|Capitulation of Pasewalk|
|Part of the War of the Fourth Coalition|
The Pasewalk Mühlentor, an old city gate
|Commanders and leaders|
|1,500||4,200, 8 guns|
|Casualties and losses|
|None|| 4,200 soldiers captured,|
8 guns captured,
37 colors captured
The Capitulation of Pasewalk on 29 October 1806 resulted in the surrender of Oberst (Colonel) von Hagen's 4,200 Prussian soldiers to an inferior force of two French light cavalry brigades led by Generals of Brigade Édouard Jean Baptiste Milhaud and Antoine Lasalle. The Prussians were completely demoralized after a two-week-long retreat following their decisive defeat at the Battle of Jena-Auerstedt. Pasewalk is 110 kilometers north of Berlin and about 40 kilometers west of Szczecin (Stettin), Poland.
Oberst is a military rank in several German-speaking and Scandinavian countries, equivalent to Colonel. It is currently used by both the ground and air forces of Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Denmark, and Norway. The Swedish rank överste is a direct translation, as are the Finnish rank eversti and the Icelandic rank ofursti. In the Netherlands the rank overste is used as a synonym for a lieutenant colonel.
The Kingdom of Prussia was a German kingdom that constituted the state of Prussia between 1701 and 1918. It was the driving force behind the unification of Germany in 1871 and was the leading state of the German Empire until its dissolution in 1918. Although it took its name from the region called Prussia, it was based in the Margraviate of Brandenburg, where its capital was Berlin.
France, officially the French Republic, is a country whose territory consists of metropolitan France in Western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The metropolitan area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, and from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean. It is bordered by Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany to the northeast, Switzerland and Italy to the east, and Andorra and Spain to the south. The overseas territories include French Guiana in South America and several islands in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans. The country's 18 integral regions span a combined area of 643,801 square kilometres (248,573 sq mi) and a total population of 67.3 million. France, a sovereign state, is a unitary semi-presidential republic with its capital in Paris, the country's largest city and main cultural and commercial centre. Other major urban areas include Lyon, Marseille, Toulouse, Bordeaux, Lille and Nice.
While retreating east toward Stettin on the Oder River, Hagen found his column trapped between Lasalle's brigade and Milhaud's brigade. Without attempting to break out, the baffled Prussian officer surrendered. The incident at Pasewalk came after a similar Prussian surrender after the Battle of Prenzlau the previous day. Within a week two fortresses would capitulate without firing a shot and a number of other Prussian columns would be hunted down one by one.
In the Battle of Prenzlau or Capitulation of Prenzlau on 28 October 1806 two divisions of French cavalry and some infantry led by Marshal Joachim Murat intercepted a retreating Prussian corps led by Frederick Louis, Prince of Hohenlohe-Ingelfingen. In this action from the War of the Fourth Coalition, Hohenlohe surrendered his entire force to Murat after some fighting and a parley. Prenzlau is located about 90 kilometers north of Berlin in Brandenburg, Germany at the intersection of routes B109 and B198.
On 14 October 1806, the Grande Armée of Emperor Napoleon I of France decisively defeated the Prussians at the Battle of Jena-Auerstadt. At Jena Napoleon's 96,000 troops smashed the 53,000-man army of Generals of Infantry Frederick Louis, Prince of Hohenlohe-Ingelfingen and Ernst von Rüchel,while the 26,000-man III Corps of Marshal Louis-Nicolas Davout defeated Feldmarschall Charles William Ferdinand, Duke of Brunswick's 49,800-strong army at Auerstedt.
The Grande Armée was the army commanded by Napoleon I during the Napoleonic Wars. From 1805 to 1809, the Grande Armée scored a series of historic victories that gave the French Empire an unprecedented grip on power over the European continent. Widely acknowledged to be one of the greatest fighting forces ever assembled, it suffered terrible losses during the French invasion of Russia in 1812 and never recovered its tactical superiority after that campaign.
Jena is a German university city and the second largest city in Thuringia. Together with the nearby cities of Erfurt and Weimar, it forms the central metropolitan area of Thuringia with approximately 500,000 inhabitants, while the city itself has a population of about 110,000. Jena is a centre of education and research; the Friedrich Schiller University was founded in 1558 and had 18,000 students in 2017 and the Ernst-Abbe-Fachhochschule Jena counts another 5,000 students. Furthermore, there are many institutes of the leading German research societies.
