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 Research | Napoleonic Cugnac Campaign of the Army of the Reserve in 1800 English Part 1 Chapter 9

IN 1800


Passage of Watrin's division with its artillery, May 15 and 16. – Engagement close to Étroubles 15th May. – Occupation of Aoste 16th May. – Passages of Rivaud's cavalry brigade, Boudet's division and Loison, May 17 and 18. – Difficulties for the passage of artillery. – Action of Châtillon 18th May. – Instructions in General Suchet and Moncey. – Provisions to keep the line of communication.

At the time when the troops will be put successively moving to cross the alpine range, various measures are captures to relieve them, supplement their armament, to ensure their subsistence (1).

Order of the day of the 25th.

Villeneuve, 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

The major generals will be made account for the number of cartridges which are available in each corps and will send continuation of it the state to the general chief of staff.

The large baggage and the women according to the army, who would have come to Villeneuve, of continuation will be directed on Geneva and Chambéry, in accordance with the order of the 23rd.

The general officers will hold the hand with the execution of the Article of the Regulation of campaign, which prescribes to make accompany with the distributions the men by fatigue duty by an armed detachment, commanded by an officer, to maintain the good order there.

The Major general, chief of staff,


Alex. Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with General Dupont.

Villeneuve; 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

Put at the order of the army that all that composed the garrison of Ancône is exchanged;

That General Brune commands the part of the Army of the Reserve which is 18th and 26th division;

That the soldiers will smell how much it is essential that they spare their subsistence so that they are enough at the days indicated.

The victory is due to the economy of the subsistence and the constancy of the brave men to support the deprivations. These first days will be painful; it is where the French soldier will prove that he is the first warrior of the world.


Alexandre Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with the First Consul.

Villeneuve, 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

447,480 rations of biscuit yesterday evening had been received.

One sent to Martigny 110,636 rations; it was distributed by it 60,000.

It remained about it in magazine 276,744 rations on which quantity Chambarlhac's division will be provided.

It has just arrived this morning 136,000 rations of biscuit, 300 quintals of corn and 200 oats bags.

Three boats are close arriving, including one in charge of effects of hospital.

It was sent to Martigny 178 brandy barrels. There remain 122 barrels about it.

The means of transport miss here.

It appears essential to to me that you make give the order to the administrative room of Léman to send on it field at least 200 transports in Villeneuve, to carry biscuit in Martigny.

It is ensured me that Loison's division and Boudet received the weapons which were necessary for them.

It has just arrived in the moment 260,000 cartridges; there remain here approximately 1400 muskets and about fifteen pieces of ordnance arrivals by water.

General Lannes writes me that 23rd it started to make assemble its artillery; but I do not have a news that it is arrival at the hospice.

I send various states to you which will make known to you the situation of the things.

In general, what we miss are transport.

One brings to me at the moment a report that I make you pass; you will see there that one counts 18 pieces of ordnance (2) with the fortification of Bard.

I leave at the moment for Martigny and Saint-Pierre where I hope to arrive tomorrow morning.

Chambarlhac's division could not make the ordered day, it slept in Vevey.

Attachment and respect.



Situation by outline of the provisioning.


Receipt so far. 447,480
Envoy with Martigny. 110,736 170,736
Distributed the 24 and 25 morning. 60,000
It must remain in magazine this morning 276,744

Foot-note. – There are cases which were damaged by the rain and which one cannot distribute. One plundered some several, so that one should look at this situation only like approximate, though just.


Receipt 300 barrels.
Sendings 178
It must remain 122 barrels.
Who, reduced in rations, make the quantity of. 78,080 rations.
There remain moreover 13 pipes which contain some. 145,120
Total 223,200 rations.

Boudet's division and Loison took bread yesterday for the day and of biscuit for five days.

It arrives in the moment:

137,000 rations of biscuit;
300 quintals of corn;
200 quintals of flour (3).

Intelligence on the enemy forces.

The force of the Austrians, from Saint-Remy to Ivrée inclusively, was to the 16th floréal, it is:

Saint-Remy. 200 Croats;
Étroubles. 150
Oyen. 150
City of Aoste. 500
Châtillon. 300
Bard. 100
Albard. 100
Ivrée. 500 regiment of Kinsky;
Surroundings of Ivrée. 200 Savoy regiment, Piedmontese.

In Étroubles, there is a piece of 4;

With Aoste, eight pieces of 4;

In Châtillon, for the defense of the bridge, four pieces of 8;

With Bard, twenty-six pieces of 8 and 16, including ten out of iron;

With Albard (position which dominates Fort Bard), two pieces of 4 and the entrenchments.

One does not form a camp between Bard and Ivrée.

The enemy made march on Genoa some batallions that it had in the surroundings of Turin.

Peasants of…. (4) are very dissatisfied with the Austrians, who monopolize all the food products for their magazines; it made very dear food there. The enemy raises by force a militia in the country.

The First Consul with the general-in-chief Berthier.

Lausanne, 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

600 men of the 60th, citizen General, have just arrived. Half of their weapons are in bad condition; I estimate that they miss 300 of them. I would wish that you make known me if there is not in Villeneuve; in the contrary case, it will be necessary to grant the day after tomorrow stay to them in Villeneuve, to have time to make some come from Geneva, where I will write so that one sends continuation of it.

It is necessary that you give the order to General Sauret to establish its headquarters in Villeneuve or Saint-Maurice. Give him the command of Léman, all the edges of the lake and all the Valais Alps (5). Attach to him a commisioner of war or a directing commissioner. Fix your roads from Geneva to Saint-Pierre.

Order with General Sauret to hold the hand so that it passed, in Geneva and Villeneuve, of the reviews of all the conscripts and troops which pass there, so that one supplements the armament, the shoes and the 40 cartridges by man: that any corps or detachment which will leave Geneva will take bread for four days, and, on the basis of Villeneuve, of biscuit for five days. Then, it is enough for you to have only one handling in Geneva and two furnaces with Nyon, in order to be able to provide the bread to the troops which would not go to Geneva.

It will remain to take measures for the cavalry. It will pass much of it, and if it is not nourished better than it was it until this hour, the horses will arrive dead to Italy. Several corps did not leave their depots to Dijon, nor in the 18th division; it is necessary whereas they establish them in Geneva.

Also order that the small depots of cavalry are established in Villeneuve. There will be possibility of making provide the oats by the lake, and here the season when one does not miss fodder.

I recommend to you to take measures for the cavalry. It will arrive a great quantity of artillery horses. All will die while assembling the mountain, if they are eight days without being nourished.

I have just made leave Lausanne 5 wagons of ammunition, charged with 10 made sledges with Auxonne, for the transport of the caissons and the pieces of 8. Make harness them by other horses which will be in Villeneuve and send them in all diligence to the Saint-Bernard. The horses which are harnessed with these 5 transports could be used to harness artillery of the division of General Monnier.

I made give, in Lausanne, a piece of 4 with the legion cisalpine. Make give him another of them in Villeneuve.



General Murat does not organize his cavalry; there is neither commisioner of war nor commanders of administration, so that it is not known how to live (6).

The organization which appears the best would be to divide it into 4 brigades:

1. 12th of hussars, the 21st of chasseurs;

2. 1st of hussars, 2nd and 15th of chasseurs;

3. 5th, 7th, 8th and 9th of dragoons;

4. 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th and 20th of cavalry.

Is needed that each brigade has an agent of fodder, a commisioner of war, a light artillery squad with 2 pieces of artillery. While waiting for that the light artillery of the army is arrival, one could be useful oneself of that of the Consular Guard.

It is necessary that the director takes measures to have in Lausanne 2 or 3,000 pairs of shoes per decade, during three decades, for the detachments and corps which pass (7).

Bonaparte, First Consul, with citizen Guériot, colonel, director of the park.

Lausanne, 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

A detachment of 600 men, 60th demi-brigade, needs 300 muskets; make leave them in all diligence on a boat for Villeneuve, where it would be necessary that they had arrived tomorrow in the night.

I fear that we are not in a great embarrassment of cartridges; as soon as you have of them 100,000 of made, dispatch them; that does not comprise delay.


The First Consul, with the general-in-chief Berthier.

Lausanne, 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

It is necessary, citizen General, to give the orders so that one forms artillery of the division of General Monnier. The pieces must be returned to Villeneuve. It is necessary that General Marmont names a commander of artillery batallion and organizes continuation this artillery. It is necessary also that the director as a commander names a commisioner of war, an assistant and a commander of each administration.


Order for the guard.

Lausanne, 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

The guard will leave tomorrow, at 5 o'clock in the morning (9). It will pass to Villeneuve, where it will take food for the 26,27, 28, 29 and 30.

Servants, drivers, etc, will also take food for them and their masters, and their horses, until the 30.

They will sleep in Saint-Maurice.

The aide-de-camps Lefebvre, Merlin and Lebrun will leave with my horses.

They will choose me in Saint-Maurice a house for me.


Alexandre Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with the general chief of staff.

Villeneuve, 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

Give the order which the demi-brigades which would not have taken in Villeneuve the flints and cartridges that they would have order to take, take some while passing to Bex. They will have to be addressed to the artillery commander.

Give the order to the detachment of 9th of dragoons, which is with Chambarlhac's division, to await in Villeneuve the regiment.

100 men of the 11th of hussars, which are ahead, are intended for Chambarlhac's division.


Alex. Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with General Dupont, chief of staff.

Villeneuve, 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

The troop had to take in Villeneuve of biscuit for the 26, 27, 28 and 29 included. It is necessary that the director as a commander takes measures so that arrival with Saint-Pierre it takes some for the 30 floréal, 1st and 2 prairial included.

Give orders so that all the biscuit, after Chambarlhac's division passes, conducts on Saint-Pierre. It is possible that, not finding anything in the valley Aoste and being stopped by the fortification Bard, I would be embarrassed for the food. It would be also necessary of hurry on of the flours on Martigny and Saint-Pierre.

It is necessary at the same time to take measures to ensure Villeneuve and on the road the food for approximately 10,000 men who follow Chambarlhac's division.

It is extremely important that we take measures to try to nourish the army in the valley of Aoste during approximately four to five days, which will be useful in the case that we cannot emerge as quickly as we wish it. One says the valley of Aoste entirely ruined.

The headquarters will be 26 in Martigny tomorrow.


Alex. Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with the major general Lannes.

Martigny, 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

I send to you, my dear Général, the commander of Piedmontese batallion Pavetti. This officer is known and has partisans in the valley of Aoste, from where it is; there is great credit. Say to him to make circulate proclamations by announcing an army of 100,000 men.

I will be to the Saint-Bernard tomorrow.



The First Consul, with the Consuls.

Lausanne, 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

I received your letter of the 21st floréal. The needs for the moment are not enough pressing to make ruinous operations. I would thus wish although one did not make any any more on the delegations; we withdrew some enough for the preceding operations.

The advance guard passes in this moment the Saint-Bernard; it is commanded by General Lannes.

I passed the review of the cavalry today.

Remain a few days without giving news of the Army of the Reserve; known as only that it is moving full (10).

It will be perhaps wise to make put in some journals, others that the official Journal, that I crossed Switzerland and that I passed by Basle, in order to divert those which would like to spread bad news and to alarm the good citizens.

We will have some obstacles to overcome; transport. artillery by

The Alps will not be one of least; but finally any species of means will be employed.

I greet you affectionately (11).


The First Consul, with the general-in-chief Berthier.

Lausanne, 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

Lauriston, citizen General, have just arrived; it teaches me that all the artillery of the division of General Lannes passed (12). Immediately make pass all the corps of General Duhesme, and carry you as soon as possible at the height of Bard. There if General Chabran could bring the pieces of 12, make-the lead. You feel that one could not too early remove the fortification of Bard.

I imagine that Lannes occupied Aoste today. I hope that at the latest in the course of the day of the 27th you will be master of Bard (13).

The cavalry will sleep tomorrow in Villeneuve. Monnier, with his division, will sleep tomorrow in Vevey. The Italians must have joined to you.

Tomorrow at the evening I will be probably in Saint-Maurice (14); my guard and the crews leave tomorrow morning to go there.

I have just received news of Paris, where all is perfectly well.

The 1000 men of cavalry who left Paris a few days before me will be 30th in Lausanne.

I greet you (15).


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Large St Bernard


15th May, while Gency's Brigade come to Saint-Pierre, Malher's brigade and the headquarters of the advance guard pass the pass, which was occupied by three companies of the 3rd batallion of the 28th demi-brigade since 13th May 1799 (16).

With the arrival of the first troops of the Army of the Reserve, “the monks draw up at once tables in front of the hospice, each soldier receives two wine glasses there with a small ration of cheese and rye bread (17)”.

After a stop of short duration, Malher's brigade goes down on the Italian slope.

“…. At 2 o'clock in the morning (15th May) it (advance guard) emerged D years the valley of Aoste, forced the advanced post of the Austrians, placed at the foot of the Jupiter mount, with approximately three quarters of mile below the hospice, continued it to Saint-Remy, first village of the valley of Aoste. The enemy defended himself a few moments in this village, closed by a wall and a notched door, but it gave up it soon and was withdrawn on Étroubles (18)”.

