Schloss Neuhaus

Schloss Neuhaus
Seat of the Margrave

Saturday, 29 March 2008

"Peace on Earth"

"Flick! Flick! Where are you? blast your eyes!"

"You called, Your Highness?"

"Of course I called you, you fool. Did you think it was the wind in the trees?"

"Of course not, Your Highness. How may I be of service? Your Highness appears, if I may make so free, to be somewhat irritated?"

"Irritated! Irritated? No, Herr Flick, I am not 'irritated', I am thoroughly displeased."

"What has occurred, Your Highness, to disturb your customary tranquility?"

"Read this, Flick, and then tell me if I should retain my 'customary tranquility'!"

"Ah, if you will permit, Your Highness?"

'Feldhausen, the 31st Day of December, 1700, at one quarter of an hour past the hour of five of the clock in the morning.

I beg leave to report a most distressing event. Last night (the 30th) the town was awoken in the small hours, by alarums and excursions, and the general cry of 'fire!'. I dressed and made my way to the site of the disturbance, which I regret to inform Your Highness, was the military storehouse, situated to the North-West of the Holsteiner Porte.
The building, was indeed, aflame, and the fire had taken such great hold, that the efforts of the burghers to extinguish the inferno were unavailing. I further regret to inform you, the building together with its contents are a total loss.
The absence of representatives of Your Highness' army was a mystery, which was only resolved this morning, once the embers of the conflagration had cooled sufficiently to allow a search of the site. I deeply regret to further inform you that the remains of twelve individuals were found with in an interior chamber of the building, and that they, as far as was possible to discern, had formed a pile, the one on top of another. I fear that the sad remains are those of the Intendent and his guard.
I have inferred from the disposition of the bodies that their fate was not subject to the whims of fortune and that Some Unknown Agency had perpetrated this double crime of arson and murder.
This being so, I thought it fitting to submit to you this preliminary report while further investigations are conducted, and have, accordingly, and without delay despatched the courier who bears this report.

I have the honour to remain, Sire, your most loyal subject and obedient servant,
Joachim Weininger

"Well, Flick?"

"Most inconvenient, Your Highness".

"Inconvenient! Damn it all Flick, if all you can do is mouth inanities, then I must reconsider your suitability as Head of the Secretariat".

"Just so, Your Highness, I do indeed appreciate your concern, but we must, I believe, maintain an appearance of serenity, lest we cause alarm and despondency amongst the underlings. I fear Your Highness' voice has reached a level that is clearly audible outwith this chamber".

"H'mmm... Very well, Flick. So... what do you consider has brought about this miserable state of affairs?"

"Your Highness has indeed the mot juste, a miserable state of affairs. Yes, yes, just so. Your Highness will forgive me, I required just an instant during which I could muster my thoughts. My suspicions must necessarily fall into three separate categories. Primus: This is yet another hostile act by agents of the Elector of Hannunter. Secundus: An attempt, possibly by agents of Bourbon Louis, to disrupt our preparations for the coming campaign. Tertius: An act of destruction by a disaffected subject. Of course Your Highness, it is, despite the good Burgermeister's opinion, still entirely possible that the conflagration was an accident".

"And what, Herr Flick, do you consider to be the most likely of these causes?"

"If Your Highness will permit, I do not, at this time, favour one cause in particular over any of the others. Before I shall be able to refine my suspicions, I needs must, if you... er... if Your Highness will allow, travel to this place... ah, yes, Feldhausen, and examine the scene with my own eyes".

"Very well then, Herr Flick, make it so."

"I shall make my departure within the hour, Your Highness".

Friday, 28 March 2008

The Margraf Airs Some Thoughts

"Herr Flick, I have had some few thoughts to which I wish you give consideration."

"Certainly, Your Highness."

"As you are aware, I have authorised the formation of a Landwehr, and the thought has occurred to me, that once the Volunteers have been trained, they could well provide a source of men for the reinforcement of our Army."

"Very true, Your Highness... But how shall we convince men who have joined the Landwehr, which after all is said and done, is a Home Defence Force, that the life of a Full-Time Soldier, is that which they really desire?"

"Ah, this thought had occurred to me also, Herr Flick. but tell me: Once a volunteer has 'listed into pay, even as a Landwehrman, he has, ipso facto, taken the oath of loyalty to me, my heirs, assigns and successors, has he not?"

"Yes, Your Highness."

"Well then, he can simply be ordered to exchange into a Regiment of the Army, can he not?"

"I am not entirely certain, that in law, this is indeed the case, Your Highness."

"Very well, Herr Flick, but I am sure that there is precedent for such cases. Find it."

"Of course, Your Highness."

"Now, Herr Flick, what progress, if any, have you made in the tracing of the perpetrator of that appalling indiscretion? I want his head on a platter, as did Salome that of John the Baptist."

"Some progress has indeed been made, Your Highness, we have eliminated from our enquiries a wide range of suspects. Our attention is now focused upon Five Gentlemen and I have hopes of a satisfactory conclusion to the investigation within a very short span of time."

"And of how short a span of time do we speak?"

"Your Highness, even as we speak, my Associate, Herr von Smallhausen, is actively pursuing his enquiries, and we have hopes of reaching a resolution within, shall we say, the next two weeks?"

"The next two weeks, Herr Flick? Then make it so".

"Of course, Your Highness".

The Margraf Writes to Generalmajor von Postler

1 January 1701


We have this day decreed the formation of a Body of Landwehr of Horse, Foot and Guns, for the better defence of our homeland while the Army shall be in the Field.

It is our earnest desire that you take upon yourself the burden of command and organisation of this formation. For so doing, this instrument shall be your warrant.

We are to raise fifteen Regimenten of Landwehr Infanterie, Five Regimenten of Landwehr Kavallerie and Six Bataillonen of Landwehr Artillerie. Regimenten shall be locally recruited trusting that in the event of they being required to defend our Homes that the knowledge of their native soil shall assist in the confounding of the designs of Any Enemy.

