He deals with deserters and unruly soldiers.
By the end of 1810, Napoleon’s empire included nearly all of Continental Europe except for the Balkans. It was comprised of an enlarged France (which had swallowed Belgium and Holland, parts of Germany, and the Italian coast all the way to Rome) and various nations actually ruled by Napoleon or a relative....
By the end of 1810, Napoleon’s empire included nearly all of Continental Europe except for the Balkans. It was comprised of an enlarged France (which had swallowed Belgium and Holland, parts of Germany, and the Italian coast all the way to Rome) and various nations actually ruled by Napoleon or a relative. In addition to those lands he ruled over directly, Napoleon held alliances with Austria, Russia, Denmark, Sweden, and a greatly reduced Prussia. Essentially all of Europe was now “at war” with Britain, their resources and industry and populations being used to serve the French Empire. All of these states, from the Empire to the Napoleonic allies, participated in the Continental System, which was a prohibition against trading with Britain.
The suspension of trade with Britain, and its broader effects, threw many of these nations’ economies into a serious recession. Russian was hard hit, and Tsar Alexander determined to take action against Napoleon rather than let this situation continue. On December 31, 1810, he withdrew Russia from the Continental System, and in January 1811 began openly trading with Britain. Napoleon was informed that Alexander was considering a strike against his forces in the East, and whether that was a realistic threat or not, he worried that if Russia were allowed to flout his boycott of Britain, others would follow its example. He immediately began planning an invasion of Russia. This plan, included recruiting and conscripting to expand his Grand Army, had legions coming not only from France but from the allied or occupied countries, like Poland and the Netherlands. By 1812, Napoleon had well over 600,000 men at his command.
The ranks of the huge Grand Army were filled with conscripts and untested men, and Napoleon had increasingly difficulties with controlling them, and with desertion and the quality of the conscripts. He took some measures to improve the situation lest it get out of control. He created a numbers of Young Guard units and took conscripts directly into them seeking to minimize the army’s increasing desertion problems. He hoped by putting the label of ‘Guard’ on his new conscript units, and using the popular perception of what a guardsman was and a how one behaved, he could keep potentially reluctant recruits in the ranks. And he sent hard-to-control men and deserters who were picked up out of the way to remote places like the Island of Corsica.
I will await your report before determining on any action.
Letter Signed, Compiegne, France, September 5, 1811, to French Minister of War Marshall Henri Clarke (Duc de Feltre), dealing with these very critical issues. “All the unruly conscripts in France from this point on will be sent to Wesel and Strasbourg, with the exception of those in departments on the far side of the Alps, who will be sent to…Livourne and Civitia Vechia on Corsica. Moreover, it would be undesirable to assemble on Corsica a too great number of divisive soldiers from beyond the Alpes. I want to know the number of deserters and unruly soldiers the departments are yet to provide and I will see if it wouldn’t be expedient to send them to join the Corps now in Illyria [modern day Balkans, Dalmatia]. I will await your report before determining on any action.” An internal War Ministry note included states, “Received on September 6 and forwarded the same day to M. Barnier (Bamier Barrier) who was asked to inform M. Gerarde.”
Frame, Display, Preserve
Each frame is custom constructed, using only proper museum archival materials. This includes:The finest frames, tailored to match the document you have chosen. These can period style, antiqued, gilded, wood, etc. Fabric mats, including silk and satin, as well as museum mat board with hand painted bevels. Attachment of the document to the matting to ensure its protection. This "hinging" is done according to archival standards. Protective "glass," or Tru Vue Optium Acrylic glazing, which is shatter resistant, 99% UV protective, and anti-reflective. You benefit from our decades of experience in designing and creating beautiful, compelling, and protective framed historical documents.Learn more about our Framing Services