The commander of staff of Watrin's division, with the captain of the 7th company of the 3rd batallion of the 22nd demi-brigade.

Saint-Remy, 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

According to the provisions of the commanding general division, it is ordered to the captain whom commands the 7th company of the 3rd batallion of the 22nd demi-brigade, to confine in Saint-Remy with its company until new order. It will fulfill the functions there of commander of the position. It will have the greatest care to supervise the correspondence and to be kept there militarily.


Of Saint-Remy, Malher's brigade continues its march on Étroubles.

“There was the same day with Étroubles a light engagement with the enemy who, 50 to 60 men (19) gave an opinion on the right river, opposite the village, on the plate named the Peaks and showed the intention to be defended there. It was driven out soon by it and one made him some prisoners (20)”.

General Lannes ordered with Étroubles with Malher's brigade.

The commander of staff of Watrin's division, with the General of Gency's Brigade.

Étroubles 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

The intentions of the commanding general division, citizen General, are that you leave in Saint-Remy (21) the 3rd batallion of the 40th demi-brigade. The other batallions of these corps will come to give an opinion with Étroubles. They will camp at the same place where the brigade under the orders of General Malher (22) camps today.


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The commander of staff of Watrin's division, with the citizen Baker, assistant of the adjutant generals.

Étroubles, 25th floréal year 8 (May 15, 1800).

Herewith a letter for General Gency, that you will give to him to his passage.

The intentions of the commanding general division are that the 3rd batallion of the 40th demi-brigade gives an opinion in front of the village of Saint-Remy, while placing its posts in the throat To work, where they will await new orders.

Make conduct all the objects concerning artillery, as well as the edible ones in any kind for division.


During this time, the guns of the advance guard are dismounted in Saint-Pierre, and Captain Danthouard insists to have “continuation of the mules for the transport of artillery, more and as soon as possible (23)”. The ambulance of Watrin's division follows the movement and comes from Orsières to Saint-Pierre (23).

The brigade of cavalry of the advance guard (General Rivaud) was in Vevey 14th; it had received the order to come 15th to Saint-Pierre. It was a march of 76 kilometers, with 1253 meters of difference in level (Vevey, 380 meters; Saint-Pierre, 1633 meters).

It makes only 49 kilometers and confines in Martigny, with Loison's division, and behind of the Boudet's division, which occupies Orsières (24) and Sembrancher (25), 15th May.

The following day, May 16, at 4 o'clock in the morning, the Rivaud brigade leaves for Saint-Pierre (26), where it joined Boudet's division.

It there spends the night and crosses the pass 17th.


Lannes, major general, commanding the advance guard, with the general-in-chief Berthier.

Aoste, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800).

We arrived at Aoste this morning at 11 a.m. with the of line 6th light and 22nd (27).

We found the enemy on the heights of this city; a batallion of 6th had order to turn it. It did not await its movement, it was withdrawn in the city and did a little resistance on the bridge; it was overthrown with the bayonet. It had 12 killed men and 1 wounded officer with death. It left us 3 prisoners. None as of ours was killed nor wounded (28).

And fodder we will not miss the wine, but we will be very low in grains and food products (29).

Letters which we found with the post of this city and which I send you announce that Nice was taken by the enemy and that Genoa, vigorously bombarded, will not hold a long time.

There are very few enemy troops in the valley. Six or seven regiments of cavalry are confined in the surroundings of Turin. Almost all the army is in the river of Genoa.


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The adjutant general Hulin, with the major general Dupont, general chief of staff.

Aoste, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800), at midday.

Citizen General,

General Watrin me charge to inform you of our entry in the city of Aoste.

The brigade of General Malher (30) started itself this morning at 2 hours of Étroubles, where it arrived yesterday. The enemy, whom it met with a quarter of mile of this place, folded up himself of post in post to the bridge on Doire, where, being joined together with the number of approximately 400 men, he made a rather strong resistance. He was however driven out by it in little time.

We entered the city of Aoste and the enemy was continued up to two miles beyond the city. There were 12 killed men, among whom the who command officer, and several casualties. We did not lose anybody; two chasseurs of the 6th demi-brigade of light infantry were only slightly wounded. The reconnaissance will be pushed, I hope, strength far after midday.

We will find here meat, wine, oats and hay; but there will be difficulty to have bread, waited until the grain is strong rare (31) there.

Salute and respect.


P.S. – troops of 18: division passed the Mount Saint Bernard with much order and speed; their control, during their march so far, deserves the greatest praises.

The adjutant commander Brossier, in his Journal of the campaign of the Army of the Reserve, tells in these terms the march of Étroubles on Aoste and the action of Aoste:

Bridge of the Cluse forced (32).

From Étroubles to Aoste, the advance guard of the French Army tested of another obstacle only the destruction of the wood bridge close the Cluse, small post closed by a door, ahead of which the enemy had built some ground entrenchments; but it yielded this position at once that it realized that it was going to be turned by a directed column of Étroubles by the left of the river, and the bridge immediately was established and put in a position to give passage to artillery.

Aoste Taken.

Arrival with Aoste 26th in the morning, the brigade of General Malher (33) belonging to Watrin's division, had to support a rather sharp shock with the enemy who, with the number of approximately 400 men, disputed to him a few moments the passage of the bridge located on Doire, at the end of the city, the side of Piedmont, and close the triumphal arch built by the Romans. The business began in the suburb. The enemy was formed in battle on other side of the bridge; but in little time, it was forced with the retirement, lost its commander, had 12 men made captive and was continued up to two miles beyond the city (34).

Malher's brigade bivouacs beyond Aoste, in the direction of Châtillon (35).

It prepares with an administrative review (36).

During this time, Gency's Brigade, 40th demi-brigade, share of Saint-Pierre, pass the pass (37), carries a batallion to Saint-Remy and two in Étroubles.

It receives the following order for the following day, May 17:

The commander of staff of Watrin's division, with the General of Gency's Brigade.

Aoste, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800).

The intentions of the commanding general division, citizen General, are that you go tomorrow, 27 of the current, in Aoste, with the first two batallions of the 40th demi-brigade, and that the 3rd batallion of these corps, who is in Saint-Remy, goes following Étroubles, where it will remain until all the artillery, ammunition, crews and baggage belonging to division conducted on this side. The company of these same corps which are with the Saint-Bernard will have to join it at once that it will have been replaced there.

The detachment of the hussars, which is near you, must follow your movement of tomorrow.

The commander of the 3rd batallion of the 40th demi-brigade will command at the same time the position of Étroubles and will supervise the correspondence there.



Alex. Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with the First Consul.

Sembrancher, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800), at 6 o'clock in the morning.

I arrive at the moment and I learn that General Lannes passed the Saint-Bernard with all his artillery. I do not have however a direct news of him.

I press the arrival of other divisions.

I was astonished to find General Marescot here, while Lannes must be in front of Bard.

I leave to pass the Saint-Bernard. I will inform you of the first news which I will have of the advance guard.

Recommend that one makes us conduct cartridges and all the mules which could be in Villeneuve.

Transport of Villeneuve with Martigny can be done on transports, the way is good.

The 12th of hussars and the 21st of chasseurs remained badly by the way in Martigny. I made them leave this morning at 4 a.m. I hope that they will pass the Saint-Bernard this evening and that they will gain the head of Boudet's division and continuation the advance guard (38).

We need shoes.

Made, I request from you, to renew the order so that the women and the baggage remain behind; we are overpowered by it.

I found the General Mainoni which awaited the 28th of the high Valais Alps. I ordered to him to go to the advance guard to forced marches.

Attachment and respect.


The general-in-chief, with General Lannes.

Saint-Pierre, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800), to 1 h. 1/2 after midday.

I receive at the moment, citizen General, your letter gone back to Étroubles of the 25th floréal (39).

You make well gather all your troops with Aoste and in particular your artillery. It is important that you push your reconnaissance and that you employ people of the country to have positive news on the enemy.

Tomorrow 27, at 2 o'clock in the morning, the 12th regiment of chasseurs and the 21st of cavalry (40) leave from here passing the Saint-Bernard and joining you as soon as possible. All the infantry of Boudet's division passes the Saint-Bernard also tomorrow.

If you have your artillery and your infantry joined together 27th with Aoste and that the column heading of the troops under command of General Chabran put itself in communication with you, I do not see a disadvantage so that you push quickly on the fortification of Bard, but you need primarily your artillery.

The column of General Chabran will give an opinion with Aoste and will not follow your movement. Send ahead of it General Chabran for him to say that it hastens of all the possible means the arrival of its artillery; it must have passed from the pieces of 12. Also recommend to him to be made follow by all the subsistence which one will have made assemble the Saint-Bernard and which will be in the valley of Tarentaise.

Put much order in the resources which one can draw from the country; because if the fortification of Bard resists a few days, we would be embarrassed.

It is quite essential that you return us the mules and the men of Saint-Pierre most promptly possible; without that we could not make you pass a cartridge. Join together even all the mules which you could have in the valley of Aoste and send them to Saint-Pierre, with a sufficient escort, to be charged with ammunition. Ensure the owners whom they will be exactly paid.

In all the valley of Saint-Pierre with Sembrancher, on a noise that you remove the mules that you find in the valley of Aoste, all the peasants took along those which they had; restore confidence while returning us those which you have.

I send General Mainoni to you; the 28th demi-brigade follows it at one day of march, it is intended to belong to the advance guard.

I will be tomorrow at the evening with Aoste.

Also recommend to General Chabran to reduce from the Saint-Bernard artillery and all ammunition who are there (41).

I greet you.


The general-in-chief, with General Dupont.

Saint-Pierre, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800).

Make make the headquarters for 27th with Étroubles and Aoste.

Give the order to General Rivaud to leave with its cavalry at 2 a.m. precise the morning to go to Aoste and to join the advance guard.

Give the order to the diyision Boudet to leave at 4 a.m. in the morning to pass the Saint-Bernard and to go to Étroubles (42). General Boudet will leave a small batallion with its artillery which one will deal with making pass most promptly possible.

Order with Loison's division to pass the Saint-Bernard with his artillery most promptly possible (43).

Even order with Chambarlhac's division (44).

Give the order to the commanding general with Martigny of hurry on on the Saint-Bernard all that is due to the 28th demi-brigade and which arrives on the side of Sion, so that it most promptly joins possible the advance guard of General Lannes.

Also order to him hurry on on Aoste all the troops which would arrive at Martigny, either of the column of General Monnier (45), or of that belonging to the army, infantry (46) and cavalry (47); that it also activates by all the possible means the march on Saint-Pierre of transport of cartridges, ammunition and biscuit.

Write in Villeneuve that one sends the mules to us which could arrive, and which, under any pretext, one does not delay the march for Saint-Pierre.

Prevent on all our communication behind that it is by the lack of mules that the army cannot have in Aoste the necessary ammunition which are retained in Saint-Pierre.

Give the order to General Duhesme to establish its headquarters with Saint-Pierre and to activate the passage of Boudet's division and Loison. It will pass with the latter to join the headquarters.

I will leave tomorrow at 3 a.m. in the morning. Give the orders necessary for the passage.


The general-in-chief, with General Dupont.

Saint-Pierre, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800).

I request from you, citizen General, to order with the staff officer in charge of housing to fulfill his functions with more exactitude. After me to have made await a stable a long time, one gives me one of them filled of foreign horses and where mine cannot have position.

Also give orders so that I have a grenadier guard or carabiniers and that, under all the reports, one has in my connection the decency which one owes with the command which is entrusted to me.


The general-in-chief, with General Dupont.

Saint-Pierre, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800).

I receive complaints that the soldiers in the houses under pretext of will take pots and remove the salt and all that they find, and plunder the unhappy inhabitants. Send staff officers at the generals, so that they prevent these abuses and that guards are established so that one spares the properties of the inhabitants who already returned us so much services.


Alex. Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with the First Consul.

Saint-Pierre, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800).

Citizen Consul,

I arrived here today at 1 a.m. after midday.

The 6 pieces of artillery of General Lannes passed with a simple provisioning. I suppose that tomorrow at the evening they will be in Aoste, but General Lannes having taken along approximately 200 mules and all the men of Saint-Pierre, General Marmont is for the moment without aucuns average to make pass artillery of the Boudet's division, which has just arrived. I take all the possible means to get men and mules to us.

The 12th regiment of hussars and the 21st of chasseurs leave at 2 a.m. after midnight and the infantry Boudet's division at 4 a.m. in the morning.

All other divisions will follow, but the artillery will be a very long object.

All our sledges are useless (48); people of the country know each other there better than us; they take a log of fir tree that they obvious with half, they place the piece in the hollow and, with 60 men, they trail a piece of 8 with the top of the Saint-Bernard.

General Lannes was yesterday in Étroubles; today it goes on Aoste, where I will be myself tomorrow. It is said that the enemy has a small camp with Châtillon, but that it is in Bard that it awaits us. I will give you more positive news tomorrow.

