Battle of Wilhelmsthal, 24 June 1762

Battle of Wilhelmsthal, 24 June 1762

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Battle of Wilhelmsthal, 24 June 1762

Battle in Seven Years War. The Marquis of Granby caught a French army invading western Germany. One French corp remained to fight a rearguard action and allow the rest of the army to escape, and was cut to pieces by Granby.

Books on the Seven Years's War |Subject Index: Seven Years' War

Battle of Wilhelmsthal

date June 24, 1762
place Between Grebenstein and Calden-Wilhelmsthal
output Allied victory
consequences The French have to withdraw from northern Germany

Great Britain kingdom Great Britain Kurhannover Prussia Hessen-Kassel
Electorate of Braunschweig-Lüneburg
Prussia Kingdom

2000 dead and wounded
2500 prisoners
12 cannons and 8 flags

The battle of Wilhelmsthal took place on June 24, 1762 . It was part of the western theater of war in the Seven Years War . The battle is named after Wilhelmsthal Castle , which is located in this area near Kassel in what was then the Landgraviate of Hessen-Kassel .

June 24 in history

217 BC – The Romans, led by Gaius Flaminius, are ambushed and defeated by Hannibal at the Battle of Lake Trasimene.

109 – Roman emperor Trajan inaugurates the Aqua Traiana, an aqueduct that channels water from Lake Bracciano, 40 kilometres (25 miles) north-west of Rome.

474 – Julius Nepos forces Roman usurper Glycerius to abdicate the throne and proclaims himself Emperor of the Western Roman Empire.

637 – The Battle of Moira is fought between the High King of Ireland and the Kings of Ulster and Dalriada. It is claimed to be the largest battle in the history of Ireland.

972 – Battle of Cedynia, the first documented victory of Polish forces, takes place.

1128 – Battle of São Mamede, near Guimarães: Forces led by Alfonso I defeat forces led by his mother Teresa of León and her lover Fernando Pérez de Traba. After this battle, the future king calls himself "Prince of Portugal", the first step towards "official independence" that will be reached in 1139 after the Battle of Ourique.

1230 – The Siege of Jaén started in the context of the Spanish Reconquista.

1314 – First War of Scottish Independence: The Battle of Bannockburn concludes with a decisive victory by Scottish forces led by Robert the Bruce, though England did not recognize Scottish independence until 1328 with the signing of the Treaty of Edinburgh-Northampton.

1340 – Hundred Years' War: Battle of Sluys: The French fleet is almost completely destroyed by the English Fleet commanded in person by King Edward III.

1374 – A sudden outbreak of St. John's Dance causes people in the streets of Aachen, Germany, to experience hallucinations and begin to jump and twitch uncontrollably until they collapse from exhaustion.

1497 – John Cabot lands in North America at Newfoundland leading the first European exploration of the region since the Vikings.

1509 – Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon are crowned King and Queen of England.

1531 – The city of San Juan del Río, Mexico, is founded.

1535 – The Anabaptist state of Münster is conquered and disbanded.

1571 – Miguel Lopez de Legazpi founds Manila, the capital of the Republic of the Philippines.

1597 – The first Dutch voyage to the East Indies reaches Bantam (on Java).

1604 – Samuel de Champlain discovers the mouth of the Saint John River, site of Reversing Falls and the present day city of Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada.

1622 – Battle of Macau: The Dutch attempt but fail to capture Macau.

1717 – The Premier Grand Lodge of England, the first Masonic Grand Lodge in the world (now the United Grand Lodge of England), is founded in London.

1762 – Battle of Wilhelmsthal: The British-Hanoverian army of Ferdinand of Brunswick defeats French forces in Westphalia.

1779 – American Revolutionary War: The Great Siege of Gibraltar begins.

1793 – The first Republican constitution in France is adopted.

1812 – Napoleonic Wars: Napoleon's Grande Armée crosses the Neman River beginning the invasion of Russia.

1813 – Battle of Beaver Dams: A British and Indian combined force defeats the United States Army.

1821 – The Battle of Carabobo takes place. It is the decisive battle in the war of independence of Venezuela from Spain.

1859 – Battle of Solferino (Battle of the Three Sovereigns): Sardinia and France defeat Austria in Solferino, northern Italy.

1866 – Battle of Custoza: An Austrian army defeats the Italian army during the Austro-Prussian War.

1880 – First performance of O Canada, the song that would become the national anthem of Canada, at the Congrès national des Canadiens-Français.

1894 – Marie Francois Sadi Carnot is assassinated by Sante Geronimo Caserio.

1902 – King Edward VII of the United Kingdom develops appendicitis, delaying his coronation.

1913 – Greece and Serbia annul their alliance with Bulgaria.

1916 – Mary Pickford becomes the first female film star to sign a million dollar contract.

1916 – World War I: The Battle of the Somme begins with a week-long artillery bombardment on the German Line.

1918 – First airmail service in Canada from Montreal to Toronto.

1932 – A bloodless Revolution instigated by the People's Party ends the absolute power of King Prajadhipok of Siam (now Thailand).

1938 – Pieces of a meteor, estimated to have weighed 450 metric tons when it hit the Earth's atmosphere and exploded, land near Chicora, Pennsylvania.

1939 – Siam is renamed Thailand by Plaek Pibulsonggram, the country's third prime minister.

1940: World War II: Franco-Italian Armistice: France signs an armistice with Italy, in effect from 25 June, ending the brief Italian invasion of France.

1940 – World War II: Operation Collar, the first British Commando raid on occupied France, by No 11 Independent Company.

1947 – Kenneth Arnold makes the first widely reported UFO sighting near Mount Rainier, Washington.

1948 – Start of the Berlin Blockade: The Soviet Union makes overland travel between West Germany and West Berlin impossible.

1949 – The first television western, Hopalong Cassidy, is aired on NBC starring William Boyd.

1954 – First Indochina War: Battle of Mang Yang Pass: Vietminh troops belonging to the 803rd Regiment ambush G.M. 100 of France in An Khê.

1957 – In Roth v. United States, the U.S. Supreme Court rules that obscenity is not protected by the First Amendment.

1963 – The United Kingdom grants Zanzibar internal self-government.

1967 – The worst caving disaster in British history takes six lives at Mossdale Caverns.

1973 – The UpStairs Lounge arson attack takes place at a gay bar located on the second floor of the three-story building at 141 Chartres Street in the French Quarter of New Orleans, Louisiana, USA. Thirty-two people die as a result of fire or smoke inhalation.

1981 – The Humber Bridge is opens to traffic, connecting Yorkshire and Lincolnshire. It would be the world's longest single-span suspension bridge for 17 years.

1982 – "The Jakarta Incident": British Airways Flight 9 flies into a cloud of volcanic ash thrown up by the eruption of Mount Galunggung, resulting in the failure of all four engines.

1989 – Jiang Zemin succeeds Zhao Ziyang to become the General Secretary of the Communist Party of China after 1989 Tiananmen Square Protests.

1995 – "Rugby World Cup final": South Africa defeats New Zealand, Nelson Mandela presents Francois Pienaar with the Webb-Ellis trophy in an iconic post-apartheid moment.

2002 – The Igandu train disaster in Tanzania kills 281, the worst train accident in African history.

2004 – In New York, capital punishment is declared unconstitutional.

2010 – John Isner of the United States defeats Nicolas Mahut of France at Wimbledon, in the longest match in professional tennis history.

2010 – Julia Gillard assumed office as the first female Prime Minister of Australia.

2012 – Lonesome George, the last known individual of Chelonoidis nigra abingdonii, a subspecies of the Galápagos tortoise, dies.

2013 – Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is found guilty of abusing his power and having sex with an underage prostitute, and is sentenced to seven years in prison.

New book tells tale of young British hero who fought at Battle of Great Bridge

Somewhere in Great Bridge is buried a young British soldier, a captain, loyal to King George III. His name is Capt. Charles Fordyce.

While some Chesapeake citizens were celebrating the anniversary of the Battle of Great Bridge, our Wallace Memorial History room received an extraordinary book written by Roy Randolph titled “Captain Charles Fordyce, 14th Foot,” about the young officer who was killed at the Battle of Great Bridge on Dec. 9, 1775, 244 years ago.

The timing of receiving this biography could not have been better. The Wallace Memorial History room could not have received a better Christmas present than this most informative book about Fordyce’s life.

Gen. William Woodford’s and Lord Dunmore’s forces met at the village of Great Bridge, where there was a standoff, each side cautiously eyeing the other from their camps waiting for the perfect time to strike.

According to Dunmore’s account, after the battle, there were 17 dead British soldiers, including the heroic Fordyce who was killed that day by American forces. He was only 34 years old.

This new biography of Fordyce is an account of his life particularly at the outbreak of the Revolutionary War in America in 1775. For most of his military career, Fordyce commanded the elite grenadier company, His Majesty’s 14th Regiment, deployed to the Americas during the beginning of hostilities between America and England. It ends with a detailed account of a historically neglected battle, called the Battle of Great Bridge, on Dec. 9, 1775.

This unique biography about Fordyce is utterly absorbing, thoroughly researched and most informative. Randolph provides readers with the happenings that led up to the Battle of Great Bridge. It is truly a good read, a phenomenal story of a young man and his deployments in the King’s Army.

Randolph traces the origins of Fordyce’s family. He detailed his book with information from different libraries and depositories throughout England and Scotland. He gives a full account not only of Fordyce, but personal sketches of the players at the Battle of Great Bridge.

Why such a book? Randolph, who lives in California, was studying his ancestor who was also in the 14th Regiment.

Fordyce was born into an aristocratic family on Oct. 1, 1741, in Edinburgh, Scotland, and was baptized the day of his birth by his uncle, the Rev. George Fordyce. His father was Thomas Fordyce and his mother was Elizabeth Fordyce, nee’ Whitefoord.

At the time of his birth, his father was called a writer in family histories, referred to as a “writer to the signet,” or solicitor. He was also a businessman, an agent in the York Building Co. and administrator of Port Seton Glassworks.

The Fordyces, Whitefoords and Cathcarts (his grandmother’s maiden name) were all educated and highly respected in Scotland. The family was made up of high-ranking, influential military officials and diplomats who were affiliated with the highest political figures of England and Scotland at that time.

One of Charles Fordyce’s uncles was Lord Cathcart, who attained the rank of major general in the British army and served as a Scottish Peer in Parliament from 1732-1740. Cathcart would later be appointed as a groom of the bedchamber to King George II, a great honor for a soldier. Charles’s first cousin, Caleb Whitefoord, was a very good friend of Benjamin Franklin living next door on Craven Street in London.

Under the common law of Primogeniture, family lands, money, etc., descend to the eldest son, so, as he was the second son, Charles Fordyce entered the army on Jan. 8, 1761. He was 20 years old and under the company of grenadiers in His Majesty’s 14th Regiment of Foot, Highlanders.

According to an old Army commission book for 1761-1762, he was listed as a lieutenant-captain in the 14th and later promoted to captain on Oct. 8, 1761.

His first deployment was Germany from 1761-1763, where he saw a few skirmishes near Embeck, followed by a battle in Wilhelmsthal on June 24, 1762.

Afterward, he was deployed to Halifax, Nova Scotia, because of the Stamp Act problems in the Americas. In October 1768, young Fordyce was deployed to Boston with 41 privates. We followed his career to St. Vincent Island in the Caribbean to put down a few riots and, later, to St Augustine, Florida, for two years from 1773-1775.

Henry Clinton

He came from a noble family that could trace its lineage to 1066 and had a long history of service to the Crown. The son of George Clinton, an admiral of the fleet, Henry had two sons who continued the family tradition of high command: General Sir William Henry Clinton (1769–1846), and Lieutenant-General Sir Henry Clinton (1771–1829).

Henry Clinton was born, probably in 1730, to Admiral George Clinton and Anne Carle, the daughter of a general. Early histories claimed his birth year as 1738, a date widely propagated even in modern biographic summaries according to biographer William Willcox, Clinton claimed in a notebook found in 1958 to be born in 1730, and that evidence from English peerage records places the date of birth as 16 April. Willcox also notes that none of these records give indication of the place of Clinton’s birth. Historian John Fredriksen claims that Clinton was born in Newfoundland his father was posted there from 1732 to 1738.

Little is known of the earliest years of Clinton’s life, or of his mother and the two sisters that survived to adulthood. Given his father’s naval career, where the family was domiciled is uncertain. They were not obviously well-connected to the seat of the Earls of Lincoln, from whom his father was descended, or the estate of the Dukes of Newcastle, to whom they were related by marriage. In 1739 his father, then stationed at Gibraltar, applied for the governorship of the Province of New York he won the post in 1741 with the assistance of the Duke of Newcastle (who was his brother’s brother-in-law). However, he did not actually go to New York until 1743 he took young Henry with him, having failed to acquire a lieutenant’s commission for the 12-year-old. Henry’s career would also benefit from the family connection to the Newcastles.

Records of the family’s life in New York are sparse. He is reported to have studied under Samuel Seabury on Long Island, suggesting the family may have lived in the country outside New York City. Clinton’s first military commission was to an independent company in New York in 1745. The next year his father procured for him a captain’s commission, and he was assigned to garrison duty at the recently captured Fortress Louisbourg. In 1749, Clinton went to Britain to pursue his military career. It was two years before he received a commission as a captain in the Coldstream Guards. His father, after he returned to London when his term as New York governor was over, procured for Clinton a position as aide to Sir John Ligonier in 1756.

By 1758 Clinton had risen to be a lieutenant colonel in the 1st Foot Guards, which was later renamed the Grenadier Guards, and was a line company commander in the 2nd Battalion and was based in London. The 2nd Battalion, 1st Foot Guards, was deployed to Germany to participate in the Seven Years War, arriving at Bremen on 30 July 1760 then joining the main Army, operating under Conway’s Corps near Warberg. George II died on 25 October 1760 and Clinton, along with all Officers of the Regiment, was amongst those listed in the renewal of commissions to George III, in London, on 27 October 1760.

Clinton was back with the 2nd Battalion coming out of winter quarters, at Paderborn in February 1761 and with the unit at the Battle of Villinghausen on 16 July 1761, then under Prince Ferdinand, the Hereditary Crown Prince, at the crossing of the Diemel, near Warburg, in August, before wintering near Bielefeld. His father died this year necessitating a return to England to resolve family affairs.

In 1762 the unit, part of the force led by Prince Ferdinand, was in action at the Battle of Wilhelmsthal on 24 June 1762. After this action they participating in cutting the French supply lines at the heights of Homberg on 24 July 1762 and secured artillery into position. It was after this engagement that the unit lost its Commanding Officer, General (Colonel) Julius Caesar who died at Elfershausen and is buried there. Clinton, now a Colonel (seniority dated to 24 June 1762), was appointed as aide-de-camp to Prince Ferdinand by the start of 1762 and was with him when he attacked Louis Joseph, Prince of Condé at the Battle of Nauheim on 30 August 1762. Prince Ferdinand was wounded during this engagement and Clinton severely wounded forcing him to quit the field. This and the consequent siege of Cassel, were the last actions of the 1st Foot Guards in the Seven Years War and Clinton returned to England. Clinton had distinguished himself as an aide-de-camp to Brunswick, with whom he established an enduring friendship.

During these early years, he formed a number of friendships and acquaintances, mostly with other officers serving in Brunswick’s camp. These included Charles Lee and William Alexander, who styled himself “Lord Stirling” both of these men would face Clinton as enemies in North America. He formed long-lasting and deep friendships with John Jervis, and William Phillips Phillips later served under Clinton in North America, and Jervis rose to prominence in the Royal Navy. He also made the acquaintance of Charles Cornwallis, who would famously serve under him as well.

While Clinton was campaigning with the army in 1761, his father died. As the new head of the family, he had to unwind his father’s affairs, which included sizable debts as well as arrears in pay. Battles he had with the Board of Trade over his father’s unpaid salary lasted for years, and attempts to sell the land in the colonies went nowhere these lands were confiscated during the American Revolution, and even his heirs were unable to recover any kind of compensation for them. His mother, who had a history of mental instability and played only a small part in his life, died in August 1767.

On 12 February 1767, Clinton married Harriet Carter, the daughter of landed gentry, and the couple settled into a house in Surrey. There is some evidence that the marriage was performed in haste six months later, the household accounts contain evidence of a son, Frederick. Frederick died of an illness in 1774, two years after his mother. Although Clinton did not write of his marriage, it was apparently happy. The couple produced five children: Frederick, Augusta (1768), William Henry (1769), Henry Jr. (1771), and Harriet (1772). Clinton’s wife died on 29 August 1772, eight days after giving birth to Harriet. It took him over a year to recover from the grief. He took his in-laws into his house, and his wife’s sisters took over the care of his children.

Upon the death of the Duke of Newcastle, his patronage was taken up by the latter’s son and successor Henry Pelham-Clinton. Although he was at times instrumental in advancing Clinton’s career, the new duke’s lack of attention and interest in politics would at time work against Clinton. Clinton also complicated their relationship by treating the young duke more as an equal than as a noble who should be respected. A second patron was King George III’s brother the Duke of Gloucester. Clinton was appointed Gloucester’s Groom of the Bedchamber in 1764, a position he continued to hold for many years. However, some of Gloucester’s indiscretions left him out of favour at court, and he was thus not an effective supporter of Clinton.

