I was chatting on the Napoleon Series Forum a few days ago on the subject of Napoleonic Tactical Drills. It occurred to me that I did have a chapter dealing with this in a book which I began to write some 20 years ago, but never finished.
I have updated all of the diagrams in this particular chapter and it is now published as an article, entitled “Basic Formations and Movement Drills“, within the Tactics Sub-section of the Military Historical Research Section. This may be accessed via that link or the Top Menu of my webpage.
The article covers the basic tactical structures which changed little, if at all, throughout the 17th, 18th and much of the 19th Centuries. I acknowledge that I have relied mainly, although not exclusively, on British Regulations, but all nations used very similar tactical drills at this basic level. I will publish a future article on Tactical Development during the 18th Century.
I have amended the structure of pages of Military Historical Research articles. These were all originally in a single section, but the number of articles was getting long, and I have plans to add more in the near future. I have therefore divided this section into two drop down sub-sections from the main Top Menu. The new sub-sections are Organisation and Tactics.
My Squares and Oblongs article was written 20 years ago. I have now revised it to take into account my more recent research into British Converged Light Battalions. I have not changed the original article, but have added an extra section at the end to explain these drills more fully.
Having created some additional Blog Post Categories, I have decided to organise them into a logical hierarchy, with main categories of Historical Eras, Troop Types, Military Historical Research, Terrain and General. These then have various subcategories as can be seen in the Post Categories side bar. As my website grows, I think this will make it easier for readers to find blogs which interest them.
I have decided to create some new Blog Post Categories of Command, Infantry, Cavalry, Artillery, Engineers and Logistic. I have then gone back over all of my posts to date and added these categories to posts as appropriate. The intention is to make it easier for anyone reading the posts to find a particular subject.
I have published a new article in my Military Historical Research section. It is on Napoleonic Artillery and can be seen here: Napoleonic Artillery.
The article was originally drafted over 20 years ago as part of a book which I never finished. There is much better research on Napoleonic Artillery available now, such as books by Kevin Kiley, Anthony Dawson, Paul Dawson and Stephen Summerfield. However, having published articles on my similar old research into Infantry and Cavalry, I thought that I would add this one for completeness.
I like having Logistic units for my Wargames Armies. They may not get a lot of use but come in handy for some scenarios. The British Army used a half battalion of Highlanders to guard their baggage train at both Prestonpans and Culloden. The Battle of Clifton was fought as a delaying action to give the Jacobites time to withdraw their artillery and logistic train over the hills.
In most 18th and 19th Century Armies, logistics were organised by commissaries. The post of Commissary-General was normally a civilian or semi-civilian one. However the Jacobite Commissary-General, Colonel Lachlan MacLachlan, was very much a soldier, and died at the end of Culloden, leading his clan in a charge. Here is my model of him. He is a highly converted Strelets Napoleonic British Light Dragoon.
Well, I have finally finished my Jacobite Field Artillery. Their guns were either captured British ones or provided by the French. The Gunners themselves were lowlanders, mainly recruited from the Duke of Perth’s Regiment, with a small number of French Artillery providing command and technical direction. Here is a typical detachment of two model guns (representing four real guns). These guns are British 3 pounders (IMEX AWI American guns), the Jacobite crewmen are conversions from that same set, whilst the French Gunner is a conversion from a Strelets Russian Artillery of Peter I set.
Thornton’s Company of Yorkshire Blues acted as an artillery escort at the Battle of Falkirk. When I modelled them, I assumed that they were really 70 men strong, and therefore made them as a slightly understrength two figures, as described in a recent blog post. I have now realised that they were larger than this.
The French supplied the Jacobite Army with a number of artillery pieces, including six x 4 pound “Swedish” guns (so called because they were based on a lightweight Swedish design). I decided to model a complete French six gun battery (3 model guns) then I could use these for my planned expansion into the War of Austrian Succession, as well as use the same guns with mainly Jacobite gunners, plus a few French crew, for my Jacobite Rebellion set-up.
I based my “Swedish” French guns on those described in the Kronoskaf Seven Years War website (http://www.kronoskaf.com/syw/index.php?title=French_Artillery_%C3%A0_la_Su%C3%A9doise) with gun colour, horse furniture and drivers uniforms as per the print from the New York Public Library below: