Medical Evacuations
Human Element
Deaths in British Army Hospitals: 1812-1815
Life in the British Navy
Napoleonic Surgery
Medical Hygiene
Medical Evacuations
"The Flying Ambulance"
Baron Dominique-Jean Larrey
Bonaparte's Demise
British Medical Services

   After getting wounded, it was pure misery for the unfortunate soldier.   He would have to deal with thirst, hunger, pain, and infection.  Not to mention the bandits which would loot the battleground, killing and robbing the wounded.   If help did come, it was very slow!

    Evacuation was major problem for the armies of the Napoleonic Era.  Normally, the injured had to be left on the battlefield to waite to the battle was over.  Then the evacuation was slow.  Men would often wait three to four days after they were hit, until help came; then many were already dead from bandits and natural causes.
    Some lightly injured soldiers could crawl back to the nearest aid station, while those not so fortunate often required assistance from comrades.  This may seem nice, but it was very troublesome to the armies.  Comrades who would carry the wounded away, were comrades who didn't fight.  So that meant a loss in man-power.  Carts such as "Fourgons" were used to carry the wounded, but they were cumbersome and bumpy.  They had no suspension or pads, so the trip back was an agonizing horror which was very uncomfortable. 
    Leading surgeons of both the French and the British armies tried ways of helping those wounded.  Dominique Larrey invented the flying ambulance for getting men out of a raging battle to safety.
    Dr. James McGrigor spent much time trying to convince the Duke of Wellington to improve medical evacuation.   The Duke was unfourtunatly, not interested and insisted that it would be too much of a hassle to do it.
    Nevertheless, McGrigor did develop mobile hospitals which saved many British lives.

The Flying Ambulance

MARCH 2005

Term Project
Abraham Schreier
Mr. Crowley
Honors World History
March 2005