For the purposes of organisation and administration Landwehr Regimenten shall take the name of the Kreis in which they are raised; ex gratia, "Landwehr Infanterie Regiment Kreuzfeld".

We attach to this letter a copy of the Report of the Proceedings of Our Military Council of the 20th ult, in which you shall see the necessary instructions for the clothing and equipping of the said Landwehr. In addition to the conclusions reached by Our Military Council, we have decided that eligibility for enlistment into the Regimenten of Kavallerie or Bataillonen of Artillerie or Train of Artillerie shall be conditional upon the recruit being in possession of his Own, or having the unrestricted use of Another's, Horse.

Understanding that time for the necessary training of the said recruits is limited and that for the better use of the Landwehr's knowledge of their Home Districts, it is Our Earnest Desire that the Landwehr Kavallerie Regimenten shall be capable of Rapid and Discreet Movement. Therefore, it is Our Desire that priority in the enlistment of Men and Horses into the Kavallerie shall be placed upon those Men and Horses best suited for his employment.

The Artillerie Kompagnieren of the Landwehr shall be equipped with Gunnes of Four Pound Shot Weight. The number of Artillerie Kompagnieren has been decided upon taking into consideration the Quantity of the said Guns available in Our Fortresses and Arsenals.

We Desire that You, Your Officers, Under Officers and Men shall loyally fulfill Your Duties as contained within this Warrant, and that You, Your Officers, Your Under Officers and Men shall straitly obey any Orders and Instructions that shall be given unto you by Lawfully Constituted Authority. Hereof not You, nor any of Your Officers, Under Officers and Men shall fail in their several duties as You and They shall answer for The Contrary at Your Peril

We Desire that you acknowledge the receipt of this letter by the same Hand that delivers it To You.

Believe me &c,


Proclamation of 1 January 1701

Whereas we have decided that improved measures be taken for the better defence of our realm, we do hereby decree the formation of of a Body of Soldiery for the better security of said realm.

The said Body of Troops shall be entitled the Ober Nord Westfalen Landwehr and shall consist of Kavallerie, Infanterie and Artillerie.

The said arms shall be organised each to its own Kreis. Regiments of Foot shall consist each of Three Bataillonen; Regimenten of Kavallerie shall consist each of Four Eskadronen and Bataillonen of Artillerie each of Three Kompagnieren.

Each Bataillon of Infanterie to have an establishment of One Thousand Men. Each Regiment of Kavallerie to have an establishment of Six Hundred and Forty Men. Each Bataillon of Artillerie to have an establishment of Seven Hundred and Twenty Men. Further, each Bataillon of Artillerie shall be supported by a Bataillon of The Train of Artillerie, each of the said Bataillonen to have an establishment of Four Hundred and Eighty Men.

The date of the formation of The Ober Nord Westfalen Landwehr shall be the date of this instrument.

Given under Our Hand at Schloss Neuhaus this First Day of January in the Year of Grace One Thousand Seven Hundred and One.


Tuesday, 25 March 2008

Extract from The Schloss-Neuhaus Allgemeine Zeitung

27 Dezember 1700

Despite the vast amount of work necessitated by current events, we are pleased to be able to report that the Margraf and his household celebrated this anniversary of Our Saviour's Birth by attending Holy Communion in the Parish Church of St Martin. In keeping with the peaceful nature of Our Lord, the lack of military uniforms was, especially given the current circumstances, refreshingly noticeable.

Both the Margraf and his Bride seemed much affected by the solemnity of the occasion, while the Pastor's sermon took for its theme Ephesians 6:17, "Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God," which he eloquently expounded for no less than one and one half hours.

It behooves us all, in these troubled times, to take unto our hearts the words of Holy Scripture and remember that the Brave Men who are to defend our hearths and homes are acting in the belief in One God, who shall defend us all.

Sunday, 23 March 2008

The Aftermath of a Delicate matter

"Aah, that was most satisfactory, Fraulein Helga."

"Thank you, Herr Flick."

"Now, tell me, Fraulein Helga, what progress have you made in inveigling yourself into Herr Artrecht's good graces."

"He is really a most unpleasant man, Herr Flick, my overtures of the purest friendliness have met with the most improper suggestions from him. It seems that there is no likelihood of becoming his confidant unless I meet with those vile suggestions, and that, Herr Flick, I will not do."

"And why not?"

"Because I am not That Sort of Girl!"

"On the contrary, the Events of the last hour would seem to indicate that you are, Fraulein Helga, exactly That Sort of Girl."

"Herr Flick! That is different..."

"Oh, and in what way is it so very different?"

"Because, Herr Flick, I... Well it is just different!"

"Fraulein Helga. It is important that we gain an entrée into this man's affairs. Failure to do so could prove highly inconvenient to my plans. You would not, I am persuaded, wish to inconvenience me, Fraulein Helga?"

"Indeed no, Herr Flick."

"That is only prudent in you Fraulein Helga. Causing me to be inconvenienced could have very... shall we say... unpleasant results."

"Yes, Herr Flick."

"So then, Fraulein Helga, we are agreed. You will do whatever is necessary in order to gain this man's confidence, yes?"

"Yes, Herr Flick."

"Good, you may now get dressed and leave me."

"Yes, Herr Flick."

Saturday, 22 March 2008

von Smallhausen Reports

"Herr Flick, I wish to report upon the progress of the inquiry which you directed me to undertake"

"Very well, von Smallhausen, do so".

"Well, Herr Flick, it is not easy... there is no sure method of discovering whether or not any members of the Council left the Schloss in the two days after the meeting of the 12th of December, except for Obersts Himmelstoss, Beckenbauer, von Raupen, von Winkler and Fleidinger."

"And why, should these two days be so important, von Smallhausen?"

"Because, Herr Flick, the reports in the Hannunter Guardian and the Oldenburger Observer were printed on the 14th of December".

"Ah, very good, von Smallhausen, I was waiting to see if you had noticed that. However, it seems that we have at least five suspects."

"Please, Herr Flick?"

"The five gentlemen whom you have already mentioned."

"But... but they are officers, Herr Flick."

"History, von Smallhausen, is replete with examples of officers who have betrayed their trust."

"But surely, Herr Flick, these officers are to lead their regiments in the campaign to come. It would be foolish of them to place themselves in danger. Besides, Her Flick, all the Obersts can be accounted for. They were all at their Regimental Headquarters, commencing to put matters in hand for the war."

"This may well be the truth, von Smallhausen. But in a case like this, we can take nothing for granted. Renew your investigations; concentrate on the five gentlemen and when you next report to me, I shall expect a full accounting of their movements, deeds and thoughts during those two days."

"But, Herr Flick, unless I question the gentlemen, it will be very difficult."

"Aaah... questioning. That is the part of an investigation that I truly enjoy, but you have some small allowance of truth on your side, von Smallhausen. It would be impolitic to annoy these gentlemen without some evidence to their guilt."

"You think they are all guilty, Herr Flick?"

"An intriguing possibility, von Smallhausen... but, I think not. No, I am certain we are looking for only one traitor. I suggest that you cultivate the young gentlemen of the Regimental staffs, and ascertain whether they can shed any illumination on the actions of their Obersts.

"But, Herr Flick, I do not know any of these officers."

"Then cultivate their acquaintance, von Smallhausen, and discover what you may of the activities of the five gentlemen in question."

"Yes, Herr Flick. But... Herr Flick, how am I to become acquainted with them?"

"I am given to understand that many young officers seek relaxation and consolation at a certain Gasthof, zum Waldener Tor, I believe. The Inhaber there is a thorough-paced rogue, but his bar maids are reputed to be both attractive and compliant. There takes place also, I am informed, games of chance for high stakes. Young officers being young officers, I am persuaded that at least one is in debt, or has compromised his integrity in some fashion. I am convinced, von Smallhausen, that you can immediately perceive the opportunities afforded to you for bribery, subversion or even coercion, under such circumstances."

"Yes, Herr Flick."

Also, von Smallhausen, you might enquire at the Schloss stables, and the town's livery stables in order to ascertain whether any body borrowed or hired a horse for a period long enough to ride to Oldenburg and Back. Now, leave me, von Smallhausen, I have matters of a delicate nature to which I must attend."

"Yes, Herr Flick."

Friday, 21 March 2008

An Extract from the Proceeding's of The Margraf's Miltary Council

20 Dezember 1700

Markgraf: "Herren, guter Morgen. Gerade zum Geschäft, wenn Sie bitte, wir Zeit haben, Nachrichten zu einem späteren Zeitpunkt miteinander achtzugeben. Erstens bedauere ich, Sie zu informieren, daß es ein schrechlich Niveau der Indiskretion gegeben hat, verübt, ich werden verbunden zu schließen, von einem Mitglied dieses Rates. Innerhalb einiger Tage des Verkündens meiner Entscheidung, um seine imperiale Majestät zu stützen, finde ich Reports dieser Entscheidung, die im Oldenburger Beobachter und ein dünn Hinweis auf unseren Plänen gedruckt wird, die im Hannunter Wächter gedruckt werden! Ich bin mißfallen. Angelegenheiten sind in Zug eingesetzt worden, um eine Untersuchung durchzuführen und den Angeklagten zu kennzeichnen.
Zweitens erlauben Herren, mir, Ihnen Oberst-Leutnant Freiherr Richard Wetherby des Dienst seiner Britannic Majestät darzustellen. Oberst Wetherby spricht passierbares Deutsches und soll zu meiner Suite für die Zwecke des Behebens Schwierigkeiten aller möglicher angebracht werden, die aus unserer Mitarbeit mit unseren britischen Verbündeten entstehen können. Ich bin sicher, daß Sie mich im glühenden Wunsch verbinden und in Richtung zum Sicherstellen arbeiten werden, daß das gute Oberst unterbeschäftigt ist.

Nun Herren, benötigen wir müssen die aufgeworfene Frage des Versorgungsmaterials für die kommende Kampagne adressieren - für gekommen ihm müssen Sie sicher. Ich werde gegeben, um zu verstehen, daß wir, bis zum März 1, in der Lage sind, genügendes Korn für Mann anzusammeln und Tier während einer Periode von sechs Wochen dauern. Und bis zum diesem Datum hat es in unseren Arsenalen angesammelt. Alles dieses ist sehr gut und, Herren gutes, aber Zuteilungen dienen keinen guten Zweck, der in den Stapel im Lagerhaus sitzt. Wir benötigen zur rechten Zeit, um sie zu liefern, wo sie das beste tun. Daß, Herren, auch am Puder und - und mit dem geschossen wir zutrifft, leider, sind, eher weniger wohle geliefert. Jedoch habe ich Angelegenheiten in der Bewegung in der Hoffnung eingestellt, daß wir nicht dem Mangel an solchen Wesensmerkmalen glauben. Dort steht jedoch die Frage des Verschiebens dieser Versorgungsmaterialien. Ich werde durch das Landrat informiert, das nehmen genügende Lastwagen und Karren von der Bürgerschaft verursachen echte Schwierigkeiten für das Errichten und die Wachsen von Jahreszeiten, mit Konsequenzen für die Ernte und für Handel, die zu schrechlich sind, erwägt. Dementsprechend wünsche ich, daß Sie zwischen beraten und nach den wirkungsvollsten Mitteln entscheiden, und in der Tat das beste Design für einen Träger, der gut zu unseren Anforderungen entsprochen wird. Ich lasse ihn sich kümmern, um ein militärisches Transportkorps herzustellen, das alleinige Aufgabe der Wagen unserer Versorgungsmaterialien aller Arten ist.

