Wednesday, March 12, 2014

March 12, 1864 – Red River Campaign: Disaster in the Making

This day 150 years ago in Rebel Raiders’ History

-Dedicated to Civil War episodes, battles, people and ships that also appear in my game, GMT’s Rebel Raiders on the High Seas.

March 12, 1864Red River Campaign: Disaster in the Making

Historical Event:  On March 12, 1864 a score of Union ironclads and gunboats began what would become an ill-fated campaign on Louisiana’s Red River.  Sailing in support of the invading army of General Nathaniel Banks, the fleet would eventually become trapped as water levels fell and Confederate resistance under Kirby Smith rose.  Only by dint of an engineering miracle that included the building of a dam would the fleet be saved.

Additional Event:  On this date in 1864 two blockade runners lowered their colors.   The sloop Persis surrendered to USS Massachusetts in Wassaw Sound, Georgia and the schooner Marion was captured by USS Arostook near Velasco, Texas.

Game Connection:  In Rebel Raiders on the High Seas, Blockade Runners like the Persis and Marion play a vital role in bringing in cargo to keep the South in the war.  To stop them the Union player deploys screw sloops, like the USS Massachusetts and gunboats, like the USS Arostook.  The sloops tend to stay offshore in the outer ring, while the gunboats patrol the blockade stations directly opposite the key Confederate ports.    While the above-named ships themselves are represented by generic ship counters of their type, many of their sister ships appear as named counters and on corresponding cards in Rebel Raiders on the High Seas.

The Red River campaign is represented by a space on the map and a card played by the Confederates (CSN Card 76 – Red River Fiasco).  This is a design choice because few Union players would otherwise voluntarily commit such large forces, including their precious ironclads, to the complicated and highly problematic scheme concocted by Union General Henry Halleck.

No comments:

Post a Comment