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Re: [civilwarwest] Re: Master of War by Benson Bobrick

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  • keeno2@aol.com
    Just find your local listing for CSpan2. That s where it will be. (7 Central). **************Hurry! April 15th is almost here. File your Federal taxes FREE
    Message 1 of 19 , Apr 11, 2009
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      Just find your local listing for CSpan2. That's where it will be. (7 Central).


      Hurry! April 15th is almost here. File your Federal taxes FREE with TaxACT.
    • Don
      ... Correct! Thanks for the tip off Ole! Don
      Message 2 of 19 , Apr 12, 2009
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        --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, keeno2@... wrote:
        >
        > Just find your local listing for CSpan2. That's where it will be. (7
        > Central).
        > **************Hurry! April 15th is almost here. File your Federal taxes
        > FREE with TaxACT.
        > (http://pr.atwola.com/promoclk/100126575x1221653545x1201423923/aol?redir=http:%2F%2Fwww.taxact.com%2F08tax.asp%3Fsc%3D084102950004%26p%3D8
        > 2)
        >


        Correct!

        Thanks for the tip off Ole!

        Don
      • Tony Gunter
        ... http://hnn.us/readcomment.php?id=132359&bheaders=1#132359 This series of posts between Bobrick and Brooks Simpson should be enlightening for anyone tempted
        Message 3 of 19 , Apr 13, 2009
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          --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Don" <oneplez@...> wrote:
          >
          > INFO!
          >
          > Yes, the Round Table talk, that was filmed on March 17th. It will be
          > broadcast here in the East at 8 P.M. In Tampa, Florida on Channel 129.
          >

          http://hnn.us/readcomment.php?id=132359&bheaders=1#132359

          This series of posts between Bobrick and Brooks Simpson should be enlightening for anyone tempted to purchase this book:

          Re: George Thomas (#132373)
          by Brooks D. Simpson on March 3, 2009 at 1:44 AM

          How does your description of what happened at Chattanooga differ from that offered by previous Thomas biographers? It's not as if your claims are exactly new. In short, what do you have to say that hasn't been said before?

          [ Reply ] [ Return to Comments ]

          Re: George Thomas (#132380)
          by Benson B. Bobrick on March 3, 2009 at 12:44 PM
          Ok, fair question. Let's press the reset button and have a civil dialogue.

          I have never claimed (God forbid!) that everything I had to say was original or new. On the contrary, I note in my acknowledgments my heavy debt to those who have written about Thomas before. But I do think many of the points I make have been left out of (or ignored in) recent books, which has skewed the story of the war. I would also like to think, of course, that my book does, at least, put between two covers a more closely reasoned, researched, well-written, and organized account of Thomas than can be found elsewhere. Not all who admire the book agree with me entirely. For example, Jeffry Wert, a Civil War historian I assume you think well of, as do I, wrote to my editor to say: "At last, Union General George Thomas has received the biography he has deserved for more than a century. Overshadowed by fellow commanders such as Grant, Sherman, and Sheridan, Thomas was one of the North's finest generals during the Civil War. In MASTER OF WAR, Benson Bobrick gives us a finely written and researched study on a soldier whose record rivals that of his more famous comrades. This book is long overdue." I don't know Jeffery Wert personally, but from his tribute (which touched me deeply) I can see that his estimate of Thomas does not, in fact, perfectly concur with mine--since, for example, I'm convinced that Thomas was the greatest general of them all. At the same time, he evidently shares my sense that Thomas has been undervalued for a long time.

          Let's keep talking. I would value it.

          Most cordially,

          Benson Bobrick

          [ Reply ] [ Return to Comments ]

          Re: George Thomas (#132386)
          by Brooks Simpson on March 3, 2009 at 5:23 PM
          I understand how blurbs are composed, having done a few myself. The question remains what is new about your biography of Thomas that has not been covered in Cleaves, McKinney, and Buell. I assume that given all the recent writing about the Civil War, including several fine books about battles and campaigns in which Thomas played a part, that your book might incorporate that work to update a rather familiar narrative offered by previous Thomas biographers, but I freely confess that in all of this heat I've seen nothing that suggests that you have anything new to say. Even the charges of a conspiracy by Grant and Sherman to deprive Thomas of his due (and the accusation that their biographers have been complicit in that endeavor) have been made before.