Jetzt Herren, lassen uns unsere Aufmerksamkeit zur Frage des Schutzes unserer Heimaten drehen, während wir am Krieg sind. Ich habe, sehr sorgfältig betrachtet, zu dem die Angelegenheiten Sie meine Aufmerksamkeit während unserer letzten Sitzung achtgaben. Ich stimme darin überein, daß ein ungeschultes landwehr als unbrauchbar fast schlechter sein könnte. Folglich habe ich angenommen und erweitert in der Tat nach Herr Major Seidls. Um meine Entscheidung zu bewirken, geht jede Kompagnie jedes Bataillons an seinen guten Männern des Depots dreißig, durch ein fähiges Hauptman befohlen zu werden und durch zwei gute unteroffizieren unterstützt zu werden. Diese zweihundert und vierzig Männer von jedem Regiment werden zuerst von einem Major meiner Vorwähler befohlen und den Kern eines dritten bataillon für jedes Regiment bilden. Diese bataillons, zusätzlich zum Einziehen und zu den Zugwiedereinbauen für die Regimente, führen auch die Aufgaben der Anweisung für das landwehr durch. So Herren, muß ich Sie warnen, daß jeder möglicher Versuch von seiten der Regimentskommandanten, hinter das zweifelhafte, der Durchhang zu gehen, der wirkungslose Wille herauf ihre Köpfe meinen ernstesten Verdruß senken.

Jetzt hinsichtlich des Ausrüstens des landwehr, verstehe ich, daß es gibt, und Wille während einiger Zeit, bin ein Mangel an gute Musketen. Infolgedessen wird das landwehr bewaffnet und ausgerüstet, wie sie während des letzten Alters waren. Das heißt, wird Drittel mit den Spiessen und zwei an dritter Stelle bewaffnet, die, mit Musketen bewaffnet werden. Wir liefern natürlich da viele Hund-Verriegelung Musketen, wie möglich, aber, wo Vorräte an diesen Waffen unzulänglich sind, dann das landwehr benutzen die matchlock Musketen, denen es die reichlichen restlichen Vorräte an gibt. Es gibt ein ähnliches Defizit der Uniformen, die für das landwehr vorhanden sind. Folglich werden sie mit Kitteln des Landwirts, im Grau herausgegeben, und jede einzelner Wille versehen sich mit einem weißen Armband, nach dem zu markiertem ist, vorzugsweise im Stickerei - ich denke, daß ich die rechte Bezeichnung habe - das bataillon, dem er gehört. Herr Flick hat Aufträge, die er am Ende der Sitzung, der Vertretung die durch verteilt die jeweiligen Städte versorgt zu werden bataillons, und der Bezirke. Jeder Freiwilliger versieht sich auch mit einem Hut, zu dem, geregeltes zu sein Band-beugten in den nationalen Farben ist. Diese Hüte sport militärische Flechte nicht unter irgendwelchen Umständen.

Der Punkt über ein unbezahltes landwehr ist auch genommen wohles. Ich habe entschieden, daß jeder Freiwilliger zahlendes zweidrittel einer Bezahlung der Soldaten für jeden Tag ist, an dem er ausbildet. Diese Rate ist erhöhte vollständig Armebezahlung, wenn um das landwehr ersucht wird, um seine entscheidende Funktion zu füllen. Herr Flick verteilt jetzt Ihre Aufträge. Herren, sind über Ihr Geschäft - wir haben nicht eine Minute, zum zu verlieren.

20 December 1700

Markgraf: "Gentlemen, good morning. Straight to business if you please, we will have time to advert to each other's news at a later date. Firstly, I regret to inform you that there has been a shocking level of indiscretion, perpetrated, I am obliged to infer, by a member of this council. Within a few days of announcing my decision to support His Imperial Majesty, I find reports of that decision printed in the Oldenburger Beobachter and a thinly-veiled reference to our plans printed in the Hannunter Guardian! I am most displeased. Matters have been put in train to carry out an investigation and identify the culprit.

Secondly, gentlemen, allow me to present to you Oberst Freiherr Richard Wetherby of His Britannic Majesty's service. Oberst Wetherby speaks passable German, and is to be attached to my suite for the purposes of resolving any dificulties that may arise from our co-operation with our British allies. I am sure you join me in the fervent desire, and will work towards ensuring that the good Oberst is underemployed.

Now, gentlemen, we needs must address the vexed question of supply for the coming campaign - for come it surely must. I am given to understand that we will, by 1 March, be able to amass sufficient grain for both man and beast to last for a period of six weeks. And by that date it will have accumulated in our arsenals. This is all very well and good, gentlemen, but rations will serve no good purpose sitting in piles in the storehouse. We will, in due course, require to deliver them where they will do the most good. That, gentlemen, also applies to powder and shot - and with that we are, alas, rather less well supplied. However, I have set matters in motion in the hope that we will not feel the lack of such essentials. There remains, however, the question of moving these supplies. I am informed by the Landrat, that to commandeer sufficient wagons and carts from the citizenry will cause genuine difficulties for the planting and growing seasons, with consequences for the harvest and for trade that are too horrible to contemplate. Accordingly, I desire that you consult between yourselves and decide upon the most effective means, and indeed the best design for a vehicle best suited to our requirements. I have it mind to establish a military transport corps, who sole duty will be the carriage of our supplies of all kinds.

Now gentlemen, let us turn our attention to the question of the protection of our homeland while we are at war. I have considered, very carefully, the matters to which you adverted my attention during our last meeting. I agree that an untrained landwehr could be almost worse than useless. Therefore, I have adopted, and indeed expanded upon Herr Major Seidl's suggestion. To effect my decision, each company of each battalion will leave at its depot thirty good men, to be commanded by an able Hauptman and assisted by two good unteroffiziers. These two hundred and forty men from each regiment will, initially, be commanded by a Major of my selection, and will form the nucleus of a third bataillon for each regiment. These bataillons, in addition to recruiting and train replacements for the regiments, will also perform the duties of instruction for the landwehr. So, gentlemen, I must warn you that any attempt on the part of Regimental Commanders, to leave behind the doubtful, the slack, the inefficient will bring down up their heads my gravest displeasure.

Now, as to equipping the landwehr, I understand that there is, and will for some time, be a shortage of good muskets. Consequently, the landwehr will be armed and equipped as they were during the last age. That is, one third will be armed with pikes, and two thirds armed with muskets. We will, naturally, supply as many dog-lock muskets as possible, but where stocks of these weapons are insufficient, then the landwehr will use the matchlock muskets of which there are ample stocks remaining. There is a similar shortfall of uniforms available for the landwehr. Therefore, they will be issued with farmer's smocks, in grey, and each individual will provide himself with a white armband, upon which is to marked, preferably in needle-point - I think I have the right term - the bataillon to which he belongs. Herr Flick has orders, which he will distribute at the end of the meeting, showing the bataillons to be furnished by the respective towns and districts. Each volunteer will also provide himself with a hat, to which is to be fixed a ribbon-bow in the national colours. These hats will not sport military braid under any circumstances.

The point about an unpaid landwehr is also well taken. I have decided that each volunteer will be paid two-thirds of a soldiers' pay for each day on which he trains. That rate will be increased to the full army pay if the landwehr shall be called upon to fill its ultimate function. Herr Flick will now distribute your orders. Gentlemen, be about your business - we have not a minute to lose.

Wednesday, 19 March 2008

The Plot Thickens

20 December 1700

"Fraulein Helga, you are, I believe an intimate of Rheinhardt Artrecht at Zum Waldener Tor?"

"No, Herr Flick".

"Do not prevaricate, Fraulein Helga. You have prevailed yourself of his hospitality in the past; this I know".

"Well, yes, Herr Flick. But it would not be true to say that we were on friendly terms ."

"Then you must become on friendly terms."

"But, why, Herr Flick?"

"For the moment, Fraulein Helga, it is sufficient for you to know that I desire that this happy state of affairs should be so."

"But, Herr Flick..."

"Enough, Helga. I have made my decision. You would not wish to disappoint my hopes, I know."

"No, Herr Flick."

"Very well, let it be as I desire."

"Yes, Herr Flick."

Tuesday, 18 March 2008

Herr Otto Flick and the indiscretion

17 December 1700

" I have never seen the Margraf so angry. Indeed, I was slightly vexed, myself. It seems we have either a spy, or at least a loose lip among the members of the council. I wonder if that prosy little pipsqueak Seidl has been indiscreet. It would suit me if it were he. However, His Highness has requested that I investigate this matter, and, if possible, to discover the guilty party. But, I also have other matters concerning his Highness' business to which I must attend, therefore I am giving you the chance to prove that you are of some small use - You von Smallhausen, will find the perpetrator of this outrage! "

"But, but... Herr Flick.."

"Of course, von Smallhausen, if you feel that this trifling matter is beyond your capabilities, I still need a messenger to go to Potsdam. Perhaps, von Smallhausen, an errand boy is more your metier? You would prefer, perhaps, to go to Potsdam?"

"No, Herr Flick".

"Good, then the matter is settled. You will find out who is responsible for this appalling state of affairs, and I will send Someone Else with the message to Potsdam".

Sunday, 16 March 2008

Extract from "Der Wächter"

14 December 1700

"It seems that even Portia's youthful charms are not enough to keep Ludwig safe indoors. He has a new toy and is taking it out to play with the big boys. Let us hope that he doesn't get it broken and come running home in tears."

Taken from "Der Oldenburger Beobachter"

14 December 1700

We learn from impeccable sources close to the Margraf, that our arrogant Northern Neighbours have seen fit to join the arguments of their betters. This being so, then the logical route for them to take to join forces with our Noble Allies will take them across the Western Parts of our Beloved Elector's realm. It is our understanding that the Margraf's Ravaging Hordes will be on the move in the imminent future!
It behooves us to warn the Honest Burghers of Those Parts that our Neighbours are likely to prove rapacious beyond all belief, and that our Honest Burghers should lock up their houses, shops, barns and daughters.
We also warn the Margraf and his minions that all depredations must and shall be paid for!
We also hope that our Beloved Elector will take all measures necessary to defend the sanctity of our Borders.

An Extract from the Proceeding's of The Margrf's Miltary Council

15. Dezember 1700

Oberst Grüber: " Hoheit, habe ich viel Gedanken, nicht nur zur Vorbereitung der Armee für Krieg gegeben, aber was ist, hier in Ober Nord Westfalen während unserer Abwesenheit zu geschehen? Ihre Aufträge lassen keinen Zweifel, den alle neun Bataillone, beide Regimente des Pferds und die Dragoner marschieren sollen. Ich habe keinen Zweifel, dass wir alle versammeln sollten, denen wir, im Auftrag beide können unsere Verbündeten beeindrucken, und eines bedeutenden Beitrags zum Kaiser auch zu bilden; Ursache., aber die Situation muss zu Hause betrachtet werden. Unsere Nachbarn zum Norden behaupten ihre lächerlichen Ansprüche zum NordKreis wieder, während das Guelphs und ihre Günstlinge fortfahren, eine Beeinträchtigung von selbst zu bilden auf unserem westlichen Südrand. Mag ich fragen, ob Ihre Hoheit irgendwelche Vorkehrungen für die Sicherheit unseres Vaterlandes getroffen hat, während wir weg sind? "

Margraf: " In der Tat habe ich diese Sache mit ihr beraten über... , mit anderen Interessenten und mir haben Sie einige vorgeschlagen, die jetzt ich der Gelegenheit, vor Ihnen zu legen nehme. Erstens, gibt es die Wahl von einem Landwehr oder Landsturm; dieses würde eine freiwillige Kraft sein, die bewaffnet wurde und von unseren Arsenalen uniformiert. Zu eingezogen werden während unter Armen aber nicht zahlend. Zu in den Bataillonen organisiert werden gegründet worden nach ihren Heimatstädten oder Bezirken und von ihren eigenen Hauptbürgern geführt. Zweitens das Anheben einer Polizei, von den Männern des guten Renommees eingezogen werden, die genug jung sind, physikalisch gepasst zu werden, aber alt genug, um bürgerlicher Verantwortlichkeit zu glauben, und ein vollständiges Wissen ihrer Bezirke und ihrer Einwohner zu haben. Drittens das Anheben einer Kraft der Grenzwachen. Diese sind, bewaffnet und uniformiert zu sein, aber sind nicht, ein Teil der Armee zu sein. Betrachten Sie diese Wahlen gut, MeinenHerren und wenn irgendwelche von Ihnen irgendwelche anderen Vorschläge haben, seien Sie ich hört zu ihnen sicherlich.

