Battle of Hochkirch – 260th Anniversary Today

Hochkirch church and the Alter Fritz pub.
Photo taken by me in 1994.
Well, October 14, 1758 was a very bad day for the Prussian king Frederick II. The Austrian general Daun launched a six-prong attack on the Prussian position from multiple directions, or „converging columns“ as Christopher Duffy likes to call it. The battle of Hochkirch was a devastating loss for the Prussians as they lost over 9,000 of their 30,000 man army. The Austrians outnumbered the Prussians by nearly three to one.
Looking at the map of the battle below, observe how columns of infantry and cavalry (O’Donnel, Loudon, Main Army – Daun, Wiese and Colloredo) are converging on the Prussian right flank that rests on the town of Hochkirch. There was another large column, commanded by Arenberg, that is off map, just to the right up the „L-shaped“ Prussian lines in the upper righthand corner of the map.

Battle of Hochkirch map by Christopher Duffy
„The Army of Frederick the Great“ 2nd Edition.
I have posted a number of pictures that I took during the 2016 Christopher Duffy tour of Frederician battlefield sites. I have tried to identify where each picture is relative to the map above. I had previously visited Hochkirch in 1994 on another tour with Christopher Duffy. Enjoy the photo tour of the battlefield and be sure to click or double click onto each picture to enlarge the image.
Daun and the main portion of the Austrian army approached from south of the village.

Entry into Hochkirch from Loudon’s position in the South East corner of the map.

The high ground in this picture is approximately at the position of the artillery fleches
that are shown on the map just south of Hochkirch

Charles Grant (pointing) directs the attention of Tod Kershner, Jude Becker and Christian Rogge
(from right to left of Charles). They are standing near the site of the
 artillery fleche that is closest to the town on our map.

Christopher Duffy and friends stand inside the churchyard.

Sign outside of the Alter Fritz gasthaus.
A view of the wall that surrounds the Hochkirch church. The two gentlemen in front of the wall
provide a sense of the size and height of the wall.

Christopher Duffy and Jim Mitchel pose in front of the church. To the right of them is the start of the Blutgasse where much of the in-town fighting occurred. This picture was taken by me in 1994.

Major Langern of the IR19 Margraf Karl regiment defended the church yard until they ran out of ammunition. The survivors attempted to break out through the gate shown in the picture (now known as Langern’s Gate), but they were slaughtered by the waiting Austrians. The flow of their blood gave rise to the street being call the „Blutgasse.“

The Alter Fritz pub was closed-out of business in 2016. We ate lunch here and drank Rex Pils beer in the 1994 trip.

Looking north from Hochkirch towards the Prussian left flank at Rodewitz.

The town of Hochkirch and the battlefield site are still in near-pristine condition. However, it is evident that developers are building many new houses on the outskirts of the town and will soon encroach on the battlefield. The difference in the site from my first visit in 1994 to my recent visit in 2016 is like night and day – not good.

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