Western Campaign 1940
Balkan Campaign 1941
Eastern Front 1941-1943
Balkan/Italian Fronts 1943-1945
The 1.Gebirgsjäger-Division was formed on April 9th, 1938 in Garmisch Partenkirchen from
the original Gebirgs-Brigade, the sole mountain unit of the
German military since 1935 when the Wehrmacht was formed. The Divisions origins stemmed from the
traditions of the German, Italian and Austrian Mountain Units of WWI. After WWI ended, because of
their record in battle, the Weimar Republic kept a small cadre of mountain troops to use as the
nucleus for a future mountain force. In 1935 this cadre of men helped form the basis of the
Gebirgs-Brigade, and by April of 1938, it was raised to a Divisional unit, the 1.Gebrigs-Division.
In September 1939, the 1.Gebirgsjäger-Division took part in the Campaign in Poland as part of Armeegruppe
Süd where it operated in Southern Poland. Operating out of Slovakia, the 1.Gebirgs crossed
the Polish frontier after its sister Division, the 2.Gebirgsjäger-Division,
has already crossed the frontiner and started its way inland. The 1.Gebirgs was to the right of the 2.Gebirgs,
and once it was through, it headed eastwards, towards the Dulka Pass. The Division fought and captured
the Dukla Pass in the Carpathian mountains and thereafter began a race to try and take the well defended
city of Lemberg, over 150 miles to the east. Lemberg, or Lvov in Polish, was a crucial point in the
much larger advance of the entire XVIII.Korps which was tasked with aiding in
the encirclement of all the Polish forces retreating to and already in southern Poland. The
race to the city was spearheaded by a Kampfgruppe of the 1.Gebirgs-Division that consisted of
four Kompanies of Jäger with artillery, anti-tank and pionier support. Behind this Gebirgs
Kampfgruppe spearhead was the rest of the Division which would advance behind it on the single
road leading to Lemberg. The Kampfgruppe reached the approacheds to Lemberg on September 14th and
immediately began to establish lines around the city to prepare for the eventual assault to capture
the it. The rest of the Division following behind arrived shortly after and from the
15th until the 20th of September, the 1.Gebirgs-Division fought to hold and expand its lines
against fierce Polish counter-attacks. The fighting was fierce, and as the Division was
literally at a point well ahead of any other German units and facing stiff and
determined Polish attacks, the situation became very tense for the Jäger attacking and
defending in the lines around Lemberg. So fierce in fact was the fighting leading up to and
including the battles for Lemberg
that the Division lost 243 men KIA and 400 WIA, an amazingly large number considering the
view that Poland is thought of as a virtual German walk-over. In the end, the
1.Gebirgs-Division did not actually storm Lemberg as planned as the Soviet invasion of Poland
made this earlier requirement moot. The capture of the city would likely have been bloody for the
Division though, and as a result of the fierce fighting at the approaches to the city, the Poles
defending it insisted upon surrendering only to the men of the 1.Gebirgs-Division as a sign of their
mutal respect. This took place on September 21st, 1939.
After the Campaign in Poland, the Division was transfered to the Western Front to take part in the Campaign in France. In France, the 1st Gebirgs
distinguished itself in the crossings of the Maas, Aisine and Loire Rivers. After the Campaign in France, the Division was posted to take part in the
planned invasion of Great Britian, and then for the planned invasion of Gibraltar, but in both cases, the planned operations were canceled.
After training for the above two invasions, the Division was transfered to Austria to take part in operations in Yugoslavia.
On April 9th, 1941, two years after the Division was formed, it crossed the Yugoslav frontier and
fought through central Yugoslavia with the bulk of the German forces.
After the Campaigns in Yugoslavia, the Division took part in the Invasion of the Soviet Union.
Moved into the Ukraine as part of XLIX.Gebirgskorps of Heeresgruppe Süd, the Division took
part in the encirclement of Soviet forces at Uman and the capture of Stalino in late autumn of 1941.
The Division then occupied positions around Mius until May of 1942 when it was transferred to the
Donetz region under the control of XI.Armeekorps. In the summer of 1942 the
1.Gebirgs-Division advanced into the Cacausus as part of the German summer offensive.
While fighting in this region the 1.Gebirgs-Division was eventually split into two groups,
Division Lanz under the temporary command of General Lanz with major portions of the 4.Gebirgs-Division
and the other under Oberst von Le Suire alongside the remaining units of 4.Gebirgs. The second
ad-hoc formation of the 1. and 4.Gebirgs under Le Suire fought in the highest positions held by any
unit in all of German military history when the 4300 meter heights of Mt. Elbrus in the deep Caucasus region
was held by the Gebirgsjäger against repeated Soviet attacks and the harsh high alpine elements.
The Division took part in the fighting withdrawl from the Caucasus region until it was pulled out
and posted to Serbia in 1943. For the next many months the Division was transfered from one region to the next, posting from Serbia to Yugoslavia to Greece and then to Corfu. In
April, 1944 the Division was part of OHW/OKH reserve until it was posted to Hungary and then back to the Balkan Region again. In December, 1944
the Division was again moved to Hungary where it took part in offensives against the Red Army, and was then moved to the Austrian Region in 1945
where it surrendered to the Americans in May of 1945.
