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SSTSSSSSw M THE NATIONAL TRIBUNE SUPPLEMENT: WASHINGTON, D. 0., THURSDAY, APRIL 7, 1898. 9 "j"- V-."" g(w ''"JtOk' . f w CCtaio i r n Profujely Illustrated MARSHAL SUCHET. (Continued from last week.) THE SIEGE OP TARAGONA A TER RIBLE AND PROLONGED CONFLICT WHICH RESULTED IN A FRENCH VIC TORYBATTLE OF SAGUNTUM CON QUERED PROVINCES LEAVES SPAIN. WONDERFUL MILITARY ACHIEVE MENTS. Suchet had now been two years in Spain) and his whole career marked by uninterrupted success. Surrounded with obstacles in the midst of a hostile coun tryhemmed in by a still unconqucred territory, he had, by his vigor and skill as a General, fixed himself firmly in Arragon; and by his wisdom and prudence as a civil ruler, subdued the hostility of the inhabitants, and secured the co-o;.eralion even of his enemies. But his labor had scarcely begun, and nowhere does the greatness of his talents shine out with more luster than in the siege of Taragona. This place, divided into an upper and lower town, with one side resting on the sea, and the other standing amid inac cessible rt'clcs, was deemed by the garri son impregnable. The lower town was down in the plain, and divided from the upper by a strong rampart, while around both stretched a massive wall, protected by a lint of strong redoubts, and covered by the fire of an English fleet which oc cupied the liarbor. On one sfde only rould the place be approached with any hope of success, and that was in the plain around the lower town. But here were strong artificial de fenses, while the Fort of Olivo commanded all the opm space in which the besieging army must operate. The relative strength of the forces changed from time to time, but the average proportion was It 000 French against 17,000 Spaniards, without counting with the lat ter the inhabitants of the place. This was desperate odds, but made still greater by the British fleet in the bay, as well as by a Spanish army of 14.000 men, which was making preparations to raise the siege. An prdinary man would have sunk under these difficulties and aban don d the unequal contest, but it was in such crises that Suchet exhibited his great resources. Careful, prudent, and saff in all his plans, he nevertheless determined to persist in the siege. The subjugation of the place was of the utmost importance, Invohing the success of all future opera tions, both in Catalonia and Valencia, and he resolved to effect it, or perish before the aralls. At length, all things being ready, he mocd hs small but resolute army for ard, and, on the 4th of May. invested that part of the (own between Fort Olivo md the sea. In doing this, however, the runs from the fort and from the English ihips played upon his troops, massed in J nand -B6 Marshall By J. TTHEADLEY. by Reproduction of tht Btst.frtnch.Ptcfurea. the open field, with such precision that 200 men fell before night. The next day the garrison made a sally, but were repulsed, and Suchet closed with La firmer coil around the walls. His ranks, however, were battered so incessantly, and his troops so severely galled by the guns from Fort Olivo, that he determined, after a fortnight of severe toil and constant ex posure of his men to the enemy's fire, to concentrate all his force against it alone. Fourteen thousand men, or a number equal to his e.itire army, defended it, pro tected by heavy cannon and high w.ills; yet his resolution was irrevocably taken. He broke ground before the fort on the 21st, but so great were the difficulties that opposed him in advancing his trenches and so severe the fire to which he was subiectcd that a week had been wasted before ho could bring a single cannon to bear with any force on the walls. On the 28th. however, 13 guns, which had been dragged over the rocks emid a perfert tempest of grapeshot, opened a fierce fire upon them, and, thundering all that day and night and next day, finally effected a breach, though not sufficiently low to afford much hope for success in an assault. A CRITICAL POSITION. But Suchet's position was every day be coming more critical. His men were con stantly falling before the plunging fire from the fortress, and his forces gradually weak ening beneath the repeated sorties of the garrison, v. bile an army equal to his own was daily threatening him in the rear. On the evening of the 29th, therefore, lie ordered an. assault to be made, and, form ing two columns of attack, passed along their ranks and addressed them in words of encouragement, telling them everything rested on their bravery and success. The nicht