In 1769 Clinton’s regiment was assigned to Gibraltar, and Clinton served as second in command to Edward Cornwallis. During this time, Newcastle asked him to see after one of his (Newcastle’s) sons who was serving in the garrison. The young man, described by his father as having “sloth and laziness” and “despicable behavior”, was virtually unmanageable, and Clinton convinced the duke to put him into a French academy.

Clinton was promoted to major general in 1772, and in the same year he obtained a seat in Parliament through Newcastle’s influence. He remained a Member of Parliament until 1784, first for Boroughbridge and subsequently for Newark-on-Trent. In April 1774 he went on a military inspection tour of the Russian army in the Balkans. He inspected some of the battlefields of the Russo-Turkish War with his friend Henry Lloyd, a general in the Russian army, and had an audience with Joseph II in Vienna. He very nearly had the chance to watch an artillery bombardment, but it was called off by the onset of peace negotiations. Clinton was at one point introduced to the Turkish negotiators, of whom he wrote that “they stared a little, but were very civil.” He returned to England in October 1774, and in February 1775 was ordered by King George to prepare for service in North America.

==American War of Independence==

Clinton, along with Major Generals William Howe and John Burgoyne, were sent with reinforcements to strengthen the position of General Thomas Gage in Boston. They arrived on 25 May, having learned en route that the American War of Independence had broken out, and that Boston was under siege. Gage, along with Clinton and Generals Howe and Burgoyne discussed plans to break the siege. Clinton was an advocate for fortifying currently unoccupied high ground surrounding Boston, and plans were laid to occupy those spots on 18 June. However, the colonists learned of the plan and fortified the heights of the Charlestown peninsula on the night of 16–17 June, forcing the British leadership to rethink their strategy.

In a war council held early on 17 June, the generals developed a plan calling for a direct assault on the colonial fortification, and Gage gave Howe command of the operation. Despite a sense of urgency (the colonists were still working on the fortifications at the time of the council), the attack did not begin until that afternoon. Clinton was assigned the role of providing reserve forces when requested by Howe. After two assaults failed, Clinton, operating against his orders from General Gage, crossed over to Charlestown to organize wounded and dispirited troops milling around the landing area. On the third and successful assault against the redoubt on Breed’s Hill, the position was taken and these troops, having rallied, arrived and drove the rebels back to Bunker Hill. The battle was a victory for the British, but only at the heavy cost of over 1,000 casualties. Clinton famously wrote of the battle that it was “A dear bought victory, another such would have ruined us.”

For the remainder of 1775 the siege became little more than a standoff, with the sides either unwilling or unable to mount an effective attack on the other. After Howe took command of the forces following General Gage’s recall in September, the two of them established a working relationship that started out well, but did not take long to begin breaking down. Howe gave Clinton the command of Charlestown, but Clinton spent most of his time in Boston. He occupied the house of John Hancock, which he scrupulously cared for. He hired a housekeeper named Mary Baddeley, the wife of a man who had supposedly been demoted because she refused an officer’s advances. Clinton also hired Thomas Baddeley as a carpenter the relationship Clinton established with Mary lasted the rest of his life, although it was only platonic during his time in Boston.

Cracks began to form in his relationship with Howe when plans were developed for an expedition to the southern colonies, command of which went to Clinton. He asked Howe for specific officers to accompany him and authority that an independent commander might normally have, but Howe rebuffed him on all such requests. In January 1776, Clinton sailed south with a small fleet and 1,500 men to assess military opportunities in the Carolinas. During his absence his fears about the situation in Boston were realized when the Dorchester Heights were occupied and fortified by the rebels in early March, causing the British to evacuate Boston and retreat to Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Clinton’s expedition to the Carolinas was expected to meet a fleet sent from Europe with more troops for operations in February 1776. Delayed by logistics and weather, this force, which included General Charles Cornwallis as Clinton’s second in command and Admiral Sir Peter Parker did not arrive off the North Carolina coast until May. Concluding that North Carolina was not a good base for operations, they decided to assault Charleston, South Carolina, whose defenses were reported to be unfinished. Their assault, launched in late June, was a dismal failure. Clinton’s troops were landed on an island near Sullivan’s Island, where the rebel colonists had their main defenses, with the expectation that the channel between the two could be waded at low tide. This turned out not to be the case, and the attack was reduced to a naval bombardment. The bombardment in its turn failed because the spongy palmetto logs used to construct the fort absorbed the force of the cannonballs without splintering and breaking.

Clinton and Parker rejoined the main fleet to participate in General Howe’s August 1776 assault on New York City. Clinton pestered Howe with a constant stream of ideas for the assault, which the commander in chief came to resent. Howe did however adopt Clinton’s plan for attacking George Washington’s position in Brooklyn. In the 27 August, Battle of Long Island, British forces led by Howe and Clinton, following the latter’s plan, successfully flanked the American forward positions, driving them back into their fortifications on Brooklyn Heights. However, Howe refused Clinton’s recommendation that they follow up the overwhelming victory with an assault on the entrenched Americans, due to a lack of intelligence as to their strength and a desire to minimize casualties. Instead, Howe besieged the position, which the Americans abandoned without loss on 29 August. General Howe was rewarded with a knighthood for his success.

Howe then proceeded to take control of New York City, landing at Kip’s Bay on Manhattan, with Clinton again in the lead. Although Clinton again suggested moves to cut Washington’s army off, Howe rejected them. In October Clinton led the army ashore in Westchester County in a bid to trap Washington between the Hudson and Bronx Rivers. However, Washington reached White Plains before Clinton did. After a brief battle in which Washington was pushed further north, Howe turned south to consolidate control of Manhattan. By this time the relationship between the two men had broken down almost completely, with Howe, apparently fed up with Clinton’s constant stream of criticisms and suggestions, refusing to allow Clinton even minor deviations in the army’s marching route.

In November Howe ordered Clinton to begin preparing an expedition to occupy Newport, Rhode Island, desired as a port by the Royal Navy. When Howe sent General Cornwallis into New Jersey to chase after Washington, Clinton proposed that, rather than taking Newport, his force should be landed in New Jersey in an attempt to envelop Washington’s army. Howe rejected this advice, and Clinton sailed for Newport in early December, occupying it in the face of minimal opposition.

In January 1777 Clinton was given leave to return to England. Planning for the 1777 campaign season called for two campaigns, one against Philadelphia, and a second that would descend from Montreal on Lake Champlain to Albany, New York, separating the New England colonies. Since General Howe was taking leadership of the Philadelphia campaign, Clinton contested for command of the northern campaign with Burgoyne. Howe supported him this effort, but Burgoyne convinced King George and Lord Germain to give him the command. The king refused Clinton’s request to resign, and ordered him back to New York to serve again as Howe’s second in command. He was placated with a knighthood, but was also forbidden to publish accounts of the disastrous Charleston affair. He was formally invested in the Order of the Bath on 11 April, and sailed for New York on the 29th.

When Clinton arrived in New York in July, Howe had not yet sailed for Philadelphia. Clinton was surprised and upset that he would be left to hold New York with 7,000 troops, dominated by Loyalist formations and Hessians, an arrangement he saw as inadequate to the task. He also quite bluntly informed Howe of the defects he saw in Howe’s plan, which would isolate Burgoyne from any reasonable chance of support by either Howe or Clinton. He presciently wrote after learning that much of Washington’s force had left the New York area, “I fear it bears heavy on Burgoyne … If this campaign does not finish the war, I prophesy that there is an end of British dominion in America.”

Burgoyne’s campaign ended in disaster Burgoyne was stopped at Saratoga and surrendered shortly after. Clinton attempted to support Burgoyne, but the delay in arrival of reinforcements put off the effort. In early October, Clinton captured two forts in the Hudson River highlands, and sent troops up the river toward Albany. The effort was too little and too late, and was cut off when he received orders from Howe requesting reinforcements. Howe’s campaign for Philadelphia had been a success, but he had very nearly suffered a defeat in the Battle of Germantown.

As the commander in New York, Clinton was obligated to do a certain amount of entertaining. This he did, although he chafed at the costs involved. He was eventually joined by the Baddeleys. Mary Baddeley resumed her role as housekeeper, which he appreciated in part because of her excellent managerial skills. She apparently rebuffed Clinton’s romantic overtures until she discovered her husband had been cheating on her. Clinton procured a position in one of the Loyalist regiments for her husband, and tried without success to get him transferred out of New York.

General Howe submitted his resignation as Commander-in-Chief for North America in the wake of the 1777 campaigns, and Clinton was on the short list of nominees to replace him. Despite being mistrusted by Prime Minister North, principally over his many complaints and requests to resign, Clinton was formally appointed to the post on 4 February 1778. Word of this did not arrive until April, and Clinton assumed command in Philadelphia in May 1778. France had by this time formally entered the war on the American side. Clinton was consequently ordered to withdraw from Philadelphia and send 5,000 of his troops to the economically important Caribbean. For the rest of the war, Clinton received few reinforcements as a consequence of the globalisation of the conflict. His orders were to strengthen areas of North America that were firmly under British control, and do no more than conduct raiding expeditions in the rebel-controlled areas.

Owing to a shortage of transports for all of the Loyalists fleeing Philadelphia, Clinton acted against his direct orders and decided to move the army to New York by land instead of by sea. He conducted a skillful march to New York, accomplished without losing a wagon, and fighting a standoff battle with Washington’s army at Monmouth Court House on 28 June. Clinton burnished his reputation at home by penning a report on the movement that greatly exaggerated the size of Washington’s army and minimised the British casualties at Monmouth. Arriving in New York, he and Admiral Howe were faced with the spectre of a French fleet outside the harbour. Fortunately, Admiral d’Estaing decided against crossing the bar into the harbour, and sailed instead for Newport. Once Clinton learned of his destination he marshalled troops to reinforce the Newport garrison while Lord Howe sailed to meet d’Estaing. Both fleets were scattered by a storm, and the American attempt on Newport failed before Clinton arrived. Clinton sent the supporting force on a raid of nearby communities, while he returned to New York to organize the troops that were to be sent southward. The detachment to strengthen the Floridas was sent to instead strike at Georgia. This force took Savannah in December, and in January 1779 it gained a tenuous (and ultimately temporary) foothold at Augusta. He also detached troops for service in the West Indies, pursuant to a plan to capture St. Lucia the expedition was a success, compelling a French surrender not long before the French fleet arrived.

During his time in Philadelphia and New York in 1778 Clinton managed to establish a harmonious relationship with William Eden, a member of the Carlisle Peace Commission. This commission, nominally led by the Earl of Carlisle had been sent in a vain attempt at reconciliation with the rebel Congress. Despite its failures, Eden and Clinton got along, and Eden promised to make sure Clinton’s dispatches received favourable distribution in England.

With the 1778 campaign season closed, Clinton considered options for action in 1779. Although he felt that Britain would be best served by withdrawing to the frontiers, popular opinion at home, as well as that of the king and Lord Germain, dictated otherwise. Germain felt that raiding expeditions should be conducted “with spirit and humanity” to destroy American commerce and privateering this strategy was one Clinton disliked. Militarily, Clinton and Washington did little more than stare at each other across the lines of New York City. Clinton ordered two major raiding expeditions, one against Connecticut, the other against Chesapeake Bay, while Washington detached troops to deal with the increasing frontier war, which was primarily orchestrated from Quebec.

Early in 1779 Clinton sent his trusted aide, Lieutenant Duncan Drummond, to England in order to argue Clinton’s request to be recalled. Drummond was unsuccessful in this: despite the intervention of the Duke of Newcastle, the king refused to even consider granting Clinton leave, claiming that Clinton was “the only man who might still save America”. William Eden also interceded in an attempt to improve Clinton’s situation, but political divisions in the government and the prospect of Spanish entry into the war meant that Clinton ended up with very little support. Clinton also complained about the lack of naval support being provided by Admiral James Gambier, with whom he also had a difficult relationship. He eventually sent London a list of admirals he thought he could work with none of them were chosen, and Gambier was replaced temporarily by George Collier before his permanent replacement, Mariot Arbuthnot, arrived.

After the Chesapeake raid Clinton drove the Americans from a key crossing of the Hudson River at Stony Point, New York. Clinton had hoped that, with an expected reinforcement of troops from Europe, he could then attack either Washington’s army or its supply lines, forcing Washington out of his well-defended mountain positions. However, the reinforcements, including Admiral Arbuthnot, were late in arriving, and Stony Point was retaken by the Americans after Clinton weakened its garrison to supply men for the Connecticut raids. The Americans chose not to hold Stony Point, and Clinton reoccupied it. However, Clinton’s opponents used the American success to criticise him, calling him “undetermined” and “feeble”. A similar action against a British outpost in New Jersey gave them further ammunition, and soured British morale. Further actions from New York were rendered impossible by the need for the naval squadron to address the American expedition to dislodge a newly established British outpost in Penobscot Bay.

On 30 June 1779 Clinton issued what has become known as the Philipsburg Proclamation (so named because it was issued from his headquarters at the Philipsburg Manor House in Westchester County, New York). This proclamation institutionalized in the British Army an offer of freedom to enlisted runaway slaves that had first been made in a similar proclamation by Virginia Governor Lord Dunmore in 1775. He justified this offer by citing the fact that the Continental Army was also actively recruiting African Americans. The proclamation led to a flood of fugitive slaves making their way to British lines to take advantage of the offer, and the issue of slave repatriation would complicate Anglo-American relations as the war was ending.

Clinton’s relationship with Arbuthnot got off to a bad start. Rumors of a French fleet headed for northern ports (Halifax, Newport, or New York) pulled the leaders in different directions, and put off plans to withdraw from Newport for the purposes of strengthening the New York garrison (which had been weakened by disease) on at least one occasion. However, the French instead besieged Savannah, Georgia with American assistance, and failed disastrously in the attempt. This convinced Clinton that an expedition against South Carolina held promise Loyalist support was said to be strong there, and the people were said to be “sick of their opposition to government” and the British blockade of their ports.

Clinton began to assemble a force an expedition to take Charleston, withdrawing the forces from Newport for the purpose. Clinton took personal command of this campaign, and the task force with 14,000 men sailed south from New York at the end of the year. By early 1780, Clinton had brought Charleston under siege. In May, working together with Admiral Arbuthnot, he forced the surrender of the city, with its garrison of 5,000, in a stunning and serious defeat for the rebel cause. Arbuthnot and Clinton did not work together well during the siege, and their feuding lasted into 1781, with disastrous results for the unity of the British high command. Clinton’s relationship with Cornwallis also deteriorated further during the siege, improving slightly after the American surrender and Clinton’s departure for New York.

From New York, he oversaw the campaign in the South, and his correspondence to Cornwallis through the war showed an active interest in the affairs of his southern army. However, as the campaign progressed, he grew further and further away from his subordinate. As the campaign drew to a close, the correspondence became more and more acrimonious. Part of this may be due to George Germain, whose correspondence with Cornwallis may have convinced the junior officer to start disregarding the orders of his superior and consider himself to be an independent command.

In 1782, after fighting in the North American theater ended with the surrender of Cornwallis at Yorktown, Clinton was replaced as Commander-in-Chief by Sir Guy Carleton, and he returned to England.

In 1783, he published a Narrative of the Campaign of 1781 in North America in which he attempted to lay the blame for the 1781 campaign failures on General Cornwallis. This was met with a public response by Cornwallis, who leveled his own criticisms at Clinton. Clinton also resumed his seat in Parliament, serving until 1784.

Not much is known about what Sir Henry did from 1784 until he was re-elected to Parliament in 1790 for Launceston, a pocket borough controlled by his cousin Newcastle. Three years later, in October 1793, Clinton was promoted to full general. The following July he was appointed Governor of Gibraltar, but he died at Portland Place before he was able to assume that post.

Sir Henry Clinton held the command in America for four years, ending in disaster and defeat. As a result, he was widely seen to share in the blame for the defeat. Biographer William Willcox, in his analysis of Clinton’s tenure in North America, observes that at times “Sir Henry’s ideas were not carried out for reasons that lay to some extent within himself”, and that he and Admiral Graves “apparently ignored the danger” of de Grasse in 1781. However, Willcox notes that campaign plans Clinton formulated for 1777, 1779 and 1780 were frustrated by external events he could not control, and Willcox generally blames Cornwallis for the failure of the Carolina campaign. (In contrast, Cornwallis biographers Franklin and Mary Wickwire point out that Cornwallis’ failures are at least partially attributable to directives of Clinton that left him with relatively inadequate troop strength and irregular supply lines.)

Major James Wemyss, who served under Clinton, wrote that he was “an honourable and respectable officer of the German school having served under Prince Ferdinand of Prussia and the Duke of Brunswick. Vain, open to flattery and from a great aversion to all business not military, too often misled by aides and favourites”, but also pointed out that Clinton’s interests were narrow and that he was crippled by self-distrust. Colonel Sir Charles Stuart described him as “fool enough to command an army when he is incapable of commanding a troop of horse.” Historian Piers Mackesy writes that he was “a very capable general in the field.”

