Friday, 27 June 2014

American riflemen (3)

Sorry about the further long hiatus on TQ - real life, 2 young children, work, usual reasons etc.  I had a total mojo collapse earlier in the year, but that's resolved now and I'm enjoying painting AWI again.  These figures have been a long time posting, and they are of course "over mountain men" ("OMM") from Bill Nevins' King's Mountain Miniatures ("KMM").  These figures were released towards the end of last year subsequent to KMM's very successful AWI highlander range.  I've been painting lots of the highlanders over the past 12 months, mainly for Bill but latterly also for myself (I found I was getting jealous that I didn't have any of these figures in my own collection!).  You can see some earlier posts on these figures here.  I've recently finished a lot more figures for Bill and a battalion of the 76th Foot for myself and will post on those over the next few days (that's a promise).  However, in the meantime here are my first attempts at the OMM.

I don't know much about these chaps.  I suppose their main claim to AWI fame is the destruction of Major Patrick Ferguson's command at King Mountain on 7 October 1780.  The mountains of which they were "over" were the Appalachians and these men were settlers in the areas to the west of those mountains, in what is now northeastern Tennessee and southwestern Virginia.  These were areas where the Crown had refused to colonise - the Royal Proclamation of 1763 prohibited settlement west of the Appalachians in recognition of the support that the local Indians had given the Crown in the French and Indian War.  That did not deter settlers, who began to crose the Appalachians in the early 1770s and began to create settlements that were essentially illegal.  It seems that in the first instances the settlers purchased lands from the local Indian inhabitants, but then in the way of colonisation those settlements quickly increased in size, to the concern of the locals.  Conflict soon broke out and in 1776 began what is now called the Cherokee-American Wars, a series of struggles that lasted on and off for almost 20 years.  The Cherokee chief at this time was a man called Dragging Canoe, who allied himself with the British during the AWI and appears to have had some role in the capture of Savannah in 1778.

The OMM were natural patriots and throughout the AWI skirmished with British loyalists as well as Cherokee along the Appalachian frontier.  In September 1780 an OMM force of just over 1,000 gathered together in response to a proclamation by Major Ferguson that he would attack their settlements if they did not lay down arms against the Crown. So began a march over the Appalachians that ended with the encirclement and defeat of Ferguson's force of loyalists at the battle of King's Mountain.  Most of Ferguson's force of 1,000 were killed or captured while the OMM suffered only 28 killed and 62 wounded.  The destruction of Ferguson's force led Cornwallis to abandon his advance into North Carolina.

The KMM range has 16 figures in various poses that take separate heads from a vast selection.  I haven't yet counted the number of different heads, but there are about 30 sets of varying headgear.  Those sets include things like jockey caps and dragoon helmets which you wouldn't use for OMM but are instead designed for KMM's forthcoming Continental figures.  So for the OMM you have instead lots of bearded heads with hats, caps, bonnets, bandanas etc which create a very distinct look.  Some heads suit some bodies better than others, so you need to experiment a bit before you find the best fits.  But these are very useful figures than can be adapted for all kinds of things.  I have built a first unit of 12 figures, based in pairs on standard "British Grenadier!" skirmish bases.  As well as using these figures for the OMM themselves, I have in mind a more generic frontier militia unit which I would use for Guilford Courthouse and other southern battles.  I tried to keep the colours fairly muted, although I allowed myself a bit or artistic licence to introduce some colour onto the leggings.        

12 figures.  Painted December 2013 to February 2014.



Paul Forgette said...

Excellent painting, as always.
Welcome back.

Cory said...

Great looking figures! I love the outdoors shots.

Michael Awdry said...

Lovely work, really like the look of these and wonderful staging to boot.

Ubique Matt said...

A welcome return to the best AWI blog on the net.

Bedford said...

Really lovely work Giles!!

Good to see you back in the mood for painting.


Yarkshire Gamer said...

Great to see you back at the coalface Giles. I think everyone has a painting block every now and again, it soon passes. Other peoples blogs keep me going, nice work.

irishhighlander said...

nice, I will have to do some AWI battles now that summer is here

David said...

Not a great fan of the figures myself, but you have done an excellent job on those Giles. Welcome Back too!!!

Simon said...

Great to see you back Giles, as per a past post I am not a great fan of these figures. Not sure about the poses and the separate heads, are I think a weakness. Fantastic painting though as always. Made a couple of. Perry plastic Continentals a while back. Think it's put me multiple part figures :-(
All the best