Another chance to find out more about what really is in the Green Shed! Andy has kindly agreed to share some of his magnificent soldiers and an insight into life for a soldier in Napoleonic times.
Following his disastrous campaign in Russia in 1812 Napoleon returned to France. His first priority was to raise a new army and this involved a series of measures , lowering the conscription age ,withdrawing troops from outlying parts of empire and stripping troops from duties deemed to be of lower priority.
Some of these soldiers belonged to the Naval Artillery Batallions, their job had been to protect the coastline of France from raids by the Royal Navy, they manned coastal forts and naval defences at ports like Brest and Le Havre and estuaries like the Gironde and Loire , Napoleon re-designated them as infantry and sent them east to defend the invasion of France by the Allied powers.
By 1814 they were part of Marmont’s 6th Corps and, although they were few in number, were able to distinguish themselves in several battles in Napoleon’s brilliant but ultimately losing campaign.
Here are a company from the 2nd regiment part of Ricard’s division at Champaubert, 10th February 1814