Pfeffer-Wildenbruch, Karl, born 12-06-1888 in Kalkberge, joined the Army in 1907 and served in the first war. He joined the German General Staff, and served as a military attache to the German military mission in Constantinople and as a staff officer with the 11th Infantry Division. The division served on the Western Front. It spent most of the war in various parts of the trenches and fought in the 1916 Battle of the Somme . Allied intelligence rated it a second class division At the end of the war he remained on the General staff of the ZBV 55 and XXIV reserve corps. In August 1919 Pfeffer-Wildenbruch joined the police service, and spent time in the Reich Ministry of the Interior. He became the police commander in Osnabrück and Magdeburg. In 1928 he went to Santiago de Chile, to serve as Chief of the Chilean Carabineros de Chile .In June 1933, Pfeffer-Wildenbruch became an Oberstleuntant in the National Police Regiment at Frankfurt an der Oder and from May 1936 he was the Inspector General of Police schools, being promoted to Generalmajor der Polizei in May 1937. In March 1939 Pfeffer-Wildenbruch joined the SS (No. 292 713) and served on the staff of the Reichsführer SS, Heinrich Himmler. At the end of 1939, following the invasion of Poland , Pfeffer-Wildenbruch was given command of the 4th Polizei Division with the rank of SS Gruppenführer. After the Battle of France he returned to the staff of the Reichsführer-SS, serving as chief of the colonial police from 1941 to 1943.
In October 1943 he took over as commander of the new VI SS Corps, with a promotion to SS Obergruppenführer und General der Waffen-SS und Polizei. Succceeded by Obergruppenführer Friedrich Jeckeln.
Jeckeln and the other defendants were found guilty, sentenced to death and hanged at Riga on 03-02-1946 in front of some 4,000 spectators. Against popular misconception, the execution did not happen in the territory of the former Riga ghetto, but in Victory Square.
In December 1944 Pfeffer-Wildenbruch was appointed commander of the IX SS Mountain Corps , succeeding SS-Gruppenführer Karl-Gustav Sauberzweig , stationed in Budapest, Hungary with Generaloberst Ivan Hindy commander of the Hungarian I Corps. He was in command of the German forces during the Battle of Budapest from 24-12-1944 to 11-02-1945. Karl-Gustav Sauberzweig died 20-10-1946, aged 47, in the Neuengamme concentration camp near Hamburg
Pfeffer-Wildenbruch was awarded the Knight’s Cross on 11-01-1945 and the Oak Leaves on 01-02-1945. During the attempt to break out from Budapest, he was seriously wounded , and was taken prisoner by the Soviet forces. On 10-08-1949 he was sentenced to 25 years. In 1955, he was released together with some 10,000 other prisoners of war and war criminals due to an informal agreement concluded in September 1955 between German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer and Soviet Premier Nikolai Bulganin .
Death and burial ground of Pfeffer-Wildenbruch, Karl.
Pfeffer-Wildenbruch was killed on 29-01-1971, age 82, in a traffic accident in Bielefeld . Karl Pfeffer-Wildenbruch is buried on the Sennefriedhof in Bielefeld, alas his gravestone is removed in 2009, but his remains are still there.