Thursday, June 20, 2019


A few weeks back, I received a nice email from Ian Bennett of Wargames Illustrated expressing an interest in (and permission to use) an image from my blog of my Hungarian Gunners in an upcoming issue of Wargames Illustrated. Well, dear readers, this has come to pass (and I have received a complimentary issue of said mag: thanks!) as usual, you may clix pix for BIG PIX...
  ...and here they be, on Page 47 of the June Wargames Illustrated!
(posted with permission) 

This would explain the recent spike in followers to this blog--rocketing from 49 to...49 (never mind). Hey, at least the count didn't drop!   Moving on, the above image appears in the midst of an overview piece by Bill Gray on the Hungarian Revolt.  I don't intend to do a point by point analysis of the piece, but I think it gives the impression, intentional or not, of the Hungarian Army of the Revolt as a haphazardly organized, under-equipped, rather irregular affair, and of the conflict as a foregone conclusion. In my study of the conflict, I expected to find these things, but came away instead impressed at the actual structure and operational organization of the Hungarian/Honved forces (check out the link to the OOBs later in this post and draw your own conclusions, though). Having said this, I'd like to add that given the space available and the amount of material to cover, I think the WI piece is just fine.  It's all good information to expand options for playing with toy soldiers. 

I would direct anyone who has stumbled on this blog who is interested in more on the subject to check out my post on the book, Scenes of The Civil War In Hungary; The Personal Adventures of An Austrian Officer for another readily available resource.   As a reference, I would suggest acquiring, if nothing else, the following excellent Ralph Weaver book: 
 Available from Caliver Books

Added to the list of options for playing the Hungarian Revolt mentioned in WI, I would add that Bloody Big Battles has an existing (and growing) list of Hungarian Revolt scenarios. I don't subscribe to Yahoo Groups any longer, but I understand that these are available in their Yahoo Group (and perhaps in a supplement).   I would also suggest that Volley and Bayonet would be a good option, particularly the variant(s) of it (and a few other 19th C systems) that I have posted on my 19th Century Rules/Chocolate Box Wars Page  (note: I'll be posting a new set of Volley and Bayonet 19th C variant reference sheets and notes in July: watch for it!).
 Skirmish during Hungarian Revolution 1848-1849. Public Domain Image

Finally, as a bonus to anyone who still has the stamina to be reading this, I have downloaded the complete list of Nafziger Orders of Battle for the Hungarian Revolt You may want to start by looking over the List Key.  Enjoy!


Sunday, June 16, 2019


One of two new additions--Austrian 1848/mid century Grenzers. 

This post, dear readers, falls into the category of painting new units, but also into the "can't leave well-enough alone" category--otherwise known as the all too common "nobody would know the difference but me, so why am I bothering with this?" category. The answer to the latter being, "But I would know and it would bug me, so I'll go through this to satisfy myself," category...categorically speaking. 

Superficially, I could have done this post as a study of two newly added units to my Hungarian and Austrian mid century/Hungarian Revolt-era lists: one Hungarian and one Imperial--grenzers both. Ironically, this new work comes on the heels of my recent display of the "completed" Hungarian and Austrians (complete until a new thing hews into view, that is).  But there's more to this project than two new units. The genesis of this tinkering came about for three reasons. 1) I wanted to add one more Grenzer to each side 2) It turned out that my figure match was reversed.  I had originally used converted Perry Napoleonic figures for my Hungarian Grenzers and Steve Barber Grenzers for my Hungarians, but my Austrian infantry turned out to be converted Perry British Intervention Force figures and my Hungarians Steve Barber figures. 3) I had done my original Austrian Grenzer in pink facings and my Hungarian in yellow, but later found out that the two Grenzer units that fought with the Hungarians each had pink facings (would anyone but me have known? probably not...). Thus, I used figures from the "other" figure line for the new units and I redid the facings on the completed units to move them "across the line" to the other side. For those who are still reading, you may see the results of this exercise in the following images, which may help to clear up the muddle that I've just tried to explain (as usual, you may clix pix for BIG PIX)...

