Military Subjects: Battles & Campaigns

The 1799 Campaign in Italy: MacDonald’s Assault on Bologna and Modena -- June

By Enrico Acerbi

The Heart of the Defense – Bologna and Fort Urbano

Bologna had three different circles of walls: the most ancient was built in selenite stone, conceivably during the Theodoricus Age. The last circle, shaped as a polygon, today corresponds to the perimeter of the city and its circling main road, called “circonvallazione”.  Its building time is datable to the beginning of the XIII Century, when the city began to organize itself in quarters and when some of the outer villages were annexed as an integrated part of the city’s center. The last cicle enclosed the old “the Thousands” walls and was initially constructed in wood, subsequently by bricks and stone. It had 12 fortified gates, with moving bridges and an external large ditch.  Its length was approximately, 7,600 meter. Within these walls was General Montrichard’s HQs.

Macdonald, as told, had the proposal to cross with his army the Modenese Apennins, and to attack the Austro-Russians, scattered between the Appennines and the Po, pushing them backwards and forcing the Coalition Armies to pass back over the great river. The second part of the plan called for him linking himself at Parma or Piacenza, with Moreau, who had to come from Liguria, sweeping away the Austro-Russians near Alexandria, those at Tortona and, finally, to join the armies in order to give battle against Suvorov.  Moreau accepted a variant of the plan   and put Victor’s and Montrichard’s Divisions under his orders.

Armée de  Naples  Situation on May 26 - 1799

Commander in Chief General de Division Etienne-Jacques-Joseph-Alexandre Macdonald[1]
Chief of General Staff : General Victor Leopold Berthier [2]
Adjudants-généraux : Pierre-Edme Gauthrin, Sarrazin, Grandjean, Cambray, Blondeau.
Brigadiers: Jean-Baptiste Carvin dit Calvin, [3]
Chefs de brigade of the Armée de Naples:

David-Joseph-Mathieu de la Redorte, dit Maurice Mathieu, [4]
Antoine-François Merlin (brother of the famous Merlin de Thionville, général de brigade at the'Armée de Naples, was arrested for having disobeyed Macdonald’s orders, behaviour that leaded to the loss of Pontremoli, the main communication link between Genua and Toscana (through Sarzana), and was enprisoned in the fort Carré of Antibes until the military trial: 15 messidor an VII.
Jean-Marie Forest: Général of the Armée de Naples died at the Modèna battle: 6 messidor an VII.  
Capitano Gaetano Bartolomasi (cisalpine)

Guns

16

Garrison

218

Sappers, “legionnaires” of the 3rd Cisalpine demi-brigade, two Companies of 64e and 62e demi-brigades de ligne, 50 invalides from Modena.

Fort Franco or Fort Urbano garrison (Castelfranco)

600

Piedmontese artillery brigade “de bataille” 

40

Guns   

60

Battalion of the Cisalpine Artillery-Engineers Schools       

100

II Battalion: Saluzzo – 2nd Piedmontese demi-brigade 

 

1st Cisalpine Hussars Regiment        II Squadrons . 

60

1st Cisalpine Hussars Regiment        IV Squadrons        

100

National Cispadane mobile Guards (milice)

250

The city’s fort was built in 1628.  On July 9, 1799, Fort Urbano surrendered with its 600 men and 7 coaches full of women and children (on July 15 upon began the jobs of demolition but it was suspended, on August 4 by Suvorov’s order, by the request of Bologna Senate). Saint Leo capitulated on July 12, a day after the Neapolitan Fort of Sant'Elmo.

French Right Wing -  General Étienne-Jacques-Joseph-Alexandre Macdonald

Regarding his plan, Macdonald in his “Memoirs” wrote:

“… My movement, if all it would have gone well, would have had the effect to paralyze the enemy left wing, and, even if being not able to destroy them completely - as I hoped I would have done, - they would have been rejected beyond the Po, separated from the main army, and losing every communication with the rest of the army. Marching eastwards along the right Po bank and threatening passages in order to break off the blockade at Mantua, I flattered myself to force the enemy, who was pursuing the Italy’s army, to go back and to leave Moreau free to run along the left Po bank; after that, I would have executed my connection with Moreau, at Parma or Piacenza. To combine us on the Coast would have been perhaps better or, at least, - like, in fact, it after happened - we would not have met obstacles; but from Lerici there were no sufficient boats in order to transport the artillery to Genoa and other war materials, and the Coast did not have causeways fit for mule transports. However I did not ignore, also, that alternative, and so were assembled boats, in good number for the case of a failure, in the ports: this, in effect, was very useful, later, to save our precious material. If, on the other hand, my plan would have been successful, we could have obtained decisive results: a single battle would have permitted us not only to reconquer all which we had lost, but also the uprisings, no more protected or encouraged from the enemy, would have be ended."

Instead directly aiming towards Piacenza, from the Garfagnana in Tuscany, Macdonald had decided to pass through the Frignano territory (Pavullo), in order to trick the enemy on his true objective, leaving them to believe it was Mantua, rather than Alexandria. Therefore, on the 1st of June, the Armée de Naples moved from Lucca to Pistoia. In order to cover the maneuver, on June 3, the French garrison of Bologna (Hulin) made a long incursion, along the Emilia route, together with the Cisalpine “Franc Corps” recruited by Lahoz, who still was a “republican”, (600 infantrymen and 200 cavalrymen). Hulin punished Imola, imposing a sum of 4000 Scudi (Bologna’s money) and by some maneiuvers, then drove away from Faenza the insurgents of Count Annibale Milzetti.

The French right wing, formed by General Montrichard’s troops, approached Bologna and attacked the outposts of Klenau’s division, who was preparing to besiege the city. The Austrians were repulsed and forced to lift the Fort Urbano blockade. General Clauzel’s brigade was at Bologna, while Montrichard, with his remaining units, pursued Klenau, forcing him to retreat to the Parma and Piacenza Duchies. This granted more freedom for the planned Macdonald’s maneuver.

Around June 8, Macdonald, had almost organized all (his) the variants of the orginal plan and coordinated them  with Moreau. After having left in Florence a part of the Rusca Division, the Chief of the Armée de Naples, had left his former Headquarters at Lucca, moving to a new camp at San Pellegrino, near Pistoia, and had already begun his advance towards Modena. His right wing, (Montrichard’s  Division and the majority of Rusca Division), left, on that same day, (June 8), Bologna and Fort Urbano (Castelfranco); they had to surround Modena, passing over the Panaro, between the city and the Po. The Victor’s Division of his left wing, marched through Pontremoli to Fornovo; while  Dąbrowsky’s Division went through Fivizzano towards Reggio.

3rd Division: Général Joseph-Ëlie-Desiré Perruquet de Montrichard

Brigadiers:

General Bertrand Clauzel [5] (was detached at Bologna to control Klenau group, forced the Austrians to leave the siege of Fort Sant’Urbano at Castelfranco but when the Austrians pointed southwards (Fröhlich corps) rejoined his division.)

Adjudants-généraux

Pierre Louis Marie Joseph Puthod  [6]
Charles-Antoine Liébault (was the rear guard at Modena) 
Pierre-Augustin Hulin (was at Bologna garrison until the end of June)

Artillery Company             

79

Sappers                      

46

Battalion of the Cisalpine Artillery-Engineers Schools        Chef Alessandro Zanoli

 

Low cavalry numbers is the result of a lot of small garrisons scattered in Emilia - Romagna

1st Regiment de Cavalerie - Chef-de-Brigade Pierre Margaron [7]

263

12th Dragoons Regiment - Chef-de-Brigade Joseph Pages [8]       

200

11th Hussars Regiment - Chef de Brigade baron Pierre Ismert       

250

1st Cisalpine Hussars Regiment - Chef-de-Esc. Angelo Lechi - I Squadron           

108

1st Squadron Cisalpine Dragoons Regiment  Chef-de-Brigade Pietro Luigi Viani           

100

 

5th Light infantry Demi-brigade - Chef-de-Brigade Antoine Chatagnier   

1900

3rd Line infantry Demi-brigade - Chef de Brigade Pierre Martilliere        

730

21st Line infantry Demi-brigade - Chef de Brigade Robert [9]        

1000

68th Line infantry demi-brigade I Battalion: - Chef Jules-Alexandre Leger Boutrouë at Tortona with the II Btn

900

2nd Division: Général Jean-Baptiste Dominique Rusca [10]

Artillery crews (16) and sappers (34)

50

   

16th Dragoons Regiment - Chef-de-Brigade Michel-Bernard Leblanc

290

19th Dragoons Regiment - Chef-de-Brigade Pierre Geraud

339

 

AvantGarde Brigade Général de brigade Général François-Etienne Kellermann [11]

 

Général François-Etienne Kellermann was actually absent for a neurithis (at Aix-les-Bains). The commander was Goris.