was dark, and the garrison was not expecting any serious movement, as not one of their guns had yet been silenced. Four cannon were fired as tl"e j signal for the assault, and in a moment all inu urums were uc;u, anu uiu wiiuiu jti-iicii line, with deafening shouts, and amid a general discharge of musketry, advanced at once from all quarters against the walls, in order to distract the attention of the be sieged from the real point of attack. The Spaniards, alarmed by this general onset, and unable in the darkness to see the assailants, opened a furious fire around he entire ramparts. Nothing could exceed the spectacle Taragona at that moment presented the rocky bights in the rear stood rccaled in a lurid light, the ramparts were covered with flame, and the whole town flashed up in the surround ing gloom, as if wrapped in a sudden con flagration. This wild uproar roused up the English fleet, and a fierce cannonade opened also from the ships, and blazing projectiles crossed in huge somi-cirelcs over the French army. Amid this confusion and terror, and amid the thunder of 400 cannon on the ramparts, to which the distant English guns added their heavy accom paniment, those two columns adanced swiftly and steadily to the assault. One column stumbled in the dark against some Spanish troops adiancing to succor the fort, and becoming mingled with them, a part, in the general confusion, entered the town. The principal couimri, which was destined for the breach, found, when they reached the ditch, that their scaling ladders were too short, for it was 15 feet to tho bottom. In the meantime, the whole front rank went down before tho plunging fire" from tho ramparts, and the remainder were about giving way, when Vaccani, the Italian historian, beating down the paling that blocked the entrance to an old aque duct that passed into the town, mounted the narrow bridge, followed by tho Italian grenadiers, and thus descended into tho ditch, and, rushing furiously through the breach, entered the fort. In tho morning the walls and ditches presented a most melancholy spectacle. They were covered with blood; while bodies, mangled by the heavy shot, lay in confused heaps at their base, and were scattered around on the rocks as far as the eye could reach. Suchet asked for a suspension of arms, that he might bury his dead, for the ground on which tho-y lay was too rocky to admit of graves. This humano request was denied, and he was compelled to gather the 200 of his men who had fallen in the assault into huge piles, and burn them. The smoke and stench from these burning bodies arose on the morning air, carrying heavenward a fearful testimony of the horrors of war. SLOWLY GAINING VICTORY. Foit. Olivo was taken; but this was only a steppir.g-stone to the reduction of tho place. Suchet's labors had only com menced, tho weight and terror of the struggle had yet to come, and, without any delay, he continued to urge forward his works. Amid constant sorties, and under a heavy and commanding fire from the upper and lower town, which constantly carried away his men, ho pressed the attack so vigorously that every day he gained some new advantage over the enemy. Under a constant shower of balls and grapeshot, that smote every moment over the spot on which the worumen were on gaged, he still steadily advanced his parallels. It was one incessant roar and flash above the soldiers, yet they dug and toiled away as calmly as if in the peaceful field Thus the siege went on for 1! days after Fort Olivo was taken,, till at length 54 guns weie brought to bear on the enemy's bat teries. But the metal of the besieged was too heavy for them, and thoy gradually became silent. In tho meantime the Eng lish gunboats had become offectue, and, sailing up the bay, began to pom their destructive fire on the besiegers. The Spanish army, so long expected, also, now made its appearance, and dangers began to thicken still darker around the French commander. Sending oil, howeer, for a reinforcement of .'