Erzherzog Carl Infantry

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Origin and History

Uniform from 1746 to 1757 - Source: L. Kirchthaler Geschichte des k. u. k. Infanterie-Regimentes Nr. 2
Uniform in 1766 - Source: L. Kirchthaler Geschichte des k. u. k. Infanterie-Regimentes Nr. 2

This regiment was one of the six raised by Hungarian estates after the Reichstag (Imperial Diet of September 13, 1741 during the War of the Austrian Succession (1740-48). Ladislaus Baron Ujváry was promoted colonel and received his decree on October 20, 1741. Ernst Sartori was appointed lieutenant-colonel; and Franz Count Gyulay, Obristwachtmeister (major). The recruits were enlisted in various regions of Inner Hungary. The regiment was initially organized in 4 battalions, each of 5 companies. Till 1745, all 4 battalions were field battalions. In total, the regiment had 3,000 men.

In February 1742, Colonel Ujváry notified the Hofkriegsrat (War Council) that his regiment was now complete. One batallion was sent to Moravia and supported the garrison of Brünn (present-day Brno/CZ); the other under Major Count Gyulay, to Skalic (present-day Skalice/CZ); and the 3rd and 4th battalion under Lieutenant-Colonel Sartori, to Bavaria where it took part to operations. In 1744, three battalions were directed to Bohemia and the 4th to Salzburg. One battalion belonged to the garrison during the Prussian siege of Prague while two battalions fought in Southern Bohemia. The same year, Colonel Ujváry added by himself two grenadier companies to his regiment. In 1745, the regiment remained in Bavaria and fought against French and Bavarian troops. At the beginning of 1746, Colonel Ujváry raised 200 new recruits at his own expenses and was afterwards appointed as “real” regiment proprietor (Wirklicher Obrist-Inhaber). On May 6, Colonel Ujváry marched with 3 battalions and 2 grenadier coys towards the Austrian Netherlands. On October 11, these troops took part in the Battle of Rocoux. In 1747, two battalions and the grenadiers were part of Batthyány’s Army; the 3rd Battalion under Sartori (now colonel) garrisoned Luxembourg. On July 2, the two battalions took part in the Battle of Lauffeld.

In 1748, at the end of the war, the regiment garrisoned in the region of Čáslav/Bohemia. From 1750, the regiment was in Prague while one battalion was stationed at Grosswardein (present-day Oradea/RO). In 1751, the entire regiment was transferred to Pressburg (present-day Bratislava/SK).

In 1755, the regiment was reviewed at Olmütz (present-day Olomouc/CZ).

As per the Etat nouveau des Troupes de sa Majesté Impériale Royale comme elles se trouvent effectivement l'an 1759 and Etat général des Troupes qui servent sa Majesté Impériale et Royale Apostolique sur pié en 1760, the regiment counted 4 battalions (2 grenadier coys and 16 fusilier coys) for a total of 2,300 men. This was the administrative organisation of the regiment. However, the tactical organisation differed: 2 field fusilier battalions, each of 6 companies; 2 grenadier companies (usually converged with grenadiers from other battalions into an ad hoc unit); and 1 garrison battalion of 4 companies (see Austrian Line Infantry Organisation for more details).

Did you know that...
Erzherzog Carl - Source: L. Kirchthaler’s book

Erzherzog Karl Joseph, born on February 1, 1745, was the second son of Queen Maria Theresia and brother of future Emperor Joseph II. He was only 4 years (!) old when his mother appointed him proprietor of the present regiment! Colonel Sartori led the regiment, but had to reconcile all important matters with Emperor Franz Stephan. Erzherzog Carl died at the age of 16 on January 18, 1761.

Anecdote contributed by Harald Skala

Since its creation, the successive Inhaber (proprietors) of the regiment were:

  • from October 20, 1741: no proprietor
  • from 1746: Ladislaus Baron Ujváry
  • from February 26, 1749: Erzherzog Carl Joseph

During the Seven Years' War, the successive chefs of the regiment were:

  • from February 26, 1749: Erzherzog Carl (he was at that time only 4 years old, the regiment placed under the command of Colonel Sartori)
  • from 1761 until 1763: Erzherzog Ferdinand

During the Seven Years' War, its successive colonels-commanders were:

  • from 1752: Colonel Josef Count Siskovics
  • in 1757: Colonel Baron Kökényesdy de Vettes (killed on October 10, 1757 during a skirmish against the Prussian Jägers near Masselwitz)
  • from 1757: Colonel Ignaz Szallaghi
  • from 1760 till 1765: Colonel Joseph Orosz von Csicsér

Regimental numbers were introduced only in 1769 when this regiment was designated as "I.R. 2".

