-6710
     
  4. Buten42

    Buten42 Member

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    Slipdigit, Great information--did you get this from Stanton's?
    I didn't see your post until after I sent mine or I wouldn't have bothered.
     
  5. Slipdigit

    Slipdigit Good Ol' Boy Staff Member WW2|ORG Editor

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    Happens to me from time to time, start typing a reply and someone else post while I am doing so and I don't see their post until after I post mine.

    Some came from Stanton's and some from a OOB for the ETO prepared in 1945 by the Office of the Theater Historian for the US Army. It is at an Army.mil site. Send me your email address and I will email it to you.

    It more or less has the same info found in Stanton's book, but you can let the PC do the searching for you, instead of having to thumb through each page looking for it.
     
  6. 693FA

    693FA Member

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    JW and Dave,
    Thanks for the reply....some good info there and I will use it to dig a little more.....might be hard as you said JW but if everything was easy what fun would it be! Dave that contact you listed is the one...I found it on the Normandy Allies page....guess I'll take that step and use snail mail and see what happens. Again Thanks guys!
    Regards
    Clint
     
  7. 693FA

    693FA Member

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    JW, forgot to add this but would it be possible to get a copy of that site info you were refering to? if so I'll get you and email address...Clint
     
  8. 693FA

    693FA Member

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    The difficult has been done....note to any who reads this looking for info on a relatives service just keep digging, you never know what or where you'll find something! In this case I found the very unit history that created this thread. Titled: "On the way;Combat experience of the 693rd Field Artillery Battalion in the European Theater of Operations, Normandy,Northern France, Rhineland, Central Europe." Published 1945 and located at the Library of Congress and luckily 2 copies close to me at the US Army School of Artillery. Anyway it confirmed the above info in this thread but gave me alot of new stuff to fill in dates, locations, confirm a Bronze Star and much more.....as a side note thanks again to all in this thread and on the site that have helped me and help others!
    Regards
    Clint
     
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  9. Billy Ray

    Billy Ray recruit

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    I hope that is OK to resurrect an old thread. This is my first visit here. Clint, are you still searching for information about the 693 FA Bn? I tried to send a PM, but apparently I do not have permission. I believe that I can help with your search.

    I inherited a copy of the book detailing the history of the 693 FA during 1944-45, titled: On the way; combat experience of the 693rd Fa Bn. in the European Theater of Operations, Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, Central Europe. It was written and published by members of the 693 immediately after the war. Several libraries have copies. This link lists those libraries.
     
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  10. Slipdigit

    Slipdigit Good Ol' Boy Staff Member WW2|ORG Editor

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    Billy Ray,

    Welcome. We configured the forum to disallow new members the ability to PM following rather nasty round of Neo-Nazis making a total nuisance of themselves several years ago.

    I adjusted your account. You should be able to send a PM now.
     
  11. Billy Ray

    Billy Ray recruit

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    Thank you, JW. I was afraid that Clint might not notice my posted information. I will send him a PM to see if he is still searching for information about the 693 FA Bn.
     
  12. Billy Ray

    Billy Ray recruit

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    I missed seeing the last post by Clint where he said that he had already located the same book that I have. In addition to a lot of information about the unit including names, awards, lineage, attachments, number of rounds fired, number of PW captured, etc., there is a very detailed and fascinating accounting of the activities, especially as the war drew closer to a close and the description is almost a moment-by-moment account. Things were moving and changing so rapidly that orders sometimes changed before they could even start moving to positions in the previous orders. They described situations in the final days where road congestion sometimes made it difficult to move as surrendering Germans and liberated PW's were moving to the rear while several Armies were racing towards Berlin.
     
  13. 693FA

    693FA Member

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    Bill,
    Welcome to the site and Thank You.....just finished sending you a PM.....
    Jeff Thanks for adjusting his account that PM was a welcome read this weekend!!!!!!
     
  14. Michael Murray

    Michael Murray New Member

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    Was going through old photos from my father's time in the service and there is one of him with 693rd F.A. Disp. St. Wolfgang written on the back of it. I assume it refers to St. Wolfgang in Austria. Not sure if this is the unit you are looking for or not.
     
  15. 693FA

    693FA Member

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    Michael,
    Sounds to be correct I know the 693rd ended up at Salzburg Austria at the end of the war...any photos you don't mind sharing would be great to see! As would any info you may have from family or a diary or something your father might also have had??
    Regards
    Clint
     
  16. Michael Murray

    Michael Murray New Member

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  17. Michael Murray

    Michael Murray New Member

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  18. Michael Murray

    Michael Murray New Member

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    This was my father and his dog “Doc” who he found in France or Austria and ride in the ambulance with him.
     
  19. Michael Murray

    Michael Murray New Member

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    Do you know if this book is available digitally anywhere. This was my father’s unit and it looks like the nearest library that would have it is hours away.
     
  20. Natman

    Natman Member

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    Michael, you should be able to take the book info, found in the link in post #9, to your local library and they can have a copy of it send to them thru the inter-library loan program. I've used it several times and it works great.
     

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