Sunday, 24 March 2019

Albacete Campaign – Set Up

Campaign Map on 7 September 1813
This map shows the location of each corps and independent brigade on the evening before the campaign starts.   It also shows the supply depots for each army.

There are four corps in the Spanish field army
In addition there are nine militia brigades, one for each town

The French also have four corps

Both armies start the campaign at full strength
Each French corps has four days supplies
Each Spanish corps has three days supplies

The initiative to start the campaign lies with the French
The Spanish cannot retreat and concentrate until the French start their attack

Fifth French Army
The French have three corps
Each has 4 infantry, 1 cavalry and 1 artillery brigade

In addition there is a reserve corps of 4 infantry brigades
These will supply the garrisons of captures towns and protect lines of supply

The total field army is 16 infantry, 3 cavalry and 3 artillery brigades

Spanish Army
The Spanish have four corps
Two have 4 infantry, 1 cavalry and 1 artillery brigade
Two have 3 infantry and 1 artillery brigade

The nine militia brigades form the garrison of each of the nine towns
They can only leave the town when it is occupied by the French
They then become a guerrilla brigade
They must still operate around their original town

The Spanish have 14 infantry, 9 militia, 2 cavalry and 4 artillery brigades

Campaign Notes

The French army has been reduced to three full corps and one reserve corps
The reserve corps has four infantry brigades, but no cavalry and no artillery
Their purpose is to provide garrisons for four French depots
If more depots are required one of the corps must detach an infantry brigade as garrison

The aim is to reduce the fighting ability of the French army.

They have the element of surprise at the start of the campaign
They must take advantage of this by hitting the forward Spanish corps hard
It is important that they badly damage at least two of the four Spanish corps
It is also important that they do not suffer too many casualties themselves

The French have less infantry and artillery brigades than the Spanish
Their only advantage is in cavalry.
They must try to avoid either cavalry or artillery casualties in the early battles

French and Spanish gunners are both average quality
French cavalry are average, Spanish cavalry are poor
French infantry is slightly better than the Spanish regular infantry

Supplies will be a particular problem in this campaign
Each depot will collect sufficient supplies each day to feed one corps for one day
To resupply the corps must be within three squares and not move that day

The further the French advance the more difficult their supply problems become
Their original depots will soon be too far away to resupply the advancing corps
To establish a depot in a captured town the corps must provide a garrison
This must be a full strength infantry brigade

As each town is captured its Spanish militia garrison become a guerrilla brigade
Each can attack any isolated French garrison or supply column
To count as support a French corps must be within one square of the town