19 Replies Latest reply on Jul 4, 2020 8:24 PM by Brian Nicely

    270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII

    Brian Nicely Newbie

      i have been doing some fact finding about the 270th for the last few months and am wondering if anyone on here  has info about this unit?   This was my Grandfathers unit during the war and I would like to learn a little more about it.

       

      Also can someone tell me where this info is from?  I have done so much digging/finding that I now know I did not keep my information in an orderly fashion.  Thank you for any assistance you can provide.

      Thanks.   Brian

        • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
          Rebecca Collier Ranger

          Dear Mr. Nicely,

          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!

          The document included in your post is a copy of an index card from the series titled Index to World War II Operations Reports, 1940 - 1948 in the Records of the Adjutant General's Office, 1905-1981 (Record Group 407). The card lists the records of the 270th Field Artillery Battalion that are available in the series titled World War II Operations Reports, 1940 - 1948 also in RG 407. For access to and copies of these records, please contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference (RDT2) via email at archives2reference@nara.gov.

          We also searched the unit records in the Records of U.S. Army Operational, Tactical, and Support Organizations (World War II and Thereafter) (Record Group 338) but were unable to locate additional records of the 270th.

          We hope this information is helpful. Best of luck with your research!

          4 people found this helpful
            • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
              Brian Nicely Newbie

              Thank you very much for the info.  This will be very helpful when I visit Archives. 

                • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
                  Brian Nicely Newbie

                  Over the last year or so, I have been able to come up with a decent amount of information about the 270th FA Bn, but seem to have come to a stand still.

                   

                  I am interested in any info someone may have about the unit, but am most interested in compiling a roster of service members that were assigned to the 270th during its short life.   I have accumulated 237 names so far. (I am not a professional at this, and would love for someone to double check my handy work).   I have gathered names from AARs, google searches, newsletters, etc...

                   

                  Below are some of the places that have helped me out with my research.  If anyone has any additional places to look, please let me know.

                   

                  I have visited the Archives in College Park and the websites associated with it.

                  Controvich Library

                  Eisenhower Library

                  Field Artillery Museum at Ft Sill OK

                  Ft. Benning Library (Donovan I think)

                  Ft Bragg Library

                  NC State Historical Archives ( Camp Butner timeframe)

                  Camp Butner Museum

                  Of course a lot of Google searches

                   

                  I have a copy of the book "240" by Elmer Totsch

                  I have a copy of a pamphlet labeled "The 270th FA Bn in the ETO (Controvich Library)

                  I have copies of a newsletter they published while at Camp Butner (G.I. Hokum)

                  I have copies of the AARs the Archives had for pretty much the whole time it was a unit

                  I have a copy of the Medical Detachment post war AAR

                  Some random info I got from my mother (her father was assigned to the 270th)

                   

                  More than happy to share this info with whomever may be interested in it.

                    • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
                      Rebecca Collier Ranger

                      Dear Mr. Nicely,

                       

                      Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!

                       

                      In case you haven’t already requested them, copies of most of the monthly rosters from November 1912 - 1943 and 1947 - 1959 for Army units are in the custody of the National Archives at St. Louis, MO. For access to these records, please write to the National Archives at St. Louis, ATTN: RL-SL, P.O. Box 38757, St. Louis, MO 63138-0757 or via email at stl.archives@nara.gov. Rosters for units serving in World War II from 1944 - 1946 were destroyed in accordance with Army disposition authorities.

                       

                      We hope this is helpful. Best of luck with your research!

                      2 people found this helpful
                      • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
                        Bill O'Brien Newbie

                        Brian:

                         

                        My father was in the 270th FAB, Battery "C" on the survey team.  I've been slogging through the unit history and would appreciate getting access to the AARs that you have.  Are they something you could email to me?

                         

                        One item I would point out to you that you may not already have seen; the 270th FA Btn  was attached to the 144th FA Gp for most of the month of August, 1944, so from the time that they were activated for combat on 5-Aug-1944 through the Falaise Gap and supporting the 79th ID Seine River crossing at Mantes-Gassicourt.  The California Military Museum has a few good pieces of the history of the 144th FA Gp and, by connection, the 270th.  You can find them at the link http://www.militarymuseum.org/HistoryWWII.html .  I found the personal memoir by Charles Seneteney particularly interesting, especially for the month that the 270th was attached.

                         

                        I've also found reading the histories of the units the 270th was supporting to be good for providing background and context into their movements.

                         

                        Best of luck to you, feel free to reach out with any questions or comments.

