Karl Manussi von Montesole
Karl Ferdinand Manussi was born on the 24th of May 1843 in Vienna as son of the city official Ferdinand Karl Manussi (1809-1887) and his first wife Anna Maria born Laporta (1815-1860). The kaiserliche Rat and Truchseß Ferdinand Karl Manussi was a well known Viennese philanthropist, especially engaged in the care of the blind as president of the Blinden-Versorgungs- und Beschäftigungsanstalt at Wien-Josefstadt. He was married twice and had 12 children, 7 of them were boys and all of them chose a military or civil-officials' career, some of them both! Besides the care of blind people and the fathering of children he also spent his time in writing several patriotic poems which were often published in local magazines and other publications. On the 15th of June 1870 he was elevated to the nobility and on the 26th of December 1886 took the predicate "Montesole". This new noble name "Manussi Edler von Montesole" was transferred to all his children.
Karl Manussi started his military career as a cadet with Feldjäger Bataillon number 19 at Laibach in April 1859. With this unit he took part in the campaign in Northern Italy of this year, seeing action during the battle of Castenedolo and receiving serious wounds during the battle of Solferino. For his performance he received accelerated promotion to Unterlieutenant 2nd class in July 1859. Together with his older brother Ferdinand, he joined the Mexican Volunteer Corps on the 31st of August 1864, but unlike Ferdinand he was transferred as an Unterlieutenant 1st class in the Jäger-unit, followed by the promotion to Oberleutnant on the 9th of October 1865. During the two years in Mexico he took part in nearly every affair of the Jäger-unit as the engagement list in his personal file shows for 1865: "Tezuitlan, Zacapoaxtla, Azala, Hochiapulca, las Lomas, Hachiapulca, Elxochito, Comaltepec, la Hoya, Tetela d'Oro, Zantla, dos Cerros and Tlapacoyan" and for 1866: "Apolecca, several smaller battles against Porfirio Diaz, Tehuacan and Hnajuapan". He was honored by the recommendation of the senior command twice for the battles at the Sierra del Norte, received the Bronze Military Merited Medal for the defence of Tezuitlan and the knight's cross of the Order of our beloved Madonna of Guadalupe for his heroic performance during the storm of Tlapacoyan. During this battle a serious accident occurred, Karl Manussi fell from his horse and before he could react the horse was fatally wounded and fell upon his rider causing several serious injuries which would trouble him for the rest of his life.
On the 1st of May 1867 Karl Manussi again rejoined Feldjäger Bataillon number 19 as an Unterlieutenant with seniority from the 5th of July 1859. With this unit he received his promotion to Oberleutnant on the 1st of May 1869. In 1870 he passed through the divisional officers' school at Zara with "vorzüglichem Erfolg", followed by his transfer to Feldjäger Bataillon number 8 in Dalmatia on the1st of December 1871. During the year 1872 he was engaged for two month as commander of the troop hospital at Budna, followed by his transfer to Feldjäger Bataillon number 21 on the 1st of October 1872. It seems that troop duty there was not good for his old wounds and in May 1874 he was so troubled by them that no further duty was possible which finally leaded to a period of convalescent leave on half-pay status between the 1st of March 1975 and the 30th of November 1877. On the 1st of December 1877 Karl Manussi was again reactivated with Feldjäger Bataillon number 19 shortly followed by his transfer to the Styrian Feldjäger Bataillon number 9 and the additional attachment to the court of Großherzog Ferdinand IV of Tuscany at Salzburg on the 25th of April 1878. At this post, which became definitive on the 25th of October 1878, he remained until the 30th of April 1885 as a teacher to the grand duke's sons. During this time at the exile court at Salzburg he passed through the Infanterie-Equitation (riding course for infantry officers) at Salzburg with "sehr gutem Erfolg", was promoted to Hauptmann 2nd class on the 15th of September 1878 and to Hauptmann 1st class on the 1st of November 1881. For his efforts in teaching the young grand dukes he was honored with the Tuscany knight's cross of the Order of St. Joseph, the officer's cross of the Tuscany Military Merit Order and the Austrian Order of the Iron Crown 3rd class.
On the 1st of May 1885 Karl Manussi was transferred to the Styrian Feldjäger Bataillon number 27 but again his old wounds troubled him. Between the 1st of August 1885 and the 31st of September 1886 he was again on convalescent leave on half-pay status. On the 1st of October 1886 he returned to this unit as a company commander until the 15th of November 1888. On the 11th June 1887 he married Marie Gräfin Pace, Freiin von Friedensberg (1850-1928) at Thurn-Gallenstein (Krain) but this marriage did not produce any children. From 1887 until the 31st of October 1889 he was engaged as president of the Administration Commissions number 11 at Tarvis and number 9 at Villach. After taking part on the tactical officers staff ride through Upper Carniola and Istria he was appointed temporary commander of his battalion. In the first half-year of 1889 he successfully passed the course for aspirant field officers and than took over command of the 10th Battalion numberof the Tyrolean Kaiserjäger regiment and the Military Station at Roveredo until the 23rd of November 1890. On the 1st of November 1889 he was promoted to Major in the Tiroler Kaiserjäger Regiment. From the 23rd of November 1890 to the end of 1892 he was engaged as Ergänzungsbezirkskommandant (recruiting district commander) and commander of the Ersatz-Bataillon (replacement battalion) of this unit at Trient. But again his old wounds interrupted his career and at the end of October 1892 he was transferred to infantry regiment number 4 at Vienna without any command to recover his health but this was not enough and so yet again he was sent on leave on half-pay status for a further 6 month until April 1894.
On the 11th of April 1894 Karl Manussi was again reactivated now with infantry regiment number 13 at Krakau, shortly followed by his promotion to Oberstleutnant on the 1st of May 1894. Until the 15th of July 1896 he was commander of the 3rd battalion and additionally he was temporary commander of the entire regiment in September and October 1894. On the 15th of July 1896 he was transferred to infantry regiment number 56 where he took over command of the 2nd battalion until the 31st of October 1896. On the 1st of November 1896 he was promoted to Oberst and battalion commander in infantry regiment number 64 at Wadowice and on the 6th of April 1897 he was transferred as temporary regimental commander to the 3rd Regiment of Tiroler Kaiserjäger at Trient, taking over this command definitively on the 3rd of July of the same year. Yet again his health grew worse and forced him to take another year on half-pay status beginning on the 16th of May 1899. Oberst Karl Manussi Edler von Montesole was again reactivated on the 25th of September 1900 as commander of infantry regiment number 90 at Jaroslau.
When one read the confidential reports of his superior commanders during these years they were full of praise, he was descried as an heroic and ambitious character, perfect rider, well educated gentleman, skillful drawer and swimmer, able to express himself besides German in Italian, French and the Spanish language, under normal circumstances perfectly qualified for any higher command - but at last not fit enough because of his old wounds. Nearly every commanding General expressed his regrets about these circumstances.
On the 11th of August 1902 Oberst Karl Manussi Edler von Montesole assumed command of the 56th infantry brigade at Laibach, shortly followed by his promotion to Generalmajor on the 1st of November 1902 with seniority from the 5th of November. He did everything to fulfill his duties but at last his illness won and he was again sent on leave on half-pay status on the 14th of August 1904, but now it was forever. On the 19th of March 1909 Karl Manussi Edler von Montesole was retired on health grounds with the additional promotion to honorary Feldmarschall-Leutnant and the award of the knight's cross of the Order of Leopold. He and his wife settled down at Görz and Graz where he died on the 22nd of May 1928 at the age of 85 shortly followed by his beloved wife Marie on the 3rd of November of the same year!
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