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  #1  
Old 2nd August 2018, 13:09
waterloo waterloo is offline
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Erwin Clausen, 132 or 100 aerial-victories

Hello,
I bought the 4 volumes from Red Kite-Verlag Luftwaffe Aces by Mathews / Foremann.
I noticed a significant difference to the previously published number of arial victories to Major Erwin Clausen.
In the literature accessible to me so far and in various Internet lists, Erwin Clausen has recorded 132 aerial victories.
In my newly acquired book series only 100 aerial victories.
Would like to hear the opinion from other specialists.
Otherwise I find the book series very good, an admirable work.

Best regards

Thomas
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  #2  
Old 2nd August 2018, 16:32
Johannes Johannes is offline
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Re: Erwin Clausen, 132 or 100 aerial-victories

Hi Thomas

Thankyou for purchasing our boos.

Sorry, but this is not a differing opinion, but I'll explain why we published a total of exactly a hundred confirmed claims for Clausen.

Basically the mikrofilms for each of Clausen's units have survived in the earlier neatly typed-out form, this is in chronological order for each Staffel, these started to change to hand-written daily claims on the two fronts starting around 23rd July 1942...….often with diabolical hand-writing. Different unit started using the daily claims at differing dates, and these unit continued using these daily claims until the end of 1944, the first Geschwader to cease being on these daily claims sheets was JG 5.

So there are no units that I know of for Clausen who's earlier typed-out claims mikrofilms have not survived. In fact there is no break in his claiming until he finishes with 6./JG 77 in September 1942.

Don't know where the "132" total comes from, could be that he had an extraordinary number of unconfirmed, or some confusion with the points system, or he was somehow scoring heavily with a unit not covered by the typed-out mikrofilms. Also I found more Il-2's than Ernst Obermaier's estimates. Ernst also states Clausen's six on 22nd July 1942 were numbers 96-101 I think 66-71 which would suggest thirty are missing prior to that date, same with the five on 9th March 1942 Ernst states 36-40, I think 18-22. This would suggest that the thirty would be during late 1941 until early 1942, but the Luftwaffe was as a whole scoring very, very lightly during this Winter period due to the extreme weather.

Am sure your find many other similar cases, these are usually in the West because of the points system. I do remember that Walter Schuck added twenty-five to his total because Hermann Goring had told him that that number of previously unconfirmed claims for him had just been confirmed. Some pilots included unconfirmed in their totals, others only those confirmed. Only real way to resolve any doubt is the discovery of an obscure units typed-out microfilm with Clausen claiming, or a flugbuch of him covering this period.

I will explain any others you come across.

Kind Regards

Johannes Mathews
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Old 4th August 2018, 14:37
Kapper Kapper is offline
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Re: Erwin Clausen, 132 or 100 aerial-victories

Johannes,

Are you sure that there are no gaps for the units that where Clausen made claims?

I’ve been comparing various researchers/authors list to see the difference and when comparing your data with Priens JFV series, - the JFV series claim number match the higher numbers you quoted being 30 higher than yours. For Clausen’s claims while with 6./JG 77 both lists are very comparable (your No’s 28- 90, JFV 58-120 – as you stated 30 claims higher). Also, when comparing your list with T Woods Data the JG 11 data is also quite comparable (yours 91 -100, TW 121-132) – the 2 extra T Woods listed claims are Clausen’s last 2 claims which look like they may not have been confirmed?

However the claims in 1(J)./LG 2 which became 1./JG77 in December 1941 seems to be a mess with a lot of differences and Prien has many additional claims. This amount of differences even carried though after July 42 after Clausen transferred to 6./JG77 – Where the 6./JG77 is very comparable 1./JG 77 is not.

With respect to Clausen’s missing claims, Prien in his JFV list has an additional 25 (of the missing 30) claims between 16 Jan 1942 and 31 May 1942 inclusive that are not in your data but I also note that they are NOT marked with “B” (bestätigen – which the JFV team puts against claims that they have evidence of being confirmed) thus probably why not in the claims file and not in your list. Prien list claims for other pilots in that period that are not in the claims files (thus not in your list) including Hannak, Berres, and Guhl which have previously been considered to have higher scores than what you list. The other 5 claims are earlier with some the JFV team have determined to have been confirmed. It seems to me that with the high number of missing claims/claim not confirmed? for several pilots and the general mess with little matching between sources that the data for 1./JG 77 is incomplete in that period. Especially when compared to most other units like 6./JG77 where the data is very comparable between the sources.

