It was one of the bloodiest battles in military history – and soldiers from the north-east were in the thick of the fighting.
Now Aberdeen’s Gordon Highlanders Museum has launched two special exhibitions to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo.
The special displays seek to shed light on the regiment’s earliest roots and the path to the killing field where more than 25,000 men lost their lives.
The first, titled The Road to Waterloo, will focus on the journey taken by the soldiers of the Gordon Highlanders from the regiment’s formation in 1794 to the battle on June 18, 1815.
Featuring rare artifacts and items from the Highlander’s early history, it also includes items on loan from the National Army Museum of London.
Curator Jesper Ericsson said: “The Gordon Highlanders were formed and raised in 1894 to fight Napoleon’s armies in revolutionary France – initially it was the whole reason for their being.
“The exhibition will detail the travels of the Gordon Highlanders from the very beginning, in the early battles in Egypt and France, then across Portugal and Spain, and at last in the battles against Napoleon’s armies in June 1815.
“We will have a number of extraordinary artifacts from this time period, and especially the battle of Waterloo itself.”
Among the highlights of the show is the complete period uniform of Ensign John Bramwell, who was wounded at Waterloo, which is on loan from the National Army Museum.
Mr Ericsson said: “For the opening of the exhibition we were lucky enough to have one of his descendants view the full uniform carefully placed on a mannequin, it was a very special, very emotional moment for all of us. It’s just wonderful to have a complete uniform to see, especially when it’s 200 years old.
“We are also displaying the medals of the Commanding Officer and the Pipe Major from the Highlander’s time at Waterloo, so it’s incredible to have these pieces of history from these two senior and important figures from the day on display.”
The second special exhibition, Waterloo Lives: The Gordon Highlanders, will feature a range of personal letters, diaries and notes, allowing museum visitors to experience the day of the battle through the first-hand accounts of the local soldiers who fought there.
The displays will run at the Gordon Highlanders Museum in Aberdeen until November 28.