The Freiwilligen Landesjägerkorps was formed 14 December 1918 from 214. Infanterie-Division by General Ludwig von Maercker and was the first Freikorps unit to be officially recognized by the government. All members of this unit was required to take an oath of loyalty to the government in contrast to many of the other Freikorps units that were openly hostile to the republican government.

It was reviewed by Chancellor Friedrich Ebert and the Minister for National Defence Gustav Noske, both from the Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands (SPD), on 4 January 1919 during the Spartacist rising and Noske told Ebert: "Now you can rest easy, everything is going to be all right from now on". A few days later it was one of the units used to put down the communist rising in Berlin.

After the actions in Berlin it transferred to Weimar to protect the national assembly. The advance force of two officers and 120 men were attacked and imprisoned by communists, von Maercker later commented in his memoirs "These events showed, public opinion to the contrary, that Weimar was by no means the quiet little city of the muses where the National Assembly could meet without any disturbance". In total over 7.000 soldiers of the Freikorps during the first days of February and took complete control over the city.

It later saw heavy action in Halle against the left wing militia commanded by a former leutnant named Fechlandt. It also saw action in Magdeburg, Brunswick, Dresden, Leipzig and against the Poles in Upper Silesia.

It was used to form Reichswehr-Brigade 16 in June 1919.

A memorial in memory of the fallen of this Freikorps unit was inaugurated on 5 May 1921 in Halle, it carried the inscription: "Niemand hat größere Liebe, denn wer sein Leben lässet für seine Freunde" together with "Bruderkampf" and "Versöhnung".
It was destroyed 1946 on the order of the Soviet occupying forces.


General Ludwig von Maercker

Formed in the area of

Generalkommando IV. Armeekorps Magdeburg (Provinz Sachsen, Anhalt, Ost-Thüringen)

Manpower strength


Order of battle

1. Landesjäger-Brigade
2. Landesjäger-Brigade (Oberst Werner von Frankenberg zu Proschlitz)
Freischützenkorps Meyn
Freikorps Halle

Notable members

SS-Obergruppenführer Friedrich Alpers
Kapitän zur See Fritz Berger
SS-Brigadeführer Gerhard Bommel
Kapitän zur See Heinrich Bramesfeld
SS-Standartenführer Karl Demme
SS-Obergruppenführer Karl Freiherr von Eberstein
Generalmajor Werner von Frankenberg zu Proschlitz (commander of the Asienkorps 1917-1918)
SS Brigadeführer and Generalmajor der Polizei Hans Dietrich von Grünwald
SS-Obergruppenführer Reinhard Heydrich
SS-Oberführer Hans Holfelder
Generaloberst Hermann Hoth
SA-Obergruppenführer Max Jüttner
Konteradmiral Helmuth Kienast
Oberstleutnant Robert von Vlüber (Pour le mérite holder)
SS-Brigadeführer Walter Neblich
Generalstabsarzt Dr. med. Kurt Neumüller (Luftwaffe)
SS-Gruppenführer Eggert Reeder
SS-Oberführer Hans Sander (Freikorps Halle)
SS-Oberführer Erich Schrage
General der Panzertruppe Fridolin von Senger und Etterlin
General der Infanterie Karl-Wilhelm Specht
SS-Obergruppenführer Siegfried Taubert
SS-Obergruppenführer Josias Zu Waldeck-Pyrmont (Freikorps Halle)
Generaloberst Hubert Weise (Luftwaffe)
Reichstag deputy & SA-Oberführer Gustav Zunkel
(the ranks are the highest ranks reached in the Third Reich era)


Members of this unit wore a pair of silver oak leafs on the collar.

Burial of Oberstleutnant von Klüber who was murdered in Halle


Sources used

Verkuilen Ager - Awards of the German Freikorps 1919-1935
Bruce Campbell - The SA generals and the rise of Nazism
Nigel Jones - The birth of the Nazis: How the Freikorps blazed a trail for Hitler
Carlos Caballero Jurado - The German Freikorps 1918-1923
Samuel W. Mitcham - Rommel's Lieutenants: The Men Who Served the Desert Fox, France, 1940
Georg Tessin - Deutsche Verbände und Truppen 1918-1939
Robert Thomas & Stefan Pochanke - Handbuch zur geschichte der Deutschen Freikorps
Robert Thoms - Invalidenfriedhof Berlin
Robert G. L. Waite - Vanguard of Nazism: The Free Corps Movement in Postwar Germany 1918-1923
Charles Woolley - German Uniforms, Insignia & Equipment 1918-1923

Reference material on this unit

Ludwig von Maercker - Vom Kaiserheer zum Reichswehr: Geschichte des freiwilligen Landesjägerkorps