Monday, November 2, 2009

campaign report - move 9

Campaign map at start of move 10 0800 4 May 1813


Move 1 – 0800-1200 1 May 1813
Prussian and French armies reach their concentration areas

Move 2 – 1200-1600 1 May 1813
The Prussian Army nears the river Saale, and 3 corps secure the bridge at Dessau.
The French Army have reached their concentration areas around Helmstedt.

Move 3 – 1600-2000 1 May 1813
3 Prussian corps crossed the river Saale and entered Dessau.
4 and 13 French corps both try to pass through Wolfsburg, causing a traffic jam and a delay of 24 hours to 13 corps.

Move 4 – 0800-1200 2 May 1813
The Prussians have now crossed the river Saale at Parey in the north and Dessau in the south.
The French traffic jam at Wolfsburg has been sorted out, 13 Polish corps have entered the town and are being sorted out ready to move tomorrow.

Move 5 – 1200-1600 2 May 1813
The Prussians have crossed the river Saale and 2 corps is approaching Magdeburg
The French continue their advance towards Magdeburg.

Move 6 – 1600-2000 2 May 1815
The Prussians have crossed the river Saale and are moving west when they sight the French army approaching them from Seehausen.

Move 7 – 1200-1400 3 May 6 May 1813
1 Prussian and 4 French corps fight the battle of Colbitz
2 Prussian and 5 French corps fight the battle of Seehausen

Move 8 – 1400 -1600 3 May 1813
The French win the battle of Colbitz. 4 French corps enters the town. 1 Prussian corps withdraws towards Parey

Battle of Seehausen continues. 2 Prussian and 5 French corps exchange fire. Marshal Davout and 6 French corps join the battle..

Move 9 – 1600-2000 3 May 1813
Battle of Seehausen continues. 3 Prussian corps joins the battle, just in time to add much needed support to the weary Prussian army

At midnight both commanders in chief give orders to continue the battle the next day.


Battle of Seehausen - summary of Battle

The battle opened with 5 French corps marching north to Halbeck just as 2 Prussian corps approached Seehausen from Magdeburg. The French reacted quickly to the threat, turning from line of march to column of attack along the Halbeck road.

The Prussians used their advantage to move closer to Seehausen as the French redeployed. They sent their cuirassier brigade ahead to threaten the French, and this allowed them to reach the village before the French.

5 French attacked the village, and their dragoon brigade charged the Prussian cavalry. Neither side could gain an advantage, and both the cavalry melee and the skirmish for the village continued for most of the morning.

Just after midday 6 French corps arrived on the Groningen road, which is on the French far right. They sent their cavalry forward to threaten the Purssian left flank, and brought up their infantry in column of march to reach the battle area as quickly as possible.

2 Prussian formed square with their two left hand infantry brigades, but otherwise ignored the French reinforcements. They continued to hold the village and struggle with the French dragoons.

Late afternoon 3 Prussian corps arrived on the Prussian left and moved to take the woods separating them from 6 French corps. 6 French corps immediately turned to face this new threat, and left 5 corps to continue their struggle for the village.

At the same time Marshal Davout, the French CinC, arrived on the battlefield. He rode to join 6 corps and ordered them to advance and engage the Prussian left.

It was late afternoon when the cavalry melee was finally decided in favour of the Prussian cuirassiers. The dragoons routed, but did little damage to their supported. The cuirassiers had taken so many casualties that they had to be taken into reserve, and eventually also routed from the field.

Shortly afterwards the French finally took the village. By now they had inflicted heavy casualties on 2 Prussian corps, who had lost their cavalry and a landwehr infantry brigade. But the struggle continued.

On the opposite flank 6 French corps advanced into the woods, and their cuirassiers charged the Prussian hussars. The hussars broke and ran, leaving the cuirassiers disordered and within canister range of the Prussian gunners. The cuirassiers were soon in rout, and left the infantry in the woods shaken.

As night approached both sides held their ground. It was time to count the casualties.

French casualties
3 dragoons – 5
5 cuirassiers – 3
17 infantry – 2
19 infantry – 1

Prussian casualties
2 cuirassiers – 4
3 hussars – 3
6 infantry – 1
7 infantry – 6

Campaign situation

Both sides have reinforcements ready to join them at daybreak next day.

13 Polish corps is approaching the French left, and will reach the battlefield at 0800 next morning.

The Prussian CinC is about to reach the left flank, where he will join 3 corps at 0800 next morning. At the same time 4 corps will be in position to join the battered 2 corps.

Both CinC will have to decide whether to continue a second day.

Game mechanics

Both sides have effectively lost all of their cavalry. Casualties may seem light, but each one has a minus 1 effect of morale and fighting ability. So 2 casualties means a brigade is very likely to rout as soon as they receive a casualty, or when a friendly brigade within 4” does so.

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