General of the Infantry is a former rank of German Ground forces. Present it is an appointment or position to an OF-6 rank officer, responsible for particular affairs of training and equipment of the Bundeswehr infantry.
At Jena, French losses were 6,794 while Prussian losses were very large but impossible to calculate. The Saxons saved only 23 of their artillery pieces, while losing 59. The Prussians lost at least 24 guns plus 12 colors. Davout estimated his losses as 7,000 at Auerstedt while his enemies suffered 10,000 killed and wounded and 3,000 captured.The Prussians admitted losing 57 guns from their artillery batteries, not counting regimental guns. So Davout's claim to have captured 115 pieces may be accurate.
The Prussian army was so thoroughly shattered by its defeat that it had not recovered cohesion by the next day.Shot through both eyes, Brunswick expired at Altona on 10 November. The badly wounded Rüchel made his way to Poland where he recovered. The retreating mass of Prussians resolved itself into three columns under Prince Hohenlohe, Lieutenant General Gebhard von Blücher, and General of the Infantry Friedrich Adolf, Count von Kalckreuth. These forces marched through the Harz Mountains toward Halberstadt. Trailing behind was the 12,000-man corps of Lieutenant General Karl August, Grand Duke of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach, which missed Jena-Auerstadt.
Altona is the westernmost urban borough (Bezirk) of the German city state of Hamburg, on the right bank of the Elbe river. From 1640 to 1864 Altona was under the administration of the Danish monarchy and Denmark's only real harbour directly to the North Sea. Altona was an independent city until 1937. In 2016 the population was 270,263.
Friedrich Adolf Graf von Kalckreuth was a Prussian Generalfeldmarschall.
Halberstadt is a town in the German state of Saxony-Anhalt, the capital of Harz district. Located north of the Harz mountain range, it is known for its old town centre that was severely damaged in World War II and rebuilt in the following decades.
On 16 October, French cavalry under Marshal Joachim Murat secured the surrender of 12,000 men and 65 guns in the Capitulation of Erfurt. It was only the first of a series of craven Prussian surrenders.The following day, Marshal Jean-Baptiste Bernadotte drubbed Lieutenant General Eugene Frederick Henry, Duke of Württemberg's Reserve at the Battle of Halle, inflicting 5,000 casualties on this previously fresh body of troops for a French loss of only 800.
Joachim-Napoléon Murat was a Marshal of France and Admiral of France under the reign of Napoleon. He was also the 1st Prince Murat, Grand Duke of Berg from 1806 to 1808, and King of Naples from 1808 to 1815. Murat received his titles in part by being Napoleon's brother-in-law through marriage to his younger sister, Caroline Bonaparte, as well as personal merit. He was noted as a daring, brave, and charismatic cavalry officer as well as a flamboyant dresser, for which he was known as "the Dandy King".
In the Capitulation of Erfurt on 16 October 1806 a large body of troops from the Kingdom of Prussia under Lieutenant General the Prince of Orange surrendered to Marshal Joachim Murat of France, at the city of Erfurt. The Prussian soldiers were demoralized by their shattering defeat at the Battle of Jena–Auerstedt on 14 October and unwilling to put up much resistance. The event occurred during the War of the Fourth Coalition, part of the Napoleonic Wars. Erfurt is located on the Gera River about 40 kilometers west of Jena.
In the Battle of Halle on 17 October 1806 a French corps led by Jean-Baptiste Bernadotte fought the Prussian Reserve under Eugene Frederick Henry, Duke of Württemberg. The French defeated their opponents, forcing the Prussians to retreat northeast toward Dessau after suffering heavy losses. The clash occurred in the War of the Fourth Coalition, part of the Napoleonic Wars. The city of Halle is located about 30 kilometers northwest of Leipzig on the Saale River.
The columns of Hohenlohe and Württemberg rendezvoused at Magdeburg on 20 October. Kalckreuth crossed the Elbe River at Tangermünde and joined his corps to Hohenlohe's soon afterward. He then left for an assignment in Poland.On the 20th, Soult and Murat were before Magdeburg. Murat demanded its surrender, which Hohenlohe refused. That day, Davout seized a bridgehead over the Elbe at Wittenberg and Lannes seized a second crossing at Dessau.
Having received orders from King Frederick William III of Prussia to march to the Oder River, Hohenlohe's army left Magdeburg on 21 October and reached Burg bei Magdeburg that night. He left 9,000 men to reinforce the garrison, so that, together with stragglers, there were 25,000 troops in the city.Hohenlohe reached Genthin at night on 22 October and Rathenow on the evening of the 23rd. To better feed his troops, he divided his command up into multiple columns.
