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Madagascar
Keymaster

The position of Marotolona reconstituted on November 8, 1898, Captain Laverdure continues his way. “On November 10 he found the charred skeleton of the interpreter of the guard Ettori and he received some information about the attack on the post and the desertion of eight militia from the beginning of the attack” (report of the battalion commander Lamolle) .
The next day he set out to find traces of Ettori, but all the villages crossed were abandoned in a precipitate flight, and on 12 November the reconnaissance returned to Marotolana.
Finally, on November 13th, hearing that Ambalavelona had been attacked, Captain Laverdure decided to return and designated Lieutenant Sautel to command Marotolana.
Indeed, on the night of November 7 to 8, Lieutenant Gautier, deputy commander of the Cercle annex, arrived at Ambalavelona. In the early morning, “two hundred Marofelana, of which about thirty armed with rifles, and others with spears, attacked the post after setting fire to the village. They shouted: Vazaha! Vazaha! “
The lieutenant repulsed the attack and pursued the fugitives, who abandoned two of their own, one armed with a gun, shot down with a revolver. Five other bodies are carried away.
The post is again attacked on 8 November, in the early afternoon, “by one hundred and fifty Marofelana divided into three groups, but without much damage”.
Captain Laverdure then began to crisscross the region to reconnoitre.
In the dark night of November 22, the post of Ambalavelona commanded by the ensign Calemard, is attacked again. However, it is difficult to follow the traces of the aggressors, but a skirmisher is mortally wounded.
From 24 to 27 November, captain Laverdure received a gun of 37, ten mules and a 80m / m mountain piece. Armed with his new armament, he is preparing to march in concert with the commander of Bealanana, whose post has been removed by the insurrection which is gaining the whole region of the Ankaizina.
On the 28th of November he went to Bealanana with officers, non-commissioned officers, eighty-three riflemen, twenty-two militiamen, and fourteen artillerymen.
On November 29, the group arrived at Marotolona, ​​although the artillery could withstand great difficulties. The inhabitants of this large village are returning in considerable numbers. “Congratulated and reassured by the captain, they make a commitment to go and get their friends to get them back. On the 30th we left Marotolona. “
After a march made difficult by the rain and the cold in the high mountains, Captain Laverdure’s group arrived on the morning of the 5th, in view of Bealanana. An immense marsh separates them from the city.
“No column was in sight and no news was received from the Mondon group dispatched before. A few cannon shots were fired at the village. They did not determine any apparent movement. “
The group decides to cross the marsh that separates it from the village with care. When he entered it, he found it completely abandoned, half of the huts burned: everything denoted a precipitate flight.
From the post there is nothing left. There are only cartridge cases 74 and piston rifles as well as militia effects. “To the south-west of the village a post had been found on the top of which was attached a European helmet and an iron briefcase containing various objects belonging to the Guard Gouraud!