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Union Command Failure in the Shenandoah

Union Command Failure in the Shenandoah PDF Author: David Powell
Publisher:
ISBN: 1611214351
Category : History
Languages : en
Pages : 264

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Book Description
The Battle of New Market in the Shenandoah Valley suffers from no lack of drama, interest, or importance. The ramifications of the May 1864 engagement, which involved only 10,000 troops, were substantial. Previous studies, however, focused on the Confederate side of the story. David Powell’s, Union Command Failure in the Shenandoah: Major General Franz Sigel and the War in the Valley of Virginia, May 1864, provides the balance that has so long been needed. Union General Ulysses S. Grant regarded a spring campaign in the Valley of Virginia as integral to his overall strategy designed to turn Robert E. Lee’s strategic western flank, deny his Army of Northern Virginia much needed supplies, and prevent other Confederates from reinforcing Lee. It fell to Union general and German transplant Franz Sigel to execute Grant’s strategy in the northern reaches of the Shenandoah while Maj. Gen. George Crook struck elsewhere in southwestern Virginia. Sigel’s record in the field was checkered at best, and he was not Grant’s first choice to lead the effort, but a combination of politics and other factors left the German in command. Sigel met Confederate Maj. Gen. John C. Breckinridge and his small army on May 15 just outside the crossroads town of New Market. The hard-fought affair hung in the balance until finally the Union lines broke, and Sigel’s Yankees fled the field. Breckinridge’s command included some 300 young men from the Virginia Military Institute’s Corps of Cadets. VMI’s presence and dramatic role in the fighting ensured that New Market would never be forgotten, but pushed other aspects of this interesting and important campaign into the back seat of history. Award-winning author David Powell’s years of archival and other research provides an outstanding foundation for this outstanding study. Previous works have focused on the Confederate side of the battle, using Sigel’s incompetence as sufficient excuse to explain why the Federals were defeated. This methodology, however, neglects the other important factors that contributed to the ruin of Grant’s scheme in the Valley. Union Command Failure in the Shenandoah delves into all the issues, analyzing the campaign from an operational standpoint. Complete with original maps, photos, and the skillful writing readers have come to expect from the pen of David Powell, Union Command Failure in the Shenandoah will satisfy the most demanding students of Civil War history.

Union Command Failure in the Shenandoah

Union Command Failure in the Shenandoah PDF Author: David Powell
Publisher:
ISBN: 1611214351
Category : History
Languages : en
Pages : 264

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Book Description
The Battle of New Market in the Shenandoah Valley suffers from no lack of drama, interest, or importance. The ramifications of the May 1864 engagement, which involved only 10,000 troops, were substantial. Previous studies, however, focused on the Confederate side of the story. David Powell’s, Union Command Failure in the Shenandoah: Major General Franz Sigel and the War in the Valley of Virginia, May 1864, provides the balance that has so long been needed. Union General Ulysses S. Grant regarded a spring campaign in the Valley of Virginia as integral to his overall strategy designed to turn Robert E. Lee’s strategic western flank, deny his Army of Northern Virginia much needed supplies, and prevent other Confederates from reinforcing Lee. It fell to Union general and German transplant Franz Sigel to execute Grant’s strategy in the northern reaches of the Shenandoah while Maj. Gen. George Crook struck elsewhere in southwestern Virginia. Sigel’s record in the field was checkered at best, and he was not Grant’s first choice to lead the effort, but a combination of politics and other factors left the German in command. Sigel met Confederate Maj. Gen. John C. Breckinridge and his small army on May 15 just outside the crossroads town of New Market. The hard-fought affair hung in the balance until finally the Union lines broke, and Sigel’s Yankees fled the field. Breckinridge’s command included some 300 young men from the Virginia Military Institute’s Corps of Cadets. VMI’s presence and dramatic role in the fighting ensured that New Market would never be forgotten, but pushed other aspects of this interesting and important campaign into the back seat of history. Award-winning author David Powell’s years of archival and other research provides an outstanding foundation for this outstanding study. Previous works have focused on the Confederate side of the battle, using Sigel’s incompetence as sufficient excuse to explain why the Federals were defeated. This methodology, however, neglects the other important factors that contributed to the ruin of Grant’s scheme in the Valley. Union Command Failure in the Shenandoah delves into all the issues, analyzing the campaign from an operational standpoint. Complete with original maps, photos, and the skillful writing readers have come to expect from the pen of David Powell, Union Command Failure in the Shenandoah will satisfy the most demanding students of Civil War history.

