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Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and Defense

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  • Bill Bruner
    This thread has brought to my mind an essay I read a year or so back on the art of defensive warfare. I can t remember the author, but he was one of the
    Message 1 of 30 , Oct 27, 2006
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      This thread has brought to my mind an essay I read a year or so back on
      the art of defensive warfare. I can't remember the author, but he was
      one of the classical geniuses and writers of military history.

      I also don't remember all the ins and outs of his theories, but the nut
      of it was that the perfect defensive position was one that you could
      hold over a superior force while at the same time protecting your rear
      and also at the same time harass and menace his rear.

      In my study of the Atlanta Campaign I have kind of tried to apply this
      theory.

      Could Lookout and Missionary have been this position. After all to
      outflank it would have uncovered Chat.. Perhaps Rcky Face if the gaps
      had been properly looked after. Alatoona seems to fit or Kennesaw or
      even Atlanta itself. I don't know. I don't have the wherwithal to even
      attempt an analysis.

      Bill Bruner
    • Carl Williams
      Re: hold over a superior force while at the same time protecting your rear and also at the same time harass and menace his rear. I think this is basically
      Message 2 of 30 , Oct 28, 2006
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        Re: " hold over a superior force while at the same time protecting
        your rear and also at the same time harass and menace his rear." I
        think this is basically what the Russians did to the Germans at Stalingrad

        taking that example, it seems to require some participation in
        ineptitude on the other side... I believe that gets laid at Hitler's
        feet at Stalingrad.

        As far as Chatt., is it fair to say Rosecrans was displaying such
        ineptitude, while Grant did not?

        --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Bill Bruner" <banbruner@...> wrote:
        >
        >
        > This thread has brought to my mind an essay I read a year or so back on
        > the art of defensive warfare. I can't remember the author, but he was
        > one of the classical geniuses and writers of military history.
        >
        > I also don't remember all the ins and outs of his theories, but the nut
        > of it was that the perfect defensive position was one that you could
        > hold over a superior force while at the same time protecting your rear
        > and also at the same time harass and menace his rear.
        >
        > In my study of the Atlanta Campaign I have kind of tried to apply this
        > theory.
        >
        > Could Lookout and Missionary have been this position. After all to
        > outflank it would have uncovered Chat.. Perhaps Rcky Face if the gaps
        > had been properly looked after. Alatoona seems to fit or Kennesaw or
        > even Atlanta itself. I don't know. I don't have the wherwithal to even
        > attempt an analysis.
        >
        > Bill Bruner
        >
      • Tony Gunter
        ... back on ... was ... the nut ... could ... rear ... You just described Vicksburg ...
        Message 3 of 30 , Oct 29, 2006
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          --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Bill Bruner" <banbruner@...>
          wrote:
          >
          >
          > This thread has brought to my mind an essay I read a year or so
          back on
          > the art of defensive warfare. I can't remember the author, but he
          was
          > one of the classical geniuses and writers of military history.
          >
          > I also don't remember all the ins and outs of his theories, but
          the nut
          > of it was that the perfect defensive position was one that you
          could
          > hold over a superior force while at the same time protecting your
          rear
          > and also at the same time harass and menace his rear.


          You just described Vicksburg ...
        • Tom Mix
          Nope, a great defensive position does not have a river, a large river, as the rear. ... From: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
          Message 4 of 30 , Oct 29, 2006
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            Nope, a great defensive position does not have a river, a large river, as
            the rear.

            -----Original Message-----
            From: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com [mailto:civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com] On
            Behalf Of Tony Gunter
            Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 11:42 AM
            To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and Defense

            --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Bill Bruner" <banbruner@...>
            wrote:
            >
            >
            > This thread has brought to my mind an essay I read a year or so
            back on
            > the art of defensive warfare. I can't remember the author, but he
            was
            > one of the classical geniuses and writers of military history.
            >
            > I also don't remember all the ins and outs of his theories, but
            the nut
            > of it was that the perfect defensive position was one that you
            could
            > hold over a superior force while at the same time protecting your
            rear
            > and also at the same time harass and menace his rear.


            You just described Vicksburg ...








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          • Bill Bruner
            I don t know... wouldn t a river to the rear of a strong defensive position prohibit or limit the enemmy s ability to flank or get to your rear? ... river, as
            Message 5 of 30 , Oct 29, 2006
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              I don't know... wouldn't a river to the rear of a strong defensive
              position prohibit or limit the enemmy's ability to flank or get to
              your rear?



              --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Tom Mix" <tmix@...> wrote:
              >
              > Nope, a great defensive position does not have a river, a large
              river, as
              > the rear.
              >
              > -----Original Message-----
              > From: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
              [mailto:civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com] On
              > Behalf Of Tony Gunter
              > Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 11:42 AM
              > To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
              > Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and
              Defense
              >
              > --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Bill Bruner" <banbruner@>
              > wrote:
              > >
              > >
              > > This thread has brought to my mind an essay I read a year or so
              > back on
              > > the art of defensive warfare. I can't remember the author, but
              he
              > was
              > > one of the classical geniuses and writers of military history.
              > >
              > > I also don't remember all the ins and outs of his theories, but
              > the nut
              > > of it was that the perfect defensive position was one that you
              > could
              > > hold over a superior force while at the same time protecting
              your
              > rear
              > > and also at the same time harass and menace his rear.
              >
              >
              > You just described Vicksburg ...
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              > Yahoo! Groups Links
              >
            • Tom Mix
              With a huge river in the rear there was no reason to move troops there. They are already cut off. The only things to worry about are the flanks and the front.
              Message 6 of 30 , Oct 29, 2006
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                With a huge river in the rear there was no reason to move troops there. They
                are already cut off. The only things to worry about are the flanks and the
                front. The flanks may be truncated by the river flow as well thus lessening
                the total space of coverage.
                They were boxed in at Vicksburg. No retreat possible. In Chattanooga their
                rear was clear for maneuver.

                -----Original Message-----
                From: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com [mailto:civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com] On
                Behalf Of Bill Bruner
                Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 12:59 PM
                To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and Defense

                I don't know... wouldn't a river to the rear of a strong defensive
                position prohibit or limit the enemmy's ability to flank or get to
                your rear?



                --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Tom Mix" <tmix@...> wrote:
                >
                > Nope, a great defensive position does not have a river, a large
                river, as
                > the rear.
                >
                > -----Original Message-----
                > From: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                [mailto:civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com] On
                > Behalf Of Tony Gunter
                > Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 11:42 AM
                > To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                > Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and
                Defense
                >
                > --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Bill Bruner" <banbruner@>
                > wrote:
                > >
                > >
                > > This thread has brought to my mind an essay I read a year or so
                > back on
                > > the art of defensive warfare. I can't remember the author, but
                he
                > was
                > > one of the classical geniuses and writers of military history.
                > >
                > > I also don't remember all the ins and outs of his theories, but
                > the nut
                > > of it was that the perfect defensive position was one that you
                > could
                > > hold over a superior force while at the same time protecting
                your
                > rear
                > > and also at the same time harass and menace his rear.
                >
                >
                > You just described Vicksburg ...
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                > Yahoo! Groups Links
                >






                Yahoo! Groups Links
              • Bill Bruner
                O kay. I ll give you Vicksburg since it this case the river only aided the siege. But if we are talking about the ideal defensive position. I would envision
                Message 7 of 30 , Oct 29, 2006
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                  O'kay. I'll give you Vicksburg since it this case the river only
                  aided the siege. But if we are talking about the ideal defensive
                  position. I would envision a position in whose immediate rear was a
                  river that was easily crossed by bridges, rr trestles, pontoons,
                  fords etc. that were accessible to the defenders but not to the
                  attackers. Thus the defenders would be able to operate on either
                  side of the river and their lines of communication and supply would
                  be open and easily protected. Plus reinforcements (if available)
                  may cross the river at some distant point to flank the attackers.

                  Bill Bruner



                  --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Tom Mix" <tmix@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > With a huge river in the rear there was no reason to move troops
                  there. They
                  > are already cut off. The only things to worry about are the flanks
                  and the
                  > front. The flanks may be truncated by the river flow as well thus
                  lessening
                  > the total space of coverage.
                  > They were boxed in at Vicksburg. No retreat possible. In
                  Chattanooga their
                  > rear was clear for maneuver.
                  >
                  > -----Original Message-----
                  > From: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                  [mailto:civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com] On
                  > Behalf Of Bill Bruner
                  > Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 12:59 PM
                  > To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                  > Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and
                  Defense
                  >
                  > I don't know... wouldn't a river to the rear of a strong defensive
                  > position prohibit or limit the enemmy's ability to flank or get to
                  > your rear?
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Tom Mix" <tmix@> wrote:
                  > >
                  > > Nope, a great defensive position does not have a river, a large
                  > river, as
                  > > the rear.
                  > >
                  > > -----Original Message-----
                  > > From: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                  > [mailto:civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com] On
                  > > Behalf Of Tony Gunter
                  > > Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 11:42 AM
                  > > To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                  > > Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and
                  > Defense
                  > >
                  > > --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Bill Bruner" <banbruner@>
                  > > wrote:
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > > This thread has brought to my mind an essay I read a year or
                  so
                  > > back on
                  > > > the art of defensive warfare. I can't remember the author,
                  but
                  > he
                  > > was
                  > > > one of the classical geniuses and writers of military history.
                  > > >
                  > > > I also don't remember all the ins and outs of his theories,
                  but
                  > > the nut
                  > > > of it was that the perfect defensive position was one that
                  you
                  > > could
                  > > > hold over a superior force while at the same time protecting
                  > your
                  > > rear
                  > > > and also at the same time harass and menace his rear.
                  > >
                  > >
                  > > You just described Vicksburg ...
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > > Yahoo! Groups Links
                  > >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > Yahoo! Groups Links
                  >
                • Tom Mix
                  A fordable river would be fordable for both sides as would having access, disputed access, to the bridge crossings. At Friedland in East Prussia the Russians
                  Message 8 of 30 , Oct 29, 2006
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                    A fordable river would be fordable for both sides as would having access,
                    disputed access, to the bridge crossings.

                    At Friedland in East Prussia the Russians crossed the river and assembled
                    with their backs to that river to face Napoleon.
                    Ney wanted to attack immediately as did others. Napoleon said, "No, never
                    interrupt an adversary when he is making a mistake."
                    Once the Russian Guard had assembled Napoleon took the bridge they crossed
                    cutting them off and annihilated them.
                    A river at ones back is seldom if ever a benefit to a defender. While small
                    like Stones River are nothing more than a minor inconvenience to cross,
                    unlike the Ohio or the Mississippi. Stones River is a wading stream.

                    -----Original Message-----
                    From: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com [mailto:civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com] On
                    Behalf Of Bill Bruner
                    Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 1:47 PM
                    To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and Defense

                    O'kay. I'll give you Vicksburg since it this case the river only
                    aided the siege. But if we are talking about the ideal defensive
                    position. I would envision a position in whose immediate rear was a
                    river that was easily crossed by bridges, rr trestles, pontoons,
                    fords etc. that were accessible to the defenders but not to the
                    attackers. Thus the defenders would be able to operate on either
                    side of the river and their lines of communication and supply would
                    be open and easily protected. Plus reinforcements (if available)
                    may cross the river at some distant point to flank the attackers.

                    Bill Bruner



                    --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Tom Mix" <tmix@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > With a huge river in the rear there was no reason to move troops
                    there. They
                    > are already cut off. The only things to worry about are the flanks
                    and the
                    > front. The flanks may be truncated by the river flow as well thus
                    lessening
                    > the total space of coverage.
                    > They were boxed in at Vicksburg. No retreat possible. In
                    Chattanooga their
                    > rear was clear for maneuver.
                    >
                    > -----Original Message-----
                    > From: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                    [mailto:civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com] On
                    > Behalf Of Bill Bruner
                    > Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 12:59 PM
                    > To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                    > Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and
                    Defense
                    >
                    > I don't know... wouldn't a river to the rear of a strong defensive
                    > position prohibit or limit the enemmy's ability to flank or get to
                    > your rear?
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Tom Mix" <tmix@> wrote:
                    > >
                    > > Nope, a great defensive position does not have a river, a large
                    > river, as
                    > > the rear.
                    > >
                    > > -----Original Message-----
                    > > From: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                    > [mailto:civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com] On
                    > > Behalf Of Tony Gunter
                    > > Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 11:42 AM
                    > > To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                    > > Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and
                    > Defense
                    > >
                    > > --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Bill Bruner" <banbruner@>
                    > > wrote:
                    > > >
                    > > >
                    > > > This thread has brought to my mind an essay I read a year or
                    so
                    > > back on
                    > > > the art of defensive warfare. I can't remember the author,
                    but
                    > he
                    > > was
                    > > > one of the classical geniuses and writers of military history.
                    > > >
                    > > > I also don't remember all the ins and outs of his theories,
                    but
                    > > the nut
                    > > > of it was that the perfect defensive position was one that
                    you
                    > > could
                    > > > hold over a superior force while at the same time protecting
                    > your
                    > > rear
                    > > > and also at the same time harass and menace his rear.
                    > >
                    > >
                    > > You just described Vicksburg ...
                    > >
                    > >
                    > >
                    > >
                    > >
                    > >
                    > >
                    > >
                    > > Yahoo! Groups Links
                    > >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > Yahoo! Groups Links
                    >






