Abbildungen der Seite

ist Bat. 4oth-Captain Colquhoun, Return of Ordnance, &c. taken in the bar. slightly.

tle of the 28th July. ist Bat. 45th—Major Gwyn slightly; 4 eight-pounders, 4 six ditto, i four Lieut. Cole ditto.

ditto, I six inch howitzer, 2 tumbrils, 1st Bat. 43th--Lieut.-Colonel Don. complete in ammunition ; taken by Bri. nelian severely ; Major Marston slight- gadier General A. Campbell's brigade. ly; Captains Wood and French ditto ;

6 pieces of ordnance, i six-inch how. Lieurs. Giles and Cuthbertson slightly; itzer; left by the enemny, and found in Ensign Vandermeulen severely.

the woods. 2d Bat. 48th--Lieut. Johnson slight I standard, taken by the 29th regily; Ensign Kenny severely.

ment; i ditto, destroyed by ditto. ad Bat. 530-Major Kingscote slight 3 standards, taken by the King's Gerly; Capt. Stawell ditto.

man legion. 5th Bat.6cth-Captain Gatliff, slightly ; Captain Andrew ditto ; Lieut. Zul.

MY LORD, Deleytosa, Aug. 8. 1809. ke, Ritter, and Mitchell, severely ; En

I apprised your Lordship, on the 1st insign Altenstein ditto.

stant, of the advance of a French corps to1st Bat. 615t-Capts. Furnace, Laing, wards the Puerto de Banos, and of the Goodsman and Hartley,slightly; Lieuts. probable enibarrassments to the operations M'Lean and Tenchi ditto; Lieut. Col. of the army which its arrival at Placentia lins severely ; Lieut. Givan slightly; would occasion; and these embarrassments Ensign brakenburg ditto; Adj. Drew having since existed to a degree so consiseverely.

derable as to oblige us to fall back, and to 2d Bat. 66th-Captain Kelly slight- take up a defensive position on the Tagus, jy ; Captain Stuart severely ; Capt. A.

I am induced to trouble you more at length dams, Lieuts. Morris, Dudgeon, Hum

with an account of what has passed upoh

this subject. bly, Morgan, and Steele, severely; When I entered Spain, I had a commu. Lieut. She wbridge, Ensigns Cottar, and nication with General Cuesta, through Sir Macarthy, slightly.

Robert Wilson and Colonel Roche, respec. 2d Bat. 830--Capt. Summerfield, iing the occupation of the Puerto de Ba. slightly ; Captain Reynolds, leg ampu. nos and the Puerto de Perales, the fortated; Lieut. Nicholson severely ; mer of which, it was at last settled, should Lieuts. Baldwin and Johnson slightly ; be held by a corps, to be formed under the Lieut. Abell severely; Lieut. Pyné Marquis de la Reyna, to consist of two

battalions from General Cuesta's army, and slightly ; Ensigns Boggie and Carey se. verely'; Ensign Letoller - slightly; Adj. Perales was to be taken care of by the

two from Bejar; and that the Puerto de Braham ditto.

Duc del Parque, by detachments from the 2d Bat. 87th–Major Gough severe.

garrison of Ciudad Rodrigo. ly; Lieut. Rogers and Ensiga Pepper I doubted of the capacity of the garrison slightly.

of Ciudad Rodrigo to make the detach88th-Capt. Brown, Lieut. Whittle, ment to the latter, but so little of the ela and Ensign Whitelaw, severely, fectual occupation of the former, that in

1 Bat. Detachments-Major Ross, writing to Marshal Beresford on the 17th 38th, severely ; Capt. M.Pherson, 35th, July, I desired him to look to the Puerto ditto ; Captain Bradley, 28th, slightly;

de Perales, but that I considered Banos as Captain Chancellor, 38th, ditto ; Lieut.

secure, as appears by the extract of my lei

ter, which I enclose. Gilbert, 25th, severely; Lieut. M.Beth,

On the 30th, intelligence was received 42d, ditto ; Lieut. Fullerton, 38th,

at Talavera that 12,000 rations had been Lieut, Munroe, 42d, Lieut. Brown, 43d, ordered at Fuente Duenos for the 28th, slightly.

