The best infantry of the American War of Independence

Discussion in 'Polls' started by Soren, Jul 23, 2008.

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The best infantry of the American War of Independence

  1. The British Redcoats

    2 vote(s)
    33.3%
  2. The Hessian conscripts

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. The French conscripts

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. The Prussian conscripts

    3 vote(s)
    50.0%
  5. The American Regulars

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  6. The native americans (Either side [Which tribe ?])

    1 vote(s)
    16.7%
  7. The Dutch conscripts

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  8. The American Millitia

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  9. The Spanish conscripts

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    So which was it in your opinion ?

    Remember, reason your choice!
     
  2. pbfoot

    pbfoot Active Member

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    Butlers Rangers now known as the Lincoln and Welland Regiment
    They were accused of participating in — or at least failing to prevent — the Wyoming Valley massacre of July 1778 and the Cherry Valley massacre of November 1778 of white settlers (including some Loyalists) by Joseph Brant's Iroquois. These actions earned the Rangers a reputation for exceptional savagery. They fought principally in western New York and Pennsylvania, but ranged as far west as Ohio and Michigan and as far south as Virginia.
    And included my gggg Grandfather
     
  3. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    Does that make them the best in your opinion ?

    IMO the British redcoats and the Prussian Jägers were the best trained.

    In terms of discipline however the Redcoats were supreme, and as far as I can recall they were regarded as the best infantry on the planet back in the 18th century.
     
  4. claidemore

    claidemore Member

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    Ditto on Butlers Rangers.
    Closest they came to actually losing a fight was delaying actions against Sullivan. Victories include, Oriskany, Wyoming, Sandusky, Blue Licks and Wheeling.

    Cherry Valley was their biggest black eye, Cpt. Walter Butler was blamed for the killing of about 30 civilians, including women and children, but the killings were actually done by Seneca warriors under Cornplanter. Brant (a Mohawk) was ostensibly in command of the native troops, but really only held sway over his own outfit, Brants Volunteers (basically a rough guerilla unit). Brant and Butler did not get along and neither had much control over the Senecas. It was also Seneca warriors who were accused of atrocities the year before at Wyoming PA. What I find ironic about this incident, is that the fighting men of Cherry Valley holed up in the stockade, leaving the women and children outside to the mercies of the Senecas.

    About 800 men served with Butlers Rangers, nearly all of them Loyalists whose land and possessions had been confiscated, some of them had been imprisoned, tarred and feathered, etc.
    Re-enactors in both Canada and the USA have formed Butlers Ranger units because of their enviable record and reputation.

    BTW, as a Provincial Corps, they wore green uniforms, not red, even though they were British troops. It's surprising how many British units did not wear red.
     
  5. Kurfürst

    Kurfürst Banned

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    Not on this side on the planet, but I understand it was a bit of an American perspective, and I am inclined to believe that this impression was based on the fact that regular, 'drilled' European line infantry faced for some time the irregular American units, who did not have yet the experience, the traning, and the tradition the warfare of those centuries required. I think this was well illustrated in that brief battle scene in Mel Gibson's otherwise sucky AWoI movie.

    Battles and armies were rather mechanical in the era, irregulars would find it hard to match regulars at their own game. Hence regulars developed a scary reputation, and for the same reason, I find it hard to make comparison between armies of the era - they were all too similiar, the only real difference was the level of 'drill' and discipline, and the difference in that was rather between individual regiments, even within the same army, than between armies of different countries. Uniformization of training, and uniform was only true up to regiment level IMHO. AFAIK even during the American Civil War, units would have different types of muskets etc, no single 'service rifle' for the entire army was introduced, but I can be wrong in that.
     
  6. timshatz

    timshatz Active Member

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    Decent post Kurfurst. Covers a lot of ground.
     
  7. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    The British Redcoats were armed mostly with the Brown Bess, the rest (Which wasn't a lot) with the Baker rifle, but these were the few elites.

    I think what made the Redcoats so good actually was the uniform tough training they recieved compared to other armies of the time (Except a few in Europe perhaps).

    [​IMG]
     
  8. claidemore

    claidemore Member

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    Hi Soren: Actually the Baker rifle is from a later era, 1800-1830. The only rifle used by British troops in North America, (other than a few "Pennsylvania types" used by Butlers Rangers or Brants Volunteers), was the Fergusson rifle. It was used by one unit for a very short time.

    British soldiers were armed with either the Short Land Pattern musket, or Long Land Pattern.
     
  9. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    Aah yes, the Ferguson rifle, my mistake.

    Only the elites carried this rifle. Sadly I don't have a picture of them. Anyone ?

    The rest of the British troops, which was like 80-90%, mainly carried the Brown Bess (Which is the Land Pattern Flintlock Musket).
     
  10. claidemore

    claidemore Member

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    A picture of Fergosons rifle corps? or the rifle?

    All I know about his rifle corps was that it was 100 men, they had green uniforms, and were assigned to the Queens Rangers. Can't find an official name for them.

    here's the rifle. Stole the pic fair and square from our favorite reference source. wiki. lol
     

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  11. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    I was thinking of the men, but a complete picture of the rifle would be good as-well.

    Also AFAIK Ferguson's rifle corps wasn't the only British riflemen, there were a good deal of redcoats with great marksmanship who were provisioned with the rifle.
     
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