American Civil War... "Research Day"

You might remember the American Civil War campaign we fought last year, following the fortunes of the Fourth Texas Infantry.  It used 6mm models, Two Splendid Lines rules, and a considerable amount of dressing up.

Regular readers know that I also do historical re-enactment, mostly British Civil Wars, but last weekend I was invited to an American Civil War reenactment with the 24th Virginia, at Kelham Hall in Newark, UK.  It was run by the excellent ACWS.

Apart from being dashed good fun (as the pictures will attest), it was also a fantastic opportunity to do some 'experimental archeology', and get a snapshot of some truths of battle.  These are all being incorporated into my rules in the next update, and are all borne of experience - some I had already read in books, and were already represented in the rules.  But you don't appreciate some of them until you have a go.  Experiencing a re-enactment might only be a thousandth of what it was like in real life - but it's a step in the right direction.

I seem to recall a Donald Featherstone book form years ago which had some general, bullet-pointed truisms of ACW battle.  They were really useful, but I can't for the life of me remember what it was.

  • Artillery is terrifying up close, even when you know they're trying not to hurt you.
  • Rate of fire really slacks off as the battle goes on and you get tired.
  • Charging is an absolute pain.  Everyone has one good charge in them per battle - after that, I'd call it a 'token jog'.
Anyway, here are some fun pictures and videos of my weekend.



  1. Well done on finding an ACW reenactment group in the UK.

    1. Thanks mate! I'd been to the Kelham Hall event as a 'norm' a few times, but when one of my friends passed a trawl round I couldn't resist.

  2. A friend of mine went there and said how much fun he had. Great to see some pics from the event.



    1. Hi Pete - small world! There is quite a crossover between the wargaming and reenacting community I think. Glad you enjoyed the pictures.

  3. Wow Ed, that looks like a load of fun.

    Expensive hobby, but bloody rewarding no doubt once you are getting into character on the re-enacted battlefield. :)

    1. How horrifying! Just going through my old posts and finding lots of comments to which I never replied!

      Thanks Dai; it was a fantastic event. Costs quite a lot, but most of that kit is borrowed, mostly it’s English Civil War


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