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Re: Col. Benjamin Davis near Sharpsburg on 9/14

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  • Brian Downey
    Hi Steve, I think Larry noted earlier that Don Caughey has posted exahastively on the Breakout, participants and route - on his blog -- if you haven t already
    Message 1 of 16 , Jan 31, 2008
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      Hi Steve,

      I think Larry noted earlier that Don Caughey has posted exahastively
      on the Breakout, participants and route - on his blog -- if you
      haven't already seen that. I've linked to all 5 parts of his series,
      added some photos from Tischler, and drafted a rough map of the route
      on my own (http://behind.aotw.org/2007/09/23/exodus-from-harpers-ferry/).

      I've tried to mark (general) locations of both Federal and Confederate
      troops on that map, as describned in Harsh's book, but not which units
      they were. Another link from the blog will get you to a modern Google
      map if you want to retrace the route by car.

      I'll try to dig into Chew's Battery's whereabouts a little later. All
      I know just now is they were at Shepherdstown as late as 3pm on 17
      September - something about repairing/refitting guns there. They may
      have missed the whole thing ...
    • Brian Downey
      For starters, here s a fun view of Chew s Battery on/through the 14th: http://www.hmdb.org/marker.asp?marker=2055 ...
      Message 2 of 16 , Jan 31, 2008
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        For starters, here's a fun view of Chew's Battery on/through the 14th:

        http://www.hmdb.org/marker.asp?marker=2055

        --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "Brian Downey" <bdowney@...> wrote:
        >
        > Hi Steve,
        <snip>

        > I'll try to dig into Chew's Battery's whereabouts a little later...
      • eighth_conn_inf
        Tom, You are certainly correct: Lt. Col. Hasbrouck Davis was the commander of the 12th Ill. Cavalry during the breakout. Col. Benjamin F. (Grimes) Davis was in
        Message 3 of 16 , Jan 31, 2008
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          Tom,

          You are certainly correct: Lt. Col. Hasbrouck Davis was the commander
          of the 12th Ill. Cavalry during the breakout. Col. Benjamin F.
          (Grimes) Davis was in command of the 8th NY Cavalry and Col. Arno
          Voss of the 12th Ill. was in overall command as senior colonel
          although he apparently rode with the 12th for a while. Looks like he
          and Grimes cooperated reluctantly?

          Larry F.

          --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "Thomas Clemens" <clemenst@...>
          wrote:
          >
          > Wasn't the 12th IL commanded by Hasbrouck Davis? Benjamin Davis
          commanded the 8th NY.
          >
          > Dr. Thomas G. Clemens
          > Professor of History
          > Hagerstown Community College
          >
          >
          >
          > >>> "cowie_steve" <cowie_steve@...> 1/30/2008 4:34 PM >>>
          > Hello, Forum.
          >
          > Murfin's GOB, page 153, describes Benjamin Davis's vanguard of
          escapees, the 12th Illinois,
          > as coming into contact with Confederate pickets near the edge of
          the Sharpsburg village
          > around 10:00 p.m. on the evening of 9/14. Murfin's source is
          William Luff of the 12th Illinois,
          > who claims to have been fired upon by CS artillery at this same
          time, as well.
          >
          > After giving Dr. Harsh's TAF a thorough read, I can find little
          evidence to support CS infantry,
          > cavalry or artillery from the day's mountain gap battles being near
          the edge of Sharpsburg at
          > 10:00 p.m. on 9/14.
          >
          > Could someone please shed some light on this matter?
          >
          > Thanks,
          >
          > Steve
          >
        • eighth_conn_inf
          Brian, Don said he was going to do an article for AotW about the breakout-- have you heard from him lately? Larry F. ... series, ... route ... ferry/). ...
          Message 4 of 16 , Jan 31, 2008
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            Brian,

            Don said he was going to do an article for AotW about the breakout--
            have you heard from him lately?

            Larry F.

            --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "Brian Downey" <bdowney@...>
            wrote:
            >
            > Hi Steve,
            >
            > I think Larry noted earlier that Don Caughey has posted exahastively
            > on the Breakout, participants and route - on his blog -- if you
            > haven't already seen that. I've linked to all 5 parts of his
            series,
            > added some photos from Tischler, and drafted a rough map of the
            route
            > on my own (http://behind.aotw.org/2007/09/23/exodus-from-harpers-
            ferry/).
            >
            > I've tried to mark (general) locations of both Federal and
            Confederate
            > troops on that map, as describned in Harsh's book, but not which
            units
            > they were. Another link from the blog will get you to a modern
            Google
            > map if you want to retrace the route by car.
            >
            > I'll try to dig into Chew's Battery's whereabouts a little later.
            All
            > I know just now is they were at Shepherdstown as late as 3pm on 17
            > September - something about repairing/refitting guns there. They may
            > have missed the whole thing ...
            >
          • Brian Downey
            Hi Larry, Yes and he s working on it. No big rush on my part - I ll be glad to get it when ready.
            Message 5 of 16 , Jan 31, 2008
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              Hi Larry,

              Yes and he's working on it. No big rush on my part - I'll be glad to
              get it when ready.

              --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "eighth_conn_inf"
              <eighth_conn_inf@...> wrote:
              >
              > Brian,
              >
              > Don said he was going to do an article for AotW about the breakout--
              > have you heard from him lately?
              >
              > Larry F.
            • eighth_conn_inf
              Excellent--I hope I get to read it within a month or two to help me with that chapter in my paper. BTW, Tischler has photos of both Palmer and Wilson.
              Message 6 of 16 , Jan 31, 2008
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                Excellent--I hope I get to read it within a month or two to help me
                with that chapter in my paper. BTW, Tischler has photos of both Palmer
                and Wilson.



                --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "Brian Downey" <bdowney@...> wrote:
                >
                > Hi Larry,
                >
                > Yes and he's working on it. No big rush on my part - I'll be glad to
                > get it when ready.
                >
                > --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "eighth_conn_inf"
                > <eighth_conn_inf@> wrote:
                > >
                > > Brian,
                > >
                > > Don said he was going to do an article for AotW about the breakout--
                > > have you heard from him lately?
                > >
                > > Larry F.
                >
              • Thomas Clemens
                Larry, I don t claim expertise in this topic, but I think even at the time there was some friction, and certainly afterward when the assumption was the B.
                Message 7 of 16 , Jan 31, 2008
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                  Larry,
                  I don't claim expertise in this topic, but I think even at the time there was some friction, and certainly afterward when the assumption was the B. Davis was in charge.


                  Thomas G. Clemens D.A.
                  Professor of History
                  Hagerstown Community College


                  >>> "eighth_conn_inf" <eighth_conn_inf@...> 01/31/08 4:59 PM >>>
                  Tom,

                  You are certainly correct: Lt. Col. Hasbrouck Davis was the commander
                  of the 12th Ill. Cavalry during the breakout. Col. Benjamin F.
                  (Grimes) Davis was in command of the 8th NY Cavalry and Col. Arno
                  Voss of the 12th Ill. was in overall command as senior colonel
                  although he apparently rode with the 12th for a while. Looks like he
                  and Grimes cooperated reluctantly?

                  Larry F.

                  --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "Thomas Clemens" <clemenst@...>
                  wrote:
                  >
                  > Wasn't the 12th IL commanded by Hasbrouck Davis? Benjamin Davis
                  commanded the 8th NY.
                  >
                  > Dr. Thomas G. Clemens
                  > Professor of History
                  > Hagerstown Community College
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > >>> "cowie_steve" <cowie_steve@...> 1/30/2008 4:34 PM >>>
                  > Hello, Forum.
                  >
                  > Murfin's GOB, page 153, describes Benjamin Davis's vanguard of
                  escapees, the 12th Illinois,
                  > as coming into contact with Confederate pickets near the edge of
                  the Sharpsburg village
                  > around 10:00 p.m. on the evening of 9/14. Murfin's source is
                  William Luff of the 12th Illinois,
                  > who claims to have been fired upon by CS artillery at this same
                  time, as well.
                  >
                  > After giving Dr. Harsh's TAF a thorough read, I can find little
                  evidence to support CS infantry,
                  > cavalry or artillery from the day's mountain gap battles being near
                  the edge of Sharpsburg at
                  > 10:00 p.m. on 9/14.
                  >
                  > Could someone please shed some light on this matter?
                  >
                  > Thanks,
                  >
                  > Steve
                  >
                • cowie_steve
                  Brian, Thank you for referring me to Don Caughey s blog on the breakout. It s very well done, indeed, and the map is especially helpful. Steve
                  Message 8 of 16 , Feb 1, 2008
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                    Brian,

                    Thank you for referring me to Don Caughey's blog on the breakout. It's very well done,
                    indeed, and the map is especially helpful.

