Sachsen-Meiningen Infantry

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Hierarchical Path: War of the Spanish Succession (Main Page) >> Armies >> Palatine Army >> Sachsen-Meiningen Infantry

Origin and History

Ernst Ludwig Duke of Sachsen-Meiningen - Source: Wikimedia Commons

The regiment was raised by Prince Philipp von Sulzbach in 1688. Duke Ernst Ludwig von Sachsen-Meiningen became proprietor of the regiment in 1694. This regiment then comprised nine companies, for a total of 849 men and garrisoned Jülich.

In 1701, three companies were transferred to new regiment of infantry. In September, the regiment received four additional companies contributed by the Duchy of Sachsen-Meiningen.

On 27 February 1705, the Elector of Palatinate signed a treaty with Emperor Leopold I by which the regiment was taken in imperial pay. When the subsidy contract was renewed, an entire battalion of 10 companies (each of 80 men) was taken in imperial pay.

From 26 March 1709, the regiment was organised in one field battalion with 10 companies á 80 men. The six remaining companies, serving as depot for field battalion, remained in Palatinate.

During the War of the Spanish Succession, the successive Chefs of the regiment were:

  • from 1690: Duke Ernst Ludwig von Sachsen-Meiningen
  • from 1706: Duke Anton Ulrich von Sachsen-Meiningen

During the War of the Spanish Succession, the successive commanders of the regiment were:

  • in 1701: Baron von Coudenhoven (died at the end of 1701)
  • from 1701: von Berlichingen
  • from 1705: Colonel Franz von Norprath
  • from 1709: Lieutenant-Colonel Murmann (one field battalion)

Service during the War

1701

In 1701, the regiment garrisoned Mannheim, its strength was increased to 16 companies

1702

For the campaign of 1702, it was agreed to send one battalion of the regiment to the Upper Rhine. In March, this battalion marched to Kron-Weißenburg under the command of Lieutenant-General Philipp Ludwig von Leiningen-Westerburg-Rixingen.

By 10 June, one battalion was posted north of road leading from Godramstein to Nussdorf, in the first line of the left wing, under FML Leiningen-Westerburg; the other battalion was posted on left bank of the Schleidbach up to Mörzheim, and took part in the Siege of Landau. After the surrender of the fortress, from 12 September, one battalion was part of the garrison of Landau.

At the end of November, the battalion took up its winter-quarter in Kaiserslautern and Weißenburg.

1703

By January 1703, the regiment was posted in the vicinity of Alzey, Kreuznach, Neustadt/Haardt.

In June and July, one battalion of the regiment was stationed in the lines between Stollhofen and Bühl.

In October, this battalion formed part of Palatine Contingent under the Count Nassau-Weilburg, which was charged to secure Palatinate against the French incursions.

On 8 November, the battalion formed part of the relief army under Prince Frederik of Hesse-Kassel, which marched towards Landau besieged by the French. On 13 November, this battalion was part of the second column led by Prince Ernst Ludwig von Sachsen-Meiningen, which encamped near Mechtersheim. On 16 November, this battalion took part in the Combat on Speyerbach, where it was deployed in the first line of the left wing. After this catastrophic defeat, the battalion took refuge in the Lines of Stollhofen.

1704

From 15 April 1704, the regiment, along with other Palatine regiments, was taken in Imperial pay.

In July, the regiment garrisoned Philippsburg.

From September to November, during the Siege of Landau, the regiment encamped on the hills between Birn and the Schleidbach, east of Wollmesheim.

One battalion took up its winter-quarters in Kron-Weißenburg, and the other garrisoned Landau.

1705

In 1705, the regiment (1,600 men) was assigned to the Palatine Corps which set off from Palatinate in April to reinforce the Imperialist army in Italy.

On its way, the Palatine Corps was stopped and placed, along with six Imperial regiments, under the command of Count Gronsfeld, who had been ordered to suppress the uprising in Bavaria.

On 18 May, with the situation stabilized in Bavaria, the regiment led by Colonel von Salmuth left Munich and resumed its march towards Italy.

On 12 June, the regiment arrived at Rovereto. On 16 June, wagons and carts were provided in Riva and Gargnano to transport the regiment to Saló. On 21 June, it finally reached the camp of General Roccavione at Nave.

On 16 August, the regiment took part in the Battle of Cassano where it was deployed in the centre of the first line under Baron Bibra. In this battle, the regiment lost 88 men killed, 120 wounded and 66 missing.

On 13 November, the regiment marched through the Val di Sabbia to the County of Verona, where it was assigned to the corps of the Imperial General Battée.

1706

In mid-January 1706, the regiment took up its quarters between the Chiese River and Lake Garda.

On 24 April, the regiment was transported by ships from Gargnano to Riva and Torbole. where it made a junction with the corps of the Imperial General Count Reventlau.

By 4 July, the regiment was in San Michéle. On 16 July, once the bridge near Masi and Badia had been completed, the regiment left Bonavigo and went to Castelbaldo. On 20 July, all Palatine troops, including the present regiment, crossed the Po River.

On 7 September, the regiment took part in the Battle of Turin, where it was deployed in the second line, in the Isselbach's Brigade.

From 25 September to 29 October, the regiment, as part of Isselbach's Brigade, was present at the siege of Pavia

The regiment took up its winter-quarters in Tortona.

1707

In 1707, the regiment, as part of the Isselbach's Brigade, was assigned to the corps of General Marchese Visconti, which remained on the Dora Baltea River to cover Piedmont against enemy attacks.

