Prussian Generals of the Napoleonic Wars  1793-1815

Prussian Generals of the Napoleonic Wars  1793-1815: Rudorff, Wilhelm Heinrich von

Rudorff, Wilhelm Heinrich von (1097)

Born on the10 Apr 1741 in Körbecke, Kreis Warburg, east of Dortmund. His father, Johan Friedrich, was a court official. He entered Prussian military service in 1758 as a trooper in the HusR von Belling Nr 8, and served in the SevenYears` War with great distinction at the battles of  Kunersdorf (12 August 1759, where he was wounded) and Freiberg (29 October 1762, wounded again), the clashes of Asch, Passberg, Neubrandenburg and the Klempner pass where he received seven bullet and 15 sabre wounds. On 14 January 1761, he was commissioned as Kornett, and on 1 June 1761, promoted to Sklt. On 17 March 1771, he was promoted to Prlt, and on 17 May 1772, was appointed ADC to Gen von Lossow. On 9 April 1788, he was promoted to Strtmstr and appointed ADC to Gen von Lölhöffel.  He fought in the war with Austria in 1778/9. On 6 November 1786, he was ennobled, and on 23 Mar 1787, was promoted to Rtmstr and Kiech in Hus R Graf von der Goltz Nr 8. He fought in the war of 1787 in the Netherlands against the republicans, and on 19 January 1789, was awarded the PLM. From 1792 to 1795, he fought in the war with France, under Blücher with great distinction in the clashes of St Amand, Valenciennes and Famars. On 16 March 1795, he was appointed to command the 2. Bn HusR von Cettritz Nr 1 by the king with the express task of bringing the regiment back up to standard. On 20 May 1798, he was promoted to Obstlt, and on 20 May 1799, promoted to Obst. On 29 August 1804, he  received a gift of Thlr 1,000 from the king. On 17 October 1805, he was appointed Chef of HusR von Göcking Nr 2, and on 20 May 1806, was promoted to GM. In the 1806 campaign he fought as Chef of HusR von Zieten Nr 2 in the Duke of Weimar`s corps and saved Prussia`s honour in the clash at Kriewitz (Criwitz) on 3 November by defeating part of Bernadotte`s  corps. He was then captured in the capitulation of Ratkau on 7 November together with the rest of Blücher`s corps. On 27 August 1807, he was placed on half pay, and in 1808, he was appointed brigadier of inactive officers in Berlin. In the Wars of Liberation he volunteered his services but the king declined as he was too old. Von Rudorff retired on a pension of Thlr 800 on 2 September 1813, and died on 18 November 1832 in Berlin. 

 

Placed on the Napoleon Series: February 2012

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