Part 1 of the game ended with the union commander wringing his hands and wanting to get them around the throat of the staff officer who’d managed to lose his artillery support. By some miracle (well you could say that throwing a six comes close!) the Union artillery arrives behind Baxter’s brigade and the Union commander expends as many points as possible to get these into the fight. Its point of arrival was again determined by the throw of a dice
On the Confederate side it seems that Benning’s brigade is finally up but with a 6 thrown it arrives on the left side of the Confederate table edge. That’s reasonably handy though the middle might have been a more optimum arrival point. At least here on the left it can threaten the flank of the Iron Brigade which is hesitating this turn.
On the Union left flank Paul’s brigade has taken a while to get into battle line and an unsupported charge is considered and then decided against. Meanwhile Anderson is more bold and orders the 9th Georgia to charge the cavalry in the farmstead. The 3rd Indiana is supported by the 12th Illinois but both are classed as green troops
The charge results in a drawn result and so a melee ensues. With 11 dice vs 8 the Rebel foot cause 7 casualties but only take 3 and so whip the Union troopers who fall back.
At the same time the 7th Georgia charge the troopers of the 8th NY who have lost their fire discipline and cause no casualties to the attackers in the charge and as a consequence 3 of the 4 cavalry regiments in the brigade are whipped and mean that the brigade must take a falter test and fall back
As they do so Paul’s infantry brigade advance through them but are met by a hail of fire from the Confederate artillery with the 16th Memphis taking 5 casualties though being good steady regulars they pass the test to see the Elephant and carry on forward.
Meanwhile on the Confederate left flank the artillery fire is probably heavier and more accurate despite being at long range. This causes casualties in the 2nd Wisconsin and the 24th Michigan. The biggest problems is the death of the colonel of the 2nd Wisconsin who immediately retire as a result. This leaves the 6th and 7th Wisconsin as the only formed regiments in the brigade
Buford’s cavalry and the Iron Brigade both pass a morale test and spend the turn forming up. A throw of 6 by a commanding general means that a new brigade will arrive on the field though goodness knows where – that’s at the mercy of the dice.
As it happens the dice throws seem to be favouring the Union side as they win the initiative again for the 6th consecutive time.
In the centre Cutler is trying to make forward progress and though the 7th Indiana charge the 4th Texas they get unformed crossing a rail fence and then take a whopping 7 casualties ( a throw of 12 results in 5 casualties and another 2 from the extra combat dice). Hardly a surprise then that they are also whipped.
In summary then, though the Union rt flank is not looking good, there is an opportunity in the centre for the Brigades of Cutler and Baxter to punch a hole between Anderson and the Texas brigade as the Rebel line is very weak here. On the Union left it’s worrying that Paul’s brigade is hesitating under the sights of the Confederate artillery sights.A fire fight between the 9th Georgia and the 104th NY leave the latter whipped.
Finally the Rebels win the initiative and once brigade morale is checked it still sees Paul’s brigade quaking, hesitant and immobile under the artillery fire.
There is however light in the Confederate centre where the 83rd NY are pushing through the gap between Anderson and the Texas brigade. The confederate artillery attempts top break up this incursion and 3 batteries fire at long range though only cause minimal casualties.
The Iron Brigade on the Union right flank will need all its mettle now as its being pressed by both Benning’s and Law’s brigades and attempts to step back to realign
Meanwhile Anderson and Paul’s brigades settle down to a firefight but poor throws means that the Union troops seem to be losing their fire discipline all along the line. At last though the Union artillery has some success against the Confederate artillery on the centre hill when it engages it at long range
Again there are no hesitating brigades on either side and having failed to do much damage to the advancing Union troops in the centre the confederate artillery resume the bombardment of Paul’s brigade with devastating effect on the 13th Massachusetts and 94th NY. The pressure is mounting on Paul as is the pressure on the Rebel side because of in the gap in the centre of the Confederate line
This turn sees the arrival of reinforcements with sixes thrown on both sides. Pickett is seems is here or at least Garnet’s brigade is, though it arrives on the left not in the centre where it is most needed.
Similarly on the Union side the 1st Brigade of the 3rd Division under Doubleday arrive, again in the centre though its obvious these must head off to the Union Rt flank to support the iron Brigade as quick as they can.
It is now critical in the Confederate Centre where Hood’s brigade is hesitating and Baxter is pushing his brigade through the widening gap.
On the Union left Paul is desperately trying to hurl Anderson back by charging the 9th Georgia with the 13th Massachusetts . Artllery support fire fails but the union attackers take 4 casualties in the charge and somehow despite having accumulated 10 figure casaualties the 9th Georgia hold on to the farmstead.
Meanwhile the 83rd NY belie their green status and hurl back the 59th Georgia and the gap between Anderson and the Texans is now a chasm! Finally it looks like a Union breakthrough as the confederate centre seems to be folding
Mind, its not all looking good on the Union side, on the beleaguered right Benning and Law and overwhelming the Iron Brigade. The 20th Georgia charge the 6th Wisconsin and the 15th Alabama hurl themselves at the casualty torn 24th Michigan
Trouble on the Union rt flank as the 24th Michigan rout and the 7th Wisconsin get whipped.
If that’s not bad enough on the Union left the 13th Massachusetts are again under fire and have taken too many casualties now and disperse. The end result is that at the end of the turn the Union have 2 faltering brigades, Paul on the left and the Iron Brigade on the right. Cutler’s brigade does not seem able to make headway against the Texans and is hesitating
Baxter has pushed into the gap and seems set to blow the Confederate centre wide open his green troops of the 97th NY fails a morale test and heads backwards
Disaster for the Union side..
While on the right somehow the Iron Brigade rallies surely its only a matter of time particularly as Doubleday’s relieving troops seem bewildered, hesitate and do not move and do not seem able to help relieve the pressure that the brigade is under.
Even worse Paul’s brigade retires being catawamptiously chewed up with 2 of its 5 regiments dispersed and the others battered.
The Union cavalry, out of the fight for some time and held back for such a catastrophe are themselves badly mauled and fail to advance preferring to remain where the are.
What of Baxter who was about to tear through the centre- a terrible calamity now ensues as without the support of either Paul on his left or Cutler hesitating on his right, finds himself now trapped between Anderson and the Texans
Meanwhile Garnet is marching at the double to fill the hole in the line that seemed so promising……
No doubt the Joint Committee on the conduct of the war in Washington will get to hear of this and someone will pay dearly for this fiasco…………..