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21490Re: Did they fight in the West?

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  • Daniel Giallombardo
    Aug 3, 2000
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      --- In civilwarwest@egroups.com, "Dick Weeks" <shotgun@c...> wrote:
      > Andy, I could not agree more. Some time back I started this
      discussion
      > group to try to learn more about the Western Theater.
      >
      > A friend of mine, who is now deceased, that you folks that have
      visited the
      > various portions of my website knew as Irish, and whom his students
      knew as
      > Dr. Butner, told me in one of his essay's for the site, "One of
      the
      first
      > key moments of the war was found in the security of the border
      states and
      > the long wide, rolling transportation conduits known as the Ohio,
      Tennessee,
      > Cumberland and Mississippi Rivers. These were the grand prizes that
      would
      > either spell defeat or victory in the eyes of the people who held
      them."
      > Since the inception of my studies of the Civil War many years ago I
      had
      > concentrated my studies in the East. I am very knowledgeable, can
      and have
      > given tours on the battlefields of Manassas (both 1st and 2nd),
      South
      > Mountain and Antietam, and Gettysburg. However, Irish's words
      struck a cord
      > and it suddenly dawned on me that regardless of what happened in
      the
      East,
      > the war was to be won or lost in the West.
      >
      > Some time after the death of Irish, I decided to see if I could
      learn more
      > about this "war in the West." I already had read quite a bit and
      > established some opinions but needed more. That being the opinions
      of
      > others. Irish and I had many a private discussion about the action
      in the
      > West. We discussed such things as "what if Richmond had fallen in
      > McClellan's Peninsula Campaign? Would this have been the end of the
      war? Why
      > would the South build forts to defend the rivers when any student
      of
      history
      > knows that "fixed fortifications" are a monument to stupidity? Was
      it
      > because they were stupid or just did not have the resources to man
      the
      > rivers with ironclads?" Now, if the war in the West was so
      important, why is
      > the war in the East so studied and the war in the West is virtually
      ignored.
      > Maybe some of you folks have an answer.
      >
      > The main purpose of this this mail is to let you folks know that I
      am very
      > disappointed in the discussions this group has had to date. Let me
      try to
      > explain. As of today, there is 176 members in this group. There
      is
      no way
      > you are going to convince me that of this number there is not at
      least half
      > that don't have strong opinions about the war in the West. Why
      then
      do we
      > not get more discussions started? I can tell you why I don't
      really try to
      > start a discussion, but can speak for no one else. Think back when
      you were
      > in school and the teacher/instructor/professor, at the end of the
      lecture
      > asked "are there any questions?" and you thought to yourself, and
      were
      > afraid to admit to anyone, that you did not know enough to ask an
      > intelligent question. That is were I am. I hope you all
      understand
      because
      > I firmly believe there the purpose of a "discussion group" is to
      "discuss."
      > If there is no one out there that has opinions, questions, ideas,
      then why
      > am I maintaining it? I hope everyone gets my meaning.
      >
      > I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
      > Dick (a.k.a. Shotgun)
      > http://www.civilwarhome.com
      >
      > ----- Original Message -----
      > From: D. Andrew Burden, Ph.D. <daburden@m...>
      > To: <civilwarwest@egroups.com>
      > Sent: Wednesday, August 02, 2000 4:11 PM
      > Subject: [civilwarwest] Did they fight in the West?
      >
      >
      > > The following quote can be found at:
      > > http://www.delawareonline.com/news/2000/april/story404302000.html
      > >
      > > I thought this was an interesting observation, by a reenactor no
      less:
      > >
      > >
      > > "I believe you can't understand America today
      unless you
      > > understand the Civil
      > > War," Pickett said. "We came as close as we've
      ever come
      > > to being two
      > > nations. And this battle was the turning point in
      the
      > > war. Prior to Gettysburg, the
      > > South had won everything."
      > >
      > > Has this guy never studied the Western theater? It was, after
      all,
      > > where the war was won/lost (depending upon your perspective).
      > > Andy
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > > Dick,

      I don't know that I can agree that the west was the most
      important theater-I can say this: without the defeat of the west,the
      war would've continued much longer.....each defeat in the West-and
      there were lots of them-meant another nail into the
      political/economic
      coffin of the CSA.And the loss of cities like New Orleans and Mobile
      (although Mobile was taken much later)meant that much less coming
      into
      the Confederacy.....the horizon became more and more restricted,the
      options to the government that much fewer......>Dan
      > >
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