I write in Chambéry so that all the biscuit of the extraordinary provisioning made in Grenoble conducts to Aoste by the Little Saint Bernard, instead of going to Geneva (49).

I ask you to give the most imperative orders so that all the possible mules are sent to us to Saint-Remy (50); it is where is the obstruction of artillery and cartridges, of arm and mules.

A piece of 8 costs approximately 500 francs to be passed.

I join here a report which one of my aide-de-camps submits to me which were this morning with the Saint-Bernard (51).

Attachment and respect.


P.S. – I ordered with General Lannes that, from the moment when its advance guard would be gathered in Aoste, it marches on Bard, if the column heading of General Chabran were however in communication with him. I ordered with this last to give an opinion with Aoste until my arrival.

If we had some hot businesses in these first days, we strong would be embarrassed for the cartridges, by the difficulty in passing the Saint-Bernard, fault of mules.


Alexandre Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with General Dupont.

Saint-Pierre, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800).

Adjutant general Pannetier will be employed close to me.

Give the order to the commander of the position to make leave tomorrow at 3 a.m. in the morning all the soldiers who would belong to the demi-brigades of the advance guard; I know that there are various detachments which had been left for the service of the position of Saint-Pierre.

Each division will successively leave in Saint-Pierre 25 men who will raise. those of the division which will have passed, and which will join division at once.

Make leave a gendarme to carry the dispatch attached for the First Consul to the commander of the position of Martigny which will make it pass by on horse ordinance to Lausanne.

Put at order that troops must not to burn straw of their camp, so that it can be used for divisions which follow them, that they must be exact to return the pots that they would have borrowed.

You ensure if the commander of the position of Saint-Remy is able to occupy this important post; in the contrary case, name another and give him a very detailed instruction.

It is necessary to establish for our correspondence 3 gendarmes with Saint-Pierre, 3 in Sembrancher and 3 in Martigny, from where the commander of the position will establish a correspondence on Lausanne by such means that the circumstances will require it. It will be ordered with these gendarmes to carry only the correspondence contresigned of you.

Recommend to General Marmont the departure our cartouches for this night. It would be essential that it sent an artillery officer to the place where, after having passed the Saint-Bernard, one can be useful of transports, in order to establish a depot there from where the mules would turn over to Saint-Remy (52).


General Boudet writes me that it received the order to go tomorrow to Aoste; it is in Étroubles that it must await new orders; it is the General Rivaud which must go to Aoste, if it is possible.

You will make known year General Rivaud that I am dissatisfied with the way in which the cavalry was led to Saint-Pierre; one inserted the houses and one wasted what it would be necessary to nourish all the cavalry of the army.


Order of the day.

Saint-Pierre, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800).

The general-in-chief is not very satisfied to have seen following the columns of the carriages which have fun to burn cartridges; the commanders of corps will supervise this abuse.

The general officers fulfilling the functions of lieutenants of the army will have 8 ordinances and an aide-de-camp. The major generals will have 6 ordinances, the generals of brigade, 2. The ordinances will be exactly raised every ten days; it is expressly ordered (53) to the other officers to have ordinances.

The staff officers which will be detached to make a reconnaissance with the enemy will have an escort, which will join the squadron at once after the re-entry of the officer to the headquarters.

The generals will feel the necessity of sparing the on horse troop in the service of the ordinances, in order to make it more useful for the days of action.

The headquarters will be tomorrow in Étroubles and the day after tomorrow in Aoste.


P.S. – the commanders of corps will prevent that the straw of the bivouacs is burned, so that the troops which will follow one another can benefit from it; they will also take care that the pots and other ustensils lent to the troop by the inhabitants are accurately given.

Order of the day.

Saint-Pierre, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800).


The Army of the Rhine gains bright victories, that of Italy fights against a higher enemy in a number and balances the victory by wonders of value. It is with you, my comrades, to compete with it and to reconquer beyond the Alps the beautiful theater of the French value.

Conscripts! the hour of the action is sounded; your heart burns to compete with these old soldiers, so much of time victors; you will learn how with them to support the deprivations, to face the fatigues inseparable from the war. Never forget that the victory is obtained only by the value and the discipline.

Soldiers! Bonaparte approached you to enjoy your new triumphs. You will prove to him that you are always the brave men who illustrated themselves in the armies.

France and Humanity require peace of you, and you will conquer it.

The Major general, commander of general staff,



The First Consul, with the general-in-chief Berthier (54).

Lausanne, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800).

I receive at the moment, citizen General, a letter of General Suchet, of Nice, of the 21st. The enemy forced the pass of Tende and the line of Borghetto. General Suchet had its headquarters in Nice. It occupied the pass of Braus, the strength of Vintimiglia and Montalban, which it had supplied. Nice was evacuated to the last piece of gun. It will pass the Var and will take again the offensive with 7 to 8,000 men, as soon as the enemy is controlled by our movement.

It results from all that that you must give the order at once to General Lannes to march, nevertheless the remainder of the army would not have passed the Saint-Bernard. It is necessary to be in Ivrée as soon as possible, would be this only with half of the army.

I will be this night with Saint-Maurice (55).


The First Consul, with General Duvignau (56).

Lausanne, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800).

It is essential, citizen General, that the regiments of cavalry, which are in Lausanne, tomorrow will sleep in Bex, and those which are in Morges will sleep in Aigle. Leave before the day.

While passing to Villeneuve, you will take the bread and the oats for the 27, 28, 29, 30 floréal and 1st prairial (57).

The day that you have to make tomorrow is a little strong, but it is necessary (58).


The First Consul, with General Suchet.

Lausanne, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800).

I receive at the moment, citizen General, your letter of the 21st.

The artillery of the advance guard passed the Mount Saint Bernard with facility. The General Lannes, which commands it, is today in Aoste. The army is with the foot of the Saint-Bernard; in the night, it will be all in Piedmont (59).

Another strength detachment prepares to cross Saint-Gothard.

The enemy will not pass the Var, unless it does not have imagination to be made bury in Provence. If you cannot defend Nice, defend the head of bridge. Put in requisition the national guards. I will take measures which confer the generals and to prefects of Provence an extraordinary authority; I will send them to you in one hour by another courier.

I will be this night with the foot of the Saint-Bernard; I will move on Ivrée, from where I will operate according to the later movements which the enemy (60) will be able to have made.


The First Consul, with General Moreau.

Lausanne, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800).

Part of artillery, citizen General, already passed the Saint-Bernard, and I leave at the moment to join the army.

I receive a courier of General Suchet, of the 21st, of Nice. The enemy had forced the line of Borghetto and the pass of Tende, Nice was evacuated. The small strength of Vintimiglia, Montalban, the fortification of Nice were supplied for two months. We still occupied the pass of Braus, which had to be evacuated, like Nice, in the night of the 21st to the 22nd, where General Suchet had to pass by again the Var. The enemy appears to have very considerable forces in Italy: all the reports agree on this point.

I will be tomorrow in Aoste. I calculate that the diversion of Saint-Gothard will take place in accordance with the general plan of campaign and the decree which gave you the Minister for the war: all depends from there (61).



Alex. Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with the general chief of staff.

Étroubles (62), 27th floréal year 8 (May 17, 1800).

Give the order to Loison's division to make a forced march and to come to sleep in Aoste tomorrow.

Give the order to the Pernety citizen to make leave at 9 a.m. in the evening the howitzer and the piece 8 which are assembled like all the shells and the cartridges of 8 that it can have, balls and grapeshot.

It will also make leave the cartridges infantry, the whole for Aoste.

It will have care that these two pieces do not miss anything, and it will recommend to the artillery officer which will march with them, to take care well that nothing and is broken so that one takes precautions to pass the bridge during the march of night. Having only 2 pieces, it is essential to preserve them.

It must arrive this evening of the cartridges of infantry and the ammunition charged on mules with the artillery train. It will make them leave 28 tomorrow, at 3 hours precise of the morning, to go to Aoste.

The two pieces which leave this evening will be escorted by 30 men of the 40th demi-brigade (63).

Give the order to the Pernety citizen to make leave for Aoste the pieces artillery, caissons of the advance guard, as they are assembled (64); I hope that all could be assembled tomorrow at midday.

Order with Boudet's division to leave tomorrow at 4 a.m. in the morning to go to Aoste.

Order with the horsemen to leave at 5 a.m.


Alex. Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with General Lannes.

Étroubles, 27th floréal year 8 (May 17, 1800).

I send to you, my dear Lannes, copies of a letter which I receive from the First Consul, you will see that it is urgent that we attack the enemy (65). The commander of my staff sends orders consequently to you (66).

I make leave at the moment a piece 8 and one howitzer and all that there is ammunition here (67).

Boudet's division will leave tomorrow at 4 a.m. in the morning and I will make you support by the 9th light (68). I will be of very good hour with Aoste.

I hope that if the enemy dares to hold in Châtillon, we will wrap it, and that, 29th at the latest, we will be masters of the fortification of Bard.

I order that as there is a piece of rise, one makes it pass to Aoste.

I sent purposely to the Saint-Bernard and to Saint-Pierre for all to activate.

I send your orders by adjutant general Pannetier to you. Make say to me by an ordinance to what time you hope to start yourselves.

I think that I will arrive at Aoste of rather good hour to see you.

You will make distribute, by extraordinary, of the wine or brandy to the troop; it is necessary that it ate before leaving.



Alex. Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with General Dupont.

Étroubles, 27th floréal year 8 (May 17, 1800).

You will give the order to General Lannes tomorrow morning to attack the enemy with all his advance guard. The piece of 8 and the howitzer must join it this night (69).

You will prevent General Lannes that not having been able to make mount caisson, I send the artillery ammunition to him on mules of the country; it is necessary that it takes measures to make them follow by mules of Aoste led by soldiers.

You will prevent it that I make start from Étroubles tomorrow at 4 o'clock in the morning Boudet's division to go to Aoste, as well as the 12th of hussars and the 21st of chasseurs. My intention is to make it support by the 9th light demi-brigade, which, after having refreshed in Aoste, will restart.

General Lannes will take measures to make follow the objects necessary to its division, which will have to further continue the enemy possible and to be capable to seize as soon as possible the fortification from Bard (70).

General Lannes will calculate the moment of its attack so as to be supported by the 9th light, which will arrive at 6 or 7 hours of the morning at Aoste, where I hope to be returned myself very good hour (71).

Chabran's division will remain in position with Aoste and will keep the outlets on the side of Saint-Leger, where it teststemyà a way which comes from Bard while passing by the valley of Champorcher; it would be even necessary that General Chabran pushed a reconnaissance on this way until Cogne and beyond that, to know the nature of this way.

Send a staff officer, with this reconnaissance, which will bring a report of this way to us.


One will beat general tomorrow 28 to 3 h. 1/2, the assembly to 3 h. 3/4 and the flags at 4 a.m. precise, to start itself.

It is essential that one leaves at this precise hour and earlier than later.


The colonel, commanding artillery, with the First Consul of the French Republic.

Geneva, 27th floréal year 8 (May 17, 1800).

My General,

I have just received in the moment the order that you give me, so that all the horses and mules which arrive to Geneva are at once directed on Villeneuve.

Until now, I gave only one day of stay to be able to shoe and make an exact visit of all the horses and mules arriving, in order to make them leave only in good condition.

Yesterday, 31 pack mules left; it is all that remained. Today, 88 horses start themselves, and it is also all that is in Geneva. I ordered that half leaves spare, refresh in Nyon and await there the other half, of which I profited to lead to Villeneuve two howitzers of 6 inches, two caissons of idem, two pieces of 4, two caissons of idem and two caissons of 8, the supplied whole, so that this convoy today will sleep in Lausanne and tomorrow in Villeneuve.

The Gassendi director says to me to have left in Nyon an officer; according to your orders, I will write him of hurry on of continuation, and without passing to Geneva, all that will be dispatched of Auxonne, either in spare horses, or in complete and supplied convoys of pieces of ordnance.

Today, I still make leave by water a large quantity of effects, whose state will undoubtedly be sent to you by the adviser of State Dejean, to which I give it exactly the every day.

Salute and respect.


The First Consul, with the general-in-chief Berthier.

Martigny, 27th floréal year 8 (May 17, 1800).

I arrive at Martigny, citizen General (72). Arrighi gives me your dispatch; we exchanged ourselves the news of the capture of Nice.

I will send couriers in Chambéry by the mountain. I will spend the night here to await the news of the capture of the Fort Bard, which I hope to receive tomorrow morning.

Two pieces of 4 on mounting-sledges will be able to be assembled easily on the heights which dominate it without being dismounted and without requiring the location which requires an ordinary mounting.

General Monnier sleeps today in Saint-Maurice with the 70th.

The cavalry will be tomorrow here.

I greet you (73).



Alexandre Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with the chief of staff.

Étroubles, 28th floréal year 8 (May 18, 1800).

Give the order to General Boudet to leave two companies to Étroubles, which will provide a guard of 10 men to the park of artillery of the advance guard. These companies will await Étroubles artillery of Boudet's division.

