Lehwaldt Infantry

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Hierarchical Path: Seven Years War (Main Page) >> Armies >> Prussian Army >> Lehwaldt Infantry

Origin and History

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

The regiment was raised in 1626 by Colonel Hillebrand von Kracht and took part in the Thirty Years' War.

The regiment garrisoned the towns of Bartenstein, Preussisch-Friedland and Schippenbeil in East-Prussia. Its recruitment cantons were Balga, Barten, Bartenstein, Brandenburg, Gerdauen, Karben, Karschau, Kobberbude, Lyck, Natangen, Preussisch-Eylau, Tapiau and Uderwangen; and the towns of Bartenstein, Domnau, Landsberg, Preussisch-Eylau and Zinthen.

During the War of the Austrian Succession, the regiment fought in the battles of Chotusitz (May 17, 1742), Hohenfriedberg (June 4, 1745) and Soor (September 30, 1745).

During the Seven Years War, the regiment consisted of two battalions and was commanded by:

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 14.

Service during the War

In 1757, the regiment was part of Lehwaldt's Army assigned to the defence of East Prussia against a Russian invasion. On August 30, at the Battle of Gross-Jägersdorf, it was deployed in the first line of the infantry right wing in Lieutenant-General Kanitz brigade. The regiment suffered heavy casualties during this battle. By December 29, the regiment was posted at Tilsit and Demmin.

At the beginning of 1758, from January 10 to June 18, the regiment took part in the blockade of the Swedish fortress of Stralsund. On August 25, the regiment fought at the Battle of Zorndorf where it formed part of the first line of the right division led by Count zu Dohna. During this battle, the regiment panicked and fell in permanent disfavour with Frederick II. On September 25, it was part of the detachment of Major-General Wobersnow who was sent by Dohna from Blumenberg to cut off the Russian detachment left at Landsberg by the retreating main army. On September 26, this Prussian detachment captured Landsberg.

In the campaign of 1759, the regiment was part of the army who contained the Russian invasion of Brandenburg. On July 23, it took part in the Battle of Paltzig where it was attached to Flemming's Brigade deployed in the second line of infantry under the command of Major-General von Wobersow. A few weeks later, on August 12, the regiment fought in the Battle of Kunersdorf where it was deployed in the infantry reserve of the centre as part of Klitzing's Brigade. The regiment suffered so heavily during this battle (loss of 35 officers and 717 men) that it was later reorganised as a single battalion (its recruitment cantons being occupied by Russian troops). On September 21, this battalion took part in the Combat of Korbitz where it was deployed in the first line of the right wing under Lieutenant-General Finck. On November 20, this battalion took part in the Battle of Maxen where it was attached to Lindstädt's Brigade. Completely surrounded, the entire Prussian force finally surrendered as prisoners of war.

For the campaign of 1760, the regiment was rebuilt in Pomerania with troops recruited in Mecklenburg. In January, the newly formed regiment was attached to Prussian Lieutenant-General Heinrich von Manteuffel' Corps. During the night of January 27 to 28, a Swedish force (Skaraborgs Infantry, Wrangel Grenadiers and Meijerfelt Grenadiers) under Major Baron Pehr Ribbing launched a surprise attack in 3 columns to seize the bridge over the Peene at Anklam. They first took possession of the suburbs, then surprised the Prussian outposts near the bridge before the Prussians had time to hoist the draw-bridge. Manteuffel's Corps retired behind the Peene while the Swedes took their winter-quarters. From October 3 to 9, the regiment took part in the defence of Berlin. It took its winter-quarters in Mecklenburg.

On January 31 1761, the second battalion of the regiment formed part of the forces assembled near Rega by Courbières and Werner. On February 11, these Prussian forces reached Colberg. From August 24 to November 13, the regiment took part in the defence of Colberg. During the night of November 13 to 14, the regiment followed the Prince von Württemberg when he broke through the Russian blockade. On November 17, Württemberg made a junction with Platen's Corps at Greiffenberg, the regiment was then assigned to the Reserve under Colonel Falkenhayn. On December 11, the regiment was part of the left column of Württemberg's Corps who marched from Treptow, escorting a relief convoy destined to Colberg. On December 12, the regiment took part in the Combat of Spie where Württemberg was stopped and forced to abandon his project of relieving Colberg. The fortress surrendered on December 16. The regiment took its winter-quarters in Mecklenburg but was soon redirected to Pomerania where, at the end of December, it reinforced Colonel Belling's Corps for the incoming Winter operations against the Swedes in Pomerania.

