GREATER GERMAN REICH
 


 

COMMAND FLAGS & PENNANTS OF THE ARMY  •  1933-45
 

Image Added July 2010

Command Pennant of the Großdeutschland Division
 

Notes
 

The German Army's World War II system of command flags and pennants was developed in the late 1920s, with additions and modifications being made as required. For the most part they were used as car flags and as marker flags for headquarters.

The Chief of the Army Command (Commander-in-Chief of the Army from 1935) had a flag with a red frame and a white field bearing the traditional Iron Cross; the design was modified when the title was changed. In 1941, Hitler assumed personal command of the Army and this flag became obsolete. In 1944, a flag similar to the 1931-35 design, but with Nazi eagles in the corners and a white swastika on the Iron Cross, was adopted for the Chief of the Army High Command (the wartime title for the Chief of the Great General Staff). A distinctive flag for Army field marshals was adopted in 1940 after several generals were promoted to that rank. Military governors of occupied territories also had a distinguishing flag.

The flags for higher headquarters were identical to those specified in the Army's 1905 Field Service Regulations. In 1939 an additional flag was introduced for army groups, similar to the flag for armies except for a white-red frame. The flag for panzer groups was adopted in 1940 but abolished in 1941 when these formations were upgraded to army status, e.g. Fourth Panzer Group became Fourth Panzer Army. Thereafter they used the army flag.

Regiments had rectangular flags with a field in the arm-of-service color (Waffenfarbe), divided by a broad horizontal black stripe. Battalions had triangular pennants of the same pattern. Engineer units had a white stripe, since the engineer Waffenfarbe was black. For company-sized units, a triangular pennant with a vertical stripe was used. Usually there were no distinguishing insignia added to these flags but exceptions existed, e.g. the pennant of the Großdeutschland Division, which bore the division's monogram in black on the white stripe.

All these flags were abolished in 1945 when the Army was disbanded after Germany's surrender, but in the 1950's, the newly organized West German Bundesheer adopted a similar system of flags and pennants that is still in use.

Flag Proportions: High command and higher headquarters flags were made square. Other flags and pennants were made in 2:3 proportions.
 


 

HIGH COMMAND

 

CHIEF OF THE ARMY COMMAND  •  Chef der Heeresleitung  •  1931-35

 

COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF OF THE ARMY
Oberbefehlshaber des Heeres  •  1935-41

 

CHIEF OF THE ARMY HIGH COMMAND
Chef der Oberkommando des Heeres  •  1944-45

 

FIELD MARSHAL  •  Generalfeldmarschal 

 

MILITARY GOVERNOR  •  Militarbefehlshaber

 

HIGHER HEADQUARTERS

 

ARMY GROUP  •  Heeresgruppe  •  1939-45

 

ARMY  •  Armee  •  1935-45

 

PANZER GROUP  •  Panzergruppe  •  1940-41

 

CORPS  •  Korps

 

 DIVISION  •  Division

 

Panzergrenadier-Division Großdeutschland

 

REGIMENTS

 

INFANTRY & GRENADIER REGIMENTS  •  Infanterie und Grenadier Regimenter

 

RIFLE & MOUNTAIN REGIMENTS
Jäger und Gebirgsjäger Regimenter

 

ARMORED INFANTRY REGIMENT
 Panzergrenadier-Regiment

 

TANK REGIMENT  •  Panzer-Regiment

 

CAVALRY REGIMENT  •  Reiter-Regiment

 

ARTILLERY REGIMENT  •  Artillerie-Regiment

 

BATTALIONS

 

CAVALRY (Reiter) SQUADRON
RECONNAISSANCE (Aufklärungs) BATTALION

 

 TANK (Panzer) BATTALION
ANTITANK (Panzerjäger) BATTALION

 

ARTILLERY (Artillerie) BATTALION
ASSAULT GUN (Sturmgeschütz) BATTALION

 

COMBAT ENGINEER (Pioniere) BATTALION
 

 

COMPANIES

 

MILITARY POLICE (Feldgendarmerie) COMPANY
 

 

SIGNALS (Nachrichtentruppen) COMPANY
 



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