17th Line infantry Demi-brigade Chef de Brigade Jérôme-Joseph Goris [12]          

1883

   

Brigade Adjudant-général : Pierre-Edme Gautherin or Gauthrin (Gautrin)[13]

 

55th Line infantry Demi-brigade - Chef de Brigade François-Roch baron Ledru des Essarts     

880

III/55e was in Ancona

 

97th Line infantry Demi-brigade - Chef de brigade Claude Nérin  - I and II Btns              

1755

The Battle of Modena

Macdonald began his movement, on June 9, with the army divided in four advancing columns with rivers as their objectives: the Reno, the Panaro, the Secchia and the Taro. The inner right, formed by Rusca’s Division and the outer right, by Montrichard’s, camped at Bologna; the center, formed by Olivier’s and Watrin’s Divisions, marched in direction of Modena through Pievepelago and Pavullo; the left wing, Dąbrowski’s Division, moved from Castelnuovo dei Monti towards Reggio, while General Victor, from Pontremoli, headed to Fornovo towards Parma, trying to link up with the Army of Naples. The link between the two armies (Italie and Naples) had to be held by the brigade of General Lapoype, who was ordered, with two to three thousand  men, to push himself until Bobbio, along the higher Trebbia Valley. These French forces were opposed by General Ott’s Division which, ejected from Pontremoli, had taken a position between Parma and the outlet of the Taro Valley.  Hohenzollern’s Division (not much more than a large brigade) covered Modena; finally Klenau, forced by Clausel to remove the blockade at Fort Urbano, had deployed along the Reno and the Panaro Rivers.

While descending the part of the Apennines, which separates Tuscany, near Pistoia, from the Modenese territory, the Division of Center, under General Olivier, met, on June 10, the outposts of Prince Hohenzollern, and pushed them back until Cassina-Brunetti, located an half-mile from Modéne. The following day, a rather sharp action began between this division and the Austrian vanguard: the cavalry of the two opponents had several “melèes”, but the initiative remained with the French, under General Forest. Prince Hohenzollern, however, having advanced the Preiss Infantry Regiment, under Colonel Weidenfeld, ordered themto charge the French cavalry with the bayonets, which was incredibly achieved. That daring movement, which the  Austrian general had supported with other battalions, allowed them to regain Sassuolo, which enabled him to preserve his line of communications with Reggio. During the Sassuolo combats, Count Charles Forceville, a major in the Bussy Jägern volunteer Corps,, was killed.

The Duchy of Modena (in full, the Duchies of Modena and Reggio) was a small Italian state that existed from 1452 to 1859, with a break between 1796 and 1814. The Duchy was originally created for the Este family, who also ruled Ferrara until 1597. In 1796, the Duchy was occupied by the French Army of Napoleon Bonaparte, who created the Cispadane Republic out of its territory. The last Este Duke became ruler of former Austrian territories in southwestern Germany (the Breisgau), and died in 1803. Following his death, Modena was inherited by his son-in-law, Archduke Ferdinand of Austria-Este, an uncle of Emperor Francis II. With the fall of Napoleonic rule in Italy in 1814, Ferdinand's son, Francis IV, became Duke of Modena.

Modena, is situated in a damp, low plain in the open country in the south side of the valley of the Po, between the Secchia to the west and the Panaro to the east. Some of its main streets (as their names indicate) followed the lines of canals, which traversed the city in various directions. The fortifications gave the city an irregular pentagonal contour, modified at the north-west corner by the addition of a citadel also pentagonal. There was a Cisalpine garrison in the city, but it left Modena by the end of May, allowing the occupation by the Austrian horse-jäger patrols.

Modena's Garrison:

Commander: Adj. Gen. Charles-Antoine Liébault
Cisalpine Engineer General Leonardo Salimbeni
Cisalpine artillery chef-de-brigade Fratacchio

Battalion of the Cisalpine Artillery-Engineers School - detachment

200

National Cispadane mobile Guards (milice)

1600

The center of the Coalition Army’s deployment was reinforced by General Kray by sending there the real “factotum” of the situation, the Major General Friedrich Xavier Fürst (Prince) Hohenzollern-Hechingen, often sent where the wings’ lines showed some dangerous gap. This general, after the unlucky campaign of 1796, when he led a vanguard brigade, had recently acquired a greater fame, for his abilities as commander, shown in many 1799 episodes, such as at Magnano, during the Pizzighettone siege and with the battles in the Canton Ticino, and began to show himself as a daring and outstanding cavalry general in the Austrian army. Prince Hohenzollern received instructions, by  June 5, to reach Modena, through Parma, and to take the command o of the 3 battalions of the Klebek Regiment, that were deployed under the command of the General Count Palffy, with 6 squadrons of Bussy Jäger. Count Klenau, at that time, was at Cento. Both generals had decided to drive out the enemy from Bologna and Fort Urbano. But, by the time the prince arrived in Modena, Macdonald broke out, from his camp in Pistoia, in order to advance, through the Apennins, along the Modena and Bologna causeways, leaving as the left wing, the Dąbrowsky’s Division, and reinforcing the right with Montrichard.

Hohenzollern had put his observation camp on the right bank of the Po, in order to cover the southern flank of Mantua. He had also sent outposts between the Rivers Panaro and Secchia, from the town of Scandiano, through Sassuolo till Spilimberto. The link with Ott (at Parma) and Klenau (by the left) was in the town of Crevalcore. Otherwise he did not have many troops to engage two enemy divisions, whose campfires could be seen on the mountains, at sunset. After the brilliant operation of June 11, at Sassuolo, the Prince was aware he had beaten a small vanguard and not a French division. So a courier was sent to Mantua to ask Kray for reinforcements. The Chief of the Austrian rearguard sent, through Mirandola,  another infantry battalion with two hussars squadrons to help Hohenzollern, in Modena.

Gruppe Major General Friedrich Xavier Fürst Hohenzollern-Hechingen

4000

 

Links Abteilung Major General ? (Oberst) Carl Philippi Freiherr von Weidenfeld [14]

 

K.K. Infantry Regiment #24 Rifle Infantry Regiment (former von Preiß) 

1393

Commander: Oberst Carl Philipp von Weidenfeld. I II btns.

K.K. 4th Light Infantry battalion Bach                     

820

Commander: Major Johann Nepomuk Freiherr von Bach - Venetian and Italian troops

 

Recht Abteilung Major General Niklaus Joszef Pálffy ab Erdöd  [15]

 

K.K. Infantry Regiment # 14 Rifle Infantry Regiment  Freiherr Wilhelm von Klebek

1644

Commander: Oberst Freiherr Franz Kottulinsky – I-II-III btns.

 
 

Centre Major Charles Graf Forceville

 

Bussy Freiwillige Jägers zu Pferd (Chasseurs a Cheval) [16]           

800 

Owner Major General Anton Graf Mignot de Bussy [17] - (4 Squadrons ) – Commander: Oberst Johann Frimont. The squadrons at Modena  were led by Major Charles Graf Forceville, who died during a combat at Sassuolo.  Count Anton de Bussy was also present.

At 10 o’clock a.m. on June 12, the French vanguard advanced towards Modena. It was “welcome” with a furious canister fire and soon became disordered. The French withdrew leaving some wounded behind.  Hohenzollern waited for the main attack, organizing the defences behind the city walls and aiming the guns over the 5 roads which approached the city gates. He also gave orders to organize the eventual retreat to Mirandola, in the case of an overwhelming assault.

