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The Empire at War => Historical Games => Topic started by: Big Time on October 15, 2009, 04:13:21 AM

Title: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on October 15, 2009, 04:13:21 AM
I'm a details man when it come to military history, so I apologize if it seems the ACW has been covered in several other topics. I find the history of our own Civil War to be fascinating in many aspects and I would like to discuss it further in a dedicated thread.

More specifically:

1. Union General has mentioned that the Henry Rifle is the manliest of Civil War rifles. I couldn't disagree, the Henry was badass. But it was hardly prolific. The ACW was the only time in our history that we had such variation in individual shoulder arms on the battlefield. Coming from the 21st Century, this is amazing to me as everything in most modern militaries is so standardized. Supply must have been a nightmare in the ACW, I don't know how they did it. In the early war, Confederate volunteers not infrequently showed up to muster with flintlock muskets. This would be like me showing up for deployment training now with a Winchester or an early 20th Century bolt-action rifle. Plus, so many of our shoulder arms were supplied by the UK or Europe. Interesting that they didn't take a more active role in our war.

2. The Union had the decided advantage in artillery throughout the war. The most common pieces being the Napoleon 12-pounder and the 3-Inch Ordinance Rifle. The Confederacy relied heavily on captured field guns, which also blows my mind as this must have created a major headache for supply and training. That being said, my favorite artillerist of the war was ironically E. P. Alexander, a Confederate. Talk about making the most of what you have, Alexander was a forward-thinking officer and deserves more credit than history has afforded him.

3. Europe saw the U.S. as a backwater state and our war as a backwater affair. It's a shame, because it was a very modern war in many regards and Europe could have learned a lot of lessons from it if they'd bothered to study it. This isn't an argument about the "first modern war," there are cases to be made for several wars to claim this title. But the ACW was at the cusp of the modern era of warfare regardless.

4. Lee. So much has been said about Lee, I don't know where to go with this. Lee's involvement kept the war going probably three years longer than it would have if he'd not sided with the Confederates. Hell, if he'd come with us the war might have only lasted six months like everyone predicted. But who knows? Anyway, Lee always said his first loyalty was Virginia so it is probably an irrelevant question. I will say that Lee's decision to launch Pickett's Charge at Gettysburg cost him that battle and what remained of the Confederate initiative. Did it cost the South the war? Let me know what you think...

5. The ACW is among the most important events concerning the formation of our current Union (yes, we are all now Union as we won the war  :icon_wink:). As important, if not more so, than:

   A. The Declaration of Independence
   B. The Ratification of our Constitution
   C. Manifest Destiny
   D. The Monroe Doctrine
   
These are a few things I like to discuss. Feel free to talk about whatever you want regarding the ACW, from field rations of the typical soldier to the Abolition of Slavery.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 15, 2009, 05:49:20 AM
Good questions and a topic that I find interesting.

1.  The Henry was a good gun, better when they started making the shell casings in brass instead of copper. As it ws difficult to get ammo, I wouldn't have wanted to carry one during the war unless I was certain I could get ammo when I needed it.

If I had been a regular infantryman, I think I would have preferred the .58 caliber 3 band Enfield.  I know some reenactors who have them and the rifle is incredibly accurate for a muzzleloader.  They are easy to clean and fired a standard minie ball so getting ammo wouldn't have been a problem.

The scariets muzzleloader of the time was the Whitworth rifle, which was used by some Confederate snipers.  I know someone who has a replica and while it is stunningly accurate, the barrel has to be cleaned every few shots or else the odd shaped hexagonal bullet can get stuck in the barrel while loading.

2. The South had a number of good artillery officers.  Edward Alexander and John Pelham are two that immediately come to mind. 

3.  I agree.  The siege at Petersburg was certainly a glimse of trench warfare to come.  As far as Europeans studying the ACW, I found out that some battles, such as Brice's Crossroads, were studied by German officers before and after the First World War.

4.  I live in the South and went to college in Mississippi so I am used to hearing heaps of praise and very little criticism when it comes to Lee.  In a History of the American Military class, I thought I was going to start a fist fight when I dared point out several of the mistakes that Lee made during the war.  I think Lee was a good Army level general and at his best when on defense. Some of his mistakes may be forgiven/understood as he probably either grew overconfident or began underestimating his opponents because of his early successes against McClelland and other third rate generals.  I think his decision to attack the Federal center on the 3rd day was a gross blunder.  Doing some simple math equations using how long it would take the Conferates across the field, the rate of fire of enemy guns, and even bad estimate by half of the number of troops and artillery guns available to the Union, and it looks obvious that the attack was doomed to fail.  Did failure at Gettysburg effectively end any chance of success for the South?  No.  I think barring Lincoln losing the 1864 election or multiple disasters for Union armies in the field, there was no chance that the South could win.

5.  I think the Civil War and its aftermath was certainly critical to the history of the country.  Had the South succeeded in splitting, the United States likely would not have become the greatest industrial power from 1917 on.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 15, 2009, 11:58:14 AM
Well, I don't really have much to add at this point.  I know I've been a Lee 'apologist' to some, but more like a realist, IMO.  He did make mistakes, but I appreciate the Yankee known as Big Time for acknowledging that he was, in fact, a beast of a general.

Oh, I suppose I could add that I think Gettysburg was a crippling blow to the Army of Northern Virginia and it basically sealed the fate of the war in the East.  But possibly more importantly was the fall of Vicksburg on the following day.  That was really when the Anaconda Plan really took hold.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: PhillyT on October 15, 2009, 01:06:41 PM
I wouldplace it behind both the ratification of the constitution and the declaration of inependance.  It was a result of the ideas put forth by those two documents.  Had they not taken the shape they did, the war would have never happened.

Count meas one who isn't enamored with the ACW.  It was a brutal affair, poorly exectuted in many ways, with one side being decidedly on the side of evil.

Phil
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 15, 2009, 01:15:33 PM
I think it's a regional thing.  If you grow up with it around you, and in many ways still being fought, it still gives you a great deal of interest. 

I really have no interest in the Revolution because not much happened in this area besides Yorktown which is quite a distance away.

I think your point is valid about the formation of the country, Phil.  But I maintain that without the compromises there never would have been a country to begin with. 
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: PhillyT on October 15, 2009, 01:17:18 PM
Unfortuately that compromise was built on the backs of slavery.  While boths sides used it, one moved its economy away from it, the other refused diversification and embraced it.

The ACW still could have been shorter had some individuals not bowed to state loyalty and instead moved towards the more trancendant federal unity model.

Phil
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 15, 2009, 01:19:25 PM
Well, this will be a fun discussion as I can already see the stubborn Philly horns growing. :icon_neutral:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 15, 2009, 01:25:37 PM
Both sides were fairly racist though. Black Soldiers in the northern army were paid less and treated much worse then the whites.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: PhillyT on October 15, 2009, 01:27:09 PM
Again, not really that big of a fan of Confederate Retcon or apologists.  Both sides were racist, but removing the slavery aspect still offers innumerable reasons why the south were self serving hypocrites.

Phil
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 15, 2009, 01:30:14 PM
This should be fun.  :smile2:  Do you see me as an apologist?

What I dislike about these conversations is the simplicity in which some like to make it.  Slavery was the biggest issue in that war, it caused a cascading effect for other issues, but to just give that a once over glance and talk about the southern devil and the northern angel is just pure poppycock.

I look at this from an American perspective.  Both sides being American, you know.  And looking at it from the angle of their eyes then, and not now.  We can learn from the mistakes of the past, but realize why they made the decisions they made then.  It's so much more fulfilling then having a haughty attitude about it and judging based on standards of today (in regards to the federal vs. state governments).

Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Fandir Nightshade on October 15, 2009, 01:45:06 PM
Can´t you guys just watch "north and south" (yes the patrick swayze one again) and see how both sides had their merit and good guys and bad guys? I soo love General Lee for that movie as he tells the president that he will fight for him even if he dislikes the treatment of slaves in the south.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 15, 2009, 01:47:53 PM
Can´t you guys just watch "north and south" (yes the patrick swayze one again) and see how both sides had their merit and good guys and bad guys?

I've not seen that in quite some time, but that's where I stand on the situation.  I live on the cusp of 'northern' territory (as Northern Virginia has a different feel to the rest of the state).  So it has given me a good perspective of both sides of the argument.  I have no disdain for the north, nor the south (besides the slavery issue).  It was a regrettable and unfortunate war, but one that has forged our nation into one of even greater strength.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on October 15, 2009, 02:52:50 PM
The South was right in so many ways.  They just choose the wrong horse to fight from (slavery).

As far as the war, I would like to recommend Grant's memoirs.  It is an excellent read and provides good insight on the West Campaign and things you would have not guessed.

One thing, Grant would often stay up at night and he and his "boss" would sit beside a telegraph operator on a dedicated line and have a "real time" conversation from hundreds of miles away.  Imagine what that would have felt like at that time and technology. 

The north would also immediately set up temporary telegraph circuits along it's line of battle so that Grant could hear from and communicate to his field commanders.  The soldiers would lay the line, then have a large number of men with poles tall enough to allow passage lift the line all at the same time.

Grant truly used the communication tech he had to impact the battle.  That saw it's ultimate expression in the Gulf Wars.

To add to the above artillery comment, near the end Grant started sending his artillery back to DC.  He has so much, that the train to supply it was severely impacting his ability to supply solders with food and ammo and slowing down the army.  I think at one point he sent half his artillery back north to get it out of the way.

That is why the South could never have won as long as the North had the will to fight and the World powers would stay out of the fight.  Heck, even if other powers had joined in, the end result probably would have been the same.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 15, 2009, 03:01:51 PM
The longer the war went, the worse it got for logistical reasons.  Really the only way to have won was to break the will of the north, and while I suppose it was feasable it would've taken a near perfect execution on the part of the south, and quickly, too (by quickly meaning the first two years).
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: PhillyT on October 15, 2009, 04:03:57 PM
This should be fun.  :smile2:  Do you see me as an apologist?

Marginally.  I can't get excited enough about this to really dig into it.  We will surey have ths discussion again!

Phil
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 15, 2009, 04:15:20 PM
It could be worse.  I could call it the War of Northern Aggression.  But then that would ruin any street cred I had accumulated.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on October 15, 2009, 06:05:12 PM
It could be worse.  I could call it the War of Northern Aggression.  But then that would ruin any street cred I had accumulated.

I am not offended by that term.  It reflects the reality of the issue for the South, perfectly.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 15, 2009, 08:13:04 PM
I laugh at the "War of Northern Aggression" title.  The South fired at Fort Sumter first.

While I do think there are laws that the Federal government should leave up to the states, slavery was clearly something that needed to be addressed on a national level.  It was unfortunate that the issue wasn't resolved at the time of the founding of the country or shortly thereafter instead of requiring a war to finally resolve the issue.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on October 15, 2009, 08:19:40 PM
I laugh at the "War of Northern Aggression" title.  The South fired at Fort Sumter first.

Duh, It's the War of Northern Aggression not the War of Northern Attacking Us.  Of course us Yankees call it the "War of Southern Shot Us First While We Were Minding Our Own Business Occupying a Fort That We Owned in the Newly Independent Country "or WoSSUFWWWMOFTWOBOaFitIC.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 15, 2009, 08:48:11 PM
I'm just amazed Union general hasn't come yet. Surely he can hear the call of the Civil War, even away from his computer?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 15, 2009, 08:49:12 PM
The fort was Federal property not South Carolina property so the state wasn't entitled to occupy it.  The hotheads in South Carolina got impatient and started shooting.

The war could have been titled "the war caused by Southern crybabies trying to take their marbles and going home because they didn't like playing by the rules they had agreed upon earlier."

There are a number of reasons I would excuse a state for wanting to seperate from its country but keeping slavery wouldn't be one of them.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 15, 2009, 08:51:18 PM
well lets see i didnt see cuba attacking gitmo when they went communist.  :engel:  most new social movements dont touch foreign power areas otherwise it would be viewed as an act of war.

Honestly I think the south DID win the war.  At the start of the war they had no industry and a failing economic system.  after the war the north rebuilt everything from the ground up and changed all that for the better, and the south didnt have to pay a cent for that...they couldnt they had no more money! haha.

@wiss: try living in maryland, during the war the rural southern maryland fought for the CSA and the industrious northern part for the USA.  If you go to gettysburg the maryland soldier monument is of a unin soldier helping a Confederate soldier, both maryland regiments. plus lincoln lad that area on lock down haha.  the state song of maryland is how lincoln is an asshat for declaring marshall law.  no lie.

@Philly:  I think Big time wasnt saying it was the most significant thing in american history, I think he meant it was the most unifying thing in american history.  Both during and after the revolution the north and south were pretty much split and the distance grew between them over time. (handy hint, maryland was the only state in the american revolution to openly allow african colonists recruiting.  all other states allowed them to join but turned an eye blind about it as it was against their states militia regulations.  against regulations or not they needed the troops haha!)

Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 15, 2009, 08:56:44 PM
/offtopic I'd just like to point out, that it was the British that decided to let Slaves fight for us for their freedom. Not the Americans, like in that film with Mel Gibson about how awesome farmers are.

/ontopic I like the confederate uniforms...
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 15, 2009, 08:59:35 PM
Inarticulate, I was talking about free african colonists, not slaves.  Some plantation owners did let their slaves fight for them which is why big W said if you fight for a year you get a "get out of plantaion free card."

yeah confeds grey did look cool.  but it was the same as the north, just a different color.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 15, 2009, 11:31:19 PM
The fort was Federal property not South Carolina property so the state wasn't entitled to occupy it.  The hotheads in South Carolina got impatient and started shooting.

South Carolina is secesionist happy.  They threatened to secede from the CSA, too.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 16, 2009, 03:36:52 AM
I think it is silly to try to rate the biggest events in US history (or any history) as being more important than others. 

The creation of the Constitution is huge for starting all off.  The Civil War and Reconstruction is incredibly important for settling the question of slavery and reunifying the country.  WW2 is important for establishing the US as a world nuclear power.

WW1 is often overlooked as the US got in late and Wilson's plan for world peace didn't materialize but WW1 was extremely important in terms of the country's economy.  The US went from 5th or 6th in the world in industrial production to overwhelmingly 1st in just a couple of years time and has been an industrial giant ever since.

Sorry if this goes off topic a bit but it was in response to other comments above.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 16, 2009, 05:49:57 AM
haha someone riled up Gusravus Magnus's hornet nest. Yeah I have to agree with you there.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 16, 2009, 06:53:55 AM
I wasn't all that riled up.  I just thought I would add my thoughts to the idea of regarding what I thought the most important events in US history were.  If I had truely been riled up, I would have had a page or two rebuttal on whatever it was that got my blood boiling.

Incidentally, I agree that losing the war was the best thing that happened to the South.  Its too bad that there are still many people in the South that don't see it that way.  Some of the forum members may not know this but it wasn't until the 1970s that the city of Vicksburg, Mississippi celebrated on the 4th of July because that was the day the city surrendered in 1863!
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 16, 2009, 11:42:22 AM
I didn't know that about Vicksburg, but I can't say it's surprising.

There's another element of bitterness that takes hold when talking about this stuff.  Even though the south was remade, it took a hundred years or more to recover, in some places not even still have they recovered.  Virginia didn't even equal the mean GDP until the 80s after the Civil War, the economy was destroyed.  Utter Sherman's name in Georgia and see what happens.  It's a step beyond warfare, it became very personal on a familial level.  And being as that we're not far removed, really, people will still remember stories of their grandparents who talked about the hard times after the yankees left.

I cannot stand the 'south shall rise again' b.s. though.  It's just ignorance on a scale that is frightening on many levels. 
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 16, 2009, 12:57:57 PM
Just wait. In another hundred years, there will be campaigns for the South's independence just like Scotland. And then the EU will take over the southern states.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 16, 2009, 12:59:57 PM
There's a big difference.  The south never was its own sovereign nation so there is nothing that would prompt such a thing without another attempt at secession and hostilities.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 16, 2009, 01:52:37 PM
Just wait. In another hundred years, there will be campaigns for the South's independence just like Scotland. And then the EU will take over the southern states.
thats as about likley as a goat being made a senator here in the US...

but seriously the change of thought has changed much in the south since the war, and with the rebuilding of their economy and well everything, another succession is highly unlikley.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Perambulator on October 16, 2009, 01:55:35 PM
Just wait. In another hundred years, there will be campaigns for the South's independence just like Scotland. And then the EU will take over the southern states.
thats as about likley as a goat being made a senator here in the US...

but seriously the change of thought has changed much in the south since the war, and with the rebuilding of their economy and well everything, another succession is highly unlikley.

Well all that an immigration to and from the rest of the country and overseas has changed the landscape and the demographics.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on October 16, 2009, 02:28:49 PM
Why would the south ceed?  They have dominated the Presidential races for quite a while.

Carter, Southern
Reagan, not
Bush I, Southern  (well, ok really DCian, but he raised his kids in the south).
Clinton, Southern
Bush II, Southern
Obama, not
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on October 16, 2009, 05:14:06 PM
This topic has taken an interesting direction. Yes, when I compared the Civil War to Independece and the Constitution, I was being a little dramatic. I was just trying to illustrate its importance.

When you think about, in the scheme of things, the war really wasn't that long ago. My grandparents' grandparents where alive at the time. My first ancestor to migrate to the U.S., Hilarius Schumacher, fought for Minnesota or Michigan (we are unsure which) in the war as a volunteer.

The draft in the North was very controversial, and arguably one of the most useful institutions of the draft in our history. The draft riots in NYC were among the worst, if not the worst, riots in the city's history. There is so much to study about the Civil War, it's a great subject.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gneisenau on October 16, 2009, 05:22:38 PM
/ontopic I like the confederate uniforms...

The guys with the prettier uniforms usually lose the war. Weird pattern in history.

From a purely aesthetical point, I also like the confederate flag better than the union one. Sorry, US-boys...
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 16, 2009, 05:25:10 PM
That's interesting that folks would classify CSA uniforms as pretty.  I like the grey (I'm a Wissenlander after all) but I think the Union guys looked sharper in their dress.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 16, 2009, 05:28:57 PM
I just think the grey and the gold go very nicely.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 16, 2009, 05:33:33 PM
I guess you're referring to officers, or cavalry.  Gold wasn't really a prominent feature of foot soldier dress.  It was usually whatever you could scrounge up.  Though grey was the official color, with light blue slacks in the Army of Northern Virginia, there was a tendency to go with a khaki color known as butternut. 

I don't know if this was an occurance in other nations but the different branches were color coded (in both armies).  Red was artillery, blue (light blue) infantry and yellow was cavalry.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 16, 2009, 05:34:52 PM
Of course not, I'm not interested in what the common rabble are wearing!
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 16, 2009, 05:37:12 PM
Well, that's the most fun part, really.  Even still, general's uniforms were somewhat individualized, especially in the CSA.  Though, Grant did wear a basic private's uniform with general's stars strapped to it.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on October 16, 2009, 05:38:55 PM
Confederate uniforms have a way of always looking dingy. I agree with Wiss, the Union had much sharper unifroms. Except the Zouaves.

Generals could, and still can, alter their uniforms as they see fit so they  are not good examples of standard.

I don't know if this was an occurance in other nations but the different branches were color coded (in both armies).  Red was artillery, blue (light blue) infantry and yellow was cavalry.

Still are, actually.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 16, 2009, 05:42:38 PM
Still are, actually.

O, rly???  Didn't know that.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on October 16, 2009, 05:45:37 PM
Still are, actually.

O, rly???  Didn't know that.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Army_branch_insignia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Army_branch_insignia)
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 16, 2009, 06:01:21 PM
Same in our Army, and probably a fair few others.


Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 16, 2009, 10:54:24 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_Fremantle

Trust me to find the only British thing in the Civil War.  :biggriin:

Apparently he was portrayed in the movie Gettysburg but I can't recall seeing him.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 16, 2009, 11:05:22 PM
he hangs out with lee and general longstreet alot if I remember correctly.

oddly enough there is an american civil war memorial in ireland.  :icon_wink: 
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 16, 2009, 11:09:19 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_Fremantle

Trust me to find the only British thing in the Civil War.  :biggriin:

Apparently he was portrayed in the movie Gettysburg but I can't recall seeing him.

