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19644Re: Bragg and Longstreet

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  • Mark Peters
    Aug 1, 2003
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      --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Dave Smith" <dmsmith001@y...>
      wrote:
      > Mark,
      >
      > I don't know of any communication between Longstreet and Davis
      > regarding Bragg that wasn't in some way initiated by Davis - which
      he
      > was wont to do. See the Johnston - Pemberton - Davis ring-around-
      the-
      > rosey at Vicksburg.
      >
      > Dave


      Dave,

      Thanks for the reply. However, this is not my understanding of how
      Longstreet initially dealt with his opposition to Bragg and the
      reasons for his leaving Bragg's command.

      The following is from a book I have, titled 'The Fight for
      Chattanooga' by Jerry Korn detailing how the CSA command was in
      disarray "... Bragg's subordinates were attempting once again to have
      him replaced as commander of the Army of Tennessee. Arrayed against
      Bragg was a formidable roster of generals, headed by James
      Longstreet, Polk, Daniel Harvey Hill and Simon Buckner, all corps
      commanders. On October 4 these officers - and eight other generals
      commanding divisions or brigades - sent a formal petition to
      Jefferson Davis urging Bragg's removal." This suggests that the
      initial communication was at the behest of Longstreet, not Davis as
      you might of thought.

      The lack of trust displayed between the two was demonstrated in the
      petition which stated that Bragg's army was "stricken with a complete
      paralysis" and as such "unfits him [Bragg] for the command of an army
      in the field".

      I stated yesterday that I believed Longstreet to have been demoted.
      I take the point that he was not in fact demoted in rank, but he was
      stripped of two divisions - retaining only two from Virginia. An
      effective halving of his command.

      Longstreet later failed to advise Bragg of the Federal advance to
      Brown's Ferry. He then disobeyed Bragg, who had given him an
      additional divison, to attck the bridge at Brown's Ferry and made a
      precipitous night attack on Geary's troops at Wauhatchie. This
      foolish action ended in farce with Longstreet being attacked by
      cavalry (in fact mules who had broken loose and stampeded into
      Confederate lines).

      Finally, Bragg's opinion of Longstreet. On Longstreet's departure to
      Knoxville, Bragg wote to Davis on 31st October saying that his
      leaving "... will be great relief to me."

      Best wishes,

      Mark
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