Re: [TalkAntietam] Re: The Orbats at Antietam
As someone who worked very closely with Joe Harsh, (read the acknowledgements), I am very familiar with his ideas about D.H. Hill's status during the campaign. There is no doubt that as senior officer he commanded the column coming up from Richmond. As Joe used to phrase it, he saw Lee as "auditioning" Hill for a wing command during the campaign and evidently found him wanting because he did not act upon in October when he asked Congress for the 2 wings. He never assigned anyone else to report to Hill for anything other than perhaps a minor tactical assignment, and in fact Hill operated under Jackson in the early days of the campaign. How can he do that and be a wing commander, either de jure or de facto? Joe never calls Hill a wing commander during the battle and idea of Hill "in command" of the center is unprovable. Longstreet is there too, remember the Richardson's battery story? So how is Hill in command with Longstreet right there? In fact Hill HQ was at the Piper house asd while it is not as solid, there is suggestion Longstreet's HQ was there too. Or at least Longstreet was there for a time.
As for Burnside becoming a "wing commander" again on the 15 by placing Sykes, that again is a supposition. McClellan never ordered it, and Sykes' corps commander was near by, oobviating the necessity of subordinating him to anyone else.
If you want to "prove" these points start citing some documents, orders from the ORs, something solid. Supposition and conjecture are not proof.
Thomas G. Clemens D.A.
Professor of History
Hagerstown Community College
>>> "Bryn Monnery" <littlegreenmen.geo@...> 02/06/09 4:22 AM >>>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.
- 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
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