Origin and History
Exceptionally, in 1756, the Olonétskiy Dragoon Regiment counted 1 grenadier company and 10 fusilier companies. In 1761, after the death of Tsarina Elizabeth, it counted only 1 grenadier company and 9 fusilier companies.
During the Seven Years' War, the regiment was under the command of:
- no information available yet
Service during the War
Like most other Russian dragoon regiments, this regiment was in full reorganisation after the introduction of new regulations in 1756. By this time, it was stationed in Siberia and was not engaged into any European campaign during the war.
During summer, Russian dragoons did not wear coats. These were left in the baggage. For this reason, we present two different plates.
N.B.: another interpretation states that, on active duty, the dragoons did not wear their cornflower blue coat.
There seems to have been important variations of the uniform in the field:
- “kollet” edged with a cornflower blue braid or undecorated
- “kollet” totally absent due to supply problems and replaced by the cornflower blue coat and/or the cornflower blue waistcoat
Troopers were armed with a short carbine, two pistols and a sabre. They also had a cornflower blue epancha (cape) for winter.
The representations of the "tails" of the "kollet" differ widely. Some authors show rather long tails others illustrate short tails. If the "kollet" was sometimes worn under the coat, its tails were probably shorter than those of the coat.
Corporals wore uniforms similar to those of the troopers.
Other NCOs wore uniforms similar to those of the troopers with the following distinctions:
- gold laced tricorne
- gold laced collar
- gold laced cuffs:
- 1 stripe for Unterfähnrich
- 2 stripes for armourers and quartermasters
- 3 stripes for sergeant
Officers wore uniforms similar to those of the troopers with the following distinctions:
- gold laced tricorne
- gilt buttons
- no turnbacks
- black and gold silken sash
- cornflower blue saddlecloth and housings laced gold carrying the imperial cipher
Musicians wore uniforms similar to those of the troopers with the following distinctions:
- swallow nests at the shoulders
The kettle-drum and the trumpets were made of copper. The banners were of the colour of the squadron standards. The banner of the kettle-drum was embroidered and fringed in gold.
Dragoons still carried standards of the 1731 pattern, measuring 123 cm by 142 cm (some sources indicate square 150 cm by 150 cm standards). The flagpole had a silvered finial.
Colonel Standard: white field fringed in silver; centre device: an Imperial Eagle, crowned double-headed, bearing the regimental arms on a breastplate encircled by the necklace of the St. George’s Order and the cross of St. Andrew.
Ordonnance Standard: red field fringed in silver; centre device: a gold crown surmounting a silver shield bearing the regimental arms.
The first squadron carried the white colonel (Leib) standard while the 4 other squadrons each carried one ordonnance (Regimental) standard.
Großer Generalstab, Kriegsgeschichtliche Abteilung II (Publisher). Die Kriege Friedrichs des Großen, Part 3: Der Siebenjährige Krieg 1756–1763. Vol. 4 Groß-Jägersdorf und Breslau, Berlin 1902
- chapter A: Das Kaiserlich Russiche Heer, page 1-46
- appendix: supplement 1, Das Kaiserlich Russiche Heer, page 3-18
Konstam, Angus, and Bill Younghusband; Russian Army of the Seven Years War, vol. 2, Osprey Military, London, Reed International, 1996
Schirmer, Friedrich, Die Heere der kriegführenden Staaten 1756-1763, published by the KLIO-Landesgruppe Baden-Württemberg, Neuauflage 1989
Viskovatov, A. V., Historical Description of the Clothing and Arms of the Russian Army, vol. 3, Petersburg: 1900
Volker Ziegler, Brühl, Die Russische Kavallerie zur Zeit des Siebenjährigen Krieges (1756-1763)
Zweguintzov, L'Armee Russe, 1973
N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.