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Paul von Rennenkampf

General Rennenkampf, commander of the Russian First Army (second from left) dining at the Dessauer Hof in Insterburg, East Prussia shortly after his victory in the %+%Event%m%13%n%Battle of Gumbinnen%-% on August 20, 1914. The General might have better spent his time advancing to connect with General Samsanov, whose army would be destroyed in the %+%Event%m%40%n%Battle of Tannenburg%-%. Rennenkampf's invasion of Germany lasted four weeks during which he lost 145,000 men.
Text:
Der Krieg im Osten
General Rennenkampf (X) mit seinem Stabe beim Diner im Dessauer Hof in Insterburg
The War in the East
General Rennenkampf (X) and his staff at dinner in the Dessau court Insterburg
(Note the retouched tableware and officer.)
Reverse:
139. Verlag Fritz Krauskopf, Konigsberg i. Pr. u. Ostseebad Cranz
Lichtdruck Graphische Gesellschaft, Akt.-Ges. Berlin SW. 68

General Rennenkampf, commander of the Russian First Army (second from left) dining at the Dessauer Hof in Insterburg, East Prussia shortly after his victory in the Battle of Gumbinnen on August 20, 1914. The General might have better spent his time advancing to connect with General Samsanov, whose army would be destroyed in the Battle of Tannenburg. Rennenkampf's invasion of Germany lasted four weeks during which he lost 145,000 men.

Image text

Der Krieg im Osten

General Rennenkampf (X) mit seinem Stabe beim Diner im Dessauer Hof in Insterburg



The War in the East

General Rennenkampf (X) and his staff at dinner in the Dessau court Insterburg



Reverse:

139. Verlag Fritz Krauskopf, Konigsberg i. Pr. u. Ostseebad Cranz

Lichtdruck Graphische Gesellschaft, Akt.-Ges. Berlin SW. 68

Other views: Larger, Back

A Russian general of German extraction, Paul von Rennenkampf commanded the Russian First Army, the northernmost, in 1914. He moved slowly into East Prussia in August, was bloodied in a skirmish in Stallupönen, but emerged victorious from the Battle of Gumbinnen on August 20. Continuing a tentative invasion, he failed to protect the right flank of Samsanov's Second Army, which was destroyed in the Battle of Tannenberg.

Victorious, the Germans turned on von Rennenkampf in the First Battle of the Masurian Lakes, driving him back to Russia with substantial losses.

When Germany advanced into Poland in September and October, 1914, the Russian Tenth Army had moved north of the First, which had redeployed southwards into Poland. Superior Russian forces drove the Germans back.

On November 11, German General von Mackensen tried again, attacking towards Lodz. In five days his forces pushed the Russians back 50 miles, and drove between the First and the Second Armies, turning the latter's right flank, and pressing it back against the city of Lodz.

The Russians had simultaneously begun a major advance into Silesia on November 14, but abandoned it when the general staff realized the danger their First and Second Armies were in. The Fifth Army moved north to reinforce the Second, arriving on November 19, in time to prevent the encirclement of the Russian Army. From the north, units of von Rennenkampf's First Army moved south, in turn threatening the Germans with encirclement. Hopes for a major Russian victory were dashed when the Germans broke through a gap von Rennenkampf's troops had failed to close.

On December 6, the Russians evacuated Lodz and much of western Poland. Von Rennenkampf was relieved of his command. He was executed on April 1, 1918, after refusing a position in the Red Army.

April 1, 1918

Russia

Roles held by Paul von Rennenkampf

Role Start Date End Date
Combatant - General