                    Yahoo! Groups Links
                  • Ronald black
                    Nope, a defensive position would defend the river line from the side opposite from the enemy, with the river in front of the defender. The defender would
                    Message 9 of 30 , Oct 29, 2006
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                      Nope, a defensive position would defend the river line from the side opposite from the enemy, with the river in front of the defender.  The defender would prevent the enemy's crossing the river by securing any crossing point, removing any boats, bridges and anything an enemy may use to get across.  Defender may also still man the opposite bank with a small but strong party of troops to delay the attacker getting to the river bank as long as possible.
                      If, in the event the defender can not prevent the attacker from getting across, he does not a river that he has to cross.  In defending a river, you have to been viligiant of enemy forces trying to cross up or down river at fords or crossing points.  Cavalry pickets can watch for these attempts but are ill suited to defend the river.  Defender must maintain a mobile strong reserve force to react to the moves of the enemy and counterattack immediately before the enemy can consolidate the just captured after crossing the river.  In other words, "KICK THEM OUT".  
                      Ron
                      ----- Original Message -----
                      Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 1:59 PM
                      Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and Defense

                      I don't know... wouldn't a river to the rear of a strong defensive
                      position prohibit or limit the enemmy's ability to flank or get to
                      your rear?

                      --- In civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com, "Tom Mix" <tmix@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > Nope, a great defensive position does not have a river, a large
                      river, as
                      > the rear.
                      >
                      > -----Original Message-----
                      > From: civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com
                      [mailto:civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com] On
                      > Behalf Of Tony Gunter
                      > Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 11:42 AM
                      > To: civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com
                      > Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and
                      Defense
                      >
                      > --- In civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com, "Bill Bruner" <banbruner@>
                      > wrote:
                      > >
                      > >
                      > > This thread has brought to my mind an essay I read a year or so
                      > back on
                      > > the art of defensive warfare. I can't remember the author, but
                      he
                      > was
                      > > one of the classical geniuses and writers of military history.
                      > >
                      > > I also don't remember all the ins and outs of his theories, but
                      > the nut
                      > > of it was that the perfect defensive position was one that you
                      > could
                      > > hold over a superior force while at the same time protecting
                      your
                      > rear
                      > > and also at the same time harass and menace his rear.
                      >
                      >
                      > You just described Vicksburg ...
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Yahoo! Groups Links
                      >


                      No virus found in this incoming message.
                      Checked by AVG Free Edition.
                      Version: 7.1.408 / Virus Database: 268.13.17/505 - Release Date: 10/27/2006
                    • Tom Mix
                      I understand what you are describing but I can t think of an instance when it worked. What instantly came to mind was Hooker s masterful flanking across the
                      Message 10 of 30 , Oct 29, 2006
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                        I understand what you are describing but I can’t think of an instance when it worked.  What instantly came to mind was Hooker’s masterful flanking across the Rappahannock and then the Rapidan to get into Lee’s rear and left at Chancellorsville.

                        Also, at Aspern-Essling Napoleon found himself isolated on the wrong side of the river for his first significant defeat.

                         

                        -----Original Message-----
                        From: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com [mailto:civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Ronald black
                        Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 2:41 PM
                        To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                        Subject: Re: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and Defense

                         

                        Nope, a defensive position would defend the river line from the side opposite from the enemy, with the river in front of the defender.  The defender would prevent the enemy's crossing the river by securing any crossing point, removing any boats, bridges and anything an enemy may use to get across.  Defender may also still man the opposite bank with a small but strong party of troops to delay the attacker getting to the river bank as long as possible.

                        If, in the event the defender can not prevent the attacker from getting across, he does not a river that he has to cross.  In defending a river, you have to been viligiant of enemy forces trying to cross up or down river at fords or crossing points.  Cavalry pickets can watch for these attempts but are ill suited to defend the river.  Defender must maintain a mobile strong reserve force to react to the moves of the enemy and counterattack immediately before the enemy can consolidate the just captured after crossing the river.  In other words, "KICK THEM OUT".  

                        Ron

                        ----- Original Message -----

                        Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 1:59 PM

                        Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and Defense

                         

                        I don't know... wouldn't a river to the rear of a strong defensive
                        position prohibit or limit the enemmy's ability to flank or get to
                        your rear?

                        --- In civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com, "Tom Mix" <tmix@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > Nope, a great defensive position does not have a river, a large
                        river, as
                        > the rear.
                        >
                        > -----Original Message-----
                        > From: civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com
                        [mailto:civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com] On
                        > Behalf Of Tony Gunter
                        > Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 11:42 AM
                        > To: civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com
                        > Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and
                        Defense
                        >
                        > --- In civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com, "Bill Bruner" <banbruner@>
                        > wrote:
                        > >
                        > >
                        > > This thread has brought to my mind an essay I read a year or so
                        > back on
                        > > the art of defensive warfare. I can't remember the author, but
                        he
                        > was
                        > > one of the classical geniuses and writers of military history.
                        > >
                        > > I also don't remember all the ins and outs of his theories, but
                        > the nut
                        > > of it was that the perfect defensive position was one that you
                        > could
                        > > hold over a superior force while at the same time protecting
                        your
                        > rear
                        > > and also at the same time harass and menace his rear.
                        >
                        >
                        > You just described Vicksburg ...
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > Yahoo! Groups Links
                        >


                        No virus found in this incoming message.
                        Checked by AVG Free Edition.
                        Version: 7.1.408 / Virus Database: 268.13.17/505 - Release Date: 10/27/2006

                      • Tony Gunter
                        ... You re thinking Vicksburg in June. I m thinking Vicksburg in April and May. In April, the Confederates had the ability to threaten Grant s rear, via land
                        Message 11 of 30 , Oct 29, 2006
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                          --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Tom Mix" <tmix@...> wrote:
                          >
                          > Nope, a great defensive position does not have a river, a
                          > large river, as the rear.

