« ForrigeFortsett »
THE NEW ! PUBLIC Linhaiy
LONDON PRINTED BY WILLIAM CLOWES AND SONS,
FIELD MARSHAL THE DUKE OF WELLINGTON,
1810 AND 1811.
To Major General the Hon. W. Lumley. • MY DEAR SIR,
• Cartaxo, 220 November, 1810. * I received last night your letter of yesterday evening. The midshipman of the Navy who has the command of the boats stationed for the communication was directed to let you know where they were placed.
anxious to hear whether you see the road from Santarem to Torres Novas from Almeirim or the neighborhood.
· Believe me, &c. • Major General
« WELLINGTON. the Hon. W. Lumley.'
• I am very
To Lieut. General Hill.
MY DEAR Hill,
• Cartaxo, 220 November, 1810, 8 A.M. * I received last night your letter by Churchill. It is, I think, now tolerably certain that the enemy are not going to cross the Zezerc; and we must now endeavor to discover what they are about.
· Desire Fane to endeavor to get people up the left of the Zezere, to discover whether they are marching on the other (this) side by Cabaços and Espinhal. They appear to intend to retire that way, or to remain in the country till they get reinforcements from Spain; and I am inclined to think the former is their plan.
• The rivulets were so much swelled yesterday that we could do nothing on their right. I am just going to our left, to see what we can do this morning.
· Believe me, &c. • Lieut. General Hill.'
To Lieut. General Hill.
MY DEAR HILL, • Cartaxo, 24th November, 1810, 11 A. M.
• The enemy reconnaitred our left on the 22d, instead of my reconnaitring their right. They brought forward about 700 or 800 men on that side, and drove in our piquets to the bridge of Calhariz, but retired again in the night. This circumstance, and all the information, tends to prove that they have brought up their troops from the rear to the support of the right of their position at Santarem.
• I do not understand the enemy's meaning in the continued removal of artillery and boats up the river. Has the artillery been removed from Golegão? Do you observe the further removal of the boats after they have left Golegão ? We heard some time
intended to throw a bridge across the Tagus at Punhete, on the left of the Zezere; and their fortifying the heights on the two sides of the Zezere gives some reason for a belief that this is their intention, with a view possibly to attack Abrantes, or to open Alentejo to their parties.
• Barquinha also appears to me to be not a bad situation for a bridge over the Tagus. If Captain Squire should be with you, I request you to let him examine the river from opposite Golegão up to Abrantes, particularly at Punhete and Barquinha, and see whether the enemy would have any facilities in throwing their bridge over at any of those places.
It would be very desirable if you could get somebody over the river to ascertain to what places the enemy take their boats and materials, and what number of boats there are still remaining at Santarem. I am endeavoring to get this information by emissaries from this side.
• In respect to Fane's detachment, and Don Carlos de España's, there is no doubt that, when Fane could no longer exercise his command, Don Carlos should be the person to exercise it as the senior Officer:
• In the existing state of affairs, I think that the detachment ought to be brought rather nearer to you, and that the following objects should be attended to in the position of the Portuguese, as well as the Spanish part of it.
• First, to take care of the boats, &c., of the bridge of Abrantes.
• Secondly, to observe the enemy's bridge over the Zezere, above Punhete, and keep an accurate account of all that passes.
Thirdly, to observe the river from Chamusca to opposite to Punhete, particularly those parts which may be deemed the most favorable situations for the passage of the enemy, and to give you the earliest intimation of the collection of materials, &c.
· I received yesterday a letter from General Hamilton, stating some difficulties in the passage of a rivulet in his neighborhood. This is important in every view of the case; and
you should immediately take measures to have the communication made as good as it can be made from Chamusca to the place where you disembarked, and where you would have to embark in case you should again come over to the right of the Tagus. It is also important to enable you to get up your artillery, and collect your corps, if you should find that the enemy propose to cross the Tagus.
· Indeed, notwithstanding that if we should have to return to the lines we shall want your artillery, I think that you ought now to have with you one, if not two, brigades of artillery, and one brigade at Almeirim with General Lumley. General Lumley ought also to have with him a detachment of cavalry, to enable him to watch the Tagus from Almeirim to Chamusca.
• If we should again return to our lines, I propose to make the following arrangement of your corps. To march General Hamilton's infantry, and all the artillery, baggage, and cavalry, to Aldea Galega, where the Admiral will have boats to transport them across the river. To march the 2d division of infantry to the place where it disembarked, and there embark it again in Sir Thomas Williams' flotilla, and bring it over the Tagus to Alhandra, either by the main channel, if this part of the army should still possess the right bank
of the Tagus, or, if not, by the eastern channel. The baggage of the 2d division of infantry would have to go round by Aldea Galega.
Believe me, &c. Lieut. General Hill.'
To the Earl of Liverpool, Secretary of State. - MY LORD,
Cartaxo, 24th November, 1810. • The enemy have made no alteration of importance in their position since I addressed you on the 21st instant. The assembly and movements of our troops towards the right of the position at Santarem, notwithstanding the continuance of the rain and the swelling of the rivers, have occasioned some jealousy on that flank; as, on the 22d, they brought up a large body of troops, apparently from Torres Novas and the rear, which drove in the piquets of Major General Anson's and Brig. General Pack's brigades at the bridge of Calhariz, where they halted, and the enemy retired in the night. This circumstance, and the information which I have received, tend to prove that large detachments of the troops which have marched to the rear have returned to the neighborhood of Santarem. The artillery and baggage, however, still continue to move on the road from Santarem up the Tagus to Golegão.
• The enemy have a detachment of about 4000 men at Punhete, on the left of the Zezere; but the bridge upon
that river is a very bad one, and very unequal to bear the passage of an army.
I have ascertained that no detachments of the enemy's troops have passed to the frontier through Lower Beira, excepting one of cavalry and infantry of about 1500 men, under General Foy, which I informed your Lordship, in my dispatch of the 10th instant, had returned to Sobreira Formosa, after having been at Villa Velha, where the bridge of boats was destroyed. This detachment afterwards marched to Ciudad Rodrigo; and I understand that General Foy is with the troops which are now upon the frontier.
I have received accounts from General Silveira to the 16th instant. The advance of the enemy's corps had arrived at Pinhel, and he attacked it on the 14th. He drove in