During early October 1805, the Austrian Army of Germany under Mack concentrated on the city of Ulm. Mack seemed blissfully unaware that the French GrandArmeewas swinging in a great arc behind his position and would soon be able to cut him off from Vienna and pin him against the Danube in and around Ulm. During that week, the Austrians had suffered defeats at Wertingen and Gunzburg, which badly affected the morale of the largely new and untried recruits who made up the bulk of the battalions. Those same battalions had recently been reorganised and internal cohesion was not what it should have been.
Whilst Mack was apparently satisfied with his situation, and content to sit and await the arrival of the Russians, some of his generals were not. They continually pressed him to do something, anything, to counter the French movements. On the evening of the 10th October 1805 an opportunity presented itself to Mack. The French 6th Corps under Ney was the last section of the closing trap, and it found itself split with its 2nd and 3rd Divisions south of the Danube, and its 1st Division with cavalry support and the Corps’s supply trains to the north. Ney wanted to move his entire Corps to the northern bank, but was ordered to leave it as it was by Murat, who was acting as a wing commander. The two men argued about this on the 10th, and almost fought a duel over it, but eventually Murat got his way.
This meant that Ney’s 1st Division under Dupont was isolated and at risk if the Austrians decided to move against it. On the morning of 11th October, that was just what Mack decided to do. Reports had reached him that the French were approaching Ulm from the east, and had taken possession of the villages of Haslach and Jungingen. For once, Austrian intelligence accurately estimated this force as being of less than divisional strength. In fact, it was only about 5,000 men strong. Mack moved out with about 20,000 men to crush this isolated force. However, the Austrians were mostly new recruits, struggling with new regulations, and had been comprehensively beaten by these same French twice in the preceding week. Whilst Mack was confident, his men weren’t.
Mission French: Hold Haslach and contest
Jungingen at the end of the game. Glorious victory if, in addition, two or more Austrian brigades are broken under brigade morale. Austrian: Take and hold both Jungingen and Haslach. Glorious victory if both French infantry brigades are broken under brigade morale.
Deployment Historical deployment is set out on the accompanying map. The French artillery can be placed anywhere within the general deployment area the French player desires. The relative positions of Ferdinand and Schwartzenburg are open to debate, and so can be switched if the players so desire. If non-historical deployment is preferred, then no Austrian units should be deployed more than 45cm in from their table edge. The French can be deployed no further forward than a line level with the western edge of the large wood. Either way, the French should be able to reach Jungingen before the Austrians do.
Special Rules 1. The battle started about 2 p.m.
Given that this is October in Central Europe, darkness will
M I N I AT U R E WA R G A M E S : : I S S U E N U M B E R 3 3 8 : : J U N E 2 0 1 1