Bombing of Wiener Neustadt in World War II

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Wiener Neustadt World War II bombings
Part of Strategic bombing campaigns in Europe
Date 1941-1945
Location Austria
Belligerents
United States USAAF
United Kingdom RAF Bomber Command
Nazi Germany Luftwaffe

Wiener Neustadt, a City in Austria, was the target of bombing raids during World War II by the Allies.

Background[edit]

The targets in and around Wiener Neustadt included the marshalling yards, the Wiener Neustädter Flugzeugwerke (WNF) aircraft factory (effectively an extension of Messerschmitt) and the Raxwerke plants of Wiener Neustädter Lokomotivfabrik (two of which used forced labor from the Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp).

The three WNF plants (W.N.F. Fischamend, W.N.F. Klagenfurt, W.N.F. Bad Voslau) were targets of the Combined Bomber Offensive against the German aircraft industry. WNF manufactured Messerschmitt Bf 109 fighters and repaired Junkers bombers and heavy fighters (German: Zerstörer).[1] The Hirtenberger Patronen Zündhutchen und Metallwarenfabrik was an ammunition factory nearby.

attacks on Wiener Neustadt
Date Target Notes
August 13, 1943 61 B-24 Liberators in the first Ninth Air Force raid on Austria (using bombers on loan from the 8AF surviving from Operation Tidal Wave)[2] targeted the Wiener-Neustadt aircraft factory as part of the B-24 part of Operation Juggler postponed from August 7.[3]
August 14, 1943 61 Ninth Air Force B-24's on loan from the Eighth Air Force bombed the Wiener-Neustadt Bf 109 factory.[3]
October 1, 1943 25 B-24's based at Oudna Air Base outside of Tunis, Tunisia, from the Eighth Air Force bombed the Wiener Neustadt Bf 109 factory.[4]
November 2, 1943 Fifteenth Air Force#World War II The first mission by the US Fifteenth Air Force targeting the nearby Messerschmitt plant, including the 99th Bombardment Group on a 1,600 mile round trip,[5] dropped 312 tons[6] and hit the Raxwerke.[7]
March 20–25, 1944 Operations during Big Week destroyed 200 aircraft at the Bf 109 plants in Wiener-Neustadt.[8]
March 7, 1944 The 317th Bombardment Squadron bombed the Wiener Neustadt aircraft factory.[9]
April 23, 1944 The 317th BS bombed the Wiener Neustadt aircraft factory.
May 9, 1944 15th Expeditionary Mobility Task Force - Emblem.jpg The 464th Bombardment Group bombed an aircraft factory.[10]
May 10, 1944 15th Expeditionary Mobility Task Force - Emblem.jpg The 456th BG bombed an aircraft factory at Wiener Neustadt after the other groups turned back because of bad weather. Of 31 aircraft, 5 were shot down (including the B-17 Flying Fortress of Jacob E. Smart), and the unit earned the Distinguished Unit Citation.
May 24, 1944 The 317th BS bombed the Wiener Neustadt aircraft factory, and the 456th BG bombed "Wöllersdorf Air Drome Stores and Machine Shops".[10]
May 29, 1944 The 32nd BS[11] bombed the Wiener Neustadt Wollersdorf AID.[clarification needed]. "Successful attacks on [the] Wiener-Neustadter complex have raised oil to high priority" (allied intelligence annex to a May 31 bombing order).[12] WNF Bad Voslau manufactured Bf 109 components and was undamaged as of March 5, 1944.
December 27, 1944 marshalling yard Patch 15th USAAF.png
February 15, 1945 main station Patch 15th USAAF.png The 485 BG bombed the main station.[13]
March 12, 1945 marshalling yards Patch 15th USAAF.png B-24s and B-17s bombed the Floridsdorf oil refinery and Wiener-Neustadt marshalling yards.
March 14, 1945 15th Expeditionary Mobility Task Force - Emblem.jpg George McGovern was one of the pilots who bombed the alternate target, the Wiener Neustadt marshaling yards, instead of the Vienna oil refinery.[2]:228–9
March 15, 1945 15th Expeditionary Mobility Task Force - Emblem.jpg 109 B-17s bombed the oil refinery at Ruhland (the Fifteenth's deepest penetration into Germany); 103 others bomb the alternate target, the refinery at Kolin, Czechoslovakia. More than 470 bombers attacked targets in Austria, including Moosbierbaum, Schwechat, and Vienna/Floridsdorf oil refineries, and the marshalling yards at Wiener-Neustadt.[14]
March 20, 1945 15th Expeditionary Mobility Task Force - Emblem.jpg 760+ B-17s and B-24s, with fighter escort, bombed the Korneuburg and Kagran oil refineries in Austria, the tank works at Steyr, and marshalling yards at Wels, Sankt Polten, Amstetten, Wiener-Neustadt, & Klagenfurt[15]
March 26, 1945 The 32nd BS bombed the marshalling yards.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Wernfried, Haberfellner; Schroeder Walter. Wiener Neustädter Flugzeugwerke. Entstehung, Aufbau und Niedergang eines Flugzeugwerkes. Weishaupt Verlag, Graz. ISBN 3-7059-0000-5. 
  2. ^ a b Ambrose, Stephen E. (2001). The Wild Blue: The Men and boys who flew the B-24s over Germany. New York: Simon & Schuster. ISBN 0-7432-0339-9. 
  3. ^ a b McKillop, Jack. "Combat Chronology of the US Army Air Forces, August 1943". 
  4. ^ McKillop, Jack. "Combat Chronology of the US Army Air Forces, October 1943". 
  5. ^ http://www.99bombgroup.org/history.html
  6. ^ http://www.airpower.maxwell.af.mil/airchronicles/aureview/1986/sep-oct/eula.html
  7. ^ Ordway, Frederick I, III; Sharpe, Mitchell R (1979). The Rocket Team. Apogee Books Space Series 36. New York: Thomas Y. Crowell. pp. 74,141. ISBN 1-894959-00-0. 
  8. ^ http://books.google.com/books?id=_HkHU5RJJekC&pg=PA241
  9. ^ "317th Bomb Squadron Roster". Mike Lam. 
  10. ^ a b http://www.zplace2b.com/464th/sortie.htm
  11. ^ Thompson, Boyd. "301st Bomb Group Mission Summary of the: 32nd, 352nd, 353rd and 419th Bomb Squadrons". 32nd Bomb Squadron, 1942 -1945. 
  12. ^ Bari (1944). Fifteenth Air Force, The Air Battle of Ploesti. Italy. p. 27.  (cited by Stout p. 137) and
    The Air Battle of Ploesti Written in the Skies Over Romania by U.S. Fifteenth Air Force and 205 Group (RAF) Between 5 April and 19 August. 941st Engineering Battalion. 1945. p. 108. 
  13. ^ "485th MISSIONS". 485th Bomb Group Association. 
  14. ^ McKillop, Jack. "Combat Chronology of the US Army Air Forces, March 1945". 
  15. ^ McKillop, Jack. "Combat Chronology of the US Army Air Forces, March 1944".