The SS-Totenkopf-Standarte 3 Thüringen was formed in Buchenwald in 1937 from SS-Sturmbann Sachsen and SS-Sturmbann Elbe.
Two sturmbanne of this units took part in the occupation of Sudetenland (Czechoslovakia) in October 1938.
It was used for "police duties" during the invasion of Poland behind the lines of the 10. Armee between Upper Silesia and the Vistula river. These duties consisted of hunting down the remaining Polish soldiers, terrorising the civilians and murdering political leaders, priests, intellectuals and Jews.
Most of its men were used to create the Totenkopf-division and the remaining were used to form the SS-Totenkopf-Standarte 10.

Known war crimes

Soldiers from SS-Totenkopf-Standarte 1 Oberbayern and SS-Totenkopf-Standarte 3 Thüringen were guilty of numerous atrocities during the fighting in Poland, including massacres at Nisko, Rawa Mazowiecka and Ciepielow. (1)


SS-Standartenführer Paul Nostitz
SS-Sturmbannführer Heimo Hierthes

Manpower strength

June 1938 2.220

Order of battle

I. Stuba
II. Stuba
III. Stuba
IV. Stuba


A cuff title with the text "Thüringen" was authorized for this unit.

(Courtesy of Ruptured Duck)


1. "Soldiers of Destruction" by Charles W. Sydnor and "Murderous Elite: The Waffen-SS and its complete record of war crimes" by James Pontolillo.

Sources used

John R. Angolia - Cloth Insignia of the SS
Dr. K-G Klietmann - Die Waffen-SS: eine Dokumentation
Kurt Mehner - Die Waffen-SS und Polizei 1939-1945
James Pontolillo - Murderous Elite: The Waffen-SS and its complete record of war crimes
Jacek Solarz - Totenkopf 1939-1943
Charles W. Sydnor - Soldiers of Destruction
Ulrich of England & Otto Spronk - Deutschland Erwache: History & Development of the Nazi Party and the "Germany Awake" Standards

Reference material on this unit

- None known at this time -