Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Alasdair MacColla, "The Devastator"

MacColla was appointed commander of the Irish Brigade by the Earl of Antrim. He landed the brigade in Scotland in July 1644, and in August the force met Montrose in Atholl where the King's standard was raised marking the start of Montrose's campaign in Scotland.

This rather dandy MacColla is produced by Eureka. He is an exceptionally tall figure, reflecting the description of MacColla in Celtic poetry as being 7 feet tall.

James Graham, Marquis of Montrose

James Graham, the Marquis of Montrose and the King's appointed Lieutenant-General in Scotland from 1644 until 1646.

This excellent figure is from the Old Glory Scottish ECW Personalities pack.

The Fightin' Irish

My first regiment of the rock hard Irish brigade are finally finished. Experienced soldiers and good catholic boys, they formed the solid core of Montrose's motley Royalist army. They are mainly Eureka Miniatures Irish pike and shot, with a few Perry ECW English, and at least one Foundry ECW casualty figure.

They are painted using mainly Foundry paints, with Granite, Quagmire and Slate for the greys, Bay Brown and Peaty Brown for the browns, Drab and Arctic Grey for the unbleached wool trews. Bonnets have been added using green stuff.

The occasional highland targe has been added, using Old Glory Highland shields. The pikes are 80mm long Foundry steel pins.

The flags are printed on paper from homemade Photoshop designs. They were subsequently hand-painted over, and attached to shortened Foundry steel pins.

The bases are 3mm plywood from Litko, with flex-steel base bottoms. The bases are finished using sand glued on wood filler. After painting the bases were flocked with static grass in 2 stages; first green, and then an autumn brown. Small pieces of dark green clump foliage were added, and this were sprinkled with purple flock to represent heather.

This unit represents the Irish that took a forward position on Garlic Hill together with MacColla and his Lifeguard (to follow). These units held off the government army long enough for the the rest of Montrose's surprised army to rally and organise a counter-attack.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Flags for Campbell of Lawers' Regiment

The colours for Campbell of Lawers' Regiment are not well documented. A single colour captured at Dunbar (1650), bearing an older version of the Covenanter inscription, is thought to have been carried by the regiment. The flag is a traditional Scots Government colour with blue field and white saltire. The absence of any additional documented colours from Dunbar is attributed to the fact that this tough regiment retired from the field in good order despite the Scottish defeat.

"Company" Colour


For this project we are providing each regiment with 2 flags. A typical company colour, such as the blue saltire above, and the colonel's colour. The colonel's colour for Campbell of Lawers' regiment is unknown so we have decided to use an unknown colonel's colour, captured at Dunbar (1650), depicting a gold thistle on a white field and the motto "Nemo me impune lacessit", an ancient Scottish motto which translates as "None provoke me unpunished".

"Colonel's" Colour


The flags were created using photoshop. In this case the flag designs were then copied onto foil by hand, and hand-painted. They can also be printed on paper and either used as is or painted over. The level of subsequent hand-painting is down to individual preference and can range from a complete paint-over to some additional minor highlights and shades.

All flags created for this project will be shared on this site. Up next - the Irish.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Finished Campbell of Lawers' Regiment

Raised by Sir Mungo Campell of Lawer’s, in the Strathtay area, for service in Ireland in 1642.   Fought in the Bann campaign and other associated activities of the Army of Ulster throughout 1642.   No direct information on activities throughout 1643, but unit strength had declined from 1100 to 300 by the time the unit embarked for Scotland in 1644.  In early 1644, they operated in association with Lothian’s Regiment in activities against the Marquis’s of Huntly and Montrose.   Lawer’s crossed the border in June and participated in the siege of Newcastle, before being recalled to Scotland in September.  It spent the balance of the year and the following winter based in Inverness where it carried out harrowing activities on royalist lands.
In the spring, they, along with Buchanan’s regiment joined Hurry as he marched from Inverness to meet Montrose at Auldearn.  Lawer’s men formed the centre of the vanguard and at first successfully drove back the Irish from Garlic Hill before fighting got bogged down in Auldearn.  As the line collapsed, the regiment was the focus of little quarter, due to its history in Ireland and it’s Campbell associations.   At the close of battle, Sir Mungo, four of his captains, five of his lieutenants and 50% of the regiment lay slain, their bodies later buried in the churchyard at Cawdor.
Sir Mungo’s son, Sir James Campbell, took command of the regiment and through a series of levy’s in Perthshire recruited it back to some semblance of strength, before it was shipped to Ulster in 1646.  No detail of it’s activity in Ulster is known but by spring 1648 it had once more returned to Scotland.  The regiment officially became part of the kirk party following the Whiggamore Raid.  Through late 1648 and 49, companies were quartered throughout the east and northeast, where they generally made a nuisance of themselves on the local community (indeed, the regiment had a history of fornication, drunkenness and adultery – so the ministers were busy).
In 1650, part of the regiment marched north to join Strachan’s force, and where thus the only regular infantry engaged at Carbisdale. By the summer it was in central Scotland, were it successfully engaged Cromwell’s troops in Holyrood Park before the debacle of Dunbar.  At this battle, the regiment served on the right flank, successfully covering the retreat of the army to it’s own detriment;
“only Lawers, his regiment of highlanders, made good defense , and the chief officer, a Lieutenant Colonel being slain by one of the Generals Sergeants, the Colonel was absent of the name of the Campbells, they stood to push of pike and were all cut in pieces those were all the Foot that engaged”
However, the regiment were forced to retreat when the English horse joined the attack, but even with heavy losses, some made it safely off the field.  The balance of 1650 and early 1651 were spent recruiting, but it did not participate in the 1651 campaign.

Here's some shots of the finished regiment - should worry those papist's.

Standards painted onto foil to get the windy look. Bases from Litko, with woodfiller, local sand textures, base coat, highlights - two flocks and some bushes. If anything, some purple highlights will be placed on the bushes to give that heather look.