Danish Version    

 The Author of This Site

  The Prelude to the Wars

 
The First  War 1848-51

 
The Battles 1848-51

 
The Siege of Fredericia

 
The Second  War 1864

 Dannevirke  Stronghold

 The Siege of Dybboel

 
The Attack on Fredericia

 
The Attack on Dybboel

 
The Attack on the Als
        

 
The Peace

 
The Consequences

 Dybboel 2010

 Als 2010


 

























































































































































































The Two Danish-Prussian Wars 1848-50 and 1864

The Final attack on the Dybboel stronghold on April 18th. 1864

  
  
On 18 April 18 at 4:00 am the final bombardment was commenced.
 In a few hours almost 8000 shells fell  over the Danish fortifications, trenches and the area  behind the redoubts. The
 bombardment continued for 6 hours, during which the fortifications and redoubs  were blown to pieces, a large number of
 the few workable guns were destroyed and the defenders suffered heavy losses.

 To defend the Dybboel stronghold  was 5000 Danish soldiers in redoubts, trenches and area behind the redoubts. Further,
 there were 6000 men in reserve in the nearby city Soenderborg and on the island Als east of Soenderborg.

 11,000 battle-fatigue and exhausted Danes were under siege by 37,000 fresh, well-equipped Prussians.
 The outcome seemed a foregone conclusion.
 At 10 am the artillery fire moved farther toward the beachhead at the Als , and the Prussian outposts opened a heavy rifle fire
 towards the redoubts.

 
 On April 18th 10 am 12,000 Prussian soldiers divided into six columns started an attack towards the redoubts on the
 sparsely Occupied Danish left flank, to the sound of the Düppeler Schanzen Sturm March (MP3), which was played by
 military bands in the frontal attack trenches.

 At the same time the Prussian artillery shelling resumed.
 Up from redoubts came a swarm of bullets against the invaders. In a desperate race against the Preussians, the Danish
 reserves behind the redoubts tried to reach the redoubts in the before the enemy.
The Prussian trenches were only 250-300<
 meters from the Danish redoubt, the distance to the Danish reinforcements about the same.
More places reached defenders
 and attackers the redoubts simultaneously.

 After a short battle the Danes were thrown out of the redoubts and then driven back into hard man to man fights. A
 courageous counterattack by the Danish 8.
brigade saved the Danish army  from being destroyed and made it possible to
 save most of the army down to a bridge at the edge of the Sundeved
Peninsula and back to the island Als.

 

                        The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864. The Counter Attack at Dybboel by the 8th Brigade.    
                                      The counterattack of the 8th Brigade             
The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864. Prussian Trench used for the Attack on the Dybboel.
        Prussina trench used for the Attack

 Unfortunately the heavy artillery fire delayed the reinforcements so much, that they on several  occasions came too late to
 resist the attack.
In these cases there was now only the small crew of the redoubts to try to keep the positions.

  The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864. Prussian picture from the Attack on the Dybboel. The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864. Prussian Attack on a Danish Redoubt.  

 The redoubts at the stronghold Dybboel

  The Danish-Prussian Wars 1861. The Redoubts at Dybboel.
      The redoubts at Dybboel 

 The redoubts I, II and III was defended by the 22nd regiment.
 Redoubt I had a distance of 550 meters to the Prussian trenches and was quickly surrounded by  the Prussian soldiers in
 the first column and the crew was forced to surrender.
 
The redoubt fell at 10.06
am

                                                                   Redoubt I 1864 The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864. Danish Redoubt I at Dybboel in 1864

 Redoubt II met the Prussians second column with artillery fire and forced them out to the sides toward the trenches. Here
 they were met by a fierce fire from the Danes and stopped or even
retreated. But now the first and third Prussian column
 attacked the trenches from the sides or back.
The first attack from the south of the redoubt was repulsed. Especially redoubt
 II was under very heavy shelling by the Prussian batteries at Broager.
The redoubt was 400 meters from the Prussian front
 trench and fell at 10.10 am.

 In redoubt II, the commanding officer Lieutenant Ancher fought so valiantly, that the Prussians subsequently erected a
 memorial for him
.

                             The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Lieutenant Ancher, the Danish hero from Redoubt II                                      The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt II. Memorial for Lieutenant Ancher.
                           Lieutenant Ancher                                                    The memorial
Skanse II, Dybbøl
            Redoubt II 1864

 Redoubt III was defended by 19 men, and was attacked by 1000 Prussians.
 The attack Distance was 270 meters. Despite this, the Danes refused to surrender. 3 attacks were needed before the
 Prussians
penetrated into the redoubt, but the fight continued in the interior of the redoubt and the powder magazine before
 the Danish soldiers finally surrendered at 10.05 am.
At this time half of the defenders were dead or wounded.
 The Prussian losses in redoubt III were as large as 10 officers and 128 men.
                

                                                            Redoubt III 1864   The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt III 1864.

