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36374Re: Wallace revisits Shiloh

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  • josepharose
    Jan 10, 2006
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      --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, nickrelee@a... wrote:


      Yours was such a long post, I'll post on top to make this easy to see.
      Although certain others here may disagree with you, I think that your
      writing below just about hits the nail on the head (the only change
      I'd suggest is that WHL Wallace made arrangements with Lew Wallace as
      to the former reinforcing the latter). The arrangement was made, as
      you said, for the bridge next to Sherman. At the beginning of the
      battle, orders were given to defend this bridge for Lew Wallace's use:
      [from MOLLUS] "'Send a regiment out on the Purdy Road, to hold a
      bridge for Lew Wallace, who is expected from Crump's Landing.' The
      Thirteenth Missouri was assigned to this duty . . ." and it was noted
      it was the "position, which was supposed to be on the extreme right of
      our line." Bieler's artillery was also ordered to defend this bridge.

      I've heard that Bieler gave a speech whose contents are at Shiloh
      National Military Park. If anybody has seen it, it may help clear up
      the matter once and for all.


      > In a message dated 1/10/2006 8:49:03 PM Mountain Standard Time,
      > josepharose@y... writes:
      > It states that Wallace took the wrong road, but didn't know whether
      > the blame fell on Grant, his aides, or Wallace. It did note that
      > Wallace "went over every foot of his march" and convinced the 2 or 3
      > prominent officers and a surveyor that his troops marched 17 miles
      > that day. That would be almost 2 1/2 miles per hour.
      > He was marching toward the right of the army so, unless all of
      > Wallace's aides and others who saw Baxter's written order at that time
      > failed to notice the words "River Road" or something similar, the main
      > criticisms against him seem to be unfounded.
      > As I've understood the story:
      > In the days before the battle Wallace and Sherman had kinda worked
      out a
      > plan on how Sherman would reenforce Wallace if Wallace was the one
      > When Sherman was instead attacked Wallace followed the route in
      reverse. It
      > appears that Grant's first orders didn't say the river road. Maybe
      Grant was
      > not aware of Wallace-Sherman's plan and did not know that there was
      > road connecting them.
      > When Wallace seemed really late Grant sent men to find him. Rawlins
      > McPherson did find him on that other route. It was then explained
      to Wallace
      > that he couldn't take that road, that things had gone very badly for
      the Union
      > and that road no longer connected to their camps. Wallace then
      > countermarched his command, he gets grief for this as it delayed his
      arrival. But in
      > Wallace's defense he had just been told that the army was in
      shambles and so it
      > would make sense to have your best brigade at the front of the
      column, since
      > it already was at the front that meant some countermarching.
      > The blame: Grant deserves some for not writing out the first order
      and not
      > making the first order specific as to roads. Grant should also
      have known of
      > the Wallace-Sherman plan but they should have told him about it
      too. Also
      > reorganizing the cavalry on the eve of battle ended up being a bad
      decision as
      > it removed the cavalry regiments that were familiar with the route
      from that
      > area. Sherman had other things on his mind but if he had mentioned
      to Grant
      > that Wallace might be coming down this road then maybe Grant would
      > checked on Wallace earlier and got him going on the river road
      sooner, hard to
      > second guess now. I have a hard time blaming Wallace, if Sherman
      had held that
      > area then Wallace's arrival would have been beautiful. Wallace had
      no way
      > of knowing how badly things had gone. If Wallace had taken the
      river road
      > only to find out that Sherman sacrificed many men holding the
      bridge that he
      > thought Wallace would be using then Wallace would have taken alot
      of heat for
      > that too. In the end Wallace was set up to take some blame but I
      don't think
      > he deserved it.
      > --Nick
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