To me it just seems too much variable that some data is not to be missing.

Regards,

Craig…
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Old 6th August 2018, 12:23
Johannes Johannes is offline
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Re: Erwin Clausen, 132 or 100 aerial-victories

Hi Graig

I have been looking at Clausen again. The thirty "missing" claims would all be around very early 1942. I was thinking there may be a sheet missing 1./JG 77. With LG2 the surviving sheets are very faint in places, but I believe I finally got a correct reading...….and that wasn't easy I can tell you. I will check the mikrofilms again for a missing sheet, they are usually numbered.

Kind Regards

Johannes
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Old 6th August 2018, 18:29
Johannes Johannes is offline
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Re: Erwin Clausen, 132 or 100 aerial-victories

Gentlemen

Sheets for 1./LG 2/1./JG 77 would appear to be complete, though Jochen Prien or boch his reader has mis-read the terribly faint mikrofilms with the following:-

4th July 1941 1750 hrs Wilhelm Schneider.....should read Erwin Clausen
11th July 1941 1115 hrs Fritz Lüer….should read Hans Laun
12th July 1941 0657 hrs Wilhelm Schneider...…..should read Fritz Lüer.

I bet these dates were at the top of a sheet.

Anyway back to Clausen. Jochen Prien indicates with a "B" if found on the mikrofilms, he has many Clausen claims not thus indicated, so you would suspect a missing sheet, however there is one constant here, that being Herbert Ihlefeld, his claims can clearly be read with dates from his Bf109's rudder, and they ALL appear on the mikrofilms, why should his and not Clausen's?, same with Geißhardt, by memory I have a document listing his claims with times, and they are ALL on the mikrofilms! There are so many of Clausen's not on the mikrofilms that Jochen Prien has listed that surely they cannot all have been just unconfirmed. As to other publications having the same information, I would say they have simply copied Jochen's work/speculations. My co-author John Foreman always says that once published it's "cast in stone" i.e everybody will believe it true, it must be it's in a book.

Anyhow that is my opinion on the matter, a somewhat educated one, but we must all understand that everybody makes mistakes.....everybody. We all know that our work gets plagiarized, and I know mine will be too, including the mistakes!, even perfectly worked research is unlikely to get published without typo-errors......and as I say nothing is perfect.

Kind Regards

Johannes
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Old 6th August 2018, 22:46
Maciej Góralczyk Maciej Góralczyk is offline
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Re: Erwin Clausen, 132 or 100 aerial-victories

Quote:
Originally Posted by Johannes View Post
however there is one constant here, that being Herbert Ihlefeld, his claims can clearly be read with dates from his Bf109's rudder
Which rudder? I don't have your book, so I must rely on JFV 6/II and I see some differences when comparing the victory list with this photo (source: ex-ebay auction):
https://abload.de/img/bf1099bf6n.jpg
Even more differences may be seen in comparison with this sheet (also saved from ebay two years ago):
https://abload.de/img/ihlefeldw.nr.6095ruddc0eth.jpg
https://abload.de/img/ihlefeldw.nr.6095ruddjifqx.jpg

Your discussion about Clausen's victories is highly interesting for me, as I wonder whether these photos show Clausen's or Freytag's Bf 109 F-4:
https://abload.de/img/clausenorfreytag-2brdde.jpg
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Flugfeld.jpg
According to the listings in JFV, when Freytag and Clausen switched between 1. and 6 Staffel, either had 57 victories.

Best regards,
Maciej
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  #7  
Old 8th August 2018, 13:21
Johannes Johannes is offline
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Re: Erwin Clausen, 132 or 100 aerial-victories

Hi Maciej

Some interesting photos, but alas I cannot determine Clausen's or Freytag, but the first would be the Ihlefeld rudder I viewed, by memory I think one was not on the mikrofilms(unconfirmed) before Russia.

Kind Regards

Johannes
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