Winterfeldt Infantry

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Origin and History

Uniform in 1759 - Source: Engraving by von Schmalen, Nürnberg 1759

The regiment originated from the guard of the Margrave of Brandenburg created in 1615. At the end of the War of the Spanish Succession in 1713, the regiment was reorganised as a regular field infantry unit and counted two battalions. From this date it garrisoned Berlin till 1793. It recruited in the districts of Storkow, Beeskow, Teltow and Zauche; and in the towns of Storkow, Buchholtz, Zossen and Beelitz.

During the War of the Austrian Succession, the regiment fought in the battles of Mollwitz (April 10, 1741) and Hohenfriedberg (June 4, 1745).

During the Seven Years' War, the regiment counted 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 1.

Service during the War

On August 26 1756, when the Prussian Army initiated the invasion of Saxony, the regiment was part of the centre column led by Frederick II. More precisely, it belonged to Margrave Karl's Corps. The centre column had concentrated in the area of Brietzen and advanced unopposed upstream along the Elbe River by Torgau and Wittenberg, leaving Meissen to its left. On September 6, it encamped at Rothschönberg and finally reached Wilsdruf. While the Prussian Main Army moved forward to engage the Austrian Army at Lobositz (October 1), the regiment remained in the Pirna Country to maintain the blockade of the Saxon Army which surrendered on October 17.

On May 6 1757, the regiment took part in the Battle of Prague where it was deployed in the first line in Ferdinand of Brunswick's Brigade. During this battle, it suffered heavily, loosing two thirds of its strength. At the end of August, the regiment was part of the small Prussian army hastily assembled at Dresden by Frederick to head towards Thuringia to offer battle to the Franco-Imperial Army invading Saxony. On November 5, at the victorious Battle of Rossbach, the regiment was deployed in the second line of the infantry right wing under Lieutenant-General von Forcade. On December 5 at the Battle of Leuthen, the regiment was deployed in Münchow's Brigade in the first line of the infantry centre.

In the Spring of 1758, the regiment took part in the invasion of Moravia. In May, it guarded Frederick's headquarters at Schmirsitz.

In 1760, the regiment took part in the Battle of Liegnitz (August 15) and in the Battle of Torgau (November 3).

To do: details for the campaigns from 1758 to 1762

N.B.: During the war, the grenadiers from the wing grenadier companies were put together with the grenadiers of Forcade Infantry forming the Grenadier Batallion 1/23 (please refer to this article for the details of the service of the grenadiers during the war).

Uniform

  • Uniformen der Preußischen Armee, 1758 (Sächsische Landesbibliothek - Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek Dresden)
  • Accurate Vorstellung der sämtlich Koeniglichen Preusischen Armee Worinnen zur eigentlichen Kenntniss der Uniform von jedem Regiment ein Officier und Gemeiner in Völliger Montirung und ganzer Statur nach dem Leben abgebildet sind. Nebst beigefügter Nachricht 1.) von der Stiftung. 2.) Denen Chefs. 3.) der Staerke und 4.) der in Friedenszeiten habenden Guarnisons jedes Regiments. Hrsg. u. gezeichnet I.C. v. S.(chmalen), Nürnberg 1770 (Bibliothèque nationale de France)

Privates

Uniform in 1759 - Source: Kronoskaf
Uniform Details
Headgear
Musketeer black tricorne laced white, white pompoms
Grenadier mitre with silver-plated front plate, white headband with white metal ornaments, dark blue back with white piping, white pompom (see Grenadier Batallion 1/23 for an illustration)
Neck stock red
Coat Prussian blue with two white pointed braid loops on each side under the lapel (hidden by the sleeve in our illustration, see insert for details) and a pewter button with a white pointed braid loop on each side in the small of the back
Collar red
Shoulder Straps Prussian blue fastened with a pewter button (left shoulder only)
Lapels red, each with 6 pewter buttons and 6 white pointed braid loops arranged 2-2-2
Pockets horizontal pockets, each with 3 pewter buttons and 2 white pointed braid loops
Cuffs red (Prussian pattern), each with 2 pewter buttons and 2 white pointed braid loops on the sleeve flap
Turnbacks red fastened with a pewter button
Waistcoat white
Breeches white
Gaiters black
Leather Equipment
Cross-belt one white belt over the left shoulder for the cartridge box and one narrower white belt over the right shoulder for the haversack
Waist-belt 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 silver lace and black and white pompoms
  • silver laced lapels, cuffs and sleeve flaps
  • no braid loop below the lapels, on the cuffs and at the small of the back
  • no shoulder strap
  • yellowish leather gloves
  • black and white sabre tassel

NCOs were armed with a sabre and a light 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

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

Sash and sword knot. Small silver hat lace. White neck stock. No collar. Red lapels laced silver without braid loop. Two silver loops below the lapel. Red cuffs laced silver, two silver loops on the pockets as well as one sidewise on the waist and one on the back. Silber buttons.

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

Lace of the officer uniform in 1755 - Source: Tressenmusterbuch von 1755


Musicians

Lace of the drummer uniform in 1755 - Source: Tressenmusterbuch von 1755

White and red drummer lace. Swallow nests with four vertical bars and one horizontal bars on each shoulder. Nine chevrons on each sleeve. Lace on the lapels, pockets, cuffs and on the front and back of the coat.

Colours

Colonel colour (Leibfahne): White field. Centre device consisting of an orange medallion surrounded by a silver laurel wreath and surmounted by a silver crown. The medallion is decorated with a black eagle surmounted by a white scroll bearing the silver motto "Pro Gloria et Patria". Corner monograms (crowns, laurel wreaths, ciphers) and grenades in silver.

Regimental colours (Kompaniefahnen): Orange field. Centre device consisting of a white medallion surrounded by a silver laurel wreath and surmounted by a silver crown. The medallion is decorated with a black eagle surmounted by an orange scroll bearing the golden motto "Pro Gloria et Patria". Corner monograms (crowns, laurel wreaths, ciphers) and grenades in silver.

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

The pikes used as staffs for the colours were light brown with brass finials.

References

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

Duffy, Christopher, The Army of Frederick the Great, Purnell Book Services Limited, 1974

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

Haythornthwaite, Philip, Frederick the Great's Army (2), Osprey Publishing, 1992

Hohrath, Daniel: The Uniforms of the Prussian Army under Frederick the Great from 1740 to 1786; Vol. 2; Verlag Militaria, Vienna: 2011, pp. 12-17

Letzius, Martin, Das Zeitalter Friedrichs des Grossen, Sturm Zigaretten, Dresden: 1932

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. 53-58

Thümmler, L.-H., Preußische Militärgeschichte

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