logo-inf-15_1942-1943


The 15. Infanterie-Division was formed in Würzburg on 15 October 1935 from the cover name Artillerieführer V. The infantry regiments were formed from 13. (Württemburgisches) Infanterie-Regiment of 5. Division of the Reichwehr. It was mobilized in August 1939 as part of the 1. Welle (wave).
The division was destroyed in August 1944 at Chişinau, Romania and reformed in October 1944 from surviving elements of the 302. Infanterie-Division, 384. Infanterie-Division, 370. Infanterie-Division, 282. Infanterie-Division and 376. Infanterie-Division. The division surrendered to the Red Army near Deutsch Brod, Czechoslovakia in May 1945.

Commanders

Generalleutnant Friedrich Wilhelm (Fritz) Brandt (15 Oct 1935 - 31 Mar 1936)
Generalleutnant Emil Leeb (01 Apr 1936 - 01 Apr 1939)
Generalleutnant Walter Beschnitt (1 Apr 1939 - 6 Oct 1939)
General der Artillerie Ernst-Eberhard Hell (6 Oct 1939 - 17 June 1940)
General der Infanterie Fridrich-Wilhelm von Chappuis (17 June 1940 - 12 Aug 1940)
General der Artillerie Ernst-Eberhard Hell (12 Aug 1940 - 8 Jan 1942)
Generalmajor Bronislaw Pawel (11 Jan 1942 - 23 Jan 1942)
Generalmajor Alfred Schreiber (23 Jan 1942 - 3 Feb 1942)
General der Infanterie Erich Buschenhagen (18 June 1942 - 20 Nov 1943)
Generalmajor Rudolf Sperl (20 Nov 1943 - ? Aug 1944)
Generalmajor Ottomar Babel (14 Aug 1944 - 05 Sep 1944) (MIA) (1)
Generalmajor Hans Längenfelder (? Oct 1944 - 8 May 1945)

Operations Officers (Ia)

Oberstleutnant Anton Dostler (15 Oct 1935 - 01 Apr 1937)
unknown (1 Apr 1937 - 1939)
Oberstleutnant Hans von Linstow (1939 - Feb 1940)
Major Werner Ranck (Feb 1940 - Jan 1941)
Oberstleutnant Karl-Richard Koßmann (15 Jan 1941 - 14 Jan 1942)
Oberstleutnant Wilhelm Willemer (14 Jan 1942 - 30 Mar 1944)
Oberstleutnant Harald Helms (30 Mar 1944 - 24 Aug 1944)
Oberstleutnant Wilfried von Sobbe (5 Oct 1944 - 15 Oct 1944)
Oberstleutnant Fritz Borrmann (15 Oct 1944 - 1945)

Area of operations

Germany (Sept 1939 - May 1940)
Luxemburg, South Belgium and France (May 1940 - July 1941)
Eastern front, central sector (July 1941 - Apr 1942)
France (Apr 1942 - Feb 1943)
Eastern front, southern sector (Feb 1943 - Aug 1944)
Hungary (Oct 1944 - Feb 1945)
Czechoslovakia (Feb 1945 - May 1945)

Holders of high awards

Holders of the Commendation Certificate of the Commander-in-Chief of the Army (4)
- Bauer, Robert, 05.02.1945 (5186), Major, Kdr. Rgt.Gruppe Bauer
- Heimbächer, Jakob, 25.09.1944 (3981), Oberstleutnant, Kdr. Gren.Rgt. 88
- Hild, [first name not listed], 15.10.1941 (441), Unteroffizier, Inf.Rgt. 81
- Lemke, Dr. Werner, 27.06.1944 (3499), Stabsarzt, Btl. u. Regimentsarzt I./u. Gren.Rgt. 106
Holders of the Commendation Certificate of the Commander-in-Chief of the Army for Shooting Down Aircraft (2)
- Berghöfer, [first name not listed], 01.08.1944 (502), Unteroffizier, 2./Pi.Btl. 15
- Wickler, Heinrich, 01.11.1943 (414), Sanitäts-Oberfeldwebel, Stab/Art.Rgt. 16
Holders of the German Cross in Gold (56)
Holders of the German Cross in Silver (2)
- Breidenstein, Wilhelm, 08.07.1943, Major d.R., 15. Inf.Div.
- Bussebaum, Dr. Günter, 22.10.1943, Stabsarzt, San.Kp. 1/15
Holders of the Honor Roll Clasp of the Heer (13)
Holders of the Knight's Cross (30)
Unit-Level Commendation Certificate of the Commander-in-Chief of the Army for Shooting Down Aircraft (1)
- 3./Grenadier-Regiment 106
-- Date/Place of Downing: 07.11.1943 bei Wesselaja Dolina
-- Award Date: 01.02.1944 (443)

