Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Gettysburg Part III - the Finale

As we have seen in the previous posts the battle had veered away from the historical by some degree but was still fairly close.  The main difference was the extra strength loaded on the Confederate right against the two "Round Tops."  As Lee I hoped to use two of Hill's division to push the Yankees off the hills and straight back while using the trailing two to roll up Cemetery Ridge.  If they turned to face, then Longstreet's other two divisions were poised to strike.  As it turned out.....

Ewell's attack continued to make strong headway.  The pounding from the massed guns on Seminary Ridge were making life difficult for any Yankee on high ground as the Reb infantry moved forward.  Some statistically improbable dice throws opened up some gaps or otherwise drove off gunners.  Into a fury of fire and shot plunged Rhodes' and Johnson's divisions.  Charge and counter-attack meant that Cemetery Hill changed hands time and time again. 

On the Reb right massed brigade columns were formed to assault.  These sadly had very predictable results though the sheer mass of men coming caused the Yankees to summon up another corps to take position behind the hills.  Stuart was available to me (Lee) but there didn't seem to be any place to deploy their mass of cavalry.  The first day had demonstrated the futility of charging cavalry against steady infantry.

Back on the left, the Yankees had temporarily evacuated the top of Culp's Hill and the Confederate artillery reserve, with no viable targets, limbered up and started forward.  But General Meade intervened and sent blue-coated regiments back up the top.  In the fighting on and around Cemetery Hill and Ridge the advancing Rebels had captured 36 guns.  A fine set of trophies we thought, but then 24 more guns materialized on top of Culp's Hill, as if by magic (they had been released from the army reserve).  This did not set well with the fighting spirit of the ANV. 

Then elements of the Yankee I Corps, long sitting atop Cemetery Ridge, began to advance in a swinging motion, looking to attack the flank of Hill.  To counter this, the previously prone men of McLaw's Division leaped to their feet and moved to intercept this threat.  Perhaps this fight in the open would give us the edge we sought elsewhere? 

As General Lee I will allow myself the indulgence of thinking we had a decent chance of beating the troops on table.  But the reality check was that against the two Yankee corps still off table and part of the army artillery reserve, we had only Stuart's cavalry.

With gamer exhaustion setting in, a large pick up and long trip home for our Minnesota friends we decided to end the conflict.  We were judged to have scored a "moral victory" because of our successful attacks, but as mentioned barring some rare dice we could not beat the mass of Yankees still unbowed.

Take down and pick up took less time than expected so we had a bit more time to socialize before heading our separate ways.  All judged it a worthwhile endeavor and a success, with valuable lessons learned when it comes time to plan the next one.  The American Legion Hall were gracious hosts and seemed quite pleased with our part in things.  Three TV stations in total came out to report, though alas, my interview ended up on the cutting room floor.  ;-)

My thanks to all who gave their time, effort and money to make it possible.  Again, credit must be given to Dan Wideman without whom it never would have come together.  Cheers my friend.  His blog entry for the whole weekend can be found at:

Back row, left to right: Todd, Clayton, Aaron, Andrew, Paul, Dan, Tom and myself.
Front row, left to right: Bob, Jake, Tim, Brent, Eric (Meade) and Tad.

Now for the next big game.....


  1. Looks like a great game, fantastic pictures!

  2. What a great project and massive JR game! Very nice!

  3. Wonderful report...Thanks for sharing!

  4. Well done - It looks as though you really did it up in grand style.