Service during the War

As early as July 1756, Colonel Siskowics received order to increase all battalions to 1,000 men. However, he was unable to reach this goal and he organized his regiment two 2 field-battalions of 6 companies each, and one garrison battalion. In September, the two field-battalions were in Bohemia with Piccolomini's covering force in the Königshof-Kolin region. On September 9, the regiment left that region and marched to the camp near Königgrätz (present-day Hradec Králové/CZ). It took up its winter-quarters in Königgrätz.

For the campaign of 1757, Piccolomini was replaced by G.d.C. Serbelloni but the army remained in the region of Königgrätz until May 1. During the Prussian invasion of Bohemia, the regiment marched towards Prague but, on the day of the Battle of Prague, it was still at a day’s march. The regiment was than allocated to the army of FM Leopold Count Daun assembled near Goltz-Jenikau (present-day Gločův Jeníkov/CZ). Lieutenant-Colonel Vettes was sent by FM Daun to reconnoitre the Prussian positions. FM Daun decided afterwards to attack the Prussians near Kolin and sent Captain Stredony from the regiment with a message to the army besieged in Prague, informing Prince Charles of Lorraine of Daun’s intentions. On June 18, the regiment took part in the Battle of Kolin where it was deployed on the right of the first line in Esterházy's Brigade. During the battle, the regiment repulsed five attacks. During the last attack, Colonel Siskovics was severely wounded. However, he remained with his regiment till the Austrians gained a shining victory. In this battle, the regiment lost 2 captains and 87 men killed and 13 subalterns and 196 men wounded (including Colonel Siskovics). Lieutenant-Colonel Vettes was charged with the honourable task of bringing news of the victory to Vienna. He was promoted to colonel, every man of the regiment got a Douceur (gift) of 20 ducats from Maria Theresa. For his part, Josef Baron Siskovics was retroactively to June 6 1757 promoted to Generalfeldwachtmeister (GFWM) and proposed by the officers of his regiment for the Maria Theresia Order. After Siskovics' promotion, Colonel Vettes replaced him as commander of Erzherzog Carl Infantry. The 3rd – garrison – Battalion was then ordered to join the main army and was reunited with the two other battalions. The regiment now counted a total of 2,237 men. The regiment followed the army in its advance towards Silesia. On October 8, Colonel Vettes was killed near Masselwitz (may be Maserwitz = Mazurowice/PL) by a Prussian Jäger. In October and November, one battalion and the grenadiers took part in the siege and capture of Schweidnitz. On November 22, the entire regiment took part in the Battle of Breslau where two of its battalions were deployed in the Marquis d'Aynse's Brigade, in the extreme left wing of infantry under Count Puebla, while a third battalion was deployed in the first line of the infantry centre of Nádasdy's Corps. In this battle, the regiment lost 2 officers and 192 men killed, 26 officers and around 500 men wounded. Second Colonel Ignaz Szalloghy, who had been wounded during this affair, was promoted first colonel and spent the following weeks in the hospital of Breslau. Since all senior officers had been wounded, Captain Emericus Jékey temporarily took command of the remnants of the regiment (the three original battalions were reorganised in only two battalions, each of six companies). On December 5 at the Battle of Leuthen, the two battalions of the regiment were deployed in Puebla's Brigade in the first line of the infantry left wing under Colloredo. Once more, the battalions suffered severe losses. Most of the wounded were left behind during retreat and were captured by the Prussians. The Emperor himself praised the regiment for its valour in this battle. On December 22, the garrison of Breslau, commanded by FZM Sprecher, surrendered and became prisoners of war. Colonel Szalloghy, still wounded, remained in Breslau but, within few weeks, was exchanged against a Prussian colonel (Szalloghy was than promoted to general). The main Austrian army went to Bohemia. The 2nd Battalion was allocated to the corps of FML Buccow, which defended the passes of Landshut from December 16 to 20. After heavy combats, this battalion had only 464 men. Afterwards this battalion was posted between Königinhof (present-day Dvůr Králové nad Labem/CZ) and Miletín (present-day Miletín/CZ). It was joined there by fusiliers who had escaped from Prussian prisons. Captain Cogniazo introduced them to Queen Maria Theresia which gave them presents. The regiment remained there during winter. Lieutenant-Colonel Josef Orosz was promoted to colonel and regiment commander.

On April 18, 1758, when the Fortress of Schweidnitz surrendered, a detachment of 139 men of the regiment led by Captain Horvath was taken prisoner of war. At the end of April, when Frederick II proceeded to the invasion of Moravia and laid siege to Olmütz (present-day Olomouc/CZ), the entire regiment was with FM Daun’s main army. On June 22, a detachment of the regiment was part of the reinforcements led by Major-General (GFWM) Baron Bülow who managed to enter into Olmütz. After the destruction and capture of the Prussian convoy near Domstadtl, Frederick II retired through Bohemia towards Saxony, closely followed by Daun’s main army. The regiment went from Jaroměř (Bohemia) to Bautzen where it remained until July 30. It then went to the camp of the main army around Kittlitz. On October 14, two battalions of the regiment took part in the Battle of Hochkirch where they were deployed in the vanguard of the second left column of Daun's main army, led by FML Forgách directly south of Hochkirch. The regiment, preceded by its grenadiers, attacked a large redoubt (20 heavy guns and 6 battalion guns) defended by Markgraf Carl Infantry. The redoubt was captured and defended against a counter-attack of General Kleist’s troops. Afterwards, the regiment took part in fights inside Hochkirch. It suffered very heavy losses: 114 men killed; the grenadiers lost all their officers; Lieutenant-Colonel Josef Baron Orosz, Captains Franz Mersics and Horváth, First-Lieutenant Cogniazo, 5 other officers and 171 men, wounded; and 56 men missing. The wounded officers were transported to the hospital at Kosmonos (present-day Kosmonosy/CZ); Lieutenant-Colonel Orosz, who was severely wounded, to Prague. During his absence, Major Emericus Jékey de Bully assumed command of the regiment. In his message to FM von Daun, FML Forgách praised the grenadiers and the whole regiment. Lieutenant Dazier was directly promoted to captain; and First-Lieutenants Kokič and Cogniazo from the grenadiers to captains. After the battle, the regiment marched to its winter-quarters around Budin/CZ.

In January 1759, because of his injuries, Major Emericus Jékey received command of the 3rd (garrison) Battalion in Hungary. In April, the regiment went to Trautenau (present-day Trutnov/CZ). From April 8, it encamped near Jaromir (present-day Jaroměř/CZ). In May, the regiment (2 battalions and 2 grenadier coys) was allocated to Loudon’s Corps. In August (after the Battle of Kunersdorf, in which the regiment was not involved) Loudon marched to Grünberg (present-day Zielona Gora/PL) with his corps to effect a junction with the Russian army. General Saltykov refused to engage a new battle against the Prussians and Loudon retreated through Krakau/PL to Moravia in very bad weather conditions. The regiment spent the winter there.

