Blanckensee Infantry

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Origin and History

Uniform in 1770 (unchanged since the SYW) - Source: Anonymous work of 1770

The regiment was raised in Anklam and Demmin in 1728 as a fusilier regiment. Its troops came from a former garrison regiment and the new unit continued to garrison Anklam and Demmin. It recruited in the districts of Anklam, Demmin, Treptow, Usedom and Wollin and in the towns of Anklam, Demmin, Jarmen, Neuwarp, Penkun and Ueckermünde.

During the War of the Polish Succession, the regiment served on the Upper Rhine in 1734.

On December 16 1740, the regiment was transformed into a musketeer regiment.

During the War of the Austrian Succession, the regiment served in Silesia in 1741. On May 17 1742, it fought at the battle of Chotusitz. In 1745, it took part to the battles of Hohenfriedberg (June 4) and Kesselsdorf (December 15), distinguishing itself in the latter battle.

During the Seven Years' War, the regiment was commanded by:

  • since November 5 1755: Berend Sigismund von Blanckensee
  • from October 19 1756: Hans Samuel von Pritz
  • from January 21 1757: Ernst Ludwig von Kannacher
  • from January 1 1759 until November 23 1768: Joachim Friedrich von Stutterheim (aka Alt-Stutterheim)

The numbering system (Stammliste) was first used by Leopold I., Fürst von Anhalt-Dessau (Der alte Dessauer) in the Dessauer Spezifikation from 1737. Around 1780 the numbers were used in the printed Stammlisten, still with some variations for the fusilier regiments. It became official by "Cabinets-Ordre" from October 1, 1806. The present infantry regiment was attributed number 30.

The regiment was disbanded in November 1806 after the capitulation of Ratekau.

Service during the War

Blanckensee Infantry storming an Austrian redoubt - Copyright: Harald Skala

On the eve of the Seven Years' War, the regiment was still garrisoning Anklam and Demmin.

On August 26 1756, when the Prussian Army proceeded to the invasion of Saxony, the regiment was part of the left column led by the Prince of Bevern. This column had concentrated in the area of Lübben, then advanced through Lusatia by Hoyerswerda and Bautzen, to Hohenstein (Sept. 8) then to Lohmen north of the Elbe near Pirna. On October 1, the regiment took part in the Battle of Lobositz where it was assigned to the Brigade of Lieutenant-General Prince von Bevern. It lost 275 men in this battle. On October 2, the second battalion of the regiment was sent forward to occupy the village of Sulowitz. On October 19, the same battalion was ordered to escort the bakery to Linai.

On May 6 1757, during the invasion of Bohemia, the regiment took part in the Battle of Prague where it was deployed in the first line in Ferdinand of Brunswick's Brigade. On November 22, the regiment fought in the Battle of Breslau where it was deployed in Ingersleben's Brigade, in the first line of the infantry centre. On December 5 at the Battle of Leuthen, the regiment was deployed in Kahlden's Brigade in the first line of the infantry centre.

In the Spring of 1758, the regiment took part in the failed Prussian invasion of Moravia. On October 14, it fought in the Battle of Hochkirch where it was initially deployed in the first line to the left of the village of Hochkirch. Personally led by Keith, the regiment recaptured the Prussian battery near Hochkirch and pushed the Austrians back before being overwhelmed by number and forced to retire. Keith was killed during the action. Around 7:00 a.m., the rallied regiment supported Itzenplitz Infantry during its attack and temporary recapture of the village of Hochkirch. During this battle, the regiment suffered heavy casualties (around 50%).

On September 2 1759, the regiment, as part of Zieten's Corps, fought in the Combat of Sorau.

On September 17 1760, the regiment took part in the Combat of Hochgiersdorf where it was attached to the vanguard led by Lieutenant-General von Forcade. On November 3, the regiment took part in the Battle of Torgau, where it suffered heavy losses. The same year, it was also involved in engagements at Meißen and Böhmisch-Friedland.

On May 12 1762, the regiment took part in the Combat of Doebeln where it was attached to the centre left column led by Major-General Joachim Friedrich Stutterheim (Alt-Stutterheim). On October 29, the regiment took part in the Battle of Freiberg.

N.B.: During the war the grenadiers from the wing grenadier companies were put together with the grenadiers of Infanterie Regiment 7, forming the Grenadier Batallion 7/30 (please refer to this article for the details of the service of the grenadiers during the war).