Call out the Cadets

Call out the Cadets PDF Author: Sarah Kay Bierle
Publisher: Casemate Publishers
ISBN: 161121470X
Category : History
Languages : en
Pages : 192

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Book Description
“May God forgive me for the order,” Confederate Maj. Gen. John C. Breckinridge remarked as he ordered young cadets from Virginia Military Institute into the battle lines at New Market, just days after calling them from their academic studies to assist in a crucial defense. Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley had seen years of fighting. In the spring of 1864, Union Maj. Gen. Franz Sigel prepared to lead a new invasion force into the Valley, operating on the far right flank of Ulysses S. Grant’s Overland Campaign. Breckinridge scrambled to organize the Confederate defense. When the opposing divisions clashed near the small crossroads town of New Market on May 15, 1864, new legends of courage were born. Local civilians witnessed the combat unfold in their streets, churchyards, and fields and aided the fallen. The young cadets rushed into the battle when ordered—an opportunity for an hour of glory and tragedy. A Union soldier saved the national colors and a comrade, later receiving a Medal of Honor. The battle of New Market, though a smaller conflict in the grand scheme of that blood-soaked summer, came at a crucial moment in the Union’s offensive movements that spring and also became the last major Confederate victory in the Shenandoah Valley. The results in the muddy fields reverberated across the North and South, altering campaign plans—as well as the lives of those who witnessed or fought. Some never left the fields alive; others retreated with excuses or shame. Some survived, haunted or glorified by their deeds. In Call Out the Cadets, Sarah Kay Bierle traces the history of this important, yet smaller battle. While covering the military aspects of the battle, the book also follows the history of individuals whose lives or military careers were changed because of the fight. New Market shined for its accounts of youth in battle, immigrant generals, and a desperate, muddy fight. Youth and veterans, generals and privates, farmers and teachers—all were called into the conflict or its aftermath of the battle, an event that changed a community, a military institute, and the very fate of the Shenandoah Valley.

All Hell Can’t Stop Them

All Hell Can’t Stop Them PDF Author: David Powell
Publisher:
ISBN: 1611214149
Category : History
Languages : en
Pages : 192

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Book Description
To many of the Federal soldiers watching the Stars and Stripes unfurl atop Lookout Mountain on the morning of November 25, 1863, it seemed that the battle to relieve Chattanooga was complete. The Union Army of the Cumberland was no longer trapped in the city, subsisting on short rations and awaiting rescue; instead, they were again on the attack. Ulysses S. Grant did not share their certainty. For Grant, the job he had been sent to accomplish was only half-finished. Braxton Bragg’s Confederate Army of Tennessee still held Missionary Ridge, with other Rebels under James Longstreet threatening more Federals in Knoxville, Tennessee. Grant’s greatest fear was that the Rebels would slip away before he could deliver the final blows necessary to crush Bragg completely. That blow landed on the afternoon of November 25. Each of Grant’s assembled forces—troops led by Union Generals William T. Sherman, George H. Thomas, and Joseph Hooker—all moved to the attack. Stubbornly, Bragg refused to retreat, and instead accepted battle. That decision would cost him dearly. But everything did not go Grant’s way. Despite what Grant’s many admirers would later insist was his most successful, most carefully planned battle, Grant’s strategy failed him—as did his most trusted commander, Sherman. Victory instead charged straight up the seemingly impregnable slopes of Missionary Ridge’s western face, as the men of the much-maligned Army of the Cumberland swarmed up and over Bragg’s defenses in an irresistible blue tide. Caught flat-footed by this impetuous charge, Grant could only watch nervously as the men started up . . . All Hell Can’t Stop Them: The Battles for Chattanooga—Missionary Ridge and Ringgold, November 24-27, 1863—sequel to Battle Above the Clouds—details the dramatic final actions of the battles for Chattanooga: Missionary Ridge and the final Confederate rearguard action at Ringgold, where Patrick Cleburne held Grant’s Federals at bay and saved the Army of Tennessee from further disaster.