and 24,000 at Los Santos for the same day,

for a French corps which, it was believed, 23d Dragoons-Captains Allen and

was on its march towards the Puerto de

Banos. General Cuesta expressed some Drake, wounded, and missing, Lieut. Anderson ditto.

anxiety respecting this post, and sent me a 45th Foot-Capt. Leckey, Brigade.

message to propose that Sir Robert Wils

son should be sent there with his corps. Major, missing

Sir Robert was on that day at Talavera, 48•h Diito, 2d Bat.–Ensign Reeves but his corps was in the mountains towards missing:

Escalona, and as he had already made hins 97th Ditto-Lieut. Shipley ditto. self very useful in that quarter, and had


[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

been near Madrid, with which city he had front, since the 1st, had induced me to be had a communication, which I was desirous of opinion, that despairing of forcing us at of keeping up, I proposed chat a Spanish Talavera, they intended to force a passage corps should be sent to Banos without loss by Escalona, and thus to open a communi. of time.

cation with the French corps coming from I could not prevail with General Cuesta, Placentia. although he certainly admitted the neces This suspicion was confirmed on the sity of a reinforcement, when he proposed night of the 2d, by letters received from that. Sir Robert should be sent to Banos; Sir Robert Wilson, of which I enclose coand he was equally sensible with myself, of pies; and before I quitted Talavera on the the benefit to be derived to the cause, from 3d, I waited upon General O'Donoghue, sending Sir Robert back to Escalona. and conversed with hm upon the whole

At this time we had no further intelli of our situation, and pointed out to him gence of the enemy's advance, than that the possibility, that, in the case of the enem the rations were ordered; and I had hopes my coming through Escalona, Gen. Cuesta that the enemy might be deterred from ad- might find himself obliged to quit Talavancing, by the intelligence of our success vera, before I should be able to return to on the 28th, and that the troops in the him; and I urged him to collect all the Puerto might make some defence; and carts that could be got, in order to remove that, under these circumstances, it was not our hospital. At his desire I


purdesirable to divert Sir Robert Wilson from port of this conversation in writing, and Escalona.

sent him a letter to be laid before General On the 30t however, I renewed my Cuesta, of which I enclose a copy. application to Gen. Cuesta, to send there The British army marched, on the 34, a Spanish division of sufficient strength, to Oropesa, General Bassecourt's Spanish in a letter to Gen. O'Donoghue, of which corps being at Centinello, where I desired I enclose a copy, but without effect; and he that it might halt the next day, in order did not detach General Bassecourt till the

that I might be nearer iç. morning of the 2d, after we had heard About five o'clock in the evening, I that the eneny had entered Bejar, and it heard that the French had arrived from was obvious that the troops in the Puerto Placentia at Navalmoral, whereby they would make no defence.

were between us and the bridge of AlOn the 2d we received accounts that the enemy had entered Placentia in two co About an hour afterwards, I received lumns.

from General O'Donoghue the letter and The Marquis de la Reyna, whose two its enclosures, of which I enclose copies, battalions consisted of only 600 men, with announcing to me the intention of General only twenty rounds of ammunition each Cuesta to march from Talavera in the evenman, retired from the Puerto and from ing, and to leave there my hospital, exPlacentia, without firing a shot, and wept cepring such men a$ could be moved by to the bridge of Almarez, which he decla the means he already had, on the ground red that he intended to remove; the batta of his apprehension that I was not strong ions of Bejar dispersed without making any enough for the corps coming irom Placenresistance.

tia, and that the enemy was moving 'pon The General called upon me on that dayhis flank, and had returned to Santa

Olalla and proposed that half of the army should in his front. march to the rear to oppose the enemy, I acknowledge that these reasons did not while the other half should maintain the

appear to me sufficient for giving up so post at Talavera.

important a post as l'alavera, for exposing My answer was, that if by half the ar. the combined armies to an attack in front my, he meant half of each army, I could and rear at the same time, and for abanonly answer, that I was ready either to go doning my hospital; and I wrote the letter or stay with the whole British army, but of which I enclose a copy. that I could not separate it. He then de This unfortunately reached the General sired me to chuse whether I would

after he had marched, and he arrived at stay, and I preferred to go, from thinking Oropesa shortly after day-light on the that the British troops were most likely to morning of the 4th. do the business effectually, and without The question, what was to be done, was contest; and from being of opinion that then to be considered. The


stated to open the communication thro' Placentia, to be 30,000 strong, but at all events, conwas more important to us than to Spaa, sisting of the corps of Soult and Ney, einish army, although very important to ther united, or not very distant from each them. With this decision, General Cuesta" other, and supposed by Marshal Jourdan appeared perfectly satisfied.