James Lancaster plays him and he's seen talking to Longstreet quite a bit during the movie. And George Lazenby made an appearance as General Johnston Pettigrew. And Fremantle actually got into quite a bit of trouble. He sold his uniform to buy a horse and was fined a godly amount that I can't remember off the top of my head...

he hangs out with lee and general longstreet alot if I remember correctly.

oddly enough there is an american civil war memorial in ireland.  :icon_wink: 

Fear the 69th New York...
The Irish Volunteers!!!  :icon_cool:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yavz9rzaOSY


Expect to hear a lot more from me on this thread....  :icon_wink:

-The General

Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 16, 2009, 11:16:55 PM
We did wonder where you'd gotten to ;)
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on October 17, 2009, 12:02:48 AM
We did wonder where you'd gotten to ;)

No kidding, this thread didn't seem complete without Union General. Nice to have you back. I was meaning to ask you, as I can't remember, what was the Confederate Irish regiment that fought opposite the 69th at Fredrksburg?

Fremantle was one of my favorite characters from the book.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 17, 2009, 12:43:18 AM
I think it was commanded by Thomas R.R. Cobb, from Georgia.  I don't know the unit number, though.  Ah, Wikipedia says the 24th Georgia.  I think Cobb was in command of a brigade by the time of Fredericksburg.  I'm sure I'll get the bayonet from UG if I'm wrong. ;)
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on October 17, 2009, 01:23:31 AM
I was almost sure it was a smaller unit than a brigade, the only likely option being a regiment. I could be quite very wrong, of course. As an aside, we don't even have regiments any more, except in name only.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 17, 2009, 01:48:13 AM
I think it was a regiment.  The 24th was in his brigade, though.  Cobb formed a legion, which was folded into a brigade which was originally commanded by his brother, who was later promoted and given a different command.

TRR Cobb died at Fredericksburg.  I think in Gods and Generals it may have mentioned Cobb's Brigade specifically.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 17, 2009, 02:44:04 AM
On the subject of uniforms, it helps to remember that as the Southern States supplied their own militias regionally produced clothing, the "uniforms" weren't all that uniform.  The "Washington Artillery" from New Orleans wore dark blue uniforms as did a number of other units, at the outbreak of the war, which lead to a number of problems in the field.  Even after units had swtiched over to grey, there wasn't a uniform color of grey used univerally throughout the south.  Even Northern state militias had differences in uniforms.  The best thing about this now is that it is nice for wargamers so they don't have to paint a thousand copies of the same uniform.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on October 17, 2009, 02:47:57 AM
To keep everyone on the same page, (very simplified) the unit breakdown to follow. I haven't included anything lower than company, as they are too small to be of relevance in major engagements and rarely acted independantly. Numbers vary wildly, and were effected by casualties, many units did not replace casualties and were folded intop other units when they got too small. These reflect Infantry units, Cavalry and Artillery were a little different. That being said, here is the dirt:
1. Company: Commanded by a Captain, made of platoons (led by lieutenants) and having from 60 to 200 men.
2. Battalion: Commanded by Lieutenant Colonel, made of companies and having anywhere from 100 to 800 (or more) men.
3. Regiment: Commanded by a Colonel, made of regiments. Startin here and continuing, numbers get funny (for the Civil War).
4. Brigade: Commanded by Brigadier General, made of regiments.
5. Division: Commanded by Major General, made of brigades.
6. Corps: Commanded by Lieutenant General, made of divisions.

These were the operational units. Armies and Army Groups were too large to be of tactical significance (I am a details man). Like I said, numbers are hugely variabel, as are commanding ranks. You cann have 200 people in a company, but fewer than 200 in a regiment, and so forth. A lieutenant can command a company given need, an major can command a battalion, and so forth. It certainly doesn't help to simplify the study of history.

1.  The Henry was a good gun, better when they started making the shell casings in brass instead of copper. As it ws difficult to get ammo, I wouldn't have wanted to carry one during the war unless I was certain I could get ammo when I needed it.

If I had been a regular infantryman, I think I would have preferred the .58 caliber 3 band Enfield.  I know some reenactors who have them and the rifle is incredibly accurate for a muzzleloader.  They are easy to clean and fired a standard minie ball so getting ammo wouldn't have been a problem.

The scariets muzzleloader of the time was the Whitworth rifle, which was used by some Confederate snipers.  I know someone who has a replica and while it is stunningly accurate, the barrel has to be cleaned every few shots or else the odd shaped hexagonal bullet can get stuck in the barrel while loading.

As an individual soldier, I would take the Henry any day, maybe one of the breach-loading carbines like the Spencer if the Henry wasn't an option. If I had to equip a unit of any size, the 1861 pattern Springfield rifled-musket would be my choice. A relativley standard round size, robust and solidly built, interchangeable parts (more important than one would initially think) and domestic (easier supply).

On the subject of uniforms, it helps to remember that as the Southern States supplied their own militias regionally produced clothing, the "uniforms" weren't all that uniform.  The "Washington Artillery" from New Orleans wore dark blue uniforms as did a number of other units, at the outbreak of the war, which lead to a number of problems in the field.  Even after units had swtiched over to grey, there wasn't a uniform color of grey used univerally throughout the south.  Even Northern state militias had differences in uniforms.  The best thing about this now is that it is nice for wargamers so they don't have to paint a thousand copies of the same uniform.

Totally. Like I mentioned, the variation in uniforms was astounding. No standard led to even friendly-fire situations early on. Like everything else in the war, there was no way to standardize as getting men into the field was more important than standard.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 17, 2009, 02:54:55 AM
"As an individual soldier, I would take the Henry any day, maybe one of the breach-loading carbines like the Spencer if the Henry wasn't an option."

So you would sign up for the cavalry to increase your chances of getting one?

 :happy:
"You never see a dead cavalryman."  Common jibe made by infantrymen during the war.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on October 17, 2009, 02:59:54 AM
"As an individual soldier, I would take the Henry any day, maybe one of the breach-loading carbines like the Spencer if the Henry wasn't an option."

So you would sign up for the cavalry to increase your chances of getting one?

 :happy:
"You never see a dead cavalryman."  Common jibe made by infantrymen during the war.

Sorry, I thought it was "Fantasy Civil War." But yes, I would have joined the cav or a specialist (scout) unit. Standing around while people target practice at me is not my idea of a good time.

 :icon_biggrin:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 17, 2009, 03:31:06 AM
Yeah I would have wanted to be in cavalry or just in command.  Seems like most "heroes" from the time were generals. :::cheers:::
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: neverness on October 17, 2009, 04:27:07 AM
Of all the battles of the American Civil War, this battle http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Hampton_Roads
I think was the one that truly got the world's attention, that truly turned us from being a land of principle bickering colonials too "Shit! They just made our navies obsolete!" and set America up to be a major player -militarily- in the next century.

++++

It's bemusing how many Southerners still loathe General Sherman. I recall waking up one morning back around '99, to a local AM radio station (I'd go to sleep listening to Art Bell, and this would be on by the time I woke up) that typically has a Rightwing/Christian slant agenda where the host of this show along with his guests where just railing against this dead General, and demanding that he be declared a war criminal  and terrorist for his excursion of the scorched earth policy against the south. It was as if they personally knew someone who had lost a farm or brother to Sherman's men. Living in East Tennessee, I sometimes get to peek at the underbelly of the deeper south, and it's not changed as much as people want to think, nor have their resentments. Especially in the post-reconstruciton towns of the south. (Why am I hearing Copperhead Road in my head while I type this?)
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 17, 2009, 04:31:58 AM
yeah the deep south is as backwards as you can get in the US.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYcDP9Wl7so (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYcDP9Wl7so)
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Von Kurst on October 17, 2009, 04:32:50 AM
Heroes--Depends on what you mean by hero.  As time goes on the generals are the only ones remembered. It was a war in which a general could and did often face enemy fire.  But the heroes of the common people of the time have largely been forgotten by the culture.   I can only name one Medal of Honor winner from the Civil War and I can only think of one name from WWI...
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 17, 2009, 08:02:57 AM
I can think of a number of Medal of Honor winners from the Civil War as there were so many medals given out.  Capturing an enemy flag in combat would almost certainly ensure winning the award.  Some came very late and were mailed to the receipients in a plain envelope.

Offhand, here are some that I can think of:

William Carney - Sgt with 54th Mass who fought at Fort Wagner, first black soldier to earn the Medal of Honor but he didn't receive it until 37 years after the war

Joshua Chamberlain - Colonel of the 20th Maine, won MoH during 2nd day of Gettysburg, shown in the movie.

Mary Walker - Surgeon, first woman to receive MoH (which contradicts part of the plot of the movie "Courage Under Fire"), medal was rescinded in 1917 but restored in 1977.

I can think of a few generals who won the medal.  Dan Butterfield, O.O. Howard, and Dan Sickles.  There are a few more but I can't recall the rest.

Some of the winners you may not know, but you know a relative.

Arthur McArthur Jr - General Douglas McArthur's father.  Received the award 25 years after the war for bravery for service at Missionary Ridge

Tom Custer - won 2 Medals of Honor (within 3 days of each other during the last weeks of the war) while his more famous brother George Armstrong didn't win any. 

Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 17, 2009, 07:03:54 PM
We did wonder where you'd gotten to ;)

No kidding, this thread didn't seem complete without Union General. Nice to have you back. I was meaning to ask you, as I can't remember, what was the Confederate Irish regiment that fought opposite the 69th at Fredrksburg?

Fremantle was one of my favorite characters from the book.

I'm pretty sure it was a Georgia regiment, but I can't think of which one off the top of my head at the moment.  :unsure:

I can think of a number of Medal of Honor winners from the Civil War as there were so many medals given out.  Capturing an enemy flag in combat would almost certainly ensure winning the award.  Some came very late and were mailed to the receipients in a plain envelope.

You're forgetting about Andrews' Raiders!
For those of you who don't know, they were a bunch of civilians and Union soldiers with an Ohio regiment that hijacked a locomotive (The General) in an attempt to shred the Confederate rail network and split the Confederacy in two. It failed miserably, with the entire team captured and most of them executed by the gallows. The rest either escaped or were traded in prisoner exchanges.



They won America's FIRST Medals of Honor!
 :biggriin:

Of all the battles of the American Civil War, this battle http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Hampton_Roads
I think was the one that truly got the world's attention, that truly turned us from being a land of principle bickering colonials too "Shit! They just made our navies obsolete!" and set America up to be a major player -militarily- in the next century.

And many of the generals then were decades ahead of their time. Admiral Dahlgren is still known as the 'Father of Modern Naval Artillery.' Longstreet KNEW that Napoleonic-style warfare was a bad idea coupled with rifled weapons that had an effective range of 250 yards... AND repeating weapons...
Also, the Battle of Selma was the first battle to utilize the modern infantry squad on a large scale.

God, I love this thread....  :engel:

-The General


Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 19, 2009, 12:51:31 AM
I think it was commanded by Thomas R.R. Cobb, from Georgia.  I don't know the unit number, though.  Ah, Wikipedia says the 24th Georgia.  I think Cobb was in command of a brigade by the time of Fredericksburg.  I'm sure I'll get the bayonet from UG if I'm wrong. ;)

To bring this thread back again, no. You won't be getting the bayonet from me, don't worry...  :wink:


To keep everyone on the same page, (very simplified) the unit breakdown to follow. I haven't included anything lower than company, as they are too small to be of relevance in major engagements and rarely acted independantly. Numbers vary wildly, and were effected by casualties, many units did not replace casualties and were folded intop other units when they got too small. These reflect Infantry units, Cavalry and Artillery were a little different. That being said, here is the dirt:
1. Company: Commanded by a Captain, made of platoons (led by lieutenants) and having from 60 to 200 men.
2. Battalion: Commanded by Lieutenant Colonel, made of companies and having anywhere from 100 to 800 (or more) men.
3. Regiment: Commanded by a Colonel, made of regiments. Startin here and continuing, numbers get funny (for the Civil War).
4. Brigade: Commanded by Brigadier General, made of regiments.
5. Division: Commanded by Major General, made of brigades.
6. Corps: Commanded by Lieutenant General, made of divisions.



Ah, now for the numbers!!!  :-D
Big Time nailed company and battalion pretty well, so I'll just pick up from there!

1 Regiment= Anywhere from 300 to 1,000 soldiers
1 Brigade=3 or 4 regiments
1 Division= 3 or 4 brigades
1 Corps= 3 or 4 Divisions
1 Army- The Army of the Potomac consisted of 7 Corps, but that's not usually an official number per se. It varies from army to army.

I'm having too much fun on this thread....  :happy:
-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 19, 2009, 12:59:50 AM
I gotcha on Armies UG!

1 army generally consisted of anywhere between 2 and 4 Army Corps, so somewhere between 12,000 and 120,000 men.

Also some perspective on the smaller units:

 Regiment= 10 companies organized by individual states, they were numbered and the officers were appointed (company officers were elected)

Brigade=2 regiments but when the regiments suffered heavy losses they combined more than two. Known by the name of the commanding officer

Division=2 brigades. Identified by name of commanding officer
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 19, 2009, 01:00:59 AM
I was referencing numbers around the time of the Battle of Gettysburg, so towards the middle of the war.  :wink:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 19, 2009, 01:05:15 AM
Yeah, mines a bit more general.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 19, 2009, 05:29:02 AM
Union General, I hadn't forgotten about the guys who went on the great locomotive chase with the General but I didn't list them because I didn't think anyone would remember them at all. I've seen the train in a museum.  There was a movie about it in the mid 50s with Fess Parker, I think, but most of these youngsters online probably haven't seen it.  It was a good film, by the way.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 19, 2009, 12:51:25 PM
Gustavus- never assume that either UG or me doesn't know about something to do with the Civil War  :icon_mrgreen:.

I shall supply a few pictures of examples of uniforms as soon as the carpet cleaning people go away.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: steveb on October 19, 2009, 01:48:05 PM
if you want an idea of the size of the units, look at the orders of battle for both sides in some of the big and small battles. a regiment could be as small as 10 or 15 men, or as large as 500 (union artillery regiments around washington, who soon became infantry, lol) the size seemed to depend on how many casualties, how many sick, and how many replacement were in route to the unit.  both sides used different organisation tables, and even in the same side there was a wide variety of differences.  No one here mentioned the numerous legions that existed for quite a while.
Also of note is the difference in the manner that each side handled units that were shot up, the south I believe combined units to maintain strength and the north if I remember correctly reinforced each unit from the civilian population (new recruits).  Then there is the issue of the organisation of the indians who fought on both sides, very variable. As a note the last Confederate General to surrender was Gen. Stand Watie, an Indian leading an Indian and southern mix army.  Anyway look at the order of battles and then remember it was not unusual for these units to take 40-60% casualties in a big battle and even more to disease and illness.  steveb
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 19, 2009, 02:39:48 PM
Hey now, I mentioned Cobb's legion. :wink:

I had read that the CSA would try to keep the units going for as long as they could whilst the Union would form new regiments often (to get the government funding from unit start up costs, I believe), and then merge remnants of old regiments into new ones.  Wasn't that part of the issue with the 2nd Maine joining the 20th?  That and part of the unit signing longer enlistments than others.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 19, 2009, 05:10:01 PM
t12161991, I would never that you or Union General wouldn't know something about the ACW.   :icon_biggrin:

Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 19, 2009, 09:54:39 PM
Union General, I hadn't forgotten about the guys who went on the great locomotive chase with the General but I didn't list them because I didn't think anyone would remember them at all. I've seen the train in a museum.  There was a movie about it in the mid 50s with Fess Parker, I think, but most of these youngsters online probably haven't seen it.  It was a good film, by the way.

The Great Locomotive Chase! An excellent movie!

Also, Buster Keaton did a comedy movie based on the incident. The film was The General, and it was hilarious.  :-D

Hey now, I mentioned Cobb's legion. :wink:

I had read that the CSA would try to keep the units going for as long as they could whilst the Union would form new regiments often (to get the government funding from unit start up costs, I believe), and then merge remnants of old regiments into new ones.  Wasn't that part of the issue with the 2nd Maine joining the 20th?  That and part of the unit signing longer enlistments than others.

They would! And the Army of Northern Virginia remained largely original with its regiments throughout the entire war! The Union would form new regiments very frequently, particularly due to the superiority of available manpower.  And yes, that's what happened with the 2nd Maine and the 20th Maine. And you're right.  :happy:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 19, 2009, 10:02:10 PM
funny how natives dont get much credit for the war... :dry:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 19, 2009, 10:24:53 PM
funny how natives dont get much credit for the war... :dry:

Quite a few of them had been 'relocated' out West...  :dry:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 19, 2009, 10:31:14 PM
yeah but they also fought for the north and south during the war too.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 19, 2009, 10:34:36 PM
yeah but they also fought for the north and south during the war too.

They did!  :happy:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 19, 2009, 10:35:51 PM
If you were on the continent, your ethnicity probably participated in some fashion. :wink:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 19, 2009, 10:38:50 PM
even Quebecois?  :icon_wink:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 19, 2009, 10:59:14 PM
even Quebecois?  :icon_wink:

 :icon_lol:

Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 19, 2009, 11:11:33 PM
ooo and little known fact, after the war some confederates left the US and established their own colony in Brazil.  Where they still live today with the southern lifestyle (minus the slave plantations).

haha I remember watching "road rules" when I was a young punk and they stopped somewhere to participate in a ACW reenactment.  They evenly distrubuted the team on both sides.  Oddly enough the black guy was on the confederates.  He voiced his concerns in to the "private monologue cam" that he was afraid they would treat him badly.  He was quite shocked how open they were to him and he made a lot of life time friends.  Moral of the story, its just renactment, not a hate group haha.  I guess its a classic case of "dont judge a book by its cover"
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on October 20, 2009, 01:48:51 AM
A good part of the Union Army was fightin the redskins at the same time.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on October 20, 2009, 05:11:08 AM
Battles:

Is it just me or does anyone else think Grant should not have engaged Lee at the Wilderness. Numerical superiority does not constitute a reason to launch an attack through a nightmare terrain like that. Grant's aggression helped speed the war to it's conclusion, but like Pickett's Charge, throwing away troops like that borders on the immoral.

Question: How awesome is Brigadier Gen. John Buford? Answer: Gettysburg, Day One and Very Awesome. Granted the Confederates were blinded by a lack of recon (Stuart's fault) but Buford capitalized on that and put up one hell of a defense.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 20, 2009, 05:15:57 AM
I remember in middle school I read the book "johnny skedaddle" its about a drummer boy from the new pork bower boys who was at the battle of the wilderness.  Then lived in the south after the battle.  Yeah the wilderness was a bad idea.  Wasnt it also the first time an explosive land mine was used?

buford was awesome.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 20, 2009, 05:46:54 AM
The general concept of the moving through "The Wilderness" in itself wasn't a bad idea. Lee initiated the attack and Grant wasn't about to disengage when he had a significant superiority in numbers.  Had he withdrawn, he would have appeared to be as gutless as McClellan.
Grant knew that he had the manpower to press the attack, which would reduce Lee's limited men and resources and not let Lee regain the intiative, which Lee was repeatedly able to do with Grant's predecessors.  On the first half of the second day, the Union was doing extremely well and had pushed Lee back. They just did a very poor job of protecting either flank and ended up having to fall back.  If Longstreet hadn't arrived in time, Lee likely would have been forced to withdraw and the battle would have been a clear victory for Grant. 
On a side note, this area was bad luck for the Southern generals.  Longstreet was shot by his own troops only a few miles from the spot where Jackson had been shot the year before by his men.
When the attack through the Wilderness didn't work, Grant shifted a bit to try at Spotsylvania Court House, and when that didn't work, he moved to Cold Harbor.  Of the three battles, Cold Harbor was the mistake and Grant frequently admitted and regretted the mistake.

I'm hoping that Walmart does not end up building a store right next to the Wilderness battlefield.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on October 20, 2009, 12:04:54 PM
Grants strategy was always to find the enemy, engage him and while he's engaged use his unengaged units to go around, flank or cut him off from his support.  Not just a calvary strike (ala the confederates) but an in force, supported, infantry flanking move.  The kind of force that can flank, then occupy.

I don't think Grant would have passed up any chance to engage the enemy, no matter how unattractive.  The battle might go bad, but while he is "losing" the battle, the enemy is faced with pressing an attack or falling back to support his rear who is threatened.

Grant knew he had a vastly superior army (in numbers, supply and logistics).  That was his superior weapon and he knew it.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 21, 2009, 12:42:23 AM
AND the Union already had superior numbers to begin with. That, and a better-developed infrastructure of roads, canals, industry, and, particularly, railroads to move troops and supplies.

Grants strategy was always to find the enemy, engage him and while he's engaged use his unengaged units to go around, flank or cut him off from his support.  Not just a calvary strike (ala the confederates) but an in force, supported, infantry flanking move.  The kind of force that can flank, then occupy.

I don't think Grant would have passed up any chance to engage the enemy, no matter how unattractive.  The battle might go bad, but while he is "losing" the battle, the enemy is faced with pressing an attack or falling back to support his rear who is threatened.