Failure to Pursue

Failure to Pursue PDF Author: David Frey
Publisher: McFarland
ISBN: 1476666695
Category : History
Languages : en
Pages : 412

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Book Description
Was the Civil War preordained to last four years or were there reasons why neither side could land a knockout punch? From the outset, both North and South had anticipated a brief conflict but despite more than 50 bloody battles neither could force a decisive conclusion. For most of the war, these battles followed a pattern: the victors claimed the field and the vanquished retreated to rest, resupply and fight another day. Some generals began to realize that pursuit to capture or destroy the retreating enemy was needed to end the war--not an easy task. Taking a fresh look at the tactics that characterized many major combat actions in the war, this book examines the performance of unsuccessful (sometimes insubordinate) commanders and credits two generals with eventually seeing the need for organized pursuit.

The 1862 Shenandoah Valley Campaign

The 1862 Shenandoah Valley Campaign PDF Author: Charles River Charles River Editors
Publisher: Createspace Independent Publishing Platform
ISBN: 9781984959621
Category :
Languages : en
Pages : 94

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Book Description
*Includes pictures*Includes accounts of the campaign written by soldiers and generals*Includes online resources and a bibliography for further reading*Includes a table of contents"Jackson and his army, in one month, have routed Milroy-annihilated Banks-discomfited Fr�mont, and overthrown Shields! Was there ever such a series of victories won by an inferior force by dauntless courage and consummate generalship?" - An anonymous newspaper correspondent for the Richmond Whig, June 6, 1862Confederate general Thomas Jonathan Jackson had been a virtual unknown upon his arrival at the front line of First Bull Run, but by the spring of 1862, thanks to his actions at that battle, "Stonewall" was already becoming known across the battlefields. Ultimately, it would be the Valley Campaign of 1862 that made him a legend. In the early months of 1862, Jackson was given command of an army numbering about 17,000 in the Shenandoah Valley. His task was daunting. The loss at Bull Run prompted a changing of the guard, with George B. McClellan, the "Young Napoleon", put in charge of reorganizing and leading the Army of the Potomac. That spring, the Army of the Potomac conducted an ambitious amphibious invasion of Virginia's Peninsula, circumventing the Confederate defenses to the north of Richmond by attacking Richmond from the southeast.General Johnston's outnumbered army headed toward Richmond to confront McClellan, but the Union still had three armies totaling another 50,000 around the Shenandoah Valley, which represented a threat to Richmond from the north. It was these armies that Jackson would be tasked with stopping. Jackson would go on to lead his undermanned army through what military strategists and historians consider the most incredible campaign of the Civil War. From late March to early June, Jackson kept all three Union armies bottled up and separated from each other in the Shenandoah Valley by marching up and down the Valley about 650 miles in 50 days, earning his army the nickname "foot cavalry." After the amazing campaign in the Shenandoah Valley in June of 1862, Lee recalled Stonewall's men to travel by rail to Richmond in an effort to envelop the right flank of the Army of the Potomac. Upon taking command, Lee immediately took the offensive, attacking the Army of the Potomac repeatedly in a flurry of battles known as the Seven Days Battles. Fearing he was heavily outnumbered, McClellan began a strategic retreat, and despite badly defeating the Confederates at the Battle of Malvern Hill, the last battle of the Peninsula Campaign, it was clear that the Army of the Potomac was quitting the campaign. The failure of McClellan's campaign devastated the morale of the North, as McClellan had failed to advance despite originally having almost double the manpower. McClellan's Peninsula Campaign has been analyzed meticulously and is considered one of the grandest failures of the Union war effort, with McClellan made the scapegoat. In actuality, there was plenty of blame to go around, including Lincoln and his administration, which was so concerned about Jackson's army in the Valley that several Union armies were left in the Valley to defend Washington D.C. and even more were held back from McClellan for fear of the capital's safety. The Administration also micromanaged the deployment of certain divisions, and with Stanton's decision to shut down recruiting stations in early 1862, combined with the Confederacy concentrating all their troops in the area, the Army of the Potomac was eventually outnumbered in front of Richmond. The 1862 Shenandoah Valley Campaign: The History of the Civil War Campaign that Made Stonewall Jackson a Confederate Legend analyzes the history of one of the most famous campaigns of the war. Along with pictures of important people, places, and events, you will learn about the Valley Campaign like never before.

