Infantry Regiment "Graf Bülow von Dennewitz" (6th Westphalian) No. 55

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Infantry Regiment "Graf Bülow von Dennewitz" (6th Westphalian) No. 55

active May 5, 1860
Country Prussia
Armed forces Prussian Army
Branch of service infantry
Former locations Minden , Bielefeld , Detmold
Monument in front of the old government in Minden. Among other things, the victims of Infantry Regiment No. 55 are remembered
List of fallen soldiers of the IR 55 (right side)
55 monument on Kaiser-Wilhelm-Platz in Detmold

The Infantry Regiment "Billow of Dennewitz" (6 Westfälisches) No. 55 was an infantry joined the Prussian army .


The association was set up on May 5, 1860 as part of Roon's army reform . These were the parent regiment Infantry Regiment No. 15. , Active staff at the Landwehr - infantry from 15 regiment no.. This then regrouped to the 15th Combined Infantry Regiment and set up three battalions of infantry. This included two musketeers (1st and 2nd battalion) and a fusilier battalion (3rd battalion). Later the III. Battalion detached and replaced by the Lippe-Detmold battalion (" Lipper Schützen "). It was only given its final designation, Infantry Regiment No. 55, after the formation was complete . Since it was stationed in Westphalia and was to be subordinate to the VII Army Corps in Munster, it was given the provincial designation 6th Westphalian as the 6th Regiment in Westphalia . After its formation, the regiment moved its first locations to East Westphalia.

The regiment was never closed in one location. It was set up in Minden , Paderborn and Bielefeld. Initially, the regiment was garrisoned in Minden, Höxter and Herford . At the beginning of the First World War, the regimental staff and the III. Battalion in Detmold (Principality of Lippe), the 1st battalion in Höxter on the Weser and the 2nd in Bielefeld.

On January 27, 1889, Kaiser Wilhelm II ordered the association to be named after the infantry general Friedrich Wilhelm von Bülow in memory of the two-time savior of Berlin in the coalition wars.

“I want to honor the memory of my exalted ancestors resting in God as well as those highly deserving men who stood by them with special distinction in war and peace and who have earned just claims to the grateful memory of the king and fatherland, and for everyone Keeping times alive that I will give their names to regiments and battalions of My glorious army. "

From this point on, the association was called “Graf Bülow von Dennewitz” (6th Westphalian) No. 55 infantry regiment .

German-Danish War

The regiment entered the German-Danish War for the first time in 1864, four years after it was founded . The association moved to Minden to gather there and was then moved by train to Harburg near Hamburg. It belonged to the German-Austrian expedition corps, which had the task of taking action against Denmark as part of a federal execution on behalf of the German Confederation .

The Kingdom of Denmark , whose king was also Duke of Schleswig, Holstein and Lauenburg, wanted to integrate Schleswig into the kingdom once and for all through the advanced Danish measures. However, since the Schleswig and Holstein had decided to be "forever ungedled" and the king had also recognized this, his action was directed against the unity of Schleswig and Holstein, as they were no longer undivided. However, it should be noted that Holstein was already part of the German Confederation at that time, but Schleswig was not.

The Schleswig and Holstein therefore called on the German Confederation for help. This decided that after the failure of the political attempts to restore the unity of the two states, military intervention should be taken. Therefore, the two eternal opponents for supremacy in the German Confederation, Prussia and Austria, set up a joint expeditionary corps and set it on the march.

The regiment was involved in the occupation of Holstein, which had been completely evacuated by the Danes. The Danes had set up the first defensive position at the so-called Danewerk . After crossing the Schlei , the Allied troops quickly pushed north and occupied Kiel . To the north ran the Danewerk, which was evacuated when the Prussians approached from February 3rd to 5th, 1864. Only one Danish brigade secured the retreat of the bulk of the Danish army to Düppeln . There besieged u. a. the regiment used the entrenchments that had been built in advance of Sønderborg . On March 17th, 1864, the preparations for the assault on the Düppeler Schanzen began on April 18th, 1864. The 1st Battalion was very successful in the south of the positions and was the first to climb a hill after the Guard Corps . The Danes withdrew to the island of Alsen in the course of the storm .

After a brief armistice , an unprecedented amphibious operation began on June 29, 1864, in which the 2nd Battalion was one of the first regiments to set foot on the island of Alsen. They crossed the Alsensund with all available boats, ships and sometimes with rafts , and after a short battle the last Danish troops surrendered on Alsen.

