Tuesday, September 23, 2014

150th Anniversary Battle of Atlanta in my words and pics

Sunday afternoon, I died.......
I have been waiting to for this event at Nash Farm, located just south of Atlanta, for the better part of this year. I started reenacting with the 53rd Georgia Infantry this past March. I participated in Little Manassas, Old Clinton War Days, and the 150th Battle of Resaca. In that time I had never "taken a hit" and died on the field until this past Sunday.

My work schedule and the restraints of real life had confined my participation in my new found activity to a minimum of two days on the weekend. I woke up the family at 4 a.m. (aka O' dark stupid.) We finished putting in the car what items we didn't already pack the night before and we hit the road. Two hours later we were at Nash Farms in Hampton Ga getting settled into the camp with the rest of my unit. Before you could say. "Leonidas Polk" I was decked out and ready to go. The company formed up and we went out for a few hours to do battalion maneuvers.  The morning was comfortable, a nice overcast day with a gentle breeze blew across us as we moved to the commands of. "Right Wheel, March," "Forward, march," "Left oblique, march."

All this in preparation for the "Big Show." I admit that I was lost in the euphoria of the moment. All my troubles of the past weeks had faded away. At this moment I was a Confederate soldier training with his unit. After the drill we came back to camp and socialized and caught up on the goings on of company business. We laughed, shared stories of past events and had a general good time. After lunch we formed up and went to our position on the battlefield. We took the trenches on the ridge line that would represent the action at Cheatham's Hill. Our company was in the center of the line. We waited and waited. skirmishers went forward. we waited some more. soon there was heard from our front the sound of random musketry.
The soldiers in our line tensed up. We looked forward searching through the tree lines ahead of us. We were looking for any sign of the dark blue of our ol' foe. The cannons behind us opened up with a loud report. remembering the trick I was taught. "Keep your mouth open and the concussion of the guns won't be so bad." After the barrage it came on our right flank. Then to our left. finally they hit us in the center. We drove them off each time they attacked. The field was littered with the dead. Then it was over. We had won.

Sunday's battle was the last event for the weekend. It also signaled the close of the week of events at Nash Farm. The time came and we formed up. The whole brigade took the field. As we marched down the road I felt somewhat at piece with myself. The sun was high in the sky, not a cloud was present or accounted for. I remember all the colors being vibrant and alive. The grass was green and the different shades of gray uniforms. The crisp sounds of bayonet scabbards clinking against metal cups hanging from haversacks as we marched. In the distance We could hear the fife and drums play. Soon we crossed the final hill and in all our glorious presentation we were in awe at the sight before us. In the distance was a small house on a ridge line. before it was a trench line filled with Federal Blue. to the flanks were batteries of field guns. As we went into line of battle my heart dropped a little. Fate was a cruel mistress indeed. The federal batteries opened up down the line. One gun after another. Our batteries responded in turn. This was the beginning of the action around the Troup-Hunt House Reenactment.

After the right flank advanced and was beaten back the order came for us to advance. I picked a spot way off in the distance to the right of the house and pointed it out to my friend Joel. "The other side of that house is home."
We advanced to the middle of the field. Fired several volleys. fell back. reformed, advanced. and fell back again. The Colonel yelled. "This is the last push. Take heavy casualties on the way boys." We did as ordered. We  broke through the trench line and drove them out and off the hill. Being almost in tears I looked for my fellow Company members. Only five of us remained. The moment had not past, for the sound of that ol' familiar foe was pressing towards us again. The five of us stood by as the men in gray were pushed back from their newly won prize. As the last few past us I gave the order to fire. We did and that was the end. We tried to take flight and catch up with our compatriots but, we were cut down. I fell face forward onto the ground beside one of my fellows. I rolled over onto my back. I grasped at my clothes looking for the wound. Then I shook a bit. and slowly faded into oblivion.

It was at this moment, laying there in the sun on that beautiful clear day,  that I remembered I had a relative die at the siege of Atlanta.  The first time I "died" at a reenactment happened to be here at Atlanta.

At the end of the event. Taps was played. The haunting notes filled the air. When it was complete, the order to "resurrect" was given and we all stood up. our wounds healed, our debts paid, Lost comrades found. enemies were now friends. There were laughter and cheers. hands were shook and the flags flapped in the breeze. Then we ask ourselves. "Did it not seem real, was it not as in the old days?"

Members of the Georgia Volunteer battalion

All quiet on the hill.

The period band "Un-Reconstructed" performed at the Ball Saturday night.

The monument to the soldiers both north and south who fought at Nash Farm.

Drilling a new recruit

Confederate trench line as seen from center to left flank.

The Confederate Right Flank under pressure at Cheatham's Hill reenactment.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Battlefield Modeling on a Budget.

I have been a table top war gamer since 2004. I started out with 15mm Flames of War.
From the beginning we  realized the need for scenery for the table top. Rivers, roads, forests and hills have been utilized for some really amazing and fun scenarios.
Also over time I realized something even more important. None of my models will ever be museum quality nor will my battlefields win any design awards, but I never let it stop me.

The important thing is that you have fun and enjoy doing it. I consider myself an above average novice when it comes to modeling. With this said, I bring to you this article of how to "model on the cheap."

