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[civilwarwest] Fw: Lee's tactics

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  • Pam and Gary Warner
    Hi group I just read this and thought it might provide some discussion even though it was sent from another group. Any comments. Gary ----- Original
    Message 1 of 48 , Nov 20, 1999
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      Hi group I just read this and thought it might provide some discussion even
      though it was sent from another group. Any comments. Gary ----- Original
      Message -----
      From: Frank Capozza <caplaw@...>
      To: <gettysburg-digest@...>
      Sent: Sunday, November 14, 1999 9:50 AM
      Subject: Lee's tactics


      > Esteemed member "Frank Capozza" <caplaw@...> contributes:
      >
      > Lee's tactics and strategy at GB, as well as in the east in general have
      > been part of the recent discussions here. Coincidentally, an article in
      > American Heritage Magazine, November 1999, just came out. It is entitled
      > "Sherman's War" and was written by Victor David Hanson. Hanson is a native
      > Californian with a long California family history and a professor at
      > California State University, so I think it is fair to say he comes to the
      > discussion with neither a northern or southern bias. His conclusion is as
      > follows:
      >
      > "I am also surprised not at the contrasts drawn between Sherman and
      Grant --
      > their differences in strategic thinking, their close friendship, and their
      > shared responsibility for winning the war invite obvious and spirited
      > comparisons that have merit on both sides -- but rather at the absence of
      > contrasts drawn between Sherman and Lee. Lee, who wrecked his army by
      > sending thousands on frontal charges against an entreched enemy and who
      > himself owned slaves, enjoys the reputation of a reluctant, humane knight
      > who battled for a cause -- State's Rights and the sactity of Southern soil
      > -- other than slavery. Sherman, who was careful to save his soldiers from
      > annihilation and who freed thousands of slaves in Georgia, is too often
      seen
      > as a muderous warrior who fought for a cause -- federalism and the
      > punishment of treason -- other than freedom.
      >
      > Lee, as Sherman noted, crafted the wrong offensive for an outmanned and
      > outproduced South, which led to hoorendous casualties; Sherman's marches
      > drew naturally on the material and human surpluses of the North and so
      > cracked the core of the Confederacy, with few killed on either side. Lee
      > wrongly thought that the Union soldier would not fight as well as the
      > Confederate; Sherman rightly guessed that the destruction of Southern
      > property would topple the entire Confederacy. The one ordered thousands to
      > their deaths when the cause was clearly lost; the other destroyed millions
      > of dollars of property to hasten the end of bloodshed. Yet Sherman, who
      > fought on the winning side, who promised in the abstract death and terror,
      > who was unkepmt, garrulous, and blunt, is usually critized; Lee, who
      > embodies the Lost Cause, who wrote of honor and sacrifice, and who was
      > dapper, genteel, and mannered, is canonized. Historians would do better
      to
      > assess each on what he did, not on what he professed."
      >
      > American Heritage, November 1999, p. 66.
      >
      > Comments????
      >
      > Regards
      >
      > Frank C.
      >
      > ______________________________________________________
      >
    • D. Andrew Burden, Ph.D.
      I m currently reading Cozzens Chickamauga book, and am enjoying it very much. Also have read his Stone s River book, which was a treat since I live just a
      Message 48 of 48 , Nov 22, 1999
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        I'm currently reading Cozzens' Chickamauga book, and am enjoying it very
        much. Also have read his Stone's River book, which was a treat since I
        live just a few miles from that battlefield. His works seem to be very
        thoroughly researched, and I think he goes into them aiming to write
        definitive accounts (and succeeds). His Chickamauga book has a few
        errors in it so far, such as reference to Breckinridge's attack at
        Stone's River on the _second_ day, when I believe that attack occurred
        on the third day. Also, he refers to William Preston being kin to Joe
        Johnston. Sorry, but that's the wrong Johnston. I assume these errors
        are editorial in nature (he most certainly knows when Breckinridge's
        attack occurred at Stone's River as he has written the definitive
        account of that battle), so don't shy away from his work because I
        quibble over it. He knows one whole heck of a lot more about both of
        those battles than me or just about anybody else. Now, if we could only
        convince him to write the definitive account of the Nashville campaign
        (while Sword's book is perhaps the best book on any aspect of the Civil
        War I have ever read, I don't know that it is a definitive account of
        Nashville).
        Andy

        "L.A. Chambliss" wrote:
        >
        >
        > IMHO the best place to start as far as the Western Theater is
        > concerned is Peter Cozzen's trilogy:
        > No Better Place To Die: The Battle of Stones River
        > This Terrible Sound: The Battle of Chickamauga
        > The Shipwreck of Their Hopes: The Battles for Chattanooga
        >
        > Cozzens is not the best writer I ever ran across, and there are the
        > usual quibbles from various people on the way he interprets events.
        > However I have never seen any question of his accuracy or scholarship,
        > and the fact is that he has pretty much set the standard for overall
        > works on the Western War these days. This would be a good place to
        > start at any rate. ;)
        >
        > Laurie Chambliss
        >
        > >
        > >
        > > I would like to ask the esteemed members of this gourp would
        > > they
        > > concider the best reference works on the battles of Chickamauga and
        > > Chattanooga, and why they feel that the works are the best.
        > >
        > > Thanks
        > >
        > > Jeff Burk
        > >
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