SOME OF THE PRISONERS
3rd March 1943
The metal Edelweiss flower pinned to the side of his mountain cap. This
was worn in conjunction with the Edelweiss arm patch by all German mountain
infantry troops. (See pictures below)
Böhme’s prisoner of war photograph from the Public Relations Photo Section,
Office of the Chief of Counsel for War Crimes, Nürnberg, Germany
NAME: General der
Gebirgstruppe Franz Friedrich Böhme
PW NO: B560393
RANK: General der Gebirgstruppe
DATE: 16 Oct 1945
OF BIRTH: 15 April 1885
PLACE OF BIRTH: Zeltweg/Kreis Judenburg/Steiermark/Austria
DATE OF DEATH: 29 May 1947 (committed suicide in prison)
PLACE OF DEATH: Nürnberg, Germany
RELIGION: Roman Catholic
OCCUPATION: Regular Soldier
HEIGHT: 5’ 10 ½”
WEIGHT: 176 lbs.
HAIR COLOUR: Grey
EYE COLOUR: Blue-Grey
OF KIN: British Zone of Austria
Parents: Ernst Friedrich and Maria Ludmilla (née Stremayr)
Böhme, died 1902 and 1903 respectively in Leoben, Steiermark.
Wife: Married Romana Maria Hüller von Hüllenried
(daughter of Generalmajor Karl Rudolf Hüller von Hüllenried) on 29 June 1929
Brother: Ernst Böhme, State Councillor in Bruck am Mur.
18 August 1904
1 November 1905
1 November 1911
1 May 1915
(Titel): 1 July 1920
(Titel): 8 July 1921 – with effect from 1 January 1921
30 December 1926
25 September 1929 – with effect from 1 October 1929
24 December 1935
in the German Army: 25 July 1938 – RDA 1 April 1938 (23); RDA later changed
to 1 April 1938 (21b)
1 June 1939 (7)
der Infanterie: 1 August 1940 (4)
General der Gebirgstruppe: 23 March 1944 – RDA 1 August 1940 (4)
Attended four classes at the Volksschule (Elementary School) in Villach
Attended four classes at Gymnasium (High School) in Villach (Kärnten)
and Leoben (Steiermark).
October 1900-18 August 1904: Zögling [Cadet] in the Infantry Cadet School
in Libenau near Graz.
August 1904: Entered the Austro-Hungarian Army as a Kadett-Offiziersstellvertreter
[Cadet Deputy Officer] and Platoon Commander in Infanterieregiment von
October 1910: Instruction Officer at the One-Year Volunteer School of
Infantry Regiment 95, Lemberg.
October 1911: Assigned to the War School in Wien.
August 1912: Detached for one month from the War School for troop service
in Feldkanonenregiment Nr.14.
August 1913: Detached for1½ months from the War School for troop service
with Dragonerregiment Eugen Prinz von Savoyen Nr.13.
July 1914: Assigned to the General Staff.
August 1914: Operations Officer (Ia) in the General Staff of Fortress
Command Halicz/East Galicia.
September 1914: Assigned as a General Staff Officer in the Command of
the Royal 38th Hungarian Honved Division.
March 1915: Operations Officer (Ia) in the General Staff of the 131st
June 1915: Operations Officer (Ia) in the General Staff of the 132nd Infantry
September 1915: While retaining his previous command, transferred to the
December 1916: Operations Officer (Ia) in the General Staff of the XXIV
February 1917: Chief Supply Officer (Ib) and Intelligence Officer (Ic)
in the General Staff of the Prussian General Command for Special Employment
May 1917: Operations Officer (Ia) in the General Staff of the Section
Command IIa (XXIV Corps).
November 1917: General Staff Officer in the Command of the Second Isonzo
December 1917: General Staff Officer in the Command of the First Isonzo
May 1918: General Staff Officer in the Royal and Imperial Army High Command.
August 1918: General Staff Officer of the 1st Infantry Division.
December 1918: Transferred to Feldjäger-Bataillon 1.
Transferred to People’s Defence Battalion 6, Bruck II, later, Leoben.
September 1920: Accepted into the Austrian Federal Army; assigned as a
Platoon Commander in Alpenjäger-Regiment 10.
March 1921: Detached provisionally to the 3rd Brigade Command.
April 1921: Deputy Chief of Staff of the 3rd Brigade Command, St. Pölten.
