30th Infantry Division (Wehrmacht)

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30. Infanterie-Division
German 30th Infantry Division
30th Infanterie Division Logo.svg
Active 1 October 1936 — 8 May 1945
Country Nazi Germany Nazy Germany
Branch Heer
Type Division
Role Infantry
Nickname(s) Briesen-Division
Engagements

World War II

Decorations 1 reference in the Wehrmachtbericht
Commanders
Notable
commanders
Carl-Heinrich von Stülpnagel
Alt
30th Infantry units march through Paris before Kurt von Briesen (on horse), 1940

The 30th Infantry Division (German: 30. Infanterie-Division) of the German Army was created on 1 October 1936 in Lübeck and mobilized on 26 August 1939 for the upcoming invasion of Poland. At that time, it consisted of the usual German infantry division elements: three infantry regiments of three battalions each, one three-battalion regiment of light artillery, one battalion of heavy artillery (from a separate artillery regiment, but attached to the particular division), a panzerjager (anti-tank) battalion, an aufklärungs (reconnaissance) battalion, a signals battalion, a pioneer (engineer) battalion, and divisional supply, medical, and administrative units.

At the beginning of the Polish campaign, the division was positioned on the left wing of Army Group South under the 10. Army Corps, (Artillery) General Wilhelm Ulex. It was in the area northeast of Wroclaw and it was to attack in the general direction of the area in front of Łódź. It fought battles in areas of Kalisch, during the Vistula crossing at Warta, also at Kol. Balin, Niewiesz and Uniejew. During the Battle of Bzura they suffered heavy losses, including 1500 POW's captured by the Poles. They had to reject violent counterattacks and attempts to escape by the trapped Polish troops. Their commander Major General von Briesen personally led his last held in reserve battalion into battle and was seriously wounded and lost his right forearm. The Division, henceforth was referred to as "Briesen Division". After the Battle of Bzura was over, the division moved north of Lowicz in pursuit of the defeated enemy.

Offensive of the Red Army south of Lake Ilmen 7 January–21 February 1942.

In the winter of 1941 the division was trapped in the Demyansk Pocket along with the 12th, 32nd, 123rd and 290th infantry divisions, and the SS-Division Totenkopf, as well as RAD, Police, Todt organization and other auxiliary units, for a total of about 90,000 German troops and around 10,000 auxiliaries. Their commander was General der Infanterie Walter Graf von Brockdorff-Ahlefeldt, commander of the II. Armeekorps (2nd Army Corps).

Commanders[edit]

  • Generalleutnant Carl-Heinrich von Stülpnagel, creation – 4 February 1938
  • Generalmajor Kurt von Briesen, 4 February 1938 – 1 July 1939
  • Generalleutnant Franz Böhme, 1 July 1939 – 19 July 1939
  • General der Infanterie Kurt von Briesen, 19 July 1939 – 25 November 1940
  • Generalmajor Walter Buechs, November 1940 – 5 January 1941
  • General der Infanterie Kurt von Tippelskirch, 5 January 1941 – 5 June 1942
  • Generalleutnant Thomas-Emil von Wickede, 5. Juni 1942 – 29 October 1943
  • Generalleutnant Paul Winter, (September 1943)
  • Generalmajor Gerhard Henke (acting), 29 October 1943 – 5 November 1943
  • General der Infanterie Wilhelm Haase, 5 November 1943 – 15 March 1944
  • Generalleutnant Hans von Basse (acting), 15 March 1944 – 15 August 1944
  • Generalmajor Otto Barth, 15 August 1944 – 30 January 1945
  • Generalleutnant Albert Henze, 30 January 1945 - capitulation

References[edit]

  • Breithaupt, Hans (1955). Die Geschichte der 30. Infanterie-Division 1939 - 1945. Podzun, Bad Nauheim.
  • Müller-Hillebrand, Burkhard (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. 
  • Tessin, Georg (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.