The regiment then took part in the grinding of the fortifications of Sonderburg and the Düppeler Schanzen and returned to its peacetime locations. The battalions involved received the Düppeler Sturmkreuz and the Alsenkreuz for their participation in the assault on the Düppeler Schanzen and on the island of Alsen . A corresponding banner was attached to the flags of the 1st and 2nd battalions.

German war

During the German War of 1866, the regiment was initially involved in the occupation of Hanover after the Hanoverian army had capitulated near Langensalza in Thuringia. The regiment was then subordinated to the so-called Main Army and moved towards Fulda , which it did not reach. It was marched towards Dermbach , where it played a decisive role in the battle there on July 4th. From there we walked in the direction of Kissingen , where the Bavarian troops allied with Austria were waiting for the Prussians. However, the Battle of Kissingen on July 10th, when the regiment fought successfully at the top, did not last long. The Bavarian troops withdrew to Würzburg via Hammelburg . The regiment marched from Garlitz in the direction of Kissingen and found a crossing over the Saale and penetrated into the city from the south-west and south. The infantry regiment No. 15 and the fusilier battalion "Lippe" moved towards the heights around Kissingen while the bulk of the regiment penetrated into the city. However, this had to be done without the support of the artillery, as General von Goeben had forbidden the bombardment of the spa town. In a fierce street fight, the regiment fought its way through the city, to which the Bavarians gradually retreated. With the help of parts of Infantry Regiment No. 15 they penetrated deeper and deeper into the city and took many prisoners. In the meantime, Infantry Regiment No. 53 also entered the city and supported the other two units. At about 1 o'clock in the afternoon, the town had been cleaned up and it was pushed through the churchyard on the Chaussee to Nüdlingen . It was here that the fiercest fighting in Kissingen took place. The regiment held the positions until after some time they were reinforced by Infantry Regiment No. 15 and 53. Only when the infantry regiment No. 19 was brought in from the reserve with fresh forces, the participating forces of the regiment could withdraw and rest. Other forces of the regiment were involved in fighting on the heights together with other parts of the brigade. There was a fight on a fruit slope on the Sinnberg, during which Lieutenant Friedrich von Papen was captured and the Portepee ensign and later General Field Marshal Max von Bock and Polach could only save himself seriously injured with great difficulty. At about half past two the II. And III. Battalion against the city, but no longer intervened in the fighting. You should take the Saale bridges. However, they were taken under fire by the Winterleite on the Stationsberg and followed the Bavarian hunters to Winkels , where in the aftermath of the departure of the Bavarians and thus their defeat was sealed.

On July 13th, the advance on Frankfurt near Laufach and Frohnhofen led to further skirmishes in which the 55s, the 15s and the Lipper were involved. The opponents here were not the Bavarians, but the first Hessians of the VIII Federal Corps .

Then the Hessians were pushed back towards Aschaffenburg . On July 14th the battle broke out near Aschaffenburg . They marched on Aschaffenburg via Hösbach and Goldbach . In heavy fighting, infantry regiments No. 15 and 55 took the city gates. The Hessians, reinforced by a brigade of Austrians, shot at the invading Prussians from all the windows of the town's houses. Gradually it became apparent that the federal troops were getting more and more distressed because the city did not offer enough for the allies. When the regiment finally cleared the Main Bridge and took more than 600 prisoners, Generals von Falkenstein and von Goeben came and were greeted with cheering hurray. The battle ended around 11 a.m.

Nassauer and Hessian troops tried to prevent the march of the Main Army on Frankfurt near Hanau . They were particularly beaten by the VII Army Corps, to which the regiment was subordinate. The federal fortress in Frankfurt, which was occupied by federal troops, capitulated when the Prussians marched and was occupied.

Then the Main Army marched towards Tauberbischofsheim and fought there against the remnants of the VIII Federal Army Corps. The battle lasted from 5:30 a.m. until dawn around 8:30 p.m. After the defeat at Tauberbischofsheim, people turned towards Würzburg . In the course of the siege, during which the Marienberg fortress was also shelled , there were battles west of the Königshofen district in Uettingen and Gerchsheim on July 25, during which soldiers of the regiment were also killed. After the way was clear, the remaining Bavarians were pushed back in the direction of Würzburg. a. entrenched in the fortress Marienberg. The von Goeben division marched from Höchberg towards Würzburg. While the regiment on Nikolausberg below the Käppeles was being shelled at the fortress, the fortress artillery responded to the Prussian artillery fire and the artillery from the other bank of the Main. In the late afternoon the fortress ceased fire and the withdrawal of the Bavarian army from the city was noticed.

