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[civilwarwest] Hood and Nashville

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  • The Coys
    I really don t know that much about Franklin and Nashville after all, Ol Rosy wasn t there. I really need to learn more so I hope this thread grows.
    Message 1 of 14 , Sep 13, 1999
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      I really don't know that much about Franklin and Nashville after all, Ol' Rosy wasn't there. <vbg>  I really need to learn more so I hope this thread grows. Here is what Hood says in Advance and Retreat:

          "Thus, unless strengthened by these long-looked for reinforcements, the only remaining choice of success in the campaign, at this juncture, was to take position, entrench around Nashville, and await Thomas' attack which, if handsomely repulsed, might afford us an opportunity to follow up our advantage on the spot, and enter the city on the heels of the enemy.

          I could not afford to turn southward, unless for the special (Hood's italics) purpose of forming a junction with the expected reinforcements from Texas, and with the avowed intention to march back again upon Nashville.  In truth, our Army was in that condition which rendered it more judicious the men should face a decisive issue rather than retreat - in other words, rather then renounce the honor of their cause, without having made a last and manful effort to lift up the sinking fortunes of the Confederacy."

          Now, I realize that there are some problems with Hood's Advance and Retreat even though it is in most lists of recommended books for Civil War libraries. But, I do think that the above indicates, and I agree, that he didn't have much else to do but have one more battle.

      Your humble servant,

      Kevin S. Coy

    • Mark Wiggin
      ... You are correct about Hood s Advance & Retreat. Although it is a very good memoir, that is until The Atlanta to Nashville campaigns, when Hood gets into
      Message 2 of 14 , Sep 13, 1999
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        >The Coys wrote:

        >   I really don't know that much about Franklin and Nashville after all, Ol' Rosy wasn't there. <vbg>  I really need to learn more so I hope this thread grows. Here is what Hood says in Advance and Retreat:
         
         
         

            Now, I realize that there are some problems with Hood's Advance and Retreat even though it is in most lists of recommended books for Civil War libraries. But, I do think that the above indicates, and I agree, that he didn't have much else to do but have one more battle.

        > Kevin,

        You are correct about Hood's Advance & Retreat.  Although it is a very good memoir, that is until The Atlanta to Nashville campaigns, when Hood gets into defending his reputation and decisions.  He really should have had no expectations of reinforcements at Nashville.  Kirby Smith who was the expected donor of reinforcements really didn't have a history of denuding his command.  When secretary of war Seddon at Beauregard's request asked for the reinforcement of Hood, Smith basically said no.  All that aside should Hood even have stayed in the vicinity of Nashville at that time of the year?  Considering, even though Schofield retired from Franklin, that Hood was defeated at Franklin.  Also, his command structure was virtually destroyed & his losses in men were horrific.  In hindsight we can see that it was a poor decision to stay in the vicinity of Nashville.  However, Hood should have seen this himself.  Which brings up many questions of his ability to command considering the pain he was in & medication he was taking.  Well just my opinion.  Another good book to read on this subject is Shrouds of Glory by Winston Groom.
        Thanks
        from new to the list
        Mark Wiggin
         
         
         
      • Bryan D. McRaven
        In my reading and study of the Nashville Campaign, one theme has been recurrent in Hood s strategy. That was its incoherence. Davis wanted Hood to pursue
        Message 3 of 14 , Sep 13, 1999
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           In my reading and study of the Nashville Campaign, one theme has been recurrent in Hood's strategy.  That was its incoherence. Davis wanted Hood to pursue Sherman through Georgia, harrassing his march toward Savannah, and operating on his line of supply.  Hood began to tell his superiors what his plans were, but changed them every few days. Many people have postulated that Hood was "high" on Laudenum(sp) he was imbibing  for the pain he had  from his arm  and leg. The man really was unfit for feild duty, and in my humble opinion had become mentally unstable from that point on.  No one understood his reasoning for formulating the Nashville Campaign. Hood's aims were to #1, retake Nashville, which at best was an extreme longshot, #2 draw off troops from Sherman's army to weaken him, #3 after Nashville was recaptured, to move to Virgina and combine his army with Lee's. Given what we all know about the war at this point, and what was surely known by most people concerned at the time, it was a fool's dream.
           Hood had also proposed taking his army into Ohio after he recaptured Nashville. All these grandious plans for his little army show that his mental state was not on solid ground. The fact that his strategic aims changed almost daily should have been a clear message to those in power that he should have been removed. But, this was not the case. The Nashville Campaign is a sad footnote for the Army of Tennessee. Those men deserved better leadership, and a far better end than Franklin and Nashville.  The whole problem in studying why this campaign happened is that there was no good reason for it to have occurred in the first place.
                  The simple answer to why Hood did not wait for S.D. Lee's Corps and the Artillery to arrive was that he was highly upset by the failure of his army to destroy Schofield at Spring Hill.  He through his army  toward the entrenchments at Franklin in order to "discipline" them, supposedly because they had fought behind breastworks for too long. This was not the decision of a rational mind.  
                   To have moved his army on to Nashville after the debacle at Franklin just shows how far Hood had lapsed from reality. In short, I guess what I am trying to say is that  we should not think too deeply on Hood's strategy, because I doubt that any of us could understand the workings of a derranged mind. 
          -----Original Message-----
          From: Mark Wiggin <mawig@...>
          To: civilwarwest@egroups.com <civilwarwest@egroups.com>
          Date: Monday, September 13, 1999 11:47 AM
          Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Hood and Nashville

