Panzer Lehr Division History
|The 130th Panzer-Lehr-Division was formed 1.10.44 in the Nancy-Verdun area fromvarious units of the German Army training and demonstration units, otherwiseknown as Lehr units, hence the name, Panzer-Lehr. Upon formation, the130.Panzer-Lehr-Division was already considered an elite unit becauseof the fact that so many of the demonstration units that it was formed fromalready had elite status due to their use as demonstration units. the 130.Panzer-Lehr-Divisionwould live up to its crack unit status during its one year of combat service.|
Upon formation, the 130th Panzer-Lehr-Divisoin was located in France until it was transferedto the Eastern Front to Hungary and then back to France in May, 1944, for usein the planned counter-offensive against the Allies when their anticipatedinvasion of Europe in France finally came.
When the full fury of the massive Allied landings against Normandy, Francefinally hit in June, 1944, 130.Panzer-Lehr was one of the strongest units in theWest. Panzer-Lehr fought the Allies in fierce battles for Caen and St. Lo,until it was so depleted that it had only a mere fraction of thearmor it had stated with. Shattered, Panzer-Lehr then withdrew acrossFrance along with the rest of the retreating German forces in the West, untilit was pulled out of the lines and reformed in the Saar and then in Paderborn.
The Division was sent back to the Saar to fight against theadvancing allies, after which it was used during the massive Germanoffensive against in December, 1944, Wacht am Rhein, where it took part inthe siege of Bastogne.
When the Ardennes offensive failed, Panzer-Lehr saw action in Battles for theMaas Line in the Netherlands, and then in Battles to smash the Americanbridgehead at Remagen, which it failed to do.
Depleted, shaken and smashed, the 130th Panzer-Lehr-Division entered into theRuhr Pocket in April, 1945, a mere shadow of the unit that had so fierclymeet the Allies in front of Caen in June and July, 1944. Panzer Lehrsurrendered to the Americans when the Ruhr pocket finally fell.
|Gen.Lt. Fritz Bayerlein 1.10.44 – 6.07.44|
Gen.Maj. Hyanzinth Graf Strachwitz von Gross-Zauche u. Camminetz 6.08.44 – 8.23.44
Oberst Rudolph Gerhardt 8.23.44 – 9.08.44
Oberst Paul FrHr. von Hauser 9.44
Gen.Lt. Fritz Bayerlein 9.44 – 1.15.45
Gen.Maj. Horst Niemack 1.15.45 – 4.03.45
Oberst Paul FrHr. von Hauser 4.03.45 – 4.15.45
* another part served under LXXX. Corps/1. Armee/Hgr. B in the Paris-Soissonsarea