top of page

       Labour History Lancs.              

      Student History  

Gustav Falk.jpg

 

With great thanks to our Young Historian:

Gustav Falk 

"Those who know nothing about history are doomed forever to repeat it. — Will Durant, 1885-1981"

A crucial occasion:

A crucial occasion in the early phases of Adolf Hitler's political career and the formation of the Nazi Party was the Beer Hall Putsch, sometimes referred to as the Munich Putsch or Hitlerputsch. This failed coup attempt, which occurred in Munich, Bavaria, on November 8–9, 1923, became a pivotal point in German history, influencing the course of politics in the tumultuous years following World War I. This essay will examine the events that led up to the Beer Hall Putsch, the events that transpired during the coup attempt, and the significant ramifications that the event had for Hitler, the Nazi Party, and the German political system as a whole.

Germany was left to deal with the harsh effects of the Treaty of Versailles following World War I. Germany was forced to abide by the treaty's severe conditions, which included disarmament, reparations, and territory losses. This caused economic instability in the country. Extremist ideas were able to spread because of the ensuing unhappiness as well as feelings of humiliation and hatred.
Given this, the Nazi Party was established in 1920 with a programme that tapped into anti-Semitic sentiments, nationalist feelings, and the desire to bring Germany back to its past glories. World War I soldier and dynamic speaker Adolf Hitler led this movement after rising fast through the ranks of the Nazi Party. Disgruntled and economically struggling sections of the populace supported the Nazis because they presented a drastic solution to the problems the Weimar Republic was confronting.
 

Political scheming and tension paved the way for the Beer Hall Putsch. Radical acts were more likely in 1923 because economic instability and hyperinflation had reached a breaking point. In an attempt to capitalise on the unrest, Hitler and the Nazi Party's paramilitary group, the SA (Sturmabteilung or Storm Detachment), staged a coup in Bavaria, a state with a long history of right-wing and anti-republican feeling. Hitler and his SA supporters broke into a Munich beer hall on November 8, 1923, the evening of a conference of powerful political personalities. Gustav von Kahr, the state commissioner of Bavaria, was one of them. Hitler made the audacious decision to proclaim the establishment of a new administration, commanded by Kahr. But when Kahr backed out, the coup fell apart fast, revealing Hitler's plan's lack of coherence and forethought. Unfazed, on November 9 Hitler and his allies marched through Munich's streets in an attempt to take control of important government structures. Nazi members and police officers were killed in the violent altercation with the authorities. Following his arrest, Hitler was accused of high treason, which led to the beginning of the trial that would ultimately change the course of his political career. Hitler used the trial, which took place in early 1924, as a platform to spread his political beliefs. He presented himself as a patriotic protector of Germany against the dangers of the Treaty of Versailles throughout the proceedings. Hitler was found guilty, but his sentence was very light. Though Hitler was only imprisoned for nine months out of a five-year term, he wrote "Mein Kampf," a book that outlined his political views and outlook for Germany.

Hitler's pardon following the Beer Hall Putsch highlighted the Weimar Republic's shortcomings and its incapacity to successfully oppose radical forces. Totalitarianism eventually rose to power in Germany as a result of the democratic institutions being undermined and the underlying roots of extremism and unhappiness in German society being ignored. Hitler also reevaluated his strategy for seizing power as a result of the abortive attempt. He changed his approach to focus more on legal and political means after realising that overthrowing the government directly was not a realistic option. Representing itself as a genuine political organisation, the Nazi Party took part in elections and progressively increased its number of Reichstag seats. Despite not succeeding in its initial goals, the Beer Hall Putsch had long-lasting effects that influenced the development of German history. Above all, it cemented Hitler's position as the head of the Nazi Party. He was able to clarify and express his political beliefs during the trial and incarceration, which strengthened his standing as the charismatic head of a movement with a clear vision for Germany's future. The Putsch also exposed the Weimar Republic's flaws and divisions as well as its failure to put an end to radical forces. Given the gravity of his acts, Hitler's lenient sentencing highlighted the difficulties the Weimar Republic encountered in upholding law and order during a time of political unrest and economic hardship.

Hitler also reevaluated his strategy for seizing power as a result of the abortive attempt. He changed his approach to focus more on legal and political means after realising that overthrowing the government directly was not a realistic option. Rebranding as a respectable political party, the Nazi Party took part in elections and progressively increased its number of Reichstag seats. Hitler decided to take a more methodical and gradual approach to seizing power as a result of the lessons he learnt from the attempted coup. Hitler's adaptability and pragmatism were shown by the legal and political strategies the Nazi Party later adopted, such as voting and abusing the democratic process.

