Lally Brown has been a friend of the Guide for a long time and today, on the anniversary of Napoleon's exile to Saint Helena, I am thrilled to invite Lally to the salon to take a closer look at the emperor's incredible expense account!
I began researching into Napoleon Bonaparte’s exile and death on St. Helena when fate washed me onto the shores of this remote island in the South Atlantic and I found myself living in the house built in 1816 for Count and Countess Bertrand (Napoleon’s Grand Maréchal du Palais) directly opposite Napoleon’s home of Longwood House.
|Bertrand’s Cottage, Longwood, St. Helena|
|Countess Françoise-Elisabeth (Fanny) Bertrand|
|Longwood House 1816 – Napoleon’s home on St. Helena|
|James Bay, St. Helena – Napoleon arrives on HMS Northumberland 1815|
Forage for thirteen horses daily - £720.4.7 per annum
Transport forage for one mule conveying the same - £46.10.2 per annum
Pay of soldier in charge of mule - £27.7.6 per annum
Expense of English servants attached to establishment - £675 per annum
Expense of two overseers, six carpenters, four sawyers, five masons, three plasterers and one painter - £939.17.6 per annum.
Expenses of public transport conveying the supplies furnished by the Purveyor to Longwood:
Forage for eight mules daily - £372.1.4 per annum
Pay of two muleteers in charge of the same - £109.10.0 per annum
Rations of ditto - £68.8.9 per annum
Pay of two soldiers ditto - £27.7.6
Table stores and other necessaries for the house - £2020.5.3 per annum
Wines, claret, grave, champagne and Madeira (supplied from Government Stores sent from England) - £2445.10.0 per annum
Table expenses (supplied by Mr. Balcombe) - £11,700 per annum
Mr. Balcombe's allowance of 5% on the sum as above mentioned - to be added
Salary to surgeon O'Meara - to be added
|Mr. Barry O’Meara Napoleon’s Doctor on St. Helena 1815-1818|
9 bottles Claret,
1 bottle Madeira,
1 bottle Vin de Grave,
1 bottle Champagne,
1 bottle Constantia,
6 bottles Teneriffe
and finally 20 bottles of Cape wine for the servants.
Bread - 66 lb
Butter - 5 lb
Lard - 2 lb
Salad Oil - 3½ pints
Sugar candy - 4 lb
Coffee - 2 lb
Tea green - half pound, tea black - half pound
Eggs - 30
Common sugar - 5 lb
Vinegar - 1 quart
Cheese - 1 lb
Flour - 5 lb
Salt Meat - 6 lb
Fire Wood - 3 lots
Porter or Ale - 3 bottles
Wax candles - 8 lb
Vegetables - in value 20 shillings
Fruit - in value 10 shillings
Confectionery - in value 8 shillings
Ducks - 8 no.
Turkeys - 2 no.
Geese - 2 no.
Loaf Sugar, Loaves - 2 no.
Fine Rice - ½ bag,
Hams (not to exceed 14 lbs each) - 2 no.
Coals - 45 bushels
Fish - in value 80 shillings
Milk - in value 98 shillings
Fresh Butter, Salt, Mustard, Pepper, Caper, Lamp Oil and Pease per fortnight must not exceed £7.
24 bottles Port,
120 bottles Vin de Grave,
36 bottles Champagne,
1620 bottles Cape,
540 bottles Teneriffe,
90 bottles Madeira,
90 bottles Constantia.
10 bottles Claret
1 bottle Champagne
3 bottles Grave or Sauterne
1 ½ Madeira
½ Constance du Cap
Additionally each month 12 bottles Brandy, 6 bottles Rum, and 6 bottles of Malaga.
For the servants, daily, 7 Teneriffe, 31 Cape Ordinary, 3 Beer, 3 Cider
And a very fine Salad
Champagne (of which Napoleon poured himself a tumbler)
Interesting to note that Sir William and Mrs Greentree ‘ate very little, being unaccustomed to meat for breakfast and finding the coffee too acid for their taste’. In my humble opinion St. Helena coffee is the best in the world. Napoleon was very fond of it too, and he begged ‘for a spoonful’ when he was dying, but his doctors refused, giving him wine with water instead ‘which made him a little tipsy!’
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Written content of this post copyright © Lally Brown, 2015.