Thursday, September 8, 2011

A Bookstore, a Battlefield, and a Wedding

     My best friend Steven honored me last Saturday to stand as best man in his wedding. This was a great opportunity not just to see each other again but also get in some great talks on gaming, history and painting. Being the nerds that we are, we decided the best way to have a bachelor's party was not to hang out at a strip club or, getting drunk, but to visit a bookstore and a battlefield! Seeing as he lives on the east coast and in the heart of it all, we had to make good the opportunity.

     We made plans to pay a visit to On Military Matters in Hopewell, New Jersey which proved to be awesome. The bookstore was literally mind-numbing. There was so much goodness on the shelves [and so many of them] that I really had trouble taking it all in. The owner was also a very pleasant Joe, which makes me quite happy. I am not a rich guy and I vote with my dollars, he will get more of my dollars! :-) Steven was in the mood to go all out on his purchases knowing that his purse strings would soon be controlled by a non-gamer [the new Mrs.]. I picked up a copy of General de Brigade Deluxe Edition and was gifted a copy of American War of Independence Scenarios 3 along with The 1776-1777 Northern Campaign of the American War for Independence and Their Sequel: Contemporary Maps of Mainly German Origin.

     The next phase of the bachelor party was to travel nine miles down the road to the Princeton Battlefield Park. We chose Princeton because of its close proximity thus allowing us time to head back home and grab a good dinner [roast pork and broccoli rabe]. Coming from the West Coast and having spent most of my adult life in the Midwest, I was surprised by the closeness of all of the historic locations. I am used to having to drive for hours on end to get anywhere.

     Well, the battlefield was simply great. The Clarke House Museum was open and the tour guide most informative. The house has been added on to since the AWI but the original portions were easy to identify. The house interior has been restored to its original appearance with the addition containing the museum displays. The grounds of the park represent about one-third of the original battlefield and are well maintained. There are a handful of markers throughout which while are informative unfortunately don't offer enough detail for the wargamer in me.

The Clarke House [post-war construction is the left half].

The view across the field from the Patriot positions [great location for artillery on high ground!].

     With all of the camaraderie and the battlefield visit, the day was a great success and one to be remembered for always. The last great news came in the evening when Steven and I laid out the framework for a collaborative project. Since we live too far away to visit regularly, we decided to create a blog and a wargames project to give us a unifying direction and a means of closing the distance.

     I am pleased to announce A Bit of Colored Ribbon. The goal is discuss our ideas on rules, figures, and research to wargame the Napoleonic era. This is definitely new turf for me, and a genre that I have wanted to jump into for far too long. Please stop by and sign on to follow if you'd like. I will continue to post here as well on my AWI project so never fear. I apologize for the posts being far too sparse, but school has just been a bear this semester and I am still a full time Soldier. :-/


  1. Now that was a good day/batchelor party but could have done with strippers but that's just me.

  2. Sounds a different kind of bachelor party, but a very interesting one, I'd go along with TAL above, but I suppose there aren't that many strippers at Princeton battle field!!

  3. Thanks for dropping by guys. :-) Hopefully next trip out I can make it to Valley Forge and Monmouth. They are both just 20 and 40 minutes drives!

  4. What a terrific time it was! I enthusiastically recommend the Princeton battlefield to anyone traveling through New Jersey. Like Dave, I will continue to purchase wargame rules and research products through OMM. They have almost everything you could possibly want, and if they don't, I have no doubt they can get it! It was great seeing my buddy Dave and walking the ground of a very dramatic AWI battle.
    (Strippers would only have been appropriate if we could find them in 17th Foot uniforms...)