Prussian Generals of the Napoleonic Wars  1793-1815

Prussian Generals of the Napoleonic Wars  1793-1815: Schimmelpfennig von der Oye, Christian Ludwig

Schimmelpfennig von der Oye, Christian Ludwig (1001)

Born on 9 March 1738 in Prussia; his father, Hans, was a Landjägermeister (forester) and Herr auf Rutow und Dietrichswalde. Christan entered Prussian military service on 1 February 1756 as a musketier in the IR von Lehwald Nr 14. In the Seven Years War he served at the battles with the Russians of Gross-Jägerndorf, Zorndorf (where he was wounded with a shot in the leg and a sabre cut to the head ), and at Kay, Kunersdorf and Freiberg, at the clashes at Strehlen and Anklam (again wounded) and  the siege of Dresden. In 1760, he was commissioned as Kornett in the FreidragonerR von Kleist. On 22 May 1766, he was promoted to Sklt in the HusR von Malachowski Nr 7. On 24 May 1770, he was promoted to Prlt in the HusR Nr 9 (the Korps of Bosnaiken), and on 25 November 1770, was promoted to StRtmstr. On 14 August 1774, he was again promoted to Rtmstr and ChEs. Schimmelpfennig was an expert with horses and Fredrick the Great often sent him to Poland and Russia to buy cavalry remounts. For example, he was sent to Mohilev on 10 November 1775 to buy horses from an Armenian horse trader for the Bosniaken. He served in the war with Austria in 1778 – 1779, and in 1786, was promoted Maj. On 11 January 1787, his nobility was accepted and renewed, and on 28 January 1788, he was given command of the 2. Bn of the Bosniaken. On 17 January 1793, he was promoted to Obstlt. He served in the war in Poland in 1794 – 1795, at the clashes of Magnuszewo (wounded again) and Kolno; for bravery in the latter he was awarded the PLM on 10 Jun 1794. On 11 November 1794, he was promoted to Obst, and on 9 October 1797, was given command of the R Bosniaken Nr 9. On 17 August 1799, he was appointed Chef of Hus R von Wolffradt Nr 6, and on 20 May 1800, was promoted to GM. In the 1806 campaign - at the age of 68 - he was placed in command of a special force covering the withdrawal of Hohenlohe`s corps from Thüringia to the Mark (Brandenburg) and was defeated by Lasalle`s numerically inferior light cavalry division in the action at Zehdenick on 26 October. On 25 January 1807, he handed over command of his regiment to Obst Prinz von Anhalt-Pless, went home sick and tendered his resignation, which the king refused to accept. His failure at Zehdenick was probably due to the effects of his old wounds from the Polish campaign; they often caused him problems . General von Bülow was ordered to investigate his conduct in his defeat at Zehdenick; his findings accused the old soldier of many faults, but Schimmelpfennig died on 21 June 1812 before they were published.


Placed on the Napoleon Series: March 2012

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