Thomas Bennett

Thomas Bennett a Patriarch

Thomas Bennett, son of Amos Bennett, was born and grew up in Yorkshire, England. It is believed that Thomas was a soldier at Waterloo, or an officer in the British Navy, or both. (I have found records of a Thomas Bennett commissioned in the British Navy in that time period) Thomas was paid for his military service with land in southern Ireland. The custom at the time was for the King to pay for military service with land rather than money.

Thomas married Lucretia Hingston, the sister of Dorothy (Dora) Abbott. Thomas and Lucretia had three sons: Andrew, born October 8th 1797; William and Thomas. All three were born near Skull (Schull) in Cork County Ireland.

The Battle of Waterloo
Copyright 1991 Compton's Learning Company
On June 18, 1815, Napoleon Bonaparte received a crushing military defeat on the fields near the Belgian village of Waterloo, about 9 miles (14 kilometers) south of Brussels. The battle between Napoleon's forces and a combined army of British, Dutch, and Prussian troops was fought so hard that either side might have won. A heavy rain the evening before the battle forced Napoleon to delay his attack. The delay cost him the battle.
Only three months before, Napoleon had slipped away from his island prison of Elba off the western coast of Italy. When he returned to France his veteran soldiers flocked to rejoin him. He hurried northward, hoping to defeat his enemies before they could unite.
Napoleon's plan was to get between the British and Dutch, who were grouped near Brussels, and the Prussians, who were east of the road from Charleroi to Brussels. On June 16 French Marshal Michel Ney engaged the British at Quatre Bras, while Napoleon crushed as he thought Field Marshal Gebhard L. von Blucher's Prussians at Ligny. After these battles Napoleon ordered Marshal Emmanuel de Grouchy to follow the Prussians, and Napoleon turned his attention to the British. Blucher, however, marched northward to the assistance of the duke of Wellington, the British commander, while Grouchy wasted valuable time looking for the Prussians east of Ligny. It was at this point that Napoleon's plans began to fall apart. The essence of his original strategy was surprise. The battle of Ligny was indecisive because Marshal Ney had failed to send reinforcements that could have crushed the Prussian army. Then Napoleon made the false assumption that Blucher would retreat to the northeast instead of heading northwest to link up with Wellington. Lastly, the element of surprise was completely lost when Napoleon wasted the night of June 16 and the morning of the 17th without giving battle. By the time he started, Wellington was ready for him.
The British, meanwhile, retreated from Quatre Bras to the village of Waterloo. Napoleon overtook them late on June 17. Because of the heavy rain that night, he could not attack until the next morning. His artillery could not move until the ground dried. He delayed the attack until 11:00 AM. The ensuing battle raged for ten hours. Napoleon repeatedly threw his cavalry against the bayonet-wielding British infantry. During one furious cavalry charge the French overran all the British artillery. Had the guns been destroyed or at least made unusable at that time, the French cavalry might have won the battle. For a time it looked as though the British ranks would give way under the onslaught. Wellington eagerly awaited the help the Prussians had promised. Finally, late in the afternoon, Blucher and his men arrived. Those few hours of delay in the British ranks help the Prussians had promised. Finally, late in the afternoon, Blucher and his men arrived. Those few hours of delay in the morning had been decisive. The French made a last desperate attack but were slowly overcome. By 9:00 PM the French defeat had become a rout. Napoleon lost 25,000 men killed and wounded and 9,000 captured. Wellington's casualties were 15,000 and on June 22, 1815, four days after the battle of Waterloo, Napoleon signed his second abdication in Paris. This ended his rule in France forever.