BORN 9 Apr 1865, Kruszczewina (near Posen) - DIED 20 Dec 1937, Tutzing, Bayern|
GRAVE LOCATION Tutzing, Bayern: Neuer Friedhof, Heinrich-Vogl-strasse
Erich Ludendorff was the son of a nobleman from Posen. Between 1877 and 1882 he received a military education at Groß-Lichterfelde near Berlin. He joined the army and he married Margarete Schmidt, the daughter of a factory owner, in 1908.
In 1912 he moved to Düsseldorf to be the commander of a regiment and in 1914 he was promoted to brigade commander at Strassbourg. Shortly after the beginning of the First World War his troops occupied the citadel of Liège, for which he was decorated. Soon afterwards he became the quartermaster general of Paul von Hindenburg.
In November 1915 Hindenburg and Ludendorff were placed in command of all the troops at the Eastern Front and after Erich von Falkenhayn was dismissed they were in command of the entire army. He wanted a total submarine warfare and was opposed to peace negotiations. In October 1918 he was dismissed from the army and soon afterwards he fled from Berlin to Sweden.
In 1919 he returned to Berlin, where together with Von Hindenburg he verbally attacked the Weimar republic. He participated in the Kapp Putsch of 1920 and joined Adolf Hitler in the Munich Putsch of 1923, for which he was tried but acquitted.
From 1924 until 1928 he was a member of the Reichstag for the Nationalsozialistischen Freiheitspartei (National Socialist Party of Freedom). In 1925 he was candidate in the elections for president, but he won only 1% of the votes. In 1925 he separated from Margarete and in 1926 he married Mathilde Spieß.
In 1928 Ludendorff left the NSDAP and started the religious movement "Deutschvolk". This movement was forbidden in 1933 after the nazis came to power. In 1937 Hitler allowed him to start it again as "Bund für Deutsche Gotterkenntnis". Ludendorff died the same year in Tutzing, Bavaria. His gravesite is now a monument.
Winkler Prins Encyclopedie (Editie 1992)