Napoleonic Wargame Club
Edition 10 - May 2000
Publisher: Pierre Desruisseaux
Editor: Ken Jones, British Army
Chris Wattie, British Army
Rob Hamper, Prussian Army
Tom Simmons, French Army
Marc Lanero, French Army
In this Issue ...
Prime Minister's Address
Fellow Officers of the Napoleonic Wargaming Club! I have the honor to have been selected to head up our club cabinet. The new cabinet is as follows:
My goals for the NWC is to continue to have fun playing Napoleonic wargames, meet interesting people from around the world, get to know them, hopefully share a bunch of beers with them (or lemonade in Bill Peters case), and then kill them (on the battlefield ;-). (For those who might not know, that is an old antiwar joke about joining the US Army from the 1970s).
Who am I? Other than being the new Prime Minister and the current Prussian Army CoA, I am an old grognard who has been playing war games since Avalon Hill's Africa Korps and Blitzkrieg came out in the 1960's (yea, I did say old! Actually, I'm 45). Anybody remember Strategy and Tactics Magazine? I have a whole box full of them. Only problem with the board games was that there was no one to play. That has changed with the coming of the internet and gaming clubs and easy PBEM. I started with the Lead Eaters club playing World War II games (V4V andW@W) and really didn't play Napoleonic games until the founding of the NWC. While, I am not a founding member of this club (I believe Steve Peluso, Bill Peters and Pierre Desruisseaux were, any others I apologize for leaving out your name), I was the second Prussian officer. I know Jon Brewitt was drafted very early to lead some of the French Armies and Bill Peters was the first Prussian, before hearing the Sound of Music once too often and becoming an Austrian. I bet Bill could even sing along with the words like so many other Brits can these days.
I am in the Prussian Army because an ancestor of mine, through my mother's family, actually fought at Waterloo for the Prusisan Army. My mother is German, born in Berlin and my father American, born in South Dakota. I was born and raised in California and now live in Davis, a town just outside Sacramento, California.. I am a professional geologist who just recently got a great job working for the State of California. Prior to my job with the State of CA, I was at the University of California-Davis, getting advanced degrees in Environmental Policy and Economics. I am finally back in the workforce but only after missing the greatest Bull Market in U.S. history. However, I did learn how to brew my own beer here in Davis and I guarantee you that it is the best Pilsner in the World, bar none! Stop by if you are in the area. But beer is not my only passion....scotch and wine fill two other cabinets! Believe me, I take my Prussian Army command very seriously. I have much work to do in order to truly emulate FM Blucher!
Actually, I want to emphasize that the club was founded for the purpose of playing computer games of the Napoleonic era (hint, there are more, many more coming guys!). And reflecting this era and its history, the club is specifically set up to reward honorable play and good sportsmanship. This is not a ladder organization. The difference between wining or losing is only 6 points, yet you earn a point for every turn completed, win or lose. Collegial play is encouraged. Players will have more fun if they take the time to become acquainted with the history of the era and of the units they command. I have accumulated quite a bookshelf of Napoleonic books since I started playing games in this club. I have also joined a Napoleonic era reenactment group!
Unlike many other gaming clubs, in NWC everybody joins an army. You fight not just for your own honor but for the honor of your Army. In this club we all have allies from which we can learn; and we can enjoy their comraderie in our various taverns. Take advantage of your allies, ask them questions, and play some multiplayer (mp) games with them. You will learn more from your allies than anywhere else. Know before hand that multiplayer games take time, lots of time, they last forever, so what. You will have more fun planning strategy, watching it unfold, and getting to know your colleagues. This is a gift this club offers that many others do not. Get to know your enemy too. They are honorable men and great fun to cross swords with.
In fact, I have had great times with people I have met through this club. In addition to all the officers I have met on the gaming battlefield, I have also met Jon Brewitt in person while in London two summers ago. We shared a fair number of pints at the Grenadier (a pub in London that was Wellington's officer's mess), watched the Household Divisions (Guards) Regimental Bands, visited the Waterloo model in the British Army Museum, and in general had a great time. I have also had lunch with Bill Peters in Los Angeles one fine afternoon. I hope someday, to meet many more of you in person. There is a secret project that Secretary of State Jon Brewitt is working on that may result in an opportunity to hold a grand meeting of club members in June 2001. Much needs to be done and pulling it off is still a long shot. We'll let you know more as it develops.
In closing I just want to emphasize again - honorable play is more important than winning or losing. This is our era, we should strive to reflect it. If you lose, you can play again. Lose your honor, and well, where are you then?
Most Respectfully, Your Humble Servant,
Michael Wolf Gjerde
NWC Prime Minister
From the Editor
Three Cheers for the new Club Cabinet! Huzzah! Huzzah! Huzzah! As hobbies go, NWC activities can take up a lot of time (and thats just game play). Volunteering to become a club officer shows a real commitment of time and effort from these folks on our behalf. Please thank them when you get the chance and help them out whenever you can. It takes great members to have a great club.
Well, welcome to the May 2000 edition of the NWC newsletter. A little late this quarter thanks to a disasterous campaign in Russia (I lost not once but twice). Fortunately, my horse found its way home (and brought me along) and I was able to crank up the presses after crying in my drink for a bit. Also, I should recognize the assistance of several new associate editors. Tom Simmons and Marc Lanero (two members of the French Armee du Nord) and Rob Hamper have all joined the the editorial board. I don't know how he does it, but Rob came up with another smashing interview with one of the world's most noted historians of the Napoleonic wars.
There are many things happening in the club right now. I know of two great tournaments currently underway. The Allied Coalition Maneuvers and the French-Prussian Westphalia Campaign. Both tournaments attracted large numbers of competitors. The Allied Maneuvers wrap up in June and we will let you know the results in the next newsletter. The Westphalia Campaign is just underway and it is too early yet to report on the success of either side. You can follow the action though at (http://www.wargamesims.net/nwc/acoal/index.html ). Thanks to all the officers who gave of their time to help organize and run these events.
For happenings within the individual armies, see the newsletter's 'Dispatches' section. There is simply too much going on to report here. I would like to thank all those officers who put the news together for their individual armies. I know it takes time (a precious commodity). Remember, this is a big club and none of us can keep track of what is going on in every army. It is important that we communicate with each other and inform others about significant happenings, individual contributions, command changes, significant battlefield accomplishments, etc. That is what this newsletter is all about really.
On the battlefield, the Allied forces continue to hold the upper hand over their French opponents. In the months of February, March, and April, the allies recorded 45 major victories and 9 minor victories to the 35 major victories and 4 minor victories of the French. There were 18 draws. For a complete breakdown of game results (click here). Percentage-wise, the British army proved to be the most victorious - winning fractionally more than half of their games. The Austrians and Russians were victors in half of their games. The French won only 35 percent of all their battles. Well played gentlemen. Again, many thanks to Lt. Col. Ian Travers, Scott's Greys, for keeping such great records for us.
In the meantime, there are plenty of battles to be fought. Enjoy the camaraderie, keep your honor intact, and remember the skirmisher's prime directive: "Shoot the officers first!"
Your Humble and Obedient Servant,
K. Jones, Editor
Strategy and Tactics | Dispatches | Regimental Histories | On the Internet | Letters to the Editor
'Le courage d'un Lion,
La force d'un cheval,
L'appetit d'un souris,
Et l'humanité d'une bête'
An aphorism written on a wall of a French barracks in Lisbon, concerning the qualifications necessary to make a good soldier
(Psst - the bravery of a lion, the strength of a horse, the appetite of a mouse, and the humanity of a brute)
I really should remember to make a note somewhere of what action or figures the pictures depict whenever I save them. Any ideas?
In this Issue ...
Grapeshot, An Interview with David Chandler, by Rob Hamper
Book Review: Napoleonic Army Handbook: The British Army and Her Allies, by Richard Partridge and Michael Oliver, Review by Dermont Quigley
The Prussian Army of 1806 and 1813 - Commentary on Leadership and Fighting Ability, By Dallas Gavan
The Scenario Design Center - Founded and Operated by Richard Hamilton
Waterloo Revisited, by Brig. General Mick O' Reilly
Napoleonic Trivia Quiz, submitted by Einar Einrensonn
Foreign Generals in La Grande Armée, by Major Jean-Denis Martin, IIIe Corps, AdN
with Dr. David G. Chandler
Most of you have heard the name of Chandler before and doubtless the majority of you readers have read at least one of his works. Dr. David Chandler is a prolific author of military history, in particular, of the Napoleonic era and is no stranger to controversey or serious debate. You may also be aware that Dr. Chandler suffered a stroke back in 1994.
I had been thinking of Chandler as an interview subject for some time, but I hadn't a clue as to how to get in touch with him. I reached out to another author contact, Mr. Peter Hofschröer, himself an interview subject for Grapeshot. Peter gladly volunteered his services and suggested I send him the questions, which he would then forward on to Chandler. Peter would also review the questions to ensure I didn't get carried away. Additionally, he gave me some detail on Dr. Chandler's state of health.
Not wanting to be a burden on the prestigious historian, I limited my questions in number and in scope. I touched on some more unusual topics than is typically seen in Grapeshot. I figured I had one chance at an interview like this so why not make it a little more creative. Besides, there is a mountain of information on the man in various magazines and newsletters.
While I expected to have to make do with a shorter column, what I got was an extraordinary surprise. Dr. Chandler responded with passion and enthusiasm and I couldn't help but smile in interest as I read his replies to my questions. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.
RH:Dr. Chandler, what is your proudest moment as an historian?
DC: I am pretty certain that must have been at Oxford in December, 1991 where I was made a D. Litt., ( i.e. Doctorate of Letters) I could hardly have believed it I had never received a Ph. D - for although I have written well over 20 books - and goodness knows how many professional lectures or articles around the world - at the R.M.A. Sandhurst from 1960 when I was appointed, yet I missed this opportunity for a doctorate (rather too busy, perhaps). One day in about 1989 at dinner at General Sir Tony Farrar-Hockley's home where he challenged me teasingly to have a go. 'Blow it all...', I said privately, 'I SHALL have a go after all.' But it worked. The Professor of War at Oxford told me that there were quite a few Honorary D. Litts. of military historians, field-marshals, or famous professors abroad, etc., but that he believed from his records that I was only [one] of four Oxford 'worked' D. Litts. since 1900 - namely Sir John Fortescue, Sir Charles Oman, and Sir Michael Howard - an interesting group, (less myself, of course).
If I may add in passing two other points, I was also very surprised last January. I was delighted when my eldest son, Paul, was appointed to 'Who's Who - 2000'; but suddenly, knock-me-down, I was also listed. Now there are five Chandlers in the great volume that only runs to some 4,000 pages. It was a complete fluke - and there was no attempt of collusion. I am a retired military historian and Paul (as a historian from Oxford too) is a very busy man as Secretary-General of the 'SPCK' which has lasted for 300 years. Anyway, this has been a case of 'Ancient and Modern'! But that is enough about family pride... However, I have also been very proud to have been appointed for six years (1989 - 95) as a trustee of the Royal Armouries of HM Tower of London and Leeds. But my D. Litt. from Oxford is my most proud moment.
[Interviewer's Note: SPCK stands for the Society for the Promotion of Christian Knowledge, a worldwide organization founded in 1698 by Thomas Bray and friends for the promotion of social ideals through education and through Christian Literature]
RH: What do you think is the greatest achievement in your career?
DC: That is a difficu1t question. Perhaps I can answer by quoting from the excellent new magazine, the 'Battlefields Review' (No. 5, February 2000), The Editor, Kelvin van Hasselt, says so far that I have
'...brought History alive not just to generations of cadets of Sandhurst, but to a worldwide audience through his books, videos and television programmes. The huge public interest in military history today owes much to [D.G.C.]... This issue is concerned with Napoleonic history... [whose] ... two books 'The Campaigns of Napoleon' and 'Napoleon's Marshals' are key starting points for serious research. 'Battlefields Review' salutes David Chandler... long overdue public recognition of [D.G.C.'s] contribution to our national life'.
