The Battle of Waterloo and research on John Lambert, OC. by Christopher Tsang (S) and Koh Ishikawa (V)

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1 The Battle of Waterloo and research on John Lambert, OC by Christopher Tsang (S) and Koh Ishikawa (V)

2 Contents - Background of the Battle of Waterloo Page 3 to 4 How Napoleon rose to power Napoleonic Wars The downfall of Napoleon The return of Napoleon The Battle of Waterloo Page 4 to 6 Preparation for the Battle The Battle Day The Final Attack The Result Research on John Lambert, OC Page 6 to 7 Family Education and Hobbies Life in the Army During the Battle of Waterloo Retirement from the Army and Death Bibliography Page 8 Acknowledgements Page 8

3 Background of the Battle of Waterloo How Napoleon rose to power: The French Revolution began in 1785, and the revolutionaries had overthrown the monarchy and set up a French republic in Napoleon Bonaparte, who joined an artillery regiment of the French army during the French revolution, was quickly promoted and proved that he was a talented leader. Napoleon crowned himself emperor in 1804 and became the new leader of France. Napoleonic Wars: After Napoleon came into power, he tried to defend France from other European countries attacks, thus set out to conquer Europe. Napoleon was famous for his battlefield victories and tactics. He fought 60 battles and lost only seven of them. France defeated the first and second coalitions during the French Revolutionary Wars and Napoleon led his army to defeat the third, fourth and fifth coalitions. It seems that France, under the rule of Napoleon, was undefeatable and French empire had expanded across much of western and central continental Europe. The downfall of Napoleon: In the winter of 1812, Napoleon decided to invade Russia. He led 650,000 men and charged to Moscow. Russia used scorched-earth tactics to destroy anything that might be useful to the French army. When Napoleon finally entered Moscow on 14 th September, the Russians had evacuated from Moscow and they even burnt the city and released criminals from prisons to inconvenience the French army. Napoleon therefore had to retreat from Russia, but due to blocked supply lines and horrible weather, the French army suffered massive casualties and only 27,000 soldiers survived. The morale and strength of the French army was hugely affected. In 1813, Austrian, Prussian, Russian and Swedish troops joined together, led by Tsar Alexander I of Russia and Karl Philipp, defeated Napoleon, which is known as the Battle of Nations (or Battle of Leipzig). Napoleon retreated to France but the Coalition kept their momentum and invaded France in March On 6 th of April 1814, Napoleon was forced to abdicate the throne and was exiled to the island of Elba, which was a Mediterranean island off the coast of Italy, with the treaty of Fontainebleau. The return of Napoleon: Napoleon escaped the island of Elba and returned to Paris in March He declared war on Britain, Prussia, Russia and Austria and he raised a new army to try to defeat the allied forces individually before they could launch an untied attack against him. In June, Napoleon invaded Belgium, hoping to capture

4 Brussels. He sent troops to fight Wellington, the British commander and the Prussian troops led by General Blucher. The Prussian troops retreated but the British weren t defeated. On 18 th of June, Napoleon led his 72,000 men against 68,000 British troops, which had taken up an area at the south of Brussels near the village of Waterloo. The Battle of Waterloo is the last battle Napoleon fought and it is also the final, decisive battle. The Battle of Waterloo Preparation for the Battle The battle took place in 18th of June The French Army led by Napoleon Bonaparte and his best general Michel Ney, consisted of 50,700 infantry, 14,390 calvary, 8,050 artillery and 252 guns. In total Napoleon had 72,000 troops while the British Army, led by The Duke of Wellington, had 68,000 troops with Prussian ally Gebhard von Blucher of 50,000 troops. Britain itself was outnumbered but with the help of Blucher, both sides seemed to have the same chance to win the battle. The Battle Day Wellington knew he was outnumbered so he decided to place his men in front of the city of Brussels. He decided to use three garrisoned farms for protection for the soldiers: Hougoumont farm on his right, La Haye Sainte in the centre and Papelpotte farm on his left. He made this decision as he wanted to hold the advacne of the French Army until his ally Prussians arrived. The rain had aroused the battle terrain and Napoleon decided not to launch a major attack until the ground was dry. This was a risky decision as Napoleon gave the Prussians more time to arrive. Napoleon launched his first attack on the 18 th of June. He sent 5000 troops towards Hougoumont farm. This was Wellington s most protected farm. Wellington had placed 1500 British troops in Hougoumont. Even the French had more troops, they were not able to break through the defence. There was a breach through the gates but the British troops quickly closed the gate and captured 40 French men. The French troops that were captured were all killed during hand-to-hand combat except for one person who was an 11-year-old drummer boy. While the attack was still going on, Napoleon sent 18,000 infantry along the road to Brussels. Papelpotte and Hougoumont were soon captured and Napoleon Instruction given by Duke of Wellington about the defense of Hougoumont.