[Dort gefolgt ein Zeitraum von ca. fünfzehn Minuten, während deren verschiedene Gesichtspunkte frei und aufrichtig ausgetauscht wurden. Als die Diskussion den Punkt des persönlichen Missbrauches erreichte, das Margraf, das die Sitzung, um zu bestellen genannt wurde]

Margraf: " Herren, Herren! Genug, wenn Sie bitte. Haben Sie irgendwelche von Ihnen, alles, das zum anzubieten erheblich ist, oder sollen alle wir zum Spielplatz erlöschen? "

Herr Flick: " Unser, denke ich, dass ich für alle spreche , Entschuldigungen, Hoheite. Ich muss Sie bitten, uns zu entschuldigen, werden die meisten meinen Kollegen hier Ihre Armee begleiten und verständlich besorgt über der Aussicht des Überlassens der Häuser und geliebte die zarten Gnaden unserer traditionellen Feinde sind. Ich denke, dass wir ein oder zwei Vorschläge haben, die wir riskieren können, um vor Sie, zu legen."

Margraf: " Auf jeden Fall tut Herr Flick, bitte so".

Herr Flick: " Meine Militärkollegen sind in den meisten Fällen zugunsten der Idee von einem Landwehr, aber haben einige Vorbehalte betreffend den Antrag. Erstens bezweifeln sie, ob genügende unbezahlte Freiwilliger angehoben werden können, um die Kraft entwicklungsfähig zu bilden. Zweitens nimmt sie Zeit und Betriebsmittel, von denen keinen wir einen Überschuss haben, diese Männer auszubilden, damit er zu einem Feind als zu selbst gefährlicher werden Sie. damit, während, langfristig ein Landwehr, ein richtig ausgebildetes und ausgerüstetes Landwehr, eine gute Sache sind, es etwas beträchtliche Abneigung gibt, zum der Belastung der Verteidigung unseres geliebten Landes auf solche ungeschulten Schultern völlig zu setzen. Hinsichtlich der Frage einer nationalen Polizei, ist die auch eine Idee, die gut empfangen ist, aber wieder gibt es die Frage der Zeit erforderte Vorwähler - Ihre Anforderungen sind kein Zweifel vom höchsten - Verstärkung und Training. Unsere Stadtuhren dienen gut genug zum Zweck der Rechtschaffenheit, aber viele ihrer Mitglieder sind hinter dem Alter des Militärdienstes, in der Tat viele von ihnen sind Veterane des späten Krieges. Die selben können von vielen Ihrer Zollbeamter gesagt werden, von denen wir voraussetzen, dass Sie beabsichtigen, die Grenzwachen einzuziehen? "

Margraf: " Brunnen folgerte, Herr Flick. Sie haben uns ein redegewandtes und starkes Argument für das Handeln nichts gegeben! Ihre Ansichten sind erbärmlich Negativ, haben Sie, alles, das zum hinzuzufügen positiv ist, oder sind Sie, zum der Rolle eines Prophets des Schicksals bloß zu spielen? "

Herr Flick: " In der Tat nein, Hoheit. Oberst von Winkler, vorgeschlagen hat… "

Margraf: " Sehr gut. Oberset vonWinkler… Ihre Ideen, bitte."

von Winkler: " Gut Ihre Hoheit, wenn wir ein ungeschultes Landwehr anheben sollen. Dann müssen wir sie ausbilden".

Margraf: " Mein lieber Oberst, haben Sie ein positives Talent für das offensichtliche kraß. angeben".

von Winkler: " Äh ja danke, ich denken, Ihre Hoheit. Aber ist mein Punkt, wenn die Armee in vollem Umfang marschieren soll, Sie, ich bedeuten uns, muss Vorkehrungen treffen, damit andere das Landwehr für uns ausbilden. Wir. , ja könnten wir, um Unterstützung von unseren Verbündeten Braunschweig oder Preusse bitten, uns ein Regiment oder sogar ein Bataillon, unter erfahrenen Offizieren zu verleihen, um unser Landwehr auszubilden".

Margraf: " Danke, aber nach Betrachtung, denke ich nicht. Ich habe den größten Respekt für die Leistungsfähigkeit der Kräfte unserer Vetter von Braunschweig und von Preusse, aber ihre Aufzeichnung der Führung in den fremden Zuständen ist nicht alle, die sie könnte."

