Research Subjects: Eyewitness Accounts

British Memoirs of the Napoleonic Wars: Wellington's Military Family

By Robert Burnham

A commanding general of an army had what was known as a military family. These were officers and other individuals who work directly for him within the headquarters and not for a specific department. These inluded: aides-de-camp, the headquarters, commandant, the military secretary, and servants. This list covers those individuals who worked directly for the Duke of Wellington.

 

Campbell, Colin. "Letter to Major General Henry Torrens, dated 19 June 1815" in Gareth Glover (ed.). The Waterloo Archive Volume IV: British Sources. Barnsley: Frontline, 2012. Pages 1 - 3

Notes: was a colonel and Commandant of Wellington's Headquarters.

Cathcart, George. "Waterloo Letters #15 & 16, dated 13 April and 24 December 1835" in Waterloo Letters. Herbert T. Siborne (ed.). London: Greenhill, 1993. Pages 32 - 35

Notes: was a lieutenant in the 6th Dragoon Guards and an extra aide-de-camp to Wellington during the Waterloo Campaign.

Fane, John. Memoir of the Early Campaigns of the Duke of Wellington in Portugal and Spain by an Officer Employed in His Army. London: John Murray; 1820. 234 pages.

Notes:  Aide-de-Camp to Wellington 1808 – 1810. Succeeded his father as 11th Earl of Westmorland in 1841; best known by his courtesy title of Lord Burghersh.  Married Wellington's niece in 1811.

Fremantle, John. Wellington’s Voice: the Candid Letters of Lieutenant Colonel John Fremantle, Coldstream Guards, 1808-1837. Glover, Gareth (ed.). Barnsley: Frontline, 2012. 351 pages.

Notes: a collection of over 300 letters written by John Fremantle over a 29 year span from 1808 to 1837.  The vast majority of these letters cover his time in the Peninsula and the Waterloo Campaigns; was an aide-de-camp to Wellington, both in the Peninsula and at Waterloo; was in the 1st Battalion 2nd Foot Guards.

Fremantle, John. "Waterloo Letter #11, dated 20 November 1842" in Waterloo Letters. Herbert T. Siborne (ed.). London: Greenhill, 1993. Pages 21 - 22.

Notes: Siborne spells his name as Freemantle; was a lieutenant colonel in the 1st Battalion 2nd Foot Guards and an aide-de-camp to Wellington at Waterloo.

Gordon, Alexander. At Wellington’s Right Hand: the Letters of Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Alexander Gordon, 1808 – 1815. Rory Muir (ed) Phoenix Mill: Sutton, 2003.  458 pages.

Notes: Served on the staff of General David Baird in the Corunna Campaign and as Aide-de-Camp to Wellington from 1809 - 1815. Killed at Waterloo.

Somerset, Fitroy. "Three Letters to Lieutenant Colonel Henry Hardinge, Military Secretary to Marshal Beresford dated 28 June, 6 and 25 August 1811" in The Texas Papers: a Collection of Peninsular War Letters, Written by Various Senior British & Portuguese Officers held at the Woodson Research Centre, Rice University, Texas. edited by Gareth Glover. Godmanchester: Ken Trotman, 2010. Pages 41, 43and 44

Notes: Covers Lieutenant Colonel Charles Turner's health issue, Ensign William Galbraith's appointment, and Sergeant Backhausen's promotion to ensign.

Somerset, Fitroy. "Two Letters to Lieutenant Colonel Robert Arbutnot, Aide-de-Camp to Marshal Beresford dated 1 and 8 November 1811" in The Texas Papers: a Collection of Peninsular War Letters, Written by Various Senior British & Portuguese Officers held at the Woodson Research Centre, Rice University, Texas. edited by Gareth Glover. Godmanchester: Ken Trotman, 2010. Pages 49 - 50

Notes: Cover requests by Lieutenant Colonel David Ximenes and Captain Peter Adamson to join the Portuguese Army.

Somerset, Fitroy. "Two Letters to Lieutenant Colonel Robert Arbutnot, Aide-de-Camp to Marshal Beresford dated 8 and 9 November 1811" in The Texas Papers: a Collection of Peninsular War Letters, Written by Various Senior British & Portuguese Officers held at the Woodson Research Centre, Rice University, Texas. edited by Gareth Glover. Godmanchester: Ken Trotman, 2010. Pages 53 - 54

Notes: Letters are about funds advanced to Colonel Colquhoun Grant and ox carts for use by the Portuguese Army.

Somerset, Fitzroy. "Waterloo Letter, dated 26 November 1842" in Waterloo Letters. Herbert T. Siborne (ed.). London: Greenhill, 1993. Page 3.

Notes: was military secretary to Wellington at Waterloo; in 1st Foot Guards.

Thornton, James. Your Most Obedient Servant: James Thornton Cook to the Duke of Wellington Exeter: Webb & Bower; 1985. 120 pages.

Notes: Served with Wellington 1811 - 1820; is an interview rather than memoirs.

Vere, Charles Broke. Marches, Movements, and Operations, of the 4th Division of the Allied Army, in Spain and Portugal, in the Years 1810, 1811, & 1812 Ipswich: R. Deck; 1841. 44 pages.

Woodford, John G. "Letter to His Brother Alexander, dated 19 June 1815" in Gareth Glover (ed.). The Waterloo Archive Volume IV: British Sources. Barnsley: Frontline, 2012. Pages 6 - 7

Notes: was a lieutenant colonel and extra aide-de-camp to Wellington; was in 1st Battalion 1st Foot Guards, but initially served as an assistant quartermaster general in Coleville's Division.

 

 

Placed on the Napoleon Series: September 2013

 

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