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Re: The Orbats at Antietam

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  • Bryn Monnery
    ... commanders is unfounded and unprovable. No doubt D.H. Hill exercised his seniority to issue orders to other commanders, but it is a mistake to confuse
    Message 1 of 68 , Feb 6, 2009
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      --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "Thomas Clemens" <clemenst@...>
      wrote:
      >
      > The idea of the ANV at Antietam divided into three wings with senior
      commanders is unfounded and unprovable. No doubt D.H. Hill exercised
      his seniority to issue orders to other commanders, but it is a mistake
      to confuse that with creating "wings." McLaws and Anderson arrived
      just at dawn and were placed and ordered into the batle directly by
      Lee. There is no extant order placing D.H. Hill in authority over
      either of these two commanders. Lee's Order of Battle, and I must
      admit it took me a while to figure out that is what you mean by
      "orbat," was a very fluid and loose structure. Attempts to prove
      otherwise will, I fear, prove futile. Also I'd beware of imposing a
      modern conception of tight command structures upon an era of poor
      communication and loose battlefield control. My contention is that
      the structure was deliberately vague, and senior commanders, despite
      any presumed structure, exercised a fair amount of control over any
      troops in their immediate tactical area.
      > My two cents worth.


      The 3 wings are a known, and have been since Joseph Harsh published
      "Confederate Tide Rising" about a decade ago. The 3rd wing was
      Magruder's old Army of the Peninsula.

      McLaws was admonished on the 17th by Lee for accepting an order from
      Jackson, using his status as 2nd Major General, Lee making it clear
      that Jackson did not have the authority to command McLaws unless Lee
      said so (although perhaps there is an air of Lee's frustration at
      McLaws and Jackson in this). It is in this environment that DH Hill
      issues orders directly to McLaws' brigadiers.

      Such actions were only legal and binding if DH Hill was in the chain
      of command between Lee and McLaws. Simply being a more senior Maj Gen
      doesn't cut it.
    • DPowell334@AOL.COM
      Jackson has some real problems as a tactical commander, and he keeps making the same mistakes, which suggests that he wasn t very introspective about
      Message 68 of 68 , Feb 12, 2009
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        Jackson has some real problems as a tactical commander, and he keeps making
        the same mistakes, which suggests that he wasn't very introspective about
        developing those skills. None of his battles really display a flair for tactics,
        even Chancellorsville, where his choices of divisions in line instead of
        column greatly complicated his own attack.

        That said, he was quite effective at what we today would call the
        operational art.

        Dave Powell




        In a message dated 2/11/2009 3:21:43 P.M. Central Standard Time,
        gerry1952@... writes:

        Gary Echelbarger is also a great source on the Valley Campaign of
        1862. Mildly said, Jackson got very lucky in the Valley in 1862..
        the only Federal commander to beat him, and do so pretty soundly,
        was James Shields. (Even there, actual field commander was Nathan
        Kimball.) That said, Jackson had, after Shields, mediocre Federal
        commanders to contend with....

        Yr. Obt. Svt.
        G E "Gerry" Mayers


        **************Nothing says I love you like flowers! Find a florist near you
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