VICE ADMIRAL HANS ALFRED NYHOLM 1939 - 1940 ORIGINAL MANUSCRIPT DIARY AND NOTEBOOK OF DENMARK'S MOST NOTED AND DECORATED HEROES OF WORLD WAR II AND THE RESISTANCE TO THE GERMAN OCCUPATION OF DENMARK
COPENHAGEN DENMARK 1939 Very Good
On offer is a super, original, manuscript artefact of World War II being the handwritten diary of Vice Admiral H.A. Nyholm, Commander in Chief of the Royal Danish Navy and a hero of the Resistance during the German Occupation, written when serving as a Commander of the submarine "Havfruen" or "Mermaid" from the immediate outset of the war September 1st 1939 until May 11th 1940 thusly encompassing Operation Weserubung, the German Occupation of Denmark on April 9th 1940. This historical diary has approximately 50 pages of entries and notes, written in the Danish language, is unpublished is filled with regular dated observations by Nyholm, handwritten in pencil. Together with a fine studio portrait photograph of Nyholm, probably taken circa early 1946, Nyholm is wearing the single medal ribbon bar of the Knight of the Order of Dannebrog. The photograph measures approx 16.7 cm's by 10.9 cm. HISTORICAL NOTES: Vice Admiral Hans Alfred Nyholm; Early life and career 1898 - 1945: Hans Alfred Nyholm, was born in Copenhagen, Denmark, on the 15th August 1898. He applied to the Danish Admiralty for service in the Royal Danish Navy on 17th May 1914 and was sent for apprenticeship aboard the Patrol Vessel "Absalon" from 11th July to 2nd August 1914, and to the Naval Barracks for further apprenticeship from 2nd August to 10th September 1914. During this period he was still a school student at the "Galster of Hoboll". It appears that he applied for entrance to the Cadet School in 1915, but it was not till April 1919 that he passed the exam for entrance to the Naval Cadet School and passed in top of his class being appointed a Second Lieutenant in the Naval Officer Corps from 1st October 1919. He was subsequently promoted to Lieutenant 1st Grade in the Officer Corps from 1st October 1920. Nyholm appears to have served in a shore based capacity before he entered the Submarine School at Scoff for training from 15th October 1925 to 1st May 1926, and was subsequently appointed Temporary Commanding Officer of the B Class submarine "Triton" from 8th May 1926, being appointed Commanding Officer from 4th October 1926, during this period from 14th to 20th May 1926 he was put in charge of two United States officers on secondment. Promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Commander from 1st May 1927, he was posted to command of the C Class submarine "Rota" from 3rd June 1927, and to the command of the C Class submarine "Flora" on 2nd May 1928, followed by the A Class submarine "Najaden" on 14th July 1928, and to the C Class submarine "Bellona" from 17th August 1928. On 3rd October 1928 he was appointed to the command of the D Class submarine "Daphne" and would remain with this vessel through to 19th November 1931, during which time he participated in, a mission to the Atlas Works at Bremen, Germany for new U.T. Appliances, and would also attend trials in a new motor at Kiel, from 16th February to 17th December 1930 he was on service with the submarine division, followed by from October to November 1931 he was Superintendent at the Submarine School for Engineers, he was also awarded the Polish Order of Polonia Restituta on 24th September 1930. He was Temporary Commanding Officer of the B Class submarine "Neptun" from 1st February 1931 before returning to command the "Daphne" from 19th December 1931. Appointed to command the D Class submarine "Dryaden" from 21st January 1933, and again the "Daphne" from 13th October 1934, it was for services with this submarine that he was awarded the Belgium Military Decoration 2nd Class on 30th April 1935. Whilst with this submarine he also served as School Superintendent for the Submarine Sea Officers School. From 14th October 1935 through to 10th February 1936 he was again School Superintendent for Submarine Sea Officers School and from 5th November 1935 was appointed Deputy Naval Officer for the construction of the E Class submarines. Reappointed to the command of the "Rota" from the 7th February 1936, and to the command of the B Class submarine "Ran" from 31st January 1936, he was reappointed to the command of the "Dryaden" from 1st April 1936 continuously through to 15th August 1937 during which time he was promoted to the rank of Commander on 17th June 1937. Appointed to the commmand of the B Class submarine "Galathea" from 15th August 1937 and then back to the "Daphne" on 1st April 1938, he returned to the "Dryaden" on 30th July 1938. Appointed to the command of the new H Class submarine "Havmanden" on 8th October 1938, he was serving in command of the B Class submarine "Triton" from 10th December 1938 and was appointed to two other commands, the "Havmanden" again from 21st February 1939, the "Bellona" again from 6th May 1939, and when war was declared in Europe in September 1939 was serving aboard the then brand new H Class submarine "Havkalen" with which vessel he would remain until the occupation of Denmark by Germany in April to May 1940. Nyholm's final appointment prior to the disbandment of the Danish Navy by the Germans was as Head of the Submarine Division from 11th May through to 16th September 1940. For his long and distinguished service aboard submarines, Nyholm was appointed a Knight of the Order of Dannebrog on 2nd April 1940. DENMARK UNDER THE OCCUPATION: Nazi Germany's occupation of Denmark began with Operation Weserubung on 9 April 1940, and lasted until German forces withdrew at the end of World War II following their surrender to the Allies on 5 May 1945. Nyholm's services during the German Occupation: The best written evidence of Nyholm's service during the German