Memorials & Grave Sites

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General Eduard Dietl Airplane Crash Site Memorial

Dietl Memorial at crash site.

Houffalize Panther – Belgium

During the von Rundstedt attack, the Germans abandoned many vehicles along the road. The Panther Mark V tank belonged to the 116th Panzer Division, this one invaded Houffalize on December 19th 1944.

Laboe Naval Memorial

The Laboe Naval Memorial (aka Laboe Tower) is a memorial located in Laboe, near Kiel, in Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. Started in 1927 and completed in 1936, the monument originally memorialized the World War I war dead of the Kaiserliche Marine, with the Kriegsmarine dead of World War II being added after 1945. In 1954, it was rededicated to commemorate the sailors of all nationalities who died during the World Wars.

The monument consists of a 72 m (236 ft) high tower topped by an observation deck. The deck stands a total 85 m (279 ft) above sea level. A hall of remembrance and World War II-era German submarine U-995, which houses a technical museum, both sit near the foot of the monument, and the site is a popular tourist venue. U-995 is the world’s only remaining Type VII U-boat.

The tower was designed by architect Gustav August Munzer, who stated that the form was not meant to represent anything specific but was to inspire positive feelings in those who look at it. It is frequently associated with the stem of a viking ship or the conning tower of a submarine.

The Monument to Italian Sailors in Brindisi, Italy (begun in 1932, dedicated in 1933) bears a resemblance to the Laboe tower.

Recogne German War Cemetery – Recogne, Belgium

Recogne German war cemetery is located in the hamlet of Recogne near the municipality of Bastogne, Belgium. It contains the graves of 6,807 German soldiers of the Second World War. The cemetery is situated to the east of the hamlet, and to the south of the road to Foy. It is maintained by the German War Graves Commission.

In the last winter of the Second World War, the Germans launched the Ardennes Offensive. They surrounded Bastogne but were unable to take the city. After heavy fighting, the Americans reconquered the area in January 1945. In February 1945, they established a cemetery in Recogne, where some 2,700 Americans and 3,000 Germans were buried. After the war in 1945-1946, the remains of the fallen American soldiers were transferred to Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery and Memorial. In the meantime, the Belgian authorities started clearing all German cemeteries in the area, and transferred all German graves either to Recogne or to Lommel German war cemetery. Therefore, the cemetery also contains graves of Germans killed in 1940 or during the occupation. In the 1950s the cemetery was transferred to the German War Graves Commission.

Tannenberg Memorial

The Tannenberg Memorial commemorated fallen German soldiers of the second Battle of Tannenberg in 1914, which was named after the medieval battle of the same name. The victorious German commander, Paul von Hindenburg, became a national hero, and was later elected Reichspräsident.

Dedicated by Hindenburg on the 10th anniversary of the battle of Tannenberg in 1924 near Hohenstein (Ostpreußen) (now Olsztynek, Poland), the structure, which was financed by donations, was built by the architects Johannes and Walter Krüger of Berlin and completed in 1927. The octagonal layout with eight towers, each 67 feet (20 m) high, was influenced by Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II’s Castel del Monte, and by Stonehenge.

When Reichspräsident Hindenburg died in 1934, his coffin and that of his wife, who had died in 1921, were placed there despite his wishes to be buried at his family plot in Hanover. Adolf Hitler ordered the monument to be redesigned and renamed “Reichsehrenmal Tannenberg”. As the Red Army approached in 1945, German troops removed Hindenburg’s remains and partly demolished key structures. In the 1950s, Polish authorities razed the site, leaving few traces.

Assorted Gallery of Photos

German Military History with a focus on World War 2 History including other areas of German History