Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.
 

Champion Hill; Bowen clues in Pemberton?

Expand Messages
  • Carl Williams
    ... [regarding the strategic position of Edwards Station] ... Was this a case of Pemberton suddenly being told and realizing that his strategy of staying
    Message 1 of 9 , Jul 12, 2007
      --- In #43905, "Tony Gunter" <tony_gunter@...> wrote:

      [regarding the strategic position of Edwards Station]
      > It would seem that Pemberton was completely unaware of this until
      > Bowen reluctantly brought it to his attention ... giving Grant
      > Edwards Station gives the federal army interior lines from Cox's to
      > Amsterdam.
      >

      Was this a case of Pemberton suddenly being told and realizing that
      his strategy of staying behind the Big Black River had a flaw? Did
      Bowen tell the General that Grant was going to take Edwards Station
      and then eat Pemberton's lunch? If so, was Bowen all wet?
    • Tony Gunter
      ... I believe so. If Pemberton remains at the Big Black River Bridge, Grant moves to Edwards and cuts the RR. Grant now has interior lines to Snyder s Bluff
      Message 2 of 9 , Jul 12, 2007
        --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Carl Williams" <carlw4514@...>
        wrote:
        >
        > --- In #43905, "Tony Gunter" <tony_gunter@> wrote:
        >
        > [regarding the strategic position of Edwards Station]
        > > It would seem that Pemberton was completely unaware of this until
        > > Bowen reluctantly brought it to his attention ... giving Grant
        > > Edwards Station gives the federal army interior lines from Cox's to
        > > Amsterdam.
        > >
        >
        > Was this a case of Pemberton suddenly being told and realizing that
        > his strategy of staying behind the Big Black River had a flaw?

        I believe so. If Pemberton remains at the Big Black River Bridge,
        Grant moves to Edwards and cuts the RR. Grant now has interior lines
        to Snyder's Bluff at Bush, Birdsong, Jones, and Cox. With Snyder's
        Bluff in federal possession, and the RR cut, Pemberton cannot maintain
        an army in Vicksburg for long.
      • William H Keene
        ... Bowen had been sent to take charge of the defense of Big Black bridge. He wrote to Pemberton to explain that he could defend that spot but that it could be
        Message 3 of 9 , Jul 12, 2007
          --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Carl Williams" <carlw4514@...>
          wrote:
          > ...
          > Was this a case of Pemberton suddenly being told and realizing that
          > his strategy of staying behind the Big Black River had a flaw? Did
          > Bowen tell the General that Grant was going to take Edwards Station
          > and then eat Pemberton's lunch?

          Bowen had been sent to take charge of the defense of Big Black bridge.
          He wrote to Pemberton to explain that he could defend that spot but
          that it could be turned easily by a different crossing once Grant took
          Edwards; that he did not have enough force to defend all the crossings;
          and that from Edwards it is easier to cover multiple crossings than it
          would be from behind the river. He concluded by suggesting that his
          command be moved east of the river to a new defensive position.

          > If so, was Bowen all wet?

          What does that mean?
        • Tony Gunter
          ... that ... Station ... bridge. ... took ... crossings; ... it ... his ... Was Bowen s assessment of the position correct. I vote yes, Dave Smith might vote
          Message 4 of 9 , Jul 12, 2007
            --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "William H Keene" <wh_keene@...>
            wrote:
            >
            > --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Carl Williams" <carlw4514@>
            > wrote:
            > > ...
            > > Was this a case of Pemberton suddenly being told and realizing
            that
            > > his strategy of staying behind the Big Black River had a flaw? Did
            > > Bowen tell the General that Grant was going to take Edwards
            Station
            > > and then eat Pemberton's lunch?
            >
            > Bowen had been sent to take charge of the defense of Big Black
            bridge.
            > He wrote to Pemberton to explain that he could defend that spot but
            > that it could be turned easily by a different crossing once Grant
            took
            > Edwards; that he did not have enough force to defend all the
            crossings;
            > and that from Edwards it is easier to cover multiple crossings than
            it
            > would be from behind the river. He concluded by suggesting that
            his
            > command be moved east of the river to a new defensive position.
            >
            > > If so, was Bowen all wet?
            >
            > What does that mean?

            Was Bowen's assessment of the position correct. I vote yes, Dave
            Smith might vote no.
          • Carl Williams
            ... Note that the Big Black River must be crossed eventually by Grant *or else*. Time is ticking off for Grant; his current supply situation, living off the
            Message 5 of 9 , Jul 12, 2007
              > > > If so, was Bowen all wet?
              > >
              > > What does that mean?
              >
              > Was Bowen's assessment of the position correct. I vote yes, Dave
              > Smith might vote no.
              >


              Note that the Big Black River must be crossed eventually by Grant *or
              else*. Time is ticking off for Grant; his current supply situation,
              living off the land and all that, is deteriorating on the east side of
              the Big Black. Grant's coolness under this situation might be
              misleading. He had to be highly desirous of getting to Snyder's Bluff/
              Haynes' Bluff and a 100% better supply situation.

              My understanding is that, at one point, Pemberton thought his strategy
              should be just to keep Grant on the east side of the river at all
              costs. Seems that Bowen might have told him it isnt going to be that
              simple, and convinced him, per Tony's account here. It is of course
              possible that Pemberton would have been better off sticking to his
              original plan; certainly what he tried turned out about as bad as can
              be imagined. So, maybe Bowen was "all wet".

