Partner of the Austrian Armed Forces

The UEHMG had already been recognised for many years by the Austrian Armed Forces as an association relevant to defence policy, and now the official distinction of being a partner of the Austrian Armed Forces has been further extended by a decree of the Federal Minister of Defence.

Within the Tradition Day of the NBC Defence Centre, the partnership with the UEHMG was formally concluded by the handing over of the certificate by the Commander, Colonel Mag. Jürgen Schlechter, to the President, Major General iTR Michael Blaha, MSc.

Major General iTR Michael Blaha, MSc, who attended the ceremony in his uniform as a colonel of the Austrian Armed Forces, pointed out in his speech the objectives of the UEHMG and the intersections with the Austrian Armed Forces.

In the following social part of the event, the numerous representatives of the UEHMG and the comrades of the Austrian Armed Forces were able to perform the first joint act of cultivating tradition.

40 years of Zita lime tree

On 23 April 2023, the UEHMG accepted an invitation from the Old Austrian Landsmannschaften (VLÖ) to attend the opening of the season at the Südmährerhof in the Niedersulz Museum Village, where it was also the 40th anniversary of the planting of a lime tree by Empress Zita.

VLÖ President Norbert Kapeller welcomed numerous guests of honour, above all HIRH Karl von Habsburg as grandson of the last Empress. In entertaining reminiscences, our Grand Master told of how the tree planting came about and of incidents involving his grandmother.

The UEHMG was represented by several flag delegations under the organisation of Liaison Officer Captain iTR Christian M. Zehetmayer and by President Major General iTR Michael Blaha, MSc.

A visit to the newly designed museum in the Südmährerhof rounded off the event and a trip to the Niedersulz Museum Village can only be recommended.

Spring Parade and liturgy of the Word on 1 April 2023

The Linz k. u. k. Traditional Dragoon Regiment No.7 “Herzog von Lothringen und Bar” under its commander Colonel iTR Consul Johann Marian Eckhardt von Eckenfeld held its already legendary spring parade in Linz in almost imperial weather on Saturday, 1 April 2023.

The parade marched at 2 p.m. from Martin Luther Platz along the main road, lined by a line of spectators, to the main square. Here the usual military procedure took place: announcement, national anthem/people’s anthem,  walking down the front as well as welcoming of the guests of honour and the regiments by the commander of the DR7.

In addition to the insignia troop of the HUAk Enns, 450 uniforms came from Slovenia, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, Romania, Germany and from almost all federal provinces of Austria. For the first time, the rifle club from the town of Stribro (Czech Republic) and the Polish Volunteer Uhlan Legion were also present at the parade. The troops were commanded by Mjr iTR Alexander Sascha Eckhardt von Eckenfeld, MBA.

Guests of honour included the Academy Commander of HUAk Enns Col. Mag. (FH) Mag. Klaus Klingenschmid, MSS, GenMjr iTR Andreas Rotter, GR Regina Traunmüller (for the Mayor of Linz), Mjr iTR Hubert Niederfriniger, Lkdt der BG, Schützen und Traditionsverbände OÖ, BO der Tiroler Kaiserjäger, Mjr iTR Romed Giner, from the UEHMG Hptm iTR Ing. Christian M. Zehetmayer were welcomed.

The regimental band of LIR2 Linz played under the direction of Kapellmeister Ing. Michael Safnauer and Musikmeister Ostv Walter Forstner. The regimental chaplain of the DR7, Mag. Samuel Josef Ebner, celebrated the liturgy of the Word, which was musically accompanied by the choir of the five Dragoons from Cerknica (Croatia). Unfortunately, the intercessions in Croatian, Slovenian, Polish, Czech, Hungarian, Romanian and German could no longer be said, as it began to rain heavily and the ceremony had to be interrupted. After the truncation, we went straight to the reception at the Old City Hall.

Photos: Zgsf iTR Ing. Karlheinz Mattern, IR 59

Spring meeting of the UEHMG South-West Germany in Ostrach

On 25 March 2023, the Dragoon Regiment of Ostrach hosted the Spring Meeting of the South-West German Association. The meeting served to get to know the individual units better, to exchange information between the groups, to announce upcoming dates and to foster camaraderie.

Commander Reiner Nusser was able to welcome groups from all over Baden Württemberg to the local history museum – including delegations from Stuttgart, Reutlingen, Wolfach, Sipplingen, Tuttlingen, Sigmaringen, Bad Saulgau and Weingarten.

The participants learned from the director of the local history museum, Gerhard Fetscher, about the special features of the three-country community of Ostrach as well as the circumstances surrounding the Battle of Ostrach in 1799. The museum received a lot of praise and recognition for the detailed exhibition and one or the other already announced another visit.

Afterwards, the participants were taken by the citizens’ bus to the Buchbühl memorial, where they were welcomed with three gun salutes from the dragoon cannon. Regimental historian Bernhard Ummenhofer explained the construction and significance of the monument. It was erected in 1903 by the Ostrach Veterans’ Association to commemorate the many who died in the battle of Ostrach.