That was a very generous comment, but I am rather embarrassed by such kind comments. [However,] I agree that I have always been consciously aware that I have loved History from my earliest years, and I have so enjoyed the subject that I wish other people, old or young, to enjoy it to the full. I have deliberately tried to encourage new writers, painters, photographers, wargamers and military re-enactors. At the end of WW2 military history was relatively unpopular - and for good reason. We and our Allies had won a major war, but we were absolutely exhausted after five years of total struggle. I was only a child - but the older survivors wanted to drop about everything to do with warfare. Well, things have changed on this point of view: see the huge number of books, wargamers or re-enactors. Amazing! If I have helped in this process I am well pleased and satisfied - or at least so far!
RH:I understand that you are a wargamer. Do you think that the wargaming enthusiasts worldwide have helped to push the envelope of historical research and discovery?
DC: I certainly enjoyed wargames for about twenty years from 1962. But I am an ancient warrior - mainly using 30mm Tradition soldiers, throwing dice, marking measurements and so on. These types of games must be considered mediaeval for many modern players - and I have never been good at mathematics - never mind with computers (Amstrads are about my level, Our modern concepts are frankly beyond me - especially since my stroke (sysphasian) in 1994. My military history books have been helpful for many others - at least I hope so. Yes, the games are now for more international concepts, and also more realistic. Chess is far more ancient, of course, and that must have been the start - the ancient Chinese, the Mediaeval challenges of games, and then we come to the 1900s of H. G. Wells with simple rules. And simple they were too, with H.G.W. and his friends crawling over the floor or on the lawn although it was not very practicable for getting the soldiers to stand up properly - using books for houses or fortresses, and with insisting on firing wooden or metal projectiles from the cannon, turn by turn. Simple, indeed, but great fun! I have two pre-WW2 Britains Ltd., naval 1899 Boer War cannons, (Patent 34218/30, Made in England). Life and history move on - Britains are now all made in Communist China (!), but I will be accused of wandering off the point. No, H.G.W. (who wrote over 100 books), Mr. Scruby (USA) and now we have Don Featherstone and Brigadier Charles S. Grant (and his late father too) - these are amongst the giants of wargaming in my mind, anyway. But we must remember that this is only A GAME! [Truer words were never spoken - Rob]
RH:What is your favourite area of study?
DC: I find the Marlburian period is the most satisfactory challenge as a writer of military history. Of course I have written more on the Napoleonic era - and I love it very dearly - but there is something very special about 'Milord Duke'. It is a difficult period to work because there is a shortage of documents, but makes it more of a challenge. In that respect I was most pleased to have discovered most of the documents of Private Sentinel John Marshall Deane of the 1st Guards. (S.A.H.R., Special Publication No.12, 1984). [Society for Army Historical Research - Rob] That was exciting. I also felt one of the same type of John Wilson, 15th Foot, who calls himself an '...Old Flanderkin Serjeant' (soon to be published in the 'Military Miscellany II' of the A.R.S.'). Indeed, there are many problem of this period - including a bad habit of certain previous writers regarding their reliability, originality or plagiarism. However, I love this era.
There are other reasons than far purely academic interests. Marlborough was the greatest British soldier of all time. The nation had only become a 'great power' in Europe - and then in the World. For 250 years, therefore - for better or for worse - he had created the greatest empire of the modern age. This clearly fascinates me, and I am an Englishman too! All being well, next year should see a new book of mine being published by Spellmount. I have been seriously ill for six years, which has effectively stopped my writing 'production'. Little by little I have slowly improved in my mental capabilities and my thanks go to many kind people have helped me recover. Christopher L. Scott has kindly helped me with the rubrics, spellings and syntax in my new volume, or rather a selection. It will be about the periods of King William III and John Churchill, Earl and then first Duke of Marlborough, mainly from 1697 to 1704 inclusive. It will be called: 'Blenheim Preparations'. However, I have not been wholly idle since 1995. I have been encouraging various publishers, and as a result I have persuaded them to re-publish no less than 14 of my earlier volumes. Naturally, I was not over-interested in re-prints, and only for truly 'new' work; but I was partially wrong. One friend has taught me the realities of [a] lasting book, 'Almost anyone can publish a sound book or two,' he told me; 'however, it is more important to be re-published!' He was right, too.
RH: I understand that you are a big fan of Marlborough and of Napoleon. Could you use three adjectives for each man that would best summarize their character?
DC: Marlborough: 'INNOVATIVE' - 'FLAMBOYANT' - 'HENPECKED', thus 'The Twin Captains' (including with Prince Savoy of Savoy); and 'Creator of the Second British Empire'.
Napoleon: 'BELOVED' - 'STARTLED' - 'INSPIRED', thus 'A great, bad man.' (as Lord Clarendon's description of Oliver Cromwell); and who ultimately failed (how brilliant his later propaganda).
RH: What do you wish to be best remembered for?
DC: Of my best books (all on special paper lest they crumble away!)
RH: If you could be a general of any army, of any time, who would you like to be?
DC: I could have been tempted to be - for the modern period anyway - General Giap, (but I don't really like Communists nor rice much); for the ancient times I could have liked to have been as Alexander the Great, 356 - 323 BC, (but died far too young); or (for the Mediaeval era) Genghis Khan, c. 1162 - 1227, (but too cruel, and I'd be bored on milk). However, and after everything else and for of all periods, I wou1d have liked best to have been the first Great Duke of Marlborough, 1650 - 1721, (and who suffered from several of my unfortunate illnesses). And I have a very good wife, Gill, as 'Milord Marlborough' also had his famous Sarah.
And that concludes this issue's interview. I'd like to extend a very special thanks to Dr. Chandler for taking the time to answer my questions, and, on behalf of the Napoleonic Wargaming Club, wish him continued success in his recovery and in his writing. I would also like to thank Peter Hofschröer for his assistance in making this interview happen. I hope you all enjoyed this quarter's Grapeshot submission.
Oberst Rob Hamper
Napoleonic Wargaming Club
Napoleonic Army Handbook, the British Army and Her Allies,by Richard Partridge and Michael Oliver.
Reviewd by Dermot Quigley
Two wargaming enthusiasts, Richard Partridge and Michael Oliver, decided to paint the Spanish armies for wargaming purposes and to use Oman's History of the Penisnsular Wars as their guide, or bible, as Mike thought of it. He decided to create a data base of strengths and engagements for each regiment throughout the war. To their surprise they found glaring errors and many inconsistencies. This lead Mike to Madrid on a search for the answers and the acquaintance of one of the six men deeply involved in Peninsular war research, Juanjo Sañudo. He was able to straighten out many of the inconsistencies and alert them to the unreliability of the lists by the Conde de Clonard. He also alllowed them to see and use some of his research. When they talked over the project with their publisher it was decided that they should expand the work and produce what they term as "the first comprehensive regiment by regiment guide to the armies which opposed Napoleon."
This means that from their research on the illusive Spanish army they have compiled a regimental record from the Brunswick down to the Swedish armies. Thay admit themselves that there are facts that they could not find, but assert that they have tried wherever material and time was available to check their facts and indeed they even contradict Nafgizer on the origin of some new rgts and their colour facings in footnotes.
The data they provide is in the form of tables for quick easy reference. So for the Prussian cavalry between 1808-1815 one can find that the No.3 Kürassier rgt was formed from the 13th Kürassiers, became Garde du Korps in 1813, had red facings with white buttons and fought at Lútzen, Bautzen, Dresden, Leipzig and La Rothière.
Other uniform information is given though in their own words, "but not at the detail level required by the aficionado (a smart word for anorak)". However, one will find text on the different organisations describing for example the Austrian Line, Grenze and Jäger infantry rgts as well as some historical background on all the Allied armies. Not all of them are treated in the same way with the same format for various reasons.
For instance there is a special contrast made between the careers of British officers, with their often long and wide ranging campaigns, and the shorter careers and narrower field of operations for the Spanish officers. Some Armies, such as the Prussians have potted biographies of important officers while others like the Austrians do not, a flaw in my opinion.
They do not include orders of battle but incredibly for the Spanish army they have excelled for they have strengths of units wherever possible and here the footnotes and text are richer giving facts where Oman has ommitted them and adding in their original or borrowed research. Perhaps as the project began with the Spanish army they allotted twice the pages of any other. It is clear that this is where the book shows its real value to Napoleonic research.
There is also a special treatment of the total strength of the British army distributed throughout the world in garrisons and on campaigns and also short decriptions of drills and formations preferred by each army. It is certainly useful as a reference book but even the authors admit to sometimes only having sparse and only secondary information, as for the Swedish army.
The historical background texts are relevant, if short. But they are clear on the distinctions made between the different types of infantry, artillery and cavalry unit organisations and the tactics, formations and drills used by each component part. The authors are currently working on a follow up book dealing with Napoleon and his Allies which will in some cases overlap. Unless you are planning to wargame the Peninsular or have a special need for a quick reference on regiments you would not rush out and buy it, but if you recieved it as a present, as I did, you would definitely delve into it from time to time. Published by Constable, London 1999, price = 28₤ at Amazon.com, original publisher's price = 35₤.
The Prussian Army of 1806 and 1813- Commentary on Leadership and Fighting Ability
by Dallas Gavan
The following is a collation of a discussion I had with Kevin Kiley on the Napoleonicwars.com discussion forum. Michael Gjerde asked me to send it for inclusion in the NWC newsletter so I've tidied things up and hopefully you'll find it of interest. Just a note, though, about my sources. I've been studying the period for 25 years and have used a number of sources from magazine articles to correspondence with authors such as Peter Hofschröer. There may be some mistakes I have made and if you have some points to disagree with, please feel free to contact me [firstname.lastname@example.org].
(Preface: Kevin Kiley is another interested amateur of the period, with a particular bias towards the French and the writings of Col. Elting. He tends to prefer accounts with a decidedly French bias, using them to characterise the other armies - thus perpetuating many false myths. Having said that, he's also a very knowledgeable man, a great person to discuss the period with, and one who asks the hard questions - always a plus, if not a comfortable one. And he will, importantly, at least concede that the other person may have a point, even if he won't agree with it.
When Kevin described the Prussian army of 1806/7, he used Oman, Jomini, Elting, Paret and others for his material. All these sources draw heavily from French or anti-German/British accounts and are generally inaccurate in some detail. The use of skirmishers, the Prussian resistance to conscription in 1813, and so on, are examined from a perspective that reflects most favourably on the French. But they ignore the reality of the time and simplify a very complicated state of affairs. I prefer a more eclectic mix of references, in particular the work of Peter Hofschröer, Oliver Schmidt and others. And thus battle was joined.
As for bias, it's not something I lack, either. I have my own particular bias against Napoleon and see him as generally responsible for 10 years of unnecessary (but very interesting) warfare.)
While it's true that the Prussians in Frederick the Great's time and earlier used a lot of mercenaries, by 1792 the majority of the mercenaries were gone. The reason was pragmatic- mercenaries cost money and Prussia didn't have that much. Instead the troops were mainly native stock with the largest numbers of "mercenaries" in the officer corps. The term, though, conjures up images not appropriate to the times. Serving in an army other than your own was standard practice during the time and there was no real stigma attached to it (although there could be problems with fellow officers). The harsh discipline and practice of using the army as an interior police force did separate the army from the population, though, and is a valid criticism of the army of this time.
Prussian pay for soldiers pre- 1808 was poor and unreliable, the troops and officers were often on furlough, the discipline was pretty bad even by the standards of the times and there was little guarantee of advancement for "foreign" soldiers. Not conditions conducive to attracting mercenaries, nor keeping them.
Many Prussian officers weren't "native" to Prussia. Blücher technically wasn't a Prussian- his first service was with Sweden. Thielmann in 1815 was the same that led the Saxon Kürassiere into the Great Redoubt at Borodino (a feat never repeated and belittled by Napoleon's comment "I only see blue cuirassiers). Service as a commissioned officer wasn't seen as treason in those days- hence Eugene of Württemberg being able to command Russians against his own countryman. Let's not graft 21C ideals onto early 19C practices- it tends to obscure the issues.