Leave an intelligent assistant to Étroubles to make some successively leave all artillery the advance guard, as it is in a position to march and for hurry on on Aoste all the ammunition of war which will arrive.

Give orders so that there is always a company with the Saint-Bernard, to be used as escort to all the objects of artillery which must come from Saint-Pierre. The last hundred men who will remain there until new order will be provided by the troops of Monnier's division. It is necessary that there is an intelligent officer to be commander of position to the Mount Saint Bernard (74). You feel that since Saint-Pierre with Aoste it is necessary to be arranged so that all the convoys have escorts, without what the peasants will steal our ammunition and will assassinate our men.


Order of the day.

Étroubles, 28th floréal year 8 (May 18, 1800).

The army is in the presence of the enemy. The commanders of corps will take care that the weapons are immediately put in state, that the bivouacs are established militarily and well kept.

It is expressly defended to draw, in the camps or cantonments, of the rounds of musket, and to make any plundering, under the penalties carried by the law.

The food and fodder will be preserved exactly for the day that they will have been distributed.

This order will be read with the head of the companies.

The army is prevented that the chief Champeaux division, commanding the gendarmerie, is promoted with the rank of brigadier general and that it will command 2nd and 15th regiments of chasseurs.


Alex. Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with the First Consul.

Aoste (75), 28th floréal year 8 (May 18, 1800).

My aide-de-camp Arrighi arrives at the moment and your letter gives of the 27th me floréal, gone back to Martigny.

It is only this morning that it was possible to to me to make start from Aoste the first two artillery pieces passed to the Great Saint Bernard.

General Lannes must be close to Bard (76).

I make leave in the night two pieces 4 arrivals the Little Saint Bernard, an howitzer and a piece of 8, newcomer of the Great Saint Bernard, which will make six pieces, with which I hope to beat Fort Bard in the course of the day of the 29th. But I do not have mounting-sledges for the pieces of 4.

I will not speak to you about the difficulties which we have to overcome; we make the impossible one.


Alexandre Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with General Dupont.

Aoste, 28th floréal year 8 (May 18, 1800).

Give the order that the two pieces of 4 of the Chabran's division and all the ammunition of these pieces leave at midnight to make itself possible most promptly at the height of Bard.

It must have arrived, coming from the Great Saint Bernard, a piece of 8, a caisson idem containing 62 rounds with balls and 24 with balls, plus a caisson of howitzers containing 44 shells and 16 shell in cases, 25,000 cartridges of infantry. Order that these objects leave tomorrow to the point the day to go as soon as possible to Bard.

Order with Boudet's division (77) to take food for two days, which will supplement to him for the 3 and 4 and to leave at 7 a.m. in the morning to go to Châtillon.

Order with the 28th to leave tomorrow at midday to join the advance guard (78).

You inform if it arrived of the mountings and sledges; if there is not, write with General Marmont so that it makes them pass from continuation.


Alexandre Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with the general chief of staff.

Aoste, 28th floréal year 8 (May 18, 1800).

I leave tomorrow at 5 a.m. in the morning, to establish my headquarters in front of Bard.

All the administrations will remain in Aoste; you will leave an adjutant general there to fulfill the functions there of assistant manager of staff (79). It will make bivouac divisions and the corps of cavalry as they arrive. At once that it will arrive of the pieces of artillery and ammunition belonging to divisions, it will return them to them continuation.

As for all that is due to the park of the army and the cartridges for divisions, it is necessary some to make a depot with Aoste; it appears to to me that, for the moment, there is enough with the advance guard.

Order with General Lannes to make its provisions so as to be master heights who dominate Bard tomorrow of very good hour in the morning. It has 6,000 men with whom it can overthrow all the forces highly that the enemy can present to him. Prevent it that the 28th demi-brigade leaves tomorrow from here joining it.

Make feel with General Lannes that the fate of Italy and perhaps of the Republic is due to the capture of the fortification of Bard. Prevent to it artillery which leaves in the night.

Send this order by a staff officer which will be escorted of 6 men of horsemen. It will have to leave in one hour at the latest.

Alex. BERTHIER (80).

Alex. Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with the First Consul.

Aoste, 28th floréal year 8 (May 18, 1800), to 11 h. 1/2 of the evening.

General Lannes returns account to me. It found approximately 1000 Croats cut off from the heights from Châtillon, with two pieces of artillery; it attacked them with the bayonet and put in escape. It made them 250 prisoners.

Tomorrow morning, 29, it is order to seize the heights of Bard; I will be myself there in order to reduce this fortification in the course of the day.

The enemy carried the two guns which we would have taken if the cavalry which was with the tail of the column had not tested delay to be passed.


Dupont, major general, chief of staff of the Army of the Reserve, with the Minister for the war.

Aoste, 28th floréal year 8 (May 18, 1800).

I have to return account to you, that the advance guard, which commanded by General Lannes, found the enemy with Châtillon today. It overthrew it in the various positions which it occupied, killed 200 men to him and makes 300 prisoners. Two pieces of ordnance and four caissons charged fell in our capacity. The night saved the remainder of the enemy corps which were in Châtillon.

The grenadiers of the 22nd demi-brigade of line, which belongs to Watrin's division, removed the village with the bayonet. The hussars of the 12th regiment continued the enemy with the greatest heat (81).

Adjutant general Noguès was wounded.

Fort Bard will be invested.

I greet you.


Alex. Berthier, general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, with the First Consul.

Aoste, 29th floréal year 8 (May 19, 1800), at 3 o'clock in the morning.

I return account, citizen Consul to you, of the business which took place yesterday at 6 o'clock in the evening (82) with Châtillon.

General Lannes arrived one hour before the night in front of Châtillon and found the enemy on all the heights which surround it. It sought to attract it in the persuasion which General Malher would arrive enough in time to turn it; but the obstacles that this General had found had delayed its march (83).

General Lannes decided with a sharp attack. Grenadiers of the 22nd out removed the village with the bayonet. Hundred men of the 12th regiment of hussars received the order to charge; they had at their head the Colonel Fournier, whose rare intrepidity deserves the greatest praises.

General Watrin, Mainoni and all the staff officers also charged the enemy in same time.

We made 300 prisoners, killed or wounded 100 men, taken two pieces of 4 and four caissons charged with ammunition. Among the prisoners whom we made, are five officers, including two wounded. We took moreover 12 horses.

We had only five slightly wounded men, among whom is the adjutant general Noguès (84) which sabred, to him all alone, three or four Austrians. The adjutant general Hulin was also particularly distinguished. One of its assistants was wounded and had a horse killed under him.

General Marescot as all the officers of the engineers burned to charge with the brave men who attacked the enemy. The Garrau assistant inspector was also in the fray and fought with the hussars. The grenadiers of the 40th followed them to the race to more than two miles.

General Watrin is with part of the advance guard to more half of the way of Châtillon at the height of Bard (85).

General Lannes left today at the point the day, with what remains to him troops, to remove the heights of this fortification.

I will be myself there with the artillery, which I made leave this night, and I hope that the first news that you will receive ego to you will learn the capture from the Bard strength.

Attachment and respect.

Alex. BERTHIER (86).

Click one the image to open it full-sized in its own window.


Extract of the Journal of the campaign of the Army of the Reserve, by the adjutant commander Brossier:

“One undoubtedly owes with the tenuity of the forces of the enemy the facility with which one marched of Aoste on Châtillon.

“If it had been in a sufficient number, it could have taken a military position which is with approximately three quarters of mile of the city and which supports its left with main road close the torrent, and its line with the fortification of Quarter; this position approximately presents in the city of Aoste a one half-league length face and the firm rather exactly valley; one still notices there the layout of three lines of entrenchments whose ditches and parapets are very apparent; finally, when in the preceding wars it was occupied, it erected an obstacle which one could overcome only by removing it from sharp force or while turning it by the line.

“A batallion of Banats, with 4 artillery pieces, charged to cover Châtillon, had discussed the main road between Nus and Chambave and extended its line from the river to the small village of Saint-Denis, located on the surrounding heights.

“The French advance guard is prepared to attack it; a column is charged to turn the heights, one second column passes Doire and moves by Fenis and Pontey to wrap Châtillon and the column of the center marches to the enemy, the attack and the met in rout.

“It is continued by 100 men of the 12th of hussars which make him 300 prisoners (87), remove three artillery pieces and three caissons in the village even of Châtillon. Adjutant general Noguès was wounded in this charge.

“The village of Châtillon is located on a monticule at the left of the brook named Valley-Tournanche, which presents a considerable cashing and which one crosses on a rather narrow stone bridge.

“It is easy to defend this passage by laying out some troops on left bank; and 4 artillery pieces placed by the way were to stop the 12th of hussars, if the impetuosity of its charge had not removed with the enemy time to benefit from the advantages of the ground.

“Since the business of Châtillon, the enemy, unceasingly badgered (88), ran to contain itself in Fort Bard, with the number of approximately 400 men, including the peasants whom it had forced to follow there, It was the remainder of the forces which it had disseminated in the valley of Aoste”.


The First Consul with the general-in-chief Berthier.

Martigny, 28th floréal year 8 (May 18, 1800).

I receive at the same moment, citizen General, your two letters of Étroubles: one of 1 a.m. afternoon, of the 27th, and the other of the same day, 9 hours of the evening (89).

We had today a beautiful day, which will support the passage of the ammunition.

All the cavalry is here; I slow down of it a little the movement, in order not to not too encumber you other coast, until I know the capture of this castle of Bard (90).

The Italians left this morning.

The 1000 men of cavalry, parties of Paris a few days before me, arrived at Nyon; thus here they are with the army.

I sent a courier in Geneva so that Petiet makes pass 200,000 cartridges and 200,000 rations of biscuit by the Little Saint Bernard (91).

The oxen ravel with force: the head of the park of oxen is arrival in Lausanne,

I have just received a courier of Paris, of the 24th; all is perfectly quiet there.

I will await here, before passing, my courier of the 25th.

I required, there are four days, 300 mules and 100 transports for Villeneuve; but the Dupont commisioner of war complains about what one left him no money. I have just ordered that one gave him 20,000 francs for transport. The commisioner of war of Martigny also complains that one gave him only 1200 francs for fodder.

I required 800 mules in the high Valais Alps; I expect the head from it tomorrow.

I greet you (92).


The First Consul with the Consuls of the Republic.

Martigny, 28th floréal year 8 (May 18, 1800).

I receive, citizen Consuls, your letter of the 24th floréal. I thank you for the share which you take with dead of the woman of my brother (93). For a long time it suffered.

We fight against the ice, snow, the storms and the avalanches, the Saint-Bernard, astonished to see world so much crossing it so abruptly, erects some obstacles to us. The third of our field artillery however already passed (94).

General Berthier writes me, of the 26th, that it entered to Aoste. The General Lannes, which commands the advance guard, had, with a Croat batallion, a business of outposts of little importance. The batallion which wanted to defend the entry of Aoste was overthrown.

I am here in the middle of the Valais Alps, with the foot of the large Alps.

In three days, all the army will have passed.

Unless that was not very necessary, I believe that you will make well not give this news to the public. It is to better wait until the army is in Italy and that the military events are seriously started (95).



Orders of the day,

Aoste, 29th floréal year 8 (May 19, 1800).

The general-in-chief renews the order which it gave to the generals, to the commanders of corps and all the officers, to maintain the most exact discipline.

The inhabitants of the valley of Aoste testified to the provisions favorable for the French, and all the Italians will imitate their example, if the good order reigns with the army; he can only reconcile us the spirit of these people and avoid the partial insurrections which burst in the last campaign of Italy.

The formal intention of the Government is, moreover, that the French name is also honoured by good control with the troops and their courage.

It will be formed of the military commissions to punish plunderings and all excesses which would be made against the military laws and payments.

This order will be read with the assembled companies.

The major generals will inform the staff if the order relating to the companies of grenadiers and carabiniers is carried out in all the corps.

The Major general, general chief of staff,


The army is prevented that the advance guard found the enemy with Châtillon, It overthrew it in its entrenchments, killed 200 men to him and took 300 of them to him. It, moreover, seized 2 pieces of artillery charged. The night saved the remainder of the corps which were in Châtillon.

The Major general, general chief of staff,


Marmont, adviser of State and General commander-in-chief the artillery of the Army of the Reserve, with the First Consul.

Saint-Pierre, 29th floréal year 8 (May 19, 1800).

I received this morning, my General, your letter of yesterday (96). If you have kindness to think of the vastness of the work which the passage of artillery causes us, and if you calculate at the same time the weakness of our means, you will find that we did much work.

The peasants gave up us; the roughness of work in disgusted; I however lavished the money to make them return.

I make run with the artillery officers in all the villages and the money to the hand (97).

I put moving also the sub-prefect of the district.

I still addressed to the commissioner of the administrative Room, Frederic Gard. who spent this morning here. I so highly pressed it that it promised to me for the day after tomorrow 500 peasants (98).

I wish that these means give us arms.

The gunners are in small number, also we can make use only of their intelligence and not of their arms. The sappers left all.

