Sunday, May 17, 2009

Chapter 10: Infantry Exercises

On 17 May 1899/2009 General Pettygree ordered the 1st Sikh Battalion posted at Fort Grant to exercise in preparation for the new campaign season. Click on photos to enlarge them. And now....

The battalion marches in a hollow square. Note the screen in front.

A two rank line of Martini Henry rifles with fixed bayonets is supposed to be enough to stop any foe before it can pierce the thin line. If this is insufficient, the enemy will enter and burst the square from within. Fortunately this is just drill practice.

The battalion suffered casualties on 17 September 1899 at the Battle of Tranjapour. These were replaced during the Winter. (See Chapter 7: The Battle of Tranjapour; posting date 7 December 2009.) The battalion has been reinforced by one extra company. One forms a screen whilst the others form the square. This is a marching square. Therefore, the two companies on the sides are faced in the direction of the march. They can easily turn to face outwards.

As you see here. All closed up now.

Colonel Buckingham next orders the square to form line. The sides wheel outwards and the rear about faces.
Four companies in line. Two companies in reserve. The seventh company is split into two uneven sections screening flanks. Supply has been ordered to the rear.
Closing Notes:
  1. YOU can do this too. Easy.
  2. Consider the new and extra things you can do with battalions close to the size above.
  3. Flags were no longer carried by this time. Never mind that! Thanks to Flag Dude for making one for the battalion.
  4. Miniatures are mostly Peter Gilder Connoisseur Miniatures available from Bicorne in the UK. NCOs are from Old Glory.
  5. Previously the 1st Sikh's had six companies. When I added NCOs from Old Glory the battalion expanded to seven companies of 12 miniatures each. A bugler was also added.
  6. Only 2+ companies were at Tranjapour during the battle. Missing companies arrived the day after the battle with General Pettygree and The Relief Column.