Crisis of Command in the Army of the Potomac

Crisis of Command in the Army of the Potomac PDF Author: Jay W. Simson
Publisher: McFarland
ISBN: 0786436530
Category : History
Languages : en
Pages : 245

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Book Description
With the ascendancy of Ulysses S. Grant in late 1863, the command tone of the United States Army underwent a dramatic change. While Grant's predecessor George McClellan had been overly cautious about committing troops and resources to fight the South, Grant held the philosophy that a war fought for total ends required total means. Philip Sheridan set about reorganizing the army to reflect Grant's new style. During the last six months of the war, he relieved three generals of their commands because of their inability to follow his orders precisely. William Averell, Alfred Torbert and Gouverneur Warren found themselves and their careers casualties of Sheridan's intense determination to bring an end to the hostilities. Only Ranald S. Mackenzie managed to survive Sheridan's search for effective leaders, proving himself the ideal subordinate.

Command Failure in War

Command Failure in War PDF Author: Philip Langer
Publisher: Indiana University Press
ISBN: 0253110939
Category : History
Languages : en
Pages : 304

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Book Description
Why do military commanders, most of them usually quite capable, fail at crucial moments of their careers? Robert Pois and Philip Langer -- one a historian, the other an educational psychologist -- study seven cases of military command failures, from Frederick the Great at Kunersdorf to Hitler's invasion of Russia. While the authors recognize the value of psychological theorizing, they do not believe that one method can cover all the individuals, battles, or campaigns under examination. Instead, they judiciously take a number of psycho-historical approaches in hope of shedding light on the behaviors of commanders during war. The other battles and commanders studied here are Napoleon in Russia, George B. McClellan's Peninsular Campaign, Robert E. Lee and Pickett's Charge at Gettysburg, John Bell Hood at the Battle of Franklin, Douglas Haig and the British command during World War I, "Bomber" Harris and the Strategic Bombing of Germany, and Stalingrad.

Tullahoma

Tullahoma PDF Author: David A. Powell
Publisher:
ISBN: 9781611215045
Category :
Languages : en
Pages :