The Prussians were at peace with the French from 1793 to 1806. Their experiences in the early revolutionary stages weren't very good and a reading of the accounts shows that the intervention was half-hearted, at best, and opposed by the officers at worst. This helped exacerbate the factionalism of the senior officers. This factionalism was to plaque the army during the period.
In 1806 the Prussians didn't perform very well and the blame is often placed on the "cowardice" of the troops and inept training of the army. That isn't really true. The Prussian soldier was better drilled than his French counterpart. That doesn't make him a better soldier. A lack of leadership, poor tactical decisions, divided leadership and little motivation were the keys as I see them. Add that to the fact they faced an army with far more combat experience, a better organisation and brilliant leaders and the decision is nearly foregone.
The Prussians didn't always get beaten in 1806. When they had good leaders they performed reasonably well. York at Altenzaun, a rear-guard action, is a good example. Blücher's handling of his troops after Auerstädt (compared to his performance at the battle) is another. The Prussians at Eylau certainly showed the French how things might have been if the Prussians had reasonable leadership at the twin battles. And then there's the siege of Colberg, celebrated by the Prussians and acknowledged as a brave stand by the French themselves.
The difference between the two was that the French seemed to drill for battle while the Prussians seemed to drill for review. So the French were operating effectively in battle-effective division and corps formations while the Prussians were swanning about wondering why their parade ground excellence wasn't translating to the battlefield.
People also forget that a couple of key leaders ( Brunswick and v. Schmettau from memory) were mortally wounded early at Auerstädt. While the results wouldn't have been too different, I think, the loss of key leaders always severely damages an army's ability to fight. If the command of the army hadn't been disrupted in this way the French under Davoust may have had a harder time of things.
Much is made of the age of the Prussian commanders in 1806 as well. Some of the officers were old for their grades but the average age of the commanders was lower than for the Prussian army that decisively beat France in 1870-71. The age issue seems to be used both as an excuse by the Prussians and to emphasise the "old fashioned army" concept as an easy way to explain 1806. It ducks the real issues, though, of a divided high command and an indecisive ruler prone to intrigue.
To be sure, the Prussians of 1806 weren't a match for the French. But they weren't the fight-for-pay, incapable septuagenarians that modern myth, particularly pro-French modern myth, makes out. L'Estoq, when you look at the forces he had available and then at what he did, gives a good indication of the potential that was squandered in 1806. 14 BN or so (some Russian), half a dozen cavalry regiments and a few batteries, a force smaller than the French Corps he was engaging, and he still gave Ney a lot of trouble. It took troops from a second corps to see him off. You can't do that with unwilling, inflexible, unmotivated automatons.
I disagree with the belief that the Prussians couldn't skirmish, a belief reflected in the Talonsoft © games and many popular histories. York's success I mentioned was with primarily light troops. When well led, employed and motivated the Prussian lights, even in 1806, were the equals of the French in this field. The problem is that they were rarely well led, well employed or motivated in 1806. In 1813-15, though, they showed what they could do. In 1814, the Schleßisches Schützen charged and threw back the Polish Lancers de la Garde at Vauchamps. In 1813, the skirmishing by the third-rank men in front of Kaja at Lützen allowed that village to be taken and re-taken. And the masking of Bülow's corps on the march from Wavre to La Belle Alliance was probably the decisive action of that campaign. These troops proved they could go toe to toe with the best of them. And the old, tired myth that the Prussians couldn't fight in open order is one disproven by several Prussian and French accounts of different battles (the most easily obtained being the latest accounts from Peter Hofschröer). I don't know where the myth started, but I'd tend to look at the English-language writers and some embittered Frenchmen (especially from the period 1870 to 1945) for answers. If Napoleon himself got peeved when the Prussians refused to detach the East Prussian Jäger BN to the guard in Russia then they must have been worth having. It couldn't only have been the fact that they were armed with rifles that sparked his interest.
The training and selection process for the lights gave some very good troops. However, the jägers were disbanded before the turn of the century and were replaced by fusiliers. This experiment didn't work too well as they became more and more like line, not light, troops. They still trained as lights and could perform as such but the lack of experience told in 1806. The main problem was that their commanders didn't employ them properly. They had come to be seen as 2nd-class line and were often deployed as such instead of as the lights they were. Similarly, though there was provision for line battalions to detach skirmishers, it seems to rarely have been done in 1806. Under a leader such as Yorck, though, they could perform well when given a chance. What you needed was a commander who wasn't trying to find a place of honour in the line rather than skirmishing his troops. Yorck was one and maybe the only one to do this. These same units provided the men that formed the various light units after 1808. The training was similar as were the tactics. And although it took a while, eventually they were led as lights, not line.
Much has been made of the problems with conscription in 1813 and how this proves that the Prussians, apart from the nobles, didn't support the war. It depends upon the area when you start to look at the issue, though. Some areas, particularly those that were in former Polish areas of Silesia, the former Swedish Pommerania and similar did have problems. Many of these people felt they weren't Prussian (they had a point) and shouldn't have to serve in that army. But in other areas the recruiting was fast, the regiments were completed quickly and there was enough of an excess of middle-class volunteers that they were able to form several complete cavalry regiments, infantry battalions and dozens of company-sized units. Volunteers that paid for their uniforms and arms and provided their own horses as well. That's pretty indicative of some sort of enthusiasm in my books.
As happened everywhere else, though, the peasants objected strongly to conscription. The loss of able-bodied men from such communities only made a hard life so much harder. But in this the Prussians were no different from any other nation. France too suffered from resistance, sometimes armed insurrection (the Vendee, the South West, etc), to conscription and it was often implemented by force of arms. Yet the general description of France is that the nation was behind Napoleon. If the need for forced conscription in some areas is a condemnation of Prussia, then it is also a condemnation of France wouldn't you say?
I don't deny there were Prussians who either opposed the war, supported Napoleon or both. But the wholesale characterisation of Prussians as unwilling is as erroneous as the wholesale characterisation of the French as enthusiastic in my book. There were deserters and draft in Prussia. Much of the Landwehr lost motivation and elan with each step away from their home provinces. But, in total, I would say the majority of the nation (peasants and, sadly for the nation at this time, serfs probably excepted) was in favour of the war. There were too many volunteers, too many over-strength units and too few examples of desertion in 1813-14 to be otherwise.
An unwilling army would not have survived Lützen, Bautzen and Dresden to turn up at Leipzig. An unwilling population would not have borne the taxes and levies needed to maintain that army, regardless of British subsidies. The need to be free of Napoleon's reparations, trade restrictions and demands of obedience has been turned into the rise of Pan-German nationalism by some. On the other hand, the myth of a Prussia reluctant to be free of a benevolent Napoleon is used by his partisans to moderate the view of him being a bully and dictator. I believe neither- the Befreiungskrieg WAS a war of liberation, supported by some and not by others. It's a pity later writers have chosen to add their own political baggage to a struggle designed to free a nation from what it perceived to be a burdensome yoke.
As with all armies of this period, there's a lot of myths. I hope I've dispelled a few about the Prussians. I also hope there's people out there who can dispel the myths about a few other armies.
The Scenario Design Center
-Founded and Operated by Richard Hamilton -
The Scenario Design Center (SDC) is a site setup to support all of the games designed by John Tiller. It can be found at http://www.geocities.com/bgsdc/ It was originally created to make the custom scenarios being produced from the American Civil War Campaign Club available to all members from one easy download point. It has since evolved to the main location on the web (that I am aware of) to get custom scenarios for John's games.
All of the scenarios contained on John's homepage are there as well as Bryan Young's scenario site. There are many more in addition to those. Right now things are about even, with 62 Napoleonic Scenarios and packages available and 60 ACW. There are a growing number of 1776 scenarios posted and 1 or 2 WWII scenarios. All items are downloadable from the site. To do this press the "shift" key and then select the file you want. It will prompt you where to save it on your hard drive and then download.
In addition to just being a scenario holding tank, I have tried to make the SDC a useful tool to would be designers. There is a forum where questions can be posted, several links to useful sites, and a small play testers database of people who will help you fine tune your creation. If you have a scenario you would like posted there just follow the "Submit Scenario for Posting" link and follow the directions. If you have ideas to improve the site, by all means, send them my way! And we can always use more play testers.
For those of you not familiar with what it takes to create a scenario from scratch I give the following thoughts. When I am starting to create a new scenario I look for ways to use the existing maps that isn't done in the average scenario. I do this by either placing victory hexes on ridges normally ignored during regular battles or by placing and directing troops through less traveled areas. This adds a little flavor many of the historical scenarios might lack. Also, placing forces on opposite sides of the field has a good effect. It is also interesting to see if you can create another historical battle on an existing map, like I have attempted to do with my "Jena" scenario for BGW.
Personally I like to create scenarios for play as "casualties only" style, or ones that have most if not all of the troops arriving on the field as reinforcements. By doing this I put most of the control in the players hands. If everyone comes on as reinforcements then the players get to choose their own battle lines and have the ability to maneuver a bit more. A good example of this is my "Rumble at Waterloo" scenario. If you choose not to do this you must try to be careful of your placements. For example:
You don't want to leave one armies's lead units exposed to where they could be surrounded and wiped out in the first turn without the player having a chance to position them or react in any way.
Some other key things to remember are, if you are designing with a custom OOB, make it very clear. If possible, include it in the zip file with your scenario. A Readme file is a good idea to include as well. One with instructions for installation and any notes you find appropriate. Something I have done before, but not always, is to include a detailed OOB of the units used in the battle. This is very helpful for people who wish to use your scenario in a multi player format. They can easily split the forces amongst the various players. Again, my "Rumble at Waterloo" scenario is an example of this.
On a closing note I suggest you ALWAYS enlist some help in play testing your creation before distributing it. What appears to be a balanced scenario can turn out to be very lopsided after a few plays through. People will be much happier with your creations and more likely to download another if it is a solid one that does not overly favor either side. I hope to see you all at the SDC in the future!
Gen. de Brig. Richard Hamilton
Gen. de Brig. Richard Hamilton
VIII Corps, ADR La Grande Armee
By Brig. General Mick O'Rielly
Why title this article, Waterloo Revisited? Well, for 18 months now I've been playing this wonderful game based on a battle that changed European history for over 40 years. The more I played, the more I became fascinated with the battle. I read books about it and absorbed enough knowledge that I thought I would know the battlefield with my eyes shut. I could describe the field to anyone, where the action took place, at what time, and even the outcome of the skirmishes. I never thought that actually visiting the place would still leave me in awe. But that is exactly how I felt after spending a day there recently.
Waterloo itself is only a small town, with not too many hotels to boast about, as the main tourists only stay for the day, except in the summer when the reenactments are taking place, then accommodation is difficult to find. For the connoisseurs, I would recommend two or three days to see all the battle sites.
The Wellington Museum in the village of Waterloo was the first place I visited. All the uniforms and information there only wet my appetite for the actual visit to the battlefield. The museum has this uncanny feeling of leaving you with a "before and after the battle" feeling. All the museums in and around Waterloo are small, primarily because they are located in the original buildings. So, a little respect must be given here for what they can do -- space is limited but they are tactfully done and do provide valuable information to the not-so-informed visitor.
The drive from the village of Waterloo to battlefield took mere minutes -- it that close. My legs started trembling when I on my left I noticed the Mont St. Jean farmhouse (now derelict and not much too see). Only I could envision all the goings on that ocurred there during the battle. Anyway, I knew I was getting close and then suddenly, like out of nowhere, I was at Wellington's ridge on the main Charleroi road. As I peered down the road I felt llike I was staring at the ghost army of the French. The year was 1815. This was the strangest feeling I have ever encountered. I felt so small, like a tiny skirmisher on my computer monitor in extreme zoom out. For eighteen months the battlefield had looked so small as I played endless games, and now it totally dwarfed me as I stood upon it.