5 was ready to make his final major attack on La Haye Sainte. He had a high chance of victory now as La Haye Sainte was the only garrisoned farm left. However, Napoleon saw some movements in the fields to the east and ordered some cavalry men to investigate the area. Wellington desperately needed La Haye Sainte so he sent some cavalry to push the French back. The French infantry closed in but the British cavalry seized the moment and Napoleon s troops advanced on Hougoumont and made territorial gains around La Haye Sainte charged at the French infantry. The infantry were slaughtered. However Wellington s right flank was beginning to fall and he had to make the right decisions now. The Prussians joined the battle and they attacked the French troops with a blow. As a result, Napoleon had to send more troops to fight the Prussians. Even though Blucher didn t get to join Wellington, the French were under pressure. This meant that it was easier for Wellington to destroy the French infantry in the battle. army Now Napoleon decided to attack Wellington s central garrisoned farm, La Haye Sainte. Napoleon sent waves of his heavy armoured cavalry into the garrisoned farm. Wellington decided to change the formation of his men by this point and did well to defend the waves of French troops. However this formation that Wellington chose was not the best idea as the British troops were vulnerable from artillery fire. After many hours of Napoleon s wave attacks, La Haye Sainte fell at last. This was disastrous for Wellington as this garrisoned farm was very important to him. Napoleon could now bring all his troops and artillery towards Wellington. Wellington could only defend the ridge and wait for the Prussians to come and help. The Final Attack Napoleon knew that Wellington was desperate for help and took the opportunity to attack the British. Napoleon sent 6000 men to the ridge where the British troops were guarding. Although Napoleon had secured La Haye Sainte, when he sent the troops marching between La Haye Sainte and Hougoumont, that was still a

6 chance for British to shoot at them as they marched through. However the French army got to the ridge without too many casualties. As Napoleon and his troops made it to the ridge, Wellington ordered his men to stand and fire. This order was very effective as many French troops were slaughtered and forced to fall back. The Prussians joined Wellington s left wing finally making it harder for Napoleon and his troops. At one point Wellington had a chance to kill Napoleon but ordered his men to seize fire. Napoleon fled with his troops protecting him. The Result The Battle of Waterloo ended. Wellington stopped Napoleon s domination of Europe and secured peace. Napoleon was sent away to the island of St Helena, where he died in Wellington was known as a hero. He made peace with France and became Prime Minister of England. Research on John Lambert, OC (28 April September 1847) Family Sir John Lambert was the son of Captain Robert Lambert and Katherine Byndloss. He was the younger brother of Rear Admiral Robert Lambert, and older brother of Captain Henry Lambert, Major General Samuel Lambert and Admiral Sir George Lambert. On 19 th of October of 1816, John Lambert, aged 44, married to Mary Morant, aged 27, in St. George Hanover Square, England. They gave birth to Robert Lambert in Cumbray, France in 1819, Mary Jane Lambert in Cork Ireland in 1822, Elizabeth Lambert in Cork Ireland in 1823 and Harriet Frances Lambert in Marylebone, London, England in Education and Hobbies He was educated in London Charterhouse during 1803 to 1811 and was in Stewart s House. He was also an amateur cricketer. He made 12 appearances in major cricket matches between 1794 to He was mainly associated with Marylebone Cricket Club, which is based at Lord's Cricket Ground in St John's Wood, London NW8. Life in the Army John Lambert joined the British Army, in the 1 st Foot Guards, on 27 th of January 1791 aged 18. He was made lieutenant and captain in In the campaign of 1794 he was the adjutant of the third battalion. He was promoted captain and lieutenant-colonel in In 1809 he commanded the light companies of the guards in the Walcheren expedition. He was made colonel in the army in 1810

7 and commanded the third battalion in Cadiz in On 4 th of June 1813 he was promoted to major-general and was made commander of the 6 th division brigade. He had commanded at the battles of Nivelle, the Nive, Orthez, Toulouse and as a result he was awarded the Army Gold Cross. He was also made a Knight Commander (KCB). These awards both took place on January He went to America to command at the battle of New Orleans with the 7 th and 43 rd regiments. In the unsuccessful attack on American trenches, he commanded the reserve. As some of the British commanders were killed or wounded, Lambert was relied on by the chief command. He made some tactical decisions and the next day news arrived that peace had been signed. After his service in the battle of Waterloo he received the order of St.Vladimir and that of Military Order of Maz Joseph (the commander). He was given the colonelcy of the 10 th regiment in January He was promoted to lieutenant-general on 27 th of May He received the Grand Cross of the Bath on July Finally he was made general on the 23 rd of November During the Battle of Waterloo After his service in the battle of New Orleans, he returned to Europe just in time to command the 10 th Brigade of the British infantry at the Battle of Waterloo. His brigade joined the army from Ghent only on the morning of 18 th of June. After 3pm the brigade was sent up to the front line to back up the fifth division and the 27 th regiment that lost most of its men. Lambert was mentioned in Wellington s dispatch after the battle. Retirement from the Army and Death In 1841, John Lambert, aged 69, quitted the army and lived in Thames Ditton, Surrey, England with his wife and two daughters, Mary and Elizabeth Lambert. John Lambert lived in that house for 6 years till his death on 14 th September 1847 in Weston Green, Surrey. He was buried in Claygate, Holy Trinity, Surrey, England, and aged 75. Death certificate of John Lambert

8 Bibliography - 1) Wikipedia ( 2) BBC ( 3) The Guardian ( 4) British History ( 5) Waterloo 200 ( 6) The Battle of Waterloo Experience by Peter and Dan Snow Acknowledgements We would like to thank Mrs. C. Smith for her help in sorting out all of the relevant information and giving us the opportunity to study Lambert. Also, thanks to the CEO of Waterloo 200 for telling us more about the battle itself and about the organization of Waterloo 200. Last but not least, we need to thank Mr. McCombes for his help and comments throughout the process. This has been a wonderful experience, thank you all for your help!

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