Re: Lincoln & McClernand's expedition
- --- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "josepharose" <josepharose@...>
>I don't think anyone has argued what you claim they have argued.
> I find it somewhat difficult to believe that people here apparently
> disbelieve Grant's memoirs when they argue that Grant intentionally
> forestalled McClernand, a point confirmed by many other sources.
Grant did play a role in forestalling McClernand, as he stated in
his memoirs; but it was hardly a major role. Halleck played the
What we have disagreed with in your biased account is whether it was
insubordination. You seem to use a very plastic definition of chain
of command. IYHO it is perfectly acceptable for certain officers to
bypass that chain of command but others, like Grant, are locked
tightly into it. This is evident throughout this entire
discussion. You seem to believe that McClernand acted properly in
bypassing the chain of command, disobeying his orders to report to
the midwest to help recruit troops (that was the reason he took his
leave of absence), and appealing directly to Lincoln of an
independent command. You have also argued that McClernand was a
very competent officer, who deserved that command, no matter how
reprehensible his means of attaining it. Strange definitions you
seem to employ.
> Now, even more strangely, it seems that some might think Halleckmatter.
> should also be cleared of charges of insubordination in this
>This is a total misstatement of the argument I made sir. My
argument about Halleck's lack of insubordination was a direct
response to your claim that Grant was shown a copy of the Oct. 21
orders by McClernand. That is untrue. He never saw a copy of those
orders until late Jan. 1863, when McClernand forwarded those orders,
plus other messages, to Grant. But, as I argued, if Halleck and
Grant saw those orders, there is no way they acted insubordinately.
Those orders clearly show that McClernand was to report to IL to
raise and organize troops to be sent to Grant's department. Grant
was given authority to use those troops in his own operations. No
restrictions were placed upon those operations, so they were
perfectly justified in organizing a separate river expedition.
Furthermore, McClernand was informed that he MIGHT use those troops,
not required by Grant, to organize a river expedition, but that
those troops were still subject to the discretion of Halleck. By
the wording of those orders, neither Grant nor Halleck acted
insubordinately because both were given a level of authority over
those troops; and you have not provided a single message that
indicated they could not use those troops where and when they wanted
to. McClernand would get what was left, but only at the discretion
of Halleck. Again, please outline where Grant or Halleck, if they
saw those orders, acted against the intent of those orders.
> Lincoln wrote to F. P. Blair, on 11/17/62, "Your brother says youare
> solicitous to be ordered to join General McClernand. I suppose youare
> ordered to Saint Helena; this means that you are to form part ofexpedition.
> McClernand's expedition as it moves down the river; and General
> McClernand is so informed. I will see General Halleck as to whether
> the additional force you mention can go with you."
> It was certainly Lincoln's intent that McC was to lead the
>Once again you miss the entire point of the argument. No one has
argued that there are not a great many messages that mention
McClernand's expedition. Most were sent to politicians and their
cronies, who could assist in the raising and organizing of troops.
But, you have utterly failed to provide a single message, a single
order, a single letter, from Lincoln or Stanton to Grant that
indicates McClernand was CLEARLY to be put in command of the river
expedition. All of the messages you have posted have been to other
people, all accounts were second or third hand and no official
reports of his activities were sent to Grant. Unless you can
provide such messages you have no case. Grant asked Halleck for
clarification of his own role and was given orders. He followed
those orders. Until you can provide an order that contradicts this
interpretation I shall consider you case mere assertion.
> I'd like to see people who defend Grant and Halleck in this matterinto
> detail clearly how Lincoln's stated intent was somehow not turned
> action.Orders of Oct. 21. McClernand to report to IL to raise and organize
troops to be sent to Grant's department. Grant to employ said
troops for his operations. Any troops not required by Grant's
operations might be organized by McClernand, though only at the
discretion of Halleck. Kindly show me, in the wording of those
orders, where McClernand was explicitly given any command. The
orders state he "MAY" organize them.
Orders of Dec. 18. Grant is ordered to organize his army into four
coprs, with McClernand to have command of one corps and Sherman
command of another, both to form the river expedition, under the
immediate command of McClernand. Also Dec. 18, Grant forwards those
orders to McClernand and informs Sherman that McClernand will have
command of the river expedition, that Sherman has been preparing (in
accordance with orders from Halleck). These orders are not received
until Dec. 28 because of the disruption of the LOC by Forrest.
Kindly show me where Grant disobeyed these orders? Kindly show me
where Sherman disobeyed these orders?
Dec. 23. McClernand gets married. He also gets orders to relinquish
his activities in IL (BTW, this was a necessary preliminary step to
his assuming command in the field. He had to relinquish his
activities as specified by prior orders. That is how the military
works; it wasn't Grant's interference so much as military protocol
that delayed McClernand.).
Dec. 25. Grant sends another message to McClernand directing him to
proceed to Memphis to take command of the expedition.
Kindly indicate where Grant did anything insubordinate to delay
McClernand (he forwarded the orders placing him in command as soon
as he got them), to place Sherman in command of the operation
(Halleck had ordered him to do so) or to take McClernand's command
away from him (quite the contrary, for someone who was supposedly
trying to steal his command, Grant reacted with remarkable speed
AFTER HE RECEIVED ORDERS TO DO SO). To expect that Grant COULD or
SHOULD have acted prior to receiving orders is ridiculous in the
extreme and shows a complete lack of how military protocol works.
OTOH, the officials in DC provided ambiguous orders (Oct.21), were
slow to answer various messages from McClernand (throughout Nov and
Dec) and took 2-3 days to issue the final orders to McClernand and
Grant (Dec. 16-18). Furthermore, it was not until Dec. 23 that
McClernand got orders to relinquish his duties in IL and proceed
down the river to assume his command.