At this spot you are drawn to the Lion Mound, as it stands so high above you. The view from the top is spectacular. But first, I suggest going to the visitors centre, which stands right on the ridge (opposite the mound) where all the carnage ocurred years ago. You are drawn to the mound but be patient and go into the building at the visitors centre. Watch the two shows. One includes extracts from the Waterloo film. It does not take you long to view. From here go and ascend the Lion Mound and take in the wonderful 360-degree view of the battlefield - from Papelotte to Hougomont. You will now be able to imagine and see what the whole battlefield must have looked like with the armies facing each other. Look to the left and you will see quite clearly the farmhouse of La Haye Sainte and the Household Cavalry charging down the ridge, and right in front of you imagine the cavalry attacks and the French Guards marching up the hill. Over on your right (although not visible now because of some trees) is the farmhouse of Hougoumont.
Descend the Lion Mound and enter the Panorama Building. This marvelous painting (12 meters high and 110 meters circumference) will amaze you. It puts you in the exact spot where all the French cavalry attacks were going on that day. As you look to the front you will see Napoleon in the background (although small) and as you walk round the painting it depicts a different view from the same spot. An incredible piece of work that is an absolute must for anyone to see (click here for some pics).
From the visitors centre we drove down the main road to see the Napoleon museum, locatedin a building where he slept the night before the battle. In this museum are various artifacts taken from the battlefiled, including among other things, the skeleton of a French cavalryman. This is only a small museum and it will not take long to see it all.
Unfortunately, I did not get time to visit Hougoumont or Papelotte, but I will go back there in the near future. The whole trip left me speechless as everything I had read about this battlefield was what I could possibly imagine. I went in February and was lucky with the weather. The mild climate for that time of year gave me an opportunity to speak to people from all over the world. I can well imagine in the summer months this being a very busy place. Visiting Waterloo was an excellent experience for me and even the not-so-enthusiastic (like my good wife) will also enjoy the tour. As I left to go home after one full day there, I vowed to return to see the other places I didn't have time for.
Napoleonic Trivia Quiz
Gen. Einar Einrensonn, AdN
OK, time for a little fun. How smart a historian are you? Test your knowledge about the Napoleonic wars and time period with these little ditties. Answers can be found elsewhere in the newsletter.
1. How many horses were killed beneath Napoleon throughout his life?
2. The Battle of Waterloo was known as what by the Prussians?
3. What Russian city was "the Holy City"?
4. What was name of The Rhine Confederation State with the smallest population in 1809?
5. What Department in France's Government was known for being the centre of Royalist support?
6. What is the Czech name of Austerlitz?
7. What Secret Bureau of Louis XIV was revived in 1800 to intercept and read postal correspondence?
8. The town of Eylau is now known as what?
9. During the Congress of Vienna, the Saxon-Polish issue resulted in France participating in a secret three-power alliance against what two nations?
Foreign Generals in La Grande Armée
Major Jean-Denis Martin, IIIe Corps, AdN
Following up on some discussions about foreign officers in La Grande Armée that took place on the Rhine Tavern, I relate the following:
In 1805 La Grande Armée had about 30,000 foreigners out of its 200,000 soldiers. But as you know the proportion of foreign troops increased a lot with time, and for the Russian Campaign, about half of the army was constituted of foreign soldiers.
La Grande Armée also had up to 190 foreign Generals. Some nationalities will surprise you. Here is the breakdown:
Now more interestingly:
Source : La Grande Armée by Georges Blond
The Front Page | Feature Articles | Dispatches | Regimental Histories | On the Internet | Letters to the Editor
Strategy and Tactics
The formation of infantry in line should be always in two ranks, because the length of the musket only admits of an effective fire in this formation. The discharge of the third rank is not only uncertain, but frequently dangerous to the ranks in its front. In drawing up infantry in two ranks there should be a supernumerary behind every fourth or fifth file. A reserve should likewise be placed twenty-five paces in rear of each flank.
Napoleon's Maxim of War XLVIII
Action at Kulm
In this Issue ...
For those of you who haven't read the excellent series of tactical articles by Pourochick Jason Cawley, Vilna Infantry, 27th Division, VIII Corps, Russian Army (featured on the Prussian Army's Training Academy's Webpage), this edition's Strategy and Tactics Section is proud to present the first two of Jason's discourses on Napoleonic infantry tactics for your consumption. Two similar articles dealing with British line tactics and Russian infantry tactics will appear in the next issue. We know you will appreciate not only the time and effort Jason put into these works, but also the connection he makes between the historical use of infantry formations and how they can be replicated in the Battleground Games.
French Ordre Mixte Tactics
by Jason Cawley
Ithought players a bit less familiar with historical formations might be interested (at least a little :-) in the following rendition of the French "Ordre Mixte", using (in this instance) the Polish division structure from V Corps at Borodino, as in the NIR "Never Too Late" scenario.
Players may not understand all of the tactical reasons for the formation and system. There is a tendency to reduce the French idea to just "stay in column". There is also a BG-player tendency (out of ACW and Frederick-the-great era thinking, frankly) to put everyone in line - reinforced by some of common optional rules (unhistorically so, IMHO). I hope this explanation of how to translate (parts of) the French system into BG terms will show that a lot more is going on and that a lot of it is very sensible and useful in BG games no less than in historical reality. First, I will describe the BG deployment of the division (I use the 16th, with only 3 regiments present as "Never" gives you). Then discuss its BG usefulness and some of the reasons you should try it out.
Starting on the left, put the 1st and 2nd Battalions of the 3rd Line regiment in one hex, in column formation. Then detach the 1/3 Skirmish company and leave it in the same hex, top of the stack.
Detach the 2/3 skirmisher and move it on hex to the right.
Next hex over, put the 3rd Battalion of the 3rd Line Regiment in line formation, plus the Brigade commander. That completes the deployment of the 3rd Line regiment.
Next hex, put one of your two batteries - as is historical, in the interval between the Regiments.
In the next hex put the whole 15th Line regiment in column formation. Plus the division commander. But then detach its skirmishers, moving them one hex to the left, one hex to the right, and leaving one where it is on top of the column stack.
Next, the other battery (you should arrange for it to be on top, though, so move the 15th skirmish company in the same place out and back).
Next, again one hex to the left, the 3rd Battalion of the 16th Line Regiment, in line formation.
Next hex will go to the 1st/16th's skirmish company.
Last hex, the 1st and 2nd Battalions of the 16th Line, stacked in column formation. Then detach the 2/16th skirmish company and leave it on top in that hex. And the Brigade commander (or, optionally, he can be with the line battalion, 3rd/16th).
Overall, then, from left to right you have a column of 2 battalions, a line, a column of 3 battalions, another line, then a column of 2 battalions again. With batteries between the regiments and skirmishers between the formed infantry positions, and stacked with the columns.
Out of the 3500 men in the division (infantry), 2100 can fire (counting the columns 1/3rd) - 60% of them. From just 2 lines, and all the skirmishers. In addition, though, 60% of the men are in column formation, and only 22% in line formation (the remainder are skirmishers, and that 22 can be dropped to 17% by deploying the skirmish companies of the line-formation battalions).
If you look at the firepower the whole will get at range 1, you will find that the expected results of the "lots of little" fire attacks is 100 men dropped if not moving/advancing, and 75 men when moving/advancing, per fire phase. Plus the batteries, naturally. The actual total firepower is 126, but rounding items and groupings reduces the effect slightly (while small fp shots recover some of that, especially with 1/2ed "moving" fire).
In addition, every hex ahead of the division is threatened by a combined melee "charge" of the center column *plus* the nearer of the two flanking columns. With the column bonus, those threats are of 1800+ attacks. The placement of the columns gives excellent prospects for launching those melees from flanking positions. This is especially true of any enemy infantry that attempts to melee-attack the 2 thin line battalions. "Entry" into the formation in that manner invites the counter - 2 columns move one hex and launch 1800+, led, held fire, flank melee - regardless of the intruder's facing.
If thin lines used ahead by your enemy, then you can melee with the columns in straight-ahead fashion. If larger columns/stacks (or very large ~600 man battalions, perhaps) are used, then don't melee with the columns, just fire. (Although the combined, center-plus-one-flank column charge, remains an option when needed, even at the larger targets).
The formation has many possible alterations to account for tactical situations. For instance, in the presence of cavalry, pull in the skirmish companies to the nearest column. Each is only 1 hex away (2/3 moves 1 left, 1/15 one right, 3/15 one left, 1/16 one right). That also creates intervals for your own horsemen to charge through. To cover the guns from melee or charge threat, advance the infantry 1 hex, pulling in the interior skirmishers - giving a line of ZOCs ahead but short-range gaps for the batteries to fire case through, though with limited fields of fire obviously. To advance without wearing out the men, against light opposition, advance the skirmishers 1-2 hexes ahead. The lines may accompany them forward, or may detach their skirmish companies to complete the screen if they don't have targets to shoot right away.
To relieve disordered units in the line positions, change the whole center regiment into line formation, send the replacement or replacements needed to the line positions. Back up the disordered lines. If both need relief simultaneously in this fashion, leave the last battalion of the center column in line formation (thus giving column, line, line, line, column across the whole division frontage). If only one does, change the two battalions remaining in the center regiment, back into column formation, just with 2 battalions (like the "wing" columns) rather than 3. When elements of the columns disorder, let them wait and reorder or back up whole column 1-2 hexes, leaving the skirmish companies to hold that area until the column re-orders. When the entire division or the majority of it is disordered or badly fatigued, then relieve the entire division with the other one in the corps - assuming it is not already "blown" or committed elsewhere, obviously. If a disordered division does not have relief, leave lines and skirmishers as best you can to cover the front, then withdraw the columns 2-3 hexes to try to reorder covered by them.
If threatened by (non-cossack) cavalry (doesn't happen in "Never" but can in Borodino, obviously), form square obviously - and preferably a hex ahead of the guns to cover them, also obviously. Pull in the skirmishers when/if you have the chance. The columns when in square should be strong enough to resist most cavalry attacks (a function of the lower cavalry stacking limit, to a degree). The lines will be more vulnerable even in square. But the formation can handle that - here is how.
If one of the lines forms square but is charged and beaten nevertheless, then the neighboring columns (assumed also to have made it to square) will be 4 hexes apart, and with leaders. You can thus close the gap with ZOCs by moving either or both squares up next to the intruding cavalry (withdrawing the beaten one, if it did not rout). In addition, those line positions should be 2-3 hexes from a battery, which can rotate slightly to bear on the intruding cavalry, sheltered by the squares. You will thus recover the line of ZOCs, and punish the attackers with case and musketry (some of the latter from a flank, at the least). Naturally, the formation will also have intervals through which supporting cavalry can counter-charge as well, if available.
On the whole, a remarkably flexible formation. It offers strong melee defense along most of the line, with the few "weaker" spots having something of the character of *traps* (inviting flank melee by columns, and caseshot-range artillery fire). Most of the men can move through any terrain without disorder (and the 2 lines, obviously, can change to column to move through such, then back once out of it). Maximum melee attacks are threatened over a wide area, with flanking chances on anyone not closely covered by ZOCs on both sides. And the fire combat ability of the whole is superior (at 60% muskets "bearing") to the 1/2ed Russian columns, little below what continuous lines would give, with much greater melee security than continuous lines would give. In addition, morale contagion (other than for skirmishers) is avoided, intervals present, etc - again better than continuous lines. Reliefs are much easier as well, so the whole handles battle disorder far better than one solid line can.
To see the full strength of this sort of flexible (and historical, for the French that is) formation, though, turn off "rout limiting" and "flank morale modifier" ;-) A continuous line of line-formation battalions (Frederick the Great or US Civil War era, frankly, not Napoleonic) is worse not better in morale terms with those options off. Instead of +1 morale, they get easy spread of disorder, compared to the columns-with-intervals formation described above.