At midday, French columns began to advance from different directions. They tried to cut off the withdrawal route to Mirandola. The Austrians began a continuous and deadly artillery and musketry fire, but the waited reinforcements did not arrive. The two wings, deployed in open fields, began slowly to retreat, reaching in order the city gates and entering the city. First in was the right wing, followed the left. Then the city doors were firmly closen, but the French did not stop. Having opened some breaches in the gates, they enterd the city, following the inner roads, which became the theatre of an hard and confused melée. The rear Austrian column reached the Mirandola road, being harassed by the French cavalry, and left the city. At the nightfall the French entered the center of Modena.

Prince Hohenzollern had been cut off, on the left, along the Secchia, by the French troops which occupied Rubiera and Scandiano. If Klenau had not supported him, by blocking the two divisions Montrichard and Rusca, which came from Bologna, the retreat of the Austrians to Mirandola, would have been a real tragedy. Perhaps, followed closely by the French, Prince Hohenzollern owed his safety to the Preiss Regiment, which, forming the rear-guard, sacrificed itself to save the remainder of the troops. It was during this time that Klenau advanced, after having pushed back the two divisions, but it could only follow Hohenzollern, and withdrew to  Cento and Ferrara.

Kray, with the first moves of Macdonald, had withdrawn artillery  from the Mantua siege,  and removed the Casal-Maggiore bridge and all others over the Po.  He was now defending the left bank, with a corps of 10000 men and some bands of armed peasants, in order to prevent the passage of the river and to cover the blockade of Mantua. By examining the situation, one can notice that it was easy for Macdonald, to carry out the passage of Po, after having pushed back Hohenzollern, and to beat Kray, to advance and capture Mantua with its  provisions, to reinforce the garrison, and to force the Austrians to contain their troops in the fortresses of Pizzighettone, Ferrara, Peschiera, Verona and Porto-Legnago. Several distinguished historians blamed the French general for carring out this operation, instead of following the plan coordinated with Moreau. However the latter plan presented great difficulties, making preferable the original, except by combining new forces, which could come only by the general in chief of the Army of Italy.

Gachot wrote a different, but more detailed, account of the battle, almost viewed with “French eyes” and outlined some interesting details (see after).

1st Division général Jean Baptiste Olivier [18]

Brigadiers

General de Division Alexis Aime Pierre Cambray [19]
Chef-de-Brigade Pierre-Etienne Petitot [20]
General de Brigade Jean Marie Forest [21]

Adjudants-généraux:

Adjudant-général  Paul-Charles-François-Adrien-Henri-Dieudonné Thiébault [22] (absent at Modena, was at Genoa)
Adjudant-général  Jean Sarrazin [23]

Olivier left Formigine, at 4 o’clock a.m. of the 12th, marching in a “grosse colonne de route” formation and passed over the last Appennins slopes at a distance of 5 Kilometers  from the city. Descending the slope, through the Secchia Valley, with a fast “pas de charge” he engaged the enemy, at 9 a.m. -- the Austrian skirmishers of the Preiss Regiment. The struggle was violent. Only with the support of the 12th Line Infantry Demi-brigade, two squadrons of chasseurs, and two guns, were the French  able to force the Austrians to retreat. Behind the Republican vanguard , Olivier’s Division split into several columns: the 30th Line was on the left, marching towards the west part of the city in order to cut the Reggio road; the 73rd Infantry was on the right, and was the first to reach the city walls stopping it “a portée du fusil”, eventually preparing to link with  Rusca’s Division, whenever it would arrive; the cavalry deployed itself “par echelons” between the skirmishers screen and the main corps; the artillery deployed in the centre. A water channel split into two “chaussées” the main Pistoia road. Olivier was ordered to build a bridge in order to link his two wings.  He placed his reserve behind that bridge (4 granadier companies, 6 squadrons of the 6th and the 19th Chasseurs watching the baggage  and part of the divisional artillery). When all was ready, arrived Macdonald, who ordered the general attack.   

Artillery and Sappers battalion                     

304

Reserve - Cavalry brigade General Jean Marie Forest

 

19th Regiment Chasseurs à cheval    - Chef-de-Brigade Louis-Urbain Bruë [24] 

361

 

Reserve - Cavalry brigade General Alexis Aime Pierre Cambray

 

Grenadiers 4 companies   

348

7th Regiment Chasseurs à cheval: Chef Marie-Benoit-Antoine-Joseph Bussiere De Lamure [25]      

327

 

Avantgarde

 

12th Line infantry Demi-brigade - Chef-de-brigade François Vergez [26]

1287

 

Left Wing

 

30th Line infantry Demi-brigade de ligne Chef-de-brigade Jacques Darnaud o d’Arnaud [27]   

1393

 

Right Wing

 

73th Line infantry Demi-brigade - Chef-d-Bg. Armand-Nicolas Vouillemont de Vivier [28]    

1106

Part of the III Battalion: 5th Line Infantry Demi-brigade

400

The rest of the III Battalion: (700) was at Bologna with Macdonald

The first units to abandon the plain were Klebek’s companies, deployed behind the skirmishers. They retreated until the city walls, but the resistance of the Hohenzollern soldiers was very hard. Only at 4 p.m., did  the 12th Infantry take the southern ramparts after a deadly assault.  Austrian General Palffy, who led the right wing, gave way and retreated. In that gap, near  the quarters of Pistoia and Sant’Agostino, French and Austrian ran into each other, and every alley and house became a place to fight with bayonets and bare hands. The Bussy patrols also retreated, abandoning the Reggio Road and slinking into the roads, mounted or not. Two of these riders, turning around the corner of an house, found themselves in front of General Forest with his aide-de-camp. One of the Jäger approached the general, saying he wanted to be a prisoner and, doing so, shot with his handgun hitting Forest. Other Chasseurs arrived and sabred the two jägers, killing both. The body of Forest was carried  to Levizzano palace.

The 19th Chasseurs chased the Austrians between the houses, the first squadron led by Clèment, followed by another 200 cavalrymen led by Cambray. They went out of the city charging the rearguard, a long chain of small detachments scattered along the road to Mirandola manned by Infantry Regiment # 24 (von Preiss). For almost 14 kilometers  from Modena, Cambray chased the Austrian infantry, disordered them and took lot of prisoners. 

In the meanwhile, when the last of the Austrians had left the city, Macdonald entered the Porta Nuova, the city gate on the road to Bologna.  He was worryied about the delay of Rusca’s vanguard. The sun was going down when a patrol of Bussy Jäger went out from the fields along the San Martino trail. In order to stop them, the hussars of the MacDonald’s escort moved their horses towards the Jäger, handling the sabres. Suddenly a voice emerged from the Austrain patrol, speaking a perfect French: “Don’t know me ? I’m your brother!” Macdonald, thinking they wanted to give up, stopped his escort, but, unexpectedly, the Jäger jumped over a 2 meter large ditch and attacked the General’s staff. Twenty soldiers of the 73rd Line shot the Austrians, killing 15 Jägers, but someone reached Macdonald. An Enginer Captain was killed and the general in chief received two hits, one in the head and another in the wrist. None of the Austrians, however, survived.

French Losses

Dead : 1 général (Forest), 3 Officers, 197 men. 11 Officers wounded (Vergez and Brue among these) – 589 men wounded

Austrians Losses

Dead: 405 men 30 Officers – 668 men 180 Officers wounded – 1121 prisoners (3 battleflags lost) – 12 guns and 33 caissons lost- 400 horses lost. Other sources (Arch. of Ministry of Foreign Affairs – French Commissioner report) gave the number of 1610 prisoners (41 Officers and 1569 men) so listed:

IR 24 regiment Preiss – 31 Officers, 1016 soldiers and NCOs.
IR 14 regiment Klebek – 10 Officers, 425 soldiers and NCOs.
JR Jäger regiment de Bussy – no Officers, 49 soldiers and NCOs.