 

Ultimately, the Beer Hall Putsch is seen as a pivotal moment in the development of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party. Even though the coup's immediate goals were not met, it had a significant long-term effect. Hitler's trial and imprisonment gave him a forum to spread his beliefs, and his supporters saw him as a martyr because of the compassionate treatment he received. Hitler's approach changed as a result of the trial and jail, focusing more on legal and political tactics. This helped the Nazi Party participate in elections and gradually increase its number of Reichstag seats. Hitler was given light treatment following the coup, which highlighted the Weimar Republic's shortcomings and incapacity to successfully oppose radical groups. This shortcoming ultimately aided in the emergence of Nazism in Germany and the disintegration of democratic institutions.

Gustav von Kahr

I'm Looking back, Hitler learned a lot from the Beer Hall Putsch. After the attempted coup, he realised how important it was to be patient and delicate, which made him take a more calculated approach to gaining power. Hitler's flexibility and pragmatism were shown in the legal and political strategies the Nazi Party later adopted. Despite being a moment of failure, the Beer Hall Putsch started a chain of events that changed the direction of German history. This failed coup had far-reaching long-term effects that turned Germany into a totalitarian nation and permanently altered the course of world history. Hitler's actions and the course of the Nazi Party were shaped by the lessons learnt from the Beer Hall Putsch, which also helped to create the conditions that led to the dark periods of the twentieth century.a paragraph. 

Gustav Falk 

       Labour History Lancs.              

      Student History  

 

With great thanks to a new contributor: 


Hello my name is John Fyles and during September 2023 I built up the model of the infamous German Battleship Bismark.

Read Why, how and the process below: 

The Model of The Bismarck:


I started the model project because of the facination of the mighty
Bismarck. Why she was built, mainly to challenge the Royal Navy in the northern seas and her usage during WW2 made her recognised as one of the leading and most powerful battleships in the battle for the Atlantic.


In total it took about 21 hours to build her with every session taking about 3 hours per bag of the seven bags that came in the box.


The easy parts of the project were reading and going through the instruction manuals,
separating every piece into the right pile by size and color. Every bag would include instructions, which would then build one part of Bismarck. From the frame work to the hull, decks, panels all the way up to her minor and main armaments. The most difficult bit of building her was the detailed worked required from the sticker strips.


The stickers hade to be placed perfectly on board her hull to create the authentic look of a
German battleship. The idea being both to represent the white and black of German naval colors and not to make the ship look like a simple plastic model.]


In reality, the Bismark was a significant giant of the seas. She weighed around 50,000 tons had a length of 251 meters to the waterline and a beam of 36 meters. The ship could reach up to a speed of 30 knots powered by 12 wagner superheated boilers that could create 148,116 horsepower to spin the 3 giant screw propellers. In comparison my model of the Bismarck weighs about 2kg and has a length of 75cm with the beam being 11cm. Quite a size diffence I might say!


Her armour and armaments were indeed foreboding! Bismark was not short of firepower. She had eight15 inch SK C/34 naval guns arranged in four twin turrets, two at the front and two at the back. On her sides were secondary armaments of twelve 5.9 inch L/55 naval guns, she was
also fitted with 44 anti-aircraft turrets ranging from 4.1 inch L/65, 1.6 inch L/83 and 0.79 inch
flak 30 guns. With such a hugh amounts of armour the Bismark needed to have a big crew to
take care of her day and night. The crew would consist of 103 officers and 1,962 enlisted men split between twelve divisions around the ship.


The Bismark became the most feared and famous German battleship in the North Atlantic from 1939-1941. The Bismarck class; was chosen as a type of battleship for the Nazi Germany Kriegsmarine. There were only two ships of this class built during WW2, the first was Bismarck her self and the second was the Tirpitz her sister ship. Bismarck was named after Otto Von Bismarck the infamous Prussian and German leader and statesman. The production of the Bismarck began in July 1936 in the Hamburg shipyard and Bismark was launched in February 1939 with onboard work finally completed in August 1940.

I hope you've enjoyed reading this piece. I will be back soon with another model, perhaps even HMS Hood?


John Eric Ralph Fyles

bismark 5.jpg
Bismark 2.jpg
Bismark 3.jpg
Bismark 4.jpg

       Labour History Lancs.              