          [ Reply ] [ Return to Comments ]

          Re: George Thomas (#132388)
          by Benson B. Bobrick on March 3, 2009 at 6:43 PM
          Well, I didn't solicit the Jeffry Wert tribute, nor do I know him personally. So it seems not quite right to suggest motives on his part other than the best. I must assume he was sincere. Wouldn't that be the decent thing to do? On the battle accounts, etc., I think you would have to read the book to know if I successfully incorporate the material to which you allude. You might also want to ask yourself candidly if some of the battle accounts in the books you mention omit important information. There are a number of well-regarded books (which may or may not be the ones you have in mind) which do. Beyond that, the argument that Grant and Sherman worked more or less in concert to discredit Thomas behind his back is not, of course, discredited by the fact that it is a familiar one. To my mind, the Record is clear that they endeavored, directly and indirectly, to limit his reputation and rank.
          Finally, as to "newness," I do think my overview is new, and includes information not found in McKinney, Cleaves, or Buell. That would seem to be why readers familiar with those books still find mine compelling and fresh. We aren't going to agree on many things. I'm also sure my book is marked, as all books are, by its own shortcomings and mistakes. Yet I have hopes that over time it will hold up. Time (not you, nor I, nor any flurry of good or bad reviews) will tell.

          Again, cordially,

          Benson Bobrick

          [ Reply ] [ Return to Comments ]

          Re: George Thomas (#132392)
          by Brooks D. Simpson on March 3, 2009 at 10:33 PM
          Now, now, surely you know how blurbs work. Pointing that out doesn't mean I'm accusing anyone of anything, and, frankly, I'm a little tired of you ascribing some underhanded motive whenever anyone questions you. That's not the decent thing to do.

          Once more, you've asserted your book's freshness, without offering a single example of it. So I'll leave it at that.

          [ Reply ] [ Return to Comments ]

          Re: George Thomas (#132394)
          by Benson B. Bobrick on March 3, 2009 at 11:49 PM
          The imputation was yours, frankly. As for myself, I've never written a blurb I didn't mean sincerely. I wouldn't think of doing otherwise. So when you say you know "how blurbs work," it implies something other than straight shooting. That's obvious enough.

          If you misspoke, I think you ought to just admit it and move on. Otherwise, it drags the conversation down.

          In a final comment, I'm constrained to point out that you find yourself in the anomalous position of expatiating at length about the shortcomings of a book you haven't read. That's not a position I would like to find myself in myself. Do you not see how untenable that is?



          [ Reply ] [ Return to Comments ]

          Re: George Thomas (#132413)
          by Brooks D. Simpson on March 4, 2009 at 2:13 PM
          You seem to want to try to find a reason to take a personal slap at everyone with whom you disagree.

          Usually blurbs are by their very nature favorable statements tweaked to arouse interest in a book. That's why publishers seek them. Show me a negative blurb. That's why I've turned down opportunities in some cases, and carefully worded them in others. I've seen people blurb books that they were later compelled to criticize in contradiction of their blurb.

          But, as usual, you fail to tell us what's new about your book. That's why you would rather take another shot at me. You think it will take away attention from your failure to answer that question.

          You wrote the book ... and you can't tell us what's new about it?

          I'll leave you to deal with that blunt fact. I'm not going to dignify your repeated efforts to drag me down into a mudslinging fight with you.

          [ Reply ] [ Return to Comments ]

          Re: George Thomas (#132417)
          by Benson B. Bobrick on March 4, 2009 at 3:38 PM
          My goodness, how unself-aware can you be? Aren't you really describing yourself? These pages are splattered with your own flippant attacks on various people. I haven't taken a slap at anyone but you--and you only because your demeanor, choice of language, and general attitude are so undignified. I gave you a chance to redeem yourself a few days ago, and elevate the discussion, but you promptly slipped back into your usual mode. When you did, I called you out on it--to bring you back to your senses, if I could. However, you seem unteachable. As for the "what's new" question (that tiny little circle you seem destined to tread obsessively round and round), I gave you a good lead. In parting, I would urge you to contemplate John Milton's wise remark: "To know is not to see but taste." That's quite beyond your comprehension right now, I'm sure. But some day you may grow into what it means.

          Here endeth my sojourn on this site.