Grant knew he had a vastly superior army (in numbers, supply and logistics).  That was his superior weapon and he knew it.

Also on that note, with superior numbers comes fighting with near-unlimited resources. The casualties taken on the part of the Confederacy would be much more hard-felt than that of the Union. Sounds immoral, I know, but it's from a purely tactical standpoint.


-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 21, 2009, 12:58:34 AM
UG, my understanding is that that last point was the basis for the entire campaign after the Wilderness- hurt them until they could be hurt no more, then kill them. And that's what he did (killed the idea of rebellion at least).
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 21, 2009, 01:00:48 AM
UG, my understanding is that that last point was the basis for the entire campaign after the Wilderness- hurt them until they could be hurt no more, then kill them. And that's what he did (killed the idea of rebellion at least).

Exactly!  :biggriin:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Fog Of Waagh on October 21, 2009, 01:13:41 AM
You can kinda compare the North to the Imperial guard in 40k.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 21, 2009, 01:35:30 AM
Without the Tanks. And superior weapons.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 21, 2009, 01:46:47 AM
Without the Tanks. And superior weapons.

But we DID have superior weapons...  :happy:

Hurrah for the breech-loaders, repeaters, et cetera et cetera...

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 21, 2009, 02:05:10 AM
and the over abundance of irish immigrants...
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 21, 2009, 02:07:34 AM
I was talking the other way around for superior weapons.  :icon_redface:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 21, 2009, 11:32:43 AM
I sway to and fro quite often on whether Grant was teh awesomez.  It was remarkable for the time that he understood the total war concept, but there's a little part of me that can never truly appreciate calling assault after assault and sacrficing so many.  I'm sure he shortened the war, but it's still quite a pill to have to swallow.

I don't really think he was a butcher, quite the contrary.  I've not read many biographies, but his is one that I have and I appreciate him as a general.  Just not way up on the totem poll for me.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 21, 2009, 06:11:20 PM
The later era of the war was more like World War I with muskets than anything...  :ph34r:


-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 21, 2009, 06:19:54 PM
I think the best part of the Civil War was when Lee surrendered. And the whole saluting each other etc.

It could almost come out of some corny American movie that fades into a rippling US flag with some heroic music in the background.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 21, 2009, 06:23:58 PM
Twas very classy.  Chamberlain was awesome.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 21, 2009, 06:27:43 PM
Twas very classy.  Chamberlain was awesome.

That he was, good sir. That he was...  :-)


-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 23, 2009, 03:13:31 PM
I'm borrowing this quote from Soth.  I figured I'd put it here because it makes more sense then to clog up another thread with our nonsense.

Sorry guys, but when it comes to being invaded we (the Belgians and their ancestors) are the experts by experience.

The quote reminded me of a story:

A buddy of mine went to Georgia and went on a tour down there (don't remember about what, though).  The tour guide asked him where he was from and he said Virginia, to which the tour guide expressed 'The Yankees are coming.'

 :Ohmy:

I received that in a text message.  I was so flabergasted that I couldn't really put my thoughts into a succinct enough compression to give him a rebuttal at the time.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 23, 2009, 03:34:15 PM
The Confederacy say they were invaded. And yet we still owned Fort Sumter and THEY fired on us first...  :dry:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 23, 2009, 03:52:46 PM
But the North did invade.  That still stands up, even though South Carolina fired first. 

And they saw it as their property (even though it clearly wasn't) so their justification was that they were taking what was rightfully their's.  For the Union to not have handed it over was already hostile.  Heck, voting Lincoln in was considered a hostile act. 

Very convoluted, but things had gotten past the point of no return.  South Carolina was really itching for a fight.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 23, 2009, 03:57:19 PM
But the North did invade.  That still stands up, even though South Carolina fired first. 

And they saw it as their property (even though it clearly wasn't) so their justification was that they were taking what was rightfully their's.  For the Union to not have handed it over was already hostile.  Heck, voting Lincoln in was considered a hostile act. 

Very convoluted, but things had gotten past the point of no return.  South Carolina was really itching for a fight.

We did invade, but only after we were fired upon... I was talking 'invade' from a military standpoint.  :icon_wink:

And I've also heard that Alabama wanted to secede from the Confederacy at one point!  :icon_eek:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 23, 2009, 04:01:18 PM
Yeah, I'm just arguing semantics. :icon_razz:

I know South Carolina did.  First I had heard about Alabama.  Though really at the end things were so bad...

South Carolina (and most other states) had a lot of issues with the way the newly formed Confederate government was trying to tax and conscript.  All the things the states thought were unconstitutional they absolutely needed in a time of warfare.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 23, 2009, 04:04:39 PM
And it was constructed to have strong state governments. A weak central government and wartime just don't go together very well...  :icon_mrgreen:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 23, 2009, 04:12:37 PM
Yeah but the colonials invaded the thirteen colonies and fired on us first...
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 23, 2009, 04:14:59 PM
Everything was stacked against the CSA for a long war.

One of the dumb moves that they did was to burn off their cotton crop of 1860 in order to force England and France into the conflict.  Instead of selling it off and making gobs of money and using it to better their cause they played heavily into the foreign pressure angle to save the day.  They sorely miscalculated the emergence of other avenues of cotton (understandable in some regards).  In that situation, they didn't hold the cards as tightly to their vest as they thought they did.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 23, 2009, 04:17:09 PM
Yeah but the colonials invaded the thirteen colonies and fired on us first...

Under the context, it's not the same sort of invasion, at least in my opinion.  Plus, I'm not sure if anyone really knows who fired that first shot at Lexington.  I know you'll think it wasn't the Brits since you were so disciplined. :happy:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 23, 2009, 04:18:12 PM
I still think its that twerp of an innkeeper that shot the first shot before duckign back into his house.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 23, 2009, 05:18:07 PM
I still think its that twerp of an innkeeper that shot the first shot before duckign back into his house.

Which one?  :biggriin:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 23, 2009, 09:17:10 PM
Having used a flintlock musket for reenactments for over 10 years, it wouldn't surprise me at all if someone's weapon accidentally went off due to a malfunctioning sear and tumbler.  The "teeth" on my tumbler have worn down over the years and with a weak sear spring or if it isn't very clean, the sear can get bumped loose to drop the hammer.  I need to replace the tumbler at some point.

I agree with the earlier comment that South Carolina was ready to secede the moment Lincoln was elected.  If the South had been able to split with strong state governments but a weak central government, they would have eventually had the same problems that Mexico has had since the 1830s.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 23, 2009, 09:17:42 PM
The Shot Heard Round the World came from the Brits. They were itching for a confrontation after all!

Either that, or a misplaced Frenchman looking to cause some trouble.

GM- South Carolina did secede right after he was elected. I believe. Not sure of the exact date.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 23, 2009, 09:28:21 PM
The Shot Heard Round the World came from the Brits. They were itching for a confrontation after all!

Either that, or a misplaced Frenchman looking to cause some trouble.

GM- South Carolina did secede right after he was elected. I believe. Not sure of the exact date.

actually if I remember correctly it was still under the former president (could be after the election but before the swearing in)  and the former president had the mentality of "meh then new guy will deal with it.  im just here to party."  And he didnt take any steps in trying to solve the differences and keep the union together.  he was just wasted space in the white house.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 23, 2009, 09:32:58 PM
The Shot Heard Round the World came from the Brits. They were itching for a confrontation after all!

Either that, or a misplaced Frenchman looking to cause some trouble.

GM- South Carolina did secede right after he was elected. I believe. Not sure of the exact date.

I agree. The French did it.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 23, 2009, 09:34:13 PM
South Carolina seceded on December 20th after the election but before Lincoln took office (March 4, 1861).  Ft Sumter was attacked in April.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on October 23, 2009, 09:34:38 PM
I don't know it it was so much Meh, as, "Well I tried, we will let the election decide the matter."  And it did.  Sometimes the a leaders needs to get out of the way and let the people speak.

I think our current health care debate is at that point.  I really wish they would produce a real bill and then let the election happen.  If its a good bill and the people want it, they will elect people who will support it.  If it does not have the people's support, it will fail.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 23, 2009, 09:37:19 PM
The Shot Heard Round the World came from the Brits. They were itching for a confrontation after all!

Either that, or a misplaced Frenchman looking to cause some trouble.

GM- South Carolina did secede right after he was elected. I believe. Not sure of the exact date.

I agree. The French did it.

Time to take revenge then?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 23, 2009, 09:38:45 PM
yes it was napoleon, he stole ben franklins time machine and fired first.  also thats how the boston massacre happened.  that naughty little rascal napoleon  :icon_wink:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 23, 2009, 09:48:20 PM
Right thats it. As soon as I'm done with Sweden, I'm going after France.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 24, 2009, 06:18:26 AM
If Napoleon had access to a time machine, I'm sure he would have gone back to kill Blücher's mother before he was born.

Jump to scene:
1757, Rostock, Mecklenburg.

Young Prussian rushes in the Blücher home.

"Frau Blücher, komm mit mir ob Sie moechten leben!"

Followed by a 6 foot tall, robotic moving French Guardsman (who has hint of Austrian accent) crashing through the window with ominous music in the background.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 24, 2009, 06:36:51 AM
nah, the whole idea is revolved around napoleon as a nobody and thus changed history to make what has happen happen. Without the american revolution, would the french have revolted? Just a question, im not saying one depends on the other, but no way napoleon could have been emperor with the king still in power haha.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 24, 2009, 06:55:34 AM
Even without the American Revolution, I think it was likely that a revolution in France was doomed to happen, but when and how successful it would be is anyone's guess.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 24, 2009, 07:16:50 AM
I still think its that twerp of an innkeeper that shot the first shot before duckign back into his house.

It was a time traveling hitler...He obtained the time travel machine from his old buddy einstien so he could split england and confuse france so that he could stand a chance at making it into art school.  However this irrevocably changed time causing the first world war and changing Germany.  Einstien found out about the whole ordeal and destroyed the time machine and fled the country.  Hitler then tried to put his country back together believing it was all his fault.  He then persecuted the jews because he felt betrayed by his buddy einstien, and the rest is history.

or it was a kid playing with a firecracker and both sides thought they heard a shot and started shooting each other.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 24, 2009, 12:49:15 PM
Ok, not letting this topic get derailed...

UG I need help!

Last weekend was the reenactment at Cedar Creek Battlefield near Winchester, and for like the 5th year in a row I've missed it!  One day I'll make it out there.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 24, 2009, 02:41:25 PM
Ok, not letting this topic get derailed...

UG I need help!

Last weekend was the reenactment at Cedar Creek Battlefield near Winchester, and for like the 5th year in a row I've missed it!  One day I'll make it out there.

fall is usually when the renactments stop.  Do a google search and see if there are any around you (and neighboring states)
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 24, 2009, 03:37:37 PM
I know there are a bunch around, but I want to go to that one. :-P  It's always the same time of year, I just tend to always have something going on then.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 24, 2009, 07:11:43 PM
Fredericksburg is in December.  Maybe you can make it to that one.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 24, 2009, 10:03:29 PM
Ok, not letting this topic get derailed...

UG I need help!

Last weekend was the reenactment at Cedar Creek Battlefield near Winchester, and for like the 5th year in a row I've missed it!  One day I'll make it out there.

Actually, I couldn't make it this year either.  :ph34r:

Fredericksburg is in December.  Maybe you can make it to that one.

I've got mixed feelings about winter reenactments. Greatcoats are awesome, but I almost went into hypothermia at Cedar Creek last year... And that was in October...

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 24, 2009, 11:37:03 PM
you know the hitler story I made would make a good book or movie.  I think I may have to develop more on it.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 25, 2009, 02:13:51 AM
you know the hitler story I made would make a good book or movie.  I think I may have to develop more on it.

Hmm? Explain. You have aroused the General's curiosity...

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 25, 2009, 02:15:35 AM
look one page back. :happy:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 25, 2009, 02:40:19 AM
I have some models to show you lot...

Yes, models. Some of the few I own that are actually painted.

They show the progression of uniforms through the war for both sides, by battle.

(http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e62/t12161991/DSC01910.jpg)

(http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e62/t12161991/DSC01911.jpg)

(http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e62/t12161991/DSC01913.jpg)

(http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e62/t12161991/DSC01915.jpg)

(http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e62/t12161991/DSC01918.jpg)

(http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e62/t12161991/DSC01919.jpg)

(http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e62/t12161991/DSC01920.jpg)
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 25, 2009, 02:43:38 AM
look one page back. :happy:

 :icon_lol:


And t12161991, those models are pretty nifty. Where did you get them?  :engel:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 25, 2009, 02:47:16 AM
its almost a "Paradise Lost" scenario, just replace Lucifer with hitler.  You paint a universaly believed evil person into a more sympathetic role.  I'm sure if I did write this the Jewish community would say im an anti-Semite. :icon_rolleyes:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 25, 2009, 02:48:42 AM
My grandpa.

Don't bother looking for them, he got them in '71...

I also have this:

(http://i38.tinypic.com/2qaidci.jpg)

And a canteen I don't have pictures of. The canteen was clearly in a battle, it has several bullet dents!
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 25, 2009, 02:53:54 AM
its almost a "Paradise Lost" scenario, just replace Lucifer with hitler.  You paint a universaly believed evil person into a more sympathetic role.  I'm sure if I did write this the Jewish community would say im an anti-Semite. :icon_rolleyes:

I'm a Jew and I take no offense to your story at all...  :icon_wink:


And t12161991, I must find you and that canteen.  :-D

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 25, 2009, 02:56:35 AM
If I manage to stop by you on my road trip I'll bring it!

I'll see if I can take pictures tomorrow. It depends on how depressed I still feel over both football games...

Oh, and a Civil War chess set, which is quite well painted... and some more crappy models I got at Fort Sumter.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 25, 2009, 07:33:25 AM
Is the flintlock a Springfield, Harper's Ferry, or what?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 25, 2009, 01:53:28 PM
It's actually from before the Civil War- I think it was made/used during the Mexican War.

Not sure what type it is.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 26, 2009, 05:42:29 AM
There should be a name or date on the main place behind the hammer.  There might be some other markings somewhere else, like on the barrel near the lock that might give an idea.  Venturing a guess, I think it might be a 1816 pattern.  I saw one at auction for over $3000.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 26, 2009, 11:54:30 AM
I got it for $50 at a garage sale.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 26, 2009, 08:36:32 PM
I got it for $50 at a garage sale.


 :icon_eek:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 26, 2009, 08:37:41 PM
I have to admit I have a special place in my heart for the lovable scamp Lee.  Hes also such a tragic figure.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 26, 2009, 08:39:29 PM
I got it for $50 at a garage sale.


 :icon_eek:

I know right? I was shocked they had it as an antique that cheap, but I didn't know it was $3000... would never sell it though.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 26, 2009, 08:43:46 PM
Some people are just idiots though.

My grandparents sold a box full of first edition books for 50 cents each at a garage sale...  :dry:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 26, 2009, 08:48:07 PM
I have to admit I have a special place in my heart for the lovable scamp Lee.  Hes also such a tragic figure.

Ah, I was hoping someone would get this thread back on topic... thank you, Feanor!  :icon_wink:

He was a very tragic figure! He had taken the oath to defend his nation, but his heart rested with his home state. And he proved to be more than excellent as a general, though he was an engineer during the Mexican War and had never led troops before. The man was a genius... Easily one of the greatest generals of American History and probably the most well-known... :engel:


-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 26, 2009, 08:52:23 PM
If i remember correctly he was the only rebel who was not allowed to get his american citizenship back after the war.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 26, 2009, 08:53:56 PM
He got it back a few years later by the president himself.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 26, 2009, 08:57:05 PM
which pres?  I m sure it wast lincoln  :engel:  Wouldnt it be sweet if it was president grant.  D'awww its a kodak moment.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 26, 2009, 09:01:04 PM
He got it back a few years later by the president himself.

Actually, it wasn't given back until 1975, over 100 years after his death!  :-o

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 26, 2009, 09:03:58 PM
as I said, such a tragic figure.  I wonder what happened to him after the war.  he kinda disappears in the history books after the surrender.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 26, 2009, 09:05:09 PM
Ooh, I read it as 1875. Weird.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 26, 2009, 09:42:25 PM
He died a few years after the war, in 1870.  President Andrew Johnson said he wasn't liable for treason, so I think that's where the confusion may have come from.  He became president of Washington and Lee college, that was about the biggest thing he did that I can recall.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on October 27, 2009, 01:33:25 AM
Lee's ancestral home, sitting on a hill overlooking Washington DC was taken and turned into a military cemetery and his home a hospital.  Arlington.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 27, 2009, 01:55:03 AM
Lee's ancestral home, sitting on a hill overlooking Washington DC was taken and turned into a military cemetery and his home a hospital.  Arlington.

yup, but thats just his property.  Also if you ever visit DC, totally check out the arlington cemetery.  Do other countries have military, government run, cemeteries?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 27, 2009, 01:59:05 AM
Feck loads in france.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 27, 2009, 02:04:01 AM
Even more in Russia.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Von Kurst on October 27, 2009, 03:58:26 AM
He was a very tragic figure! He had taken the oath to defend his nation, but his heart rested with his home state. And he proved to be more than excellent as a general, though he was an engineer during the Mexican War and had never led troops before. The man was a genius... Easily one of the greatest generals of American History and probably the most well-known... :engel:
-The General

Lee was a staff officer during the Mexican War, he saw combat and received a commendation for bravery.  His actions had a direct impact on several engagements. After serving as commander of West Point, he commanded cavalry in Texas against the Comanche.  He and Stuart are the officers in direct command of the troops who capture John Brown at Harper's Ferry.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 27, 2009, 05:33:29 AM
Lee was a good army general and while I won't argue that he might be one of the most famous, I'm not sure where he would rank overall.  It is a bit pointless, though, to try to compile comparative lists as each general had completely different armies and circumstances.

I do think that Lee was a decent man and did the best he could for a cause that he did not completely support, which is very much like a protagonist in a Greek tragedy.  I have wondered if the reason why his offensive campaigns in the north were not his best because he had a conflict of conscience. Defending Virginia was easy but launching an attack against his the country he had sworn an oath to protect was difficult.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 27, 2009, 05:48:34 AM
I wouldn't be surprised if that was the case.

I think more than a few Southerners might have faced that dilemna.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 27, 2009, 09:10:17 PM
Lee was a good army general and while I won't argue that he might be one of the most famous, I'm not sure where he would rank overall.  It is a bit pointless, though, to try to compile comparative lists as each general had completely different armies and circumstances.

I do think that Lee was a decent man and did the best he could for a cause that he did not completely support, which is very much like a protagonist in a Greek tragedy.  I have wondered if the reason why his offensive campaigns in the north were not his best because he had a conflict of conscience. Defending Virginia was easy but launching an attack against his the country he had sworn an oath to protect was difficult.

He invaded Maryland, where he ended at Antietam, primarily for two reasons....

1. He believed that he could sway the Confederate sympathy present in the State.

2. He saw Marylanders as similar to Virginians like himself.  :happy:

He invaded the North a second time to demoralize the Union with a victory on Northern soil.

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 27, 2009, 11:01:18 PM
Having an army's worth of men stationed in the state had a fair amount to do with that. :icon_smile:

Bringing this over here:

The Conferates may have won the field/woods at Chancellorsville, but I'm sure Lee would have traded a dozen losses for Stonewall Jackson if he could have done so.

Probably true.  Tying in with the Lutzen thread, do you see Chancellorsville as a loss because of the loss of Jackson?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 27, 2009, 11:03:05 PM
An overall strategic loss, yes for sure. A tactical loss for that campaign, not so much.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 27, 2009, 11:17:10 PM
An overall strategic loss, yes for sure. A tactical loss for that campaign, not so much.

Well, it got Hooker out of command of the Army of the Potomac...  :biggriin:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 27, 2009, 11:32:57 PM
And the guy who followed him was just so much better...
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 27, 2009, 11:38:49 PM
And the guy who followed him was just so much better...

Meade?!? He was actually competent!  :closed-eyes:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 27, 2009, 11:40:36 PM
Well most of the Union Generals *cough* were quite dire.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 27, 2009, 11:43:44 PM
Well most of the Union Generals *cough* were quite dire.


READY!
AIM!
FIRE!
*Opens volley into Inart's screen*
 :icon_mrgreen:


Anyways......
We had far better generals in the Western theater, but Meade was a decent general. Anyone who says otherwise is free to voice their opinion....

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 27, 2009, 11:47:20 PM
Oh Sherman Sherman Sherman Sherman! :eusa_clap:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 28, 2009, 12:43:22 AM
Oh it was Meade? I thought it was Hooker for some reason...