After a short time in the vicinity of Würzburg, the regiment first marched to Württemberg to await the conclusion of peace there. At the end of August, the battalion marched back to its home base via Frankfurt.

Franco-German War

In the war against France in 1870/71, the regiment was part of the 26th Infantry Brigade under von der Goltz of the 13th Division in the battles at Spichern and Colombey and then belonged to the siege ring of Metz .

After the surrender of Metz , the regiment was subordinated to the XIV Corps as part of the newly established detachment "Goltz" and fought against the units of Garibaldi . In the battle at Villersexel and the three-day battle on the Lisaine , the regiment fought against the newly established French Eastern Army under General Bourbaki . This was followed on their retreat after the Battle of the Lisaine in the direction of the Swiss border . In extreme cold, the regiment experienced the last fighting on February 1, 1871 near Pontalier, shortly before the French were interned in Switzerland .

The regiment remained in France as an occupation force for a long time before it was relocated back to Germany.

First World War

The regiment made of the outbreak World War on August 2 mobile . As part of the 26th Infantry Brigade of the 13th Division , it was used exclusively on the Western Front . After the fronts solidified, the regiment continued to fight on all front lines up to the battle of Verdun . In the Battle of the Somme , the regiment suffered at Allains on 15./16. September 1916 heavy losses. The I and II battalions therefore had to be combined into one battalion with three companies. Pulled out of the battle due to wear and tear, it was replenished by the replacement battalion on September 22, 1916 and received a 2nd and 3rd MG company at the beginning of October . Then the regiment re-entered the trench warfare at Verdun . This was followed by the Battle of the Aisne in May 1917 and, from the end of the month, the trench warfare on the Chemin des Dames . After heavy losses at Vaudesson, the remnants of the regiment had to be combined into a battalion on October 23, 1917. The association was only complete again in mid-November. Then deployed again in front of Verdun until the beginning of February 1918, the unit was then pulled from the front and prepared for the Great Battle in France . From March 21st to April 6th the regiment took part in the German offensive and fought on the Ancre , Avre and Somme after the setting . At Hamel it suffered heavy losses again, so that the remnants formed a battalion. Due to the lack of a replacement position, it took three weeks until the regiment was replenished. As a result, parts of the disbanded Infantry Regiment No. 217 were incorporated in September. In addition, the regiment received a MW company on September 14, 1918 .


After the armistice , the remnants of the regiment moved back home to Westphalia. From December 6, 1918, the staff and the III. The 1st battalion in Detmold, the 1st battalion in Höxter and the 2nd battalion in Bielefeld were demobilized .

In the period that followed, various free formations formed . In January 1919, the Free Corps "Bielefeld" was set up by the II. Battalion and the III. Battalion set up the Freikorps "Detmold" in strength of one company with an MW platoon. The latter formation was incorporated into the Freikorps "Severin" in March 1919. With the formation of the Provisional Reichswehr, these units were transferred to the Reichswehr Infantry Regiment 14 as 2nd Battalion.

The tradition in the Reichswehr was taken over by the 14th Company of the 16th Infantry Regiment in Detmold by decree of the Chief of the Army Command, General of the Infantry Hans von Seeckt on August 24, 1921 .

Heads of regiments

In contrast to his predecessor, Prince Leopold IV was only head of the III. Battalions.

Rank Surname date
Luise of Prussia 0December 7, 1865 to December 6, 1870
Lieutenant General Prince Leopold III. August 16 to December 8, 1875
General of the cavalry Prince Woldemar March 22, 1877 to March 20, 1895
Lieutenant General Prince Leopold IV. January 27, 1910 until dissolution


