Talk:3rd SS Panzer Division Totenkopf

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Structure of the Totenkopf Division

I've just found in some papers that my grandfather was a member of the Totenkopf division from about late 1939. I'd like to work out what he was up to. The reference I have says: "11/8 Totenkopf-Regiment" - does anyone know what the number means? were there particular units, and can I track down what they did?

totenkopf Division[edit]


Totenkopfstandarte 8 (Totenkopf Regiment Nr.8) wasn't a part of the Totenkopf division. It operated alone until it was used to form the 1st SS Motorised Infantry Brigade. The 1SSInfBde (mot) operated behind the lines of the Russian Front in cooperation with Einsatzgruppe A, in the area behind Army Group South. Check out this link follow the link on the page to the 1st SS Mot Bde for a more detailed report of this units actions.

Also try asking on the biographical information forums at and

You should get an a more detailed answer from there. Hope this has been some help. --Ansbachdragoner 05:01, 18 May 2005 (UTC)

french Civilian massacred 1939-40[edit]

Does somebody is going to write something about the civilian massacre of the campaign of france ? (otherwise i will do, but english is not my primary language)

around 286 have been massacred at courrières, oignies, etrun etc ... (source: "pas-de calais, la parenthèse tragique" and more in local archives and website like axishistory)

It is really annoying to see that such civilian massacres are often not mention whereas they represent a bigger violation of geneva law than the execution of prisonners)

thx !

Removed the Wal-Mart Mention[edit]

Briefly put, I felt that it was irrelevent to the historical emphasis of this page and decided to remove it.

-JoshCurry 2/24/08 —Preceding unsigned comment added by JoshCurry (talkcontribs) 16:20, 25 February 2008 (UTC)

I actually think that there should be a new section added, something like "SS Division Totenkopf symbol in modern times" because not only did wal-mart stick it on a t-shirt there has been a resurgence of the symbol showing up on book bags, pins, hats etc. (talk) 01:02, 23 September 2008 (UTC)

"death's eternal embrace"[edit]

Wtf? I removed that, this isn't a poem. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:08, 27 July 2008 (UTC)

Summary Executions[edit]

After briefly reviewing after action reports from the 11th Armored I find nothing that indicates there were any executions of German POW's during the handover to the Red Army. I'll try the U.S. Army Historical site to see if I can find anything on this allegation. While emotions were running high after the liberation of the concentration camps I can't recall any mention of summary executions of marching or in-column prisoners. Tswold (talk) 06:36, 2 November 2009 (UTC)

Seems unlikely that a division would own up to/admit war crimes like the one in question in their after action reports. I don't think that German divisions had a habit of doing this either. If you want to look it up, you're better off checking the more or less definitive history of the division: Soldaten, Kampfer, Kameraden by Vopersal (8 volumes). Tchernobog (talk) 21:59, 2 November 2009 (UTC)

After reading from the quoted source, "Like a cliff in the Ocean," I find another story where escaping prisoners were picked up by ambulances and sped off to Linz, page 273. With the warning that anyone who attempted to escape would be shot, it seems apparent that some preferred to take their chances than be handed over to the Soviets. Not that I blame them - however, does it seem congruent to take people you have executed somewhere in ambulances? As to bias, I rely on the story that can't be kept quiet, rather than personal accounts. The division you're referring to is the Totenkopf, and I am more concerned with the US 11th Infantry. If true, it needs to be either put into context or examined in the light of possible war crimes. I find it odd that none of the quoted sources mention the 11th Infantry as being the perpetrators of this alleged massacre. Anyway, still looking. Tswold (talk) 10:14, 22 November 2009 (UTC)

The section entitled 'Totenkopf End' needs a re-write. I suspect who wrote it may not have English as their first language. Irisismykid (talk) 00:22, 28 April 2010 (UTC)

Naming conventions[edit]

In the book, "Like a Cliff in the Ocean," by Karl Ullrich, 2002, J.J. Fedorowicz Pub., ISBN 0-921991-69-X, the author who commanded a pioneer battalion of the Totenkopf states that "In the course of reorganization, the motorcycle battalion was expanded to a regiment and designated as SS-Kradschutzen-Regiment "Thule". In the course of 1943, the regiment would eventually be completely deactivated." page 173. Further, in discussing the battle of Kursk the author states, " SS-Panzer-Grenadier-Regiment 1 "Thule" reached the Gremutschi Valley at about noon while advancing and turned south with its main body." The author repeatedly indicates the the 1st regiment was named Thule, and that the Theodor Eicke was regiment 3. Without a grasp of German I have to rely on english sources, in the English Wikipedia, but there seems to be some confusion about these conventions. Tswold (talk) 12:25, 22 November 2009 (UTC)

Totenkopf does not mean Death's Head[edit]

BTW what is s Death's Head? Totenkopf rather means simply skull. Trust me, I'm a native speaker. i'm going to correct that. — Preceding unsigned comment added by MintCCC (talkcontribs) 16:03, 22 December 2011 (UTC)

But not then, a native speaker of English. As this is the English version of wiki perhaps you should refrain from this since it is a commonly used expression in English language military literature. Trust me, I am a native speaker old bean.

Taff — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:32, 3 August 2015 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the proposal was moved. --BDD (talk) 19:44, 7 August 2013 (UTC)

3rd SS Division Totenkopf3rd SS Panzer Division Totenkopf – Per WP:UCN This division developed through several names over time, but was a Panzer Division for a considerable period of 1943–45. Google Books searches show 60 hits for Panzer Division, and only 24 for just Division Peacemaker67 (send... over) 11:49, 29 July 2013 (UTC)

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

Assessment comment[edit]

The comment(s) below were originally left at Talk:3rd SS Panzer Division Totenkopf/Comments, and are posted here for posterity. Following several discussions in past years, these subpages are now deprecated. The comments may be irrelevant or outdated; if so, please feel free to remove this section.

This article lacks inline citations, it's not B-class. There is no hint why this article need immediate attention, I've deleted it. Sebastian scha. (talk) 07:53, 7 October 2008 (UTC)

Last edited at 19:45, 7 August 2013 (UTC). Substituted at 06:06, 29 April 2016 (UTC)