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|War establishment(Kriegsstärke) of the Prussian troops
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|Author:||Christian Hecht [ Mon Feb 05, 2018 10:36 pm ]|
|Post subject:||War establishment(Kriegsstärke) of the Prussian troops|
From the research I've done I can now say that various Prussian units differ strongly from the size they should have. Generally the infantry bat. are often to large, while the grenadier and fusilier bat. are too weak. I also see the cavalry has many units that are way past the theoretical max strength that a squadron should have. Mainly the info is from Jany, Curt "Urkundliche Beiträge und Forschungen zur Geschichte des Preußischen Heeres" 5. & 6. Heft, these a great publications and the best source one can get because it's based on the Prussian war archive that was lost in 1945 so one won't find anything better unless building a time machine. Find attached an office file that lists the numbers by Jany, that can be used to verify my assumptions or to make own assumptions.
Prussian unit sizes:
-- Infantry regiments structure is 2 Musketeer bat. each with 5 companies, the grenadier companies of 2 infantry regiments form a grenadier battalion of 4 companies.
-- Grenadier bat. strength is: 805 men grand total, with a total of 775 if surgeons, carpenters and the personal for the bat. guns are subtracted. 775 is the max strength that a grenadier bat. should have. Only spot where it differs are the bat. Kollin & Herwarth, these only had one infantry regiment to pull grenadier companies from and should be around 387-388 max strength. In the game the grenadier bat. are often 680 men strong what seems too low even if subtracting the usual deficiency of deserters, sick, etc. soldiers.
--- Each grenadier company had 10 Schützen led by 1 Unteroffizier, what means 44 per bat.. All Schützen-Unteroffiziere and all Schützen (1+10 per company)were equipped with the rifled Schützengewehr M 1787. So depending om the size of the Schützen unit, if such extra unit is wanted the grenadier bat. should be lowered by the size of the Schützen unit.
-- Musketeer bat. strength is: 837-838 men for the first and 831-832 for the second bat. grand total, with a total of 804-805 for the first and 798-799 for the second bat. if surgeons, carpenters and the personal for the bat. guns are subtracted. 804-805 is the max strength for a 1st and 798-799 for a 2nd musketeer bat. that they should have. In the game the musketeer bat. are often 840 men strong, counting the schützen unit to it the strength is beyond 850 what is way too much.
--- Each musketeer company had 10 Schützen led by 1 Unteroffizier, what means 55 per bat.. Schützen-Unteroffiziere and all Schützen (1+10 per company)were equipped with the rifled Schützengewehr M 1787.
-- Fusilier bat. structure is one Fusilier bat. has 4 companies.
-- Fusilier bat. strength is: 692 men grand total, with a total of 680 if surgeons & carpenters are subtracted. Despite being light infantry they are armed with muskets like musketeer and grenadier bat.. Unlikely the musketeer and grenadier bat. the fusilier bat. left their bat. guns(afaik a single 3 pdr) home, as such no artillery men is part of the battalion. In the game the Fusilier bat. are often 600 men strong or below what seems too low even if subtracting the usual deficiency of deserters, sick, etc. soldiers.
--- Each Fusilier company had 10 Schützen led by 1 Unteroffizier, what means 44 per bat.. All Schützen-Unteroffiziere and all Schützen (1+10 per company) were equipped with the rifled Schützengewehr M 1787. In the Füsilier-Kompagnien, all 12 NCOs had this Schützengewehr. Hence the idea to augment the number of Schützen from 10 to 22 without costs, by ordering the 12 Unteroffiziere to exchange their Schützengewehr with the musket of a qualified private.
-- Concerning the Schützen in the fusilier bat. Jany notes (Gefechtsausbildung, p. 78):
In 1803, the number of Schützen in the Füsilier-Bataillon Pelet (No. 14) was augmented to 22 per company, by giving them the muskets of the NCOs.
On 21 January 1804, the king permitted to likewise increase the numbers of Schützen in the other two battalions of the Niederschlesische Füsilier-Brigade led by Pelet: Füsilier-Bataillons Rühle (No. 15) and Rabenau (No. 13).
On 21 July 1806, the king ordered to likewise increase the number of Schützen in the battalions of the other seven Füsilier-Brigaden to 22 per company. Jany doubts this could have been executed before the campaign started, but quotes from the diary of the Füsilier-Bataillon Boguslawski (No. 22), which mentions on 12 October 1806 "all the 88 Schützen of my battalion", suggest a different view. Jany believes that this battalion (and maybe others as well) had introduced the 22 Schützen per company earlier on its own initiative. This has to be considered in case of forming Schützen units for the fusilier bat..
-- Jany notes the Füsiliers as 2 rank(glieder), that means the current 3-rank unit type has to be changed.
-- The size of the Prussian Schützen units seems to need adjustment. The contingent of Schützen were 10 per company what results in 50 per musketeer bat., 40 per grenadier bat. and 40 per fusilier bat.(maybe even 20 per fusilier company like above was noted by Jany), and this without the NCOs.
But it seems that they were often detached and a lot battalions went into combat without any Schützen, and even fi they were with the bat. they seem to have been used for other things like closing the spot where the bat. guns should have stood. So the use as a real skirmisher force was unlikely and doesn't fit into the purpose under which the Schützen were original established, not as skirmishing asset but to replace the light infantry who was doing patrol and guard duty for the normal infantry and who should be relieved by establishing the Schützen. That means the Schützen were likely used not only on patrols & sentry duty, but were protecting wagons for artillery, baggage, train, etc. or were on some other not combat related duty instead of being active in battle.
Because of that the mass if not all Schützen units should not depict the full contingent possible,e as that would likely lead to then unrealistic use as skirmishers, but just half of it. That was likely already attempted but those 40 men units are likely based on the view that the bat. all had 4 companies but the musketeer had 5. So the Schützen units should be enlarged to 50(55 with NCOs) subtracted by the usual amount deserters & sick soldiers.
-- The Feldjäger-Regiment had 1623 combatants in 12 companies, what results in a theoretical max strength of 135,25 men per company, all armed with rifles. At least the Masara Jäger company is above that with 138, not to forget that the theoretical strength does not have subtracted any contingent for missing personal.
-- Note, Prussia started to mobilize parts of its army in early August 1806 so the changes of 5 July 1806(regiments to have 3 Musketeer bat., 2 Grenadier co., 1 depot company) were not conducted. Exception was Rüchel's corps, he ordered these changes to take effect on 1st October 1806 in the way that one bat. was compromised of 4 companies while the other 2 had only 3 companies each. That explains the entry in Lettow-Vorbeck of IR29 with 3 bat. in the Rüchel OOB, strange is that no other unit is noted as 3 bat. reg. so it's unclear if and what other units of Rüchel really conducted these changes.
-- The Gardes du Corps has 5sq., the regiment has a grand total of 779 combatants in the field, this gives a theoretical max strength of 155,8 per sq.. In the game the sq. all 220 men strong what is way too much.
-- The Gens d`armes has 5sq., the regiment has a grand total of 845 combatants in the field, this gives a theoretical max strength of 169 per sq.. In the game the sq. all 200 men strong what is way too much.
-- The Cuirassiers have 5 sq., each regiment has a grand total of 841 combatants in the field, this gives a theoretical max strength of 168,2 per sq.. In the game few sq. are around 180-190 men but most are 200 men strong what is way too much.
-- The Dragoons have 5 sq., each regiment has a grand total of 841 combatants in the field giving 168,2 per sq.. In the game few sq. are around 170-180 men but most are 200 men strong what is way too much.
The two 10sq. regiments have each a grand total of 1682 combatants in the field, this gives a theoretical max strength of 168,2 per sq.. In the game the sq. all 200 men strong what is way too much.
-- The Hussars have 10 sq., each regiment has a grand total of 1543 combatants in the field, this gives a theoretical max strength of 154,3 per sq.. In the game the sq. range from 140-160 men but most are 160 men strong what is too much especially when considering the need for the usual deficiency by sick & deserters.
The Hussar bat. Bila has 5 sq., the bat. has a grand total of 771 combatants in the field, this gives a theoretical max strength of 154,3 per sq..
-- The Towarczys has 10 sq., the regiment has a grand total of 1251 combatants in the field, this gives a theoretical max strength of 125,1 per sq.. In the game all sq. are 120 men strong what seems perfect as it incorporates the deficiency for sick & deserters.
The Towarczys bat. has 5 sq., the bat. has a grand total of 626 combatants in the field, this gives a theoretical max strength of 125,2 per sq.. In the game all sq. are 120 men strong what seems perfect as it incorporates the deficiency for sick & deserters.
- Max strength vs field strength
Regarding the usual difference between the max strength and the field strength here an example of missing personal by Janny(p.125). It shows 71 men missing of the Grenadier bat. Hahn. 40 were volunteers to the Lessel Volunteer bat., 19 were guarding bagage & supply, 7 were sick and 5 had deserted. Ignoring the volunteers the amount of missing men is exactly 4% of the above mentioned 775 max strength. So it's not overkill to assume a minimal deficiency of 2% to account for men guarding, being sick or having deserted. This would already be a generous value because the numbers were from a grenadier bat. and that the line bat. had likely high numbers of deserters. Whatever percentage is taken it should be subtracted from the theoretical strength
|Author:||Bill Peters [ Thu Feb 08, 2018 1:40 pm ]|
|Post subject:||Re: War establishment(Kriegsstärke) of the Prussian troops|
If I reduce the infantry sizes its going to make it even harder for the Prussians to win. I can see increasing the grenadier battalion size though but frankly the game is long out and changes at this point are probably out of the question.
Feel free to update the OBs as you wish - just use a copy.
I am not one of those insecure guys that cannot handle "our OB is more authentic than Bill's" as I really didn't have the greatest materials at hand when I worked on the game. As usual there was tons of material on the French army in English but scant on those of the German troops (Saxons included). I used Sapherson's small booklet on the Prussian army plus what little Nafziger had to offer.
Later when I did buy Bowden's translation of the Jena campaign (Emperor's Press) I found better material but a change to the OB would have also involved fixing the errors in the Advance Guard as well which would have meant redeploying the units all over again AFTER I removed them from every scenario in the game they were in. Just way too much work.
As time goes on its getting harder to find the time to update the older games. I did my best for 17 years but its time to move on. I can still correct incorrect image numbers and things like that. But eventually updates to the older games in the series will be only for when John and Rich have program updates to do. Right now I am drawing the line at Austerlitz and forward. If I do any updates to Eckmuhl, Wagram or Jena it will be on my own time and in a mod.
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