occupation can be gleaned from the original recommendation for the award of the Honourary Member of the Order of the British Empire awarded to Nyholm for his services with Danish Naval Intelligence during the occupation. As Nyholm was specifically working in Denmark covertly in support of the Allies and particularly Great Britain - the British recommendation sums it all up: At the outbreak of war, Orlogskapajn Nyholm was personal assistant to the Admiral commanding the Danish Navy. After a short time he was transferred to the Naval Intelligence department to collect intelligence concerning German Fleet movements in Danish waters and to obtain details of the production of German U-Boats in Danish shipyards. On 29th August, 1943, when the Germans demobilised the Danish Army and Navy, the Danish Naval Commander in Chief gave instructions for certain units of the Danish Navy in Copenhagen harbour to be scuttled rather than allow them to fall into the hands of the Germans. Orlogkaptajn Nyholm was one of the officers responsible for the successful execution of this order. Orlogskapitajn Nyholm then set to work to establish Resistance Groups among naval officers and men. These groups were used for the collection of intelligence and for training as guerilla troops in the event of an invasion of Denmark by the Allies. At the end of 1943, the naval and military intelligence organisations combined and Orlogskapitajn Nyholm was appointed to a senior post on the combined staffs. In response to a request from the British Naval Intelligence Division, the network of the Danish Naval Intelligence was considerably increased and detailed reports of all German shipping movements were sent to England three times a day. In December 1944, several of his colleagues were arrested and some were shot. Orlogskapitajn Nyholm himself was arrested with compromising papers on him but he managed to swallow these. He was subjected to such brutal torture that it is unlikely he will ever recover from the effects but he steadfastly refused to betray his comrades. He was finally sent to Neuen Gamme where once more he was very badly manhandled but again refused to divulge any compromising information. He remained in Neuen Gamme until the capitulation. Orlogskapitajn Nyholm's outstanding services in procuring high-grade naval intelligence was of the greatest value to the Allied cause. At all times he displayed the greatest bravery and self-sacrifice and his conduct has been a source of great inspiration to his comrades.' The United States of America in awarding him the Medal of Freedom with Bronze Palm state this: 'Captain Hans A. Nyholm, Danish Navy, for exceptionally meritorious achievement which aided the United States in the prosecution of the war against the enemy in Continental Europe until 5th May 1945. Captain Nyholm accomplished the duties assigned to him with outstanding and distinguished success, thereby materially aiding the United States in the war against the enemy and in the eventual liberation of Denmark. His fortitude, diligence, perseverance, and energy in dangerous and difficult circumstances reflect the highest credit upon him and the Allied Armed Forces.' For his distinguished war services, Commander Hans Nyholm was promoted to the rank of Commander Captain on 23rd May 1945, and awarded the Danish Medal of Good Service in the Navy on 23rd January 1946; the Officer of the Legion D'Honneur by France on 27th November 1946; the Medal of Freedom with Bronze Palm by the United States of America on 20th December 1946; and the Honorary Member of the Order of the British Empire, M.B.E., by Great Britain on 30th May 1947. In addition he was awarded the title of Dannebrog Man on 22nd January 1948. The United States award is one of only 16 given to Danish recipients. Post Occupation services and achievements: Captain H.A. Nyholm, Knight of Dannebrog and Dannebrog Man continued in the service of the reformed Royal Danish Navy post 1945. He was appointed to the command of the Royal Yacht "Dannebrog" on 14th January 1948, twice serving in this role, the second time being in the Summer of 1949. No doubt as a result of Royal visits he was awarded the Royal Order of the Sword Swedish, 2nd Class, by Sweden on 16th June 1948, and the Commander of the Order of Saint Olav by Norway on 25th August 1948, though both of these awards may also have been belatedly in recognition of his war services. He had also been promoted to Naval Commodore on 18th February 1948. Promoted to the rank of Rear Admiral on 15th June 1950, he was appointed to the Command of the Danish Navy Coastal Fleet on 22nd September 1950, and was subsequently put in command of the Royal Danish Navy on 19th December 1951. He had been awarded the Commander 2nd Class Grade of the Order of the Dannebrog on 29th January 1951. Nyholm would remain Head of the Danish Navy & Chief of Naval Staff through to his retirement in 1961. Promoted to Vice Admiral on 1st June 1958, during his service as Head of the Danish Navy he would be grated the following Honours and Awards: from Denmark: Commander 1st Grade of the Order of the Dannebrog, on 29th January 1956; Grand Cross of the Order of the Dannebrog on 29th January 1961; Norway: Grand Cross of the Order of Saint Olav, on 11th September 1958; Sweden: Commander Grand Cross of the Order of the Swedish Sword, in 12th December 1961; United States of America: Commander of the Legion of Merit, on 18th December 1959; Brazil: Grand Commander of the Order of Naval Merit, on 26th April 1956; and from the Netherlands: Grand Cross of the Order of Orange-Nassau on 24th October 1958, and the Grand Officer of the House Order of Orange, in June 1953. Vice Admiral H.A. Nyholm, Grand Cross of the Order of the Dannebrog and Dannebrog Man retired on 21st February 1961 and died, aged 66 in 1964. Overall VG.