The little of artillery mules which I have escapes, by two reasons: the first, it is that the general-in-chief takes them along in the valley and the guard with him instead of me to return them; the second, it is that the muleteers, for whom I could not still obtain a pair of shoes and a dress, desert per tens and hide in the batallions.

For height of misfortune, our mules are not nourished, or rather die of hunger.

I employed a batallion of the 59th (99) and a detachment of 600 men of Loison's division to assemble pieces and to carry effects of artillery. They of it are drawn with an excessive difficulty, and thanks to the rounds which the officers distributed (100); but they if are tired, harassed and dissatisfied that it is impossible to make them start again. It is much that each one makes this fatigue duty once.

The mules are good and it is necessary to employ some as much as possible, but the men are better. They do not fear the glaze and do not leave like the first their charge on the road (101).

We will never draw from business without extraordinary means; here those which I propose to you:

Order with Chambarlhac's division in entirety, and by demi-brigade, and the officers with the head, to carry and trail in Saint-Remy artillery.

To make make the same operation with Monnier's division.

This help must carry on the other side of the mounts all the artillery of divisions.

To authorize to me to take, in the conscripts of the demi-brigades, 50 muleteers to replace the deserters (102).

To send here by extraordinary means, an oats provisioning, which we miss absolutely.

To make buy and bring here all the ropes existing in the valley; we made an immense consumption of it. I expect some from Geneva; I gave of all the coasts of the orders of replacement, they will undoubtedly produce me, but anything still produced me.

With these average extremes, my General, I believe capacity to answer of success; without them, I do not see reason to arrive at the end.

Salute and attachment,



The First Consul, with the general-in-chief Berthier.

Martigny, 29th floréal year 8 (May 19, 1800).

I receive at the moment, citizen General, of the news of the bridge of the Var, of the 24th, at 7 o'clock in the morning.

General Suchet writes me that General Melas in person is in Vintimiglia. The corps which are on Nice appear to be of 15,000 men. The Lattermann grenadiers attacked, 23rd, the bridge of the Var; they vigorously were pushed back and continued to the suburbs of Nice; 200 grenadiers were made prisoners.

General Melas made by the pass of Tende a detachment of 5,000 men in Piedmont; it is commanded by the General Bellegarde, This movement took place on the news which one had received that you had arrived to Geneva with 15,000 men.

A moment ago to lose to go ahead. If Fort Bard held more than we do not think, it would be necessary that advance guard, with four pieces of artillery of 4 on mounting-sledges, which will pass everywhere, and the brigade of light cavalry, took a good position between Ivrée and the strength; place the first division in measure to support it. But I hope that you will have invested this strength today. The day is superb, which will facilitate much the passage of artillery.

I await in the course of the day my courier of Paris, of the 25th; I will pass probably tomorrow.

I greet you (103).


The First Consul, with Lieutenant General Suchet (Army of Italy).

Martigny, 29th floréal year 8 (May 19, 1800).

I received, citizen General, your two letters of the 23rd.

The Mount Saint Bernard is crossed. Half of our artillery is in Aoste. I pass myself tomorrow, When you receive this letter, the diversion must be entirely made, and the uncertainty of the enemy to have been felt in Nice.

The first operation in Nice will be to make rearm the batteries of coasts.

Make stop, to be punished severely, the inhabitants who would have badly behaved and who would have served the enemy. They are in the case of a military commission. I especially authorize you to name some to make some severe examples, if it is necessary.

The Garnier General, with a good force and some mobile columns of the Var, will be able to go in the cantons far away from the department, there to restore the tree of freedom and to punish those which would have badly behaved.

The army will be very joined together in Ivrée the 4 prairial one (104).


The First Consul, with the Consuls.

Martigny, 29th floréal year 8 (May 19, 1800).

I receive, citizen Consuls, your courier of the 25th.

The weather finally became good, which was quite necessary for us to activate the passage of our artillery by the Saint-Bernard,

A courier of General Suchet, of the 24th, teaches me that the enemy attacked, 23rd, the head of the bridge of the Var. It was pushed back; him 150 prisoners were made. General Suchet also teaches me that the enemy begins to be anxious movement of the Army of the Reserve and that it made a detachment on Berthier.

The Minister for the interior had testified the desire to me to come to join me to distract itself from dead from his wife; but, in addition to, from here to two or three days, the operations will start with a great activity, I believe necessary that, in these circumstances, it remains in Paris.

I read in the journals that one makes me write with my mother a letter in which I say that I will be in Milan in one month, That cannot be in my character. Very often, I do not say what I know; but it never arrives to me of saying what will be. I wish that you make put, on this subject, a note in the Monitor, on the ton of the joke (105).


The First Consul, with the citizen Minister of the foreign relations.

Martigny, 29th floréal year 8 (May 19, 1800).

I return you signed, citizen Minister, all papers that you sent to me.

Lastly, the Army of the Reserve enters in scene. The Saint-Bernard offered some difficulties to us, Since Charlemagne, it had not seen such a many army. He especially wanted to be opposed to the passage our large pieces of campaign; but finally half of our artillery is in Aoste (106).


The letters of Berthier, written of Aoste in the night of the 18th to the 19th, to announce the action of Châtillon (107), arrive in the afternoon at Martigny and require new letters of the First Consul.

The First Consul with the general-in-chief Berthier (108).

Martigny, 29th floréal year 8 (May 19, 1800).

I congratulate you, citizen General, on this first victory. It is a prelude of larger.

One starts finally here to have 5 or 600 mules of requisition.

I hope that tomorrow and after one will have enough considerable means to be able to make pass our artillery.

I will leave probably tomorrow.

According to the news of the 24th, of Nice, it is physically impossible that Melas can be in Turin, if it moved on this position, before the 5 or 6 prairial.

It is necessary that the 4 you are in front of Ivrée perfectly in measure. Chambarlhac's division and Monnier and the cavalry will have joined us for this day.

I greet you.


I receive at the moment a courier of Moncey: it sends the copy of the letter to me that it writes to you. You can exempt yourselves to answer him, because I do it (109).

The First Consul, with the Consuls.

Martigny, 29th floréal year 8 (May 19, 1800).

You will find herewith, citizen Consuls, copy of two small relations of Berthier (110), which you will be able to make print to seal the thirst for the public.

If you test a few days of delay in the arrival of my couriers, do not worry you. I pass to this night the Saint-Bernard (111).


The First Consul, with the Minister for the war.

Martigny, 29th floréal year 8 (May 19, 1800).

The Consuls will make you share, citizen Minister, of a small business of advance guard which took place 28th. The army did not pass all yet; we have yet only half of our artillery on other side.

One would need, in Villeneuve, of a batallion of veterans for the guard of our magazines and the escort of the prisoners in Geneva, and of some companies in Geneva (112).

Give the order to a squadron of 150 men of 19th of dragoons, which is in Caen, to move on Geneva, to belong to the Army of the Reserve.

The gendarmerie of the army would need 100 men of reinforcement. It would be necessary to take 1 man out of 10 in the quietest departments and to direct them on Villeneuve, from where they will come to join the army (113):


The First Consul, with the Minister for the French Republic as Switzerland (114).

Martigny, 29th floréal year 8 (May 19, 1800).

I request from you, citizen Minister, to see the executive Council, so that it gives the order to a batallion made up of 3 or 400 men to go to Saint-Pierre, to keep the Saint-Bernard and to take care of the safety of the communications of the army.

I would also wish that the Swiss executive Council could put in requisition three batallions of the national guard, each of 300 men. One would be held in Martigny, the second in Villeneuve and the third in Lausanne. These batallions would be intended to give escorts to the convoys of the army, guards with our magazines, to lead prisoners and to maintain the safety of the communications with France. Each National Guard will be balanced by the case of the army, at a rate of 10 pennies per day, in consideration of which it to them will not be made any species of supplies (115).


The First Consul with the administrative Room of the Valais Alps.

Martigny, 29th floréal year 8 (May 19, 1800).

Having full confidence in the attachment with the cause of the freedom of the inhabitants of the Valais Alps, I would wish, citizens, to have six companies of national guards, which commanded by a commander of batallion, each of 100 men. They will be intended to maintain free the communications of the Saint-Bernard â Villeneuve, to keep the magazines, to escort the prisoners, the casualties, etc

The first company will be held in Saint-Remy; the second, at the Hospice; the third, in Saint-Pierre; the fourth, in Sembrancher; the fifth, in Martigny; the sixth, in Saint-Maurice (116).

Each soldier will receive 5 francs every decade, in consideration of which it to them will not be made any species of supplies. The officers will be paid like those of the French troops, each one according to its rank. The commisioner of war with Martigny will stop the states of review (117).


The First Consul with General Moncey.

Martigny, 29th floréal year 8 (May 19, 1800).

I receive your letter, citizen General, with the copy of that which you address to the General Berthier, which is strong far; I take the party to answer you for him.

Huningue, Neuf-Brisach or Strasbourg must be able to provide you gunners. Nothing will compensate for the intelligence and the practice of the gunners for the transport of artillery in the bad ways, by which you will pass.

I give the order to the Petiet citizen to make you pass 50,000 francs, and I write in Paris so that one addresses 100,000 out of gold directly of them to you. You will not miss the money.

If you are with 12 or 15,000 men, 8th, to Saint-Gothard, all goes well.

The difficulties, which the passage of the Saint-Bernard offered to us, delayed us a little. The army will not be joined together in Ivrée, and in the case of to operate into large (118), that 5 prairial, where it is possible that it attracts with it the corps which are on the Alps, under the orders of General Turreau, strength from 4 to 5,000 men. After which, it will take the party of going right on Milan. It will pass Sésia as soon as possible, will be made join by the column of the Simplon, where it will have some ammunition of war, and will present itself on Tessin; in this case, it would be on Tessin only 8th.

Thus, on this assumption, of the 4th prairial to the 9th, the Army of the Reserve is to make a rather bold march. Sésia will be disputed to him by the corps which defend the Milanese. One needs that you find the means of showing many forces, to make you believe in measure, and to make beat the every day the general one with the headquarters of the division which is opposite for you; by this means, it will less dare to weaken to be opposed to the march of the Army of the Reserve, which will be able very whole to operate, according to the circumstances, to crush Melas, which would be on its right side since the 7 or 8th, where it will be arrival on Tessin.

Then it will be necessary that you go in Bellinzona, in order to form the left of the Army of the Reserve, and to carry you on Lugano or Varese, which would turn Tessin, or any operation which the circumstances will require.

If, from Ivrée, the army on the contrary goes down immediately on the side of the river of Genoa, to relieve General Masséna, then you will have five to six days moreover, during which it will be urgent and essential that you engage of the businesses of outposts to make believe that you arrive to Milan. The arrival of the Army of the Reserve in Lombardy would be delayed from five to six days, with the result that you would be more in measure.

If the enemy absolutely affected not to pay any attention to you and dismantled himself considerably to march on the Army of the Reserve, then your forces, Bellinzona, you carry remove consult on Lugano, and made the greatest diversion which you will be able (119).


Moncey, lieutenant of the general-in-chief of the Army of the Reserve, commanding the left wing, with Bonaparte, First Consul of the French Republic.

Lucerne, 4 prairial year 8 (May 24, 1800).

General First Consul,

I have the honor to show you of the 29th the reception of your dispatch floréal.

I will be 8th in front of Airolo with the 1st division and 9th at the latest with my two divisions; I will be able to thus operate with all my forces on strong Bellinzona only 9th late or 10th in the morning.

I will not have, at most, that 11,000 men, as you will be convinced some by the state attached.

You conceive easily. this delay of twenty-four hours while agreeing to recall you that I did not receive my first opinion that 25th in the night; that then, I had neither troops, neither artillery, neither draft horses, nor pack horses.

My subsistence was dispersed on points distant from that where I must put myself moving. It was necessary all to create, because nothing existed at our disposal. We will not have all that we would need; but we will compensate for what we miss by goodwill, constancy and resignation; in a word, provided that we are obliged to remain in the Valentine valley only few days, we will overcome the obstacles.

As soon as it is possible for me to establish my communication with the Simplon, by the Italian slope of Gothard, I will do it.

In uncertainty where I will be day when General Berthier will arrive on Tessin, I will be obliged to grope, when I could have and take a bolder resolution, if I had the certainty of his appearance on fixed up to date Tessin. With the remainder, if the enemy dismantles himself, I will push it with strength.

I am quite sensitive, Général First Consul, with the marks of your benevolence, and I believe to return some you certain while you assuring that my attachment for the Republic is equalized only by my devotion to its first magistrate.


State of the troops arrivals.

