Friday, 21 February 2020

2nd Bull Run ( Battle of Manassas) 29th & 30th August 1862.

Well, this battle was more involved than I thought. Not having an in- depth knowledge of the war, there were a couple of points I found confusing.

One item is that there were two formations designated as 3rd Corp. Anyway, I digress.

This battle came about because, Robert E. Lee managed to out-manoeuvre Pope. Lee also managed this because of the mental stamina of the men under his command.

The battle of Brawners Farm took place South of Stoney Ridge a few days before Manassas. Although a small action it was no less sanguine, with both sides standing toe-to-toe in close range fire. Even the Officers suffered.

Amongst the Confederates, Taliaferro was wounded three times and General Ewell had his leg shattered by a minie ball which led to amputation.

This was a foretaste of events to come. Jackson had found an excellent position on the wooded
hillside of Stony Ridge from which to fight a defensive battle.

Jackson was also aided in his defense by an unfinished railway embankment. Knowing that Longstreet was on his way in support Jackson  settled his men in position for the coming battle.

The Union General Pope finally found out where Jackson was, having found out about the battle of Brawners Farm. However, Popes army as well as his battle plan was in total chaos thanks to the speed and hard marching of the Confederate forces.

The Union Army gradually assembled from all points of the  compass in front of Jackson's position as Pope sent forward any formations
within marching distance.

The battle was fought over two days. On the first day (the 29th ), Jackson was against the Union Generals; Siegel, Heinztelman and Reno
plus a Division led by John F. Reynolds.

Longstreet, with Lee, turned up later on the first day. As much as Lee wanted Longstreet to attack to take the pressure off Jackson, Longstreet demurred wanting to know what was in front of him.

Jackson's men held on, at one point throwing rocks at the advancing Union forces due to a shortage of ammunition.

On the 2nd day, ( the 30th ) Longstreet attacked!!;

Confederate Army of Northern Virginia.
Left Wing ( 29th August)
24,000 = 24 points.

Major General Stonewall Jackson @ 2 points.
General Ambrose P. Hill @ 2 points.

3 stands of 1st class Line Infantry @ 3 points = 9 points.
3 stands of 2nd class Line infantry @ 2 points = 6 points.

1 stand (A ) James E.B Stuart,s cavalry;
dismounted @ 1 point = 1 point.

1 stand ( B ) Fitzhugh,s cavalry;
dismounted @ 1 point = 1 point

3 stands of Horse Artillery @ 1 point = 3 points.

Union Army of Virginia;
Formations present on the 29th  August
48,000 = 48 points.

1st Corp ;

Franz Siegel ; @ 1 point.
6 stands of 2nd class Line Infantry @ 2 points = 12 points.
2 stands of Horse Artillery @ 1 point = 2 points.

3rd Corp ( from the Army of Potomac )

Samuel Heinztelman @ 1 point.
4 stands of 2nd class Line Infantry @ 2points = 8 points.
2 stands of Heavy Artillery' @ 2 points = 4 points.

9th Corp;

Jesse L. Reno @ 1 point.
4 stands of 2nd class Line Infantry @ 2 points = 8 points.
2 stands of Heavy Artillery @ 2 points = 4 points.

John F. Reynolds @ 1 point. Reserve Division;
1 stand of 1st class Line Infantry @ 3 points = 3 points.
1 stand of 2nd class Line Infantry @ 2 points = 2 points.
1 stand of  Horse Artillery @ 1 point = 1 point.


● This 1st battle will last for 8 turns.

●The Confederate Army get the Initiative Point on every turn even when they move 2nd.

● The Confederate Army moves 1st on the
first game turn. All other Game-Turns are
diced for as usual.

● The line of trees count as a wooded area.

● The railway embankment counts as a Trench
or low earthworks.

The Battlemap;

The Battle. The first day;

The second day, 30th August 1862;

Confederate Army of Northern Virginia
Right Wing; 26,000 = 26 points.

Major General James Longstreet @ 2 points.
Nathan " Shanks" Evans @ 2 points.

4 stands of 1st class Infantry @ 3 points = 12 points.
4 stands of 2nd class Infantry @ 2 points = 8 points.
2 stands of Horse Artillery @ 1 point = 2 points.

Union Army of Virginia = 22,000.

5th Corps;

Fitz-John Porter @ 1 point.
5 stands of 2nd class infantry @ 2 points = 10 points.
1 stand of Horse Artillery @ 1 point = 1 point.

3rd Corp;
Irvin McDowell @ 1 point.
4 stands of 2nd class Infantry @ 2 points = 8 points.
1 stand of Horse Artillery @ 1 point = 1 point.

As you can see on the map, those Stands that are positioned on the table for the 2nd  battle are marked in red.

This second picture shows the stands that show up on the 2nd day.

Robert E. Lee turned up late on the first day with Longstreet.
The Union General John Pope finally arrived on the second day.
Although both Generals were present, they did not directly influence the battle so they have no points.

The Confederate Cavalry are worth 1point.  When dismounted, the cavalrymen  have zero points and a basic die is rolled for their firing and close combat.

The two Confederate stands positioned on the
flank of Chinn ridge can be bought on during
the 2nd battle. The Confederate  player throws
a die 6 at the start of their chosen Game Turn.
A six must be thrown for these two stands to
be moved onto the table.

