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Strategic-Tactical Exercises

;+with Solutions-~-


Colonel, 18th (2nd Brandenburg) Field Artillery


Translated by MAJOR C. H. BARTH, iath Infantry,

Instructor Department of Military Art, Infantry &5
Cavalry School, and Staff College..... .. .. ..
Fort Leavenworth . . . Kansas



In each of the following exercises it is earnestly

recommended that the student solve the problem for
himself before reading the discussion or solution by
the author. In this way the principles discussed by
the author will be more firmly impressed and the
student will derive greater benefit from the wof'k.
An attempt was made to adapt the first five.exer-
cises to our own organization. In the last two this
was not attempted as it was considered unnecessary-
the tactical studies being as readily understood and
yielding as much benefit with the German organiza-
tion as with our own.
Sketches and map will be found at the end of the
pamphlet; likewise notes explanatory of the sketches.

It is impossible to sufficiently commend General

von Verdy for having everywhere introduced the ap-
plicatory method of instruction for the advancement
of officers in the study of strategy and tactics.
A great diversity of terrane and of problems en-
countered in war precludes the adoption of a scheme
including all possible situations. But even if it were
possible to evolve such a scheme, it would never abso-
lutely fit any concrete case, for, being a composite
affair, it would contain only that which is common to
all and not that which is peculiar to any one and thus
not serve our purpose. Therefore the very best
scheme or theory can serve only as a general guide.
Each concrete case must always be separately viewed
and analyzed.
Conclusions must be drawn from the detailed
study of a concrete case and not from an abstract
To begin with, the three following faculties
should be developed in the troop leader:
1. To arrive at clear and intelligible conclusions;
2. To lucidly explain these conclusions to others;
3. Ability to lead troops so they will carry out
his plans.
Clausewitz, in his excellent work on "War", has
told us that these characteristics are necessary to ar-
rive at energetic conclusions and to carry them into
execution. For the intellectual development of the
three above-named faculties, General von Verdy
gives the following instructions: "Through contin-
uous practice in solving concrete cases, have the vast
variety of possible situations brought before you.
Learn thus of the nature of war, and through the
vast number of decisions and orders given, incident
to solving the problems, you will develop the facul-
ties named."
This method, so self-evidently the best for ad-
vancement in the field of strategy snd tactics is, how-
ever, a very laborious one. For in such concrete
examples devised either by the student or by others
or taken from history, it is not sufficient to arrive at
general conclusions alone; thereby but little would be
accomplished. It is necessary to fully imagine one-
self in the leader's place, with the mind's eye to
transform the map into the terrane represented, to
give-such scope to the imagination that the situation
becomes a living reality with all of the unavoidable
friction of war, and to correctly deal with time and
Such a routine for judging military situations
can in the course of time be acquired by the above-
named process that with the greatest rapidity-almost
instinctively-a correct decision will be made.
The advantage of this will be apparent when it
is remembered that in war there will seldom be time
for lengthy cogitation, that a decision must as a rule
be promptly formed and as promptly executed.
Particular care must be given to writing of
orders. They are, as the first evidence of the decis-
ion determined upon, of such far-reaching importance
that errors in them often can not be corrected or com-
pensated for during an engagement or even during a
To be of service in this sense, the following exer-
cises are given to the public. For them the claim of
infallibility is not made. There may be dissension
concerning much in them. But be it remembered
that even here many roads lead to Rome.
.(See Sketch 1.)

A South detachment, in its own country on Sep-
tember 1, 1905, after a severe battle of six hours du-
ration has defeated a hostile North detachment four
miles southwest of Blankensee and forced it back
through Blankensee, Remmlingen and Willfingen to-
wards Schtnstedt. At 4 p. m. the main body of the
South detachment bivouacs in Blankensee. At the
same time Major N. receives orders from the de-
tachment commander to establish outposts along the
Aue river with the 1st battalion, 1st Infantry and
one half of troop A (two platoons) 1st Cavalry.
The North detachment at this time still occupies
The weather is clear and dry with a full moon.
(a) Outpost orders issued by Major N.
(b) Detailed description of the organization
and posting of the outposts.
Solution and Discussion.
The supposition made is that the South detach-
ment is in its own country and therefore that the
North detachment the enemy's country. Such
a supposition is rarely, made in field maneuvers, al-
though in most cases necessary to. a complete under-
standing of the situation. For not :only in the mat-
ter of security, but also in other matters, the question
often arises whether we have to deal with a friendly
or a hostile population.
The statement is: made that after a severe battle
of six hours duration about four miles southwest of
Blankensee the!North detachment was forced back
on Schons edt. From this it appears that the North
i -' , " ,.r -
- , " ... .
detachment after its defeat retreated about eight
miles and that no further offensive movement need
be expected from it that day, even if it should have
received re-enforcements at Schinstedt.
Therefore the main duty of the outposts of the
South detachment will be to determine whether the
North detachment continues to occupy Schonstedt or
continues its retreat after a short rest. In the latter
event it would be the duty of the outpost cavalry of
the South detachment to determine in what direction
the enemy retreats.
Major N. received his orders direct from the de-
tachment commander, because small forces while at
rest are usually divided only into outposts (Vorposten)
and main body; whereas, in larger forces, the sub-
division into main body and advance guard is retain-
ed for the night: the outpost commander in such
cases receiving his orders from the advance guard
The state of the weather is also mentioned.
This should always be mentioned in such problems,
for it always influences the mode of action. In case
of protracted heavy rain troops would be sheltered
in houses where in pleasant weather, on account of
the proximity of the enemy, this would be out of the
question. Severe winter weather completely changes
the characteristics of the terrane. Thus swampy
meadows and running streams become easily passable
when frozen and cease to be obstacles-lose their im-
portance as protection for front or flank. Fog de-
prives an otherwise excellent position of its value, as
the enemy can then approach unobserved close to
the position. In night operations, especially for
outposts, it is of importance whether or not the
moon is shining.
Let us now turn to the problem under consider-
Concerning mixed outposts, theyField Service
Regulations state:
"Outposts are usuo 1 ve io -re-
serve a n and outpost
cavalry. . fb:
,,Where but a small force of cavalry is available,
or in very close country, or in the immediate vicinity
of the enemy, etc., a detail of outpost cavalry should
not be made. In such cases -a few cavalrymen are
sent to the reserve and to the outpost companies as
occasion may require. Cyclists should be used as
messengers wherever practicable.
"On account of the varying terrane, conditions
and means at hand, no directions can be given cover-
ing all cases of outposts. In each specific case the
subdivisions, service and conditions of command of
the outposts must be adapted to the particular ex-
isting conditions.
"While siege operations require a systematic
division and complete chain of ofoutposts, in field oper-
ations the division and form of outposts vary ac-
cording to circumstances.
"If facing the enemy for some time, a greater
degree of security and preparation for action are re-
quired. A force halting after a day's march, with
the object of continuing the march next day, will
adopt the simplest form of outposts for security."
Bearing the foregoing in mind, there can be no
doubt but that Wilfingen and Remmlingen should be
occupied by outpost companies and that their duties
will be to secure the crossings of the Aue. Doubt
might arise concerning the use of outpost cavalry.
Considering the small amount available, the proxim-
ity of the enemy, and above all the fact that in front
of the line Wuilfingen-Remmlingen there is an ob-
stacle-the Aue-which limits movements virtually
to the ,brigades-all this would seem to suggest

that a platoon be sent to each outpost company.

During the day these would be posted as 'officer's-
-E-/l fists' on Windmiihlen and Galgen hills, and at night
they would be withdrawn to tne villages in rear,
from which points they would send forward patrols.
Usually the outpost order is given verbally by
the outpost commander and based on the map alone.
Were he to look over the ground before issuing his
orders, his troops would be compelled to wait too
long before they could move to their places. This
should be avoided. But an order based on the map
alone must be so general in its directions as to admit
of its being adapted to the ground by the subordinate
commanders. For an apparantly good look-out as
determined by the map may be in a corn-field or be-
hind houses not shown on the map, and thus be en-
tirely useless.
In the present instance, however, when the out-
post commander receives his orders he is with his
troops in the immediate vicinity of the position to be
occupied; and the landscape is in full view. Conse-
quently he can issue his orders based on the confor-
mation of the ground and without delaying his troops.
For this reason, too, he can give more specific in-
structions than otherwise. There is an advantage in
this, for he can require a close adherence to his de-
tailed orders. It may naturally be asked whether
the commander is not interfering with the preroga-
tives of his subordinates when he goes into such de-
tails in his orders.
During tactical exercises in time of peace the
superior issues short orders and instructions and
leaves the execution of the same as far as possible
to his subordinates. For the superior then wishes
to become acquainted with the ability and judgment
of his subordinates. If errors are made by the lat-

ter they do not result in injury to the troops, but

serve as means of instruction and further advance-
ment. War is not the place for this. In war it is
necessary to dispose of the available strength and
ability in such a way as to derive the greatest bene-
The superior must then take no chances as to
what his subordinates may do. Therefore it is of
great importance that a leader should thoroughly
know his subordinates. Considering the great dif-
ference in characteristics and ability of subordinates
and the varying demands made on them by the ex-
igencies of war, it becomes one of the most import-
ant tasks of a superior to frame his orders in such a
way as to fit the personality of the one ordered.
A perfectly trained captain in the present case
would require no detailed instructions concerning the
posting of his company on the outpost line at Remm-
But should the captain have been killed and the
company be in command of a young lieutenant-pos-
sibly of the Reserve-then the outpost commander
may fear that he cannot count on this lieutenant
being equal to the occasion, and so he will do right
to go more into details; possibly saying to the lieu-
tenant: "It will probably be necessary during day-
light to have two independent non-commissioned
officer posts* in front of your company-one at the
bridge and the other at the ford. Concerning night
positions, I shall give you further instructions later
on the spot."
In making a report only the general import of
orders received verbally will be noted.
,Furnished from a support and taking the place of a
picket. They consist of a non-commissioned officer and six
men as reliefs for a double sentry post. To this number men
are added for patrol duty. (transl.)

The form of a verbal order is also a point to be

considered. Let us imagine that an engagement has
taken place during which the leader has been watch-
ing the enemy and has not followed his map. After
the fight the enemy has been pursued. Luring this
time the leader again has not followed the map. It
must therefore be assumed that the officers receiving
the outpost orders hardly know where they are. At
least it has been my experience that the names of
villages passed during an engagement do not become
known until afterwards. If, therefore, after an en-
gagement a verbal order is issued, the subordinates
must first be instructed concerning prominent features
of the landscape in sight as otherwise the order might
be misinterpreted.
Let us then assume that Major N., when at
4 o'clock he received the order to form outposts,
was with his battalion in the vicinity of Wul-
fingen-Remmlingen, and that the two platoons of cav-
alry were also near-by; while other cavalry kept
touch with the enemy.
After an engagement the outposts are usually
established by fresh troops; particularly the cavalry
should be other than that in touch with the enemy.
.In this way the horses can be fed and watered
under protection of the advance cavalry before the
detachment goes on outpost duty.
After Major N. had taken a glance at the country
from one of the heights between Wilfingen-Remm-
lingen he had the company commanders and the cav-
alry leader report to him and gave them the following
"The enemy has retired to Sch6nstedt-the vil-
lage that you can see there between two groves, and
about two miles away.
"The main body of our detachment will be can-
toned in Blankensee-the village here behind us. I

am ordered to establish outposts on the Aue-this

stream in front of us-with my battalion and half of
troop A, 1st cavalry.
"Captain A, you will canton your company in the
northern part of Remmlingen-the village yonder-and
secure the road Remmlingen-Schnstedt. I place at
your disposal one platgqq, of cavalry. This you will
use by day as a% at Galgen-Huigel-the
hill there just to the right of the right-hand grove-
and by night have it canton in the southern part of
"Captain B, you will canton your company in
the north-eastern part of Wiulfingen-this village
here-and secure the road Wlfingen-Schnstedt. I
place the remaining platoon of cavalry at your dis-
posal. This you will use by day as ai-offi-er's-poste
at the grove on Windmiihlen-higel-the hill over
there-and by night have it canton in the southern
part of Wiilfingen.
"The two platoons of cavalry must keep touch
with the enemy by night as well as by day; and there-
fore must have patrols follow him .should he march
"Companies B and C, to which four troopers are
attached, will bivouac as .l re-
serve south-west of the saddle (DieWelle) -there. Cap-
tain C, you are detailed as bivouac commandant and
will govern yourself accordingly. Both companies may
cook supper, but pickets must be posted on these two
knolls (69 and 65.) Troops, through their officers,
will requisition provisions for companies A and B in
Remmlingen and companies C and D in Wulfingen.
I have no information yet as to the -time of probable
arrival of the regimental train.
"The night position will be assumed at 7 p. m.
to-day; the day position will be resumed at 5 a. m."

"Reports will reach me at the outpost reserve.

"In case any one does not understand his orders,
please so state now-otherwise the troops will take
their assigned posts at once. Companies A and D
will each leave a messenger who will report to the
battalion adjutant at the outpost reserve."
The Field Service Regulations prescribe that
"outpost orders" should specify what is to be done
in case of attack by the enemy. This was not done
here, because it is hardly likely that any captain will
fail to recognize that the villages of Wtilfingen and
Remmlingen must be defended. Besides preceding
events of the day preclude the possibility of a real
attack by the enemy. The enemy to cover a further
retreat, might of course, make a feigned attack on
the outposts. The chances are, however, that the
enemy will retreat under cover of darkness. For
this reason the cavalry was particularly cautioned to
be vigilant, and keep touch constantly with the
enemy. But experience proves that it is precisely
after a victory that touch with the enemy is often
lost-cavalry due to its exhaustion readily giving up
its activity. And so cavalry divisions must make
good what cavalry patrols have neglected. For this
reason the extra caution above given to the cavalry
is not considered superfluous.
It is a fundamental principle never to use more
troops than are absolutely necessary for all outpost
duty. Even when outpost troops are lodged in
houses, they are under a greater strain than if they
were back with the main body. It is therefore a
waste of energy to use more troops on outposts than
are wanted, simply to avoid breaking up units of
It may therefore be asked whether one company
and a platoon of cavalry, each, at Wiilfingen
and Remmlingen would not be sufficient, and thus;

dispense with the other two companies altogether.

Opinions as to the degree of danger depend on the
individual. One sees danger where another does not.
Besides, in the present case, it must be remembered
that the two companies in question are available for
use in promptly pursuing the enemy should he retreat
from Schinstedt. They therefore are intended more
for offensive than for defensive purposes.
Had the outpost commander divided his entire
force into two equal parts and assigned one to each
of the two villages, he would have made no mistake
tactically (for such a disposition could be justified)
but he would not have complied with the intent of
the detachment commander's orders-which contem-
plated a single leadership at the outposts-whereas, a
division of the troops into two equal parts would
have resulted in two separate detachments with two
sub3rdinates as commanders, to whom Major N.
would then virtually have relinquished command.
The degree of readiness of the sub-divisions of
the outposts increases towards the enemy. From
this follows that the most advanced posts must al-
ways be more ready for action than those further
back. When, however, as in the above case, the out-
post reserve bivouacs only because no village is near
enough for cantonment, this should not cause any hes-
itancy to canton outpost companies in villages if op-
portunity serves; provided danger of attacks by the
enemy does not forbid this.
It was mentioned at the end of the (verbal)
outpost orders that Companies A and D should each
leave a messenger with the outpost reserve. This is
advisable because all important verbal orders (like
the present outpost order) should afterwards be sent
out by dictation through messengers so as to inform
the officers of all ranks of the situation, as well as to
prevent any part of the verbal order being forgotten.

