Ludwig Alexander Friedrich August
Philipp Freiherr von Falkenhausen
(13.09.1844 - 04.05.1936)
place of birth: Guben, Niederlausitz (Brandenburg)
Preußen: OBH, GenGouv von Belgien, Generaloberst
Prussian baron and Generaloberst Ludwig von Falkenhausen
served as both corps- and army-level commander during the Great War.
He was born into the home of imperial Prussian Lieutenant General
Alexander von Falkenhausen and his Russian-born wife Katharina von
Rouanet. Young Ludwig began his budding military career as an 11-year
old we he entered the Cadet Institute in Potsdam in 1856. In 1862, he
received orders to report to Potsdam's Foot Guards Regiment, the unit he
later saw action with during the Austro-Prussian War of 1866.
During the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-71, 1st Lieutenant
Falkenhausen functioned as field artillery regimental adjutant and
participated in actions at Gravelotte-St Privat, Beaumont,
After the War, von Falkenhausen completed several assignments as
a general staff officer in Karlsruhe, Trier, and Koblenz, a battalion
commander in Cologne, and was then recalled to Berlin to serve as Guard
Corps Chief of Staff. After stints as regimental and brigade commander,
he was assigned to quartermaster duties with the Great General Staff and
then as Director of the General War Department at the War Ministry. He
also concurrently served in the Lower House (Bundesrat) of Prussia's
Parliament. Prior to retiring from the military, von Falkenhausen also
served as a divional commander, as well as commander of XIII. Imperial
Army Corps of Württemberg.
Called out of retirement at the age of 74, General von
Falkenhausen commanded the Ersatz Corps which was subordinate to
Bavarian Crown Prince Rupprecht's Sixth Army. His troops were engaged in
front-line action at Nancy- Epinal. As senior commander of Army
Detachment "A" (also known as Army Detachment
Falkenhausen) he was promoted to the rank of colonel general, and
his soldiers were mainly engaged in trench warfare in northeastern
France (Lorraine). It was for these actions that Falkenhausen was
awarded the Pour le Merite for distinguished service. He lead
coastal defense troops for about four months from headquarters in
Hamburg, after which he was transferred back to the Western Front to
head up the Sixth Army (1916-17). There troops under his command fought
in the trenches in Flanders and Artois, along the
so-called Siegfried Line, and during the Spring Offensive at
Arras. For this he received the coveted Order of the
Black Eagle. Von Falkenhausen was then transferred to Belgium in
April 1917 to serve as the Governor General there until War's end.
Generaloberst von Falkenhausen was married to Helene von Waldow
und Reitzenstein, with whom he had a son Friedrich and a daughter Elsa.
Two other subsequent children did not survive. Helene died at the age of
39 while they were stationed in Cologne. A few years later, he married
Alice Petzold from Chemnitz. Von Falkenhausen died on 4 May 1936 in Görlitz
and was interred in the Invaliden-Friedhof in Berlin.