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Charred documents attributable to Waffen SS volunteer Åke Kretz recovered in Hanko S. Finland.

Day 6 of the WW2 battlefield archaeology dig in Hanko S. Finland where archaeology students BA Fanny Fagerholm (University of Uppsala) and BA Jaakko Ervasti (University of Oulu) today made tremendous work today in Hanko under my supervision.

Charred, extremely fragile WW2 documents that are attributable to lieutenant Åke Kretz, Waffen SS volunteer and author. Photo Jaakko Ervasti.


With much effort Fanny and Jaakko managed to identify, recover and document several very rare and extremely fragile burnt document fragments that can definitely be associated with Swedish Lieutenant Åke Kretz. Kretz was one of the three soldiers manning the shelter when it caught fire and burned to the ground in November 1941.

CharredWW2 documents attributable to lieutenant Åke Kretz. Photo Jaakko Ervasti.


Åke Kretz participated as an observer in the Spanish civil war and tried several times to volunteer in the "Waffen SS" through German occupied Norway before joining "Svenska Frivilligbartaljonen" and the battles on the Hanko Front in 1941.

Norwegian Waffen SS recruitment poster.


The dig is advancing according to plan with lots and lots of small finds coming to light by the minute as we get nearer to the floor level of the burnt down shelter.

"Hamsterbo", level 3. The charred floorboards are clearly visible. Photo Jaakko Ervasti.


A Swedish brass sports badge that propably belonged to either Lieutenant Åke Kretz, second lieutenant Sture Stigsson or private Dahl.

A brass sports award. Photo Jaakko Ervasti.


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