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The 81. Infanterie-Division was formed December 1939 at Truppenübungsplatz Neuhammer as part of the 6th welle (wave) and saw action at Staraja Russa, Demjansk, Newel and ended the war in Kurland (Courland).

Commanders

Generalleutnant Friedrich-Wilhelm von Löper (1 Dec 1939 - 5 Oct 1940)
Generalmajor Hugo Ribstein (5 Oct 1940 - 8 Dec 1941)
Generalleutnant Erich Schopper (8 Dec 1941 - 1 Mar 1943)
Generalleutnant Gottfried Weber (1 Mar 1943 - 13 Mar 1943)
Generalleutnant Erich Schopper (13 Mar 1943 - 1 June 1943)
Generalleutnant Gottfried Weber (1 June 1943 - 30 June 1943)
Generalleutnant Erich Schopper (30 June 1943 - 5 Apr 1944)
Generalleutnant Vollrath Lübbe (5 Apr 1944 - 1 July 1944)
Generalmajor der Reserve Dr. Ernst Meiners (1 July 1944 - 10 July 1944)
Generalleutnant Franz-Eccard von Bentivegni (10 July 1944 - 8 May 1945)

Area of operations

Germany (Dec 1939 - May 1940)
France (May 1940 - Dec 1941)
Eastern front, central sector (Dec 1941 - Feb 1944)
Eastern front, northern sector (Feb 1944 - Oct 1944)
Kurland pocket (Oct 1944 - May 1945)

Holders of high awards

Holders of the Commendation Certificate of the Commander-in-Chief of the Army (2)
- Hasse, Dieter, 15.09.1944 (3903), Oberleutnant, Kp.Chef im Pi.Btl. 181
- Zühlke, Harry, 17.09.1944 (3947), Oberst, Kdr. Art.Rgt. 181
Holders of the German Cross in Gold (46)
Holders of the German Cross in Silver (2)
- Ehrle, Dr. Berthold, 31.01.1945, Stabsarzt d.R., San.Kp. 1/181
- Mutzek, Artur, 27.10.1944, Major, Nachr.Abt. 181
Holders of the Honor Roll Clasp of the Heer (28)
Holders of the Knight's Cross (23, including one unofficial/unconfirmed)

Order of battle (1939)

Infanterie-Regiment 161
Infanterie-Regiment 174
Infanterie-Regiment 189
Artillerie-Regiment 181
Divisionseinheiten 181

Order of battle (1944)

Grenadier-Regiment 161
Grenadier-Regiment 174
Grenadier-Regiment 189
Artillerie-Regiment 181
Divisionseinheiten 181

Sources used

Georg Tessin - Verbände und Truppen der deutschen Wehrmacht 1933-1945

Reference material on this unit

Werner Haupt - Die 81. Infanterie Division: Geschichte einer schlesischen Division

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