The 95th Rifles at Waterloo

Discussion in '1800-1914' started by Hobilar, Nov 7, 2007.

  1. Hobilar

    Hobilar Member

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    Of all the regiments present at Waterloo, none was more respected at the time than the Green-jacketed 95th Rifles. A highly-trained regiment of expert marksmen and skirmishers, the 95th drew a grudging respect and generated great fear amongst their French enemies.

    The men of the 95th were armed with the 'Baker' rifle and sword bayonet; the standard of marksmanship in the regiment was phenomenal. Officers were armed with a sword humourously describd by John Kincaid (the Adjutant of the 1st Battalion) as 'Our small regulation half-moon sabre... better calculated to shave a lady's maid than a Frenchman's head'. In Kincaid's case at Wateroo, the effeciveness of the sword was of little consequence; His sword had rusted solid in its scabbard due to the heavy rain!

    Present at Waterloo were the 1st and 2nd Battalions of the 95th, plus two companies from the 3rd Battalion, a total of 1,322 Officers and Men. By the end of this day of battle they had suffered 35 officers and 482 men as casualties.
     
  2. Hobilar

    Hobilar Member

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    Following Napoleons abdication in 1814, five companies of the 3rd Battalion 95th Rifles were despatched to take part in the ill-fated New Orleans operation.

    At Waterloo the 1st Battalion served in the 8th Brigade (Major General Sir John Kempt) of the 5th Division (Lt. Gen Sir T Picton) in Wellington's 'Reserve' Corp.

    The 2nd Battalion and the two companies of the 3rd Battalion present served in the 3rd Brigade ( Maj Gen. Adams) of 2nd Division ( Lt. Gen. Sir H. Clinton) of Lord Hill's 2nd Corps.
     
  3. fer-de-lance

    fer-de-lance Member

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    After the Napoleonic Wars, Baker rifles were supplied to Mexico, particularly the early models that accepted the same sized ball as the 0.69 "Brown Bess" smooth-bore muskets. Some of the Mexican Cazadores light infantry were equipped with these rifles as well as second-hand kit from the British Army (likely from the 95th).

    Mexican Cazadores and British made Baker rifles (probably some used previously by the 95th) saw action at the Alamo.
     
  4. renrich

    renrich Active Member

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    Interesting posts about the rifle units in the British army. The novels written by Bernard Cornwell whose main character is Richard Sharpe are mainly about the Rifle Companies. He talks of when the action became hot and close the rifleman not using the patched ball in order to speed up loading. The Baker rifles, if they were used by Santa Anna's troops at the San Jacinto, did not seem to do them much good.
     
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