This mistake on Johntson's part is new to me. One might guess what drove him: fear for a raid against his LOC or some part of eastern MS / western AL, or maybe, as you hint, he was more concerned with affairs in TN. Perhaps he thought Vicksburg to be impregnable?
Does anybody know if there are contemporary sources covering this subject?
-------- Original-Nachricht --------
> Datum: Wed, 09 Jan 2013 17:52:36 -0000
> Von: "Tony" <tony_gunter@...>
> An: email@example.com
> Betreff: [civilwarwest] Re: Was Pemberton Wrong, Bad, Incompetent (Vicksburg Campaign)
> Sorry, meant to say:
> BAD: Pemberton really should have spent some energy developing intel on
> the area south of the railroad. When the sh*t hit the fan, Pemberton's troops
> acted like they were the visiting team, often taking the wrong roads and
> failing to understand the location and direction of Grant's movements.
> Regarding the cavalry Johnston failed to return, Pemberton had other options:
> abandon north mississippi temporarily and pull most of his cavalry south.
> Vicksburg was much more important strategically, and it would take a couple
> of weeks for the federals to realize that most of the cavalry was gone from
> their front.
> UGLY: Johnston really didn't need to hold onto Van Dorn's cavalry division
> after Pemberton had requested it be returned multiple times. With the
> size of the threat facing Pemberton and the lack of activity in Tennessee, it
> seems bizarre that Johnston was calling for reinforcements from Pemberton
> just before Grant's surprise move south. Johnston also failed to keep a
> reserve force between the two departments that rapidly could respond to any
> unexpected threat. Johnston seems to have been acting more as the head of
> the department of tennessee rather than a theater commander.