Division von Broich/von Manteuffel

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Division von Broich / Division von Manteuffel
Active 15 November 1942 - 9 May 1943
Country Germany Germany
Branch Army (das deutsche Heer)
Type Named Division, no standard organizational structure
Size 9 Battalions, 10,000 - 12,000 men total
Engagements Establishment of the Tunis Bridgehead 11–25 November 17[clarification needed]; Defensive Battles West and South of Mateur 25–30 November 1942; Battles for the Expansion of the Tunisian Bridgehead 1 December 1942 - 22 February 1943; Defense of Western Tunisia 23 February - 15 March 1943; Defensive Battles in Tunisia 16 March - 9 May 1943 including Defense of Bizerte; Source for campaign participation/battle credit is the 'Schlacht und Gefechtskalender 1943' Oberkommando des Heeres (OKH) Heeres-Verordnungsblatt (H.V.) 1943;
Disbanded Capitulated 9 May 1943, officially disbanded 30 June 1943.

Division von Broich was a German provisional infantry division active in 1942-43 in North Africa.

It was created on 15 November 1942 by renaming Schützen-Brigade (Rifle Brigade) von Broich, a provisional unit formed from Ortskommandeur II/960 on 10 November specifically for the command and control of miscellaneous units flown in by the Germans to defend the Bizerte and Tunis Bridgeheads in Tunisia.

The German action was in response to the Allied Landings in North Africa that took place 8 November 1942 and was intended to protect the Axis lines of communication. Although it was never given a formal organizational structure, it was quickly organized along the lines of a standard infantry division, but composed of a variety of German Fallschirmjäger (paratrooper) units, Tunis Field Battalions and Africa March (replacement) Battalions, as well as an Italian Regiment. Virtually all of its artillery and logistics had to be improvised using a variety of German, Italian and captured Allied equipment. Though it was a makeshift force in all respects, it quickly proved itself as a capable force, especially in the hands of its highly talented commanders, scoring impressive German defensive victories at Mateur, Djedejda, Medjez el Bab and Sedjnane in November and December 1942.

Throughout most of its short service, it defended the northern sector of the Tunisian Front, spanning the northern coast of Tunisia as far south as the town of Pont du Fahs. One of its regiments, Fallschirmjäger Regiment Barenthin, was called "perhaps the best German troops in Africa" by none other than General Harold Alexander, Commander of the Allied 18th Army Group. On 7 February 1943, the division was renamed Division von Manteuffel after its new commander, Generalmajor Hasso von Manteuffel, succeeding Generalmajor von Broich, who had departed to take command of the 10th Panzer Division. As the German defensive campaign in Tunisia wore on into 1943, the division underwent several actions designed to bring its structure within the lines of a conventional infantry division, having two regiments being given formal numerical designations before it ran out of fuel and ammunition and was forced to capitulate near Bizerte on 9 May 1943.

Commanding officers[edit]

General Staff Officers[edit]

  • Ia - Hauptmann Prahst, Major Ulrich Boes
  • Ib - Hauptmann Rudolf Beck
  • Ic - Leutnant Habedank, Oberleutnant Ernst Sont
  • IIa - Hauptmann Selig, Hauptmann Gustav Felix
  • IIb - Leutnant Felix Monka
  • 01 - Oberleutnant Ernst Sont, Leutnant Walter Schwaegermann
  • O2 - Oberleutnant Karl Schleiermacher
  • IVa - Stabsintendant Gerhardt Pischottka
  • IVb - Oberfeldartzt Hermann Dr. Gottesbueren
  • Vk - Major (Ing) Hermann Schmidt
  • WuG - Oberleutnant Guenther Schreiber
  • Nachr.Offz - Oberleutnant Herbert Funk

Order of Battle (January 30, 1943)[edit]

Division Headquarters

Fallschirmjäger Regiment (motorized) "Barenthin" (Luftwaffe)

Tunis Field Battalion T3

4th and 12th Batteries, Artillery Regiment (motorized) 2

4th Battery, Artillery Regiment 190

Panzerjäger (Antitank) Battalion 605

Reconnaissance Company

Fallschirmjäger Pionier Battalion (motorized) 11 (Luftwaffe)

Panzer Communications Platoon (motorized) 190

Bersaglieri Regiment 10 (Italian)

Maintenance Platoon (motorized) 215

Division Rations Office

Order of Battle (March 18, 1943)[edit]

Division Headquarters

Fallschirmjäger Regiment (motorized) "Barenthin" (Luftwaffe)

Tunis Field Battalion T3

Africa March Battalion A30

4th Battalion, Artillery Regiment (motorized) 2

Flak Battlegroup (Luftwaffe)

Fallschirmjäger Pionier Battalion (motorized) 11 (Luftwaffe)

Panzer Communications Platoon (motorized) 190

Bersaglieri Regiment 10 (Italian)

Transportation Battalion "Weber"

Maintenance Company (motorized) 215

Medical Company (motorized) "Burgass"

Division Rations Office

Division Field Post Office

Order of Battle (March 23, 1943)[edit]

Division Headquarters

Fallschirmjäger Regiment (motorized) "Barenthin" (Luftwaffe) with:

I - III Battalions

Panzergrenadier Regiment 160 (aka Kampfgruppe Ballerstedt) with:

- Tunis Field Battalion T3

- Tunis Field Battalion T4

- Africa March Battalion A30

Bersaglieri Regiment 10 (Italian) with:

- XVI Bersaglieri Battalion

- XXXIV Bersaglieri Battalion

- LXIII Bersaglieri Battalion

IV Battalion, Artillery Regiment (motorized) 2 with:

- 10th Battery, Artillery Regiment 2

- 11th Battery, Artillery Regiment 2

- 12th Battery, Artillery Regiment 2

4th Battery, Artillery Regiment 190

Fallschirmjäger Pionier Battalion (motorized) 11 (Luftwaffe)

Flak Battlegroup (Luftwaffe)

Panzer Communications Platoon (motorized) 190

Medical Company "Burgass"

Heavy Truck Column "Weber"

Maintenance Platoon (motorized) 215

Division Rations Office

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  • Bender, Roger James and Law, Richard D: Uniforms, Organization and History of the Afrikakorps. (Mountain View, CA: R. James Bender Publishing, 1973).
  • Tessin, Georg: Verbände und Truppen der deutschen Wehrmacht und Waffen-SS 1939 - 1945, Vol. 14. (Osnabrueck, Germany: Biblio Verlag, 1980).
  • Alexander, Viscount H. R.: "The African Campaign from El Alamein to Tunis from 10th August 1942 to 13th May 1943," Supplement to The London Gazette, 5 February 1948. (London: The London Gazette, 1948).
  • 1a Kriegstagebuch, Division von Broich/von Manteuffel 11 Nov. 1942 - 31 Jan. 1943.
  • 1a Kriegstagebuch, XC Korps, 16 Nov. - 7 Dec. 1942.
  • Schlacht und Gefechtskalender 1943 Oberkommando des Heeres (OKH) Heeres-Verordnungsblatt (H.V.) 1943.