Wellington's Rifles: The British Light Infantry and Rifle Regiments, 1758-1815

Wellington's Rifles: The British Light Infantry and Rifle Regiments, 1758-1815

by Ray Cusick


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Until now there has not been a serious study of the rifle-armed regiments of the British Army that earned such renown in the Peninsular and Waterloo campaigns. Compiled by a former rifleman, Ray Cusick, who has written extensively on the subject, Wellington’s Rifles examines the new rifle regiments, how they came about, their development, and their actions.

The author also investigates the introduction of rifled muskets into the British Army in the French and Indian wars of the eighteenth century, where they were shunned by the military establishment, to their transition into a key element in Wellington’s extraordinarily successful Peninsular army.

The training and tactics of the riflemen are explained and each significant engagement in which they were involved is explored in thrilling detail. It was the riflemen of the 95th Regiment that inspired Bernard Cornewell’s famous series of Richard Sharpe books. That was the fiction—here is the reality. Featuring a foreword by renowned Napoleonic historian Ian Fletcher, Wellington’s Rifles is an authoritative account of the early history of rifle regiments in the British Army.

Skyhorse Publishing, as well as our Arcade imprint, are proud to publish a broad range of books for readers interested in history—books about World War II, the Third Reich, Hitler and his henchmen, the JFK assassination, conspiracies, the American Civil War, the American Revolution, gladiators, Vikings, ancient Rome, medieval times, the old West, and much more. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781631440113
Publisher: Carrel Books
Publication date: 01/27/2015
Pages: 216
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

Ray Cusick served in the British Rifle Brigade and later in the King’s Royal Rifle Corps with active service spent in the Middle East, principally in Palestine. After the Army, Ray taught art and history before joining the BBC as a designer, where he is perhaps most well known for being the designer of the Daleks from the Doctor Who television series. While at the BBC he developed an interest in writing, particularly on the Napoleonic wars, and eventually had articles published in a variety of magazines including The Age of Napoleon, First Empire, Journal of the Waterloo Association, and the journal of the King’s Royal Rifle Corps. After moving near Horsham, England, he began research on its military past, Horsham barracks, and the Experimental Corps of Riflemen who first mustered there in 1800, eventually being invited to become a Fellow of the International Napoleonic Society. He died in February 2013 at the age of eighty-four.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements vii

Foreword ix

Chapter 1 Firepower: Fire and Shock - Linear Warfare in Europe in the Eighteenth Century 1

Chapter 2 The French and Indian War: Fire and Move 13

Chapter 3 The Introduction of Light Infantry 35

Chapter 4 American Revolution 1776-83: Rebels, Tories, Loyalists and Bloodybacks 57

Chapter 5 The French Revolution 1793 69

Chapter 6 The Duke of York 79

Chapter 7 Aimed Fire: The Experimental Corps of Riflemen 87

Chapter 8 The 95th Rifles and the Baker Rifle 97

Chapter 9 Sir John Moore, the Father of Light Infantry 111

Chapter 10 The Peninsular War 1808-12: The Light Division in Action on the Côa, July 1810 119

Chapter 11 The Peninsular War, 1808-12: The Light Division in Two Actions during 1811 139

Chapter 12 Wellington's Light Infantry and Rifles at Waterloo 157

Appendix 1 The Manoeuvres of General Howe as practised in 1774 at his light infantry camp at Salisbury 171

Appendix 2 Extracts From Regulations for the Exercise of Riflemen and Light Infantry and Instructions for Their Conduct in the Field 175

Appendix 3 Titles of the Regiment 181

Bibliography 183

Index 187

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