How Napoleon crossed the Alps
by James Baldwin
About a hundred years ago there lived a great gen-er-al whose name was
Na-po´le-on Bo´na-parte. He was the leader of the French army; and
France was at war with nearly all the countries around. He wanted very
much to take his soldiers into It-a-ly; but between France and Italy
there are high mountains called the Alps, the tops of which are
covered with snow.
"Is it pos-si-ble to cross the Alps?" said Na-po-le-on.
The men who had been sent to look at the passes over the mountains
shook their heads. Then one of them said, "It may be possible, but"—
"Let me hear no more," said Napoleon. "Forward to Italy!"
People laughed at the thought of an army of sixty thousand men
crossing the Alps where there was no road. But Napoleon waited only to
see that everything was in good order, and then he gave the order to
The long line of soldiers and horses and cannon stretched for twenty
miles. When they came to a steep place where there seemed to be no way
to go farther, the trum-pets sounded "Charge!" Then every man did his
best, and the whole army moved right onward.
Soon they were safe over the Alps. In four days they were marching on
the plains of Italy.
"The man who has made up his mind to win," said Napoleon, "will never