In 1762, the regiment served in the campaign of Saxony. On May 12, it fought in the Combat of Doebeln where it formed part of the centre right column under Lieutenant-General Hans Wilhelm von Kanitz. At the end of July, it took part to Seydlitz's incursion into Bohemia. On August 2, it fought in the Combat of Teplitz.

N.B.: During the war the grenadiers from the wing grenadier companies were put together with the grenadiers of Infantry Regiment 11 forming the Grenadier Batallion 11/14 (please refer to this article for the details of the service of the grenadiers during the war).

Uniform

Privates

Uniform in 1756 - Source: Kronoskaf
Uniform Details
Headgear
Musketeer black tricorne laced white, one brass button, light red pompoms
Grenadier mitre with brass front plate; white headband with light red braid decorated with brass ornaments; white backing with light red braid; light red pompom (see Grenadier Batallion 11/14 for an illustration)
Neck stock red
Coat Prussian blue lined red with 2 brass buttons under the lapel on the right side, and with 3 brass buttons on each side to fasten the skirts forming the turnbacks
Collar none
Shoulder Straps Prussian blue piped red fastened with a small brass button
Lapels light red, each with 6 brass buttons and 6 buttonholes (each buttonhole was made of a thick white braid decorated with two thin red lines and arranged in two adjacent hollow rhombuses) arranged 2-2-2
Pockets horizontal pockets piped red, each with 3 brass buttons
Cuffs light red (in the Prussian style), each with 2 brass buttons and 2 buttonholes (same pattern as on the lapels) on the sleeve flap
Turnbacks red fastened with a brass button
Waistcoat white with horizontal pockets, each with brass buttons
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 sabre with a curved blade.

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 shoulder strap
  • no buttonhole on the lapels and sleeves
  • gold laced cuffs without buttonholes
  • yellowish leather gloves
  • black and white sabre tassel
  • gilt buttons

NCOs were armed with a sabre and a brown (maybe 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

Lehwaldt Infantry Officer - Source: Menzel, Adolph von, Die Armee Friedrich's des Großen

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

  • black tricorne with a thin golden hat lace (officers always wore tricornes notwithstanding if they were commanding musketeers, fusiliers or grenadiers)
  • white neck stock
  • coat:
    • one pair of golden lace loops with tassels under each lapel
    • one golden lace loop with tassel on each side in the small of the back.
    • no shoulder strap
    • no turnback
    • gilt buttons
  • black and silver sash around the waist
  • black and silver sword knot

Officers carried brown (maybe black) spontoons measuring 7 ½ Rhenish feet (2.36 m.).

Musicians

The uniforms of the drummers were similar to those of the privates but had much more elaborate lacing (drummer lace consisting of a white braid with a thin red stripe in the centre) and other peculiarities:

  • no shoulder strap
  • 5 vertical narrow drummer laces and one horizontal drummer lace
  • drummer lace along the lapels and on the pockets, cuffs, in the small of the back and on the front and back of the coat
  • two white buttonholes made with the drummer lace under each lapel
  • each sleeve decorated with 8 horizontal narrow laces on the sleeve bordered with red/white tassels on each side

Colours

Colonel colour (Leibfahne): White field. Centre device consisting of a red-purple 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): Red-purple field. 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 red-purple scroll bearing the golden motto "Pro Gloria et Patria". Corner monograms (crowns, laurel wreaths, FR ciphers) and grenades in gold.

Colonel Colour - Source: Dal Gavan from an original by Hannoverdidi
Regimental Colour - Source: Dal Gavan from an original by Hannoverdidi

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

References

Anonymous (maybe Karl Wellner): Montierung des Königlich Preussischen Armee

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

Bleckwenn, Hans: Die Uniformen der Preußischen Infanterie 1753-1786, Teil III/Bd. 3, Osnabrück 1973

Bleckwenn, Hans: Die friderzianischen Uniformen 1753-1786, Bd. I Infanterie I, Osnabrück 1984

Deutsche Uniformen, Bd. 1, Das Zeitalter Friedrich des Großen, 240 images of Herbert Knötel d. J., Text and explanations by Dr. Martin Letzius, published by Sturm-Zigaretten GmbH, Dresden: 1932

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

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

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. 98-103

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

Summerfield, Stephen: Prussian Musketeers of the War of the Austrian Succession and Seven Years War: Uniforms, Organisation and Equipement of Musketeer Regiments, Ken Trotman Publishing: Huntingdon, 2012, pp. 134-138

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