Treadway bridge across the “Weser” at Ohr, Germany, april 5th, 1945
ABLE and BAKER Company, 17th Armored Engineer Battalion, 2nd Armored Division
April 5th 1945
Ohr,31860 Emmerthal, Germany
Information After action reports:
On 5 April the Battalion (Plus) moved to the vicinity of Arzen, Germany (CO585).Company’s Able, Baker and Easy placed 384 foot treadway bridge across Weser River near Chr (C1138614), The Flame Throwers from 739th Tank battalion were attached to Combat Command Able. (After action report link)
Results of operations: The swift and efficient bridging operations across the Weser River attributed greatly to the Division’s rapid advance to the Elbe River. At the of this period all Allied Prisoners of war and Displaced Persons were classified and segregated and evacuation started and the entire assigned area brought firmly under Military Control. (After action report link)
5 April 1945: Company constructed Treadway bridge across WESER RIVER in the vicinity of TUNDERD. (380 feet – completed in 4 hours.)
(Edit; “Tunderd” this is Tündern, Germany) (this is the village across the bridge of Ohr)
6 April 1945: Company moved out at 0900 and crossed WESER RIVER and proceeded to EENSTORF where it closed 2400. (After action report link)
(Edit: “Eenstorf” this is Estorf, a village to the North paralell to the Weser river)
Information from the Unit History
On 5 April Companies “A” end “B“ bridged the Weser River, the job requiring 384 feet of tread way and being completed in four hours. Two platoons of Co, “B” remained to maintenance the bridge, which was used by CC “A” to cross the river. (link Unit History)
Democrat and Chronicle (Rochester, Monroe, New York, United States of America) · 6 Apr 1945
VIC JONES Continued from the First Page .
Infantry was still crossing in the rubber pontoons pulling themselves across by a rope stretched across the Weser. On the return trip the rubber boats were rilled with kraut prisoners who were surrendering in droves. To give you some idea of the depths the Germans have reached in the matter of manpower, one of the prisoners I saw climbing, out of the infantry prisoner ferry was a one-legged German captain who had great difficulty getting around with crutches. The Weser isn’t much of a river by any standards. At the crossing site it is perhaps 300 feet wide, maybe the width of the Charles near the Cottage Farm bridge. Since we already held the high commanding ground on the east side and the infantry was rapidly over-running the high ground a mile or so to the east, a very strong bridgehead was assured. At the bridge site, I encountered tall, lean 1st Lt John B. Coughlin, Manthorn road. West Roxbury, Mechanic Arts graduate and a former architect He is platoon leader in Company B of the 17th Engineers, who are part of 2d Armored Division. In the past, he said, his outfit had been fighting as infantry so much they hadn’t had much time to build bridges. But this one was going to be easy. Also on the Weser. so busy swinging a sledge I got nothing more than that his name was Sgt Charles Ellers of Boston. Banging away with his camera for the Signal Corps was Cpl Edison Farrand of Win-throp, former Globe photographer.