Prussian Garrison Regiment VI
Origin and History
The regiment was raised in 1741, during the War of the Austrian Succession, to garrison the recently captured fortress of Brieg (actual Brzeg) in Silesia. It initially counted 2 battalions. In May 1745, its first battalion was taken prisoners at the surrender of the Fortress of Cosel (actual Koźle). Until 1756, the regiment garrisoned the places of Cosel, Brieg and Namslau (present-day Namysłów).
On June 19 1756, the regiment was increased to 4 battalions. The 2 new battalions had no grenadier company and garrisoned Brieg and Breslau (present-day Wrocław).
During the Seven Years' War, the regiment was under the command of:
- since December 10 1753: Christian Friedrich von Lattorf
- from April 4 1762: Gerhard Alexander baron von Saß
After the war, the regiment retained its four battalions and garrisoned the places of Brieg (15 coys) and Namslau (5 coys).
Service during the War
At the outbreak of the war, in 1756, the regiment was assuming garrison duties in Silesia. Its grenadiers garrisoned Brieg. On June 19 1756, it was increased to 4 battalions. The 2 new battalions had no grenadier company and garrisoned Brieg and Breslau (present-day Wrocław). On July 28, the regiment received orders to prepare itself to relieve regular field infantry regiments in the places they were currently garrisoning. Accordingly, 2 bns were sent to Cosel, 1 bn to Brieg and 1 bn remained in Breslau.
In April 1758, the third battalion of the regiment was at the siege and recapture of Schweidnitz. The fourth battalion then joined the army of Frederick II for the invasion of Moravia and the unsuccessful siege of Olmütz. On May 11, it guarded Frederick's headquarters at Schmirsitz. From July to November, the first and second battalions took part in the defence of Cosel.
In October 1760, the first and second battalions of the regiment once more took part in the defence of Cosel.
N.B.: During the war the grenadiers from the wing grenadier company were put together with the grenadiers of Garrison Regiment VIII, forming the Standing Grenadier Battalion Nr. VI (G-VI/G-VIII Plötz) (please refer to this article for the details of the service of the grenadiers during the war).
As was the case for most garrison regiments, the musketeers and grenadiers of this regiment wore different uniforms. The present article describes the uniform of the musketeers. For the uniform of the grenadiers, please refer to the article dedicated to the Standing Grenadier Battalion Nr. VI (G-VI/G-VIII Plötz).
|Coat||Prussian blue lined red with 6 pewter buttons on both sides on the chest, 2 pewter buttons at the waist on the right side and 3 pewter buttons on each side to fasten the skirts forming the turnbacks
Privates were armed with a short musket and a bayonet.
NCOs wore uniforms similar to those of the privates with the following distinctions:
- tricorne with wide silver lace and a black and white quartered pompom
- silver laced cuffs
- no shoulder strap
- yellowish leather gloves
- black and white sabre tassel
NCOs were armed with a sabre and a white light half-pike measuring 7,5 Rhenish feet (2.37 m.).
NCOs also carried wooden canes (normally attached to a button at the top of the right front while carrying the half-pike).
Uniforms of officers were very similar to those of the privates with the following exceptions:
- black tricorne wearing a thin silver lace and 2 black and white tassels: 1 in each side corne of the tricorne (officers always wore tricornes notwithstanding if they were commanding musketeers, fusiliers or grenadiers)
- black neck stock
- no shoulder strap on the coat
- no turnbacks on the coat
- no trimming on the coat
- black and silver sash around the waist
- a silver and gold gorget
Officers carried white spontoons measuring 7 ½ Rhenish feet (2.36 m.) and an officer stick.
Drummers wore uniforms to those of the privates with the following differences:
- no shoulder strap
- shoulders decorated with white swallow nests (4 vertical and 1 horizontal braids)
Drummers carried a side-arm.
The drum pattern had ???.
Colonel flag (Leibfahne): White field. Centre device consisting of a silver “FR” monogram surrounded by golden palm leaves and surmounted by a silver crown. Grenades in silver.
Regimental flags (Kompaniefahnen): Turquoise field. Centre device consisting of a silver “FR” monogram surrounded by golden palm leaves and surmounted by a silver crown. Grenades in silver.
N.B. the reverses of all colours were mirror images of the obverses
Bleckwenn, Hans: Die friderizianischen Uniformen 1756-1783, Bd. II., Infanterie II, Osnabrück 1984
Duffy, Christopher: Friedrich der Große und seine Armee, Stuttgart, 2. Auflage 1983
Engelmann, Joachim and Günter Dorn: Die Infanterie-Regimenter Friedrich des Grossen, Podzun-Pallas, 2000, pp. 146-147
Grosser Generalstab Kriegsgeschichtliche Abteilung II: Die Kriege Friedrichs des Grossen, Part 3 Der siebenjährige Krieg 1756-1763, Vol. 1 Pirna und Lobositz, Berlin, 1901, App. 1
Guddat, Martin: Die Infanterie Friedrichs des Großen, Herford 1986
Haythornthwaite, Philip: Frederick the Great (2), Men-at Arms-Series No. 240, Osprey
Hohrath, Daniel: The Uniforms of the Prussian Army under Frederick the Great from 1740 to 1786; Vol. 2; Verlag Militaria, Vienna: 2011, pp. 420-425
Horvath, Carl Christian: Friedrichs II. König von Preussen Armee-Montirungen, Potsdam 1789. Vierte Sammlung
Merta, Klaus-Peter: Das Heerwesen in Brandenburg und Preußen von 1640 bis 1806 - Die Uniformierung, Berlin 1991
N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.
Martina Hager for the initial version of this article.