Macdonald’s Reserve

4th Reserve Division - Général François Watrin [29]         

4402 ?

   

Light artillery            

33

25th Regiment Chasseurs á Cheval   (3 Squadrons s) - Chef de brigade François Guerin d'Etoquigny [30]   

284

27th Light infantry Demi-brigade II battalion (from garrisons in Northern Italy and Rome)     

455

 

62nd Line infantry Demi-Brigade:  Chef-de-brigade Claude-Louis Gudin [31]           

2426 ?

Note: To the total, probably, had to be subtracted the 900 men of the III Battalion, which was in Rome

78th Line infantry Demi-Brigade: Chef-de-Brigade Pierre-Etienne Petitot

2137

While Watrin did not really participate in the city’s assault, a regimental history source stated in a different way:

“The 62e de bataille  was attached to Watrin’s division. It left in Rome its administrative board with the 3rd Battalion, 900 men strong. This battalion, did not remain inactive, but took part in  the combats of Albano, Frascati, Rossiglione and Viterbo, in the territory of the Roman Republic. During this period, Lieutenant Déchamp distinguished himself for the courageous assault, against Fabriano, while being one of the first to climb the walls. Captain Limouzin, leading several different detachments, French, Cisalpine, and Romans, attacked Palestrina, then Conegliano and suffered several wounds there. Beaufils, the chef-de-battalion, commanded the place of Rome in a such good way, that the provisional committee of the Roman government decided that he had well deserved to the Roman republic. The 3rd Battalion joined the regiment in Genoa, taking its share of glory in the defense of that place. Macdonald had moved north and, after a stop in Tuscany, had gone on Modena. The 62e took part in the attack of that city, defended by Hohenzollern.”

Notes:

[1] Général de division Etienne-Jacques-Joseph-Alexandre Macdonald, (then Duke of Taranto, Marshal of France) Son of a Scottish Jacobite, he was born at Sedan (Ardennes), on November 17, 1765. (He died in the Château de Courcelles-le-Roi (Beaulieu sur Loire, Loiret), on September 25, 1840). In 1784 he served in the Légion Irlandaise (Irish Legion), becaming Lieutenant in the Régiment de Maillebois (serving in Holland), on April 1, 1785. As volunteer in the Régiment de Dillon (become the 87e Infanterie in 1791), he was attached to the French republican army as. Beurnonville's aide-de-camp, on June 17, 1792, becaming Captain on August 19, 1792. His career, otherwise, started up when he was a Dumouriez's aide-de-camp, August 29, 1792. He was at Jemappes, and was named Lieutenant-colonel in the 94e d'infanterie, on November 12, 1792. In 1793 (March 8) he was named also Chef de brigade of the 2e d'infanterie, distinguishing himself at Blaton, in August. Général de brigade in the Armée du Nord, on August 26, 1793, he was at the combat of Tourcoing (August 27) and at the capture of Werwicq and Menin (September 13). Attached to the Souham Division, was at Werwicq, Courtrai (May 11, 1794), Tourcoing battle and Hooglède. On November 15, 1794 he Replaced Souham as commander of the 1er Division, being promoted Général de Division in the Armée du Nord on day 28.

Appointed commander of the 2e Division of the Armée du Nord (in place of Compère), on May 21, 1795, he was temporarily suspended, as a result of complaints from the government of Holland, and then named commander in Zeeland (3e Division of the Armée du Nord, August 2, 1795). By July 10, 1796, he was charged to coordinate three divisions (Macdonald, Daendels and Dumanceau) and ordered to cover the left wing of the Armée de Sambre-et-Meuse, becaming the official commander of the left wing of the Armée de Sambre-et-Meuse, on September 24, 1796. Before the armistices he was also commander of the 1ere Division of the Armée du Nord, on February 1797.

After Campoformio he joined the Armée d'Italie, on April 24, 1798 and was appointed commander of the French troops, stationed in the Roman Republic (in place of Gouvion-Saint-Cyr) July 11, 1798. Took the command of the 1ere Division of the Armée de Rome and was Governor of Rome, November 19, 1798. There it became his personal struggle against insurgents (the rebels). He won the battles of Ferentino and Otricoli and then fought at Cività Castellana, on December 5. Was at the capture of Calvi, and successfully attacked Capua (January 3, 1799), resigning the command, a week later, after disagreements with Championnet. But when the same Chief Championnet went into troubles, he got the command in Chief of the Armée de Naples, on February 27, 1799. Recalled by Schérer to support the armée d’Italie, he marched northwards fighting against the insurgencies in Tuscany. Then passed the Appenins and was at Modena, on June 12, 1799, where he was wounded. Beaten at Trebbia, on June 17-19, 1799, joined the Armée d'Italie, on July 3, 1799. He left Italy on day 15 July, retiring from the active duty, on August 3, 1799. However he was recalled as commander in Versailles and was there during 18 Brumaire crisis, (November 9, 1799). After the bonapartist’s victory he was sent to the Armée du Rhin, as lieutenant of Général en chef, Moreau. The same rank he had on December 7, 1800, but as Lieutenant of the Général en chef of the Armée de Réserve. From August 24, he was the commander in chief of the 2e Armée de Réserve, and, then, the commander in chief of the Armée des Grisons, on October 5, 1800. With it he crossed the Splügen pass (December 4, 1800) and took Trento (January 6, 1801). Left the Armée des Grisons, he became Ministre Plénipotentiare in Denmark, on April 1, 1801, returning to France at the end of January, 1802. There, Macdonald, went into disgrace for having defended Moreau in 1804. Otherwise the Emperor, who had a great trust in him, authorised the general to serve in Naples, on February 28, 1807. Soon he was employed in the Armée d'Italie, on March 28, 1809 and became corps commander of the right wing under Prince Eugène, in April. Wounded at the battle of Piave, on May 8, 1809, he took Laibach (Ljubliana on May 22) and Graz (May 30). At Wagram Macdonald broke the enemy centre, so deciding the victory, on July 6, 1809. After a week he received the Staff (Maréchal d'Empire, July 12, 1809) and the Grand Aigle of the Légion d'Honneur, in August, with an annual income of 60000 francs from Naples. He we also awarded with the title of Duke of Taranto, on December 9, 1809. Recalled to Paris, by January 9, 1810, he began the Spanish adventure. Commander in chief of the Armée de Catalogne (in place of Augereau), on April 24, 1810, he won at Cevera, took Manresa, but was driven back at Bisbal and Valls. He left Spain and returned to France after September 20, 1811. There he was named commander of the 10th corps of the Grande Armée in Russia, on June 3, 1812. After the unsuccessful siege of Riga, from August till December, 1812, he left the command to Rapp, on January 13, 1813, and was placed in the General Staff. He took again the battlefield as commander of the 11e corps of the Grande Armée in Saxony, on April 10, 1813, winning at Merseburg. He was the right wing commander at Lützen, on May 2, 1813, won the clash of Bischofwerda, and led the right wing at Bautzen, (May 20-21, 1813). Then the Fate changed and he was beaten at the Katzbach, on August 26, fought at Wachau and in the 'Battle of the Nations”, at Leipzig, on October 18, where he avoided the prisony, escaping by swimming the Elster river. He fought again at Hanau, on October 30, and was ordered to defend the Lower Rhine border near Cologne, on November 1, 1813. The French retreat brought him till Châlons-sur-Marne, on January, 1814, then to Meaux, (February 4), fighting in retreat at Mormant, (February 17), La Ferté-sur-Aube (February 28), Troyes (March 4), Nogent-sur-Seine and Provins (March 17), and Saint Dizier (March 29). Chosen by Napoleon, along with Ney and Caulaincourt, to negotiate with the allied sovereigns, on April 4, 1814, he became  Member of the War Council on May 6, 1814. During the first Restoration he was named Pair de France, on June 4, 1814, then Governor of the 21e division militaire in Bourges, on June 21, 1814. In 1815 he led the Armée du Gard, under the Duc d'Angoulême, (March 6), accompanied the Comte d'Artois to Lyons, (March 8), and was commander in chief of the combined army for the defence of Paris, under the Duc de Berry, (March 17). Then he followed Louis XVIII to the border and then returned to Paris where he served as a Grenadier in the Garde nationale. During the Second Restoration he was named Great Chancelor of the Légion d'Honneur, on July 2, 1815; commander in chief of the Armée de la Loire and governor of the 21e division militaire, on July 26, 1815. His many titles had a sudden growth under the king: “deuxième major general” in the Garde Royale (out of four), on September 13, 1815; State Minister and member of the Privat Council, on September 19; Grand-croix de Saint-Louis, on August 24, 1820; Chevalier commandeur of the Ordre du Saint-Esprit, on September 30, 1820 .

