As the battle opens, French general Forey responds quickly to reports of Austrian capture of Genestrello. Lead elements of Beuret's brigade take fire on the approach to the village. As Austrian musketry increases, two French battalions are repelled from Genestrello. Beuret's 4kg guns are disorganized as Austrian jaegers concentrate their fire upon the now exposed guns.
|French advances on Genestrello meet tough opposition|
Bringing up reinforcements, Beuret forces the 3rd battalion of IR39 out from Genestrello, disorganized, while half of the 3rd Jager Battalion falls back to cover the left flank of Montebello. Baum's Austrian brigade, facing Cascina Nuova, falls back to the grain fields to the north of Montebello. Seems Stadion has no stomach to maintain an advanced position! Instead, he chooses to fall back and prepare a defense.
|Austrians ejected from Genestrello|
|Beuret redoubles effort against Genestrello|
|Overview of early stage of battle|
|Austrians abandon Genestrello|
|Montebello, key to the Austrian defense|
|Forey advances upon Austrian positions|
|Battle overview from behind French lines|
|Forey prepares to attack the Austrian line|
|Arrayed in depth, French attempt assaulting |
the Austrian positions
|Cavalry action in the north while line forms in center|
|French casualties mount in front of Montebello|
|French cavalry in disarray after repeated charges|
What a fine battle! Jake played out a brilliant hand by foregoing the use of Hesse in the north as a flanking move and rushing Paumgarten's center wing pell-mell to the front. While Paumgarten raced to the front, Urban pulled back his forward forces to consolidate a line centered on Montebello. Few casualties were suffered by the Austrians as the French captured Genestrello almost without a fight.
|The Long White Line stands firm|
The French, upon approaching the Austrian defensive line, suffered greatly from Austrian fire. Battalion after battalion failed to press on. Taking even light casualties was sufficient to stop the French attack in its tracks as the French juggernaut repeatedly failed response tests. This was a battle in which the French really never got into the fight.
Congratulations to Jake as he stymied French efforts at every turn and every roll of the die. Despite their success in stopping French aggressions, the Austrians were awarded a minor victory. Pursuing the French back to Voghera would have been an unlikely outcome. Still, a great victory for Jake and Austria as Stadion pulls out the first victory for the Austrian empire in the mulit-game series on Montebello 1859.
For Jake's battle preparations, see Jake's comprehensive plan of battle (see Operation Design Montebello). Reading through Jake's post on his pre-game planning, I wager the French had little chance! I was outwitted, outplayed, and outlasted.
After cleaning up the carnage from the battle, the table, now devoid of troops, awaits the deployment of troops for the 1800 Battle of Montebello.
|The barren landscape readies for Montebello 1800|