This is done without delaying .the execution of the

order as received verbally from the commander by
the subordinate officers.
Dictated orders should be as brief as possible
without sacrificing clearness to detain the messengers
unnecessarily and to prevent the latters' resort-
ing to abbreviation in taking down the orders. It
must be strictly required that the orders be copied
verbatim, because the messenger often cannot tell
whether a change in the wording may not change the
sense. In designating commanding officers and
troops, any abbreviation is permissible that will not
impair clearness. The dictated order sent out after
the verbal order was given would be something like
the following:
Outpost Reserve North of Blankensee,
1st Sept. 1905, 4:30 p. rm.

No. 1. 1
1. The enemy has retreated to SCHONSTEDT.
The main body of our detachment has gone into
cantonment at BLANKENSEE.
2. I am directed to establish outposts along the
AUE river with the 1st battalion, 1st Infantry and
one-half troop A, 1st cavalry.
3. (a) Company A willbecantonedinthe northern
part of REMMLINGEN and will secure the REMM-
LINGEN-SCIIONSTEDT road. The cavalry pla-
toon attached to it will be placed by day as officer's
post on GALGEN HILL; during the night it will be
cantoned in REMMLINGEN.
(b) Company D will be cantoned in the northeast-
ern part of WULFINGEN and will secure the
platoon attached to it will be placed by day as offi-
cers post at the grove on WINDMILL HILL;
during the night it will be cantoned in WUL-
(c) The cavalry will maintain contact with the
enemy both day and night.
(d) Companies B and C and four troopers will
bivouac as outpost reserve on the southwestern
slope of the "Welle" (Saddle.)
4. The night position will be taken up at 7 p. m.;
the day position will be resumed at 5 a. m. to-
5. 1 shall remain with the outpost reserve.
Major and Outpost Commander.

The outpost companies and the outpost cavalry,

in case the latter acts independently, as soon as they
have taken their positions, are required each to sub-
mit a rough sketch of their positions to the outpost
commander, who will make a suitable report to the
advance guard or detachment commander.
"To continuously supervise the outpost service,
the outpost commander locates himself where reports
can most readily reach him and where he can best
send out orders. As a rule this will be with the re-
serve of the outpost. His location should be easily
found; and field musicians, orderlies and possibly
cyclists should always be on hand. It will be best
if he retains his original location; but this does not
preclude his going where his presence is most need-
ed. Should he leave the reserve, he notifies the
senior officer present and turns over the command
of the same to him." (German F. S. R.)
In riding over the ground to inspect the outposts
he will usually have to give only minor instructions;
including the designation of roads where examining
posts shall be established.
Concerning these roads there can hardly be any
doubt in this case in the minds of the outpost com-
pany commanders. It may therefore be assumed
that the latter without special instructions will have
examining posts on the two roads leading towards
Schinstedt. Besides, the outpost commander should
as a matter of policy not change dispositions made
by his subordinates unless absolutely wrong; for such
changes shake the confidence of the men in their im-
mediate superiors and usually result in additional

fatigue for the men. For example, nothing exasper-

ates men more than when about to cook their supper
they are ordered to change their bivouacs a few
hundred yards one way or the other. The tactical
advantage to be obtained by such a change is usually
outweighed several times over by the disadvantages
resulting therefrom as above stated. But in case
of minor errors the officers who made them should
always be privately informed of them so there may
be no repetition.
Let us assume it is 5.30 p. m. The outpost com-
mander concludes to inspect the line of outposts with
his adjutant-notifying the senior officer of the re-
serve and turning over the command of the reserve
to him. Special instructions need hardly be given
the reserve, because an attack of the enemy is hardly
to be expected. And, besides, the country is so open
that the outpost commander from all along the out-
post line could see any occurrences that might call
for action by the reserve.
During this inspection let us assume that the
dispositions of subordinates satisfied him and were
as follows: Captain A had his company occupy a
large farm-house and yard in the northern part of
Remmlingen, alongside the road. The men were
quartered in a shed open towards the court-yard.
Their guns were stacked immediately in front of
them and their accoutrements lay there also.
In the middle of the court-yard was the cook
fire, where the supper was cooking. Two troopers
ready to act as messengers were waiting beside their
saddled horses.
A double sentry post was at the only, though
very large, gate-way of the enclosure and overlooking
the road towards Schdnstedt as far as the bridge.
Captain A. reported: The enemy still occupies
Schinstedt and is very active. The cavalry patrols

sent forward from Galgen hill towards Schonstedt

are constantly turned back by the enemy's fire. The
enemy appears to have retreated in perfect order
for only a few scattered rifles and knapsacks were
found on the road. According to information from
the inhabitants, particularly the village president,
yesterday, about noon, troops of all arms moved
from Schonstedt through Remmlingen towards Blank-
ensee; about 2000 infantry lodging in Remmlingen
over night and moving this morning at about 5
o'clock towards Blankensee.
Between 2 and 3 p. m. today, the enemy's troops
of all arms passed through Remmlingen towards
Schinstedt. The enemy took from the inhabitants
everything in the way of food he could find, so that
very little could be obtained by us on requisition;
but three wagons loaded with food and abandoned by
the enemy were found in the village. These wagons
had been partly plundered before the arrival of the
company, but sufficient had been left to supply com-
panies A and B and the cavalry until morning.
,Catain A. further reported: "For daytime, two

on nd f nd sx n have been
established, one at the bridge, the other at the ford.
Guards at the village entries were considered un-
necessary by him. Thy avalry platoon has been
established aT tf at Galgen hill. In the
night it is proposed to replace the nom
-post at the bridgeby a picket of half a platoon, and
to relieve the post at the ford by other men.
The cavalry has already found a barn in the
southern part of Remmlingen where both horses and
men could find shelter; half to unsaddle at a time.
Infantry patrols are to move along the Aue, and cav-
alry patrols to move constantly toward Schonstedt.

After Major N had indicated his approval of the

arrangements made and in prospect, he rode to
Galgen hill.
At the slope east of the road was halted the
cavalry platoon, dismounted.
The officer on duty reported that, as observable
through field glasses, the enemy occupies the height
in front of Schonstedt with infantry, and that east
and north-west of this village cavalry vedettes are
posted. To gain information regarding the enemy's
location a strong patrol had made a wide circuit to
the east of Schinstedt. It succeeded in establishing
the fact that on the Schinstedt-Bischofsheim* read
about 1700 yards north-east of Schnstedt there is a
camp of troops of all arms.
As the patrol had just returned, it had not yet
been possible to send, a report of this to Captain A.
Major N. had the patrol commander and his men
called and questioned them; becoming fully satisfied
that the report was correct.
After Major N. had examined Schinstedt for a
while through his field-glasses, he asked the officer
on duty if he observed anything besides infantry
sentinels at Schinstedt; which was answered in the
It was true that with the inferior glasses of the
officer on duty nothing but infantry sentries could be
seen at Schinstedt; but with Major M's superior
glasses, the officer in charge readily discovered in
rear of the sentries a string of men several hundred
yards long digging trenches.
The picket would have a sentry for its own im-
mediate protection, a-e-ae
~~ - post eP-one-neB-
-mmisiC-Cofficer-and-thee-t ~-eepers on the south-
ern slope of 38 dismounted and close by the
road, and a post f-neN
*(35 miles North-east from Schinstedt.)

commi- " .azt r .J -tropers dismounted and

posted in the northern edge of the grove on Galgen
hill. The latter post reported to the officer on duty,
shortly after 6 P. M., and while Major N was pres-
ent, that the enemy was entrenching on the height
of Schnstedt. After Major N had directed the of-
ficer in charge to promptly report to Captain A what
had been observed of the enemy, and had instructed
him to keep up continuouspatrolling during the night,
he rode to Windmill hill. On the road Wiilfingen-
Sch~instedt, the cavalry b
;elonging to company D
was stationed at the south-western edge of the grove
on Windmill hill. It had a sentry post in its immediate
front, a c m Is ?
ariz of
post rft'--Z';~-
.a. G0C
-b O ^CIIa f~rTnL~IC atat

the north-east edge of the grove, and a vedette post

of 3 troopers on the northern spur of Windmill hill.
The officer on duty, just before 6 P. M. had reported
to his captain at Wi ifingen that the enemy, at about
5:30 P. M., had begun intrenching on the height of
Company D was posted in Wuilflngen similarly to
Company A at Remmlingen. It had -

T:C- :st at the mill. This was to be eplaced

by a picket of half a platoon. The enemy's infantry
had also entered Wilfingen yesterday. , During his
retreat only cavalry and a little artillery passed
through the village.
Here, too, the retreat seemed to have been con-
ducted in good order. Provisions were obtained here
for companies C and D and for the cavalry platoon,
but the villages were unable to supply any more.
The commander of the outpost-reserve ad s-
tablished an interior guard, and had posted ""
Sosts on the two knolls. Eacho-otAetacl-
had-- a- -doube-sentr--o"nutya-and-th-us-en-siste ef--4
N. C.--OC,---an4n-prrvates.


In the night these were to be pushed forward

and doubled in strength, in order to establish two
double posts each.
After Major N., at about 6:45 P. M., had re-
turned to the outpost reserve, and had examined the
reports received during his absence (the contents of
which he already knew) he turned to his Adjutant
and said: "I must now report to the commanding
general what has been reported to me concerning the
enemy-part of which we ourselves saw. Instead of
sending him a written report I prefer to send you
with a verbal report."
Make brief notes of what you have to repor t:
"First, that the cavaly officer's-post on Wind-
mill hill observed that at about 5:30 P. M. the enemy
began to intrench just in front of Schinstedt; we
ourselves observing men at this work on a line several
hundred yards long.
"Again, that a reliable cavalry patrol at about
5.30 P. M., observed on the Schinstedt-Bishofsheim
road-about 1700 yards north-east of Schinstedt-
a. camp of troops of all arms: that I am of the opinion
that the enemy retreated in good order, as only a
few scattered guns and knapsacks dropped by him
had been found. The enemy had occupied Wilfingen
and Remmlingen only yesterday noon, coming from
Schinstedt; and had this morning at about 5 o'clock
left for Blankenesee.
"In his retreat to-day most of the troops went
through Remmlingen, only cavalry and some artillery
passing through Wilfingen.
*"If the regimental train has arrived at Blanken-
see, direct it to the different companies; otherwise,
leave a trooper (whom you will take with you from
the reserve) with a written order to that effect in
*(This to the Adjutant.)

At about 8 p. m.-the battalion-adjutant returned

and reported as follows:
"The general has concluded from the Major's
report and from the statements of prisoners that the
enemy has received reinforcements and has decided
to resist attack at Schtnstedt. The General will
therefore attack early in the morning. The necessary
orders cannot be issued until about 9 p. m., because
the reports of some of the troops have not been re-
ceived. But the General now orders that by 5 a. m.
tomorrow the Major occupy the two groves on Galgen
and Windmill hills respectively with the two outpost
companies-doing this if possible without the enemy's
knowledge, and defending the hills against possible
attack. The two companies should take such covered
position, however, that the enemy may not discover
any change in the outposts. The outpost reserve will
break camp at 5 a. m., and take up a covered position
between Galgen and Windmill hills to support if nec-
essary the two outpost companies. At 5 o'clock to-
morrow morning the General will have the main body
of the detachment move up to the Aue, and then
order the attack.
At 5.15 a. m. tomorrow the General will expect
the Major on Galgen hill.
"The regimental train* had arrived at Blanken-
see and was ordered by me as directed; it will be with
the troops in about half an hour."

*The regimental train or heavy baggage of a (German)

battalion consists of 1 two-horse headquarters baggage wagon,
4 two-horse company baggage wagons, 5 two-horse provision
wagons (including 1 sutler's wagon.)
The heavy baggage of a company consists of 1 two-horse
company baggage wagon and 1 two-horse provision wagon.
The light baggage of a battalion, which is always with the
troops, consists of 7 lead horses, 1 two-horse medicine
wagon, and 4 two-horse ammunition wagons. The heavy
baggage of a single squadron consists of 1 two-horse--baggage

- The-verbal orders brought by the battalion adju-

tant would be communicated verbally to the two com-
pany commanders with the outpost reserve. The
other two company commanders would receive
these orders in writing unless the outpost com-
mander should prefer personally to go to Wuilfingen
and Remmlingen to give the orders verbally;
for these two commanders, on account of their
important duties should not be ordered to the
station of the outpost reserve to receive the orders.
The written orders would read about as follows:
Outpost Reserve North of Blankensee,
1st Sept. '05, 8.20 p.m

No. 2.
As the detachment is to attack the enemy at SCHON-
STEDT tomorrow morning, the Commanding General has
ordered as follows regarding the outposts:
At 5 a. m. to-morrow the outpost cavalry will take exactly
the same position it had this afternoon. At 5 a. m. to-morrow
Company A will occupy the grove on GALGEN HILL and
Co. D the one on WINDMILL HILL.
The march to these points should be conducted so as to
be unseen by the enemy, and the groves must be so occupied
as to prevent the enemy's discovering any change in our out-
post line. But both companies must be ready to defend the
woods against attack.
The outpost reserve will advance at 5 a. m. tomorrow and
take up a covered position between GALGEN and WIND-
Concerning the regimental train just arriving, it is ordered
that it be dispensed with-after 11 p. m. to-night by the com-
panies and sent to the outpost reserve, where it will remain
until further orders.
Major and Outpost Commander.

wagon, 1 two-horse provision wagon and 1 four-horse forage

wagon; the light baggage of 12 led horses.
In our service impedimenta accompanying troops are di-
vided into "light train-' and "regimental train'. For detail
of this, see F. S. Regulations, para. 396__. (Transl.)
(See Sketch 2.)

A western corps -is concentrating back of the
frontier mountain range (about 8 miles west of
Tirnau) and intends to advance across the frontier on
June 1st via Tirnau and Libochowitz.
Early on May 29, the following detachment under
Col. X was sent forward from the corps towards
Libochowitz with orders to protect the contemplated
passage of the corps across the mountains on June
1st. Until then, however, the frontier is to be crossed
only by patrols. Libochowitz is in telegraphic com-
munication with the Headquarters of the Western
War has not yet been formally declared, but hos-
tilities may begin at any minute.
It is known that the enemy has about 4000 men
in Reichenberg and about 20,000 men 20 miles further
1st Infantry, (3 battalions.)
Troop A, 1st Cavalry.
1st battery field artillery.
Company A, 1st battalion of Engineers.
Weather: Warm and Dry--New moon.
How will Colonel X proceed to carry out his in-

*As in the German army there is now a field artillery

brigade instead of a regiment with each division, this de -
tachment in "Gizycki's latest supplement" is given 3 bat-
teries instead of one. In this translation the artillery is con-
tinu3d as 1 battery for obvious reasons.

