Red Army Officer Photo ID, issued on 16 February 1943 to
Guards Junior Lieutenant Nikolay Konstantinov, Deputy
Battery Commander in the 12th Guards Artillery Regiment,
55th Army. Hard bound red booklet of approx. 9 x 6.5 cm
The ID shows that Konstantinov was appointed to his current
position on 31 January 1941. It also contains a later note
indicating that he was promoted to Lieutenant in April 1944.
There is also brief biographical information: he was born in
1907 in the town of Luga near Leningrad (then St.
Petersburg) and was married. There is also a record of his
first award, a Medal for the Defense of Leningrad, and a
note that he was issued a Tokarev pistol. The document is
hand-signed on two pages by the regiment's Chief of Staff.
The document is in very good condition. The cover is almost
pristine, without significant wear. The internal part has
separated from the binding but all the pages are present and
are still tightly held together by the single staple. The
pages show only normal age toning, no excessive wear or
soiling. Overall, a nice representative example of a Red
Army officer's ID from the middle of the Patriotic War.
According to the information found in the military archives,
Konstantinov later became commander of a two-gun fire
platoon of the 357th Artillery Regiment, 171st Rifle
Division, 79th Rifle Corps, 3rd Shock Army. In September
1944, he repeatedly distinguished himself during the Soviet
offensive in the Baltics. On its second day on 16 September,
he and his men advanced with the infantry line and even
managed to capture three German POWs. In one of the
skirmishes, he and his gun crews firing over open sights
destroyed two assault guns and a tank, and killed 60 enemy
soldiers during an enemy counterattack. In another
engagement, his platoon destroyed two German machine gun
nests. On 21 September, they destroyed two field guns, one
heavy machinegun and eliminated up to 40 Nazi soldiers while
repelling another counterattack. In the following month of
October, Konstantinov was recommended for an Order of the
Red Banner by his regiment commander, but the award was
downgrade to Patriotic War 1st cl. up the chain of command.
The order was bestowed upon Lt. Konstantinov on 2 November
1944 by a decree of the 79th Rifle Corps.
Research Materials: photocopy of the award commendations
for Konstantinov's Order of the Patriotic War, 1st cl. from
the Russian military archives. Information about his
division can be found in the Volume X "Red Swarm" of the
Soviet Order of Battle in WW2 by Charles Sharp.