                          You're thinking Vicksburg in June. I'm thinking Vicksburg in April and
                          May.

                          In April, the Confederates had the ability to threaten Grant's rear,
                          via land (Memphis) or river (ironclad fleet being built in Yazoo City).

                          In May, the Confederates had the ability to threaten Grant's rear by
                          crossing the Big Black River and severing his link to Grand Gulf.
                        • Ronald black
                          TOM: A successful defense of a river is not necessarily a permanent or long term operation or a static position. The idea is to inflict as much damage as
                          Message 12 of 30 , Oct 29, 2006
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                            TOM:
                            A successful defense of a river is not necessarily a permanent or long term operation or a static position.  The idea is to inflict as much damage as possible while the enemy is vulnerable during the crossing operation and to secure a better position for later operations.  Your right in that river defense can be attacked and defeated but properly done, the attacker can be made to pay.  After inflicting major damage on the enemy, the defender has more and better options.  Now would be a good time to occupy the high ground, ridge lines and block the roads.  Stike the heads of his columns as he approachs your new positions.  Remember that old rule of warfare by Sun Yat Ron, rule # 23, "Where one army goes, another can follow".  I just wrote this rule, another 1,000 just like it and I will publish my book.      
                             
                            Ron
                             
                            Wait till you see Rule 32.
                             
                             
                            ----- Original Message -----
                            From: Tom Mix
                            Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 4:20 PM
                            Subject: RE: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and Defense

                            I understand what you are describing but I can’t think of an instance when it worked.  What instantly came to mind was Hooker’s masterful flanking across the Rappahannock and then the Rapidan to get into Lee’s rear and left at Chancellorsville.

                            Also, at Aspern-Essling Napoleon found himself isolated on the wrong side of the river for his first significant defeat.

                             

                            -----Original Message-----
                            From: civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com [mailto:civilwarwes t@yahoogroups. com] On Behalf Of Ronald black
                            Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 2:41 PM
                            To: civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com
                            Subject: Re: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and Defense

                             

                            Nope, a defensive position would defend the river line from the side opposite from the enemy, with the river in front of the defender.  The defender would prevent the enemy's crossing the river by securing any crossing point, removing any boats, bridges and anything an enemy may use to get across.  Defender may also still man the opposite bank with a small but strong party of troops to delay the attacker getting to the river bank as long as possible.

                            If, in the event the defender can not prevent the attacker from getting across, he does not a river that he has to cross.  In defending a river, you have to been viligiant of enemy forces trying to cross up or down river at fords or crossing points.  Cavalry pickets can watch for these attempts but are ill suited to defend the river.  Defender must maintain a mobile strong reserve force to react to the moves of the enemy and counterattack immediately before the enemy can consolidate the just captured after crossing the river.  In other words, "KICK THEM OUT".  

                            Ron

                            ----- Original Message -----

                            Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 1:59 PM

                            Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and Defense

                             

                            I don't know... wouldn't a river to the rear of a strong defensive
                            position prohibit or limit the enemmy's ability to flank or get to
                            your rear?

                            --- In civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com, "Tom Mix" <tmix@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > Nope, a great defensive position does not have a river, a large
                            river, as
                            > the rear.
                            >
                            > -----Original Message-----
                            > From: civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com
                            [mailto:civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com] On
                            > Behalf Of Tony Gunter
                            > Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2006 11:42 AM
                            > To: civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com
                            > Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Braxton Bragg Joseph Johnston and
                            Defense
                            >
                            > --- In civilwarwest@ yahoogroups. com, "Bill Bruner" <banbruner@>
                            > wrote:
                            > >
                            > >
                            > > This thread has brought to my mind an essay I read a year or so
                            > back on
                            > > the art of defensive warfare. I can't remember the author, but
                            he
                            > was
                            > > one of the classical geniuses and writers of military history.
                            > >
                            > > I also don't remember all the ins and outs of his theories, but
                            > the nut
                            > > of it was that the perfect defensive position was one that you
                            > could
                            > > hold over a superior force while at the same time protecting
                            your
                            > rear
                            > > and also at the same time harass and menace his rear.
                            >
                            >
                            > You just described Vicksburg ...
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > Yahoo! Groups Links
                            >


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                          • keeno2@aol.com
                            In a message dated 10/29/2006 3:32:06 PM Central Standard Time, tony_gunter@yahoo.com writes: In April, the Confederates had the ability to threaten Grant s
                            Message 13 of 30 , Oct 29, 2006
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                              In a message dated 10/29/2006 3:32:06 PM Central Standard Time, tony_gunter@... writes:
                              In April, the Confederates had the ability to threaten Grant's rear, via land (Memphis) or river (ironclad fleet being built in Yazoo City).
                              I hesitate to make a statement here, as I am well aware of your extensive knowledge of the area. So I'll just ask a question or two. Just how could the Confederates have threatened Grant's rear via Memphis? Given that the Confederacy could not make a boat powerful enough to go upstream (CSS Arkansas), just how big a threat was that ironclad fleet?
                               
                              How dependent was Grant on his LoC to Grand Gulf?
                               
                              Thank you in advance for the education.
                              Ken
                            • Tony Gunter
                              ... rear, via land ... extensive ... could the ... Memphis was a staging area for Grant s Vicksburg operations. Dodge was spread awfully thin from Memphis to
                              Message 14 of 30 , Oct 29, 2006
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                                --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, keeno2@... wrote:
                                >
                                > In a message dated 10/29/2006 3:32:06 PM Central Standard Time,
                                > tony_gunter@... writes:
                                > In April, the Confederates had the ability to threaten Grant's
                                rear, via land
                                > (Memphis) or river (ironclad fleet being built in Yazoo City).
                                > I hesitate to make a statement here, as I am well aware of your
                                extensive
                                > knowledge of the area. So I'll just ask a question or two. Just how
                                could the
                                > Confederates have threatened Grant's rear via Memphis?

