Josef Harpe

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Josef Harpe
Bundesarchiv Bild 146-1981-104-30, Josef Harpe.jpg
Josef Harpe
Born (1887-09-21)21 September 1887
Died 14 March 1968(1968-03-14) (aged 80)
Allegiance  German Empire
 Weimar Republic
 Nazi Germany
Service/branch Army
Years of service 1909–45
Rank Generaloberst
Commands held 9th Army
12th Panzer Division
XXXXI Panzer Corps

World War I

World War II

Awards Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords

Josef Harpe (21 September 1887 – 14 March 1968) was a German general (Generaloberst) in the Wehrmacht during World War II who commanded the 9th Army. He was a recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords of Nazi Germany.

Harpe joined the Prussian Army in 1909 and fought in World War I. After the war Harpe remained in the Reichswehr and then served in the Wehrmacht. He served on the Eastern Front, where he commanded XXXXI Panzer Corps and the 9th Army. From September 1944 to January 1945 Army Group A, when he was relieved of his command due to the inability of German forces to stop the Soviet Vistula–Oder Offensive. He ended the war commanding the 5th Panzer Army on Western Front. He was interned by the United States until 1948.




  1. ^ Thomas 1997, p. 248.
  2. ^ a b c Wegmann 2009, p. 238.
  3. ^ a b c Scherzer 2007, p. 367.
  4. ^ Patzwall & Scherzer 2001, p. 165.


  • Patzwall, Klaus D.; Scherzer, Veit (2001). Das Deutsche Kreuz 1941 – 1945 Geschichte und Inhaber Band II [The German Cross 1941 – 1945 History and Recipients Volume 2] (in German). Norderstedt, Germany: Verlag Klaus D. Patzwall. ISBN 978-3-931533-45-8. 
  • Scherzer, Veit (2007). Die Ritterkreuzträger 1939–1945 Die Inhaber des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939 von Heer, Luftwaffe, Kriegsmarine, Waffen-SS, Volkssturm sowie mit Deutschland verbündeter Streitkräfte nach den Unterlagen des Bundesarchives [The Knight's Cross Bearers 1939–1945 The Holders of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross 1939 by Army, Air Force, Navy, Waffen-SS, Volkssturm and Allied Forces with Germany According to the Documents of the Federal Archives] (in German). Jena, Germany: Scherzers Militaer-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-938845-17-2. 
  • Thomas, Franz (1997). Die Eichenlaubträger 1939–1945 Band 1: A–K [The Oak Leaves Bearers 1939–1945 Volume 1: A–K] (in German). Osnabrück, Germany: Biblio-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-7648-2299-6. 
  • Wegmann, Günter (2009). Die Ritterkreuzträger der Deutschen Wehrmacht 1939–1945 Teil VIIIa: Panzertruppe Band 2: F–H [The Knight's Cross Bearers of the German Wehrmacht 1939–1945 Part VIIIa: Panzer Force Volume 2: F–H] (in German). Bissendorf, Germany: Biblio-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-7648-2389-4. 
Military offices
Preceded by
Paul Bader
Commander of 2. Infanterie-Division
5 October 1940 – 10 January 1941
Succeeded by
12. Panzerdivision
Preceded by
2. Infanterie-Division
Commander of 12. Panzerdivision
10 January 1941 – 15 January 1942
Succeeded by
Generalleutnant Walter Wessel
Preceded by
Commander of XXXXI Panzerkorps
10 July 1942 – 15 October 1943
Succeeded by
General of Artillery Helmuth Weidling
Preceded by
Generaloberst Erhard Raus
Commander of 4. Panzer-Armee
18 May 1944 – 28 June 1944
Succeeded by
General der Panzertruppe Walther Nehring
Preceded by
Generalfeldmarschall Walter Model
Commander of 9. Armee
4 November 1943 – 19 May 1944
Succeeded by
General Hans Jordan
Preceded by
General der Panzertruppe Hasso von Manteuffel
Commander of 5. Panzer-Armee
8 March 1945 – 17 April 1945
Succeeded by