Order of battle (1939)

Infanterie-Regiment 81
Infanterie-Regiment 88
Infanterie-Regiment 106
Aufklärungs-Abteilung 15
Artillerie-Regiment 51 (2)
- I./Artillerie-Regiment 15
- II./Artillerie-Regiment 15
- III./Artillerie-Regiment 15
- I./Artillerie-Regiment 51
Beobachtungs-Abteilung 15 (3)
Pionier-Bataillon 15
Panzerabwehr-Abteilung 15
Nachrichten-Abteilung 15
Feldersatz-Bataillon 15
Versorgungseinheiten 15

Order of battle (1942)

Grenadier-Regiment 81
Grenadier-Regiment 88
Grenadier-Regiment 106
Radfahr-Abteilung 15
Artillerie-Regiment 15
- I. Abteilung
- II. Abteilung
- III. Abteilung
- I./Artillerie-Regiment 51
Pionier-Bataillon 15
Panzerjäger-Abteilung 15
Nachrichten-Abteilung 15
Feldersatz-Bataillon 15
Versorgungseinheiten 15

Order of battle (1943-1945)

Grenadier-Regiment 81
Grenadier-Regiment 88
Grenadier-Regiment 106
Füsilier-Bataillon 15
Artillerie-Regiment 15
- I. Abteilung
- II. Abteilung
- III. Abteilung
- I./Artillerie-Regiment 51 (4)
Pionier-Bataillon 15
Panzerjäger-Abteilung 15
Nachrichten-Abteilung 15
Feldersatz-Bataillon 15
Versorgungseinheiten 15

Notable members

Hans Otfried von Linstow (Active in the resistance against Hitler and executed after the failure of the July 20 Plot)

Insignia

The II Battalion of Infanterie-Regiment 81 was one of the battalions transferred as whole units from the Prussian Landespolizei into the Army in 1936 and was allowed to continue carrying their old Polizei flags.
The flag-bearer of this battalion wore the Landespolizei gorget instead of the normal Heer gorget.

de_pr-po
(Illustration courtesy of Flags Of The World)

Marder I of 15. Infanterie-Division in France 1942
marder1-15inf
(Courtesy of Bundesarchiv/Wikimedia, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 Germany)

 

Footnotes

1. Oberst Babel was reported missing in action on 5 September 1944. He was later declared dead on 31 December 1945. He was posthumously promoted to the rank of Generalmajor.
2. The staff of Artillerie-Regiment 51 was redesignated the staff of Artillerie-Regiment 15 on 21 January 1941. The I.-III. Abteilung had originally been components of the pre-war Artillerie-Regiment 15. The regiment retained I./Artillerie-Regiment 51 which had been assigned as the schwere Abteilung upon mobilization.
3. Released from the division in December 1939 and designated Heerestruppe.
4. Reformed as IV./Artillerie-Regiment 15 in August 1944.

Sources used

John R. Angolia & Adolf Schlicht - Uniforms & traditions of the German Army 1933-1945, Vol 3
Georg Tessin - Deutsche Verbände und Truppen 1918-1939
Wilhelm Willemer & Paul Zärban - Die 15. Infanterie Division im Zweiten Weltkrieg

Reference material on this unit

Wilhelm Willemer & Paul Zärban - Die 15. Infanterie Division im Zweiten Weltkrieg

Do you have any corrections or additions to the material presented on the site?
Please help us improve the site by sending them to us.