by H.L. deZeng IV

Formed November 1941 in Osijek with a battalion HQ and 1st – 6th Co. The term “Verfügungsbataillon” best translates as Reserve Duty Battalion. The personnel were young, physically fit Volksdeutschen 17-22 years of age. (1)

Operational History

1942
1 May 42: Battalion completed all of its training in Osijek this date. Average strength over the course of 1942 was approximately 1,256.
11 May 42: cleansed the Matajica area approximately 30 km ESE of Bosanska Gradiška.
Jun – Jul 42: took part in Operation “West-Bosnien” in the Kozara Mountains between Banja Lika and Prijedor.
22 Jun 42: Battalion HQ, Cavalry Platoon (Reiterzug) and 3 companies in Jablanica attached to the Banja Luka Brigade as part of the “West-Bosnien” force.
18 Jul 42: Bn. being used as security troops in the Kozara to mop up small pockets of Partisan hold-outs following the conclusion of “West-Bosnien”.
18 Sep 42: “Prinz Eugen” now in and around Slavonska Požega.
1 Oct 42: Bn. HQ and staff in Osijek, 1st Co. in Kula, 2d Co. in Darkovac, 3d Co. in Osijek, 4th Co. in Kutjevo, 5th Co. in Kaptol and Vetovo, 6th Co. in Drventa, Signal Platoon in Kula and Cavalry Platoon in Kula.
1-8 Dec 42: transferred to Banja Luka and attached to Grenadier-Rgt. 741 of the 714. Inf.Div. pending incorporation into the regiment as its IV Battalion. This does not appear to have been carried out, and instead the Battalion simply remained attached to the Division during the remainder of its existence.

1943
6 Jan 43: 6th Co. in action against Partisan units around Vočin in Slavonia.
12 Feb 43: Bn. HQ and 1st – 5th Co. in Slavonska Požega attached to 714. Inf.Div.
19 Mar 43: according to a Partisan report, the Battalion was ambushed by the 17th NO Brigade along the road 5 km west of Kutjevo (between Našice and Sl. Požega) losing 24 killed, 14 wounded and 9 missing, while the Partisans admit to the loss of just two men.
19 Mar – 2 Apr 43: Bn. participated in Operation “Braun” in the Sl. Požega area.
Apr 43: ordered disbanded and its personnel mustered into the Waffen-SS in Osijek. The Cavalry Platoon (Reiterzug) and the Battalion supply column were exempted and instead were reassigned to the 2d Battalion “General Laudon”.

Commander

Obstlt.d.ES Willibald Keller (? - ?) May 1942

Subordination

HQ ES der DM in Osijek (Nov 1941 - Apr 1943)

Footnotes

1. [Vojnoistorijski institute] - Zbornik dokumenata i podataka o narodnooslobodilačkom ratu jugoslovenskih naroda, Tom IV/5, p.378; Tom V/13, p.681; V/14, pp.430-43; NARA WashDC: RG 242 (T-120 roll 5800/H311923; roll 5802/H313181 and H313261); (T-315 roll 1294/215; roll 2270/1032-36); (T-501 roll 249/1114 and 1274); Vojnoistorijski glasnik, br.54 (1952), p.61; plus the sources cited in the Introduction.

Reference material on this unit

- None known at this time -

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