Discussion and Solution:

It may appear strange that Corps Headquarters
should authorize the sending of patrols across the
frontier in advance of a declaration of war.
When an army not alone has been mobilized but
also is so far concentrated that, as in this case, the
offensive is to be assumed within 3 days then war is
certain and the declaration of war a mere form.
Nevertheless, patrols ordinarily will not be sent
across a frontier in advance of a declaration of war.
But when, as here, it is expected that a corps sta-
tioned 4 miles back of the frontier shall cross a
mountain range, it must secure its passage; and for
this reason Libochowitz is occupied as a preliminary
But an outpost at Libochowitz must for its own
security send patrols as far as Mischlowitz, Minkwitz
and Samnitz, and therefore across the frontier.
By prohibiting the crossing of the frontier by
larger bodies, the Corps Headquarters desire to
avoid a premature engagement.
In 1866 there was no specific declaration of war
between Prussia and Austria. The Prussians on the
morning of June 23d simply sent a flag of truce to
the Austrian outposts with the information that the
conduct of the Austrians at Frankfurt was virtually
an act of war, and that therefore the Prussian troops
had been instructed to act accordingly. But already
on June 18,-five days before-Austrian Hussars
crossed the frontier of Silesia and fired on Prussian
According to the ordre de bataille, Colonel X's
force belongs to one of the two infantry divisions of
the western corps. But for his special mission at
Libochowitz he is to report directly to the corps

Let us see what dispositions Colonel X has

made for his advance on Libochowitz. Although it
is unlikely that during this advance the enemy will
be encountered, yet this might happen and provision
must be made for the security of the march. But
even if this were not necessary, as a matter of safe-
ty, it would be well for the commander to march
strictly as in time of war to again familiarize the
newly-joined reserve troops with this duty.
Even the other officers and men can learn from
such a march where companies are at war strength.
A field order issued by an independent com-
mander-for such is the one under consideration-
should contain all that the subordinate commanders
may not order, and no more.
For the preparation of such orders, the German
field service regulations prescribe:
1. Information concerning the enemy in so far
as this is of importance to the party receiving the
2. In general terms the intention of the com-
mander, though only in so far as the object requires
3. The duties to be performed by the different
bodies shown in the "distribution of troops."
4. Orders for the regimental trains, ammunition
and supply columns, in so far as this is of importance
for the troops.
5. The position of the commanding officer.
Concerning the distribution of troops, the field
service regulations state: "In the column, 'distri-
bution of troops'-best placed in the margin-the
troops are named according to the branches of the
service (infantry, cavalry, field artillery, etc.) When
in exceptional cases, the sequence of march is placed
in the order, the heading of the column is supple-
mented by the words 'in order of march.' "

What has been said concerning separation of the

'distribution of troops' from the body of the order
has reference to written orders; i. e., those that are
written or manifolded and given to orderlies for dis-
tribution. Such a written order is more easily un-
derstood if the distribution of troops appears in the
In addition to the verbal and written order there
is the dictated order. The latter is dictated to those
detailed to receive it and is by them read to their
commanding officers. This method mostly obtains
within the division. It is evident that such an order
is most readily understood if the distribution of troops
appears where it logically belongs, i. e., between the
2nd and 3d paragraphs of the foregoing classification.
If this is not done, and it appears instead either in
advance of or after the body of the order, and is read
in that way, it will usually be necessary to have the
order re-read to fully understand it.
Besides, this separation may easily result in the
dictating officer's forgetting to give the distribution
of troops at all. In maneuvers this is not likely
to happen, but in time of war, during great exhaus-
tion, it actually has happened. This can best be
avoided by the dictating officer accustoming himself
to place the distribution of troops where' it logically
belongs; viz., just preceding No. 3 of the foregoing
It is probable that in this case the advance guard
will consist of a battalion, the troop of cavalry (less
a few orderlies detailed for duty with the main body)
and a detachment of engineers.
Instead of advance guard cavalry we might have
independent cavalry. The latter would precede the
advance guard a considerable distance and would be
under the immediate orders of the commander of the
entire force.

In this case where the cavalry (as the other

troops) has but a day's march before it, there is very
little reason for constituting it independent cavalry
-and besides, after detailing the necessary orderlies
for the advance guard and the main body, but about
three platoons would remain.
The commanding officer of the advance guard
will then divide his force into advance guard cavalry
van guard, and reserve or main body.
The reserve will consist of the mass of the in-
fantry, and, as a rule, of any artillery attached to the
advance guard.
The vanguard will consist 4 to s of the infantry, the
necessary cavalry and the pioneers. The addition of
cavalry to the vanguard is so regulated as to make it
unnecessary for infantry to act as flankers.
Colonel X's detachment in column of route would
be disposed about as follows:
Advance guard cavalry (moving alternately at walk and trot
to obtain sufficient distance from the vanguard.)
Cavalry point (1 officer and 6 troopers)
500 yards
Troop A, 1st Cavalry (less 10 troopers)
(Distance between advance guard cavalry and van guard
Van Guard:
Cavalry point (1 officer and 4 troopers).
400 yards.
Infantry point (1 officer and 1 squad).
300 yards.
Company A, 1st Infantry (less 1 squad).
Detachment of Engineers.
500 yards.
1st battalion (less company A.)
800 yards.
Main Body:
2nd battalion.
3d battalion.
Engineer company (less detachment).
The bicyles (of which each battalion has two)
would come into requisition now, in case the road to
Libochowitz is hard and has no heavy gradients. The
six cyclists of the regiment would follow the advance
guard cavalry to transmit the latter's messages to the
detachment commander.
The regimental train we find distributed as fol-
lows: The light train of the troops is united with the
light train of the regiment, under charge of an officer,
the whole marching immediately in rear of the column.
The regimental train (23 escort wagons*) under the
control of the regimental quartermaster, marches in
rear of the column.
The order of march of the wagons of the trains
is the same as that of the organizations to which
they belong.
The total length of our detachment in route for-
mation, allowing 20 per cent for elongation or tailing
out is 5,000 yards in round numbers.
If we are to assume the initial point for the
column to be eight miles west of the eastern exit of
Tirnau and that the march begins at 5 a. m., it would
be about 5.45 before the last wagon would pass this
point-the column opening out to get route formation
with proper distances. In the meantime the cavalry
could have moved ahead at an alternate walk and trot
until it had obtained its distance in front of the van-
I have dwelt on the details of the route-forma-
tion, because I know a young officer seldom pictures
the same to himself vividly, particularly with refer-
ence to the regimental train.
*The wagons, according to the United States Field Ser-
vice Regulations, are apportioned as follows:-Infantry,
regiment, 17; cavalry troop, 2; battery, 3; engineers, 1.
Withthe regimental train would march 4 caissons, 1 artillery
wagon and forge belonging to the battery; the latter habit-
ually having only eight of its caissons with the battery.

The train of this small detachment in case of lack

of discipline is liable to block the road to the rear for
hours. For instance, in case of unfavorable news a
panic might result in the train so that in the. twink-
ling of an eye a regular Gordian knot might result.
Although each unit must have a leader for its
part of the train, yet it is wise to have a mounted of-
ficer in charge of the whole, with possibly several
troopers under his immediate orders. At any rate,
the regimental train should follow the troops at a con-
siderable distance as soon as it becomes likely that
the enemy will be encountered.
In the present case, the regimental train will not
be moved into the mountains until we are sure of se-
curing the eastern exit.
As it is important to learn as soon as possible
whether the terrane is unoccupied by the enemy, the
advance guard cavalry would make but a short halt
to rest. For the other troops there should be a halt
of about half an hour. In this way, if the detach-
ment started from a point 8 miles west of TUirnau at
5 a. m., the cavalry could arrive at the heights east
of Libochowitz by 7 a. m. and the point of the infan-
try advance guard by 9.30 a. m.
If the troop commander, immediately after reach-
ing Libochowitz, should send a trooper back at a trot,
or send a cyclist with the information that the enemy
had not been seen, this message should reach the de-
tachment commander (marching at the head of the
main body) at about 7.30 a. m. -possibly at the time
when the command is resting as above indicated.
The detachment commander then, riding ahead
with the staff, would arrive at Libochowitz about 8.15
a. m.

The regimental train in consequence of the news

would before 9 a. m. receive orders to move for-

ward and by 1 p. m. should arrive at the western

edge of Tiirnau.
Let us now imagine ourselves with the troop
commander, arriving at about 7 a. m. at Libochowitz,
and discuss the arrangements he will have to make
The situation must be known to the troop com-
mander through the detachment order.
From the two hills east of Libochowitz the coun-
try can be seen beyond the frontier. But whether
or not the villages in sight are occupied by the enemy
has yet to be determined.
The troop would probably move to the western
slope of hill 110 and dismount, placing a vidette
on the two heights ' S0 and 110 and sending for-
ward three patrols. One of the latter would ad-
vance via Rauschwitz, Prelwitz and Mischlowitz; the
second would go to Minkwitz and the third via Pros-
tau to Samnitz. When the detachment commander
arrives on the heights of Libochowitz messages might
already have been received from these patrols. Let
us assume that no enemy is found in the villages
named, and that nothing new is learnt concerning
the enemy. The detachment commander must then
come to a decision as to what position he will take up
to meet a possible advance of the enemy and thus
comply with his instructions to cover the advance of
his corps, planned for the 1st of June. Not until he
has decided this point will he be able to issue orders
for. the placing of his troops. If the troops are to
lose no time, the orders should be issued by 9:30 a.m.,
when the infantry arrives.
During the evening of May 28, when the detach-
ment commander received orders from the Corps
Headquarters to advance, he would consult the Gen-
eral Staff map and decide what is expected of him.

On the supposition that the news concerning the

enemy is correct, he must have said to himself: "The
detachment might be attacked at any moment by the
enemy reported in Reichenberg; and must at all
hazards resist such attack until June 1st.
The 20,000 men of the enemy's army reported as
being 20 miles east of Reichenberg can arrive at Lib-
ochowitz before June 1st only in case they begin their
march towards the frontier on the 29th. In this
event the detachment, early on May 31st, might be
attacked by largely superior forces, and be unable to
resist them. Should such a superior force, however,
not attack until the morning of June 1st an effort
should be made to check it until the corps could reach
Serious danger therefore does not threaten the
detachment before May 31st, if the reports concern-
ing the enemy are true. Before that time the de-
tachment may be forced to fight, but only with a
slightly superior enemy. This superiority should be
more than counter-balanced by a strengthening of the
defensive position.
On account of the peculiar conformation of the
terrane, there can hardly be any doubt as to the
position to be taken up by the detachment.
The only position to be occupied with hope of suc-
cess is formed by the two heights east of Libochowitz.
These command the main line of the enemy's ad-
vance-that from Minkwitz. Even if the enemy ad-
vanced via Samnitz or Michlowitz the heights 90
in the former case and 110 in the latter would
form the chief point of support for the defense. A
few minutes would be sufficient to come to this con-
The next question is how to dispose of the troops
so as to be ready at all times to meet the enemy. The
highest degree of readiness is obtained in bivouac.

This method is eagerly adopted by all anxious com-

manders, even if local conditions do not necessitate
it, but would instead permit of placing troops in can-
The German Field service regulations state:
"Troops suffer less under shelter, even in the
poorest villages than in the open. In houses they are
not only protected from the weather, but they can
find something to supplement their rations, can cook
their food, and clean and repair arms, accoutrements
and clothing."
Considering that the enemy is ten miles away,
that the terrane is open and that unless the enemy
wishes to cross in deep water he will be limited to
bridges-in view of all this, it seems sufficient to
have the outposts bivouac and the other troops go
into cantonment if opportunity serves. There are
but two villages available for this purpose: Libocho-
witz and Tiirnau. Prostau and Rauschwitz are too
far from the flanks of the position to be of use unless
the flanks of the outpost line be extended beyond
these villages-a procedure that would give a front
of nearly 6,000 yards, which is inadvisable for so
small a detachment.
Sufficient quarters for the troops could be ob-
tained at Libochowitz alone. But aside from the
fact that this would result in a crowding of troops,
it is advantageous to place some of the troops in
Tiirnau. In the latter village it will be advisable to
place those troops not needed at the beginning of an
engagement and thus afford them more rest and
quiet than would be possible at Libochowitz. By
day the battery would be attached to the outposts
so as to promptly come into action from either 90
or 110 in case the enemy showed himself in consid-
erable numbers.

Gun pits should be constructed on the two

heights. The second echelon of the battery would
however be left at Ttirnau. At night, the fighting
battery would move to Libochowitz or back to Tirnau.
As the battery horses would probably have to remain
harnessed by night at Libochowitz, the battery com-
mander would doubtlessly prefer to march back to
Tirnau to assure his men and horses more rest. Such
of the cavalry as is not on outpost duty and a com-
pany of infantry would also bivouac in Tirnau.
I would not move the regimental train as far as
Libochowitz as the enemy may attack at any minute.
It would be impracticable to send the train back to
Tirnau after an attack by the enemy began; for the
teams would go at such a rapid gait as either to upset
some of the wagons and block the road or hurry away
back beyond Tilrnau. The personnel of a train is pos-
sessed of the idea that its members are not with it to
be shot and act accordingly whenever life is in danger.
Everyone who has served in a campaign can give
examples of this kind. This subject is seldom men-
tioned in military histories because efforts are usually
made to keep such disgraceful scenes from the pub-
But should it be learnt from patrols during the
early evening of May 29 that the enemy is in the
neighborhood and that there is no danger to be ex-
pected for that day, the regimental train would be
brought forward for a few hours. By the time the
detachment commander had decided these points it
would probably be 9 a. m. The head of the
infantry at this time might be at Tirnau. The de-
tachment commander would direct the battery com-
mander (who would be with him) to send a trump-
eter back ordering the second echelon of the
battery to remain in Tirnau. He would direct the
troop commander to have half of his troop take quar-
- 34-

ters at the same place. A written order would be

sent to the main body directing that a company of in-
fantry from the rear of the column take quarters in
Tiirnau and have the regimental train (arriving about
1 p. m.) park at the western exit of Tiirnau, and that
the troops at once send forward orderlies to obtain
further orders. The order now to be dictated by the
detachment commander to his adjutant would refer
only to what is next to follow. It should also cover
the ground of the verbal orders already issued so that
.all the troops may have cognizance of these. If all
were placed in the order that is to be ordered for the
24th the troops would be delayed at least an hour be-
fore being dismissed.
The order would read about as follows:
Libochowitz, 29 May, '05, 9 a. m.

