Parents and Teachers: Support Ducksters by following us on Ducksters Facebook or Ducksters Twitter.
Ducksters Educational SiteDucksters Educational Site
History Biography Geography Science Games

History >> World War 2 for Kids

World War II

Battle of Stalingrad

The Battle of Stalingrad was one of the largest and deadliest battles in World War II. It was a turning point in the war. After losing the battle, the German army lost so many soldiers and took such a defeat that they never quite recovered.

Soviet Tanks in WW2
Soviet Union tanks defend Stalingrad
Photo by Unknown

About Stalingrad the City

Stalingrad was located in Southwest Russia on the Volga River. It was a major industrial and communications center for the Soviet Union in the south. Also, it was named after the Soviet leader Josef Stalin. This made the city important to Stalin and also important to Hitler, who hated Stalin.

Stalingrad was called Tsaritsyn until 1925 when it was renamed Stalingrad in honor of Josef Stalin. In 1961 the city's name was changed to Volgograd, meaning Volga City.

When was the Battle?

The battle took place during the last part of 1942 and early 1943. After months of fighting and finally nearly starving to death, the Germans surrendered on February 2, 1943.

The Battle

The battle began with the German air force, the Luftwaffe, bombing the Volga River and the then the city of Stalingrad. They reduced much of the city to rubble. Soon the German army moved in and was able to take a large portion of the city.

However, the Soviet troops were not ready to give up. Fighting in the city of Stalingrad was fierce. Soviets hid all over the city, in buildings and even the sewers, attacking the German soldiers. This brutal battle began to take its toll on the Germans.

WW2 Battle of Stalingrad soldiers
Soviet Soldiers fight in the streets of the city
Photo by Unknown

Surrender

In November, the Soviets gathered and made a counter attack. They trapped the German army inside of Stalingrad. Soon the Germans began to run out of food. Finally, weak from lack of food and freezing from the cold winter, the majority of the German army surrendered. Hitler was angry with General Paulus for surrendering. He expected Paulus to fight to the death or commit suicide, rather than surrender. Paulus, however, surrendered and later spoke out against the Nazi's while in Soviet captivity.

How many soldiers fought at the Battle of Stalingrad?

Both sides had large armies of over 1 million soldiers. They also each had hundreds of tanks and over 1,000 planes. It is estimated that around 750,000 soldiers from the German army died and nearly 500,000 Russians.

Who were the leaders?

The German army was led by General Friedrich Paulus. He was promoted to Field Marshall right before he surrendered to the Russians. Hitler was hoping that promoting Paulus would boost his moral and cause him not to surrender.

The Soviet Union army was led by General Georgy Zhukov.

Interesting Facts
Activities

Take a ten question quiz about this page.

  • Listen to a recorded reading of this page:



  • Learn More about World War II:

    Overview:
    World War II Timeline
    Allied Powers and Leaders
    Axis Powers and Leaders
    Causes of WW2
    War in Europe
    War in the Pacific
    After the War

    Battles:
    Battle of Britain
    Battle of the Atlantic
    Pearl Harbor
    Battle of Stalingrad
    D-Day (Invasion of Normandy)
    Battle of the Bulge
    Battle of Berlin
    Battle of Midway
    Battle of Guadalcanal
    Battle of Iwo Jima

    Events:
    The Holocaust
    Japanese Internment Camps
    Bataan Death March
    Fireside Chats
    Hiroshima and Nagasaki (Atomic Bomb)
    War Crimes Trials
    Recovery and the Marshall Plan
    Leaders:
    Winston Churchill
    Charles de Gaulle
    Franklin D. Roosevelt
    Harry S. Truman
    Dwight D. Eisenhower
    Douglas MacArthur
    George Patton
    Adolf Hitler
    Joseph Stalin
    Benito Mussolini
    Hirohito
    Anne Frank
    Eleanor Roosevelt

    Other:
    The US Home Front
    Women of World War II
    African Americans in WW2
    Spies and Secret Agents
    Aircraft
    Aircraft Carriers
    Technology
    World War II Glossary and Terms

    Works Cited

    History >> World War 2 for Kids





    About Ducksters Privacy Policy   

    Follow us on Ducksters Facebook or Ducksters Twitter

    This site is a product of TSI (Technological Solutions, Inc.), Copyright 2019, All Rights Reserved. By using this site you agree to the Terms of Use.