Rank Surname date
Colonel Emil von Schwartzkoppen 0July 1, 1860 to January 8, 1864
Lieutenant Colonel / Colonel Alexander Stoltz 0January 9, 1864 to October 29, 1866
Colonel Karl Lewin Leopold from and to Gilsa October 30, 1866 to November 6, 1869
Colonel Rudolf von Barby 0November 7, 1869 to March 21, 1873
Colonel Botho von Wussow March 22nd to May 22nd, 1873 (in charge of the tour)
Colonel Botho von Wussow May 23, 1873 to December 1, 1873
Lieutenant Colonel / Colonel Ernst von Grolman 0December 9, 1873 to October 14, 1874
Lieutenant colonel Richard von Seeckt October 15, 1874 to June 18, 1875 (in charge of the tour)
Lieutenant Colonel / Colonel Richard von Seeckt June 19, 1875 to March 11, 1881
Lieutenant Colonel / Colonel Hans Wilhelm Herwarth von Bittenfeld March 12, 1881 to January 12, 1887
Colonel Richard von Loeben January 13, 1887 to May 21, 1889
Colonel Emil von Meerscheidt-Hüllessem May 22, 1889 to May 16, 1892
Colonel Constantin von Quadt-Wykradt-Hüchtenbruck May 17, 1892 to May 25, 1894
Colonel Arthur von Schlieffen May 26, 1894 to October 17, 1897
Colonel Max von Weddig October 18, 1897 to October 17, 1900
Colonel Friedrich Sixt by Armin October 18, 1900 to November 13, 1901
Colonel Alfred von Strubberg November 14, 1901 to April 9, 1906
Lieutenant colonel Erich von Boyneburgk April 10 to August 17, 1906
Colonel Alexander von Winterberger August 18, 1906 to January 16, 1908
Colonel Max von Hopffgarten called Heidler January 17, 1908 to April 20, 1911
Colonel Georg von Wachter April 21, 1911 to January 26, 1914
Colonel Otto von Trautmann January 27 to September 30, 1914
Lieutenant colonel Lorenz von Gottberg 0October 1, 1914 to April 4, 1915
Lieutenant colonel Reinhard Kock 0April 5 to June 1, 1915
major Erich von Flotow 0June 2, 1915 to April 20, 1916
Lieutenant Colonel / Colonel Hans von Feldmann April 21 to November 11, 1916
major Willi von Klewitz November 12, 1916 to January 19, 1917
major Ernst von Wangenheim January 20 to October 10, 1917
major Hans von Fabeck October 11, 1917 to April 22, 1918
Lieutenant colonel Viktor Bauernstein April 23 to September 3, 1918
major Paul place 0September 4, 1918 to February 4, 1919


Lippe (bottom, 4th from left) and Prussian cockade (top, 2nd from left)

The regiment wore the blue Prussian tunic with red lapels, red sleeve flaps edged in white, light blue badges and yellow buttons. The soldiers wore the yellow metal or gold-plated line eagle on their helmets (ugspr .: Pickelhaube ). The leather gear was black, and the regimental number was affixed to the men’s epaulets and the officers’ epaulettes. The soldiers of I. / and II./ wore the Prussian, those of III./ the Lipper cockade next to the imperial cockade.


  • EM Dörk: The Royal Prussian 15th Infantry Regiment, Prince Friedrich of the Netherlands, (formerly Count Bülow von Dennewitz) in the war years of 1813, 14th and 15th G. Reichardt, 1844 digitized
  • Ernst-Adolf Otto Hilmar von Mansberg: Officer master list of the royal Prussian infantry regiment Graf Bulow von Dennewitz (6th Westphalian) No. 55, formerly 6th Westphalian infantry regiment. Berlin 1900. ( digitized version )
  • v. Blomberg, v. Leszozynshi: History of the 6th Westphalian Infantry Regiment 1860–2.9.1877. , Digitized
  • H. Tümpel: Minden-Ravensberg under the rule of the Hohenzollern. Velhagen and Klasing, Bielefeld 1909.
  • W. Poetter: Infantry Regiment No. 55 (=  memorial sheets of German regiments, formerly Prussian troop units . No. 41 ). Stalling, Oldenburg / Berlin 1922. Digitally available: Württembergische Landesbibliothek

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Military weekly paper . No. 9 of January 30, 1889. pp. 185-186.
  2. ^ Günter Wegmann (Ed.), Günter Wegner: Formation history and staffing of the German armed forces 1815-1990. Part 1: Occupation of the German armies 1815–1939. Volume 2: The staffing of the active infantry regiments as well as the hunter and machine gun battalions, military district commands and training managers from the foundation or list until 1939. Biblio Verlag. Osnabrück 1992. ISBN 3-7648-1782-8 . P. 163.
  3. ^ Günter Wegmann (Ed.), Günter Wegner: Formation history and staffing of the German armed forces 1815-1990. Part 1: Occupation of the German armies 1815–1939. Volume 2: The occupation of the active infantry regiments as well as Jäger and MG battalions, military district commandos and training managers from the foundation or list until 1939. Biblio Verlag, Osnabrück 1992, ISBN 3-7648-1782-8 , pp. 164-165 .

Coordinates: 51 ° 56 '10.9 "  N , 8 ° 52' 4.7"  E