December 1922: Detached as Officer on Staff of the 5th Brigade Command,
December 1923: Deputy Staff Chief in the 5th Brigade Command, Graz.
January 1927: Chief of Staff of the 5th Brigade Command, Graz.
April 1928-31 May 1928: At the same time, detached to troop service in
the 5th Brigade Artillery Battalion.
June 1928-31 October 1929: At the same time, detached to troop service
in Steirisches Alpenjägerregiment Feldmarschall Conrad von Hötzendorf
February 1930: Director of the Army Administration Office in Eisenstadt.
February 1931: Chief of Staff of the 3rd Brigade Command, St. Pölten.
September 1932: Instructor at the Military Test Commission for Staff Officers.
[Böhme served as Leader of four staff officer courses divided between
one course in Linz and Graz and then two courses in Wien.]
December 1933: Consultant in the 2nd Department of the Federal Ministry
of National Defence.
January 1935: Director of Department 1/A (Abwehr or Intelligence Service)
of the Federal Ministry of National Defence.
June 1935: Director of the Signals Department of the Federal Ministry
of National Defence.
January 1936: At the same time, detached for nine weeks as an observer
to the Italian Forces in Abyssinia during the Campaign in East Africa.
[During his time in Abyssinia, Böhme served on the Northern Front at Makalle,
Adua, Axum and Takazé and on the Southern Front at Neghelli, Garrahei
and Gerlogubi and then flew 3,000 kilometres in an Italian bomber aircraft.]
March 1938: At the same time, also named Chief of the General Staff of
the Austrian Federal Army.
March 1938: Accepted into the German Army and appointed Director of Section
III in the Federal Ministry of National Defence.
July 1938: Detached to the 23rd Division.
August 1938: Officer for Special Employment to the Commander-in-Chief
of the Army.
November 1938: Infantry Commander 23 and, at the same time, Garrison Senior
July 1939: Commander of the 30th Infantry Division.
July 1939: Commander of the 32nd Infantry Division. [Böhme’s division
took part in the invasions of Poland in September 1939 and France in May-June
September 1939: At the same time, delegated with the leadership of II
June 1940: Delegated with the leadership of XXXXIII Army Corps. [Böhme
assumed temporary leadership of this corps after its commander, General
der Artillerie Hermann Ritter von Speck, received command of the XVIII
Mountain Army Corps.]
June 1940: Delegated with the leadership of XVIII Mountain Army Corps.
[Böhme assumed leadership of this corps after its commander, General der
Artillerie Hermann Ritter von Speck, was killed in action on 15 June 1940
near Pont sur Yonne, France.]
October 1940: Commanding General of XVIII Mountain Army Corps. [Böhme’s
corps took part in Operation Marita, the invasion of Greece in
April 1941 as a component of the German 12th Army. Consisting of the 2nd
Panzer Division, the 5th and 6th Mountain Divisions, the 72d Infantry
Division and the reinforced 125th Infantry Regiment, the XVIII Mountain
Corps attacked Greece from its assembly area in southern Bulgaria. Launching
a frontal attack on the Metaxas Line, Böhme’s corps finally broke through
after three days of tough fighting during which each individual group
of fortifications had to be reduced by a combination of frontal and enveloping
attacks with strong tactical air support. The capture of Salonika by the
2nd Panzer Division and the penetration of the Metaxas Line caused Greek
resistance east of the Vardar River to collapse and, on 9 April 1941,
the Greek Second Army surrendered unconditionally. The corps continued
its advance into Greece capturing Mount Olympus and Larisa in the face
of withdrawing British and New Zealand troops. Operating in conjunction
with panzer forces, Böhme’s mountain infantry outflanked and forced the
withdrawal of British troops defending the Thermopylae Pass on 24-25 April
1941. After occupation duty in Greece and anti-partisan operations in
Serbia, the XVIII Mountain Corps returned to Germany by January 1942.
The corps then deployed to the Lapland region of Finland in May-June 1942
and took over the Kesten’ga sector where it served for the duration of
the German presence in Finland. On 10 December 1943, Böhme handed over
corps command to fellow Austrian Generalleutnant (later General der Gebirgstruppe)
1942 / 1943
NOTE: The "Gebirgsjäger"
(Mountain Infantry) arm patch (his right sleeve) was unique to German
mountain troops and depicted an Edelweiss flower surrounded by a
mountain climbing rope and pitons. The Edelweiss flower is unique
to the alpine regions of Europe and has long been associated with
German mountain troops. Indeed, the mountain troops of today's German
Federal Army still wear this patch
September 1941-2 December 1941: At the same time, Commanding General
and Commander of Serbia.