                         

                        Bill O'Brien

                        2 people found this helpful
                          • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
                            Brian Nicely Newbie

                            Thanks for the link, and the tips.   What was your fathers name?   I have accumulated 250ish out of the 450ish names for the Battalion so far, but do not have an O'Brien.  I still have a long way to go with that. I can try to scan in the AARs once I go back to work.  I just don't have the equipment to do it at the house. I will be happy to send you some of the things I have digitized.

                              • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
                                Bill O'Brien Newbie

                                Brian, thanks for your response.  Hope you are able to safely return to work very soon.

                                 

                                My dad's name was James O'Brien.  He joined the 270th in February 1944 at Ft Bragg and, other than a couple detachments to the 243rd FAB, was with the 270th until July 1, 1945 when he was transferred to the 243rd.

                                 

                                I am spending this time going through my Dad's letters to my Mother (fiance at the time) and have come across a few other names of soldiers who were with him in his Survey Section for Battery "C" in August 1944:

                                 

                                Sgt Patterson

                                Cpl Jim Graves

                                Cpl Spradlin

                                Cpl Dan Bloom

                                Pfc Jim Kidwell

                                Pfc Parker

                                 

                                Also mentioned (not sure if these individuals were in Survey) are Lt Roslund and Sgt Lidgard.

                                 

                                Here's a couple photos with caption on the back:

                                 

                                First picture is "Early Dec, 1944 - Furweiler, Germany  Oszusrulri (sp?) radio, JJ (My Father James J O'Brien), "Little Porky" and Venerable".  My Dad is 2nd from the left, looks like he left one name off. 

                                 

                                2nd photo is "Betting France, Jan, 1945  Sgt Wolny posing with a 240 projectile"

                                 

                                I'll pass along any other names I come across in my readings.

                                 

                                Best of luck,

                                Bill O'Brien

                                 

                      • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
                        Brian Nicely Newbie

                        Bill

                         

                        Thank you for the info and the photos.   I am truly thankful for the help.

                         

                        Some things that may be of interest to you.

                         

                        LT Roslund is   1LT Iver Roslund   He was the Asst Battalion S-2 (Intel section)

                        SGT Lidgard was Wounded in Action Aug '44 by enemy aircraft strafing.  He was C Btry crane operator

                         

                        Staff Sgt Jerome Wolney

                         

                        I have a August Oprzadek listed as a cook for the Battalion.  Wonder if that is him in the photo next to your dad with the knife and the pig.  Maybe prepping dinner?  LOL

                         

                        if you would like, I can e-mail you my history document I have been working on. Its not very well organized, but has a lot of information about the Battalion. Its still a work in progress too.    I am headed into work tomorrow and hopefully will find some time to scan the AARs.

                         

                        v/r

                        Brian

                          • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
                            Bill O'Brien Newbie

                            Brian:

                             

                            Your response is very interesting, thanks for fleshing these gentlemen's names out. No doubt you're right, August Oprzadek is the man with the knife and, like you say, they ate well that evening!  Below find my Father's captions on the back of these photos.

                             

                            I would love to see your "history document", I'm also working on one that is, to put it mildly, a mess.  I am attempting to put the Battalion's movements together with my Dad's letters to my Mom, along with any other detail from the 270th ETO pamphlet, "240", XX Corps docs, and any other pertinent histories like the 144th FA Gp info.  With the censorship in effect my Dad's letters during the "Somewhere in ___" phases are light on details.  But he put together a 16 page letter that goes from joining the 270th in Feb '43 through July 1, 1945 when he was transferred to the 243rd FA Bn.  I would be happy to share what I have with you as well. 

                             

                            Cheers!

                            Bill O'Brien

                             

                             

                          • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
                            Michael Mercier Newbie

                            Hello Brian,

                              Thanks to NARA's Facebook page, I just learned about HistoryHub. I wish I found it earlier. The Camp Bunter Society and Museum has been trying to acquire as many rosters of units that came through Camp Butner as possible. A lot of these have come from the pages of published unit histories but off the top of my head, I don't remember if we have anything on the 270th. Seeing that you have not come across any printed roster, I'm assuming we don't have one either.

                             

                            I will take a look to see if we have anything and report back once I have.

                             

                            I had a week-long trip to College Park scheduled for the first week they were closed for Covid and digging more into the units was one of the many things on my list. I have never been there before and I'm anxious for the day they open their doors to research again.

                              • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
                                Brian Nicely Newbie

                                Michael.
                                Thanks for reaching out. I would love to see anything you guys have on the 270th.  I would be happy to share what I have too.   I visited the Camp Butner museum about a year ago and hope to make it back again soon.   I live down by Fayetteville, so it’s an easy commute.  