No. - f


not occupied by the enemy.
2. This command will go into cantonment and will estab-
lish outposts.
3. (a) Major A will establish outposts with the 1st bat-
talion, one half troop of cavalry and the fighting battery.
The infantry of the outpost reserve will bivouac on the
western slope of hills 110 and 90 on both sides of the road
to MINKOWITZ. The battery will take up a position in gun-
pits, on hill 110.
The cavalry will patrol beyond MISCHLOWITZ, MINK-
In case of attack the hills 110 and 90 must be held at
all hazards.
(b) The 2nd and 3d battalions (less one company of the
latter) as well as the engineer company will be cantorcd in
LIBOCHOWITZ, where their districts will be assigned them
by me.
(c) One company of the 3rd battalion, the half troop of
cavalry not on outposts and the 2d echelon of the battery will
be cantoned in TURNAU.
4. The regimental train will be parked at the western
exit of TURNAU.
5. Orderlies will report for orders at my quarters in
LIBOCHOWITZ at 5 p. m. today.

Colonel, Commanding Detachment.

While the adjutant is dictating the foregoing

order to the orderlies, the detachment commander
probably will be composing his message to Corps
As we shall have considerable to do with such
messages, a few general remarks on the subject are
here in order. The one sending such message or re-
port by his signature becomes responsible for its con-
tents. He should therefore carefully examine and
consider the contents and mode of expression.
The style should be brief and precise, similar to
a telegram, and without any formalities. From the
message it should be apparent what the sender him-
self has seen, what others have seen or said and what
he simply surmises. The sources of information
should be stated, and surmises should be verified.
Events must be judged dispassionately and free from
preconceived ideas. Nothing must be treated too
lightly and nothing must be exaggerated. It is often
very important to know that the situation has not
changed, or that the enemy was not found in a cer-
tain place.
The form of the message-blank is prescribed by
Regulations.* It is to be remarked that the pre-
scribed form is given simply to prevent the sender's
forgetting some necessary part of the message. If
in the absence of a message-blank the writer should
try to re-produce the ruled lines, etc., on a piece of
blank paper, he would thereby show that he did not
understand the significance of the blank form.
*See page 57, U. S. Field Service Regulations.
All messages that follow (excepting telegrams)
are worded as they would be if written on a piece of
blank paper. In general, it is not advisable to ad-
dress a person by name as it has often happened that
such messages have been delayed by reason of the
bearer waiting to find the person addressed, who pos-
sibly was absent. It has happened to me that an ad-
jutant had a mounted orderly await my return, where
an official letter was addressed to me personally.
The adjutant, in justification of his action, said that
the orderly could not tell him what the letter con-
tained, and as it was addressed to me in person he did
not feel authorized to open it. Instead of addressing
the person, the office should be addressed. Very im-
portant orders and messages should if possible be sent
by an officer; or they should be sent by several mes-
sengers over different routes; or two or three horse-
men are sent together. If to be sent a long distance
or at night, it may be advantageous to send messages
by officers accompanied by enlisted men, in vehicles.
It is often advisable to inform the bearer of the
contents so he can destroy the message if threatened
with capture. In marking the speed "ordinary"
would mean about 5 miles an hour for a mounted
man; "rapid" 7 to 8 miles an hour (principally trot),
"urgent", the greatest speed consistent with safety.
These indications are sometimes given by one,
two or three crosses, respectively, marked on the
For the transmission of messages and reports
over great distances, not provided with safe telegraph
or telephone lines, connecting posts are established.
For temporary use connecting posts of a few troopers
at not more than 5 or 6 miles intervals will be suffi-
cient. For more permanent use they would consist
of a non-commissioned officer and 5 to 10 troopers,
and would be as far as 10 miles apart.

In the enemy's country, especially in the pres-

ence of a hostile population, connecting posts must be
very vigilant and ready for defense. The leader re-
quires much prudence to perform his duty properly.
Over metalled roads of easy grades, cyclists can
travel more rapidly than horsemen. It is esti-
mated that -a good cyclist can travel 1 kilometer
in 3 minutes or 60 miles a day. Under favorable
road conditions cyclists are therefore especially suit-
ed for connecting posts.
With the introduction of corps and division tele-
graph sections, telegraph and telephone lines will
play an important part in the transmission of mes-
sages. In.the present case, had their been no tele-
graph station at Libochowitz, it surely would have
been connected with Corps Headquarters by field
telegraph. The message to be transmitted, in case
this were to be done by courier or cyclist, would
Outpost Detachment, Libochowitz, 29 May, '05, 9.30 a. m.
Chief of Staff, Xth Corps,
Message No. 1.
Patrols have found MISCHLOWITZ, MINKWITZ and
SAMNITZ unoccupied by the enemy. I will canton main
body in LIBOCHOWITZ and place outposts on hills north-
east and south-east of said town. These hills will be defend-
ed if necessary.

As there is no hurry with this message, the

envelope would be marked "Speed: ordinary"; .or
one (X).
Messages should be given a serial number when
more than one is sent by a picket, patrol, etc., during
a day to the same authority. It is advisable to num-
ber the first one, so that the receiver may know at

once that it really is the first one sent and that none
have been lost.
In the present instance, the message is a tele-
gram. The heading "outpost detachment" might be
omitted. Even under other circumstances it might
have been omitted as the point of departure; the con-
tents and the subscription indicate sufficiently whence
the message comes. Neither would it be necessary
to number this or succeeding telegrams, as the safety
of transmission makes this unnecessary.
Immediately after sending his message, the de-
tachment commander would have to attend to his
duties as cantonment commandant. He might detail
one of his subordinates for this duty, but this would
not be advisable for the detail would have to be
changed as each of the battalions in turn will re-
lieve the outposts.
Beside the cantonment commandant, an officer
of the day and necessary officers of the guard are de-
tailed for each village of the cantonment.
The officer of the day is in charge of all guards
and is responsible for their being properly posted,
instructed and inspected by day and night.
The village would be divided into districts for the
billeting of troops. The second battalion might be
located in the court yards, along the streets towards
Minkwitz and Prostau; the third battalion and the
engineer company in those along the roads towards
Tiirnau and Ranschwitz.
As the location of the outposts in this case would
preclude the surprise of the village by the enemy,
only the following guards would probably be needed:
1. An interior guard located by the second bat-
talion in the vicinity of the eastern end of the street
towards Minkwitz, with a sentry at the post of the
guard and a double sentry on the streets leading res-
pectively towards Prostau and Minkwitz. There
should also be a sentry at the quarters of the detach-
ment commander, where the battalion colors are.
2. An interior guard located by the third bat-
talion at the cross-streets of the village with a
sentry at the post of the guard and a double sentry
at each of the two remaining exits from the village.
3. For the night (from 8 p. m. to 5 a. m.) the
third battalion would post an exterior guard at the
southern edge of the grove, south of and adjoin-
ing the town. This would have an examining post
on the road and a double sentry beyond the south-east
corner of the grove.
The second battalion would furnish the officer of
the day and the third battalion an officer of the
guard. Particular care should be taken that the vil-
lage streets be not obstructed by trains. For this
reason it might be well to have the wagons of the
light train park at the western exit of the village and
have the neighboring sentry -post take charge of them.
The movements of all suspicious civilians should
be watched and spies should be employed to obtain
information of the enemy from Reichenberg. To dis-
close as little as possible of the proceedings of the de-
tachment to the inhabitants of the neighboring
enemy's country and to prevent unnecessary alarm
by a misinterpretation of signals, only one should be
used, and that in case of necessity, viz.: the call to
SThe detachment commander would have to come
to an agreement with the village authorities about the
subsistence of his men. For the 29th of May there
should be no difficulty; but there might be for suc-
ceeding days. Recourse must then be had to the
supplies carried in the provision and forage wagons.
These must, however, be at once replenished by re-
quisition. Steps should'also be taken to provide for
a hospital and a guardhouse.
After the detachment commander in this manner
has verbally made arrangements as cantonment com-
mandant, he would visit his outposts; taking the cap-
tain of the engineer company with him.
Let us now imagine ourselves in the position of
outpost commander to determine what arrangements
he should make independently.
Before the infantry had arrived, vedettes had
been posted on the hills 90 and 110 and patrols
had been ordered toward Mischlowitz, Minkwitz and
Samnitz. This arrangement is sufficient for observ-
ation and reconnaissance of the terrane to the front
during the day. Under the protection of this small
number of men, the battalion, the half troop and the
battery can rest securely. The bivouacs mut how-
ever be located so that they cannot be seen from
Minkwitz. If a half-battalion bivouacs on either
side of the road, the half-troop could be with one or
the other.
Aside from an interior guard during the day, this
force need only post one exterior guard to prevent
unauthorized traffic with Libochowitz.
The two vedettes on the hills consist each of three
men and are dismounted. The half-troop continues
patrolling beyond the three nearest villages in the
enemy's country; carefully examining the terrane
beyond these.
The battery has been ordered to construct gun-
pits on hill 110. Eight men can complete such a
pit in medium soil in about an hour. But as the bat-
tery does not know in advance in what direction it
must fire, at least a double allowance of pits should
be constructed to use as circumstances may require.
As the defense is to be carried to the utmost, the
battery commander should consider how he can im-
prove the cover and also provide such for limbers and
caissons of the first echelon.
As it might happen that the battery could be of
most service on hill 90, the detachment commander
would order the captain of engineers to prepare em-
placements on this day for the guns to provide for
an attack from Samnitz or even Prostau.
Even the infantry on outpost will construct in-
trenchments on the front to be defended. These are
to be strengthened as opportunity serves. If time
were available, the engineer company would also
strengthen the flanks towards Rauschwitz and Pros-
tau for it must be taken into consideration that the
west corps advancing on Libochowitz June 1st may
have to defend itself at once.
The detachment must therefore exert itself to
the utmost to hold its position until the arrival of re-
enforcements-neutralizing as far as possible the
superior strength of the enemy by strengthening its
position in every way possible. Various arrange-
ments are feasible for the night position of outpost.
But the regular division into outpost cavalry, outpost
companies and outpost reserve is not suitable for
this case. Strictly speaking, Colonel X's entire de-
tachment is the outpost for the corps. The troops
in Libochowitz in a certain sense are therefore the
outpost reserve, while the 1st battalion partakes of
the nature of outpost companies forced, by the con-
formation of the terrane and the peculiar situation,
to bivouac in the immediate vicinity of the reserve.
A separate outpost cavalry could not be provided
for the day, because only 3000 yards beyond the out-
posts lies the frontier which is not to be crossed be-
fore June 1st except by patrol; and because the ter-
rane beyond the frontier is visible from the defensive
If it should be objected that the very first exer-
cises are injudiciously selected as they do not typify
the rule, but call for exceptions, I can only say that

experience has taught me that every concrete case is

an exception to the rule.
Whoever believes that he can master the art of
war by memorizing certain forms for future use is
mightily mistaken.
Assuming that war has not been declared by the
evening of May 29th and that the patrols have not
touched upon the enemy, I would consider the prin-
cipal duty of the night to be to control the traffic
over the Zama River at the crossings west of Misch-
lowitz, Minkwitz and Samnitz; and therefore to
establish examining posts near these crossings.
Then it would be sufficient to protect the companies
of the 1st battalion on the west slopes of hills 110
and 90, by exterior guards. I do not consider it ad-
visable to push forward to the Zama (about 3000
yards) independent infantry N. C. 0. posts, as
mounted messengers would be needed by them to
receive information from them in time. For this
reason I would prefer to establish there independent
N. C. O. posts of cavalry, and either relieve them
every two hours or make them so strong that the
posts need not be relieved.
In the first instance, each post would consist of
one N. C. 0. and three troopers; in the latter case of
one N. C. 0 and six troopers. The remainder of the
half-troop on outpost would be cantoned in Libocho-
After the detachment commander has given the
outpost commander the necessary instructions, he
would ride to the flanks of the position with the cap-
.tain of engineers to instruct the latter concerning the
work to be done after the company has completed
the gun pits on hill 90.
Let us assume that until 5 p. m. the situation has
not changed, that therefore war has not been de-
clared and the cavalry patrols have not encountered

the enemy. The question then presents itself wheth-

er the regimental train shall be brought forward and
made available for the troops.
I would not do this without an escort detailed from
the cavalry at Tiirnau, which would see that the
wagons keep to one side of the road, keep closed up
and halt at the western exit of Libochowitz facing
Ttrnau, so that the troops can readily get at their
wagons and that the latter can start for Tiirnau
again without any obstruction.
If it is thought inadvisable for the troops to have
the regimental baggage on the 29th, it would prob-
ably be more so on any subsequent evening for some
time to come.
As there is no apparent danger of an attack, the
regimental train would be brought forward. If there
should be no change in the situation until the morn-
ing of May 30, the train would stay at Libochowitz
until 5 a. m. on the 30th and then return to Tiirnau.
The foregoing then would probably be the disposition
of detachment commander just before issuing his 5
p. m. order which would read as follows:
LIBOCHOWITZ, 29, MAY '05., 5 P. M.

1. At 8 p. m. today the outposts will take up their night

position as follows: The two biv ouacs of the battalion must
be protected by exterior guards.
At the crossings of the ZAMA, west of MISCHLOWITZ,
MINKWITZ and SAMNITZ independent cavalry N. C. O.
posts will be established, performing also the duty of exam-
ining posts. The remainder of the outpost cavalry-less the
necessary messengers-will be quartered at LIBOCHOWITZ.
The fighting battery will go to TURNAU.
2. At 5 a. m. tomorrow the outposts will resume their
day position.
3. The troops in LIBOCHOWITZ and TURNAU may un-
dress for the night; the horses in these places can be un-
saddled or unharnessed; but in every occupied building one
man must remain awake and have a light burning.
The regimental train pertaining to the troops in and to
the front of LIBOCHOWITZ has been ordered at once to
move to the western exit of LIBOCHOWITZ and will be
available there until 5 a. m. tomorrow.
Colonel, Detachment Commander.