In 1760, the regiment took part in the Austrian campaign in Saxony. In early June, it was attached to Daun's Grand Army encamped near Dresden, as part of FML Campitelli’s Corps, and was deployed in the first line of the infantry centre. In June, the army concentrated near Plauen. The regiment was part of GFWM Migazzi’s Brigade, while the grenadiers were converged with other companies to form the “Grenadier Battalion Kokoržowa”. They remained at Plauen until the end of June. The main army then marched to Görlitz and Naumburg but, at the end of July, returned to Dresden. On July 20, the regiment and the grenadiers took part in the combat on “Weisser Hirsch” against the troops of Duke of Holstein. In this action, the regiment lost 15 men. The Duke of Holstein then retired to the left bank of the Elbe River. On August 15, during the Battle of Liegnitz (present-day Legnica/PL), the regiment was part of Daun’s main army which was not seriously involved in combat (the main Prussian attack was against Loudon’s Corps). On September 17, two battalions were present at the Combat of Hochgiersdorf where the grenadiers of the regiment distinguished themselves once more, losing 4 men killed and 11 wounded. After the combat, Grenadier Captain Kokič was promoted to major and transferred to Haller Infantry. On November 3 at the Battle of Torgau, the regiment (two battalions for a total of 1,864 men) was on the left wing on the so called “Schaf-Teichen”. The grenadiers, led by Colonel Normann were at Grosswig as reserve. Late in the evening, the regiment was attacked by 7 Prussian battalions led by General Hülsen. The regiment distinguished itself but was almost entirely captured in the confused final stages of the battle. In this sanguinary battle, the regiment lost 6 officers and 227 men killed or mortally wounded; Colonel Orosz, 19 officers and 304 men taken prisoner of war.; 89 officers and 373 men wounded and transported to Kosmonos (present-day Kosmonosy/CZ), Gradisch Monastery (present-day Klášter Hradiště/CZ) and Raudnitz (present-day Roudnice/CZ). The regiment was reduced to a single battalion. In November, when it was reviewed, it counted only 990 men, including 373 in hospitals and 73 detached (Depositorium) to Prague.

On January 18, 1761 the regiment proprietor, Erzherzog Carl, died. On January 25, Erzherzog Ferdinand was appointed as the new proprietor. In May, the regiment was deployed in the corps of G.d.C. O’Donell in Upper Lusatia, in d’Argenteau’s Brigade (along with Gyulay Infantry and Botta Infantry) which marched to Trautenau (present-day Trutnov/CZ). On May 19, it effected a junction with Loudon’s Corps near Dittresbach. On October 1, one battalion of the regiment led by Lieutenant-Colonel Jékey took part in the storming of Schweidnitz where it was attached to the second column to the left of Nikolaus Esterházy Infantry and attacked the “Jauerniker Fort”. After the capture of the fort, the battalion stormed the fortress gate and entered. The regiment lost only 5 men killed and 61 wounded. Each men of the battalion received one gold ducat from Empress Maria Theresia. On October 21, Loudon sent 20,000 men under FML Buttler to Saxony. The regiment (now counting 1,805 men, while Colonels Szalloghy and Orosz, 5 captains and 22 officers were still in Prussian prisons) was part of these troops and arrived on November 3 at Freiberg where it spent the winter.

In March 1762, the regiment was sent to Silesia. Its grenadiers were converged with those of Harsch Infantry to form the Grenadier Battalion de Vins. From August to October, a detachment of 264 fusiliers led by Captain Michel Pfundt, First-Lieutenants Josef Ocskay and Michael Waldhütter and Lieutenant Ignaz Schröckinger was deployed in the battalion of Major Kaltschmidt from Thürheim Infantry and took part in the defence of Schweidnitz. During the siege, the detachment took part in several sorties, mainly during the night of August 14 and 19. Ocskay, Waldhütter and Schröckinger distinguished themselves. In the night of September 28, First-Lieutenant Waldhütter led another a sortie. His troop had to move across a deep hole after a mine explosion. Waldhütter was hit to the face by a Prussian bayonet; he killed the Prussian grenadier with his sabre and proceed with the attack. The commander of Schweidnitz, Count Guasco, immediately promoted Waldhütter to captain (on October 21, as part of the 8th Promotion of the Maria-Theresia-Order, Waldhütter would receive the knight cross and would be ennobled with the title “von Minenburg”). On October 8 at 1:00 a.m., a Prussian cannon-ball hit the gun powder magazine in the “Jauernik-Fort” and the whole magazine blow up. Two grenadier companies and 200 fusiliers of different regiments were killed. The commander of the regiment detachment there, Captain Michael Pfundt with several fusiliers was among the victims. On October 10, Guasco surrendered. Empress Marie Theresia gave the order, that each officer of the Schweidnitz garrison should receive an additional six-month pay; and the soldiers, a 12-months pay. Ocskay was promoted to captain, and Lieutenant Schröckinger, to first-lieutenant. During the siege of Schweidnitz, the detachment lost 45 men killed; and all officers and 113 men, wounded. During the heroic defend of Schweidnitz, the main part of the regiment was with Daun’s main army around Glatz (present-day Klodźko/PL). The regiment took up its winter-quarters at Bilin (present-day Bílina/CZ).