                                I was fortunate to spend a day at NARA researching the 270th and wish I had more time.  There is so much info there, that 1 day was not enough.  

                                Have you seen the newsletter the 270th wrote while at Butner?   GI Hokum was the name.    Not sure how many were written.  I only have 1ea.     I got it from the NC state archives.

                                v/r

                                Brian

                                • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
                                  Brian Nicely Newbie

                                  Here is the roster I have put together so far.  Still a long way from 475ea which was the units TOE authorized strength.   Names mainly gained from AARs and Google Searches (mainly obituaries unfortunately).

                                   

                                  270th FA personnel as best as I can make it.

                                   

                                  CPT Bernard Adams (C Btry CDR)

                                  Margarito Alvarez

                                  Herman Anderson

                                  Freddie Andras

                                  1LT Eugene Anspach (Motor Officer, Liaison Pilot/Observer shot down over Germany KIA 2 Jan ’45)

                                  MAJ Luther Arnold (Bn XO)

                                  Merle Arnold (Ammo Handler A Btry)

                                  Edwin Atteberry Sr.

                                  TEC5 Frank Baker

                                  TEC4 Delbert Ballengee (HQ Btry FDC Instrument Operator)

                                  Morris Barker

                                  PVT Roger Baribeault

                                  TEC5 William Basham

                                  2LT William Battin

                                  TEC4 Herbert Baumann (Bronze Star)

                                  CPL Harry Bennett

                                  CPL Dan Bloom (C Btry, Survey Team)

                                  2LT Ambrose Boles

                                  George Bolton

                                  Henry “Cecil” Borne

                                  John W. Bradshaw

                                  Brewster Branz

                                  Charles Breeding

                                  John Bristow

                                  SGT William Brooks

                                  Raul Buentello

                                  Obadiah Burns

                                  George Canales

                                  Jack Carberry (Motor Sgt)

                                  Donald Carter (HQ Btry)

                                  _____ Catnell

                                  PVT Oscar Chandler (Taxicab robbery @ Camp Butner)

                                  Edwin Chastain

                                  CPT Angelo Cicciu (Btry XO)

                                  John Coke

                                  Norman Collins

                                  Charles Conrad

                                  TEC4 Charles Cormendy (Gun Mechanic)

                                  Loren Cook

                                  Raymond Couchman

                                  ____Croft

                                  CPT Paul Culberson (Hq Btry CDR)

                                  Merle Cummings (1SG)

                                  James Currie

                                  Frank Daly Jr.
                                  David W. Davis

                                  Adam Dittenbir
                                  John T. Doughty

                                  ______ DeMercy (Commo / Wire Section)

                                  PFC Roy Denman (Medic)
                                  Guy R. Dulin
                                  Daniel J. Dunn

                                  2LT Fidel Dunne

                                  Jesse Dyess
                                  Clovis Z. Edwards

                                  John Eitson
                                  2LT Duane Ellingham

                                  Calvin C. Elmore

                                  1LT LaVerne Emberts (Liaison Pilot shot down over Germany KIA 2 Jan ’45)

                                  2LT Frank Esosito (Asst. Bn S2 and Survey Officer, Aerial Observer)
                                  ______ Faircloth
                                  Walter Ferens
                                  Edward Fielder

                                  CPT Howard Fillmer (HQ Btry CDR and COMO)
                                  ________ Fletcher
                                  Luis A. Flores
                                  Edward E. Foster Jr.

                                  Bennie Foster
                                  Arlon Fowler

                                  2LT Louis Fulop
                                  LTC James C. Gabriel (Bn CDR)

                                  PFC Robert Gittinger
                                  Alfred H. Gonzales

                                  Raul Gonzales (Medic)
                                  Eddie Graham

                                  CPL James Graves (C Btry, Survey Team)
                                  John W. Greene

                                  Peter Giussago

                                  2LT Charles Gurganus

                                  2LT Louis Haberkorn

                                  Raymond Hall (Medic)

                                  PVT Hall (Field Survey Instrumentation)
                                  Lewis S. Hammonds

                                  MAJ Robert Hannah (Bn S3)

                                  CPT Stone Harris

                                  TEC5 William Harvey (WIA Aug ’44 enemy aircraft strafing) (C Btry Crane Operator)
                                  Lloyd R. Hawley (A Btry XO)

                                  TEC5 John Heath

                                  Eliot Herman
                                  Rojelio O. Hernandez (Machine Gunner)

                                  TEC5 Bernard Hillebrandt (Medic)
                                  John W. Hinton

