German Cavalry and the 20 July Plot to Kill Hitler

bundesarchiv_bild_183-c0716-0046-003__claus_schenk_graf_v__stauffenbergWanted to crosspost this picture from the militaryhorse discussion forum showing Von Stauffenberg mounted.  He was an excellent rider and one of the best in the German army.  See this short biography which has some interesting tidbits on his career.  The intersting thing that is pointed out in the discussion of the movie Valkyrie in the forum that at least 5 of the plotters were from the same cavalry regiment, Reiter Regiment 17, in Bamberg.  Anyway…I love the picture.  Beautiful example of the classic German trakenier cavalry mount.  Also, there are some other interesting pictures of Stauffenberg in a tribute online at the German Stern Magaine.

boeslager     philipp-boeselager-_667558e

Two other very important plotters who were also cavalry officers were the brother Georg (left) and Philipp (right) von Boeselager.  Georg von Boeselager, in addition to being a player in the anti-Hitler army movement, was one of the leaders who reintroduced horse cavalry into the German army after it was abondoned in 1942.  Georg was a highly decorated colonel, winner of the knights cross with oak leaf and swords, who was killed in action on the Russian front in 1944.  Philipp did not have as much front experience as his brother but was one of the few plotters who was not found out.  He survived the war and helped organized the Bundeswehr after the war.  I had the honor of meeting Philipp Boeslager at the 1985 NATO reconnaissance competition named for his brother Georg.  Philipp passed away in May 2008. 

An intersting note is that one of Philipp’s daughters Maria-Felicitas Baronin von Boeselager, married into the Stauffenberg family, marrying Patrick von Stauffenberg.  Though I haven’t figured out the exact connection, I suspect Patrick is a son of  Claus’s brother Alexander.  Thus bringing two very prominent anti-Hitler cavalry families full circle.

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5 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Seems I have finally stumbled upon someone else that was present at the 1985 Boeselager Cup. What a wonderful time of comraderie with other horse soldiers like yourself. (Although my horse was of the IRON variety.)

    Before we began our months of training for the Cup, we were taught the importance of German soldiers like Colonel Boeselager and what the difference was between the Wehrmacht and the SS in the 1940’s.

    I was a young, 19 year old scout from the American 11th ACR, and I have many fond memories of the tough competition and the brotherhood that I shared with my German, Dutch, British, and other NATO friends.

    Thanks for an interesting blog.

  2. I have been interested in the history of WW2 due to my father since I was a child.
    Though politically I am a leftist, I am interested in power and ability of the wehrmacht, and unfortunately I am just told about the strong panzer division of germans.
    Now will you write about the german cavalry’s power at the time ??? Thanks……….

  3. Other executed conspirators in 17. Reiter included Rudolph von Marogna-Redwitz, Ludwig von Leonrod, Karl von Thuengen, Roland von Hoesslin. Others in the cavalry included General Hoepner and Major von Gersdorff among others. The cavalry was well represented in the july plot.

    Colin

  4. you know i was just thinking back to my military days in Germany, 3/11 ACR Badhersfeld, Germany 1979 to 1982. i too was on the Boeselager team of 1980/ 1981 was not an easy program, tough as hell, but damn good memories. I was 18 years old full of piss and viniger. afterthat they assigned us for LRRP training. those years will always be in my mind.

  5. Was with the 3/2A.C.R. Amberg,Germ. 1981-1984 Boeslager team. Great training. very tuff. Thanks for your leadership Lance, you ROCK!


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