Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Chris,

Ludendorff was the 1. Generalquartiermeister, a position created in September 1916 initially just for him - in effect the Chief of Staff of the armies in the Field; Hindenburg being the defacto Commander-in-Chief. Gröner replaced him.

The Generalquartiermeister in wartime was the deputy Chief of Staff responsible for those matters not directly of an operational nature such as supply, rear area administration, railways, field post, medical and veterinary matters etc. Generalleutnant Hahndorff was the last holder of this appointment.

Regards

Glenn

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi,

so the 1. Generalquartiermeister and the generalguartiermeister both answered directly to Hindenburg?

Would it right to assume the the 1. was at OHL Hauptquartier and the normal Generalquartiermeister was at the Kaisers gr. Hauptquartier.... or were both at OHL Gr. Hauptquartier?

Thanks

Chris

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Chris,

the Generalquartiermeister was directly subordinate to the Chef des Generalstabes des Feldheeres (Hindenburg) as so presumably was co-located.

I think what confuses matters is that although Hindenburg was Chief of Staff of the Armies in the Field, he was in reality the commander-in Chief after 1916 and his Chief of Staff (Ludendorff) effectively became the Chief of Staff of the Armies in the Field although titled 1. Generalquartiermeister!!

Glenn

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Why confuse matters by insisting for oneself the title of 1 Generalquatiermeister? Seems very strange for a power staff officer and/or commander though I find Ludendorf to be a bit odd and self serving from whats I've read of this man.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Why confuse matters by insisting for oneself the title of 1 Generalquatiermeister? Seems very strange for a power staff officer and/or commander though I find Ludendorf to be a bit odd and self serving from whats I've read of this man.

You have to remember that in the Prussian Army, Generalquartiermeister was not traditionally merely an admin/logistics officer. It was originally a wartime title, given to General Theophil von Podbielski in the Austro-Prussian War and again in the Franco-Prussian War, when he was the right-hand man to the Chief of the General Staff Helmuth von Moltke the Elder. Of course, most of Podbielski's responsibilities were administrative and the like, freeing up Moltke to focus on operational matters.

After 1871, no one held the title until Alfred Graf Waldersee as the Elder Motlke's chief deputy from 1881 to 1888. When Graf Waldersee succeeded the Elder Moltke as Chief of the General Staff, no one held the title until 1896, when Franz Xaver von Oberhoffer became Generalquartiermeister. Oberhoffer remained Generalquartiermeister until his retirement in March 1902, when he was succeeded by Karl von Bülow. In January 1903, Bülow was named commander of III.Armeekorps, and there was again no Generalquartiermeister. Helmuth von Moltke the Younger received the title in 1904 as Alfred Graf von Schlieffen's chief deputy, and when he took over from Schlieffen in 1906, again there was no Generalquartiermeister.

On mobilization, Hermann von Stein, the commander of the 41.Division and earlier one of Moltke's Oberquartiermeisters, got the title. Over the next few months, as the field army experienced various shake-ups, the holder of the title changed rapidly. War Minister von Falkenhayn took the title in September 1914, but also succeeded Moltke as Chief of the General Staff. A few weeks later, Werner von Voigts-Rhetz, who had been chief of staff to the Generalquartiermeister (Stein and then Falkenhayn), took over. After Voigts-Rhetz died of a heart attack in November, Adolf Wild von Hohenborn, earlier head of the General Army Department and deputy War Minister under Falkenhayn, got the job. In January 1915, Wild von Hohenborn succeeded Falkenhayn as War Minister. It doesn't appear that anyone held the title in the field after that, though Wild von Hohenborn apparently continued in the job, as the War Ministry ran most of these support functions.

With the reorganization in 1916 when Hindenburg became Chief of the General Staff, it was thus natural for Ludendorff to take the title traditionally given to the principal deputy chief of the general staff, with the "1." to indicate he ranked ahead of Wild von Hohenborn. Viktor Hahndorff then got the Generalquartiermeister title. This mirrors somewhat the situation in the peacetime Army, when the Chief of the General Staff was assisted by several Oberquartiermeisters, with the senior one sometimes designated 1.Oberquartiermeister.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...