Yes, Meade was at the least competent, if not great.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on October 28, 2009, 03:19:25 AM
One of the problems in the East was too many generals.  The troops were very close to DC and you had endless trains of Congressmen and Senators who tried to "help" run the war.

I think that Lee was clearly the best general of the war (at least on defence) and he has some good generals under him.  But beyond that, the North had far more (numbers) capable men.  It just took a while to identify them and get them in the battle against Lee.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on October 28, 2009, 05:52:51 AM
Ironically, if I remember correctly (far too lazy to google it right now), Arlington National Cemetary is built on his land, seized after the war. If so, it is both awesome and tragic.

Lee was a great leader, but I think his subordinates deserve a shout out.

Longstreet was unfairly maligned after the war for criticizing Lee, but his criticism was deserved. Longstreet was also a forward-thinking genius of defensive warfare.

Lee has gotten a lot of credit for Jackson's early war action, also. If Jackson hadn't been capped by his own boys, the war would have had a much different tune.

I'm not trying to discredit Lee, just trying to point out that he had some great help.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 28, 2009, 06:31:51 AM
I think Longstreet was a very good general and likely would have done well in Lee's place.  Lee was good and he had some very capable generals below him.  It took the North a couple of years to weed out the incompetent ones.  Well, most of them.

Chancellorsville clearly was a tactical victory for the South.  However, the loss of Jackson was tremendous, especially just prior to the the invasion of Pennsylvania.  If Jackson had been at Gettysburg, then he might have been able to succeed where Longstreet wasn't able; to convince Lee not to launch an assault against the Union Center on the 3rd day.  He also might have pushed his troops harder on the days proceeding the battle and likely wouldn't have been as sluggish as Dick Ewell, which could have ended the battle before the 3rd day.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 28, 2009, 12:17:50 PM
I'm in agreement with everything on this page, so there's no need for me to reiterate it.

The Lee estate was captured early on as the beginning of the buffer around DC.  For his treasonous acts against the Union, someone saw it fitting that Union soldiers be buried there.  Don't remember the year, though.

Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 28, 2009, 01:30:23 PM
I have a lecture on Lee's High Command it's quite good and quite interesting.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 30, 2009, 01:24:46 AM
Oh it was Meade? I thought it was Hooker for some reason...

Yes, Meade was at the least competent, if not great.

Exactly. He knew to hold back at Gettysburg. If he HAD counterattacked after Pickett's charge, the Army of the Potomac would be crushed. The Confederate forces had run out of long-range artillery in the preliminary bombardment, but had PLENTY of canister rounds left.... Fear the giant shotgun shells.
Though the 1st Corps did send regiments around to flank the advancing Confederates... I'd personally have sent more troops to encircle and trap them. Many prisoners would be taken. The advance already took well over 50% casualties...

-The General

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 30, 2009, 01:57:26 AM
Pickets charge is probably in the top 10 defining moments of our history, because it basically decided Gettysburg.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on October 30, 2009, 02:02:04 AM
Pickets charge is probably in the top 10 defining moments of our history, because it basically decided Gettysburg.

Which also decided the war in the East. The war in the West was already pretty much ours.  :icon_cool:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 30, 2009, 05:38:09 AM
I don't know that I agree with either of the last two statements.

I think Gettysburg was probably decided on the second day when the Rebels failed their attempt at turning the flank and by Lee stubbornly refusing to continue a flanking move the next day.  Pickett's Charge had virtually no chance of success and even if by some miracle, had managed to force a breach in the middle, Lee had no remaining forces to exploit an opening.  More Union forces were arriving and the battle might have continued another day.  Or Meade would have predictably retreated toward Washington and Lee wouldn't have been in position to pursue.  Even if Meade had fled north, Lee could not have taken Washington, which was heavily defended in terms of troops and forts.

I don't know that Gettysburg was the deciding battle in the east either.  If Lee wins at Gettysburg, he still has to limp back to Virginia and get ready for the next round and the war resumes as it had the first couple of years.

I think there were three factors that tipped the scales absolutely.
1.  Sherman's capture of Atlanta in '64 and further advance to the sea that prevented further men and material from reaching Lee.
2.  Grant's campaign starting in the Wilderness that wore Lee's army down by attrition
3.  Lincoln's determination that nothing was going to stop him from reuniting the country

Had Sherman failed and Grant been repulsed with massive losses, then McClellan might have had a better chance to beat Lincoln in the '64 election.  A Democratic victory by someone willing to let the war end without reunification was the only thing that could save the South at that point.

Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 30, 2009, 05:45:21 AM
Oh, I also don't agree with the statement "He knew to hold back at Gettysburg. If he HAD counterattacked after Pickett's charge, the Army of the Potomac would be crushed" either.

A counterattack against Lee wouldn't have to be made by a mad charge across open ground in the center.  A large flanking move would have been better.  Or better still, allow Lee to start to withdraw and then attack his rearguard while sending additional troops around to intercept the head of his column.

The one strategy that the generals of the American Civil War should have learned from the Napoleonic wars was the one that they seemed to understand or practice the least.  Grant finally figured it out at the end.
Napoleonic armies were rarely destroyed on the battlefield.  They were destroyed in the pursuit.  McClellan didn't pursue after Antietam and Meade failed to pursue after Gettysburg.  In either case, a proper pursuit could have destroyed Lee's army once and for all.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 30, 2009, 06:27:05 AM
If Lee had won the war, how demoralized would the north have been?  and when would the europeans intervene?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 30, 2009, 06:42:17 AM
France wasn't going to intervene.  At that point, they had their hands full in Mexico.
England wasn't going to intervene because of the issue of slavery.

It has been mentioned earlier that had the South succeeded, it would have been terrible for them in the long run.  The North would have turned into an industrial giant and the South would have been struggling and likely would have had more problems with the issue of slavery later on.  I think it would have been highly likely that some states like Texas would have split from the Confederacy at some point.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 30, 2009, 10:43:24 AM
Well considering Britain (England isn't the entire country) was making the South ships, I'd say that it would be quite likely France and Britain would've intervened. Also if that one year had a bad cotton crop in Egypt and India, Then its likely Britain and France would've gone in.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on October 30, 2009, 01:30:09 PM
Or better still, allow Lee to start to withdraw and then attack his rearguard while sending additional troops around to intercept the head of his column.

The one strategy that the generals of the American Civil War should have learned from the Napoleonic wars was the one that they seemed to understand or practice the least.  Grant finally figured it out at the end.
Napoleonic armies were rarely destroyed on the battlefield.  They were destroyed in the pursuit.  McClellan didn't pursue after Antietam and Meade failed to pursue after Gettysburg.  In either case, a proper pursuit could have destroyed Lee's army once and for all.

That was the missed opportunity after Gettysburg.  Push Lee while he was retreating and attempt to get between him and the quick roads to Richmond and at the same time threaten his capital from a different direction (Naval assault/landing/campaign).
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 30, 2009, 02:58:37 PM
Well considering Britain (England isn't the entire country) was making the South ships, I'd say that it would be quite likely France and Britain would've intervened. Also if that one year had a bad cotton crop in Egypt and India, Then its likely Britain and France would've gone in.

Not after Antietam. The risk was simply too great. As well, that's when Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, which was the sort of thing Britain and France had been pushing for for a while.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 30, 2009, 04:36:08 PM
Ah yes, all this was happening before Antietam. If 1863(? - cba to wiki) had been a bad cotton crop, then europe would most probably have intervened to save their mills.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: HoS on October 30, 2009, 06:05:10 PM
If I had been a regular infantryman, I think I would have preferred the .58 caliber 3 band Enfield.  I know some reenactors who have them and the rifle is incredibly accurate for a muzzleloader. 

Thats my weapon and I love it ; beautiful and beautifully accurate.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 30, 2009, 06:38:31 PM
Ah yes, all this was happening before Antietam. If 1863(? - cba to wiki) had been a bad cotton crop, then europe would most probably have intervened to save their mills.


Antietam was late 1862.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 30, 2009, 07:46:42 PM
I don't think the British or French would have gone to war considering the slave trade was abhorent to both nations.  They were aware that nearly half the population (over 3 million out of 8 million) of the South were slaves. 

Even if there had been terrible cotton crops in India and Egypt in 1863, the South wouldn't have been in control of much of their cotton fields.  New Orleans was captured in April 1862, the Mississippi River was already controlled by the North by mid '63 and Sherman was in Atlanta by May '64.  Also, there were crop failures in Europe in 1860 through 1862 and the North was sending huge amounts of grain to Europe.  I think Britain would have been more concerned about a shortage of food than a shortage of cotton.

What would have Britain done anyway?  The US had sea going ironclads by then and the British navy did not.  The US had an effective blockade and no major port would have been open so an attempted seaborne invasion would have been risky.

The British used about 250,000 troops in Crimea.  Even if they had been able to land half that amount in Virginia or the Carolinas, they would have had major problems with keeping them supplied as the South already had issues with supplying and feeding their own troops.  The US army was about 2 million strong at that point and had Britain invaded, the size of the Army undoubtedly would have gone up.

Even if the British more seriously considered attacking, they had to know by that time that the war would end faster without their help than with it so it would have been better for them to stay out and let the South collapse.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 30, 2009, 08:10:16 PM
Britain, in fact had the second ironclad in the world, HMS Warrior. About 10 times the displacement of Monitor.

And a land war would probably not have been the European's strategy. Much easier to supply the confederates with the cannon, artillery and food needed to fight, as well as advisors. While then blockading the north with combined navies.

Oh and lets not forget that Britain owned Canada. Rather easy walk from Canada into the heartland of the union.

(Edit: Changed a little wording)

Second Edit: And several Union states still legally allowed slavery. The reason for the war before the Emancipation Proclamation was not about slavery really. Lincoln just used the freeing of the slaves as an excellent way to win.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 30, 2009, 09:26:55 PM
I hadn't completely forgotten the HMS Warrior or the HMS Black Prince but they both had sails and were not completely engine driven ships.  I think their armor would have been largely effective against any cannons used by the US Navy but I'm not sure it would have protected against ramming or mines.

Even the British could have broken a blockade at Savannah or Charleston, the US military would have then made seizing the city a priority.  Supplies couldn't have been landed on the Virginia coast as it was already in possession by Union troops.

Rather an easy walk?  What would be the purpose of invading from Canada?  This didn't work for Burgoyne in 1777 so why would it work in 1864?  The army would have to travel a long way to get to any city of any importance and would be harrassed constantly and would have an impossibly long supply line through enemy territory.

Going to war against the US would have been incredibly costly with a very low chance of success.  Even if all of the things you suggest were to happen, it wouldn't increase the flow of cotton going to Britain for some time, if ever, so there really would be no point in even attempting such a idea.  They were very wise to stay out.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 30, 2009, 09:36:59 PM
the flow of cotton

does that make the south "Harkonen" and the North "Atreides?"  :happy:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 30, 2009, 09:38:12 PM
Sorry mate, but I completely disagree with you.

New England isn't exactly that far from Canada now, is it? Imagine if Boston and New York had fallen to the British?

And Warrior was much faster than Monitor, on engines alone. Over double its speed with sails too. Was also armed with 10 7 inch guns and 4 40 pounders, one shot, one kill on a Monitor class. (I realise the Monitor class wasn't the only ironclad type used by the Union Navy, but its a benchmark).

You realise this was the time of Britain's complete supremacy on the global scene (sadly lost, I lament), population levels on par with the US and a much more efficient and advanced manufacturing sector.

And lets not forget the French.

I don't think the Union would've lasted long
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 30, 2009, 09:42:14 PM
why does it seem everything erupts into an Anglo-centrism and American-centrism pissing contest.  :icon_rolleyes:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 30, 2009, 09:50:32 PM
I really didn't need to go out of my way to do it. The conversation came to how the south could've won, and Europe came up and said it could've been likely if cotton crops had been bad in the British Empire, forcing them to back the Confederacy in order to keep its textile industry working. Gustavus then stated that Britain would not have done much in the war, and I countered with that they would. Its a debate, not a pissing contest.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on October 30, 2009, 10:12:44 PM
nah im just noticing a trend in the back table haha. not just this thread. :icon_wink:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 30, 2009, 10:40:32 PM
You're forgetting a few things- the North had a gigantic industrial base, and you bet it would have been expanded rapidly had the need been there. The North's population was roughly 2/3 of the UK this true, but there are definite logistical factors that swing in the North's favor.

There's the whole patriotism thing that would have come into play. Britian would have followed a similar strategy to that of the American Revolution, coastal dominance. The problem is now the territory they would need to control stretches much further inland- they wouldn't be able to maintain their supply chain.

Cotton was available from other sources. One bad year of harvest doesn't mean that they'd commit to a war they weren't anywhere near sure of winning.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 31, 2009, 12:09:06 AM
Well, they almost went to war over the random Trent Affair.

Edit: And it wouldn't be AWI 3, the South would still be the main player. Germany has showed us that a war can't be fought on two fronts when you have a naval blockade in effect.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on October 31, 2009, 02:17:46 AM
Trent was when tensions hadn't had time to ease though. You lot were still being sore loosers.

 :engel:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 31, 2009, 08:15:54 AM
France didn't want to go to war with the US for the same reasons the British didn't.  Slavery being first.  Also, France was busy in Mexico trying to keep their Austrian friend in power and even without fighting a war in the US, they couldn't manage to keep Maximillian from getting getting overthrown by 1867 and that was fighting against mostly militia in a country with almost no industry.

Even if the HMS Warrior and the HMS Black Prince were the greatest ships on the sea and could defeat the larger monitor class ships, they were still only two ships.  And "unsinkable" ships have a Murphy's Law of their own that usually causes them to sink when they shouldn't and usually in a catastrophic fashion.

Even if the British could hold a port like Savannah open to land supplies, the North had already cut the South into parts and getting cotton to the port would have been difficult.  The British army certainly wasn't capable of recapturing all of the South.   Landing in Boston or New York wouldn't have done anything either but get a British army encircled once they landed.  They would have been quickly besieged as every militia or volunteer unit within 200 miles would have been on their way.  And the same Irish immigrants who rioted in New York over the draft would have been clamoring at recruitment offices to sign up.

Even the northern Demcrats who were in favor of ending the war with the South wouldn't have been able to ignore or forgive the capture of a US city.  If the US didn't give up in 1814 when the British burned the White House, why would we quit if the British took Boston or New York?

My next question is how long would it have taken the British to prepare an army for invasion?  They didn't have a large standing army in Britain and probably wouldn't have been able to strip many units from India as they had just been reorganizing the army after the 1857 Mutiny.  Even after Haldane came up with the idea of the BEF following the Boer Wars, the British only had about 70,000 troops available for deployment in 1914.  My point is that it would have taken considerable time for the British to raise an army and by that time, the South would have already been defeated or would have been so close to defeat that outside intervention wouldn't have mattered.

Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on October 31, 2009, 08:41:07 AM
Oh, I just noticed the addition to an earlier post.

"The reason for the war before the Emancipation Proclamation was not about slavery really. Lincoln just used the freeing of the slaves as an excellent way to win. "

The Emancipation Proclamation came after Antietam in 1862.  While I agree it was good strategy on Lincoln's part, it was also the right thing to do.  And while many Southerners to this day will argue otherwise, the war was about slavery.  Trying to argue it was about the states' rights over the Federal rights are just ignoring that the "right" in question was solely the question of slavery.

The first is South Carolina's declaration of the causes for Secession.  In the first part, they try to make a good case for why a state should have justification to leave the Union.  By the end, they state that half the country is against slavery and have taken control of the government so that the rights of slave-owners would no longer be protected.

http://www.sonofthesouth.net/leefoundation/secession_causes.htm

The second document is from the second state to secede, Missisippi.  I've read it often enough that I have most of it memorized.  Unlike the South Carolinians, they don't wait farther than the second sentence to mention slavery.

"Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery-- the greatest material interest of the world. Its labor supplies the product which constitutes by far the largest and most important portions of commerce of the earth. These products are peculiar to the climate verging on the tropical regions, and by an imperious law of nature, none but the black race can bear exposure to the tropical sun. These products have become necessities of the world, and a blow at slavery is a blow at commerce and civilization."

http://www.sonofthesouth.net/leefoundation/Mississippi_causes.htm

Regardless of how the Southerners may have spun their reasoning, it was clear to anyone what the actual cause was and supporting the South was supporting the last major country to still have slaves.  (The Czar abolished serfdom in Russia in 1861.)

Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on October 31, 2009, 11:48:25 AM
The mobilisation of the Royal navy and sending the small amount of 11,000 troops to Canada forced the US to give up the prisoners in the Trent affair. The US did NOT want a war with anyone other than the south because they would lose being sandwiched between the South and Canada.

You need to realise that wars aren't fought just because of numbers, generalship or morale. The vast majority of Union munitions were bought from Britain and British factories. Imagine if suddenly, with the RN destroying the blockade, the South having all modern equipment and supplies? The North would not be able to survive with a blockade on themselves.

And, I tell you again, the war before 1862 was NOT about slavery to the global community. It was only after the Emancipation Proclamation that the population in Europe, who had already abolished slavery started supporting the North as they saw their cause as just (and rightly so). No matter how much you think America is awesome, an embattled country fighting on two fronts during a civil war with naval blockade wouldn't win. Period.

And the Warrior class weren't the only Ironclads in the RN, just the biggest (And Warrior is humongous, excellent museum ship too, even if the doorways are a little short!).
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on October 31, 2009, 01:09:17 PM
On some levels it was about slavery.  As I mentioned earlier, slavery permeats every reason for the war, but it's not the only reason.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: ekman on November 01, 2009, 04:20:35 PM
Abe did make a number of comments in the beginning of the war both publicly and privately which made it clear that the abolishment of slavery was not why the North was at war. It just would have alienated too many people within the North and hindered the war movement.  The big thing in the beginning was just to keep the US together and bring the rebels back in.

However, as others have mentioned, if you start looking into basically every point of argument between the North and South, it quickly becomes apparent that slavery was at the heart of nearly all of them.

On European intervention, other than the Trent affair, I'm pretty sure Europe wanted no part in the war (despite the South's optimism for it) just in the same way that America wanted no part in the World Wars that would shortly follow.  Once Britain knew it could get its cotton from other places, there really wasn't any good reason at all for it.  France also had few practical reasons.

Speaking of World Wars, I have wondered something (and I apologize for mixing other wars into the ACW thread) but the first few years of the ACW were pretty lousy in part because the leaders had no idea how to conduct a newer kind of war with rifles and other advancing technology.  This is doubly true in WW1.  I have heard some say that many of the hard lessons of the ACW were not remembered in WW1. Do you guys think that is valid?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 01, 2009, 05:38:04 PM
Speaking of World Wars, I have wondered something (and I apologize for mixing other wars into the ACW thread) but the first few years of the ACW were pretty lousy in part because the leaders had no idea how to conduct a newer kind of war with rifles and other advancing technology.  This is doubly true in WW1.  I have heard some say that many of the hard lessons of the ACW were not remembered in WW1. Do you guys think that is valid?

I think you have some very interesting points!  :eusa_clap:

I would say that a lot of lessons could be used in the First World War, but in Europe, I think many thought it would be a conflict like the Franco-Prussian War and not on such a huge scale. Or perhaps it could be some European snootiness in play? (But then again, Pershing didn't exactly learn any lessons from the French or British)
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on November 01, 2009, 06:08:26 PM
and the UK and france were expecting WW2 to be like the first and was getting fortifications ready...then all hell broke loose.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 01, 2009, 06:39:17 PM
Yep, France decided to put up some lovely defences on the Franco-German border when the traditional route for invading France is obviously Belgium... ;)
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gneisenau on November 01, 2009, 06:41:29 PM
I blame the beer and chocolate.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on November 01, 2009, 08:00:17 PM
Im surprised you didnt say "the women" too, I guess that says alot.  :icon_wink:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on November 01, 2009, 08:37:32 PM
Speaking of World Wars, I have wondered something (and I apologize for mixing other wars into the ACW thread) but the first few years of the ACW were pretty lousy in part because the leaders had no idea how to conduct a newer kind of war with rifles and other advancing technology.  This is doubly true in WW1.  I have heard some say that many of the hard lessons of the ACW were not remembered in WW1. Do you guys think that is valid?

