Series: Great Campaigns of the American Civil War
Scenario: Harpers Ferry - Crampton's Gap
Participants: Jim "HeavyD", Myself
Time: Friday, May 27th ~ 6.30PM - 8.45PM
The scenario takes place between September 12th through the 15th, 1862. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia is on the move prior to the Battle of Antietam (Sept 17th). The CSA player (HeavyD) is try to take Harpers Ferry with all of Jackson's Corps and some of Longstreets. Jackson's Corps starts out North of Martinsburg while some of Longstreet's Corp begins NE of Harpers Ferry. Stuart has a couple of Cavalry Brigades between Harpers Ferry and the approaching Union forces.
The Union Player starts off with the garrison forces of Martinsburg and Harpers Ferry as well as Franklin's VI Corps of the Army of the Potomac. VI Corps starts a good 20 hexes away from Harpers Ferry with a couple sets of mountains between then, not to mention Stuarts two Cavalry Brigades and 5 Brigades of Longstreet's Corp. The objective for the CSA player is to take Harpers Ferry and Martinsburg and then position divisions and brigades in or next to Sharpsburg which is a few hexes NW of Harpers Ferry. All of the CSA units begin the game at Fatigue level 1.This scenario has been "fixed" and we are using the new version (it, and other errata is located at gcacw.com as well as CSW).
|End of Turn one, near Martinsburg|
|End of Turn one, near Harpers Ferry|
The first turn saw HeavyD take Jackson's Corps to next to Martinsburg, rolling poorly in the process. Thus the entire Corps was at F3 at the end of the turn. I ran that Garrison unit out of there as there was no sense in allowing HeavyD the VP's he would get but destroying the unit. HeavyD then moved Longstreet's Brigades towards the Naval Battery (NE side of Harpers Ferry). I pulled one Brigade out of HF and parked it on the other side of the bridge in case HeavyD was able to push out the one Infantry Brigade I had on that side of the River. I marched Franklin's Corps twice, rolling well each time. HeavyD then moved Stuart down in my path setting up a blocking action in front of me.
Turn two started off with me activating Franklin's Corp and rolling well. Stuart did a Cavalry retreat and due to the retreat table had to fall back towards HF. This would prove disastrous as I got the next activation and again marched Franklin's Corps towards HF. Stuart was again in my path and this time the Cavalry retreat forced him to retreat through my units near HF, eliminating the Brigade in the process. This caught me by surprise as I didn't think the retreat chart was as harsh as this to cavalry doing a cav retreat, but it is (the first 4 hexes HAVE to be further away from the unit causing the retreat. With Stuart out of the way I continued towards HF. I moved next to Semmes Brigade and got a +4 attack, again the retreating Brigade had to move through other Union units thus destroying itself as well.
|Franklin's attack on Semmes' Brigade|
Now the road to HF was open and HeavyD had few options left. He elected to launch an attack on Ford's Brigade in hex 2720 to try and at least throw a ZOC in Franklin's lead Division. The attack went in as a straight up affair and he was unable to force me to retreat. This was the death knell as I would be able to get Franklin's Corps next to the Bridge on my next activation. Jackson had yet to move and thus was still 15-20 hexes away from HF. We decided to call it at this point.
|McLaws Attack on Ford's entrenched Brigade|
I really diced HeavyD in this one. But on the bright side we certainly have a very good understanding of the retreat table and its implications in tight quarters. We plan on playing one more small scenario before we plunge into a Campaign Game.