25th Panzergrenadier Division (Wehrmacht)

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25th Panzergrenadier Division
Divisionsabzeichen der 25. Infanterie-Divisision der Wehrmacht.jpg
25th Panzergrenadier Division insignia
Active 1943 - 1945
Country Nazi Germany Nazi Germany
Allegiance Adolf Hitler
Role Panzergrenadier
Size Division
Nickname Stuttgarter Haus Division
Engagements World War II
Commanders
Notable
commanders
Anton Graßer

The 25th Panzergrenadier Division fought in the central sector of the Eastern front from June 1943 to July 1944. It was destroyed in the encirclement east of Minsk and reformed in October 1944. It then fought in France between October 1944 and January 1945 and in eastern Germany January to May 1945. Most of the survivors of the division surrendered to the western Allies.

History[edit]

The 25th started as an infantry division formed from Swabians and Bavarians. It participated in the Polish Campaign and the Battle of France. In late 1940, it was reorganized as a motorized infantry division and took part in Operation Barbarossa, the invasion of the Soviet Union, in June 1941. It was attached to Army Group Center and fought in the Soviet Union for two years before being reorganized as the 25th Panzergrenadier Division in June, 1943. After another year of heavy fighting, the division was almost destroyed near Minsk during the Soviet Minsk Offensive; the survivors were reorganized at the training area at Mielau (in modern-day Poland) as the Panzer Brigade 107. In November 1944, the brigade was upgraded to divisional status at the Baumholder training area and re-christened the 25th Panzergrenadier Division.
The new division moved to France in the area of the German / Luxembourg / French border at Sierck-les-Bains, where it fought a delaying action against the US Third Army, until December. It was then moved to Bitche. There it fought on the Maginot line fortifications at Forts Ouvrage Simserhof and Ouvrage Schiesseck, under the command of the XIII SS Corps and Obergruppenführer Max Simon.
After the US Seventh Army's offensive operations were halted in December as a result of the German Ardennes Offensive, the 25th was pulled out of the line and re-organized near Zweibrücken. It then took part in Operation Nordwind, along with the 21st Panzer Division. Together, these divisions were to exploit the penetrations made by either the XIII SS Corps in the west, or the LXXXIX and XC Corps in the east, with the intention of cutting the US Seventh Army off from the 1st French Army. It was then sent back to the eastern front to defend against the Soviet attack on the Oder north of Berlin, most of the survivors managed to escape to the west and surrendered to the British or Americans.[1][2][3]

Commanders[edit]

Order of battle[edit]

  • Division Staff
    • 25. Mapping Detachment (mot)
  • 35. Panzergrenadier Regiment
  • Staff Company
    • Panzerjäger Platoon
    • Motorcycle Platoon
    • Signals Platoon
    • Pioneer Platoon
  • 3 x Battalions
    • Battalion Staff
    • 3 x Companies (mot)
    • Machine Gun Company (mot)
    • Infantry Gun Company
  • 119. Panzergrenadier Regiment
  • Staff Company
    • Panzerjäger Platoon
    • Motorcycle Platoon
    • Signals Platoon
    • Pioneer Platoon
  • 3 x Battalions
    • Battalion Staff
    • 3 x Companies (mot)
    • Machine Gun Company (mot)
    • Infantry Gun Company
  • 25. Panzer Reconnaissance Battalion
    • Battalion Staff
    • Light Armored Car Company
    • 3 x Motorcycle Companies
    • Heavy Company (mot)
    • Pioneer Platoon
    • 2 x Panzerjäger Platoons
    • Light Infantry Gun Section
  • 125. Panzerjäger Battalion
    • 3 x Panzerjäger Companies (self-propelled)
    • Flak Company (self-propelled)
  • 8. Panzer Battalion
    • Staff Company
    • Flak Platoon
    • 3 x Sturmgeschütz Batteries
    • Panzer Maintenance Platoon
  • 25. Artillery Regiment
    • Staff Battery
    • 3 x Battalions
    • Staff Battery (mot)
    • 3 x Batteries (mot)
  • 25. Pioneer Battalion
    • Battalion Staff
    • 3 x Companies (mot)
    • Light Pioneer Column (mot)
  • 25. Signals Battalion
    • Battalion Staff
    • Telephone Company (mot)
    • Radio Company (mot)
    • Signals Column (mot)
  • Supply and Support Units [2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "US 100th Infantry Division". Retrieved 2009-01-04. 
  2. ^ a b Wendal, Marcus. "25 Panzergrenadier Division". Axis History. Retrieved 2009-01-04. 
  3. ^ Mitchum, pp 111-113
  4. ^ Mitchum, p113
  • Mitchum, Samuel W (2007). German Order of Battle: Panzer, Panzer Grenadier, and Waffen SS divisions in World War II. Stackpole Books. ISBN 0-8117-3438-2. 
  • Burkhard Müller-Hillebrand (1969), Das Heer 1933-1945. Entwicklung des organisatorischen Aufbaues (in German), Vol. III: Der Zweifrontenkrieg. Das Heer vom Beginn des Feldzuges gegen die Sowjetunion bis zum Kriegsende, Frankfurt am Main: Mittler, p. 286 
  • Georg Tessin (1970), Verbände und Truppen der deutschen Wehrmacht und Waffen-SS im Zweiten Weltkrieg, 1939 - 1945 (in German), Vol. IV: Die Landstreitkräfte 15 -30, Frankfurt am Main: Mittler 

Further reading[edit]

  • Erwin Bodhm - Geschichte der 25. Division (in German)
  • Wilhelm Schrode - Geschichte der 25. Division: Die Wiederaufstellung der 25. Pz.Gren.Div.(in German)