Thursday, September 20, 2007

Greene's Division At Brandywine - 1777

10th Virginia Regt - George Weedon's Brigade

5th Virginia Regt - Peter Muhlenberg's Brigade

General Washington & Staff Confer at Chester Court House

9th Virginia Regt. - Muhlenburg's Brigade

Please click on the pictures to enlarge the photographs

In the previous post, Der Alte Fritz outlined how he organized his British and American forces around the battle of Brandywine on September 11, 1777 . I have posted several pictures of some of the units that comprise the 1st Virginia Brigade, under the command of Brigadier General Peter Muhlenberg, and the 2nd Virginia Brigade, commanded by Brigadier General George Weedon. The figures shown in the pictures are primarily from the Old Glory American Revolution range. The figure scale used is 1:10, i.e. one casting represents ten real soldiers.

The order of battle for these two brigades consist entirely of regiments from the Old Dominion State of Virginia. The first number, shown in parentheses, is the estimated number of men in the regiment and the second number represents the number of wargame figures used to create the brigade on the tabletop.

1st Virginia Brigade - Muhlenberg (850) - 90 figures
1st Va. Regt (120) - 20 figures - blue coat w/red facings
5th Va. Regt. (127) - 20 figures - blue coat w/red facings
9th Va. Regt. (391) - 30 figures - hunting shirts
13th Va. Regt. (200) - 20 figures - blue coat w/ yellow facings

2nd Virginia Brigade - Weedon (900) - 90 figures
2nd Va. Regt. (182) - 20 figures - blue coat w/red facings
6th Va. Regt. (223) - 30 figures - grey coat w/green facings, bowler hat
10th Va. Regt. (295) - 30 figures - hunting shirts
14th Va. Regt. (100) - nil
Stewart's Pa. (100) - 10 figures - brown coat w/green facings

My methodology in deciding the number of figures per regiment starts by taking 10% of the reported number of real men and seeing if that results in a viable wargame unit of close to 20 or 30 figures. In Muhlenberg's brigade, I basically rounded the 9th Virginia Regt. down to 300 men and allocated the remainder to the 1st and the 5th Virginia regiments. Then, I rounded those smaller regiments up to 20 figures. I could have also merged two smaller units together and maybe called on of the units the 1st/5th Virginia Regiment. No doubt some reorganization such as this might have occurred in real life once a couple of regiments were depleted by casualties , sickness, expiring commitments, etc.

In the second Virginia Brigade, I completely eliminated the 14th Virginia and allocated its men to other regiments. As a result, I was able to increase the 6th, which look rather natty in their grey coats and bowler round hats, while simply rounding up the 2nd Virginia to 200 men and the 10th Virginia to 300 men. I decided to keep Stewart's small Pennsylvania regiment on the books so that I could have a couple of dinky regiments on the table. I would imagine that the Continental Army had a lot of undersized regiments such as Stewart's, so it adds to the verisimilitude (how do you like that word?) of my army.

I should also mention that each Continental brigade also gets a skirmish stand of 3 figures. Skirmishers simply roll a D10 die and score a "hit" on a roll of "2" or less. So they can be quite pesky if you have luck with your game dice. Each brigade has a command stand with 2 figures on a 2-inch square stand. Usually both figures are mounted, although sometimes I had the second figure standing on the ground to create a mini-diorama. Division commanders such as General Greene are also mounted two per stand. The army command stand, shown third from the top, has three figures. This depicts general Washington (from the Old Glory Continental personalties pack) with one mounted aide and a second aide standing on the ground with his foot on a barrel as he peers through a telescope. This figure was included with the artillery command bag for the American side. It makes for a nice diorama for the army command stand, don't you think?

This all adds up to 180 figures plus 6 skirmishers, 4 mounted brigade command figures and 2 mounted division command figures in Nathanael Greene's division, or 192 figures in total. That is a relatively easy amount of figures to paint over several months and it is why the American Revolution is a good candidate for the 1:10 ratio of castings. It doesn't involve huge wargame units as the regiments average only 20 to 30 figures.

I hope that you enjoyed this little peek at Greene's division and that you will come away with an understanding of how Der Alte Fritz organizes an army. I will try to post some more pictures, perhaps of the Loyalist Forces, in my next blog entry within the next couple of days. Oh, one more thing, the buildings were designed and created by Herb Gundt of H.G. Walls and the terrain boards were made by Tony Adams.


  1. wonderful set up you got there , very jealous, more please it's helping me formulate my plans for my american regiments, at the moment i've just got a hotch-potch (how do you like those words) of regiments with no real formation. guess i need to base them on some army that took to the field. But i've painted maryland and some other general, brown coated red turn back types ,never paint before your research i guess is the cry.

  2. You could start organizing your troops around Sullivan's Maryland Division at Brandywine. 2 brigades of MD regiments plus the Delaware Regt, Hazen's battalion and The German Battalion.

  3. Nice figures Jim! I started with OG AWI's and painted a few when I noticed that the Right arm of most of the English troops was wasy short, hand attached at the elbow. I didn't like the castings anymore so I've quit painting them. My thoughts are that someday they will become metal for Prince August molds. Anyway nice looking Virginians!

  4. Wonderful!! I am really enjoying your AWI pictures and articles. Are those metal bases?
    I am looking forward to seeing the loyalists and wish to say thanks for taking the time to do this.......Bill

  5. I use metal bases and store them in large plastic boxes that have the inside bottom covered with a large magnet sheet. Thus, they transport easily without moving around and are very secure.

    The terraining is done with spackle mixed with brown paint. While the spackle is still wet, I sprinkle bits of "fine ballast" or sand and some Woodlands Scenics Burnt Grass (fine) onto the base and then it is finished.

  6. I use those same metal bases. However, I find spackle to be brittle, so I use Liquatex Resin Sand Gel. I mix in some earth color and apply it with a pallet knife. Do a quick drybrush with "spice tan (ochre)" and add the ballast and grass. Works for me.

  7. I do like your painting JIm and you even manage to make Old Glory figures look reasonable, but why oh why do they insist on that "I've just crapped my pants" pose in all their ranges?

    Good painting wasted on bad figures in my opinion.


  8. Old Glory are good "filler" figures. They have some good poses and some not so good. I ususally put my Perry's, Foundry's or Eureka's on the front of the stands and the Old Glory's in the back lines.
    If you enjoy lots of different poses and hundreds of figures in your battles then this is one way to go.....Bill

  9. Nice Blog!!! I've really been inspired to crank up my painting efforts. I have some old painted Custom Cast/Iron Brigade AWI figures that have been sitting for years because I couldn't find a good set of rules. I like your basing arrangment, what rules have you used for your AWI games? I have BAR but I beleve those regements would be too large.

  10. Lovely stuff. Beautiful layout too!

  11. I use my own rules, which are called "Sons of Liberty". They are easy to learn and everything is printed on one side of a standard 8.5" x 11" sheet of paper. I've used this mechanical system for over 10 years at conventions and have adaptations for the Late Roman period, the SYW, American Rev, and Napoleonics. I find that players in my games are virtually running the game on their own after the 2nd turn.

  12. Jim, the rules sound interesting and I'm al for easy rules. Any chance of a peek at them and the SYW variant?


  13. Are you still mourning Bill Wirtz?
    Is that why no updates?
    The Hawks may be on the downside, but they still have the best sweater in the game.
    And that from and Islanders season ticket holder..........Bill