I think you have some very interesting points!  :eusa_clap:

I would say that a lot of lessons could be used in the First World War, but in Europe, I think many thought it would be a conflict like the Franco-Prussian War and not on such a huge scale. Or perhaps it could be some European snootiness in play? (But then again, Pershing didn't exactly learn any lessons from the French or British)

I would agree wholeheartedly. I am among the many who say that the Civil War was, in some respects, the first 'modern' war. Infantry squads, repeating weapons, improved artillery, the ironclad battleship, the first strategic use of the railroads, and even trench warfare first came around during the ACW.  The siege of Petersburg and the Battle of Cold Harbor looked like World War I with muskets.

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 01, 2009, 08:46:01 PM
I would agree wholeheartedly. I am among the many who say that the Civil War was, in some respects, the first 'modern' war. Infantry squads, repeating weapons, improved artillery, the ironclad battleship, the first strategic use of the railroads, and even trench warfare first came around during the ACW.  The siege of Petersburg and the Battle of Cold Harbor looked like World War I with muskets.

-The General

Again, I will say that the Crimean was the first. Ironclads = Floating batteries, First tactical use of railways in a major war, and trench warfare at Sebastapol. But we've been over this and I will say no more on the subject.

Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on November 01, 2009, 08:55:49 PM
I would agree wholeheartedly. I am among the many who say that the Civil War was, in some respects, the first 'modern' war. Infantry squads, repeating weapons, improved artillery, the ironclad battleship, the first strategic use of the railroads, and even trench warfare first came around during the ACW.  The siege of Petersburg and the Battle of Cold Harbor looked like World War I with muskets.

-The General

Again, I will say that the Crimean was the first. Ironclads = Floating batteries, First tactical use of railways in a major war, and trench warfare at Sebastapol. But we've been over this and I will say no more on the subject.

You used railroads in the Crimea? Or was it for transporting supplies on the home front?  :icon_confused:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 01, 2009, 08:58:35 PM
Both sides used railways in the Crimea. The main one used by the Allies was the Grand Crimean Central Railroad.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand_Crimean_Central_Railway

If you look at pictures of the Siege of Sevastapol, it could almost come out a painting of the fighting in WW1.

And I shouldn't have derailed the thread yet again, so back to the War between the States!
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on November 01, 2009, 09:31:53 PM
Both sides used railways in the Crimea. The main one used by the Allies was the Grand Crimean Central Railroad.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand_Crimean_Central_Railway

If you look at pictures of the Siege of Sevastapol, it could almost come out a painting of the fighting in WW1.

And I shouldn't have derailed the thread yet again, so back to the War between the States!

Indeed, but it was a brief, interesting derailment!  :icon_wink:

Anyways...........
Rail Artillery. Or, more exactly, the Brady Rail Mortar employed very effectively at the Battle of Petersburg. Fear it.  :biggriin:

(http://i486.photobucket.com/albums/rr227/MrTrath/BradyRailroadGun.gif)

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on November 02, 2009, 06:33:54 AM
"The North would not be able to survive with a blockade on themselves."

This is a preposterous statement and you have completely avoided responding to any of my points regarding that if Britain had tried to become involved after 1863, it would have been too late to save the South.  Even if the British had gotten involved earlier on, they would be the ones on the defensive in Canada as the US would likely have had a 10 to 1 superiority in numbers in Canada initially and still a superiority after Britain sent further troops.

As wondrous as the British ironclads were, they would not have been able to operate in the shallow waters near the US coast and no doubt both sides would have continued to develop new ships in an effort to counter the other.

The Trent Affair may have made some hotheads in Britain upset but Lincoln had only one concern on his mind and that was saving the Union.  He did what was necessary to placate Britain and that was the end of it.  He knew it wasn't worth starting a war over two idiot politicians captured on a ship.  By the time the issue was resolved, Lincoln was already working on the Emancipation Proclamation, which pretty much sealed the issue of Britain leaving the South to its fate.

The other unknown in your hypothetical situation is France.  If Britain went to war against the US, it is possible that France would have taken the opportunity to go to war against Britain to settle some pending disputes between the two countries.

A war against the US would have been extremely unproductive for Britain.  Besides the financial costs, it would have had lasting repercussions well into the next century.  Britain would have been viewed as an aggressive, interfering country willing to start a rather unjustified war.  They would have been viewed with suspicion from that point on and 40 years later, the US likely wouldn't have lifted a finger to assist them against the Germans in WW1.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 02, 2009, 12:55:03 PM
I'm talking about BEFORE Antietam. I wrote 1863 with a question mark because I'm unfamiliar with the exact dates of the ACW.

And cmon, mate, you really think America can stand on it's own figthing on two sides against their own people and the two most powerful nations on earth against a much superior navy (Those two were not the only Ironclads, just the biggest) while being starved of munitions, their crops destroyed by the fighting as the Confederate cotton crops were. Just.. just no. Look at Germany in WW1, blockaded and surrounded.

Someone jump in and agree here, he won't listen to me.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on November 02, 2009, 02:35:21 PM
I'm talking about BEFORE Antietam. I wrote 1863 with a question mark because I'm unfamiliar with the exact dates of the ACW.

And cmon, mate, you really think America can stand on it's own figthing on two sides against their own people and the two most powerful nations on earth against a much superior navy (Those two were not the only Ironclads, just the biggest) while being starved of munitions, their crops destroyed by the fighting as the Confederate cotton crops were. Just.. just no. Look at Germany in WW1, blockaded and surrounded.

Someone jump in and agree here, he won't listen to me.

If Britain had entered I think it would have been a long and bloody war had America decided not to surrender. But I don't think they would have, even before Antietam.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on November 02, 2009, 02:43:59 PM
All this what if stuff reminds me of the Harry Turtledove series that started after the alternate ending of Antietam.  I'll not give it away, but it's interesting to see what different perspectives are on the matter.  And no one is right, so no matter how much 'proof' you can come up in this circumstance it truly is subjective.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on November 02, 2009, 06:18:45 PM
I'm talking about BEFORE Antietam. I wrote 1863 with a question mark because I'm unfamiliar with the exact dates of the ACW.

And cmon, mate, you really think America can stand on it's own figthing on two sides against their own people and the two most powerful nations on earth against a much superior navy (Those two were not the only Ironclads, just the biggest) while being starved of munitions, their crops destroyed by the fighting as the Confederate cotton crops were. Just.. just no. Look at Germany in WW1, blockaded and surrounded.

Someone jump in and agree here, he won't listen to me.

Europe was watching a young nation killing themselves by the 10's of thousands in battle after battle.  What do you think it would have looked like if a third party stepped in?  Did England et al have enough troops to haul them cross the ocean, supply then and then kill them 10k a pop on a distant battlefield?

Nope.

The best the British could have done was a semi effective blockade of a few ports.  With the risk of the Union winning and then rolling all over what was left of the British holdings in the Americas.  The US could win a naval war with coastal ships.  The British has to build vessels capable of long, extended operations.  Every American ship lost could be replaced quickly.  Every British loss would be a month away or more.  And don't forget, the US did beat the British navy in a similar war in 1812 and the US was weaker then.

No, the Brits were out.  There was too much risk that a full on Brit engagement would motivate a weakly involved northern population, the South lose and then an energized North go full out to toss the Brits from the Western Hemisphere.  The Brits had Canada to lose, some Islands and trade with the rest of the Americas.  Not to mention a long involved, bloody American war would create an opening for the rest of Europe to carve of convenient portions of the British Empire around the world.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on November 02, 2009, 09:06:49 PM
Inarticulate, if Britain declared war on the US over the Trent Affair or any other reason, why would you assume that France would follow suit?  They would have no real reason to join in and probably would have more reason to fight Britain over colonial possessions anyway.

I would also point out that the blockade against Germany in WW1 was much easier as Britain is located in a good strategic location to Germany, the ships were faster, and the German coast is much smaller than the US.  The Germans were starved.  The North produced enough food that they could feed everyone and still have tons of grain left over for export.

Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 02, 2009, 09:29:47 PM
Wars are not won by deaths on a battlefield.

The Union was importing most of it's fighting supplies from Britain. With that shut off, they would have to pull resources out of other areas into munitions etc.

Sure, the US was weaker in 1812, Britain was too (And also fighting Napoleon). The ACW takes part during the height of the Imperial Century.

I don't understand why people think that the Union could stave off three attacks at once from two gigantic powers and a well-lead and well equipped (Once the blockade is lifted) Confederate army.

Perhaps some of you don't understand how powerful Britain and France both were mid 1800s before Germany started rivalling them. The Royal Navy had over 200 ships, many of them at the height of technology and France had one of the best equipped army in the world.

This is how I would fight the ACW as the allies: Recognise the Confederacy, pull off supplying the Union. Lift the blockade with the gigantic combined fleets of Britain and France, blockade the Union. Start sending the South the latest munitions and weapons. Now that the Union cannot export grain and other exports, they lose any way of buying themselves weapons or properly organising a Military Industrial sector able to fight all three enemies. Land Franco-British troops in Canada and immediately strike down to New York and Boston, close to the Canadian border and far from the Union lines. Raid all the Union cities along the coast and bombard and burn them to the ground. With the Confederacy marching north and the allies holding the two most important cities, no way for the Union to export their goods or import anything, they'd be financially starved. Once the US capitulates, the allies return all possessions to them allowing Britain to hold Canada without any proper reprisals and France free to frolick in Mexico.

The British Isles had roughly the same population as the Union, with the addition of the millions in the colonies. It would, however be doubtful that any large force would be sent to Canada by either France or Britain. It would probably be on the levels of the Crimean so perhaps 750,000.

And Britain and France were still close allies from the Crimean at the start of the ACW.

Addition: The Royal navy at the time was designed to be larger than the two closest Navies combined, so perhaps France and Russia. At this time in the war (1862) the Union navy had perhaps 100 vessels, I don't have the numbers of the combined Grand Fleet, but I'd expect it to be in the several hundreds of vessels.

And yes, the naval war was fought in the largely shallower coastal waters. However, with the destruction of the ports, the Union navy wouldn't have lasted long, the RN and FN could just sit back in a massive big ring around the continent waiting for the Union navy to come into range of their guns.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on November 02, 2009, 09:41:55 PM
Actually IA the Isles had ~35 million in population in the 1860's. Union had 22.

I'm arguing that there was no way Britain would have gone to war in the first place, not that they would win the ensuing war. That I agree with. I don't think it would have been as easy for the British as you are implying, but I do think they would have won eventually, barring some miracle.

But then, by all rights Britain should have won the previous two wars as well...
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 02, 2009, 09:43:03 PM
Oh, I agree that Britain and France would not have gone to war. I'm just arguing that if they did, if the Confederates had had their way, they would have won.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on November 03, 2009, 12:39:16 AM
Oh, I agree that Britain and France would not have gone to war. I'm just arguing that if they did, if the Confederates had had their way, they would have won.

And apparently Colonel Fremantle predicted a certain Southern victory.  :icon_eek:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on November 03, 2009, 06:20:44 PM
I still don't see why you are making the presumption that France would just naturally join England if they had gone to war with the US.  France was not a solid ally of England at the time.  They had joined together against the Russians in the Crimea, but certainly weren't the best of friends and had a number of issues between them.I also think your estimate is quite high for the number of troops the British-French-Allies coalition had in the Crimea.

Those of us who aren't giving the idea of British and/or French intervention much chance of success, probably do so for the following reasons.

1.  France couldn't manage to keep Maximillian in power in Mexico with no other nation really getting involved.
2.  Allied leadership in the Crimea wasn't exactly brilliant.  Things wouldn't have been much better a few years later.
3.  Britain still had colonies to control so a significant part of the military would be needed to hold India and the others
4.  Britains population and industry was not grossly larger than the US.  The advantage held by the British would be negated by the long distances that supplies and men would have to travel to North America.
5.  The North started off fighting the war against the South with kid gloves.  No draft, limited war, limited war production.  If Britain had gone in, the war would have been fought differently on multiple levels.
6.  The US had plenty of raw materials, food, and factories to supply our forces despite a blockade.  We may have bought large numbers of weapons from Britain because they were readily available.  If they weren't available, we would have just made our own.  As it was, 700,000 1861 Model Springfields were produced.  Our Springfields were just as good as the Enfields on the battlefield.

Ultimately, the reason why we don't think Britain would have changed the end result was because the nature of the conflict, Britain couldn't win.  The US would have been more detemined to fight longer than the British would be.  At some point, the population and leadership of Britain would reach a point where they would see no point in continuing.   

Historically, one country fighting to prop up another country's government doesn't end well.  South Korea was one of the few exceptions that comes to mind. 

Another issue that might influence the results would be WHEN Britain became involved.  For example, if Britain declares war on the US before April 1861, then would Lee have even joined the Confederacy.  Would Virginia for that matter?    Lincoln had already said that he was willing to keep slavery to preserve the Union.  Some of the undecided states might have stayed with the Union to defend it against foreign threat and let the issue of slavery remain pending as long as the outside threat existed.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 03, 2009, 06:30:33 PM
I guess we're going to have to agree to disagree.

I hold that a naval blockade would force the US into submission, and allow the South to fight the war easier.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on November 03, 2009, 06:39:53 PM
Even if your theory of tons of supplies going to Southern ports to support their military, the other undeniable truth is that the South only had a white population of about 5.5 million.  There were over 3.5 million slaves.  The Confederate Army in combined totals likely never got about 500,000 and some states were reluctant to send many of their soldiers outside the state.

The North had a population of 22 million.  So it could easily raise an army several times larger the army of the South.  Even if a million man army from England and France arrived in the South, the US army could still have been larger.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 03, 2009, 06:43:54 PM
Except the South actually had an army of just over 1 million at their height...

And then even with this big population, how will the North supply this vast army of 9 million or so men you've cooked up with powder/muskets/artillery etc?

During the war, a vast percentage of the Union's equipment was imported from Europe.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on November 03, 2009, 06:49:37 PM
I believe 1/4 of recruits actually saw some form of combat, the rest were auxiliary support. 
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on November 03, 2009, 06:52:41 PM
That's wrong. They had 750,000 men in their army at their height. The North had 200,000 in one army group at one point (roughly the same time).

The percentage of equipment imported is much less than you think. There were 110,000 factories in the North. That's 1 per 2000 people, probably a higher ratio than we have today.

For a read on the ACW in general and bits and pieces of why Europe would never have intervened in the first place: http://www.civilwarhome.com/europeandcivilwar.htm

EDIT: Ok, stats from a college course

22.5 million people in the North, to 9.1 million in the south (3.5 million slaves, 160,000 free blacks).

The Confederacy was able to muster between 75% and 85% of it's available manpower because of slavery, to the North's 50% (see Ben, I wasn't that far off).

Throughout the war, about 2.2 million men in the Union army, 850,000 in the Southern Army.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 03, 2009, 06:59:34 PM
Wow, I'm sorry, but thats a proper bias article right there. Good read though!
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on November 03, 2009, 07:01:12 PM
Dunno, I just skimmed it to see if it had relevant bits, which it did.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 03, 2009, 07:12:22 PM
Well it actually supported many of my claims.

I'll have to search around for the source book.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on November 04, 2009, 06:43:12 AM
Even with more liberal estimates, the South never had a million men in uniform at one time.  The more conservative estimates put the max at any given point at about 480,000.  I think over the 4 years of the war, it is reasonable to believe that 1 million men served at one time or another in their army.

I have seen a couple sources that estimated that the South lost about 16 to 18% of its white male population of military age during the war.  If this is correct and their losses were about 260,000 deaths, then the total men of service age was 1.4 million.  There is no way that they South achieved a 100% service rate so I think 1 million in total appears to be correct.

The Union lost about 360,000 men which is supposed to be about 6% of the men of service age. This would mean that they would have about 6 million men of service age. About another 800,000 freed slaves would be of age to serve once they were liberated. Considering this number, the US army could have been 3 to 4 times its size and still had reserve manpower.

As far as supplying the army, about 275,000 Springfield Model 1842 muskets were produced prior to and during the war.  Another 700,000 Model 61 muskets and 60,000 Model 1855 muskets were produced before and during the war.  As far as pistols go, Colt made about 100,000 Army 1861 models and about 100,000 Navy Colts during the war.  Remington made about 60,000 of their Army pistols during that time.

While it is true that the US did import large numbers of Enfields, if they had not been available, Springfield could have increased their production.  They did allow other companies including Colt to produce the design during the war so it would just been a matter of additional companies picking up the extra demand.

Anyway, it was a good thing for both Britain and the US that Britain didn't get involved.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 04, 2009, 06:54:12 PM
They might've been able to make muskets, but supplying the men with powder, ammunition, clothing, artillery etc would be a problem.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on November 04, 2009, 06:58:01 PM
Who exported the most amount of cloth to Britain during the time period we're talking about?

I think you're grossly underestimating the industrial capacity of the US at the time.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 04, 2009, 07:02:18 PM
And I think you're grossly underestimating the materials required for the troops the Union had.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on November 04, 2009, 07:16:20 PM
Considering what we already produced, I think it's entirely possible.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 04, 2009, 07:23:52 PM
And yet, during the First World War, Britain, with a much larger economy than they had in the 1860s needed economic help from the US for munitions etc.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on November 04, 2009, 07:26:07 PM
You just proved my point.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on November 04, 2009, 07:30:33 PM
And I think you're grossly underestimating the materials required for the troops the Union had.

And you are continuing to grossly underestimate the logistics of Britain supplying an army the size of a Continental European army from thousands of miles away with ships driven by sails.  Much less getting that army in place.  All the while blockading a coastline as vast as the eastern seaboard.  While defending a vast, wealthy empire from nations that would attack if they sensed the opportunity.

And don't think for a second that the South would allow a large foreign army to be based on it's soil.  They were not that stupid.

As said before, Britain could have enforced an ineffective partial blockade and may have been able to lift the union blockade of the South.  But that would not have been certain and could not have lasted for very long.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on November 04, 2009, 07:37:03 PM
Well, I'm going to disagree with you all, and stay by my point that if Britain and France intervened on the side of the south, those three countries would have won it. But obviously I'm not going to get far when debating with three Americans!  :happy:

But that's me finished with this conversation.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on November 04, 2009, 07:39:22 PM
Well, what's to say that Russia wouldn't side with the US in this hypothetical?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on November 04, 2009, 08:38:00 PM
The US Army had over 2000 cannon before the war began.  The famous Parrott rifled guns as well as the Rodman Columbiad guns were invented and produced in the US, not overseas.  Almost all of the artillery pieces supplied by Britain went to the South, not the North.  So the North didn't need artillery produced in Britain.  The North was also able to produce plenty of ammunition and powder.

 
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on November 04, 2009, 08:49:45 PM
Well, I'm going to disagree with you all, and stay by my point that if Britain and France intervened on the side of the south, those three countries would have won it. But obviously I'm not going to get far when debating with three Americans!  :happy:

But that's me finished with this conversation.

You say it Y'all.    :wink:

Or All Y'all.   :wink: :wink:

Bless his heart.   :wink: :wink: :wink:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on November 04, 2009, 08:59:59 PM
yeah here we say y'all and all y'all.  :happy:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on November 05, 2009, 12:14:46 AM
The US Army had over 2000 cannon before the war began.  The famous Parrott rifled guns as well as the Rodman Columbiad guns were invented and produced in the US, not overseas.  Almost all of the artillery pieces supplied by Britain went to the South, not the North.  So the North didn't need artillery produced in Britain.  The North was also able to produce plenty of ammunition and powder.

Don't forget the Dahlgren guns!  :biggriin:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on November 05, 2009, 06:38:27 AM
I think in my head I was lumping Columbiads and Dahlgrens together since the later model Dahlgren was made using Rodman's process but you are correct that they are two different (but similar) types of guns.  And both were made in mass quantity (over 1000 Columbiads of various calibers) in the North during the war.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on November 05, 2009, 09:41:23 PM
But the Dahlgren was still the manliest piece of naval artillery in the Civil War.  :closed-eyes:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on November 06, 2009, 03:25:36 AM
I cant wait for totalwar:imperialism which takes place from 1800-1899 then we will see what happens when the zulu invades the confederate capital while china annexes japan.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on November 06, 2009, 03:26:52 AM
There is no such thing. I hope. Pray.

Napoleon: Total War looks better than decent though!
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on November 06, 2009, 03:40:48 AM
honestly I'd love to see them redo the classic Shogun total war. :blush:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: ekman on November 06, 2009, 03:57:06 AM
I'm still a little upset with them over how they hosed up Empire:TW so bad.  I was looking forward to it for quite a while too, broke my heart...

I'm about halfway through the book Battle Cry of Freedom, supposedly the leading single-volume ACW book.  It's very good, I'd definitely recommend it to people who want to know some well developed history of the war but not go crazy about it.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on November 06, 2009, 12:54:41 PM
ETW is better now. Especially with Darthmod. It's very very good with Darthmod.

