First name

Text source

Hugh O'Kelly was a colonel in Poland-Lithuania whose status as a nobleman was confirmed there in 1673 as a reward for valour. Having previously served in Sweden (it is said) he joined the Lithuanian army in Livonia in 1658 and served under hetman Gosiewski. In 1658 he was commander of the Lithuanian garrison of Kircholm, and in February 1659 was sent to Prussia to recruit soldiers for both dragoon and infantry units. At that time he was in charge of hetman Gosiewski’s dragoon company (100 strong) and held the rank of colonel over foreign troops. In Autumn 1659 he acted as commander of the Lithuanian division in Courland. HoweverSamuel Komorowski dismissed O’Kelly from the army. King Jan Kazimierz wrote a letter to Komorski, asking for an explanation of incident and indicating his displeasure. O’Kelly was re-enlisted again at the same rank as before. In 1660 he was again in charge of a foreign infantry unit of 200 persons. It seems that late in the year he was only in charge of infantry, while his dragoons were given to his lt. colonel Jakub (Jacob?) Jaspers. It is possible that for some time Colonel O’Kelly was not present with his unit and that is why his lt. colonel took over. O’Kelly decided to settle in Lithuania where he married Anna Raczycka. He served in the Lithuanian army until 1678. He acquired some land and wealth, and in 1673 he received ‘indygenat’ (Indygenat in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth was a recognition of foreign status as a noble).

B. Treliska, ed. Album armorum nobilium regni Poloniae XV-XVIII saec. (Lublin, 2001), p.1110. Thanks to Professor Waldemar Kowalski for this information. See also Andrzej Rachuba, Oficerowie armii litewskiej z armii szwedzkiej i oficerowie armii szwedzkiej z armii litewskiej w latach 1655-1660 [in:] Wojny Polnocne w XVI-XVII wieku, Boguslaw Dybas (ed.), Torun 2007, p.161; Rachuba Andrzej, Wysilek mobilizacyjny Wielkiego Ksiestwa Litewskiego w latach 1654-1667 [w:] Studia i Materia?y do historii wojskowo?ci XLIII, (Bia?ystok, 2007), pp.56-57. The bulk of this record was provided by Michal Paradowski

Service record

Departed 1673-12-31, as COLONEL
Capacity OFFICER, purpose MILITARY
Departed 1658-12-31
Capacity OFFICER, purpose MILITARY