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The (44.) Reichsgrenadier-Division Hoch und Deutschmeister (HuD) was formed on 1 June 1943 by the redesignation of the 44. Infanterie-Division, which had been reformed after being destroyed at Stalingrad in January 1943. It was transferred to Italy in August 1943 and soon took part in the disarmament of the Italian forces after the Italian surrender in September. From August to November 1943, schwere Panzer-Kompanie/Tigergruppe Meyer, equipped with eight Tiger I tanks, was attached to the division for the disarmament of Italian formations in northern Italy. After some actions against partisans between Gärz and Fiume the division was sent south to the front were it remained for over a year. After a brief rest it was transferred to Hungary and fought the Red Army while retreating into Austria. It managed to avoid capture by the Red Army and surrendered to US forces at Hohenfurth on 10 May 1945.

Commanders

Generalleutnant Dr. jur. Franz Beyer (1 June 1943 - 1 Jan 1944)
Generalleutnant Dr. rer. pol. Friedrich (Fritz) (von) Franek (1 Jan 1944 - 1 May 1944)
Generalleutnant Bruno Ortner (1 May 1944 - 25 June 1944)
Generalleutnant Hans-Günther von Rost (25 Jun 1944 - 23 Mar 1945) (KIA) (1)
Oberst Hoffmann (23 Mar 1945 - 8 May 1945)

Operations Officers (Ia)

Oberstleutnant Friedrich Reinhardt (1 June 1943 - 15 Apr 1944)
Oberstleutnant Lothar Metz (15 Apr 1944 - 10 Nov 1944)
Major Franz Vogl (10 Nov 1944 - 20 Mar 1945) (KIA)
Major Schönefeld (1 Apr 1945 – 1945)
Hauptmann Könnefort (1945 - 8 May 1945)

Area of operations

Belgium (June 1943 - Aug 1943)
Italy (Aug 1943 - Nov 1944)
Hungary & Austria (Nov 1944 - May 1945)

Holders of high awards

(44. Infanterie-Division / Reichs-Grenadier-Division Hoch und Deutschmeister)
Holders of the Commendation Certificate of the Commander-in-Chief of the Army  (5)
- Goppold von Lobsdorf, Wolfgang, 27.01.1944 (2817), Leutnant, Kp.Fhr. 11./Reichsgren.Rgt. “HuD”
- Harrer, Leopold, 17.08.1944 (3729), Major, Kdr. II./Art.Rgt. 96
- Knapp, Franz, 05.10.1942 (1259), Oberleutnant, Chef 2./Pz.Jäg.Abt. 46
- Restorff von, [first name not listed], 01.03.1942 (756), Oberleutnant, Btl.Fhr. III./ Inf.Rgt. 131
- Scholz, Dr. Helmuth, 17.07.1943 (1891), Oberstabsarzt, Chef San.Kp. 2/44
Holders of the Commendation Certificate of the Commander-in-Chief of the Army for Shooting Down Aircraft (2)
- Schefbeck, Hermann, 16.05.1942 (134a), Gefreiter, Stab II./Inf.Rgt. 132
- Stimetz, Karl, 16.05.1942 (134), Obergefreiter, Stab II./Inf.Rgt. 132
Holders of the German Cross in Gold (60)
Holders of the German Cross in Silver (1)
- Kreuzig, Dr. Hans, 30.07.1944, Stabsarzt d.R., San.Kp. 2/44
Holders of the Honor Roll Clasp of the Heer (19)
Holders of the Knight's Cross (26)
Unit-Level Commendation Certificate of the Commander-in-Chief of the Army for Shooting Down Aircraft (3)
- Infanterie-Regiment 131
-- Date/Place of Downing: 28.03.1942 bei Balakleja
-- Award Date: 16.05.1942 (136)
- Artillerie-Regiment 96
-- Date/Place of Downing: 08.04.1942 bei Werbowka
-- Award Date: 19.07.1942 (177)
- III./Infanterie-Regiment 132
-- Date/Place of Downing: 13.05.1942 bei Wolochow-Jar
-- Award Date: 10.08.1942 (194)

Order of battle (1943-1945)

Grenadier-Regiment 131
Grenadier-Regiment 132
Reichsgrenadier-Regiment Hoch- und Deutschmeister (2)
Aufklärungs-Abteilung 44
Artillerie-Regiment 96
Granatwerfer-Bataillon 44 (3)
Pionier-Bataillon 80
Panzerjäger-Abteilung 46
Nachrichten-Abteilung 64
Feldersatz-Bataillon Hoch- und Deutschmeister
Versorgungseinheiten 44

Insignia

The "Hoch- und Deutschmeister" cuff title was authorized for this unit on 26 February 1945.

The “Hoch- und Deutschmeister-Kreuz” or the “Stalingrad-Kreuz” was authorized for certain units of the division on 23 March 1944. The emblem took the form of a small blue-enameled Maltese cross edged in gold, with a Reichsadler and banner in the center reading “STALINGRAD”. The emblem was authorized to be worn on the epaulettes of all ranks of the divisional staff and Reichsgrenadier-Regiment Hoch- und Deutschmeister. It was also used as a semi-official cap insignia.
armytradbadges-hud
Photo © Jacques

Reichsgrenadier-Regiment Hoch und Deutschmeister (formed 1938 as Infanterie-Regiment 134) used the traditional "Hoch und Deutschmeister" banner used by Hoch- und Deutschmeister Regiment Nr 4 of the Imperial Austrian Army since 1868.
flag-de-hoch-und-deutschmeister
(Courtesy of Wikimedia)

Notable members

Hans-Günther von Rost (Active in the resistance against Hitler)

Footnotes

1. Generalleutnant von Rost was killed 23 March 1945 by Soviet anti-tank fire near Stuhlweißenburg, Hungary.
2. Ex-Grenadier-Regiment 134.
3. Formed on 28 August 1944 from I./Grenadier-Regiment 131.

Sources used

Friedrich Dettmer, Otto Jaus & Helmut Tolkmitt - Die 44. Infanterie-Division / Reichsgrenadier-Division Hoch- und Deutschmeister (Podzun-Pallas Verlag, Friedberg, Germany, n.d.)
Jill Halcomb & Wilhelm P. B. R. Saris - Headgear of Hitler's Germany, Vol 1
Andris J. Kursietis - The Wehrmacht at War 1939-1945
French MacLean - Quiet Flows the Rhine: German General Officer Casualties in World War II
Samuel W. Mitcham Jr - Hitler's Legions: The German Army Order of Battle World War II
George F. Nafziger - The German Order of Battle: Infantry in World War II
Adolf Schlicht & John R Angolia - Die Deutsche Wehrmacht: Uniformierung und Ausrüstung 1933-1945, Band 1 Das Heer
Wolfgang Schneider - Tigers in Combat II
Georg Tessin - Verbände und Truppen der deutschen Wehrmacht 1933-1945
Gordon Williamson - German Army Elite Units, 1939-45
Gordon Williamson & Thomas McGuirl - German Military Cuffbands 1784-Present

Reference material on this unit

Friedrich Dettmer, Otto Jaus & Helmut Tolkmitt - Die 44. Infanterie-Division / Reichsgrenadier-Division Hoch- und Deutschmeister
Friedrich Dettmer - Ergänzungen zur Divisionsgeschichte
Anton Schimak, Karl Lamprecht & Friedrich Dettmer - Die 44. Infanterie Division: Tagebuch der Hoch  und Deutschmeister

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