Monday, 30 April 2018

Battle of Redmond, an AWI scenario for Patriots and Loyalists.

Our game this week features Steve's collection of 25mm AWI figures.  Washington's army is in urgent need of supplies.  A convoy has been gathered by a local provision merchant, Jim Morrison, who has called in some 'favours' and secured the contract.  The wagons have begun their journey, accompanied by a brigade under the command of General Carter.  Last night they reached the small settlement of Redmond where General Burnside's brigade are quartered and today they will set out on the last leg of the journey to Washington's army.

Morrison's wagons in Redmond
Unfortunately, the British have got wind of the American plans and General Dalrymple has organised a force of three brigades, (generals, Arbuthnot, Beddington and Von Riesling ) to intercept the convoy, preferably capturing it, but if necessary, destroying it.  Just before he sets off from Redmond, General Carter received a message from Washington saying that intelligence reports suggest that a British attack on Redmond may occur and General Armistead's brigade has been ordered to march on Redmond rendezvous with the convoy and then escort it on to Washington's army.

No sooner had the messenger delivered his message than the heads of the British and Hessian columns were spotted approaching Redmond.  Burnside ordered his men forward to seize Laura's Hill and cover the road leading to Washington's army.  Carter put two battalions in the houses of Redmond and led the remainder of his force on a flanking march hoping to catch any British attack on the settlement in the flank.  Aides were sent to General Armistead requesting he advance at his best speed to help repel the British attack.

Beddington's brigade prepare to advance on Redmond
For the British/Hessians, Dalrymple had ordered Von Riesling (in the centre) to seize Laura's Hill and then advance on the road from Redmond to Washington's army, cutting off the convoy.  General Beddington (on the left), was to direct his attack on Redmond itself, whilst general Arbuthnot (on the right), was to advance with all speed to cut the road as per Von Rielsing and prevent any forces from Washington reaching Redmond.

In the centre, Von Riesling's Jaeger were beaten to the summit of Laura's Hill by Burnside's riflemen.  The two bodies of light troops exchanged fire, but neither could gain the upper hand.  Behind the Jaegers, Von Riesling was deploying his musketeer and fusilier battalions, once these had advanced into short range, the Jaeger pulled back and volleys began to whittle away the American unit.  Burneside's other units had been impeded by the fences, walls and buildings of Redmond and also by the desire of Morrison to get his wagons away from the conflict as quickly as possible.  The drivers urged their horses forward, blocking the road for any other traffic.  Eventually, one unit made it onto the hill, to be met by the riflemen coming the other way, having succumbed to the weight of fire from the Hessians.

The Hessian advance towards Laura's Hill
Beddington had made fairly slow progress towards Redmond, but he now had his first unit, the 6th Foot, deployed in line firing at the militia in Redmond.  The artillery was closing up and the light companies were moving past Palmer's Woods towards Green Ridge.  Around Green Ridge came Carter's riflemen, who began to skirmish with the light companies.  On the ridge itself Carter's artillery appeared.  Before they could deploy, the 21st Foot deployed into line and fired a volley.  Losses were heavy among the artillerymen and they abandoned their gun and fell back over the ridge.
Before Beddington could exploit this opportunity, two militia battalions appeared on the summit of Green Ridge and fired accurate volleys at the British line.  The firing between the light troops ebbed as both units edged towards Palmer's Woods, hoping to reduce their losses in the thick undergrowth.

The British advance was slowed by fences
On the British right. Arbuthnot's regulars were having a torrid time working their way through fences and other obstacles.  Progress was slow, but their light troops had managed to move into woods on the left of the road.  From here they were able to fire at the riflemen from Armistead's brigade as they moved off the road and towards the British lines.  The officers in the American unit struggled to get their men to deploy and by the time they did they were subjected to several close range volleys from the advancing British line.  To Armistead's dismay, his riflemen raced back to the road without even firing a shot.  There, they milled about deaf to the entreaties of their officers.  The next unit of Armistead's brigade were continentals.  They advanced with pace and quickly came into action, exchanging volleys with the British regulars.  However, they too succumbed to a combination of close range volleys and harassing skirmisher fire.  Suddenly there were two units attempting to rally and Armistead wasted no time in galloping over and haranguing his recalcitrant infantry.  Following up their success, Arbuthnot's light troops now moved into the wood bordering the road along which Armistead's men had to advance.  To oppose them Armistead sent in his next available unit, militia.

