Earliest known ancestor - Johan Sladetzky (est. born 1660-1675)

Earliest Known Ancestor Johan Sladetzky

The earliest known ancestor for the Schladetsch family of Dithmarchen, is Johan Sladetzky, known to be a Danish Soldier.  We do not know where he was born, what he did, how he came to be in Dithmarchen,  or any of the other details of his life.  All we do know for sure is that  at some point in his life he met, fell in love, married, they had a son and they named him Adolf Friderich.    We can guess that Johann was born sometime around 1660 – 1675.  Through this time period up until Adolfs birth in 1715, the whole of the Jutland peninsular from it’s Danish cap, down to it’s Germanic roots, was involved in the machinations and power struggles of Dukes and Kings of  Denmark, Sweden, and Germany.   Located between Denmark and the German Empire was an area of independent city states  or duchies including Schleswig, Holstein, and Dithmarchen. 

Before 1700, the Danish army consisted of volunteers, being mostly foreigners.  In 1701 and in 1733, this army was supplemented with a national militia.  Few records exist from this time period, and they contain little genealogical information.  It is possible, given that Schladetzky is not a surname of Danish origin,  that Johan was a foreign soldier in the employ of Denmark, helping to maintain Denmarks control  in Schleswig-Holstein against the Swedes, and was involved in the Great Northern war that lasted from 1700 to 1720, and one siege of interest is that of Tonning in 1713.

In February 1713, breaching his proclaimed neutrality, the minor duke Charles Frederick of Holstein-Gottorp provided  the Swedish leader Stenbock and his force of 16,000 men with shelter and assistance at his fortress of Tönning.     The  Russian and Saxe-Polish Allies of Denmark sent 36,000 troops after Stenbock.  Although hoping they would receive help from the naval forces of Sweden, they did not come, and the trapped, still 9,000 strong force of Stenbock ran out of supplies. When the food situation deteriorated and 2,800 Swedes fell ill, Stenbock surrendered on 16 May 1713.  The 1,600 strong Holstein garrison of the Tönning fortress held out  until 7 February 1714.   Danish forces, in pursuit of a royal occupation order of 13 March 1713,  gained complete control over Holstein-Gottorp when the last Holsteiners loyal to Sweden were captured in 1715.  After Tönning's surrender, its defensive works and palace were leveled until 1735.

The siege of Tonning is interesting because it is one battle that would have brought a Danish Soldier to within 20 klms of Heide, a major township  of Dithmarschen in 1713, and where Adolf was born.