Trapshooters Forum banner

1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
563 Posts
"Virginia by God Sir, will be heard from today" T.J.Jackson, 1st Manassas
"Rally around the Virginians for there stands Jackson like a Stonewall". BG Bee, 1st Manassas
"Kill them, kill them all today as I don't want to fight them tomorrow". Jackson during the Valley Campaign of 1862, when one of his aides suggested to Jackson not to pursue retreating Federal troops.
"Let us cross over the river and rest in the shade of the trees", Jackson's last words

Van
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,725 Posts
I speculate that if Jackson were alive at Gettysburg, Lee would have listened to him when and if he would have stated Pickets Charge to be doomed from the beginning. Longstreet wanted to flank and IMO Jackson being the great tactical general that he was would have agreed. Lee had respect (and love) for Jackson and may have listened to the advise. Who knows how the battle of Gettysburg would have ended had that happened.

blade819
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
2,562 Posts
Pickett's charge failed due to several reasons. Artillery went well over the intended mark. Longstreet did not follow orders. Period.

I agree Gettysburg would have been different with Jackson. Maybe the south would not be tied to the dying northern states today if that had happened nor the minority nightmare prevalent in this country today.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
2,562 Posts
Pickett's charge failed due to several reasons. Artillery went well over the intended mark. Longstreet did not follow orders. Period.

I agree Gettysburg would have been different with Jackson. Maybe the south would not be tied to the dying northern states today if that had happened nor the minority nightmare prevalent in this country today.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
563 Posts
Blade,
Good points.. We have to remember that after Jackson died, Lee split the ANV from two corps yo three. He went north with two new commanders, Richard Ewell and A.P Hill. Both way above their pay grade. If Lee would have used his same plan with Jackson, the Battle of Gettysburg probably would have never happened. Jackson would have not stopped at Harrisburg like Ewell did and would have continued N.E. to encircle and cut off Washington. While Longstreet would have headed straight east along the Baltimore Pike.

Ewell went through Gettysburg before the fight so there goes the old myth about looking for shoes. On the other hand, George Meade had figured Lee's plan of attack and issued what is called the Pike Creek Memorandum. This order stated where he wanted to fight Lee, tight down to unit placement. If this action would have taken place, Lee would have a hard row to hoe to dislodge the AOP...

Lee never gave Jackson specific orders, who, what, when and where. Just told him the objective and turned Jackson loose to accomplish it.. Longstreet, who Lee normally staid with, lost his will to really fight after his wife and children died of fever. He tried to resign but Lee would not let him. Members of Longstreet staff, including Captain Peyton Manning said that after the death of his wife and children died, they only saw the fire of battle in his eyes except for the second day of Chickimagua.

Van.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,725 Posts
Van... good post. As for the Southern artillery. It didn't go over the intended target, the Southern Artillery did not have the range from where it was placed. One only needs to stand next to Pickett's statue on the upper part of the ravine and look down the valley then up to the Northern fence line to realize that the charge was probably doomed from the beginning. A mile wide line marching/running over a mile to dug in Union Troops with their artillery placed and registered to target. From what I've read (a lot) yes both Ewell and Hill may have been above their pay grades but were good order takers and both adored Lee. Jackson was a brilliant tactician, dare I say the best from both sides, especially with artillery placement. I believe that he would have devised an alternate point of attack, perhaps agreeing with Longstreet, rather than agree to what amounted to a slaughter of Pickett's Brigade. Now for discussion would be what would have happened if Custer's Michigan Brigades didn't hold up Stuart at Hanover. I believe Stuart was earmarked to attack the right flank but didn't show. I read that after Gettysburg, Longstreet held a huge dislike for Lee and blamed Lee for their losses. Conversely, Lee may have known in his heart that Pickett's charge was going to be a tactical failure from the beginning and took full responsibility for the loss to the point of trying to resign his commission to Jefferson Davis. Any more info/additions/corrections will be appreciated. Fascinating and tragic time in our country.

blade819
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
563 Posts
Blade,
The Battle of Gettysburg is the most studied and written about event in American history. We are fortunate to have in depth resources to be "Monday Morning Quarterbacks". I have been studying this war since I was 9 years old and even today, still learn interesting facts and yes, myths destroyed which is my favorite thing to do in history.

E.Porter Alexander was in charge of Longstreet's artillery and was a very good artillery officer. After the war, he penned, "Fighting for the Confederacy". A very good read for those interested. He stated hype reason for the in effectiveness of the artillery was two fold; 1. Fuses, they received new paper fuses from S.C. And failed to test their burn time prior to the battle. When they did test them, the were burning on an average of 1.5 seconds to long, so a fuse cut to explode at 5 seconds, did not fire till around 6 seconds which would put the rounds going off state their range, between 250 to 300 yards long. 2. Emplacement of Federal troops in what we today refer to linear target line. The troops and guns were emplaned in depth of about 100 yards which is a very narrow target. They could not move their tubes to get oblique fire due to Federal counter battery fire.

Custer really didn't impede Stuart at Hannover. Stuart went a little joy ride which he was famous for. He captured some wagons and didn't arrive on the field till the evening of the second day. Some Lee waited on Stuart's cavalry to do some recon but if you check the O.B., Lee had around 5,000 cav troops available to,him.

