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Games & Diversions
Mar 11, '21

Games & Diversions


“I have had many anxious thoughts dear Evy about Baillie's lonely condition and his unsettled frame of mind, he is at times painfully low spirited and again with young people in the house he forgets it all, with music and games to divert his mind.”

Captain John McIntosh Kell from Sister Evy; Sunnyside, August 6, 1876


I used to walk home from school with a girl called Ruth Offerman, who was slightly older than me, and her young sister Rachel Offerman, who I ended up teaching later on in my first teaching post. Their father was a doctor and I used to go up to the surgery and see him, so walking home with his two daughters was quite a normal thing to do from Junior School. I was only a little lad, about 10 years old. They lived off St James‟s Avenue in Ramsgate, a more select area than where I lived at 14 Lorina Road just off Whitehall Road, Ramsgate, Kent.

Incidentally I can not help noticing how Lorina Road rhymes with Laurel Grove, Baillie's home in Darien, Georgia. Constant reiteration makes the point - coincidence? Whitehall could easily be a description of Sallie's Big House at South End Sapelo Island, just a thought!

My good friend David Ellingworth lived in Whitehall Farm House just across the road, a big lovely house, with a big dog called Prince. I had many adventures with Dave. He also had three cousins, Gary, Pete-ie and Stevie, who were all Americans with their short crew cuts and I loved them because of the American connection I guess. I always had a thing about America. We used to play board games and they had this marvellous game called Railroader, because I like railroads as well as you now know. There was also a game called Buccaneer.

The American's had much more imaginative and innovative board games than us British at the time, such fantastic board games we used to play as Dogfight and Broadside. They were so lucky because they had PX, the US equivalent to our NAAFI and they could get access to all sorts of American cool stuff.

Meaning of Lorina:

Lorina means “from Laurentum” (an ancient Italian city) and “laurel” (from Latin “laurus”).

Alexander Baillie Kell (1was born at Laurel Grove, Darien, Georgia.


The Game

Dogfight is one of the American Heritage games in the "Command decision" series of wargames published by Milton Bradley circa 1961-65. Definitely not for the hardcore wargamer, Dogfight is a light version of WWI air combat. The Germans and Americans each get 6 biplanes divided into 2 squadrons of 3 planes each. Each squadron gets a hand of combat maneuver cards and players move one plane from each squadron engaging and evading each other. For each plane shot down you receive an ace token that entitles you to hold a larger hand of cards. Anti-Aircraft guns guard each home squadron and the lucky flyer has the opportunity to strafe the enemies planes on the ground. A great introductory wargame with easy to learn rules.


The Game

Broadside is an American Heritage game from the "Command Decision" series published by Milton Bradley circa 1962. Players take turns maneuvering their frigates and other ships to gain position so as to fire their cannons and destroy the masts on the enemy ships. Not for hardcore gamers, Broadside is an introductory wargame of early naval combat on the high seas. Some ports are guarded by land based cannons and players risk losing ships by straying too close. Rules are easy to learn and like "Dogfight" the game includes some great plastic miniatures to play with.


The Game

A race, in the wild west, to pioneer the first railroad from Junction City to Buffalo Creek - using scale model rails and trains.

All the thrills and spills of the romantic west plus a continuing struggle to sabotage each others track !


The Game

The idea of the game is to collect treasure to a total value of 20 points. A player may obtain treasure by three methods:

1) Sailing to Treasure Island and turning up Chance cards.

2) Sailing to other ports and trading.

3) By attacking other ships at sea.

A notable feature of this game are the very nice treasure pieces. The diamonds, rubies and pearls look like small jewels. The way cards work for ship movement and combat is a very clever mechanic, years ahead of its time.


Mar 11, '21
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