Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Crimean Russian Organisation

Following on from my post about Russian Crimean facing colours, I had a few questions that I wanted answered.

The system appeared to show that an infantry brigade contained two Regiments, each of which had 4 Battalions, in other words an 8 Battalion Brigade. Just a tad bigger than their British counterparts.

Therefore a Russian Crimean Infantry 'Division' would have 16  infantry Battalions plus support.
Moreover each Brigade would, on paper, have to be composed of only 2 Regiments or the facing scheme then becomes meaningless.

I found extracts from General Eduard Todleben's Seige of Sebastopol 1854-1855 which appeared to confirm this.

They refer to the centre right flank which in the first line is composed of 'the four battalions' of Grand Duke Michael Regiment with the Regiment of Souzdal alongside.
The second line is composed of the Regiment of Wladimir and the Regiment of Ouglitch with the Don Cossack (cavalry?) and batteries of artillery in support.
To me this looks like a full 2 Brigade Division.

Behind these Todleben refers to the 'Reserve' which is  said to contain the Regiment of Volhynia and 3 Battalions of the Regiment of Minsk (the other batallion is detailed elsewhere). Again this supports the 2 Regiment/ brigade theory.

I have no idea how large a Russian Infantry Battalion was in terms of manpower, but even if it was similar to and not larger than  it's British counterpart it is still a huge number of troops, even allowing for casualties and attrition.

On the painting front the first Regiment has been undercoated and had its first layer of greatcoat added. I have also painted the flesh on the figures and am waiting for a day or so before I start work on the webbing and facings. At his rate I will be on schedule to reach my target of three Regiments by March.


  1. I think your deductions are logical and sound and fit in with what you describe well.
    I dont know much about crimean russians but before that the Napoleonic russians were organised in similar sized Brigades they are very large in numbers of men,

  2. Yes I thought that as well.

    On that basis I was going to have 'large' battalions of 32 figures for the Russians and 24 figure battalions for the British and French. I will probably end up using Black Powder as I can then 'downsize' for the 15mm Sudanese.