Her son Louis Napoleon treated his Mother’s Memoirs as a sacred relic. He built Paris into a beautiful new city with wide boulevards and a system of public parks. He named many locations in Paris after his mother, Hortense de Beauharnais Bonaparte. Louis Napoleon also changed the national anthem to one of the songs Hortense had composed for Napoleon the First.
You can listen here below to one of the songs written by Hortense for her Stepfather. This song was the national anthem of France under Napoleon III.
Napoleon’s problem was that there was practically no way he could create a dynasty that could survive him, past his death. Which meant they were always trying to kill him. His best attempt to create an heir that would survive him would be if it were Hortense’s child. Why did Napoleon think that?
Napoleon the First couldn’t have a legitimate child with Hortense because that would make him a cad and he would be violating the contract he made with her to be her father. So he ARRANGED for her to marry his brother so she could merge with his genetics in a way that didn’t discredit his honor.
Hortense’s son did, in a sense, have enough of Hortense and Napoleon’s essence in him that he actually was competent enough to establish a dynasty that survived the First Napoleon. Napoleon III was for the most part a napoleonic ruler who was eventually trapped and framed and removed from power. That story is a large part of “the unification of Germany”, circa 1870.
Then they obscured the good Napoleon III had done also. Paris which is an architectural living monument to Napoleon III’s work, only honors this man with a small plaque. That was the only recognition I could find and it looked like mockery to me.
Napoleon III was Hortense’s son and Napoleon’s nephew.
Napoleon’s big problem was always that whatever he created would end at his death (if not sooner) because his enemies were too violently opposed to fairer laws and trade (and mostly they were opposed to anyone in power but them).