By the way, the other, 5-battalion regiments in the French army can obviously be used in a similar fashion, with each in the form - 2 battalion column, line, 2 battalion column - again with the columns aided by skirmish companies to put more muskets on-line (and cover the gaps if desired). Again you get 60% of the maximum, all-line firepower (4 x 1/4 skirmisher x 1 fp, + 1xline, + 3/4 battalions-with-skirmisher-deployed x 1/3rd column fp x 4 battalions -> 1 + 1 + 1 = 3 battalions worth of firepower).
In other words, the formation is 3 ranks deep in line and skirmishers across the center, but 9 deep on the column-anchored flanks - for an average of 5 deep overall, effectively, but with much better melee and movement characteristics than all-lines. In BG terms, you get intervals, lack of morale contagion, easier relief, and many other benefits compared to wall-to-wall lines, in return for the modestly greater depth.
Prussian Depth Tactics
by Jason Cawley
Over at the NHWC, I once wrote a few articles on historical "depth tactics" and how to implement them in BG game terms. With some revisions, I provide an example of that again in the form of using the Prussian brigade structure. That is slightly different for the regular formations at Ligny in PTW than in BGW - though some of the brigades e.g. of III Corps at Ligny, also have the 1 line, 2 landwehr structure of the Waterloo forces.
The following is based on the typical brigade structure of I or II Corps at Ligny. Minor alterations are needed to accommodate 2 Landwehr regiments, but do not seriously alter the idea.
So what do you get in a Prussian brigade? 9 large infantry battalions in 3 regiments, 2 of them fusilier, 4 line (first 2 regiments) and 3 landwehr. Plus a battery, and some small attached units (skirmishers in I Corps, cavalry in the rest). How are they meant to be deployed and to fight, in BG terms? Here is one way that I have found useful and that follows Prussian doctrine reasonably closely.
First, lets deploy the brigade, in several "ranks" front-to-back. In the first, put just the 2 fusilier battalions of the line regiments, beside each other and in line formation. Leave a hex gap between them. If they are large, you can deploy them into extended line for a longer frontage, and whether they are or not, you can extend them to cover 3 hexes more loosely if desired, by deploying skirmishers out of them on either flank of the "formed" line (assuming you use my .oob revisions of equivalent ones yourself, that is).
On the center-line of the brigade, behind those two, place the brigade battery. If you have two (one horse, or attached from Corps reserve), you can put those on the flanks instead (slightly more historical actually) - meaning 2 hexes back and 1 to the side of the fusilier battalions.
A note about the historical accuracy of the battery placements. In reality, usually the batteries would be on-line or slightly ahead of the forward lines of infantry, at least until in close contact. But this deployment does not work properly in BG games, because of some abstractions of the BG game system and problems with it. The biggie there is that "phasing" breaks up what would be continuous movement. Infantry historically counted on being able to spring forward to help defend the guns in the same time it took attackers to close with them. The guns could also displace (or their crews could) during an enemy move on the battery. In the BG game system, only the ZOCs ahead of formed units approximate this ability. To "support" a battery in BG terms, then, you must either stack with it or cover with ZOCs the hexes ahead of it, from which it can be meleed.
Stacking with the guns doesn't work, because the BG system treats guns and infantry in the same hex as a square-negating formation, quite vulnerable to enemy cavalry. In addition, guns alone melee very poorly in the BG system. Against flank attackers that may be reasonably, but frontal charges on batteries could be very expensive in reality but are quite easy (especially with cavalry) in BG game terms. The proper thing would be some sort of "caseshot fire zone of control" that automatically triggered attacks on the frontal fire zone of a battery. (The old board game Wellington's Victory actually had such a rule.) But with the system we have, protecting artillery becomes a matter of ZOCs covering it, to reflect the ability of infantry to leap to their defense. And that does not happen in "real time", but only by placing infantry slight ahead of where it would be historically (before the enemy got too close).
One can lament all this, but it is not more historical to unilaterally leave guns that fall easily to melee ahead of the infantry to be captured at the first rush. And there is certainly evidence of this formation, as for example Thiebalt's famous battery at Austerlitz, firing when unmasked by a French bayonet push. The charge created an angle in the line and the battery was able to fire at very close range.
Next, on-line with the battery or batteries, you want the remaining battalions of the 2 line or forward regiments - in column, stacked with one another and seperated. They should be behind the fusiliers and (with central battery placement) a bit farther to the flanks as well. These are effectively your two "fists" for melee combat, when that is called for.
Next, 2 hexes back from those place your 3 landwehr battalions in column formation, spread out into alterate hexes. Attached cavalry and supply wagon can go 2 hexes further back behind even those, or alternately in one of the intervals.
A variation on the above is to put one of the landwehr battalions on-line as well, making 3 all told, and then add a 3rd 2-battalion column to the second rank, or increase the size of the column stacks to 3 battalions. This can work with the Waterloo-style, 2-landwehr-regiment, brigade structure. Meaning, landwehr - fusilier - landwehr up front in line, followed by line + landwehr x2, line + landwehr x2 big columns, or 3 2-battalion columns. Those 3 lines-ahead variations are to fight on somewhat longer frontages or with less depth (e.g. when another brigade can support from behind if needed).
With the 2-line formation, your primary means of attack is the fire attacks of the 2 fusilier battalions plus the battery. The other columns are primarily meant to wait and to provide reliefs for the lines that get tired/disordered. Just form both (or three) into line, send the relief up to the front, back up (or about face and march rear-ward) the forward line, and put the other battalions back into column (and have the relieved unit join them as soon as it can get out of line formation/reordered). Similarly, with the 3-lines ahead, you count of the firepower of 3 line battalions plus (generally) 2 batteries. In either case, formidable firepower for the limited frontage.
But when needed, the columns swing out and "punch" in melee. They are especially useful to smash counterattacks into your lines. From their placement on either flank of the forward lines, anyone meleeing one of those can be hit with a counterattack from a flank hex. Victory should mean rout, since they will be disordered, at least yellow fatigued (2 melees in a row), and flanked = check morale -4. And even if a unit wins the melee, there is another column the following turn - "if the left don't getcha then the right one will."
Avoid smashing ahead with those melees when not performing such a counterattack, unless the stacks are very high (important terrain objective, storming a grand battery, valuable or threatening enemy unit that can be hit with a surround melee, etc). That is not what they are for - save the fatigue for the counterattack role. That is what provides the "integrity" or internal defense ability of the formation.
Incidentally, you will also be able to keep up the fire combat much longer with proper use of the columns and depth for reliefs. When a regiment gets fatigued to yellow, send the landwehr up to do their spell on-line. Always having 1 of the 3 regiments in reserve (as the 2-line formation allows) means even a large rout is instantly patched. The effect you want is every turn someone stands in front of the brigade, he loses men and gains fatigue and checks morale - all from fire - and faces ordered men turn after turn like clockwork, whatever he dishes out he gets back. The brigade defeats people by routing them, after outlasting them - but can escalate to outright melee-brawling whenever necessary.
How well does all of the above work in practice? After all, terrain and tactical needs often force dispersion of the forces of the brigade over a wider area. Units rout or are lost to surround-melee, and thus are not available to fufill their role. The answer is that the Prussian brigade handles such things very well. The rear columns get smaller, but the forward roles all get performed by somebody. If you are down to 4 battalions you can continue to fight in a 2-line forward, 1 big column behind fashion after the same pattern.
Notice, the whole formation effective has great depth. The columns represent men deployed 9 deep, the lines 3 deep. The whole is up to 21 men deep, more than most other nations use (the French, if entirely in column and those in two ranks, preceded by a skirmisher screen, are about the same depth. That is as deep as anyone else fights, really). Because of this, the frontage a brigade will occupy may seem too small. Sometimes you will have to fight a bit more spread - fine, but try to get back to the proper frontage (5-7 hexes) as soon as you can, especially in places you are trying to attack.
I have fought this way as the Prussians in one all-day Ligny, and won a major victory against a solidly able opponent. The primary combat occurred on the slopes of the central ridge, were the original grand battery is located at the start. The first wave of French were from III Corps; then the Young Guard was added in a second wave; Cuirassiers helped them when they began to falter as well; finally the Old Guard pressed the same ~8-10 hexes of front. From first rush to last, the French advanced, net, about 400 yards. I had to feed forward and "cycle in" the better part of 3 brigades to hold that small length of front, along with a full cavalry brigade supporting. But hold they did - even with a brigade's worth routed in the meantime. And generally I had no more than 6 battalions along the front at any one time.
Why do such depth tactics work? A big part of it is the nature of fatigue on the defensive, and works with the big Prussian battalions. The French will melee attack with a regiment or brigade to get decent odds on a big battalion. When they do, say they win 2/3rds of the time. What happens fatigue-wise?
2/3rd win x Prussians take 3, French 2 *per battalion*
1/3 lose x Prussians take 2, French 3 "
The Prussians expect to add 3 1/3 fatigue per occasion. 2 of those will wreck a single battalion (with fire, fatigued red). But if the French have 3 battalions in each, they take 7 total fatigue per occasion, on average. Thus "burning up" regiments as fast as the Prussians "burn up" battalions. The French will run out first if they try that ;-)
(Not that the French can't try other things. The point is limited men along the frontage is *not* a weakness that can be overpowered just by overstacked melee charges - not in the long run).
I hope this is interesting. In my next, I will discuss the fire-combat tactics of the British, through the example of Picton's division in the battle of Quatre Bras and its "formation tactics".
The Front Page | Feature Articles | Strategy and Tactics | Dispatches | On the Internet | Letters to the Editor
Officers of the French and Allied armies! Welcome to our Regimental Histories section! Your researched biographies or regimental histories are hereby solicited for submission. If accepted, you may earn an award or mention in dispatches. At the minimum, you can join us for a flagon or two at the Rhine Tavern....our thanks go out to this month's contributors, with a special mention to artist Romain Baulesch for his kind permission to use the image (below) from Osprey Publishing's Campaign Series 33 by Ian Castle.
2eme Hussards - A Regimental History
by Capitaine T. Simmons
Formed in Strasbourg in 1735, partly from Hungarian volunteers, this regiment was given the royal title "Hussards de Chamborant". Renamed 2eme Regiment de Hussards in 1791, the unit continued to be known as the Chamborant Regiment until well into the early Empire. Throughout this period the regiment drew its recruits from the eastern borders of France; many of its members spoke a German-Alsatian jargon and could not communicate in French. The light cavalry known as Hussars had originated with the Gunalis, the horsemen of the Ottoman Empire whose outlandish uniforms set military fashion in Eastern Europe and eventually spread to Germany and France.
The 2nd Hussars were attached to Bernadotte's division (under Simon) at Wurzburg in 1796. The regiment served under Bernadotte again, from 1805-1808, as part of the light cavalry brigade of the I Corps d'Armee of the Grande Armee. The 2nd were engaged on the French left flank at Austerlitz in 1805. Absent at the battles of Jena and Auerstaedt in 1806, the regiment participated in the devastating pursuit of the Prussians which followed. The 2nd were a part of the force which crushed the Prussian Reserve at Halle (17 October, 1806) but received a check two weeks later at Crewitz where their commander, Colonel Gerard, was captured.
During the campaign in Poland, the 2nd saw action at Mohrungen on 25 January, 1807 but missed the Battle of Eylau. At 4 PM on 14 June, 1807 three squadrons of the 2nd arrived on the field at Friedland and formed part of the army reserve under Victor. Together with Ney's corps, the reserve smashed the Russian left flank when the battle was resumed at 5 PM. From 1808-1813, the 2nd Hussars served a long tour of duty in Spain. During their stay on the Peninsula, the unit saw action at Medellin, Alcabon, Ronda, Sierra de Cazala, Gebora, Los Santos, Albufera and Somanis.
Transferred to Germany in 1813, the 2nd Hussars were with the Grande Armee at Leipzig. In 1814, the regiment participated in the action at Montereau, and on Napoleon's abdication was renamed the Regiment de Hussards de la Reine. When Napoleon returned in 1815, the unit reassumed the designation 2eme Regiment de Hussards and was attached to the Corps d'Observation du Jura, where it saw its final action at the defense of Belfort. The regiment was disbanded in September of that year. The regimental motto was "Noblesse oblige, Chamborant autant."
Units of the III Corps d'Armee, Armee du Nord
by Lt. Col. Jean-Denis Martin
3e Regiment d'Infanterie Legere
1739: Regiment Royal Corse
1788: 3e bataillon de chasseurs royaux corses
1791: 3e bataillon d'infanterie legere
1796: 3e demi-brigade d'infanterie legere
1803: 78e demi-brigade de ligne becomes 3e regiment d'infanterie legere
1814: becomes régiment du Dauphin
Battle of Austerlitz: 2/12/1805, Carabiniers companies part of Oudinot's Grenadier Div.
Battle of Eckmuhl, 22/04/1809,
Battle of Essling, 21-22/05/1809,
Battle of Wagram; 5/7/1809, 1re division (Tharreau), IIC (Oudinot)
Battle of Lutzen, 02/05/1813, 3eBat. in 1re brigade (Bellair), 12e division (Morand), IVC (Bertrand); 4eBat in 1re brigade (Grillot), 9e division (Brenier), IIIC (Ney)
Battle of Bautzen, 20-21/05/1813, 3eBat. as for Lutzen, 4eBat. in 1re brigade (Anthing), 9e division (Delmas), IIIC (Ney).
Battle of Leipzig: 2e brigade (Meunier), 36e division (Charpentier), XIC (McDonald)
Campaign of France
Colours: Gênes, 1800,
"Soldats, vous n'avez de salut que dans vos bayonettes !" (Gouvion Saint-Cyr - 1799)
15e Regiment d'Infanterie de Ligne
1595: Regiment de Balagny de Montluc
1612: Regiment de Rambures
1676: Regiment de Feuquieres
1700; Regiment de Leuville
1718: Regiment de Richelieu
1738: Regiment de Rohan-Chabot
1745: Regiment de Crillon
1746: Regiment de La Tour du Pin La Charce
1761: Regiment de Boisgelin
1762: Regiment du Bearn
1791: 15e regiment d'infanterie
1796: becomes 15th demi-brigade de ligne
1803: 15e Regiment d'infanterie de ligne
1815: Legion du Finistère (Brittany, France)
Battle of Friedland, 16/6/1807,
Battle of Vimeiro, 21/8/1808, 1re brigade (Brennier), 2e division (Solignac), under Junot
Battle of Corunna, 11/01/1809
Battle of Fuentes de Onoro: 3/5/1811, 1re brigade (?), 2e division (Solignac), VIIIC (Junot)
Battle of Salamanca, 22/07/1812, under Marmont
Battle of Lutzen, 02/05/1813, 2e & 4e Bat. in 2e brigade (Coehom), 22e division (Friederichs), VIC Marmont
Battle of Nivelle, 11/10/1813, under Soult
Colours: Friedland 1807
37e d'Infanterie de Ligne
1587: Cie d'Hommes d'armes
1604: Regiment de Lemont
1620: Regiment de Turenne
1675: Regiment du Maine
1740: Regiment d'Eu
1775: Regiment du Nivernais
1778: Regiment du Marechal de Turenne
1791: 37e Regiment
1796: becomes 37e demi-brigade de ligne
1803: again 37e regiment d'infanterie de ligne
1815: Legion de la Sarthe.
Battle of Zurich, 25-26/9/1799, 1re brigade (Gazan), 5e division (Lorge), under Massena
Battle of Eckmuhl, 22/04/1809,
Battle of Essling, 21-22/05/1809,
Battle of Wagram, 05/07/1809, 2e brigade (Viviez), 3e division (Molitor), under IVC (Massena)
Battle of Borodino, 07/09/1812,
Battle of Lutzen, 02/05/1813,
Battle of Bautzen, 20-21/05/1813,
Battle of Leipzig: 16/10/1813, 2e brigade (Brun), 4e division (Dubreton), under IIC (Victor)
100 days campaign: 2nd brigade (Corsin), 8e division (Lefol), under Vandamme.
Colours: Zürich, 1799 - Polstock: 1812
86e Regiment d'Infanterie de Ligne
1690: Regiment de Courten
1791: 86e regiment d'infanterie
1792: dissolved (Swiss)
1794: 86e demi-brigade de bataille
1796: 86e demi-brigade de ligne
1803: 86e Regiment d'infanterie de ligne
Battle of Vimeiro: 21/8/1808, 2e Brigade (Thomieres), Division Delaborde, under Junot)
Battle of Coruna, 11/01/1809
Battle of Fuentes de Onoro: 3/5/1811, 1re brigade (?), 2e division (Solignac), VIIIC (Junot)
Battle of Salamanca, 22/07/1812
Siege of Toulouse, 10/04/1814
Battle of Lutzen, 02/05/1813,
Battle of Bautzen, 20-21/05/1813,
Battle of Dresden, 26-27/08/1813,
Battle of Leipzig: 16/10/1813, (2e bat.), 2e brigade (Godard), 52e Division (Semele), XVC (Augereau)
1814: Camapign of France
1815: Campaign of Belgium
Colours: Lodi, 1796 - Passage du Tyrol, 1797
The Saxon Leibstandarte Training Regt. -Part Two
by Col. v. Maunsell & Captain O'Shaugnessy
Fellow officers, here is part II of the gripping regimental history of the Saxon Liebstandarte (1er) Training Regt. Due to the many surviving members of the regiment and their detailed testimonials, there was a rich source of information for the Regimental historian.
If you remember we left the regiment in Spain so without further delay let us continue with their tales of derring-do.
1809 - Soult grants the regiment the honour of leading the Advance Guard, due to its numerical strength through never having lost a man by enemy action, in the pursuit of Moore's retreating British army.
The pursuit was hampered by atrocious weather, narrow mountain passes and the presence of the Saxon Liebstandarte regimental artillery at the head of the column. The pace of the pursuit was dramatically improved four days later when the regimental artillery was relocated to the rear of the column. During this time a round was accidentally fired by Otto, whilst inspecting the barrel by candlelight. This roundshot sailed off in the direction of Corunna. General Moore died later that night as a result of a wound received from a roundshot.
1809 - Soult reluctantly releases the regiment to counter the threat of Austria. This must speak volumes for the character of the regiment as Soult felt that "this regiment alone could alter the result of any battle where they were present."
May 1809 - The regiment arrives in Austria barely in time for the battle of Aspern-Essling. Presumably due to their late arrival, the Emperor personally placed them in reserve where they took up position on the south bank of the Danube. At this stage their baggage had still not arrived and they made make-shift shelters of a rope slung between two trees with canvas over the top. Otto set off in search of a rope for his shelter and found a handsome length of rope curled around the bottom of a large tree. He pulled to loosen the rope but it was held fast to several barges. Making a mental note to put the rope back in the morning, Otto cut the rope from the stationary barges and made his shelter. He had only just fallen asleep when he was awoken by a large commotion from the pontoon bridge to Aspern-Essling. Several barges had shattered the slender lifeline to the northern bank, stopping the flow of reinforcements. Due to the disaster with the bridge, the Emperor Napoleon was forced to order the withdrawal of the remainder of his troops later that day and so suffered his first defeat.
July - The regiment is posted back to Soult's army in Spain but due to a mix-up of orders at Soult's HQ, the regiment is sent to join Victor's army. Victor was visibly moved at receiving this fine regiment, as he had tears in his eyes after reading the transfer order from Soult.
Marshal Victor had determined on a hasty night attack after hearing a rumour that the British planned to torch the town of Talavera, including its extensive cream bun facility. For some inexplicable reason the regiment never received orders to join the daring night assault. The regiment woke during the night to the sound of thunder but no rain. After enquiring at several tents, Otto discovered that the camp site was empty.
A couple of hours later, after a lengthy discussion, they concluded that there must be a battle in progress and endeavoured to join it. They set out in the direction of the flashes, which negated the need for a map-reader. At this point they were met by a stream of returning French soldiers and joined in their return to the campsite.
A reorganisation after the Battle of Talavera resulted in the regiment being transferred to Massena's Army of Portugal. Marshal Victor must have been completely unaware of the guerilla situation in Spain as the route that he suggested to the regiment was, at that time, a hotbed of insurrection and banditry. Led by the notorious "Baker of Seville", these bandits caused the destruction of whole formations of France's finest dragoons and resulted in couriers being escorted by entire regiments. Into this cauldron the regiment marched under the warm rays of the Spanish sun, to the sound of their oompah band. The mapreader followed the Marshal's directions diligently but still somehow managed to miss the hotbed by several hundred kilometres. It is to the regiment's credit that after a march of such magnitude they arrived with a full complement. Their noisy arrival completely surprised Marshal Massena as the courier announcing their transfer, along with his escort, had never arrived. Massena was deeply touched by the regiment's appearance and was carried to his tent after collapsing, presumably with emotion.
1810-The regiment took up position opposite Wellington's defensive Lines of Torres Vedras. Whilst filling out requisition forms, Otto mistakenly wrote the Saxon Division instead of regiment. The food rations came thick and fast and many months of happy feasting were enjoyed by the regiment, with the Christmas festivities of 1810 being a particular highlight. The regimental tailor was the busiest of all the soldiers, letting out their uniforms to accommodate their ever-increasing girths. As the winter drew to a close, a notably thinner Massena arrived at the Saxon camp sucking the marrow from a rat bone. He was on a tour of inspection and arrived just as the regiment was sitting down to its midday meal in the company of their guests, the 85th Buckinghamshire Volunteer Light Infantry. Visibly shaken, Massena had to be carried to the shade of a tree where he was revived with a warming cup of broth followed by caviar on toast, quails eggs in a champagne sauce and a main course of oxen roasted on a spit. These courses were washed down with copious quantities of fine port. Shortly afterwards Massena ordered his army to retreat back into Spain for revictualling.
(editor's note - Wellington carried out a scorched earth policy, which effectively forced his beseigers out of Portugal, many months later, due to starvation).
1811-Marshal Massena marched his army to relieve the garrison of Almeida and made contact with Wellington's army at Fuentes d'Onoro. The wily Marshal ordered an immediate frontal assault on the heart of the English position. This assault was repelled along with several others that day. The regiment once again found itself in reserve. In fact it was the reserve.
The following day, the battle commenced early with a dawn flanking attack by the French, carrying all before it. Due to the heavy morning fog and the after-effects of standing around in the sun all the previous day, the regiment missed this early attack. By now it was midday and the battle had been raging since dawn with the strain showing on both sides. Massena searched frantically for any troops and called forward the Saxons. They rushed up towards their new positions, the grenadier company leading, with only their bearskins visible above the stone walls. Their chosen route took them parallel to the epic struggle at the church and the sight of the bearskins caused Wellington to order a fierce counter attack by the 88th Regiment of Foot, the Connaught Rangers. This counter attack fell not on the Saxons, who were still behind a wall but rather on the tired remnants of Massena's attacking columns. The effects of two days of heavy fighting was too much for the brave French and they were sent reeling down the hill. Meanwhile, with the battle raging close by them, the Saxons found themselves enmeshed in a maze of high stone walls and a labyrinth of tortuous alleys. They eventually found one, which led them along a meandering path onto a plateau and then down a gentle slope to their starting positions. It was at this time that a dishevelled Massena came upon the regiment in the exact same position from which he had ordered them to attack the church two hours earlier. He staggered back into the arms of his AdCs and was led off towards his carriage, with a severe nervous twitch and mumbling "Le...Lei..Leib....Leib". Sadly, he would never fight for the Emperor again and became a semi-recluse. With a modest amount of money that he had acquired during his campaigns, Massena purchased, amongst others, a little farm near a small Belgian town.
This draws to a close the chapter detailing the regiment's involvement in the Peninsula.
Coming soon, Part Three "Onwards to Moscow"
The Front Page | Feature Articles | Strategy and Tactics | Regimental Histories | Letters to the Editor
To act upon lines far removed from each other, and without communications, is to commit a fault which always gives birth to a second.
