Re: [TalkAntietam] Re: The Orbats at Antietam
To which brigadiers in McLaws' division does D H Hill issue
orders on September 17th?
D H Hill NEVER was a wing commander as Tom Clemens pointed out.
He was the main commander of the "relief column" that marches
north from Gordonsville in mid August to try to reach the ANVa in
time for the battle at Manassas Plains (2nd Bull Run or 2nd
Manassas). However, once he does reach the ANVA and the entire
army concentrates between Leesburg and Dranesville following the
failed pursuit of Pope's fleeing columns, D H Hill becomes simply
a division commander. In fact, as Harsh points out, 05 per cent
of Hill's division is the advance elements of the ANVa into
Maryland in early September; once Jackson crosses into Maryland,
D H Hill becomes subject to Jackson's orders.
IF D H Hill was a third wing commander, why would he have had to
take orders from Jackson rather than directly from Lee (which
Jackson and Longstreet did do?)?
There is strong evidence, as per Harsh's Taken at the Flood, that
Hill operates for most of the Maryland Campaign, and especially
during the battle of Sharpsburg, as an independent division
command, specifically subject to orders from Lee. Even though
Harsh does not directly say it (as far as I recall and will need
to potentially verify this in TATF), I do believe that at
Sharpsburg there was an informal sharing of command authorities
between Longstreet and Jackson with either being able to call
upon and secure assistance from Army General HQ for more men or
to call upon nearby brigades for assistance.
Remember, after Jackson has his own divisions fought out to a
frazzle by 8 am on the morning of September 17th (including the
famed Cornfield charge by the Texans), he asks his brother in law
D H Hill for help and Hill dispatches three of his five
brigades -- about 60 percent of his total divisional force
available -- from the Confederate center.
Bryn, I suspect you have a particular agenda you are trying to
prove here. Why not just spell it out directly?
Yr. Obt. Svt.
G E "Gerry" Mayers
To Be A Virginian, either by birth, marriage, adoption, or even
on one's mother's side, is an introduction to any state in the
Union, a passport to any foreign country, and a benediction from
the Almighty God. --Anonymous
----- Original Message -----
From: "Bryn Monnery" <littlegreenmen.geo@...>
Sent: Friday, February 06, 2009 4:22 AM
Subject: [TalkAntietam] Re: The Orbats at Antietam
--- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "Thomas Clemens"
> The idea of the ANV at Antietam divided into three wings with
commanders is unfounded and unprovable. No doubt D.H. Hill
his seniority to issue orders to other commanders, but it is a
to confuse that with creating "wings." McLaws and Anderson
just at dawn and were placed and ordered into the batle directly
Lee. There is no extant order placing D.H. Hill in authority
either of these two commanders. Lee's Order of Battle, and I
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
modern conception of tight command structures upon an era of poor
communication and loose battlefield control. My contention is
the structure was deliberately vague, and senior commanders,
any presumed structure, exercised a fair amount of control over
troops in their immediate tactical area.
> My two cents worth.
The 3 wings are a known, and have been since Joseph Harsh
"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
Jackson, using his status as 2nd Major General, Lee making it
that Jackson did not have the authority to command McLaws unless
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
issues orders directly to McLaws' brigadiers.
Such actions were only legal and binding if DH Hill was in the
of command between Lee and McLaws. Simply being a more senior Maj
doesn't cut it.
- 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
In a message dated 2/11/2009 3:21:43 P.M. Central Standard Time,
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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