Samuelson's Slaughterers was one of several Age of War-era mercenary units hired by the Magistracy Armed Forces as part of a crash military buildup in the years immediately before the Reunification War. The mercenary trade fluctuated heavily in the years around the birth of the Star League, with the peacekeeping efforts of the Terran Hegemony drastically reducing the market for mercenaries. The mass demobilization of House forces in the wake of the formation of the Star League led to a mercenary market glut of former House troops. The Magestrix of the Magistracy of Canopus at the time, Crystalla Centrella, knew that war between the Star League and the Magistracy was inevitable; as a part of her efforts to increase the strength of the MAF, Centrella hired half a dozen mercenary units, including Samuelson's Slaughterers.
When the phony war became a real war in 2577, Samuelson's Slaughterers were acting as garrison for the Magistracy world of Vakarel; as a part of the elaborate shell game played by the commander of the MAF, Colonel Adam Buquoy, Samuelson's Slaughterers were moved between worlds several times during the war, deployments intended to keep the SLDF task force guessing as to where MAF units were. Samuelson's Slaughterers would garrison several worlds during the war, including Gallis, Megarez, and the Navy supply world of Cate's Hold. During the Reunification War, Samuelson's Slaughters would be one of the most active mercenary regiments in service to the MAF, seeing combat on six worlds.
Meadowvale was perhaps the biggest success of the war for Samuelson's Slaughterers. Buquoy had deduced that the SLDF supply lines were vulnerable, partly because the SLDF supply worlds were all located either in the Capellan Confederation or the Free Worlds League and Captain-General Marion Marik and her advisors assumed that the war would largely be fought on her terms - which meant inside Magistracy space. In early January 2578, Buquoy dispatched a sizeable portion of the Magistracy Armed Forces on missions inside the Free Worlds League; Buquoy led four of the mercenary units under contract to the MAF personally on a strike against the key world of Meadowvale. Buquoy's Bandits were accompanied by Kincani's Dragoons, Mieselsen's Marauders, and Samuelson's Slaughterers. Buquoy led his Bandits directly at a huge supply camp named Camp Torrence, a legacy of the Second Andurien War and the principal supply base for the SLDF on the world. The Bandits struck the camp deliberately drawing the defending garrison to them; the Bandits then held the garrison in place for five hours while the other mercenary regiments struck at other SLDF supply camps across the world before all of the mercenary units lifted off and retreated back into Magistracy space. The Meadowvale strike and the others across Free Worlds League space were an almost total success, which not only slowed the SLDF offensive down significantly, but would be emulated several times in the future.
Following the successful raid on Meadowvale, the Slaughterers were redeployed to the world of Eleusis, one of a number of regiments moved to the world in secret by Buquoy, to join what would be one of the largest MAF deployments of the war. When the SLDF task force assigned the 57th Brigade and the 61st Royal Brigade to conquer Eleusis, reinforced by the 401st Independent Regiment and 35th Royal CAAN Marine Regiment - all drawn from VII Corps - the 5th Marik Militia, and the 1st Brigade of the Fusiliers of Oriente from the Marik auxiliaries supporting VII Corps, the SLDF expected to face a couple of 'Mech regiments supported by a handful of conventional regiments, but had been outmaneuvered by the MAF. Instead of the anticipated defenses, they faced four 'Mech regiments, including the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Canopian Light Horse, along with the Slaughterers, and eighteen conventional regiments.
Operating under the overall command of Colonel Ann-Britt McMillan, the MAF forces turned what should have been a two-week SLDF conquest into a grueling six-month campaign, inflicting more damage on the SLDF than they suffered in turn, but slowly losing because the MAF supply chain couldn't keep up with losses due to battlefield attrition as well as the SLDF's support network. Orders received from Colonel Buquoy and countersigned by Magestrix Crystalla Centrella, ordered the various MAF forces to retreat on the 19th of September; the MAF could have held out for several more months, but only the cost would have been losing all of the MAF units.
Despite having been forced from Eleusis in 2579, the Slaughterers returned to the world in 2582; despite the steady annexation of the Magistracy by SLDF Task Force Canopus, the MAF continued to raid supply worlds and garrisons, both within the Free Worlds League, the Capellan Confederation, as well as those on occupied Magistracy worlds. In a successful hit and run attack, the Slaughterers conducted one such raid on Eleusis, repeating a pattern established at Meadowvale and successfully forcing the SLDF to continue to devote resources to protecting garrisons and supply depots.
Early Dawn & Brixtana
In 2583/2584, the Slaughterers ended up fighting two campaigns against the SLDF 60th Brigade. The first was on the world of Early Dawn, where the Slaughterers were bolstering the local militia when the 60th Brigade landed. The Slaughterers couldn't resist the attention of a complete brigade for long, particularly as VII Corps had been reenergized by the destruction of the bulk of the Magistracy Navy at Thurrock earlier in the year. The Slaughterers managed to escape off world though, only to face the 60th Brigade again a few months later.
As VII Corps prepared for the invasion of Canopus, various brigades were tasked with securing additional worlds; for the Slaughterers, this meant facing the 60th Brigade on Brixtana, where the end result was the same as their encounter on Early Dawn. Once more, the Slaughterers resisted the invasion, but couldn't defeat the superior numbers the SLDF had deployed and had no choice but to retreat for a second time.
During the Reunification War, Cate's Hold had become an important supply world and repair depot for the Magistracy Navy, and had continued to service the few remaining vessels available to the MAF after the fall of Canopus IV; although the MAF was down to only a handful of units in 2587, half of those units - the 2nd Canopian Fusiliers and the Slaughterers - were protecting Cate's Hold when the Star League targeted the world for invasion. The SLDF task force commander, Captain-General Marion Marik, became aware of the significance of Cate's Hold to the surviving Magistracy forces when a previous error on the part of the Hegemony Central Intelligence Directorate came to light, and she tasked almost a division of troops to capture the world. By this point, the Slaughterers were one of only two mercenary commands still operating within the MAF - the other four commands had all been defeated or destroyed by 2584; their luck couldn't hold out any longer. The Slaughterers and the 2nd Fusiliers faced the combined forces of the VII Corps' 57th Brigade and 63rd Royal Brigade, augmented by the 403rd Independent Regiment, and the 5th Marik Militia. The Fusiliers and their mercenary allies fought a fierce campaign and held out for two weeks against greater than four to one odds before they were finally defeated and the world of Cate's Hold secured for the SLDF.
|Commanding Officers of Samuelson's Slaughterers|
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 59, "Adam Buquoy"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 41, "Magistracy Armed Forces (MAF)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 150, "Magistracy of Canopus Front (Jump Off-2583)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 94, "Reunification War: Magistracy of Canopus Front Deployments (2577)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 99, "Meadowvale (January 2578)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 148, "Magistracy Of Canopus Front(Jump-Off - 2582)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 100-101, "Eleusis, Obrenovac and Bethnolog (March 2579-January 2580)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 149, "Magistracy Of Canopus Front (2583-2588)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 151, "Magistracy Of Canopus Front (2583-2588)"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 103, "Endgame (2583-2584)"
- The Periphery (sourcebook), p. 104, "Planet Profile"
- Historical: Reunification War, p. 105, "Mopping Up (2584-2588)"