Origin and History
The regiment was created by a regulation of September 6, 1684. Indeed, expecting a Coalition to soon form against France, Louis XIV raised 30 new regiments from September 1 to 30 for the defence of the various places of the realm. By raising one regiment a day, he avoided any problem of precedence among these new regiments.
During its first years of existence, the regiment was not included in field units.
By 1688, at the outbreak of the Nine Years' War (1688-97), the regiment garrisoned Calais. In 1693, it was sent to Huy where it distinguished itself in the glorious defence of the place. The remnants of the regiment (only 150 men) evacuated Huy with the honours of war. After this feat of arms, the regiment was admitted in the filed units.. In 1697, it took part in the siege of Ath.
In 1700, on the eve of the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-1713), the regiment was sent to Italy. On February 1, 1701, the regiment, which initially counted a single battalion, was increased to two battalions. These two battalions served independently for the entire war. In 1701, the first battalion took part in the Battle of Chiari; in 1702, in the Battle of Luzzara and in the capture of Luzzara and Borgoforte; in 1704, in the sieges of Vercelli, Ivrea and Verrua; in 1705, in the Battle of Cassano; and in 1706, in the Battle of Calcinato and in the siege of Turin. In 1707, the first battalion was sent to Spain where it participated in the siege of Lérida. In 1708, it took part in the siege of Tortosa and in the submission of the Kingdom of Valencia. In 1709, it fought the migueletes in Catalonia. In 1710, it was at the siege Girona. From 1711, to 1713, it campaigned in Catalonia. In 1714, it took part in the siege and capture of Barcelona.
Meanwhile, the second battalion, which had been raised on 1 February 1701, served in Flanders and Germany. In 1703, it garrisoned Landau after its capture. In 1704, it took part in the disastrous Battle of Blenheim and in the unsuccessful defence of Landau. From 1705 to 1710, it served in the Lines of the Lauter. In 1711, it was sent to Dauphiné.
In 1715, the second battalion was disbanded.
In 1733, at the outbreak of the War of the Polish Succession (1733-35), the regiment served on the Rhine and participated in the siege of Kehl. In 1734, it took part in the attack on the Lines of Ettlingen and in the siege of Philisbourg; and in 1735, in the Battle of Klausen.
In 1741, during the War of the Austrian Succession (1740-48), the regiment in the Army of the Lower-Rhine under Maillebois. In 1742, it was sent to Bohemia and took part in the capture of Elnbogen and Kaaden, in the relief of Braunau and Egra. In 1744, the regiment was transferred to Flanders where it participated in the operations of the sieges of Menin and Ypres. In 1745, it took part in the siege of Tournai, in the Battle of Fontenoy and in the capture of Oudenarde, Termonde and Ath; in 1746, in the passage of the canal of Wilvorde, in the siege of Bruxelles, in the capture of Namur and in the Battle of Rocoux; and in 1747, in the capture of Rodenendam, Sluys, Sas van Ghent, in the defence of Antwerp and in the siege of Berg-op-Zoom. On July 1, 1747, the regiment received a second battalion. In 1748, part of the regiment was at the siege of Maastricht.
On October 30, 1748, the second battalion of the regiment was disbanded.
During the Seven Years' War, the regiment ranked 75th and was under the command of:
- from May 21, 1748: N. de Saint-Cyr
- from February 10, 1759: Pierre-Constantin Le Vicomte, Chevalier de Blangy
- from November 30, 1761 to June 11, 1774: Jean-Toussaint de La Pierre, Marquis de Frémeur
Service during the War
By August 1 1757, the regiment was garrisoning Monaco in Provence.
In 1762, the regiment, then counting 400 men in 9 companies of musketeers and 1 company of grenadiers, received reinforcements from Bigorre Infanterie, bringing its effective force to 51 officers and 687 men. It was then sent to America aboard the Médée (19 officers and 205 men), the Fortune (5 officers and 80 men) the Bien-Aimé (11 officers and 161 men and the Bien-Acquis (11 officers and 161 men). Another vessel, the Ressource (5 officers and 80 men), never left France. On her way, the Bien-Acquis was captured by the British Navy. On April 29, the regiment arrived in Louisiana. On December 1, the regiment was assigned to the service of harbours and colonies, and was stationed in Louisiana where it would remain until 1766.
|Waistcoat||blue with pewter buttons; horizontal pockets (each with 3 pewter buttons)|
|Gaiters||white (black in 1761)|
N.B.: the various États militaires show several differences for this regiment:
- buttons pewter or copper
- lace at the tricorne: silver or gold
- collar described once as red
- cuffs sometimes not described at all
Armaments consisted of a musket and a bayonet. Fusiliers carried a sword (brass hilt) while the grenadiers had a sabre.
Officers wore uniforms similars to those of privates with the following differences:
- silver laced tricorne
- no turnback
- a sash worn under the coat at the waist
The colonel flag was white with a white cross. Ordonnance flags had a white cross and each of the four cantons were aurore (light orange) and violet in a dented pattern. Ordonnance flags remained unchanged from 1684 to 1791.
This article incorporates texts from the following books which are now in the public domain:
- Susane, Louis: Histoire de l'ancienne infanterie française, J. Corréard, Paris, 1849-1856, Tome 7, pp. 101-109
Anon.: Recueil de toutes les troupes qui forment les armées françoises, Gabriel Nicolas Raspe, Nuremberg 1761
Anon.: Recueil de toutes les troupes qui forment les armées françoises, Gabriel Nicolas Raspe, Nuremberg 1762
Funcken, Liliane and Fred: Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle
Menguy, Patrice: Les Sujets du Bien Aimé (a website who has unfortunately disappeared from the web)
Mouillard, Lucien: Les Régiments sous Louis XV, Paris: 1882
Pajol, Charles P. V.: Les Guerres sous Louis XV, vol. VII, Paris, 1891
Rogge, Christian: The French & Allied Armies in Germany during the Seven Years War, Frankfurt, 2006
Sommaire des forces armées Françaises à l'intérieur et à l'extérieur de la France - 1er Août 1757, Service Historique de l'armée de terre
Taccoli, Alfonso: Teatro Militare dell' Europa, Part 1, vol. 2; Madrid, March 1760
Jean-Pierre Loriot for info on the service of the regiment in America