                                  TEC5 Jack Hodges
                                  John Hollebeek
                                  Fred S. Hopson

                                  MAJ George Howze  (Asst S3 and A Battery CDR) (Captured Bn’s first POWs 8ea on 8 Aug 44)

                                  Elmer Hughes

                                  1LT John Hummer (Asst. Bn S2 and Survey Officer) (KIA  1430hrs 15 Nov ’44 by enemy mortar fire near city of Thionville on the East bank of Moselle River)

                                  Paul Hummer
                                  Buell Hunter

                                  TEC5 Lavern Hunter
                                  Pablo H. Infante
                                  J.P. Issacs
                                  John F. Jett
                                  Esias J. Johnson
                                  Billy H. Jordan

                                  Louis Kawacha (Field Survey Instrumentation)

                                  C.P. Kelly

                                  PFC James Kidwell (C Btry, Survey Team)

                                  CPT Howard Kingston
                                  2LT Gerald Knackstedt
                                  Walter S. Kohl

                                  2LT Phillip Klatman
                                  Lester R. Kluting

                                  Gerald Knackstedt

                                  1LT Cyrille John LaBlanc (Aerial Observer / Liaison Pilot)

                                  CPT Dudok Langerak (Bn S4)
                                  James E. Langford

                                  2LT Arthur Larsen
                                  CPL Louis Leal (.50 Cal MG squad)

                                  William M. Lee

                                  2LT Alvan Levenson

                                  TEC4 Wayne Lidgard (WIA Aug ’44 enemy aircraft strafing) (C Btry Crane Operator)

                                  CPL William Loftin

                                  Phillip Loyacano
                                  _______ Luker
                                  2LT Charles Madden
                                  ______ _Manecia

                                  Tec5 George Marcak (Purple Heart wounded 31 July 1943 New Georgie Island PTO prior to joining unit 23 Nov 1943)

                                  CWO Robert Martin (Bn S1 / Adjutant)
                                  Francis C. Martines
                                  Bacilio V. Martinez

                                  PFC Marcos Martinez
                                  Estarislado L. Mauricio
                                  Anthony J. Mele
                                  Carlton L. McCray
                                  Charlie R. McClain

                                  S/SGT Robert McDonald

                                  Burl McGraw
                                  William A. Meyers

                                  Jerry Michalsky

                                  CPT Roger Michels (Bn Surgeon)
                                  2LT Gray O. Miller
                                  Johnie W. Morgan

                                  TEC4 Kenneth Moore (Medic)
                                  2LT Carrol N. Morris
                                  Perry Moye
                                  Bert A. Mullen

                                  Buck Mullens (Ammo SGT)

                                  Marion W. Mullican
                                  CPT Paul Murphy ( Svc Btry CDR and Bn Motor Officer)
                                  Benjamin Nale
                                  CPL Phillip Narcomy

                                  Billy J. Neal

                                  PVT Gilbert Nelson (Taxicab robbery @ Camp Butner)
                                  Harold F. Nickel (Motor Sgt)
                                  Ray F. Noble (A Btry)

                                  James O’Brien (C Btry, Survey Team)
                                  August Oprzadek (Cook)

                                  John Panks III (Field Survey Instrumentation)

                                  John Parker

                                  ______ Parks
                                  Roger A. Parsels (A Btry Clerk)

                                  S/SGT Aylmer Patterson
                                  Frank H. Patterson

                                  PFC ___ Parker (C Btry, Survey Team)
                                  CPT Fred B. Perry (A Btry CDR)
                                  Alvis E. Peters

                                  PFC Arthur Petri (Medic)

                                  2LT August Walter Pfluger (B Btry)

                                  Gilberto Pineda
                                  Lawrence R. Potts (Machine Gunner)
                                  Robert Presser
                                  Joe A. Pyle (AKA Muscles)
                                  Regino Ramirez
                                  Oscar R. Ramos
                                  S/SGT Edward E. Raetz (Battlefield Commisioned to 2nd Lt 17 Feb ’45)
                                  CPT Robert Ray ( Bn S2 and A Btry CDR)

                                  Archie Roberts
                                  Joe Rodriguez
                                  Simon Rodriguez

                                  Victor H. Rogers

                                  1LT Iver Roslund (Asst Bn S2)
                                  2LT James G. Rothrock Jr. (A and C Btry)

                                  1LT Charles Rothaermel (Btry XO)

                                  F.J. Roussell
                                  Antonio G. Ruiz
                                  Guadalupe Saenz

                                  PFC Armengol Saens (Medic)

