I'm trying to fill in some blanks in my family history.
In May 1805 an ancestor of mine traveled from Koblenz (Germany) to Paris (France).
He left most likely on May 16 or 17, maybe a few days later.
He embezzled a large amount (approx $200.000 in today's money) on the morning of May 16. He knew he had at least a week before it would be discovered and I assume he probably wanted to create some distance fairly quickly.
He was accompanied by his accomplice and girlfriend, a French woman.
My ancestor was a good horseman, but the woman most likely was not. They probably traveled by stage coach or just purchased a coach or wagon and horses.
They would have avoided the Moselle river and river valley at all costs as my ancestor was well known along the river all the way south to the city of Trier.
(I presume that up the Moselle to Metz or Thionville and then west to Paris via Reims would be the logical route otherwise.)
I know from family records that end of January 1806 my ancestor was in Paris, had lost all his money and his girlfriend (or she took of with the money) and he had to enlist (maybe forced by a press gang) in Napoleons army.
There is no record of when exactly he arrived in Paris, but it was at least 2-3 months before that.
To complicate matters the French Grande Armee was that summer on the move, redeploying from the Atlantic coast to southern Germany because of the "War of the 3rd Coalition". But my ancestor was probably early enough to have avoided that troop movement altogether. According to my sources the Grande Armee reached the Moselle around September. My ancestor should have been clear of the area already by that time.
What route could they have traveled? How long would it have taken?
(West of Reims would river-travel on the Marne have been a possibility?)