Major Seidl: "Wenn Ihre Hoheit ermöglicht? Herren, meine Entschuldigungen für das Brechen innen nach der Diskussion über meine Älteren, aber möglicherweise meine eigenen Gedanken können zu den Gruppen etwas wenig Verdienst prüfen. Hoheit, trotz Ihrer Aufträge, damit die gesamte Armee, denn folgert marschiert, also offensichtlich beleidige ich unsere Kollektivintelligenz nicht, indem ich sie, dort reiteriere, kein Zweifel bin einige Einzelpersonen von jedem Bataillon oder von Regiment, die, aus verschiedenen Gründen, nicht imstande sind zu marschieren. Gewöhnlich würde ich lasse sie entladen werden sagen, aber in diesem Fall denke ich, dass wir rentablen Gebrauch von ihnen bilden können. Lassen Sie sie in kleine Maßeinheiten von sagen wir zwölf zu zu Zwanzig Einzelpersonen, unter einem guten Unteroffizier organisiert werden, und liefern Sie sie an den verschiedenen Mitten aus, in denen Sie beabsichtigen, die Landwehr Bataillone zu setzen. Zweitens und dieser Gedanke ist gerade zu mir, obgleich allmächtiger Gott, setzt sicher seins überreichen uns aufgetreten, werden wir, wenn es kommt zu kämpfen, verlieren Männer. Diese Männer müssen ersetzt werden. Lassen Sie den Kranken, alteres und lahmer Neuzugang an und bilden Sie diese Wiedereinbaue aus, bis sie in der Lage sind zu marschieren und die Armee im feld zu verbinden"

Margraf: "Brunnen gesprochen, Herr Major. Ihre Ideen haben etwas Verdienst. Wurde irgendwelche von Ihnen, Herren interessieren sich Durchlauf kommentieren? "

Oberst Himmelstoss: " Exzellenz, das Grundidee der Major ist, aber gut, wenn die, die wir zurücklassen, ist die, die ungeeignet sind zu marschieren, die, zu sagen ist, dass ihnen genug gepasst werden, zum auszubilden, oder sogar ist ein Beispiel zu, zu dem die Neuzugänge wir sie betrauen? "

Margraf: " Zutreffend, zutreffend, sehr zutreffend. Wir werden, jedoch Notwendigkeitswiedereinbaue. Wenn mein Gedächtnis mich gut dient, nicht nur lassen wir jene Unfall durch Kampf verursachen, aber wir verlieren auch die schwächeren Einzelpersonen durch Ermüdung auf dem Marsch, sowie, Gott verteidigen uns, die Erscheinung des Lagerfiebers. Ich betrachte Ihre Anträge, Herren und verkünde meine Entscheidung bei unserer folgenden Sitzung an betrachte ich denke, die zwanzigste? Herren, werden Sie entlassen. Herr Flick, ein Moment, wenn Sie bitte."

15 December 1700

Oberst Grüber:"Highness, I have given much thought, not only to the preparation of the army for war, but what is to happen here in Ober Nord Westfalen during our absence? Your orders leave no doubt that all nine battalions, both Regiments of Horse and the Dragoons are to march. I have no doubt that we should muster all that we can, in order both to impress our allies, and also to make a significant contribution to the Emperor's cause., but the situation at home needs to be considered. Our neighbours to the North are re-asserting their ridiculous claims to the Northern Kreis, while the Guelphs and their minions continue to make a nuisance of themselves on our South Western Border. May I ask whether Your Highness has made any provision for the security of our homeland while we are away?"

Margraf: "Indeed, I have discussed this matter with Her.., with other interested parties, and I have some suggestiions, which I now take the opportunity to lay before you. Firstly, there is the option of a Landwehr, or Landsturm; this would be a volunteer force, armed and uniformed from our arsenals. to be fed while under arms but not paid. To be organised in battalions based upon their home towns or districts and led by their own chief citizens. Secondly, the raising of a constabulary, to be recruited from men of good reputation, who are young enough to be physically fit, but old enough to feel civic responsibility, and to have a thorough knowledge of their districts and their inhabitants. Thirdly, the raising of a force of Border Guards. These are to be armed and uniformed, but are not to be a part of the army. Consider these options well, gentlmen, and if any of you have any other suggestions, be assured I will listen to them.

[There followed a period of some fifteen minutes during which various points of view were freely and frankly exchanged. When the discussion descended to the point of personal abuse the Margraf called the meeting to order]

Margraf: "Gentlemen, gentlemen! Enough, if you please. Have any of you anything substantial to offer, or shall we all go out to the playground?"

Herr Flick: "Our, I think I speak for all, apologies, Highness. I must ask you to excuse us, most of my colleagues here will be accompanying your army and are understandably anxious over the prospect of leaving homes and loved ones to the tender mercies of our traditional foes. I think we have one or two suggestions that we may venture to lay before you."

Margraf: "By all means, Herr Flick, please do so".

Flick: "My military colleagues are, for the most part, in favour of the idea of a Landwehr, but have some reservations regarding the proposal. Firstly, they doubt whether sufficient unpaid volunteers can be raised to make the force viable. Secondly, it will take time and resources, neither of which we have a surplus, to train these men so that they become more dangerous to an enemy than to themselves. so that while, in the long term a Landwehr, a properly trained and equipped Landwehr, will be a Good Thing, there is some considerable reluctance to place the burden of the defence of our beloved country entirely on such untrained shoulders. As to the question of a national constabulary, that too is an idea that is well received, but again there is the question of time required, selection - your standards are no doubt of the highest - recruitment and training. Our town watches serve well enough for the purposes of probity, but many of their members are past the age of military service, indeed many of them are veterans of the late war. The same can be said of many of your Customs officers, from whom we presume you intend to recruit the Border Guards?"

Margraf: "Well reasoned, Herr Flick. You have given Us an eloquent and forceful argument for doing nothing! Your views are depressingly negative, have you anything positive to add, or are you to play merely the part of a prophet of doom?"

Flick: "Indeed, no, Highness. Oberst von Winkler, has suggested..."

Margraf: "Very well. Oberset vonWinkler... your ideas, please."

von Winkler: "Well, Your Highness, if we are to raise an untrained Landwehr. Then we must train them".

Margraf: "My dear Oberst, you have a positive talent for stating the blindingly obvious."

von Winkler: "Er, yes, thank you, I think, Your Highness. No, my point is, if the army is to march in its entirety, you, I mean we, must make arrangements for others to train the Landwehr for us. We.., yes we, could ask for assistance from our allies Braunschweig or Preusse, to lend us a regiment, or even a battalion, under experienced officers to train our Landwehr".

Margraf: "Thank you, but upon consideration, I think not. I have the greatest respect for the efficiency of the forces of Our cousins of Braunschweig and Preusse, but their record of conduct in foreign states is not all that it could be."

