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"The Black Company of Pioneers" Topic

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Comments or corrections?

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP01 Aug 2013 2:46 p.m. PST

Nice work here.



From here

Anyone had and wargame with them?


FusilierDan01 Aug 2013 5:19 p.m. PST

That painting style works well with those figures.

historygamer01 Aug 2013 5:31 p.m. PST

For some reason, I want to say their coats should be white.

epturner Supporting Member of TMP01 Aug 2013 5:38 p.m. PST

I think the Osprey on the Loyalists was showing them in green jackets or sleeved waistcoats.

Either way, I would defer to anything Todd Braisted has handy or if SM has an opinion.

The fact they are conversions, though, makes them even more interesting.


historygamer01 Aug 2013 5:48 p.m. PST

I think they were part of the company of Scouts, Guides, and Pioneers.

Here is a site, but not reference on the uniform:


historygamer01 Aug 2013 5:51 p.m. PST

I know McGuire talks about them in volume 1 on his Philly campaign. I do not believe it was an all black unit. In fact, I believe they massed the pioneers from all the units under this group as well as freed slaves (this is where Dunmore's Loyal Ethiopian regiment went)

(Stolen Name)01 Aug 2013 6:14 p.m. PST

Nice houses

Supercilius Maximus02 Aug 2013 12:41 a.m. PST

Nothing to add beyond what's already been posted. The site run by Todd Braistead would be my first stop for anything Loyalist/Provincial:-


unfashionabledc02 Aug 2013 12:56 a.m. PST

There's a very curious statement on that site re black loyalists:

There was but one Provincial regiment in which their service was permitted, that of course being the Black Pioneers. Sir William HOWE banned Black and Mulatto soldiers in any Provincial regiment under his command, ordering the discharge of any who had previously enlisted.

I'm not familiar with that Howe order, but we all know that many (i suspect most) loyalist units included black members, so it was clearly ignored or countermanded subsequently.


Very nice work.

Supercilius Maximus03 Aug 2013 4:37 a.m. PST


Remember that General Howe and his brother were jointly tasked with both prosecuting the war AND seeking some sort of peaceful settlement and return to the "status quo ante bellum". He may well have reasoned that the employment of black troops in combat could be seen as un-necessarily provocative by both the enemy and the Whigs back home, and could also have impacted on white Loyalists in terms of being offered quarter in battle, or treatment as PoWs.

Once Howe departed in early 1778 and the concurrent peace mission failed, the gloves came off in many respects and Clinton was forced to make more use of non-Regular troops (especially once half his Regular infantry departed for the Caribbean). By the time he issued the Phillipsburg Proclamation, peace options had shrunk to almost nothing and hence black Loyalists were seen as a much more potent and therefore useable resource.

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP03 Aug 2013 10:38 p.m. PST

Glad you had enjoy it my friend.


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