                    Steve

                    --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "Brian Downey" <bdowney@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > Hi Steve,
                    >
                    > I think Larry noted earlier that Don Caughey has posted exahastively
                    > on the Breakout, participants and route - on his blog -- if you
                    > haven't already seen that. I've linked to all 5 parts of his series,
                    > added some photos from Tischler, and drafted a rough map of the route
                    > on my own (http://behind.aotw.org/2007/09/23/exodus-from-harpers-ferry/).
                    >
                    > I've tried to mark (general) locations of both Federal and Confederate
                    > troops on that map, as describned in Harsh's book, but not which units
                    > they were. Another link from the blog will get you to a modern Google
                    > map if you want to retrace the route by car.
                    >
                    > I'll try to dig into Chew's Battery's whereabouts a little later. All
                    > I know just now is they were at Shepherdstown as late as 3pm on 17
                    > September - something about repairing/refitting guns there. They may
                    > have missed the whole thing ...
                    >
                  • eighth_conn_inf
                    Steve, According to Carman there were pickets from Hampton s Brigade, Martin s regiment, the Jeff Davis Legion. Check out Carman (Pierro) pp. 124-5. Here is a
                    Message 9 of 16 , Apr 2, 2008
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                      Steve,

                      According to Carman there were pickets from Hampton's Brigade,
                      Martin's regiment, the Jeff Davis Legion. Check out Carman (Pierro)
                      pp. 124-5. Here is a brief summary:

                      The Union column missed a more dangerous encounter with Rebel cavalry
                      that morning. When Hampton's Brigade rode from Burkittsville near
                      Crampton's Gap on the morning of 14 September, some of it went along
                      the east foot of South Mountain to picket roads leading from
                      Frederick and Berlin, while two regiments crossed into Pleasant
                      Valley to the western side of South Mountain. One of these was the
                      Jeff Davis Legion with six guns of Hart's Battery which took up a
                      position at Solomon's Gap in Elk Ridge to the north of Harpers Ferry.
                      Some of its pickets were those encountered by the Union column at the
                      mouth of Antietam Creek near the Potomac about 10 pm that night. Col.
                      Martin commanding the regiment decided to retreat to Hagerstown
                      believing the McClellan's troops were between Harpers Ferry and
                      points north and west. As he retreated, his scouts reported the Union
                      column on a roughly parallel track but closer to the Potomac.
                      Learning of the identity of the column he began pursuit seeing the
                      smoke from the burning wagons in the Unionist's wake. Finding that he
                      could not catch them, he turned and crossed into Williamsport. This
                      was fortunate for Martin as his 300 troopers would not have been much
                      of a match for the Union column.

                      Larry

                      --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "cowie_steve" <cowie_steve@...>
                      wrote:
                      >
                      > Hello, Forum.
                      >
                      > Murfin's GOB, page 153, describes Benjamin Davis's vanguard of
                      escapees, the 12th Illinois,
                      > as coming into contact with Confederate pickets near the edge of
                      the Sharpsburg village
                      > around 10:00 p.m. on the evening of 9/14. Murfin's source is
                      William Luff of the 12th Illinois,
                      > who claims to have been fired upon by CS artillery at this same
                      time, as well.
                      >
                      > After giving Dr. Harsh's TAF a thorough read, I can find little
                      evidence to support CS infantry,
                      > cavalry or artillery from the day's mountain gap battles being near
                      the edge of Sharpsburg at
                      > 10:00 p.m. on 9/14.
                      >
                      > Could someone please shed some light on this matter?
                      >
                      > Thanks,
                      >
                      > Steve
                      >
                    • cowie_steve
                      Larry, Thanks so much for clarifying. To refresh, Murfin s GOB, page 153, placed the 10:00 p.m. contact between the escaping Federal cavalry column and
                      Message 10 of 16 , Apr 2, 2008
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                        Larry,

                        Thanks so much for clarifying.

                        To refresh, Murfin's GOB, page 153, placed the 10:00 p.m. contact between the escaping
                        Federal cavalry column and Confederate pickets "near the edge of Sharpsburg." Carmen's
                        placement "at the mouth of Antietam Creek near the Potomac" makes much more sense to
                        me.

                        Best,

                        Steve



                        --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "eighth_conn_inf" <eighth_conn_inf@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > Steve,
                        >
                        > According to Carman there were pickets from Hampton's Brigade,
                        > Martin's regiment, the Jeff Davis Legion. Check out Carman (Pierro)
                        > pp. 124-5. Here is a brief summary:
                        >
                        > The Union column missed a more dangerous encounter with Rebel cavalry
                        > that morning. When Hampton's Brigade rode from Burkittsville near
                        > Crampton's Gap on the morning of 14 September, some of it went along
                        > the east foot of South Mountain to picket roads leading from
                        > Frederick and Berlin, while two regiments crossed into Pleasant
                        > Valley to the western side of South Mountain. One of these was the
                        > Jeff Davis Legion with six guns of Hart's Battery which took up a
                        > position at Solomon's Gap in Elk Ridge to the north of Harpers Ferry.
                        > Some of its pickets were those encountered by the Union column at the
                        > mouth of Antietam Creek near the Potomac about 10 pm that night. Col.
                        > Martin commanding the regiment decided to retreat to Hagerstown
                        > believing the McClellan's troops were between Harpers Ferry and
                        > points north and west. As he retreated, his scouts reported the Union
                        > column on a roughly parallel track but closer to the Potomac.
                        > Learning of the identity of the column he began pursuit seeing the
                        > smoke from the burning wagons in the Unionist's wake. Finding that he
                        > could not catch them, he turned and crossed into Williamsport. This
                        > was fortunate for Martin as his 300 troopers would not have been much
                        > of a match for the Union column.
                        >
                        > Larry
                        >
                        > --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "cowie_steve" <cowie_steve@>
                        > wrote:
                        > >
                        > > Hello, Forum.
                        > >
                        > > Murfin's GOB, page 153, describes Benjamin Davis's vanguard of
                        > escapees, the 12th Illinois,
                        > > as coming into contact with Confederate pickets near the edge of
                        > the Sharpsburg village
                        > > around 10:00 p.m. on the evening of 9/14. Murfin's source is
                        > William Luff of the 12th Illinois,
                        > > who claims to have been fired upon by CS artillery at this same
                        > time, as well.
                        > >
                        > > After giving Dr. Harsh's TAF a thorough read, I can find little
                        > evidence to support CS infantry,
                        > > cavalry or artillery from the day's mountain gap battles being near
                        > the edge of Sharpsburg at
                        > > 10:00 p.m. on 9/14.
                        > >
                        > > Could someone please shed some light on this matter?
                        > >
                        > > Thanks,
                        > >
                        > > Steve
                        > >
                        >
                      • Thomas Clemens
                        I am familiar with Carman s account and the letters, reports, etc. he used to write that passage. Murfin used Carman as his source on this. I am also
                        Message 11 of 16 , Apr 2, 2008
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                          I am familiar with Carman's account and the letters, reports, etc. he used to write that passage. Murfin used Carman as his source on this. I am also familiar with how far it is from Solomon's Gap to What is essentially today Sample's Manor and that is a hell of a distance to picket with 300 men. Given the reductions for picket reserves, those supporting Hart's guns and the signal detachment on Elk Ridge, it doesn't leave a lot of guys to stretch that distance. Dennis Frye, who knows the MD Campaign quite well and grew up in Pleasant Valley, finds this passage hard to accept. Yet Carman's sources say it happened, and he takes that as gospel. This passage really illustrates the difficulty and ambiguity of dealing with Carman.


                          Dr. Thomas G. Clemens
                          Professor of History
                          Hagerstown Community College




                          >>> "eighth_conn_inf" <eighth_conn_inf@...> 4/2/2008 2:39 PM >>>

                          Steve,

                          According to Carman there were pickets from Hampton's Brigade,
                          Martin's regiment, the Jeff Davis Legion. Check out Carman (Pierro)
                          pp. 124-5. Here is a brief summary:

                          The Union column missed a more dangerous encounter with Rebel cavalry
                          that morning. When Hampton's Brigade rode from Burkittsville near
                          Crampton's Gap on the morning of 14 September, some of it went along
                          the east foot of South Mountain to picket roads leading from
                          Frederick and Berlin, while two regiments crossed into Pleasant
                          Valley to the western side of South Mountain. One of these was the
                          Jeff Davis Legion with six guns of Hart's Battery which took up a
                          position at Solomon's Gap in Elk Ridge to the north of Harpers Ferry.
                          Some of its pickets were those encountered by the Union column at the
                          mouth of Antietam Creek near the Potomac about 10 pm that night. Col.
                          Martin commanding the regiment decided to retreat to Hagerstown
                          believing the McClellan's troops were between Harpers Ferry and
                          points north and west. As he retreated, his scouts reported the Union
                          column on a roughly parallel track but closer to the Potomac.
                          Learning of the identity of the column he began pursuit seeing the
                          smoke from the burning wagons in the Unionist's wake. Finding that he
                          could not catch them, he turned and crossed into Williamsport. This
                          was fortunate for Martin as his 300 troopers would not have been much
                          of a match for the Union column.