9 and Joseph Bonaparte, to be sufficiently The movements of the enemy in our strong to attack the British army, stated to




be 25,000 strong, were on one side, in pos been possible, or consistent with hana. session of the high-road to the passage of nity, to attempt to remove any more of the Tagus at Almarez, the bridge at which them. place we knew had been removed, altho' From the treatment which some of the the boats still necessarily remained in the soldiers, wounded on the 27th, and who river.

fell into the hands of the enemy, experienOn the other side, we had reason to ex ced from them, and from the manner in pect the advance of Victor's corps to Ta which I have already treated the wounded savera, as soon as General Cuest'a’s march who have fallen into my hands, I expect should be known, and, after leaving that these men will be well treated; and I 12,000 men to watch Venegas, and allow have only to lament, that a new concuring froin · 10,000 to 11,000 killed and rence of events, over which, from circumwounded in the late action, this corps stances, I had and could have no controul, would have aniounted to 25,000. We should have placed the army in a situation could extricate ourselves from this difficult to be obliged to leave any of them behind. situation only by great celerity of move

I have the honour to be, &c. ment, to which the troops were unequal,

ARTHUR WELLESLEY, as they had not had their allowance of provisions for several days, and by success in two battles. If unsuccessful in either,

Truxillo, Aug, 20. 1809. we should have been without a retreat, and if Soult and Ney, avoiding an action,

MY LORD, had retired before us, and had waited the I wrote some days ago a letter to the arrival of Victor, we should have been ex French Commander in Chief, which I posed to a general action with 50,000 meri, sent to him by Lieutenant-Colonel Wal. equally without a retreat.

ters, to request his care and attention of We had reason to expect, that as the the wounded officers and soldiers of the Marquis de la Reyna could not remove British army, who had fallen into his the boats from the river Almarez, Soult hands, in return for the care and atwould have destroyed them.

tention which I had paid to the French Our only retreat was, therefore, by the

officers and soldiers who had fallen into bridge of Arcobispo, and if we had moved on, the enemy, by breaking that bridge, my hands at different times; and that while the army should be engaged with he would allow money to be sent to Soult and Ney, would have deprived us of the officers ;; and that officers, who that only resource.

should not be deemed prisoners of war, We could not take a position at Oropesa, might be sent to superintend and také as we thereby left open the road to the care of the soldiers, till they should rebridge of Arcobispo from Talavera by Ca cover from their wounds, when the of. lera; and, after considering the whole sub- ficers should be sent to join the British ject maturely, I was of opinion, that it was

army. adviseable to retire to the bridge of Arco I received a very civil answer from bispo, and to take up a defensive position Marshal Mortier, promising that every upon the Tagus. I was induced to adopt this last opinion; tion paid to the British officers and sol

care should be taken, and every attenbecause the French have now at least 50,000 diers who were wounded; but stating, men disposeable to oppose to the combined armies, and a corps of 12,000 men to watch

that he could not answer upon the other Venegas; and I was likewise of opinion, demands contained in my letter, having that the sooner the defensive line should been obliged to refer them to the Combe taken up, the more likely were the mander in Chief. troops to be able to defend it.