Leaving Marshal Michel Ney's VI Corps to begin the Siege of Magdeburg, Napoleon ordered his right wing to march east for Berlin.The French right wing consisted of Davout's corps, Marshal Jean Lannes' V Corps, Marshal Pierre Augereau's VII Corps, and four of Murat's cavalry units. These were the 1st Cuirassier Division led by General of Division Etienne Marie Antoine Champion de Nansouty, the 2nd Cuirassier Division under General of Division Jean-Joseph Ange d'Hautpoul, the 2nd Dragoon Division commanded by General of Division Emmanuel Grouchy, and the 3rd Dragoon Division under General of Division Marc Antoine de Beaumont. The left wing was made up of Bernadotte's corps, Marshal Nicolas Soult's IV Corps, and General of Division Louis Michel Antoine Sahuc's 4th Dragoon Division. Guarding the line of communications was General of Division Louis Klein's 1st Dragoon Division.
Blücher crossed the Elbe at Sandau on 24 October,while Saxe-Weimar got across there two days later. On the 26th, Oberst Ludwig Yorck von Wartenburg held off Soult's advance guard at Altenzaun before safely crossing to the east bank. At this time Lieutenant General Johann Friedrich Winning relieved Saxe-Weimar in command. Hohenlohe marched to Neustadt an der Dosse on the 24th. His goal was the fortress of Szczecin (Stettin) on the Oder. To protect his right flank, he ordered General-Major Christian Ludwig Schimmelpfennig to move through Fehrbellin, between Neustadt and Oranienburg. Blücher took over the leadership of Hohenlohe's rear guard.
On 25 October Davout's corps marched through Berlinwhile one of Lannes' divisions captured the fortress of Spandau with 920 men and 71 cannons. Hohenlohe's main body arrived near Neuruppin that evening, with Blücher's rear guard division still at Neustadt. General von Schwerin's cavalry and Oberst von Hagen's infantry brigade bivouacked at Wittstock. General-Major Karl Anton von Bila's light brigade reached Kyritz north of Neustadt. Desiring to cut off the forces under Hohenlohe, Napoleon ordered Murat and Lannes to move north from Berlin. Immediately available at Oranienburg were the light cavalry brigades of Generals of Brigade Antoine Lasalle and Edouard Jean Baptiste Milhaud, plus Grouchy's dragoons.
On 26 October, Lasalle caught up with Schimmelpfennig at Zehdenick. Initially, the Prussians held their own, but when Grouchy's division charged into the fray, Schimmelpfennig's force scattered. The survivors fled to Stettin with Lasalle, Grouchy, and Beaumont in pursuit.The results of this clash compelled Hohenlohe to shift farther northeast from Gransee to Lychen. The next morning he waited in vain for Blücher and Bila to catch up before continuing toward the east. On 27 October, Milhaud's brigade reached Boitzenburg before Hohenlohe's advance guard. After a three-hour combat, the Prussians drove Milhaud's troopers off, but not before the French despoiled supplies collected for their hungry opponents at the Schloss Boitzenburg. Hearing the sounds of battle, Murat marched north with Grouchy's dragoons. At Wichmannsdorf, three French dragoon regiments got into a brawl with the Gensdarmes Cuirassier Regiment # 10. Murat wiped out the Prussian unit but Hohenlohe managed to slip past him toward Prenzlau.
At 4:00 AM on 28 October, Hohenlohe's exhausted Prussians stumbled into Schönermark-Nordwestuckermark eight kilometers west of Prenzlau. At a council of war it was determined to continue on into Prenzlau. At this time orders were sent to Hagen to make for Pasewalk. The Battle of Prenzlau occurred that day. Murat with Lasalle, Milhaud, Grouchy, Beaumont, and 3,000 of Lannes' infantry intercepted Hohenlohe's column as it marched into the city. Lasalle attacked in front, followed by the two dragoon divisions. On the outskirts, one of Grouchy's brigades hewed a path through the Prussian column, capturing many prisoners and isolating the rear guard. Beaumont's dragoons drove the rear guard against the Uecker River north of the city and forced Prince Augustus of Prussia to surrender. Though Hohenlohe still had a clear road to Stettin, Murat bluffed him into surrendering 10,000 troops by claiming he was surrounded by 100,000 Frenchmen.
