Andreas Emmerich & Emmerich's Chasseurs

From "The personal history of Andreas Emmerich," originally published by Friedrich W.Strieder in Grundlage zu einer Hessischen Gelehrten-und Schriftsteller=Geschichte, XVI, pp.555-556.:

  Born 1737 in the village of Kilianstaedten near Hanau. He was in the game and forestry service of the Isenburg family. In 1756 young Emmerich went to England with a Hessian corps commanded by Lieutenant General Graf Christian Ludwig von Isenburg.

  Later he served in Germany in various light corps engaged in partisan warfare against the French during the Seven Years' War. He had highly placed sponsors, including the Duke of Cumberland, the Hessian Lieutenant General Johann Casimir von Isenburg and the Erbprinz of Braunschweig, Carl Wilhelm Ferdinand.

  About 1760 he was commissioned a Lieutenant, possibly in the Jaeger corps of Graf von Schulenburg. At the end of the war, although he could have entered Prussian service, he went to England, where Lord Granby obtained a position for him as Deputy Surveyor General of the King's Forests (sic).

  At the outbreak of the American Revolution he obtained a Lieutenant Colonel's commission and permission to raise a corps of light troops bearing his name. After the Revolution he returned to England and later went to Germany. He was very unsettled, and although he had a family, he was forever traveling. About 1794 he intended to publish a five-volume autobiography entitled "Histoire Memorable de la vie du Lieutenant-Colonel-Anglois Andre Emmerich", but this was never completed and all he ever prepared was about nine and a half octavo pages. His unsettled and restless ways continued.

  After the French occupation of Hesse-Kassel and the establishment of the Kingdom of Westphalia, he became involved in an insurrection against the French. Toward the end of June 1809 he was captured at the head of a small band of men. At the age of seventy-two he was executed by a firing squad in Kassel on July 19, 1809.

For more information on Andreas Emmerich, read his remarkable (and incredibly rare) book on light infantry warfare entitled The Partisan in War, published in 1789.

Historical Sidenotes on Emmerich's Chasseurs

  Emmerich (often spelled "Emmerick" in period newspapers and letters) was a man of some consequence -- as can be seen in this letter from Sir William Howe to Lord George Germain, New York, 21 Dec. 1776:

My Lord: Captain Emmerick, who has been very useful to me in the course of this campaign, will have the honour of presenting this letter to your Lordship, on his return to Britain, in order to raise a corps of German Chasseurs.

If your Lordship is pleased to recommend such a measure to his Majesty, and it should meet with approbation, I have reason to believe the corps would be well commanded by Captain Emmerick and can assure that troops of this class are much wanted, and would render essential services in the course of the war.

I have the honour to be, your Lordship's most faithful and most obedient servant,

-- American Archives, Fifth Series, Vol. III/1345
Editor's note: this particular effort was unsuccessful.

  Contemporary newspapers of the time provide interesting tidbits of information. We present these stories ripped from the headlines:

September 25 [1777] -- Today, as a party of Captain Emmerick's new corps of chasseurs were bathing near Kingsbridge, in New York, he suddenly beat to arms, when they, with the greatest spirit imaginable, flew to their firelocks, and appeared naked, in order to have attacked any enemy that might be at hand. This so pleased the captain, that he presented each man with a dollar, and gave them his thanks for their alertness.
-- Pennsylvania Ledger, October 29, 1777

May 20 [1778] -- . . . The reports circulated in the country are, that France and Spain have declared war against England; that all troops are called home; that Emmerick had left Kingsbridge some days ago, and that neither King nor Parliament could raise either more men or more money. These things they believe, or pretend to believe, and treat the poor Tories accordingly.
-- Rivington's Gazette, May 20, 1778

  British Excursion into Westchester, New York:

September 16 [1778] -- Early this morning, Lieutenant-Colonel Simcoe, with the Queen's Rangers, Lieutenant-Colonel Emmerick, with the chasseurs, and a detachment of the second battalion of General DeLancey's brigade, Lieutenant-Colonel Tarleton, with the dragoons of the legion, and one troop of Colonel Emmerick's, and the Hessian Jagers, moved from their respective encampments near King's Bridge. Lieutenant-Colonels Simcoe and Emmerick marched undiscovered between two rebel pickets, and got one mile and a half in the rear of a body of two hundred and thirty select Viriginia riflemen, strongly posted in front on Babcock's Heights, under the command of Colonel Gist. Lieutenant-Colonel Tarleton marched to Colonel Philip's farm.
     About six in the morning, Lieutenant-Colonel Emmerick, with the detachment of De Lancey's, attacked the rebels, and though discovered when going to attack, killed three on the spot, wounded several, and took thirty-five prisoners, among which are three officers. The rebels were so briskly charged, that many of them forgot their arms, &c. and fled with the utmost precipitation; their colonel in particular, scampering off without his breeches or boots, and 'tis thought he was wounded in his flight.
     At the same time, Lieutenant-Colonel Tarleton, with the dragoons, charged a body of rebels posted on Valentine's Hill, but as the enemy were near a very thick wood, they took shelter where the horse could not possibly act, which prevented their sustaining any other loss than the capture of a few of their number. The only loss sustained by his Majesty's troops in both attacks, was one horse of Emmerick's killed.
-- Gaine's Mercury, September 21, 1778


  Fight at Kingsbridge, New York
July 9 [1781] -- In the evening of the 2d, Lieutenant-Colonel Emmerick marched with one hundred men, drawn from the regiments of the line, from the encampments near New York, to Phillips' house; as, the next morning, a number of wagons, under an escort of two hundred foot, and thirty mounted Yagers, were to be sent to the same place for some hay . . . [a lengthy battle account follows]
-- Rivington's Gazette, July 14, 1781



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