Until mid-May 1763, the regiment remained in its winter quarters around Bilin, In May, Colonel Orosz von Csicsér took command of the regiment. On May 13, the regiment marched towards Vienna to attend on (“zur Aufwartung”). In August, the Hofkriegsrat gave the order that each infantry regiment should have 3 field battalions and two grenadier coys.

Uniform

In 1741, the regiment wore a black “Kalpaks” made of felt, a white Hungarian coat, a blue dolman with yellow buttons, Hungarian blue trousers with yellow tassels. The soldiers also had a sabretache made of yellow leather with a blue lid.

In 1751, the uniform was changed. Instead of the Hungarian pelisse, the regiment received white coats lined with lemon yellow with 6 lemon yellow laced buttonholes. Instead of the dolman, its fusiliers wore a blue waistcoat. Blue trousers. The csismen were replaced by short black boots.

Since 1744, officers wore a black tricorne laced gold; the fusiliers kept the black shako.

For the moment we have very few information on the uniform in 1756, at the outbreak of the war. Most of our references describe the uniform in 1762. However, the few details given by Muhsfeldt and Schirmer suggest a uniform almost identical to the uniform of 1762.

Privates

Uniform in 1762 - Source: Frédéric Aubert from a template made by Richard Couture
Uniform Details in 1762
as per Knötel, Donath and the Bautzener Bilderhandschrift of 1762

completed with other sources where necessary
Headgear
Musketeer black tricorne laced white with a white fastener and a small yellow button on the left side; lemon yellow cockade; one lemon yellow tassel in each lateral corne
Grenadier bearskin with a lemon yellow bag probably laced white with a white tassel
Neckstock one red and one black (for parades the regimental commanders agreed before on the colour of the neckstocks)
Coat white lined lemon yellow with 6 lemon yellow laced buttonholes with lemon yellow tassels arranged 1-2-3, on each side; 6 yellow buttons on the right side
Collar none
Shoulder Straps white fastened by a yellow button (left shoulder only)
Lapels none
Pockets vertical pockets without buttons
Cuffs lemon yellow pointed cuffs without buttons
Turnbacks lemon yellow
Waistcoat royal blue dolman edged lemon yellow with 3 rows of small yellow buttons linked with lemon yellow brandebourgs
Sabretache royal blue edged yellow and decorated with a white eagle
Trousers royal blue Hungarian trousers
Gaiters none
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt white
Waistbelt royal blue and yellow barrel sash
Cartridge Box black with a small brass plate carrying the initials “MT”
Bayonet Scabbard black with brass fittings
Scabbard black with brass fittings
Footgear short black boots


Troopers were armed with a musket (Model 1745 for fusiliers, Model 1754 for grenadiers), a bayonet and a sabre.

NCOs

Sergeants and corporals carried a short musket and a bayonet.

Officers

As per the Bautzener Bilderhandschrift, the officers wore a different uniform in 1762:

  • tricorne laced gold with a white and green cockade
  • black neckstock
  • dark blue waistcoat edged in gold with golden brandebourgs
  • brandebourgs only on the left side of the coat
  • no turnbacks
  • vertical pockets with 3 yellow buttons
  • white waistbelt
  • dark blue trousers decorated with a golden lace
  • yellow Hungarian boots

Senior officers carried sticks identifying their rank:

  • lieutenant: bamboo stick without knob
  • captain: long rush stick with a bone knob
  • major: long rush stick with a silver knob and a small silver chain
  • lieutenant-colonel: long rush stick with a larger silver knob without chain
  • colonel: long rush stick with a golden knob

Musicians

As per a regulation of 1755, musicians were now distinguished from troopers only by lemon yellow swallow nests on the shoulders.

The drum had a brass barrel decorated with black flames at the bottom and with a black double headed Eagle on a yellow field. Rims were decorated with red and white diagonal stripes. The bandolier was white.