Longstreet did not disobey orders at Gettysburg. On the second day, he was late attacking due to the guide supplied by Lee got his troops lost. Some say he was late on the third day and was supposed to attack at sunrise in conjunction with Ewel's attack on Culps Hill. He did receive his orders till around 9 or so the morning of the third day. Pickett's division was the draw unit and did not get on the field till 0 dark thirty of the third day. Yes, he was opposed to a frontal assault and asked not to be in charge since only Pickett belonged to him, the other two divisions belonged to A.P. Hill. Lee refused and as they say, the rest is history. Longstreet fell out of favor after the war when he became a Republican. When he started his book, "Manassas to Appomattox", his home "burned" with all his wartime papers. Lee was dead by this time but he wrote to Lee's aids to confirm jus memory and they agreed with him. Yes, he does blame Lee and of course in the south, that would get ran out of town. This was not their first disagreement, in the spring of 1862, he wanted to take his corps west to the AOT A.O. Lee was already planning to go north but he allowed Pete to present his plan to Jeff Davis but walked out of the room before he started and Davis took this as Lee disagreed with the plan and turned him down. He did go out west in the fall of 1863 and
arrived for the second day of Chickamauga. Longstreet even named one of his sons after Lee.

Most astute historians will agree the battle was lost on the second day. Failure to take Culps Hill, the Roundtops and most importantly, Cemetery Ridge. Confederate troops actually went further the second day than they did the third but just like the third, not enough troops to hold what they had taken. General Anderson failed to support his 3 brigades woth Mahone's brigade and the Georgians, a Alabama and Florida brigades had to fall back. General A. Doubleday actually states that the center of his lines were "pierced" by these troops. I had several ancestors who went up that hill twice, once on the second day and again on the third. My great grandfather and his brother were members of the 2nd Florida. The Florida brigade started the fight with 800 and two days later, less than 200 started the track back to Virginia.

Van
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,725 Posts
PM sent Van. Great history lesson. It just kills me that you could probably walk into any USA History class in American High Schools today and discover that no one knows about the greatest tragedy to ever happen to this country. Too much Xbox or Playstation I guess.

blade819
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
563 Posts
Chris, the second has long been debated igade, Laws. Lee approved the delay till Laws got to the field. If you are familiar with Hardee's Tactics, infantry, then you would know that to go from column of fours, normal marching formation into line of battle, brigade strength is not done quickly. Here is a brief timeline of that day, around noon, Laws arrives in the rear of Hoods Division, still 4 miles from Gettysburg, Around 12:30 is when the guide from Lee arrives and Longstreet realizes that this route of March would be detected by Federal troops, loosing the element of surprise. They counter march, take a different route.around 3, McClaws division goes into line of battle and finds old Dan a sickles troops in the Peach Orchard, note here,Sickles disobeyed orders and advanced to this position, leaving a big hole in the federal left. Around 3:45, Hood finally gets the rest of his division into line of battle and that is when he finds the Union left in the air and asks Longstreet permission to flank and Longstreet refuses, citing Lees orders. Around 4, Hood begins his attack and the rest they say is history. A little known fact about the late 2nd day attack is that Confederate troops, three brigades of Anderson's division actually pierced the Union center on a Cemetery Ridge, through zdoubleday's division but had to withdraw when Anderson does not order Mahone's brigade forward to support the attack, the third day is another day with the same results. In conclusion, from my view, Longstreet followed Lee's orders and adjusted as both terrain and tactics dictated. Gad he followed Lee's order to the letter, a Hoods division would have been detected and perhaps severely hurt before they could form a line of battle.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,725 Posts
Good info Van. It makes me want to visit Gettysburg for the third time and actually stand on the spots while reviewing the hour by hour history. I do know that walking the grounds and riding like I did on our Harley, it's hard to believe that the amount of blood and carnage was there. Of course I said that about Antietam also. I particularly like to read the letters (handwritten copies) by soldiers from both sides.

blade819
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
2,562 Posts
Great discussion. I assume a lot of the opinions vary on many of the issues that happened in those 3 days. As they say....its history.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
563 Posts
Blade and Chris,
Alway interesting as well as educational to discuss history. One of my history profs told me when I graduated to "stay away from someone calling themselves a historian but to adhere yourself to a student of history", one will never know it all and always open to learn more.

Sharps burg is my favorite battle of the war. Have given many tours and round table talks about it. More Americans killed there than were killed in the American Revolution, War with Mexico and the Spanish American war combined. Around 24,000 total KIA, WIA and cAptured/ missing. Have walked Miller's Cornfield at night. Really spooky. Also parked at Devils Den and did the loop around at night and that was even spookier...

Van
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
2,562 Posts
Strange.....very strange. That is where my great great great grandfather fell. I do not know exactly where but it is recorded in our family bible. One returning soldier said he was shot and died 3 days later. Other than that we have been able to find little info. Boy, have several of us searched too. I have one cousin who has traced us all the way back to Germany several generations deep but that info has eluded us all.
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top