Letters from General Sir Henry Clinton during the Revolutionary War can be found in the political papers of his cousin, Henry Pelham-Clinton, in the Newcastle (Clumber) Collection held at Manuscripts and Special Collections, University of Nottingham Information Services.


Hunter infantry

The foothunters wore an all dark green uniform with silver buttons, and they wielded a drawn rifle . Former foresters carried rifles and hag hunters , the rest of the soldiers carried rifles with bayonets . In addition to the foot hunters, there were also special grenadier companies with the casket as headgear.

Riding hunters

Largely identical to the foothunter's uniform, except for cavalry armament and riding equipment.

Battle of Vellinghausen

Place of the Battle of Vellinghausen: On the banks of the Lippe River in North West Germany.

Prince Soubise, French commander at the Battle of Vellinghausen on 15th July 1761 in the Seven Years War

Combatants at the Battle of Vellinghausen: 65,000 British, Hanoverians, Prussians, Brunswickers and Hessians against 92,000 French.

Generals at the Battle of Vellinghausen: The Archduke Ferdinand of Brunswick commanding the allies against Prince Soubise and the Duc de Broglie commanding the French army.

Uniforms, arms and equipment at the Battle of Vellinghausen: All regular European soldiers of this time fought in a knee length uniform coat, turned back at the skirt, cuffs and lapels to reveal a distinctive regimental lining colour. Headgear was a black tricorne hat with a lace brim, except for grenadiers who wore a tall mitre cap. In some armies the grenadier mitre was giving way to a bearskin cap.

The uniform was white for the majority of French regiments, blue for the Prussians and German armies that followed the Prussian tradition, like Hesse-Darmstadt, and red for the British and Hanoverians. There were exceptions within every army. The French Royal Household troops wore a variety of coats. The foreign mercenary regiments in the French service wore red. The Hanoverian and Hessen horse wore white. The British Royal Artillery and Royal Horse Guards wore blue coats.

Winner of the Battle of Vellinghausen: The Archduke Ferdinand of Brunswick.

British Regiments at the Battle of Vellinghausen:
The Royal Horse Guards now the Blues and Royals.
The King’s Dragoon Guards now the Queen’s Dragoon Guards.
2nd Dragoon Guards later the Queen’s Bays and now the Queen’s Dragoon Guards.
3rd Dragoon Guards later the 3rd Carabineers and now the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards.
The Carabineers later the 3rd Carabineers and now the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards.
7th Dragoon Guards later the 4th/7th Royal Dragoon Guards and now the Royal Dragoon Guards.
1st Royal Dragoons now the Blues and Royals.
6th Inniskilling Dragoons later the 5th Inniskilling Dragoon Guars and now the Royal Dragoon Guards.
2nd Dragoons, the Royal Scots Greys now the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards.
7th Dragoons later the Queen’s Own Hussars and now the Queen’s Royal Hussars.
10th Dragoons later the Royal Hussars and now the King’s Royal Hussars.
11th Dragoons later the Royal Hussars and now the King’s Royal Hussars.

Private 11th Dragoons: Battle of Vellinghausen on 15th July 1761 in the Seven Years War: picture by David Morier

15th Light Dragoons later the 15th/19th the King’s Royal Hussars and now the Light Dragoons.
Royal Artillery.
2nd Battalion the First Guards, now the Grenadier Guards.
2nd Battalion the Coldstream Guards.
2nd Battalion the Third Guards, now the Scots Guards.
5th Foot later the Northumberland Fusiliers and now the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers.
8th Foot The King’s Regiment.
11th Foot later the Devonshire Regiment and now the Devon and Dorset Regiment.
12th Foot later the Suffolk Regiment and now the Royal Anglian Regiment.
20th Foot later the Lancashire Fusiliers and now the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers.
23rd Foot, the Royal Welch Fusiliers.

Grenadiers of 1st, Coldstream and 3rd Regiments of Foot Guards: Battle of Vellinghausen on 15th July 1761 in the Seven Years War: picture by David Morier

24th Foot later the South Wales Borderers and now the Royal Regiment of Wales.
25th Foot now the King’s Own Scottish Borderers.
33rd Foot now the Duke of Wellington’s Regiment.
37th Foot later the Royal Hampshire Regiment and now the Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment.
27th Foot later the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers and now the Royal Irish Regiment.
51st Foot later the King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry and now the Light Infantry.
87th Highlanders disbanded after the war.
88th Highlanders disbanded after the war.
Vellinghausen is not a British battle honour.

Map of the Battle of Vellinghausen on 15th July 1761 in the Seven Years War: map by John Fawkes

Account of the Battle of Vellinghausen: The main theme of the Seven Years War in North West Germany was the constant French threat to Hanover and the other North Germany states allied to Prussia.

In early July 1761 the two French armies of Prince Soubise and the Duc de Broglie united with the aim of forcing Ferdinand’ army to cross the River Lippe and abandon the important town of Lippstadt. Ferdinand took up positions to the south of the River Lippe while the two French commanders approached him and prepared to attack.

Hanoverian Regiment of Horse von Bremer

The allied army lay along a series of hills stretching from Vellinghausen to Hulbeck, divided in the middle by the Ahse River. The marshy Salzbach Brook lay along the front of the allied right wing.

The French suffered from having in Soubise and Broglie two commanders of equal rank, neither prepared to accept orders from the other. The agreement between them was that Broglie would attack the allied forces that lay between the Ahse and the Lippe Rivers, while Soubise moved against Ferdinand’s troops on the French left, behind Werle, and envelope their unsecured right wing. The attack was intended to begin in the early hours of 16th July 1761.

Broglie’s troops moved forward on the evening of 15th July towards Vellinghausen. The Hessian General Wutginau commanded on the allied left. His corps was encamped to the rear of its intended battle positions and the French advance took his men by surprise. An additional problem was that ammunition was in short supply. The French pressed forward. To take advantage of his unexpected success in what had been intended as a preliminary move, Broglie developed his attack to include the hill above Vellinghausen, the Dünckerburg, held by the Marquis of Granby with British foot and cavalry and some Hanoverian regiments. Although also surprised, the British and German regiments held off the French assault. The fighting continued until nightfall with the French unable to exploit their initial success.

Hanoverian Regiments of Foot

During the night re-inforcements for both sides came into the line. Broglie brought up fresh troops to renew the attack the next day. Ferdinand shifted regiments across the Ahse, strengthening his left wing at the expense of the right, until he reached parity with Broglie. The allied right wing was now heavily outnumbered by Soubise’s army.

At dawn Broglie renewed the attack around Vellinghausen, expecting Soubise to advance on the left wing. In view of the considerable disparity in numbers and that the flank of Ferdinand’s weakened right wing was now badly exposed, the French had a reasonable expectation of victory. But Soubise contented himself with sending a small force out to the left and making a limited assault on the village of Scheidingen, while most of his army remained inactive.

On Broglie’s wing, after some heavy fighting, a fresh allied force under Wolff arrived from the far side of the Lippe and attacked down the left bank of the river, catching the French at a moment of re-organisation and driving them back in confusion. Ferdinand’s left wing, with Brigadier Sandford’s British brigade, the two highland regiments, the British grenadiers and Mannsberg’s Brunswickers, went onto the assault and Broglie’s troops retreated in disorder, one of his regiments being captured.

The battle ended by midday with the French in full retreat.

Casualties: Broglie’s army suffered 4,700 casualties. Soubise lost 300 men. The allies suffered 1,400 casualties. The British casualties in the battle were 434. There were no cavalry casualties on either side.

Follow-up: It seems probable that Ferdinand and his army did not immediately realise they had won the battle. It was a week later that the army was ordered to fire a “feu de joie” to celebrate the victory. This may explain why Ferdinand made no use of his cavalry to follow up the French retreat.

Hanoverian Regiment of Dragoons : Grenadier Troop

The effect of the battle on the French was far reaching. Broglie and Soubise blamed each other for the defeat and refused to co-operate further. They also decided that Ferdinand could not be defeated in battle and that further general engagements were to be avoided.

Anecdotes and traditions of the Battle of Vellinghausen:

  • The British surgeons are said to have taken particularly good care of the French wounded in gratitude for the consideration shown to British casualties left on the field of Fontenoy in 1745.
  • The Marquess of Granby in a letter reported an incident in the battle in which the Marquis de Rougé was talking with his father-in-law, the Duc d’Havrée, his brother-in-law Lieutenant General the Marquis de Verae and his uncle Lieutenant General Rougé when a cannon ball struck the group killing three of them and taking off the leg of the fourth. It was the Regiment de Rougé that surrendered.
  • The British Guards Brigade at the battle was commanded by Major General Julius Caesar.

British troops: Battle of Vellinghausen on 15th July 1761 in the Seven Years War

References for the Battle of Vellinghausen:
His Britannic Majesty’s Army in Germany during the Seven Year War by Savory

Fortescue’s History of the British Army

The previous battle of the Seven Years War is the Battle of Kloster Kamp

The next battle of the Seven Years War is the Battle of Wilhelmstahl

File history

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The Seven Years War: Frederick’s Gamble – “The First World War”, 1756-1762 – Part 2

1758 7YW:FG Turn Two : Beginning 1758, the strategic initiative still lay with the Prussians and their superb hard marching professional infantry. With the victory at Rossbach, the appreciative for Prussian support British felt that continuing the fight in Hanover was now feasible. Imagine how a British Player would react to such aid from their Coalition Camp Partner in a game of 7YW:FG since complete enemy capture of all four Hanover’s Keys at the end of a year will automatically end the game.

The British Army on the continent, however, was in need of a major refit with new leadership. Cumberland was replaced and replaced with one of the most talented Generals of the war when Frederick transferred Prince Ferdinand to aid his British ally. This, along with the British themselves raising a new army in Hanover containing a large influx of British Regular Regiments (card “His Britannic Majesty’s Army”) , changed the struggle’s complexion. This Coalition army quickly seized French held territory in Hanover and with “lightning” speed the capable Ferdinand drove the French out of Hanover. In just six weeks Ferdinand had redrawn the strategic map of Europe.

Prussia’s western flank was now secure, leaving Frederick the task of facing the Russian and Austrian armies as they closed in on Prussia. Frederick moved against the Austrians and put Olmutz under siege. The siege dragged on and Frederick got reports that the Russians, under their new commander Fermor, were advancing into the very heart of Prussia. This caused Frederick to once again redeploy the main Prussian Army.

Much of the year passed by the time Fredrick was ready to attack the invading Russians, this he did on August 25 at Zorndorf. The Prussian army began with a massive artillery barrage that lasted over two hours. This would have routed many other European armies, but the stolid Russians maintained discipline and even counter attacked the Prussian left. The battle degenerated into a large hand to hand brawl during which neither side gained clear advantage. By nightfall, both armies drew back from each other. The Battle of Zorndorf was over with nothing to show but the dead and dying. The Russians had lost about 19, 000 and the Prussians about 13,000. Although the Prussians could claim they won the battle, with losses like that, Prussia’s trained troop pool would not be able to long withstand such stress.

Frederick the Great in the battle of Zorndorf before the frontline of the von Bülow regiment, by Carl Röchling.

Frederick was not given any rest, the Austrians were moving into Saxony and Frederick had to defeat this threat before it invested all Saxony. The two armies met near the Saxon village of Hochkirch, (Bautzen on the game map) on October 14 th . Though significantly outnumbered, Frederick skirmished for some time not realizing the Austrians were mounting a full on attack. The Austrians consequently pushed aside the Prussian army. Losses were light, about 8,000 Austrians and 9,000 Prussians.

The Austrians had hoped for a more decisive outcome and, upon hearing there were more Prussians coming to reinforce Frederick, the Austrians retired to winter quarters in Pirna. The 1758 year ended well for Frederick, Prussia was clear of the Russian army, Silesia was still in Prussian control, and Saxony remained well within the Prussian orbit as well. The great concern for Frederick was that his army, his Nation, was being bled white.

1759 7YW:FG Turn Three : In the beginning of 1759 British/Hanoverian forces under Ferdinand were a bee hive of activity. In April, Ferdinand attacked the French near Frankfurt and Wesel at a village called Bergen. This attack met with no real success and Ferdinand withdrew. The French pursued and after some months forced Ferdinand into battle at Minden. Despite intense fighting, ultimately casualties for Ferdinand were light, whereas for the French, the same could not be said. The French withdrew from this battle demoralized. They obtained favorable conditions on the battlefield, but were unable to achieve the sought for ultimate victory.

French cavalry unable to break the British line at Minden, western Hannover, in 1759

The Russians had now fully committed to the war ( Card “Russia Fully Commits”) and to the utter defeat of Frederick. They spent much effort building up forces to drive into the heart of Prussia. The Russians were able to defeat a small Prussian force in Schwibus near the Polish border in July before Frederick turned his attention to attacking, and defeating the Russians. Frederick attacked the Russians at Kunersdorf in August. The Russian army, under the command of Saltikov (a 3-8 Leader in the 7YW:FG game), was concerned about being outflanked and had strategically positioned themselves in good defensible terrain. Saltikov had gone as far as preparing trenches and redoubts in anticipation of Frederick’s attack.

The Battle of Kunersdorff, by Alexander Kotzebue.

The result was Frederick suffering one of the worst defeats of his military career a defeat which left the Russians ever so near disputed Saxony. The Prussians suffered about 19,000 casualties, the Russians approximately 15,000. Frederick could ill afford these kinds of losses and appealed for help to Ferdinand in the west. This defeat was not the only bad news for Prussia the Austrians were able to defeat a small Prussian Army in Saxony and capture Dresden. Frederick was truly starring dire defeat in the face.

That a main Prussian field army to was allowed to remain at large, able to gather strength and fight again, was only due to the lack of cooperation between the Russians and Austrians (each having their own war objectives… and in the 7YW:FG game, the Russians are commanded by the French Player, who, sensing an Imperial Camp victory, could well do things to further their own interests rather than those of the Austrian Player since only a single player can be declared the game’s victor. )

1760 7YW:FG Turn Four : 1760 brought even more disasters to Prussia. A minor Prussian Army was defeated by the Austrians in the Battle of Landshut (in terms of the game, an Austrian Army crossed the Pass into the Prussian Silesian Key Duchy Fortress of Schweidnitz). The French reinvaded Hanover and captured Marburg , and the Swedes, who declared war in 1757, but were finally willing to enter the fray as an active Imperial Camp ally, seized part of Brandenburg-Prussian Pomerania (they would eventually be defeated and compelled to withdraw back to Sweden after a lackluster campaign and overall participation in the war). The campaign season’s Coalition bright spot was the Hanoverians being victorious over the French at the Battle of Warburg (Kassel on the 7YW:FG map). The British continued their success preventing France from sending troops to aid Austria against Prussia in the east. Now after 4 years of war, the French were no closer to accomplishing a conquest of Hanover then when they started.

The Austrians, advanced unopposed from the south under the command of General Loudon and captured Glatz (now Kłodzko), identified as Neisse on the 7YW:FG map in Silesia. This was where at the Battle of Liegnitz was fought. Frederick scored an impressive victory despite being outnumbered three to one. This Battle was fought when Frederick and the fortunes of the Prussian state were at low ebb. The victory restored Prussian morale and acted as a corresponding dampener to the expectations of the Austrians and Russians in beating Frederick. It also prevented the Russian and Austrian armies from uniting. Liegnitz restored the confidence of the Prussian army and people in their King.

The Russians under General Saltikov , with Austrian support, briefly occupied Frederick’s capital, Berlin, in October, as well as capturing Schwibus and Kunerfsdorf but they could not hold that Prussian territory for long. The end of that year saw Frederick once more victorious, defeating the able Austrian General Daun at the Battle of Torgau (in the 7YW:FG map – the Duchy of Luckau) but the Prussians suffered very heavy casualties and the Austrians retreated in good order.

Although a highly disappointing battle for Frederick, involving appalling losses among his best troops, Torgau’s effect on his enemies was much greater. The Austrian Chancellor Kaunitz, who engineered the alliance against Frederick, despaired of recovering any part of the lost territories and began to advise obtaining a negotiated peace. The French court at Versailles equally doubted whether Frederick could be defeated. Cracks in the Imperial Camp’s resolve were beginning to appear.

1761 7YW:FG Turn Five : In 1761, two French armies, under Marshals, Duc de Broglie and Prince de Soubise met up July 1, intending to force Prince Ferdinand out of Lippstadt . Allied reinforcements under General Spörcken arrived bringing Ferdinand’s forces up to 65,000 while the combined French armies numbered around 90,000. The French were able to form an “Army Group” through use of an “offensive interception”, obtained in the 7YW:FG game through play of the “Damn the Orders” Card Event.

