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The 294. Infanterie-Division was formed on 6 February 1940 as part of the 8. Welle (wave). It took part in the invasion of Belgium and France in 1940. Following a period of occupation and training duties in France, the division moved to the Balkans in 1941 and took part in the invasion of Yugoslavia. Transferred to the the Eastern Front in July 1941, it saw much combat in the Ukraine and southern Russia.
Reduced to a Kampfgruppe after sustaining heavy losses during the withdrawal through the Ukraine, it was strengthened by the addition of the remnants of the 336. Infanterie-Division as Divisions-Gruppe 333 in November 1943. The division was destroyed in August 1944 at Chişinau, Romania. It was formally disbanded on 9 October 1944.

Commanders

Generalleutnant Otto Gabcke (13 Feb 1940 - 22 Mar 1942)
General der Infanterie Johannes Block (22 Mar 1942 - 12 Aug 1943)
Generalmajor Hermann Frenking (12 Aug 1943 - 24 Dec 1943)
Generalmajor Werner von Eichstädt (24 Dec 1943 - 26 Aug 1944)

Operations Officers (Ia)

Major Joachim Staats (Feb 1940-Jan 1942)
Major Theodor Plock (Jan 1942-Mar 1942)
Oberstleutnant Theodor Mehring (23 Mar 1942-20 May 1944)
Oberstleutnant Luitpold Leeb (20 May 1944-24 Aug 1944)

Area of operations

Germany (Feb 1940 - May 1940)
Belgium & France (May 1940 - Mar 1941)
Balkans (Mar 1941 - July 1941)
Eastern front, southern sector (July 1941 - Aug 1944)

Holders of high awards

Holders of the Commendation Certificate of the Commander-in-Chief of the Army for Shooting Down Aircraft (1)
- Fritsche, Rudi, 01.08.1944 (524), Unteroffizier, 3./Gren.Rgt. 514
Holders of the German Cross in Gold (28)
Holders of the Honor Roll Clasp of the Heer (5)
- Essmann, Reinhard, 27.01.1944, Unteroffizier, 7./Art.Rgt. 333 / Div.Grp 333
- Mertel, Adolf, 27.08.1943, Leutnant d.R., I./Art.Rgt. 294
- Reumuth, Siegfried, 17.09.1943, Oberleutnant, II./Gren.Rgt. 514
- Steinhauser, Friedrich, 17.07.1944, Major, Gren.Rgt. 514
- Wilhelm, Werner, 27.08.1943, Oberleutnant, Stoßtr.Kp. 294
Holders of the Knight's Cross (9)
- Oakleaves
-- Block, Johannes [331. EL] 22.11.1943 Generalmajor Kdr 294. Inf.Div
-- Rietscher, Georg [210. EL] 14.03.1943 Unteroffizier [VB] i. d. 14.(Pz.Jäg)/Gren.Rgt 513
- Knight’s Cross
-- Dorow, Otto 03.04.1942 Oberstleutnant Kdr Inf.Rgt 514
-- Guhr, Hans 10.09.1942 Oberleutnant Rgt-Adjutant Inf.Rgt 513
-- Misera, Walter 28.03.1943 Major Kdr II./Gren.Rgt 515
-- Rausch, Werner 26.03.1943 Gefreiter Geschützführer i. d. 3./Pz.Jäg.Abt 294
-- Rietscher, Georg 27.06.1942 Gefreiter Richtschütze i. d. 14.(Pz.Jäg)/Inf.Rgt 513
-- Ruhnke, Herbert 08.02.1943 Unteroffizier Geschützführer i. d. 3./Pz.Jäg.Abt 294
-- Schädlich, Gottfried 09.07.1944 Hauptmann Kdr I./Gren.Rgt 514
Unit-Level Commendation Certificate of the Commander-in-Chief of the Army for Shooting Down Aircraft (2)
- Stabskompanie/Infanterie-Regiment 515
-- Date/Place of Downing: 15.06.1942 bei Dolshok
-- Award Date: 24.09.1942 (211)
- II./Grenadier-Regiment 515
-- Date/Place of Downing: 26.07.1943 bei Kuibyschewo
-- Award Date: 01.11.1943 (413)

Nicknames

Kleeblatt-Division (Clover Leaf Division)

Order of battle (1940)

Infanterie-Regiment 513
Infanterie-Regiment 514
Infanterie-Regiment 515
Artillerie-Regiment 294
- I. Abteilung
- II. Abteilung
- III. Abteilung
Pionier-Bataillon 294
Panzerabwehr-Abteilung 294
Nachrichten-Abteilung 294
Feldersatz-Bataillon 294
Versorgungseinheiten 294

Order of battle (1942)

Grenadier-Regiment 513
Grenadier-Regiment 514
Grenadier-Regiment 515
Artillerie-Regiment 294
- I. Abteilung
- II. Abteilung
- III. Abteilung
- IV. Abteilung
Pionier-Bataillon 294
Panzerjäger-Abteilung 294
Nachrichten-Abteilung 294
Versorgungseinheiten 294

Order of battle (1943-1944)

Grenadier-Regiment 513
Grenadier-Regiment 514
Grenadier-Regiment 515 (1)
Grenadier-Regiment 685 (2)
Divisions-Gruppe 333 (3)
- Stab der Gruppe
- Regiments-Gruppe 679
- Regiments-Gruppe 680
Füsilier-Bataillon 333 (4)
Artillerie-Regiment 333 (5)
- I./Artillerie-Regiment 294
- II./Artillerie-Regiment 294
- III./Artillerie-Regiment 333
- IV./Artillerie-Regiment 294
Pionier-Bataillon 294
Panzerjäger-Abteilung 294
Nachrichten-Abteilung 294
Feldersatz-Bataillon 294
Versorgungseinheiten 294

Notable members

Bernhard Bechler (German Cross in Gold holder and post-war a general in the Nationale Volksarmee of the German Democratic Republic)

Footnotes

1. Disbanded on 2 November 1943.
2. Reformed from the remnants of the 336. Infanterie-Division and assigned to the division in July 1944.
3. Assigned to the division from 2 November 1943 to 24 July 1944.
4. Assigned to the division on 2 November 1943; redesignated Füsilier-Bataillon 294 on 24 July 1944.
5. Artillerie-Regiment 294 was disbanded on 2 November 1943 and replaced by Artillerie-Regiment 333. It was redesignated Artillerie-Regiment 294 on 24 July 1944.

Sources used

Klaus Froh & Rüdiger Wenzke - Die Generale und Admirale der NVA: Ein biographisches handbuch
Georg Tessin - Verbände und Truppen der deutschen Wehrmacht 1933-1945

Reference material on this unit

Stefan Hänsel - Die 294. Infanteriedivision 1940-1944.: Ihr Weg, ihre Geschichte, ihre Einsätze

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