              The Big Black looks pretty impressive on the west point map. So makes
              you wonder.
              http://tinyurl.com/3xbbr6
            • Tony Gunter
              ... *or ... of ... Bluff/ ... There are two problem with the Big Black position. If Grant moves to Edwards, he can attempt to move across the Big Black at
              Message 6 of 9 , Jul 12, 2007
                --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Carl Williams" <carlw4514@...>
                wrote:
                >
                >
                > > > > If so, was Bowen all wet?
                > > >
                > > > What does that mean?
                > >
                > > Was Bowen's assessment of the position correct. I vote yes, Dave
                > > Smith might vote no.
                > >
                >
                >
                > Note that the Big Black River must be crossed eventually by Grant
                *or
                > else*. Time is ticking off for Grant; his current supply situation,
                > living off the land and all that, is deteriorating on the east side
                of
                > the Big Black. Grant's coolness under this situation might be
                > misleading. He had to be highly desirous of getting to Snyder's
                Bluff/
                > Haynes' Bluff and a 100% better supply situation.
                >
                > ...
                >
                > The Big Black looks pretty impressive on the west point map.
                > So makes you wonder.
                > http://tinyurl.com/3xbbr6
                >

                There are two problem with the Big Black position. If Grant moves to
                Edwards, he can attempt to move across the Big Black at Baldwin's,
                another ferry two miles from the railroad brigde, the railroad bridge
                itself, a crossing north of Smith's station, Amsterdam, Messenger's,
                Bridgeport, Jones' Ferry, Bush Ferry, Birdsong, or Cox. That's 11
                crossings, and Pemberton's force converging on the area only has 10
                brigades.

                The second problem is that the roads north of Bridgeport converge at
                Oak Ridge, and the roads south of Bridgeport converge on Bovina.
                Pemberton has to split his force in two wings that cannot support
                each other.
              • Tony Gunter
                ... to ... bridge ... Messenger s, ... at ... Let me add to this. I think a skilled field commander with a highly mobile force could have pulled off the
                Message 7 of 9 , Jul 13, 2007
                  --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Tony Gunter" <tony_gunter@...>
                  wrote:
                  >
                  >
                  > There are two problem with the Big Black position. If Grant moves
                  to
                  > Edwards, he can attempt to move across the Big Black at Baldwin's,
                  > another ferry two miles from the railroad brigde, the railroad
                  bridge
                  > itself, a crossing north of Smith's station, Amsterdam,
                  Messenger's,
                  > Bridgeport, Jones' Ferry, Bush Ferry, Birdsong, or Cox. That's 11
                  > crossings, and Pemberton's force converging on the area only has 10
                  > brigades.
                  >
                  > The second problem is that the roads north of Bridgeport converge
                  at
                  > Oak Ridge, and the roads south of Bridgeport converge on Bovina.
                  > Pemberton has to split his force in two wings that cannot support
                  > each other.
                  >

                  Let me add to this.

                  I think a skilled field commander with a highly mobile force could
                  have pulled off the defense of the Big Black River. However,
                  Pemberton was dealing with multiple factors that would have made this
                  problematic:

                  1) Pemberton's force was not highly mobile. The units had been
                  serving garrison duty for many months and were not in shape for the
                  lightning campaign that Grant was waging.

                  2) Pemberton was not a good field commander. In fact, he was not
                  good commanding from afar either, tending to micro-manage the
                  movements of his top subordinates. Grant's hands-off style, by
                  comparison, led to great flexibility.

                  3) All indications are that Pemberton's intel network had been
                  compromised. This meant that Grant knew exactly what Pemberton was
                  doing, while Pemberton knew little about McClernand's and Sherman's
                  dispositions, and nothing of McPherson's disposition. Grant could
                  have pinned Pemberton at a given point with his heavy wing
                  (McClernand's corps), while striking from an unexpected direction
                  with his mobile wing (McPherson and Sherman).
                • Carl Williams
                  perhaps we will still hear from dave smith... Tony, in any case, may I ask what was your source describing Bowen s interaction at this stage of things? Bowen
                  Message 8 of 9 , Jul 16, 2007
                    perhaps we will still hear from dave smith...


                    Tony, in any case, may I ask what was your source describing Bowen's
                    interaction at this stage of things?

                    Bowen was described somewhere as getting some attention as one of the
                    better generals, but then died... disease, tho, not a bullet, IIRC.
                  • Tony Gunter
                    ... May 11, 1863 I have the honor to state that the intrenchments in front of Big Black Bridge will be finished tonight, and beg leave to suggest that,
                    Message 9 of 9 , Jul 16, 2007
                      --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Carl Williams" <carlw4514@...>
                      wrote:
                      >
                      > perhaps we will still hear from dave smith...
                      >
                      >
                      > Tony, in any case, may I ask what was your source describing Bowen's
                      > interaction at this stage of things?

                      May 11, 1863

                      I have the honor to state that the intrenchments in front of Big
                      Black Bridge will be finished tonight, and beg leave to suggest that,
                      although we can readily preserve the bridge by a proper defense, yet
                      the position can be turned if the enemy pass Edwards and cross at
                      Bridgeport Ferry. My division is not sufficient to give battle at
                      both places, and while we have 9 or 10 miles to pass from one point
                      to the other, the enemy march 3 or 4, from Edwards Depot.

                      If a force cannot be spared for that point, could not my command, if
                      suported at Raymond, move forward, and hold a position between
                      Edwards and Fourteen Mile Creek, fronting south, with our right near
                      enough to Big Black to force them to cross at Baldwin's? Could we
                      not thus preserve the entire railroad, as well as the bridge?

                      ...
                    Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.