General Jean ChemineauOfficer who distinguished himself at the Siege of Danzig and the Battle of Friedland in 1807 and later served in Spain
Born: April 26, 1771
Place of Birth: Angoulême, Cantal, France
Died: June 12, 1852
Place of Death: Poitiers, France
Arc de Triomphe: CHEMINEAU on the east pillar
The first recorded position in the army for Jean Chemineau was when in September of 1791 he became sergeant major of the 4th Battalion of Gironde. The next year he was commissioned as a sous-lieutenant and he served with the Army of the North. In 1793 Chemineau served at the Battle of Hondschoote where he was wounded. In 1794 he was promoted to capitaine. For the next five years Chemineau served in the Army of the Rhine, the Army of the West, and the Army of Italy. In 1800 he served at the defense of the bridge over the Var and he was promoted to chef de bataillon.
In 1803 Chemineau joined the Army of the Coasts of the Ocean and he was appointed major in the 61st of the Line. As part of the Grande Armée, he served against the Third Coalition in 1805 and then against Prussia in 1806. In April of 1807 he took command of a provisional regiment in Oudinot's division, in May he distinguished himself at the Siege of Danzig , and in June he distinguished himself at the Battle of Friedland. At the end of the month he was promoted to colonel of the 76th of the Line, serving as part of Marchand's division.
Chemineau was sent to Spain as part of VI Corps in 1808 and that November he was named a Baron of the Empire. He served in Spain for the next few years and in 1811 he was promoted to général de brigade and employed in Foy's division. The next year Chemineau took part in the Battle of Salamanca in July and then in October he repulsed the British at the bridge of Carrion and he seized Palencia.
In 1813 Chemineau was sent to the army in Saxony where he took command of the 1st Brigade of Souham's division. That May he fought at the Battle of Lützen where he was wounded twice, once in the neck and once in the leg. Chemineau's leg was badly hurt enough that the surgeons amputated it. In recognition of his services, he was promoted to général de division at the end of July and then in August he was named a Commander of the Legion of Honor. Chemineau was appointed commander of arms at Strasbourg in November. After Napoleon's abdication and the Bourbon Restoration in 1814, Chemineau was named commander of the département of Vienne. He retired from the army in November of 1815. Chemineau briefly returned to the army in 1831 but then he retired again in 1832.
Updated October 2020
© Nathan D. Jensen