Napoleon's Maxim of War XI
Allied Coalition News | British Army | La Grande Army | Prussian Army| Russian Army
Allied Coalition News
Greetings to all of the new recruits in the Coalition! Our ranks have swelled with all armies gaining new members!
Thanks to all that are making the Allied Coalition a great asset to the club! First and foremost is our beloved Brig Gen Paul Harris who keeps up with ALL of our points and ranks as well as victories and defeats! Three cheers for the General!
Secondly, without the efforts of Brig Gen Tony Dobson our current Allied Coalition tournament would not have been as well organized! The General put up a great place for us to check on the status of our games and also continues to help out with web pages for the RMA.
I would like to thank Ian Travers for taking care of processing all of the club game forms. Great job you are doing sir! Without you we would not get the credit for our games!
Congradulations to Gen-Lt. Gjerde (alias Blucher) for accepting the office of Club President! Already the Prussian whip has been cracking and the ministers are running wild trying to stay out of his way! Seems he took a course in Crisis Management from Gen. Heidar Karlsson!
Finally thanks to all that put this fine newsletter together. This is a great mouthpiece for the club! All of you guys do a great job with this work!
Allied Commander in Chief
Ladies and Gentlemen: George, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, and of the British Dominions beyond the seas, King, Defender of the Faith, does hereby order the promotion of the following officers for their continued success against the French and for their diligent discharge of their duties:
Ensign William Glaukler to Lieutenant, Landwehr Battalion Verdun
Ensign J. de Visser to Lieutenant, 4th Dutch Light, Dutch-Belgian Division
Engisn Phillip Roubard to Lieutenant, 8th Belgian Hussars, Dutch-Belgian Division
Ensign Ken Hampton to 6th Dutch Hussars, Dutch-Belgian Division
Ensign Phillip Kessler to 2nd Light Dragoons, KGL
Major J. Douglas McMann, 92nd Reg. of Foot, to Lt. Colonel
Captain Ian Travers, Scott's Greys, to Major and then to Lt. Colonel
Lt. Neil Henderson, 40th Reg. of Foot, to Captain, then to Major, then to Lt. Colonel
Lt. Ralph Taylor, 35th Reg. of Foot, to Captain, then to Major, then to Lt. Colonel
Lt. Colonel Ken 'Muddy' Jones, Dutch-Belgian Cavalry Division, to Colonel
Capt. Dan Cotter, 2nd Hussars, KGL, to Major
Lt. John Cameron, 15 Hussars, to Captain
Lt. Stefan Johansonn, 95th Rifles, to Captain
Lt. Colonel Colin Gaskill, 4th Reg. of Foot, to Colonel
Capt. Terry Lubka to Major
Colonel Rich Holland, I Corps, to Brigadier General
Major John Munro, 71st Reg. of Foot, to Lt. Colonel
Colonel Tony Dobson, 3rd Division, to Brigadier General
Sir Christopher Arbuthnot Wattie, KG, MSM, to Major General
Major Davie Frey, 5th Line Regt., KGL, to Lt. Colonel
Major Jack Nazor, 5th Div., to Lt. Colonel
Lt. Phillip Roubard, 8th Belgian Hussars, to Captain
Medals and Awards
Feldzeugmeister William Peters, Austrian Army CiC, Order of the Garter
Brigadier General Rich Holland KT, DCM,
Bar to Army Gold Cross
Order of the Thistle
Distinguished Conduct Medal
Army Gold Medal
Lt. James McLeod, Military General Service Medal
Lt. Col. Ralph Taylor, Military General Service Medal
Major General Paul Harris, KT, esq., Distinguished Conduct Medal
Col. Mick O'Reilly, II Corps, Army Gold Medal
Lt. Col. Ina Travers, Scott's Greys
Military General Service Medal
Meritorious Service Medal
Lt. Col. Neil Henderson
Military General Service Medal
Long Service and Good Conduct Medal
Brigadier General Tony Dobson,
Military General Service Medal
Order of the Garter
bar to Army Gold Medal
Captain Stefan Johansonn, Military General Service Medal
Lt. Col. Ralph Taylor, Military General Service Medal
Lt. Seth Ferguson, Military General Service Medal
Col. Colin Gaskill, Military General Service Medal and bar
Capt. Terry Lubka, Military General Service Medal
Lt. Col. John Munro, bar to MGSM
Lt. Colonel Jack Nazor, Army Gold Medal
Colonel Ken 'Muddy' Jones, Army Gold Medal
Colonel Elric Williams, Army Gold Medal
Captain Chris Cook, Long Service and Good Conduct Medal
Capt. Phillip Roubard, Military General Service Medal
La Grande Armee
Nouvelles de la Grogne:
We need to point out Colonel Crotts' excellent work. Our faithful companion in arms has made a Web Site for the II Corps that even David, who so often painted our great emperor, would be jalous.
With a user-friendly interface that even yours truly can operate without problems and a graphical content that, despite being refreshing, does'nt attenuate the content, This site will now become the Waterloo of the other armies. The strategy section, in a library format, is also as good looking as it is useful.
General Jon Brewitt, in recognition for his valor in battle, has been awarded a command in the Imperial Guard
THE UNDEFEATED LEADERS:
Général de Brigade Tomasz, Nowacki, Vth Corps, Armee du Rhin, leads the pack with 8 Major Victories and still undefeated.
Chuck Jensen, the Chief of Staff of the Armee du Nord, II Corps, still is undefeated with 5 major victories
Lt. Colonel Vincent Gatto, follows with 4 Major Victories and no defeat
L'Armee du Nord
Appended below is an extract from my latest Muster report for l'Armee du Nord, Grande Armee de la Farnce.
I Corps de Armee:
The current command structure is as follows:
Corps CO - Gen. De Bg. John Mitchell
CoS - Col. Chris Sloan
1st Dv - Capt. Stuart Wilson
1st Bg/1st Dv - Lt. Reuben Hopkins
2ndBg/1st Dv - Lt. Mauro Falconetti
2nd Dv - Lt. Terrence Cuddy
1stBg/2nd Dv - Major Ian Weightman
2ndBg/2nd Dv - Major Andrew Chaytor
1st Cav Leg - Col. Sloan
1stBg/ 1st DCL - Lt. James Witmer
2ndBg/1st DCL - Maj. Fabio Fogato
10 commanders, 18 rank & file, Total: 28
Iron Crown -
Capt. Wilson (For distinguished service re-organizing his division);
Gen. Mitchell (Laurel) (For continuing development of his corps AND for fostering greater participation in MP games).
Valor Cross -
Gen. Mitchell, Major Andre Gofayzen & Major Nick Kouranis for their victory in the longest running MP game in NWC history.
II Corps de Armee -
The IIC has revamped its chain of command so that Col. Crotts can concentrate on developing its own, specialized training facility while Col. Jensen dedicates himself to his duties as Chef de Etat-Major (CoS). Gen. Einar Einarsson was also promoted to the post of Chef de Etat-Major for the AdN. The new command structure is as follows:
Gen. de Bg. Einar Jon Masson: Corps CO
Col. Chuck Jensen: Chef de Etat-Major (CoS)
Col. Wayne Crotts: Quatermaster
5th Dv: Capt. R. Forster
2ndBg/5th: Maj. S. Dodson
1stBg/6th: Capt. S. MacPhee
2nd Cav Leg: Capt. Tom Simmons
2Bg/2nd Cav: Capt. Y. Lamezec
(Capt. David Dassler was assigned to command the 6th Dv, but unfortunately he subsequently had to resign due to personal commitments)
8 commanders, 16 rank & file, Total: 24
Medaille Militaire: L. Lanero, S. Dodson
E. Masson (For development of new scenarios)
C. Jensen (For devoted services to IIC)
Capt. Dassler (For two conscutive Major Victories)
III Corps de Armee
The IIIC was shattered by Marechal Barbier's departure, which led to the resignation, en masse, of numerous
members. However, a veteran core has remained at their posts and, with their help, the IIIC continues in the forefront of L'Empereur's legions. Special mention should be made of Major Jean-Denis Martin, who has now accepted command of the IIIC, LtC. Vincent Gatto, the commander of the 3rd Cav Leg. and Lt. Paul Worthington, now commanding the 11th Dv. The new chain of command is as follows:
Corps CO - Major Martin
11th Dv - Lt. Paul Worthington
1stBg/11th - Lt. Sebastien Merchandier
2ndBg/11th - Lt. David Guegan
3rd Cav Leg - LtC Vincent Gatto
Total reporting in: 5 commnaders, 10 rank & file. Total: 15
I Res Cav
With considerable regret I am saddened to announce that Gen. Salvador Alemany will be resigning as the Corps' commander. Unfortunately, the demands of his work make it impossible to cotinue to devote the necessary time to the corps' activities. Gen. Todd Davis, the senior divisional commander will assume command of the corps. Special mention should also be made of the specialized training program for new recruits that has been developed by Gen Davis & Major Rios, the 3rd Cav Lourde's commander. This entails the use of two basic scenarios for training, one of which emphasizes the proper use and deployment of cavalry.
Current Chain of command:
Corps - Gen. Davis
3rd Cav Lourde - Maj Juan Rios
1stBg/3rd Cav Lourde - Lt. Ricardo Esteller
Commanders: 3, Rank & file: 9. Total: 12
Iron Crown: Davis (Development of new cav scenarios)
Medaille Militaire: Ricardo Esteller
M. Francisco Palomo
Count of Massena
Bulletin Officiel des Armées
Armée du Nord
IIIème Corps d'Armée
1 June 2000
By Imperial Decree,
16 May 2000
By Imperial Decree,
14 May 2000
By Imperial Decree,
13 May 2000
By Imperial Decree,
6 May 2000
By Imperial decree, a new order of battle has been developed for the 3e corps.
7 May 2000
By Imperial Decree, and for excellent management of his brigade, LtPaul Worthington is promoted to the command of 11e division in replacement of Capt Jean-Denis Martin
2 May 2000
By Imperial Decree, CapitaineJean-Denis Martin, Co 11e division is promoted to the command of the 3e Corps d'Armée, replacing Général Francisco Palomo who was assuming temporary command.
L'Armee du Rhin
Courier Lost-- Presumed captured by scouts from the 4th Dutch Light Dragoons,
Dutch-Belgian Division, Cavalry Corps
SECOND ARMY OF THE WEST DISPATCH
Another fine quarter for recruitment. Ten new recruits joined the Russian Army since the last dispatch. Of these, the following have completed training and received their command assignments:
Podporuchik Gary Phillips: Lagoda Infantry Regiment, 26th Division
Podporuchik Paul Buckingham: Alexopol Infantry Regt., 12th Division
Podporuchik Paul Stapleton: Simbrisk Infantry Regt., 27th Division Podporuchik Jason Cawley: Vilna Infantry Regiment, 27th Division
4th Cavalry Corps:
Podporuchik Andy Lane: Chernigov Dragoons, 4th Cavalry Division
Podporuchik Steve Wennerberg: Military Order Regt., 2nd Curr. Div.
Podporuchik Keith Rasmussen: Don Cossacks
It is with great regreat that the Tsar accepts the resignation of Polkovnik Gil Ocampo due to pressing personal concerns. Polkovnik Ocampo was a former Russian chief of staff and current commander of the Second Army of the West's cossacks in addition to the honorary commander of the Russian Guard.
II. BATTLE HONORS\DECORATIONS\PROMOTIONS
The Second Army of the West achieved sixteen major and five minor victories since the last dispatch. The Tsar fears that he shall soon be returning captured eagles to Paris for lack of adequate storage space.
Generalmajor Peter Yrureta:
Major Victory in game #017 (31 turns)
Major Victory in game #197 (12 turns)
For outstanding conduct, Polkovnik Peter Yrureta has been promoted to Generalmajor and is the officer to hold this rank in the Russian Army.