All the same,  I do find myself playing other games most of the time...
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: ekman on November 06, 2009, 02:53:01 PM
Is Darthmod the AI improvement? 
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on November 07, 2009, 05:06:48 AM
That's it's primary purpose, but it does a lot of other stuff (making it more realistic and balanced).
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Thomas Aagaard on December 03, 2009, 06:32:08 AM
If the british had supported CSA from the very start and had gotten a fleet and a "army" (maybe 5-000men) to Virginia in spring of 1861, then they might have won a battle in northen verginia and captured washington.
(5000 highly trained, diciplined and well equipt british troops would have made a huge defrence at the 1861 battlefield gainst the green and/or untrained militia that both sides used)

I don't belive they could have gathered more that this in time and any later it would require a "total war" effort from the british. Something they would newer do... 

The same goes for the frence.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on December 03, 2009, 06:37:12 AM
The British had no motivation to come in at that point though, so...
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on December 03, 2009, 12:08:32 PM
Yeah we can say that they would not have gone to war.

But by god we'd have won it for those brave Southerners! France would've done fuck all.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on December 03, 2009, 02:56:36 PM
If the british had supported CSA from the very start and had gotten a fleet and a "army" (maybe 5-000men) to Virginia in spring of 1861, then they might have won a battle in northen verginia and captured washington.
(5000 highly trained, diciplined and well equipt british troops would have made a huge defrence at the 1861 battlefield gainst the green and/or untrained militia that both sides used)

I don't belive they could have gathered more that this in time and any later it would require a "total war" effort from the british. Something they would newer do... 

The same goes for the frence.

5000 was nothing in the Civil war.  Hardly a decent afternoon's death toll in a minor battle.  If the Brits had done this, local militias would have rallied instantly and harassed the Brits till a larger group would throw itself over and over till they were gone.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on December 03, 2009, 03:01:08 PM
Five thousand Brits at 1st Manassas would've made a really big deal.  There were very few regulars at that battle.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on December 03, 2009, 03:08:53 PM
Hell, our entire army (half of whom were Southerners) right before the war started was 16,000.

5,000 would have been nearly a 62.5% increase in trained soldiery on either side.

Later it wouldn't have done jackshit (McClellan had 120-180,000 during Seven Days depending on your source), but at the beginning it would have been huge.

After a quick bit of research, both sides had ~30,000 at 1st Man., though only ~20,000 actually fought in the battle on either side. In any case, 5,000 would have been more than large enough to make a difference.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on December 03, 2009, 04:16:27 PM
But the Brits invading the North would have been an entirely different animal.  You cannot assume the North would have been the same post Brit invasion.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on December 03, 2009, 04:33:20 PM
I was talking about 1st Manassas, not an invasion of the north.  If 5,000 veterans helped route the north, conceivably easier, and allowed an initial movement by Confederate forces upon DC that would've been quite a difference.  And frankly, southern commanders would be foolish to authorize such an action.

I won't comment on whether the war would be won or what have you, but the impact at the begin of the war cannot be denied.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on December 03, 2009, 05:19:02 PM
I see.  I agree.  A sudden influx of quality British troops along with Southern Forces in an early battle would have had a significant impact.

Naturally, with the secession being in January and the Manassas in July of the same year, the logistics of England hearing about the secession, agreeing to help, negotiating with the CSA, mobilizing a force and getting it to Virginia would be quite impossible.  Kind of like a AK47/Civil War scenario.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on December 03, 2009, 05:27:01 PM
Kind of like a AK47/Civil War scenario.

I see you read that Harry Turtledove novel. :wink:  I agree with you, though.

Oh, awesome side note.  I put an offer on a house in the town in which the last battle of that alternate timeline took place. :D
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on December 03, 2009, 05:27:21 PM
Troops in Canada.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on December 03, 2009, 05:34:42 PM
You just solved one of the problems in jlutin's scenario, congrats.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on December 03, 2009, 06:16:42 PM
"then they might have won a battle in northen verginia and captured washington.
(5000 highly trained, diciplined and well equipt british troops would have made a huge defrence at the 1861 battlefield gainst the green and/or untrained militia that both sides used)"

The British army vets had experience fighting Indians from the Sepoy Mutiny but I don't know that it would have made them the end all, be all elite force on a battlefield in Virginia.  The crack Peninsula vets that were sent to New Orleans in 1815 certainly didn't prove effective against the rabble that Jackson had assembled.  Crack troops incorrectly handled will die just as fast (or faster because they don't run from stupid orders) as green.

And even if they had made a difference in a battle.  So what?  Capturing Washington didn't end the War of 1812 and it wouldn't have ended this conflict either.  The government likely would have moved to Philadelphia or New York and continued.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on December 03, 2009, 06:19:30 PM
The South needed a hell of a lot more than a few thousand additional troops to strike a decisive blow, even that early. Logistics in the Confederacy were a nightmare, supplies and weapons (particularly artillery) were hodgepodge, and virtually zero navy.

In order to really effect a positive Confederate outcome, Britain would have had to commit to a real war with the U.S. I doubt they were that interested in helping the Rebs.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on December 03, 2009, 06:20:23 PM
The Redcoats were re-structured after the Crimean, about 6 years before. There would be a lot of veterans from that war, plus the added bonus of actual good leadership.

I agree that taking Washington would not have won the war, but I'm guessing it would have tipped it in favour of the Confederates.

The War of 1812 was different from the Civil War, I'm not sure you can compare them that well.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on December 03, 2009, 06:40:43 PM
I'm sure the Brits still had vets from the Crimea but the point is, regardless of how tough vets are, unless they are well handled, they can still die to a lesser trained force.  If you don't like the 1812 reference, there are thousands of other examples throughout history of "invincible" troops being defeated by lesser ones.

Throughout the Napoleonic Wars, capitals were taken (Vienna, Berlin, Moscow, Madrid) and the armies continued on in the field.  Washington falling wouldn't have been any different.

Another point to consider is this.  If British troops had landed in Virginia, how complicated would the chain of command have been.  I don't think the Southern government would have been ready to turn over the entire army to a British general.  Lee wasn't overall commander yet.  Joe Johnston was.  Beaureguard certainly wouldn't have been happy being subjugated to British command and  I don't think the Brits would have agreed to let a green Confederate general lead the expedition. So there likely would have been issues with leadership conflict. 
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gneisenau on December 03, 2009, 06:58:42 PM
Duh. I just read "Washington falling wouldn't have been any different" and was about to object, when I realized you talked about the city. Wrong war.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on December 04, 2009, 12:53:33 AM
Hell, our entire army (half of whom were Southerners) right before the war started was 16,000.

5,000 would have been nearly a 62.5% increase in trained soldiery on either side.

Later it wouldn't have done jackshit (McClellan had 120-180,000 during Seven Days depending on your source), but at the beginning it would have been huge.

After a quick bit of research, both sides had ~30,000 at 1st Man., though only ~20,000 actually fought in the battle on either side. In any case, 5,000 would have been more than large enough to make a difference.

McClellan... Ask me why I hate the man with a fiery passion...  :dry:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on December 04, 2009, 12:54:38 AM
I already know of and share your sentiments.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on December 04, 2009, 05:39:29 PM

McClellan... Ask me why I hate the man with a fiery passion...  :dry:

-The General

Hey UG, why do you hate McClellan with a fiery passion?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on December 04, 2009, 06:07:44 PM
UG thinks he was too agressive and needed to slow down a bit. :wink:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on December 04, 2009, 06:23:49 PM

McClellan... Ask me why I hate the man with a fiery passion...  :dry:

-The General


Hey UG, why do you hate McClellan with a fiery passion?
Because he wasn't British, of course.  :engel:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: ekman on December 04, 2009, 06:34:19 PM
I'll have you men know that he was the savior of America.  He said so himself, multiple times
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on December 04, 2009, 07:11:58 PM

McClellan... Ask me why I hate the man with a fiery passion...  :dry:

-The General

Hey UG, why do you hate McClellan with a fiery passion?

Why?  I think I  should ask you............................

Why not?  :icon_mrgreen:

At Antietam, he had the largest army assembled on Earth at the time... and did absolutely nothing with it. If he had actually had the guts to attack on that terrible day, Lee's disorganized army would be crushed. He had the potential to end the war in September 1862, and he dropped the ball. And yet his troops loved him. Why? Because he loved them too much. There is a quote by Robert E. Lee that "In order to be a good soldier, you must love the army. To be a good leader, you must be willing to order the death of the thing you love."

Furthermore, at Antietam, he didn't even bring up his rifled guns to a position of greater advantage. He left that to the short-ranged, obsolete smoothbores.

And in the Penninsula Campaign, he split his massive army in two... the twit......  :dry:

And even though he frequently outnumbered his opponents (The Union Army had numerical superiority to begin with), he would always sit and wait for reinforcements, at times claiming that he was outnumbered at least 2 to 1, and yet... it was the opposite.

I'll have you men know that he was the savior of America.  He said so himself, multiple times

And he was the only one ballsy/stupid enough to run against Abe Lincoln... the self-proclaimed "Savior of America" lost in a terrible landslide...  :icon_mrgreen:

*pant, pant*

There... I ranted enough for now... *retreats back into officer's quarters to read a good book*

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on December 04, 2009, 07:13:57 PM
See, too agressive. :wink:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Inarticulate on December 04, 2009, 07:17:59 PM
Wow, big letters too!
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on December 04, 2009, 07:20:12 PM
Wow, big letters too!

*Peeps out from officer's quarters*

Exactly how much I hate General McClellan... Great organizer, terrible general.

*Retreats back to officer's quarters*

 :-D
-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: ekman on December 04, 2009, 09:15:27 PM
Of course (and forgive me if this has been said, but I think it's interesting) if the war had been won so early it probably wouldn't have lead to the same breakdown and subjugation of the South, and slavery very likely would have been left intact.

That's the weird thing about the Civil War, there are countless paradoxes in it where short term victories were actually long term defeats.  If the South would have just lost when they "should" have, they probably would have come out of it with their power and slaves instead of being absolutely ruined.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on December 05, 2009, 07:18:25 AM
Hindsight is 20/20, to use a major cliche. The Confederacy was looking for autonomy, not just the continuation of slavery so an early defeat wouldn't have suited their original goals. If the Confederates had abolished slavery, they could have gained some much-needed international support/recognition. Pushing slavery to the forefront of the conflict was a huge PR victory for the Union, and a huge PR defeat for the Rebs. The average American (North and South alike) war supporter wasn't fighting for slaves one way or the other, but to the potential European ally (to include the British), it was a key point.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: ekman on December 05, 2009, 04:35:30 PM
There's certainly no way anybody could have really known how the war was going to end - public opinion on both sides was a rollercoaster the entire war.  It's something to keep in mind when looking back in dismay on the missed opportunities of the North (and especially McClellan) - in a sense it was actually a good thing.  Maybe not the best way possible but still not bad in the long term.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on December 06, 2009, 05:31:53 PM
It is difficult to make any kind of guess as to what would have happened if the war had ended very quickly in favor of the Union.  Even if slavery had been kept intact, there is little doubt that it would have remained a major issue as new states were added and a growing number of Americans became opposed to the practice.

For certain, had the war ended early, I wouldn't be here.  My grandfather's grandfather was captured at Lookout Mountain and remained at Rock Island Prison until early '65.  He made his way home and eventually married the widow of a another Confederate soldier who was killed mid war.  If the war had ended early, the woman's first husband would have been alive and my ancestor wouldn't have married her.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 15, 2010, 02:16:03 PM
Yeah, I'm bringing this back...

I have to write a paper and will probably be doing something regarding the Civil War, since I can speed through it pretty quickly without a lot of thought.  My premise is Gettysburg being the turning point of the war.  My 3 main points are thus:

1.  CSA casualties were unreplacable
2.  CSA morale issues
3.  CSA financial implications in the European market

Frankly, this is a BS paper, especially the morale aspect, but since that's an opinion piece I can pull a lot out of it I think.

Any thoughts or ideas on a better angle to take without me being a lying bastage?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on April 15, 2010, 02:30:16 PM
How long does it have to be?

Could bring in Union morale as well.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 15, 2010, 02:45:22 PM
Ten pages, ten sources.  Nothing major.

That is a good angle.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on April 15, 2010, 02:47:57 PM
Yeah, I'm bringing this back...

I have to write a paper and will probably be doing something regarding the Civil War, since I can speed through it pretty quickly without a lot of thought.  My premise is Gettysburg being the turning point of the war.  My 3 main points are thus:

1.  CSA casualties were unreplacable
2.  CSA morale issues
3.  CSA financial implications in the European market

Frankly, this is a BS paper, especially the morale aspect, but since that's an opinion piece I can pull a lot out of it I think.

Any thoughts or ideas on a better angle to take without me being a lying bastage?

Thre were also financial implications at home for the Confederacy as well. Around 1863 is when inflation really started to take off. Furthermore, they were also increasingly reliant on foreign imports, particularly from Great Britain, which, though a large consumer of cotton, was easily able to obtain cotton from their own colonial posessions.

Now for the tactical aspect...
Grant had already been doing VERY well in the Western Theater of the war, particularly at Vicksburg, where a decisive victory was won just one day after the conclusion of the Battle of Gettysburg. This resulted in a defeat on two fronts and the beginning of the end for the Confederacy.

Anything else?  :engel:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: MrDWhitey on April 15, 2010, 02:48:50 PM
I hadn't seen Union General post for a while, but as soon as I saw this thread come back I knew it was mere minutes.  :icon_biggrin:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 15, 2010, 02:52:31 PM
Thre were also financial implications at home for the Confederacy as well. Around 1863 is when inflation really started to take off. Furthermore, they were also increasingly reliant on foreign imports, particularly from Great Britain, which, though a large consumer of cotton, was easily able to obtain cotton from their own colonial posessions.

Is this more to do with Gettysburg or the fact that the Anaconda Plan started to really take shape, though?  An essay I was reading earlier points to news of Gettysburg as a major factor in Europe writing the rebellion off as a loss.  Something like 42% success rate down to 15% overnight.

This resulted in a defeat on two fronts and the beginning of the end for the Confederacy.

But if I talk about Vicksburg I think it will lessen the impact I'm trying to go for with a Gettysburg essay.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on April 15, 2010, 03:06:38 PM
I hadn't seen Union General post for a while, but as soon as I saw this thread come back I knew it was mere minutes.  :icon_biggrin:

You know me all too well, sir.  :-D
Expect to see me on a lot more often, come late August.

Thre were also financial implications at home for the Confederacy as well. Around 1863 is when inflation really started to take off. Furthermore, they were also increasingly reliant on foreign imports, particularly from Great Britain, which, though a large consumer of cotton, was easily able to obtain cotton from their own colonial posessions.

Is this more to do with Gettysburg or the fact that the Anaconda Plan started to really take shape, though?  An essay I was reading earlier points to news of Gettysburg as a major factor in Europe writing the rebellion off as a loss.  Something like 42% success rate down to 15% overnight.

This resulted in a defeat on two fronts and the beginning of the end for the Confederacy.

But if I talk about Vicksburg I think it will lessen the impact I'm trying to go for with a Gettysburg essay.


My mistake.  :biggriin:

However, the point you NEED to hammer home is Pickett's Charge. The Army of Northern Virginia was never the same after such a disastrous failure. You could also bring up the possiblity that whichever side won, the outcome of the war would be drastically changed.


-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on April 15, 2010, 03:10:34 PM
I think the unstainable losses is an excellent angle.  Of course the Union had a higher population, but when you factor in the large percentage of slaves in the south that could not fight, the south was even more pressed for Able Bodies White Males.  That might make a useful chart in your report.  Compare the two sides population, ABWM percentage and the number of non fighting "workers" who could be employed to sustain a war effort.

Has any work been done on the number of CSA troops that had to be held in reserve to prevent a feared Slave uprising?  An issue the north did not have, even though there were some Union riots at various times.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on April 15, 2010, 03:19:07 PM
However, the point you NEED to hammer home is Pickett's Charge. The Army of Northern Virginia was never the same after such a disastrous failure. You could also bring up the possiblity that whichever side won, the outcome of the war would be drastically changed.


-The General

If the South had one on those 3 days, oh.. baby, what a game changer.

Lee would have had the option of pressing for DC (a mistake).  Or pulling back but keeping armies on the line between the north and south to threaten another attack at any time.  That would have forced DC to weaken the western campaign and support the North and for at least a while forced the North into a defensive posture.

Lincoln would have lost for sure at that point.

Gettysburg was a Union win.  Even a Union tie or minor loss would have ended in nearly the same result.  But a Southern win could have saved the Confederacy.

Heck, if that happened you would need a passport to watch a NASCAR race.  Not sure if you would have to talk German, Japanese or Russian at the race, but those are just details.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 15, 2010, 03:22:16 PM
My mistake.  :biggriin:

No worries.

However, the point you NEED to hammer home is Pickett's Charge.

I think that would be a good microcosm of the psychological and morale factor. :::cheers:::

I think the unstainable losses is an excellent angle.  Of course the Union had a higher population, but when you factor in the large percentage of slaves in the south that could not fight, the south was even more pressed for Able Bodies White Males.  That might make a useful chart in your report.  Compare the two sides population, ABWM percentage and the number of non fighting "workers" who could be employed to sustain a war effort.

Thanks.  Taking it that extra step will help flesh out that idea even further as far as pure numbers go.  I think the slave issue might have been a trade off in some regards.  Though it did lessen the overall population, it did free up a good portion of ABWMs to fight and not halt production.  But the population numbers have been skewed.  To think that the CSA had 9 million and 1/3 of that was slave it makes the odds that much more insane.  But the following issue is one that is interesting and I really am not sure of the answer too...

Has any work been done on the number of CSA troops that had to be held in reserve to prevent a feared Slave uprising?  An issue the north did not have, even though there were some Union riots at various times.

As much as has been done with this overall topic, I'd have to say yes, but I don't know for sure.  I'll have to check Battle Cry of Freedom.  Seems like the type of info that would be in that book.

If the South had one on those 3 days, oh.. baby, what a game changer.

Though impossible to truly know, I wonder the effects it would've had on Union morale as a whole, whether it would've galvanized or pulverized.  Even after another loss the Union still would've had the advantage in almost every way except for morale.  And at that point I wonder if Europe truly would've stepped in.  Probably not, but that would've been the statement battle they said they were looking for.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on April 15, 2010, 03:25:35 PM
I can't give you exact numbers on the slave thing, but certainly not many.

You should of course mention the Gettysburg Address at some point. Also, that it demonstrated the South would never be able to effectively attack the North on it's home turf.

On how many Southern soldiers the slaves freed up, the South had a 70-80% participation rate among eligible men, while the north had around 20%. The exact numbers are a bit earlier in this thread.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 15, 2010, 03:30:09 PM
I can't give you exact numbers on the slave thing, but certainly not many.

I think that makes sense, what with the general issue of the wealthy able to avoid service and then wounded men not fit for duty being able to guard the home front well enough.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on April 15, 2010, 03:37:30 PM
I'll look up the numbers for you if I have time today. I have them at home.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 15, 2010, 03:40:36 PM
Cool, thanks.  Do you have a book source or is it lecture source? 
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on April 15, 2010, 03:45:56 PM
Lecture. Is that fine?

If you look through either this thread or the previous ACW thread the stats are there, fully cited.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 15, 2010, 03:47:53 PM
Oh, that's fine, especially since that's backed up.  I was just curious.

I think it would be kind of hard to use 'T12's prof' as a source though. :wink: 
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on April 15, 2010, 03:49:04 PM
Not mine. I'm bored, and found the post for you.

http://www.warhammer-empire.com/theforum/index.php?topic=29042.msg403771#msg403771
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 15, 2010, 03:55:35 PM
We do like our Civil War discussions.  Thanks for finding those numbers.  I don't think I would've looked in that thread.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on April 15, 2010, 04:02:16 PM
Thanks.  Taking it that extra step will help flesh out that idea even further as far as pure numbers go.  I think the slave issue might have been a trade off in some regards.  Though it did lessen the overall population, it did free up a good portion of ABWMs to fight and not halt production.  But the population numbers have been skewed.  To think that the CSA had 9 million and 1/3 of that was slave it makes the odds that much more insane.  But the following issue is one that is interesting and I really am not sure of the answer too...

It goes to the point of sustainability.  Sure you can field 70% of your fighting males, but then you cannot sustain losses and must have either a "cheap" long victory or a quick "expensive" one.  As it was, the north and Grant in particular turned it into a long, expensive victory that the south simply could never win under any scenario.  Gettysburg greatly increased those costs.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on April 15, 2010, 04:04:40 PM
We do like our Civil War discussions.  Thanks for finding those numbers.  I don't think I would've looked in that thread.

