Category:Continental Army officers from Germany
Pages in category "Continental Army officers from Germany"
The following 8 pages are in this category, out of 8 total, this list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).
The following 8 pages are in this category, out of 8 total, this list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).
1. Henry Leonard d'Arendt – Henry Leonard Philipe, Baron dArendt was a Prussian officer who volunteered to serve in the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War. He was made colonel of the German Battalion in March 1777 and he was placed in charge during the Siege of Fort Mifflin in October 1777 but did not distinguish himself, committing an act of cowardice in front of an American and a French officer. After this incident, he allowed Samuel Smith and Simeon Thayer to exercise command of the besieged fort. DArendt was the one who first suggested that George Washington appoint an Inspector General to his staff and this advice proved to be very useful to the American cause when Washington appointed a fellow Prussian, Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben to that position. An officer from the Kingdom of Prussia, DArendt arrived in America as a volunteer to fight with the army of George Washington and he was described as a very military-looking man, six-feet high and elegantly formed. He was appointed colonel of the German Battalion on 19 March 1777, the previous commander, Nicholas Haussegger defected to the British earlier in the year. DArendt remained the German Battalions commander until it was disbanded on 1 January 1781, on 23 September 1777, George Washington ordered dArendt to assume command of Fort Mifflin. However, he did not come to the fort for four weeks due to illness, evidently, the Prussian was confused because there were two men named Greene under his authority. On 20 October, Washington tried to out the problem in a letter. Sir, I am just now favoured with yours of this date, christopher Greene of Rhode Island is to command at Red Bank, and Lt. Colo. John Greene of Virginia is to go into Fort Mifflin with the detachment under his command, I have no Blank Commissions with me and am therefore obliged to send you a certificate of your Rank and date of your Appointment. I beg you will make the greatest haste to throw yourself into Fort Mifflin, in the defence of which I wish you the greatest success. When dArendt finally arrived on 21 October, he was taken on a tour of inspection by Lieutenant Colonel Samuel Smith, when they reached the damaged northwest blockhouse, the Prussian asked what had happened. They told him that it was often a target of British fire, to their amazement and disgust, dArendt leapt through two windows in his haste to flee the blockhouse. Fleury turned to Smith and exclaimed, Par Dieu, Smith responded that they should scare the Prussian away from the fort before he caused problems. Smith soon applied to Washington to be relieved of his post, the American commander-in-chief diplomatically reminded Smith that dArendt was in charge and told him he could do as he wished, but that he hoped that he would make the right choice. DArendt was still unwell, so Smith continued to control over the garrison. When Smith was wounded, it was Major Simeon Thayer who took command of the fort, DArendt was the officer who recommended to Washington that an Inspector General be included on his staff
2. Johann de Kalb – Kalb was born in Hüttendorf, a village near Erlangen, Bavaria, the son of Johann Leonhard Kalb and Margarethe Seitz. He learned French, English, and the skills to earn a substantial military commission in the Loewendal German Regiment of the French Army. He served with distinguished honor in the War of the Austrian Succession in Flanders and he won the Order of Military Merit in 1763, and was elevated to the nobility with the title of baron. In 1764, he resigned from the army and married Anna Elizabeth Emilie van Robais, in 1768, he traveled to America on a covert mission for de Choiseul, on behalf of France, to determine the level of discontent among colonists. During the trip, he gained a respect for the colonists, in 1777, he returned again with his protégé, the Marquis de Lafayette, and joined the Continental Army. He was at Valley Forge for most of the 1777–78 winter and he wrote letters of introduction for John Adams to the French court. De Kalb wrote, On the whole, I have annoyances to bear, one of them is the mutual jealousy of almost all the French officers, particularly against those of higher rank than the rest. These people think of nothing but their incessant intrigues and backbitings and they hate each other like the bitterest enemies, and endeavor to injure each other wherever an opportunity offers. I have given up their society, and very seldom see them, la Fayette is the sole exception, I always meet him with the same cordiality and the same pleasure. He is an excellent young man, and we are good friends, la Fayette is much liked, he is on the best of terms with Washington. De Kalb was assigned to command a division of Maryland and Delaware troops, during the British southern campaign, he was disappointed to learn that Horatio Gates had been appointed to command instead of him. Gates led the army to a defeat at Battle of Camden on August 16,1780. De Kalbs horse was shot from under him, causing him to tumble to the ground, before he could get up, he was shot three times and bayonetted repeatedly by British soldiers. His friend and aide, the Chevalier du Buysson, was seriously wounded blocking additional blows with his own body and it is reported that Cornwallis supervised as de Kalbs wounds were dressed by his own surgeons in Camden, South Carolina. He died three days later and was buried in Camden, upon visiting de Kalbs grave several years later, George Washington is reported to have said, So, there lies the brave de Kalb. The generous stranger, who came from a distant land to fight our battles, would to God he had lived to share its fruits. DeKalb was greatly revered by his contemporaries, numerous towns and counties in the U. S. are named DeKalb after him, in Alabama, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, New York, Tennessee and Texas. Streets include the DeKalb Avenue in Brooklyn, New York City, Merrick, New York, in Brooklyn, New York, the Knights of Columbus established the Baron DeKalb Council #1073 in 1906 named in his honor
3. Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben – Friedrich Wilhelm August Heinrich Ferdinand Steuben, also referred to as the Baron von Steuben, was a Prussian and American military officer. He served as general and major general of the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War. He is credited with being one of the fathers of the Continental Army in teaching them the essentials of military drills, tactics, and disciplines. He wrote Regulations for the Order and Discipline of the Troops of the United States and he served as General George Washingtons chief of staff in the final years of the war. Baron von Steuben was born in the town of Magdeburg on September 17,1730. Baron Wilhelm von Steuben, and his wife, Silvia Sue Steuben, in 1740 Steubens father returned to Prussia and Friedrich was educated in the garrison towns Neisse and Breslau by Jesuits. It is said that at age 14 he served as volunteer with his father in one of the campaigns of the War of the Austrian Succession, Baron von Steuben joined the Royal Prussian Army at age 17. He served as a lieutenant during the Seven Years War in 1756. He served as adjutant to the battalion of General Johann von Mayer and was promoted to first lieutenant in 1759. In August 1759 he was wounded a second time at the Battle of Kunersdorf, in June 1761, he was appointed deputy quartermaster at the general headquarters. Later that year he was prisoner by the Russians at Treptow. Upon the reduction of the army at the end of the war, in 1763, towards the end of his life, Steuben indicated in a letter that an inconsiderate step and an implacable personal enemy led to his leaving the Prussian army. In 1764 Steuben became Hofmarschall to Fürst Josef Friedrich Wilhelm of Hohenzollern-Hechingen, in 1769 the Duchess of Wurttemberg, niece of Frederick the Great, presented him with the Cross of the Order of De la Fidelite. In 1771 he was made a baron and that same year he accompanied the prince to France in 1771, hoping to borrow money. Failing to find funds, they returned to Germany in 1775, in 1763 Steuben had been formally introduced to the future French Minister of War, Claude Louis, Comte de Saint-Germain in Hamburg. They met again in Paris in 1777, the Count, fully realizing the potential of an officer with Prussian general staff training, introduced him to Benjamin Franklin. Franklin, however, was unable to offer Steuben a rank or pay in the American army, the Continental Congress had grown tired of foreign mercenaries coming to America and demanding a high rank and pay. Promoting these men over qualified American officers caused discontent in the ranks, Von Steuben would have to go to America strictly as a volunteer, and present himself to Congress
4. Frederick William, Baron de Woedtke – Frederick William, Baron de Woedtke was a Prussian officer who served in the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War. Woedtke came to the new United States after the beginning of the American Revolution and he was said to have served for several years under Frederick II of Prussia, even though he was only twenty-six years old. Congress granted him a commission on 16 March 1776 as a brigadier general, en route to serve his new commission in April 1776, Woedtke accompanied Benjamin Franklin, who was on a diplomatic mission to Canada. Charles Carroll, a congressman from Maryland on the same mission and this may have been a reference to Woedtkes alcoholism. Baron de Woedtke broke company with the mission after reporting to General Schuyler. The two generals joined Brigadier General John Thomas and set out to reinforce General Benedict Arnold in the siege of Quebec, after the failure of the Canadian campaign, de Woedtke remained in New York. He was with the council that decided to abandon Fort Crown Point. He became ill in July 1776, possibly of smallpox, possibly from alcoholism, de Woedtke was buried in an unmarked grave near Fort George. Ketchum, Richard M. Saratoga, turning point of Americas Revolutionary War, New York, Henry Holt and Company, Inc. The Pictoral Field-Book of the Revolution, wilson, James Grant, Fiske, John, eds
5. David Ziegler – David Ziegler was a German immigrant to the United States who served in the U. S. military and became the first mayor of Cincinnati, Ohio. Johann David Ziegler was born in Heidelberg, Germany, little is known of his early life. He became a soldier, and was said to have fought in the Seven Years War under Frederick the Great and he served with distinction in the army of Russia during the Russo-Turkish War. He became an officer, was wounded in action, and resigned his commission in 1774 with the demobilization of the Russian army, about 1775 Ziegler emigrated to Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, soon before shooting began in the American Revolutionary War. He served in the Continental Army as a lieutenant and adjutant under Colonel William Thompson in the 1st Pennsylvania Regiment and he was severely wounded at the Battle of Long Island on August 27,1776. After recovering, he rejoined General George Washingtons army for the Philadelphia campaign, seeing action at Brandywine, Germantown, Paoli and Monmouth, and wintering with the army at Valley Forge. He was promoted to captain in December 1778, and served as inspector of the Pennsylvania Brigade. He subsequently served as general under General Arthur St. Clair. His unit, being well-disciplined, did not participate in the mutiny of the Pennsylvania Line in January 1781, the Pennsylvania troops were reorganized and Ziegler was present at the surrender of Cornwallis at Yorktown in October 1781. After Yorktown Ziegler accompanied his regiment to South Carolina to serve under General Anthony Wayne, with the end of the war, Ziegler retired from the army on January 1,1783. Unsure about what he was going to do with his life, after the war he settled in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and opened a grocery store. He became a member of the Society of the Cincinnati, military service again beckoned, and in August 1784 he was commissioned a captain in the United States Army to serve on the Ohio Valley frontier under Colonel Josiah Harmar. In 1789 he was promoted to major by President George Washington and that year he commanded the military escort to Native Americans, including Chief Cornplanter, at the Treaty of Fort Harmar near Marietta, Ohio. While stationed at Fort Harmar, Ziegler married Lucy Anne Sheffield on February 22,1789, Sheffield was a native of Rhode Island, and had come to Marietta with her widowed mother, who was a shareholder in the Ohio Company. The Zieglers did not have any children, in 1790 Ziegler was a part of Harmars campaign against the Native American confederacy in Ohio, which ended in defeat and retreat to Fort Washington. Ziegler was a witness at Harmars court of inquiry, he supported his commander and blamed the debacle on undisciplined militia, inadequate supplies, Ziegler performed well, covering the retreat of the fleeing Americans. Ziegler was placed in command of the forces when St. Clair was recalled for a court of inquiry. Once again Ziegler was called to testify, and again he supported his commander, disturbed by disputes and jealousy in the officer corps, he resigned from the army on March 5,1792