3rd batallion 1st light 800 men.
2 batallions 12th light 1,200
2 20th of line 1,200
2 91e of line 1,200
1 101st of line) 800
3 grenadier companies of the 44th 250
3 batallions of the 67e 1,900
1st of line 2,000
Total of the infantry 9,350 men.
Infantry which remains to be arrived.
1 batallion 91e demi-brigade.
1 1st light.
1 29th of line.
1 101st of line.
6 companies of this demi-brigade.
Cavalry arrival.
12th regiment chasseurs 400 men.
6th dragoons 400
1st 600
14th of cavalry 140
15th 180
22nd 240
25th 200
Total of the cavalry 2,160 men.
Total of the infantry arrival. 9,350
GRAND TOTAL 11,510 men.
  1. One joined together, in chapter XII, all the fundamental provisions relating to this question.
  2. Quantify which does not agree with that of the report, where it is mentioned 26 pieces (see p. 381).
  3. It is perhaps not without interest to add some observations to this situation:

    1. Berthier had prescribed 12th May that the troops would take in Villeneuve of biscuit for the five days of the 15, 16, 17, 18 and 19. Watrin's division having already exceeded Villeneuve 12th May, order had be carried out with date of the 15th only by Boudet's division and Loison, which shows that the strength of these two joined together divisions rose with 12,000 men the day of their passage in Villeneuve, quantifies a little lower than that given by the situation of the 10th May [14,223] (see appendix no. 17).

    2. Watrin's division took 15th with Saint-Pierre four days of biscuit, for the days of the 15, 16, May 17 and 18.

    Moreover, since it had exceeded Villeneuve, i.e. since 9th May, it had had to live on the rations sent of Villeneuve to Martigny; it had thus taken ten days with 5,000 rations or 50,000 rations out of the 110,000 sent to Martigny. It thus remained about it at Saint-Pierre 60,000, or five days for Boudet's division and Loison, i.e. their necessary until May 24 included;

    3. the troops having to still supply itself in Villeneuve were:

    Chambarlhac's division, 8,000 men; the Italian Legion, 1,500 men; Monnier's division, 4,500 men; conscripts and isolated joining their corps, approximately 1000; on the whole, 15,000 men, fascinating for five days, is 75,000 rations;

    Cavalry: Rivaud brigade and division Harville, 3,500 men, fascinating for eight days, are 28,000 rations.

    In all, 100,000 rations to be taken in Villeneuve.

    It remained in this position 276,000 plus 137,000 or 413,000 rations. One could thus send of it to Saint-Pierre 300,000, which represented for all the army seven or eight days of food, i.e. the subsistence assured until May approximately 30 apart from the reserves corn and flour.

  4. Illegible word.
  5. Berthier gives two days later, in Étroubles, the order necessary.

    General Sauret established its headquarters in Villeneuve and informed the troops under its orders of its capture of command (Register of the municipality of Villeneuve, May 31).

    Sauret (Pierre-François, known as Franconin), born in Gannat (To combine) 23rd March 1742, soldier with the regiment of Guyenne 14th September 1756, grenadier 11th March 1759, sergeant 11th March 1763, discharged by seniority 28th September 1771, sergeant with the Champagne regiment 17th October 1771, furrier on June 5, 1772, adjudant 13th June 1776, carry-flag 15th November 1779, second lieutenant on June 2, 1780, lieutenant 17th September 1784, captain of the grenadiers 12th January 1792, lieutenant-colonel 17th October 1792, colonel 19th May 1793, provisional brigadier general 15th October 1793, major general 23rd December 1793, pensioner on 1 November 1796, reinstated on February 6, 1800.

    He was knight of Saint-Louis at the beginning of the Revolution.

    He was created baron of the Empire 28th June 1813, and died 24th June 1818.

  6. The First Consul had just passed the review from it.

    “Bonaparte went at midday, the head of his staff and his on horse guard to review several regiments of cavalry and the Italian Legion which were gathered on the plains of Saint-Sulpice. He totaled 3 a.m. preceded by the 12th regiment of chasseurs (*)” (Journal of professor Pichard, Lausanne).

    After the review, the Italian Legion, whose uniform was green with red reverse, goes in Vevey where it arrives only at It hours of the evening (Handwritten Couvreu, May 15), and where it touches 1510 rations of bread (municipal Register of Vevey, May 15).

    (*) It seems that one must read 15th regiment of chasseurs. This cavalry comprehend indeed five regiments of division Harville (brigades Kellermann and Duvignau) and 15th of chasseurs of the Champeaux brigade.

  7. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4802.
  8. The colonel who commands artillery with the First Consul of the French Republic.

    Geneva, 27th floréal year 8 (May 17, 1800).

    My General,

    I have just received the letter of the 25th running, by which you make me the honor be written that the needs for a detachment of 600 men of the 60th demi-brigade require that I make leave in all diligence for Villeneuve the quantity 300 muskets.

    This detachment can arise and to make its request in Villeneuve, where I have dispatched for several days more than 1600 muskets boxed such as I received them.

    As for the cartridges of infantry, the depot of Villeneuve is supplied of more than one million and having received the order today to make leave by Nyon and Lausanne, the quantity of 1600 muskets and 195,000 cartridges to be delivered with the division of General Monnier, I at once dispatch a brigantine in charge of these quantities with an officer provided with orders. This made sending, it does not remain to us any more only one cartridge. Manufacture always goes its train, but not as quickly as I would wish it, because not having here a garrison, the gunners are continuously distracted from this work for unloadings of the convoys arriving and the loading of the boats.

    Salute and respect.


  9. The grenadiers of the guard leave Lausanne 16th May indeed, according to the Journal the Vaudois Pichard and Writer of the 16th May. The Swiss Bulletin, only, indicates a departure of the guard 15th May.
  10. See note 3, p. 390.
  11. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4798.
  12. Lauriston, envoy ahead by the First-Consul, was in Villeneuve 13th May at 8 o'clock in the morning (see its letter with the First Consul, p. 348).

    It undoubtedly had to arrive in the course of the day with Saint-Pierre (65 kilometers), to see, 14th, artillery of Lannes completing to go up to the hospice, and to set out again the evening, or in the night, of Saint-Pierre for Lausanne (96 kilometers).

  13. Altitudes: Saint-Pierre, 1630 meters; the Hospice, 2,472 meters; Aoste, 660 meters. Horizontal distances: Saint-Pierre at the Hospice, 13 kilometers; the Hospice with Aoste, 35 kilometers; Aoste with Bard, 53 kilometers.
  14. In the original of the hand of Bourienne, it y a: Tomorrow at the evening, I will be probably tomorrow at the evening. In the publication of the Correspondence of Napoleon, one restored the sentence, by putting Saint-Maurice, according to the indication of about the same day with the guard (V. p. 384).
  15. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4803.
  16. The officers of these three companies, under the orders of the commander of Vivenot batallion, had lived in the intimacy of the monks. “They took together their meals and their innocent recreations; at the feastdays and Sundays they linked their voices to sing the praises of God of the armies. The day of the Rise, May 15, 1800, after a fraternal meal, the commander of batallion girded his sword and bade in the name of all the officers his last farewell with the monks in these terms: ” (66 Follow towards alexandrines) (handwritten Notes of a monk of the Great Saint Bernard).
  17. One distributed 15th May 1295 bottles of wine and 831 cheese pounds (Archives of the Great Saint Bernard).
  18. Journal of the campaign of the Army of the Reserve, by the adjutant commander Brossier.
  19. According to the Austrian relation, Étroubles was defended by two companies which had broken the bridge and which were withdrawn when they were threatened by a turning movement of the French coming from the valley of Pellina (OEstreichische militärische Zeitschrift, volume XXVI, 1822, p. 175).
  20. Journal of the campaign of the Army of the Reserve of the adjutant commander Brossier.
  21. General Gency had already received the order to come known pass 16th May (see p. 372).
  22. The topographical engineers made a plan of the Camp of Étroubles which exists in Military Archives.
  23. Archives of Orsières.
  24. 9th light (arch. of Orsières, register of the military supplies).
  25. 30th and 59th, according to the Archives of Sembrancher, which indicate for the strength of the first demi-brigade 661 men, and for those of the second 77 officers, 1785 warrant officers and soldiers.
  26. It is not in ordered Saint-Pierre even as generally the various corps of the army, but with bivouacs between this village and that of Liddes.

    “…. Between Liddes and Bourg-Saint-Pierre, one establishes three camps of relay. All the demi-brigades made a halt there, follow to take again breath, follow to take the mountain in the morning. As the soldiers could not march that to the file and two steps of distance one of the other, by a narrow path traced in snows, one let leave the camp more brought closer to the mountain only 5 to 6,000 men per day, so that the rear-guard could arrive before the night at the camp of Étroubles, village located at 3 miles of the Saint-Bernard, in the valley of Aoste” (handwritten Notes of a monk of the Great Saint Bernard).

    One of these camps was the bivouac of Pratz, located about halfway between Liddes and Bourg-Saint-Pierre, on banks of a tributary torrent of right-hand side of Dranse. One still calls it in the country the “Camp of the French. ”

    Another camp was the “bivouac of the meadows” in bottom of the town of Liddes (local traditions)

  27. It is by error that in the Memoires of Napoleon (volume VI, p. 206) reproduced in the Correspondence of Napoleon (volume XXX, p. 442) it is indicated that General Lannes arrives 16th May at Aoste with the 6th light, 28th and 44th of line, 11th and 12th of hussars and 21st of chasseurs.

    16th May, the 28th was in the Valais Alps; the 44th, in the Simplon with Béthencourt; 12th of hussars and 21st of chasseurs (Rivaud brigade), in Saint-Pierre; the 11th of hussars, belonging to the brigade Duvignau (Harville division), in Morges or Lausanne.

  28. This first part of the letter of Lannes was published in Paris in the Monitor of the 24th May, at the same time as the letter of Berthier of the 19th May announcing with the First Consul the action of Châtillon. The former news given to the public had appeared in the number of the 17th May and mentioned the arrival of the army in Lausanne, without letting foresee the direction which it was going to follow.
  29. An assembly of the council and the notable ones of the town of Aoste meet 16th May.

    It is noted that the administration is absolutely deprived of magazines and funds of subsistence. One deliberates to represent with the commanders of the army the state of exhaustion and distress in which reduced this province is and the impossibility of the administration of being able to contribute to the food and the services of the army.

    The sior Secondin is in charge of the distribution of all that one will be able to still find of hay, straw, wine, salt, rice, candles. The orders signed by one of the syndics or any of the advisers will be supposed sufficient, considering the urgency of the service (Archives of the town of Aoste, Délibérations of the municipality, May 16, 1800).

  30. A batallion is left with the guard of the line of communication. The arrival of the 40th demi-brigade on the southern slope makes it available and the adjutant general Hulin written in the evening of the 16th:

    With the commander of the 3rd batallion of the 22nd demi-brigade of line.

    According to the provisions adopted by the commanding general division, you will leave, citizen, with the batallion under your orders, tomorrow 27 of the current, to come to join to Aoste the two other batallions.


  31. The inhabitants of Aoste were very frightened arrival of the French. The bishop went to find General Lannes and tells him terrors of the population; Lannes promised that the city would be treated like a friendly territory.

    In spite of that, each inhabitant barricaded his door and the French crossed a deserted city, or the least noise was not heard. (Cagliani, It passagio di Large-Sant-Bernado Bonaparte per it.)

    Lannes notified with the municipality that the authorities made up would remain in position (arch. of the town of Aoste, Lettres, vol. 162).

  32. With the museum of Versailles, room 80, below the small table which represents the business of the Cluse, one reads the inscription: Action of the Cluse, May 21. This date is obviously a material error.
  33. It seems that Malher's brigade did not examine serious resistance between the Cluse and Aoste. However one knew by the intelligence collected which the Austrians “raised another entrenchment more extended (than that of the Cluse), in Gignod, which is an assembly of some houses distant one hour of the City; this entrenchment defends the outlets of the Pellina valley and that of the Saint-Bernard” (Intelligence on the road of the Great Saint Bernard to Pd, while passing by Aoste).
  34. According to the Austrian account, the three companies which defended Aoste had their retirement threatened by a French detachment arrived at 10 o'clock in the morning with Villefranche (one mile downstream from Aoste); but colonel Rakitkvich, marching of Châtillon towards Aoste with some companies and a gun, pushed back this detachment in the mountain, rejoined the defenders of Aoste and occupied the position of Villefranche.

    As for a company which beat a retreat since the Little Saint Bernard in front of Chabran's division, it was crossed by the occupation of Aoste and was obliged to take by the mountain the way of the pass of Cogne (V. OEstreichische militärische Zeitschrift, T. XXVI, 1822, p. 175).

  35. Aoste, 26th floréal year 8 (May 16, 1800).

    With the commisioner of war.

    Want well, my dear Commissaire, to make transport the straw for the camping of the troop to the bridge in the suburb where the soldiers have order to go to seek it.

    I warned the commanders of the corps which the distribution of the meat will be made tomorrow at 5 o'clock in the morning. It is necessary that you make cut down in the suburbs beyond the bridge of stone to avoid the lengths and the difficulty to the soldiers.

    Friendly salute.


    With the commander of the position.

    The intentions of the commanding general division being, citizen Commandant, that no soldier can go downtown without having the permission of it beforehand, please give order well to the guard of the bridge not to let enter nobody of the camp without the authorization of a commander of batallion, the officers even having to place downtown only according to my authorization.

    Salute and fraternity.