Since the receipt of this letter, Mr Accordingly, I marched on the 4th, and Dillon, the Assistant Commissary, has crossed the Tagus by the bridge of Arco arrived from Talavera, having been tabispo, and have continued my route to this ken prisoner near Cevolla on the 27th place, in which I am well situated to defend the passage of Almarez, and the lower of July, previous to the action, and haparts of the Tagus. General Cuesta cros

ving been allowed to come away. sed the river on the night of the 5th, and is

He reports that the British officers still at the bridge of Arcobispo.

and soldiers, who are wounded, are do. About 2000 of the wounded have been ing remarkably well, and are well fed brought away from Talavera ; the remain- and taken care of; indeed, he says, preing 1500 are chere, and I doubt whether, ferable to the French troops. under any circumstances, it would have I propose to send Colonel Walters,


with another flag of truce, to-morrow. Before the battle of the 28th of July, morning, and a letter to the Comman- he had pushed his parties almost to the der in Chief of the French army, re- gates of Madrid, with which city he questing that a suin of money, which I was in communication ; and he would shall send, may be given to the officers; have been in Madrid, if I had not and I shall endeavour to establish a thought it proper to call him in, in excartel of exchange as soon as possible. pectation of the general action which I have the honour to be, &c. took place on the 28th of July. He ARTHUR WELLESLEY. afterwards alarmed the enemy on the

right of his army; and throughout the

service, shewed himself to be an active Truxillo, August 21. and intelligent partizan, well acquainted My LORD,

with the country in which he was actWhen I marched from Talavera on ing, and possessing the confidence of the the 3d instant, with a view to oppose troops which he commanded. Being the French corps which we had heard persuaded that his retreat was not open had passed through the Puerto de Banos, by Arcobispo, he acted right in taking and had arrived at Placentia, Sir Robert the road he did, with which he was Wilson was detached, upon the left of well acquainted, and although unsucthe army, towards Escalona ; and before cessful in the action which he fought I marched on that morning, I put him (which may be well accounted for, by in communication with the Spanish Ge- the superior numbers and description neral Cuesta, who, it had been settled, of the enemy's troops,) the action, in was to remain at Talavera. Iunderstood

my opinion, does him


credit. that General Cuesta put Sir Robert

I have the honour to be, &c. in communication with his advanced

ARTHUR WELLESLEY. guard, which retired from Talavera on the night of the 4th. Sir Robert Wilson, however, did not

SIR, Miranda de Castexar, Aug. 13. arrive at Valida till the night of the 4th,

I have the honour to acquaint you, that having made a long march through the

I was on march yesterday morning to the

road of Grenadella from Aldea Nueva, to mountains; and as he was then six leagues from the bridge of Arcobispo, army, when a peasant assured us, that a

restore my communication with che allied and had to cross the high road from 0.

considerable quantity of dust, which we ropesa to Talavera, of which the enemy perceived in the road of Placentia, proceedwas in possession, he conceived that he ed from the march of a body of the enemy. was too late to retire to Arcobispo, and I immediately returned and took post in he determined to move by Venta St front of Banos, with my piquets in advance Julien and Centinello towards the Tie. of Aldea Nueva, selecting such points for tar, and across that river towards the defence as the exigency of the time permitmountains which separate Castile from

ted, Estremadura.

The enemy's cavalry advanced on the Some of Sir Robert Wilson's dispat. high road, and drove back my small cavalry ches having missed me, I am not aware

posts; but a piquet of Spanish infantry,

which I had concealed, poured in on the by which of the passes he went through cavalry a steady and well directed fire, that the mountains, but I believe by Tor- killed and wounded many of them. návacas. He arrived, however, at Ba. The two hundred Spanish infantry in adnos on the urth, and on the 12th was vance of Aldea Nueva, continued, under attacked and defeated by the French the direction of Colonel Grant and their ofcorps of Marshal Ney, which, with that ficers, to maintain their ground most galof Soult, returned to Placentia on the lantly, until the enemy's cavalry, and chas9th, 10th, and 11th, that of Ney having peared on both Aanks, when they were o

seurs a cheval, in considerable bodies, apsince gone on towards Salamanca. I enclose Sir Robert Wilson's account

bliged to retreat. of the action. He has been very active,

The enemy's chasseurs a cheval and intelligent, and useful in the command cavalry advanced in great numbers in every

direction, and pushed to cut off the legion of the Portugueze and Spanish corps

posted between Aldea Nueva and Banos, with which he was detached from this but, by the steady conduct of officers and army,

men, the enemy could only advance gra


[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

cually, and with a very severe loss from Grant, Major Reiman, Don Fermen Mar: 2be commanding fire thrown on them. quis, Adjutant Major of the dragoons of

