Monday, June 21, 2010

OK Damnit, Reinforcements Are Arriving!

Seaforth Highlanders (renamed the Royal Banffshire Regt for this scenario) try desperately to fend off the Dervish and Beja warriors of Osman Dinga in the Sudan.

To paraphrase Miss Scarlet O'Hare, "as God is my witness, I shall never, ever be wiped out again!".

After the shocking news of the destruction of the Royal Banffshires at Jebil Obeid on June 19, 1885 filtered back to London, His Grace, the Duke of Sunderland, patron sponsor of the 78th Seaforth Highlander Regiment, decided that such a dreadful thing should never happen to his beloved regiment. With that in mind, he sent a telegram to Gardiner & Sons Armourers, requesting the purchase of a brace of Mr. Gardiner's famous machine guns, for delivery to The Port of Cairo in Egypt. From there, the equipment shall be shipped via the Suez Canal, through the Red Sea, and on to the port of Suakin, in the Sudan. The new equipment shall await the arrival of the 78th Regiment as it is redeployed from Fort Grant, in Northwest Tranjipour, to assist General Graham in his campaign to restore order in the Eastern Sudan, near Suakin.

At the same time, His Grace authorized Colonel Archibald Sinclair of the 78th Foot to raise two more companies of men to augment the Seaforth's rolls up to 8 companies (96 figures). The new recruits should arrive within the month, wherein they will undergo training and equipping, with a goal to be ready for action in September.

Meanwhile, unbeknownst to the Imperial authorities, Osman Dinga too was reassessing the performance of his army at Jebil Obeid and decided that he needed more cavalry. Orders were placed to find sufficient Beja and Ansar recruits to fill out a 24 figure unit of camelry to add to his army. An additional rub of warriors was recruited from the distant province of Sidi al Perry to make up for the losses at the recent battle.

Gentlemen, the game is afoot!

Last evening I remembered that I had at least one Gardiner gun packed away, unpainted, in a box of Connoisseur figures that I had ordered a couple of years ago. Sure enough, there was one gun set. So I ordered a second Gardiner so that the Seaforths will have a battery of 2 or 3 machine guns to augment their firepower. The addition of 24 more Lee-Metford rifles should also increase the quantity of lead that will be flying in the direction of the Dervish the next time that Osman Dinga goes on the warpath.

All of the figures ordered will be from Connoisseur Miniatures, which are available from Bicorne Miniatures in the UK. When we set up our Sudan forces, we realized that we did not have much in the way of Dervish cavalry or camelry, so I figured that I might as well address that deficiency while I was placing orders. I also have an three unpainted units of Perry Beja and a small unit of Beja riflemen that I hope to paint before the next battle, which probably won't be until later in the year. That's about 180 Perry figures in all. Yikes!

For now, it is back to painting SYW Minden Croats. That makes me happy indeed. As much as I enjoyed this little interlude in the 19th Century Sudan, tricorns and turnbacks are what really does it for me.


  1. Agreed. A fun "blip", but the 18th Century just has that certain, indefineable something, doesn't it?

    Best Regards,


  2. The Duke may think those Gardiner guns are that and a slice of pie, till they jam.

    I like your little "interludes" in the Sudan, and hope to see more later this year!