Hans-Georg von Friedeburg

Generaladmiral (Crew IV/14)

No ships sunk or damaged.

Born  15 Jul 1895 Strasbourg
Died  23 May 1945(49)Flensburg, Germany


1 Apr 1914 Seekadett
23 Dec 1914 Fähnrich zur See
13 Jul 1916 Leutnant zur See
28 Sep 1920 Oberleutnant zur See
1 Jul 1925 Kapitänleutnant
1 Apr 1933 Korvettenkapitän
1 Jan 1937 Fregattenkapitän
1 Jan 1939 Kapitän zur See
1 Sep 1942 Konteradmirale
1 Feb 1943 Vizeadmiral
1 Apr 1943 Admiral
1 May 1945 Generaladmiral


World War I Iron Cross 2nd Class
World War I Iron Cross 1st Class
6 Jun 1939 Spanish Cross in Silver without Swords
1939 Spange 1939 zum Eisernen Kreuz 2. Klasse 1914
1939 Spange 1939 zum Eisernen Kreuz 1. Klasse 1914
6 Jun 1942 German Cross in Silver
1943 War Merit Cross 2nd Class with Swords
1944 War Merit Cross 1st Class with Swords
17 Jan 1945 Ritterkreuz des Kriegsverdienstkreuz mit Schwertern

U-boat Commands

U-27 6 Jun 1939 8 Jul 1939   No war patrols 

Admiral Hans-Georg von Friedeburg had a son, Ludwig, that was also a U-boat commander, being the youngest to go out on a mission. Ludwig died on 17 May 2010.

World War One

von Friedeburg joined the German Navy in 1914. After training on training cruiser Hansa from April to Oct 1914 he served on the naval staff in cipher services until December when he was assigned to the battleship Kronprinz. He served there until Dec 1917 (Busch & Röll, 1999).

Hans-Georg von Friedeburg joined the U-boat force in Dec 1917 and went through training until June 1918. He then served as a watch officer on the U-114 from June to Nov 1918 then being assigned to the U-boat inspectorate until Dec 1918 (Busch & Röll, 1999).

After the Armistice he served on various warships and also in many staff positions.

World War Two

Just prior to WWII von Friedeburg again served in the U-boat force, taking command of the U-27 for a month in the summer of 1939. From July 1939 he served on the staff of U-boat Command (Busch & Röll, 1999).

From Sept 1941 Hans-Georg von Friedeburg was the deputy commander of the U-Boat Forces of Nazi Germany and the last Commanding Admiral of the Kriegsmarine (Wikipedia). From Sept 1941 he oversaw training and deployment of the U-boat bases in France. In Feb 1943 he took command of the U-boat force. When Dönitz became Reich President on 1 May 1945 von Friedeburg succeeded him as Commander-in-Chief of the Kriegsmarine, the German Navy (Wikipedia). He was heavily involved in preparing and signing the German surrender in early May 1945.

At the end of the war Von Friedeburg committed suicide, after learning that the Allied Control Commission were going to arrest him as a suspected war criminal. Any such charges against him would most probably have been unfounded.


Busch, R. and Röll, H-J. (1999). German U-boat commanders of World War II.
Wikipedia (en). Hans-Georg von Friedeburg.

Patrol info for Hans-Georg von Friedeburg

This commander did not go out on patrols with his boats.

About ranks and decorations
Special thanks to Fernando Almeida for data on ranks and decorations.

Media links

German U-boat Commanders of World War II

Busch, Rainer and Röll, Hans-Joachim

Listing of all U-boat commanders

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