sippenkundlichen Quellen" (Old Prussian army and its genealogical sources, 1807-1867). After defeat at the hands of Napoleon, Prussian Army reformers Gneisenau, Scharnhorst, Boyen, and others sought to create a modern new army. Conscription dates back to antiquity and it continues in some countries to the present day under various names. I think a very important reason for the origin of the Prussian militarism going over to the Second and Third Reich is the realization of their weakness after the drubbing received at the hands of Napoleon Bonaparte and the Grand Armee. Conscription, sometimes called the draft, is the mandatory enlistment of people in a national service, most often a military service. Berlin: Verlag für Standesamtswesen, 1939. Glory Years of the Prussian Army. Prussia adopted universal conscription during the Napoleonic Wars. Germany had a large army and a small navy. The introduction of universal conscription marked the start of the fundamental militarisation of society in the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy. Shooting the Dreyse M.41. Since most German states had conscription laws, most young men were required to register for military service. (LDS film 477,807). 155 While it is true that the Kantonreglement (1733) made military service compulsory in theory, it did so by assigning each regiment of the army a recruitment district, from which it found its quota of ‘native’ troops. The defeat of Napoleon brought enormous prestige to the military. Military records identify individuals who served in the military or who were eligible to serve. Frederick the Great imposed so spartan discipline that 400 officers "are said to have asked to resign". Prussian Infantry during the time of Frederick the Great of Prussia. The Prussian forces brought into being by conscription in 1813 differed in kind from those of the old standing army. Service was compulsory for all men of military age, thus Prussia and its North and South German allies could mobilize and field some 1.2 million soldiers in … By maintaining this large pool of trained men the German army could expand rapidly and in 1914 it grew in 12 days from 808,280 to 3,502,700 men. Conscription in France The French system was similar to the German one with men undertaking compulsory training and service aged 20-23, followed by a period as reservists until the age of 30. At the same time, public awareness of the military changed: from a dubious place for forcibly conscripted lower classes to a respected “school of the nation”. * * * * * Records at German State Archives "There is no central archive for German military records. German states each had their own system of keeping military records before 1867. 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