14th Panzer Division (Wehrmacht)

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14th Panzer Division
14. Panzer-Division
4th Infanterie Divsion and 14nd Panzer Division logo.svg
Unit insignia
Active 1940–45
Country  Germany
Branch Army
Type Panzer
Role Armoured warfare
Size Division
Garrison/HQ Wehrkreis IV: Dresden
Engagements

World War II

The 14th Panzer Division (German: 14. Panzer-Division) was an armoured division in the German Army during World War II. It was created in 1940 by the conversion of the 4th Infantry Division.

The division took part in the invasion of Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union, eventually being destroyed in the battle of Stalingrad. Reformed, the 14th Panzer Division soon returned to the Eastern Front and eventually surrendered to Soviet forces in Courland in May 1945.

World War II[edit]

The 14th Panzer Division was formed in August 1940 from units of the 4th Infantry Division and 4th Panzer Division. The 4th Infantry Division provided both divisional staff and the infantry components, while the 4th Panzer Division provided the tank element by transferring 36th Panzer Regiment to the new division.[1]

In April 1941, the 14th Panzer Division took part in the Invasion of Yugoslavia, reaching Sarajevo on 15 April. Soon after, it returned to Germany in preparation for Operation Barbarossa. In June 1941, as part of Army Group South, the division took part in the invasion of the Soviet Union. It was involved almost continuously in the fighting throughout 1941, including the first winter on the Eastern Front. In early 1942, the division took part in the German summer offensives as Army Group South advanced through the Kharkov and Don regions. It was transferred to Friedrich Paulus' VI Army, which was encircled at Stalingrad soon after. By February 1943, the division had been destroyed in the fighting at the Battle of Stalingrad.[2]

The division was reformed in Brittany, France. By November 1943, it was combat ready, transferring back to Army Group South on the Eastern Front. It now had an additional battalion of StuG assault guns, the III/36 Panzer Regiment. The division was part of Army Group South up to June 1944. In August, after being refitted, it was transferred to Army Group North to the Courland area (now Latvia and Lithuania). The refit included delivery of Panther tanks.[2]

In January 1945, the Red Army launched a number of major offensives across the Eastern Front. Much of Army Group North - including the 14th Panzer Division - was bypassed and became trapped in the Courland Pocket, and remained there until Germany’s surrender in May 1945. The division was disbanded during the last weeks of the war, with its personnel being formed into two panzer brigades. Parts of the division were evacuated to Germany in the last week of the war and surrendered to the Western Allies while those units remaining surrendered to Soviet forces on 10 May 1945.[2]

Commanding officers[edit]

The commanders of the division:[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Mitcham, p. 119
  2. ^ a b c Mitcham, p. 120
  3. ^ Mitcham, p. 121–123

Bibliography[edit]

  • Mitcham, Samuel W. (2000). The Panzer Legions. Mechanicsburg: Stackpole Books. ISBN 978-0-8117-3353-3. 
  • Stoves, Rolf (1986). Die Gepanzerten und Motorisierten Deutschen Grossverbände 1935 – 1945 [The armoured and motorised German divisions and brigades 1935–45]. Bad Nauheim: Podzun-Pallas Verlag. ISBN 3-7909-0279-9. 
  • Rosado, Jorge; Bishop, Chris. German Wehrmacht Panzer Divisions 1939-1945. 
  • Beevor, Antony. Stalingrad. 
  • Winchester, Charles. Osterfront.