If the situation does not change by the following

forenoon, the outposts will be relieved by the 2nd
Battalion and the other half of the troop--the artil-
lery remaining on duty as before. The troops relieved
from the outposts would take the quarters and guard
duty of the relieving ones.
I do not consider it advisable to order this now
as it is impossible to know what changes might be
necessary due to unforseen events.
A telegram would be sent to Corps Headquarters
as follows: "Nothing new in front of Libochowitz."
As there has been no change in the situation by
the morning of May 30, the detachment commander
decides to send forward an officer's patrol as far as
possible, to get information of the enemy-especially
concerning the troops reported in Reichenberg.
This officer's task is not an easy one, as he must
understand how to advance unseen as far as possible.
He must avoid the main road to Reichenberg and
the adjoining villages; and must observe the terrane,
and the enemy if advancing, from view points at a
distance from the road.
Let us assume that this officer, verbally instruct-
ed by the detachment commander, leaves about 8 a.
m. on May 30, accompanied by three troopers.
The detachment commander then orders the out-
posts to be relieved by the new detail.
Just before 3 p. m., the detachment commander
receives a telegram from Corps Headquarters stating
that the enemy has declared war. Soon after this
the officer's patrol returns with the information that

the enemy left Reichenberg at 1 p. m., marching to-

wards Minkwitz with from four to six battalions,
some cavalry and two or three batteries.
The detachment commander orders the troops in
Turnau to move to Libochowitz and that the regimen-
tal train with an escort of one N. C, 0. and six troop-
ers remain at the western exit of Tirnau.
The outpost battalion takes up a covered position
in rear of hill 90, and the 3rd battalion in rear of
hill 110.
The guns take their position on hill 110. The
1st battalion and the Engineer company remain at
their assembly points in Libochowitz. Three pla-
toons of cavalry advance via Minkwitz to reconoiter
the enemy. About 4.30 p. m. the cavalry returns,
reporting that the enemy, consisting of all arms, is
approaching Minkwitz. About 5 p. m. the enemy's
infantry occupies Minkwitz. There is no attack
by him, but he establishes outposts in the hills on
either side of Minkwitz and at the western exit of
this village.
In consequence of these occurences the detach-
ment commander sends the following telegram to
corps headquarters:
"An officer's patrol has ascertained that the ene-
my, consisting of four to six battalions, some caval-
ry, and two to three batteries left Reichenberg at
1 p. m. today, marching towards Minkwitz. At 5
p. m. the enemy placed outposts at Minkwitz."
Then the following order is issued:
LIBOCHOWITZ, 30 MAY, '05., 6 P. M.

1. The enemy has declared war and has marched with

troops of all arms from REICHENBERG to the frontier,
where he has established outposts at MINKWITZ and on the
hills north and south of said village.
-- 46-
2. a. The 2d and 3d battalions and half a troop will re-
main on outpost.
Major C. will bivouac with the 3d battalion and one
platoon of cavalry on the western slope of hill 110, will se-
cure the road towards MINKWITZ and the terrane south of
the road, and in case of an attack by the enemy will hold hill
Major B. will bivouac with the 2d battalion and one
platoon of cavalry on the western slope of hill 90, will se-
cure the terrane north of the MINKWITZ road and in case of
attack will hold hill 90.
b. The Ist battalion and the engineer company will re-
turn to their quarters. The former will also secure the west-
ern and southern exits of the village and will place an exterior
guard at the southern edge of the grove just south of
c. The half troop of cavalry not on outpost will canton
in the eastern part of LIBOCHOWITZ.
d. The fighting battery will retain its fire position un-
til 8.30 p. m., will then move to and park at the western exit
of LIBOCHOWITZ and will shelter its horses and men in the
eastern part of the same village.
3. The regimental train will be parked at the western
exit of TURNAU.
4. The troops in LIBOCHOWITZ will remain clothed
during the night; one man will be on guard in each occupied
house; all occupied houses and stables will remain lighted;
all the horses will remain harnessed and saddled.
5. At 5 a. m. tomorrow all the troops will resume the
position in readiness as now occupied.
Colonel, Detachment Commander.

Here, apparently contrary to all rules, two-thirds

of the infantry remains on outpost. When, however,
the gravity of the situation is borne in mind, and it
is remembered that the advance of the corps depends
upon the detachment holding its present position,
this readiness will readily be demanded of it.
At any moment the enemy may advance to the
attack. The entire detachment really forms, as al-
ready stated, the outpost for the army corps. Here
we have two outpost-detachments: the one secures

the terrane to the south of and the other to the north

of the Minkwitz road.
In what way will these two detachments carry
out their orders?
The independent N. C. O. posts of cavalry that
were near the bridges across the Zama the night be-
fore will be impracticable, as the enemy would not
tolerate them. I do not consider it advisable to push
outpost companies forward beyond hills 90 and 110;
for if these send out pickets and the latter double
sentries, then the opposing sentries will be so near
each other that there will be picket-firing all night.
For this reason I would prefer to push forward pick-
ets from the outpost reserve and have them form a
cordon of sentries as in fortress warfare. The right
wing of the line of the outposts would extend to the
grove south of Libochowitz and the left wing to the
road Libochowitz-Prostau, with an independent N. C.
0. post on hill 50. Cavalry patrols should be sent
forward as far as the Zama.
The present case can serve as an example to
show how our theories may not fit on account of pecul-
iarities of terrane and conditions of war. Here we
see Colonel X's detachment strangely cramped. It
has to dispense with the usually desired depth, be-
cause it is hemmed in on one side by mountains and
on the other side by the frontier. This cramped po-
sition calls for peculiar means of security, viz: the
omission of the out-post companies, intermediate link
between pickets and outpost reserve.
We cannot imagine that Corps Headquarters will
remain inactive after receiving the latest information.
As soon as the Corps Commander received news
of the declaration of war, he must have said to him-
self that hostilities would probably begin by May
31st. Although it was expected that the western
corps would not cross the frontier before June 1st

and that therefore it could not be concentrated before

the afternoon of May 31st, still the corps commander
must have the larger part of his corps with him by
the evening of May 30. He must therefore not ex-
pose Colonel X to the danger of being forced back in-
to the mountain defile by twice his number of the
enemy; but must do all he can to prevent this. For
if Colonel X's detachment is forced back into the de-
file then the western corps will be unable to advance
.on June 1st and the other corps of the army, without
its assistance, may be defeated in the coming decisive
battle by superior numbers of the enemy.
We must therefore assume that, immediately af-
ter the receipt of the declaration of war, the corps
commander will push forward his available troops
far enough to support Colonel X, at Libochowitz, if
necessary. On the same day, therefore, that Colonel
X's message arrived, stating that the enemy nearly
twice as strong as himself had advanced to the fron-
tier, the corps commander would as far as practic-
able re-enforce the detachment at Libochowitz.
And thus Colonel X at 7.30 p. m. receives the fol-
lowing message from Corps Headquarters:
Brigadier-General Z, with 3 battalions, 1 troop
and 2 batteries will arrive today at Tiirnau and will
assume command: of the troops at Libochowitz.
(See map of Guben section.)


A southern corps concentrating in its own coun-
try, at Drebkau-south west of Cottbus*, intends to
advance via Guben towards Crossen to force back
the enemy located near the latter point.
The following detachment is sent from the (first)
southern army corps to protect the railway Cottbus-
Guben by occupying Guben and to hold the Neisse
crossing at Guben for its corps.
1st Infantry
1st Infantry Brigade 2nd Infantry
3rd Infantry
1st Squadron 1st Cavalry
1st Battalion (3 batteries) field i(rtilleryt
Bridge train
Company A, 1st Battalion of Engineers
I2 ambulance Company Section

The southern detachment left the vicinity of

Drebkau the morning of July 10, and marched via
Cottbus towards Peitz. Passing through Cottbus in-
formation was received from the telegraph operator
that the telegraph line to Guben has been interrupted
since 9:00 a. m. that date.
At about 2:00 p. m. after a march more than 12
miles in a broiling sun, the infantry-point of the ad-
vance guard reaches Peitz. At this time the detach-
ment commander, marching at the head of the main
body, receives from a cyclist the following message
*Crossen is 18 miles north-east of Guben and Drebkau 9 miles south-
west of Cottbus.

tIn a supplement the author states (in view of the recent increase in ar-
tillery) that if a brigade of artillery is with the Division to which the above
detachment belongs, then a regiment of artillery (2 battalions) should ac-
company the detachment.

sent by the independent cavalry. (This body consist-

ing of three troops had received orders to advance as
far as Tauer and Jaenschwalde and thence to recon-
noiter as far as Guben.)
Independent Cavalry.
TAUER, 10 July, 05. 1:30 p. m.
To the Adjutant General,
1st Infantry Brigade,
Message No. 1.
I have 2 troops at TAUER and 1 troop at JAENSCH-
WALDE. My patrols encountered enemy's cavalry patrols at
KALTENBORN and SCHENKENDOBERN and at 11:30 a. m.
were driven back from South of the railway station at GUBEN
by Infantry outposts. Countyrmen are unanimous in say-
ing that Guben was not occupied by the enemy before this
Major, Commanding.
Give the intentions and arrangements of the de-
tachment commander.
A "Situation" in war-time so clear as to leave no
doubt whatever in the mind of a detachment com-
mander would never be encountered. In the pres-
ence of the fog of war it is often only the possession
of a certain military tact that leads to a correct deci-
sion; for usually there is lacking the necessary data
upon which to base a positive calculation. And there-
by war becomes an art and not a science.
Likewise in the present case the "Situation" is
hazy for the detachment commander. To be sure, it
is known that Guben was occupied by the enemy the
morning of July 10th, but nothing whatever is known
concerning his strength. Besides,, it is not known in
the detachment when the main body of the corps will
follow the detachment via Peitz towards Guben; for
this is not yet known even at Corps Headquarters.

The detachment commander is concerned only

with what is to be done by him at once; i. e., at
about 2:00 p. m.
The facts that the detachment has already had a
very severe day's march and that the enemy is still
about a day's march away preclude any great enter-
prises being undertaken on July 10th.
The first thing to do would be to camp the
Should the detachment commander be undecided
as to the manner of disposing of his troops for the
night he would prevent subsequent marching and
counter-marching by having the detachment halt,
close up and have messengers report for orders that
are to be issued.
On account of the distance of the enemy the
troops may be cantoned. Infantry must be placed
in Tauer and Jaenschwalde to relieve the. Cavalry
from guard-duty in the villages at night.
In addition, troops might be placed in Preilack,
Turnow, Drehnow and Peitz. After having come to
this decision the detachment commander issues the
following orders to the Cavalry, which will be for-
warded by cyclists:
PEITZ, 10 July, 05. 2:15 p. m.
To the,
Commanding Officer,
Independent Cavalry,
It is of importance to me that you ascertain, at least ap-
proximately, the strength of the enemy at GUBEN. If this
cannot be done by questioning villagers or prisoners, officers'
patrols must go beyond the right bank of the NEISSE to get
this information in the villages through which the enemy
passed this morning before occupying GUBEN.
The main body of the detachment will be quartered in
PEITZ and vicinity. I shall send you a battalion each to
Messages will reach me at PEITZ.
Brigadier-General, Commanding.
After the detachment commander has given his
Adjutant instructions concerning the orders to be is-
sued to the troops, he sends the following telegram
to corps headquarters:
PEITZ, 10 July, 05. 2:30 p. m.
To the,
Chief of Staff, First Army Corps,
According to information received from my Cavalry, the
enemy occupied Guben this morning-strength not yet de-
termined. I shall quarter my main body in Peitz and vicin-
ity. 'Outpost detachments will occupy Jaenschwalde
and Tauer.

The present order of march will be retained as

far as practicable in the assignment of troops to the
various villages; so that the troops that are in ad-
vance will occupy the most advanced villages. We
shall therefore see what is the order of march and
distribution of troops in the column.
As there was no probability of meeting the enemy
during the march to Peitz, and as it was extremely
hot, the troops were allowed to march with as much
comfort as possible.
We shall therefore assume the following as the
distribution of troops:
Independent Cavalry:
Major A, 3 troops.
Advance guard: Major B.
1st Battalion, 1st Infantry.
2 troop Cavalry.
Main body (in order of march)
2 troop Cavalry.
Hdqrs. 2nd and 3rd Battalions, 1st Inf.
1st Battalion, Field Artillery.
2nd Infantry.
3rd Infantry.
Engineer Company.
Bridge train.
I2 Ambulance Company Section.

On account of the excessive heat the troops were

allowed to march on either side of the road, the mid-
dle of the road remaining unused.
The regimental train followed immediatel~y in
rear of the troops.
Based upon this order of march, the following
orders would be issued:
PEITZ 10th July, '05, 2:30 pmr.

1. The enemy occupied GUBEN this morning.

2. This detachment will take quarters as follows:
1st battn. 1st Inf. ? JAENSCHAWALDE.
1 troop cay.
2d battn. 1st Inf. TAUER.
2 troops cav. and Sqdn. Hdqrs. S
3d battn. 1st Inf. & Regtl Hdqrs. TURNOW
1st battery PREILACK.
1st battn. 2d Inf. ,DRERNOW.
2d & 3d bat'ries and battn. hdqrs. S
Brigade hdqrs. PEITZ
2d & 3d battns. 2d Inf. & Regtl Hdqrs. PEITZ
1 troop cav. old town
i 1st battn. Cottbus. C Suburbs of
3d Inf. }2d battn. Lieberose. SuIbso
t 3d battn. Drehnow. T
Engineer company. Col. Ottendorf.
Bridge train.Co.tenrf
Ambulance Co. Section Factory (Fabrick) just
south-west of PEITZ.
3. The cantonment commandants of JAENSCH-
WALDE and TAUER will provide for the security
of the detachment and will keep up communication
with each other.
4. In case of an alarm the troops in PREILACK,
TURNOW and DREHNOW will assemble at the
northern end of the LIEBEROSE suburbs; the other
troops will remain at the assembly-points designat-
ed for their respective villages.
The assembly places of the troops in PEITZ and
its suburbs must be communicated to Brigade
Hdqrs. by 5 p. m. to-day.
5. The regimental train will follow the troops to
their quarters and in case of alarm will remain
there; assembled in each suburb.
6. Rations and forage consumed from the wagons
must be replaced by requisition.
7. Further orders will be commnnicated at my
quarters this evening at 9 o'clock.
Biga~ier General, Commanding.

