In terms of actual revolutionaries, Hugo had next to no direct connections. Borel and du Seigneur were on the Romantic avant-garde at a time when Hugo was still approved by the monarchy and using those connections as much as possible (he had an actual royal pension that he thoroughly enjoyed; these guys were hippies). The Hernanistes weren't his actual friends; they were worshipers. Jeanne had a public trial that was covered extensively. I think some issues discussed in the novel are related directly the 1834 massacre in the rue Transnonain - another failed revolution, and the army went into a house in the rue Transnonain where some revolutionaries were supposed to have holed up, and they fired on the floor where it was assumed the revolutionaries were. There were no revolutionaries in there. 12 were killed, a number of others were wounded. Women were among the victims. It was covered extensively, public opinion was entirely against the soldiers. A lot of the things Hugo talks about, in the way he talks about them, require no real research or interviews - that was done at the time, by the newspapers and pamphleteers.
Hugo's real experience of barricades was 1848, February and June. In February, he, and a lot of other rich people, went touristing. From February, and this intended supportive "let's go stare at the war", is pretty much where his "good barricade" notions come from. the June Days is from where a bunch of "not good barricade" notions come from. He believed that the June Days was the absolute wrong way to go about the issue being protested ("how much government assistance should be provided" and "how should we determine the effectiveness of said assistance" were the actual issues: the government, under Louis Blanc's insistence, had set up a series of national workshops to deal with the issue of mass unemployment. These were generally poorly run, there wasn't actually enough work to bother with nationalized industry, and the whole thing was a money-losing proposition that was frequently paying men to go to a place where there was no actual work, as opposed to paying men to work. And the national workshops were not on a scale to even be paying subsistance to the number of people who needed it, anyway. So the government shut the whole project down, arguably without taking enough time to set it up properly or to let the experiment run a reasonable number of months to work out kinks and get some actual data. The workshops were shuttered in June, the working classes took the closure as a sign that penny-pinching businessmen had hijacked their revolution, and boom: June Days.)
Hugo felt the working classes were pure at heart, but that they were easily led astray from their better nature. The June Days was an example of this: they had overthrown a tyrant in February, but now they were being dragged along by socialist (or even communist!) demogogues. But the working classes were generally pure at heart and could be saved, and maybe they weren't 100% wrong in demanding that their needs be addressed along with the needs of commerce. So he went with a National Guard unit from barricade to barricade, begging the revolutionaries to surrender. When they didn't surrender, the National Guard unit would fire on them.
For the novel, with the benefit of hindsight post-Louis Napoleon's coup, Hugo is trying to erase what he actually did in favour of returning to and mostly emphasising the "good barricade".
I think the key thing in here, with Hugo and revolution, is to look at how much "screentime" Feuilly gets. The character is very loosely based on a man named Albert, who had been a fanmaker and was elected to the legislative assembly at the same time Hugo was. There's nothing there. Revolution is made by the educated working classes - the men apprenticed to decent-paying trades, who traditionally have been able to afford to get married rather than just shacking up with someone until the relationship collapses, who are able to set up their children with apprenticeships in turn. The educated working classes do not appear as characters in this novel. Hugo has to default to the bourgeois students who made up a much lesser proportion of combatants because those are the people he understands and can portray sympathetically. Revolution isn't made by or for the Misérables, the people with nothing, though they may provide boots on the ground when it comes time. It is made - organized- by the people who have less than they think they have earned and by their allies.
Hugo has lots of feels, we can tell. We can also tell, from the way in which he expresses his feels and the characters he decides to spend his time with, that he has way more feels than he has personal experience.
I think I've gone on at more length on this stuff in the read through threads for the appropriate books.
What kind of literature and what kind of life is the same question. - Tom Stoppard