Army field railway exercise 1909

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Pontoon bridge over the Elbe

The heeresfeldbahn exercise in 1909 was a big maneuvers in Saxony , where a nearly 37-kilometer heeresfeldbahn with a track width of 600 mm from engineer units from Saxony, Prussia , Bavaria and other German states of Schänitz after Seeligstadt was built in Meissen country and operated. In addition to the track construction, the construction of a pontoon bridge over a river, the construction of a cable system on a steep stretch and the construction of a larger wooden viaduct spanning the valley were practiced.


"His Majesty King Friedrich August visits the drill" (contemporary postcard from Brück & Sohn , Meißen )

The Amtshauptmannschaft Meißen published the planning of the field railway exercise on August 4, 1909 by means of an official decree with the number 1424 II, in order to inform the communities along the route about upcoming billeting. The exercise began the very next day with the first material transports. On August 9, 1909, the 1st Royal Saxon Battalion of the Royal Prussian Railway Regiment No. 1 quartered in Weißig and unloaded the first four Heeresfeldbahn locomotives, designated as twins , there on August 11, 1909 . The line was built from August 21st to 31st, 1909 using five-meter track sections .

On August 27, 1909, there was an accident near Kaschka when a construction train derailed on a steep slope and another train hit it. A locomotive driver and a stoker were injured.

The 36.7 km long route was operational from August 31, 1909. It was operated day and night from Wednesday, September 1, 1909. On Sunday, September 5, 1909, there was a day of rest to hold large field services at the Luga Viaduct, at the Schänitz Feldbahn station and at Pinkowitz . On September 6, 1909, the locomotives were heated up again from midnight, so that operations could be resumed on the schedule at 5 a.m., which was carried out "to the full satisfaction of the military" until September 8, 1909. The field railway was dismantled from September 9 to 22, 1909.

The exercise was repeated several times by the Saxon King Friedrich August III. as well as the chief of the Prussian general staff, Helmuth Johannes Ludwig von Moltke , visited. Kaiser Wilhelm II sent a congratulatory telegram.


Schänitz – Seeligstadt
Route of the army field railway exercise 1909
Route from 1909 on a map from 2021
km m above sea level
End station - start of the route
Transfer station "East"
Pontoon bridge over the Elbe
Station, station
Transfer station "West"
Station, station
0.0 Beginning and machinery bhf. Schänitz 95
Station, station
6.2 Oberlommatzsch 140
Railroad Crossing
State road Dresden - Leipzig
Station, station
10.8 Kellerberg 175
Station, station
12.3 Piskowitz 115
Railroad Crossing
Street Lommatzsch - Zehren
Bridge over a watercourse (medium)
12.8 Ketzerbach
Station, station
15.4 Priesa 165
Incision , 6 m wide, 1.5 m deep
Station, station
20.5 Stroischen 235
Station, station
22.4 Löthain 225
Plan-free intersection - above
25.1 Narrow-gauge railway Wilsdruff – Gärtitz
Station, station
27.3 Luga 205
27.7 Luga Viaduct
Bridge (medium)
29.3 Wiesengrund railway overpass
Station, station
30.0 Roitzschen 180
Bridge over a watercourse (medium)
30.5 Instinctively 164
Plan-free intersection - above
31.0 Borsdorf – Coswig railway line 160
Bridge over a watercourse (medium)
31.2 Mill moat
Bridge over a watercourse (medium)
31.4 Gallenbach
Bridge over a watercourse (medium)
31.5 Gallenbach
Bridge over a watercourse (medium)
35.0 Gallenbach
End station - end of the line
36.7 Seeligstadt 245

From the "Ost" transfer station on the standard-gauge siding of the Chemischen Fabrik v. Heyden in Nünchritz , which branched off from the Riesa – Dresden railway line at Weißig station , led the field railway over a pontoon bridge over the Elbe to the “West” transfer station. The pontoon bridge was only allowed to be used by the material transport trains for six hours a day for rail traffic in order not to hinder navigation on the Elbe .