 The officer is a repurposed Steve Barber 1848 Austrian Officer Advancing.
The now complete Hungarian Grenzer contingent, both units with pink facings. The new unit (#2) is in greatcoats to differentiate it from unit #1 (on the right), which had its yellow distinctions repainted in pink.  I have to say that I'm pleasantly surprised at how the greatcoated unit turned out--it may not be a peacock, but it has an appeal, nevertheless.

Perry Napoleonic Grenzers Skirmishing Converted to Mid-Century Austrians.
The animation of the Perrys tends to make each figure its own project, as opposed to the Steve Barber, which lend themselves to more "assembly line" painting techniques. 
  The complete Austrian Grenzer contingent, with the new unit (#2) on the left joining the original (#1) on the right. I redid unit #1's distinctions from pink to orange  and re-did the pompom in Austrian black and yellow, but I could not bring myself to redo the drum, which I left in the original Hungarian details--let's say it is a trophy.  Although each has its own unique color distinctions, I added a bit more by using Grenzers skirmishing for unit #2 as opposed to the Grenzers casually marching in unit #1. Both have the same command set, from Grenzers marching. 

 The Steve Barber (Hungarian) Grenzers to the Left and the Perry (Austrian) Grenzers to the right.  Each line has its distinctive look.  I can now rest knowing that the figure Feng Shui is  finally in balance.  


Wednesday, June 12, 2019


West, William H. "The most stirring scene ever produced on any stage." Back cover of minstrel program. 1899. Strobridge Litho. Co., Cin'ti & New York. From the Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA (found on 

In this post, dear readers, we meander onto a brief topic that came up in an exchange among comrades in my gaming circle--history nerds that we all are. Whilst sharing a post-meeting meal with the fellows, I for some reason (since forgotten) made reference to a wonderfully (or awfully) captioned picture in a celebratory contemporary picture book I have of the Spanish American War...
 ...above, the source of the image (which shall be found at the conclusion of this post: patience, dear readers), published in 1898 by the Pearson Publishing Company, New York.  In describing the image, the book mentions a very unsplendid aspect of the war, for which we must give it at least some credit...
Willets, Gilson. Fever wards at the division hospital - Jacksonville, Florida. 1898. Black & white photonegative. State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory. Accessed 12 Jun. 2019.

....Specifically, it refers to the losses that the US Army suffered through disease--most of those coming from troops who never even left the country.  Here is how a 2004 history of military medicine in the Spanish American War addresses the topic:  

"108,000 volunteers from various states had been assembled in a handful of national encampments located in Georgia, Florida, Virginia, and Pennsylvania. With some notable exceptions, military officers had very little knowledge of the role of hygiene in the prevention of disease. As a result, the sanitary facilities in the camps rapidly became overwhelmed, and the resultant situation was appalling. Typhoid fever epidemics broke out in all of the encampments. Regiments in these camps suffered 20,738 cases of typhoid fever, which resulted in 1,590 fatalities."
Source: Vincent Cirillo. Bullets and Bacilli: The Spanish-American War and Military Medicine.  2004. Rutgers University Press.: New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA.256 pp. ISBN: 0-8135-3339-2 (hardcover).  Found at: The Journal of Clinical Investigation

And here is how it is covered (sort of) in the Bully 1898 Photographic History of the war:
"AN OFFICER’S TENT. At the close of the war the necessity of mustering out certain regiments and maintaining others created a difficult problem for the consideration of the administration. In most cases the officers were anxious to remain in the service; the men, on the other hand, wanted nothing more than to return to private life. Without attempting to lay responsibility on the shoulders of any one person or any particular department, it must be admitted that the affairs of the army might have been managed better than they were. Particularly was this so in connection with the selection of the sites for camping grounds. Here, indeed, was grave blundering. But though the chosen places were unsanitary, they were in most cases unusually picturesque. Our photograph shows the tent of a captain in the regular army, with the regimental colors in the foreground. No artist could have found a prettier spot, let the doctors say what they may" (page 219).

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