          [ Reply ] [ Return to Comments ]
        • gnrljejohnston
          ... I have not read the new book out on GH Thomas, but I always have refered back to my copy of his bio written by Palumbo. In my estimation, Thomas was a
          Message 4 of 19 , Apr 13, 2009
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            > This series of posts between Bobrick and Brooks Simpson should be enlightening for anyone tempted to purchase this book:
            >
            > Re: George Thomas (#132373)
            > by Brooks D. Simpson on March 3, 2009 at 1:44 AM
            >
            > How does your description of what happened at Chattanooga differ from that offered by previous Thomas biographers? It's not as if your claims are exactly new. In short, what do you have to say that hasn't been said before?

            >
            I have not read the new book out on GH Thomas, but I always have refered back to my copy of his bio written by Palumbo. In my estimation, Thomas was a great Union commander. Not better, not worse, but a integral part of Sherman's team. Being a room mate of Sherman at WP, the two of them knew each other very well and had a lot of respect for each other. Both of them made Brigadier on General Order # 10 with Sherman's name first. How did Thomas's get that appointment... by Sherman twisting the arm of his brother, John Sherman. But, that friendship was put aside when it came to the business afor them. Both of them made mistakes. Following Resaca, Sherman did lean on the advice of Thomas more and more. He had enough confidence in Thomas knowing that Thomas alone could handle Hood without a problem. He is in many ways, an unsung hero, but there are those on line that have tried to make him into a God. This is wrong.

            JEJ
          • swan_pat_estelle
            ... As to Thomas being overlooked after the war was over, I think that s probably true. Should Grant and Sherman have taken the time to build up Thomas s
            Message 5 of 19 , Apr 13, 2009
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              --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "gnrljejohnston" <GnrlJEJohnston@...> wrote:
              >
              > It seems to me that each of the three generals (USG, WTS & GHT) was good enough in the role that he had to get the job done. That was the important thing. Different qualities of leadership are usually required at different levels within an organization and each of these men had a somewhat different role from the other two. Thus, it seems to me not to be useful to try to do exact comparisons among them. Each was equal to his task and that's what counts.

              As to Thomas being overlooked after the war was over, I think that's probably true. Should Grant and Sherman have taken the time to build up Thomas's reputation after the war? Perhaps. In my view, the whole western theater was overlooked after the war was over and may just now be beginning to get the recognition it deserves. Thomas's reputation may be shining brighter as historians look more closely at what happened "way out here!" However, it is doubtful that Sherman's or Grant's reputations will suffer. Perhaps the strengths and weaknesses of each man will be revealed more clearly, but will that make one "better" than the others? I doubt it.


              > > This series of posts between Bobrick and Brooks Simpson should be enlightening for anyone tempted to purchase this book:
              > >
              > > Re: George Thomas (#132373)
              > > by Brooks D. Simpson on March 3, 2009 at 1:44 AM
              > >
              > > How does your description of what happened at Chattanooga differ from that offered by previous Thomas biographers? It's not as if your claims are exactly new. In short, what do you have to say that hasn't been said before?
              >
              > >
              > I have not read the new book out on GH Thomas, but I always have refered back to my copy of his bio written by Palumbo. In my estimation, Thomas was a great Union commander. Not better, not worse, but a integral part of Sherman's team. Being a room mate of Sherman at WP, the two of them knew each other very well and had a lot of respect for each other. Both of them made Brigadier on General Order # 10 with Sherman's name first. How did Thomas's get that appointment... by Sherman twisting the arm of his brother, John Sherman. But, that friendship was put aside when it came to the business afor them. Both of them made mistakes. Following Resaca, Sherman did lean on the advice of Thomas more and more. He had enough confidence in Thomas knowing that Thomas alone could handle Hood without a problem. He is in many ways, an unsung hero, but there are those on line that have tried to make him into a God. This is wrong.
              >
              > JEJ
              >
            • James W. Durney
              If you are thinking about buying the book, take a close look at the Amazon reviews. Thomas fans LOVE the book! Civil War people are dismissive of it. I have
              Message 6 of 19 , Apr 14, 2009
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                If you are thinking about buying the book, take a close look at the Amazon reviews. Thomas fans LOVE the book! Civil War people are dismissive of it. I have not found an ACW person that thinks well of the book.
              • DPowell334@AOL.COM
                I did not find it all that worthwhile. Very slanted, very distorted in Thomas favor. Dave Powell In a message dated 4/14/2009 6:05:26 A.M. Central Daylight
                Message 7 of 19 , Apr 14, 2009
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                  I did not find it all that worthwhile. Very slanted, very distorted in Thomas' favor.
                   