                                Memphis was a staging area for Grant's Vicksburg operations. Dodge
                                was spread awfully thin from Memphis to Corinth, and a couple of
                                divisions showing up suddenly on Dodge's front would have resulted in
                                Grant trying to juggle the forces that he had slated to move south.

                                > Given that the Confederacy could not make a boat powerful
                                > enough to go upstream (CSS Arkansas), just how big a threat was
                                > that ironclad fleet?

                                I have never heard that! Do you have a reference you can point me
                                to? The listed top speed for the Arkansas is 8 knots, which is
                                faster than, say, the Cairo's 6 knots. Does anyone have a reference
                                to the flow on the Mississippi River? I found one article that
                                claimed it ranges between 4 and 8 knots, depending on the water
                                level. Additionally, the river in 1863 made a hairpin turn directly
                                under the cliffs in Vicksburg and the water speed would have been
                                tremendous. Is it possible that the Arkansas simply could not travel
                                upstream past Vicksburg?

                                >
                                > How dependent was Grant on his LoC to Grand Gulf?

                                Critically dependent, until after the first week of May.
                              • keeno2@aol.com
                                In a message dated 10/29/2006 6:49:15 PM Central Standard Time, tony_gunter@yahoo.com writes: I have never heard that! Do you have a reference you can point
                                Message 15 of 30 , Oct 29, 2006
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                                  In a message dated 10/29/2006 6:49:15 PM Central Standard Time, tony_gunter@... writes:
                                  I have never heard that!  Do you have a reference you can point me to?  The listed top speed for the Arkansas is 8 knots, which is faster than, say, the Cairo's 6 knots.  Does anyone have a reference to the flow on the Mississippi River?  I found one article that claimed it ranges between 4 and 8 knots, depending on the water level.  Additionally, the river in 1863 made a hairpin turn directly under the cliffs in Vicksburg and the water speed would have been tremendous.  Is it possible that the Arkansas simply could not travel upstream past Vicksburg?
                                  I'm going to have to scour a bit to find that. I read it less than 3 months ago. Gimme some time to think and delve into the stack of books currenty being read. The reference I'm referring to stated something like "nowhere in the Confederacy was a facility large enough to make the size engine needed to power an ironclad against the Mississippi's current."
                                   
                                  I've understood that the Mississippi usually keeps rollin' along +/- 7mph. Have no idea what that equals in knots, but I believe kph and mph are close. If the Arkansas could reach 8 knots, that means that at full steam upriver it would be doing 1 -- one could crawl a mile in less than an hour. If it hadn't broken down after it passed through the Union fleet, it might not have been able to get back up.
                                   
                                  A hairpin turn doesn't increase water speed unless there's also a narrowing. It does, however, set up some nasty currents. With a net gain of one mph/kph, the Arkansas didn't have enough juice to fight those currents upriver. The Arkansas had its 15-minutes of fame. That was the end of it (he says, taking off his hat and pausing for a moment of silence). The Union gunboats had the power to move upriver, but they also had 7mph subtracted from their top speed.
                                   
                                  I will get you that answer (unless someone else has their finger on it and beats me to it)
                                  Ken
                                • Walt
                                  Gents Man-made channels and levees are usually straight to flow faster and restrict shipping less. But how many of the more modern types were in place by 1863
                                  Message 16 of 30 , Oct 30, 2006
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                                    Gents

                                    Man-made channels and levees are usually straight to flow faster
                                    and restrict shipping less. But how many of the more modern types were
                                    in place by 1863 is unknown to me. I did read somewhere that the
                                    first steam powered engine to travel up the Mississippi was during the
                                    early 1820's. Locomotives were being built throughout the South and
                                    basic hull designs were being turned out every year all along the
                                    Mississippi.

                                    Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain) must have had a good geology teacher.
                                    In "Life on the Mississippi" (1863) he wrote: "One who knows the MS
                                    [knows]... that ten thousand River Commissions with the mines of the
                                    world at their back, cannot tame that lawless stream, cannot curb it
                                    or confine it, cannot say to it, "Go here," or "Go there," and make it
                                    obey; cannot save a shore which it has sentenced; cannot bar its path
                                    with an obstruction which it will not tear down, dance over, and laugh
                                    at... one would ... say the Commission might as well bully the comets
                                    in their courses and undertake to make them behave, as try to bully
                                    the Mississippi into right and reasonable conduct."

                                    Then again we know that the old girl had it's lowest levels in 1864.
                                    1863 was not far behind in levels and subsequent lack of flows.
                                    Taking benchmarks from what the averages are now could be a bit
                                    misleading. Getting closer to the year(s) in question and knowing
                                    which of the newest improvements were in place in 1863 would seem to
                                    garner better assessments of what may have been.

                                    Walt
                                    Baltimore & Chesapeake Steamboat Company
                                    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~``35``~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                                    --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, keeno2@... wrote:
                                    In a message dated 10/29/2006 6:49:15 PM Central Standard Time,
                                    tony_gunter@... writes:

                                    I have never heard that! Do you have a reference you can point me to?
                                    The listed top speed for the Arkansas is 8 knots, which is faster
                                    than, say, the Cairo's 6 knots. Does anyone have a reference to the
                                    flow on the Mississippi River? I found one article that claimed it
                                    ranges between 4 and 8 knots, depending on the water level.
                                    Additionally, the river in 1863 made a hairpin turn directly under the
                                    cliffs in Vicksburg and the water speed would have been tremendous.
                                    Is it possible that the Arkansas simply could not travel upstream
                                    past Vicksburg?

                                    I'm going to have to scour a bit to find that. I read it less than 3
                                    months ago. Gimme some time to think and delve into the stack of books
                                    currenty being read. The reference I'm referring to stated something
                                    like "nowhere in the Confederacy was a facility large enough to make
                                    the size engine needed to power an ironclad against the Mississippi's
                                    current."

                                    I've understood that the Mississippi usually keeps rollin' along +/-
                                    7mph.

