Sunday, June 30, 2013

Prussian Artillery, 1813

    In the wake of the drastic reduction in the strength of the Pussian Army resulting form the treaty of Tilsit in 1807, the Prussian army's artillery was reorganized into three "brigades", each to have a strength of 12 Foot and 3 Horse batteries. In terms of uniforms, the brigades were distinguished by the color of the shoulder straps - Prussian Brigade - white, Brandenburg Brigade - red, and Silesian Brigade - yellow. The Guard 6# Foot and Horse batteries both belonged to the Brandenburg brigade. In 1814, these distinctions were discontinued, and all batteries had red shoulder straps thereafter... at least on paper!

    Thus, the army maintained a fairly high Artillery contingent compared with the Infantry and Cava;ry establishments. Doubtless that was in part due to the technical nature of the Artillery service. By August 1813, there were six 12 lber batteries, one Howitzer battery, one 3 pounder Foot battery, twelve 6 lber Horse batteries, and thirty 6 lber Foot batteries. Of these eight were Landwehr batteries, all 6lber foot batteries except one 6 lber horse battery. Prussian batteries ordinarily consisted of six guns and two howitzers.

A pair of Prussian 12 lber batteries; one Calpe (with Calpe guns), and the other Old Glory (with Sash and Saber guns).

The Calpe unit is ti the front here; it was painted 10 years ago, while the Old Glory battery was just finished last night!

In this shot, the Old Glory Battery is to the left of the picture. 

This is a pair of Old Glory 6lber foot batteries, with Old Glory guns, once again painted about 10 years ago. 

The Old Glory guns run rather small , although these Prussian pieces are better than some of the others. I use the excellent Sash and Saber guns whenever possible now. 

Left overs from Old Glory Prussian Dragoon packs painted as mounted horse artillery...

equipped with Old Glory guns once again.

The dark "Prussian blue" sharaques are in evidence; the fellow on the grey is painted as a Trumpeter (note the "wings", for all artillery musicians, these should actually be black with white lace (yellow lace for the Guard units).

Here is a newly painted Prussian 6lber foot battery with Old Glory crew and Sash and Saber guns. The belts and other leather equipment were black for all Foot batteries. 

The foot artillery jackets had black collars and cuffs, piped in red, 

The turnbacks were solid red for the Foot artillery. Grey pants with black gaiters complete the uniform.

This is a Guard 6lber Horse Artillery battery. If the shakos were uncovered, they would have a yellow band on the top (in place of the white of the line batteries), a Guard star on the front of the shako, and for Parade use, a white"Busch" plume.

Alas, no one I know of makes such a figure, so the only clues as to this unit's Guard status are the yellow litzen on the collars and cuffs...

and the Guard star on the cartridge boxes.

These distinctions being rather subtle, I took a little liberty and pained the woodwork on their tools a light blue color to match the carriage color to make the Guard units stand out a bit more.

Here is a pair of Prussian Horse Artillery batteries with all the gunners dismounted for action, once again using Old Gory crew and Sash and Saber guns. 

In contrast to the Foot Artillery, Horse Artillery had white belts in stead of black, 

The turnbacks on the jacket (when worn instead of the Litewka coat, which was authorized as an option for Horse Artillery starting in 1809) were dark blue with a border of black velevet piped in red. 

The horse artillery also wore Cavalry overalls, with red [piping and brass buttons on the outer seams. 

This 6lber Foot battery is painted as a Guard unit. Once again, the covered shako obscures most of the Guard distinctions, which were the same as for the Guard Horse Battery.

The yellow litzen is barely visible. 

Once again I have painted the wood of the artillery tools light blue to help the Guard unit to be more readily identifiable; once again, in parade dress, a black Busch plume would also be worn.  the saddle blankets of Guard officers had silver Guard star emblems in the corners. 

A couple of spare OG artillery officers were used to make an Artillery Commander stand .

The cocked hat was an option for Artillery officers; when worn it had a black plume for Foot Artillery, and mixed black and white for Horse Artillery officers. Like all Prussian officers, a mixed silver and black sash was also worn.

Artillery NCO's had gold lace edging to their collars and cuffs (not shown).

This brings the total for the Prussian artillery arm of my forces top ten batteries (although I am short six 6# tubes still, which I may pick up from Sash and Saber at Historicon).



  1. Nice models. The Calpe figures look very nice. Completely agree with you regarding Sash and Saber guns. I have several of the French guns and they are both BIG and BEAUTIFUL.

  2. Sash and Saber are definitely my "go to" models for most Continental artillery pieces!

  3. A lot of wonderful guns and crews...

  4. Very good post; I will be adding to my Prussian artillery before the end of the year and this will be very helpful.
    In the past week I've finished the last three Austrian Insurrection infantry units I need for Raab and used this blog as my main reference.

    1. Thanks, Mike!

      The Insurrectio are kind of fun to ad to the Austrian Army even if they saw only limited service (chiefly Raab, and a few minor actions in Hungary.

      What did you use for figures?

  5. Nice looking unit, like the basing as well. I think I have 6 Calpe guns left to paint. I will get there. Nothing like a nice array of guns.


    1. To paraphrase my friend Gavin, Nothing says "I don't love you" like a nice big row of guns shooting at you; says it all, really.

  6. Replies
    1. Yeah, they should probably be a somewhat more grey-ish hue, but hey, you only live once! :-)

  7. Interesting the way you make your artillery bases. Usually these are made to fit the guns
    Nice models and painting

    1. I have based my artillery like this for almost 40 years; in part, it allows the ghun models to be moved around to show limbered by placing the artillery piece at the back of the stand facing to the rear (as with the Mounted Horse Battery pics. Also, with today's models. it can be hard to fit the gun and three crew (or four for 12 lbers in my scheme) on the base - my artillery bases are almost 50% wider than infantry bases (1.75" x 1" vs. 2,5" x 2" deeep)

  8. Absolutely lovely paint jobs on these :-)

  9. Ditto Gary's comment; you have 'exceeded your self' with these Peter!