                  Dave Powell
                   
                  In a message dated 4/14/2009 6:05:26 A.M. Central Daylight Time, JWD2044@... writes:
                  If you are thinking about buying the book, take a close look at the Amazon reviews.  Thomas fans LOVE the book!  Civil War people are dismissive of it.  I have not found an ACW person that thinks well of the book.




                  Why pay full price? Check out this month's deals on the new AOL Shopping.
                • Harry Smeltzer
                  I only read the captions in the photo section of the book, and can see how some would adore it, and many would have a reaction similar to the one Thomas had to
                  Message 8 of 19 , Apr 14, 2009
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                    I did not find it all that worthwhile. Very slanted, very distorted in Thomas' favor.

                     

                    Dave Powell

                     

                    In a message dated 4/14/2009 6:05:26 A.M. Central Daylight Time, JWD2044@hotmail. com writes:

                    If you are thinking about buying the book, take a close look at the Amazon reviews.  Thomas fans LOVE the book!  Civil War people are dismissive of it.  I have not found an ACW person that thinks well of the book.

                     


                    Why pay full price? Check out this month's deals on the new AOL Shopping.

                  • Harry Smeltzer
                    Wow, that was weird.let s try again. Third time s a charm. ... From: Harry Smeltzer [mailto:hjs21@comcast.net] Sent: Tuesday, April 14, 2009 9:57 AM To:
                    Message 9 of 19 , Apr 14, 2009
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                      Wow, that was weird…let’s try again.  Third time’s a charm.

                       

                      -----Original Message-----
                      From: Harry Smeltzer [mailto:
                      hjs21@...]
                      Sent:
                      Tuesday, April 14, 2009 9:57 AM
                      To: '
                      civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com'
                      Subject: RE: [civilwarwest] Re: Master of War by Benson
                      Bobrick

                       

                      I only read the captions in the photo section of the book, and can see how some would adore it, and many would have a reaction similar to the one Thomas had to Schofield’s writings – you know, when his head exploded.

                       

                      -----Original Message-----
                      From:
                      civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com [mailto:civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of DPowell334@...
                      Sent:
                      Tuesday, April 14, 2009 8:03 AM
                      To:
                      civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                      Subject: Re: [civilwarwest] Re: Master of War by Benson
                      Bobrick

                       

                       

                      I did not find it all that worthwhile. Very slanted, very distorted in Thomas' favor.

                       

                      Dave Powell

                       

                    • Don
                      ... Why would you expect a Thomas biographer to be distorted in disfavor of Thomas? Don
                      Message 10 of 19 , Apr 14, 2009
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                        > -----Original Message-----
                        > From: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com [mailto:civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com] On
                        > Behalf Of DPowell334@...
                        > Sent: Tuesday, April 14, 2009 8:03 AM
                        > To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                        > Subject: Re: [civilwarwest] Re: Master of War by Benson Bobrick
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > I did not find it all that worthwhile. Very slanted, very distorted in
                        > Thomas' favor.
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > Dave Powell
                        >
                        Why would you expect a Thomas biographer to be distorted in disfavor of Thomas?


                        Don
                      • Don
                        Brooks said: Re: George Thomas (#132386) by Brooks Simpson on March 3, 2009 at 5:23 PM I understand how blurbs are composed, having done a few myself. The
                        Message 11 of 19 , Apr 14, 2009
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                          Brooks said:


                          Re: George Thomas (#132386)
                           by Brooks Simpson on March 3, 2009 at 5:23 PM
                           I understand how blurbs are composed, having done a few myself. The question remains what is new about your biography of Thomas that has not been covered in Cleaves, McKinney, and Buell. I assume that given all the recent writing about the Civil War, including several fine books about battles and campaigns in which Thomas played a part, that your book might incorporate that work to update a rather familiar narrative offered by previous Thomas biographers, but I freely confess that in all of this heat I've seen nothing that suggests that you have anything new to say. Even the charges of a conspiracy by Grant and Sherman to deprive Thomas of his due (and the accusation that their biographers have been complicit in that endeavor) have been made before.
                          ________________________________________________________

                          What's new in the 5,000+ books written about Grant?  Why are there 2 -3 books being turned out about him every year?

                          Not only did I find several new data about Thomas in Bobrick's Great book but also some about Grant and his Son Frederick Dent Grant who broke into Piatt's house and terrorized his family.

                          As well as his cruel treatment of the first black cadet at west point!

