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Thread: "street Firing" - How to do street fighting by the book.

  1. #1

    USA Sergeant

    thomas aagaard's Avatar
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    "street Firing" - How to do street fighting by the book.

    In The US infantry tactics from 1861. (Hardee's 1855 book with a new front page and both the manual arms for muskets and rifles) there is at the end an interesting "Lesson"

    It describe the orders and procedure for how to do "Street Firing."

    I got no evidence that is was actually used during the civil war... But with this game having a map with combat in Harper's Ferry it might be relevant to use there.
    (obviusly Fredricksburg or the 1st day at Gettysburg are two times where it might have been used.)


    LESSON VIII.
    STREET FIRING
    717. Street firing is the method of firing adapted to defend or clear a street, lane, or narrow pass, in the execution of which the company or platoon must be formed according to the width of the place, leaving sufficient space on the flanks for the platoons to file successively to the rear.
    718. When the column has arrived at the place where the firing is to commence, the commanding officer will give the command:
    1. Column - HALT. 2. Prepare for Street Firing.
    719. At this command, all the captains will pass by the right flank to the rear of their companies, covering the centre. The colonel next commands:
    Commence - FIRING.
    720. The captain of the first company will promptly command:
    1. First company. 2. Ready. 3. Aim. 4. FIRE.
    5. Recover - ARMS. 6. Outward - FACE. 7. MARCH.
    721. The first platoon faces to the right, the second to the left; the first platoon conducted by the captain, the second by the first lieutenant, will file right and left around the flanks towards the rear, halt on the flanks opposite the centre of the column, re-load, and as soon as the rear of the column has passed the platoons, the captain will command:
    1. Platoons. 2. Right and Left Face. 3. MARCH.
    722. At which command, the first platoon faces to the left, and files left; and the second to the right, and files right; and unite in rear of the column. At the instant the soldiers of the first company recover their arms after firing, the captain of the second will order:
    1. Second Company. 2. Ready.
    723. The second company will wait in that position until the front is cleared by the first company, when the captain will cause it to advance twice its front (followed by all the companies in the rear), and fire, file down the ranks in the same order as prescribed for the first company.
    724. Firing in retreat is conducted on the same principles as on the advance, except that the companies fire without advancing, on the front being cleared by the former company; and, instead of halting on the flanks, the platoons will pass immediately to the rear of the column, counter-march, form, and re-load. The same principles will be observed in column of platoons as column of company.

    And you can read the rest here:
    https://books.google.dk/books?id=3kA...street&f=false

    At the end it got an interesting commend about how one can use use "the mounted howitzer" to help limited damage to property.... when suppressing riots and insurrections.

    The text, originally written by the french army, is clearly made with riots in Paris in mind.
    (The population of Paris revolted in 1787, 1830, 1848 and 1871... and likely in other cases as well. So it makes sense that the french army wanted a procedure for it... and one that the officers and men should know.)
    Thomas Bernstorff Aagaard

  2. #2

    CSA Major

    Eddy Rich's Avatar
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    Making an instructional video using the Harper's Ferry map would be quite an interesting task.

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    USA Brigadier General

    Maximus Decimus Meridius's Avatar
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    wow sounds fancy.

    would like to be part of a video production of that
    http://www.warofrightsforum.com/image.php?type=sigpic&userid=522&dateline=14500460  02


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    USA General of the Army

    A. P. Hill's Avatar
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    Too bad the Federal Army didn't abide by these rule and regulations during the Battle of Fredericksburg, or Atlanta, or Columbia.

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    USA 1st Lieutenant

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    Quote Originally Posted by A. P. Hill View Post
    Too bad the Federal Army didn't abide by these rule and regulations during the Battle of Atlanta.
    No, they did. See the part where it says Ready, Aim, Fire?
    Best,
    Dman979

  6. #6

    USA Brigadier General

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    But the said fire was by the Confederates, so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
    First Sergeant Joseph P. Brevett of Company B, 2nd Maryland Infantry

    We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
    For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
    Shall be my brother; be he ne’er so vile,
    This day shall gentle his condition;- William Shakespeare, Henry V

    A Good Resource for The Maryland Campaign

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    USA 1st Lieutenant

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    Quote Originally Posted by JaegerCoyote View Post
    But the said fire was by the Confederates, so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
    Doesn't matter;had fire anyway.

    Best,
    Dman979

  8. #8

    USA General of the Army

    Oleander's Avatar
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    I've done this before with the unit I was with. It is a very interesting tactic, we had an artillery piece pulled by prolong with us as well. So, after the fifth company would fire, the piece would get it's turn. Very similar to Napoleon's Attack Column or the Greek/Roman phalanx with the advantage of always having a fresh line ready to fire while continuing to move the line forward.

  9. #9

    USA Sergeant

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    Quote Originally Posted by Oleander View Post
    I've done this before with the unit I was with. It is a very interesting tactic, we had an artillery piece pulled by prolong with us as well
    A british period drill book, include explanations on how you do it with a cannon or cavalry also.
    (another sign that this was intended more for suppressing riots, than attacking well armed soldiers)
    Thomas Bernstorff Aagaard

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