                                  1SG Sahr (Btry 1SG)
                                  Santos F. Saldana
                                  Domingo Sanchez
                                  Robert S. Sanders
                                  Leroy Savoie
                                  Robert W. Sheegog
                                  Robert W. Sides

                                  S/SGT John Siepieranski (B Btry Motor Sgt and WIA Aug ’44 enemy aircraft starting)

                                  Israel Silva

                                  PFC James Sims (Medic)

                                  1LT Paul Sinclair (Aerial Observer)
                                  Ivan J. Slaughter

                                  Irby Earl Slaughter

                                  PFC Calvin Smith 

                                  TEC5 James Smith (WIA)

                                  PFC Elliot Smith (WIA Aug ’44 enemy aircraft strafing)
                                  Robert H. Smith

                                  Toby Smith

                                  Bill Snodgrass (Ammo bearer B Btry)

                                  CPT Thomas Snyder (B Btry CDR)
                                  Willie E. Sofka
                                  Paul S. Soileau
                                  Ernest J. Sonnier
                                  Billy Spencer

                                  CPL ___ Spradlin (C Btry, Survey Team)
                                  _______ St. Clair
                                  Lowell Stamps
                                  Lawless A. Stelly

                                  PFC Gerhard Steppke (WIA Jan ’45)

                                  Jeff Stewart (Field Survey Instrumentation)

                                  Riley W. Stuckey Jr.
                                  Earnie E. Tedford
                                  Lee Testa
                                  Jack A. Thompson
                                  Joseph W. Thompson
                                  Elmer H. Totsch
                                  Dillard R. Tucker

                                  _______ Uel (Supply Sgt)
                                  Carlos D. Valadez
                                  Albert M. Van De Velde

                                  1SG Vic Velvecates (A Battery 1SG)

                                  Robert Vaughn

                                  ___ Venerable
                                  Israel Villarreal
                                  ________ Ward
                                  Adam E. Wadzinski
                                  1LT Carl A. Walker (Aerial Observer / Liaison Pilot)
                                  Harvey O. Walker
                                  Harry E. Wallace

                                  SGT Robert Wallace
                                  Willard Watts

                                  Robert “Barry” Weigert ( Medic  Bronze Star and 2ea Purple Hearts)
                                  Ralph W. Wendt
                                  Ted Williams

                                  CPL Lester Williams (Medic)
                                  James M. Williamson

                                  2LT Richard Wilson (Liaison Pilot)

                                  S/SGT Alex Woitowitz (Medic)

                                  John (Jack) Wolf
                                  S/SGT Jerome Wolney
                                  John E. Woloszyn

                                  Lee H.Womack

                                  John R. Woolard
                                  Tommy L. Wright
                                  Margarito R. Ybarra

                                  ________Young

                                  TEC3 Frank Zaleski (Medic and designed an improved Pharmacy chest)
                                  Richard Zule

                                   

                                  As an amateur, there may be some errors in my findings, but it is to the best of my abilities.

                                  Brian

                                    • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
                                      Malcolm Atteberry Newbie

                                      Brian, et al,

                                       

                                      The 270th was my grandfather's unit. EE Atteberry Sr. is 8th down on your roster. If I could see the AARs for the unit it would help separate the fact from fiction. Grandpa Atteberry liked to tell stories, some true some not, so the unit history would be extremely helpful. I'll attach 2 photos. One is from a 270th unit reunion with a note on the back that gave me the unit name... which led me here. :-) The other is a photo from after the war when grandpa was in the Texas National Guard. He passed in 1976.

                                      Thanks for your help!

                                       

                                      -Malcolm Atteberry

                                  • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
                                    Michael Mercier Newbie

                                    Wow, Brian. That list you've created is going to be much more than we have! I'm impressed with your dedication. In the past few days, I have started building a basic website for the society with the intention of having as many rosters available as possible for units that were at Camp Butner. It is a tedious process and slow going at times. It is to be expected when trying to use OCR software to convert 75 year old rosters to a spreadsheet.

                                     

                                    I hope in the next week to start posting some starting with the 60th Med Bn/500 Medical Collections Company, three or so engineer battalions followed by the 89th Infantry Division and some of the 78th Infantry Division

                                     

                                    Mike

                                    • Re: 270th FA Bn.  ETO. WWII
                                      Brian Nicely Newbie

                                      I have seen a “Butner Battery” mentioned a few times while I have been researching the 270th.  From what I have gathered it was captured Axis howitzers used by the Allies mainly during the rationing of gas/ammo period. I found it mentioned a couple of times in AARs.  Mostly talking about round counts, etc. but not much more. Anyone know anything more about the unit?