History and Organisation of the Dutch 8th Militia Battalion: 1814 - Spring of 1815
By Marco Bijl
Editor's Note: This article is first appeared on the Dutch 8th Militia website and is used with the author's permission.
Author's Note: This article is based on research in primary sources only. All information is coming directly from archives, libraries and museums in the Netherlands and Belgium. Numbers between ( ) brackets are referring to numbers in the bibliography. The author has a copy of all documents mentioned in the text.
The 1814 Campaign
Soon it was April and time for campaigning. on 13 April 1814 the battalion left for a tour around the southern part of the Netherlands.
They stayed for a while in Bergen Op Zoom, but began moving to Utrecht
for their winter quarters on 24 September 1814 (1).
Winter 1814-1815 in Utrecht
The 12th Militia spent the winter mainly encamped in a building called "the "Leeuwenburg" in
the "Schalkensteeg". That building later became "Leeuwenberg gasthuis" and
the street name was changed to "Schalkwijkstraat". The building and
still there and are now a music and performance house (59).
The Leeuwenberg nowadays.
Southern Netherlands, Spring 1815
The 8th Militia did not stay long in Tongeren. Tongeren was merely
a collection point for the 2nd Division. Most of the units of this
division were present by 30 March. The 8th Militia formed part of the
1st Brigade of the 2nd Division (18, 58).
The division left Tongeren on 1 April. Its destination was the area
around Charleroi and Nivelles, around 100 kilometers towards the southeast
(58). Between 5 April and
15 June, the battalion was encamped in several small villages (8, 9, 10, 11, 13, 18, 55, 56)
Southern Netherlands/ Belgium villages. Map from Google Earth.
Luitenant-Kolonel De Jongh took over command of the battalion on the 21st of April; Colonel Van Bijlandt became the commander of the 1st Brigade of the 2nd Division (8). In June 1815, the battalion consisted of 561 men, 22 officers and 1 medical officer.(8)
Original signature of De Jongh, taken from one of his original letters.
Placed on the Napoleon Series: June 2008
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