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87th Infantry Division (87. Infanterie-Division)
Active 1914-1919
Country German Empire
Branch Army
Type Infantry
Size Approx. 12,500
Engagements World War I: Gorlice-Tarnów Offensive, Second Battle of the Marne

The 87th Infantry Division (87. Infanterie-Division) was a unit of the Imperial German Army in World War I. The division was formed in February 1915 as the provisional Dickhuth Corps (Korps Dickhuth), named after its commander, and became the 87th Infantry Division in August 1915.[1] The division was disbanded in 1919 during the demobilization of the German Army after World War I.

Combat chronicleEdit

The 87th Infantry Division initially served on the Eastern Front, fighting on the Polish frontier and in the Gorlice-Tarnów Offensive. It fought in the battle of Lake Njemen and the battle of Vilnius in September 1915. From October 1915 to September 1917, the division occupied the line between Lake Narač and Lake Drūkšiai. In November/December 1917, it occupied the line near Daugavpils. After the armistice on the Eastern Front, the division remained stationary on the armistice line until February and March 1918, when it was involved in fighting in the Baltic region. At the end of March 1918, the division was transferred to the Western Front, where it entered the line in the Champagne region. It later fought against the Allied counterattacks in the Second Battle of the Marne. The division remained on various parts of the front until the end of the war. Allied intelligence rated the division as fourth class.[1][2]

Order of battle on formationEdit

The 87th Infantry Division was formed as a square division. The order of battle of the division on August 20, 1915 was as follows:[3]

  • 173. Infanterie-Brigade
    • Infanterie-Regiment Nr. 345
    • Infanterie-Regiment Nr. 346
  • 179. Infanterie-Brigade
    • Infanterie-Regiment Nr. 347
    • Landsturm-Infanterie-Regiment Nr. 8
  • Kavallerie-Regiment Nr. 87
  • Feldartillerie-Regiment Nr. 87
  • 4.Kompanie/Pionier-Bataillon Nr. 26
  • 2.Garde-Landwehr-Pionier-Kompanie

Late-war order of battleEdit

The division underwent a number of organizational changes over the course of the war. It was triangularized in December 1917. Cavalry was reduced, artillery and signals commands were formed, and combat engineer support was expanded to a full pioneer battalion. The order of battle on February 24, 1918 was as follows:[4]

  • 179. Infanterie-Brigade
    • Infanterie-Regiment Nr. 345
    • Infanterie-Regiment Nr. 347
    • Reserve-Ersatz-Infanterie-Regiment Nr. 3
    • Radfahrer-Kompanie Nr. 156
  • 1.Eskadron/Grenadier-Regiment zu Pferde 3
  • Artillerie-Kommandeur 3
    • Feldartillerie-Regiment Nr. 38
  • Stab Pionier-Bataillon Nr. 87
    • 3. Landwehr-Kompanie/Pionier-Bataillon Nr. 6
    • 2. Ersatz-Kompanie/Pionier-Bataillon Nr. 25
    • Minenwerfer-Kompanie Nr. 87
  • Divisions-Nachrichten-Kommandeur 87

ReferencesEdit

  • 87. Infanterie-Division (Chronik 1915/1918) - Der erste Weltkrieg
  • Hermann Cron et al., Ruhmeshalle unserer alten Armee (Berlin, 1935)
  • Hermann Cron, Geschichte des deutschen Heeres im Weltkriege 1914-1918 (Berlin, 1937)
  • Günter Wegner, Stellenbesetzung der deutschen Heere 1825-1939. (Biblio Verlag, Osnabrück, 1993), Bd. 1
  • Histories of Two Hundred and Fifty-One Divisions of the German Army which Participated in the War (1914-1918), compiled from records of Intelligence section of the General Staff, American Expeditionary Forces, at General Headquarters, Chaumont, France 1919 (1920)

NotesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 87. Infanterie-Division (Chronik 1915/1918)
  2. Histories of Two Hundred and Fifty-One Divisions of the German Army which Participated in the War (1914-1918), compiled from records of Intelligence section of the General Staff, American Expeditionary Forces, at General Headquarters, Chaumont, France 1919 (1920), pp. 563-565.
  3. Hermann Cron et al., Ruhmeshalle unserer alten Armee (Berlin, 1935).
  4. Cron et al., Ruhmeshalle.


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