Saturday, 17 January 2009

35th Regiment Indiana Infantry (Ist Irish)




Although the American Civil War (ACW) isn’t one of my main interests I greatly enjoyed playing a game on the ZX Spectrum called ‘North & South’ (1989) in my youth and I thought they’d be relatively easy to paint. These are my first attempt at 25/28mm miniature figures, bought directly from Perry Miniatures. This company seem to held in the highest regard in the wargaming community. The Perry brothers day job is working for Games Workshop; how they find the time to produce so much material is beyond me.

After preparing the figures, which seemed to take weeks as I have an irrational hatred of mould lines (and converted a few) the only thing left was to decide who the miniatures would represent. Before painting commenced I happened to drop into Questing Knight Games shop in Telford. The flag of the 35th Indiana Volunteers ‘1st Irish’ (US59) from GMB Designs caught my eye with its distinctive green Regimental flag. This unique flag was presented to the regiment in December 1861. After a few searches on the internet I found an interesting re-enactment site that revealed the following information.

The 35th Regiment Indiana Infantry were organised on 11th December 1861 and served throughout the American Civil War, being mustered out 23rd October 1865. It was known as the First Irish as it was made up of many Irish-Americans. Of particular interest is the fact that the 35th wore a distinguishing emerald green kepi. This Hoosier Regiment kept this kepi until the end of the war. I realised that this would provide an appealing focal point for my figures.

The 35th served as a veteran regiment under Sherman in the Western theatre. During the Atlanta campaign alone they lost over 100 men and took part a numerous battles throughout the war.

Coincidently a short time afterwards Osprey published Men-at-Arms ‘Irish-American Units in the Civil War’. This book contains a good illustration of a sargeant and the regimental flag. It goes on the highlight that the kepi was decorated with a gold wreath of shamrocks and the numeral ‘1’. This I tried to represent (badly) on the kepi/forage caps (I can never remember which is which).

Another coincidence is that the 35th served alongside the 18th Regiment at the Battle of Stones River (31st Dec. 1862 - 2nd Jan. 1863) and the Battle of Chickamuga (Sept. 19th & 20th 1863). I only mention this because the National & Regiment flags of the 18th Infantry come free (printed on the rule sheet) with the figures. The completed miniatures for the 18th will be the posted soon.

35th Regiment command stand.




35th Regiment unit with modified sargeant figure, note the distinctive green headgear.




Please note that the bases still need to be completed, flocked etc.