German Orders of Battle for September 1, 1939

German Panzer Division after the first border fights in Poland

German Panzer Division after the first border fights on September 1, 1939. In front a Panzer I, followed by Panzer II tanks.

Orders of Battle, strength of the Army divisions and tank inventory of the Wehrmacht at time of campaign in Poland

The German Orders of Battle at the time of the campaign in Poland and the resulting outbreak of World War 2.
In 1939 Germany was divided into 13 geographical districts known as Wehrkreise, each of which was a depot for a number of divisions and formed a ‘home-base’ for their regiments. On moblisation there were 51 active divisions: 39 infantry divisions (including four motorised), 5 panzer divisions (plus a panzer brigade), 4 light divisions and 3 mountain divisions. When Germany mobilised, the system was rapidly expanded to include 16 reserve, 21 territorial (Landwehr) and 14 training divisions (Ergänzungsdivisionen).
For the Polish Campaign the OKW created two army groups (deployment see map further down): Army Group North (divided into two armies each of three corps) consisted of one panzer division, one mixed Army/SS panzer division, two motorised divisions, 16 infantry divisions and a cavalry brigade. Army Group South (10 corps in three armies) consisted of four panzer divisions, four light, 21 infantry and three mountain divisions. Two of XVII Army Corp’s infantry divisions were Slovak, while attached to XIII Army Corps was the motorised SS infantry regiment Leibstandarte (Bodyguard Regiment) Adolf Hitler.


Schematic layout of the German Wehrmacht from September 1, 1939
Army Group Army Corps Divisions
Army Group South (v.Rundstedt) in Silesia, Czech and Slovakia 14 Army (List) in Czech and Slovakia VIII, XVII, XVIII, XXIII Corps, Border Guard Command 3 2, 5 Panzer
4 Light
7, 8, 28, 44, 45, 239 Infantry
1, 2, 3 Mountain
Border Guard unit 30
10 Army (v.Reichenau) in Lower Silesia XIV, XV, XVI Panzer-Corps, IV, VII XI Corps 1, 4 Panzer
1, 2, 3 Light
13, 29 motorised Infantry
4, 14, 18, 19, 27, 31, 46, 62, 68, 213, 221 Infantry
8 Army (Blaskowitz) in Upper Silesia X, XIII Corps, Border Guard Commands 13, 14 10, 17, 24, 30 Infantry
Army Group North (v.Bock) in Pommerania and East Prussia 4 Army (v.Kluge) in Pommerania XIX Panzer-Corps, II, III Corps, Border Guard Commands 1, 2, 12 3, 10 Panzer
2, 20 motorised Infantry
3, 23, 32, 50, 73, 207, 208, 218 Infantry
3 Army (v.Küchler) in East Prussia I, XXI Corps, Gen.-Com. Wodrig, Fortress-Com. Königsberg and Lötzen, Army Group Danzig and Group 15 Panzer Unit East Prussia (4 Panzer Brigade)
1 Cavalry Brigade
1, 11, 12, 21, 61, 206, 217, 228 Infantry
Army Group C (v.Leeb) in West Germany (Reserves: 22, 87, 209, 216, 223, 225, 251, 253, 254 Infantry) 5 Army VI Corps, General Com. Eifel 16, 26, 69, 86, 211, 227 Infantry, Forttress troops Aachen, Border Guard troops Trier
1 Army IX, XII Corps, General-Com. Saarpfalz 6, 9, 15, 25, 33, 34, 36, 52, 71, 79, 214, 231, 246 Infantry, Combat group St Wendel
7 Army Border Guard Com. Oberrhein 5, 35, 78, 212, 215 Infantry, 14 Landwehr (Homeguard)
Reserves subordinated to OKW 56, 57, 58, 75, 76, 252, 257, 258, 260, 262, 263, 267 Infantry
Reserve Army and Commander of the Army Armament 4 Infantry divisions in preparation
Location of Polish and German Armies on September 1, 1939

Location of Polish and German Armies on September 1, 1939

Approximate organization strength of the major types of the German Army divisions in 1939
Infantry Division motorised Infantry Division Mountain Division Panzer Division Light Division
Units total 87 4 3 5 4
Officers 500 500 ? 400 400
Officials 100 100 ? 100 100
NCOs 2,500 2,500 ? 2,000 1,600
Privates 13,400 13,400 ? 9,300 8,700
Total men 16,500 (35 divisions of 1st wave 18,000) 16,500 ? 11,.800 10,800
Infantry Regiments 3 with 3,000 men each 3 with 3,000 men each 2 with 3,000 men each 2 with 3,000 men each 1 or 2 with 2,000 or 3,000 men each
Machine guns MG34 500 500 220 220 460
Mortars 140 (54 x 8,1cm, others 5cm) 140 (54 x 8,1cm, others 5cm) 90 50 60
Infantry guns 25 (6 x 15cm, others 7,5cm) 25 (6 x 15cm, others 7,5cm) 14 (2 x 15cm, 12 x 7,5cm) 10 10
AT 3,7 cm PAK 36 75 75 48 (6 x 4,7cm) 50 50
Howitzers and guns 48 (12 x 15cm, others 10,5cm leFH ) 48 (12 x 15cm, others 10,5cm leFH) 32 (16 x 7,5cm, 8 x 10,5cm leFH, 8 x 15cm) 28 24 (10,5cm leFH)
AA 20mm Flak 12 12 12 12 12
Armored Cars 3 30 - 100 100
Tanks - - - 324 86
Trucks 500 1.700 - 1,400 1,400
Cars 400 1,000 - 560 600
Motorcycles 500 1,300 - 1,300 1,100
Sidecars 200 600 - 700 600
Horses 5,000 - ? - -
Horse-drawn carriages 1,000 - ? - -
Inventory of armored fighting vehicles on September 1, 1939:
Armored fighting vehicles Inventory
Panzer I 1,445
Panzer II 1,223
Panzer II(flamethrower) 3
Panzer III 98
Panzer IV 211
Armoured Command Vehicles 215
Assault gun StuG III 5
Panzer 35(t) 219
Panzer 38(t) 59
TOTAL 3,478

German Forces total:
3,706,104 men (103 divisions), 3,478 tanks, over 7,000 guns
4,093 planes (inc. 1,176 bombers, 1,179 fighters, 335 dive-bombers)
2 old battleships, 2 battlecruisers, 3 pocket battleships, 8 cruisers, 22 destroyers, 56 submarines

Call of War
Related Reports:
Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply