Prussian Generals of the Napoleonic Wars  1793-1815

Prussian Generals of the Napoleonic Wars  1793-1815: Elsner, Karl Christian von

By: Digby Smith

Elsner, Karl Christian von (1149)

Born on 13 September 1753 in Riemberg, Kreis Steinau, Silesia; his father, Melchior Joachim, was financial controller of the savings bank in Breslau and rented the farm at Riemberg. He entered Prussian military service on 10 May 1768 as a cadet in Berlin. On 15 March 1771 he entered the Academie Militaire in Berlin; on 22 March 1772 he was commissioned as Frch, in the IR von Saldern Nr 5; on 4 April 1785 – after the death of General von Saldern, he became an ADC to Frederick the Great. On 3 September 1786 he was promoted to Stkpt; on 2 February 1787 to Kpt and Kiech, in the Gren Bn von Meusel Nr 2. On 29 January 1788 he transferred to IR Herzog von Braunschweig Nr 21. On 6 December 1792 he was promoted to Maj. In the war against France he fought at the siege of Verdun , the battles of Kaiserslautern and Pirmasens and the clashes of La Lune and Kettrich. On 17 September 1793 he was awarded the PLM. On 19 January 1798 he transferred to IR Herzog von Braunschweig Nr 21; on 11 June 1800 he was promoted to Obstlt and on 3 June 1803 to Obst. He fought with distinction at Auerstädt in 1806 and was then in charge of escorting PWs. On 9 May 1809 he was promoted to GM but on half pay. On 23 Oct 1809 he was sent to Brandenburg on the Havel River to investigate the riots there. They had broken out among the local populace against Polish troops billeted there and Napoleon demanded that the culprits be punished. On 15 November 1809 he was appointed commandant of Brandenburg. On 20 January 1813 he retired from his post as GOC of a Landwehr division due to ill health with a pension of Thlr 1,200p.a. On 21 October 1813 he was appointed commandant of Leipzig. On 31 March 1815 he was appointed commandant of Wittenberg. On 31 May 1815 he was promoted to GL; he died on 15 September 1815 in Dessau, between Berlin and Leipzig.

 

Placed on the Napoleon Series: July 2010

 

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