- For the actor, see Michel Saint-Denis
General Jacques Duchesne (1837–1918)
|Born||3 March 1837
|Died||27 April 1918(aged 81)|
|Battles/wars||Siege of Tuyên Quang
Second Franco-Hova War
General Jacques Charles René Achille Duchesne (3 March 1837 – 27 April 1918) was a 19th-century French military officer. He was born at Sens and entered Saint-Cyr in 1855, aged 18, and became a Lieutenant in 1861.
Tonkin and Formosa
In 1884-85, during the Sino-French War, Lieutenant-Colonel Duchesne distinguished himself both in Tonkin (northern Vietnam) and Formosa (now Taiwan). On 12 March 1884, during the Bắc Ninh campaign, Duchesne was placed by General François de Négrier in command of the 2nd Brigade's attack on the forward defences of Bắc Ninh and led a successful charge into the Chinese-held village of Keroi.
In November 1884 Duchesne led a column of legionnaires, marine infantry and Tonkinese riflemen to relieve the Siege of Tuyên Quang, defeating Liu Yongfu's Black Flag Army at the Battle of Yu Oc (on 19 November 1884). In December 1884 he was appointed to the command of the Formosa expeditionary corps at Keelung in northern Taiwan. In January 1885 he assaulted the Chinese lines of investment around Keelung, capturing the advanced Chinese position of Fork Y. In March 1885 he launched a full-scale offensive against the Chinese lines at Keelung, making a bold flank march to attack the Chinese defences on their exposed eastern flank. The French offensive was completely successful. Duchesne's men captured the key Chinese positions of La Table and Fort Bamboo on 5 March and 7 March, respectively, forcing the Chinese to retreat to new positions south of the Keelung River.
In 1895, Duchesne led the French invasion of Madagascar in the second Franco-Hova War, disembarking his 15,000 troops at Majunga, and managing to capture Tananarive after 7 months. Twenty French soldiers died fighting and 6,000 died of malaria and other diseases before the second Franco-Hova War ended. The government signed a treaty that yielded significant powers to the French authorities but left the monarchy intact. Madagascar became a French protectorate.
- "He distinguished himself in the Franco-Prussian war, 1870-71" in The International Cyclopedia: A Compendium of Human Knowledge by Selim Hobart Peabody, Charles Francis Richardson - Encyclopedias and dictionaries (1898), p. 147
- Lecomte, pp. 144–46
- Garnot, pp. 119–35
- Garnot, pp. 147–72
- "In 1895 General Jacques Duchesne disembarked at Majunga on the west coast", Historical Dictionary of the Third French Republic, 1870-1940 by Patrick H. Hutton, Amanda S. Bourque, Amy J. Staples, p. 723
- African Proconsuls by Lewis H. Gann, Peter Duignan, p. 93
- Garnot, L'expédition française de Formose, 1884–1885 (Paris, 1894)
- Lecomte, J., Lang-Son: combats, retraite et négociations (Paris, 1895)
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