                          Why are Grantophiles still trying to deny Grant's drinking problems and dispute his butchery of his troops in the war?

                          Now ask why one has to tear down Grant and Sherman to build up Thomas.  That seems to be the favorite refrain of Grantophiles.

                           

                          Don

                        • Tony Gunter
                          ... There are plenty of biographies that are not slanted at all (although I was surprised to find Marszalek so unfriendly to Halleck).
                          Message 12 of 19 , Apr 14, 2009
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                            --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Don" <oneplez@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > > -----Original Message-----
                            > > From: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com [mailto:civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com] On
                            > > Behalf Of DPowell334@
                            > > Sent: Tuesday, April 14, 2009 8:03 AM
                            > > To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                            > > Subject: Re: [civilwarwest] Re: Master of War by Benson Bobrick
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > > I did not find it all that worthwhile. Very slanted, very distorted in
                            > > Thomas' favor.
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > > Dave Powell
                            > >
                            > Why would you expect a Thomas biographer to be distorted in disfavor of Thomas?
                            >
                            >

                            There are plenty of biographies that are not slanted at all (although I was surprised to find Marszalek so unfriendly to Halleck).
                          • Tony Gunter
                            ... Seriously? I could answer for him, but I think it would probably be better for him to answer for himself. ... In my opinion, Simpson broke quite a bit of
                            Message 13 of 19 , Apr 14, 2009
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                              --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Don" <oneplez@...> wrote:
                              >
                              >
                              > Brooks said:
                              >
                              >
                              > Re: George Thomas (#132386)
                              > by Brooks Simpson on March 3, 2009 at 5:23 PM
                              > I understand how blurbs are composed, having done a few myself. The
                              > question remains what is new about your biography of Thomas that has not
                              > been covered in Cleaves, McKinney, and Buell. I assume that given all
                              > the recent writing about the Civil War, including several fine books
                              > about battles and campaigns in which Thomas played a part, that your
                              > book might incorporate that work to update a rather familiar narrative
                              > offered by previous Thomas biographers, but I freely confess that in all
                              > of this heat I've seen nothing that suggests that you have anything new
                              > to say. Even the charges of a conspiracy by Grant and Sherman to deprive
                              > Thomas of his due (and the accusation that their biographers have been
                              > complicit in that endeavor) have been made before.
                              > ________________________________________________________
                              >
                              > What's new in the 5,000+ books written about Grant? Why are there 2 -3
                              > books being turned out about him every year?


                              Seriously? I could answer for him, but I think it would probably be better for him to answer for himself.

                              :D

                              In my opinion, Simpson broke quite a bit of new ground on Grant that has never been covered before. My biggest disappointment with the book is that he did not do so in a way that underscored how groundbreaking some of his assertions were.
                            • Bob Taubman
                              ________________________________ From: Tony Gunter To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com Sent: Tuesday, April 14, 2009 12:31:59 PM Subject:
                              Message 14 of 19 , Apr 14, 2009
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                                From: Tony Gunter <tony_gunter@...>
                                To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                                Sent: Tuesday, April 14, 2009 12:31:59 PM
                                Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Master of War by Benson Bobrick

                                --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Don" <oneplez@...> wrote:
                                >
                                >
                                > Brooks said:
                                >
                                >
                                > Re: George Thomas (#132386)
                                >  by Brooks Simpson on March 3, 2009 at 5:23 PM
                                >  I understand how blurbs are composed, having done a few myself. The
                                > question remains what is new about your biography of Thomas that has not
                                > been covered in Cleaves, McKinney, and Buell. I assume that given all
                                > the recent writing about the Civil War, including several fine books
                                > about battles and campaigns in which Thomas played a part, that your
                                > book might incorporate that work to update a rather familiar narrative
                                > offered by previous Thomas biographers, but I freely confess that in all
                                > of this heat I've seen nothing that suggests that you have anything new
                                > to say. Even the charges of a conspiracy by Grant and Sherman to deprive
                                > Thomas of his due (and the accusation that their biographers have been
                                > complicit in that endeavor) have been made before.
                                > ________________________________________________________
                                >
                                > What's new in the 5,000+ books written about Grant?  Why are there 2 -3
                                > books being turned out about him every year?


                                Seriously?  I could answer for him, but I think it would probably be better for him to answer for himself.