The allied Prussian-Hanoverian-British forces lined up along a series of hills, with their left anchored by the Lippe River (in the north), and the Ahse River in their center. The French advanced on 15 July, and Broglie’s troops in the north made progress against German troops under Wutginau. The battle of Vellinghausen (The Hanover Duchy of Lippstadt on the game map) was underway. However, British troops under Granby just south of Wutginau held their ground and the French assault stalled. Reinforcements for both sides arrived that night and Ferdinand strengthened his left at the expense of his right. The next morning, Broglie continued his attack on the Allied left, expecting Soubise to attack the weakened Allied right. However, Soubise only ordered a few small actions against the right, due in part that both French commanders were the same rank and reluctant to take orders from the other.

Allied reinforcements soon arrived along the Lippe River and attacked the French flank, halting Broglie’s attack and forcing his men to withdraw. By about noon, the French were in full retreat and the battle was over. News of the French debacle provoked joy in Britain, and led William Pitt to take a much tougher line in ongoing peace negotiations with France. Although defeated, the French still had a significant numerical superiority and committed to continuing their offensive despite increasing political doubts at home.

Frederick’s army in the last stages of the war numbered no more than 100,000 men, most of whom were raw recruits and prisoners of war incapable of the complex maneuvers and rapid marches that allowed Frederick to effectively strike his enemies with fearsome vigor. In terms of the 7YW:FG game, the Prussian player would have invoked one of his “Bottom of the Barrel” measures to bolster a dwindling Trained Troops Pool. To compensate for this, Frederick switched strategy to positional warfare, in which he attempted to wear down his enemies with the use of fortifications.

Two large Russian and Austrian Armies moved against the Prussians in Silesia. Frederick began building a large fortified camp at Bunzelwitz, near Schweidnitz, in August. The fort was heavily protected and the terrain denied the independently advancing Austrians and Russians use of their artillery. Frederick made one tactical error in thinking the Austrians and Russians would not attack his camp. He withdrew most of his force and marched toward Neisse in order to better position for retaining the Silesian Fortresses of Schweidnitz and Breslau . On September 26 th , in his absence, the Austrians seized Schweidnitz.

Frederick spent the rest of 1761 maneuvering his army in an attempt to keep it between the Russian and Austrian Armies and preserve it for future offensive/defensive action. Within weeks, the Austrians captured most of Silesia and liberated most of Saxony. The happy mood in Wien bordered on the euphoric. In Britain, it was speculated a complete Prussian collapse was imminent.

1762 7YW:FG Turn Six : In1762, the “Miracle of the House of Brandenburg ” occurred. On 5 January, the Russian Czarina Elizabeth died. Her Prussophile successor, Peter III , at once recalled Russian armies from Prussia, offered a peace treaty and Alliance with Frederick (the Treaty of Saint Petersburg ), and mediated Frederick’s truce with Sweden. With all but Austria removed from the war, Frederick concentrated all his resources on recapturing Saxony and Silesia from Austria. The Battle of Freiberg (or Dresden) was fought on October 29, and was the last great central European battle of the Seven Years’ War . The Austrian army abandoned all their gains of the previous year and withdrew their field Army back to Pirna , their remaining enclave in Saxony.

The last great battle for Hanover was fought on June 24 th . The Battle of Wilhelmsthal, essentially the Hanover Key Duchy depicted on the 7YW:FG map, was between the Coalition forces of British, Hanover, Brunswick and Hessian troops against the French. Once again, the French threatened Hanover, so the Allies maneuvered around the French, surrounded the invasion force, and forced them to retreat. It was the last major action fought by the British before the Peace of Paris brought an end to the war.

The Seven Year’s War Results: In Europe, almost all territorial boundaries were returned to prewar status. Most of the combatant Nations were close to bankruptcy and their pools of Trained Troops bled out or severely strained. Austria had proven she had vastly improved her military Leadership and quality of armed forces, but when she stood alone, she was still not able to effectively fight and subdue Prussia.

Russia too had proven to all she was a force to be reckoned with. Any further conflicts in Europe would have to consider Russia’s interests. Frederick may have won himself a place in military history by fighting to a draw so many enemies, but it was clear Prussia was no longer militarily “Head and Shoulders” above its neighbors. Frederick, as the ruler of Prussia, had not secured any new lands from this conflict. His “Saxony Gamble” had failed: nor had the Prussian King procured through treaties any financial subsidies. He knew, from this point forward, if there were to be further warfare in Europe he would require allies.

France was the clear loser of The Seven Years War. She lost her trading posts in India, she lost New France and all Canada. Her Navy was not up to the task of preventing France from being blockaded by Britain. Last and not least was experiencing her previously vaunted armies, although superior in numbers, being unable to obtain victory over the Anglo-Hanoverians.

Britain, however, was the clear winner of the struggle. Her leaders were able to focus their resources on achieving winnable objectives: North America was now singularly Britain’s, with the Caribbean and India part of an ever burgeoning Empire. Britain was able to protect Hanover. The Royal Navy effectively protected and extended Britain’s interests and at the same time foiled France’s and later Spain’s Navy.

Britain’s blue print for victory had clearly shown itself worthy. Britain would continue to refine this approach for all its future conflicts. If not for the financial burdens caused by The Seven Years War, the British Crown might have been able to avoid the North American colonial rebellion of 1775. In terms of the 7YW:FG game, the Coalition won with the British Player declared sole victor.

Vintage Trading Card : The Battle of Plassey June 23rd 1757

Recommended reading list:
The Osprey Essential History is a pretty reasonable summary and the e-book version is really cheap ($1.49), furthermore, once you get to the site there are links to a lot of other goodies for fans of the period:

Someone looking for an in-depth history should read Franz Szabo’s The Seven Years War in Europe, 1756-1763:

and Fred Anderson’s Crucible of War: The Seven Years’ War and the Fate of Empire in British North America, 1754-1766.

My Tin Soldier Collection - SYW Hanoverians

Unit History
The regiment was formed in 1745 from the 2nd battalion of Bourdon. The 2nd battalion had originally been raised for Bourdon in 1744. Bourdon, himself, deserted to the French in 1745 and his regiment was split into three regiments: Graf Kielmannsegg (later 12A), Brunck (later 12B) and Hohorst (later 13A).
During the Seven Year War, the unit was engaged at Hastenbeck, Krefeld, Minden, Warburg and present but not active at Vellinghausen.
At Hastenbeck, July 26 1757, the regiment fought in the first line of the left wing.
On May 26 1758, the regiment was with Ferdinand's main force in the camp of Nottuln. On May 31, it accompanied Ferdinand in his offensive on the west bank of the Rhine. The regiment was left at Rees under major-general von Brunck to guard the bridge head. On June 23, the regiment took part to the battle of Krefeld where it fought along with Lintzow (No. 7B) on the left wing under the command of lieutenant-general von Spörcken.
At Minden, August 1759, the regiment was located in the center in the second line along with the Hessian Erbprinz regiment in Lt.-Gen. von Scheele’s brigade. This brigade supported the surprise advance of von Spörcken’s brigade.
At Warburg, July 1760, on the right flank along with battalions from Scheither (No. 1A), Post (No. 10A), Block (No. 8B), Monroy (No. 10B), 87th Foot (Keith's Highlanders) and the Légion Britannique. The right flank was under the command of Lt.-Gen. Hardenberg.

This is one of my ‘Bergen’ units. The figures are Dixon British from their French & Indian Wars series and are one of the first units I painted when I started up my Anglo-Hanoverian forces. However, the small stature and large head are not the most appealing to me so I switched to Front Rank for the rest of the regiments. Unit painted in 2000.

Flag: Warflag at
Text: Pengel & Hurt, German States in the Seven Years War 1740 to 1762, Imperial Press

Dragoons No. 5 – Breidenbach

1742 Wendt, 1748 Behr, 1756 Dachenhausen, 1759 Breidenbach, 1761 Veltheim

Unit History
The regiment was formed in 1671. The unit was engaged at Hastenbeck, Krefeld, Bergen, Minden and Wilhelmstal. The commander in 1761, v. Veltheim, had previously commanded the Grenadiers zu Pferde.
At Hastenbeck, the unit was part of the Cavalry right wing along with the Hammerstein Horse (2 squadrons), Grenadiers zu Pferde (1 squadron), and Prinz Wilhelm Horse (Hessian, 2 squadrons). The cavalry was not really tested in the battle. They were superbly mounted, but drilled in the old German style tactics that meant that they were steady, but slow. They would have charged at a trot and quite likely would have received an enemy charge at the halt, trusting their firearms. In addition to the force already mentioned, two squadrons of the regiment began the battle located in Hameln.
At Krefeld, June 1758, the regiment was located in the left wing along with the cavalry regiments Hammerstein (No. 2B), Grothaus (No. 3A), Ruesch Hussars (No. 5), and Luckner Hussars as part of the brigade under Lt.-Gen. Spörcken.
At Bergen, April 1759, the regiment was part of the left brigade under Prinz Isenburg. The two squadrons, along with two squadrons of the Hammerstein Horse and Prinz Wilhelm Horse, covered the flank of the attempted Hanoverian infantry advances into Bergen. Saw very little action other than the occasional skirmish.
At Minden, August 1759, four squadrons were present along the Grenadiers zu Pferde and the Garde du Corps, all under the command of the Colonel Charles Breitenbach. This command was in the first line under the command of Lord Sackville.
At Wilhelmsthal, June 1762, the regiment fought as part of the cavalry corps which included the Garde du Corps, Alt-Bremer (No. 2A) and Hodenburg (No. 3B) regiments.
A regular unit dissolved in 1803.

This is one of my ‘Bergen’ units. The flag is speculative based on the usual British flag pattern combined with the Hanoverian coat of arms. One noticeable difference between the Sturm image and my painted figures is the stock. Pengel & Hurt as well as other references state that the Dragoons used a red stock as opposed to the black stock shown in the Sturm Card. Unit painted in the fall of 2005.

Text & Flag: Pengel & Hurt, German States in the Seven Years War 1740 to 1762, Imperial Press



Unit History
The artillery of the army of the Electorate of Hanover was perhaps held in even higher esteem than the cavalry. The foundations of its reputation were principally laid by two men, the first being General Brückmann, who virtually created the artillery in the 1730's and 40's the second being Scharnhorst sixty years later. In 1735, during von Brückmann's command, experiments were carried out with a breech-loading gun which had a wedge-shaped breech-block.
At the beginning of the SYW in 1757 the actual pieces in the army were very ponderous and had an old-fashioned construction. Most were loaded with loose powder rather than cartridges with many untrained gunners. These problems were tellingly displayed when a powder barrel exploded during an artillery duel during the battle of Hastenbeck that caused chaos. As the war progressed, many of the cumbersome pieces were replaced by British or captured French guns. In addition, gunners became highly trained and experienced.
The ranks of the artillery were filled, like the rest of the army, by voluntary recruitment. The artillery had the character of a craft-guild, as there was an indentured apprenticeship which had to be signed by those wishing to learn the science of gunnery. Artillery recruits received no bounty, but instead had to pay the sum of 6 Talers for instruction in the arts of gunnery and pyrotechnics.

I used Front Rank British gunners who have a similar uniform only in blue instead of the steel grey. Unit painted in 2004.

Text: Pengel & Hurt, German States in the Seven Years War 1740 to 1762, Imperial Press

IR No. 13A - Fersen

1745 Hohorst, 1746 Halberstadt, 1748 Diepenbroick, 1758 Fersen, 1760 Ahefeldt

Unit History
The regiment was formed in 1745 from the 3rd battalion of Bourden. The 3rd battalion had originally been raised for Bourden in 1744. Bourden, himself, deserted to the French in 1745 and his regiment was split into three regiments: Graf Keilmannsegge (later 12A), Brunck (later 12B) and Hohorst (later 13A). During the Seven Years War the unit, Hohorst, fought at Krefeld, Bergen and was present but not active at Villinghausen. The regiment combined with Wrede (13B) in 1763.
At Krefeld, June 23, 1758, the regiment was located in the center, along with the regiments Scheele (No. 2B), Druchtleben (No. 3B), Ledebour (No. 4A), Kielmannsegge (No.12A) and Reden (No. 3A) all brigaded under Lt.-Gen. Oberg.
At Bergen, April 13 1759, the regiment was stationed on the left wing of the Anglo-Allied army, along with Post (No. 10A), Lintzow (No. 7B), and the Hessian regiment Kanitz, commanded by Prinz Isenburg. After repeated attempts to storm the village, Bergen, the Hanoverian and Hessian troops withdrew. Prinz Isenburg, who had been a rallying point for Hessian resistance against the French, fell leading the repeated assaults up a steep slope against the abattis situated around the village. The French units in Bergen were strengthened by a reserve formed from the regiments Piedmont (No.4), Alsace (No. 36), Rohan-Montbazon (No. 32), Royal-Roussillon (No. 37), Beauvoisis (No.41) and the Royal Deux Ponts (No. 92). These reserves blunted the repeated attacks until the Anglo-Allied army withdrew.
The regiment performed as a regular unit.

This is one of my ‘Bergen’ units that had an interesting story around the original founding of the regiment during the War of the Austrian Succession. The figures are Front Rank. The unit looks very familiar to those who use British forces as the blue facings are a common feature of the British Royal troops of the time – only the oak leaves and the flags give the unit away on the table top. Unit painted in the fall of 2005.

Flag: Warflag at
Text: Pengel & Hurt, German States in the Seven Years War 1740 to 1762, Imperial Press
S. Manley, The War of the Austrian Succession - Part IX, Potsdam Publications

IR No. 3A – Reden

1742 Bothmer, 1743 Freidermann, 1756 von der Knesebeck, 1758 von Reden

Unit History
The regiment was formed in 1665. During the Seven Years War the unit was present at Hastenbeck, Krefeld, and Minden. The regiment was garrisoned at Fallersleben, Gifhorn, Burgdorf, and Wittengen.
At Hastenbeck, July 1757, the regiment was part of the right wing under the command of General Block. The unit fought along side battalions from Scheither (No. 1A), Scheele (No. 2B), Druchtleben (No. 3B) and Stoltzenberg (No. 4A), as well as, two cavalry squadrons from the Dachenhausen Dragoons (No. 5C ) and Breidenbach Horse (No. 1A) respectively.
At Krefeld, June 1758, the regiment was located in the center, along with the regiments Scheele (No. 2B), Druchtleben (No. 3B), Ledebour (No. 4A), Kielmannsegge (No.12A) and Fersen (No. 13A) all brigaded under Lt.-Gen. Oberg.
At Minden, August 1759, the regiment was located in the first line, along with the Hardenberg (No.6A) and Scheele (No. 2B) all brigaded under Lt.-Gen. Scheele.
At Klosterkamp, October 16, 1760, the regiment along with the 87th Foot (Keith's Highlanders), the 23rd Royal Welsh Fusiliers (Huske) and the 20th Foot (Kingsley) assaulted the monastery at Kamp.

The figures are an older version of the Front Rank marching Hanoverian pose and were discovered in a cardboard box full of Front Rank SYW troops which I received as a surprise. Needless to say, my Hanoverians were more than happy to receive some additional comrades-in-arms. An unusual element in this unit is the grenadiers on the right of the formation. The grenadiers historically were usually split off into their own unit but given the limited number of troops in the unique marching pose, I have included the grenadiers directly in the unit. Unit painted in the fall of 2005.

Flag: Warflag at
Text: Pengel & Hurt, German States in the Seven Years War 1740 to 1762, Imperial Press

Horse No. 3B - Hodenburg

1742 Bülow, 1744 d'Acerre, 1745 Hardenburg, 1747 Breidenbach, 1748 Wintzer, 1756 Schlütter, 1757 Hodenburg

Unit History
The regiment was formed in 1645. It was known as the Cell'sches Reiterregiment and was the oldest regiment of the army. Had a reputation as a 'fated' unit as no fewer than three Inhabers were killed in action in the War of the Spanish Succession (Bülow, d'Acerre, and Hardenburg) . A later Inhaber, Schlütter, was killed in the opening actions of the Seven Years War. During the Seven Year War, the unit was pr esent at Hastenbeck, Krefeld, Minden, and Wilhemstal.
At Hastenbeck, two squadrons were detached from the main army and were located near Afferde along with two squadrons from the Dachenhausen Dragoons. During the battle, the squadrons were posted in a defile between Afferde and Diedersen to cover the extreme left rear of the Hanoverian position. Ordered to counter attack the French in Obensburg, the brigade was wildly successful as the French, in their confusion, fired on their Swiss allies thinking they were advancing Hanoverians. The recapture of Obensburg was short-lived as the French cavalry soon arrived and the Hanoverian cavalry withdrew covering the retreat of the rest of Cumberland's force.
At Krefeld, June 1758, the regiment was located in the center along with the cavalry regiment Alt-Bremer (No. 2A) as part of the brigade under Lt.-Gen. Oberg.
At Minden, August 1759, the unit, along with the Grothaus Horse, was in Wangenheim's corps that contested the area around Totenhausen. The unit was in the second line and acted as a reserve.
At Wilhelmsthal, June 1762, the regiment fought as part of the cavalry corps which included the Garde du Corps, Alt-Bremer (No. 2A) and Veltheim Dragoons (No. 5C) regiments.
A regular unit disbanded in 1803.

