Carl Heinrich von Wedel

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Carl Heinrich von Wedel.

Carl Heinrich von Wedel (born July 12, 1712 in Göritz ; † April 2, 1782 there ) was a Prussian lieutenant general and minister of war.


The Wedel family belongs to the ancient Pomeranian nobility . His father Georg Wilhelm (* 1661; † 13 July 1731) was the district administrator of the Uckermark , chief court director and heir on Göritz, his mother was Marie Salome von Eickstedt († 1731) from the Eichstedt family. At fifteen Wedel went to the Prussian military and performed as Corporal Corporal in the Guard Regiment of the King (no. 6) a. In 1730 he was promoted to ensign , on March 1, 1735 to second lieutenant . Shortly after taking office, Frederick II made him captain and company commander in the Grenadier Guard Battalion (No. 6) on June 23, 1740 .

Wedel took part in both the First and Second Silesian Wars, but his regiment was not involved in any battle. Nevertheless Wedel received promotion to major on August 14, 1743. He joined the von Kleist Infantry Regiment (No. 26) , to which he was to belong for fourteen years. He was wounded in the Battle of Thrush in 1745.

The promotion to lieutenant colonel took place on September 8, 1751, with the Pour le Mérite Wedel was honored for his previous services on May 31, 1752 ( Battle of Chotusitz ). After presiding over the court martial against Captain Ernst Joachim von Virgin , the king made him colonel on June 17, 1755.

In 1756 Wedel and his regiment went to the Seven Years' War . The first battle experience for him was the meeting near Prague on May 6, 1757. Six days later he was appointed regimental commander. Although he took part in the battle of Rossbach , he hardly got to fight. At Leuthen , his regiment fulfilled its key role in the difficult right-wing march on the right wing so well that fourteen members of the regiment were awarded the Pour le Mérite three days later .

On January 5, 1758 Wedel took over the infantry regiment von Schultze (No. 29), but three weeks later he moved to the head office of his old regiment. In the spring he joined the siege corps in front of Olomouc . Wedel was able to repel Laudon's attacks on June 20th near Littau and on June 28th near Gundersdorf . In September a corps was assigned to him to liberate the Uckermark from the Swedes. Wedel mastered the task by October. At the end of the year he drove in recruits, money and horses in Zerbst , Bernburg and Dessau .

Frederick II promoted Wedel to lieutenant general on February 22, 1759 . In July he gave him the supreme command of the Dohna Corps and on July 20 appointed him "dictator": in the army he should be "what a dictator presented in Roman times".

The royal orders then drove Wedel to attack the doubly superior Russians; the battle of Kay was lost for the Prussians . At Kunersdorf Wedel was severely wounded. Health problems forced him to take a longer vacation in 1760.

Gut Göritz , Uckermark

After the death of Minister von Katte , the king gave him the management of the army on December 11th. On January 27, 1761 Wedel got the office of the first Minister of War, to whom the storage and provisions, marching and billeting matters and the military orphanage were subordinate. After the end of the Seven Years' War, in 1763 he reorganized the cantons, the forage , the building of barracks, the services of the cities and the income of the captains. In addition, Wedel headed the investigation against Finck because of Maxen and in 1777 against General von Reitzenstein . He took his leave on September 4, 1779 and retired to his Gut Göritz estate.


In 1747 Wedel took Friederike Auguste von Broecker (* February 17, 1731; † January 23, 1785) as his wife. The marriage produced four daughters and one son, including:


Individual evidence

  1. ^ Letter from Friedrich to Lieutenant General Count Dohna of July 20, 1759 .
  2. ^ Friedrich Ludwig Joseph Fischbach : Historical political, geographic, statistical and military contributions, concerning the royal Prussian and neighboring states , Volume 1, p. 274, digitized