Friedrich Hossbach

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Friedrich Hossbach (22 November 1894 – 10 September 1980) was a German staff officer in the Wehrmacht who, in 1937, was the military adjutant to Adolf Hitler. Hossbach created the document which later became known as the Hossbach Memorandum.

Friedrich Hossbach
Major Friedrich Hoßbach (cropped).jpg
Hossbach in 1934
Born(1894-11-22)22 November 1894
Unna, German Empire
Died10 September 1980(1980-09-10) (aged 85)
Göttingen, West Germany
Allegiance German Empire
 Weimar Republic
 Nazi Germany
Years of service1913–45
RankGeneral of the Infantry
Commands held82nd Infantry Division
LVI Panzer Corps
4th Army
Battles/warsWorld War I World War II
AwardsKnight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves


Hossbach created the document which later became known as the Hossbach Memorandum. This was a report of a meeting held on 5 November 1937 between Hitler and Feldmarschall von Blomberg, General von Fritsch, Admiral Dr. Raeder, Generaloberst Hermann Göring, Baron von Neurath and Hossbach. His account was found among the Nuremberg papers, where it was an important piece of evidence.[1]

In early 1938, Hossbach was present when Hitler was presented by Goering with a file purporting to show that General von Fritsch, the Commander-in-Chief of the Army, was guilty of homosexual practices. In defiance of Hitler's orders, Hossbach took the file to Fritsch to warn him of the accusations he was about to face. Fritsch gave his word as an officer that the charges were untrue, and Hossbach passed this message back to Hitler. This did not, as it might have, cost Hossbach his life, though he was dismissed from his post as Hitler's adjutant two days later.[2]

Hossbach was restored to the general staff in 1939 and promoted to major general on the 1st of March 1942. Exactly 5 months later he was promoted again to lieutenant general and his last promotion happened on 1 November 1943, where he became general of infantry and was given command of the 16th Panzer Corp. He spent the next 2 years on the Russian front, taking over as commander of the 4th Army on 28 January 1945, only to be dismissed two days later for defying Hitlers orders and withdrawing his troops from East Prussia in fear of a second Stalingrad.[3]




  1. ^ Documents of German Foreign Policy, I, pp. 29-39
  2. ^ William Shirer, The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich p. 315
  3. ^ Who's who in Nazi Germany p. 126
  4. ^ a b c Thomas 1997, p. 302.


  • Jones, Michael (2011) "Total War. From Stalingrad to Berlin". John Murray, London. ISBN 978 1 8485 4231 0
  • Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000) [1986]. Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939–1945 — Die Inhaber der höchsten Auszeichnung des Zweiten Weltkrieges aller Wehrmachtteile [The Bearers of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross 1939–1945 — The Owners of the Highest Award of the Second World War of all Wehrmacht Branches] (in German). Friedberg, Germany: Podzun-Pallas. ISBN 978-3-7909-0284-6.
  • Thomas, Franz (1997). Die Eichenlaubträger 1939–1945 Band 1: A–K [The Oak Leaves Bearers 1939–1945 Volume 1: A–K] (in German). Osnabrück, Germany: Biblio-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-7648-2299-6.
  • Who's Who in Nazi Germany. Routledge, 1995. ISBN 0-415-12723-8
Military offices
Preceded by
Generalmajor Gerhard Berthold
Commander of 31. Infanterie-Division
20 January 1942 – 24 February 1942
Succeeded by
Generalleutnant Kurt Pflieger
Preceded by
Generalleutnant Josef Lehmann
Commander of 82. Infanterie-Division
1 April 1942 – 6 July 1942
Succeeded by
Generalleutnant Alfred Bäntsch
Preceded by
Oberst Hermann Flörke
Commander of 31. Infanterie-Division
15 May 1943 – 2 August 1943
Succeeded by
Oberst Kurt Moehring
Preceded by
General der Panzertruppe Ferdinand Schaal
Commander of LVI Panzer Corps
1 August 1943 – 14 November 1943
Succeeded by
General der Infanterie Anton Grasser
Preceded by
General der Infanterie Anton Grasser
Commander of LVI Panzer Corps
9 December 1943 – 14 June 1944
Succeeded by
General der Infanterie Johannes Block
Preceded by
General der Infantrie Kurt von Tippelskirch
Commander of 4. Armee
18 July 1944 – 29 January 1945
Succeeded by
General der Infantrie Friedrich-Wilhelm Müller