Since Wismar is of great importance to the von Wachenfelt family, it may be prudent to talk about it a little. Because of its geographic location between the provinces of Bremen–Verden in the west and Swedish Pomerania in the east, the city became something of a center of the Swedish possessions in Germany.  However, Wismar was an important city long before it became Swedish in the peace treaty of Westphalia in 1648.

Hanseatic City

Wismar is mentioned in historical sources at the beginning of the 13th century. It became a Hanseatic city on the medieval trading route along the Baltic Sea. There was brisk trading:  wood, furs, wax, and herring were imported from Russia and Scandinavia in exchange for manufactured items, grain, flax, and beer.

Thirty years war – Swedish possession

After the Hanseatic era, Wismar fell on rough times. During the Thirty Years War, its gates were forced open for an imperial army of some 1000 men. When the Swedish king Gustav II Adolf landed on German soil, his army besieged Wismar in 1631 and a year later the imperial troops were forced to capitulate.

At the peace treaty in Osnabrück 1648, the port city became a Swedish possession. Queen Christina visited the city and pledged that it would have autonom under the Swedish Crown.


The exposed location brought wars to the city repeatedly. The Swedes, after being attacked by all manner of armies, built a circle of fortifications around the city: 18 bastions, two ravelins, and two citadels. Thus Wismar became one of the biggest fortresses in a Swedish chain of fortifications from Stade at the river Elbe to Nöteborg at Lake Ladoga. A 3000 man strong Swedish garrison was stationed in Wismar. That is the one referred to as the governors regiment.

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