           

          >The Coys wrote:

          >   I really don't know that much about Franklin and Nashville after all, Ol' Rosy wasn't there. <vbg>  I really need to learn more so I hope this thread grows. Here is what Hood says in Advance and Retreat:
           
           
           

              Now, I realize that there are some problems with Hood's Advance and Retreat even though it is in most lists of recommended books for Civil War libraries. But, I do think that the above indicates, and I agree, that he didn't have much else to do but have one more battle.

          > Kevin,

          You are correct about Hood's Advance & Retreat.  Although it is a very good memoir, that is until The Atlanta to Nashville campaigns, when Hood gets into defending his reputation and decisions.  He really should have had no expectations of reinforcements at Nashville.  Kirby Smith who was the expected donor of reinforcements really didn't have a history of denuding his command.  When secretary of war Seddon at Beauregard's request asked for the reinforcement of Hood, Smith basically said no.  All that aside should Hood even have stayed in the vicinity of Nashville at that time of the year?  Considering, even though Schofield retired from Franklin, that Hood was defeated at Franklin.  Also, his command structure was virtually destroyed & his losses in men were horrific.  In hindsight we can see that it was a poor decision to stay in the vicinity of Nashville.  However, Hood should have seen this himself.  Which brings up many questions of his ability to command considering the pain he was in & medication he was taking.  Well just my opinion.  Another good book to read on this subject is Shrouds of Glory by Winston Groom.
          Thanks
          from new to the list
          Mark Wiggin
           
           

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        • Allnoles@aol.com
          The thought that Hood was deranged, possibly from excessive use of laudanum, is an interesting one and it would explain some rather strange decisions. Why,
          Message 4 of 14 , Sep 13, 1999
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            The thought that Hood was deranged, possibly from excessive use of
            laudanum, is an interesting one and it would explain some rather strange
            decisions. Why, for example, would he imagine that the Federals would have
            to drive him away from Nashville if he decided to entrench and lay seige to
            the place? They could, had they chosen, simply sat there or raided around
            him enough to cut him off, and just let him starve to death, no?

            Jim Morgan
          • Bryan D. McRaven
            I agree completely. Hood was not right in the the head. If you look at his performance as a brigade commander, and then as a division head, none of the
            Message 5 of 14 , Sep 13, 1999
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              I agree completely. Hood was "not right" in the the head. If you look at
              his performance as a brigade commander, and then as a division head, none of
              the ideosyncracies he displayed during his tenure as a Army commander are
              evident. Surely, he could be a little hot headed, but the bad strategic
              judgement, coupled with the idiocy of the Franklin attack just have no
              precedent in his record. Personally, I have to attribute much of his bad
              judgement to the effects of drugs used to dull the pain of amputation.
              I am not trying to excuse Hood at all. I had quite a few relatives in the
              Nashville Campaign, one of which lost his life due to Hood's frontal
              assaults. I hold Hood completely responsible for what happened, but there
              were extenuating circumstances.


              -----Original Message-----
              From: Allnoles@... <Allnoles@...>
              To: civilwarwest@egroups.com <civilwarwest@egroups.com>
              Date: Monday, September 13, 1999 7:03 PM
              Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Hood and Nashville


