Thursday, September 30, 2010

With the Light Brigade - Brunswick Oels Jäger

Having spent over a year on the Isle of Wight undergoing a period of reorganisation and re-equipping the infantry of the Brunswick-Oels Jaegers landed at Lisbon, Portugal on 8 October 1810. ‘…The initial force consisted of Prussians who were good, well trained soldiers, but the campaigns in Spain gradually reduced this. The replacements were of German and other extraction and were the “worst” recruits. The better material was always sent to the KGL. They were “a motley crew, much given to desertion-on several occasions large parties went off together”. They could not be trusted on outpost duty, but they rendered good service in battle. …’ (Nafziger, 1990)

The Jaeger battalion that landed in Portugal consisted of 12 companies and a regimental headquaters. The Brunswickers initially went to the 4th Division. Shortly after this they were transferred to Craufurd's Light Division. As part of the Light Division the Black Horde saw action in the pursuit of Massena from the lines of Torres Vedras (17 November 1810) and the skirmish at Santarem (19 November 1810). They then saw action at Redinha, Casal Novo and Foz d’Arouce (12-16 March 1811) before being transferred to the newly formed 7th Division.

The Black Brunswickers - Osprey MAA007 - Otto von Pivka
Brunswick Troops 1809-15. - Osprey MAA167 - Otto von Pivka
Napoleons German Enemies: The armies of Hannover, Brunswick, Hesse-Cassel and the Hanseatic Cities (1792-1815). G.F.Nafziger

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