  36. Order of the day of the 26th floréal.

    The Garraux citizen, inspector with the reviews, will pass the review of the 6th light demi-brigade and 22nd demi-brigade of line, 28th of the current; the hour will be indicated by it.

    The commanders of the corps will make bring to this review:

    1. personal controls of the companies with the notes of the changes which took place since the 1st germinal year 8;

    2. the situation of the case of the 1st germinal;

    3. That of clothing;

    4. That of the armament.

    They will conform finally to all that prescribed to them the Garraux inspector by his letter of the 15th floréal.


  37. The 40th made a halt at the hospice, like had made the day before Malher's brigade. The Archives of the Great Saint Bernard indicate which 16 May one distributed to the French troops 1172 bottles of wine and 398 pounds cheese.
  38. Rivaud's cavalry brigade joined the advance guard 18th (V. p. 415, note 1).
  39. This letter was not found.
  40. Obvious lapse; it is necessary to read 12th of hussars and 21st of chasseurs.
  41. Lannes had to receive this letter with Aoste 16th, very late in the evening. Dupont wrote the same day to him an almost identical letter.
  42. Boudet's division assembles 16th of Orsières to Saint-Pierre.
  43. Loison's division goes 16th of Martigny in Sembrancher (Archives of Sembrancher). 17th, it comes to Saint-Pierre.
  44. Chambarlhac's division comes 16th from Saint-Maurice in Martigny and 17th in Sembrancher.

    The following provisions are adopted to confine in this locality only the staff and the companies of elite, although the surface of this village had made it possible to shelter a greater number of troops:

    “The others will remain with the bivouac with their troops.

    “Will only place in Sembrancher: Chambarlhac General and his aide-de-camp, General Rivaud and its aide-de-camp, General Herbin and its aide-de-camp, general Delort and its assistants, colonels, a commisioner of war, commanders of artillery, engineers, 6 companies of grenadiers in the barns, quatermasters, officers of health” (Archives of Sembrancher).

  45. Monnier's division is 16th on Lake Geneva; the 19th light with Gex; the 70th with Vevey.

    The 70th, arrival with 1 a.m., is inspected on the position of Vevey at 5 o'clock in the evening, by General Monnier, before going “to place as well in Vevey as in the district”. Its strength is approximately 2,000 men (Couvreu Manuscript); 800 men of this demi-brigade receive bread with Vevey (municipal Register of Vevey, May 16).

    17th, the 70° goes to Villeneuve and the 19th light to Nyon.

  46. The Italian Legion leaves Vevey 16th at midday and half (Handwritten Couvreu) to go to Aigle, and 17th with Martigny.
  47. The cavalry of Murat is still in Morges and Lausanne.
  48. It is known that waiting of the sledges had delayed several days the movement of the army.
  49. The First Consul approved this change of line of communication and gave 18th May of the orders to the advisers of state Petiet and Dejean to make pass by the Little Saint Bernard 200,000 cartridges and 200,000 rations of biscuit (see these letters at the end of chapter XII).
  50. Probably for Saint-Pierre.
  51. This report was not found.
  52. Probably for Saint-Pierre.
  53. It is undoubtedly necessary to read: It is expressly defended, etc
  54. This order arrives to Berthier in Étroubles 17th. It is necessary to count for the way: from Lausanne with Martigny, 68 kilometers. 6 hours; of Martigny at the hospice, 10 hours; hospice with Étroubles, 4 hours; maybe, at least, 20 hours.
  55. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4807.
  56. It is astonishing that this letter is addressed General Duvignau, to brigadier general whom commands the dragoons and not the major general Harville, if not with the lieutenant of the general-in-chief Murat.
  57. That is to say five days of bread and oats, i.e. 3k, 750 of bread and 15 to 20 kilogr. of oats, according to the weapons (V. the composition of the rations, p. 372, note 2).
  58. The stage of Lausanne with Bex is 49 kilometers, that of Morges with Aigle, 53 kilometers. The next day, May 18, the cavalry went only from Aigle and Bex to Martigny, 28 and 20 kilometers. and had to make stay then (V. the letter of the First Consul with Berthier 18th May, p. 419).
  59. The purpose of this inaccuracy, volunteer, were undoubtedly to give confidence to Suchet.
  60. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4808.
  61. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4809.
  62. Berthier arrives at Étroubles towards midday.

    It had stopped at the hospice and had asked a dog of the Saint-Bernard it. After the battle of Marengo, 29th June, it wrote to the prior of the convent to point out to him its promise (Archives of the Great Saint Bernard).

    The general-in-chief had left his baggage in the valley; it is only 24th May which a transport transported its maps of Martigny to Saint-Pierre (Archives of Martigny). It could not thus receive them before 27th or 28th.

  63. The same day, Berthier sent a new order to Dupont:

    “Give the order that a detachment of 15 sappers with their tools leave with the two pieces artillery. ”

  64. Pernety received in Étroubles the written following letter of Aoste, 17th May, by the commander of staff of Watrin's division:

    With the commander the artillery of division.

    The commanding general division authorizes you, citizen Commandant, to take what you ask him by your letter of yesterday, to retain the 15 sappers who are necessary for you.

    This country not having wagons, I made you dispatch yesterday 20 mules in position of the 10 wagons which you asked; you will receive 8 others from them today.

    The cartridges which you sent by two gunners are arrivals at the evening yesterday; as they cannot be distributed of continuation, there will remain here a gunner to keep them and receive then the goods of the distributions.


  65. See p. 402.
  66. See p. 408, note 1.
  67. The six pieces of Watrin's division only on the Italian slope, dismounted and are trailed with arm in tree trunks. They should be gone up on their mountings with Étroubles, where a way starts.
  68. Boudet's division (three demi-brigades) and Rivaud's cavalry brigade (two regiments) passed sticks it morning. The hospice distributes 17th May, 2,453 wine bottles and 578 cheese pounds.

    These corps arrive in the course of the day at Étroubles. With the Chabran's division, which arrives at Aoste by the Berthier Little Saint Bernard lays out, 17th, of approximately 15,000 infantrymen and 1000 horsemen in the valley of Aoste.

  69. The troops which delivered the action of Aoste 16th, i.e. the 6th light and two batallions of the 22nd, remain 17th in their camp, close to this city. Watrin's division concentrates there, except for a left batallion with Étroubles, and the commander of staff written to the Trousset commisioner of war:

    “I warn you, citizen Commissaire, that the first two batallions of the 40th demi-brigade and the batallion of the 22nd will arrive today at Aoste. You will want to ensure their subsistence it well:

    “HULIN. ”

    In the Bulletin of the Army of the Reserve of the 24th May, one reads that General Lannes was started and went on châtillon 17th May.

    The Memoires of Napoleon, volume VI, page 206, and the Correspondence of Napoleon, volume XXX, page 442, reproduced this mistake in the date by putting the action of Châtillon 17th May.

    It is only 18th which the free advance guard Aoste.

    The Austrians, under the orders of colonel Rakithvich, give up Villefranche 17th and withdraw themselves in Châtillon, with outposts with Chambave (OEstreichische militärische Zeitschrift, volume XXVI, 1822, p. 175).

    Mathieu Dumas, in his Precis of the military events, volume III, pages 169 and 172, edition of 1816, makes leave Lannes and division advance guard 17th May of Saint-Pierre and the fact of arriving 19th May at Châtillon. The same dates are given by Jomini in the History of the wars of the Revolution, delivers XVI, CH. CII.

    There is a double inaccuracy, since, actually, Malher's brigade appeared of Saint-Pierre in the evening of the 14th May and that the action of Châtillon took place 18th.

    Further, page 173, Mathieu Dumas indicates that the First Consul left Lausanne 19th May, while it left 16th there.

    One can judge, according to these examples, of the degree of confidence which must be granted to the facts advanced by the most famous writers and most precisely famous.

  70. The letter of Dupont with Lannes is the almost textual reproduction of the orders of Berthier, except the following passage:

    “The goal of your operation is to clean the valley of Aoste to the fortification of Bard and to highly overthrow the enemy who is there, in order to accelerate the rendering of this strength, which you will invest and attack immediately.

    “The general-in-chief will go itself tomorrow very good hour to Aoste.

    “Give orders so that all the effects of ambulance. and others, necessary to your operations, are ready. ”

  71. Before to have received the instructions of Dupont, General Watrin had made give the following orders to Aoste, in the course of the day of the 17th May:

    With the generals of Malher's brigade and Gency.

    In accordance with the provisions of the commanding general division, you will want well, citizen General, to give orders to the brigade which you command so that it is held lends to leave tomorrow morning.

    You will make take subsistence with all the corps which make it up until the 1st prairial one or the 2, if it is possible. It is necessary that the distribution is made tomorrow at 9 o'clock in the morning for later.

    You will make take cartridges at a rate of 50 rounds per man. The magazine of the cartridges is with the vault, in the suburb, close the camp


    [Order, consequently, with the Trousset commisioner of war, about the distribution.

    They is three or four days of food which Watrin's division took in Aoste, since it had been supplied in Saint-Pierre until the 28 floréal included (see p. 372)].

    With the generals of Gency's Brigade and Malher.

    I warn you, citizen General, that the troops of division will receive tomorrow sixteen rations of rice and a half-pint of wine per man. The distribution will be done at 6 o'clock in the morning. I ask you to deliver opinion of them to the commanders of the corps composing the brigade under your orders.

    The distribution of the bread will take place at 9 a.m., as I have just written it to you.

    Salute and attachment.


    (See p. 412, note 1, the new orders given to the receipt of the instructions of Berthier.)

  72. 16th May, at 5 o'clock in the evening, the First Consul had left Lausanne (Writer of Vaud of the 17th May and Journal Pichard of the 16th). It passed at 8 o'clock in the evening to Vevey, where it changed horses (Couvreu Manuscript), and came to sleep in Saint-Maurice, in the convent, according to the Memoires of Napoleon, or, according to the local tradition, in a house which one still shows in Saint-Maurice.

    17th, it establishes its headquarters with Martigny in the house of the monks of the Great Saint Bernard, from where it writes 18th with Joséphine:

    “I have been here for three days, in the middle of the Valais Alps and of the Alps, in a convent of Bernardins. The sun there is never seen: judge if one is there agreeably! …. It (Memoires of contemporary).

    This letter could make believe that the First Consul had arrived 16th at Martigny, as also a manuscript of the Great Saint Bernard mentions it.

    But the order of the 15th ordering with the aide-de-camps to prepare housing 16th in Saint-Maurice, the letter of the 16th indicating to Berthier: “I will be this night with Saint-Maurice” and that of the 17th starting with these words: “I arrive at Martigny…. ” seem to only prove the arrival with Martigny 17th.

    In any case, there is glaring error in the Memoires of Bourrienne (T. IV, p. 97), announcing the arrival of the First Consul to Martigny, 20th May.

    The monks noted the passage of the First Consul:

    “…. It. went down to the provostal house from the Saint-Bernard. During the three days that it stopped there, one did not see it appearing outside; it left its room to only go to the refectory; a silence of Carthusian monk reigned with the provost and the environs; neither the staff, nor the guards dared to open the mouth. ”

    The Consular Guard was celebrated by the municipality of Martigny, which offered a “reception to him” and required for that “of the best wine of the cellar of the treasurer of the Saint-Bernard”. The First Consul contributed to this rejoicing, by giving 100 louis (Archives of Martigny).

  73. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4810.
  74. The 28th demi-brigade crosses the Great Saint Bernard 18th and reaches Aoste, while Loison's division, also passing the pass, ordered in Étroubles.

    The provisions provided 18th May by the monks to the French Army are assembled to 2,685 bottles of wine and 864 pounds cheese (Archives of the Great Saint Bernard).

  75. Dubreton announced with the municipality of Aoste its arrival with the general-in-chief Berthier, 18th May, required housing for its commanders of administration, its commanders of crew and its drivers, a house for him and its offices and finally of the stables. (Archives of the town of Aoste. Letters, vol. 162.)
  76. General Lannes had received, in the night of the 17th to the 18th May, the orders sent of Étroubles in the evening of the 17th (V. the letter of Berthier, p. 406, and that of Dupont, p. 408, note 1).

    Watrin's division had had, consequently, to advance the hour of its departure.

    Aoste, 28th floréal year 8 (May 18, 1800), to 4 h. 1/2 of the morning.

    With the generals of Malher's brigade and Gency.

    According to the new provisions of the commanding general division, it is necessary that you order with the troops under your orders of going from following the distribution of the food and the wine, and to be held ready to start itself, at once after it is finished. As for the meat, one will make follow to oxen the movements of division.


    With the Trousset commisioner of war.

    According to the new provisions of the commanding general division, you will want well, citizen Commissaire, to give orders so that the distribution of the food to the troop is made continuation, waited until it is necessary that it is started at once afterwards.


    While Watrin's division left Aoste, its artillery was started to join it.

    The commander of batallion, commanding artillery of Watrin's division, with the commander of the position of Aoste.

    Étroubles, 28th floréal year 8 (May 18, 1800).

    I send, citizen Commandant, a piece of 8 with a caisson and a caisson of howitzers for Watrin's division; I ask you to direct this convoy under escort on the road which must have capture division, by Châtillon. So however the general-in-chief or General Lannes and Watrin were still in Aoste, it would be in connection with taking their orders on this subject, so already do not have you.

    The adjutant general Hulin, commander of our staff, has just sent an ordinance to me to prevent himself departure of division and to ask for a prompt sending of cartridges to me. I join it to that of the gun, asking you to make follow this one under escort, most promptly possible, on the road of Châtillon, addressed to the adjutant general, who will have which it. A gunner will have to accompany it for the distribution in order.

    Salute and fraternity.


  77. Boudet's division descends 18th from Étroubles to Aoste.
  78. The 28th comes in the course of the day of the 18th from Saint-Pierre to Aoste. It is undoubtedly because of this strong stage which it leaves the following day only at midday, although having an objective more moved away than Boudet's division.
  79. It was the Stabeurath adjutant general who remained in Aoste (see p. 443).
  80. This letter of Berthier was published in the Correspondence of Napoleon, T. VI, p. 371, no. 4816, with the mention “by order of the First Consul” and without the signature of Berthier.

    This process was frequently employed in the publication of this correspondence for the campaign of 1800. A note put on page 342 of volume VI gives of it an explanation which is far from being conclusive.

    The error is not serious, when Berthier and Dupont are in the same locality as the First Consul; one can then regard their orders as writings under the inspiration, if not the dictation of this last.

    But it “by order of the First Consul” becomes incredible, when the signatory of the letter is separated from the First Consul by a considerable distance.

    It is thus for the letter of the 18th May. Berthier writes it in Aoste, while the First Consul is in Martigny, and the surface observer to hardly believe that it is “by order of the First Consul”, separated from him by the solid mass of the Alps, that Berthier fixed its departure of the following day at 5 o'clock in the morning and ordered that a staff officer leaves for the advance guard with an escort 6 men.

    Besides one could forget only the First Consul, commander of the government, does not have to go into details which hardly belong to General Berthier, commanding the Army of the Reserve, but which it more precisely regards as the généralissime giving instructions to the various armies.

  81. The Rivaud's cavalry brigade, which had passed the Great Saint Bernard 17th, had started from Étroubles 18th in the morning, and had joined Watrin's division in the course of the day.
  82. According to the Austrian military Review, volume XXVI, p. 175, the attack took place at 2 o'clock in the afternoon.
  83. It is with the 6th light only that General Malher made the revolving movement, since the 22nd was with the attack of face.
  84. Noguès (Jean-François), born in Castelnau on December 3, 1769, had been a lieutenant in the 2nd batallion of the Hautes-Pyrénées on March 2, 1792, captain in this batallion on 4 April 1792, named commander of batallion by the representatives of the people on 3 October 1793, adjutant general, provisional colonel 24th November 1794, confirmed in this rank 13th June 1795.

    It became brigadier general 28th July 1800, and major general on February 1, 1805.

  85. The advance guard thus spends the night of the 18th to the 19th in two levels: towards Arnaz, with Watrin, the troops are which continued the enemy, undoubtedly the 40th and the cavalry; in Châtillon, ordered General Lannes with Malher's brigade.

    The journal of march of Brossier only says:

    “As of 28th, the advance guard arrives at a half mile of Fort Bard. ”

  86. This letter of Berthier was published in the Monitor of the 24th May; one removed there the sentence relating to General Marescot and the Garrau assistant inspector, as well as the two last lines: I hope that the first news….
  87. These prisoners all were of the regiment of Deutschbanat. The list of item, which was drawn up by it, is in Military Archives; it comprehend 223 names whose 1 chaplain, 1 surgeon, 2 lieutenants, 2 ensigns, 4 warrant officers, According to the Manuscripts of Bourdillon and Dunant, these prisoners arrived to Geneva 25th May and were interned at the height Boats.
  88. A detachment of 30 men was still a few days later in the mountains around Châtillon.

    “De Ayas,

    With the French citizen Commanding, resident with Châtillon.


    Leprous undersigneds, lieutenant; List, corporal; Kamonski, corporal; Joseph Bosco, salaried; François Chindelar, private of the regiment of François-Kinski-Infantry, are ready to make itself prisoner of war with the detachment, provided that the François commander promises and holds the word which it is made no insult neither wrong to the officer nor with his detachment, and which it does not allow that it is not attacked any the crew of each individual, very small that it has, of which the deprivation will not be less sensitive to the poor soldier.

    Fact with Ayes, 22nd May 1800.

    Gisepe Bosco, Franz SCHINDELAR (sic), Johan LIST, corporal,
    Josephus KAMONYSKY (sic), corporal,
    LEBREUX (sic), lieutenant of the regiment of Franz-Kinsky-Inf. “

    (Piece written in French),

    Adjutant general Noguès, aide-de-camp of General Lannes, wounded with the action of the 18th and constrained to remain to look after itself in Saint-Vincent, received this letter at 10 o'clock in the evening, of the 23rd sent in the morning “an officer of the 58th demi-brigade accompanied by 10 men to the post occupied by the Austrians”, directed the 30 prisoners “on Aoste after their having made deposit the weapons with Châtillon”. and account returned to General Dupont from there.

    An odd legend was formed about this lieutenant Lepreux.

    It would have surprised 23rd May, in a path close to Saint-Vincent, the First Consul out of gray dress and hat embroidered without plume, only accompanied by some generals; but having wasted time to answer the questions which were asked to him, it would have been soon surrounded itself by the consular guard, would have become in its turn the prisoner of the First Consul and would have learned only the importance from the capture that it had just missed (the true lame Messenger, Vevey, 1801; It passagio di Large-Sant-Bernardo Bonaparte per it, by Cagliani-Bex, 1892; Napoleon i in the valley of Aoste, by the abbot vescoz, Aoste, 1887).

    The capitulation above decreases considerably the probability of this legend and the fortuitous meeting the Leprous one.

  89. These two letters were not found,
  90. The cavalry (six regiments, according to the Couvreu Manuscript) leaves Morges and Lausanne and goes by a stage of 50 kilometers in Aigle and Bex, where “fodder is more abundant than with the foot of the Saint-Bernard. It bivouacs there in the meadows” (Swiss Bulletin, number of the 20th May, quoting a letter of Saint-Maurice of the 17th).
  91. See in chapter XII.
  92. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4812,
  93. Christine Boyer, girl of a landlord of Saint-Maximin (Var), that Lucien Bonaparte had married on May 4, 1794, at the time where it was guard-magazine of the administration of the military subsistence in this city (Large Encyclopedia).
  94. News identical to Joséphine and Lucien, Minister for the Interior:

    “The Great Saint Bernard offers many difficulties of overcoming…. ”

    “…. One the third of artillery is in Italy; the army goes down to force; Berthier is in Piedmont; in three days all will have passed. ”

  95. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4811,
  96. This letter was not found.
  97. One had proposed several times 1000 francs per piece of 8 rise of Saint-Pierre to the Saint-Bernard, but the communes were not arrivals to be gotten along (Letter of Alix, colonel of artillery to the sub-prefect of Orsières, May 29, Archives of Sembrancher).
  98. The First Consul requires of the canton of the Valais Alps to immediately provide him 6,000 peasants with cords and promises a strong pecuniary reward to attract them. The administrative Room transmits 20th May its requisition to the various cities:

    “The administrative room, prevented that Bonaparte requires 6,000 men for the transport of artillery of Bourg-Saint-Pierre to the Saint-Bernard, prevents that the General promises 40 louis per gun returned to the Saint-Bernard and who will be paid immediately.

    “Sion will have to provide 40 men with as many possible cords, 1 axe for 20 men and of the food for 8 to 10 days.

    “These men will leave in the 24 hours” (Archives of the town of Sion). (Archives of the town of Sion)

  99. Of Boudet's division,
  100. This fact, quoted by Marmont, seems exceptional; it is not brought back nowhere elsewhere.

    One will see on the contrary the devotion of the other demi-brigades of infantry.

  101. One minute of the Journal of the campaign of Brossier gives the following details on the passage of artillery:

    “…. As for artillery and for the caissons of the ammunition of war, it had been necessary to dismount them piece with piece and to make them trail or transport to back of mules and with arm, One had dug tree trunks in the shape of shuttle, to embed the pieces of artillery and the howitzers there; the Gassendi General had made make in Auxonne sledges with rollers, which were used to transport the empty axles and caissons. The mountings were carried by pieces detached on poles, excluded those of the pieces of 4 which were it by 10 men, on a stretcher.

    (The piece of 8 weighed 1650 kilograms; its caisson, 1700; the piece of 4 weighed 1050; its caisson, 1500; the howitzer, 1600; its caisson, 1600 also).

    The ammunition of war were divided into cases, ranges with back of mules or arm. A batallion was in charge of the transport of the assembled gun and its furnished caisson; one gave him for that 4 or 500 francs of gratification.

    Then half of the soldiers of the batallion carried the bags, weapons and food of their comrades, while those were harnessed with the sledges and tree trunks or carried the dismounted caissons and mountings and the cases of ammunition. The peasants, who initially were not moved away, returned by the soft food of the same rewards, and those that they received while being used as guides to the general and higher officers.

    The descent of the mountain arised then much more dangerous.

    The way was so fast and if slipping that the men nor the horses could not ensure their steps the snow melt had caused innumerable cracks. “

  102. These proposals were approved and the infantry of Chambarlhac's division fired her guns with much spirit (see p. 480 and 481).

    In spite of the great difficulties of the passage, there was one accident.

    “…. In the passing of the Saint-Bernard an avalanche carried a piece of 8 and 3 gunners. This event produced a quantity of tales and exaggerations…. These accounts are fables, and it absolutely proved only the accident brought back there above…. ” (Letter of Martigny of the 21st May, quoted in the Swiss Bulletin of the 25th May 1800, volume III, p. 280).

    This accident appears even doubtful, because it is not mentioned in any official document.

  103. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4824.
  104. Correspondence of Napoleon, u° 4827.
  105. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4817.
  106. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4819.
  107. See p. 414 and 415.
  108. The Correspondence of Napoleon, volume VI, p. 375 and 376, gives this letter and another of the same day (p. 424 above), with the mention: “With General Berthier, commanding as a commander the Army of the Reserve with Verres” who does not exist on the originals.

    It is exact that General Berthier slept in Verrès 19th May, but the First Consul, only informed that Berthier went in the course of the day in front of Fort Bard, could not envisage in Martigny its return of Bard to Verrès.

    It of the 19th could even less the it is in the letter written in the morning, whereas it was unaware of the action of Châtillon, and knew only the presence of Berthier with Aoste.

    The Correspondence of Napoleon contains many similar indications which denature the text of the originals and deteriorate the value of it.

  109. See p. 129.
  110. Reports of Berthier to the First Consul, envoys of Aoste in the night of the 18th to the 19th (see p. 414 and 415).
  111. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4818.
  112. The Minister, Carnot, answered of Paris, 25th May:

    “…. I have the honor to observe you that the organization of the companies of veterans in batallions is not finished; but to fill, in this respect, your intentions, I gave orders to make pass to Geneva and Villeneuve 13 companies of veterans, drawn from the most brought closer points and where their presence is less necessary….

    … It results from these provisions that 9 companies equivalent to the force of a batallion will be directed on Villeneuve, and that the 4 others will remain stationed in Geneva, independently of those which are there in this moment…. “

    According to a state joint with the letter of Carnot, the strength of these units varied from 24 to 57 men and reached for the 13 companies the total of 540 men, of which 105 were directed on Geneva and 435 on Villeneuve. These troops came from Dijon, Châlons, Saint-Dizier, Mâcon, Autun, Besancon, Bourg, Lons-the-Salt maker, Salins, Saint-Etienne, Roanne and Cret, and arrived at Gex or Geneva between the 3 and 15th June.

  113. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4822.
  114. Citizen Reinhard.
  115. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4821.
  116. The administrative Room of the Valais Alps and the executive commission of the Swiss Republic agreed at the requests of the First Consul.

    Three companies valaisiennes were placed at the Saint-Bernard, Sembrancher and Martigny; three companies of infantry occupied Saint-Remy, Saint-Pierre and Saint-Maurice, “not to overload the quotas of the Valais Alps”.

    Two batallions of 300 men kept the road of Lausanne with Vevey.

    But the executive commission wrote in Moncey on June 3 that, to provide these 1200 men, it “was obliged with its great regret to withdraw the 4 companies of light infantry which were in Saint-Gothard”.

    It ordered in more “on the request of the First Consul, to establish a chain of couriers of Lucerne or Altorf to the Great Saint Bernard, to have regular and prompt news march of the troops of Switzerland” (Actensamlung aus der Zeit DER helvetischen Republik, volume V, no. 400, May 23, May 28 and June 3).

  117. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4820.
  118. The First Consul had initially dictated: . , in the case of to act according to circumstances',
  119. Correspondence of Napoleon, no. 4825.