December 1943: Deputy Commanding General of the XVIII Army Corps and
Commander of Wehrkreis [Military District] XVIII, Salzburg.
June 1944: Delegated with the leadership of the 2nd Panzer Army in the
Balkans. [Böhme succeeded
Generaloberst Dr. jur. Lothar Rendulic to command of the 2nd Panzer
July 1944: Badly injured in a flying accident in a Fieseler Storch
July 1944: Transferred to Army High Command Leader Reserve. [General der Artillerie
Maximilian de Angelis succeeded Böhme to command of the 2nd Panzer Army.]
January 1945-16 October 1945: Armed Forces Commander of Norway and Commander-in-Chief
of the 20th Mountain Army. [Böhme
succeeded Generaloberst Dr. jur. Lothar Rendulic in both duty positions.]
October 1945-29 May 1947: Prisoner of war in British and then Allied
- 9 January 1946: Transferred to Island Farm Special Camp
11 from Camp 1.
- 26 July 1946: Transferred to the London District Cage
(LDC) from Island Farm Special Camp 11.
- 18 September 1946: Transferred to Island Farm Special
Camp 11 from the LDC.
May 1947: Committed suicide by jumping from the fourth floor of Nürnberg
An interesting letter, in German, from Bohme...his hand
writing is pretty legible! It appears he sent this letter to the International
Military Court (that would eventually try him) with the intent of establishing
certain facts about his career. He opens (roughly) with "I, Franz Bohme,
an Austrian holding the rank of General der Gebirgstruppe in the German
Armed Forces." He made sure to state he was an Austrian ! He goes on to
say that from 21 June 1944 to 10 July 1944, he was delegated with leadership
of the 2d Panzer Army but then had an accident (see his profile). From
18 January 1945 until the ceasefire on 8 May 1945, he was Commander-in-Chief
of the 20th Mountain Army and Armed Forces Commander-in-Chief of Norway.
I think he also states that his career information can be checked in his
personnel record (he was probably reciting these dates from memory...he
was pretty accurate too!).
on trial by U.S. Military Tribunal, Nürnberg (Case No. 7, “Hostages Trial,”
8 July 1947 to 19 February 1948) for war crimes and crimes against humanity
in Serbia. However, Böhme committed suicide prior to his arraignment. See
the “Web Genocide Centre” internet web site for a transcript of the Hostages
Trial at http://www.ess.uwe.ac.uk/genocide/
is an extract from the Web Genocide Centre:
“On 16th September, 1941, Hitler, in a personally
signed order, charged the defendant Wilhelm List with the task of suppressing
the insurgent movement in the Southeast. This resulted in the commissioning
of General Franz Boehme with the handling of military affairs in Serbia and
in the transfer of the entire executive power in Serbia to him. This delegation
of authority was done on the recommendation and request of the defendant List
to whom Boehme remained subordinate. Boehme was shown to have issued orders,
dated 25th September and 10th October, 1941, to the units under his command
in which he ordered that "the whole population” of Serbia must be hit
severely ; and that "In all commands in Serbia all Communists, male residents
suspicious as such, all Jews, a certain number of nationalistic and democratically
inclined residents are to be arrested as hostages, by means of sudden actions,”
and "If losses of German soldiers or Volksdeutsche occur, the territorial
competent commanders up to the regiment commanders are to decree the shooting
of arrestees according to the following quotas : (a) For each killed or murdered
German soldier or Volksdeutsche (men, women or children) one hundred prisoners
or hostages, (b) For each wounded German soldier or Volksdeutsche 50 prisoners
- Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross: 29 June 1940,
Generalleutnant, Commander of the 32nd Infantry Division.
- German Cross in Gold: 10 February 1944, General
der Infanterie, Commanding General of XVIII Mountain Army Corps.
- Prussian Iron Cross, 1st Class (1914): 12 June 1917.
- Prussian Iron Cross, 2nd Class (1914): 1916.