Quite difficult to distinguish this unit from its sister regiment, 3A – Grothaus, as both have red facings and red flags. The only differences are the white buttons and white lace work compared to yellow buttons and lace. Unit painted in the fall of 2005.

Text & Flag: Pengel & Hurt, German States in the Seven Years War 1740 to 1762, Imperial Press

Horse No. 3A - Grothaus

1740 Wrede, 1756 Grothaus, 1761 Jung-Bremer

Unit History
The regiment was formed in 1662. The unit was present at Krefeld, Minden, and Wilhemsthal.
At Krefeld, June 1758, the regiment was located in the left wing along with the cavalry regiments Hammerstein (No. 2B), Dachenhausen Dragoons (No. 5C), Ruesch Hussars (No. 5), and Luckner Hussars as part of the b rigade under Lt.-Gen. Spörcken.
At Minden, August 1759, a single squadron formed, along with three squadrons of the Royal Horse Guards (The Blues), three squadrons 1st King's Dragoons Guards, and four squadrons of the Breidenbach Dragoons, a portion of the first line of cavalry commanded by Lord Sackville. Lord Sackville's deliberate inactivity kept the unit out of any serious action. The remaining squadrons were placed along with the Hodenburg Horse (No. 3B), was in Wangenheim's corps that contested the area around Totenhausen. The unit was in the second line and acted as a reserve.
At Wilhelmsthal, the unit was part of the general reserve. A regular unit disbanded in 1803.

Quite difficult to distinguish this unit from its sister regiment, 3B – Hodenburg, as both have red facings and red flags. The only differences are the yellow buttons and yellow lace work compared to white buttons and lace. Unit painted in the fall of 2005.

Text & Flag: Pengel & Hurt, German States in the Seven Years War 1740 to 1762, Imperial Press

Battle of Wilhelmsthal, 24 June 1762 - History

Battle of Almanza, 25 April 1707

The Raising of the Regiment 20 June 1685
On the death of King Charles II the succession was disputed. Charles's brother James succeeded him as King James II, but Charles's illegitimate son James Scott, the Duke of Monmouth, raised an army in June 1685, to challenge the succession. King James II was an experienced soldier who had served under Marshal Turenne for four campaigns, and with the Spanish for two more. Parliament was reluctant to sanction a standing army that pledged allegiance to the monarch after the Civil War and the Commonwealth, but the Monmouth Rebellion gave James the excuse to raise his regiments.

The existing cavalry consisted of 3 Troops of Horse Guards in England and one in Scotland, with Horse Grenadiers attached to each Troop. Monmouth had actually been Colonel of the 1st Troop of Horse Guards from 1668 to 1679. There was only one Regiment of line cavalry, the Earl of Oxford's, which was designated 1st Horse in 1685 when James raised several more Regiments. Within two years Oxford's Horse, the Blues, had been promoted to join the Horse Guards. This meant that the other cavalry regiments moved up in ranking. These other regiments were raised for the current emergency but because of disbandments not all of them lasted as long as the Queen's Bays.

Of the Regiments of Horse raised in 1685 the two most senior were the Queens, 2nd Regiment of Horse (KDG) raised on 6 June 1685, and the 3rd Regiment of Horse (Queen's Bays), known at that time as the Earl of Peterborough's, raised on 20 June 1685 the date of the Earl's commission. These two regiments remained as such for almost 300 years, until 1959 when they were amalgamated with each other as one unit known as the 1st The Queen's Dragoon Guards.

The regiment was formed from four independent Troops of Horse raised by the end of June 1685:

1st Sir Michael Winkworth's Troop - Wakefield and Pontefract
2nd Sir John Talbot's Troop - Hounslow
3rd John Lloyd's Troop - Edgware
4th Lord Ailesbury's Troop - London

The last three Troops, based around London were sent to the West Country to confront Monmouth's supporters. They were commanded by Colonel Henry Morduant, Earl of Peterborough, and Lieutenant-Colonel Sir John Talbot who had held a commission in the Foot Guards in 1661.

The Monmouth Rebellion July 1685
Duke of Monmouth
Both the newly raised Regiments of Horse arrived in the West Country too late for the Battle of Sedgemoor near Bridgewater, on 6 July 1685. Peterborough's men were camped at Devizes and given the task of guarding the prisoners at Winchester and patrolling the roads to find any rebels that had got away from the battlefield. On 16 July they were brought back to London and reduced in size by 10 men per Troop of 50 men.
Ireland 1691-93
Patrick Sarsfield, 1st Earl of Lucan

Battle of the Boyne, 1 July 1690

After the Glorious Revolution of 1688 the Catholic officers that had been appointed by King James faced an uncertain future. The Earl of Peterborough was removed from the command of the regiment and replaced by the Protestant Hon Edward Villiers of Waterford. The regiment was camped at Dundalk when William arrived in Ireland in June 1690. His army of 36,000 met the Jacobite army of 20,000 on the River Boyne near Drogheda on 1 July. Villier's Horse, as the Bays were called at that time, numbered 248. Their first action was when they were sent towards Slane to find a way to cross the river. They fought against O'Neill's Dragoons at Rossnare, to force their way over a ford at that point of the river. The main attack by William was with infantry which slowly forced the Jabobites back. Then William himself led the cavalry charge but the two armies made several charges and counter-charges, with James's Irish cavalry proving themselves time and again. But William's Protestants won the day and Villier's Horse was singled out for praise by the King.

Sarsfield's Raid, 11 July 1691

Two Troops of Villier's Horse were stationed in Dublin while the other four marched to Limerick with the Queen's Horse (KDG). The Dublin Troops under the command of Lieutenant Ball were ordered to escort the siege guns and ammunition to Limerick. They stopped for the night at Ballyneety, near Pallasgreen, on 11 July and made camp. The Jacobite officer, Patrick Sarsfield had been tipped off about the guns by a sympathiser named Hogan, and took a force of cavalry to capture them. William heard about Sarsfield's pending attack and sent the Queen's Horse to intercept the Jacobites. But they were too late. After a desperate fight, Ball and his men had been killed along with Irish peasants who had brought food and supplies to the soldiers. Sarsfield's capture of the guns was a welcome victory for the Jacobites in Limerick and a severe setback for King William.

The Irish supporters of King James were expert at capturing horses from William's soldiers, but on one occasion at least, they were thwarted. Lieutenant Spicer and Cornet Collins led a successful mission to prevent a raiding party of 100 Jacobites from stealing a supply of newly arrived horses from England. The two officers had only a dozen troopers when they sighted the enemy at Cappoquin in County Waterford on 15 March. They charged into the enemy with great spirit and drove them into a wood. They were then joined by another 18 troopers who came to their assistance. They dismounted and entered the wood where they managed to kill 40 of the enemy without losing any of their own men. They also captured a Jacobite captain and 7 men.

At the siege of Athlone the troopers were dismounted and fought in the trenches. There, they lost a popular officer, Lieut-Colonel James Kirk, who was killed by a cannon ball. He had led a successful raid in April, on Macroom, co Cork, which killed 20 Jacobites and captured horses and cattle. On 30 June they were part of the attack in which they waded breast high through the Shannon to capture the town within half an hour. A thousand Jacobite Irish were killed and their General Maxfield captured. King William rewarded his general, De Ginkel, with the Earldom of Athlone.

Battle of Aughrim, 12 July 1691

The Battle of Aughrim
General St Ruth was sent out from France to command the Jacobite army of French and Irish troops. He chose to give battle against William at the castle of Aughrim. The enemy were positioned on a ridge with their left flank at Aughrim and their right at Kilcommodon. In front of his position was the River Meldham with boggy ground in between the river and the ridge. There were only two ways for William's men to cross the river, by a bridge at Tristaun on William's left, or the causeway to the castle on the right. Edward Villiers commanded the cavalry brigade on the left, with his regiment, and a concerted attack was made at Tristaun Bridge. Villiers' men fought hard to drive the enemy back and both sides brought reinforcements to that side of the battle. But William's commander, de Ginkel sent in the infantry to attack St Ruth's centre, by crossing the river and the bog.

Another infantry attack was sent in at the Aughrim flank which braved a storm of musket fire to force the defenders back, but Irish cavalry charged them and sent them back down the hill. De Ginkel's cavalry, led by the Blues came up the causeway and charged the Jacobite left wing. Another brigade of cavalry also charged against the enemy right wing and the Jacobites were now in a difficult situation. To make matters worse they lost their commander St Ruth who was decapitated by a cannon ball. They lost heart at this point and began to withdraw. A lack of ammunition prevented the Jacobites from going on with the battle. Both sides had fought with great bravery and many men had been killed. The troops inside Aughrim Castle surrendered and the others fled towards Galway. The cavalry pursued them and slaughtered many more French and Irish soldiers. Four thousand were killed altogether, and 1,000 captured.

War of the Spanish Succession
Almanza 1707
The 25th April 1707 was a black day for the regiment. On that day the allied army of British, Dutch and Portuguese fought and lost against the French-Spanish army at Almanza, in the historic region of La Mancha, south-east Spain. The battle is remembered well for the fact that the British alliance was led by a Frenchman and the French alliance was led by an Englishman. The English, Dutch and Portuguese were commanded by Henri de Massue, Earl of Galway, son of the Huguenot Marquis de Ruvigny, from Paris. He had fought under Turenne but distinguished himself at Aughrim fighting for William and been rewarded with the title Earl of Galway. The French commander was the Duke of Berwick aka James the illigitimate son of James II who had been living in exile in France, until his death in 1701.

Galway was heavily outnumbered, 15,000 to 25,000, and had the disadvantage of a high proportion of Portuguese troops who, for the most part, ran away. Some of the Portuguese fought bravely but the sheer weight of numbers prevailed. The 3rd Horse who at this time were called Harvey's Horse, were led by Lt-Col Edward Roper. He led a frantic charge against some infantry that had come too far forward. The enemy begged for quarter as they were beyond help, but Harvey's Horse became dispersed and were in turn attacked by French cavalry. Col Roper was killed along with other officers and a large number of the men. Many more were wounded or taken prisoner. The remainder of the regiment still had some fight left in them and went to the aid of John Hill's Regiment (11th Devons). The rest of the army were forced to surrender or managed to retreat. Galway extricated 1,000 cavalry and 1,500 infantry together with six British guns and took them 20 miles away to Alcira. The battle had lasted 2 hours and the army had lost 4,000 killed or wounded, and 3,000 taken prisoner.

In 1709 there was a siege at Balaguer which was soon captured and the army under Lt-General James Stanhope moved on to capture Ager. The following year the 3rd Horse fought well at Belcayre and defeated several French and Bourbon Spanish squadrons under the command of King Philip V. On 27 July the enemy were positioned on a plateau overlooking Almenar, just inside Catalonia, north-east Spain. King Philip had a line of 22 squadrons with their right flank guarded by infantry. A second line of 20 squadrons was behind them, together with nine battalions of infantry. The British, Austrian and Dutch army under Guido Starhemberg and James Stanhope had only 22 squadrons but more infantry. The 3rd Horse were on the right, led by Stanhope himself. In the evening they advanced to charge the enemy, while the Bourbons also moved forward. The two opposing masses of cavalry clashed together in a fierce battle. Stanhope engaged in personal combat with General Amenzega and killed him. The 3rd Horse were mostly pitted against the Spanish Royal Life Guards. They defeated them and charged on to the second line of cavalry. The enemy, now in disarray, broke ranks and fled. The Spanish Life Guards lost their standard and kettledrums. The British cavalry would have pursued the fleeing enemy but it was now dark and the mountainous terrain made it too difficult. The French/Spanish casualty figures for this cavalry battle ran into thousands while the British lost 73 men killed and 113 wounded, including the 3rd Horse commanding officer Lt-Col John Bland.

King Philip's army took up a strong position in front of Saragossa after crossing the River Ebro. The British and their allies attacked them at noon and a melee ensued for two hours while the 3rd Horse stood by, in reserve. The Wolloon regiments, fighting for Spain were on the point of withdrawing so the 3rd Horse were finally let loose and shattered them. They rallied and repeated the charge several times so that the Spanish, although numerically much stronger, gave way and retreated. More than 5,000 prisoners were taken and 4,000 killed, according to one account. Many guns and stores were captured, and the 3rd Horse pursued the fleeing enemy to kill even more.

The Siege of Brihuega, 8-9 Dec 1710

General James Stanhope
The French and Spanish were put under the command of the duc de Vendome who brought with him a large number of reinforcements. Meanwhile, the British and their Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch and German allies entered Madrid on 1 Sep 1710. But when the Portuguese learned of the strengthened enemy forces they withdrew into their country leaving the depleted allies to their fate. To keep their troops supplied they moved out along the river Tarjuna towards Catalonia. Stanhope's cavalry consisted of the 3rd Horse and 3 other regiments. The infantry consisted of a battalion of Foot Guards and the remnants of 7 other regiments. Guido Starhemberg, who commanded the whole army, ordered the British to make a stand inside Brihuega. The journey there was fraught with difficulty because the local Spanish peasants had been badly treated by the Portuguese, and they took every opportunity to attack stragglers and steal whatever they could. It was now winter and the cold weather caused them further suffering.

The town of Brihuega was quite large and had narrow streets, overlooked by surrounding hills on which the enemy placed artillery. The French and Spanish had 20,000 laying siege to Stanhope's much smaller British force. He refused to surrender, in the hope that Starhemberg would come to his relief. The enemy made two breaches in the walls and dug a mine to create another breach. The defenders managed to repulse an attack through one of these, with the 3rd Horse fighting on foot like the rest of the cavalry, and firing on the attackers when they came in a second time. However the weight of numbers forced them to retreat back into the town. They burned houses and threw rocks at the enemy to save ammunition. After four hours of fierce fighting Stanhope ordered the men to surrender, having lost 600 killed or wounded. This was at 7 o'clock. Starhemberg arrived the next morning to find that 2,228 British soldiers had been taken prisoner. A further battle took place on 10 Dec at Villaviciosa between Vendome's and Starhemgerg's armies. The men of the 3rd Horse were in captivity at this time and remained prisoners for a year until they were exchanged in October 1711.

The 1715 Jacobite Rebellion

Map of Preston 1715
The 3rd Horse re-established themselves after their release from captivity in Spain. By 1712 they were in Ireland but when the Jacobite Rebellion broke out in 1715 they were recalled to England. The Jacobites originated from different parts of Scotland and England. A group of 2,300, under General Fraser, came from Scotland through the Lothians and found little opposition in Penrith and Kendal. They met up with 1,200 Lancashire Jacobites and marched down the Ribble Valley to Preston. There they fortified themselves with barricades and prepared to meet the King's men who were approaching from Cheshire under the command of Major-General Charles Wills. His force of 2,000 included one experienced cavalry regiment, the 3rd (Pitt's) Horse , and 5 newly raised dragoon regiments (9th 11th 13th and 14th). The infantry was mostly the 26th Foot (Cameronians).

They surrounded the town on 12 Nov and while the 3rd Horse remained mounted on the Manchester Road, the dismounted dragoons and the 26th attacked from either side. Although they captured the barricades they were unable to progress because the rebels were well hidden, firing through loopholes in the walls of the houses. Most of the army's casualties were sustained at this stage of the battle. However, Wills was reinforced by General Carpenter and 1,000 more men on the 13th, and changed his tactics. He set fire to the houses and had his men fire on them as they advanced. Many rebels were burned to death and some escaped but were cut down by the 3rd Horse who were guarding the roads out of the town, especially the crossings over the Ribble. The Jacobites surrendered on the 14th Nov so that 1,468 prisoners were taken. Out of these 463 were English. There were many people of distinction, like the Earls of Derwentwater and Winton. The casualty figures for the army were 3 officers and 53 men killed and 13 officers and 81 men wounded. The 3rd Horse came off lightly with one trooper and 2 horses wounded. They were thanked by George I and granted the title The Princess of Wales's Own Regiment of Horse. The 1745 Jacobite Rebellion

The Skirmish at Clifton Moor, 19 Dec 1745

The regiment spent the next 30 years in different parts of the Midlands and the south of England. When King George I died in 1727 Caroline the Princess of Wales became Queen Caroline. This meant a change of title and they were now The Queen's Own Royal Regiment of Horse. In 1745, while much of the army was campaigning on the continent, the Queen's Own were ordered to the north of England to help counter the threat of another Jacobite rebellion. Field Marshal Wade commanded the English army sent to crush the rebellion caused by the landing of the Young Pretender in Scotland. New regiments were raised, even the Duke of Montagu, not content with being the Colonel of the Queen's Own Horse, raised another unit called Montagu's Carbineers, as well as a battalion of Foot called the Ordnance Regiment. The Queen's Own travelled via Derby to Doncaster, from where they were sent the other side of the Pennines on 10 Dec. The Jacobites had entered England via the north west, reaching as far as Derby and then retreating north again. The Queen's Own, along with other cavalry under General Oglethorpe, made a three day forced march of 100 miles through snow, sleet and mud, to arrive at Preston on 13 Dec. They had captured a number of rebels on the way and linked up with the Duke of Cumberland's cavalry. The Jacobites gave up the idea of giving battle at Lancaster when they heard of Oglethorpe's arrival at Preston, so they continued north. The Jacobite rearguard was engaged on 19 Dec near Penrith at Clifton Moor and caused the fugitives to be 'roughly handled'. The main fight at Clifton Moor was fought on foot in the dark and the Highlanders with their claymores had some success. But the Jacobite Highlanders continued their retreat, leaving a garrison at Carlisle Castle. The regiment joined the siege but Carlisle soon surrendered, and they went back to York where they stayed for the next year. They were not part of Cumberland's army that fought and defeated the Jacobites at Culloden in April 1946.

