Date added: 14 Jun 2015
Private Robert Soper was born in 1781 in Old Basing, Hampshire. He was a labourer and is described as 5ft 11ins with brown eyes and a fresh complexion. His service record shows that he served with 1st Regiment of the Dragoon Guards from 1800-1818 and was discharged at the age of 37. The 1st (King's) Dragoon Guards formed 40% of 1st Brigade, known as the Household Brigade, which was commanded by Major-General Lord Edward Somerset. 1st Kings Dragoon Guards were involved in the skirmish at Quatre Bras prior to the Battle and, as the troops steadily retreated back down the Brussels road, they formed the rearguard as British cavalry fell back onto position at Mont St Jean. By 2pm on the day of the Battle a dangerous gap had opened in the centre of the Allied position. At this crucial juncture, Uxbridge, the overall commander of the Anglo-Dutch cavalry Corps, ordered his two brigades of heavy cavalry—formed unseen behind the ridge—to charge in support of the hard-pressed infantry, smashing into the French cavalry. They penetrated so far into the ranks of the French Battalions that the 1st Dragoons managed to capture one of the French Imperial eagles. Casualties were high and by the end of the battle only 30 were still fit to fight. Soper was injured during the battle resulting in damaged hearing, shortness of breath and a numbed left leg. He was a recipient of the Waterloo Medal. He is recorded as a Chelsea Pensioner and may have died at the Hospital.
British Straight Heavy Cavalry Sword (Undress).
The sword is 107 cm long overall and has a 87 cm long blade.
The Officers' helmet is a special edition for Waterloo. It features a black metal skull piece compared to the normal golden cap.
The medal which was issued to the whole of the British forces present at Waterloo and was given to the next of kin of the fallen soldiers. The name of the precipitant was imprinted on the side of the medal.