                                :D

                                In my opinion, Simpson broke quite a bit of new ground on Grant that has never been covered before.  My biggest disappointment with the book is that he did not do so in a way that underscored how groundbreaking some of his assertions were.
                                 
                                ----------------------------------------
                                Could you expand on the new ground covered by Simpson and why is it groundbreaking?
                                 
                                Thanks.




                                ------------------------------------

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                              • Tony Gunter
                                ... Off the cuff and without looking, I could only give you those pieces that touch Vicksburg: 1) It was actually Halleck and Lincoln, not Van Dorn, that
                                Message 15 of 19 , Apr 14, 2009
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                                  --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Tony Gunter" <tony_gunter@...> wrote:
                                  >
                                  > --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Don" <oneplez@> wrote:
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > Brooks said:
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > Re: George Thomas (#132386)
                                  > > by Brooks Simpson on March 3, 2009 at 5:23 PM
                                  > > I understand how blurbs are composed, having done a few myself. The
                                  > > question remains what is new about your biography of Thomas that has not
                                  > > been covered in Cleaves, McKinney, and Buell. I assume that given all
                                  > > the recent writing about the Civil War, including several fine books
                                  > > about battles and campaigns in which Thomas played a part, that your
                                  > > book might incorporate that work to update a rather familiar narrative
                                  > > offered by previous Thomas biographers, but I freely confess that in all
                                  > > of this heat I've seen nothing that suggests that you have anything new
                                  > > to say. Even the charges of a conspiracy by Grant and Sherman to deprive
                                  > > Thomas of his due (and the accusation that their biographers have been
                                  > > complicit in that endeavor) have been made before.
                                  > > ________________________________________________________
                                  > >
                                  > > What's new in the 5,000+ books written about Grant? Why are there 2 -3
                                  > > books being turned out about him every year?
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > Seriously? I could answer for him, but I think it would probably be better for him to answer for himself.
                                  >
                                  > :D
                                  >
                                  > In my opinion, Simpson broke quite a bit of new ground on Grant that has never been covered before. My biggest disappointment with the book is that he did not do so in a way that underscored how groundbreaking some of his assertions were.
                                  >

                                  Off the cuff and without looking, I could only give you those pieces that touch Vicksburg:


                                  1) It was actually Halleck and Lincoln, not Van Dorn, that terminated Grant's Overland Campaign.

                                  2) Grant did not bumble around in the swamps for months in 1863, searching for a way to get at Vicksburg, trying one thing, then another, then another, until he finally hatched a plan to move south. Nearly every operation between February and April was the direct or indirect result of orders issued by Grant when he first stepped off the boat at Milliken's Bend in late January 1863. In other words, all of the so-called "failed efforts" to get at Vicksburg were integral pieces of a cohesive plan to move south of Vicksburg and operate against its lifeline from below.

                                  3) The Lake Providence expedition was actually successful, but the war department was unable to supply Grant with enough small river boats to transfer McClernand's corps to Banks.

                                  4) Grant moved McClernand down the river first against Grand Gulf because Grant planned to establish a beachhead and then send McClernand to Banks. He would then use Sherman and McPherson's fresh troops to operate inland against the railroad as he waited for Banks to join forces with him.

                                  Those are just the ones that I remember off the top of my head. I also remember Simpson had the best analysis I've ever seen of Grant's "drinking problem."
                                • Bob Taubman
                                  Thank you for the information.  Appreciated. Bob Taubman ________________________________ From: Tony Gunter To:
                                  Message 16 of 19 , Apr 14, 2009
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                                    Thank you for the information.  Appreciated.
                                     
                                    Bob Taubman


                                    From: Tony Gunter <tony_gunter@...>
                                    To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                                    Sent: Tuesday, April 14, 2009 5:20:50 PM
                                    Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Master of War by Benson Bobrick

