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Re: Was attacking Beull an option? [was Shiloh]

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  • Will
    ... I agree that it was not an important supply depot at that time, but it was an important capture. With the attitude of Andy Johnson and the defensive
    Message 1 of 21 , Oct 29, 2002
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      --- In civilwarwest@y..., "hank9174" <clarkc@m...> wrote:
      >
      > In April 1862, Nashville did not have the importance it gained in
      > later years. Louisville was the primary forward depot in the west.

      I agree that it was not an important supply depot at that time, but
      it was an important capture. With the attitude of Andy Johnson and
      the defensive mindsets of Buell and Halleck, I think that the
      existence of a perceived threat would have led to prioritizing the
      defense of Nashville over an advance on Corinth.


      > Regardless, the CSA AoT had a difficult enough time moving the 15
      or
      > so miles from Corinth to engage Grant. Multiplying this effort
      times
      > 10 is out of the question...

      The distance to Nashville would be a lot less if Johnson had not
      surrendered Middle Tennessee without contest. What I am sugesting is
      that instead of abandoning the area in early March, a force should
      have remained in the Mufreesboro-Shelbyville-McMinnville region in
      order to hold Buell's attention.

      The AoT did have a hard time moving the few miles from Corinth to
      Shiloh, but a few months later Bragg moved with greater speed
      northward from Chattanooga. Bragg's summer move north illustrates
      some of what I am envisioning could have been done in the spring.
      Buell was closing in on Chattanooga. Bragg, by moving past Buell's
      flank, draws Buell back into central Tennessee and then into
      Kentucky, postponing the battles for Chattanooga by a year.

      http://www.dean.usma.edu/history/dhistorymaps/AcivilwarPages/acwL16.ht
      m

      As important as it is to concentrate ones own forces, I think
      Cofenderate strategy needed to work at getting the opponent to divide
      his forces. I also think one of the goals should have been to play
      for time.

      ~Will


      > --- In civilwarwest@y..., "Will" <wh_keene@y...> wrote:
      > > --- In civilwarwest@y..., "hank9174" <clarkc@m...> wrote:
      > > >
      > > > I doubt that feinting towards Buell would have concerned anyone
      > > other
      > > > than Buell.
      > >
      > > Disagree. I think it would have concerned Halleck, Andy Johnson,
      > > Lincoln, etc.
      > >
      > >
      > > > Buell's was the larger force, 50K to Grant's 35K and Grant's
      > > position
      > > > was more exposed. It is fine strategy to defeat the opposition
      in
      > > > detail, but not when both forces are larger than your own.
      > >
      > > But the idea was to demonstrate at Buell, not attempt to defeat
      him,
      > > thereby keeping Grant exposed for longer.
      > >
      > >
      > > > Grant's forces were vulnerable because they had assumed fixed
      > > > positions. Moving forces with flanking cavalry and advance
      units
      > > and
      > > > other means of intelligence are difficult to surprise. It would
      > > have
      > > > been difficult to 'sneak up' on Buell on the plains of south
      > > central
      > > > Tennessee...
      > >
      > > Why sneak up? I think the idea is to do the opposite:
      demonstrate
      > > towards Nashville making as much noise as possible, hoping to
      create
      > > an exaggerated sense of your strength. The goal would be to get
      > > Johnson in a tizzy and make Buell feel that he needs to cover
      > > Nashville with his 50K.
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