As an economy measure the Government decided to convert three regiments of Horse into Dragoons. This was announced on 14 Dec 1746 to take effect from 25 Dec. The Blues were taken out of the regiments of the line, although not formally made part of the Household Cavalry until 1820. This left seven regiments of Horse, three on the English establishment and four on the Irish establishment. The three English regiments of Horse were the King's Own Regiment, the Queen's Own Regiment and Wade's Horse (soon to be the Prince of Wales's). These had been the 2nd 3rd and 4th Horse. The 5th 6th 7th and 8th Regiments of Horse now became the 1st 2nd 3rd and 4th (Irish) Horse. On 9 Jan 1747 the concession was made, in a Warrant for His Majesty, that the new Dragoon regiments shall be called Dragoon Guards. 'Nevertheless, Our further will and pleasure is, that the said three regiments of DRAGOON GUARDS shall roll and do duty in Our army, or upon detachments with Our other forces, as Dragoons, in the same manner as if the word GUARDS was not inserted in their respective titles.' This last sentence was a blow to regimental pride, and made them determined not to submit to dismounted roles in battle. The Seven Years War (1756-63)

The Queen's Dragoon Guards had spent the four years between 1754 and 58 in Scotland. After a spell in Yorkshire they marched south to prepare for foreign service. They left England and landed at Bremen on 17 May 1760, marching to join the army of Ferdinand Duke of Brunswick at Friztlar. Here they were brigaded with the other two regiments of Dragoon Guards (KGD and 3DG), numbering 300, under Brigadier-General Webb. The Dragoon Guards provided advance guards and pickets and were involved in many skirmishes as the armies manoeuvred, with the allies on the defensive. On 10 July Webb's Brigade were ordered, with other British and German units under the the Duke's nephew, Erbprinz (Hereditary Prince) Ferdinand, to occupy a defile through which half the French, under St Germain, were expected to pass. But they were too late and found 10,000 of the French drawn up on the heights of Corbach. Prince Ferdinand ordered an immediate attack but this was repulsed as the French were being reinforced by the duc de Brolie's army. They had to retreat with the enemy on their heels. As the situation became desperate the Erbprinz put himself at the head of the King's Dragoon Guards and led the brigade in a brilliant charge against their pursuers. The honours went mostly to the KDG who lost 47 men killed, and the 3rd DG, while the 2ndDG were in support. These regiments continued to cover the retreat, but their charge had allowed the army to withdraw in relative safety.

The defeat at Corbach was a setback but the French had in turn, been defeated at Emsdorf on 16 July, mostly by the 15th Light Dragoons. So morale had improved when the British/German force met the French at Warburg on 31 July 1760. A wing of the French army, 20,000 men, was sent to cut off the allies from reaching Westphalia. Their commander Chevalier de May placed his army near Warburg, in a strong position along a ridge running north of the river Diemel. One part of the allied army under the Erbprinz was to attack the French left wing at Ochsendorf while the main army, under the Duke of Brunswick, with most of the British cavalry were to cross the river at Liebenau to launch a simultaneous attack on the enemy front. The attack on the French left wing was well under way but Brunswick's infantry had trouble making progress through marshy ground and in hot weather, so the Marquess of Granby forged ahead with the heavy cavalry and horse artillery. They had 5 miles to cover, but they were spurred on by the thought of redeeming the disgrace wrought upon them by Lord Sackville's obstinacy at Minden. Granby especially was eager to show Sackville how cavalry should be led and charged ahead 'bald-headed' when his hat blew off. The two brigades in the front line were, from right to left the 1st KDG, 3rd DG, 2nd QDG, then in the next brigade, the Blues, the 4th Horse (7th DG) and 3rd Horse (6th DG). The second line had the Greys, 10th Dragoons, 6th Inniskilling Dragoons, and 11th Dragoons. The Blues and the KDG had 3 squadrons each while all the other regiments had two.

Cavalry Charge at Warburg
The two lines of heavies were galloping hard while the Horse Artillery kept close behind, despite the rough ground. They were heading for the French cavalry on the right of the enemy line. As they came nearer most of the enemy turned and fled, leaving 6 squadrons of Bourbon Cavalry led by the Marquis de Lugeac to face them. On seeing the cavalry leaving a gaping hole in the French line, Granby altered course and led them to the right, into the exposed flank of the French infantry. The infantry was caught unawares and started to break up. But the cavalry didn't have an easy ride because the Bourbon Brigade charged at the KDGs who were on the left of the line, and killed 7 men and 17 horses. The Queen's Dragoon Guards lost more men killed 3 NCOs and 9 men, with 8 missing. Three officers, one NCO and 10 were wounded. The casualties would have been higher but 2 squadrons of the Blues were sent to their aid and the Bourbons were forced back. After 4 hours the French army was in full retreat and had to cross the river the best way they could. The British Horse Artillery unlimbered and set up their guns at the edge of the river to play havoc with the retreating army so that they were unable to re-group. And just to make sure, the KDG and QDG were sent on to pursue the enemy for four miles to Wilda. In letters written later, The Marquess of Granby said: '. nothing could exceed their gallant behaviour on this occasion. Finer troops I believe never were, and at the head of them I should be happy to receive a visit from the enemy.'

Capelnhagen and Furwohle, Nov 1761

In 1761 the Queen's DG, with their brigade were on operations near the river Lippe and had little to do at the battle of Vellinghausen on 15 July and the continuation the following day. On 5 Nov the Queen's DG forced out a French regiment from its position at Capelnhagen, and then marched to Eimbeck near Hanover, where with the KDG they were involved in a skirmish with the French. On the night of 7 Nov the brigade march through heavy snow to Furwohle in Hanover. On arrival the tired troopers were erecting their tents when the trumpets sounded 'To horse!' They quickly saddled up and charged at the advancing French, driving them off and inflicting considerable losses. On 9 Nov the QDG and KDG took up positions on the heights between Lithorst and Mackensen. Detached parties continued with sporadic skirmishing at a heavy cost in sickness to the men. They and their horses had been suffering from fatigue and poor rations in severe weather. They finally moved into winter quarters in early December in East Friesland.

Wilhelmsthal, 24 June 1762

The battle of Wilhelmsthal was a complete victory for the allies and paved the way for a conclusion to the Seven Years War. Both armies had remained in their winter quarters until there was enough forage for the horses in June. The French were camped near Wilhelmsthal and Ferdinand decided to attack them there on 24 June. The Dragoon Guards were part of the centre column which crossed the Diemel river at Liebenau once more, at 4am. After a march of 9 miles they and two further allied columns converged on the French camp from different directions. It seems incredible that there were no outlying picquets to warn the camp of the impending allied advance, but they were caught by surprise and retreated towards their headquarters in Wilhelmsthal. Some regiments under Stainville covered the retreat and were surrounded by the cavalry, including the British Dragoon Guards. Many Frenchmen were killed and some regiments surrendered wholesale. Three thousand prisoners were taken but 1,500 were killed. The QDG were part of the pursuit that killed and captured many more. They later marched to Hoff and forded the river Eder. Another encounter took place at Homberg on 24 July where they drove a strong French force from the heights. They were on further operations around Melsungen, and finally Cassel was taken in November, thus bringing about peace negotiations in Paris. The Queen's Bays 1767 The regiment spent the next 30 years on duties in various stations all over England and Scotland. It is not known for how many years they had been riding bay horses. David Morier's paintings of the British cavalry in 1751 show the regiments mostly using dark or black horses. The most noticable exceptions are the 2nd Dragoons (Scots Greys) and the 2nd Queen's Dragoon Guards, the latter having a lighter brown horse with black mane and tail. They may well have been referred to as the Bays at around the mid 18th century. There was an order in 1764 that ended the use of horses with docked tails. Long-tailed horses were stipulated, although no mention was made of the colour of the horses. In the 19th century it was customary for some regiments to mount the various squadrons on a certain colour horse for uniformity, so that A Squadron would be on blacks and B Squadron would be on bays etc. But the black horse was in high demand for the 18th century regiments making it easier for the Queen's Dragoon Guards to acquire bays. According to various histories of the regiment the name The Queen's Bays came into use in 1767 although not officially sanctioned until 1872. Aid to the Civil Power 1768-9 The Queen's Bays were ordered to Scotland in Feb 1768 having spent the last three years in the south of England. They halted in Yorkshire for a month and several Troops were detached for duty in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. The seamen were demanding higher wages and in various ports they conducted a reign of terror, blackmailing citizens to contribute to their cause. They roamed the streets in gangs and committed many 'outrages'. The men of the Bays were able to police the area and bring the sailors to order. When things had quietened down they proceeded to Scotland. However they were in action again the following year, this time in Manchester, Blackburn and Warrington where there was trouble in the coalfields. Their police work, in conjunction with other units was not completed for several months. French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars 1793-1809

Attack on the French Camp, 30 May 1793

In 1793 King Louis XVI of France was guillotined in Paris and the French Revolutionaries declared war on all the monarchies of Europe. They invaded the Austrian Netherlands and war was declared against Britain. In May the QDG went to Blackwell where they embarked for Ostend. After attending at the siege of Valenciennes one squadron of the Bays under the command of Le Marchant accompanied a Prussian and Austrian column to attack the French at Cassel. The night before they set off Le Marchant visited his squadron and found the men lying face down. When asked the reason he was told that they had all dressed their queues with the usual paste of flour and fat, and they wanted to avoid having to do it again the next morning.

The attack took place on 30 May and the French were taken by surprise in their camp and fled. However as they retreated they came to a field of corn where they decided to make a stand. The Bays and the Austrian cavalry charged and broke them so that they took flight once more. Sixty Frenchmen were dead and they pursued the rest. Le Marchant wrote about the brutality of their allies to his wife. He was appalled at the way the Austrians showed no mercy to men begging on their knees, and saw one group of Frenchmen that had been captured by the Bays slaughtered by the Austrians while the British troopers were busy elsewhere.

After the fall of Valenciennes two squadrons of the Bays were placed in the division commanded by the Hanoverian General Freytag. Eight other British squadrons were supplied by the 3rd DG, the Inniskillings and the Royals. They were at Hondschoote when the French attacked on 6 Sep. They were driven back by the enemy and one trooper of the Bays was killed. They fought dismounted because of the marshy nature of the ground near the river Yser. The siege of Dunkirk was lifted on 8 Sep and they retreated to Furnes.

The Duke of York, who was in command of the British army in Flanders at this time, moved 9,000 men towards Tournai to reinforce the allies watching Lille. There was an action on 24 Oct involving a squadron of the Bays under the command of Captain James Hay who was later wounded at Waterloo and became the CO in 1830. A force of 150 French troops and 6 officers was retreating from Sainghin-en-Melantois to Lezennes. Major Crauford, who was ADC to the Duke of York, took charge of the 56-strong squadron and led them towards the enemy and charged. Capt Hay had his horse shot from under him and he continued on his farrier's grey horse. The squadron lost 3 men killed in the charge. The French lost 46 men killed, the rest were captured with the help of another Bays squadron, 2 squadrons of the Royals and some Austrian light dragoons. Former Bays officer Charles Crauford, although on the Duke's staff, managed to spend time with his regiment and gave them excellent training which brought them great respect in Ghent and Tournai where they were in barracks.

The Queen's Bays were brigaded with the Scots Greys and the Inniskillings under General Laurie. They were reviewed near Cateau by the Emperor of Austria on 16 April and soon after were part of the Duke of York's column that attacked the French advanced post at Vaux. The Star redoubt guarded by the French Republican Horse was assaulted by their brigade and captured with no casualties apart from Captain Hay's horse which was again shot from under him. Two British soldiers were hanged on the spot for looting but probably not men from the Bays.

French Victory at Fleurus
The Bays and their brigade were not involved in the battle of Beaumont on 26 April, but they were sent to operate towards St Armand and saw the surrender of Landrecies on 30 April. They then headed towards Tournai and built a defensive site between Hertain and Lamain. The French, under Pichegru successfully attacked the British position in very heavy rain, but a gap in their line was exposed and exploited by 16 squadrons, including the Bays. The French formed squares and beat them off. However, the French were now in retreat and headed northwest to Willems. Here the cavalry caught up with them and routed their cavalry. The infantry squares proved more difficult until an officer of the Greys galloped headlong into one square creating a gap for his men. The other French infantry became demoralised when they saw this, and were more easily defeated. The cavalry were able to hack their way through the panicking enemy causing more than a thousand casualties. Many surrendered and over 400 prisoners were taken. The Bays lost two men killed and two missing. Three horses were killed, two wounded and to missing. The battle honour WILLEMS was granted, but not until January 1910.

A further failed attack on the British camp was made on 22 May but the Bays were in reserve. By June 1794 the allies were in retreat. Belgium was abandoned, and then Holland, so that the British headed back to Germany. They crossed the Meuse at Grave and the Rhine was crossed on 13 Nov 1794. The retreat was a terrible ordeal for the army, although the cavalry suffered less than the infantry. The regiment went into winter quarters near the river Ems, from Rhein to Emden. There are no figures for the loss of life due to sickness and starvation for the Queen's Bays, but the KDG lost 59 men who died of sickness and 3 died of wounds. The horses also suffered, 247 died of sickness in the KDG alone. The regiments were shipped back to England from Bremen in March 1795. The Bays then made their way to Ipswich.

The British sent a disastrous expedition, under the command of the Earl of Chatham, to destroy the French-held port of Antwerp in 1809. The Queen's Bays provided 6 Troops which embarked at Ramsgate on 23 July 1809 as part of a force of 40,000 sailing on an armada of ships to the mouth of the Scheldt. They landed on the island of Walcheren to capture the fort of Flushing. The siege lasted until 16 Aug, giving time for the French to send strong reinforcements. There was little that the cavalry could do and the army was suffering from sickness. The terrible sanitation and bad water caused malaria which killed ten per cent of the force and weakened the survivors. By 6 Sep the regiment was back in Ramsgate. France 1815-17 The Queen's Bays missed out on the Battle of Waterloo which took place on 18 June 1815, being stationed in Scotland. But they were brought up to strength in anticipation of a lengthy resumption of the Napoleonic Wars. Six Troops were sent to reinforce the army that had been depleted in the conflict. Three divisions were sent over, landing at Ostend in early August. In Paris they were quartered with the King's Dragoon Guards who had fought in the battle. Both regiments remained in France when most of the army returned home in the autumn. They were at St Omer in the following year and in Oct 1816 were reviewed in front of the Duke of Wellington. A mock battle was performed for the Duke on 22 Oct. During 1817 the regiment was in the area of Calais, then Cambrai. During their time in France they were brigaded with the 3rd Dragoons, their overall commander being Major-General Lord Edward Somerset, son of the Duke of Beaufort and elder brother of the future Lord Raglan. He had commanded the Household Cavalry Brigade at Waterloo. The Bays were finally sent home in November 1818. Chartist Disturbances 1842 The Regiment spent much of 1842 keeping the peace against the Chartists in Cheshire and Staffordshire. In the Potteries the rioting was particularly severe, and the Queen's Bays were constantly called upon, together with the Staffordshire and Cheshire Yeomanry, to charge with drawn swords. The disturbances continued from July until the middle of September and entailed much patrolling, especially at night, and the provision of mounted escorts for prisoners during the day. In June 1843 they were sent to Ireland for 5 years. This was to be the fourth of five long tours in Ireland between 1818 and 1857. The Indian Mutiny 1857-59

The Bays were in Dublin when the Mutiny broke out in India. They were ordered to Liverpool, then on to Canterbury where one Troop was left behind. They embarked 9 Troops under the command of Lt-Col Hylton Brisco, with a strength of 28 officers 47 sergeants and 635 other ranks. They sailed on 25 July on two transports, the Blenheim and the Monarch. The voyage was a long and arduous one for the officers and men on the overcrowded transports. The only land they sighted before reaching India, was Madeira, where they lay becalmed for 28 days. This increased their journey to 141 days. During that time they were daily rationed to 1 lb of very hard biscuit, 12 oz of salt meat, a small quantity of tea and sugar, and 5 pints of water. Washing had to be done in sea water. After 3 months at sea they were told that they were only half way there and rations had to be halved. One of the Bays described the lack of appetising food: 'On Sundays, boulle soup was given for a change, but it wasn't generally approved of, as one mess found a dead mouse in theirs, and another mess found a man's finger with a rag wrapped round it.' They reached Calcutta to find that the KDG had arrived a fortnight before, having set off a month later than them. All of them suffered sickness for 4 or 5 days after disembarkation.

