|AWI action at Groveton
Click or double click all pix to enjoy a larger view
On Saturday April 1, 2017 I hosted a slightly larger set piece AWI battle taking place during the Philadelphia Campaign of 1777. The scenario was inspired by the ACW battle of Groveton (or Brawner's Farm) in 1862, prior to 2nd Bull Run.
The Crown Forces fielded three brigades that included: the British Light Brigade, British regulars, and the Hessian Brigade, positioned on the right, center and left sections, respectively. The Light Brigade included the converged light companies forming a large battalion of 40 figures, 12 Ferguson's Rifles, 2 one-pound amusettes, and a troop (6 figures ) of the 17th Light Dragoons. The British regulars consisted of two line regiments, one converged grenadier battalion and two 6-pound cannon. The Hessian had two musketeer battalions with 40 figures each, one grenadier battalion of 30 figures, and 18 Jagers.
The Continental Army featured Greene's Division that included the Maryland-Delaware Brigade on the American left flank, the Pennsylvania Brigade in the center, and a brigade of Militia on the right flank. Each brigade fielded four battalions and there were two French 4-pounders and a light 3-pounder augmenting the attack.
The game began with the Hessian Brigade marching down the Graveton Road towards the Groveton Tavern. The Light Brigade, hearing the sound of gunfire, turned around and headed back to the Groveton Tavern (entering the table from the British right flank). The British regulars did not arrive until turn three, then they arrived in the right-center of the table, between the Hessians and the Light Battalion.
The Continental forces saw the Maryland Brigade marching towards the Groveton Tavern, where they would encounter the British Light Brigade. The Pennsylvania Brigade and the Militia were deployed behind a ridge that ran parallel to the Groveton Road and was perpendicular to the Hessians on the road. Both American brigades erupted from the cover and made a mad dash for the Hessians, hoping to catch them on the road in column.
|British Light Brigade Deploys Those Curious Amusettes
|The Maryland Brigade advances towards Graveton Tavern.
|Infantry to the left and cavalry to the right, and meet in the middle!
|Light infantry occupy the Graviton Tavern
|The Lights having bought some time, the British regulars begin to arrive to the battle and take on the Maryland Brigade.
|A view of the British artillery park.
|On the left flank, Knyphausen deploys his Hessian Brigade into line to face the oncoming Pennsylvania Brigade.
|Overhead view of the Hessian deployment in the wooded area. Jagers to the front, backed by musketeers and grenadiers.
|American Militia emerge from the woods and march towards the Hessians.
|Militia threatens the Hessian left flank while Pennsylvanians attack them from the front.
|In the center, the Hessian grenadiers link up with the British brigade, but they have already taken extensive casualties from the Continental artillery.
|With the Hessian Brigade destroyed, the British in the center concede the battlefield to the Americans and fall back.
In the end, the Hessian Brigade was caught in a vise between the Militia on their left flank and Continentals to their front...and lots of artillery to contend to. As a result, the Hessians put up a good fight, but they could not hold their position against superior American numbers. The Hessians' lack of artillery did not help them any either.
The British regulars were in a stand off with the Maryland Brigade, with neither side gaining any advantage. The Light Brigade was trying to outflank the Maryland Brigade, which began to fall back upon the appearance of the British to their front.
The Crown Forces ceded victory to the Americans and marched off the field. Greene and his officers enjoyed a good night's meal at the Groveton Tavern.