General Charles-Victor Woirgard de Beaurgard
Born: October 16, 1764
Place of Birth: Metz, Moselle, France
Died: February 19, 1810
Cause of Death: Killed in action
Place of Death: Valverde, Spain
Arc de Triomphe: BEAUREGARD on the west pillar
Charles-Victor Woirgard, more commonly known as de Beaurgard, first enlisted in the Swiss Regiment of Diesbach at Boulogne-sur-Mer in August of 1782. He remained with the army until 1788 and afterwards he lived at Elbeuf. After the onset of the Revolution, Beaurgard was elected a lieutenant in the 1st Battalion of Volunteers of Seine-Inférieure in January of 1792. Only eight months later he was promoted to lieutenant colonel. Serving with the Army of the North, Beaurgard fought at the Battle of Jemappes in 1792 and the Battle of Neerwinden in 1793. In April of 1793 he was promoted to général de brigade by the representatives of the people with the army, and the next month he joined the defense of Valenciennes. After the surrender of Valenciennes in late July, Beaurgard was released on parole and he went on to command the troops of the département of Aisne and then at the camp of Guise. That October he was suspended from command and imprisoned by the government.
After the Thermidorian Reaction and downfall of Robespierre in July of 1794, Beaurgard was released from prison and reinstated in the army in August. He was initially sent to the Army of the West and then named commander at Angers. In January of 1796 General Caffin denounced him and General Hoche relieved him due to allegations that Beaurgard had supported pillaging and indiscipline. Despite being relieved of command, Beaurgard was conducted before a council of war and in December he was finally acquitted and he returned to the army. General Canclaux had written that Beaurgard was a "brave, very good officer with knowledge of tactics and fortifications". Beaurgard joined the Army of the Rhine in July of 1799 and he served at Kehl and then Brisach. In June of 1800 he was repulsed in a sortie by the Austrian partisans of Captain Mier. Once peace was achieved, Beaurgard was named commander of arms at Alexandria in February of 1802. However, within six months he was now accused by General Barbou of indiscreet and troublesome behavior. In September he was removed from active duty.
Beaurgard returned to the army seven years later in April of 1809 when he began to serve in the 12th military division. Only a few months later he took command of a cavalry brigade of V Corps of the Army of Spain. Beaurgard distinguished himself in the Battle of Ocaña in November, but he was killed in action in February of 1810 at Valverde, near Badajoz.
- Six, Georges. Dictionnaire Biographique des Généraux & Amiraux Français de la Révolution et de l'Empire (1792-1814). 2 vols. Paris: Gaston Saffroy, 2003.
Updated February 2017
© Nathan D. Jensen