Knights Cross Holders
Feldgrau :: Knights Cross Holder Biographies
Rudolf Abrahamczik 2/29/1944Albrecht Achilles 1/16/1943Georg Ackermann 3/27/1945Horst Adameit 5/1/1943Walther Adolph 11/13/1940Fritz Aechtner 12/20/1944Heinrich-Wilhelm Ahnert 8/23/1942Reinhard Aigen 6/30/1944Robert Alber 9/7/1943Egon Albrecht 3/1/1943Fritz Albrecht 4/19/1945Friedrich Alpers 10/14/1942Paul Amann 3/12/1945Heinz-Guenther Amelung 7/15/1942Friedrich Anders 8/14/1943Richard Anders 7/27/1944Kurt Andersen 12/23/1942Ernst Andres 4/20/1944Otto Angel 3/15/1945Karl Angerstein 11/2/1940Wihelm Anhalt 7/3/1944Willi Antrup 11/13/1942Kurt Arendt 2/24/1945Alexander Arentschildt 8/5/1940Willi Ascherfeld 2/14/1945Alois Assmann 9/18/1942Heinz Auert 3/28/1945Hans-Heinz Augenstein 6/9/1944 Erich Axthammer 4/28/1945Walter Axthelm 9/4/1941 Heinz Baader 4/26/1945Sophus Baagoe 6/14/1941Werner Baake 7/27/1944Hans Baasner 3/11/1943Herbert Bachnick 7/27/1944Kurt Bade 8/26/1943Erwin Bader 3/26/1944Emil Badorrek 11/22/1943Johann Badum 10/15/1942Heinrich Baer 7/2/1941Hansgeorg Baetcher 12/21/1942Niels Baetge 1/4/1942Günther Bahr 3/28/1945Horst Baldauf 8/8/1944 Josef Baldes 5/9/1945Gerhard Ball 11/23/1941Otto Ballasko 8/13/1942Wilhelm Balthasar 6/14/1940Udo Balzer 4/9/1944Alfred Banholzer 1/14/1945Hans Bargen 9/19/1942Klaus Bargsten 4/30/1943Gerhard Barkhorn 8/23/1942Hans Bartels 5/16/1940Heinrich Bartels 11/13/1942Herbert Bartels 11/22/1943Franz Barten 12/6/1944Eitel-Albert Barth 3/24/1943Karl Barth 12/14/1940Siegfried Barth 10/2/1942Helmut Bastian 11/3/1944Wilhelm Batz 3/26/1944Ernst Bauer 3/16/1942Gerhard Bauer 2/29/1944Herbert Bauer 12/31/1943Joachim Bauer 5/14/1944Konrad Bauer 10/25/1944Oskar Bauer 10/22/1941Viktor Bauer 7/30/1941Gerhard Bauhaus 5/25/1942Adolf Baum 12/21/1942Werner Baumbach 5/8/1940Erich Baumgartl 7/31/1943Hans Bayer 5/1/1945Günther Becker 2/28/1945Ludwig Becker 7/1/1942Martin Becker 4/1/1944Wilhelm Becker 5/17/1944Wilhelm Becker 2/18/1945Friedrich Beckh 9/18/1941Ludwig Beckmann 3/20/1943Theodor Beckmann 12/23/1942Horst Beeger 11/23/1944Franz-Josef Beerenbrock 10/6/1941 Herbert Behm 4/1/1945Friedrich Behne 3/26/1944Heinz-Georg Behrens 3/12/1944Gerhard Beier 3/17/1945Karl Beier 12/6/1944Wilhelm Beier 10/11/1941Hans Beisswenger 5/9/1942Franz Bellegarde 11/28/1940Ludwig Bellof 1/28/1945Josef Belz 12/23/1942Hans-Wilhelm Bender 9/8/1941Karl-Heinz Bendert 12/30/1942Helmut Benkendorff 3/26/1944Hans Bennemann 3/26/1944Helmut Bennemann 10/2/1942 Anton Benning 4/13/1945Kurt Benz 3/24/1943Karl Bergelt 8/3/1942Fritz Berger 8/4/1940Heinz Berger 4/18/1943Kurt Bergerhoff 8/27/1944Helmut Bergmann 7/8/1944Matthias Bermadinger 4/5/1944Alois Berndl 6/16/1944Emil Berner 11/12/1942Herbert Berrer 8/5/1944Heinz-Edgar Berres 9/19/1943Hans-Wilhelm Bertram 1/14/1945Otto Bertram 10/28/1940 August Berzen 5/9/1945Werner Beschnidt 10/4/1944Helmut Besler 9/6/1942Hans-Henning Beust 9/17/1941Ernst Beutelspracher 5/4/1944Heinz Bevernis 9/19/1942Erich Bey 5/9/1940Franz Beyer 8/30/1941Ernst Bibra 12/23/1942Gerhard Bielig 2/10/1943Günther