                          Larry

                          --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "cowie_steve" <cowie_steve@...>
                          wrote:
                          >
                          > Hello, Forum.
                          >
                          > Murfin's GOB, page 153, describes Benjamin Davis's vanguard of
                          escapees, the 12th Illinois,
                          > as coming into contact with Confederate pickets near the edge of
                          the Sharpsburg village
                          > around 10:00 p.m. on the evening of 9/14. Murfin's source is
                          William Luff of the 12th Illinois,
                          > who claims to have been fired upon by CS artillery at this same
                          time, as well.
                          >
                          > After giving Dr. Harsh's TAF a thorough read, I can find little
                          evidence to support CS infantry,
                          > cavalry or artillery from the day's mountain gap battles being near
                          the edge of Sharpsburg at
                          > 10:00 p.m. on 9/14.
                          >
                          > Could someone please shed some light on this matter?
                          >
                          > Thanks,
                          >
                          > Steve
                          >




                          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                        • joseph_pierro
                          Tom is correct regarding the distances involved in Carman s version of the event. It does give one pause. On the other hand, I ve yet to find any contemporary
                          Message 12 of 16 , Apr 4, 2008
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                            Tom is correct regarding the distances involved in Carman's version
                            of the event. It does give one pause. On the other hand, I've yet to
                            find any contemporary evidence to contradict the claim.

                            Also, the purpose of picketing, after all, is simply to give notice
                            of an enemy's approach, not to attempt any appreciable resistance.
                            And we're talking about picketing during the operational stage of a
                            campaign (as opposed to the tactical phase, when the bulk of both
                            armies are in close proximity, in their main battle lines). Given the
                            distances over which the ANV was scattered at the time, the vast
                            expanse of mileage over which potential threats could come, and the
                            number of different avenues of approach from which the ANV had to
                            guard against being attacked in detail, a distance as great as Carman
                            records for those pickets is not entirely out of the realm of either
                            possibility or military soundness.

                            On the larger issue, one good thing to keep in mind whenever dealing
                            with the Carman mss. is that the focus of his research overall was in
                            furtherance of his official task: to mark the battlefield of Sept.
                            17. That's where the bulk of his energies were directed -- on
                            Antietam. Much of his focus on other aspects of the campaign -- South
                            Mountain, for instance -- was undertaken primarily with regard to
                            what the unit strengths would have been by the time they reached the
                            field at Antietam. 9/17 was always uppermost.

                            Of course, his manuscript covers the entire campaign, however. I
                            don;t mean to suggest that it isn't of tremendous value OUTSIDE of
                            9/17, but the area of Carman's greatest expertise was on the battle
                            of Antietam. (Or, to put it more generously, he was on even FIRMER
                            ground when discussing Antietam than he was on other aspects of the
                            campaign.)

                            I noticed in my work that, as he moves away from the battle itself,
                            he tends to defer a bit more to his sources and is less willing to
                            second-guess them.

                            --jake

                            --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "Thomas Clemens" <clemenst@...>
                            wrote:
                            >
                            > I am familiar with Carman's account and the letters, reports, etc.
                            he used to write that passage. Murfin used Carman as his source on
                            this. I am also familiar with how far it is from Solomon's Gap to
                            What is essentially today Sample's Manor and that is a hell of a
                            distance to picket with 300 men. Given the reductions for picket
                            reserves, those supporting Hart's guns and the signal detachment on
                            Elk Ridge, it doesn't leave a lot of guys to stretch that distance.
                            Dennis Frye, who knows the MD Campaign quite well and grew up in
                            Pleasant Valley, finds this passage hard to accept. Yet Carman's
                            sources say it happened, and he takes that as gospel. This passage
                            really illustrates the difficulty and ambiguity of dealing with
                            Carman.
                            >
                            >
                            > Dr. Thomas G. Clemens
                            > Professor of History
                            > Hagerstown Community College
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
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