Monday, 27 April 2009


The uniforms of the Genoan Cavalry who arrived to force the Austrians from the bridge.

Governolo was a kind of secondary action to the one described below in a previous post at Goito.(to be continued) . The troops arriving from Modena entrencfhed and barricaded themselves at Governolo under Major Fontana. It was a small Moderna force that defended the town. Above is the Strategic bridge.

Easter had just ended and this sleepy but important strategic town on the Mincio river started to extinquish candles and retire to bed.
But a little before the first light on the 24th of April 1848 the cannons roared.The battle had begun.

Tuscan grenadiers
    Mantova was held by the Austrians and one of their ideas was to get Governolo and a base on the Mincio.
Sardinian Guards

The best magazine anywhere on toy soldiers and model soldiers.I have included it not because I write for them but because it really is a great source of info (sometimes) on this period
Austrian Guards .
Colonel Castellitz moved out of Mantova and moved towards Roncoferraro (A part of Governolo) and Casale, they killed Italian sentries and Major Fontana saw them on the other side of the river banks. He opened fire with cannon .

Austrian officers .

tHE FIGHTING LASTED FROM 4.30 UNTIL 9.00. The intelligent placing of troops stopped the Austrians. They retreated . The Austrians lost nine men and 18 wounded. The Italians one and 7 wounded. But it wasn't over Fontana heard that 4,000 Austrians were heading towards the village of Governolo . The Austrians quickly controlled the strategic bridge next to the old tower of Governolo

The first tricolour

On the 15th of July the Austrians arrived led by Rukavina. The day after they were reinforced by another 3 companies . The Bersaglieri hid on boats and sailed down river and took the Austrians by suprise. They let down the bridge and allowed the Queen's Brigade to go across with the Genoan cavalry. The Austrians fled towards Mantova, they more or less ran, abandoning arms and uniforms trying to hide themselves.The Austrian flag was taken and is now conserved in The Royal Armoury of Torino.

Line infantry of Modena

The only bridge on the Mincio at Governolo was back in Italian hands.It had been a very brief barttle but it had been a brilliant one for the Italians.

A typical volunteer

Modena royal infantry in parade unform

Modena artillery sgt

Modena dragoons

    Austrian Guards

    Re-enactors in typical voluunteer uniforms. Likely it was these kinds of uniforms that were worn by Modena troops at Governolo

    A selection of Italian uniforms in the period

    Close ups.

    I have no idea of what these particular volunteer uniforms are but these were general garb in the war

    Bologna civic guard

    Typical volunteer regular.

    Governolo in the first part of the century

    The battle

    tuscan university volunteer

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