              > The thought that Hood was deranged, possibly from excessive use of
              >laudanum, is an interesting one and it would explain some rather strange
              >decisions. Why, for example, would he imagine that the Federals would have
              >to drive him away from Nashville if he decided to entrench and lay seige to
              >the place? They could, had they chosen, simply sat there or raided around
              >him enough to cut him off, and just let him starve to death, no?
              >
              >Jim Morgan
              >
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            • Bryan D. McRaven
              I agree completely. Hood was not right in the the head. If you look at his performance as a brigade commander, and then as a division head, none of the
              Message 6 of 14 , Sep 13, 1999
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                I agree completely. Hood was "not right" in the the head. If you look at
                his performance as a brigade commander, and then as a division head, none of
                the ideosyncracies he displayed during his tenure as a Army commander are
                evident. Surely, he could be a little hot headed, but the bad strategic
                judgement, coupled with the idiocy of the Franklin attack just have no
                precedent in his record. Personally, I have to attribute much of his bad
                judgement to the effects of drugs used to dull the pain of amputation.
                I am not trying to excuse Hood at all. I had quite a few relatives in the
                Nashville Campaign, one of which lost his life due to Hood's frontal
                assaults. I hold Hood completely responsible for what happened, but there
                were extenuating circumstances.


                -----Original Message-----
                From: Allnoles@... <Allnoles@...>
                To: civilwarwest@egroups.com <civilwarwest@egroups.com>
                Date: Monday, September 13, 1999 7:03 PM
                Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Hood and Nashville


                > The thought that Hood was deranged, possibly from excessive use of
                >laudanum, is an interesting one and it would explain some rather strange
                >decisions. Why, for example, would he imagine that the Federals would have
                >to drive him away from Nashville if he decided to entrench and lay seige to
                >the place? They could, had they chosen, simply sat there or raided around
                >him enough to cut him off, and just let him starve to death, no?
                >
                >Jim Morgan
                >
                >------------------------------------------------------------------------
                >MyPoints-Free Rewards When You're Online.
                >Start with up to 150 Points for joining!
                >http://clickhere.egroups.com/click/805
                >
                >
                >eGroups.com home: http://www.egroups.com/group/civilwarwest
                >http://www.egroups.com - Simplifying group communications
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
              • pattie@cuci.nl
                I have read in a couple of this postings that Hood was not right in the head due to the use of drugs to ease the pain of amputation. This combined with his
                Message 7 of 14 , Sep 13, 1999
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                  I have read in a couple of this postings that Hood was not right in the head due to the use of drugs to ease the pain of amputation. This combined with his physical condition (he lost a leg and the use of an arm) made him IMHO totally unfit for duty. Why did Jefferson Davis sustain him, especially when there were enough other able commanders? Before Franklin that is. Can't therefore any of the blaim for Franklin and Nashville be put on Jefferson Davis and the rest of the Confederate government?

                  Respectfully,

                  Patrick Starmans
                  http://www.cuci.nl/~pattie
                • pattie@cuci.nl
                  I have read in a couple of this postings that Hood was not right in the head due to the use of drugs to ease the pain of amputation. This combined with his
                  Message 8 of 14 , Sep 13, 1999
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                    I have read in a couple of this postings that Hood was not right in the head due to the use of drugs to ease the pain of amputation. This combined with his physical condition (he lost a leg and the use of an arm) made him IMHO totally unfit for duty. Why did Jefferson Davis sustain him, especially when there were enough other able commanders? Before Franklin that is. Can't therefore any of the blaim for Franklin and Nashville be put on Jefferson Davis and the rest of the Confederate government?

                    Respectfully,

                    Patrick Starmans
                    http://www.cuci.nl/~pattie
                  • Stephen Basic
                    Pattie....Main reason why Hood got the job....Hood campaigned for the job behind Johnston s back...telling Davis that he would attack until he could get
                    Message 9 of 14 , Sep 13, 1999
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                      Pattie....Main reason why Hood got the job....Hood campaigned for the
                      job behind Johnston's back...telling Davis that he would attack until he
                      could get Sherman away from Atlanta....Just the words Davis wanted to
                      hear, because he was fed up with Johnston not trying to stop Sherman's
                      advance towards Atlanta.....And yes you are right...Davis had bungled
                      the handling of Confederate armies in the west the whole war....and he
                      deserves much of the blame as well..

                      Steve
                    • Stephen Basic
                      Pattie....Main reason why Hood got the job....Hood campaigned for the job behind Johnston s back...telling Davis that he would attack until he could get
                      Message 10 of 14 , Sep 13, 1999
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                        Pattie....Main reason why Hood got the job....Hood campaigned for the
                        job behind Johnston's back...telling Davis that he would attack until he
                        could get Sherman away from Atlanta....Just the words Davis wanted to
                        hear, because he was fed up with Johnston not trying to stop Sherman's
                        advance towards Atlanta.....And yes you are right...Davis had bungled
                        the handling of Confederate armies in the west the whole war....and he
                        deserves much of the blame as well..

                        Steve
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