      Student History  

Gustav Falk.jpg

 

With great thanks to our Young Historian:

Gustav Falk 

"Those who know nothing about history are doomed forever to repeat it. — Will Durant, 1885-1981"

Battle for Mons (1918)

The Battle for Mons on November 11, 1918, was a pivotal and moving occasion in World War I history. It was a combat that served as a metaphor for both the conclusion of the war and the numerous sacrifices made by soldiers all during the struggle. This essay examines the historical importance of the Battle of Mons in relation to World War I and its long-lasting
effects on the public's remembrance of the conflict. The Great War, also known as World War I, was a world war that raged from 1914 to1918. It was characterised by trench warfare, high death tolls, and the application of innovative and destructive technologies like machine guns and poison gas. The combatant nations wanted the war to end quickly and decisively because it had caused unheard-of agony and destruction in Europe and elsewhere. 


The Central Powers, which included Germany, Austria-Hungary, and the Ottoman Empire, found themselves on the losing end of the war by 1918. On the Western Front, the Allies had made progress under the leadership of France, the United Kingdom, and the United States. For the British and Belgian forces, the Battle of Mons, which had taken place at the
start of the war in 1914, had immense symbolic value. One of the first significant fights of the war took place at Mons, where the British Expeditionary Force first came into contact with the German Army. The Battle of Mons was not a massive conflict in terms of scope. It didn't lead to enormous numbers of deaths or the conquest of broad areas. But its timing was
profoundly symbolic. British and Belgian forces reached Mons triumphantly on November 11, 1918, the day the Armistice that ended the war was signed. They had completed the cycle of the conflict, and it was a time for celebration as well as reflection. Their liberation of Mons, where their involvement in World War I had started, marked the conflict's conclusion and the Allies eventual triumph.

 

 

 


The Armistice of Compiègne, which marked the formal end of World War I, was signed on November 11, 1918, and that day remains indelibly imprinted in history. A world worn out by years of cruel conflict found relief and rest when the guns on the Western Front finally stopped firing. Millions of people had died in the conflict, and it had left massive
amounts of destruction in its wake. The Battle of Mons, which took place on the day of the armistice, provided as a moving reminder of the path the war had taken from its beginning to its end. The armistice and the Battle of Mons continue to resonate in people's collective memories. It serves as a stark reminder of the terrible human cost of conflict and emphasises the need of paying tribute to those who gave their lives and served as ambassadors for peace.
Mons, which has seen both the beginning and the end of a major war, serves as a reminder of the ongoing commitment to averting further destruction like this.

mons map.webp
mons 3.jpg
mons 2.jpg
nthafrica-005.gif

Second Battle of El Alamein

Many people consider the Second Battle of El Alamein, which took place between October 23 and November 4, 1942, to be one of the war's turning points. This fight, which took place in the North African theatre, was a pivotal turning point in the war because it shifted the tide in favour of the Allied troops, particularly the British Eighth Army under General Bernard Montgomery's command. This essay will explore the Second Battle of El Alamein's strategic significance, the major characters engaged, how the battle developed, and its enormous effects on the trajectory of World War II

Background

Before delving into the details of the Second Battle of El Alamein, it is essential to understand the overall background of the North African theatre of World War II. From its base in Libya, Benito Mussolini oversaw Italy's invasion of Egypt in 1940. The British forces in North Africa, led by General Archibald Wavell, were able to halt the Italian advance and even start a counteroffensive into Libya despite initial difficulties.

Adolf Hitler's Germany, on the other hand, made the decision to intervene in North Africa to defend their ally Italy in the early months of 1941. The "Desert Fox," Field Marshal Erwin Rommel, was assigned to lead the German and Italian forces in North Africa. Rommel immediately distinguished himself as a brilliant tactician and launched a number of effective offensives that drove the British soldiers back to Egypt.

By the middle of 1942, Rommel's Afrika Korps was prepared to take control of Alexandria, a significant port, and possibly pose a threat to the Suez Canal, which served as a vital lifeline for the British Empire. The Second Battle of El Alamein served as the Allies' response to the crisis in North Africa, which had gotten out of hand.

 

Why North Africa Was So Important

Both the Allies and the Axis powers placed a great deal of strategic emphasis on the Second Battle of El Alamein. Several factors made maintaining control over North Africa necessary. 

  1. Access to the Suez Canal: For the British Empire, the Suez Canal served as the quickest marine route between Britain and its possessions in Asia and the Pacific. For the Allies, losing control of the canal would have had serious strategic and logistical repercussions.

  2. Oil Resources: Both sides valued North Africa's vast oil deposits, which made it a vital asset. The Allies wanted to deny the Axis powers access to these resources, while the Axis sought to secure them.

  3. Control of the Mediterranean Sea, a critical theatre for naval and aviation operations, came with control of North Africa. To establish a presence in the Mediterranean and exert pressure on Axis-held southern Europe, the Allies needed to take control of North Africa.

