Sunday, April 21, 2019

Cowpens-Guilford Courthouse Campaign Refought: Battle of New Garden Meeting House.

  For the final battle of the campaign Greene and Cornwallis armies fought a meeting engagement at New Garden Meeting house.  The Americans fielded the army they would have at Guilford Courthouse.  I gave them a additional North Carolina Militia battalion  and Maryland-Delaware light battalion intact instead of returning it to its parent battalions.  The British got both battalions of the 71st regiment, the light battalion  and the British Legion infantry since Cowpens had not been fought.  Lastly since the battle was so large it was fought at club game night since we had additional players and more room.

Peaceful farm before The Battle with The now famous geese!

The Americans set up on the north side of the table.  They had a large woods with a road running through it on their left with more open fields in the center and right.  This area was dotted with fences, crop fields and two ridges.  Woods were rough going exception on road.

Riflemen in the woods.

Continental line battalions.

  The American commander placed his Continental line regiments (1st & 2nd Maryland, 4th and 5th Virginian and the Light battalion and a medium gun) in his center.  On his right he massed his cavalry (Lee's, William Washington's and Militia horse) and supported them with four Virginian militia battalions and a medium gun.  Both commands were to attack the British and try to push through.  In his left he placed two rifle battalions in the woods and four North Carolina Militia  battalions to support them  this command was to try and hold off the British.

Com Bose and 33rd Regiment

British Legion and Light troops advancing through the woods.
  On the British side the commander recorded to send Tarleton, his Legion cavalry and infantry with the 17th Light dragons and Light Infantry battalion through the woods to turn the American flank.  He then deployed the two battalions of the 71st to guard his left with the Regiment von Bose, 33rd and 23rd to attack in the center.  The Brigade of Guard's were in reserve.  The subordinate commanders questioned if the cavalry should be in the open but their objections were over ruled.

  The game started by the Amercans aggressively advancing in the center and right.  Their guns were placed to support the advance.  The British countered this by advancing the von Bose, 33rd and 23rd in the center.  In the woods the British pushed forward, but at reduced speed.  All the time sniped at by the riflemen.

  Because the British commander advanced the  Von Bose 33rd and 23rd  one behind the other. The Continental line was able to mass against them.  First artillery and muskets fire forced the von Bose to check morale.  Poor dice saw the Germans rout off the board!  The two Maryland regiments  then attacked the 33rd regiment supported by the Light battalion.  Heavily outnumbered the 33rd routed.  The Royal Artillery went down fighting as their gun was over run.

  Seeing the mass of cavalry approaching the commander of the 71st moved out to meet them . He advanced his two battalions against the cavalry and four battalions of militia.  Trying to support his commanders he moved one battalion towards the center and the Continental line while the other faced off against the militia.  This left the American cavalry to swing around the British flank.

  The Highlanders charged the militia and caused numerous casualties.  But the militia morale held and the Highland 23rd fell back disordered.  Unfortunately the American cavalry were there in their flank and rear.  With no where to go the Highlanders surrendered.   The other battalion advancing towards the Continental line was ridden down by cavalry who attacked them from the rear.

23rd Royal Welch Fusiliers fighting the Maryland regiments.

last stand of the Fusiliers.

In the center the gallant 23rd Royal Welch Fusiliers stood their ground.  A devastating volley caused the Light battalion to retire in disorder.  The two Maryland regiments charged but could not make a dent in the Fusiliers.  Both regiments fell back disordered.  Looking over their shoulders for support the Fusiliers saw the Brigade of Guard's move in the direction of the woods!

The British Legion had made slow but steady progress.  They had pushed the Riflemen back.  The British light infantry and Jagers, supported by a squadron the the Legion attacked the militia along the stone wall and routed them.  At this point the rest of the Legion Cavalry were moving out of the woods and ready to attack the American flank.  But what he saw was the entire Continental line in position to fight him.  Additional militia battalions were moving up.  And the American cavalry were moving forward to engage.  Deciding to save what was left of his army the British commander ordered them to retreat and save what they could.

This ended the Cowpens-Guilford Courthouse Campaign.  The American had crushed the British army and won a decisive, but unexpected victory.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

The Race to Weitzel's Mill: part 1

  Another article from Gorget and Sash.  A brilliant article about The Weitzel's Mill action by Kenneth Hayes.  This is the best researched article I have read about This battle and it has the added bonus of an number of pictures from the battlefield.  Kenneth Hayes has done a number of outstanding articles and this is one of his best.