A while ago I picked up a book from a local charity shop, Napoleon's Army by Col. HCB Rogers. I've not had the chance to read all of it, but what I have read that is pertinent to the Marengo period is interesting though a little sketchy. There's lots of snippets that do more to spark curiosity about the era rather than actually explain it.
What I did like was some of the internal illustrations. I don't think they were produced for this publication as I'm sure I've seem them elsewhere, and there are no credits or sources. My favourite was this one, described as "Infantry in Italy, 1796".
The background buildings are great and I may attempt building some of those in the future. What I really liked were the haystacks, or more accurately Corn Stooks (though they probably had a different name in Italy. I had thought about making these myself but luckily hadn't got around to it when I spotted that Timecast actually had these in their catalogue, specifically in the General Scenic Items range, and available here. They come in 6mm, 10mm and 15mm scales, and at only £2.50 for a pack of ten (the website says 20 but that's obviously an error) the value of these was great.
I'd ordered a pack of Old Glory figures (sidetracked again - I'll post these later but they are SYW / FIW) and included these corn stooks in the order. That was Friday and on Monday they are through the door. How's that for service?
So how did they look? Absolutely fine.
They were well packaged, both the scenic items and figures in a secure bubble wrapped bag. As usual with Old Glory its a big bag of figures with there guns tangled and flag poles bent, but the price is great and there were no broken figures. A bit of care and all is fine with them.
The stooks themselves came well packaged as you can see, so lets pop them open and have a look...
So ten little resin scenic items. They are in different colours for some reason, the resin has a matt feel to it, and they don't stink like some other resin items do.
There are a few variants here. I was expecting them all to be the same, or maybe two designs, but there are quite a few different models here. I like these. They look like they will paint up rather nicely.
A closer look shows a few bubbles, which some may quibble about but I will easily be able to fill those. The bubble all seem to be at the topmost section of the stooks, but these are overall decent little sculpts.
So how do they compare to the figures? They are slightly small, but then most of my miniatures are on card bases that raise the figures. I may base the stooks to compensate, or maybe that will make them take up too much table space. Once painted I'm sure they'll add a bit of interest to the table.
Here's how they compare to some of my French in a quick attempt to recreat the image from the book. (Which reminds me: I really need to rebase those skirmishers)
Maybe not a greatly interesting blog post, but I sometimes feel little things like these make a tabletop game that little bit more fun.
Unless someone points out that Marengo took place in June and the corn wouldn't be getting harvested yet..... hmmm.
Oh, and here's another interesting image from Napoleon's Army. "Troops of the Army of Italy". I like the little wagon and wish we could get more things like that in 15/18mm.