Uniform

Privates

Uniform in 1756 - Source: Dal
Uniform Details
Headgear
Musketeer black tricorne laced white with one brass button and red within blue within white pompoms
Grenadier mitre with polished brass front plate, red headband with brass ornaments, white backing with Prussian blue/white/Prussian blue piping, red within Prussian blue within white pompom (see Grenadier Batallion 7/30 for an illustration)
Neckstock red
Coat Prussian blue lined red with 6 brass buttons and 8 orange braid loops with white tassels on each side and 1 brass button with 1 orange braid loop on each side in the small of the back
Collar none
Shoulder Straps blue
Lapels none
Pockets horizontal pockets edged in red, each with 3 brass buttons
Cuffs red (in the Prussian pattern), each with 2 brass buttons and 2 orange braid loops with white tassels on the sleeve flap
Turnbacks red
Waistcoat white
Breeches white
Gaiters black
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt one white belt over the left shoulder for the cartridge box and one narrower white belt over the right shoulder for the haversack
Waistbelt white
Cartridge Box black
Bayonet Scabbard brown
Scabbard brown
Footgear black shoes


Privates were armed with a musket, a bayonet and a straight bladed pallasch.

NCOs

NCOs wore uniforms similar to those of the privates with the following distinctions:

  • tricorne with wide gold lace and black and white quartered pompoms
  • no buttonholes on the chest, in the small of the back and on the sleeves
  • no shoulder strap
  • cuffs and sleeve flaps edged with golden lace braid
  • yellowish leather gloves
  • black and white sabre tassel

NCOs were armed with a sabre and a (probably) black half-pike measuring 10 Rhenish feet (3.06 m.) in the musketeer companies and 13 Rhenish feet (4.10 m.) in the grenadier companies (carried by the 3 most senior NCOs while other grenadier NCOs were armed with rifled muskets since 1744).

NCOs also carried canes (normally attached to a button at the top of the right front while carrying the half-pike).

Officers

Uniform of the officers in 1770 (unchanged since the SYW) - Source: Anonymous work of 1770

The uniforms of the officers were very similar to those of the privates with the following exceptions:

  • black tricorne laced gold (officers always wore tricornes notwithstanding if they were commanding musketeers, fusiliers or grenadiers)
  • white neck stock
  • no shoulder strap on the coat
  • no turnbacks on the coat
  • 8 elaborate golden embroidered loops on each side on the chest
  • 1 elaborate golden embroidered loop on each side in the small of the back
  • 2 elaborate golden embroidered loops on each sleeve flap
  • black and silver sash around the waist

Officers carried black (probably) spontoons measuring 7 ½ Rhenish feet (2.36 m.) and an officer stick.

Musicians

The wide drummer lace consisted of a white braid bordered with yellow triangles and decorated with two blue inner stripes. The narrow drummer lace consisted of a white braid bordered in its upper part with yellow triangles and decorated with one blue inner stripe.

The uniforms of the drummers were similar to those of the privates but had much more elaborate lacing and other peculiarities:

  • no shoulder strap
  • coat bordered along the front edge with the drummer lace
  • coat generously laced with the drummer lace

Colours

Colonel colour (Leibfahne): White field with black corner wedges. Centre device consisting of a green medallion surrounded by a golden laurel wreath and surmounted by a gold crown. The medallion is decorated with a black eagle holding a sword and lightning bolts surmounted by a white scroll bearing the golden motto "Pro Gloria et Patria". Corner monograms (crowns, laurel wreaths, “FR” ciphers) and grenades in gold.

Regimental colours (Kompaniefahnen): Green field with black corner wedges. Centre device consisting of a white medallion surrounded by a golden laurel wreath and surmounted by a gold crown. The medallion is decorated with a black eagle holding a sword and lightning bolts surmounted by a green scroll bearing the golden motto "Pro Gloria et Patria". Corner monograms (crowns, laurel wreaths, “FR” ciphers) and grenades in gold.

Colonel Colour - Source: Hannoverdidi
Regimental Colour - Source: Hannoverdidi

The pikes used as staffs for the colours were (probably) black.

References

Anonymous work: Etat Militaire du Roi de Prusse, au premier Janvier 1770, Infanterie, Première Partie

Engelmann, Joachim and Günter Dorn: Die Infanterie-Regimenter Friedrich des Grossen, Podzun-Pallas, 2000

Die Bewaffnung und Ausrüstung der Armee Friedrichs des Großen: Eine Dokumentation aus Anlaß seines 200. Todesjahres, 2 erw. Auflage, Raststatt 1986

Grosser Generalstab Kriegsgeschichtliche Abteilung II: Die Kriege Friedrichs des Grossen, Part 3 Der siebenjährige Krieg 1756-1763, Vol. 1 Pirna und Lobositz, Berlin, 1901, Appendix 1

Guddat, Martin: Grenadiere, Musketiere, Füsiliere: Die Infanterie Friedrichs des Großen, Herford 1986

Hohrath, Daniel: The Uniforms of the Prussian Army under Frederick the Great from 1740 to 1786; Vol. 2; Verlag Militaria, Vienna: 2011, pp. 242-249

Schirmer, Friedrich: Die Heere der kriegführenden Staaten 1756-1763, published by KLIO-Landesgruppe Baden-Württemberg, Neuauflage 1989

N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.