  4. The North African theatre had enormous propaganda value, which had an effect on people's minds. A resounding victory in this area would raise spirits and show the respective belligerents' will and power to their home fronts and the rest of the globe.

 

The Armies

Rommel first appeared poised to join the German forces moving forward in the Caucasus and take over the entire Middle East. Although the British force was damaged during their disorganised retreat into Egypt, they rallied and made a stand in the First Battle of El Alamein. Unlike other positions in the desert, this one could not be turned by a flanking operation. The Qattara Depression, a sea of quicksand inaccessible to mechanised forces, and the Mediterranean both flanked it. The final attempts by Rommel to invade Egypt were thwarted in the summer of 1942. The British held the initiative at this time. To finally eliminate the Axis menace to the Middle East, they prepared yet another offensive.

 One of the most talented and divisive British generals was Lieutenant-General Bernard Law Montgomery. He was named the Eighth Army's commander in August 1942, and he set out to change the fighting spirit of the army right away. He oversaw 190,000 soldiers from the British Empire, Greece, Poland, and France at Alamein. They had 1,400 anti-tank guns, 900 artillery pieces, and more than 1,000 tanks.

 On the Axis side there was Erwin Rommel, a field marshal, who was already well-known for his outstanding leadership during the battles for France and North Africa. Rommel was an expert at fighting in the desert, gaining the moniker "Desert Fox." He motivated his men to outstanding acts of bravery and endurance by exuding a frenzied energy and leading from the front. The 'Afrikakorps' routinely outperformed the Allies, frequently against overwhelming odds, thanks to his aptitude for controlling armoured formations and the superiority of German forces in terms of quality. He oversaw 490 anti-tank weapons, 540 tanks, 116,000 German and Italian forces, and 500 pieces of artillery at Alamein.

The Battle Begins

Once more, the Axis forces were in a precarious supply situation. Instead of fighting a mobile combat because he lacked the fuel and mechanised forces to do so, Rommel built strong defensive positions surrounded by extensive minefields, which he dubbed the "devil's gardens." Montgomery rebuffed the impatient calls for an immediate attack from British Prime Minister Winston Churchill because he was aware of the strength of the Axis defenders. Instead, he started bolstering his forces, enhancing the training and morale of his soldiers, and making sure he had more men, tanks, weapons, and aircraft.

 Once more, the Axis forces were in a precarious supply situation. Instead of fighting a mobile combat because he lacked the fuel and mechanised forces to do so, Rommel built strong defensive positions surrounded by extensive minefields, which he dubbed the "devil's gardens." Montgomery rebuffed the impatient calls for an immediate attack from British Prime Minister Winston Churchill because he was aware of the strength of the Axis defenders. Instead, he started bolstering his forces, enhancing the training and morale of his soldiers, and making sure he had more men, tanks, weapons, and aircraft.

Despite the challenges, Montgomery maintained his composure. He emphasised the opposing forces' attrition while mounting a diversionary offensive to entice the limited Axis reserves. Then, on the night of November 1-2, he took a break and gathered his forces before unleashing his final assault, known as Operation Supercharge. On November 4th, after several more days of fierce battle, the British made a critical breakthrough. Montgomery's caution allowed the motorised Axis troops to escape and live to fight another day while the British managed to capture the majority of the Axis infantry. But the British had nonetheless achieved a tremendous victory, and Montgomery started chasing his vanquished adversary back into Libya and Tunisia.

 

The Aftermath

The British Army's first decisive and unassailable victory over the Axis came at El Alamein. This was a boost to British spirits after years of discouraging setbacks. The victory demonstrated that the Army's long-standing issues had been resolved and that the Axis could not outmatch the Army's equipment, tactics, generalship, or fighting spirit. Before America demoted Britain to the position of junior partner in the western alliance, Churchill believed that the win was essential for restoring British dignity. He had been eager to commence the battle before Operation Torch, the Allied landings on the coasts of Algeria and Morocco, began for this reason.

            El Alamein has been immortalised in British folklore as a major strategic turning point of the war, helped by Churchill's rhetoric that hailed it as "the end of the beginning" of the war. Given that the fierce battles fought on the Eastern and Western Fronts were far more significant, this may be overstating the case. North Africa was really a sideshow. The battle, however, raised national spirits and turned into one of the most lauded wins of the conflict. Alamein also contributed to Montgomery's reputation. He made the most of his gift for self-promotion by taking full ownership of the win. As a result, he became well-known and was given prominent commands in Italy and North-West Europe. Although he was able to solidify his status as a national hero, there is still controversy around Montgomery's actions during the conflict. 

bottom of page