Danish-Prussian Wars 1848-50 and 1864
Fredericia and Jutland 1849
the Danish army had moved towards Schleswig, they won the first battle
at Bov, but was shortly after faced by superior forces.
The Danish army retreated and large parts of Jutland was occupied.
The fortress at the city of Fredericia was considered impossible
as a redoubt, since the fortress had not been
maintained for 100 years and was not suitable for war.
after, a ceasefire was agreed,
which lasted until April 1849.
These ceasefire, however, had been so unfavorable to Denmark, that the Danes almost looked forward to
resuming the war.
war was actually resumed in 1849.
Danish army was now facing the Prussian general Prittwitz with a total
of 61,000 men and General Bonin, who
led the special
Schleswig-Holstein strength of 14,000 men.
Danish army counted only 41,000 men, and they had to retreat to the
island Als and to the fortress of Fredericia. Meanwhile
had been made combative, and parts of the Danish force went into
the fortress, while other parts pulled back to the
island of Funen.
Rye pulled by a slow retreat the German main force further up in
General Bonin and his Schleswig - Holstein army
was by his commanding general ordered to prevent the Danes from
attacking the German forces from the fortress of Fredericia.
May 7th General Bonin arrived with the army of 14,000 men to the City of
Fredericia and during the first week they built the first
Rendsburg he had procured 14 pieces of siege artillery and already the
May 16th a bombardment of the city began. The
bardement started at
3:00 in the morning.
four 168-pound mortars were the most effective.
49 houses were destroyed and 200 damaged.
The people fled to the Citadel,
where they felt themselves most secure.
Several, however, continued to the Funen. The
bombardment had no effect on the city's defense
capability, and only a
few lives were lost.
The Soldiers' morale could not be weakened as long as the lifeline to the Funen could be
General Bonins next move was to move the batteries nearer the harbor, and enable
them shoot at piers and shipping.
The jetty facilities
at Strib were destroyed, but the Danes builded several
new jetties farther east, outside the reach of the enemy
launched an artillery battle during the period june 3th to june 17th, attempting to bombard the fortress and the city.
combat got more
and more the character of a decisive battle, and the
Danish artillery did everything they could.
It was now apparent that the fortress
artillery were superior to the German , not
least by much more ammunition.
Bonin artillery was, gun by gun, destroyed and could not be replaced.
For example, half of the powerfull 168 pound mortars were
the same time the attacker suffered from a June, that this year was
unusually cold and rainy, and the failed attacks
seemed to lower the morale by the soldiers.
Princippet i morteren
Bonin was at this time aware, that reinforcemants were brought from the
outside to Fredericia.
Because the Danisk navy had absolute superiority at sea, it was possible
to transport soldiers and equipment from both the Funen in the
Island Helgenæs in the north and from Als and Soenderborg in the south
without being disturbed. He had the choice to pull back
and get ready for aDanish attack from the
fortress, og to or even abolish the siege and withdraw even farther away.
chose to stay in the besieged position.
The outcome of the Danish attack July 6th 1849
Bülow's plan was to assemble a large army in Fredericia, make a sortie
and add Bonin and his Schleswig Holstein army a
For this undertaking General de Meza brought a brigade of 5 battalions,
a total of 5000 soldiers from Als, and general
Rye brought from Helgenæs
total numbers of the Danisk army in Fredericia were now 23,000 ,
opposing the 14.000 from the Schleswig-Holstein rebel army
a council of war on July 4th 1849 at Vejlby rectory,
General Bülow maintained an overall attack from the fortress. The situation was
favorable because the enemy was divided into four
In some places, the gap between the groups up to 1 kilometer
Because of the Danish fortress artillery range, there was also a huge
gap between the Schleswig-Holstein frontline and camps,
reserves were located. General de Meza should push forward on the northern front between the Holstein's posts and
General Schleppegrells brigade would follow and capture positions south
of it and general Rye
had to walk up along the beach
and attack and conquer the posts on the
coast with his brigade og 5000 men while Moltke's brigade would
was hard fighting around the redoubt No. III, who managed to obtain
reinforcements from behind.
Only when general Bonin
pulled his troops away, the redoubt was
The redoubt No. V (Trelde redoubt) also made great resistance. The Danish
troops surrounded it and even intercepted the reinforcement
from the camp behind it.
Molkte's brigade of 1000 men succeeded to
occupy the redoubt , which was
defended by 200 men.
brigades of Schleppegrell and Moltke now surrounded the remaining enemy
redoubts and captured them.
The attack on the
Originally it was General Bülow's plan to dig in on the
grounds outside the Fredericia fortress, but he changed his decision,
and at 8 pm
all the remaining Danish soldiers were back behind the rampages
and artillery in Fredericia