                                    Have no idea what that equals in knots, but I believe kph and mph are
                                    close. If the Arkansas could reach 8 knots, that means that at full
                                    steam upriver it would be doing 1 -- one could crawl a mile in less
                                    than an hour. If it hadn't broken down after it passed through the
                                    Union fleet, it might not have been able to get back up.

                                    A hairpin turn doesn't increase water speed unless there's also a
                                    narrowing.
                                    It does, however, set up some nasty currents. With a net gain of one
                                    mph/kph, the Arkansas didn't have enough juice to fight those currents
                                    upriver. The Arkansas had its 15-minutes of fame. That was the end of
                                    it (he says, taking off his hat and pausing for a moment of silence).
                                    The Union gunboats had the power to move upriver, but they also had
                                    7mph subtracted from their top speed.

                                    I will get you that answer (unless someone else has their finger on it
                                    and beats me to it)
                                    Ken
                                    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~``30``~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                                  • keeno2@aol.com
                                    In a message dated 10/30/2006 7:07:02 AM Central Standard Time, scentofhorse@yahoo.com writes: Man-made channels and levees are usually straight to flow faster
                                    Message 17 of 30 , Oct 30, 2006
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                                      In a message dated 10/30/2006 7:07:02 AM Central Standard Time, scentofhorse@... writes:
                                      Man-made channels and levees are usually straight to flow faster and restrict shipping less. But how many of the more modern types were in place by 1863 is unknown to me.  I did read somewhere that the first steam powered engine to travel up the Mississippi was during the early 1820's.  Locomotives were being built throughout the South and basic hull designs were being turned out every year all along the Mississippi.
                                      Water speed is a function of quantity volume and channel. Wide and deep accommodates the volume and results in a slower flow. Narrow and shallow requires a faster flow to accommodate the volume -- put your thumb over the end of the hose; same volume, faster flow. Man-made channels and other such interference -- breakwaters, dredging, etc. -- are an attempt to stabilize the changing nature of the river, not for faster flow.
                                       
                                      Mark Twain spent some time as a pilot -- a most difficult occupation. It may not be an exaggeration to say that the river still changes from day to day. There will be one set of hazards on your way upstream (sandbars, snags, eddies, cross currents, etc.), and all of them will be in a different place on the way back down. As he so poetically put it, the river couldn't be tamed by the hand of man. It still periodically reminds us of that.
                                       
                                      I did read somewhere that the first steam powered engine to travel up the Mississippi was during the early 1820's. The keyword is iron-clad. It takes a much larger engine to move those puppies than a freighter.
                                      Ken
                                    • Donald Pontious
                                      ... Yes, Ken, they are close. A mile is 1760 yards. A nautical mile, or knot , is 2000 yards. The conversion is that a knot equals about one and one-eight
                                      Message 18 of 30 , Oct 30, 2006
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                                        On 10/29/06, keeno2@... <keeno2@...> wrote:

                                        I've understood that the Mississippi usually keeps rollin' along +/- 7mph. Have no idea what that equals in knots, but I believe kph and mph are close.
                                         

                                        Ken







                                        Yes, Ken, they are close. 
                                        A mile is 1760 yards. A nautical mile, or "knot", is 2000 yards. The conversion is that a knot equals about one and one-eight miles. Eight knots per hour is about nine miles per hour.

                                        Don


                                      • gnrljejohnston
                                        ... 7mph. Have no idea what that equals in knots, but I believe kph and mph are close. 1 knot = 6076 feet per hour 1 mph = 5280 feet per hour Thus 1 mph =
                                        Message 19 of 30 , Oct 30, 2006
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                                          --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, keeno2@... wrote:
                                          >I've understood that the Mississippi usually keeps rollin' along +/-
                                          7mph. Have no idea what that equals in knots, but I believe kph and mph
                                          are close. >>

                                          1 knot = 6076 feet per hour
                                          1 mph = 5280 feet per hour

                                          Thus 1 mph = 1.152 knot
                                          or 1 knot = .868 mph

                                          If the Mississippi has a flow of 7 mph, that would equal 8.06 knots

                                          Glad that I remembered all this from aviation ground school :-)

                                          For rough figures, 1 mph = 1.2 knots and .87 knots = 1 mph

                                          JEJ
                                        • Walt
                                          ... Hi Ken, Indeed, iron or tin clads are a bit more weightier than 1820 s vessels. I only wnated to make the point that steam power had been around for a
                                          Message 20 of 30 , Oct 30, 2006
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                                            --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, keeno2@... wrote:
                                            Hi Ken,

                                            Indeed, iron or tin clads are a bit more weightier than 1820's
                                            vessels. I only wnated to make the point that steam power had been
                                            around for a long while prior to the War. You may know that CSS NEUSE
                                            was supplied (in part) with motive power from one of the locomotives
                                            taken at Martinsburg, Virginia during the great loco caper. Locmotive
                                            boilers were being produced, or made available from existing
                                            equipments in the South which could have supplied the necessary thrust
                                            against the river flow.

                                            Tnx for the insight of the ever changing flow and currents of the
                                            Mississippi. Excepting the downward pointed snags, such challenges,
                                            as you relate, gives one something to look forward to.

                                            Walt
                                            ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~``35``~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

                                            >> I did read somewhere that the first steam powered engine to travel
                                            up the Mississippi was during the early 1820's.<<

                                            The keyword is iron-clad. It takes a much larger engine to move those
                                            puppies than a freighter....There will be one set of hazards on your
                                            way upstream (sandbars, snags, eddies, cross currents, etc.), and all
                                            of them will be in a different place on the way back down. As he so
                                            poetically put it, the river couldn't be tamed by the hand of man. It
                                            still periodically reminds us of that.

                                            Ken
                                            ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~``30``~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                                          • Donald Pontious
                                            General, I think you have mixed up some of the numbers. If a knot is bigger than a mile, then how can one mile equal more than one knot? It cannot. If your
                                            Message 21 of 30 , Oct 30, 2006
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                                              General,

                                              I think you have mixed up some of the numbers. If a knot is bigger than a mile, then how can one mile equal more than one knot? It cannot. If your numbers are correct,

                                                 1 knot = 1.152 mph
                                                 1 mph = .868 knot

                                                 If the Mississipi has a flow of 7 knots, that would equal 8.06 mph.

                                              Agreed?



