Brunswick Hussar Regiment No. 17 - Braunschweigisches Husaren-Regiment Nr. 17

Fur hat with parade bush of the Brunswick Hussars

The Brunswick Hussars. 17 was a cavalry joined in the Brunswick army , later Prussian army .

Organizational and command structure 1914

X. Army Corps in Hanover - Commanding General : General of the Infantry Otto von Emmich
20th Division in Hanover - Commander: Lieutenant General Richard Schmundt
20th Cavalry Brigade in Hanover - Commander: Major General Wolfgang von Unger


Soldiers in the corps of the Duke of Brunswick Oil, on the right a hussar. Drawing by Richard Knötel .

Already in the Principality of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel was during the Seven Years' War by Duke Karl of Brunswick , the 1759 "Hussars of Roth" built. It initially had four companies , but was reinforced by two companies in 1762. Due to a lack of financial resources, this regiment had to be dissolved again in 1767. For the time being, the hussars in the small principality remained an episode. [1]

Only after the signing of the Convention of Vienna with Austria succeeded the "Black Duke" Friedrich Wilhelm von Braunschweig , as agreed in the convention, from April 1, 1809 [2] in the small Bohemian towns of Nachod and Braunau [3] a free corps of just under to deploy over 2000 men, including 1000 hussars , 1000 light infantry and 125 mounted artillery [4] . The corps, called the Black Squad , operated independently under the leadership of Friedrich Wilhelm.[5]

After setting up under Austrian patronage moved the Hussars of the black crowd of the Association of Free Corps of Duke Friedrich Wilhelm of Saxony from order against the troops I. Napoleon to fight. After the defeat of the coalition troops in the battle of Wagram , the association and with it the regiment left the Austrian service, fought their way from Bohemia to the North Sea coast and embarked for England in Elsfleth and Brake . September 1, 1809 on the Isle of Wightarrived, the Braunschweigische Freikorps entered English service, the hussars led from September 25, 1809 to the name English-Braunschweigisches Hussar Regiment .

Under English command, the regiment was spun off from the corps. It fought against the French occupation in Spain in 1813 and 1814 and moved to Sicily in 1815 , where it remained stationed for over a year. In 1816 the regiment returned to Braunschweig and was disbanded on June 24th of the same year.

While the original regiment was continued under British command in the Mediterranean, Duke Frederick William presented in spring 1814 in Wolfenbüttel a new hussar regiment to six companies on [6] . This moved in 1814 and 1815 with the field corps to Brabant and took part on June 16, 1815 in the battle of Quatre-Bras and on June 18, 1815 in the battle of Waterloo .

On January 1, 1825, the troop was reorganized under the name "Ducal Braunschweigisches Garde-Hussaren-Regiment" . In 1839 it lost its "Guard" status. In 1867, after the Duchy of Braunschweig joined the North German Confederation , the unit was renamed "Ducal Braunschweigisches Hussar Regiment No. 17" . After the military convention with Prussia on March 18, 1886, the regiment was incorporated into the Prussian Army and now received its final designation "Braunschweigisches Hussar Regiment No. 17".

Battle calendar

In the campaign against Denmark in 1849, the regiment was assigned to a reserve division and did not take part in any combat operation.

German war

During the war between Prussia and the German Confederation in 1866, the hussars were assigned to the II. Prussian Reserve Corps and only involved in minor fighting.

Hussars of the 17th and their barracks, the "old" Waterloo barracks and the "new" Mars-la-Tour barracks .

Franco-German War

The war against France of 1870/71 brought the regiment to participate in the fighting at Spichern on August 6, 1870 and then to take part in the siege of Metz . This was followed by heavy fighting at Thionville and Mars-la-Tour . In September and October the regiment was assigned to the siege army in front of Paris . In 1871 the hussars were still fighting against the French Loire Army and returned to Braunschweig on July 3, 1871.

First World War

At the beginning of the First World War, the regiment formed two half regiments, which were assigned to the 20th and 21st divisions as divisional cavalry . With these formations, the hussars first moved west , where they were deployed in the Reims area after the retreat from the Marne . At the end of September 1914, the two half regiments were disbanded and the squadrons were distributed to various infantry divisions. In April 1915 the regimental association was restored with four squadrons and the troops were relocated to the east , where they joined the X. Army Corps in Russian Poland andFought Galicia and took part in the Battle of Gorlice-Tarnow on May 6, 1915 . In September 1915 they were transported back to the Western Front, where the hussars were entrusted with a wide variety of tasks. In May 1916 they went to the Eastern Front again. Shortly afterwards the Austro- Hungarian Army , which had been hard pressed by the Russian Brusilov offensive , had to be supported. The regiment was deployed in the Kovel area. In October 1916 the regimental association was dissolved again and this time for good. Some of the squadrons had to dismount and were used as cavalry riflemen in trench warfare, the rest of the squadrons were used as occupation troops in the various theaters of war.


The regimental headquarters arrived in Braunschweig on November 21, 1918 after the armistice as advance command . The rest of the troops reached their old garrison on December 5, 1918. On January 30, 1919, a volunteer squadron was set up from members of the regiment to ensure peace and order during the riots in Bremen , Wilhelmshaven and Emden . This volunteer squadron was later transferred to the Reichswehr Cavalry Regiment 10 of the Provisional Reichswehr .

The tradition of the regiment in the Reichswehr was taken over by the 4th Squadron of the 13th (Prussian) Cavalry Regiment in Lüneburg by decree of the Chief of the Army Command, General of the Infantry Hans von Seeckt .