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Book Description
July 1863 was a momentous month in the Civil War. News of Gettysburg and Vicksburg electrified the North and devastated the South. Sandwiched geographically between those victories and lost in the heady tumult of events was news that William S. Rosecrans's Army of the Cumberland had driven Braxton Bragg's Army of Tennessee entirely out of Middle Tennessee. The brilliant campaign nearly cleared the state of Rebels and changed the calculus of the Civil War in the Western Theater. Despite its decisive significance, few readers even today know of these events. The publication of Tullahoma: The Forgotten Campaign that Changed the Course of Civil War, June 23 - July 4, 1863 by award-winning authors David A. Powell and Eric J. Wittenberg, forever rectifies that oversight.On June 23, 1863, Rosecrans, with some 60,000 men, initiated a classic campaign of maneuver against Bragg's 40,000. Confronted with rugged terrain and a heavily entrenched foe, Rosecrans intended to defeat Bragg through strategy rather than bloodshed by outflanking him and seizing control of Bragg's supply line, the Nashville & Chattanooga Railroad, at Tullahoma and thus force him to fight a battle outside of his extensive earthworks. It almost worked.The complex and fascinating campaign included deceit, hard marching, fighting, and incredible luck--both good and bad. Rosecrans executed a pair of feints against Guy's Gap and Liberty Gap to deceive the Rebels into thinking the main blow would fall somewhere other than where it was designed to strike. An ineffective Confederate response exposed one of Bragg's flanks--and his entire army--to complete disaster. Torrential rains and consequential decisions in the field wreaked havoc on the best-laid plans. Still Bragg hesitated, teetering on the brink of losing the second most important field army in the Confederacy. The hour was late and time was short, and his limited withdrawal left the armies poised for a climactic engagement that may have decided the fate of Middle Tennessee, and perhaps the war. Finally fully alert to the mortal threat facing him, Bragg pulled back from the iron jaws of defeat about to engulf him and retreated--this time all the way to Chattanooga, the gateway to the rest of the Southern Confederacy.Powell and Wittenberg mined hundreds of archival and firsthand accounts to craft a splendid study of this overlooked campaign that set the stage for the Battles of Chickamauga and Chattanooga, the removal of Rosecrans and Bragg from the chessboard of war, the elevation of U.S. Grant to command all Union armies, and the early stages of William T. Sherman's Atlanta Campaign. Tullahoma--one of the most brilliantly executed major campaigns of the war--was pivotal to Union success in 1863 and beyond. And now readers everywhere will know precisely why.

Historical Dictionary of the Civil War

Historical Dictionary of the Civil War PDF Author: Terry L. Jones
Publisher: Scarecrow Press
ISBN: 0810879530
Category : History
Languages : en
Pages : 1816

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Book Description
The Civil War was the most traumatic event in American history, pitting Americans against one another, rending the national fabric, leaving death and devastation in its wake, and instilling an anger that has not entirely dissipated even to this day, 150 years later. This updated and expanded two-volume second edition of the Historical Dictionary of the Civil War relates the history of this war through a chronology, an introductory essay, an extensive bibliography, and hundreds of cross-referenced dictionary entries on persons, places, events, institutions, battles, and campaigns. This book is an excellent access point for students, researchers, and anyone wanting to know more about the Civil War.

The Grand Design

The Grand Design PDF Author: Donald Stoker
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199706603
Category : History
Languages : en
Pages : 512

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Book Description
Despite the abundance of books on the Civil War, not one has focused exclusively on what was in fact the determining factor in the outcome of the conflict: differences in Union and Southern strategy. In The Grand Design, Donald Stoker provides for the first time a comprehensive and often surprising account of strategy as it evolved between Fort Sumter and Appomattox. Reminding us that strategy is different from tactics (battlefield deployments) and operations (campaigns conducted in pursuit of a strategy), Stoker examines how Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis identified their political goals and worked with their generals to craft the military means to achieve them--or how they often failed to do so. Stoker shows that Davis, despite a West Point education and experience as Secretary of War, ultimately failed as a strategist by losing control of the political side of the war. Lincoln, in contrast, evolved a clear strategic vision, but he failed for years to make his generals implement it. And while Robert E. Lee was unerring in his ability to determine the Union's strategic heart--its center of gravity--he proved mistaken in his assessment of how to destroy it. Historians have often argued that the North's advantages in population and industry ensured certain victory. In The Grand Design, Stoker reasserts the centrality of the overarching plan on each side, arguing convincingly that it was strategy that determined the result of America's great national conflict.