Waterloo: Netherlands Correspondence, ed John Franklin

Waterloo: Netherlands Correspondence, ed John Franklin

This is a valuable collection of previously unprinted documents relating to the Netherlands army, covering the General Staff, 2nd and 3rd Netherlands Infantry Division and the Netherlands Cavalry Division, all of which played a part on the Waterloo campaign. The collection includes a number of contemporary reports, letters sent during and immediately after the campaign, and a series of letters written during the 1840s in response to requests for information about the battle.

The Netherlands army made up about a quarter of Wellington's army at Waterloo, and was effectively a separate army with its own commander in chief, the Prince of Orange. These documents give us some useful insights on the difficulties this posed to Wellington, and the nature of his contacts with the Netherlands army. That army also had problems, having only recently been formed after the forced merger of Belgium and the Netherlands as the United Kingdom of the Netherlands in the aftermath of Napoleon's first abdication - this shows in the frequent mentions of troops marching into battle for 'King and Country', somewhat unconvincingly given the short history of the new kingdom!

Overall this is a very useful volume for anyone interested in the Waterloo campaign, shedding light on an often neglected aspect of the battle, and of the Allied army.

General Staff
2nd Netherlands Infantry Division
3rd Netherlands Infantry Division
Netherlands Cavalry Division

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