Prince Wilhelm of Hesse-Philippsthal-Barchfeld

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Prince Wilhelm
Born (1905-03-01)1 March 1905
Rotenburg an der Fulda
Died 30 April 1942(1942-04-30) (aged 37)
(m. 1933)
Issue Wilhelm, Landgrave of Hesse
Prince Hermann
Princess Elisabeth
Full name
Wilhelm Ernst Alexis Hermann
House Hesse
Father Chlodwig, Landgrave of Hesse-Philippsthal-Barchfeld
Mother Princess Caroline of Solms-Hohensolms-Lich

Prince Wilhelm of Hesse (Wilhelm Ernst Alexis Hermann; 1 March 1905 – 30 April 1942) was German soldier and heir to the headship of the Hesse-Philippsthal line of the House of Hesse.

As a member of the House of Hesse he was styled His Highness Prince Wilhelm of Hesse.

Early life[edit]

Prince Wilhelm was born in Rotenburg an der Fulda, the eldest child of Prince Chlodwig of Hesse and his wife, Princess Caroline of Solms-Hohensolms-Lich. On 16 August 1905 his father succeeded to the headship of the Hesse-Philippsthal-Barchfeld line of the House of Hesse.[1]

From a non reigning branch of the House of Hesse, Prince Wilhelm was closely related to the reigning Darmstadt line through his aunt, Princess Eleonore, who was married to Ernest Louis, Grand Duke of Hesse. Through his father he was the nephew of Leopold IV of Lippe, who was married to his aunt, Princess Bertha.

Post World War I[edit]

With the end of the First World War the monarchy in Germany was abolished. Prince Wilhelm lived at Schloss Augustenau in Herleshausen where he was engaged in forestry and agriculture. In 1932 he joined the Nazi party and the SS rising to the rank SS-Hauptsturmführer.[1] His application to join to the SS ran into some problems due to the epilepsy of his brother, Prince Alexander Friedrich, which caused an investigation to be carried to see if his condition was the result of a hereditary illness.[2]

During the Second World War Prince Wilhelm refused to join an SS unit instead switching to the regular German Army where he became a captain of infantry.[2][3] He was killed in action during the fighting at Gor on the Eastern Front.

Marriage and issue[edit]

Prince Wilhelm was married on 30 January 1933 in Tabarz to Princess Marianne of Prussia, daughter of Prince Friedrich Wilhelm of Prussia and his wife, Princess Agatha of Hohenlohe-Schillingsfürst. They had three children:

  • Wilhelm, Landgrave of Hesse-Philippsthal-Barchfeld (born 14 August 1933);[1] married in 1961 to Oda-Mathilde von Garmissen, had issue (two sons).
  • Prince Hermann of Hesse-Philippsthal-Barchfeld (born 21 August 1935; died 18 May 2019);[1] married in 1962 to Countess Monika Strachwitz of Gross-Zauche and Camminetz, had issue (one daughter, one son).
  • Princess Johanna of Hesse-Philippsthal-Barchfeld (born 22 November 1937);[1] married in 1957 to Alfons Kuhn, had issue, divorced in 1961; Married secondly in 1963 to Bruno Riek, had issue.



  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Almanach de Gotha. Justus Perthes. 1942. p. 62.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Petropoulos, Jonathan. Royals and the Reich: The Princes Von Hessen in Nazi Germany.
  3. "Four high Nazis dead, Berlin says". The Milwaukee Journal. 31 July 1942. p. 1. Retrieved 21 June 2013.