“Wire rope route” near Zscheilitz
Construction of the viaduct near Luga

There, the mileage began at the first telephone station at the start and machine station in Schänitz . The route ran in a southerly direction west of Schänitz, Boritz and Bahra and east of Kobeln to Oberlommatzsch , where the second telephone station was located. The route followed the road Oberlommatzsch- Wölkisch and crossed the state road Dresden-Leipzig at the Gasthof Wölkisch . It continued via Zscheilitz to the third cellar telephone station on the Zscheilitzer Höhe. There began a 515 m long, double-track wire rope route to overcome the gradient to the fourth telephone station in Piskowitz , which had extensive track systems. The trains going downhill were connected to the trains going uphill with a wire rope and a pulley, as the incline was too big for locomotive operation alone.

After crossing the Lommatzsch - Zehren road , the route ran in the valley via Schieritz to the fifth telephone station at Priesa . From there the route climbed uphill and, after bypassing Großkagen via Pröda and Kaisitz, reached the sixth telephone station in Stroischen and the seventh telephone station in Löthain .

The route crossed the narrow-gauge railway Wilsdruff – Gärtitz, which was still under construction, on a 28.6 m long wooden bridge and led via Canitz to the eighth telephone station near Luga . It crossed the Triebisch valley on the 23 m high and 280 m long wooden viaduct near Luga and led to the ninth telephone station in Roitzschen . From there it crossed the Borsdorf – Coswig railway line and led via Sönitz to the tenth telephone station at the terminus in Seeligstadt .

Anniversary celebration with reenactment

One hundred years after the Great Army Field Railway Exercise, an anniversary event with " reenactment " or a re-performance based on the original took place from August 27th to 30th, 2009 . For this, after three years of planning, around 600 m of rail material was laid on a meadow along the Gallenbach in Seeligstadt, including two switches at the beginning and end of the rail, so that the field railway operation could be simulated with the Krauss steam locomotive No. 7790, a closed ambulance car and two field railroad cars. There were a total of five points, a bridge and a locomotive shed.


  • Wolfram Wagner, Peter Wunderwald: The narrow-gauge railway Wilsdruff - Meißen Triebischtal and the large army field railway exercise in Meißner Land in 1909 ; Wunderwald Bahnbücher, Nossen 2019, without ISBN

See also

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Article in the Sächsische Volkszeitung from August 18, 1909 on
  2. Article in the Sächsische Volkszeitung from August 29, 1909 on
  3. a b c Wolfram Wagner: About a field railway exercise in Saxony. In: Modellisenbahner 1/84. Pp. 4-6.
  4. Wolfram Wagner and Peter Wunderwald: The narrow-gauge railway Wilsdruff - Meißen Triebischtal and the large army field railway exercise in Meißner Land in 1909.
  5. Local and Saxon: Military services on September 5, 1909 near the Schänitz Feldbahn station and near Pinkowitz, as well as an imperial feast on September 20, 1909 at Albrechtsburg. Riesaer Tageblatt, September 4, 1909.
  6. Article in the Sächsische Volkszeitung from September 7, 1909 on
  7. Article in Riesaer Anzeiger from September 4, 1909
  8. Seeligstädter found an association for light railways. May 20, 2010.
  9. a b Feldbahn Schänitz – Seeligstadt
  10. Local and Saxon: The most interesting points of the Feldbahn are likely to be: the railway bridge over the Elbe near Nünchritz, the main train station, which is now being built below Schänitz, the crossing of the Ketzerbach near Piskowitz near Zehren and the 280 meters to be built near Luga over the Triebisch valley long viaduct. The transition station near Weißig and the terminus near Seligstadt should also offer a lot of interesting things. Riesaer Tageblatt, August 14, 1909.
  11. Christian Gollmar: heeresfeldbahn exercise 27 until 30 August 2009 in the Meißner country / Saxony.
  12. Thorsten Köhler: Great Army Field Railway Exercise of 1909.
  13. Fans want to recreate the light railroad of the last Saxon king. December 29, 2007.
  14. 120 meters of track for the field railway are ready. September 17, 2008.
  15. ^ Dress rehearsal for the historic Heeresfeldbahn exercise in Seeligstadt , August 14, 2009.
  16. Jürgen Birkhahn: Large station during the field train exercise. August 31, 2009.
  17. ^ Narrow gauge and museum railway news: Historische Feldbahn Dresden e. V. Feldbahnmuseum Herrenleite. Preß'-Kurier , June / July 2019.

Coordinates: 51 ° 17 '14.3 "  N , 13 ° 23' 31.9"  E