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Re: [TalkAntietam] US Civil War Factbook

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  • James Rose
    I like the site. However you are missing one name for the Civil War (an important one too). The War of the Rebellion which was the official name given by
    Message 1 of 30 , Jun 6, 2001
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      I like the site. However you are missing one name for the Civil War (an
      important one too). "The War of the Rebellion" which was the official
      name given by the U.S. War department.

      Jim Rose

      Marcus Wendel wrote:

      > I have just published my site on the American Civil War:
      > The US Civil War Factbook - http://www.skalman.nu/uscivilwar/
      >
      > I am interested in hearing your comments on it, thanks.
      > Either post them here or (better) mail them to me at
      > marcus_wendel@...
      >
      > btw. If you are interested in providing information for the site,
      > please let me know.
      >
      > /Marcus
      > http://www.skalman.nu
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
      >
      >
      >
      >
    • Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine)
      I d have to say that although the victory wasn t all the North would have liked it to be, you d still have to give the boys in blue the nod. Something like
      Message 2 of 30 , Jun 7, 2001
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        I'd have to say that although the "victory" wasn't all the North would have
        liked it to be, you'd still have to give the boys in blue the nod. Something
        like "turned back the Confederate invasion" might be closer to the truth,
        even if it was only a raid.

        -----Original Message-----
        From: Brian Downey [mailto:brdowney@...]
        Sent: Wednesday, June 06, 2001 8:14 PM
        To: TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [TalkAntietam] Re: US Civil War Factbook


        Thanks for the link Marcus. You have a very clean, readable site
        there - nice introduction to the War between the States.

        To bring it back to the subject of _this_ group:

        On your 1862 timeline, you noted "17 Sep - Union forces defeat the
        Confederate forces at Antietam, Maryland."

        I would suggest the forces met on that date, but the matter of who
        was victorious is open to debate. Also, in the North, the battle was
        named for Antietam Creek. The battle actually occurred near the town
        of Sharpsburg, Maryland. Those in the South referred to the battle by
        the name of the town.

        Welcome aboard, I hope we'll hear more from you and your site.

        Brian

        --- In TalkAntietam@y..., "Marcus Wendel" <marcus_wendel@y...> wrote:
        > I have just published my site on the American Civil War:
        > The US Civil War Factbook - http://www.skalman.nu/uscivilwar/
        >
        > I am interested in hearing your comments on it, thanks.
        > Either post them here or (better) mail them to me at
        > marcus_wendel@y...
        >
        > btw. If you are interested in providing information for the site,
        > please let me know.
        >
        > /Marcus
        > http://www.skalman.nu





        Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
      • Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine)
        It would for those who wish to read it that way, but by the contemporary yardstick, it you left first, you lose -- as at Stones River. Tactically you can
        Message 3 of 30 , Jun 7, 2001
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          It would for those who wish to read it that way, but by the contemporary
          yardstick, it you left first, you lose -- as at Stones River. Tactically you
          can easily call it a draw, but strategically, Lee was in Maryland, and then
          he wasn't. (And for those who would quibble, "left first" as in breaking off
          offensive efforts.)

          Needless to say, in terms of what _might_ have happened, if Jim Rose will
          allow me to get away with saying this, the battle was a failure of immense
          proportions on the Union side.

          -----Original Message-----
          From: Teej Smith [mailto:teej@...]
          Sent: Thursday, June 07, 2001 8:53 AM
          To: TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: Re: [TalkAntietam] Re: US Civil War Factbook


          "Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine)" wrote:
          >
          > I'd have to say that although the "victory" wasn't all the North would
          have
          > liked it to be, you'd still have to give the boys in blue the nod.
          Something
          > like "turned back the Confederate invasion" might be closer to the truth,
          > even if it was only a raid.

          Would the fact Lee stood the ground an extra day and Mac failed to
          pursue the ANV constitute the draw?

          Regards,
          Teej
          >




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        • Teej Smith
          ... Would the fact Lee stood the ground an extra day and Mac failed to pursue the ANV constitute the draw? Regards, Teej
          Message 4 of 30 , Jun 7, 2001
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            "Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine)" wrote:
            >
            > I'd have to say that although the "victory" wasn't all the North would have
            > liked it to be, you'd still have to give the boys in blue the nod. Something
            > like "turned back the Confederate invasion" might be closer to the truth,
            > even if it was only a raid.

            Would the fact Lee stood the ground an extra day and Mac failed to
            pursue the ANV constitute the draw?

            Regards,
            Teej
            >
          • Anthony W. Turner
            Re: Who won? Who lost? For me, this raises a semantics question. Wouldn t it be right to call it a tactical draw and a strategic victory for the Union? Tony
            Message 5 of 30 , Jun 7, 2001
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              Re: Who won? Who lost?

              For me, this raises a semantics question. Wouldn't it be right to call
              it a tactical draw and a strategic victory for the Union?

              Tony Turner
            • James Rose
              ... I m trying to figure out how I can prevent you from saying that. :) Sure the battle could have gone better for the North. Such as if A.P. Hill had arrived
              Message 6 of 30 , Jun 7, 2001
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                Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine) wrote:

                > It would for those who wish to read it that way, but by the contemporary
                > yardstick, it you left first, you lose -- as at Stones River. Tactically you
                > can easily call it a draw, but strategically, Lee was in Maryland, and then
                > he wasn't. (And for those who would quibble, "left first" as in breaking off
                > offensive efforts.)
                >
                > Needless to say, in terms of what _might_ have happened, if Jim Rose will
                > allow me to get away with saying this, the battle was a failure of immense
                > proportions on the Union side.

                I'm trying to figure out how I can prevent you from saying that. :)
                Sure the battle could have gone better for the North. Such as if A.P.
                Hill had arrived either much earlier or latter in the battle, or if
                Rodman hadn't been mortally wounded there are good reasons to believe
                that Antietam would have been a complete victory.

                If you are talking about the chance for the AotP to totally destroy the
                ANV, I'm afraid I still don't see it. As far as I know there was only
                one time (ONE) that an army was destroyed during the war. According to
                Livermore the odds were worse for the Union at Antietam (1.45-1) than at
                Nashville (2.14-1). Admittedly Livermore may not be the best, but using
                Harsh's numbers the odds only up in the Union's favor a little bit at
                Antietam (1.58-1). Quite simply the evidence from the war suggests that
                one (of many) things needed for one army to destroy another is numerical
                superiority of at least 2-1, and that is something that McClellan did
                not have. If you can show me a single example of where an army in the
                Civil War that had a 1.58-1 or less superiority in effectives destroyed
                the other army I will change my opinion. Until that happens I will
                maintain that McClellan did a very good job during the Maryland campaign.