The first and second day of the battle are played as two games each of 8 Game Turns. At the end of the first game, the Confederate player may reorganise any Stands still positioned on or around Stoney Ridge.

Bull Run can only be crossed at the bridges.

Well, this is my interpretation of the battle.
All done on a 3 foot x 2 foot table with 15mm

The figures shown in the pictures are Peter Pig and Miniature Figurines with a few Essex Miniatures.
The flags are by Peter Pig. The square bases are cardboard and the round bases are 40mm MDF From Minibits ( Pendraken ).

Thursday, 2 January 2020

Battle of Klissow : Poland-Lithuania July 9th 1702.

This is another battle of  the Great Northern War where an outnumbered Swedish army took on a larger force. However a few incidents happened which favoured the Swedes in winning this battle and I have tried to reflect this in the reconstruction.

The Swedish Army;

Infantry ; 8000 = 8 points x 3 = 24 points.

Cavalry ;  4000 = 4 points x 3 = 12 points.

Artillery ; This was available but was left trailing in order to get the army into battle formation as soon as possible.

1) General Carl Gustav Rehnskiold= 1 point.
2) General Knut Goransson Posse   = 1 point.
3) General Frederick 4th Duke
of Holstein-Gottorp = 2 points.

4 stands of Line Cavalry @ 3 points = 12 points.
7 stands of Line Muskets @ 2 points = 14 points.
2 stands of Pikemen @ 3points = 6 points.

Saxony Army.

Infantry ; 7000 = 7 points x 3 = 21 points.

Cavalry ; 9000 = 9 points x 3 = 27 points.

46 guns ( ÷10 ) = 4 guns.

A) General Adam Heinrich von Steinau = 1point.
B) Johann von Der Schulenburg = 1 point.
C) Jacob Heinrich von Fleming = 1 point.


Cavalry; 5000 = 5 points x 3 = 15 points.

Winged Hussars 1,250 = 1.250 points x 3 = 4 points.

Polish Infantry 660 = 0.660 points x 3 = 2 points.

D) General Hieronim Augustyn Lubomirski = 1 point.

7 stands of Saxon Line Cavalry @ 3 points = 21 points.
2 stands of Saxon Light Dragoons @ 2 points = 4 points.
10 stands of Saxon Line Infantry @ 2 points = 20 points.
4 stands of heavy guns @ 2 points = 8 points.

The Polish Wing.

4 stands of Line Cavalry @ 3points = 12 points.
1 stand of Line Dragoons @ 2 points = 2 points.
1 stand of Winged Hussars @ 4 points = 4 points.
1 stand of Line Infantry @ 2 points= 2 points.

Special notes;

This is another battle that needs a few special rules in order to obtain a reasonable outcome. The Swedes did win despite being outnumbered!! but the Saxons and Poles did put up a bit of a fight and I wanted to give
both sides a chance of victory.

● If cavalry attack enemy infantry within the marshy area they do not get the 3 points for attacking Infantry on flat open ground.

● Any stands moving into the marshy ground on each side of the stream plus the stream itself can only move one square each Game Turn.

●  The Saxon artillery cannot move.

● The artillery has only two squares range.

● Stands cannot be moved through the trees.

● The Nida river cannot be crossed.

●The Swedish army gets the Initiative point every Game-Turn and also moves  first every Game Turn.

● The Swedish player can move all their stands
on the movement phase. The Saxon player however has to throw a 12 sided die, the result showing the number of stands that can be, prior to the to the Saxon movement phase.

The above hopefully reflects the conditions of
the actual battle. Despite the Saxons having the
preponderance of artillery it didn't seem to affect the Swedish manoeuvres.
The Saxons attacked twice along with the Polish wing. After being beaten back twice the Swedes advanced. For some reason both Generals Fleming and Lubomirski
decided to withdraw their commands!!

The entire Polish wing plus the Saxon right wing cavalry and Dragoons left the field, leaving General Steinau's Cavalry and General Schulenbergs infantry ( which up to this point seemed to be doing little ) to fight a rearguard action!.

As the Swedes overan the Saxon artillery the guns were turned on their former owners.

● Ok, to reflect this, if a Swedish infantry stand moves into an adjacent square to a Saxon artillery stand and, the Swedes are not in combat the gun becomes Swedish!.

A couple of important points;

● Duke Frederick was mortally wounded at one point in the battle so the Swedish King himself took command of the Swedish left wing ( 2 points ).

● At the start of GAME TURN 6, All the Polish stands plus the Saxon right wing cavalry along with general's Fleming and Lubomirski are taken Off The Board! The Swedish player then moves their stands.

Winning the game.

Having played this game three times  I have found that numbers do count and, without the above restrictions the Swedes cannot win.
So, at the end of Game Turn 8, the Swedish player must have a minimum of Three Stands on the South Side of the stream within the marshy ground in order to win the game. The small red lines on each side of the map delianate how far forward the stands must be..

The Saxons win if they can prevent this.

One last historical note. This appears to be the
last battle in which the famous Polish Winged
Hussars took the field ( so it was nice to have a
historical reason to include a stand of these
famous troops on the table!!)

As before , I used a 3 foot x 2 foot ( 90 cm x 60 cm )
table with a 2 inch ( 50mm ) square grid.

Here is the map;

This is the board showing the set up;

All the figures are 15mm from either Essex Miniatures or Minifigs.

Finally, here's a glimpse of those famous horsemen from the Essex Miniatures range;