The regiment had a difficult overland journey to Allahabad with new horses that had been purchased locally. The men suffered from cholera, and the sick men had to be carried. On 23 Jan two squadrons of the Bays, and a Troop of Horse Artillery were sent out and met up with the 97th regiment and some companies of Gurkhas. They encountered a body of mutineers at Nusrutpore in jungle country. One squadron under Captain Powell made a brilliant charge, and the fighting caused the enemy to lose 1,800 men and some of their guns. Five men of the Bays were wounded, along with 7 horses killed or wounded. These casualties were light considering the heavy fire they came under from the rebels.

Charge at Lucknow
After the recapture of Delhi the focus of the conflict was on Lucknow, 150 miles northeast of Allahabad. Sir Colin Campbell had already rescued the beleaguered garrison there but had not prevented the rebels from capturing the city and holding it with 130,000 men. Campbell now had a force of 20,000 to march on Lucknow. The rebels made several sorties out of the town to engage with them. On 6 March two squadrons of the Bays made a charge under the command of Major Percy Smith. This got out of control over broken ground and three men were killed, including Major Smith. They were unable to retrieve his body. One corporal was unhorsed and unable to remount, so was cut to pieces. Six other men were wounded and many of the horses suffered terrible wounds from the mutineers' swords and bayonets. Lucknow was recaptured by 16 Mar 1858, but 20,000 rebels escaped. The cavalry units were already scattered around the countryside chasing small parties of rebels so were not in position to block the mass exodus on 16 Mar.

In a battle at Nawabganj, east of Lucknow, 2 squadrons under Major Seymour were part of the cavalry element of Hope Grant's 3,500-strong column that attacked a force of 15,000 mutineers entrenched at a river crossing. They made a 12 mile night march to surprise the rebels. There was a three hour battle during which the British were surrounded but they turned the tables and drove the enemy off, having killed 600 and captured 9 guns. The British lost 67 killed or wounded in action, but 33 died of sunstroke and 250 ended up in hospital. All members of the regiment had suffered from fever or sunstroke, both proving fatal in many cases. The CO, William Campbell died on 6 July 1858, after being promoted to brigadier. The second lieutenant-colonel, Hylton Brisco had suffered with fever and retired in September. Because of the fatalities and sickness, officers were gaining promotion without purchase. Captain William Henry Seymour, whose letters home provide valuable information on the Bays in India, attained his majority and lieutenant-colonelcy so that within 8 months he had gone from captain to CO of the regiment.

Chasing Rebels
The regiment were transferred to another column led by Brigadier Sir George Barker in Oct 1858. On 8 Oct they were in action against 30 or 40 mutineers from the 42nd Bengal Native Infantry, concealed in a jungle of sugar cane at Jamo near Sundeela in Oudh. They opened fire on the Bays from a distance of a few yards. Lt-Col Seymour fought desperately with pistol and sword, but was cut down. Trumpeter Thomas Monaghan and Private Charles Anderson rushed to his rescue and fought them off so that Col Seymour was able to get up and carry on fighting. Monaghan and Anderson were awarded the VC for this action. While this was happening, boy Trumpeter John Smith engaged a sepoy in single combat and killed him.

Colonel Seymour was in action again in the spring of 1859. There were two actions near Bungdon in Oudh, which were among the last battles fought by the Bays after their 20 consecutive months in the field. In another action mutineers had taken refuge in the mountains of Nepal and the Nepalise King asked the British to hunt them down. Two squadrons of the Bays under Major Hutchinson chased the rebels to the Jowah Pass where they charged and defeated them. They had one casualty, Cornet Torrens who was wounded. Following this they went into cantonments near Lucknow. The Queen's Bays remained in India until 1869, eleven years in all. Regimental Strength 1860-72 From 1862 the regiment was stationed at Benares, from Jan 1865 they were in Muttra, and from November 1868 they were at Mhow. One of their peacetime duties in 1865 was to escort the new governor of India, now called Viceroy, Sir John Lawrence. They attended him at the first durbar at Agra. Their strength was reduced so that they numbered 21 sergeants and 378 rank and file. But during this period the following appointments were added to the strength:

NCOs in India 1865
Paymaster Sergeant
Armourer Sergeant
Bandmaster Sergeant
Saddler Sergeant
Farrier Major
Hospital Sergeant
Sergeant-instructor of Fencing
Sergeant Cook
Trumpet Major
Orderly Room Clerk

When the order came to send the Queen's Bays home to England in 1869 nearly one hundred men elected to stay in India. They were split up and posted to seven different British cavalry regiments that were there already. The remainder gave up their horses and embarked on the 'Malabar' on 31 Dec 1869. They landed at Suez, travelled by train from Cairo to Alexandra and arrived at Portsmouth on 31 Jan 1870.

From 1870 the regiment were stationed in Colchester where their new depot was established. Their strength was now 483 all ranks additional to the above list were:

1 Colonel
1 Lieutenant-Colonel
1 Major
7 Captains
7 Lieutenants
3 Cornets
1 Paymaster
1 Adjutant
1 Riding Master
1 Quartermaster
1 Veterinary Officer
1 Regimental Sergeant Major
1 Bandmaster
1 Regimental Quartermaster Sergeant
7 Troop Sergeant Majors
7 Trumpeters
21 Sergeants
21 Corporals
9 Showing Smiths
2 Saddlers
1 Saddle-tree Maker
374 Troopers

They has 300 horses which had to be taken from other cavalry regiments on their return from India. The Queen's Regulations stated that horses were not to be allotted to Troops according to colour, but the Queen's Bays always ignored this. They managed to find only bay horses from the other cavalry regiments, except for the trumpeters who had greys, and drum-horse which varied. This side-stepping of the regulations also applied to the household cavalry who had black horses, but the distinction of the 2nd Dragoon Guards was that they were officially recognised and re-titled The Queen's Bays in 1872. Ireland 1875-80 From 1871 the Queen's Bays were stationed in Aldershot, in the East Cavalry Barracks, and in 1875 were shipped over to Ireland. During 1879 and 1880 there were widespread civil disturbances throughout Ireland over the issue of land, made worse by the failure of crops in Western Ireland. In 1880 the Bays were employed in aid of the police and civil magistrates. There were 7,000 troops and police under arms in County Mayo alone. At the end of 1880 the regiment was moved back to Lancashire where they were stationed in Manchester and Liverpool until 1884. The Heavy Camel Corps 1884-5 The plan to rescue General Gordon from the Mahdi's dervishes in Khartoum involved a boat trip up the Nile and the deployment of camel mounted troops to cross the Bayuda desert. There were 3 regiments, the Heavy Camel Regiment, the Guards Camel Regiment, and the Mounted Infantry Camel Regiment. The Heavy Camel Regiment was made up of the following:

Camel Corps
No.1 Coy. The Blues and the Queen's Bays
No.2 Coy. 1st and 2nd Life Guards
No.3 Coy. 4th and 5th Dragoon Guards
No.4 Coy. Royal Dragoons and Scots Greys
No.5 Coy. 5th and 16th Lancers

When the first troops went to Egypt in 1882 there had been calls for drafts posted to regiments that fought at Te-el-Kebir and Kasassin. Twenty-eight men had been sent to the 4th DG so some of them may have been part of the Heavy Camel Regiment as well as the 43 men and two officers who were in no.1 Company. The two officers were Captain Gould and Lieutenant Hibbert. The Camel Corps sailed from Portsmouth on 26 Sep 1884. The Duke of Cambridge wrote, 'It is most distasteful to Regiments and officers and men, especially the commanding officers are disgusted at seeing their best men taken from them, and themselves being disbarred from sharing in the honours and glories..'

The men were unfamiliar with camel riding so the journey over the desert was hard enough. But the added complication was the formation that had to be maintained. They were ordered to travel as a square with the artillery in the middle of the front face and the Heavies forming the rear face. The men were also armed with unfamiliar Martini Henry rifles which tended to jam, and bayonets and swords which very often bent and broke in action. The rear face often lagged behind because they were held up by the baggage and wounded who were carried in the middle of the square. On 17th Jan, news of the enemy near Abu Klea caused the Camel Corps commander, Sir Herbert Stewart, to leave most of the camels and the wounded in a defensive zariba, under guard, and for the men to be dismounted and proceed in the square formation towards the wells. As they neared the wells of Abu Klea they were attacked by a large force of dervishes. The skirmishers had to race back to the square and the Royal Dragoons and Greys were led out by Colonel Burnaby of the Blues to give them covering fire.

The Square at Abu Klea
This made a gap in the lower left corner which was exploited by thousands of dervishes who rushed towards the breach. The Naval Brigade manhandled a five-barrelled Garner gun outside the corner to deter the oncoming force but the gun jammed and most of the sailors were killed. Burnaby's Dragoons were unable to get back to their places in time and the Arabs rushed into the square. The Queen's Bays were amongst those most involved in the melee. Desperate hand-to-hand fighting took place in a mass of men so packed together that some were lifted off their feet. There were many baggage camels in the middle of the square which prevented the scrimmage from spilling too far. The rear ranks of the other sides of the square turned about and poured a heavy fire into the enemy, thus causing them to falter and retreat. There was another charge made by Arab cavalry but the Bays and the Household Cavalry fired at them and drove them off. The whole action lasted 10 minutes. Over all the British losses were 9 officers and 66 men killed, 9 officers and 72 men wounded. The dervishes left 1,100 dead behind them. Colonel Burnaby of the Blues had been speared in the throat and his wounded and dying body cared for by a crying young Bays private.

Mahdist Warriors 1885
There was much to do in the way of dealing with the dead and wounded before they marched on to the wells. They stayed the night there and moved on in the morning. On 19 Jan they came in sight of Metemmeh and the Nile but the enemy lined a ridge by the village of Abu Kru. Lt Hibbert described the action that day: 'Our Squadron Leader was wounded at the commencement and my Captain was in the laager disabled by gout, so I was the senior officer in the squadron. At last the enemy charged the left and front faces of the square, but not one of them got within 150 yards. We then marched down to the river and drank it nearly dry out of our helmets. Under arms all night in the bitter cold and nothing to eat. Next morning half the force went to bring up the camels, and the rest of us fortified the village.' The Boer War 1899-1902

The Queen's Bays arrived late for the Boer War and so their service in South Africa was short, but it was bloody, resulting in the death of almost 100 of them. They arrived at Capetown on 6 December 1901 with an effective strength of 24 officers and 513 men under the command of Colonel Dewar who very soon had to be invalided home. The regiment was then commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Hew Dalrymple Fanshawe. The men were issued with rifles and bayonets instead of the carbines they had been used to, and handed in their swords, so it wasn't until January 1902 that they began their campaigning. They were tasked with chasing General Christiaan de Wet, and joined a column together with the 7th Hussars, under the command of Colonel the Hon Richard Lawley (later Lord Wenlock) of the 7th Hussars. They were involved in several skirmishes which resulted in the capture of hundreds of prisoners, thousands of cattle and quantities of stores. On 28 Feb 1902 Private Roberts distinguished himself when he rescued Lieutenant G H A Ing who had been wounded and thrown from his horse.

Battle of Leeuwkop, 1 April 1902

At the end of March 1902 the column was operating against Piet Viljoen's commando which, it was thought, had joined up with the Heidelburg commando under General H A Albrechts. Major Vaughan of the 7th Hussars, the intelligence officer, had gained the information needed to make an attack. On the night of 31 Mar/1 April the Bays, numbering 284 men marched to Enkeldebosch, while the 7th Hussars went to attack Steenkoolspruit. Col Fanshawe ordered a surprise attack, led by Major Vaughan, on the Boers in a laager at Holspruit which was successful, but another laager proved to be more heavily defended. The Bays retreated up a slope some 400 yards away but this was an unsatisfactory position. C Squadron was sent off to establish a better defence on a kopje a mile away with the others joining them as the opportunity arose. However the new position was little better, and to add to the difficulties of working in the dark it was also raining. Their thin line of defence came under attack from mounted Boers firing from the saddle.

Crossing a Drift
At dawn the position was almost surrounded and Fanshawe ordered them to withdraw to a new position at Leeuwkop (Lion's Head), three miles away. B Squadron moved to a ridge where they could cover the withdrawal. A Squadron moved first while C Squadron under Lieut Allfrey acted as rearguard. The Boers were outflanking them and a small party of 5 men were firing from a range of 50 yards after their squadron had left. The Boers called on them to surrender but they carried on until only Corporal F Webb was left. He became badly wounded and the position was overrun. He was captured but later freed and awarded the DCM. Two officers and 23 casualties had to be left behind. Another small party under Captain Maskelyne Smith VC became isolated and held out for another 20 minutes. They refused to surrender and Smith was the only one who managed to get away.

Leeuwkop was found to be occupied by Boers, so positions were taken up on hills near Boshof's Farm to the west. They formed a long front to prevent the large enemy force from outflanking them. B Squadron under Major John Walker and A Squadron under Captain Robert Herron made a dash for Boschmanskop but both these officers were killed. Fanshawe was with A Squadron further to the left. Relief came in the form of a charge made by the 7th Hussars who still had their swords, and guns at Boschmanskop opened up a barrage on the enemy. It was 7am when the Boers retreated towards Leeuwkop taking captured men from the Bays with them. These would only have been a hindrance to their captors and were returned the next day having been stripped of their weapons and clothes.

Searching a Farm
The regiment's losses were two officers and 13 men killed, 3 officers and 59 wounded. Eight of the wounded died later. They lost 120 horses in the action. The Boers were a combination of 10 Commandos numbering up to 1,200 men. They suffered between 35 and 75 killed, and 40 wounded. Commandant Prinsloo was among the dead.

The Drive across the Veldt 1902

Between 18 and 20 April The Queen's Bays took part in their last operation of the War, a drive across the veldt, which proved to be abortive except for some Boers captured at Palmiefontein on 6 May. By now peace negotiations were in hand. Between 8 April and 10 May the regiment had marched 900 miles, arriving on 20 May at Heidelburg. Peace was signed on 31 May 1902. The Bays were ordered to Middleburg in June and were present at the surrender of Louis Botha's Commando at Kraal Station on 5 June. They then went to Pretoria in August. The casualties for the war were: Two officers and 78 other ranks killed, 14 died of disease. Four officers and 51 other ranks were wounded. They had arrived in South Africa with 775 horse and lost nearly all of them, 748 throughout the campaign. The Bays remained in South Africa until January 1908 when they arrived back un the UK and were stationed at Hounslow. The Commander-in-Chief praised their service 'The conduct of the 2nd Dragoon Guards (Queen's Bays) has been irreproachable in action, on trek and in camp.' World War One 1914-18

Troopers in 1914

When mobilisation was ordered in August 1914 the Queen's Bays were at the forefront of the British Army. Aldershot Command sent out the order on 3 August two days ahead of the rest of the country. A week earlier, all leave had been stopped and reservists called in. Many of them were old NCOs who had fought in the Boer War. Mobilisation was completed by 19 Aug and on the 11th the regiment was inspected by King George V and Queen Mary. Captain Hall went off to France to organise billeting, and the regiment, under the command of Lt-Col Wilberforce marched to Farnborough station to entrain for Southampton on 14th. They sailed on the 16th and arrived at Le Havre that evening in pouring rain and entrained on box wagons to Maubeuge via Rouen where they stopped for feeding and watering.

Retreat From Mons Begins, 23 Aug 1914

Officers in 1914
On 21st Aug they were sent forward as advance guard to the 1st Brigade crossing the Aisne and Mons-Charleroi canal. On 23rd they were at Audregnies when they heard that the French were retreating in the face of an unexpectedly large German advance. This was the start of the BEF's retreat from Mons. The Bays were ordered to hold a stretch of railway from Mons to Valenciennes but that lasted only a few hours before they were on the move again without contact with the enemy. They came to a field near St Waast for the night and then bivouacked at Le Cateau in time to witness the battle ongoing there. They experienced shellfire for the first time at Le Cateau and retired once more on a dark wet night, regrouping on the 27th Aug. On 28th they suffered casualties three troopers and 6 horses, from German shellfire near Guiscard. They carried on, across the Aisne and the Oise and halted at Venitte but Brigadier Briggs ordered the Brigade to concentrate on the village of Nery on the evening of 31st Aug.

Battle of Nery, 1 Sep 1914

Nery 1914
The Queen's Bays and L Battery RHA were the last to arrive at Nery. The 11th Hussars and 5th Dragoon Guards were already there. The men of C Squadron spent the night in the open while A and B were billeted in houses in Nery main street. All the horses were in lines out in the open. During the night the 4th German Cavalry Division approached Nery and made contact with a patrol of the 11th Hussars in the early hours of 1st Sep. In a thick mist the enemy artillery opened fire on the Bays horse lines killing many and causing the rest to stampede. The men of the Bays improvised a firing line while L Battery brought its guns into action under Captain Bradbury. The machine-gun section of the Bays, commanded by Lieutenant Algernon Lamb, provided valuable covering fire to enable the gunners to position their three 13-pounders to fire on the German batteries. Meanwhile the 5th DG moved out of the north end of the village but came face to face with German cavalry, causing the 5th to fall back. The 1st Cavalry Brigade were heavily outnumbered but because of the mist the Germans were unaware of the size of the British force.

