Generaloberst Herman Hoth

Generaloberst Herman Hoth


1 in stock

Original WW2 postcard of Oakleaves and Swords winner “Generaloberst Hoth” who was a “Panzer General”. The postcard is in very good condition. It is approx. 6 inches high by 4 inches across.

Hermann “Papa” Hoth (12 April 1885 – 25 January 1971) was an officer in the German military from 1903 to 1945. He attained the rank of Generaloberst during World War II. He fought in France, but is most noted for his later exploits as a panzer commander on the Eastern Front.

Hoth commanded the 3rd Panzer Group during Operation Barbarossa in 1941, and the 4th Panzer Army later during the Wehrmacht’s 1942 summer offensive. Following the encirclement of the 6th Army in Stalingrad in November 1942, Hoth commanded the panzer army during Operation Wintergewitter. After Stalingrad, Hoth was involved in the Kursk counter offensive in the summer of 1943 and the Battle of Kiev.

The Fourth Panzer Army under his command at Kursk was the largest tank formation ever assembled. Hoth was dismissed from command by Adolf Hitler in 1943, only to be reinstated for a short time during the last weeks of the war.

Hoth was promoted to Lieutenant-General and given command of the XV Motorised Corps from 10 November 1938, leading it in the invasion of Poland the following year. He was successful in the Western Offensive of spring 1940, and was promoted to full General on 19 July 1940.

In Operation Barbarossa in 1941, Hoth commanded the Third Panzer Group which captured Minsk and Vitebsk. In October he replaced General Carl-Heinrich von Stülpnagel as commander of the Seventeenth Army in Ukraine. As its commander he called upon his men to understand the need for “harsh punishment of Jewry”.His army was driven back by the Russian offensives of early 1942.

In June 1942, he took over from General Erich Höpner as commander of Fourth Panzer Army. As part of Operation Blue, the German offensive in southern Russia, the army reached the Don River at Voronezh. Hoth was then ordered to swing south to support the First Panzer Army’s own crossing of the Don, and the Sixth Army’s attempt to capture Stalingrad.

In November 1942, the Soviet winter counteroffensive smashed through the German lines and trapped the Sixth Army in Stalingrad. Hoth’s panzer army was the centerpiece of Operation Winter Storm, the attempt to relieve the Sixth Army, under the overall command of Field Marshal Erich von Manstein’s Army Group Don. The operation failed, as Soviet reinforcements and worsening weather ground down the German advance. On 25 December, the Soviets resumed their offensive, forcing the Germans back and sealing the fate of the Sixth Army.

In July 1943, Hoth commanded the Fourth Panzer Army in the Battle of Kursk. His divisions, now reinforced by the II SS Panzer Corps, made a significant penetration of the Soviet lines, before being brought to a halt at Prokhorovka. Manstein urged that the attack continue, but the slow progress of the German Ninth Army to the north of Kursk, heavy losses and the Allied invasion of Sicily meant that the operation was called off.

In the aftermath of Kursk, the Red Army mounted a series of successful offensives that crossed the Dnieper, retook Kiev and pushed the Germans out of eastern Ukraine. Despite his distinguished record, Hoth, now Generaloberst, was blamed by Hitler for part of the losses, and relieved of command. He was reassigned to the reserves in November.

In April 1945, he was recalled to active duty and assigned to command the defense of the Harz Mountains, a position he held until the end of the war.