Major Seidl: If Your Highness will permit? Gentlemen, my apologies for breaking in upon the discussion of my seniors, but perhaps my own thoughts may prove to posses some little merit.
Highness, despite your orders for the entire army to march, for reasons so apparent I will not insult our collective intelligence by reiterating them, there will no doubt be some individuals from each battalion or regiment, who are, for various reasons, unable to march. Ordinarily, I would say let them be discharged, but in this case I think we can make profitable use of them. Let them be organised into small units of, say, twelve to to twenty individuals, under a good Sergeant, and despatch them to the various centres where you intend to place the Landwehr battalions. Secondly, and this thought has just occurred to me, although Almighty God, will surely place his hand over us, we will, if it comes to battle, lose men. These men will need to be replaced. Let the sick, halt and lame recruit and train these replacements until they are able to march and join the army in the field."

Margraf: "Well spoken, Major. Your ideas have some merit. Would any of you gentlemen care to pass comment?"

Oberst Himmelstoss: "Excellency, the major's basic idea is good, but if those we leave behind are those unfit to march, who is to say that they will be fit enough to train, or even be an example to, the recruits to whom we entrust them?"

Margraf: "True, true, very true. We will, however need replacements. If my memory serves me well, not only will we have those casualties caused by battle, but we will also lose the weaker individuals through fatigue on the march, as well as, God defend us, the spectre of camp-fever. I will consider your proposals gentlemen, and will announce my decision at our next meeting, on, I think, the twentieth? Gentlemen, you are dismissed. Herr Flick, a moment, if you please."

Friday, 14 March 2008

An extract from the Proccedings of the Margraf's Military Council

12 December 1700

Margraf Albrecht: "Herren, berücksichtigen wir alle die falschen Ansprüche, die durch den Bourbon Louis von Frankreich gebildet werden. Ich habe die Umstände, sehr sorgfältig gewogen, und ich muß Sie informieren, daß ich entschieden habe, seine imperiale Majestät gegen den französischen Heuchler zu stützen. Meine Gründe für so tun sind erstens es ist die Aufgabe aller loyalen Themen vielfältig, zum des Kaisers zu unterstützen. Zweitens wenn Louis seinen Ehrgeiz zufriedenstellt, ist die gesamte Gezeitenzone des Kontinentes unter seiner Hegemonie, von den Straßen von Gibraltar Deutschen zu Sea. Drittens, seit der Rücknahme des Erlasses von Nantes, wir haben bewilligt Schutz und Häuser zu vielen unserer Gefährteprotestanten aus diesem unglücklichen Land, sollten wir in unserer christlichen Aufgabe dann ausfallen, wenn wir jetzt sich mit ihrem persecutor verbinden sollten.

Ich beachte, daß unsere Position hervorquellen kann führen uns in die Grausigkeiten des Krieges und daß so seiend und wir seiend zu schwach, alleine zu stehen, ich Kuriere zum englischen Herzog Marlbroog geschickt haben und angeboten, unsere Armee zu setzen, klein, während es ist, unter seinem Befehl für den kommenden Konflikt. Herren, diese Entscheidung ist genommen worden und ist, anders als den Erlaß von Nantes, unwiderruflich - ich wurde nicht, für alle Liebe, irgendwelche mich mit Louis von Frankreich vergleichen zu lassen. Folglich lassen Herren, uns entscheiden jetzt die beste Weise, in der wir unsere Absichten durchführen können.


Margraf Albrecht: "Gentlemen, we are all aware of the false claims made by the Bourbon Louis of France. I have weighed the circumstances, very carefully, and I must inform you that I have decided to support his Imperial Majesty against the French Pretender. My reasons for so doing are manifold, firstly, it is the duty of all loyal subjects to aid the Emperor. Secondly, if Louis should gratify his ambitions, the entire littoral of the continent will be under his hegemony, from the Straits of Gibraltar to the German Sea. Thirdly, since the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes, we have granted refuge and homes to many of our co-religionists from that unhappy country, we should then be failing in our Christian duty if we were now to ally ourselves with their persecutor.
I am aware that our stance may well lead us into the Horrors of War, and that being so and we being too weak to stand alone, I have despatched Messengers to the English Herzog Marlbroog, offering to place our army, small as it is, under his command for the coming conflict.
Gentlemen, this decision has been taken and is, unlike the Edict of Nantes, irrevocable - I would not, for all love, have any compare me to Louis of France. Therefore, Gentlemen, let us now decide the best manner in which we may execute our intentions."

A letter to his wife, in which he tells of the war to come

To My Wife,

Today I set pen to paper to bring you news from Schloss Neuhaus. As you are aware, I have the honour to be a member of the Margraf's Military Council. I tell you IN STRICTEST CONFIDENCE, that the Markgraf has taken the decision to support the Emperor in his current dispute with the Bourbon Louis XIV.

Accordingly, the army marches as soon as may be to join the Forces under the Command of the English General Marbrau. I shall command the second Regiment of Infantry, and as Much Needs To Be Done 'ere we depart, I shall not have the time to seek your embrace.

This being so, I desire you to pack four shirts, two pairs of boots, my second wig, and two hats and send them to me at Schloss Neuhaus without delay. They should travel in my light coach under the escort of Gunther and he is to be accompanied by Wilhelm Stultz, groom, who should bring with him Blue Devil and the bay gelding. I may obtain other necessarie either here or in Oldenburg.

Forgive me for sending you such a brief missive, but as I say, time is pressing upon me. Be assured however, that I am still, as always,

Your most devoted and affectionate husband,

Franz Himmelstoss,
Oberst der Infanterie
Schloss Neuhaus, 12th December 1700


Ober Nord Westfalen is turning (has turned ) into a rationale. So, for news of the goings on in Ober Nord Westfalen, come here and read the Schloss Neuhaus Allgemeine Zeitung!