As a rule in assigning troops to quarters the Regi-

mental Commanders designate the battalions, troops
or batteries. But as the commander of the whole
force must know where these different bodies are,
the officer issuing the order will find out from the
various adjutants what distribution is desired and
insert the number of the battalion, troop or battery
in the order as it is issued.
Outpost duty in the present instance assumes a
very different form from that in the first two exer-
cises. It will be performed by the troops in Jaen-
schwalde and Tauer and will be limited to exterior
guards furnished by the infantry and to cavalry pa-
trols towards Guben. This will be sufficient on ac-
count of the great distance of the enemy.
The various cantonment commandants must pro-
vide for the security of their respective villages
without any further orders. The manner of doing
this has been explained in the second exercise.
As it is impossible to say what changes may
occur during the remainder of the day, whether a
further advance on Guben may not be undertaken, it
is impossible at present to issue the orders for the
following day.
If under the most favorable circumstances the
orders for the following day are issued by 9 p. m.
they will not reach all of the troops before 11 p. m.
But the troops will not suffer on account of the late
issuance of the orders. They are prepared for an
early departure in case of an active campaign and
will settle down for the night without waiting for the
orders. Only the commanders of the troops and their
staff officers have their rest broken and this increases
with the rank of the officer.
During a campaign the subdivisions of an army
as a rule do not receive their orders until after dark-
often not until the following morning, shortly before

the time for resuming the march. For only towards

nightfall will reports reach army headquarters that
will form the basis for further orders.
Adjutants will often have to wait for hours be-
yond the time designated for the receipt of orders.
And often after receipt of orders there is so little
time left that only a very rapid ride will enable the
adjutants to deliver the orders on time. In the mean-
time the private soldier has been sleeping and is
awakened only by the call for reveille or the call to
arms. On this account the requirements from mind
and body of troop leaders in time of war are much
greater than from the rank and file. On this account
we need men in the higher positions of command who
are in full possession of their bodily strength.
The conduct of war will lag in the hands of de-
crepid leaders.
By day the troop leader bears the same hard-
ships as his subordinates. After the latter have re-
tired as a rule the former's mental work begins, the
results of which form the most brilliant pages of his-
The decisions for the following day then will de-
pend on the news received in the meantime about the
enemy and on instructions received from superior
authority. For it is doubtful whether the latter, un-
der the changed conditions, will consider it important
that Guben be secured by the detachment through an
attack on the enemy. The Corps Commander would
have to direct what the detachment shall do on the
following day if Guben is not to be attacked for the
In case the detachment is to attack Guben on the
following day, the detachment commander must de-
cide in time in what manner the advance is to be
made so that the issuing of the orders in the evening

may not be delayed by his not having decided this

A number of roads lead from Peitz to Guben, but
only one chaussee. A number of wood-roads lead
from Jaenschwalde towards Guben.
But in examining this network of roads on the
map it is to be noted that a force unfamiliar with the
terrane might easily get lost in the woods, although
the line of railway would assist somewhat in orient-
ing oneself.
For the detachment to follow one of these wood-
roads, in case the enemy advanced along the chaussee
from Guben towards Peitz, would be to expose the
former to great danger. Therefore the detachment
commander decides to advance with his main body
from Peitz via Tauer towards Barenklau; sending
the battalion and troop at Jaenschwalde as a right
flank detachment via Wtist-Drewitz towards Atter-
wasch. The detachment can then according to cir-
cumstances either attack the enemy from the west or,
by turning to the right from Barenklau or Atterwasch
towards Kaltenborn, attack from the south.
The regimental train of the troops in Jaen-
schwalde would remain at the southern exit of the
town, so it could in case of necessity go back via
Cottbus. The regimental train of the other troops
should be assembled south of the defiles of Peitz on
the road leading towards Cottbus. This precaution
seems necessary on account of the uncertainty con-
cerning the enemy and the difficult nature of the
terrane. The detachment commander for the pres-
ent need not consider any further questions; even the
foregoing ones may be considerably modified by news
that might yet be received concerning the enemy.

Events occurring with the southern detachment

during the afternoon of July 10.
Of the messages received during the afternoon
by the detachment commander, the following deserve
1. From the Cantonment Commandant at Tauer.
Tauer, 10 July '05, 4:30p. m.
To the Adjutant-General, 1st Brigade,
A hostile patrol of dragoons was seen near this village at
about 3:30 p. m. One man of this patrol (3d Dragoons)
dangerously wounded was captured. He says that he came
from the railway station at Guben, where Brigadier General
A is in command; that the latter arrived there this morning
at 5 o'clock with the 49th Infantry, 1 troop of the 3d Dragoons
and 1 battery from Gr. Braschen*; and that there are no
other troops in Guben. At 3:20 p. m., Lt. Z with 3 troopers
left here to cross the Neisse at Gr. Gastrose and reconnoiter
in rear of the enemy.
Major, Commanding.

2. From the Cantonment Commandant at Jaen-

Jaenschwalde, 10 July, '05, 6:00 p. m.
To the Adjutant General, 1st Brigade,
At about 4 p. m. a cavalry patrol found Kaltenborn and
Deulowitz occupied by the enemy. About a platoon of the
enemy's infantry is stationed at the bridge at Gubinchen.
Major, commanding 1st Batt'n. 1st Infantry.

3. From the Cantonment Commandant at Tauer.

Tauer, 10 July, '05, 6:15 p. m.
To the Adjutant General, 1st Brigade,
At about 4:30 p. m. my cavalry patrols were driven back
from Deulowitz and Schenkendobern by hostile infantry
Major, commanding.
* 13 miles northeast of Guben.

Based on these three messages, the detachment

commander sent the following telegram:
Peitz, 10 Jul', '05. 7:00 p. m.
To the Chief of Staff, 1st Army Corps,
A prisoner reports that at 5:00 a. m. to-day the 49th In-
fantry, 1 troop of Dragoons, and 1 battery of the enemy's
force arrived at Guben from Gr. Braschen and that no other
troops were at Guben.
The bridges at Gubinchen, Kaltenborn, Deulowitz and
Schenkendobern, which were not occupied by the enemy
this morning were found occupied by the hostile infantry at
4:00 p. m.
Brigadier General.
In consequence of this, the detachment command-
er receives the following telegram at about 10:00
p. m.
Drebkau, 10 July, '05. 9:30 p. m.
Commanding General, 1st Brigade,
Attack the enemy at Guben tomorrow. I send you de-
tachment signal corps per railway to the Western Railway
Station in Peitz for use in repairing telegraph line to Guben.
The corps will advance tomorrow morning to the line
Corps headquarters will arrive at Pietz by noon tomor-
Commanding General.
Give the dispositions and orders of the detach-
ment commander.
Discussionof the solution,
The severely wounded hostile dragoon who was
captured near Tauer said that that morning an infan-
try regiment and a troop and a battery had arrived
at Guben and that no other troops had arrived there.
This statement may be accepted as reliable because
there is no information to contradict it; and because
it is fair to assume that a severely wounded man will
tell the truth.
The hostile dragoon can not know, however,
whether or not other troops arrived in Guben during

the afternoon. In favor of this, assumption is the

fact that the enemy, who limited his action in the
morning to occupying Guben, during the afternoon
advanced to the line Schenkendabern-Gubinchen,
which line is about 4 miles long. For this reason, in
the telegram to Corps Headquarters, it was specially
noted that the line in question was not occupied until
during the afternoon. But the corps commander
must be satisfied that greatly superior forces are not
opposed to the detachment, or he would not have
ordered an attack by it for the following day. A
further clearing-up of the situation may result from
the reconnaissance of the officer's patrol sent from
Tauer via Gastrose in rear of the enemy.
It is not practicable to await the return of this
patrol before issuing the detachrhent orders, partic-
ularly as it is not certain the patrol will return. But
steps should be taken that the troops could receive
modified orders without loss of time, in case the
patrol should return. On this account the office force
would have to be retained after issue of the order,
and an increased number of orderlies must be kept
ready with saddled horses as they should ride in pairs
to Jaenschwalde, Turnow and Drehnow on account of
the poor and obscure roads. The detachment Signal
Corps, arriving in Peitz this evening, must be met at
the railway station by members of the Engineer com-
pany, and be conducted to the latter's quarters. In-
structions to this effect must be given before proceed-
ing to issue the regular detachment orders.
The latter would read as follows:

Field Orders PEITZ, 10 July '05. 10:30 p. m.

No. -.
1. The enemy occupied GUBEN this morning with 1
infantry regiment, 1 troop and 1 battery. This
afternoon our patrols found the bridges at GU-
SCHENKENDOBERN occupied by hostile in-
fantry. The main body of our army corps will
advance tomorrow to the line HEINERSBRUCK-
2. I am ordered to attack the enemy at GUBEN to-
3. Distribution of troops.
Advance guard, Col. C.
1st Infantry.
2 troops cavalry.
Main body (in order of march)
1 troop cavalry.
1 battalion 2nd infantry.
Ist battalion field artillery.*
2 battalions 2nd infantry.
1 battalion 3rd infantry.
Engineer company, advance guard bridge
train and detachment signal corps.
I2 ambulance company section.
Right flanking detachment, Major B.
2 battalions 3rd infantry.
1 troop cav.
4. (a) The advance guard will start at 5:40 a. m. to-
morrow from the northern exit of TAUER ,advan-
cing along the main route through BAREN-
(b) The main body will be at its assembly-place be-
tween LIEBEROSE-Suburb and the western rail-
way station of PEITZ at 4:40 a. m. ready to march
via TAUER towards BARENKLAU. The adjutant
general will be at the assembly-point and indicate
to the troops their respective places.
(c) The right flanking detachment will march at
5:00 a. m. tomorrow from JAENSCHWALDE
through WUST-DREWITZ via the improved
road leading from TAUER to ATTERWUSCH.
It must keep up communication with the advance
5. The regimental train of the troops at JAENSCH-
WALDE will be parked by 6:30 a. m. at the south-
ern exit of that village. The regimental train of
the other troops will move back towards COTT-
BUS at 6:30 a. m. tomorrow, going as far as oppo-
site MAUST so as to leave the road free for the
main body of the army corps. One officer and
six troopers from the cavalry in PEITZ will be
detailed as escort. This officer will also be held

* In a recent supplement by the author he states that as the detach-

ment would now (1905) on account of the increase of artillery, have a regi-
ment (6 batteries) one-half of this would be with the advance guard and
one-half with the main body. The advance guard would also be increased
by"additional infantry from the main body, making the proportion about
half and half. This he justifies by the expectation of an early attack upon
the enemy.
responsible that the march of the train to its
parking place takes place without confusion.
6. Messages will reach me at the head of the main
Brigadier General, Commanding.

Let us examine the foregoing order more closely.

In the second paragraph is stated "I am ordered,
This was intended to show that it was not alone
the detachment commander's but also the corps com-
mander's idea that the enemy should be attacked.
If, instead, it had been stated: I shall attack
the enemy at Guben, the next in command, in case
of the death or wounding of the detachment com-
mander, might decide not to attack as his predeces-
sor's views on the subject would not necessarily be
his own. For this reason, I would consider it more
correct, where an order from higher authority exists,
to refer to it.
In the distribution of troops, the order of march
of only the main body would be given because the
latter is commanded by the detachment commander.
The order of march of the advance-guard and other
detached bodies would be determined by their respec-
tive commanders. In the advance-guard we find only
troops from Tauer, Turnow and Preilack; that is,
those that are farthest in advance.
To send troops forward from farther back for
advance-guard duty would be permisible only in case
some special officer were wanted to command the ad-
vance guard. This might be done in especially diffi-
cult cases.
Sometimes a very careful and at other times a
very dashing advance-guard commander may be
If it seems necessary to bring the artillery into
action very promptly, it might be placed at the end

of the advance-guard. But in such cases the detach-

ment commander must remain with the advance-
guard to retain control of the artillery.
It is a good plan to place small detachments of
infantry at intervals in a long column of artillery for
the greater security of artillery.
The times of departure for the advance-guard and
right flanking detachment are so arranged that the
heads of their respective columns may advance tow-
ards Guben approximately on the same front.
The main body had to assemble an hour earlier
than the advance-guard because the former's place
is about 3 miles in rear of that of the advance-
guard. The main body must march from its assem-
bly-point at about 4:50 a. m. to follow the advance-
guard at about 600 yards.
The field service regulations warn against a too
early start; but on the other hand declare heat to be
the greatest enemy of marching troops. In the
present case, the detachment commander would want
to pass through the woods located ahead of the de-
tachment as soon as possible, as it is quite likely that
the enemy himself will advance to the attack.
The time of departure of the regimental train is
so arranged as to preclude any collision with the ad-
vancing troops. At 6:30 a. m. the end of the main
body will have passed the southern exit of Tauer. It
is announced to the troops that the reason for the
retrograde movement of the regimental train is that
the roads are to be kept open for the main body of
the corps. The main reason however is in part the
uncertainty concerning the enemy and in part the
existence of the long defiles to the rear that must be
kept open against the contingency of a defeat.
As a rule, reasons are not stated in orders. But
to not cause an unfavorable impression on account of

the regimental train being sent back, something had

to be said in explanatiorin of the movement.
We see that an officer and 6 troopers were as-
signed to the train. On account of scarcity of officers,
it will often be necessary to do without an officer for
such duty. It is always desirable to have an officer
thus detached; in the present case, it seems to me
imperative. The vexation that the regimental train
causes troop leaders in peace maneuvers is well known
to all. In time of war it is no better; and disorder in
the regimental train may be disastrous.
Finally, I wish to remark that immediately after
issuing such order, watches should be compared be-
cause difference of time may easily lead to col-
Nothing can be decided in advance as to the
manner in which the attack is to be made on the
enemy. The troops reported as being on the line
bridge of Gubinchen-Schenkendobern are nothing but
outposts that will be withdrawn by the enemy before
he is seriously attacked.
It is impossible to judge whether the enemy will
remain at Guben to be attacked or whether he him-
self will not take the offensive. On this account,
nothing more than the advance could be ordered. It
is self-evident that the commanders of the advance-
guard and a right flanking detachment must send
forward their cavalry as far as possible. If they
had needed a special order for this purpose, they
would be unfit for war.

Report of the officer's patrol that crossed the Neisse at

Gr. Gastrose:
Just after 11 p. m., as the orderlies were about
to be dismissed, Lieutenant Z of the officer's patrol
arrived at detachment headquarters and reported as
"By 8 p. m. today at least a division of the ene-
my's army arrived at Guben. I crossed the Neisse
at Gr. Gast-rose and without seeing anything of the
enemy passed through Sadersdorf, Niemitsch,
Schenkendorf, Baeschen and Ddbern. Although
the inhabitants of Schenkendorf, Baeschen and
DSbern knew the enemy to be in Guben they could
not give any details concerning him.
In Saude I saw the village president who hap-
pened to be in Guben during the night of July 9-10
and remained there until about 2 p. m., July 10.
He told me what he claims to have seen with his
own eyes. He said that about 8:30 a. m. cavalry ar-
rived in Guben and took possession of -the post and
telegraph office carrying away letters and instru-
ments and after a short delay moved towards the
Neisse leaving an officer and a few troopers at the
post office; that shortly after 9 a. m. several thous-
and infantry with artillery arrived in Guben and
were quartered there; that towards noon about the
same number of infantry with artillery passed
through Guben; and that the villages east of Guben
as far as he knew were not occupied by the enemy.
To verify this latter statement I concluded to
ride to Mickenberg. But at 6:30 p. m. as I was
about to pass through a grove north of Btjsitz I
saw troops debouching from a wood at about 1,000

yards distance ahead of me and making towards

Guben. I saw six battalions of infantry and three
batteries. As no other troops followed I returned as
far as Gr. Gastrose by the route over which I had
advanced and thence direct to this point, quitting my
observation point just before 8 p. m.
My commanding officer at Tauer so far has no
news of me as on account of darkness and bad roads
I did not think it advisable to let my troopers ride
alone to Tauer.
Give the dispositions and orders of the detach-
ment commander.
The afternoon of July 10 after receipt of the
first report of the enemy's occupying Guben, the de-
tachment commander already saw the possibility of
his being attacked on July 11 near Peitz instead of
being able to advance on Guben.
On this account he had carefully reconnoitered
the terrane near Peitz during the afternoon.
He had satisfied himself that an attack by the
the enemy in the section between the Cottbus-Guben
railway and the Chaussee Peitz-Tauer was very im-
probable on account of the ground off the roads being
very difficult to pass and that even the roads present-
ed obstacles in the many swampy ditches they
crossed. Even an advance via Jaenschwalde towards
Peitz presented great obstacles; the most favorable
plan to the detachment commander seemed to be an
advahce over the ground west of the Tauer-Peitz
Chaussee-for instance over the line Tauer-Preilack.
Lieutenant Z's report therefore did not find the
detachment commander unprepared. In view of
this report and notwithstanding the corps command-
er's orders to attack there could be no doubt that the

attack should not be made. The detachment com-

mander therefore cancelled the order issued at
10:30 p. m. and dictated the following:
PEITZ, 10 July, 05. 11:30 p. mn.