Colours

All Hungarian infantry regiments were supposed to carry the same colours as the German infantry regiments: a white Leibfahne (colonel) and yellow Regimentsfahne. The colours were made of silk. The flagpoles had golden finial and were decorated with black and yellow spirals of cloth.

The colonel colour was carried by the first battalion.

Colonel flag (Leibfahne):

  • field: white
  • border: alternating white and yellow outer waved triangles pointing inwards, red and black inner waved triangles pointing outwards
  • obverse (right): the Immaculate Mother of God (which had been declared the patroness of the army by kaiser Ferdinand III) on a cloud, crushing a snake under her foot and surrounded by rays
  • reverse (left): crowned and armed Imperial double-eagle with the "Lothringen-Toscanian" arms on a shield and the initials of the Emperor CF on the left wing and JM on the right
Leibfahne – Source: PMPdeL

Regimental flags (Regimentsfahne):

  • field: yellow
  • border: alternating white and yellow outer waved triangles pointing inwards, red and black inner waved triangles pointing outwards
  • obverse (right): crowned and armed Imperial double-eagle with the "Lothringen-Toscanian" arms on a shield and the initials of the Emperor CF on the left wing and JM on the right
  • reverse (left): unarmed and crowned Imperial double-eagle with the arms of Hungaria and Bohemia on a shield and the initials M on the left wing and T on the right
Regimentsfahne – Source: PMPdeL

In fact, the situation on the field was slightly more complex than this, since colours were usually replaced only when worn out. It is fairly possible that some regiment who had been issued colours of the 1743 pattern were still carrying them at the beginning of the Seven Years' War. For more details, see Austrian Line Infantry Colours.

References

This article contains texts from the following sources, which are now in the public domain:

  • Kirchthaler, L.: Geschichte des k. u. k. Infanterie-Regimentes Nr. 2 .. Vienna, 1895
  • Hirtenfeld: Der Militär-Maria-Theresien-Orden und seine Mitglieder, p. 167, Vienna 1857.
  • Seyfart: Kurzgefaßte Geschichte aller kaiserlich-königlichen Regimenter zu Pferde und zu Fuß, Frankfurth and Leipzig, 1762, p. 38

Other sources

Dihm, Dr. Hermann: Oesterreichische Standarten und Fahnen zur Zeit des 7 jährigen Krieges, Die Zinnfigur, Klio

Donath, Rudolf: Die Kaiserliche und Kaiserlich-Königliche Österreichische Armee 1618-1918, 2. Aufl., Simbach/Inn 1979

Etat nouveau des Troupes de sa Majesté Impériale Royale comme elles se trouvent effectivement l'an 1759

Etat général des Troupes qui servent sa Majesté Impériale et Royale Apostolique sur pié en 1760

Funcken, Liliane and Fred: Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle

Hausmann, Friedrich: Die Feldzeichen der Truppen Maria Theresias, Schriften des Heeresgeschichtlichen Museums, vol. 3, Vienna: 1967

Knötel, Herbert d.J. and Hans M. Brauer: Heer und Tradition / Heeres-Uniformbogen (so-called “Brauer-Bogen”), Berlin 1926-1962, Österreich-Ungarn – 1756-63

Muhsfeldt, Th.: Abzeichenfarben der K. und K. Regimenter zu Fuss im Jahre 1757 und früher, in Mitteilungen zur Geschichte des militärischen Tracht, No. 12, 1904

Pengel, R. D. and G.R. Hurt: Austro-Hungarian Infantry 1740-1762; On Military Matters; Birmingham, 1982

Schirmer, Friedrich: Die Heere der kriegführenden Staaten 1756-1763, hrsg. von der KLIO-Landesgruppe Baden-Württemberg, überarb. u. aktual. Neuauflage 1989

Seidel, Paul: Nochmals österreichische Standarten und Fahnen zur Zeit des 7 jährigen Krieges, Die Zinnfigur, Clio

Thümmler, L.-H.: Die Österreichiches Armee im Siebenjährigen Krieg: Die Bautzener Bilderhandschrift aus dem Jahre 1762, Berlin 1993

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

Acknowledgments

Michael Zahn for gathering most of the initial information about this regiment and Harald Skala for the translation and integration of Kirchthaler’s work