                                    --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Tony Gunter" <tony_gunter@...> wrote:
                                    >
                                    > --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Don" <oneplez@> wrote:
                                    > >
                                    > >
                                    > > Brooks said:
                                    > >
                                    > >
                                    > > Re: George Thomas (#132386)
                                    > >  by Brooks Simpson on March 3, 2009 at 5:23 PM
                                    > >  I understand how blurbs are composed, having done a few myself. The
                                    > > question remains what is new about your biography of Thomas that has not
                                    > > been covered in Cleaves, McKinney, and Buell. I assume that given all
                                    > > the recent writing about the Civil War, including several fine books
                                    > > about battles and campaigns in which Thomas played a part, that your
                                    > > book might incorporate that work to update a rather familiar narrative
                                    > > offered by previous Thomas biographers, but I freely confess that in all
                                    > > of this heat I've seen nothing that suggests that you have anything new
                                    > > to say. Even the charges of a conspiracy by Grant and Sherman to deprive
                                    > > Thomas of his due (and the accusation that their biographers have been
                                    > > complicit in that endeavor) have been made before.
                                    > > ________________________________________________________
                                    > >
                                    > > What's new in the 5,000+ books written about Grant?  Why are there 2 -3
                                    > > books being turned out about him every year?
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > Seriously?  I could answer for him, but I think it would probably be better for him to answer for himself.
                                    >
                                    > :D
                                    >
                                    > In my opinion, Simpson broke quite a bit of new ground on Grant that has never been covered before.  My biggest disappointment with the book is that he did not do so in a way that underscored how groundbreaking some of his assertions were.
                                    >

                                    Off the cuff and without looking, I could only give you those pieces that touch Vicksburg:


                                    1) It was actually Halleck and Lincoln, not Van Dorn, that terminated Grant's Overland Campaign.

                                    2) Grant did not bumble around in the swamps for months in 1863, searching for a way to get at Vicksburg, trying one thing, then another, then another, until he finally hatched a plan to move south.  Nearly every operation between February and April was the direct or indirect result of orders issued by Grant when he first stepped off the boat at Milliken's Bend in late January 1863.  In other words, all of the so-called "failed efforts" to get at Vicksburg were integral pieces of a cohesive plan to move south of Vicksburg and operate against its lifeline from below.

                                    3) The Lake Providence expedition was actually successful, but the war department was unable to supply Grant with enough small river boats to transfer McClernand's corps to Banks.

                                    4) Grant moved McClernand down the river first against Grand Gulf because Grant planned to establish a beachhead and then send McClernand to Banks.  He would then use Sherman and McPherson's fresh troops to operate inland against the railroad as he waited for Banks to join forces with him.

                                    Those are just the ones that I remember off the top of my head.  I also remember Simpson had the best analysis I've ever seen of Grant's "drinking problem."





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                                  • cashg79
                                    ... 5,000+? Really? Why are there 2 -3 ... Maybe you can read them and discover that. For example, compare McFeely s biography of Grant to Simpson s.
                                    Message 17 of 19 , Apr 14, 2009
                                    • 0 Attachment
                                      --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Don" <oneplez@...> wrote:
                                      >
                                      >
                                      > Brooks said:
                                      >
                                      >
                                      > Re: George Thomas (#132386)
                                      > by Brooks Simpson on March 3, 2009 at 5:23 PM
                                      > I understand how blurbs are composed, having done a few myself. The
                                      > question remains what is new about your biography of Thomas that has not
                                      > been covered in Cleaves, McKinney, and Buell. I assume that given all
                                      > the recent writing about the Civil War, including several fine books
                                      > about battles and campaigns in which Thomas played a part, that your
                                      > book might incorporate that work to update a rather familiar narrative
                                      > offered by previous Thomas biographers, but I freely confess that in all
                                      > of this heat I've seen nothing that suggests that you have anything new
                                      > to say. Even the charges of a conspiracy by Grant and Sherman to deprive
                                      > Thomas of his due (and the accusation that their biographers have been
                                      > complicit in that endeavor) have been made before.
                                      > ________________________________________________________
                                      >
                                      > What's new in the 5,000+ books written about Grant?
                                      ----------------
                                      5,000+? Really?



                                      Why are there 2 -3
                                      > books being turned out about him every year?
                                      ----------------
                                      Maybe you can read them and discover that. For example, compare McFeely's biography of Grant to Simpson's. Compare Simpson's to Catton's. Simpson corrects McFeely's misinterpretations of Grant and takes Grant to task for events for which Catton did not.



                                      >
                                      > Not only did I find several new data about Thomas in Bobrick's Great
                                      > book but also some about Grant and his Son Frederick Dent Grant who
                                      > broke into Piatt's house and terrorized his family.
                                      ----------------
                                      Bobrick was unable to point to a single thing that was new in his book, and he wrote it. What new information was contained that the author didn't know about?



                                      >
                                      > As well as his cruel treatment of the first black cadet at west point!
                                      ----------------
                                      What does this have to do with Thomas?


                                      Regards,
                                      Cash
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