Browse Our Free Content

Timelines

Third Reich Day by Day

The rise of the Third Reich as it happened from its beginnings to the start of World War II in September 1939.

Weapons & Technology

Aircraft

Blohm und Voss Bv 141

Blohm und Voss Bv 141
Blohm und Voss Bv 141

In 1937 the Luftfahrtministerium (German Air Ministry) issued a requirement for a single-engined three-seat tactical reconnaissance aeroplane, drawing submissions from Focke Wulf in the form of its Fw 189, and Blohm und Voss’s Bv 141 design. Much emphasis was placed on the need for good visibility, and in response the Bv 141 had a highly unusual asymmetric layout with the fully glazed crew nacelle offset to starboard of the centreline and a boom (carrying the engine at its front and a tail unit at its rear) offset to port.

Read more …

Artillery

Stug III 10.5cm

Stug III 10.5cm
Stug III 10.5cm

Introduced to service in August 1942 and otherwise known as the Sturmhaubitze 42 Ausf F, the five-man 10.5cm Feldhaubitze 42 was basically identical to the Sturmgeschütz 40 Ausf F (SdKfz 142/1) in all major essentials except its armament, which was the powerful 10.5cm Sturmhaubitze 42, an L/18 weapon based on the 10.5cm leichte Feldhaubitze 18. This was installed in an armoured mounting in the front of the raised superstructure of welded steel armour that replaced the turret (as above).

Read more …

Ships

Emden

Emden
Emden

Completed in January 1925, the light cruiser Emden was the first medium-sized German warship built after World War I. Originally a coal-burning vessel, she was intended primarily for overseas service and consequently had a large bunker capacity; particular attention was paid to accommodation space and crew comfort, something of a novelty at that time. Her first mission in World War II was to lay mines in the North Sea, and, in April 1940, she was one of the warships that accompanied the Blücher during the invasion of Norway. Though this operation was a costly affair in terms in shipping, she survived and was later transferred to the Baltic and saw considerable operational service there, initially operating as part of a powerful task force that included the new battleship Tirpitz and later operating as a mine warfare training vessel.

Read more …

Small Arms

FG 42

FG 42
FG 42

The German paratroop arm was an element of the air force, and many of its weapons were therefore different from those of the army. Thus when the army issued its specification for an assault rifle, the air force decided not to adopt the 7.92mm kurz (short) intermediate-power round and therefore contracted with Rheinmetall-Borsig for an assault rifle suitable for airborne use and chambered for the original 7.92mm high-power round.

Read more …

Tracked Vehicles

Tiger II

Tiger II
Tiger II

The result of a German Army Weapons Office demand for a redesigned Tiger with thicker armour, sloped plates and a powerful gun, the Tiger Ausf B, or “King Tiger”, entered production in December 1943. Henschel was the sole manufacturer of the vehicle, though the first 50 Tiger IIs completed mounted the turret of the rival Porsche design (with a curved front mantlet and a bulged commander’s cupola). Suspension was similar to the Tiger I, but the wheels were overlapped rather than interleaved to simplify maintenance problems. LIke the Tiger I, the arrangement gave good cross-country performance despite the vehicle’s weight.

Read more …

Free Media

Caption Competition

Hitler and Mackenesen
Hitler and Mackenesen

You must be logged in to submit a caption. Please login or signup if you don’t have an account yet.

Help required!

We have a large photo collection, many of which are uncaptioned, or for which we have incomplete information or are guessing. If any readers can give us correct captions (or more informed captions than we hold at the moment) we would be very grateful. We will display on the site the best or most accurate captions for the photos that we are putting up. Please make your captions no longer than 150 words - shorter if possible.

View suggested captions

Photo Galleries

Young and under nourished - the ranks of the Wehrmacht were being filled by shockingly young men in 1945. These youths have been captured in March 1945.

Read more …

Commanders

Commanders

Josef Goebbels

Josef Goebbels
Josef Goebbels

It is a little-known fact that the Minister of Propaganda was opposed to a European war. He realized that Germany would be taking unnecessary risks and that her position of power would be weakened. Despite the victories of 1940 Goebbels said: “We must not fool ourselves. It will be a long and difficult war. Its outcome will not depend on boisterous victory parties but on a determination to do one’s daily duty.” He was probably the only Nazi leader to correctly judge the length and gravity of the war.

Read more …