Mrs. Duberly's War: Journal and Letters from the Crimea, 1854-6

By Frances Isabella Duberly; Christine Kelly | Go to book overview

APPENDIX 2
The Battle of Balaklava

By concentrating on the siege of Sebastopol itself, Raglan had ignored the threat posed by Menschikov's field army and made inadequate provision for defence of Balaclava. Nearest the harbour, on the high ground to the north-east, were six batteries of naval guns. Next, overlooking the south valley and covering the entrance to the gorge that led down to the port, were the 93rd Highlanders (about 700 men), plus a Turkish battalion, under Sir Colin Campbell, who had overall command of the defence. The outer defensive line consisted of six redoubts – all hastily dug and still incomplete. Five of these were on the crest of the Causeway Heights, which divided the north and south valleys, and along which ran the metalled Woronzov road – the main route up to Sebastopol. Numbered from east to west, redoubts 2 to 4 were each defended by approximately 300 inexperienced Turkish soldiers, manning two British 12pounder naval guns under the supervision of a British gunner. Redoubts 5 and 6 were unfinished and unmanned. Redoubt 1 stood alone on Canrobert's Hill occupied by a force of about 600 Turks, also inexperienced, with three British 12-pounder naval guns, again supervised by a British gunner.

Beneath redoubt 6, at the western end of the south valley, were camped the cavalry commanded by Lord Lucan, independent of Campbell, comprising the Heavy Brigade under Sir James Scarlett and the Light Brigade under Lord Cardigan. Cardigan, 'The Noble Yachtsman', was frequently absent, dining and sleeping on his yacht every night, leaving his duties to be carried out by Lord George Paget. In contrast, Lord Lucan shared the same dismal conditions as his men. Attached to the cavalry were Captain Maude's Royal Horse Artillery, with four 6-pounder guns and two howitzers. The Sapoune Heights rose at right angles to the western end of the two valleys and here General Bosquet was camped; beyond these lay the Khersonese Uplands with Lord Raglan's headquarters and, further off still, the camps of the 1st and 4th divisions.

On the evening of 24 October, Campbell and Lucan forwarded to Raglan the report from a Turkish spy, warning that a Russian army of about 20,000 infantry and 5,000 cavalry plus artillery, led by General Liprandi, was marching towards Balaclava, determined to cut the British off from their supply lines. Raglan brushed this

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Mrs. Duberly's War: Journal and Letters from the Crimea, 1854-6
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Maps and Illustrations ix
  • Notes on Endpapers x
  • Chapter 1 - The Voyage 1
  • Chapter 2 - Embarkation and Encampment at Varna 17
  • Chapter 3 - The Expedition to the Crimea 54
  • Chapter 4 - Balaklava October-November 1854 75
  • Chapter 5 - Balaklava December 1854– March 1855 113
  • Chapter 6 - The Camp 154
  • Chapter 7 - The Fall of Sebastopol 200
  • Notes and Commentary 263
  • Biographical Notes 307
  • Appendix I - How the War Began 327
  • Appendix 2 - The Battle of Balaklava 334
  • Books Referred to and Further Reading 343
  • Acknowledgements 345
  • Index 347
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