Generalmajor Paul Goerbig
PW NO: 939908
CAPTURED: Bad Grund
DATE: 11 April 1945
DATE OF BIRTH: 23
PLACE OF BIRTH: Saarbrcken
DATE OF DEATH: 17 August 1974
PLACE OF DEATH: Hamburg
OCCUPATION: Regular Soldier
NEXT OF KIN:
Generalmajor Paul Goerbig was an early member of the German Motorized
and Panzer Troops. After seeing
motorized troop service in the 1920s and early 1930s, he briefly separated
from the Army to serve at the clandestine German Panzer Command in the USSR.
As the Treaty of Versailles that formally ended World War I had forbidden
Germany to possess tanks, the Germans signed a secret treaty with the USSR
and established an armored fighting vehicle testing station at Kazan. Here
the Germans were able to test new tanks and operational concepts far from
the Allied Control Commission, the agency responsible for monitoring Germany’s
compliance with treaty obligations.
his return to Germany, Goerbig was reactivated in the Army and served successively
on the staffs of the Inspectorate of Motorized Troops and the newly created
Command of Panzer Troops. Both organizations were headed by General der
Panzertruppe Oswald Lutz who, together with his highly talented Chief of
Staff, Oberstleutnant (later Generaloberst) Heinz Guderian, helped create
the operational art of modern armored warfare universally known as the “Blitzkrieg”
(Lightning War). Influenced by leading British tank warfare theorists, both
Lutz and Guderian developed the concept of grouping tanks into Armored (Panzer)
Divisions. Guderian opined that tanks, teamed with motorized infantry and
artillery, would operate as a “combined arms team” to deliver fast and decisive
blows to an enemy’s flanks and rear as well as achieving decisive breakthroughs.
Although these theories remained much at odds with the traditional military
thinking of the day, Adolf Hitler believed in the concept and gave his support
to the creation of the German Panzer Arm.
Volunteer: 8 August 1914
5 December 1914
27 January 1915
18 April 1915 (without Patent)
22 June 1918 (Patent 22 May 1915; later changed to 1 September 1915)
31 July 1925 (RDA 1 April 1925)
1 February 1930
1 November 1935
1 October 1938
1 September 1941 (RDA later changed to 1 October 1940)
1 April 1944
Commands & Assignments:
August 1914: Entered Army service as a War Volunteer, later Fahnenjunker
in the Replacement Battalion of Pioneer Regiment 30.
October 1914: Allocated to Pioneer Regiment 30 in the field.
February 1915: Wounded/in hospital.
November 1915: Allocated to Replacement Battalion of Pioneer Regiment
April 1916: Platoon Leader in Mortar Company 19.
February 1917: Adjutant of the Inspector of Mortar Services 2.
October 1918: Transferred to the 5th Mortar Replacement Battalion.
November 1918: Company Leader in Mortar Battalion 23.
January 1919: Adjutant of the Assault Detachment “Henschkel.”
February 1919: Court Officer of the 5th Mortar Replacement Battalion,
April 1919: Allocated to the Assault Battalion “Henschkel.”
April 1919: Leader of the 1st Mortar Company of the Assault Battalion
October 1919: Transferred to the Assault Battalion “Schmidt”/Reichswehr
January 1920: Transferred to Reichswehr Infantry Regiment 6.
May 1920: Transferred to the Mortar Company of Reichswehr Rifle Regiment
October 1920: Transferred to the Mortar Company of Infantry Regiment 2.
February 1921-16 April 1921: Detached to the Mortar Training Course in
November 1922: Transferred to Infantry Regiment 16.
June 1923-31 March 1924: Detached to the Inspectorate of Weapons and Equipment/Reich
October 1924: Transferred to Motorized Battalion 5.
April 1926-15 August 1926: Detached to the Officers Weapons School Course
June 1928: Transferred to the Motorized Personnel of Medical Battalion
March 1930: Detached to Motorized Battalion 3/Panzer-Special Command Döberitz.
[Major Heinz Guderian commanded Motorized Battalion 3 from 1 February
1930-1 October 1931.]
February 1931: Separated from the Army and detached to the clandestine
Panzer Command in the USSR.
January 1932: Reactivated in the Army and assigned to the staff of Motorized
August 1934: Detached to staff of the Inspectorate of Motorized Troops
headed by Generalleutnant Oswald Lutz.
October 1935: Detached to the staff of the Command of Panzer Troops headed
by General der Panzertruppe Oswald Lutz (Generalleutnant Heinz Guderian
from 4 February 1938).
April 1938: Transferred to the General Staff of the XVI Army Corps (Motorized).
November 1938: Commander of Panzer Battalion 67 of the 3rd Light Division,
redesignated and reformed as the 8th Panzer Division on 16 October 1939.
[Commanded by General der Panzertruppe Adolf Kuntzen, the 3rd Light Division
took part in the invasion of Poland in September 1939.]
November 1939: Chief of the Department of Troop Training Areas in the
General Army Officer/Army High Command.
April 1943: Führer Reserve in the Army High Command.
April 1943: Detached to the Commanding General of Security Troops and
Commander in Army Area South.
May 1943: Field Commandant 509.
June 1944: Führer Reserve in the Army High Command.
July 1944: Detached to the Commandant of Troop Training Area Bergen for
August 1944: Commandant of Troop Training Area Wischau near Brünn.
October 1944: Führer Reserve in the Army High Command.
Commandant of Troop Training Area Sennelager.
April 1945: Commander of Battle Group Goerbig, also Battle Group Senne
and then named Division Goerbig (formed from troops at Sennelager).
April 1945: Taken prisoner by U.S. troops near Bad Grund.
April 1945-1947: Prisoner of war.
- 29 April 1945 transferred to Trent Park Camp 11 sorting camp.
Decorations & Awards:
NOTE: Goerbig’s World War II decorations,
if any, are not known. However, he was not a recipient of any high decorations
such as the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross, Knight's Cross of the War
Merit Cross with Swords, or the German Cross in Gold/Silver.