legion-condor

Condor Legion, German Legion Condor,  Condor Legion a unit of the German air force, or Luftwaffe, detailed by Hermann Göring for special duty with General Francisco Franco’s Nationalist forces in the Spanish Civil War (1936–39). It was sent to Franco on the condition that it stay under German command. The Legion consisted of four bomber squadrons (of 12 bombers each) and four fighter squadrons and was backed by antiaircraft and antitank units. It engaged in several raids, especially on Barcelona. On April 26, 1937, it attacked the Basque city of Guernica.

Legion Condor Award Ceremony in Hamburg

Date: Wednesday, 31 May 1939
Place: Hamburg, Germany

On the 31st May, 1939, there was an award ceremony for Legion Condor veterans, where they received the Spanienkreuz (Spanish Cross) campaign medal for their service in the Spanish Civil War. In this picture of the event we can see the recipients of Spanienkreuz in Gold mit Brillanten (from left to right): Oberleutnant Otto Bertram, Oberleutnant Joachim Schlichting, Hauptmann Harro Harder, Hauptmann Werner Mölders, Hauptmann Wolfgang Schellmann, Oberleutnant Walter Oesau, unknown, Major Martin Harlinghausen and Major Karl-Heinz Wolf. Of these, three would serve later in Jagdgeschwader 2 (JG 2) ‘Richthofen’, two as Geschwaderkommodoren (Schellmann and Oesau) and one as Gruppenkommandeur (Bertram). In total, there are 27 recipients of Spanienkreuz in Gold mit Brillanten and, apart from the name already submitted above, they were as follow: Oberleutnant Wilhelm Balthasar, Leutnant Peter Boddem, Oberleutnant Kart Eberhardt, Oberleutnant Wilhelm Ensslen, Leutnant Paul Fehlhaber, Oberleutnant Adolf Galland, Leutnant Oskar Henrici, Oberleutnant Max Graf Hoyos, Oberleutnant Hans-Detlef von Kessel, Hauptmann Günther Lützow, Oberstleutnant Karl Mehnert, Hauptmann Rudolf Freiherr von Moreau, Hauptmann Wolfgang Neudörffer, Generalmajor Wolfram Freiherr von Richthofen, Leutnant Heinz Runze, Oberleutnant Reinhard Seiler, General der Flieger Hugo Sperrle, Oberleutnant Bernhard Stärcke, and General der Flieger Helmut Volkmann. There’s one more recipient (no.28), Oberstleutnant Wilhelm Ritter von Thoma, but his verleihung is still debated, whether he received Spanienkreuz in Gold mit Brillanten or Spanienkreuz in gold mit schwertern.

Welcoming ceremony in honor of the Legion Condor field Lustgarten, Berlin, dated 6 June 1939.

Adolf Hitler had just arrived at the location of the ceremony and welcomed by the officials directly interested.

From left to right: SS-Gruppenführer Karl Wolff (Chef der Hauptamt Persönlicher Stab Reichsführer-SS), Generaloberst Erhard Milch (Generalinspekteur als der Luftwaffe Vertreter des Oberbefehlshaber Göring), Generalmajor Wolfram Freiherr von Richthofen (Befehlshaber der Legion Condor), Generalfeldmarschall Hermann Göring (Oberbefehlshaber der Luftwaffe) and General der Flieger Hugo Sperrle (Chef der Luftflotte 3).

The driver next to Hitler SS-Sturmbannführer Erich Kempka