Field Orders

1. According to a report just received from Lt. Z. 1st
Cav. the enemy assembled about one division at
GUBEN today. During the afternoon the patrols
sent out from JAENSCH WALDE and TAUER found
hostile infantry. The main body of our army corps
will advance tomorrow to the line HEINERS-
2. This detachment will remain at PEITZ to repulse
any attack made by the enemy.
3. The troops at JAENSCHWALDE and TAUER will
remain there; keeping touch with the enemy by
means of cavalry patrols. If the enemy attacks, the
troops at JAENSCHWALDE will retire along the
NEUENDORF highway as far as the northern edge
of the KOENIGL. KLEINE HEIDE where a stand
will be made. And in case the enemy attacks, the
troops in TAUER will retire via PREILACK and
TURNOW towards the DREHNOWER suburb.
4.The main body at 6:30 a. m. tomorrow will take
up a position in readiness as follows:
3rd battn. 1st Inf.
Headq'rs and 2d & 3rd battns. 2d Inf. Western railway-
1 troop of cav. station, PEITZ.
3 batteries of artillerytern exit o
1st battn. 3rd Inf. stEastern exit of COTTBUS'
Suburb of PEITZ.
2d battn. 3rd Inf. Northern exit of
Ambulance Co. section Factory
5. The bridge train, detachment Signal Corps, and
regimental train (excepting that in JAENSCH-
WALDE) at 5:00 a. m. tomorrow will move back on
the highway towards COTTBUS until opposite the
village of MAUST wherethe train will be parked
alongside the chaussee. The troop of cav. in PEITZ
will furnish a train guard of one officer and six
troopers. This officer will see that the movement
of the regimental train is conducted ini perfect order.
The regimental train of the troops in JAENSCH-
WALDE at 5:00 a. m. tomorrow will move back on
the road to NEUENDORF as far as the NEUEN-
DORFE Teich and will then halt alongside the
6. Reports will reach me after 6:30 a. m. at the West
ern Railway Station in PEITZ.
Brlg.-Gen. Comdg.

After issuing the foregoing order the detach-

ment commander sends the following telegram to
Corps Headquarters:
PEITZ, 11th July, 05. 12:15 a. m.
Chief of Staff, 1st Corps,
Lt. Z. 1st Cav. by reconnaissance east of Guben learnt
that during the 10th inst. the enemy assembled at least a di-
vision at Guben. I shall remain in position at Peitz to resist
any attack by the enemy.
Brig. Gen. Comdg.

Lieutenant Z's. report saved the detachment a

Although this officer was very fortunate during
his reconnaissance because he met the village presi-
dent at Saude who happened previously to have been
at Guben, and because at the time Lieutenant Z. was
riding towards Miickenberg he observed the hostile
brigade en route, still his work is deserving of great
commendation. For this reason the detachment com-
mander saw fit to mention Lieutenant Z's. name in
his order and telegram.
Such achievements call not only for a good horse-
man but also a good horse and above all quick-wit-
During July 10th Lieutenant Z. travelled nearly
40 miles and performed a service, not only for the
detachment but also for the corps, the importance of
which cannot be calculated.
Had the southern detachment been in the en-
emy's country the ride would hardly have been prac-

ticable. At least it would not have led to such defi-

nite results. In this we again see how important it
is to state for map problems whether the detachment
is in its own or the enemy's country.
Further dispositions by the detachment com-
mander for taking up a defensive position in case of
hostile attack can be made only on the ground on
the morning of the 11th of July. There is plenty
of time for this as it is not likely that the enemy will
advance very early from Guben (if at all) as part of
his command did not arrive there until late in the
The situation therefore is not dangerous for the
southern detachment because the terrane at Peitz is
very favorable for defense and in case of an engage-
ment the early arrival of the main body of the south-
ern army corps can be depended upon.
It is surely a painful situation for a commander
who has been ordered to attack to report that instead
he will assume the defensive. But under the fore-
going circumstances he has no choice. A detach-
ment commander, who, after receiving Lieutenant
Z's report would still carry out his orders to attack
would very properly be court-martialled.
(See Sketches 1 and 3.)


General Situation:
A southern division was defeated at Bischofsheim
September 1 by a hostile northern division and had
retreated via Sch~instedt. The northern division had
pursued towards Sch6nstedt.
Special situationfor the southern division on the
afternoon of September 3.
The southern division in friendly territory had
arrived in rear of the Aue on the afternoon of Sep-
tember 3. The rear guard (the Fusiliers, the 1st, 2nd
and 3rd Squadrons of Dragoons and the Pioneers) had
occupied the line Remmlingen-Wiifingen; the main
body of the division bivouacked southwest of Blank-
The enemy in pursuit had reached a point about
four miles northeast of Schiuenstedt. The engage-
ment of September 1 had reduced the battalions of
the southern division to about 700 men each. But as
the troops. during the 3d had recovered from the
effects of the defeat, the commander of the southern
division decided to again meet the enemy and that on
the Aue.

37th Infantry Brigade 78th Infantry (4 battalions).

38th Infantry Brigade i 91st Infantry (4 battalions).

73d Fusiliers (4 battalions).
74th Infantry (3 battalions).
19th Dragoons.
26th Regiment, Field Artillery 16
1st Company Pioneers, 10th Battalion.
Bridge train.
1st Sanitary detachment.
*These are not a continuation of the first exercise (trans.)

1st Ammunition column.

Field hospitals 1-4.
Total 15 battalions, 4 Squadrons, 6 batteries.

Special situation of the northern division on the

morning of September 4.
The northern division in hostile territory with
its battalions averaging 750 men each had started
from its bivouac four miles northeast of Schinstedt
to continue the pursuit of its enemy. As the infan-
try point of the advance guard approached Schon-
stedt, the independent cavalry reported that the ene-
my was in position on the line Remmlingen-Wtilfin-

39th Infantry Brigade 79th Infantry (4 battalions).

82d Infantry (4 battalions).
67th Infantry (4 battalions).
40th Infantry Brigade 77th Infantry (4 battalions),
10th Rifle Battalion.
16th Dragoons.
10th Regiment Field Artillery (6 batteries).
2nd Company Pioneers, 10th Battalion.
Bridge train.
2d Sanitary detachment.

( 2nd ammunition column.

Field hospital 5-8.
Total 17 battalions, 4 squadrons, 6 batteries.
Weather: cool and hazy.

The Aue river above Wiilfingen is between 3 2 anq 4 feet

deep. The chaussee from SchSnstedt to Remmlingen and to
Wiilfingen, respectively, is bordered with Lombardy poplars
40 feet high. The fields have been harvested axcept that
there are large patches of potatoes on the right of the Aue,
just north-west of Wiilfingen.
Give the arrangements for defense; likewise for


With the preceding exercises the term "Situa-
tion" alone was used. In the present instance we
use both "General" and "Special situation." The
latter method is followed where both sides of the
problem are to be worked out. Sometimes the terms
"General and special idea"' are used. But- it is not
apparent why foreign terms should be used instead of
our own that more accurately convey the thought.
The "general situation" in all peace problems is
the same for both sides for this reason it must not
contain anything that one side can or must not know
of the other. In this category belong all orders, in-
structions, intentions of one side or the other. For
these would not be known by the opponent in time
of war. Everything that one side should know
in the solution of its problem, and that the opponent
must not and cannot know, belongs in the "special
situation" for this side.
If we study the terrane in question we shall find
the position Remmlingen-Wiifingen is very strong
1. There is an obstacle (the Aue) in front that can only be
crossed with difficulty below Wiilfingen, except on bridges;
2. This obstacle can be kept under most effective fire;
3. The terrane on the left bank of this stream is perfectly
open without any cover whatever for about 900 yards;
4. On this account the front of the position can be held
by a small force, thus permitting a strong reserve being held
that can find a covered position at the south-western slope of
the saddle (Welle) whence it can without difficulty move
towards any threatened point.

The following are unfavorable features of the

1. The field of view and therefore effective artillery fire
is restricted because
(a) The groves on Windmill and Galgen hills conceal
considerable terrane beyond (behind) them;
(b) The ground immediately north of these hills forms a
dead angle;
(c) The poplar rows extending from Schbnstedt to Wiil-
fingen and Remmlingen, respectively, screen in part the
ground west of the former and east of the latter rows.
2. It is difficult to assume the offensive after resisting an

Nevertheless the position is so strong that it

would be attacked only in case it could not be turned
strategically. This was precluded by the conditions
of the problem.
On the other hand an attack on the position un-
der the given conditions is not without hope of suc-
cess particularly from above W-ilfingen where the
Aue is less of an obstacle; and besides the northern
division is also superior in morale.
After these preliminary remarks let us turn to
the southern division.
As these troops have regained their moral tone
the commander cannot limit his action to a blocking
of the enemy's advance but must draw the enemy on
so as to gain a victory over him. The crossings over
the Aue must therefore under no circumstances be
destroyed. Instead additional places for crossing
should be found and marked where material for
crossings should be gathered in advance.
In addition the preparations for defense must not
be too evident so the enemy may not at once con-
clude that the entire southern division is in position
behind the Aue, but he should rather be led to be-
lieve that he has to deal with nothing but a rear
guard of the southern division.
On this account it is recommended that in addi-
tion to gun-pits only the northern edges of the two
villages be prepared for defense and shelter trenches
of strong profile be constructed in rear of the two
crossings. Such a strengthening of the position
ought to be sufficient to resist a frontal attack by the

entire northern division. But such an attack is

hardly to be expected as the northern division would
not be able even to properly prepare for it by its
Galgen and Windmill hills do admit of the
artillery's advance under cover to about 1,000 meters.
But the artillery would not be able to fire from the
northeastern slopes (i.e. by indirect fire) on the cross-
ings of the Aue in the valley. To do this the artil-
lery would be obliged to advance to the tops ofthe
hills in question where it would at once come under
hostile infantry fire.
If the artillery went into action between the two
hills at a distance of about 1,500 meters from the
crest of the saddle (welle) it would come into action
in the open and there would result an artillery duel
unfavorable for the northern division. A position
between the two hills and at long range would give a
restricted field of fire on account of the two groves
of trees.
More favorable would be a position in the open
north-east of Galgen hill because the artillery of the
southern division could not have much effect. But
in this event the main attack of the infantry of the
northern division would necessarily be directed
against Remmlingen within most effective artillery
and infantry fire of the southern division.
All this points to the probability that the north-
ern division will occupy Galgen and Windmill hills
with detachments of infantry to secure the roads
leading from Schinstedt to Wiilfingen and Remmlin-
gen, respectively, and launch the main attack from
north of Windmill hill against the Aue, the latter
there forming but a minor obstacle. It is probable
then that the artillery of the northern division will
take position on the northern part of Windmill hill.
The southern division should therefore be prepared
for this contingency in the selection of its position in
readiness for the morning of September 4th.
The vanguard infantry of the southern division
(73d Fusileers) would have to occupy Remmlingen
and Wiilfingen, with two battalions in each village,
and eventually would have to defend these villages.
The 37th Infantry brigade (8 battalions) should be
held together under cover south of Wiilfingen so
as to make a counter attack against the enemy's in-
fantry if it advanced west of the Sch6nstedt-Waiifin-
gen road. The 74th infantry (3 battalions) as reserve
should be placed south of the saddle (Welle) and west
of Remmlingen. The three squadrons with the rear
guard should maintain touch with the enemy and
and when hard pressed should cross the upper Aue
and take position to cover the left flank of the di-
vision. The fourth squadron would be retained with
the main body south-west of Wiilfingen for use in
special contingencies and to furnish orderlies. The
pioneers would proceed to the same point as soon as
they had completed such defensive work as had
been assigned them. For the present the sanitary
detachment might halt at the northern exit of Blan-
kensee. The ammunition columns and field hospitals
would be brought forward to within about 2 miles
south-west of Blankensee; while the heavy baggage
would be sent back about 4 miles. The bridge train
is not needed to bridge the Aue as it is assumed the
pioneers have gathered the material necessary for
this purpose. The bridge train would therefore be
sent back, possibly to join the ammunition columns.
We still have to determine what is to be done
with the artillery. I take up this question last to give
it a more thorough consideration and because it is no
easy matter to place the artillery of the southern di-
vision. The field artillery drill regulations state

among other things as follows in case of the de-

"To obtain the greatest effect of fire the defense
must above all make skillful use of the terrane. As
far as time permits the defender should make a
thorough previous study of the position, improve the
means of communication within the position, deter-
mine ranges particularly to points likely to be occu-
pied by the enemy's artillery or past which his in-
fantry may advance.
"In most cases the artillery at first will best take
up a position in readiness even when a regular posi-
tion has been strengthened. Only in this way is
there any certainty that the artillery will be able to
take up a correct position to meet the opposing at-
tack without losing time by an early change of posi-
"In this way, too, the enemy will be prevented
from obtaining an idea of the defender's dispositions
and intentions before the beginning of the engage-
"The utmost use must be made of earthworks in
preparing a position, If there is not sufficient time
then screens should be improvised and the field of
fire be improved by cutting down trees and hedges.
Having considerable ammunition near the guns is of
great importance. As soon as the direction of the
enemy's attack becomes known, if possible before he
brings his batteries into action, the defender's artil-
lery should come into battery."
The rule then is to come into battery when the
direction of the attack becomes known, and prior to
this to remain in position in readiness even if the
position has been artificially strengthened.
In the present case there has been ample time to
strengthen the position by preparing gunpits or
epaulments, as the southern division arrived on the
-- 76-

