Wednesday, 28 August 2013

THS summer event: Our very own Penobscot Expedition - Part 1

Last weekend our annual summer special summer special took place. Thereby it's tradition to gather the whole THS-club and have a large game with all people which want to participate and with all miniatures they want to use. Edged with time to chat and the Saturday evening barbecue it promised to be a funny event. I had the pleasure to participate for the second time after our great Napoleonic Kolberg game of 2013.

This time we decided to play a partly fictional scenario which was inspired by the Penobscot expedition of 1779.
"Britain defending New Ireland" by Dominic Serres
Actually it was a rather small event. On 30th May 1779 a small force of about 700 British landed on the Majabigwaduce peninsular which lies in the bay where Penobscot river runs into the Atlantic ocean. Northwards from Boston does it belong to Maine nowadays although it was Massachesetts in 1779. However the British startet to build a fortification named Fort George to open a new theatre of war. Understandably the Continentals didn't want to accept this and sent an allotmant of navy, infantry and artillery to banish their foes. The campaign ended after some half-hearted attacks of Continental milita and marines when British vice-admiral Sir George Collier arrived with a British relief fleet on 13th August and smashed the American fleet.

Bernard Cromweel decribes these events very vividly in his novel "The Fort" (in German "Das Fort"). A very good read from this well-known author of historical novels. I can frankly recommend it to any reader who is interested in this period.

Anyway about 700 British and a bit more than 1.000 Continentals seemed not enough for this event. So one of our fellows expanded the scenario slightly to allow us to field all the units available for AWI in our club. About 40 units were to field the board and the following sketch of the terrain was presented by our gamemaster Bernhard:
Our very special Penobscot expedition
As you see it's rather complex game (each flag symbolises a brigade):
B1: Fort George guarded by its brave, British builders
B2 and B3: British and Hessian relief forces approaching by land.
B4: A part of Collier's fleet which is transporting a brigade of British marines

F: A French battery of 24pdr heavy siege artillery. Allied with the Continentals they try to shatter the fortifications of Fort George. It is guarded by a French brigade.
A1 and A2: American entrenchments to hold the British back

Additionally there are two American brigade which try to storm the pallisades of Fort George.

Since we wanted to play the whole saturday the board was to be prepared in advance. Hence we met on friday afternoon and evening to make everything ready:

After we arrived at the parish hall we chartered for our event, we unloaded the cars and set all available terrain pieces aside, pushed along some tables and started to puzzle everthing together.
Bernhard, Didier and Axel interpreting the sketch of the board.
After two hours of puzzling, trying and merging we had our gaming area ready. It had about 4,50 m (~14' 9") x 5,50 m (~ 18') with some insections to be able to reach into the middle of the table.
The gaming table prepared, but awaiting scenic details.
Afterwards we spread some terrain over the table. Centerpiece of it was a small settlement near the piers. A combination of bought and build buildings pallisades and trees:
A look onto the settlement which helt the hospital in Cornwell's book.
Absolutely eye catching was the farm which Micheal made of Renedra's farmhouse, a lot of scratchbuild stuff and some scenic additions. If you are interested in more details about this awesome masterpiece of craftsmanship then have a look at his threat in the Lead Adventure Forum (here):
Schmied's farm yet unoccupied.
So after about five hours the stage was set. The board prepared, the brigades sorted and the players in good mood. Strategically both sides were hopeless alike but playfully we all were looking forward to saturday morning...

As soon as I have my remaining pictures sorted, I'll present a kind of AAR. Until then here is a small foretast of the attacking Continental brigades:
Attacking Fort George...
Read more in Part 2 of the report: here


  1. Now that and this is good......very good!

  2. Great looking game Monty, looks like some fun was had there

  3. Wonderful looking game, lovely terrain and brilliant board!

  4. That board looks excellent. Having barbecue was s stroke of genius!

  5. Wow impressive gaming board.

  6. Wow, what a sight to behold. An absolutely marvellous set up.

  7. Great looking table. I have to say that I am looking forward to these annual games.

  8. Now that looks to be a great battle! Lovely set up indeed! I'm looking forward to reading your AAR!


  9. Hi fellows,

    I'm glad that you all liked the my first humble lines about the set up. Meanwhile I prepared some pictures of the game itself which you find here: