Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Past glory: game night Crimean War

   Well here is a surprise for me.  While visiting AJ's blog I came across a YouTube video he did of one of my Crimean war battles.  Here are a few pictures from that game.

   I had never seen this before and was delighted when I discovered it.  Thank you AJ! I am always amazed by all the very clever things you come up with.

Saturday, February 22, 2020

The March to Richmond game

  Club game day and it is a big, American Civil War spectacular.  Infantry, artillery, cavalry, a fleet of ships and a observation balloon. Here is the scenario for the game:

  "McClellan has landed his army at Fort Monroe on the peninsula. He now must get his siege train in position to bombard Richmond and take the rebel capitol. With naval assets available, the Union players will need to fight their way up the peninsula to Richmond. the Confederates must stop the Federals and protect the capitol."

   The table for this game was over 20 feet long.  There were twists and turns and all sorts of interesting terrain.  Off table was the James River.  Both sides ships were extremely nice models mounted on moveable tables.  A most amazingly clever idea!


Unimpressed observers.

  Both sides set up on the far table with the majority of their troops.  The Southerners had some river batteries to protect the water front.  The Northerners had two transport ships which could hold a division each.  These could land anywhere  along the river.  If they landed in the waterfront by the piers they could land the entire division plus guns.  Otherwise only a brigade at a time and no artillery. The Federals had two transport ships and two casement iron clads while the Confederate head a single iron clad ship.

  Both sides set up the majority of their forces on the far table.  The Federals planned on using their artillery superiority to blast through the Confederate lines.  This was a long process and sounded better then it worked.  This front was a neat grinder and both sides were locked in a see saw action which saw heavy casualties but little movement. 
Naval action.

Shore batteries

Confederate division moves to stop the naval landing.

 This caused the action to move to my front with a battle between ironclad ships and shore batteries. The heavy guns of the shore batteries blasted the ships and kept them at a distance.  But the two Federal ironclad hanged up on the line Confederate ship and eventually sank her.  But not before a transport was sunk.  This meant the Federals could only land a single division.  Which they did  behind enemy lines and within sight of the outskirts of Richmond.  But the Southern commander had held a infantry and cavalry division in reserved for just this eventuality.  So the landing party was stymied.

In all it was a very fun game and a visual spectacular.  Thank you to Ralph. For all the hard work you put into this.  The game saw 25 club members participate.  The game lasted from 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Captured officer vignette

   I am on something of a roll with painting small vignettes.  It's a nice break from production line painting of line regiments.  And this charming one has always been on my list to paint.  A very interesting group of figures and uniforms.  But something about the set looked, well,  like there was much more to the story.  And after a bit of asking around here is the story I found out.  This is from Giles Allison's blog, Tarleton's Quarter.

"It was noted that Alan's AWI range was nearing the magic "100 packs" mark. Shortly afterwards, I suggested on the TMP forum as a joke that a suitable way of celebrating this landmark would be for Alan to do a "National Army Museum characters" pack. It was then suggested (I'm not sure by whom, perhaps Eclaireur or Alan himself) that a suitable vignette might be a group of British/Hessian officers interrogating Alan, as an allegory of the pestering that Alan has to put with from those of us who are always demanding that he makes specific packs of obscure AWI troops.

  And so pack AW100 was born. Mug-shots and measurements (our heights, obviously...) were sent to Alan early in 2006, there was a bit of discussion about what uniforms the various, er, "personalities" should be wearing and then in July I received an email from Alan with a picture of the greens he had finished. The likenesses that he has captured in such a small scale are absolutely incredible. The Perries together with other Games Workshop designers have already demonstrated their superb skill as portrait artists through their "Lord of the Rings" figures, so I suppose we should not really have been surprised at how well these figures turned out. But many thanks to Alan for being so game and taking on this capricious idea!

In front of Alan are a gesticulating Eclaireur (in the uniform of a Guards officer; of impeccable breeding is EC), Dave Brown in the yellow facings of the 44th Foot (which became the East Essex Regiment in 1782) and myself reading the captured despatches, dressed as an officer in the Black Watch. Behind Alan are two Hessians in the orange facings of the von Lossberg regiment. The tall officer is AWI expert and guru Supercilius Maximus (as he is known on TMP) whilst the sentry is a chap I think is called Norbert. I also painted a set of masters for Alan's own collection which he's put up on his site. Painted November 2006. Tree stumps and fence from Redoubt Miniatures. Base size: 100mm x 100mm. "

I would like to see a different version of this scene.  Perhaps some of the same characters but this time at either Trenton or Yorktown.  :)

Monday, February 17, 2020

18th century civilians

   Here we have a few civilians to add to my back ground on my table.  All figures from Perry miniatures.  Very useful for adding interesting scenes in the background and additional color.  One more thing to brighten the table top.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Camp vignette

  I picked up this very nice vignette from Perry Miniatures at Cold Wars too many years ago.  It went into my "to do" box and got forgotten about.  I recently found it and wondered why I had never painted it!

  The camp scene is a series of small set pieces.  Here is a woman cooking over a fire, while a soldier brings a barrel of water.  Two soldiers settle the problems of the world over a drink while another soldier gets his hair dressed.  The set is full of life and very charming.

  I decided to set it in my American camp.  The timing is 1776 around New York city.  The Continental Army is not yet field tested and their clothing has not acquired the campaign look from hard service.  One soldier is in a typical New England brown faced red coat.  The one getting his hair dressed is in the uniform of the famed Delaware regiment.  The women's clothing is very well done and unlike too many miniatures correct for the time period.  No "farbs" here!  It is also of a better quality then you may find in camp.  Hence my setting it around New York before the fighting starts.

   The two continental line soldiers holding a animated conversation reminds me of two old friends from the Park Service.  To me they look like Eric Olsen from Morristown NHP and Joe Craig from Saratoga NHP.  

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Light Infantry battalions

  The 1st and 2nd battalions of Light Infantry 1776.  The "Light Bobs" are ready for the skirmish at Harlem Heights that I am planning later this year.

  In the meantime a couple pictures of these fine battalions.  All figures by Fife and Drum miniatures.

Friday, February 7, 2020

Grenadier battalions

   Now that I have my two battalions of Grenadiers finished I wanted to take a few pictures.  Here we have a short parade before Lord Cornwallis.

Two quotes about the Grenadier battalions at the Battle of Brandywine in 1777.

Nothing could be more dreadfully pleasing than the line moving on to the attack; the Grenadiers put on their Caps and struck up their march, believe me I would not exchange those three minutes of rapture to avoid ten thousand times the danger."
Lt William Hale, 45th Foot.

"(The) line moving on exhibited the most grand and noble sight imaginable.  The grenadiers beating their march as they advanced contributed greatly to the dignity of the approach."
Lt Martin Hunter, 52nd Foot