Waterloo Women and Children

All too easy to forget the bravery and involvement of the fair sex and children in the caldron of Waterloo.
Here are four of note.

The Waterloo battlefield


A Scots woman Margaret Tolmie had the distinction of being one of the girl children born the day after the Battle of Waterloo 1815. Margaret's Mother  travelled with her husband and father both of  the 2nd Royal North  British Dragoons Scots Greys famous for their valorous charge that was in many  ways as deadly as the charge of the light brigade a t Balaclava.  

The day after the Melee on a June morning Mrs Margaret Tolmie and other ladies left the safe confines of Brussels to look for their loved ones. On the  battlefield itself all of the wounded that could be found had been removed and  all that remained considered dead. With great determination she ventured int o the mass of bodies and examined individuals to identify her husband. Luck was on  her side and recognised the initials she had sewn on the uniform that clearly  identified him.

 On discovering he was alive Margaret acquired the help of two  other women who carried her wounded husband to a medical location. The excitement of discovering her husband alive. Overcome by the excitement of the  day she gave birth to baby girl. This special child named after her brave  Mother Margaret lived to be an octogenarian chronicled in 1901. She became the  wife of a Rosewell tradesmen, on his death she moved to Fifeshire to live with  her daughter and remained there until her death. One of her sons became a fairly rich man in America, whilst a grandson a chairman of a large commercial  enterprise in Scotland.

Quatre Bras battle
Quatre Bras


Thomas Deacon of the 73rd of Foot became one of the wounded at  Quarte Bras. Martha Deacon spend a horrifying night looking for her Ensign husband. Martha was pregnant and cared for her three children by  her side. With her brood she marched twenty miles to Brussels in a  torrential down pour desperate to find her husband. Fortunately he was alive  and the added excitement of a baby girl made it a time to be remembered by  naming their new daughter Waterloo. 


The brave wife of Private McMullen serving in the 27th Foot  did her best to carry him of the field when he was wounded in the knee. During  this time the battle was in full swing when a musket ball struck her leg and  fractured the bone. The private's courageous wife gave birth to a daughter and Waterloo was added to her family name. The Duke Of York and  Albany so famous for making of the British Army the most efficient in the world, and commander of the British Army, became a proud godfather of the battle  offspring.    

Battle of Hougoumont


One five year old girl, the daughter of a gardener was caught  in the initial assaults at Hougoumont. The Duke of Wellington chose this  position well tempting the French to assault it at great loss.

The Chateau eventually was set alight by artillery fire and a Sergeant of the Guards Regiment took her to a safe haven. In 1876 on a visit to  England the London Times reported her dramatic memories of our troops. She was  sincerely impressed by the kindness displayed and the games the soldiers played  to amuse her.

Acknowledgements to Old Books and The History net.com    

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