At the beginning of the Austerlitz campaign, on the instructions of the Minister of War on August 25, 1805, a division of four regiments on foot was formed in Strasbourg where a dragoon corps of twenty-four regiments on horseback had just been assembled under the supreme command of General Baraguay d’Hilliers. From their ranks emerged four regiments constituting an infantry division of 7,200 men.
These provisional regiments – as stated by Maj. E.L. Bucquoy – were dismissed at the end of the campaign, and each detached company rejoined its mounted regiment, whose clothing with its distinctive color had in any case been preserved.
Dragoons are versatile units with the great characteristic of having to be able to fight both on horseback and on foot. They could therefore be used as simple horsemen (with a straight sword, called latte), or use their horses to deploy quickly as infantry. At certain times (1805 – 1806) some dragoon regiments no longer had horses…
At most, the Empire would have 30 dragoon regiments, some of which were later transformed into Light Horse regiments. Under Napoleon I the dragoon regiments mainly served in Spain.