                                              On 10/30/06, gnrljejohnston <GnrlJEJohnston@...> wrote:

                                              1 knot = 6076 feet per hour
                                              1 mph = 5280 feet per hour

                                              Thus 1 mph = 1.152 knot
                                              or 1 knot = .868 mph

                                              If the Mississippi has a flow of 7 mph, that would equal 8.06 knots

                                              Glad that I remembered all this from aviation ground school :-)

                                              For rough figures, 1 mph = 1.2 knots and .87 knots = 1 mph

                                              JEJ



                                               


                                               


                                               



                                            • gnrljejohnston
                                              ... than a ... your ... mph. ... Actually, it would equal 8.064mph You would have to travel 8.064 mph in order to go 7 knots. Remember, a mile is 1760
                                              Message 22 of 30 , Oct 30, 2006
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                                                --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Donald Pontious"
                                                <don.pontious@...> wrote:
                                                >
                                                > General,
                                                >
                                                > I think you have mixed up some of the numbers. If a knot is bigger
                                                than a
                                                > mile, then how can one mile equal more than one knot? It cannot. If
                                                your
                                                > numbers are correct,
                                                >
                                                > 1 knot = 1.152 mph
                                                > 1 mph = .868 knot
                                                >
                                                > If the Mississipi has a flow of 7 knots, that would equal 8.06
                                                mph.
                                                >
                                                > Agreed?
                                                >
                                                Actually, it would equal 8.064mph You would have to travel 8.064 mph
                                                in order to go 7 knots. Remember, a mile is 1760 yards(5280 ft),
                                                where a knot is a little over 2000 yards (6076 ft).

                                                For example, if a train is moving at 50 mph on a track, how would you
                                                represent this speed in knots (even though trains are not usually
                                                represented in knots)?

                                                To do this problem easily, one can multiply the number of miles per
                                                hour that the train is moving by the number of feet per hour that = 1
                                                mph. this converts the speed to a distance traveled in one hour.

                                                That is:- (50 mph)(5280 feet/ mph)=264,000 feet

                                                Now, divide that distance by the number of feet in a nautical mile
                                                (6076).

                                                (264,000 feet)/(6076 feet/ knot) = 43.4 knots

                                                JEJ
                                              • nickrelee@aol.com
                                                I asked a buddy of mine who I knew recently read a book on the Mississippi and the Atchafalaya Rivers if he remembered anything about old/new current speeds.
                                                Message 23 of 30 , Oct 31, 2006
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                                                   I asked a buddy of mine who I knew recently read a book on the Mississippi and the Atchafalaya Rivers if he remembered anything about old/new current speeds.  He said that the book (The Contol of Nature by John McPhee) doesn't have any velocities for the Mississippi historically.
                                                   
                                                  The Atchafalaya River today diverts about 30% of the flow of the Mississippi on a normal day and the speed of the water thru it is 12 mph. The Mississippi at this point flows at 3 knots in low water, 6 in a typical Spring runoff and 8 knots during flood.
                                                   
                                                  My buddy thought that since the Mississippi has been tamed not only by levees, but by lock and dams on its main channel and the dams of the Tennessee, Missouri, Arkansas etc., today's river speed (which carriers 2 million tons of sediment each year to the gulf) is probably faster than its historical past as it has been forced into channels against its will. 
                                                   
                                                  I would think though that the upriver dams probably evens out the effect of the levees forcing into into a channel.  I would guess that the river is roughly the same as it once was, but I could be worng.
                                                   
                                                  --Nick
                                                • Walt
                                                  Nick, Tnx for the insight. I would venture to quess that much of hwat we might be looking for could well be in the National Archives I at Washington, DC under
                                                  Message 24 of 30 , Oct 31, 2006
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                                                    Nick,

                                                    Tnx for the insight. I would venture to quess that much of hwat we
                                                    might be looking for could well be in the National Archives I at
                                                    Washington, DC under the US Corps of Army Engineers section even back
                                                    beyond the period spanning the War of 1861.

                                                    The regular surgeons with the US Army Medical Department were also
                                                    obliged to keep records of terrain, weather conditions and bottom
                                                    depths at placed where armies would ford or cross bodies of water.
                                                    Perhaps rate-of-flow was performed on occasion as well.

                                                    Walt
                                                    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~``35``~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                                                    --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, nickrelee@... wrote:
                                                    I asked a buddy of mine who I knew recently read a book on the
                                                    Mississippi and the Atchafalaya Rivers if he remembered anything about
                                                    old/new current speeds. He said that the book (The Contol of Nature
                                                    by John McPhee) doesn't have any velocities for the Mississippi
                                                    historically.

                                                    The Atchafalaya River today diverts about 30% of the flow of the
                                                    Mississippi on a normal day and the speed of the water thru it is 12
                                                    mph. The Mississippi at this point flows at 3 knots in low water, 6 in
                                                    a typical Spring runoff and 8 knots during flood.

                                                    My buddy thought that since the Mississippi has been tamed not only by
                                                    levees, but by lock and dams on its main channel and the dams of the
                                                    Tennessee, Missouri, Arkansas etc., today's river speed (which
                                                    carriers 2 million tons of sediment each year to the gulf) is probably
                                                    faster than its historical past as it has been forced into channels
                                                    against its will.

                                                    I would think though that the upriver dams probably evens out the
                                                    effect of the levees forcing into into a channel. I would guess that
                                                    the river is roughly the same as it once was, but I could be worng.

                                                    --Nick
                                                    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~``30``~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                                                  • keeno2@aol.com
                                                    In a message dated 10/31/2006 3:56:45 PM Central Standard Time, nickrelee@aol.com writes: would think though that the upriver dams probably evens out the
                                                    Message 25 of 30 , Oct 31, 2006
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                                                      In a message dated 10/31/2006 3:56:45 PM Central Standard Time, nickrelee@... writes:
                                                      would think though that the upriver dams probably evens out the effect of the levees forcing into into a channel.  I would guess that the river is roughly the same as it once was, but I could be worng.
                                                      And you could be right. Levee's control high water and promote channel maintenance -- faster flow. Dam's even out the seasonal flow -- slower water. Keeping in mind that the Mississippi drains an enormous area from the Alleghenies to the Rockies, what happens upstream dictates the river condition at Memphis and Vicksburg. The river may have borne a totally different character in the spring of '62 than it did in '63, but it remains that 8 knots is not enough to beat upstream and maneuver.
                                                      Ken
                                                    • Tony Gunter
                                                      ... effect of the ... is roughly ... channel ... slower water. ... the Alleghenies to ... Memphis ... character in the ... not enough to ... What this suggests
                                                      Message 26 of 30 , Nov 1, 2006
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                                                        --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, keeno2@... wrote:
                                                        >
                                                        > In a message dated 10/31/2006 3:56:45 PM Central Standard Time,
                                                        > nickrelee@... writes:
                                                        > would think though that the upriver dams probably evens out the
                                                        effect of the
                                                        > levees forcing into into a channel. I would guess that the river
                                                        is roughly
                                                        > the same as it once was, but I could be worng.
                                                        > And you could be right. Levee's control high water and promote
                                                        channel
                                                        > maintenance -- faster flow. Dam's even out the seasonal flow --
                                                        slower water.
                                                        > Keeping in mind that the Mississippi drains an enormous area from
                                                        the Alleghenies to
                                                        > the Rockies, what happens upstream dictates the river condition at
                                                        Memphis
                                                        > and Vicksburg. The river may have borne a totally different
                                                        character in the
                                                        > spring of '62 than it did in '63, but it remains that 8 knots is
                                                        not enough to
                                                        > beat upstream and maneuver.

                                                        What this suggests is that the city class ironclads of the Union
                                                        Navy, with a top speed of 6 knots, could not navigate upstream on the
                                                        Mississippi River during the Civil War. I have trouble accepting
                                                        this because of reports that these vessels moved back and forth from
                                                        Memphis to just above Vicksburg.

                                                        However, I suppose it's possible the Union Navy could have been
                                                        towing these vessels back upstream.
                                                      • keeno2@aol.com
                                                        In a message dated 11/1/2006 8:46:30 AM Central Standard Time, tony_gunter@yahoo.com writes: However, I suppose it s possible the Union Navy could have been
                                                        Message 27 of 30 , Nov 1, 2006
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                                                          In a message dated 11/1/2006 8:46:30 AM Central Standard Time, tony_gunter@... writes:
                                                          However, I suppose it's possible the Union Navy could have been towing these vessels back upstream.
                                                          Anything is possible. Are you sure the city class could do only 6 knots? Sounds pretty sloy for a vessel designed for river duty.
                                                           
                                                          At any rate, upstream travel was possible but would have been painfully slow. Part of the reason Farragut couldn't take Vicksburg (aside from falling water levels) would have been the difficulty of holding and maneuvering against the current.
                                                          Ken
                                                        • hank9174
                                                          ... at ... the ... from ... I seem to recall Porter telling Grant that the trip downstream would be one-way past Vicksburg. Of course, the CSA batteries may
                                                          Message 28 of 30 , Nov 1, 2006
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                                                            --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Tony Gunter" <tony_gunter@...>
                                                            wrote:
                                                            >
                                                            > --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, keeno2@ wrote:
                                                            > >
                                                            > > In a message dated 10/31/2006 3:56:45 PM Central Standard Time,
                                                            > > nickrelee@ writes:
                                                            > > would think though that the upriver dams probably evens out the
                                                            > effect of the
                                                            > > levees forcing into into a channel. I would guess that the river
                                                            > is roughly
                                                            > > the same as it once was, but I could be worng.
                                                            > > And you could be right. Levee's control high water and promote
                                                            > channel
                                                            > > maintenance -- faster flow. Dam's even out the seasonal flow --
                                                            > slower water.
                                                            > > Keeping in mind that the Mississippi drains an enormous area from
                                                            > the Alleghenies to
                                                            > > the Rockies, what happens upstream dictates the river condition
                                                            at
                                                            > Memphis
                                                            > > and Vicksburg. The river may have borne a totally different
                                                            > character in the
                                                            > > spring of '62 than it did in '63, but it remains that 8 knots is
                                                            > not enough to
                                                            > > beat upstream and maneuver.
                                                            >
                                                            > What this suggests is that the city class ironclads of the Union
                                                            > Navy, with a top speed of 6 knots, could not navigate upstream on
                                                            the
                                                            > Mississippi River during the Civil War. I have trouble accepting
                                                            > this because of reports that these vessels moved back and forth
                                                            from
                                                            > Memphis to just above Vicksburg.
                                                            >
                                                            > However, I suppose it's possible the Union Navy could have been
                                                            > towing these vessels back upstream.

                                                            I seem to recall Porter telling Grant that the trip downstream would
                                                            be one-way past Vicksburg.

                                                            Of course, the CSA batteries may have had something to do with that
                                                            conclusion...


                                                            HankC
                                                          • Carl Williams
                                                            Hank, for sure, Porter was referring to the batteries... it would have been suicidal for the transports to try to go back, and basically he told Grant to *be
                                                            Message 29 of 30 , Nov 1, 2006
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                                                              Hank, for sure, Porter was referring to the batteries... it would have
                                                              been suicidal for the transports to try to go back, and basically he
                                                              told Grant to "*be sure* this is what you want to do" [paraphrasing].
                                                              Really points out what a disaster a Grant failure would have been.

                                                              >
                                                              > I seem to recall Porter telling Grant that the trip downstream would
                                                              > be one-way past Vicksburg.
                                                              >
                                                              > Of course, the CSA batteries may have had something to do with that
                                                              > conclusion...
                                                              >
                                                              >
                                                              > HankC
                                                              >
                                                            • Carl Williams
                                                              This is also why Farragut fizzled at Port Hudson in 1863, getting only his flagship [IIRC]past those batteries in a night run... suffering at least one
                                                              Message 30 of 30 , Nov 1, 2006
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                                                                This is also why Farragut fizzled at Port Hudson in 1863, getting only
                                                                his flagship [IIRC]past those batteries in a night run... suffering at
                                                                least one outright sinking, an ocean-going cruiser at that


                                                                >
                                                                > At any rate, upstream travel was possible but would have been
                                                                painfully slow.
                                                                > Part of the reason Farragut couldn't take Vicksburg (aside from
                                                                falling water
                                                                > levels) would have been the difficulty of holding and maneuvering
                                                                against the
                                                                > current.
                                                                > Ken
                                                                >
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