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Ferdinand Schörner file photo [27700]

Ferdinand Schörner

Given NameFerdinand
Born12 Jun 1892
Died2 Jul 1973


ww2dbaseFerdinand Schörner was born in München (English: Munich), Germany in 1892. He participated in WW2 as a junior officer and had won the Pour le Mérite award for bravery in the 1917 Battle of Caporetto. During the inter-war years, he remained in the German Army. He commanded the 98th Mountain Regiment during the Invasion of Poland in Sep 1939, then commanded the 6th Mountain Division during the German campaign in the Balkan Peninsula in 1941; for his role in breaching the Greek Metaxas Line, he was awarded the Knight's Cross award. Again with the 6th Mountain Division, he participated in the invasion of Soviet Union. In Jan 1942, he was promoted to the rank of general of mountain troops (General der Gebirgstruppe) and was given command of XIX Mountain Corps. In this role, he participated in the failed attack on Murmansk, Russia. Between Nov 1943 and Jan 1944, he led XXXX Panzer Corps. In Mar 1944, he was made the commanding officer of Army Group A. In May 1944, he was made the commanding officer of Army Group South Ukraine; while in this role, the port city of Sevastopol on the Krym (English: Crimea) peninsula was lost. In Apr 1944, he was promoted to the rank of colonel general (Generaloberst). In Jul 1944, he was made the commanding officer of Army Group North (later Army Group Courland). In Jan 1945, he was made the commanding officer of Army Group Center. In this role, he gave the harsh order that all soldiers not fighting on the front lines without explicit written orders would be hanged. In Apr 1945, he was promoted to the rank of field marshal. Later in the same month, he was made the Commander-in-Chief of the German Army according to the last testament of Adolf Hitler. Unwilling to surrender to the Soviets, he led a small formation fighting through Soviet lines toward Czechoslovakia. He abandoned his position in mid-May and, in civilian clothes after having destroyed his uniform, surrendered to the Americans in Austria on 18 May 1945. In Aug 1951, he was arrested by the Soviet authorities on charges of war crimes. In Feb 1952, the Military Board of the Soviet Supreme Court sentenced him to a 25-year prison term, but two months later it was reduced by the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet to 12.5 years. In Dec 1954, he was turned over to East Germany. In 1958, he was released from East German captivity. As he traveled to West Germany, he was once again arrested, this time by West German authorities, for his 1945 orders that led to the death of many uniformed Germans who were caught behind the front lines, resulting in them being killed by their own countrymen. Schörner was found guilty and was given a 4.5-year prison sentence. He served the sentence between 1959 and 1964. Upon his release, he lived in his hometown of München and was the last German field marshal to passed away in 1973.

ww2dbaseSource: Wikipedia

Last Major Revision: Jul 2018

Ferdinand Schörner Timeline

12 Jun 1892 
22 Dec 1914 
20 Apr 1916 
27 Jan 1917 
24 Oct 1917 
5 Dec 1917 
12 Sep 1939 
20 Sep 1939 
20 Apr 1941 
1 Jul 1942 
20 Aug 1942 
30 Jan 1943 
17 Feb 1944 
28 Aug 1944 
1 Jan 1945 
4 Apr 1945 
30 Apr 1945 
2 May 1945 
8 May 1945 
18 May 1945 
2 Jul 1973 


Portrait of Lieutenant Ferdinand Schörner, 1918; note Pour le Mérite medalFerdinand Schörner in Bulgaria, Mar 1941
See all 7 photographs of Ferdinand Schörner

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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Anonymous says:
24 Jul 2018 10:15:09 AM

He was awarded the Pour Le Merite as a junior officer in WWI, not [email protected]

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More on Ferdinand Schörner
Event(s) Participated:
» Invasion of Poland
» Balkans Campaign
» Operation Barbarossa
» Operation Silver Fox
» Silesian Offensive and the Siege of Breslau

Ferdinand Schörner Photo Gallery
Portrait of Lieutenant Ferdinand Schörner, 1918; note Pour le Mérite medalFerdinand Schörner in Bulgaria, Mar 1941
See all 7 photographs of Ferdinand Schörner

Famous WW2 Quote
"Among the men who fought on Iwo Jima, uncommon valor was a common virtue."

Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, 16 Mar 1945