From a family of Scottish origins, Macdonald personifies the position of those who were dedicated to France rather than to the ruler’s cult. Unfairly dismissed in 1802 (essentially for having fought under Moreau and Pichegru but never under Bonaparte) he spent five years effectively in the wilderness. But on his return to the army in 1809, his action at Wagram (a compact column charge, subsequently known as the Colonne Macdonald) led to his being made Maréchal on the battlefield; the only occurrence of such an event. During the Hundred Days he accompanied Louis to the border and returned to Paris where he enrolled as a simple grenadier in the Garde nationale. He remained faithful to his old “grognards” notably when he defended Général Drouot during his trial. Sources : Macdonald, J.-É.-J.-A., Souvenirs du maréchal Macdonald, duc de Tarente (with an introduction by Camille Rousset), Paris: Plon, 1892.

[2] Victor-Leopolde Berthier (22.05.1770-13.03.1807), brother of the future French Marshal, was renowned for having refused his wife, Josephine d’Aiguillon (1802), then married (1803) with general Lassalle. Berthier in 1791 was the adjudant of gen. Custine (Sept. 16). Promoted in 1796 (May 19) chef-de-batallion, he was assigned to the Topographical Section of the Army’s Geographical Bureau. In 1797 (Sept. 7) he was named adjudant général chef-de-brigade and, in 1798 (Dec. 8), he became the Chief of Staff of the Rome’s Army. He obviously became also the Chief of general Staff of the Naples’ Army in 1799 and was promoted général-de-brigade, directly by Chief Macdonald, provisional on June 19, after the Trebbia battle, and definitive on October 19. In 1800 he was sent to the 15th and 17th (Paris) military districts, always acting as Chief of Staff. On November 20, 1800, he had the same rank in the Observation Corps of the Northern France. In 1801 he returned to Paris as Chief of Staff of the 1st military district and in 1803 returned on the battlefields as Chief of Staff of the Mortier’s Corps in Hannover (May 2). In Germany he was named général-de-division (Feb.1), then Chief of Staff of the I Corps (from August 29, 1805 till November 30 of the same year). He was sent in a Diplomatic mission at the Prussian Court and in the Hessen (Assia) Electorate. On  November 30. 1805, he asked for a dismissal, retiring because of some helath’s failures.

[3] Jean-Baptiste (Andrè) Carvin otherwise called  Calvin (19.02.1767-21.01.1801) died because of the wound suffered during the battle of  Pozzolo (1800). From 1792 till 1796 he always was in the Armée d’Italie, becaming, on March 15, 1796, chef-de-brigade in the 103e line demi-brigade (future 11th line demi-brigade, where he was the Second chef-de-brigade). In 1798 he was transferred to the armée de Naples, where, on January 20, 1799, he was promoted général de brigade, a provisional rank obtained on the battlefield by general Championnet; his promotion was confirmed on February 15, 1799, in the Rome’s army. In 1800 he was with the armée de Reserve in Italy and, as told, he was severely wounded, near the Mincio, at the Pozzolo’s battle, during the Christmas day. Soon transported to the camp hospital at Volta, he remained there, and, one month later, he died.

[4] David-Maurice-Joseph Mathieu de la Redorte. Noble, from an old family of the Rouergue, he was born in Sainte-Afrique (Aveyron), on September 30, 1768. Cadet in the Swiss regiment of De Meuron, April 1, 1783, he left Europe for the Indies, as Lieutenant, with the French Legion de Luxembourg. He returned in France in 1789, when his unit was disbanded and he left the duty. In 1792 he was againg in military service with the 1st Dragoons regiment of his uncle, Mr de Muratel, who was the Colonel; that one, become Field Marshal, transferred Mathieu in the Centre Legion, as Captain, maintaining him as his aide-de-camp. He was then in the armée du Rhin, distinguishing himself at Landau, at the Valmy battle. From 1793 till 1795 he took part in the campaigns of the Moselle and Sambre-et-Meuse armies, as aide-de-camp of general Chapsal. Then he received the nomination as adjudant-général serving in the Intérieur, Nord and Sambre-et-Meuse armies ; in 1797 he reached the army of Italy, then marching, under Championnet, against the insurgents.After a terrible reprisal at Terracina, in 1798, the adjudant-général Mathieu was promoted général de brigade by Directory. He was then at Otricoli with Macdonald, who appreciated his bravery, where he took about 2000 prisoners, 8 guns, 3 flgs and the whole Staff of the Neapolitan regiment  “Principessa” (Princess). He was promoted général de division in 1800, commanding a corps of 3600 men in Brest. Ordered to participate at the Expeditionnary force against Guadeloupe, he was insteda recalled to led the 20th territorial military division (Périgueux). In 1807 he led the 2nd division of the VII corps of the Grande Armée in Tirol, against the Austrian corps of Jellachich. In 1808 he passed to the service of King Joseph in Spain, attached to the Lannes’ corps, and was wounded at the Tudela battle, having an honour mention by Macdonald. In 1812 he was at the Mont-Serrat capture, at Altafulla hills, continuing, in 1813, to the serve as brave Officer; he was also named count of the Empire. He returned in France in 1814 where he was named General infantry Inspector in the territorial military divisions n. 10 and n. 12. In 1817, king Louis gave him the command of the 19th territorial military division and that of Lyon, after the 1818 riots. He died on March 1, 1833 in Paris.

[5] Général de brigade Bertrand Clausel (more correctly Clauzel, Count) (1772-1842), marshal of France, was born at Mirepoix (Ariege) on the 12th of December 1772, and died at Secourrieu (Garonne) on the 21st of April 1842 (see under Alexandria siege).

[6] Adjudant général Pierre Louis Marie Joseph Puthod  (1769-1837) In 1799 he was a Adjudant général chef-de-bataillon (he will be promoted général-de-brigade on October 19, 1807). In 1808 he led a division of the X Corps and was confirmed as general-de-division on November 24, 1809. During the 1813 campaign he led the 4th infantry division of the III Corps - Armée d’Allemagne and, then. The 17th infantry division of the V Corps; he was taken prisoner after a clash at Płakowice.

[7] Chef-de-Brigade baron Pierre Margaron, wounded at Novi. He was born in Lyon (Rhône) on May 4, 1765. Adjudant-général from 1795 in the armée du Nord, was in the armée de Sambre-et- Meuse and in Italy. In 1799 he became the chef de brigade of the 1st Cavalry, the future 1st Cuirassiers, was wounded by a bullet during the Novi battle, and, after, also in the battle of Fossano, having the right leg fractured while performing a mission, ordered by general Championnet. Died on December 16, 1824 in Paris.

[8] Chef-de-Brigade Joseph Pages, Born on March 10, 1754 and named Chef-de-Brigade on June13, 1794. He will be General-de-Brigade on December 24, 1805. His awards were: Officer of the Legion d'Honneur: June 13, 1804. Baron of the Empire: January 9, 1810. Died on September 1, 1814.

[9] Severely wounded during the 1795 Rhine campaign, the chef-de-brigade Robert, had retired by illness dismissal on 3 fructidor an VI. (August 20, 1798), however he was recalled on duty in 1799 (remis en activité: 6e complémentaire an VII).

[10] Général de division Jean-Baptiste Rusca  He was born at the Briga, in the ancient department of the « Alpes maritimes », on November 27, 1759. After a period of intense studies he acted as a medical doctor in the Nice county. With the outbreak of the Revolution, he met the Nice’s Jacobins; so he was exiled and his goods requisited by the Savoyard Administration. He came to France, whre he joined the army HQs at Toulon, acting as medical doctor in the military hospitals. Named chef de bataillon in the  6th Sappers battalion (May 1, 1793), and then also adjudant-général chef de bataillon, he followed the Dumerbion’s army, who invaded the Genoese State and threatened Italy. As a guide, he led the army into the Nice County, drove out the Piedmontese from the col de Fouvelus, and supported the capture of the Saorgio fortress, assaulted by Massena’s grenadiers. The Alpes maritimes department, thanking him for his bravery, gave a Honour Sabre to the “montagnard” doctor. As the Italy’s invasion was blocked, he was in the armée des Pyrénées-Orientales, under Pérignon and after Schérer, where was named adjudant-général, chef de brigade (25 prairial an III), distinguishing in the Crospia affair where, leading a small Chasseurs column, he captured “trente paires d’épaulettes d’officiers espagnols”. The peace with Spain made him (and Scherer) returning to Italy. In 1795 he was at Loano where he conquered several entrenched camps and was praised on the battlefield. In 1796, at Dego, he captured 100 prisoners and 2 guns, capturing the lines of San Giovanni hills. Then he attacked the entrenched camp of Ceva with bravery, doing so also at Lodi, when he repulsed an Austrian column. He was ordered to garrison Salò, on the Garda lake, and defended the town with valour, being also wounded by two bullets in the left thig. In 1797 he passed in the Rome’s army, having the command of several garrison and finally passing in the Naples’ army under Championnet. When Championnet left Rome, Rusca was sent to the Adriatic coast in order to march south clearing the many insurgencies on the road. He bote the Neapolitans at Torre-de-Palma, won at Monte-Pagano and concurred in the conquer of Naples. For this quick exepedition he was promoted général de division. When Macdonald left Naples, Rusca followed the army, keepinh his division in the right wing. At the Trebbia battle he suffered other two wounds (two bullets in the left leg). He was then abandoned in Piacenza, in a hospital, with many other wounded Officers, and remained prisoner of the Austrians for 20 months. Returned from the prisony, Consul Bonaparte gave him the command of the Elba island (he was also awarded with the Crosses of Member and Commander of the Legion d’Honneur). After a long period of rest he was recalled on active duty in 1809 (army of Italy) leading a division in Tirol. He was sent in Carniola (Krain) against Chasteler and met him at Villach; he won the combat making 900 prisoners and forcing the Austrians to retreat. After the peace of Vienna, Napoleon named him Baron of the Empire. He was on duty until January 20, 1814, when he was appointed with the command of the 2nd Reserve division. Named commander at the Soissons camp, Rusca was mortally hit on the town bastions, on February 14, 1814. 

[11] Général François-Etienne Kellermann, son of the famous Marshal, was born in Metz (Moselle), in 1770. He began his service as second lieutenant in the hussars regiment Colonel-Général, which he left, in 1791, to follow the chevalier of Ternau, named embassador in United States. In 1793 he returned in France, at his father’s side, who was going to take again the command of the Alps’ army. As aide-de-camp he was at the siege of Lyon. Having talked about Robespierre’s incarceration he became suspected and was put in prison. Released, after some weeks, he wanted his rank of commander of the bataillon chasseurs des Hautes-Alpes to be resumed. With the refusal of the Convention he eneterd the I Hussars as volunteer. After the arbitration of his father, he was restored to the battalion’s command, a unit which was at Cagliano, near Vado in Liguria. Named adjudant-général he was ordered to reach Bonaparte, being at his flank at Lodi, Milano and Pavia. Attached to the Massena division he had several command at Bassano, at Arcole, at Rivoli, and in the capture of Mantua. In 1797, during the passage of Tagliamento he was wounded by many sabre’s cuts during the charge he executed together with general Dugua. At the age of 26, ordered to carry the captured flags onto the Directory in Paris, he was named général-de-brigade, directly by Bonaparte’s nomination. In 1798 he was with Championnet against the Neapolitans. During the Macdonalds 1799 campaign he was actually absent for a recovery period, suffering from a neurithis, and really he was at Aix-les-Bains, substituted by chef Goris. In 1800 he led a cavalry brigade under Bonaparte and became renowned for his cavalry charge at Marengo. During the Empire he was protagonist of a lot of brilliant actions until the last battles at Quatre Bras and Waterloo. After having received the father’s heritage or the title of Duke and the peerage, he developed a liver disease which brought him to the death, on June 2, 1835.

[12] Chef de Brigade Jérôme-Joseph Goris   Born at Castillon-sur-Sambre (Nord), on May 6, 1761 he joined the army being married and father of many children. In 1794, after the first amalgamation, he passed in the 17th line demi-brigade, unit in which he acted as Chef-de-battalion. He became the Chef-de-Brigade on January 7, 1799, in the Naples army. On August 6, 1811 he was named général-de-brigade, having received the title of Officer of the Legion d'Honneur on June 14, 1804. Goris died on November 9, 1828.

[13] Adjudant-général  Pierre-Edme Gautherin o Gauthrin (Gautrin) baron. Gautherin was born on August 12, 1770, at Troyes (Aube). Soldier in the Neustrie infantry, he passed into the Allobroges ranks. At the Toulon siege he was Captain of the Guides of the armée des Alpes and then chef d'escadron « provisoire » in the Hussards des Alpes or Death’s Hussars. Transferred to army of Italy, he soon became chef of one squadron of the 1er régiment de hussards and took part in many actions, under general Bernadotte. In 1798 he was in the Roman State and then at Naples. After the unlucky Macdonald’s campaign in 1799, he returned to the armée d’Italie, wher he was commander of an avantgarde brigade in Watrin division. After six months he became Chief of Staff by the right wing of the army, and worked under general Soult. Prisoner at Genoa he returned to France, where he had the command of the 2nd territorial military division (Metz). His return on the battlefields was at Mainz (Mayence) where he took the guide of the 9th hussars regiment, which leading he received a bullet in the front at Friedland (June 14, 1807). On October 21, 1809 he obtained the promotion to général de brigade and led the 11th light cavalry brigade in the armée d'Italie, on December 25, 1811. By March 1812 he was in the III reserve corps of the Grande Armée, with which he was in Russia. Wounded and taken prisoners, he was able to return in France only on August 6, 1814, resuming his service as Cavalry Inspector of the 16th territorial military division. During the 100 days, the Empereur assigned him to the 5th division of the Corps d'observation de la Moselle, after IV Corps of the armée du Nord. Withe the IV Corps he was at Waterloo and forced to retire on October. Nevertheless he had other military charges until the definitive retirement of the April 1831. He died on March 20, 1851.

[14] Oberst Carl Philippi Freiherr von Weidenfeld was born in a military camp at Esseg in Croatia (today Osjek) in 1741. (died in Ofen on May 21, 1811). He was the son of a K.K. Officer and followed the army from the age of 14, during the Seven Years war. In 1785 he was a major of the IR 53 regiment. In 1793 he was transferred to the IR 32 Gyulai , while in 1794 he was in the IR 24 Preiss as recently promoted Oberstleutnant. For his brave behaviour at Mannheim de was promoted Oberst in 1795 (November 12) in the same regiment. The following year he was in Italy gaining, on August 5, 1796, the military Member Cross of Maria-Theresia at Sulforia. He served in the Davidovich division with which attacked the strong position of Madonna della Corona (or La Corona). On September 7 he was again awarded with the Knight Cross of Maria-Theresia (in this occasion he was confirmed as Freiherr of Weidenfeld). In 1799 he distinguished himself at Magnano were he was wounded and, on June 12, he repulsed three French assaults avoiding the rout of the Austrian flank at Modena. He fought the 1800 campaign and, then, he had the command of the military place of Ofen (Budapest), where he died, at the age of 70, as Feldmarschallleutnant.