The Merida battalion, however, having Pavia, Captain Charles, and Mr Bolman; given way on the right, a road was laid o and to express the greatest approbation of pen, which cut behind our position, and I two companies of the Merida battalion, ad. was obliged to order a retreat on the vanced in front, and of the Commanding Of. heights above Banos; when I was again ne. ficer and soldiery of the battalion of Seville, cessitated to detach a corps, in order to and the Portuguese brigade I have alscour the road of Monte Major, by which ready noticed the distinguished conduct of 1 saw the enemy directing a column, and Don Carlos, and his battalion merits the which road turned altogether the Puerto de best encomiums. Banos a league in our rear.

I have not yet been able to collect the reAt this time, Don Carlos Marquis de E. turns of our loss. From the nature of moun. strange came up with his battalion of light tain warfare, many men are missing, who infantry, and in the most gallant manner, cannot join for a day or two; but I believe took post along the heights commanding the enemy will only have to boast that he the road of Baues, which enabled me to has atchieved his passage, and his killed send some of the Merida battalion to the and wounded will be a great diminution of mountain on our list, commanding the main

his victory. soad, and which the enemy tried to ascend.

I have the honour to be, &c. The battalion of light infantry, the de

ROBERT WILSOK, tachment of the legion on its right, conti. Sir A. Wellesley, &c. nued, notwithstanding the enemy's fire of artijlery and musketry, to maintain their

Truxillo, Aug. 21, 1809' ground; but at six o'clock in the evening, three columns of the enemy mounted the

Gen. Cuesta moved his head.quarters heisht on our left, gained it, and poured from the neighbourhood of the bridge such a fire on the troops below, that longer of Arcobispo on the night of the 7th indefence was impracticable, and the whole stant, to Peraleda de Garbin, leaving an was obliged to retire on the mountains on

advanced guard, consisting of two diviour left, leaving open the main road, alongsions of infantry, and the Duke D'Alwhich a considerable body of cavalry im- buquerque's division of cavalry, for the mediately poured. The battalion of Seville had been left

defence of the passage of the Tagus at at Bejar, wich orders to follow me next

this point. day, but when I was obliged to return, and

The French cavalry passed the Tagus the action commenced, I ordered it to at a ford, immediately above the bridge, Puerto de Banos, to watch the Monte Ma. at half past one in the afternoon of the jor road, and the height in the rear of our 8th, and surprised this advanced guard, left.

which retired, leaving behind them all When the enemy's cavalry came near, an their cannon, as well as those in the bat. officer and some dragoons called out to the teries constructed for the defence of the Commanding Officer to surrender ; but a


bridge. volley killed him and his party, and then

The General then moved his head. the battalion proceeded to mount the heights, in which movement it was attacks quarters to the Mesa d'Ibor on the eveed and surrounded by a column of cavalry ning of the 8th, having his advanced and a column of infantry, but cut its

guard at Bohoral. He resigned the

way and cleared itself, killing a great many of command of the army on the 12th (on the enemy, especially of his cavalry. account of the bad state of his health,)

The enemy is now passing to Salamanca which has devolved upon General E. with great expedition; U lament that i quid. The head-quarters of the Spaenuld no longer arrest his progress ; but, nish army are now at Deleytosa. when the enormous superiority of the en It appears that a detachment of Ve. emy's force is considered, and that we had

negas's army had some success against no artillery, and that the Puerto de Banos, on the Estremaduran side, is not a pass of

the enemy, in an attack made upon it such trength as on the side of Castile, e.

in the neighbourhood of Aranjuez, on the specially without guns, I hope that a re

5th instant. General Venegas was then sistance for nine hours, which must have

at Ocana, and he determined to retire cost the enemy a great many men, will

towards the Sierra Morena, and, after not be deemed inadequate to our means.

the sth, he had moved in that direction. I have to acknowledge the services ren. He returned, however, towards Toledo, dered me on this occasion by Colonel with an intention of attacking the ene


[ocr errors]
« ZurückWeiter »