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The German Imperial Admiralty Staff (German language: Kaiserliche Admiralstab) was a military institution established in 1899 under the direct authority and command of the German Emperor, Kaiser Wilhelm II for managing the German Imperial Navy. The Staff continued until the end of the German Empire in 1918.

History[]

The German Imperial Naval High Command (Kaiserliches Oberkommando der Marine) was, on 14 March 1899, replaced by an Admiralty Staff (German language: Admiralstab) responsible for planning, officer training, and naval intelligence. In time of war the Admiralty Staff was to assume overall command of the Imperial Navy, although in peace-time it acted only in an advisory capacity. Direct control of the various elements of the fleet was subordinated to officers commanding those elements, accountable to the kaiser.[1]

This reorganization suited the Kaiser, who wanted to maintain direct control of his ships. A disadvantage was that it split apart the integrated military command structure, which before had balanced the importance of the navy within overall defense considerations. It suited Tirpitz, because it removed the influence of the admiralty staff from naval planning, but it left him the possibility, in wartime, to reorganise command around himself. Wilhelm II, however, never agreed to relinquish direct control of his fleet.[2]

Chiefs of the Admiralty Staff[]

(Chefs des Admiralstabs der Kaiserlichen Marine)

  • Admiral Felix von Bendemann (1848-1915) --- 14. März 1899 bis 31. Dez. 1899
  • Vice-Admiral Otto von Diederichs (1843-1918) --- 1. Jan. 1900 bis 19. Aug. 1902
  • Vice-Admiral Wilhelm Büchsel (1848-1920) --- 20. Aug. 1902 bis 28. Jan. 1908
  • Admiral Ferd. Graf von Baudissin (1852-1921) --- 29. Jan. 1908 bis 5. Sep. 1909
  • Admiral Max von Fischel (1850-1929) --- 6. Sep. 1909 bis 11. März 1911
  • Vice-Admiral August von Heeringen (1855-1927) --- 12. März 1911 bis 31. März 1913
  • Admiral Hugo von Pohl (1855-1916) --- 1. Apr. 1913 bis 1. Feb. 1915
  • Vice-Admiral Gustav Bachmann (1860-1943) --- 2. Feb. 1915 bis 3. Sep. 1915
  • Admiral Henning von Holtzendorff (1853-1919) --- 4. Sep. 1915 bis 10. Aug. 1918
  • Admiral Reinhard Scheer (1863-1928) --- 11. Aug. 1918 bis 14. Nov. 1918

Notes and references[]

  1. Herwig p.22
  2. Herwig p.22-23
  • Holger H. Herwig (1980). 'Luxury Fleet', The Imperial German Navy 1888-1918. London: The Ashfield Press. ISBN 0-948660-03-1. 

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