The Schwere Panzer-Abteilung 504 was formed in February 1943 and one company was sent to North Africa in Marvh 1943. It surrendered in Tunisia in May 1943.


The second company was attached to Fallschirm-Panzer-Division Hermann Göring and fought the Allies after the landing on Sicily in July 1943. It was evacuated across Messina Strait to Italy and was sent to Holland for refitting.
The 504 returned to Italy in June 1944 and was attached to SS Panzergrenadier Division Götz von Berlichingen. It fought the Allies at Anzio in support of 362. Infanterie-Division.
It was refitted with Tiger II (Köningstiger) tanks and fought the Allies in Italy until the surrender in May 1945.

Commanders

Major August Seidensticker (? Feb 1943 - 12 May 1943) (WIA, POW) (1)
[Reformation]
Hauptmann Kühn (? Nov 1943 - ? Sep 1944)
Major Nill (? Sep 1944 - 2 May ? 1945)

Area of operations

Tunisia (Mar 1943 - May 1943)
Sicily (May 1943 - July 1943)
Refitting (July 1943 - June 1944)
Italy (June 1944 - May 1945)

Campaign New issue Transfers in Transfers out Combat loss Type of tank
Tunisia 11 0 0 11 Tiger I
Italy 74 17 3 88 Tiger I

 

Holders of high awards

Holders of the German Cross in Gold (3)
- Gross, Kurt, 30.08.1944, Oberfeldwebel, 3.(Fkl)/s.Pz.Abt. 504
- Heim, Herbert, 24.03.1945, Oberleutnant, 2./s.Pz.Abt. 504
- Mayr, Heinrich, 06.08.1944, Leutnant d.R., 1./s.Pz.Abt. 504
Holders of the Knight's Cross (1)
- Röhrig, Oskar 04.07.1944 Oberfähnrich Zugführer i. d. 1./s.Pz.Abt 504

In museums

A Tiger I with the turret number 131 was captured in Tunisia by British forces and that tank is now on display on the Bovington Tank Museum in Bovington, UK, and is in running condition.

Tiger tank in Sicily
spz-abt-504-sicily
(Courtesy of Bundesarchiv/Wikimedia, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 Germany)

Footnotes

1. August Seidensticker was commander of s.Pz.Abt. 504, that is 1./504 on the spot in North Africa; additionally Führer s.Pz.Abt. 501 since 17 March 1943. 2./504 on Sicily wassubordinated to Pz.Abt. 215 and then Division "Hermann Göring", chef was Leutnant / Oberleutnant Herbert Heim followed by Leutnant Goldschmidt.

Sources used

William Fowler - The Secret war in Italy: Special forces, partisans and covert operations 1943-45
Ron Klages - Trail of the Tigers
Wolfgang Schneider - Tigers in combat (2 vol)
Georg Tessin - Verbände und Truppen der deutschen Wehrmacht 1933-1945
Gordon Williamson - German Army Elite Units, 1939-45

Reference material on this unit

- None known at this time -

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