Rank Name Date [7]
Lieutenant colonel August von Hennings 0 January 1, 1825 to October 20, 1830
Major/Oberstleutnant/Oberst Alexander Leopold von Erichsen October 21, 1830 to March 20, 1848
Major/Oberstleutnant Erich von Mansberg March 22, 1848 to June 14, 1857
Major/Oberstleutnant Karl von Cramm June 15, 1857 to May 19, 1862
Lieutenant Colonel / Colonel Christian von Strombeck May 20, 1862 to March 14, 1869
Major Friedrich Wilhelm von Rauch March 15, 1869 to July 17, 1870 (in charge of the tour)
Major/Oberstleutnant/Oberst Friedrich Wilhelm von Rauch July 18, 1870 to January 1, 1876
Lieutenant Colonel / Colonel Karl Kuhlwein von Rathenow 0 January 2, 1876 to August 3, 1884
Lieutenant Colonel / Colonel Karl von Groote 0 August 4, 1884 to March 21, 1889
Lieutenant colonel Gottfried Rabe von Pappenheim March 22, 1889 to October 13, 1890
Lieutenant Colonel / Colonel Leopold von Versen October 14, 1890 to March 16, 1894
Lieutenant Colonel / Colonel Anton von Wallenberg March 17, 1894 to May 23, 1898
Lieutenant Colonel / Colonel Arthur von Arnstedt May 24, 1898 to February 21, 1900
Lieutenant Colonel / Colonel Adalbert von Rothkirch-Panthen February 22, 1900 to July 17, 1905
Lieutenant Colonel / Colonel Alexander von Humboldt-Dachroeden July 18, 1905 to March 19, 1911
Major/Oberstleutnant/Oberst Ernst von Uechtritz and Steinkirch March 20, 1911 to August 1, 1914


The hussars wore a black attila with yellow lacing. The fur hat was equipped with a ponceau red Kolpak and a black horsehair bush for the parade . On the front there was a new silver skull with crossed bones and a foreign exchange ribbon (also called "fatherland bandeau") made of tombak with the inscription "PENINSULA, SICILIEN, WATERLOO, MARS-LA-TOUR" for the campaigns and battles. The country cockade was blue-yellow, as was the lance flag. The Braunschweiger's skull is not identical to that of the Prussian body hussars. There was also a white bandolier with a black cartridge .

Already ordered by AKO on February 14, 1907 and gradually introduced from 1909/10, the colorful uniform was replaced for the first time by the field-gray field service uniform (M 1910) on the occasion of the imperial maneuver in 1913. This was completely like the peace uniform; however, the lacing was gray. The leather gear and the boots were natural brown, the fur hat was covered by a fabric cover called reed-colored. The bandolier and the cartridge were no longer attached to this uniform.

Skull Hussars

Brunswick skull from 1815

Totenkopfhusaren was the popular name for the Brunswick Hussar Regiment No. 17 and for the 1st and 2nd Leib-Hussar Regiment in Danzig (Langfuhr) because of the skull worn on fur and cloth hats, which is said to be an old symbol of it that they neither Pardon take still give. They are not to be confused with the Belling's hussars called “The Whole Death” , who wore a complete skeleton with the inscription “ vincere, aut mori ” (“win or die”) on their hats.


  • Hermann von Schlieffen-Wioska: One Hundred Years of Brunswick Hussars History of the Brunswick Hussars Regiment No. 17. Volume 1: From the establishment of the Black Squad 1809 to the spring of 1870. Brunswick 1909.
  • Rudolf Mackensen von Astfeld: One Hundred Years of Brunswick Hussars History of the Brunswick Hussars Regiment No. 17. Volume 2: From mobilization in 1870 to 1909. Brunswick 1909.
  • Georg Westermann: The Brunswick Hussars in the World War 1914/1918. First part: 1914 to the end of 1915 (= memorial sheets of German regiments. Formerly Prussian troops . Volume 54 ). Stalling, Oldenburg iO / Berlin 1922 ( digitized version of the Württemberg State Library ).
  • Georg Ortenburg: Brunswick military. Elm Verlag, Cremlingen 1987, ISBN 3-980-02196-3 .
  • Hugo FW Schulz: The Prussian Cavalry Regiments 1913/1914. Weltbild, 1992.
  • Stefan Rest (Ed.), Jürgen Kraus : The German Army in the First World War. Ingolstadt 2004.


Commons : Braunschweigisches Husaren-Regiment Nr. 17 - album with pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. see list of the Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel regiments of the early modern period # Regiments (selection)
  2. ^ Ludwig Ferdinand Spehr : Friedrich Wilhelm, Duke of Braunschweig-Lüneburg-Oels , 2nd edition, Braunschweig 1861, p. 50.
  3. Ludwig Ferdinand Spehr: Friedrich Wilhelm, Duke of Braunschweig-Lüneburg-Oels , 2nd edition, Braunschweig 1861, p. 49.
  4. ^ Louis Ferdinand Spehr: Friedrich Wilhelm, Duke of Braunschweig-Lüneburg-Oels , 2nd edition, Braunschweig 1861, p. 51
  5. Complete text of the Vienna Convention (1809) ( Memento of September 21, 2005 in the Internet Archive )
  6. ^ Georg Ortenburg: Braunschweigisches Militär , Cremlingen 1987, p. 46
  7. ^ Günter Wegmann (ed.), Günter Wegner: Formation history and staffing of the German armed forces 1815-1990. Part 1: Occupation of the German armies 1815–1939. Volume 3: The occupation of the active regiments, battalions and departments from the foundation or list up to August 26, 1939. Biblio Verlag, Osnabrück 1993, ISBN 3-7648-2413-1 , pp. 135-137.