The day came to a successful conclusion at the Landhotel Hirsch, where the Ostrach Dragoons received much praise for the organisation and implementation of the spring meeting from UEHMG Liaison Officer Bruno Herunter, Commander Toni Rädle, Hohenzollern Cuirassiers Sigmaringen, and Captain Jerg J. Werner, Stadtgarde zu Pferd Stuttgart, among others. On behalf of the Dragoon Regiment, Commander Reiner Nusser thanked all participants for coming, Gerhard Fetscher for the guided tour of the local history museum, the citizens´bus team for the transport and Petra Megerle for taking photos during the day.

New Year’s wishes

Just before Christmas, the now traditional end of the year took place, with a virtual toast in uniform to Christmas and the upcoming New Year.

The executive committee of the UEHMG wishes all comrades and friends a healthy and happy New Year!

19. Saint Sylvester´s cannon with Ostrach participation

Traditionally, the Saint Sylvester´s cannon of the “Badische Böllerschützen Nußdorf” took place on 31.12.2022.

More than 300 spectators watched the cannons being loaded and fired in Überlingen Altbirnau. The cannoneers of the Dragoon Regiment Ostrach 1799 e.V. Matthias and Michael Kunze as well as Uli Schuler took part with the muzzle-loading cannon, calibre 95 millimetres.

Remembrance Day in Ostrach

On Sunday, 13.11.2022, the nationwide day of remembrance for the victims of violence, terror and war took place in Ostrach. The Dragoon Regiment No.11 zu Ostrach 1799 e.V. also took part.

Originally, the Remembrance Day was introduced by the “Volksbund Deutsche Kriegsgräberfürsorge” (German War Graves Commission) to commemorate the many millions of victims of the First World War. Especially in the current time, the day is not only a day of mourning, but also a sign for peace and reconciliation, especially for the victims of the terrible war in Ukraine.

The flag delegations of the associations and comradeships solemnly entered the church in Ostrach. The churchgoers, associations and comradeships then marched to the Ostrach cemetery with musical accompaniment.

The official commemoration ceremony then took place at the war memorial. Texts and poems were recited by pupils and Mayor Christoph Schulz gave a speech. While the music band played the song “vom guten Kameraden” (of the good comrade), the gunners of our dragoon regiment fired three salutes.

The subsequent lunch was a nice conclusion for all participants.

Memorial Mass for the Fallen

On Sunday, 13 November 2022, the traditional memorial mass for the fallen of the two World Wars took place in the Prandtauer Church in St. Pölten at the invitation of the church rector DDr. Knittel.

After two years of interruption due to corona, delegations of the Kameradschaftsbund, the Hesser Garde and the Radetzky-Orden followed the invitation. The UEHMG was represented by its President Major General iTR Michael Blaha, MSc, and the Deputy President Lieutenant Colonel iTR Michael Joannidis.

After a short prayer service and a salute at the Hesser Monument, the delegations marched together into the church, where the fallen and missing of the World Wars were commemorated in a dignified manner, but also the victims of the current war on the border of Europe.

Afterwards, the rector of the church, DDr. Knittel, invited the participants to the sacristy for a communal ending. A big “Thank you” for this event, which we hope will be attended more by the traditional delegations in the future.

Expression about condolences about Schützenmajor Josef Kaser

Josef Kaser

With great sadness we have the duty to announce that Schützenmajor Josef “Sepp” Kaser, liaison officer for South and Welsh Tyrol of the Association of Traditional Associations of Central Europe, was taken from life by a tragic accident on November 2, 2022.

The President of the Union of European Historical Military Groups, Major General iTR Michael Blaha, the Board, the Presidium and all comrades of the UEHMG express their deep sympathy to the bereaved for this heavy loss.

The UEHMG will keep an honorable memory of Schützenmajor Josef Kaser .

Commemoration for Emperor Karl I.

On Sunday, October 23, 2022, a memorial event for the Blessed Emperor Karl I. took place in the palace garden of Laxenburg near Vienna on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of his death.

The President of the Cavalry Association, Colonel of Cavalry Franz Prandstätter, had the honour to welcome HIRH Eilika von Habsburg as representative of her husband HIRH Georg von Habsburg, as well as the President of the UEHMG, Major General iTR Michael Blaha, MSc, and the Adjutant General, Major General iTR Peter Pritz.

Many delegations accepted the invitation and were able to watch the dragoons and infantrymen in impressive drill demonstrations, which ended with a general de charge and a defile.

Afterwards, a field service commemorated the Blessed Emperor Karl I., whose official day of remembrance falls on October 21. This touching part of the event ended with a blessing of the horses.

Last but not least, the participants had the opportunity to enjoy food and drinks in the best imperial weather and to exchange ideas in a friendly atmosphere before the successful event came to an end. Below are many impressions provided by the Cavalry Association.