                Jim Rose
              • Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine)
                Not talking about wiping Lee out to a man; just doing even more damage than they did. An interesting comment along those lines comes from Porter Alexander, who
                Message 7 of 30 , Jun 8, 2001
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                  Not talking about wiping Lee out to a man; just doing even more damage than
                  they did.

                  An interesting comment along those lines comes from Porter Alexander, who
                  while saying that Meade was entirely right not to attack at Falling Waters,
                  as they'd have waxed his tail for him all too happily, with the opportunity
                  to end the war in one afternoon, he should have tried anyway. (A good
                  example of talking out of both sides of your mouth but still making sense
                  anyway if there ever was one.)

                  That same theory, such as it is and so far as it goes, might have been
                  applied to McClellan on the 18th.

                  -----Original Message-----
                  From: James Rose [mailto:eodrose@...]
                  Sent: Thursday, June 07, 2001 7:17 PM
                  To: TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com
                  Subject: Re: [TalkAntietam] Re: US Civil War Factbook




                  Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine) wrote:

                  > It would for those who wish to read it that way, but by the contemporary
                  > yardstick, it you left first, you lose -- as at Stones River. Tactically
                  you
                  > can easily call it a draw, but strategically, Lee was in Maryland, and
                  then
                  > he wasn't. (And for those who would quibble, "left first" as in breaking
                  off
                  > offensive efforts.)
                  >
                  > Needless to say, in terms of what _might_ have happened, if Jim Rose will
                  > allow me to get away with saying this, the battle was a failure of immense
                  > proportions on the Union side.

                  I'm trying to figure out how I can prevent you from saying that. :)
                  Sure the battle could have gone better for the North. Such as if A.P.
                  Hill had arrived either much earlier or latter in the battle, or if
                  Rodman hadn't been mortally wounded there are good reasons to believe
                  that Antietam would have been a complete victory.

                  If you are talking about the chance for the AotP to totally destroy the
                  ANV, I'm afraid I still don't see it. As far as I know there was only
                  one time (ONE) that an army was destroyed during the war. According to
                  Livermore the odds were worse for the Union at Antietam (1.45-1) than at
                  Nashville (2.14-1). Admittedly Livermore may not be the best, but using
                  Harsh's numbers the odds only up in the Union's favor a little bit at
                  Antietam (1.58-1). Quite simply the evidence from the war suggests that
                  one (of many) things needed for one army to destroy another is numerical
                  superiority of at least 2-1, and that is something that McClellan did
                  not have. If you can show me a single example of where an army in the
                  Civil War that had a 1.58-1 or less superiority in effectives destroyed
                  the other army I will change my opinion. Until that happens I will
                  maintain that McClellan did a very good job during the Maryland campaign.

                  Jim Rose






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                • James Rose
                  ... I understand the theory, but for the Union I don t accept its validity. What some people have trouble understanding is that sometimes the attacker loses
                  Message 8 of 30 , Jun 8, 2001
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                    Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine) wrote:

                    > Not talking about wiping Lee out to a man; just doing even more damage than
                    > they did.
                    >
                    > An interesting comment along those lines comes from Porter Alexander, who
                    > while saying that Meade was entirely right not to attack at Falling Waters,
                    > as they'd have waxed his tail for him all too happily, with the opportunity
                    > to end the war in one afternoon, he should have tried anyway. (A good
                    > example of talking out of both sides of your mouth but still making sense
                    > anyway if there ever was one.)
                    >
                    > That same theory, such as it is and so far as it goes, might have been
                    > applied to McClellan on the 18th.

                    I understand the theory, but for the Union I don't accept its validity.
                    What some people have trouble understanding is that sometimes the
                    attacker loses the battle even when they outnumber their opponent.
                    Battles of the "win the war in one battle" (if such actually exist)
                    variety usually apply to both sides. In that case the person with the
                    upper hand (ie the one who will win in the end anyway) would be a fool
                    to give the underdog a chance at total victory.

                    Whether or not Lee and McClellan were right that a decisive Confederate
                    victory in Maryland would give the best chance to end the war in the
                    Confederacy's favor, they were both thinking in those terms.
                    McClellan's conduct during the campaign was to deny Lee that victory.

                    Jim Rose
                  • NJ Rebel
                    Tony-- After having been away all week in Chicago at a trade show, I am only now joining in again and am shortly off for the weekend to my family summer
                    Message 9 of 30 , Jun 8, 2001
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                      Tony--

                      After having been away all week in Chicago at a trade show, I am
                      only now joining in again and am shortly off for the weekend to
                      my family "summer house"....

                      Actually, IMHO, no one won the Civil War!

                      Your humble servant,
                      Gerry Mayers
                      Co. B, "Tom Green Rifles",
                      Fourth Regiment, Texas Volunteer Infantry

                      "I know of no fitter resting-place for a soldier than the field
                      on which he has nobly laid down his life." --General Robert
                      Edward Lee


                      ----- Original Message -----
                      From: "Anthony W. Turner" <awturner@...>
                      To: <TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com>
                      Sent: Thursday, June 07, 2001 11:54 AM
                      Subject: [TalkAntietam] Re: US Civil War Factbook


                      > Re: Who won? Who lost?
                      >
                      > For me, this raises a semantics question. Wouldn't it be right
                      to call
                      > it a tactical draw and a strategic victory for the Union?
                      >
                      > Tony Turner
                      >
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                      Service.
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                    • Anthony W. Turner
                      Off the top, I agree with you about no one winning the war, Gerry. It might be a worthy topic for discussion on a forum with a broader range, however. In how
                      Message 10 of 30 , Jun 8, 2001
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                        Off the top, I agree with you about no one winning the war, Gerry. It
                        might be a worthy topic for discussion on a forum with a broader range,
                        however. In how many contexts can we put the question, "Who won?"..???

                        My own "Who won? Who lost?" comment on TalkAntietam referred to the
                        battle, not the war. Apologies if I didn't make that clear.

                        Enjoy your weekend.

                        Tony Turner
                      • Curt
                        I would suggest: Mill Springs (A/D 1:1) Brice s Cross Roads (A/D 0.4/1.0) If you would like a contemporary European example, there is Sadowa (1866)(A/D
                        Message 11 of 30 , Jun 8, 2001
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                          I would suggest:

                          Mill Springs (A/D 1:1)

                          Brice's Cross Roads (A/D 0.4/1.0)

                          If you would like a contemporary European example, there is Sadowa
                          (1866)(A/D 1.0/0.98).

                          These were true battles of annihilation, as was Nashville, which I
                          assume is your unnamed example (benchmark?).

                          As I have attempted to demonstrate elsewhere, in discussion of the
                          purported 3-1 rule, there is no real correlation of raw numbers of
                          personnel to success in battle.

                          Curt Johnson
                          McLean, Va.


                          James Rose wrote:
                          If you can show me a single example of where an army in the
                          > Civil War that had a 1.58-1 or less superiority in effectives destroyed
                          > the other army I will change my opinion. Until that happens I will
                          > maintain that McClellan did a very good job during the Maryland campaign.
                          >
                          > Jim Rose
                          >
                        • James Rose
                          ... I don t have much information on those two battles, but what I do have does not equate to battles of annihilation . At Mills Springs the forces were US
                          Message 12 of 30 , Jun 9, 2001
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                            Curt wrote:

                            > I would suggest:
                            >
                            > Mill Springs (A/D 1:1)
                            >
                            > Brice's Cross Roads (A/D 0.4/1.0)

                            I don't have much information on those two battles, but what I do have
                            does not equate to "battles of annihilation".

                            At Mills Springs the forces were US 4,000 to CS 4,000. Casualties were
                            US 262 to CS 529. Crittenden abandoned most of his equipment in the
                            retreat. True it was a resounding victory for the US forces, but it
                            stops well short of annihilation. I would like to point out two extra
                            things about this battle. One, the scale of operations is significantly
                            much smaller than I was thinking about (when I say army I generally
                            refer to at least 20,000 men). Scale of operations does make a
                            difference. Two, if what I read about many of Crittenden's men having
                            weapons that didn't work is correct, then the odds change. A man cannot
                            be considered a fighting effective if his weapon doesn't work.

                            Brice's Cross Roads is a much better example (although the problem of
                            scale is still there). The forces were US 8,100 to CS 3,500
                            (interestingly at 2.3:1 this is close to the superiority that many
                            people believe McClellan had over Lee). Casualties were US 2,612 to CS
                            493. It was a rout, massive one sided victory (question are there any
                            victories that were more one sided during the war), and just an all
                            round good day for Forrest. However, Sturgis still made it to safety
                            with the bulk of his army. I would like to point out one thing about
                            this battle. The CS had Forrest. McClellan was many things, but a
                            tactical genius was not one of them.

                            I was looking up Nashville (yes it was the benchmark), and one
                            conclusion jumps out at me. The difference between being routed and
                            annihilation has a lot to do with the support structure of the army in
                            question. As near as I can tell the only reason why Hood's army was
                            "destroyed" was because the South could no longer recover from a massive
                            defeat. This was not the situation in 1862.

                            > As I have attempted to demonstrate elsewhere, in discussion of the
                            > purported 3-1 rule, there is no real correlation of raw numbers of
                            > personnel to success in battle.

                            If this is true (which in general I agree) then why do people
                            automatically assume that McClellan would defeat and destroy Lee? From
                            every account I have read and heard Lee is considered a much better
                            tactical commander than McClellan. I don't deny that McClellan might
                            have been able to destroy the ANV. What I deny is that it is a given
                            that had McClellan attacked on the 18th he would have destroyed the
                            ANV. If anything Brice's Cross Roads shows that it could have gone the
                            other way.

                            In the Maryland campaign McClellan had two things going for him: numbers
                            (which he was unaware of his advantage), and supply (his supply
                            situation was far better than Lee's). He had five things going against
                            him: strategic defense (i.e. he was reacting to Lee), tactical offense
                            (if 3-1 isn't an official axiom, it is still better to be in a strong
                            defensive position when fighting), morale (his army had just been
                            routed), combat veterans (13% had never been in combat, and many of
                            those who had been in only one major campaign got their experience at
                            2nd Manassas), and tactical command ( the Lee/Longstreet/Jackson team is
                            considered far better than the McClellan/Burnside/Porter team). The
                            situation was reversed for Lee except that it is even worse for
                            McClellan in the morale and combat veterans department. For morale the
                            ANV had come off of a summer of victories capped with routing the
                            federal army. For veterans, everyone in the ANV had been in at least
                            one major campaign (the highest percentage being in 3 major battles).

                            For the life of me I can't see what people base the assumption that it
                            is axiomatic that the AotP would destroy the ANV if McClellan had
                            attacked on the 18th. Possible, yes; probable, maybe (I thinks that's
                            pushing it); a given, no way.

                            Jim Rose
                          • Anthony W. Turner
                            Jim Rose wrote:
                            Message 13 of 30 , Jun 9, 2001
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                              Jim Rose wrote:
                              << In the Maryland campaign McClellan had two things going for him:
                              numbers (which he was unaware of his advantage), and supply (his supply
                              situation was far better than Lee's). He had five things going against
                              him: strategic defense (i.e. he was reacting to Lee), tactical offense
                              (if 3-1 isn't an official axiom, it is still better to be in a strong
                              defensive position when fighting), morale (his army had just been
                              routed), combat veterans (13% had never been in combat...) >>

                              Your 13% figure differs, Jim, from the "one quarter" (or 25%) D. Scott
                              Hartwig uses in his essay, "Who Would Not Be a Soldier?" within Gary
                              Gallagher's _The Antietam Campaign_. I'm not the scholar here, and not
                              about to dispute either figure, but feel two such disparate numbers
                              deserve further discussion.

                              Hartwig writes of the AoP: "The field army had an effective strength of
                              approximately 60,000 men. On September 6-7, McClellan assigned
                              twenty-four new regiments to his field army, distributing them equally
                              among his corps, with the Second, Ninth, and Twelfth recieving the
                              largest number. Only eighteen regiments, numbering about 15,000-16,000
                              men, actually accompanied the army, the others being unable to join
                              their assigned brigades before the army moved. In addition, several
                              thousand volunteers who had been recruited for veteran regiments joined
                              their assigned brigades before the army marched, raising the number of
                              recruits in the field to approximately 20,000. This meant nearly
                              one-quarter of McClellan's infantry had undergone little or no
                              training."

                              Comments, Jim and others?

                              Tony Turner
                            • James Rose
                              I don t think that our numbers are really very different. It just takes some explaining. You might call my research the quick and dirty kind. Hartwig was
                              Message 14 of 30 , Jun 9, 2001
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                                I don't think that our numbers are really very different. It just takes
                                some explaining. You might call my research the quick and dirty kind.
                                Hartwig was talking about the men, while I was simply talking about
                                regiments without reference to how many men were present for duty from
                                each regiment. It stands to reason that the unblooded regiments will
                                have more men present than the veteran units. I would not be surprised
                                if a full 25% of the men at Antietam were under one month service. The
                                following is how I came up with my numbers.

                                I had to do the research on this by myself. Harsh did a good job with
                                the ANV, but he has yet to do the AotP. So I did my research using the
                                criteria in "Sounding the Shallows" for what constitutes major battles.
                                What I did was use the table in "Gleam of Bayonets" for my list of what
                                regiments were in the AotP at the time (from what I understand it is not
                                a perfect list, but it was the best I had). Then using that list I went
                                through Dyer's and created a spreadsheet of the 217 infantry regiments
                                (that is what I was concerned with at the time). The tables were:
                                branch (all infantry), state, regiment #, muster in date, terms of
                                service, corps assign, division assign, brigade assign, previous combat
                                (I included skirmishes for this), and major battles (using Harsh's
                                definitions). It took a really long time to put all this information
                                together, so I wouldn't be surprised if I made any mistakes.

                                Of the 217 regiments in the AotP at this time there were 23 absent from
                                Antietam (Forth corps and Humphrey's division). Of the 194 remaining,
                                17 were mustered in less than one month before (8.8%); 26 had no
                                previous combat experience (13.4%); 40 had never fought a major battle
                                (20.6%); 35 had fought one major battle (18%); 92 had fought two major
                                battles (47.4%); 25 had fought three major battles (12.9%); and 2 had
                                fought 4 major battles (1%).

                                Note that I did not put numbers of men to each regiment. That was
                                beyond the scope of the research I was doing at the time (not to mention
                                that would probably take a year, and I only had a few days). I will say
                                that the absolute most that the new men could make up would be about 22%
                                of the total men in the army in the "effectives" group. It was probably
                                fairly close to this percentage.

                                Jim Rose

                                Anthony W. Turner wrote:

                                >
                                > Your 13% figure differs, Jim, from the "one quarter" (or 25%) D. Scott
                                > Hartwig uses in his essay, "Who Would Not Be a Soldier?" within Gary
                                > Gallagher's _The Antietam Campaign_. I'm not the scholar here, and not
                                > about to dispute either figure, but feel two such disparate numbers
                                > deserve further discussion.
                                >
                                > Hartwig writes of the AoP: "The field army had an effective strength of
                                > approximately 60,000 men. On September 6-7, McClellan assigned
                                > twenty-four new regiments to his field army, distributing them equally
                                > among his corps, with the Second, Ninth, and Twelfth recieving the
                                > largest number. Only eighteen regiments, numbering about 15,000-16,000
                                > men, actually accompanied the army, the others being unable to join
                                > their assigned brigades before the army moved. In addition, several
                                > thousand volunteers who had been recruited for veteran regiments joined
                                > their assigned brigades before the army marched, raising the number of
                                > recruits in the field to approximately 20,000. This meant nearly
                                > one-quarter of McClellan's infantry had undergone little or no
                                > training."
                                >
                                > Comments, Jim and others?
                                >
                                > Tony Turner
                                >
                                >
                              • Marcus Wendel
                                ... Thanks, but I actually have that name on my list. /Marcus http://www.skalman.nu
                                Message 15 of 30 , Jun 10, 2001
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                                  --- In TalkAntietam@y..., James Rose <eodrose@e...> wrote:
                                  > I like the site. However you are missing one name for the Civil
                                  > War (an important one too). "The War of the Rebellion" which was
                                  > the official name given by the U.S. War department.

                                  Thanks, but I actually have that name on my list.

                                  /Marcus
                                  http://www.skalman.nu
                                • Marcus Wendel
                                  ... Thanks, I am glad you like it. ... Good point, I will try to rephrase that. /Marcus http://www.skalman.nu
                                  Message 16 of 30 , Jun 10, 2001
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                                    --- In TalkAntietam@y..., "Brian Downey" <brdowney@m...> wrote:
                                    > Thanks for the link Marcus. You have a very clean, readable site
                                    > there - nice introduction to the War between the States.

                                    Thanks, I am glad you like it.

                                    > On your 1862 timeline, you noted "17 Sep - Union forces defeat the
                                    > Confederate forces at Antietam, Maryland."
                                    > I would suggest the forces met on that date, but the matter of who
                                    > was victorious is open to debate. Also, in the North, the battle
                                    > was named for Antietam Creek. The battle actually occurred near
                                    > the town of Sharpsburg, Maryland. Those in the South referred to
                                    > the battle by the name of the town.

                                    Good point, I will try to rephrase that.

                                    /Marcus
                                    http://www.skalman.nu
                                  • Pa128th@aol.com
                                    In a message dated 6/9/01 8:54:47 PM Eastern Daylight Time, awturner@midtel.net writes:
                                    Message 17 of 30 , Jun 10, 2001
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                                      In a message dated 6/9/01 8:54:47 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
                                      awturner@... writes:

                                      << Hartwig writes of the AoP: "The field army had an effective strength of
                                      approximately 60,000 men. On September 6-7, McClellan assigned
                                      twenty-four new regiments to his field army, distributing them equally
                                      among his corps, with the Second, Ninth, and Twelfth recieving the
                                      largest number. Only eighteen regiments, numbering about 15,000-16,000
                                      men, actually accompanied the army, the others being unable to join
                                      their assigned brigades before the army moved. In addition, several
                                      thousand volunteers who had been recruited for veteran regiments joined
                                      their assigned brigades before the army marched, raising the number of
                                      recruits in the field to approximately 20,000. This meant nearly
                                      one-quarter of McClellan's infantry had undergone little or no
                                      training."
                                      >>
                                      Just to give you an example, one brigade of Alpheus Williams division in the
                                      the X!! corps had 6 regiments, The 124th, the 125th and the 128th Pa were
                                      just about full strength but were green troops and never in combat, the XII
                                      corps missed South Mt, arriving there the night of the 14th. The other 3
                                      regiments, the 10th Ct, 46th Pa and 28th NY were veterans, but had strengths
                                      of about company size, if that.

                                      Paula
                                    • John Priest
                                      I ascertained that 27 of the Federal regiments at Antietam were green - being in the service less than six weeks. Regiments like the 8th Ohio, had been in
                                      Message 18 of 30 , Jun 10, 2001
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                                        I ascertained that 27 of the Federal regiments at Antietam were "green" -
                                        being in the service less than six weeks. Regiments like the 8th Ohio, had
                                        been in actions of some sort but not on the scale of Antietam. Antietam was
                                        the first real battle of a large portion of the A of P. It was a very
                                        terrible taste of on the job training.

                                        Mike Priest


                                        -----Original Message-----
                                        From: James Rose <eodrose@...>
                                        To: TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com <TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com>
                                        Date: Saturday, June 09, 2001 10:29 PM
                                        Subject: Re: [TalkAntietam] Re: US Civil War Factbook


                                        >I don't think that our numbers are really very different. It just takes
                                        >some explaining. You might call my research the quick and dirty kind.
                                        >Hartwig was talking about the men, while I was simply talking about
                                        >regiments without reference to how many men were present for duty from
                                        >each regiment. It stands to reason that the unblooded regiments will
                                        >have more men present than the veteran units. I would not be surprised
                                        >if a full 25% of the men at Antietam were under one month service. The
                                        >following is how I came up with my numbers.
                                        >
                                        >I had to do the research on this by myself. Harsh did a good job with
                                        >the ANV, but he has yet to do the AotP. So I did my research using the
                                        >criteria in "Sounding the Shallows" for what constitutes major battles.
                                        >What I did was use the table in "Gleam of Bayonets" for my list of what
                                        >regiments were in the AotP at the time (from what I understand it is not
                                        >a perfect list, but it was the best I had). Then using that list I went
                                        >through Dyer's and created a spreadsheet of the 217 infantry regiments
                                        >(that is what I was concerned with at the time). The tables were:
                                        >branch (all infantry), state, regiment #, muster in date, terms of
                                        >service, corps assign, division assign, brigade assign, previous combat
                                        >(I included skirmishes for this), and major battles (using Harsh's
                                        >definitions). It took a really long time to put all this information
                                        >together, so I wouldn't be surprised if I made any mistakes.
                                        >
                                        >Of the 217 regiments in the AotP at this time there were 23 absent from
                                        >Antietam (Forth corps and Humphrey's division). Of the 194 remaining,
                                        >17 were mustered in less than one month before (8.8%); 26 had no
                                        >previous combat experience (13.4%); 40 had never fought a major battle
                                        >(20.6%); 35 had fought one major battle (18%); 92 had fought two major
                                        >battles (47.4%); 25 had fought three major battles (12.9%); and 2 had
                                        >fought 4 major battles (1%).
                                        >
                                        >Note that I did not put numbers of men to each regiment. That was
                                        >beyond the scope of the research I was doing at the time (not to mention
                                        >that would probably take a year, and I only had a few days). I will say
                                        >that the absolute most that the new men could make up would be about 22%
                                        >of the total men in the army in the "effectives" group. It was probably
                                        >fairly close to this percentage.
                                        >
                                        >Jim Rose
                                        >
                                        >Anthony W. Turner wrote:
                                        >
                                        >>
                                        >> Your 13% figure differs, Jim, from the "one quarter" (or 25%) D. Scott
                                        >> Hartwig uses in his essay, "Who Would Not Be a Soldier?" within Gary
                                        >> Gallagher's _The Antietam Campaign_. I'm not the scholar here, and not
                                        >> about to dispute either figure, but feel two such disparate numbers
                                        >> deserve further discussion.
                                        >>
                                        >> Hartwig writes of the AoP: "The field army had an effective strength of
                                        >> approximately 60,000 men. On September 6-7, McClellan assigned
                                        >> twenty-four new regiments to his field army, distributing them equally
                                        >> among his corps, with the Second, Ninth, and Twelfth recieving the
                                        >> largest number. Only eighteen regiments, numbering about 15,000-16,000
                                        >> men, actually accompanied the army, the others being unable to join
                                        >> their assigned brigades before the army moved. In addition, several
                                        >> thousand volunteers who had been recruited for veteran regiments joined
                                        >> their assigned brigades before the army marched, raising the number of
                                        >> recruits in the field to approximately 20,000. This meant nearly
                                        >> one-quarter of McClellan's infantry had undergone little or no
                                        >> training."
                                        >>
                                        >> Comments, Jim and others?
                                        >>
                                        >> Tony Turner
                                        >>
                                        >>
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                      • James Rose
                                        ... If you count Humphrey s division and Forth corps the number of Green regiments jumps to 27 on my table. I didn t count them because they were not at
                                        Message 19 of 30 , Jun 10, 2001
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                                          John Priest wrote:

                                          > I ascertained that 27 of the Federal regiments at Antietam were "green" -
                                          > being in the service less than six weeks. Regiments like the 8th Ohio, had
                                          > been in actions of some sort but not on the scale of Antietam. Antietam was
                                          > the first real battle of a large portion of the A of P. It was a very
                                          > terrible taste of on the job training.


                                          If you count Humphrey's division and Forth corps the number of "Green"
                                          regiments jumps to 27 on my table. I didn't count them because they
                                          were not at Antietam on the 17th.

                                          Jim Rose
                                        • Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine)
                                          I don t think everyone believes McClellan would automatically destroy Lee. But with an advantage in manpower, and facing an opponent that had been whacked
                                          Message 20 of 30 , Jun 11, 2001
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                                            I don't think everyone believes McClellan would "automatically" destroy Lee.
                                            But with an advantage in manpower, and facing an opponent that had been
                                            whacked pretty good the day before (and Mac should know this, since _he_ was
                                            whacked pretty thoroughly too), and with his back against a river and
                                            nothing but catastrophe awaiting him should the day go against him, was it
                                            _at least_ worth a try?

                                            I would think even you would have to consider that as a valid choice.

                                            -----Original Message-----
                                            From: James Rose [mailto:eodrose@...]
                                            Sent: Saturday, June 09, 2001 9:10 AM
                                            To: TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com
                                            Subject: Re: [TalkAntietam] Re: US Civil War Factbook




                                            Curt wrote:

                                            > I would suggest:
                                            >
                                            > Mill Springs (A/D 1:1)
                                            >
                                            > Brice's Cross Roads (A/D 0.4/1.0)

                                            I don't have much information on those two battles, but what I do have
                                            does not equate to "battles of annihilation".

                                            At Mills Springs the forces were US 4,000 to CS 4,000. Casualties were
                                            US 262 to CS 529. Crittenden abandoned most of his equipment in the
                                            retreat. True it was a resounding victory for the US forces, but it
                                            stops well short of annihilation. I would like to point out two extra
                                            things about this battle. One, the scale of operations is significantly
                                            much smaller than I was thinking about (when I say army I generally
                                            refer to at least 20,000 men). Scale of operations does make a
                                            difference. Two, if what I read about many of Crittenden's men having
                                            weapons that didn't work is correct, then the odds change. A man cannot
                                            be considered a fighting effective if his weapon doesn't work.

                                            Brice's Cross Roads is a much better example (although the problem of
                                            scale is still there). The forces were US 8,100 to CS 3,500
                                            (interestingly at 2.3:1 this is close to the superiority that many
                                            people believe McClellan had over Lee). Casualties were US 2,612 to CS
                                            493. It was a rout, massive one sided victory (question are there any
                                            victories that were more one sided during the war), and just an all
                                            round good day for Forrest. However, Sturgis still made it to safety
                                            with the bulk of his army. I would like to point out one thing about
                                            this battle. The CS had Forrest. McClellan was many things, but a
                                            tactical genius was not one of them.

                                            I was looking up Nashville (yes it was the benchmark), and one
                                            conclusion jumps out at me. The difference between being routed and
                                            annihilation has a lot to do with the support structure of the army in
                                            question. As near as I can tell the only reason why Hood's army was
                                            "destroyed" was because the South could no longer recover from a massive
                                            defeat. This was not the situation in 1862.

                                            > As I have attempted to demonstrate elsewhere, in discussion of the
                                            > purported 3-1 rule, there is no real correlation of raw numbers of
                                            > personnel to success in battle.

                                            If this is true (which in general I agree) then why do people
                                            automatically assume that McClellan would defeat and destroy Lee? From
                                            every account I have read and heard Lee is considered a much better
                                            tactical commander than McClellan. I don't deny that McClellan might
                                            have been able to destroy the ANV. What I deny is that it is a given
                                            that had McClellan attacked on the 18th he would have destroyed the
                                            ANV. If anything Brice's Cross Roads shows that it could have gone the
                                            other way.

                                            In the Maryland campaign McClellan had two things going for him: numbers
                                            (which he was unaware of his advantage), and supply (his supply
                                            situation was far better than Lee's). He had five things going against
                                            him: strategic defense (i.e. he was reacting to Lee), tactical offense
                                            (if 3-1 isn't an official axiom, it is still better to be in a strong
                                            defensive position when fighting), morale (his army had just been
                                            routed), combat veterans (13% had never been in combat, and many of
                                            those who had been in only one major campaign got their experience at
                                            2nd Manassas), and tactical command ( the Lee/Longstreet/Jackson team is
                                            considered far better than the McClellan/Burnside/Porter team). The
                                            situation was reversed for Lee except that it is even worse for
                                            McClellan in the morale and combat veterans department. For morale the
                                            ANV had come off of a summer of victories capped with routing the
                                            federal army. For veterans, everyone in the ANV had been in at least
                                            one major campaign (the highest percentage being in 3 major battles).

                                            For the life of me I can't see what people base the assumption that it
                                            is axiomatic that the AotP would destroy the ANV if McClellan had
                                            attacked on the 18th. Possible, yes; probable, maybe (I thinks that's
                                            pushing it); a given, no way.

                                            Jim Rose






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                                          • James Rose
                                            Perhaps saying everyone was a bit strong, but overall that is my impression of how most people judge McClellan s actions during the Maryland campaign. The
                                            Message 21 of 30 , Jun 11, 2001
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                                              Perhaps saying "everyone" was a bit strong, but overall that is my
                                              impression of how most people judge McClellan's actions during the
                                              Maryland campaign. The seize on their vision of what might have been,
                                              and lose sight of what McClellan did accomplish.

                                              As to the specifics of your question (which was phrased quite
                                              differently than I normally see it), I agree that it would have been
                                              worth a try. That is speaking from the position of hindsight, and
                                              knowing what I know, attacking on the 18th probably would have been a
                                              good idea. While admitting that attacking might have been the best
                                              course of action, that does not mean that I believe what McClellan did
                                              do was wrong. I think that Harsh goes into the best detail of how the
                                              situation looked to McClellan after the battle in TATF (Murfin does
                                              little more than try to show that McClellan was little more than a
                                              whinny boy, and Sears is not much better).

                                              Looking at the situation on the evening of the 17th as it appeared to
                                              McClellan his decision is not unreasonable. In the first place
                                              McClellan did intend to attack on the 18th, but circumstances delayed it
                                              for 24 hours. McClellan was unaware of his advantage in manpower. All
                                              of the intelligence reports put the ANV at having a 25% advantage in
                                              men, and nothing that happened during the 17th could have changed that
                                              opinion downward. The AotP was repulsed at every point with 25-33%
                                              losses (it was worse among the green troops). The ANV's line was never
                                              broken fully open anywhere. The ANV was "wacked", but so was the AotP.
                                              Any attack on the 18th could only be done with the Fifth and Sixth
                                              corps'. The other corps' were unable to conduct offensive operations
                                              (at least that is what the corps' commanders told McClellan). Of those
                                              two corps' around 25% of the men had less than one month in service.
                                              Then there is the ammo situation. Small arms ammo was critically short,
                                              and the AotP was completely out of Parrot ammo. Because of the
                                              destruction of the B&O bridge the AotP would not be resupplied until the
                                              evening of the 18th. Finally any attack would again give Lee the
                                              advantage of defense. At best I don't see how McClellan could have
                                              believed that any attack on the 18th would be more than a toss up as to
                                              who would win.

                                              So the question becomes: should McClellan have taken that gamble and
                                              attacked on the 18th? Considering what McClellan believe his duty to be
                                              I would say that he was unjustified in taking the gamble that it
                                              appeared to be. McClellan's first duty was the protection of
                                              Washington, and the second was to end the invasion of Maryland (down
                                              around the end of the list is the destruction of the ANV). By standing
                                              fast on the 18th, and preparing to attack on the 19th McClellan served
                                              both those duties. Lee had three options. He could attack, stand, or
                                              leave. McClellan was ready for any counterattack, he would attack on
                                              the 19th if Lee stood, and the only place for Lee to go was back to
                                              Virginia. On the other hand if McClellan had attacked and lost, then
                                              Lee might have been able to revive his invasion (unlikely in hindsight
                                              no matter the outcome of the battle). That would mean a failure of both
                                              the primary and secondary missions. Quite simply if McClellan had
                                              attacked on the 18th he would have risked everything for the possibility
                                              of gaining relatively little.

                                              Jim Rose

                                              Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine) wrote:

                                              > I don't think everyone believes McClellan would "automatically" destroy Lee.
                                              > But with an advantage in manpower, and facing an opponent that had been
                                              > whacked pretty good the day before (and Mac should know this, since _he_ was
                                              > whacked pretty thoroughly too), and with his back against a river and
                                              > nothing but catastrophe awaiting him should the day go against him, was it
                                              > _at least_ worth a try?
                                              >
                                              > I would think even you would have to consider that as a valid choice.
                                            • Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine)
                                              Not to entirely rehash this ever-so-familiar topic, but a couple of points: 1. You carefully explain all the reasons Mac had for not attacking on the 18th, yet
                                              Message 22 of 30 , Jun 11, 2001
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                                                Not to entirely rehash this ever-so-familiar topic, but a couple of points:

                                                1. You carefully explain all the reasons Mac had for not attacking on the
                                                18th, yet state that he intended on attacking anyway. Huh?

                                                2. Why did the reasons for not attacking on the 18th not apply to the 17th
                                                as well?

                                                -----Original Message-----
                                                From: James Rose [mailto:eodrose@...]
                                                Sent: Monday, June 11, 2001 2:19 PM
                                                To: TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com
                                                Subject: Re: [TalkAntietam] Re: US Civil War Factbook


                                                Perhaps saying "everyone" was a bit strong, but overall that is my
                                                impression of how most people judge McClellan's actions during the
                                                Maryland campaign. The seize on their vision of what might have been,
                                                and lose sight of what McClellan did accomplish.

                                                As to the specifics of your question (which was phrased quite
                                                differently than I normally see it), I agree that it would have been
                                                worth a try. That is speaking from the position of hindsight, and
                                                knowing what I know, attacking on the 18th probably would have been a
                                                good idea. While admitting that attacking might have been the best
                                                course of action, that does not mean that I believe what McClellan did
                                                do was wrong. I think that Harsh goes into the best detail of how the
                                                situation looked to McClellan after the battle in TATF (Murfin does
                                                little more than try to show that McClellan was little more than a
                                                whinny boy, and Sears is not much better).

                                                Looking at the situation on the evening of the 17th as it appeared to
                                                McClellan his decision is not unreasonable. In the first place
                                                McClellan did intend to attack on the 18th, but circumstances delayed it
                                                for 24 hours. McClellan was unaware of his advantage in manpower. All
                                                of the intelligence reports put the ANV at having a 25% advantage in
                                                men, and nothing that happened during the 17th could have changed that
                                                opinion downward. The AotP was repulsed at every point with 25-33%
                                                losses (it was worse among the green troops). The ANV's line was never
                                                broken fully open anywhere. The ANV was "wacked", but so was the AotP.
                                                Any attack on the 18th could only be done with the Fifth and Sixth
                                                corps'. The other corps' were unable to conduct offensive operations
                                                (at least that is what the corps' commanders told McClellan). Of those
                                                two corps' around 25% of the men had less than one month in service.
                                                Then there is the ammo situation. Small arms ammo was critically short,
                                                and the AotP was completely out of Parrot ammo. Because of the
                                                destruction of the B&O bridge the AotP would not be resupplied until the
                                                evening of the 18th. Finally any attack would again give Lee the
                                                advantage of defense. At best I don't see how McClellan could have
                                                believed that any attack on the 18th would be more than a toss up as to
                                                who would win.

                                                So the question becomes: should McClellan have taken that gamble and
                                                attacked on the 18th? Considering what McClellan believe his duty to be
                                                I would say that he was unjustified in taking the gamble that it
                                                appeared to be. McClellan's first duty was the protection of
                                                Washington, and the second was to end the invasion of Maryland (down
                                                around the end of the list is the destruction of the ANV). By standing
                                                fast on the 18th, and preparing to attack on the 19th McClellan served
                                                both those duties. Lee had three options. He could attack, stand, or
                                                leave. McClellan was ready for any counterattack, he would attack on
                                                the 19th if Lee stood, and the only place for Lee to go was back to
                                                Virginia. On the other hand if McClellan had attacked and lost, then
                                                Lee might have been able to revive his invasion (unlikely in hindsight
                                                no matter the outcome of the battle). That would mean a failure of both
                                                the primary and secondary missions. Quite simply if McClellan had
                                                attacked on the 18th he would have risked everything for the possibility
                                                of gaining relatively little.

                                                Jim Rose

                                                Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine) wrote:

                                                > I don't think everyone believes McClellan would "automatically" destroy
                                                Lee.
                                                > But with an advantage in manpower, and facing an opponent that had been
                                                > whacked pretty good the day before (and Mac should know this, since _he_
                                                was
                                                > whacked pretty thoroughly too), and with his back against a river and
                                                > nothing but catastrophe awaiting him should the day go against him, was it
                                                > _at least_ worth a try?
                                                >
                                                > I would think even you would have to consider that as a valid choice.






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                                              • James Rose
                                                ... Is there a problem with there being a disparity between what McClellan wanted to do and what he felt he was capable of doing? During the evening of the
                                                Message 23 of 30 , Jun 11, 2001
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                                                  Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine) wrote:

                                                  > Not to entirely rehash this ever-so-familiar topic, but a couple of points:
                                                  >
                                                  > 1. You carefully explain all the reasons Mac had for not attacking on the
                                                  > 18th, yet state that he intended on attacking anyway. Huh?

                                                  Is there a problem with there being a disparity between what McClellan
                                                  wanted to do and what he felt he was capable of doing? During the
                                                  evening of the 17th McClellan had determined to attack the following
                                                  day. The decision not to attack was an evolution of thinking that came
                                                  with the information he had. The situation didn't change, but
                                                  McClellan's understanding of it did. After thinking it through he
                                                  determined to postpone the attack until the 19th. Its called "changing
                                                  your mind", and people do it from time to time.

                                                  >
                                                  > 2. Why did the reasons for not attacking on the 18th not apply to the 17th
                                                  > as well?

                                                  I would imagine that two important things looked different on the
                                                  morning of the 18th then they did on the evening of the 17th. First, I
                                                  don't think that McClellan was aware that the ammunition would be
                                                  delayed until the morning of the 18th. Second, McClellan probably
                                                  thought that after marching all night Humphrey's and Couch's men would
                                                  not be in very good condition to conduct an offensive. Since they
                                                  constituted close to half of McClellan's available force for the attack,
                                                  the thought of using them right then may have looked a bit different
                                                  than in the abstract.

                                                  Jim Rose
                                                • Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine)
                                                  ... Well, yeah. On the face of it, you give very good reasons for not pursuing offensive actions -- in fact, with the lack of ammo, staying put might not even
                                                  Message 24 of 30 , Jun 11, 2001
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                                                    >Is there a problem with there being a disparity between what McClellan
                                                    >wanted to do and what he felt he was capable of doing?

                                                    Well, yeah. On the face of it, you give very good reasons for not pursuing
                                                    offensive actions -- in fact, with the lack of ammo, staying put might not
                                                    even have been such a good idea. With said reasons, he shouldn't even have
                                                    been considering it under any circumstances. But he was, and it comes
                                                    closely to sounding like you want to play it both ways: He doesn't fight,
                                                    but deserves credit for at least thinking about it.

                                                    >I would imagine that two important things looked different on the
                                                    >morning of the 18th then they did on the evening of the 17th.

                                                    I was talking about the morning of the 17th -- if it was a good time to
                                                    attack then, what changed overnight other than slightly delayed ammo? If
                                                    there were reasons not to attack on the 18th, I would think they'd apply to
                                                    the 17th even more.
                                                  • NJ Rebel
                                                    Jim-- I cut your most excellent post to shorten the bandwith for this message but, in essence, I am in agreement with you on your statements. However, I
                                                    Message 25 of 30 , Jun 11, 2001
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                                                      Jim--

                                                      I cut your most excellent post to shorten the bandwith for this
                                                      message but, in essence, I am in agreement with you on your
                                                      statements.