[15] Generalmajor Nikolaus Joseph Franz de Paula, Xaver Matthias Graf Pálffy ab Erdöd. Born 3 december 1765, son of prince Karl Hyeronimus and Maria Theresia princess Liechtenstein. He was named Generalmajor on October 20, 1796 (provisional from  September 21, 1796). General in Italy, died on May 26th, 1800 during an assault in the Aosta valley at Romano.

[16] In 1795, the Bishop of Paderborn and Hildesheim, had given money to create a volunteers cavalry corps: the Jäger Freikorps zu Pferd (4 squadrons). The unit got his riders in that area, near Hannover and in March 1797 was put in the service of Austrian Emperor with 6 squadrons. In June 1798 he integrated also the Bourbon, Carneville and Rohan  Hussars, forming 8 squadrons under the new name “Jäger regiment zu Pferd”. In 1800 he had also a 5th division as depot. The regiment recruited in the hereditary territories of Austria (Germany) but had many French “emigré”. The unit was disbanded in 1801. The Owner was the count Anton de Bussy, who commande the unit from 1795. In 1798 the commander was the Oberst Johann Frimont and from 1801, for a short period, the Oberst count Claudius de Bussy. During the 1799 campaign it was at the Mantua siege, then at Sassuolo and Modena and, finally, at the Ancona siege.

[17] Generalmajor Graf Anton Mignot de Bussy. Born at Beaujolais in 1755, dead at Brünn on April 10, 1804. Emigré on 1792 from French army to the Austrians got the rank of Colonel of his own formation of French volunteers Rgt. Jägerd zu Pferd de Bussy. Il 1799 was promoted to Generalmajor and was in Italy at the defeat of Modena, at Coni (Cuneo), at Barraggio on the genoese Riviera (10 April 1800) . Five days after at Ladrino he distinguished himself. In 1801 took parte in the clashes of Villanuova and Vicenza. At Vicenza he found a large enemy formation and decided to withdraw towards Montebello. Since the city had not defences he refuse to cross it in order to avoid pillages, but passed by and behind its walls, with all troops and carriages, spending an half hour of additional march to save the city. For that episode he was awarded with the Maria Theresia Cross. After the Luneville treaty he was in Bohemia leading a brigade in Brüx. There he died at the age of 49.

[18] General de Division Jean-Baptiste Olivié called Olivier, baron. Was born under the flags of a regiment, in Strasbourg (Lower-Rhine), on December 25, 1765. He entered the military career on July 1, 1770, as soldier in the 35e regiment, former Aquitanian. Then he became Adjudant-Major in the 4th battalion of the Moselle on August 25, 1791, Major on June 15, 1792, and brigade general on September 19, 1793. On June 26, 1794, he got into the first airship, which was launched before the battle of Fleurus, commanding a brigade during that day, and deserved there such praises, he gave to his son the name of Fleurus, to remember the event. Olivier led, in year IV, the cavalry of division Grenier. He was at the passage of Lahn, where he charged the enemy rear-guard, at the combat of Rauch-Eberach where, at Subbach, at the brilliant defense of the bridgehead of Neuwied, in October 1796, at Bendorff, in April 1797, under the army of Sambre-and-Meuse, and at Wetzlar, also in April 1797. This last feat of arms was worth to him the rank of division general. In 1798 he fought against the rebels of Calabria, and under Macdonald in 1799. On June 12, 1799 he met an Austrian vanguard at San-Venanzio, charged it until Modena and made a great number of prisoners. On 30th, he was wounded close to Piacenza; he made also wonders of bravery in the battle of the Trebbia, where his division supported the left wing of the line, and where he had a leg crushed by the last French “friendly” ball, when he was actually taking care of the wounded on the battlefield. Returned in France, after a long convalescence, and when he was fit to take again the service, the first Consul, himself, entrusted to him the rank of General Inspector, which task he carried on from 1800 until 1806. He had a frank, firm and judicious character, and always got the regard and the attachment of his colleagues and his subordinates. In 1804 he went in the Italian Republic, was put on duty the following year and led the 20th military division. Olivier was named, at that time, baron of the Empire, Great Officer of the Legion-d'Honneur, Knight of the Iron Crown. On April 4, 1809, he accepted the command of the 16th military division, employed close to the army corps gathered on the Scheldt on August 8; then he served in the army of North, on September 26 of the same year, and went to Lille, as chief of the town government. He was still in the service of his division when died in the castle of Saint-Andrew, at Witernesse, on October 21, 1813.

[19] General de Division Alexis Anne Pierre Cambray. Born in Douay: April 8, 1763. He was named Adjudant  General  Chef de Brigade on September 30, 1793; General de Brigade on November 28, 1793. He served in the armée des Pyrénées orientales and, then., in the army of the Cotes de Brest and de l’Ouest. On january 1, 1796 he served in the armée des Cotes de l’Ocean. He was the provisional commander of the 22nd division, replacing general Quesnel (April 28, 1797) and was dismissed on March 30, 1798. On May 4, however, he was recalled on duty and sent to the armée d’Italie, in the Macdonald division, being also named Governor at Viterbo. On April 28, 1799 was named General de Division. On June 20, 1799, he was mortally wounded at the Trebbia and died at the age of 36.

[20] Chef-de-Brigade Pierre-Etienne Petitot Born: February 12, 1752 - Chef-de-Brigade: January 7, 1795 (87e Demi-Brigade d'Infanterie) - Chef-de-Brigade: February 23, 1796 (78e Demi-Brigade d'Infanterie)  - General-de-Brigade : September 20, 1793 (refused the promotion) - General-de-Brigade : June 19, 1799 after the Trebbia battle  - Commander of the Legion d'Honneur: June 14, 1804  Died: September 7, 1807

[21] General de Brigade Jean Marie Forest – Born at Lyon, on  February 4, 1752. General de Brigade (cavalry): June 11, 1794. Died on June 12, 1799 (at the battle of Modena) .

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[22] Paul-Charles-François-Dieudonné Thiébault (1769-1846) Employed as volunteer in the battalion de la Butte des Moulins, on August 20, 1792, retired once, first for health reasons, in November 1792, and then because accused of complicity with Dumouriez, after his desertion in April 1793. Thiébault served then in the armies of the Rhine and the North, in 1793-1794, assistant to the general Solignac, then adjudant-général in the army of Italy in 1795. He fought at Rivoli, on January 14, 1797, and distinguished hinself during the attack against Naples, in January 1799. Put on dismissal in June 1799, he was recalled to the army of Italy in January 1800 and employed with the staff of Masséna, General Staff at Genoa in April 1800, and was named general in 1801. Wounded in Austerlitz, on December 2, 1805, he was named Governor of  Fulda in October 1806. He took part, thereafter, in the operations of the army of Portugal. Named general of division in 1808, he was governor of Salamanca in May 1810; then of the Old -Castille in 1811. He left Spain in 1813, with the title of baron, but without patent letters. Commanded the 3rd, then 40th, infantry divisions, under Davout in Hamburg and Lübeck, in 1813-1814. He was employed at the defense of Paris during the Hundred Days. Thiébault in 1801 wrote a Journal of the military operations during the blockade of Genoa, then, in 1817, a Relation on the events of Portugal, in 1807 and 1808. His Memories were published only in 1893.