Casualties at Nery
Lamb's machine-guns maintained a steady fire on the artillery 800 yards away while the horse gunners of L Battery fought a heroic and famous action that wiped them out and brought them 3 awards of the VC to the men who manned the last remaining gun. A small party of Bays under Lieutenants Champion de Crespigny and V H Misa with 15 men were at a sugar factory and made an attack on the enemy who had taken over buildings nearby. They drove the Germans out but at the cost of Lieut De Crespigny and several others. The situation was saved by the arrival of the 4th Cavalry Brigade and their artillery who were able to silence the German guns. Lamb's machine-guns, although dangerously over-heated prevented the enemy teams from retrieving their guns and 8 of them were captured by the Bays under the command of Major George Ing. These were the first guns to be captured by the British in World War One. By 9.45am the Germans had withdrawn and the battle was over.

The Bays resumed their progress towards Paris later that morning. They had 17 officers and 423 rank and file. The bombardment at Nery had reduced them to 304 riding horses out of 527 and 48 draught horses out of 74. Lieutenant Lamb was awarded the DSO for his command of the machine-guns section, and DCMs were awarded to Troopers Ellicock and Goodchild.

On 12 Sep the Bays were ordered to clear the village of Braisne on the Vesle, a tributary of the Aisne, and then seize the heights which overlook the Aisne. C Squadron under Captain Pickering advanced on the village and found the bridge barricaded. The Germans opened fire causing casualties, and Lieut Milne's horse was killed. The remainder of the regiment dismounted and went into action, supported by Z Battery RHA who prevented German reinforcements entering the village. The Bays advanced through Braisne engaging in house-to-house fighting, but a German sniper killed Captain George Springfield and wounded Captain Pickering. By 3pm the battle was over and they had captured 200 prisoners. One of the bridges was still intact and they handed Braisne over to an infantry brigade before securing the heights at Dhuizel.

The regiment crossed the Aisne on the 13th, and on the 16th the British army began to engage in trench warfare. The Bays spent a few days in a wood at Chavonne experiencing heavy shell fire, but on 20 Sep they moved into trenches vacated by the 11th Hussars. Their location was changed on 3 Oct and they marched to Bethune which they reached on 11 Oct. They were reinforced with new horses and replacements for the officers and men who had been killed and wounded.

They spent some days in the area of Ploegsteert which they had reached by means of a horrendous night march on 15 Oct. On 21 Oct Colonel Wilberforce was invalided with muscular rheumatism and the regiment were under the command of Major J A Browning. But it was his misfortune to be killed 10 days later when they were ordered to hold some trenches just north of Messines. C Squadron was in front and A and B Squadrons were behind, on the Ypres-Messines road, during the evening of 30 Oct when they came under attack. This was fought off but at 5.45am the next morning the left flank of C Squadron was heavily engaged and had to withdraw by stages, sustaining 30 wounded in the process. Lieut Paul and 3 Troop sergeants were killed and Lieut Milne was wounded. The regiment were ordered to retire 100 yards to the rear of the road where there was a hedge. Major Browning stood out in the open organising the men into a firing line when he was hit and killed. Command devolved on Major Matthew Lannowe who led them back to the road under shellfire. They held the line all day.

After spending the winter in billets at Fletres the Bays were bussed to Ypres where they took over trenches from the 16th Lancers. They suffered shelling and sniping most of the time and conducted bombing raids on the enemy. On 28 Feb they were relieved by the 18th Hussars but B Squadron remained behind to carry out a combined operation with French troops. They were to detonate simultaneous mines under a crater occupied by Germans but the French failed to set theirs off and Captain Sloane was left unsupported by the French. When the squadron stormed the crater they found a steep 8 foot bank, the other side of which was occupied. Sloane assumed the French were there and hoisted his interpreter over the bank. Luckily the Germans on the other side were stunned by the explosion and unable to react quickly. The interpreter scrambled back and they realised that the French had not detonated their mine. Eight men were wounded in this failed venture.

The regiment was provided with a new CO as from 1 May when Lieutenant-Colonel Lawson arrived from the Scots Greys. On 9 May they were sent into the front line again, south of Potijze, taking over from the 19th Hussars. The trenches were in a bad condition and they spent the night trying to improve them. The digging alerted enemy snipers who killed RSM Turner. B Squadron suffered badly from a heavy bombardment on 13 May. This killed many men including 2nd Lieutenant Herron. The bombardment was followed by an infantry attack. On the right of the Bays a gap had formed after a British unit had retreated. Major Ing dashed out to rally as many of the fleeing men as he could to defend the gap. Captain Kingstone was sent for reinforcements and returned with the 10th Hussars so that the line could be held. The following day the Bays were relieved by the Oxfordshire Yeomanry. The regimental strength was only 175 so the casualty figures were high for this battle: 2 officers killed and one wounded, 28 other ranks killed and 32 wounded. Major Ing was awarded the DSO and Corporal Clarke given the DCM.

In May 1915 the Bays were active in the line south of Belwarde Lake, taking some casualties. But the summer was spent at Hardifort near Cassel waiting for the call to provide cavalry for a breakthrough. In September they were concentrated near Mametz for the battle of Loos but the 'gap' never materialised so they were billeted for the winter at Neuville. Although 1915 was a quiet year they still ended up with 95 casualties: one officer killed, one wounded, 31 other ranks killed, 4 died of wounds, 57 wounded, and 2 missing.

Patrols on The Somme, Sep 1916

The Bays on The Somme
In preparation for the Somme offensive the Bays endured a 4 day march in June 1916 to arrive at Querrieu where there was a Divisional concentration. But they were not needed on the big day, 1 July, and stayed in the area until 9 Aug when they were withdrawn north west of Amiens. A month later they advanced to the Carnoy Valley and met with tanks for the first time. On 15 Sep A Squadron under Major Pinching advanced into the valley and two dismounted patrols were organised. One of these patrols under 2nd Lieut Yeatherd came under heavy fire so that every man was wounded. Yeatherd himself went missing and his body found a week later. Major Pinching was also injured. The Bays remained in this area until withdrawn into billets near Daours on the 17th, and a few days later to Blangy sur Turnoise. Two more moves in October were made at a miserable time when the weather was very wet. They spent the winter at Montcavrel, until April 1917. The casualty figures for 1916 were: 2 officers killed, 2 wounded, 17 other ranks killed, 35 wounded and 3 missing.

In Jan 1917 Major Pinching was given the command of a Pioneer Battalion formed from the 1st Cavalry Brigade. The Bays contributed a company of 225 other ranks and 6 officers which was commanded by Captain Kingstone. They worked on the improvement of the railway line from St Pol to Arras. It was while working there that they captured a German observer who had jumped out of an aeroplane that landed to read a signpost. In February Major Pinching returned to the regiment to take over command until 7 April while Lt-Col Lawson was sick.

Fampoux 11 April 1917
In the battle of Arras the Bays were moved to Fampoux on 10 April 1917, in wintery weather, to be ready to exploit the success of an Infantry attack. They spent a terrible night in a snowy field with no cover or protection. On 11 April they were ordered to seize Greenland Hill beyond the village and then extend north-eastwards. They moved through Fampoux but the leading Troop was subjected to shell fire which wounded Lieut Grant and several men. A wall had been knocked down trapping the men and they had to be dug out. The leading squadron was commanded by Capt Kingstone, now returned from the Pioneers, and he ordered his men to take cover while a patrol of 6 men under 2nd Lieut Quested probed forward to find out if indeed the infantry had been successful. Quested's patrol was gunned down and the survivors returned on foot under cover of a snow storm. This abortive action cost the Bays the lives of 4 men and 14 horses. Four officers and 18 men were wounded.

The cavalry were brought forward on 11 Nov 1917 to take part in the battle of Cambrai. They were at Bois des Neuf as the tanks attacked. They took 100 prisoners at Cantaigne but the fighting was fierce, lasting until 22 Nov. They had 3 officers and 20 men wounded, one killed. Lieut Barnard won the Military Cross and 5 men won the Military Medal. They were billeted at Metz after that but were required to supply men for a company in a Cavalry Brigade infantry battalion. Their service in cold wet weather brought about 13 more wounded men. Their worst day that winter, however, was on 23rd Dec, at Buire where they were bombed by German aircraft. Eleven horses were killed and 22 men wounded. 1917 ended with these casualty figures: Four men killed and 58 wounded, one missing. Eight officers wounded and Major Pinching had died in April after an operation in London.

In January 1918 the Bays were in the trenches in front of Vadencourt until 26th but did not suffer casualties. The infantry company returned there in Feb while the others stayed back in Buire. In March the regiment was at Vendelles to prepare for a raid on an enemy post called Eleven Trees, to catch prisoners. There were 3 raiding parties, each made up of men from the 5th DG, 11th Hussars and the Bays. Eighty men were picked from each regiment. The first party under Lieut Miles of the 5DG attacked the German post. This was successful and there were no casualties apart from 8 Germans killed. Another party used Bangalore torpedoes to try to break through the enemy wire but without success. They could not proceed and threw bombs, but they spent more than ten minutes exposed to machine-gun fire before withdrawing. Four Bays troopers were killed and 17 wounded.

The German Offensive, 21-22 March 1918

The great German offensive began on 21 Mar 1918 in thick fog. It is hard to believe that the cavalry were still using horses at this stage of the war but The Bays were maintained in a state of mounted readiness at Bernes on the afternoon of the 21st. A dismounted party was, however, sent to assist the 24th Division east of Vendelles. This resulted in the deaths of Lieutenant Waddell and 4 other ranks, two officers and 30 men were wounded. The main part of the regiment covered the crossings over the Somme between Brie and St Christ. They were withdrawn over the next two days and on the night of the 24th the horse lines were bombed by enemy planes killing one man and wounding six. The CO, Lieut-Col Lawson had been promoted to command the 1st Dismounted Brigade but then temporarily commanded the 1st Dismounted Division. This reorganisation of formerly mounted troops gives an idea of how the cavalry had adapted to the changing nature of warfare. The Division was under great pressure the Bays alone had 6 men killed, one officer and 24 wounded on the 25th March.

The Bays were shelled while filling a gap in at the line at Mericourt on the Ancre on 27 Mar but were then moved to Bouzencourt on the Somme. There they combined with Carey's Force, a cobbled together brigade formed to protect Amiens against the German advance. The position was held against artillery and snipers all day on the 29th but on the 30th the bombardments intensified in the area of Hamel where their brigade was based. German infantry attacked in wave after wave. Captain Fred Single, commanding B Squadron saw that men of Carey's Force were wavering so he jumped onto the parapet to order them to stand fast and to inspire them with courage. He was struck down, and after further exhorting the men to hold the enemy attack he was taken away. He was brought to a casualty station but died in the night. The following days were relatively quiet and there was a chance to carry out one successful raid and another that failed. They were withdrawn on the night of 3 April and marched 8 miles to a bivouac at Bussy les Daours. They had been under attack for 14 days, losing 2 officers and 20 other ranks killed, 6 officers and 111 other ranks wounded. This, together with 3 missing men, represented 25 per cent of their strength.

The Battle of Amiens, August 1918

In the days leading up to the planned big Allied Offensive on 8 Aug 1918, the regiment took its place in some woods to the west of Villers Brettonneux. They had to follow up an advance made by Canadian and Australian infantry. Mounted patrols from both A and B Squadrons advanced along the Amiens-St Quentin road. Near Harbonnieres, A Squadron made a charge against a German position, killing 20 and capturing 22 prisoners, and 2 machine-guns. Soon after they came upon another smaller enemy group with similar success. Lieutenant Solaini who commanded a Troop of A Squadron was wounded but won the Military Cross with his actions on 8th Aug. C Squadron was in support and they succeeded in capturing German supplies. The two squadrons dismounted for a combined defence of Harbonnieres with the Canadians and Australians.

B Squadron's patrol, under Lieut Cockrill met a confused situation in Bayonvillers where they were fired on by a British armoured car. Cockrill won the MC after etricating his men. When the squadron came under fire from an enemy machine-gun, another officer, Lieut Carabine won the MC when he dashed out to rescue a wounded man under fire. Lieut Cockrill's patrol seized a supply train but were again the target of British armoured cars in Framerville. The following day, 9 Aug, the Bays were subjected to aerial bombing and again the next day when nine men and some horses were wounded. There was another offensive on 21 Aug in which the Bays were in reserve. As well as the awards of the MC to the three mentioned officers, and to Captain Magnay, the DCM was given to Sergeants Spain and Ford, and Corporal Bordman. Sergeant Elliott and 15 others won the Military Medal.

On the day of the Armistice there were two encounters with German cavalry. The regiment was advancing through allied infantry northwest of Herchies. Shortly after 10am a patrol from C Squadron came in contact with an Uhlan patrol two miles east of Montigny le Lens. At the same time a patrol from B Squadron encountered more Uhlans at Masnuy St Pierre. Twelve prisoners were taken in this skirmish and fortunately the Bays suffered no casualties. The Great War ended at 11am on that day and the firing ceased.

The Bays remained at Elsdorf on the Rhine until March 1919 when they returned to Southampton. Only 60 men returned but after a few months in York they recruited to bring them up to 500 men and 19 officers. To their great surprise they were ordered to embark for overseas service on 24 June 1919, bound for Palestine. They picked up horses at El Kantara in Egypt and sailed to Beirut, from where they went to their camp at Aleppo which they reached on 3 Aug. Three months later they were ordered to make their way to Palestine and set off on a 500 mile march to Sarona near Jaffa. The end of this month-long trek wasn't as rewarding as expected. They arrived on 13 Dec to find a marquee set up on a slope, and it was pouring with rain. Whilst there they were reunited with their wives and children who were brought out to stay in Sarona. This was a dubious privilege as there were howling jackals, and in the summer of 1920 the families suffered 'sleepless nights', presumably because of heat and insects. On 7 Nov 1920 they entrained for Suez and from there sailed to India.

In April 1921 the Bays were at Bangalore with a strength of 29 officers an 562 other ranks. Whilst stationed there they were involved in the suppression of the Moplah revolt on the Malabar coast. The Moplahs were of Arab descent and had a reputation for causing trouble. They had been formed into two regiments of the British Indian Army, the 77th and 78th Moplah Rifles but only lasted from 1902 to 1907 when they were disbanded. The troubles between the Muslim Moplahs and their Hindu neighbours turned into riots and guerrilla warfare. A British police officer was killed at Calicut and the town was in danger until the Leinster Regiment stepped in. A movable column was formed with the 2nd Dorsets and the Queen's Bays, the latter being commanded by Major Stone. They travelled by train from Bangalore to Shoranur where they split up and patrolled the railway line. The cavalry were called upon when things were getting difficult but as soon as they turned up at a trouble spot the Moplahs disappeared. The region was mostly jungle which was unsuitable for mounted troops. In September 1921 the Bays returned to Bangalore but three NCOs remained to help with pack mules and convoys. One of them was Corporal Archdale who was mentioned in despatches for rallying native drivers who panicked when fired on by rebels.

Mounted Manoeuvres 1935
The regiment returned to England in early 1927 and were stationed at Colchester for a year followed by short spells in Tidworth, Shorncliffe and then Aldershot. In the autumn of 1935 they went on brigade training followed by army manoeuvres for the last time as a horsed regiment. The Inspector-General of Cavalry had told the regimental colonels that there was no longer any future for horsed cavalry and that they should convert to armoured vehicles. The process of conversion to light tanks began in Oct 1936. By March the next year they were down to 40 chargers and 53 Troop horses. They had at that time 10 light tanks, 20 tractors, 6 motorcycles and 15 trucks (15cwt Morris). The men had to retrain from being horsemen to drivers, mechanics and gunners. In May 1937 they provided an escort at the coronation of King George VI, 110 men and 7 officers, including a horse mounted Troop under 2nd Lt Weld. In October that year the regiment moved back to Tidworth and was part of 2nd Light Armoured Brigade with the 9th Lancers and 10th Hussars.
The Bays
Rusty Buckles
Pro Rege et Patria
For King and Country
Regimental Marches
Rusty Buckles (Quick)
The Queen's Bays (Slow)
Regimental Anniversary
Gazala Day
1685 - 1959
Commanding Officers
1685 - 1959
1685 - 1959
1685 - 1959
Musicians and Drumhorses
1685 - 1959
1685 - 1959
1685 - 1959
Standards and Guidons
1685 - 1959
1685 - 1959
Principal Campaigns and Battles
Seven Years War (1756-63)

French Revolutionary Wars

Indian Mutiny (1857-58)

South African War (1899-1902)

MARNE 1914
YPRES 1914 1915
SOMME 1916 1918
CAMBRAI 1917 1918

AISNE 1914
ARRAS 1917

SOMME 1940

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