Origin and History
The Finnish regiment was created in 1620. It became an Indelta regiment in 1733.
In 1634, a government regulation ranked the Österbottens Regiment 20th among the infantry regiments.
In 1699, the regiment garrisoned Riga. In 1702, it joined Schlippenbach's army but a detachment remained in Riga. This latter detachment joined Lewenhaupt's army in 1705. One battalion followed Lewenhaupt in the summer of 1708 when he advanced in Ukraine and fought at Liesna on September 28. This battalion finally surrendered a few days after the battle of Poltava in June 1709. The other battalion was captured by the Russian at Riga in 1710. However, the regiment was re-established during the same year and assigned to the army of Finland.
In 1718, the regiment took part to general Armfeldt's campaign in Norway. After the peace of 1721, it returned to Finland.
This Finnish regiment consisted of 1,200 privates in 2 battalions of 4 companies. Each company had 150 privates and 11 officers, NCOs and musicians.
During the Seven Years' War, the regiment was commanded by:
- 1757: V. Carpelan
Service during the War
In 1756, the regiment was reorganised, integrating the Kajana independent company as its 9th company. This brought its total force to 1,350 troopers.
By the end of August 1757, 6 companies of the regiment (about 900 men) had been transported across the Baltic towards Swedish-Pomerania.
To do: campaigns from 1758 to 1763
|Coat||dark blue with 10 brass buttons down the front with yellow trimmed buttonholes and 2 brass buttons at small of the back
|Gaiters||white stockings with brown leather strap at knee|
Troopers were armed with a sword and a musket. The bayonet was permanently fixed to the musket.
Schirmer as well as Pengel and Hurt mention a yellow collar and white trimmed buttonholes.
NCOs wore uniforms similar to those of the privates with the following distinctions:
- a silver lace on the tricorne
- brass buttons (smaller than those of officers)
NCOs carried halberds but no cane.
Officers wore a blue uniform (coat) with blue distinctives (collar, cuffs, turnbacks). They were further distinguished from privates by:
- a gold lace on the tricorne
- no turnbacks on the coat
- a silver gorget
- brass buttons
- blue or black breeches (breeches of the same colour as those of the privates were also worn)
N.B.: contrarily to the custom in other armies, Swedish officers did not wear any sash
Horses were equipped with blue housing with a yellow border.
The uniform of the drummers were usually yellow with the addition of plain white swallows nest on each shoulder. There were no other lace on the sleeves, etc.
The drums were brass with provincial coats of arms embossed on the front. The rims were blue with yellow edging.
The pikes used as staffs to carry the colours were always yellow. The Liffana had gold finials while the Kompanifana had steel finials. The colours measured 2.12 x 1.70 m. (1.81 x 1.33 m. as per Clifford).
Liffana (colonel flag): white field; centre device carried the crowned royal arms of Sweden flanked by 2 crowned golden lions; the outer corner of the first canton carried 6 silver or white hermines.
N.B.: for the liffana, Clifford adds a pedestal supporting the arms, the letters “AFRS” above the arms and 1 royal crown in the corner of each of the 3 remaining cantons.
Kompanifana (ordonnance flag): blue filed; centre device consisting of 6 silver or white hermines; the whole surrounded by a green laurel wreath tied with a gold ribbon.
The colonel's battalion carried the Liffana and a Kompanifana. The lieutenant-colonel's battalion carried 2 Kompanifanor.
Großer Generalstab: Die Kriege Friedrichs des Großen - Dritter Teil: Der Siebenjährige Krieg 1756–1763. Vol. 6 Leuthen, Kriegsgeschichtliche Abteilung II (Publisher), Berlin 1904, pp.92-107, Annex pp. 11-16
Högman, Hans: Svenska regementen under indelningsverkets dagar (broken link)
Höglund, Lars-Eric and Ake Sallnäs: The Great Northern War 1700-1721, Colours and Uniforms, Acedia Press, Karlstadt, 2000
Pengel, R. D. and G. R. Hurt: Swedish Army in Pomerania – 1757-1763, Birmingham, 1983
Purky, Jim: Swedish Army Organization, Seven Years War Association Journal Vol. X No. 1
Säwe, Teofron: Sveriges deltagande i Sjuåriga Kriget Åren 1757-1762, Beijers Bokförlagsaktiebolag, Stockholm, 1915
Schirmer, Friedrich: Die Heere der kriegführenden Staaten 1756-1763, published by KLIO-Landesgruppe Baden-Württemberg, Neuauflage 1989
Schorr, Dan: Swedish Flags 1757-1762 - Part II Infantry Flags, The Courrier, March-April 1980
Schorr, Dan: Uniforms of the Swedish Army, 1757-1762, The Courrier, June-July 1979
Wilson, Peter: The Swedish Army in 1756, Seven Years War Association Journal Vol. X No. 1
N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.