[23] Adjudant Jean Sarrazin Born in St. Sylvestre (Lot-et-Garonne) on August 15, 1770, he was son of peasants. In 1786 he enlisted in the Dragoons regiment Colonel-Général but, the following year, he left the service for the civic charge of Governor of Verduzan County. Till 1792 he acted as Mathematics teacher at the military College of the Sorrèze, when he enrolled volunteer in the armée du Nord. At Chalons he had the task to train the artillery personnel and was elected Adjudant Major of the newborn civic battalion. When, in 1793 in Metz, he was leading a Franc company, he was accused by general Houchard to maintain contacts with secret oppositors and was dismissed. For an evil trick of the Fate, that son of peasants, at that time, was believed being the son of count Sarrazin, an emigré. He enrolled again as private in the Chasseurs de la Gironde, participating in the Vandean war. There he was noticed by general Marceau, becaming an Officer of his General Staff. There he began to write his famous treatise about the “Military instructions for the troops in campaign” reachin higher ranks in the Engineers Corps. During the Coblenz attack, he made possible the capture of some redoubts, being named chef-de-battalion for merits. The same thing happened at Maastricht, where he was promoted chef.de-brigade. In 1796 he was Chief of General Staff by Bernadotte in Germany and, in 1797, he followed him in Italy. After the Leoben armistice he became Governor at Udine, always following the Bernadotte’s fate, when he refised to go in Egypt with Bonaparte. He was punished by being sent to the general Humbert Expeditionnary Force in Ireland. In that campaign he distinguished himself, now a provisional chef-de-brigade, at Killala (August 1798) and at Castlebar, as general Humbert first named him, général-de-brigade, and after also of division. He was taken prisoner and exchanged, following general Joubert in Italy. There he had the command of a Force of the armée de Rome, and took part in the campaign against Naples, under Championnet. At the Trebbia battle he was wounded and named again général-de-brigade on the battlefield. Returned in Paris, in order to reach the armée d’Helvetie, he met Bernadotte, who gave him the direction of the Ministry Bureau of the Troop Movements. Being in the Bernadotte “entourage” he was, obviously, considered an oppositor of the First Consul. In Italy he went into trouble with Murat, who forced him to retire, after having accused him in an heavy manner. For some years he studied and wrote books. He was recalled on 1802 as général-d-brigade, sent to santo Domingo and, in 1805-1806, in Germany with Augereau. Fallen again into disgrace, Sarrazin retired in the Escaut department. There he was accused to have some contacts with British couriers and was called by Bonaparte, in order to explain his position, in 1811. Tired for the persistent troubles he finally reached London, where he asked for an income, admitting to act as a spy. In 1815 he was discharged in France, upon his treason, returned for a short time and then was again in London, where he lived poorly, thanks a modest income and some aids from Bernadotte, and where he died in 1840.

[24] On December17, 1798, the Directory sent a letter to Championnet praising him for the successes: the Directory said : “We have no doubts, once regrouped all the forces, you will quickly master the situation and you will destroy the Neapolitan Army, occupying the evil Nations of its immoral King and bringing there the Freedom kingdom: with this we confirm the Bruë’s promotion to chef de brigade of the 19e chasseurs à cheval proposed on the battlefield at Civita-Castellana on 3 pluviôse an VII.”

« Bruë (Louis-Urbain), conventionnel du Morbihan, promu par Championnet chef de brigade au 19e chasseurs àcheval sur le champ de bataille à Civita-Castellana, Confirmé: 27 frimaire an VII. »

[25] On January16, 1799, the chef d'escadron Lamure was promoted chef de brigade of the 7e chasseurs à cheval.

[26]Chef-de-brigade François Vergez  Born on June 12, 1757. He was promoted, in 1799, chef de brigade replacing the entitled Girardon, left by Macdonald at Capua. Colonel on August 30, 1805 and then General de Brigade on October 23, 1806. He was  Commander of the Legion d'Honneur on August 28, 1810; baron of the Empire on September 21, 1808. Died on June 20, 1830.

[27] Chef-de-brigade Jacques Darnaud or d’Arnaud. He was born on January 8, 1758 (Died on March 3,1830). In 1794 served in the armée du Nord, as Longwy place commander (May 4). He was named chef-de-brigade, on April 26, 1795, in the 72e demi-brigade de bataille, armée Sambre-et-Meuse ; confirmed on August 2. In 1796 and 1797 he served in the Bernadotte’s division, being chef-de-brigade of the 30e demi-brigade de bataille from February 19, 1796. From November 16, 1797 he commanded the place of Ancona, then he passed in the armée de Rome, the following year. On January 7, 1799, he was taken prisoner at Cajazzo and, after his rescue, acted as Governor of the Capua’s province. In the Armée de Naples he was wounded at the Trebbia and, again, during the Castagna combat, being a provisional général-de-brigade in the divisions of generals Olivier and Watrin. On July 30 he was named général-de-brigade and was at Novi. In 1800 (May 28) he lost one leg, wounded in a fire combat and successively amputated. Then he remained in Italy as commander of the place of Genoa and of the Ligurian division (on April 13, 1801), being awarded with an Honour Sabre (April 23). On August 19, 1802, he returned in France and led the Corréze department (September 23). In 1807 he candidated himself at the political ballots for the Orne department and two years after (Jan. 15, 1809) he was baron of the Empire. From May 13, 1811 he commanded: first the 14th military district, provisionally, and, after, he was the second commander at the Hotel des Invalides in Paris.

[28] Chef-de-Brigade Armand-Nicolas Vouillemont de Vivier, Born on December 19, 1753. Chef-de-Brigade in the 60e demi-brigade de bataille on November 1, 1796 ; Chef-de-Brigade on October 27, 1797 in the 73e Demi-Brigade d'Infanterie. General-de-Brigade on May 21, 1800. Commander of the Legion d'Honneur on June 14, 1804, Baron of the Empire on April 12, 1813. He died in 1846 at Bar-sur-Aube.Note :Brevets de l'infanterie: Musnier-La Converserie et Wouillemont, chefs de brigade aux 30e et 60e demi-brigades d'infanterie  Bien que Six ne connaisse pas ces mesures, il s'agit sans doute des futurs généraux Louis-François-Félix Musnier de La Converserie, adjudant général depuis l'an IV, que nous voyons nommé à l'armée de Mayence le 29 thermidor an VI (tome VI, index), et Armand-Nicolas Wouillemont de Vivier.

[29] Général de Division François Watrin (1772-1802) He was born at Beauvois (Oise) on January 29, 1772. In 1794 he enlisted as a private, quickly arriving to the rank of adjudant-général for his merits (armée des Cote de l’Ocean). In 1796 he was named brigade-general (First of January) by general Hoche. He was chosen for the Irish Expedition but remained with the armée de Sambre-et-Meuse fighting at Neuwied and Mainz (Mayence) in Germany. Then he participated to the Santo Domigo expedition. Returned in France he was attached to the armies in Italy. In 1799 he was promoted to the rank of general de division (provisional on June 30) and then confirmed on October 10, 1799, having already led a division of the army of Naples and of the army of Italy. He fought at la Trebbia and Novi battles. In 1800 he led a division of the Armée d’Italie, with vanguard tasks, and fought at Montebello, Marengo,Valeggio, losing his young brother at Marengo (for the merits acquired in that battle he receives an Honour Sabre). After the peace he led a division of the Observation Corps of the Midi, then, in 1801, he commanded an infantry division of the general Dupont Corps – Cisalpine Republic army. Upon his request he took part at the new colonial Expedition to Santo Domingo. There he died, on November 22, 1802, at the age of 30, having contracted the Yellow Fever.

[30] Chef de Brigade François Guerin d'Etoquigny Born on April 28, 1762 - Chef de Brigade: February 1, 1795 (13e Regiment de Hussards)- Chef de Brigade: October 14, 1796 (10e Regiment de Chasseurs a Cheval)- Chef de Brigade: January 7, 1797 (25e Regiment de Chasseurs a Cheval) -General de Brigade: June 30, 1799 -Commander of the Legion d’Honneur: June 14, 1804 -Died: April 28, 1831

[31] Chef-de-brigade Claude-Louis Gudin Born at Auroux (Nièvre) March 22, 1753. May 9, 1771 – June 10, 1772 officer of the Legion de Saint Victor. February 10, 1774 entered the ranks of the Adjudants serving until the disbanding of the unit (1792). Became chef-de-bataillon of the 2e bataillon de la Creuse, part of the 62e demi-brigade (september 21, 1792). On 8 messidor an II (1794) promoted to chef-de-brigade of 95e demi-brigade.  On February, 8th 1796 chef-de-brigade of 62e demi-brigade. Was in all campaigns from 1792 to the Year IX. In the An V was wounded by a bayonette-cut in the right hand. Was wounded at la Trebbia, near Piacenza, on 1 messidor an VII, in the right thigh by an howitzer shot-splinter. Retreated from service on 26 germinal an XII. 

 

Placed on the Napoleon Series: April 2008

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