Moving on Murat's left flank on the 28th, Milhaud reached the village of Bandelow, about halfway between Prenzlau and Pasewalk. From there, he marched toward the sound of the guns from the Battle of Prenzlau. His brigade arrived in time to witness Prince Augustus' surrender to Beaumont. His troopers bivouacked that night in Bandelow and rode to Pasewalk the next morning. After Hohenlohe capitulated at Prenzlau, Lasalle rode northeast to Löcknitz on the Randow stream. At 4:00 PM, he arrived at the village, which was on the direct road between Pasewalk and Stettin. The French general deployed his cavalrymen in Löcknitz and in the hamlet of Bergholz facing northwest in the direction of Pasewalk.
Appearing before the town, Milhaud sent an emissary to demand a surrender. The Prussian colonel, finding Milhaud behind him and Lasalle ahead of him, immediately capitulated with 185 officers, 4,043 rank and file, 2087 cavalry horses,one ammunition wagon, and eight artillery pieces. Hagen's force consisted of his own infantry brigade and Oberst von Podewil's cavalry brigade. The French captured colors (number in parenthesis) from the Pirch Infantry Regiment # 22 (3), Zenge Infantry Regiment # 24 (3), Treuenfels Infantry Regiment # 29 (4), Prince Ferdinand Infantry Regiment # 34 (2), Henkel Cuirassier Regiment # 1 (5), Heising Cuirassier Regiment # 8 (5), Holtzendorff Cuirassier Regiment # 9 (5), Leib Carabinier Regiment # 11 (5), and Bünting Cuirassier Regiment # 12 (5).
The Prussian officers were released after giving their word of honor not to fight against France for the rest of the campaign. Milhaud's entire force consisted of the 1st Hussar Regiment and the 13th Chasseurs a Cheval, a total of 700 troopers. Lasalle's brigade included the 5th and 7th Hussar Regiments with 800 cavalrymen and two cannons.Another authority placed the 1st Hussars with General of Division Anne Jean Marie René Savary at Neuruppin on the 29th, and wrote that Milhaud led the 13th Chasseurs and an unnamed dragoon regiment.
Historian Digby Smith wrote that the Pasewalk incident showed the morale of the Prussian army to be extremely low at this point in the campaign. There was no fighting.Lannes wrote, "The Prussian army is in such a state of panic that the mere appearance of a Frenchman is enough to make it lay down its arms." That night, Lasalle achieved an even more astonishing coup in the Capitulation of Stettin. Between 30 October and 3 November, the French captured Küstrin fortress, an artillery convoy, Hohenlohe's baggage train and guard, and Bila's brigade. Blücher and Winning decided to head northwest for Lübeck with their 22,000 troops. The Battle of Lübeck was fought on 6 November.
The twin battles of Jena and Auerstedt were fought on 14 October 1806 on the plateau west of the river Saale in today's Germany, between the forces of Napoleon I of France and Frederick William III of Prussia. The decisive defeat suffered by the Prussian Army subjugated the Kingdom of Prussia to the French Empire until the Sixth Coalition was formed in 1812.
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Antoine-Charles-Louis, Comte de Lasalle was a French cavalry general during the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, often called "The Hussar General". He first gained fame for his role in the Capitulation of Stettin. Over the course of his short career, he became known as a daring adventurer and was credited with many exploits. Eventually, he fought on every front and was killed at the Battle of Wagram.
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The Reserve Cavalry Corps or Cavalry Reserve of the Grande Armée was the name of a French military formation that existed during the Napoleonic Wars. In 1805, Emperor Napoleon appointed Marshal Joachim Murat to command all the cavalry divisions that were not directly attached to the Army Corps. During the Ulm Campaign, Murat led his horsemen in successfully hunting down many Austrian Empire units that escaped the Capitulation of Ulm. Murat's horsemen fought at Austerlitz in December 1805. Under Murat, the Cavalry Reserve played a prominent role in the destruction of the Kingdom of Prussia's armies after the Battle of Jena-Auerstadt in 1806. Five dragoon divisions of the corps were employed in the Peninsular War starting in 1808 and placed under the overall command of Marshal Jean-Baptiste Bessières. The Cavalry Reserve was reassembled in 1809 to fight Austria with Bessières still in command. In 1812 the Reserve Cavalry Corps was split up into the I, II, III, and IV Cavalry Corps for the French invasion of Russia.