On Laura's Hill Burnside's continental infantry held their ground, issuing fervent prayers for their supports to come up quickly.  In front of them they could see that Von Riesling had completed his deployment and they were now faced by three units of Hessian infantry.  It was going to be hot work withstanding that amount of firepower, but they did their best.  As their numbers dwindled they became vulnerable to a flank attack and Von Riesling saw the opportunity and took it.  One of his musketeer units pivoted on their right, fired a volley and then charged the Americans.  The continentals did not contest the charge, seeing the advancing line of bayonets, they turned and ran back towards Redmond, pinning their tardy supports.

The Hessians capture Laura's Hill 
Burnside had ordered Morrison to get his wagons out of the way of his troops and on the road to Washington's army.  With the sound of battle approaching, Morrison needed no second warning he set off at his best speed, (unfortunately not fast as his wagons were heavily loaded).  Carter's men were doing a good job keeping the British away from the settlement, but Burnside seemed to be struggling to get his men forward.  As the wagons moved along they could see that ahead the road was blocked by Armistead's men who were still marching along it.  How were they going to get past them?  However, that was the least of their worries, as they neared the junction with the turnpike along which Arbuthnot had been heading they were spotted by the Hessian artillery.  The first round sailed just over the team of the leading wagon; the second struck home.  It demolished the front of the wagon, blocking the road with debris and provisions.  Morrison quickly got his men to break down the fence alongside the road and began to take his wagons across the pasture, hoping to avoid the British who seemed 'mighty close',

Get those wagons moving!
Desperate measures by Morrison as he takes his wagons 'off road'
  Arbuthnot had by now got all his units forward and was advancing on Armistead's brigade in a solid mass.  Armistead's fresh continental unit lined the fence bordering the road and attempted to stem the tide.  At first they seemed to be gaining the initiative, the British advance stopped.  In a moment of enthusiasm (later branded by Armistead as 'madness'), the colonel shouted to his men "They're wavering boys!  Go get 'em".  With a shout, the American line advanced, to be met by a devastating volley at point-blank range.  As they struggled to recover they were hit again.  All order was lost and the remnants of the battalion streamed to the rear.  Here they met the survivors of the militia battalion which had entered the woods where they had been met by Arbuthnot's light infantry.  With fire seemingly coming from all directions the surviving officers had lost control and the men had turned and run.  Armistead saw that he could no longer carry out his orders and get the supplies to Washington.  The wagons were getting bogged down in the fields and a brigade of enemy troops were on the point of capturing the road.  He therefore rallied what men he could and formed a rearguard to protect the rest of the brigade retreating back to camp.

Armistead's men driven back by the British volleys
In the centre Burnside was faring no better.  Most of his brigade was trapped between Laura's Hill and the road.  Above them, on the hill, the Hessian musketeers were firing volleys into the packed ranks of Americans.  On their flank were the Hessian grenadiers who were advancing, firing and advancing again, forcing them back towards Redmond.  The Hessian jaegers had now cut the road and were sniping away at the officers trying to restore order.  Only Carter was holding his ground, though he was too weak to force Beddington to retreat.  He had prevented an attack on Redmond and this at least gave the two brigades a chance of falling back and avoiding capture.  Morrison had decided that discretion was the better part of valour and suggested to his wagon drivers that a hike across the fields was preferable to a close encounter with the advancing British and Hessian troops.  So the supplies never reached Washington and Dalrymple's men dined well for some time on the produce they 'liberated'.

Burnside's men penned in by the Hessians
My thanks to Steve for devising a very enjoyable game.A very enjoyable game,   


  1. A very enjoyable narrative - thanks.

  2. Love the commentary and story here, as well as the epic pics. I could almost 'feel' the British volley hitting home as the yanks moved forward.

  3. Beautiful armies - and wagons - and a great looking game!

  4. Thanks very much chaps, the AWI games always seem to provide plenty of action; as well as being lots of fun.