The Soviets were already in the centre of the city and had begun to surround the building when a young Russian lieutenant named Fyodor Mikhailovich Yelchenko was invited inside. Yelchenko and two of his comrades went indoors and down to the basement. It was crammed with German troops, sheltering from the shelling.
Yelchenko accepted Paulus’s surrender. A car was summoned and the Field Marshal was driven away under guard. The German forces, including fifteen generals, began to surrender en mass.Much of what transpired is described in Russia at War 1941-1945 by Alexander Werth (Barrie & Rockcliff, London, 1964).
Two days later, the fighting in Stalingrad ended completely. Over 280,000 Germans, Romanians, Italians, and Hungarians had been surrounded at Stalingrad. Around 30,000 wounded were evacuated by air and 150,000 died in action. Of the 90,000 who surrendered and were marched to Siberia, barely 5,000 returned home. The Soviet losses were equally staggering. Paulus survived and eventually returned to Germany. He died in Dresden in 1957.
Following the defeat at Stalingrad, Germany went into a state of mourning. To Germans and Allies, both, the Soviet victory at Stalingrad signaled the turning point of the war. As for Hitler: He flew into a rage and declared that he would create no more field marshals.