Di Stampa Cuirassiers
Origin and History
The regiment was raised in 1636 by Claus Dietrich Sperreuter (ca. 1600–1653) according to a decree issued on August 23, 1636. Sperreuter was born in Mecklenburg and, at the beginning of the Thirty Years’s War, had fought in the army of Ernst von Mansfeld and between 1623-1635 in the Swedish Army. He had joined the Imperial Army in 1636 in the rank of GFWM.
The regiment took part in the blockade of Hanau. In 1637, under de Werth, it served on the Rhine. In 1642, it took part in the Battle of Leipzig and, in 1645, in the Battle of Jankau.
In 1655, the regiment fought against Turks at Levencz (present day Levice/SK). In 1664, it distinguished itself in the Battle of St. Gotthard. In 1670, it took it part in the siege of Murány Castle (present day Muráň/SK).
From 1673 to 1676, the regiment served once more on the Rhine.
From 1683 to 1688, the regiment campaigned in Hungary. It was later transferred to Italy where it served until 1713.
From 1716 to 1739, the regiment was stationed in Hungary and Transylvania, and took part in the battles of Peterwardein (1716) and Temesvár (1716), in the siege of Belgrade (1717) and in the battle of Grocka (1739).
In 1741, during the War of the Austrian Succession, the regiment was part of the main army in Silesia and fought in the Battle of Mollwitz where it was deployed on the left wing, second line with Römer Cuirassiers and Lanthiery Cuirassiers under Major-General Count Frankenberg. In 1742, at the Battle of Chotusitz, it was with Pálffy Cuirassiers in the advance guard under G.d.C. Batthyányi. In 1743, the regiment was posted a few months in Bavaria, before being transferred to the Rhine. In 1744, it returned to Bohemia. On June 4, 1745, at the Battle of Hohenfriedeberg, the regiment was deployed with Czernin Cuirassiers in the first line of the left wing under FML Bernes. In 1746 and 1747, the regiment campaigned in the Netherlands where it took part in the battles of Rocoux and Lauffeld.
The successive regiment Inhaber (proprietor) were:
- from 1636 to 1643: Claus Dietrich Sperreuter (between 1639-1640 imprisoned by enemies)
- from 1707 to 1740: Johann Count Browne de Hautois
- from 1740 to 1761: Prince Wilhelm von Pfalz-Birkenfeld-Zweibrücken (died on December 25, 1760)
- from 1761: Cajetan Count Stampa
During the Seven Years' War, the regiment was commanded by:
- from 1753 to 1758: Maximilian Baron von Rechbach (aka Rehbach, promoted to general on February 25, 1758)
- from 1758 to 1764: Abraham Baron von Gersdorff
The regiment was disbanded in 1775 as “Jaquemin” (Schakmin) Cuirassiers.
Service during the War
In June 1756, at the beginning of the Seven Years' War, the regiment was stationed in the Komitat of Bihar in Eastern Hungary and counted 806 men and 772 horses. In September, it was in the region of Königshof-Kolin in Northern Bohemia with Piccolomini's covering force.
On June 18, 1757, the regiment took part in the Battle of Kolin where, along with O'Donell Cuirassiers, it was part of Castiglione’s Brigade in the corps of Count Colloredo held in reserve behind the centre. During the battle, Colonel Rechbach recognized the dangerous situation of the Herzog Württemberg Dragoons and attacked the Prussians without order and drove them back. The Prussian General Joachim Christian von Tresckow was taken prisoner of war. Rechbach was three times wounded by bullets, but remained at his post until the end of the battle. (on December 4, 1758, he would be part of the second promotion of the military Maria-Theresia-Order). On November 22, the regiment took part in the Battle of Breslau where it was deployed in Count Kollowrat's Brigade, in the second line of the cavalry left wing under Count Stampach. On December 5 at the Battle of Leuthen, the regiment was deployed in Kolowrat's Brigade in the second line of the cavalry left wing under General Serbelloni.
By August 2, 1758, the regiment was part of the reserve of the main Austrian army under the command of Daun near Jaromirs. Daun was following up the Prussian army retiring through Bohemia after the failure of the Prussian invasion of Moravia.
In September and October 1760, the regiment was part of Lacy’s troops, which briefly occupied Berlin with General Tottleben’s Russians. On November 3, the regiment took part in the Battle of Torgau where it was deployed in Lacy’s Corps, in Liechtenstein’s Brigade.
In 1761, the regiment was attached to the main army stationed in Bohemia, and saw no action.
In 1762, the regiment was sent to reinforce the Reichsarmee. On August 2, the regiment took part in the Combat at Teplitz (present day Teplice/CZ) where FML Cajetan Count Stampa, the regiment proprietor, distinguished himself (on December 22, 1761, he would be part of the sixth promotion of the military Maria-Theresia-Order in recognition of his conduct in this combat and in the battle of Torgau).
After the war, the regiment returned to Hungary where it garrisoned the Komitat of Neograd.
|Coat||white with one row of 14 brass buttons on the right side
|Waistcoat||white with 2 rows of brass buttons|
Troopers were armed with a black breastplate (worn over the coat), a pallasch (sword) and a pair of pistols. Carabiniers also carried a carbine.
The Bautzener Bilderhandschrift of 1762 shows a lace on the tricorne and a red neckstock.
The officers (according to the Bautzener Bilderhandschrift of 1762) wore the same uniform with the following exceptions:
- laced tricorne with a green and white cockade
- blue saddlecloth and sabretache both laced in red and fringed in yellow
The aprons of the trumpets were yellow with black ciphers. No information has been found about the decoration of the kettledrums.
Musicians wore a uniform very similar to troopers. However, they had two red ribbons fastened to the back of their coat at the level of the shoulder blades.
Leib Standard: no information found yet
Regimental Standard: no information found yet (Shown on the reverse : the Birkenfeld old Coat of Arms)
Bleckwenn, Hans: Die Regimenter der Kaiserin, Gedanken zur "Albertina Handschrift" 1762 des Heeresgeschichtlichen Museums Wien, Köln: 1967
Friese, Ulf-Joachim: Quellen zur Uniformierung der österreichisch-ungarischen Armee 1740-1763
Funcken, Liliane and Fred: Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle
Grosser Generalstab: Die Kriege Friedrichs des Grossen, Hiller, Berlin, 1830-1913
Hirtenfeld: Der Militär-Maria-Theresien-Orden und seine Mitglieder, Vienna 1857, pp. 63, 121,
Knötel, Richard: Uniformkunde. Lose Blätter zur Geschichte der Entwicklung der militärischen Tracht, 18 Bde., Rathenow 1890-1919
Kornauth, Friedrich: Das Heer Maria Theresias: Faksimile-Ausgabe der Albertina-Handschrift, "Dessins des Uniformes des Troupes I.I. et R.R. de l'année 1762", Wien: 1973
Raspe: Accurate Vorstellung der sämtlichen Kayserlich Koeniglichen Armeen zur eigentlichen Kentnis der Uniform von jedem Regimente. Nebst beygefügter Geschichte, worinne von der Stiftung, denen Chefs, der Staercke, und den wichtigsten Thaten jedes Regiments Nachricht gegeben wird., Nürnberg: 1762
Schirmer, Friedrich: Die Heere der kriegführenden Staaten 1756-1763, hrsg. von der KLIO-Landesgruppe Baden-Württemberg, überarb. u. aktual. Neuauflage 1989
Thümmler, L.-H.: Die Österreichiches Armee im Siebenjährigen Krieg: Die Bautzener Bilderhandschrift aus dem Jahre 1762, Berlin 1993
Wrede, A. v.: Geschichte der K. und K. Wehrmacht, file III. second part, pp. 579ff
Zahn, Michael: Oesterreichische Kürassier und Dragoner Standarten in Siebenjährigen Krieges, Zusammenstellung, 1988
Harald Skala for the history of this regiment.