Well, it was a war fought with "modern" communications.  So many previous wars simply did not have the records one has for the Civil War.  So many wars before it end up being discussions about legends and "I thinks" instead of cold hard numbers and facts.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 15, 2010, 04:10:14 PM
We still manage to throw in a lot of our 'thinks', too.  At least I do.  :-D  But I agree that military sustainability was hurt greatly at Gettysburg.  And by that point every veteran you lost was felt doubly as well.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on April 17, 2010, 04:53:50 AM
An important morale issue that has yet to be discussed is the invincibility of Lee being shattered over night. Longstreet himself was demonized for blaming Lee in this misadventure, but Longstreet was 100% correct in his assessment of the battle, especially Pickett's Charge. Lee was a great tactician and strategist, but he also fought a lot of battles against more or less incompetent generals in the Union Army. And his early victories owed a lot to Jackson. Jackson, pound for pound, was probably the best general of the war (from either side) and the early loss of him was a poison pill for the South. Lee knew it, and would probably have traded his next three best generals to keep one Jackson.

Gettysburg marked the end of the third and final invasion of the North and though the war lasted another two years the South never regained the initiative after Gettysburg. A century later Vietnam proved that a defensive war can be won without the victors ever really having the initiative to win a decisive victory, but the South could not have achieved the same effect during the Civil War because the political and social realities were completely different than they were for the belligerents of the Vietnam War. The South needed those key strategic victories to establish themselves like the Continentals had achieved during the Revolution. There was no way around it. A lot of contrast can be drawn from the Revolution and the failed revolution of the Confederacy.

Vicksburg and Gettysburg were a decisive one-two punch that the South could not recover from. Could they have won the war if at least one of those battles ended in victory? Maybe. Again, for ultimate victory they needed international recognition and support. After Gettysburg neither of these possibilities were within reach. That is the true cost of Gettysburg for the South, in my opinion.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on April 17, 2010, 07:43:08 PM
An important morale issue that has yet to be discussed is the invincibility of Lee being shattered over night. Longstreet himself was demonized for blaming Lee in this misadventure, but Longstreet was 100% correct in his assessment of the battle, especially Pickett's Charge. Lee was a great tactician and strategist, but he also fought a lot of battles against more or less incompetent generals in the Union Army. And his early victories owed a lot to Jackson. Jackson, pound for pound, was probably the best general of the war (from either side) and the early loss of him was a poison pill for the South. Lee knew it, and would probably have traded his next three best generals to keep one Jackson.

Gettysburg marked the end of the third and final invasion of the North and though the war lasted another two years the South never regained the initiative after Gettysburg. A century later Vietnam proved that a defensive war can be won without the victors ever really having the initiative to win a decisive victory, but the South could not have achieved the same effect during the Civil War because the political and social realities were completely different than they were for the belligerents of the Vietnam War. The South needed those key strategic victories to establish themselves like the Continentals had achieved during the Revolution. There was no way around it. A lot of contrast can be drawn from the Revolution and the failed revolution of the Confederacy.

Vicksburg and Gettysburg were a decisive one-two punch that the South could not recover from. Could they have won the war if at least one of those battles ended in victory? Maybe. Again, for ultimate victory they needed international recognition and support. After Gettysburg neither of these possibilities were within reach. That is the true cost of Gettysburg for the South, in my opinion.


It was really after Antietam that the Confederacy lost all hope for international recognition. After that battle, the Prime Minister announced that Great Britain would not recognize the Confederacy.

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on April 18, 2010, 12:04:50 AM
If the Confederates continued to win big victories, I bet they would have changed their minds. Britain isn't the only other country in the world, either.  :wink:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on April 18, 2010, 01:35:36 AM
If the Confederates continued to win big victories, I bet they would have changed their minds. Britain isn't the only other country in the world, either.  :wink:

I'm aware.  :icon_wink:

At that time, however, Britain controlled the largest Empire the world had ever seen. If Britain recognized you, your nation was legit.

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 19, 2010, 07:04:46 PM
I found an interesting read on the internetz about the CSA's dependency on European investors and the implications that Gettysburg and Vicksburg had on said investments.

http://www.ekh.lu.se/ehes/paper/Did%20Johnny%20Reb%20have%20a%20Fighting%20Chance.pdf
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on April 19, 2010, 07:38:57 PM
Darn Trilateralists screwing the little guy.

Nice find Wis!
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on April 19, 2010, 08:56:07 PM
Indeed, most interesting.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on April 19, 2010, 10:12:25 PM
I hadn't seen Union General post for a while, but as soon as I saw this thread come back I knew it was mere minutes.  :icon_biggrin:

You know me all too well, sir.  :-D
Expect to see me on a lot more often, come late August.
Why August?

Quote
However, the point you NEED to hammer home is Pickett's Charge. The Army of Northern Virginia was never the same after such a disastrous failure.
The battle was lost before Pickett's charge.  The Army of Northern Virginia wasn't the same after the first two days, and had the battle ended without the third day, it still wouldn't have been the same.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on April 19, 2010, 10:15:39 PM
However, the point you NEED to hammer home is Pickett's Charge.

I think that would be a good microcosm of the psychological and morale factor. :::cheers:::
Pickett's Charge could help on the "morale" issue.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 19, 2010, 10:26:04 PM
The thing is, you could say that about any battle the Confederacy fought in for the most part, even victories.  Every casualty was damning.  But, fifty percent casualties and every brigadier and colonel on top of that makes Pickett's charge a nice exclamation for that statement.  Almost a third of all casualties the Confederacy received at that battle happened during that charge.  Not sure how that would stack up towards days one and two, but combat wasn't so focused as it was during that segment of the battle.

I ended up using the entire battle as the morale killer, even though, as I stated before I don't think it really killed Confederacy morale.  What I ended up doing was talking about how that high morale 'baited' the South into making such an ill conceived action.  I also stated how Gettysburg helped lift the spirits of the Army of the Potomac.

Also, I'm reading some of Shelby Foote's stuff at the moment.  I love his style and find it very engaging, even though its semi archaic in the way its presented. 
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on April 19, 2010, 10:37:20 PM
Its a report that needs to be written, so I understand.

I'd find it difficult to argue the morale thing because the South fought on for 2 more years, and didn't give up until it was very bleak.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 19, 2010, 10:43:54 PM
Yeah, that's why I changed it to that morale getting them in trouble.  It just had no legs to stand on, and I can't BS that well to make it.  Especially since I don't even believe it.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on April 20, 2010, 01:16:55 AM
Why August?

I'm going to take a stab at college.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Nicholas Bies on April 20, 2010, 01:26:50 AM
I have a mate, an older chap who regards himself a bit of a military historian. He claims that Lee didn't win any "decisive" battles and that's the key of the issue, that fighting and winning a bunch of tactical fights does nothing strategically.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on April 20, 2010, 01:30:16 AM
I dunno, the 7 Days and Chancerlorsville were kind of sort of decisive. You know, they only ended their respective Union invasions, nothing major.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on April 20, 2010, 01:33:30 AM
Why August?

I'm going to take a stab at college.
Ok, yet I quoted Union General when asking that question.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on April 20, 2010, 01:34:51 AM
I have a mate, an older chap who regards himself a bit of a military historian. He claims that Lee didn't win any "decisive" battles and that's the key of the issue, that fighting and winning a bunch of tactical fights does nothing strategically.
I'm wondering what he defines as being decisive?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Nicholas Bies on April 20, 2010, 01:39:32 AM
Forcing the other side to terms.

Such as Austerlitz over Ulm
Waterloo over Qatra Bass (sp) or Ligny
Jena-Austerdat (sp)

Apparently they're very rare and there have been none in modern times due to the nature of current warfare or something. I have no idea if he's correct in this but he seems to know his stuff (currently building the only [according to him] working repeater Roman Ballistae and has appeared on the History channel for Roman artillery before).
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on April 20, 2010, 01:44:18 AM
Then there have been next to no decisive battles, and you can't fault Lee for not creating one because very few people have (and I think Napoleon is the only one to have created more than one by that definition)!

For me, as an example, I would consider Cannae (yeah, I know, tangent) to be decisive. Not because it brought the Romans to defeat, but because it created a marked shift in their strategy. A decisive battle has a large impact on the war. It does not necessarily have to end the war.

That's me anyway.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Nicholas Bies on April 20, 2010, 01:48:03 AM
yea Murray said Cannae wasn't decisive because while it defeated the Romans military it didn't make the Romans call Truce.

No joke we were talking about Cannae when he started talking about what a decisive battle was.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on April 20, 2010, 01:50:14 AM
Different definitions.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 20, 2010, 01:51:18 AM
Different definitions.

Stole the words from my mouth. 
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on April 20, 2010, 01:52:04 AM
I see.  So his definition is fairly limiting, but I understand.  And by it, yep, Lee probably didn't have a decisive victory.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 20, 2010, 02:08:33 AM
Under that definition the only two that could really claim that in this war would be Grant and probably Sherman.  Any others?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on April 20, 2010, 02:12:16 AM
Not that I can think of.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on April 20, 2010, 02:32:25 AM
Did Lee want to risk a decisive victory?  He was happy with battles that allowed for victory without exposing his army to defeat.  His strategy was to stay alive and cause the enemy as much pain as possible.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 20, 2010, 02:40:22 AM
I think he was after that form of decisive victory in his two invasions.  But otherwise I'd agree that that was his goal, just to bleed them as much as possible and frustrate them into submission.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Nicholas Bies on April 20, 2010, 04:00:03 AM

War of Attrition doesn't really work though, unless you have a real long-term strategy in mind. I don't really know enough to comment on the ACW but I'm sure a solid Victory that bought the Union to terms wouldn't have been criticized.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on April 20, 2010, 05:53:24 AM
Thing is Ben, to succeed with his strategy, he would have needed casualties in the numbers produced by your friend's decisive battles- self fulfilling prophecy really.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Nicholas Bies on April 20, 2010, 06:22:14 AM
Thing is Ben, to succeed with his strategy, he would have needed casualties in the numbers produced by your friend's decisive battles- self fulfilling prophecy really.

off memory the French came off reasonably well at Austerlitz.

Also would you consider Ulm a decisive battle? Or even a battle...
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on April 20, 2010, 06:31:38 AM
I meant he would needed to have inflicted casualties in the numbers produced by that definition of a decisive battle- so what the Austrians took at Austerlitz for example.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Nicholas Bies on April 20, 2010, 06:39:47 AM
No not necessarily. I don't think it's about the casualties I think it's about the impact the battle has on the opposite sides ability to continue the fight.

Don't forget one of Murat's greatest abilities was releasing is Hussars and cavalry and chasing down the enemy and not letting them reform and regroup. This kind of morale defeating action helped fragment many opposing forces, resulting in mass desertion and a longer period of time to regroup, regather, rearm and re-enter the fray.

Cannae was a blood bath and a great tactical victory but strategically it just pissed the Roman's off, they gathered a couple of extra legions a dude call Scipio and went on a massive Revenge trip to North Africa
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 20, 2010, 12:00:02 PM
Are you talking about Lee or Grant?  I assume you're still on about Lee.  What's his opinion of Grant, then?  Does he consider him to have the decisive victory needed to be an uber general? 
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on April 20, 2010, 12:29:55 PM
You're misunderstanding me. What I mean is that to bleed the Union enough that they would just give up, he would have needed one of the enourmous victories that would have given him the sort of victory your friend is talking about.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on April 20, 2010, 01:51:25 PM
I don't think Grant would have turned down the decisive battle but he didn't necessarily seek it out either.  But Grant sought to get between the Rebs and their support while maintaining his line of supply.  In his dream world he would have driven Lee west instead of Lee working south.  Grant is the empire general, don't let the enemy break your line and maneuver on the flanks till you turn, then take him apart.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Willmark on April 20, 2010, 02:18:00 PM
Grant was an insanely good general and gets the short end of the stick because Lee was perceived as so great. Lee was a fine general, but often went up against  interior generals like McClellan, Burnside, Pope, etc. Longstreet was the best man at Grant's wedding prior and Grant's wife was a cousin to Longstreet: in short Longstreet knew who they would be facing when Grant took command. Lee was fo his own part largely unconcerned and though it mattered little. Longstreet was quoted as saying" that man will fight us every minute of every day for the remainder of the war".

Lee took bold risks no one can deny that but for instance take Chancellorsville. Hooker actually had a very strong plan and it stood every chance of succeeding, It was the merest of chance that it didn't. Missed communications, a division being the weakest on the flank at the time of Jackson's flanking attack. In this case the mediocre O.O Howard and the XI Corp. Imagine if Reynolds with the the I Corp had gotten their in time. This is the first Core, with the likes of "The Iron Brigade" etc who would later save the 1st day at Gettysburg against overwhelming odds. If they were there to brace the XI Stonewall might have ran into a wall. In other words chance is a great determining factor.

Grant had the numbers true, but does a disservice to him in places like Tennessee and at Shiloh in particular. He was a great strategist, a much better one then Lee IMHO. His campaign against Vicksburg is one of the finest military campaigns ever. It was masterfully executed. Of course it could be argued that Lee was just as good and lacked the resources.

In the end it was Grant that won the war with his direction. And when did he win it? At the end of the Battle of the Wilderness in May 1864. Prior to this campaign the Army of the Potomac would turn back northward towards Washington, but he didn't this time. He maneuvered south east to keep the pressure on. This one small change lifted the morale of the entire army. The army finally realized they had the right man and so did Lincoln. No longer would Lee have a chance to fall back and refit.  Grant was prepared to keep the pressure on and after the fighting on May 7th he was more or less free to maneuver. And while Grant had Lee fixed in place Sherman was tearing apart the south.

In short in 1864 the best general in the Civil War took the center stage and his name was Grant.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on April 20, 2010, 07:41:52 PM

Grant had the numbers true, but does a disservice to him in places like Tennessee and at Shiloh in particular. He was a great strategist, a much better one then Lee IMHO. His campaign against Vicksburg is one of the finest military campaigns ever. It was masterfully executed. Of course it could be argued that Lee was just as good and lacked the resources.

In the end it was Grant that won the war with his direction. And when did he win it? At the end of the Battle of the Wilderness in May 1864. Prior to this campaign the Army of the Potomac would turn back northward towards Washington, but he didn't this time. He maneuvered south east to keep the pressure on. This one small change lifted the morale of the entire army. The army finally realized they had the right man and so did Lincoln. No longer would Lee have a chance to fall back and refit.  Grant was prepared to keep the pressure on and after the fighting on May 7th he was more or less free to maneuver. And while Grant had Lee fixed in place Sherman was tearing apart the south.


Don't forget that Grant also helped to turn the tide of the war in 1863 with the fall of Vicksburg. With that and Gettysburg, it was a one-two punch that cut the Confederacy in two.

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on April 20, 2010, 11:26:40 PM
And Meade was the winning general at Gettysburg. :icon_cool:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on April 21, 2010, 04:39:59 AM
"The South needed those key strategic victories to establish themselves like the Continentals had achieved during the Revolution."

This is where I think Lee and Southern planning completely missed the mark.  The Continental army had very few successes for the first half of the war (Trenton was a minor success and Saratoga a larger success) but they were able to stay in the field and make the Brits work to beat them.  Lee won several defensive fights but wasted the victories by following up with blunders of his own.

 The Confederates foolishly wasted men and material trying to move north in 1862 and 1863 while their own lands were being overrun and the Mississippi River taken, as well as several important ports along the coast.  Even if Lee had driven off the Federal army at Gettysburg at the end of the 2nd or 3rd day, what would it have gained him in the long run?  Nothing.  He still would have to march back home because he wouldn't have the numbers to take Washington nor the men and supplies to try to move further north.  The Union would regain the initiative and start a new offensive campaign, as they had done the previous year.

I think it would have been far better for them to allocate troops to break the siege at Vicksburg and retake New Orleans.  Without Vicksburg falling and the losses they took at Gettysburg, the South might have been able to prolong the fight, which is the only thing that might have worn down the resolve of the Northern citizens to continue the war.

Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: shavixmir on April 21, 2010, 05:37:54 AM
Something that's always been on my mind concerning the American civil war is:
- Would the world have been a better place if the South had won?
- Would slavery have ended on its own accord, eventually?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 21, 2010, 12:13:24 PM
I think it would have been far better for them to allocate troops to break the siege at Vicksburg and retake New Orleans. 

Do you think once the siege was commenced in earnest, that detaching troops from Lee's command (most likely Longstreet I'd imagine) would have broken the siege?   Would they have gotten there in time?

The plan to releive Vicksburg was proposed, but it was thought that they'd not arrive in time to aid the siege, but instead to put pressure in other areas to try and relieve Vicksburg.  If anything was to be done, it would've needed to be done before the time of the Gettysburg campaign ended up taking place. 

Something that's always been on my mind concerning the American civil war is:
- Would the world have been a better place if the South had won?

Probably not.  There would've probably been a lot of friction and possibly more warfare on this continent. 

- Would slavery have ended on its own accord, eventually?

That was the thought at the time.  I'd be inclined to think yes, eventually, though when and under what circumstances is unclear.  Oddly, there was a push at the end of the war to allow blacks to serve in the CSA army and anyone who did so would be able to earn his freedom.  As backwards as the south may have been in some regards, I really can't see them going too far forward having that antiquated institution as its economic foundation.  There was already pressure from the outside about slavery, and was a big reason that France and England never steped in on their side.  Pressure from the touside would've forced a change along with a move from within.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on April 21, 2010, 12:45:18 PM
"The South needed those key strategic victories to establish themselves like the Continentals had achieved during the Revolution."
This could be a very good point.  Who is being quoted?

Quote
This is where I think Lee and Southern planning completely missed the mark.  The Continental army had very few successes for the first half of the war (Trenton was a minor success and Saratoga a larger success) but they were able to stay in the field and make the Brits work to beat them. ...
Not that this is an AWI thread, but I'd had the add Lexington and Concord fight (true not the continental army yet), and Bunker Hill as also important victories.

Quote
...   Lee won several defensive fights but wasted the victories by following up with blunders of his own.

The Confederates foolishly wasted men and material trying to move north in 1862 and 1863 while their own lands were being overrun and the Mississippi River taken, as well as several important ports along the coast.  Even if Lee had driven off the Federal army at Gettysburg at the end of the 2nd or 3rd day, what would it have gained him in the long run?  Nothing.  He still would have to march back home because he wouldn't have the numbers to take Washington nor the men and supplies to try to move further north.  The Union would regain the initiative and start a new offensive campaign, as they had done the previous year.

I think it would have been far better for them to allocate troops to break the siege at Vicksburg and retake New Orleans.  Without Vicksburg falling and the losses they took at Gettysburg, the South might have been able to prolong the fight, which is the only thing that might have worn down the resolve of the Northern citizens to continue the war.
If the South had a long term strategy of prolonging the fight and keeping their army in the war, they might have won, but I question whether or not they would have with both the industrial and manpower might of the North.  And Lincoln's resolve to maintain the Union.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on April 21, 2010, 02:39:54 PM
And Meade was the winning general at Gettysburg. :icon_cool:


Indeed! While a bit cautious, it served him well. If he had followed up with a counterattack after Pickett's Charge, who knows what could have happened? The Army of Northern Virginia had virtually exhausted their supply of long-range ammunition, but they had plenty of canister fire left.

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on April 21, 2010, 02:47:38 PM
And Meade was the winning general at Gettysburg. :icon_cool:


Indeed! While a bit cautious, it served him well. If he had followed up with a counterattack after Pickett's Charge, who knows what could have happened? The Army of Northern Virginia had virtually exhausted their supply of long-range ammunition, but they had plenty of canister fire left.

-The General
If you mean cautious in terms of not following up after Pickett's charge, his entire army had been involved in the largest battle by the Army of the Potomac up to that point and a very large number of casualties across its scope.  Yep, caution was very much in order, and wise.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 21, 2010, 02:55:14 PM
Meade was the first Union General (see what I did there ;) ) to lead the Army of the Potomac that I actually have any sort of liking for.  My knowledge base on each of them isn't as great as it could be, though, so perhaps I should reserve my judgement until I do further readings.

"Any understanding of this nation has to be based, and I mean really based, on a an understanding of the Civil War.  I believe that firmly.  It defined us.  The Revolution did what it did.  Our involvement in European wars, beginning with the First World War, did what it did.  But the Civil War defined us as what we are and it opened us to being what we became, good and bad things.  And it is very necessary, if you're going to understand the American character in the twentieth century, to learn about this enormous catastrophe of the mid-nineteenth century.  It was the crossroads of our being, and it was a hell of a crossroads."