                                                      However, I believe there is one very valuable thing that Mac did
                                                      with respects to Lee that most historians either overlook or
                                                      simply did not take the time to consider. Harsh goes over this
                                                      from the viewpoint of what Lee could or could not have done on
                                                      September 18th in TATF. Essentially, by remaining "in place"
                                                      where he was on September 18th, Mac effectively shut the door for
                                                      Lee to continue his Maryland campaign. Hence a large part of the
                                                      reason for the ANV retreat to Shepherdstown.

                                                      I wonder, too, if Carman says anything about Mac not attacking on
                                                      September 18th vis Lee and any plans Lee might have had. IIRC,
                                                      Lee was all for attacking on September 18th, but his main
                                                      subordinate commanders were unanimously against it.

                                                      Hope this helps.

                                                      Your humble servant,
                                                      Gerry Mayers
                                                      Co. B, "Tom Green Rifles",
                                                      Fourth Regiment, Texas Volunteer Infantry

                                                      "I know of no fitter resting-place for a soldier than the field
                                                      on which he has nobly laid down his life." --General Robert
                                                      Edward Lee
                                                    • James Rose
                                                      ... McClellan had to stay put. It was absolutely imperative that Lee not be allowed to revive the campaign. As for the ammo situation, if I understand it
                                                      Message 26 of 30 , Jun 11, 2001
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                                                        Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine) wrote:

                                                        >
                                                        > Well, yeah. On the face of it, you give very good reasons for not pursuing
                                                        > offensive actions -- in fact, with the lack of ammo, staying put might not
                                                        > even have been such a good idea. With said reasons, he shouldn't even have
                                                        > been considering it under any circumstances. But he was, and it comes
                                                        > closely to sounding like you want to play it both ways: He doesn't fight,
                                                        > but deserves credit for at least thinking about it.

                                                        McClellan had to stay put. It was absolutely imperative that Lee not be
                                                        allowed to revive the campaign. As for the ammo situation, if I
                                                        understand it correctly McClellan thought (on the 17th) that he would be
                                                        resupplied in time for the attack on the 18th. That didn't happen, and
                                                        the shipment was delayed until the evening. If you don't want to give
                                                        McClellan credit for intending to attack on the 18th that's fine. It
                                                        doesn't actually matter to me. I personally think that McClellan
                                                        answered the questions about moral cowardice, timidity, and
                                                        unwillingness to fight on the 17th. The fact that McClellan thought
                                                        about attacking on the 18th and then changed his mind doesn't mean
                                                        anything other than he changed his mind.

                                                        >
                                                        > I was talking about the morning of the 17th -- if it was a good time to
                                                        > attack then, what changed overnight other than slightly delayed ammo? If
                                                        > there were reasons not to attack on the 18th, I would think they'd apply to
                                                        > the 17th even more.
                                                        >
                                                        Let me see. What changed during the day of the 17th. Let's start with
                                                        10,000 casualties and go from there. On the morning of the 17th the
                                                        AotP had 6 intact corps' that were capable of offensive operations. By
                                                        evening McClellan was reduced to two corps' capable of offensive
                                                        operations. In the morning there was a full load-out of ammo. By
                                                        evening there were critical shortages (heavy fighting tends to use up ammo).

                                                        There were many reasons not to attack on the 17th. I can think of
                                                        several with straining myself. However, not fighting Lee was out of the
                                                        question. If McClellan did not bring Lee to battle in Maryland it would
                                                        have been as damaging, or even more so, than actually losing the AotP.
                                                        McClellan had to fight Lee at some point, and thanks in part to S.O. 191
                                                        McClellan thought that the ANV was still separated (at least somewhat).
                                                        That means that on the 17th McClellan thought that the odds were
                                                        probably as good as they were going to get. Therefore, he attacked.
                                                        There were many reasons not to attack, but more overriding ones to
                                                        attack on the 17th. By evening those overriding reasons had been muted
                                                        by the battle (i.e. a bloodied ANV leaving Maryland is very different
                                                        than an unscratched ANV leaving Maryland).

                                                        Jim Rose
                                                      • Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine)
                                                        ... Let me see. I guess all the Yankee bullets missed their marks. Where was this paralyzing lack of ammo in all of our other discussions? Has Dr. Harsh
                                                        Message 27 of 30 , Jun 12, 2001
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                                                          >Let me see. What changed during the day of the 17th. Let's start with
                                                          >10,000 casualties and go from there.

                                                          Let me see. I guess all the Yankee bullets missed their marks.

                                                          Where was this paralyzing lack of ammo in all of our other discussions? Has
                                                          Dr. Harsh written another book?
                                                        • James Rose
                                                          ... You do realize that McClellan had no real idea of how badly the Confederates were hurt during the battle. He could make an educated guess, but that is it.
                                                          Message 28 of 30 , Jun 12, 2001
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                                                            Jeff Beckner (PWC Magazine) wrote:
                                                            Let me see.  What changed during the day of the 17th.  Let's start with
                                                            10,000 casualties and go from there.

                                                            Let me see. I guess all the Yankee bullets missed their marks.
                                                            You do realize that McClellan had no real idea of how badly the Confederates were hurt during the battle.  He could make an educated guess, but that is it.  Basically what you are saying sounds like a paraphrase from a famous politician that goes something like this "Yes your troops are hurt, but so are they.  You are all hurt together."  McClellan understood something that apparently a lot of people miss.  It is easier to defend than it is to attack.  So on the 18th McClellan would only be able to attack with part of his army, but Lee would be able to defend with his entire army.


                                                            Where was this paralyzing lack of ammo in all of our other discussions? Has
                                                            Dr. Harsh written another book?

                                                            Have you read "Taken at the Flood" yet?  As for our other discussions, this is the first time I've been on these groups that I have joined in on a discussion of why McClellan didn't attack on the 18th.  That is why I've never mentioned it.  I've also never said that the ammo situation was "paralyzing".  That word has connotations that do not fit in this instance.  I said that he was critically short of ammo.  Sears acknowledges that lack of Parrot rounds even as he dismisses it as meaningless.  I think that the loss of the 20lb Parrots is far from meaningless.  They represented over 10% of the artillery pieces, and as the largest caliber they probably represented a higher percentage in actual combat power.  Considering that artillery is the one branch that McClellan knows is superior in all respects to the Confederates, such a loss is far from trivial.

                                                            Jim Rose


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