The first stage of my Aspern-Essling set-up featured in Post 60. This was just as much of the battlefield of Aspern-Essling at a scale of 1:2,500 as I could put together with my existing terrain tiles. Since then, I’d painted and modelled a good quantity of terrain and figures. I thought it was now time to bring the figures and the terrain together on the tabletop. One way of doing this, I thought, was by concentrating my efforts on completing one tile at a time – finishing as much as possible of both the terrain tile and the miniatures that would be positioned on it. The plan was just to complete the Essling side of the battlefield, an area of five tiles by five (1m x 1m). I decided to make a start with the tiles at the southern end of the battlefield.

The Essling Grand Plan

Troop dispositions were to be based on the first day of the battle, 21 May, as illustrated in the map of the battle in Ian Castle’s Aspern & Wagram 1809 (see 1809 Reference). I began with five – what I called – coast tiles. That’s to say tiles that could create watersides, whether bank or shore of a lake, sea or wide river. These were already made. They would represent the Stadtler Arm of the Danube south of the village of Essling. However, the design of my existing tiles meant that the river didn’t extend as far north as it should have. I meant to correct this by making sure that an area of scrub classed as bad- going lined the riverbank where the river was at its most northerly. The Stadtler Arm was 130m wide at the crossing point from Lobau Island to the Mühlau salient – at 1:2,500 60mm wide. Further downstream, the channel widened enough to accommodate a number of significant islets. I needed to model a few of these.
POST 145