                         The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt I, 2010                               The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt II, 2010                          The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt III, 2010
                                Redoubt I 2010                                                  Redoubt II  2010                                                  Redoubt III 2010
 
 
The redoubts IV, V and VI was defended by the second Regiment
 The Prussian fourth column which was supposed to attack redoubt fort IV in a distance of 400 meters, was met with such a
 fierce fire from the redoubt and the area behind it, that the column was in disarray.
A part of the column attacked the trench
 to the left of the redoubt and broke through the Danish position.
The redoubt was now effectively surrounded and fell after a
 fierce  battle at 10.13 am.

  The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt IV, 1864
 
The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt IV, 1864
       Redoubt IV 1864
The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt IV, 1864
 

 Redoubt V was in a distance of 320 meters from the Prussian front trench. The Danish defenders  managed to shoot two
 grenades with little bullets into the forwarding Prussian columns which
 suffered heavy losses.
Two Danish counterattack against redoubt V with two or three platoons, pushed the enemy back for
 some time before the Danes even after hard struggle were forced to
withdraw. The redoubt fell at 10.05 am

                                      
                                         Redoubt V and the back
                                                  of redoubt VI
                     
The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt V, 1864

 Redoubt VI fired six grenades with little bullets against the Prussian sixth column, while they advanced towards the redoubt.
 The attack distance was 330 meters.
 These grenades did not stop the Prussian advance, and after a short battle the redoubt fell at 10.05 am The infantry from
 behind did not reach in time to defend it.
 
The Artillery crew continued firing until the redoubt fell, and therefore did not have sufficient time to destroy the guns, which
 were now turned against the trenches and the redoubts VII and VIII.

                                 The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt VI, 1864
                                              Redoubt VI 1864
The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt VI, 1864
 

                  The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt IV Blown Ammunition Store, 2010                          The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt V, 2010                           The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt VI, 2010
                            Redoubt IV 2010                                                    Redoubt V 2010                                               Redoubt VI 2010
 
 
 
Redoubt VII
 
As soon as the shooting was heard, units from the 17th  Regiment moved forward to take their posts in the redoubts VII and
 VIII.
Despite heavy losses of the Prussian artillery fire on the road, they arrived before the enemy and opened fire against
 them.
The Prussians were now surrounding  redoubt VII and shortly after it fell. The 1th Company attempted a counterattack,
 however, it failed.
 Also the 7th Company attempted another counterattack, but was surrounded and after a short bayonet fighting they
 surrendered.

                     The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt VII, 1864                                  The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt VII, 2010
            Redoubt  VII 1864                                                           Redoubt VII 2010

 The counterattack of the 8th Brigade
 The time was now 10.45, and the attack had lasted for 45 minutes. The Redoubts I to VII were surrendered and the Prussian
 advance towards the beachhead,  where  the Danish 8th Brigade was in reserve, continued. The brigade had not discovered
 that a  major attack was going on and precious time was lost. At 10.30 am the 8th brigade was finally ordered forward to
 counterattack and take back the redoubts and support the first and the third  Brigade.
 At the beginning of the counterattack the brigade made little progress, and the enemy forces  were for a period forced to
 retreat.

   The counterattack of
 the
8th Brigade
The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, The Counter Attack of the Danish 8th Brigade at Dybboel 1864

 The redoubts VIII, IX and X were defended by the 17th regiment
 While the 8th brigade’s counterattack was underway, redoubt VIII was still defended by the 5th  company.
 28 Prussian artillery guns commenced a heavy fire over the redoubt VIII, and two times Prussian infantry tried to attack the
 redoubt, and both times attacks were repulsed.
The third time they managed and the redoubt fell. Back by the defense was
 only a few men.

                                                     Redoubt VIII 1864 The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt VIII, 1864

 Redoubt IX was attacked by nine enemy companies. It was defended by the sixth Company, and the battle ended only when
 most of the Company had fallen. Redoubt
X was not left until the order to withdraw came, and all the guns in the redoubt
 were destroyed.

  The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt IX, 1864
               Redoubt IX 1864
The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt IX, 1864
            Redoubt IX 1864
The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt X, 1864
             Redoubt X 1864

               The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt VIII the wooden Blockhouse, 2010                     The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt IX Blown Ammunition Store, 2010                  The Danish-Prussian Wars 1864, Dybboel Redoubt X the Wooden Blockhouse, 2010
                     Redoubt VIII 2010                                                 Redoubt IX 2010                                            Redoubt X 2010
 
 

 
Although the counterattack of the 8th Brigade did not throw the enemy decisive, it had it not been in vain.
 The counterattack cost heavy casualties, but helped the remaining troops of the first and third Brigade to get back to the
 bridgehead.
The Prussian forces continued their advance against the Danish positions at the bridgehead. But artillery fire
 from the opposite side of the strait Alssund and from the armored vessel Rolf  Krake stopped their advance and the remains
 of the Danish forces withdrew in good order back to the island Als and the pontoon bridges over Alssund was interrupted.

 The battle of Dybboel was lost.

 
 Casualties on both sides had been heavy, telling of the hard fighting, often hand-to-head with bayonets. On the Danish side
 approx.
700 were killed, 554 were wounded and 3,534 were captured, totally 4834 men. One general, (du Plat), a brigade
 commander, 5 regimental  commanders, 8 battalion commanders, and 36 company 
commanders were killed, wounded or
 captured. More than half of the commanders who participated in the battle 

 The Prussian loss were 1201 killed and wounded.