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8535Re: [civilwarwest] Re: Understanding Vicksburg

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  • Michael Mason
    Nov 13, 2001
      Grant was at his finest hour,but there was little or no margin
      of error in this campaign. The Baron

      On 13-Nov-01, brooksdsimpson@... wrote:
      --- In civilwarwest@y..., "Dave Smith" <dmsmith001@y...> wrote:<BR>
      > I've also thought that perhaps a Gordon Rhea-style approach - a <BR>
      > series of relative standalone books, which encompasses the whole, <BR>
      > might well work.� The problem is, I think, that the part people <BR>
      want <BR>
      > to get to - post Bruinsburg - comes later in such a series.� <BR>
      Perhaps <BR>
      > they'd have to be written out of order.<BR>
      > <BR>
      > I'd be interested to hear Brooks's thoughts on this.<BR>
      I think that it is true that the lead-up to the April movements would <BR>
      be slow going for some people -- I know that I found myself impatient <BR>
      to get on to the crossing when I wrote my chapter on Vicksburg -- and <BR>
      that the period after May 22 is largely ignored (which is one reason <BR>
      the Yazoo bender story gets so much play -- the assumption is that <BR>
      nothing was going on, when in fact a great deal was going on).� <BR>
      There's probably room for two solid single-volume studies.� One would <BR>
      be primarily a military study, not as detailed as that offered in <BR>
      Ed's OR-bound narrative; I found the recent James Arnold book to be a <BR>
      disappointment in that it simply reoffered what was offered before.� <BR>
      The second would be a study that took a larger view of the campaign, <BR>
      complete with its relation to politics and social change -- life <BR>
      inside Vicksburg, what happened along the line of march, the <BR>
      induction and training of black soldiers, and so on. <BR>
      The military study might also shift the camera from Grant to <BR>
      Pemberton once in a while.� Too often the Confederate leaders are <BR>
      treated as objects, awaiting Grant's next decision.� Put yourself in <BR>
      Pemberton's place on April 15, 1863, and tell me what you do for the <BR>
      next five weeks. <BR>
      Finally, I don't think people appreciate how this was truly Grant's <BR>
      finest hour.� We give that notion lip service, but the fact is that <BR>
      Grant was simply brilliant during the campaign.� Not flawless, but <BR>
      brilliant -- with a good bit of guts thrown in.��� <BR>


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