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German Armour

The German Armour section will be displaying models of all types of WW2 German tanks and assault guns.

A Panzer Division was an armored division in the army and air force branches of the Wehrmacht and the Waffen-SS of Nazi Germany during World War II. The panzer divisions were the key element of German success in the Blitzkrieg operations of the early years of the war.

A panzer division was a combined arms formation, having both tanks and infantry as organic components, along with the usual assets of artillery, anti-aircraft, signals, etc.

Heinz Guderian first proposed the formation of panzer units larger than a regiment, but this was rejected by the inspector of motorized troops Otto von Stuelpnagel. After his replacement by Oswald Lutz, Guderian’s mentor, the idea gained more support in the Wehrmacht, and after 1933 was also supported by Adolf Hitler. On 15 October 1935 the first three panzer divisions were formed. The 1st Panzer Division was formed in Weimar and commanded by Maximilian von Weichs, the 2nd was formed in Würzburg and commanded by Guderian and the 3rd was formed in Berlin and commanded by Ernst Feßmann.

Most other armies of the era organized their tanks into “tank brigades” requiring additional infantry and artillery support. Panzer divisions had their own organic infantry and artillery support. This led to a change in operational doctrine: instead of the tanks supporting operations by other arms, the tanks led operations, with other arms supporting them. Since the panzer divisions had the supporting arms included, they could operate independently from other units.

This site is intended for those of us whose interest in the Third Reich is purely historical.

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