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Albuera 16th May 1811:


Whilst Wellington was busy fighting the battle of Fuentes de Onoro and applying pressure to the central fortifications of Almeida and Cuidad Rodrigo, the French Marshall Soult had plans to attack General Beresford who had been left in charge of the blockade of Badajoz in the south. Soult’s Army marched from Seville and came across Beresford’s position at Albuera. The French bivouacked beyond the olive woods on the night of the 15th May 1811 ready to attack in the morning.

Soult’s plan was to feint an assault from the Santa Marta road onto the bridge whilst his real intentions were to advance into the enemy’s right flank. Bereford initially had the Spanish troops of Blake and Castanos posted on the right and it was these that took the main brunt of the action until the allied reinforcements were brought up during the day to support the flank. 

The first of the reinforcements were Colborne’s Brigade and these four battalions passed through the Spanish right to attack the left side of the advancing French columns . It was at this point that the British came into a dire catastrophe. Unseen by a sudden burst of rain, Colborne’s right flank was assailed by 800 cavalry of the 1st Vistula Lancers and the 2nd Hussars belonging to Latour-Maubourg’s Division. The carnage was dreadful – out of 1,568 infantry 1,190 were slain, wounded or captured. Nevertheless, the French columns were shaken by all the pressure and Hoghton’s brigade then came up to stabilise the allied right.

By the time the French had gained impetus again more allied reinforcements were arriving on the field and the battle raged on to become the highest casualty rated battle throughout the entire Peninsular war.

 

Monument In the Town Centre                           Monument on the Outskirts of the Town

Monument on the Battlefield

 

Pictures of the Battlefield

 

Don Collins pictures of Albuera & Elvas

 

Polish Lancer Wall Plaque Albuera

Monument  Gardens Albuera

Monument Gardens Albuera

Colours Gardens Albuera

 

Monument Albuera Castanos

  Lower Part Monument Showing Beresfords Name

Church Albuera

 

Central Square Albuera

Central Battlefield Map Albuera

View Part of Battlefield Albuera

ELVAS

Walled Town

British Cemetery Elvas

British Cemetery Elvas

Five Known Graves

Plaque British Cemetery Elvas

Museum Fort Santa Luzia

The Excellent Archive on The Napoleon Series website: Edited by Guy Dempsey Albuera 1811 – The Electronic Archives

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