- Shelby Foote
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on April 21, 2010, 04:54:11 PM
If the South had a long term strategy of prolonging the fight and keeping their army in the war, they might have won, but I question whether or not they would have with both the industrial and manpower might of the North.  And Lincoln's resolve to maintain the Union.

This was the strategy, but the Souths utter and complete failure to execute in the West ruined the chances for this plan.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on April 22, 2010, 12:36:36 AM
Meade was the first Union General (see what I did there ;) ) to lead the Army of the Potomac that I actually have any sort of liking for.  My knowledge base on each of them isn't as great as it could be, though, so perhaps I should reserve my judgement until I do further readings.

Very clever, Wissenlander. I approve. Have one on the Union Army!  :::cheers:::
Hooker was good, and was only defeated at Chancellorsville because Robert E. Lee was, well, Robert E. Lee. And because Stonewall Jackson was a very scary general.

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on April 23, 2010, 01:12:22 PM
I don't doubt his plan was sound.  Just as McDowell's plan was sound at 1st Manassas.  Goes to show the adage of making contact with the enemy throws the best laid plans out the window.

I don't know if any of you guys are metal fans at all, but Iced Earth has this epic 3 part song series on Gettysburg that I find to be pretty awesome.

The Devil to Pay: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dud6UYOfkO4

Hold at All Costs: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HsW3i9rY58k&feature=related

The High Water Mark: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kh6M4jBd1O8&feature=related
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gustavus Magnus on May 03, 2010, 12:30:53 AM
"Hooker was good, and was only defeated at Chancellorsville because Robert E. Lee was, well, Robert E. Lee. And because Stonewall Jackson was a very scary general."

The terrible terrain didn't help him any nor did a relatively green corps handled badly by a new corps commander.  I have never quite understood why Hooker was so timid on April 30 and May 1.  If he had pressed on, especially late on the 1st and early on the 2nd of May, Lee's gamble would have been a disaster.  Sickles also didn't press on when he should have and Howard didn't follow orders and watch his flank. 

I think Hooker was a decent commander and that if he hadn't been wounded in the foot at Antietam, he might have been able to keep pressure on the rebel left flank, which would have caused problems later in the day for Lee.  It is hard to say if the outcome of Gettysburg would have been any different had Hooker remained in command.

Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on May 04, 2010, 04:41:16 PM
I think Hooker was a decent commander and that if he hadn't been wounded in the foot at Antietam, he might have been able to keep pressure on the rebel left flank, which would have caused problems later in the day for Lee.  It is hard to say if the outcome of Gettysburg would have been any different had Hooker remained in command.

Then again, Meade knew the ground fairly well, as he himself was a Pennsylvania man.  :icon_cool:

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on May 14, 2010, 02:22:44 PM
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/37133861/ns/us_news-life/

10 most endangered Civil War sites

1. Picacho Peak, Az., site closing due to budget cuts.

2.  Pickett's Mill, Ga., which is amid cuts in public funding and, last fall, saw foot bridges and portions of a mill damaged by flood waters.

3.  Fort Stevens, Washington, D.C., threatened by a proposed church community center that will tower over the fort where President Lincoln was the target of sharpshooters.

4.  Cedar Creek, Va., a mine expansion that would chew up nearly 400 acres of battlefield.

5.  Richmond, Ky., a new highway interchange that will likely attract commercial growth.

6.  South Mountain, Md., the feared development of an energy plant.

7.  Thoroughfare Gap, Va., the possible construction of a 150-foot communications tower.

8.  Camp Allegheny, W.Va., where wind turbines on a high ridge across the border in Virginia threaten to blot the view from the battlefield.

9.  Gettysburg, Pa., threat from a casino being planned

10.  The Wilderness, Va.,  Walmart...


There's a good video of a historian talking about Thoroughfare Gap.  I really liked this because it gives you the perfect visualization without actually being there.  And growing up right next door it still helps me out, I guess I'm more of a visual learner than I thought?

http://www.civilwar.org/video/at-thoroughfare-gap-with-bud.html
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on May 14, 2010, 04:03:27 PM
So the question is ... what can be done to save these sites?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: t12161991 on May 14, 2010, 04:12:46 PM
I believe Gettysburg is being saved rather... actively by a bunch of groups already. Not sure about the others.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on May 14, 2010, 04:39:42 PM
Some of them deserve saving, some of them will be just fine with modern devices surrounding them.

You can't save everything nor should you try.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on May 14, 2010, 04:54:15 PM
Which ones?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on May 14, 2010, 05:03:39 PM
I think it all depends.  Thoroughfare Gap doesn't have to have a cell phone tower right there, there are other spots that could accomodate such a tower along that mountain range.  It's probably the easiest and cheapest for the company, I'm sure. 
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on May 14, 2010, 05:04:10 PM
Which ones?

I don't think you have ruined a site by having a 150 communications tower nearby.  I also don't think an off site on ramp for a highway is cause for concern.

Some of these battlefields are miles wide.  Focus on the key points, have reasonable deed restrictions on the rest and let development happen around them.  If no group is willing to buy the area and preserve it, then let the landowners do what they deem best for the land they own.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on May 14, 2010, 05:05:23 PM
Except for the tower being right in the middle of the battlefield...

If it's an actual battlefield then I'm generally all for preserving it.  If it's a hill where a certain partisan ranger group slept one night, then that's different.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on May 14, 2010, 05:07:36 PM
Is the site preserved from development or has it already been developed?
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on May 14, 2010, 05:10:44 PM
So the question is ... what can be done to save these sites?

To answer your question, this site does a lot of work trying to preserve Civil War grounds:

http://www.civilwar.org/

Is the site preserved from development or has it already been developed?

It's a gap in the mountains with nothing much around, there's really no development for miles around beyond a post office.  There's one dead spot around there where there's no cell phone reception, for maybe about a mile or two which is probably why they want to put in a tower.  Call me silly, but I'd be fine with that mile or two area of dead space.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on May 14, 2010, 10:09:15 PM
It's truly a pity about Cedar Creek. I was there for a reenactment, and it was easily one of the prettiest battlefields I've ever seen. And, of course, the mining off in the distance completely ruined it. A railroad track runs through the battlefield, though it's only the occasional CSX freight train, and that track has been there for ages.
Fredericksburg... Don't get me started on a rant...

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on May 14, 2010, 10:27:21 PM
Which ones?

I don't think you have ruined a site by having a 150 communications tower nearby.
My understanding is its not nearby, but right on top.

Quote
I also don't think an off site on ramp for a highway is cause for concern.
Do you know why the new ramp is being put in?  Besides the obvious answer, cars coming off the highway.

Quote
Some of these battlefields are miles wide.  Focus on the key points, have reasonable deed restrictions on the rest and let development happen around them.  If no group is willing to buy the area and preserve it, then let the landowners do what they deem best for the land they own.
Yep, miles wide, and preservation is important to our culture and its understanding of what happened there.  In a way, the land is owned by the country as is the responsibility to preserve such sites for the future of the country.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: jlutin on May 14, 2010, 11:14:51 PM
No the land is owned by the landowner.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on May 15, 2010, 03:25:03 PM
Which is why there are groups that try to buy the land.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Fidelis von Sigmaringen on May 15, 2010, 03:33:10 PM
On the one hand, it is a shame that sites of historic importance should be developed.
On the other hand: the US has the luxury that it has so few battlefields. At least since medieval times, Belgium has been the battleground of Europe. If we would preserve all battlefields, there would not be much left for human activity of any kind (except reenactments  :laugh:).
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Union General on May 18, 2010, 12:41:28 AM
On the one hand, it is a shame that sites of historic importance should be developed.
On the other hand: the US has the luxury that it has so few battlefields. At least since medieval times, Belgium has been the battleground of Europe. If we would preserve all battlefields, there would not be much left for human activity of any kind (except reenactments  :laugh:).

True, but most of our battlefields are located on the East Coast, where the population density can be a bit... extreme at times. This also includes battlefields from the Revolution and the War of 1812, many of those in the New England region. Fortunately, those out in the middle of nowhere are relatively safe, as the middle of nowhere exists for a reason.

-The General
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Big Time on May 19, 2010, 03:39:31 AM


On the one hand, it is a shame that sites of historic importance should be developed.
On the other hand: the US has the luxury that it has so few battlefields. At least since medieval times, Belgium has been the battleground of Europe. If we would preserve all battlefields, there would not be much left for human activity of any kind (except reenactments  :laugh:).

True, but most of our battlefields are located on the East Coast, where the population density can be a bit... extreme at times. This also includes battlefields from the Revolution and the War of 1812, many of those in the New England region. Fortunately, those out in the middle of nowhere are relatively safe, as the middle of nowhere exists for a reason.

They could move some of the battlefields out here, we've got plenty of room. walmart is not nearly as popular here as it is back East either. Better yet, we could send some battlefields to Australia. Almost the size of the continental U.S. but the population of Southern California. They'd never be in danger there.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Fidelis von Sigmaringen on May 19, 2010, 06:06:03 AM


They could move some of the battlefields out here, we've got plenty of room. walmart is not nearly as popular here as it is back East either. Better yet, we could send some battlefields to Australia. Almost the size of the continental U.S. but the population of Southern California. They'd never be in danger there.

Any particular battlefield you are interested in? How much are you willing to pay? For a large purchase, we are prepared to make a special price. However, you will have to pay for shipping. We would accept paypal.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Warlord on May 19, 2010, 06:49:52 AM
I'm glad you said battlefield. Because we aren't really interested in taking a large dump of your population.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Fidelis von Sigmaringen on May 19, 2010, 07:18:13 AM
We are only 10 million - we do not have that many to spare. However, we are offering politicians at a heavy discount. Why, some of them you can get for free.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on May 23, 2013, 08:40:36 PM
After seeing this in another thread ...

Lee sucked.
... figured I'd dig this one out for MrDWhitey.

- - - - - -

I didn't remember it being so long! :icon_eek:
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on May 23, 2013, 10:13:12 PM
He's just grumpy because it's his birthday. :-P
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on May 24, 2013, 03:17:42 AM
Well, we aint' talking civil war here yet, but he can't see it with his new designation as "Pure of Heart".  So I've been chatting a wee bit in the "Heth's Initial Attack" thread over in the main Count's Tavern area.  And I'm too tired to read this thread tonight to see where we left things off anyway.

However, I read the opening prologue for a book called "Retreat From Gettyburg" by Kent Masterson.  Its starts recounting the aftermath of Pickett's Charge, ouch!  It gives the usual figures for the number of officers killed as being reflective of the greater number of casualties, and then it descirbes the casualties and what Lee and others were seeing come back over the field from the repulsed charge.  Fairly nasty stuff, and thats puttign it mildly.  Approximatley 6700 total CSA casualties, over 3500 of them from Trimble's and Pettigrew's commands, Davis and Marshall's brigades lost 74%, while some inidividual companies lost over 90%.  I'd previously read about how Lee had road around rallying the remants of the attack while fearing a counter attack, and the story of him taking full responsibility, but the collection of comments that are attributed to him and gathered in one spot was eye opening.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: S.O.F on May 24, 2013, 03:22:58 AM
However, I read the opening prologue for a book called "Retreat From Gettyburg" by Kent Masterson.  Its starts recounting the aftermath of Pickett's Charge, ouch!  It gives the usual figures for the number of officers killed as being reflective of the greater number of casualties, and then it descirbes the casualties and what Lee and others were seeing come back over the field from the repulsed charge.  Fairly nasty stuff, and thats puttign it mildly.  Approximatley 6700 total CSA casualties, over 3500 of them from Trimble's and Pettigrew's commands, Davis and Marshall's brigades lost 74%, while some inidividual companies lost over 90%.  I'd previously read about how Lee had road around rallying the remants of the attack while fearing a counter attack, and the story of him taking full responsibility, but the collection of comments that are attributed to him and gathered in one spot was eye opening.

The Emperor would have made them surrender...
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on May 24, 2013, 10:57:40 AM
I haven't read anything on the ACW in a while now.  I think the last one I read was either Eric Wittenberg's work on Brandy Station or Jonathan Noyalas' work on Jackson's Valley Campaign.  Both of them are quick reads as they're part of the 150 Anniversary series.  I got a copy of Shelby Foote's work second hand that I'd like to get into but it's kind of intimidating!

I went to the Graffiti House at Brandy Station a couple of weeks ago and talked to one of the guides about the goings on with Fleetwood Hill.  The NPS is trying to buy a tract of land on Fleetwood Hill for over $3 million.  Civil War Preservation Trust says it's their most ambitious campaign yet.  It's so expensive because one of the locals built a massive house on the hill.  That lead to all sorts of problems, some of which I may have discussed in the past in this thread.  He finally came to an agreement to sell the land.  Now they're not sure what they'll do with the house.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gankom on May 24, 2013, 03:07:19 PM
I've always been a big fan of Bernard Cornwall books, especially the civil war series. Not always as historically accurate but usually a good read.

In one of the towns nearby here in Ontario, there's actually a monument to about a dozen people who went down and volunteered as medics with the Union. I think that out of about a dozen or so half came back.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on May 24, 2013, 04:31:14 PM
I haven't read anything on the ACW in a while now.  I think the last one I read was either Eric Wittenberg's work on Brandy Station or Jonathan Noyalas' work on Jackson's Valley Campaign.  Both of them are quick reads as they're part of the 150 Anniversary series.  I got a copy of Shelby Foote's work second hand that I'd like to get into but it's kind of intimidating!
I look those up.  How would you say those two works on Brandt Station and Jackson's Valley Campaign were?

Haven't ever tried Shelbey Foote's series yet, 3 volumes if I recall correctly.  It could be a goode while before I decide to read that one because my interests tend to be more specific in what I read, rather than broad scope as I suspect his writing is.  But that doesn't mean I won't some day.

Quote
I went to the Graffiti House at Brandy Station a couple of weeks ago and talked to one of the guides about the goings on with Fleetwood Hill.  The NPS is trying to buy a tract of land on Fleetwood Hill for over $3 million.  Civil War Preservation Trust says it's their most ambitious campaign yet.  It's so expensive because one of the locals built a massive house on the hill.  That lead to all sorts of problems, some of which I may have discussed in the past in this thread.  He finally came to an agreement to sell the land.  Now they're not sure what they'll do with the house.
I need to reread this thread.  Maybe I'll get to doing that in the next few of days over the Memorial Day weekend.  I can't recall mention of the Brandy Station issue or not, but somewhere alog the line we might have been chatting on saving ACW battlefields in general, and this thread was as good a place as any ... lol.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on May 24, 2013, 04:33:02 PM
I've always been a big fan of Bernard Cornwall books, especially the civil war series. Not always as historically accurate but usually a good read.

In one of the towns nearby here in Ontario, there's actually a monument to about a dozen people who went down and volunteered as medics with the Union. I think that out of about a dozen or so half came back.
I've encountered Cornwall's name before, but what did he write?

Interesting that thee were medical folks volunteering to come down and help.  The medical issues of the war seemed to have been vast, but makes sense considering that the casualties were so large, and plans for handling such wasn't very much from what I understand.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Gankom on May 24, 2013, 05:02:07 PM
From what I remember the volunteers went down as part of a church save the soldiers kinda movement. I always thought it was interesting that there was indeed Canadians who went down to join in the fight. I'd heard about both Union and Confederacy trying to either cause problems coming over the Canadian border or spies and stuff, but didn't realise we actually had men and women on the field in places.

As for Bernard Cornwall he's a historical fiction writer. His big hit was the Richard Sharpe series of books and eventually the show with Sean bean. His Civil war series follows some young northern guy who ends up stranded in the south when the war begins and ends up fighting for the south. Each book generally focus's on one major battle. I believe the most recent was at Antietam. unfortunately he hasn't written another one since the mid 90's but apparently it's one of the ones he's currently working on.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Starbuck_Chronicles

Like I said it's historical fiction but generally good for some fun. I'm also a fan of his series in Saxon England..
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: wissenlander on May 24, 2013, 05:14:11 PM
Haven't ever tried Shelbey Foote's series yet, 3 volumes if I recall correctly.  It could be a goode while before I decide to read that one because my interests tend to be more specific in what I read, rather than broad scope as I suspect his writing is.  But that doesn't mean I won't some day.

They're both good.  Quite light, but I think that was the intent.  The whole series seems to be good info without going into too much depth.  I've talked to both Wittenberg and Noyalas before (Noyalas taught at the community college I attended and worked at).  Both are very knowledgeable in their areas of expertise (Wittenberg in cavalry and Noyalas in Shenandoah Valley).  I'd like to read some of their other stuff but haven't gotten around to it.

Foote's is 3 volumes.  It's massive.  He's got good information but none of it is sourced, which is his big downfall.

I need to reread this thread.  Maybe I'll get to doing that in the next few of days over the Memorial Day weekend.  I can't recall mention of the Brandy Station issue or not, but somewhere alog the line we might have been chatting on saving ACW battlefields in general, and this thread was as good a place as any ... lol.

I can go through the situation again if you're interested.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: PhillyT on May 24, 2013, 08:12:15 PM
I am in the middle of teaching it right now, but I am not terribly inspired by the war itself.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Captain Dob Van Dwi on May 25, 2013, 02:44:36 PM
yeah but they also fought for the north and south during the war too.

They did!  :happy:

-The General

Indeed. The best Confederate general of the war in my opinion was the Cherokee general Stand Watie. He was also the last to surrender as well.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on May 27, 2013, 01:09:47 AM
PBS has been rerunning the American Experience series called "Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln".  If there are those interested in this subject, this program is well worth seeing when you can.  I suspect it will be on again from time to time even if it gets missed on this round.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on May 31, 2013, 09:40:48 AM
Ended up getting into the "Retreat From Gettysburg" book and not rereading this thread yet.  Not too far along yet, but ... 1st chapter covered the CSA army's confiscation of supplies as they invaded prior to the battle.  It tells of how much stuff they really captured as they went from town to town, and then established a long line of supplies that they booted back towards Virginia for future use by the army.  Quite the effort was made.  2nd chapter covers the hospitals and casualties that Lee's army faced as the battle materialized.  It doesn't take long to pick up on the high casualty rates of the ACW battles, but to read about the extensive field hospitals is viewing the problem form a different perspective, and an eye opener to say the least.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on July 03, 2013, 11:39:01 PM
Battle of Gettysburg ended today 150 years ago today
(http://media-1.web.britannica.com/eb-media/13/913-004-2F9DEBCC.jpg)

(http://25.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_md8vo2S8KL1rko9o5o1_400.jpg)

Pickett's Charge (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3po17QbHLRQ) from the movie Gettysburg.  The 3 day battle ended with it on July 3rd 1863.



And now I am a Yank who just invaded Virginia!
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: MrDWhitey on July 04, 2013, 12:01:19 AM
I haven't said "Lee sucked" for few minutes so yeah.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on July 12, 2013, 07:59:20 PM
if no one has watched Crash Course: world history or Crash Course: US history I suggest you do.  John Greene is a great tour guide.

The Election of 1860 & the Road to Disunion
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=roNmeOOJCDY (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=roNmeOOJCDY)

American Civil War part 1
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rY9zHNOjGrs (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rY9zHNOjGrs)

American Civil War part 2
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GzTrKccmj_I (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GzTrKccmj_I)

ACW battles
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25HHVDOaGeE (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25HHVDOaGeE)

Next week: reconstruction.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: MrDWhitey on July 15, 2013, 12:06:05 AM
Apparently, reloading and firing a musket takes 5 seconds.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: patsy02 on July 16, 2013, 10:33:04 AM
Scrub, I can easily fire 40 musket shots in one minute.
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: Feanor Fire Heart on July 19, 2013, 05:12:08 PM
Reconstruction
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nowsS7pMApI (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nowsS7pMApI)
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on February 26, 2021, 09:59:29 PM
Was hunting for this thread ... to post a link to this interview of Shelby Foote ... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9m5Ma9_9H1w

 ... and I enjoyed seeing this, makes me want to read his civil war narrative (three books), and maybe even a novel or more of his.

- - - - - -

By the way, three more threads linked below, for those interested in the topic ...

1. This thread on the ACW started back during the 150th anniversary ...  http://warhammer-empire.com/theforum/index.php?topic=40153.0

2.  And this thread has chat from my Heth's First Attack scenario  ... http://warhammer-empire.com/theforum/index.php?topic=45751.0

3.  Plus there is this thread started by Artoban ... http://warhammer-empire.com/theforum/index.php?topic=52422.0
Title: Re: American Civil War
Post by: GamesPoet on May 16, 2021, 12:53:01 PM
An interesting selection of American Civil War Uniforms ... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zLoq9vNvvFQ