GM Yrureta also heads the Russian contingent in the ongoing Allied spring manuevers. Preliminary reports indicate that the Russian delegation have already won several victories in the manuevers.
Polkovnik Karl Schneider:
Minor Victory in SPW137- The Grand Battle of Waterloo. In 41 out of 54 turns, the Allies disposed of 41,300 French infantry, 13,775 cavalry, 138 guns and 34 leaders at a cost of 28,750 infantry, 11,725 cavalry, 74 guns and 11 leaders. As night fell, the Allied armies linked up and began the inevitable pursuit of the Armee du Nord. The Old Guard was destoyed almost to a man.
Minor Victory in game #263 (5/8 turns). The scenario was the first scenario from JMB's NIR battlegound Project- The Battle of Kirilichi. The scenario featured a cavalry clash between Polish cavalry in the vanguard of the Grande Armee and Platov's cossacks. After a sharp engagement, the Poles were obliged to retreat.
Promoted to Polkovnik.
Major Ruben Lopez :
Major Victory in SPR232 (18/54 turn).
Major Victory in game # 297 (6/14 turns).
Major Victory in SPR082 (The Final Assault 10/12 turns). The fighting was fierce as the French commander sent his cavalry immediately against the Great Redoubt, taking advantage of the poor initial defensive positions. The French captured two of the objectives inside the Redoubt, while the Russians managed to keep the other two at first. Having most of his infantry fixed and no cavalry, the first moments of the battle were hard. Waves of enemy cavalry washed against the Russian positions taking heavy losses. When the Italian Guard made an appearance, it managed to take the third objective hex in the Redoubt, leaving only one in Russian hands. A flank attack against the positions near the Kolocha was repulsed. The Russian Guard helped hold the line, albeit with heavy losses, including their commander Baron Rosen. Russian cavalry reinforcements meanwhile were arriving, and the Russians started making limited counterattacks in the flanks. Several French batteries were destroyed and the remainder were obliged to retire to a safer distance. Most of the Russian infantry was destroyed, but the still strong cavalry was ordered to retake the Redoubt. They charged through the north entry and broke the Italian Guard holding one of the positions. The French still held two Redoubt hexes, but seeing that they no longer had the initiative, and that they had sustained very heavy losses in their cavalry, their commander decided to retreat.
7.600 infantrymen, 4.950 cavalrymen, 65 artillery pieces, 12 leader casualties:Captured (5): Gen. Brig. Domanget, Saint Geniez, Romangin, Beaumont, 1 Colonel. Killed and Wounded (7): Gen. Brig. Seron, Paultre, Pastol, Leclerc, 3 Colonels.
11.225 infantrymen, 2.175 cavalrymen, 59 artillery pieces, 5 leader casualties: Captured (2): GM Filisov, Tchoglokov ,Killed (2): GM Tschoulski, Baron Rosen, Wounded (1): GM. Ryleieff
Major John Underwood:
Major Victory in game #186 (26/26 turns).
Promoted to Major.
Shtabs-Kapitan Simon Ward:
Major Victory in game #097 (11/15 turns).
Promoted to Shtabs-Kapitan.
Kapitan Alex Gelfand:
Major Victory in SPR 220 (20/48 turns) for which Poruchik Gelfand was awarded the General Service Medal for his first victory (10 turn minimum).
Poruchik Alex Gelfand won his second major victory in SPR228 (Kutuzov Turns to Fight). In only 17 turns, Poruchik Gelfand forced his opponent to surrender.
French losses: 59,725 (I), 22,975 (C), 158 (A) and 126 leaders which include Marshals Ney and Lefebvre captured, Marshal Bessieres wounded, Prince Eugene de Beauharnais killed, 24 Gen.de Div, 9 Generalmajors, 46 Gen. of Brig., 42 Colonels and one Generalleutenant.
The battle climaxed when the Emperor committed Old Guard, which was almost totally destroyed and sent reeling by Russian militia! For this outstanding achievement, Porporuchik Gelfand was been promoted to Poruchick and awarded the Army Best Shot Medal (for 2 French Marshals captured) and the coveted Order of Alexander Nevsky by the Tsar.
Poruchik Gelfand was promoted to Kapitan for his outstanding service.
Poruchik Daniel Strenikov:
Major Victory in game #161 (14 turns). Poruchik Strelnikov has been awarded the General Service Medal for his first victory (10 turn minimum).
Major Victory in game #241 (12 turns).
Minor Victory in game #143 (Raevskii's Redoubt-10 turns). After fierce fighting, the Italian Guardwas able to secure only one hex of the Great Redoubt. Casualties: French - about 6000 (including 2 Generals, Russians - about 3500 (including one General).
Promoted to Poruchik
Poruchik Jason Cawley:
Podporuchik Jason Cawley recorded his first Major Victory . His Cossacks harassed the retreat Eugene's IV Corps without respite, destroying the French and allied cavalry almost to a man within three hours. Neither Prince Eugene nor a single French gun escaped.
Podporuchik Jason Cawley's second Major Victory was not long in coming (NIR scenario Never Too Late 10/10 turns). The Poles lost all their cavalry along with its leadership, half their guns, and 45% of their infantry. The Russians lost 25% of their cavalry and 18% of their infantry, both grenadier and militia, while keeping all their guns and objectives for the entire game. Unfortunately, General Karpov was killed, but only after his splendid cossack charges destroyed half the Polish cavalry.
Podpourchik Cawley was promoted to to Poruchik for his dual victories.
Poruchik Ray White:
Promoted to Poruchik.
Podporuchik Daniel Claude:
Major Victory in scenario 005 "never too late" (8/10 turns)
French losses: 4750 (I), 950 (C) and 17 (A)
Russian losses: 3750 (I), 1500 (C), 1 (A).
Minor Victory playing the french (20/20 turns).
French losses: 6300 (I), 5875 (C), 4 (A) and 8 leaders (including Marshal Murat);
Russian losses: 18575 (I), 6275 (C), 40 (A) and 21 leaders.
Podporuchik Peter Green:
Major Victory in SPR204 (8 turns).
Podporuchik Jarmo Larsson:
Major Victory Game #216 (8 turns)
At noon the cossacks and first cavary corps under Uvarov struck the french left flank to divert the attention of the Emperor and perhaps relieve some of the pressure on the russian center. Opposing the Russian cavalry were IV corps cavalry and the 1st and 2nd brigades of the 13th division. The french were without any serious artillery support. The cossacks boldly made a demonstration against the french infantry which promptly formed squares. Not wanting to foolishly attack the french squares, the Russian horse who withdrew slowly before the advancing squares but not before artillery on the heights on the south side of the Kalatcha river made the best of teh temting targets.
Uvarov ordered forward his two horse batteries. They unlimbered in position to fire into the dense squares and also at enemy cavalry on the other side of the creek. When the enemy targets came into the sight of the russian guns, orders werer given to fire but to the astonishment of the russian commander nothing happened! An embarrased artillery officer reported that the ammunition wagons had been left behind. Uvarov had no choice but to order a general retreat consoling himself with the fact that the russian artillery on the other side of the river had inflicted 400 casualties, mostly infantry, on the enemy. Uvarovīs command had lost only 50 men. A successful start, or so he thought...
Suddenly, reports arrived that french cavalry was crossing the creek. New orders were given. The second cossack brigade were ordered to charge the enemy. The enemy, bavarian lancers 200 strong, were smashed but soon the cossacks found themselves in a precarious position on the wrong side of the creek. An admirable charge by outnumbered french on the flanks of the second brigade forced the cossacks to surrender. To avenge this loss more russian horse were sent in two waves into the battle at the creek. A considerable enemy force was surrounded and some of them started to lay down their arms (routed) but the enemy managed to open up a way of escape.
Both sides now disengaged.
Uvarov counted his losses and thought; our losses were not light but only half as much as the french!
LONG LIVE THE TSAR!
Polkovnik Karl Schneider
Chief of Staff
Second Army of the West
Armeeschreiber(Oberst Robert Hamper)
Officer and Rank
Oberst Hamper AdC
For reports and Newsletter material
General Naujoks (PlM) CoS
Great communications, Army work
Generalmajor Karlsson AQM
Quartermaster and Military Police
General Ritter v. Reuter (PlM)
I Korps Kommandeur
General Major Orlando
II Korps Kommandeur
Games Report / Historical Support
The Front Page | Feature Articles | Strategy and Tactics | Regimental Histories | Dispatches | Letters to the Editor
On the Internet
There is a heck of a lot of stuff our there on the web for those interested in Napoleon and the Napoleonic Wars. More than we can possibly put in the newsletter. A few of the more interesting sites that we have come across are described below. We encourage members to share their favorite sites as well (just drop one of us a line). KJ
Waterloo on the Net (http://www.braine-laaleud.com/waterloo/)
Napoleonic Fiction on the Net (http://www.napoleonic fiction/Napoleonic wars.com/)
A site dedicated to publishing Napoleonic fiction on the internet. The author plans to publish, chapter by chapter, 2 novels based on the opening events of the Peninsula war. Check out Spanish Affairs and The Road to Corunna.(P.s. if this link won't work, go to www.napoleonicwars.com and scroll down the left box listing of supported sites until you find napoleonic fiction.)
First Empire (http://www.firstempire.ltd.uk) An international magazine for Napoleonic enthusiasts, historians, and wargamers. Each issue covers aspects of tactics, uniforms, personalities, and battles of the period. For a sample of the magazines articles go to (http://www.firstempire.ltd.uk/samples/index.htm). There you will find:
The Defense of Danzig- 1813, by A Ricciardeallo
Friendly Fire at Waterloo, by Peter Hofschoröer
The Fighting Marshals: Marshal Lefebre- Duc de Danzig, by Ian Barstow
Notes on Baggage, by Keith Raynor
The Battle of Craonne- March 17th, 1814, by Ian Barstow
The Battle of Bremen - 1815: A Wargame Scenario, by Ian Barstow
Robert Fulton's Submarines, by Jonty
Bonaparte's Egyptian Campaign, by George F. Nafziger
(these links will take you out of the NWC newsletter; click BACK to return here)
The Front Page | Feature Articles | Strategy and Tactics | Regimental Histories | Dispatches
Letters to the Editor
If you have something to contribute or would like comment on any aspect of the newsletter or the NWC, then feel free to write a letter to the editor (email@example.com). However, this newsletter reserves the right to ignore, edit, delete and/or refuse to publish any letter received if it is deemed to be inappropriate or worthless. All letters absolutely must include the name of the author and his/her e-mail address or they will not be posted. KJ
Paul Harris wrote:
Having just read Ken's account (in the Allies' Dresden Mess) of capturing the little Corsican guy, it got me thinking of what the leaders are worth and it make interesting and thought provoking reading.
The Army Leaders
Napoleon & Wellington are worth 80 points if captured (wounded & killed are less)
[Wellington = 20 pts. if wounded; Napoleon = 40 pts. if killed].
Ney = 60; but if he takes over from Napoleon he is worth 80.
Corp = 54, Div = 28/32/48 depending on there position
Brigade = 12.
Overall the French have 80 officers and if all captured at once a points total of 1862.
Orange is worth 42 - 56 if Army leader
Hill 48 & 64 if Army leader(Hill is 4th in line Wellington/Orange/Altern/Hill)
If all the Allied officer were captured 810 points from 42 officers.
Oh, I nearly forgot: Here are the answeres to Einar's Napoleonic Trivia Quiz.
1. 19; 2. Belle Alliance; 3. Smolensk; 4. Hohengeroldseck (population 4.500); 5. Vendee;
6. Slavkov; 7. Cabinet Noir; 8. Bagrationovsk; 9. Russia and Prussia
The Front Page | Feature Articles | Strategy and Tactics | Regimental Histories | Disatches
photo by: Jack Sheehand
The Hôtel des Invalides was built in 1670 by Loius XIV for disabled soldiers. Finished by Jules Hardouin-Mansart, the chapel of Saint-Louis houses the tomb of Napoleon I. The Army Museum and the Plans-Reliefs Museum are part of the site.