Goltz, Colmar, Freiherr Von Der
GOLTZ, COLMAR, FREIHERR VON DER (1843- ), Prussian soldier and military writer, was born at Bielkenfeld, East Prussia, on the 12th of August 1843, an d entered the Prussian infantry in 1861. In 1864 he entered the Berlin Military Academy, but was temporarily withdrawn in 1866 to serve in the Austrian war, in which he was wounded at Trautenau. In 1867 he joined the topographical section of the general staff, and at the beginning of the Franco-German War of 1870-71 was attached to the staff of Prince Frederick Charles. He took part in the battles of Vionville and Gravelotte and in the siege of Metz. After its fall he served under the Red Prince in the campaign of the Loire, including the battles of Orleans and Le Mans. He was appointed in 187 1 professor at the military school at Potsdam, and the same year was promoted captain and placed in the historical section of the general staff. It was then he wrote Die Operationen der II. Armee bis zur Capitulation von Metz and Die Sieben Tage von Le Mans, both published in 1873. In 1874 he was appointed to the staff of the 6th division, and while so employed wrote Die Operationen der II. Armee an der Loire and Leon Gambetta und seine Armeen, published in 1875 and 1877 respectively. The latter was translated into French the same year, and both are impartially written. The views expressed in the latter work led to his being sent back to regimental duty for a time, but it was not long before he returned to the military history section. In 1878 von der Goltz was appointed lecturer in military history at the military academy at Berlin, where he remained for five years and attained the rank of major. He published, in 1883, Rossbach und Jena, (new and revised edition, Von Rossbach bis Jena und Auerstddt, 1906), Das Volk in Wa/en (English translation The Nation in Arms), both of which quickly became military classics, and during his residence in Berlin contributed many articles to the military journals. In June 1883 his services were lent to Turkey to reorganize the military establishments of the country. He spent twelve years in this work, the result of which appeared in the Greco-Turkish War of 1897, and he was made a pasha and in 1895 a mushir or field-marshal. On his return to Germany in 1896 he became a lieutenant-general and commander of the 5th division, and in 1898, head of the Engineer and Pioneer Corps and inspector-general of fortifications. In 1900 he was made general of infantry and in 1902 commander of the I. army corps. In 1907 he was made inspector-general of the newly created sixth army inspection established at Berlin, and in 1908 was given the rank of colonel-general (Generalobersf).
In addition to the works already named and frequent contributions to military periodical literature, he wrote Kriegfuhrung (1895, later edition Krieg- und Heerfuhrung, 1901 ; Eng. trans. The Conduct of War); Der thessalische Krieg (Berlin, 1898); Ein Ausflng nach Macedonien (1894); Anatolische Ausfluge (1896); a map and description of the environs of Constantinople; Von Jena bis Pr. Eylau U907), a most important historical work, carrying on the story of Rossbach und Jena to the peace of Tilsit, etc.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)