This post is dedicated to all the gamers out there with limited skill and funds, but limitless love for the hobby.

My game mat.

My game mat is a green denim material cut straight off the material rack from Wal-mart.
I folded the edges under and had them sewed to keep the material from unraveling.
It is best to know the measurement of your game table. make sure the game mat has "over hang" off your table.  Over hang can always be folded up and tucked under the mat.


I have taken a few pieces of thick cardboard material and used Elmer's Paper Glue to attach the foam inserts in layers on the board. The foam layers are the backing that has come with most blister packaged models.
These "hills" are now tucked under the game mat to give some detail to the battlefield.
(this is the reason for the game mat being bigger than the table.)

Foam backing used as "hills."

Adding two or more hills under the game mat gives the impression of a "ridge line."

Woods/ Forests

I purchased a few tree packs from my local hobby store. The trees are from "Woodland Scenics" The specialize in rail road scale model products. They work well with table top war games as well.

Next I take some brown cloth material cut to fit a few inches larger than the piece of cardboard.
I take the tree "stands" and glue them to the cardboard in a zig zag pattern.

The support stand from the tree pack sitting on the cardboard base.

Next I used hot glue and leave a fine bead along the edge of the cardboard.
I place the piece of brown clothe over the cardboard.

Add caption

Then using an X-acto knife I cut holes in the material so the tree "stands" poke through.
Then I glue the material around the tree stand sealing it.

When it is time for the battle, I place the woods on the table and put the trees in the stands. Instant forest.
When the battle is done. Take the trees from the stand and store them separately. No more worries about broken trees.

Roads/ Rivers.

I take a piece of brown clothe, measure and mark them in strips at 1 1/2" wide. I cut the strips and use pins to fold 1/4" under on each side so that there is a 1" wide strip of material.
using a sewing machine i sew the folded edges to keep them from unraveling. The same method can be used for streams and rivers of different lengths and widths.

Example of a 2" road used in larger scale war gaming.

Example of a 1" wide road.

Game table is ready, just add Armies.

I would like to take this time to thank my friend Erik Blankenship. After our first deployment
to Iraq, he and I saved each others lives by picking up the hobby of war gaming.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

150th Anniversary Battle of Atlanta

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the Siege of Atlanta. The reenactment will be held this September 19-21 2014 at Nash Farm Battlefield in Hampton Ga.

For more information visit.

All information below comes from the official website.

~The Address is~

                         100 Babbs Mill Rd
                         Hampton, Ga 30228

The reenactment will take place on an actual historic battlefield which was part of one of the largest cavalry raids in Georgia during the war. Also on site is a museum.


Adults $10.00 per day
Children ages 6 to 17 $5.00 per day
Under 6 are free
For ticket information call 770-614-8616 or email ezeckman @bellsouth.net or purchase at the gate.
Gates will open at 9 AM each day.

The band "Un-Reconstructed" will be performing live throughout the event.


Monday, September 15th
Site open to Sutlers beginning at 10:00 a.m.

Tuesday, September 16th 
Site open to Sutlers only.

Wednesday, September 17th
Reenactor registration opens at Noon and closes at midnight.

Thursday, September 18th 
Registration opens at 8:00 a.m. and should remain open all night.
9:30 p.m. - Officers call at the Carriage House

Friday, September 19th 
7:00 a.m. - Reveille
8:00 a.m. - Registration Opens
9:00 a.m. - Arrival of school students who have registered for the School Day
10:00 a.m. - Gates open to the general public with activities all day
6:00 p.m. - Troops form for Battle
6:30 p.m. - Battle of Utoy Creek
11:00 p.m. - All quiet

Saturday September 20th
7:00 a.m. - Reveille and Registration Opens
9:00 a.m. - Gates Open to Public
10:00 a.m. - Cavalry Battle......Kilpatrick's Raid
11:30 a.m. - Ladies Tea in the Activity Barn
1:30 p.m. - Authors meet and Greet (Tentative) in the Activity barn
3:00 p.m. -  Troops form for Battle
3:30 p.m -  Battle of Cheatham's Hill
8:00 p.m. -  Military Ball In the Activity Barn
10:00 p.m. -  Ball Ends
11:00 p.m. -  All Quiet

Sunday September 21st
7:00 a.m. - Reveille
9:00 a.m. -  Gates open to Public
10:00 a.m. - Church Services in both Camps or the Activity Barm
1:30 p.m. -  Troops form for Battle
2:00 p.m. - Battle of Atlanta, Action around the Troup-Hurt House
3:30 p.m. - Camps Close

Cars will be allowed in Camp after 3:30 PM on Sunday. You will be checked for your pass to enter the site if you leave. Thank you for attending the 150th Anniversary Battle. Please have a safe trip home. For those that wish to stay over Sunday night and leave Monday you may do so.

Monday, September 1, 2014

HQ and Supply Wagons

I had completed a few odds and ends pieces in my spare time. Here is a U.S. Headquarters set. I will be using it as an objective. Soon I will make one up for the Confederates as well.
I also included my supply wagons. I did one for Federal and one for Confederate.