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Old March 11, 2005, 11:39 PM   #63
4V50 Gary
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Join Date: November 2, 1998
Location: Colorado
Posts: 16,728
Rapp's Free Company

First Aide to Napoleon, General Rapp, could lead a cavalry charge or cook a chicken. He was also an excellent marksman with a cavalry carbine. Highly trusted, he was given command of the Fortress of Danzig after Napoleon's retreat from Moscow.

The Russians besieged Danzig and called upon Rapp to surrender. He held while his food lasted. However, we're here today to learn of his Free Company led by Captain Chambure. Here's an interesting excerpt:

"The free company became every day more audacious. Trenches, palisadoes, were trifling obstacles; it penetrated every where. In the middle of a dark night, it stole along from tree to tree, the whole length of the avenue of Langfuhr, without being perceived by the Russians. On a sudden it leaped into their works, killed some of the Russians, drove out the others, and pursued them as far as Kabrun. The brave Surimont, the intrepid Rozay, Payen, Dezeau, Gonipet, and Francore, threw themselves on the redoubt, and carried it. A hundred men were put to the sword, the othres owed their escape only to flight."

Despite their work, shortage of food impelled the surrender of Danzig. Napoleon's eagle had flown.
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