Book of the Month: Waterloo in 100 Objects

May 13, 2015 - Alwyn Collinson

This is an excellent volume which complements the 200 objects on the Waterloo 200 website. However there are some important differences. Gareth Glover, whose knowledge of the subject is encyclopaedic, has include several objects which are not on the website. For example the Forest of Soignes, an important landmark is not on the website, yet […]

In Literature and Song: The Legacy of the Napoleonic Wars

May 11, 2015 - Alwyn Collinson

This is a guest article by Emma Butcher and Anna Maria Barry. The Napoleonic Wars had a profound effect on British culture of the early nineteenth century. Military memoirs carried vivid, personalised accounts of battle, while ballads, cartoons and dramas reflected patriotic fervour on street corners and stages throughout the country. Barely a single literary […]

Excellent Programme on the Duke

May 10, 2015 - The Chairman

An excellent programme was broadcast on BBC2 this evening. Well worth watching on BBC iPlayer: http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b05vlz90/wellington-the-iron-duke-unmasked. Has some excellent comments from historians and the Wellesley family.

Does Hougoumont Float?

May 10, 2015 - The Chairman

Well, I bloody well hope not. I know it rained on the 16/17th June but not so much to float the chateau! However, did you know Hougoumont was the last convict ship to transport convicts to Australia? I and Serjeant Gibson will be surprised if you did! She was a three-masted full rigged ship of the type […]

Circus Origin

May 6, 2015 - The Chairman

Who knows about Circus Ginnett?  I certainly didn’t until the other day, when it was mentioned on the field of Waterloo. Show business started for the Ginnetts, a French family, in Briton after they were captured at Waterloo. At this time Ginnetts were big horse people and thought to be in the French cavalry. They […]

The Many Faces of Napoleon: ‘Little Boney’ or Napoleon le Grand?

April 21, 2015 - Alwyn Collinson

This is a guest article by Sheila O’Connell, British Museum Curator. See ‘Bonaparte and the British: prints and propaganda in the age of Napoleon‘ at the British Museum until 16 August 2015. On a Tuesday at the end of January, we unpacked the marvellous large bronze head of Napoleon Bonaparte made by Antonio Canova for […]

WaterWho?

April 17, 2015 - Alwyn Collinson

With the bicentenary anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo fast approaching, the National Army Museum conducted a survey investigating how much Brits really know about this monumental Battle… We’re all familiar with places named after the Battle of Waterloo, from pubs named after the Duke of Wellington to Waterloo Station in London, but do Brits […]

Racing Legends

April 12, 2015 - The Chairman

Having just watched the Grand National it reminded me that a correspondent recently informed us that although winners of the Derby were always English bred up until 1865 the winner that year was a horse called “Gladiateur”. It was a French bred horse and was nicknamed “The Avenger of Waterloo”. The same correspondent told me […]

Macabre Find

April 9, 2015 - The Chairman

Archaeologists have made an interesting find in 2012. A skeleton was found during the excavation on the battlefield when building a new Car Park adjacent to the Mound. There was much speculation as to the identity of the man whose right rib cage was still holding a musket ball, see the attached photo. In the […]

Greenjackets to the Fore

March 25, 2015 - The Chairman

The general and I attended an excellent re-opening of the Waterloo Exhibition at Winchester. The Duke of Wellington declared the exhibition open and stated what a good show it was. Notable was the renewed Waterloo Diorama, all 35,500 figures cleaned by hand and now accompanied by a commentary by the lovely Kate Aidie. Also of […]