At the end of the year, the regiment was recalled to Germany.

1708

In 1708, the regiment was assigned to the Palatine Contingent which reinforced Prince Eugène's Army.

From 13 to 21 October, during the Siege of Lille, the regiment was posted to the south-east of the city.

At the end of November, the regiment took up its winter-quarters in Maastricht.

1709

Between 3 January and 25 February 1709, the regiment was in the vicinity of Cologne.

On 22 March, a new subsidy contract was signed between the Elector of Palatinate and Emperor Joseph I and the regiment (now 10 companies, of 80 men each) was taken in Imperial pay.

On 20 June, the regiment, which had been assigned to the corps of Lieutenant-General Bettendorf, reached Ghent.

In July, Bettendorf's Corps escorted the heavy artillery train to Tournai. where it arrived on July 11 after various difficulties.

On 11 September, one battalion of the regiment took part in the Battle of Malplaquet, where it was deployed in the third line.

From 27 September to 20 October, one battalion of the regiment took part in the Siege of Mons.

The regiment took up its winter-quarters in Palatine lands.

1710

In the order of battle of July, in the camp of Prince Eugène, one battalion of the regiment (691 men) was posted in the second line of the centre.

From September to November, during the Siege of Aire-sur-Lys, the regiment was posted east of Aire.

On 14 November, when the Allied left for their winter-quarters, the regiment went to the County of Jülich-Berg.

1711

For the campaign of 1711, the two field battalions of the regiment were allocated to the Army of the Upper Rhine.

By 30 April, the regiment formed part of the Palatine Contingent led by Count Vehlen, which was posted in the centre of the second line. This corps only took part in small actions (Klein Krieg).

On 14 June, the regiment, as part of Vehlen's Corps, marched by way of Rumillies-Melles, Soignies, Nivelles, Tirlemont, Maastricht, Düren, Jülich, and Andenach to Koblenz, where it crossed the Rhine on 9 July. It then took part in the campaign on the Upper Rhine.

On 27 August, when Prince Eugène left his camp near Esslingen and advanced to Dudenhofen, G.d.C. Vehlen's Corps (including the present regiment) remained in the vicinity of the Lines of Weissenburg.

In mid-November, when the Allied troops took up their winter-quarters, the regiment was initially quartered in the neighbourhood of Frankfurt, and later on in the County of Jülich-Berg.

1712

During the first half of 1712, the regiment remained in the vicinity of Jülich-Berg and Cologne, and saw no action.

In June and July, one battalion of the regiment took part in the Siege of Le Quesnoy.

1713

By the end of May 1713, all Palatine troops were in the camp of Prince Eugène at Graben. The regiment was under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Murmann. It later garrisoned the Citadel of Mannheim, where it remained until winter.

The regiment took up its winter-quarters between Ketsch and Cologne.

1714

In March 1714, after the Treaty of Rastatt, the regiment was reduced to 10 companies in two battalions, for a total of 800 men.

Uniform

Privates

Uniform circa 1705 - Copyright Kronoskaf
Uniform Details as per Robert Hall
Headgear
Fusilier black felt hat without lace
Grenadier no information found
Neck stock white
Coat red with green lining and with tin buttons from top to bottom on the right side, one tin button on each side in the small of the back
Collar none
Shoulder Straps none
Lapels none
Pockets horizontal pockets, each with 3 tin buttons
Cuffs green, each with 3 tin buttons
Turnbacks none (it seems that the basques of the coat could be turned back if needed but this was a rare practice during this period)
Waistcoat green with tin buttons from top to bottom
Breeches red
Stockings white
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt buff leather
Waistbelt buff leather, worn above the coat
Cartridge Pouch buff leather
Bayonet Scabbard buff leather
Scabbard buff leather with brass tip
Footwear black shoes fastened with a strap


Armaments consisted of a musket and a bayonet; and a sword.

Other interpretations

Bezzel describes a dark blue uniform with red as distinctive colour (lining, cuffs, waistcoat) with tin buttons.

NCOs

NCOs wore uniforms similar to those of the rank and file but with the following distinctions:

  • cuffs bordered with a braid
  • absence of the large ammunition pouch

Corporals and sergeant-majors carried a stick and a halberd or a pike.

Officers

Officers carried spontoons and had white and blue sashes.

Musicians

The uniforms of the musicians were identical to those of the rank and file but decorated with lace.

The shell of the drums were decorated with alternating white and blue flames and carried the cypher of the Electorate of Palatinate.

Colours

During the war, the French captured a colour of the regiment. This colour and many others from various origins had long been on display at Notre Dame de Paris and reproduced in "Les Triomphes de Louis XIV", a collection of five books now kept at the Cabinet des Estampes of the Bibliothèque Nationale de Paris.

Tentative Reconstruction
Colonel Colour - Copyright: Kronoskaf

References

Bezzel, O.: Geschichte des Kurpfälzischen Heeres, Bayrisches Kriegsarchiv, IV. File, part 1 and 2, Munich 1925

Feldzüge des Prinzen Eugen von Savoyen, Spanischer Successions-Krieg I. ser. IV. file, Vienna 1877

Goldberg, Claus-Peter and Robert Hall: War of the Spanish Succession 1701-1714 – Electorate Palatine under Elector Johann Wilhelm 1690-1716, s.l., 2003

N.B.: the section Service during the War is partly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.

Acknowledgement

Harald Skala the initial version of this article