ground the previous afternoon. This work therefore

will have been completed on the evening of the 3rd
or the early morning of the 4th of September. It
should not be done in broad day-light as the enemy's
cavalry patrols might become aware of it and the
enemy thus be informed betimes not only that
further resistance is intended but also where the
artillery is posted. The advantage of the cover ob-
tained would thus in part be again lost.
As we have seen, it is most likely that the infan-
try of the northern division will attack west of the
Schanstedt-Wiilfingen road with its artillery on Wind-
mill hill. This artillery could be advantageously
brought under fire and even flanked from hill 69,
southeast of Wtilfingen. As the prolongation of Wind-
mill hill is northerly the batteries on it would be
echeloned on the left.
But hill 69 does not offer sufficient room for six
batteries. Probably not more than two batteries
could be advantageously placed on the hill. But
even if the artillery could be brought in battery here
it should not be done as from this point the hostile
infantry attack could not be seen.
From hill 65 west of Remmlingen the hostile
artillery on Galgen hill is not visible on account of
the grove on the latter hill. There is an excellent
position for artillery in the potato-field just north-
west of Wiilfingen.
Early in September such fields already have a
brownish tint and at long range can hardly be dis-
tinguished from plowed ground.
In this way gun-pits or epaulments in such fields
often cannot be detected even with the strongest
field glasses, particularly if care has been taken by
means of screens and other devices to have the up-
turned earth resemble its surroundings. From this
point the hostile infantry attack could be brought
under fire. But care should be taken to construct
more gun-pits than just enough for the guns to be
used, as additional ones might be of service in case a
change of front by the artillery should become neces-
The two batteries intended for hill 69 might at
first take up a position in readiness in rear of the
gun-pits intended for them. I do not consider this
advisable in case of the four other batteries as they
might thus be obliged to take their regular positions
under hostile artillery fire and thus be forced to be-
gin action under unfavorable circumstances. For it
must be remembered that on account of the terrane
and the hazy weather the enemy's direction of attack
will probably first become evident only through his
artillery fire. Should the enemy contrary to expec-
tation decide to make a frontal attack, although un-
favorable for him, the four batteries northwest of
Wilfingen would be obliged at once to give up their
position and come in battery under hostile fire
further to the southeast. But this would be less
disastrous as the enemy's attack would in this
case be directed against the strongest part of the
Let us now consider the northern division. We
should, in the first place, decide what would probably
be the distribution and order of march of the troops
of this division.
The composition of the advance-guard would de-
pend on the opinion of the division commander formed
after his victory at Bischofsheim. Should he have
concluded that the southern division was so thorough-
ly defeated that not the slightest resistance was to
be expected for some days to come, then it would
have been simply a question of pushing the enemy
relentlessly so he would have no time to recuperate.
For this purpose it is advisable to have a battery

with the advance-guard whose duty it would not be

to bring about an artillery duel, but simply to fire a
few shots at the retreating troops to hasten the re-
treat and to rob them of any remaining morale. All
of the cavalry should co-operate, whereas the infan-
try of the advsnce-guard would hardly come into
requisition. The pioneers and the bridge train
should be with the advance-guard as an enemy thus
defeated to the best of his ability would block roads
and destroy bridges. If, however, the division comman-
der should have formed the opinion that the enemy
would still be able to engage in rear guard actions, that
he would endeavor to prevent rapid pursuit by inter-
posing his rear-guard, then it would be advisable to
give the advance-guard a battalion of artillery whose
duty it should be to make any determined resistance
of the rear-guard impossible.
Finally, should the division commander have con-
cluded that the enemy would again seek a decision of
arms then the artillery should be kept together. Let
us assume that the commander of the northern divis-
ion has concluded that the enemy has not been so
overwhelmingly defeated as to be unable to offer
further resistance to the pursuing troops. He
therefore has ordered the following distribution of
Independent cavalry: Col. A.
16th Dragoons (less 2 squadron).
Advance guard: Major General* B.
67th Infantry.
10th Rifle battalion.
14 squadron 16th Dragoons.
1st battalion 10th Field Artillery.
Bridge train.
I2 Sanitary detachment.

*In the German army a brigade is commanded by a major general.

Main body.
27th Infantry.
39th Infantry Brigade.
+ squadron 16th Dragoons.
2nd Battalion 10th Field Artillery.
2 Sanitary detachment.
The independent cavalry, in touch with the ene-
my's cavalry, would have advanced partly along the
road and partly off the same, being divided as de-
manded by the enemy's dispositions.
The advance guard would have its van-guard
well forward, consisting of one-half troop of cavalry,
a detachment of pioneers and the rifle battalion.
The main body of the advance guard would follow in
closed formation, the artillery in rear of the leading
battalion of infantry. The main body of the divis-
ion following at about 1100 yards would have, aside
from the dragoons with the division commander, the
77th Infantry in the lead immediately followed by
the 2nd battalion of artillery.
The heavy baggage would follow the main body
of the division at a greater distance (than 1100yards);
and farther in rear would follow the columns and
The depth of column of the northern division
would thus be six miles (assuming 750 men per bat-
talion) and about two hours would be required to de-
ploy the division on the head of the advance guard.
But as it is of, great importance to deploy rapidly,
wherever practicable the depth of column would be
decreased by using several parallel roads.
Using but one road there is simply a loss of time
in deployment where the action is against an enemy
in a prepared position; but in case of a casual en-
counter (both sides being in motion) the one able to
deploy first brings locally a superiority of numbers
into action even if not actually superior when the
total strength is considered.

As soon as the independent cavalry informs the

division commander (riding at the head of the main
body) that the enemy has occupied the position
Wiifingen-Remmlingen, he will ride forward to the
vicinity of Schinstedt to get a clear idea of the ter-
rane by examining it with the assistance of a map.
If the point of the advance guard has halted he would
have to ride two miles to reach it. If the advance
guard has continued the march he will find it on one
of the roads leading from Schdnstedt to the Aue.
On this account it is proper to ask what disposi-
tions the advance guard commander will have made
after having received the news concerning the enemy
from the independent cavalry, as should have been
the case.
It is always a mistake for the advance guard to
seriously attack the enemy in position without first
having the attack prepared by the whole force of
artillery and waiting for the approach of the main
body. If the advance guard commander has not
committed this error he either will have sent the in-
fantry to Windmill and Galgen hills with orders to
occupy them without for the present entering into a
serious engagement, or he will have ordered the ad-
vance guard to halt at Schonstedt. Let ussume the
The division commander will be able to learn
from the inhabitants of Schdnstedt what manner of
obstacle the Aue forms.
But the groves on Galgen and windmill hills will
largely prevent his obtaining a good view of the en-
emy's position. As these are on the main roads
which must be held by the northern division no mat-
ter where the main attack is made, he will probably
at first decide to hold Windmill and Galgen hills with
the advance guard and have the main body assemble
at Schonctedt while he reconnoiters the enemy's

position under protection of his cavalry. He would

therefore order from Schonstedt:
"The Dragoons will continue to observe the posi-
tions occupied by the enemy, particularly reconnoi-
tering the Aue above Wiilfingen for roads.
Two battalions of the advance guard will occupy
Galgen hill and three battalions Windmill hill; the
remainder of the advance guard will remain here.
The main body will take a position in readiness
north of Schinstedt. The heavy baggage will halt.
One artillery ammunition column and the field hos-
pitals will move forward to the northeast exit of
Where the foregoing orders are not given verb-
ally to commanding officers, concerned they will be
transmitted by the chief of staff on message blanks.
It is now a question to what extent the division com-
mander gets an insight to the enemy's position
through his reconnaissance.
Let us assume the following:
From Galgen hill the divison commander ob-
serves that the enemy is occupying trenches along
the northern edge of Remmlingen and on either side
of the crossing of the Aue in front of Remmlingen.
Nothing is visible on the two hills between' Remm-
lingen and Wiilfingen.
But it is evident that Wiilfingen is defended and
occupied by infantry as is Remmlingen. From
Windmill hill there is also visible considerable of the
enemy's cavalry beyond the Aue and way above Wiil-
fingen. Nothing else is to be seen of the enemy in
the open beyond the Aue.
The detachment commander had about decided
that there was merely a rear-guard in his front when
the general staff officer accompanying him pointed
out that there were troops in the open just north-
west of Wiilfingen. But with the strongest field

glasses it could not be determined whether trenches

or gun-pits existed there. Some long lines seemed to
indicate trenches; but troops could be seen only at
intervals. After further inspection however it be-
came evident that considerable intrenching had been
done here. On this account the division commander
decided to have his artillery come into action on Wind-
mill hill against this point and to have the main body
of the division move nearer to this hill to have it
eventually advance to the attack from north of the
same. He therefore ordered:
"The regiment of artillery will come into battery
on the northern part of Windmill hill and will fire on
the northern exit of Wtilfingen and on the troops be-
hind intrenchments north-west of that village. The
advance-guard infantry will carry on a delaying
action from Galgen and Windmill hills and will de-
fend these hills in case of an attack by the enemy.
The infantry of the main body, joined by the pioneers,
will take a position in readiness under cover north of
the Schinstedt-Wilfingen road half way between
Schinstedt and Windmill hill.. The sanitary detach-
ment and the bridge train will for the present remain
in Schinstedt. The dragoons will cover the right
flank of the division."
If the artillery moves carelessly to its position on
Windmill hill it will come under fire of the batteries
of the southern division during this movement. But
if the guns are unlimbered behind the crest and
moved by hand to the front they should be able to at
once reply to the enemy's fire. The advance to Wind-
mill hill can be seen only from hill 69 and that but
partially. But, to prevent premature discov-
ery, the two batteries on this hill would open fire
only after the enemy's artillery appeared on Wind-
mill hill. At all events the artillery of the southern
division from the beginning has a great advantage as

it occupies a well prepared position; accurately knows

the range to the enemy's batteries and thus should
very promptly obtain an effective fire, and above all
his two batteries almost enfilade the enemy's
Should it be claimed that the division commander
would have previously seen the gun-pits on hill
69, I can reply that pioneers in the vicinity of Ciis-
trin succeeded in constructing a large provisional
field fortification and so closely had it resemble its
surroundings in a perfectly open country that it
could not be detected with the strongest glasses at
about 1700 yards distance. Formerly earthworks
were constructed with a steep exterior slope. At
present every conceivable means is used to conceal
earthworks. This is largely accomplished by having
the slopes facing the enemy resemble the adjoining
ground; if necessary using screens for this purpose.
The artillery of the northern division will soon be
forced to turn at least one of the batteries on its left
flank against hill 69 to meet the artillery fire from
that point. The advantage here obtained by the
artillery of the defense will to a greater or less ex-
tent be found in all well selected defensive positions.
In spite of this I would not in general give the de-
fense the advantage over the attack.
At least experience teaches that in the majority
of cases not the defender but the assailant has been
victorious. This is in part because the assailant is
always superior in morale but mainly because the as-
sailant need pierce the position at but one point to be
victorious while the defender must successfully hold
all points of his position.
Some claim that on account of the great accuracy
of fire now-a-days the artillery duel would soon be
decided. This would surely be in case of unequal op-
But if our opponent maneuvers and shoots as
well as we do, then artillery duels will, as formerly,
last for hours without decisive result for either side;
the only result being that the fire on account of
losses will gradually become slower.
How long, therefore, should infantry wait with
its attack? It will certainly often have to begin be-
fore its artillery has gained the superiority over the
enemy. Should infantry even then always decline
to attack if the enemy's artillery has gained the su-
It is hardly to be assumed that in this event the
commander of the northern division will retreat, as
only a few days before he gained a victory over the
same enemy and his infantry therefore is buoyed up
by feeling assured of victory.
The question might be discussed how the infantry
of the southern division should proceed to attack in
case it wished to anticipate the enemy's attack. It
would surely be done by an advance above Wiilfingen
because here the entire artillery force could support
the attack. The troops at Remmlingen and Wtilfin-
gen should in this event also advance towards the two
hills. The result of the infantry attack can be pre-
dicted with less certainty even than that of the artil-
lery although the northern division is superior in
numbers and morale. The northern division can use
in the main attack all of its battalions excepting the
two on Galgen hill, i. e., 15 battalions at 750 men
equal 11,250 men. The southern division can only
dispose of 13 battalions at 700 men equal 9,100 men.
As an example in arithmetic it would follow that the
southern division will be defeated. But war is not an
example in arithmetic. The companies and battalions
are not chess men of fixed value but are composed of
individuals each possessed of a will and and intelli-
gence of differing value and not ponderable.
It cannot be determined in advance how the dif-
ferent companies will manage to work through the
different zones of hostile fire, how they will mutually
support each other and above all what losses they
will inflict. Otherwise it would be a mistake to en-
gage in an action as soon as it was determined that
the enemy was superior in numbers.
It is to be hoped that in war we shall not bother
much whether the enemy has a few battalions more
that we, but shall resolutely attack him as long as
we have the necessary strength left.
Sketch 3 shows the development of the attack.
It is not considered advisable to carry the engage-
ment beyond what has been indicated above.
The few exercises that we have discussed may
already have led to the view that a military situation
can never be handled according to a fixed pattern.
Otherwise war would be a science and not what it
really is-an art. In war it is always' essential to
view each problem without bias so the conclusion may
follow a careful objective criticism. Our field service
regulations are permeated with this spirit from cover
to cover.
It is self evident that the detachments considered
in the foregoing exercises are not waging war with
each other independently; they belong to a larger in-
ter-related mechanism. But the strategical relations
were not specified because their consideration was
not necessary in the solution of these exercises.
It will often be found that exercises calling sim-
ply for the taking up of a defensive position, or the
attack of such, by a small detachment contain a pre-
liminary of elaborate strategical situations. If the
latter are such that they really must influence the
conduct of the detachment commander then it is
right and proper to mention them, as they will lead

to considerations that ..may in time of war be forced

upon even the commanders of the smallest indepen-
dent detachments.
But the smaller the detachment the more difficult
it is to devise such exercises. It will be found that
strategical preliminaries for smaller exercises either
have no influence on the contemplated solution, serv-
ing simply as adornments, or they, quite contrary to
the wish of the one originating the exercise, are of
such a nature as lead the one solving the exercise
to entirely different conclusions from what are in-
Thus now and again in maneuvers we see detach-
ments fighting each other for days at a time when
according to the "situation" engagements are not
only not required but act counter to the intended
plan. Is it then to be wondered that in war-time de-
tachment commanders bring about engagements
without sufficient cause?
In the case of small exercises on the terrane it
is sufficient to tell the detachment commander: "you
will defend this village, or that hill," and the oppon-
ent: "you will make the attack."
Instead we see a battalion re-enforced by a
squadron and a battery compelled to carry out a
complete engagement to defend-a few hundred
weight of hay or conversely to sieze this from the

The Aue is ten yards wide, four to five feet deep, has a
firm bottom and fiat banks.
The groves consist of old scattered oaks. The fields con-
sist of dry farm land entirely unobstructed.
The foot hills east of the mountains have an average slope
of I5 The slopes are covered with heather; with bare rock
appearing in various places. The mountain tops are covered
with so dense a forest that even individual infantrymen can
pass through only with difficulty. Precipitous slopes exist
towards Tiirnau and the Chaussee. Tiirnau at the most can
shelter about 1000 men and 300 horses.
The plain east of the mountains is in part cultivated and
in part meadow land. Libochowitz can shelter several thou-
sand men and about 500 horses. The trees of the grove just
south of Libochowitz are scattered, and there is no under-
brush. The Fliess forms no obstacle to troops and contains
potable water.
The Zama is ten yards wide, three to four feet deep, has
flat banks and firm bottom. It can be everywhere forded by
Infantry and Cavalry. Artillery is restricted to the bridges.
The bridges are of wood.

September 30, 1905

Staff College Press




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