- 1939 Clasp to the Prussian Iron Cross, 1st Class:
25 September 1939.
- 1939 Clasp to the Prussian Iron Cross, 2nd Class:
12 September 1939.
- Austrian Order of the Iron
Crown, 3rd Class with War Decoration and Swords
- Austrian Military Merit
Cross, 3rd Class with War Decoration and Swords (two awards).
- Austrian Silver Military
Merit Medal (“Signum Laudis”) on the Ribbon of the Military Merit Cross with Swords
- Austrian Bronze Military
Merit Medal (“Signum Laudis”) on the Ribbon of the Military Merit Cross with Swords
- Austrian Karl Troop Cross
- Austrian Military
Jubilee Cross: 2 December 1908.
- Austrian War
Commemorative Medal with Swords: 19 June 1933.
- Golden Decoration for Services to the Austrian Republic (Goldenes Ehrenzeichen für Verdienste um
die Republik Österreich): 23 December 1933 – The decorations of the
First Austrian Republic (1918-1938) were not permitted to be worn after
the Anschluss (Union) with
Germany in March 1938.
- Order of the Crown of Italy, Grand Officer: 21 January
- Italian Commemorative Medal for Military Operations
in East Africa with Swords (italienisch Erinnerungsmedaille
mit dem Schwerten für die militärisch Operationen in Ostafrika)
- Bulgarian Military Merit Order, 1st Class with War
Decoration: 8 August 1941.
- Hungarian Order of Merit, Commander’s Cross: 1936.
- Hungarian Order of Merit, Commander’s
Cross with Star on the War Ribbon with Swords: 19 June 1941.
- Hungarian War Commemorative Medal with
- Finnish Order of the Cross of Liberty,
1st Class with Oakleaf and Swords: 13 May 1943.
General der Gebirgstruppe Böhme’s World War I Combat
East Galicia (Royal 38th Hungarian Honved Division): Combat at Halicz
and Bolszowce; Second Battle of Lemberg; Combat in the Carpathians at Szinna,
Uszoker Pass, Turka and Boryslaw. West Galicia: Battle of Limanova.
East Galicia (in the German South Army): Combat in the Carpathians
at Beskiden and Zwinin; Battles of Steryj, Halicz and Tarnopol; Combat on
the Strypa River.
East Galicia (in the German South Army): Combat on the Strypa River
at Burkanow; Combat on the Zlota-Lipa at Brzezany.
Volhynien-Russia (XXIV Corps): Combat southeast of Vladimir Volynsk
(Novi Zagorow). Courland (Prussian General Command for Special Employment
51): Combat at Dünaburg and at Jakobstadt. Italy (XXIV Corps and
Second Isonzo Army): 10th, 11th and 12th Isonzo Battles; Advance on the
Italy (First Isonzo Army): Combat on the Piave River. France
(Austrian 1st Division): Defensive Battle on the eastern Maas before Verdun
with the Prussian V Reserve Corps.
- Blau, George E. The German Campaign in the Balkans (Spring 1941).
U.S. Department of the Army. Historical Study, Pamphlet
No. 20-260, November 1953.
- Bradley, Dermot; Hildebrand,
Karl-Friedrich; Rövekamp, Markus. Die Generale des Heeres, 1921-1945,
Band 2 (v. Blanckensee-v. Czettritz und Neuhauß). Biblio Verlag,
Osnabrück, Germany, 1993.
- Kennedy, Robert M. Hold
the Balkans! German Antiguerrilla Operations in the Balkans (1941-1944). White Maine Books, Shippensburg, Pennsylvania,
2000 (reprint of the of the original 1954 U.S. Army historical study)
– Companion volume to The German Campaign in the Balkans (Spring
- Mehner, Kurt. Die deutsche Wehrmacht 1939-1945: Führung und Truppe. Militair-Verlag
Klaus D. Patzwall, Norderstedt, Germany, 1993.
- Ziemke, Earl F. The German Northern Theater of Operations,
1940-1945. Department of the Army Pamphlet No. 20-271, Washington,
- Personal-Nachweis/Dienstlaufbahn for General der
Gebirgstruppe Franz Böhme detailing his military career from 1 October
1900-16 March 1938.
- Prisoner of War File
Card for General der Gebirgstruppe Franz Böhme prepared by Captain
Edward “Ted” Lees, camp intelligence officer and interrogator, Island
Farm Special Camp 11.
to see a photo of General der Gebirgstruppe Franz Böhme (Franz Boehme)
in the company of fellow prisoners of war at Island Farm.