!,000 men, he whs able to beat off and disperse the enemy, without abandoning for a moment the siege. Twenty-three rdays had now elapsed since the storming of th3 fort, and Suchet resolved to make an attempt to carry the lower town also by assault. His cannon, after the first disaster, had gradually over come and silenced those of the besieged, and opened three narrow breaches in the bastions. Through these he ordered 1.f00 grenadiers to charge, seconded by a strong storming parts to repel all assistance from the upper town. At 7 o'clock, at the dis charge of four bombs, the brave grenadiers rushed forward. In a moment the walls were covered with men, and tho carnage became dread ful; but after an hour's desperate fighting, the besieged were driven back, aid tho assailants swarmed throueh the town with shout- of victory. During this breathless and sanguinary struggle, the English fleet uept up an incessant; cannonading on tho French tho thunder and flash of their guns through the gloom "lightening in conceivably tho effect of-the scene, while, to crown all, tho warehouses on tho harbor took fire, and burned with-such fierceness that "tho ships in port cut their cables and stood out to sea." r But no sooner was tho town carried, and tho troops rallied, than the soldiers were set to work; and before tho garrison in tho upper town could recover thoir confusion, were again hidden in their trenches, dig ging stcadiljr forward towards the walls. Suchet had lost over three thousand men, and still tho upper town was un touched. Forty-eight days of incessant toil and fighting had passed, and now just as hope began to dawn on his efforts, nearly two thousand British soldiers from Cadiz entered the bay, while tho Spanish army landward again advanced to succor tho city. As the besieged saw thoso troops slop ashore they sent up a shout of joy; but fortunately for Suchet tho English offices thought the town could not be held, as the walls were fast crumbling before tho heavy batteries, and withdrew entirely from the contest. The Spaniards wcre easily re pulsed, and tho works again pressed with redoubled vigor. PREPARING FOR FINAL ASSAULT. Still Suchet's position tvas perilous in the extreme. He had made four different assaults lost one-fifth of his entire army, and exhausted his men by the labor which tho immense worlcs demanded But the wall which now separated the enemy from him had no ditch at its base to embarrass the columns of attack, and the cannon wore playing within musket-shot of tho ramparts. A hctige of aloes, how ever, at the bae, presented a strong ob stacle, and came very near preventing the success of the storming party At length breaches being mado in the walls, Suchet prepared to make a final assault on tho upper town. But as the prospects grew darker around the besieged their energy seemed redoubled, and their pieparations to resist this last effort were of the most formidable kind. Three battalions crowded the breaches, supported by strong reserves; while heavy barricades were stretched across every street, to arrest the enemy the moment he bmilH nnfpr. In the meantime such a terrible fire was kept up from the ramparts j that the parapets Oi me j rssneu iiv.-iiwH.o were shot away, and the gunners, un covered, stood in full view, a certain mark for the enemy's bullets. Thev fell, one after another, in their footsteps yet still others sternly stepped in their places, while tho excitement and the wish to close in the last mortal struggle beenmc so intense on both sides, that the soldiers shook their muskets at each other and shouted forth defiance in the midst of . the halls that smote them di.wn. t At loncrlh the signal for the assault was . iriven. and the maddened-columns rushed j forward. A i epen space .f more than j twenty rods was to bo crossed before the wall was reached, ana as tne assailants cmerced on this, a plunging fire received them.' em-hi.v them to the earth with friirhtful rapidity. Pressintr sternly on. however, they came to the aloe trees, which stood within five rods of the walls, wlien uiey were com pelled to turn one side for .-massage. This, together with the destructive fire before which they stood uncovered, threw the column into" confusion, and it was ju.5- beginning to break and fiy', when an Italian soldier named Bianckini, who had at his own request been allowed to join the forlorn hope, coolly stepped from the ranks, and bidding his comrades follow him, be gan all alone to ascend the breach. Dressed in white from head to foot, he looked more like' a being from the unseen t vssr & "- s - f csfey FK:mxANn"s Es-tuy T-ro Madrid As Ksa Upon the Abdication- of His Father. When, i.. fd.s. NcjoYon had determined Madrid next day he was received with de on the df'th.wnemeni of tho Bourbons light. Chailes !. of Siainand his Qveen -Murat Ferdinand, hoping to conciliate Napo mareh'd c.n Vrdrid. Gt.I y, tho Spanish Icon, went to Bayonnc to meet him. He Ministc-. v.! ir-c intrittes had incurred was made to restore the crown to his father. nif onml'v t th rot,? e ni:d of Ferdinand. The title and all the rights it conferred had 1 rincc Anurias. rclised the King to - seek refuge in Amcric a. The people, ce out in insur- feeling the disgrace, Lrol feeling the disgrace, Lroice out in insur- rection against Godoy, but he was rescued by Ferdinand. The King abdicated in interference. Becoming suddenly ambitious for possession of this kingdom lor nimsen, Murat displayed himself grandly at tho head of an aimy of mere beardless boys. He was received with cool contempt by tho people. But when Ferdinand entered ' already been resigned by Charles to Na- t. ...... C ilm T7nAyM Intin rni 4nnf . poiu-on. ou iu 'j' uw. .... . ir.,!I .f bourbon had ceased to t - .n gpain i Alurat meantime disposed hi I such a way that the people s; is forces in wav that the neonle saw no was not an ally but a conqueror. Other acts 1JH.J I OIUVU NW VV v - -- w nf tho rioters were nubliclv executed. Na poleon then recalled Murat, to be King of Naples, and put Joseph on the throne, Louis having refused the crown. Event ually under Ferdinand restored Spain un derwent civil war. " world than a living man, as he glided on ward, and silently and steadily ascended, the wall. Regardless of tho volleys of musketry that smoto his breast, apparently unconscious of the blood that was bursting in streams from every part of his body, ho kopt sternly on till ho reached tho top and then fell dead The French soldiers stopped and gazed with astonishment, almost with awe. on that solitary white figure as it fearlessly strode into the breach, and then with a shout that rent the uir, rushed after him. The breach was won tho Spanish troops overthrown, and amid shouts of victory, and cries of despair, and yells of execra tion, the French thousands went pouring in and forming into columns of attack, dashed into the barricaded streets, and overcoming all resistance, swept liko a devastating flood through the town. Some of the inhabitants rushed through the farther gate, others streamed over tho ramparts, making for tho sea; others still, driven to despair, flung themselves from tho rocks. Still thousands were left be hind, and on these tho infuriated soldiery fell in brutal ferocity, and aged men and women, the young, tho beautiful, and tho helpless, were bufchercd without mercy. The most pitiful cries, and agonizing shrieks and prayers for mercy, pierced tho heavens on every side. A MASSACRE BY THE FRENCH. But the maddened troops, hardened against every appeal, smote on the right hand, and on the left; and it was one in cessant flash through the streets, which were literally inundated with blood. Tho officers put forth every effort to stay tho massacre, but the passions of the soldiers had now broken over all bounds, and nothing could arrest them. For nearly two months had they been, shot at and taunted by the inhabitants, and now their hour of revenge had come,, and, reckless alike of sleep or rcstr they moved in terror through the darkness Before morning dawned on the appalling spectacle, 0,000 wretched beings had been butchered in cold blood. A city sacked presents one of the most frightful scenes this stained and dcpravcd earth of ours ever exhibits. It s the cul minating act of human ferocity &nd piti- Jess cruelty. Taragona was won, and though Suchet mourned over the violence that had stainetE his triumph, he could not but rejoice at the successful termination of his long toils and his happy deliverance from the dan gers that threatened every hour to swallow him up. St'll h's labors had not terminated, and in a few hours after the city fell his troops were again in motion. The army that threatened so frequently to raise the siege of Taragona was overtaken at Villa Nucvar and 1,500 made prisoners. The wholo country was thrown into consternation, and the Spanish troops that so long de fended Catalonia were fleeing in every direction for safety. Suchet marched eagerly forward; for added to the consciousness that he had acted worthy of the trust committed to him, he here received dispatches from Napoleori creatine- him Marshal of the Empire Ho j at length came up to Montserrat. mtot which some of the lugitives nau cast, mem selves, deeming the place impregnable. Indeed, it seemed so, for the rampart ont the top was one of the strongest fortresses in that part of Spain. Situated on a high mountain, surrounded by rocks, and approachable only by wind ing paths that were protected by batteries, it bade defiance to all attacks. There wa3 no foothold for an army, and the irregular, rocky, and isolated hieht looked, as Suchet said, "like the skeleton of a mountain." Still the darinc Marshal poured his troops over the rocks, and along the paths. iti.