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Post Info TOPIC: A-H Holts - Military or Civil?


Legend

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A-H Holts - Military or Civil?
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Just read a bit of Glanfield again. Acc to him, although the Holt was trialled successfully for the KuK Army, plans for a licence deal were scuppered by the outbreak of war. Does that mean that the Holts used in Belgium etc were all requisitioned civilian vehicles?

There's this strange claim on an American site: "One of the 'Caterpillars' was captured by the British during the early stages of the conflict." I can't see that. They were well away from the BEF in eastern Belgium.

Then this, on the same site: "When the order came from England for a trial tractor, there rested on the docks in New York one of the largest machines that had ever been built. This 'Caterpillar' had been ordered by Franz Joseph of Austria-Hungary for use on one of his estates. It was painted in Franz Joseph's colors and bore his coat-of-arms. War had been declared, and the tractor could not be delivered. So representatives of the Holt company uncrated the tractor, painted out the Austro-Hungarian colors, repainted it a neutral color, and shipped the same vehicle to England."

I've never heard that before.

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Hero

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.... I've found a good deal of period writings to be quite biased;  if not down right made up.   I think that likely explains the first assertion.

I do know there was indeed a factory in Austria prior to the war( Cat's own records bear this out ).   However,  in the KuK manual I have of traktor, and lorry vehicles; the Holt 45 does not appear.

The last quote is extremely suspect.  The US did not declare war until December 8, 1917,  at which time the  Austro Hungarian Emperor had been quite dead for over a year.  ( Imagine an all-yellow caterpillar. )   The allied blockage had effectively sealed imports by sea anyway.

-- Edited by 28juni14 on Saturday 16th of January 2010 01:07:42 AM

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Commander in Chief

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As you say, James, the last snippet seems like a work of fantasy. How many writers have said it was Bullock Creeping Grip, the machines at Greenhithe, Pedrail etc etc.



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Commander in Chief

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As far as I know there were Austro-Hungarian Forces in Belgium alright after the beginning of the war. It was Heay Artillery - so the Holt was used by them.

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Hero

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... yes,  the fortress of  Liege suffered primarily from the fire of the M11 ,  but I have not seen evidence of a Holt in service with any of the KuK batteries.  All photo evidence I've seen shows only the M12 Zugmaschine.  
Incidentally,  these units suffered zero battle casualties,  or equipment losses during the fortress campaigns of August 1914.  

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Commander in Chief

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Didn't Vollmer wrote that he saw Austro-Hungarian Holts in action on the Western Front in 1914?

-- Edited by elbavaro on Monday 18th of January 2010 10:01:24 PM

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Legend

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Previous discussion here, with newspaper pic of Holt allegedly in Brussels.

http://www.activeboard.com/forum.spark?forumID=63528&p=3&topicID=13048006

Glanfield says that Lt. Robert Macfie presented a report to Sueter before November 7th 1914 that included "a photograph cut from the Daily Mail that week showing a Holt at work with the German Army."

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Legend

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Found (but can't now find again!) a US Army inventory of the KuK, presumably an assessment made at or before the US declaration of war.

It lists ten Holt 75s as being in service. If Jack (28juni14) can't find any listed in the manual he has, that would suggest they were requisitioned rather than already on the strength.

It's most likely that it wasn't (neutral) US policy to stop supplying parts to A-H, just that the Allied blockade made it impossible. There is an interval between the trials and the outbreak of war during which some vehicles could have been assembled from imported parts.

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