During the Napoleonic Wars the military croquis, or sketch map, played an important role in the spatial management of the various campaigns. Presumably, many of these sketch maps were destroyed or discarded after their immediate use. Those that survive have received little scholarly notice. Attention is drawn in this article to a large and well-documented collection produced during the campaign in Russia in 1812 and subsequently amassed by the Saxon cartographer Ferdinand Heinrich August von Larisch. The operational value of the military croquis is examined and the relationship between cartographic poetics and historical representation considered.