Kursk - Main Data Sources
This page details the sources used in my research so far.
1. General Accounts:
The Battle of Kursk by David Glantz and Jonathan House:
Newly acquired 13th Nov 1999, courtesy of Amazon.co.uk (amazing - order Friday lunchtime, on the doorstep Saturday morning).
This could be one of the definitive works on the battle... more when I have read it !
Kursk Operation Simulation and Validation Exercise - Phase II:
This was produced by the Dupuy Institute (and Russian subcontractors) under contract to the US Army Concepts Analysis Agency.
It is a massive collection of data, down to the level of day-by-day casualties and fuel consumption for
both sides in the conflict, using recently-declassified Soviet records. I am still working my way through it all.
Available from NTIS on CD. The following papers are also avalable from NTIS, originating from the Army Command and General Staff College,
- Influence and Reasons for acceptance or rejection of operational level intelligence during the 1914 Marne and 1943 Kursk campaigns, by (then) Maj Joseph A Bolick
- Kursk: A study in operational art by (then) Maj Kerry K Pierce
- Relationship of depth and agility by (then) Maj Craig H Pearson
- Operational level analysis of Soviet armored formations in the deliberate defense in the Battle of Kursk, 1943 by (then) Maj Charles L Crow
- Battlefield air interdiction by the Luftwaffe at the Battle of Kursk - 1943 by (then) Maj William J Dalecky
Kursk 1943: The Soviet General Staff Study, tr by David Glantz and Harold Orenstein:
Colonel Glantz strikes again - this is not just "regurgitated Soviet propaganda" - it was written for internal
Soviet consumption and is quite scathing of some areas of their performance - notably in the air.
Decision in the Ukraine Summer 1943, II SS and III Panzerkorps, by George W Nipe:
A useful work which includes a great deal of "anecdotal" detail on Kursk.
Kursk, Hitler's Gamble, 1943, by Walter S Dunn:
Aiming to be the "definitive work" on the subject...
Had for a while...
Red Army Tank Commanders, by Richard N Armstrong:
Useful book on the actual Soviet commanders, including Rotmistrov.
Citadel, by Robin Cross:
A reasonable overall account, marred mainly by inaccuracies.
The Last Finnish War, by Waldemar Erfuth:
A useful account of the Finnish part in the (to them) "Continuation War" of 1941-44
Field Artillery and Firepower, JBA Bailey:
A work useful for understanding the impact of artillery during the period.
Armoured Warfare, JP Harris and FN Toase:
The book covers the battle (very) briefly.
A History of Blitzkrieg, Bryan Perrett:
Another general book covering the battle briefly.
Tank War 1939-1945, Janusz Piekalkiewicz:
Covers the war from a differnt perspective - including quantities of press statements.
The Tiger Tanks, Peter Gudgin:
Covers the history of the various Tiger units in some detail.
Soviet Tanks and Combat Vehicles of WW2, Steven J Zaloga and James Grandsen:
A lot of info on the development and force structures of the Russian tank forces;
looking back on the book, a number of errors do come to light.
Encyclopedia of German Tanks of WW2, Peter Chamberlain and Hilary L Doyle:
Still the definitive work for me on German armour production and stats.
The World War II Databook, John Ellis:
One that should be excellent - but I find it light in many areas.
Panzer Leader, Gen Heinz Guderian:
Still a classic book - even if written in an American POW camp, under pressure from the Americans
to be "good". Little detail on the battle tho...
Lost Victories, Field Marshall Erich von Manstein:
Another classic account, written somewhat later. Still not huge detail on the battle.
The Liebstandarte Vol III, Rudolf Lehmann (tr. Nick Olcott):
A wealth of detail on the day-by-day account - but how much do you trust the SS account?
Oh, and they were so bloody inaccurate with their maps.
Waffen SS, an Illustrated History, Adrian Gilbert:
Useful picture book.
Journal of Slavic Military Studies, Frank Cass (pub.):
Vol 6/3, 6/4 and 7/1 contain a reprint (translated, fortunately for idiots like me) of
"Collection of Materials for the Study of War Experience No. 11 - The Battle of Kursk July 1943.
This was written by the Soviet General Staff - and is essential reading.
2. Key for Orders of Battle/Organisation Structures:
Hitler's Legions, Samuel W Mitcham:
I rate this very highly for data on German divisions - their whereabouts, history and commanders.
The mainly problem is usually that the data is incomplete.
The Red Army Order of Battle, Poirier and Conner:
While this initially seems to be the definitive work, it was written from earlier Soviet materials.
This leads to some major inaccuracies - the number of units listed as being present at Kursk is
never ending - and many of them had already long ceased to exist. However, a stunning work based
on the materials available at the time.
Soviet Order of Battle, World War II, Charles C Sharp:
In my humble opinion, the (currently) definitive study on the Sovet OB. Superb detail and - so far -
accuracy. Total of 1 volumes published to date (see the Nafziger Collection for details):
- The Deadly Beginning - Tank, Mechanised, Motorised Divisions raised 1940-42
- School of Battle - Tank Corps and Tank Brigades raised Jan 1942-45
- Red Storm - Soviet Mechanised Corps and Brigades and Guards Armoured Units raised 1942-45
- Red Guards - Soviet Guards Rifle and Parachute Infantry Units raised
- Red Sabers - Soviet Cavalry Corps, Divisions and Independant Brigades
- Red Thunder - Soviet Artillery Corps, Divisions and Brigades (incl Rocket, AT and Mortar)
- Red Death - Soviet Mountain, Naval, NKVD and Allied Divisions and Brigades
- Soviet Rifle Divisions formed up to 22 June 1941
- Soviet Rifle Divisions formed June - December 1941
- Soviet Rifle Divisions formed 1942 to 1945
- Red Volunteers - Soviet Rifle and Ski Brigades and Militia Units, 1941-45 (apparently now available)
From the Don to the Dnepr, David M Glantz:
Another scholarly treatise from Col. Glantz. This covers force structures of the Russian forces
in a fair level of detail, although it does not cover the battle itself.
Das Handbuch der Deutschen Infanterie, Alex Buchner:
Again, essential reading - and I believe that there is now an English version available.
Panzer Grenadier Division GroßDeutschland, Horst Schelbert (Bruce Culver ed.):
A Squadron/Signal publication - very helpful on GD !
Russo-German War, Summer-Autumn 1943, W Victor Madej:
Contains a wealth of reprinted data and maps. Most useful - when you trust the German accounts ! The following
are also by the same author/publisher:
- Hitler's Elite Guards - Waffen SS, Parachutists, U-Boats
- German Army Order of Battle: Field Army and Officer Corps 1939-45
- Hitler's Dying Ground: Description and Destruction of the German Army
- German Military Dictionary of World War II - Terms and Symbols
- Red Army Order of Battle 1941-1943
- Southeastern Europe Axis Armies Handbook
- Southeastern Europe Axis Armed Forces Order of Battle
Command magazine - forgotten the actual issue !
Good account and game - one everyone seems to like to argue about - but still a good work.
3. Map sources:
The Times Atlas of the Second World War, John Keegan (ed.):
For a historian that I have huge respect for, I am always sadly disappointed by this work.
I am sorry to say that the units marked on the (very pretty) maps are often wrong...
East View Publications:
These wonderful people have supplied me with maps printed (in Russian) in the USSR in the 1960s.
The maps are at 1:100,000 and 1:200,000. Again - essential stuff.
© Alan Wilson 1997, 1998, 1999 Last update: 22/11/99 11:02:08 PM GMT