Bierbrauer 4/17/1945Fritz Biermann 8/31/1943Gerhard Bigalk 12/26/1941Werner Biggemann 11/26/1944Hans-Joachim Birkner 7/27/1944Heinz Birnbacher 6/17/1940Paul Birnkraut 5/10/1943Otto Bischoff 5/3/1942Joseph Bisping 10/22/1941Emil Bitsch 8/29/1943Rudolf Bittner 11/28/1942Adalbert Blanc 11/27/1944Kurt Blasberg 9/7/1944Arbulf Blasig 9/4/1941Joachim Blechschmidt 3/17/1943Karl Bleckl 11/3/1942Günther Bleckmann 6/9/1944Johannes Bleichrodt 10/24/1940Werner Bleyer 2/24/1945Fritz Bliesener 12/20/1941Erich Bloedorn 10/13/1940Josef Bluemel 1/28/1945Hermann Blume 3/11/1945Werner Blume 7/1/1942Hans-Ekkehard Bob 3/7/1941Helmut Bochnig 6/9/1944Albert Bock 9/4/1941Engelbert Bockhoff 11/18/1943Helmut Bode 10/10/1941Heinrich Boecker 2/29/1944Heinz Boedicker 1/9/1944Hermann Boegel 10/13/1942Ernst Boehm 6/20/1943Walter Boehm 3/17/1945Friedrich Boehme 8/26/1944Kurt Boehmer 10/6/1940Walter Boenicke 5/14/1944Ernst Boerngen 8/3/1944Alwin Boerst 10/5/1941Otto Boesel 7/5/1944Philipp Boeselager 7/27/1944Paul Boettcher 9/30/1944Wolfgang Boewing-Treuding 3/24/1943Bruno Bogert 4/21/1944Helmut Bohlens 6/21/1943Fred Bollmann 10/29/1944Hans Bonath 3/26/1944Eckart-Wilhelm Bonin 2/5/1944Hubertus Bonin 12/21/1942Friedrich Bonnke 12/6/1944Friedrich Bonte 10/17/1940Johann Boos 10/9/1943Alhard Borch 8/19/1944Adolf Borchers 11/22/1943Walter Borchers 7/27/1944Hans-Georg Borck 12/23/1943Walter Bordelle 3/26/1944Eberhard Boremski 5/3/1942Ernst Bormann 10/5/1941Ralf Bornemann 4/17/1945Walter Bornschein 9/24/1942Carl Borris 11/25/1944Wolfgang Bostell 9/2/1944Walter Bradel 9/17/1941Kurt Braendle 7/1/1942Otto Brakat 7/27/1941Heinrich Bramesfeld 1/21/1943Hans-Joachim Brand 12/5/1943Johannes Brandenburg 9/18/1940Max Brandenburg 6/11/1944Albrecht Brandi 1/21/1943Günther Brandt 12/23/1943Paul Brandt 9/29/1944Walter Brandt 3/24/1943Paul Brasack 10/30/1944Karl Brassert 2/10/1945Rudolf Braun 6/14/1941Willi Braun 6/9/1944Herward Braunegg 3/26/1944Erich Brauneis 12/28/1944Werner Breese 2/29/1944Gerhard Brehme 8/23/1943Fritz Breithaupt 8/3/1941Joachim Brendel 11/22/1943Wilhelm Brennecke 3/26/1944Gerhard Brenner 7/5/1941Heinz Bretnuetz 10/22/1940Heinz Bretschneider 2/3/1945Klaus Bretschneider 11/18/1944Paul Breu 10/2/1942Georg Briel 7/23/1942Karl -Friedrich Brill 12/27/1941Friedrich Brinckmann 12/30/1943Helmuth Brinkmann 5/17/1944Achim Britzke 10/23/1944Hugo Broch 3/12/1945Jürgen Brocke 12/9/1942Jost Broekelmann 6/14/1942Herbert Broennte 3/14/1943Eduard Brogsitter 3/24/1943Peter Broich 9/24/1942Wilhelm Bromen 4/16/1943Helmut Bruck 9/4/1941Heinrich Brueckner 6/22/1941Wolfgang Brueckner 12/5/1943Albert Brunner 6/13/1943Hans Buchholz 3/24/1941Max Buchholz 8/12/1941Hermann Buchner 7/20/1944Hermann Buechting 4/22/1943Kurt Buehlingen 9/4/1941Otto Buelow 10/20/1942Harry Buelow-Botkamp 8/22/1940Alfred Buelowius 7/4/1940Rudolf Buenau 8/8/1943Nikolaus Buesen 9/4/1942Arthur Buessecke 1/10/1943Hans Buetow 3/12/1941Ludwig Bulla 6/26/1944Herbert Bullinger 2/1/1945Robert Bumen 10/29/1944Kurt Bundrock 6/30/1944Johannes Bunzek 4/6/1944Hans Bunzel 2/10/1943