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RE: [civilwarwest] Re: The Straw that Broke the Pathfinder's Back

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  • jaaah@tbcnet.com
    Well, Zagonyi s attack in itself was a blunder, and Fremont blundered when he ordered it be done. Zagonyi attacked this force and looses 80 of his own men and
    Message 1 of 4 , Aug 3, 2001
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      Well, Zagonyi's attack in itself was a blunder, and Fremont blundered when he ordered it be done. Zagonyi attacked this force and looses 80 of his own men and accomplishing nothing. Price still arrives in Springfield, Fremont had not accomplished what he was ordered to do. It wasn't his order so much to take Springfield, but to cut Price off from it and keep him north of Springfield so that retreat into Arkansas would be impossible. However, Price did successfully retreat through Springfield toward Arkansas, so Fremont failed in his mission. And even when he did take Springfield, Fremont failed to pursue Price until he was told he was being relieved and that the only way Lincoln would not relieve his generals was when they were in battle, so Fremont prepared to attack Price, but Curtis's messenger got there first and made sure Fremont was booted.


      > ** Original Subject: RE: [civilwarwest] Re: The Straw that Broke the Pathfinder's Back
      > ** Original Sender: carlw4514@...
      > ** Original Date: Fri, 3 Aug 2001 12:40:53 -0500

      > ** Original Message follows...

      > <html><body>
      > <tt>
      > Addison, I'm not getting what was the "blunder" with Fremont trying to <BR>
      > take Springfield, Mo.  Was it the plan that was bad or the execution? <BR>
      > If Fremont took Springfield, wasn't that successful?<BR>
      > Carl<BR>
      > --- In civilwarwest@y..., jaaah@t... wrote:<BR>
      > > Now, if it wasn't enough for the Rail-Splitter that Maj. Gen. John <BR>
      > C. Fremont, commander of the Department of the West had allowed Lyon <BR>
      > to blunder into Wilson's Creek and Lane to be routed at Drywood Creek <BR>
      > and Mulligan to be surrounded and destroyed at Lexington, had babbled <BR>
      > on and on about his grandiose "Mississippi Plan" and so that his <BR>
      > subordinates got no orders and when they did they were written in a <BR>
      > foreign language, and that old Chicken Guts had issued his own <BR>
      > Emancipation Proclamation, and allowed his wife Jessie to march off to <BR>
      > the President to yell at him about how important her husband was to <BR>
      > the survival of the Union and to toss her gloves in his face, <BR>
      > Fremont's one and only action in the war in Missouri was a blunder. <BR>
      > Fremont had moved his army towards Springfield, where Maj. Gen. <BR>
      > Sterling Price and the Missouri State Guard were to be encamped. Now, <BR>
      > Price had moved to Lexington to destroy Mulligan's force, and once <BR>
      > this was accomplished he was to return to Springf!<BR>
      > > ield, but Fremont mobilized his army to cut Price off from <BR>
      > Springfield. Fremont's army (20,000 men) left St. Louis Oct. 7th, and <BR>
      > were in the Springfield area by the 24th. The cavalry in the army had <BR>
      > swelled to an immense 5,000 men, the most elite unit of this Cavalry <BR>
      > Corps was the Prairie Scouts under Maj. Francis White. However, Maj. <BR>
      > White had become ill and command of the Prairie Scouts was given to <BR>
      > the commander of the 300 best men in the army, the Fremont Bodyguards. <BR>
      > The commander was a Hungarian named Maj. Charles Zagonyi, who always <BR>
      > received and sent orders in his native tongue, which was a good reason <BR>
      > that there was so much confusion in the battle that came. Fremont <BR>
      > himself was sending messages in Hungarian to all his major officers, <BR>
      > as Grant recalled. Springfield, at the time, was garrisoned by some <BR>
      > 500 Missourians under Col. Julian Frazier, whose men were encamped on <BR>
      > the Mount Vernon Road fairgrounds. This route leads into the city from <BR>
      > the west. Zagonyi was determine!<BR>
      > > d to take Springfield, and asked for permission to ride down the <BR>
      > Mount Vernon Road for scouting purposes. By night on the 24th, <BR>
      > Frazier's scouts had informed him of Zagonyi's presence, and Frazier <BR>
      > hurriedly sent off messages requesting more troops to come to his <BR>
      > aide. Fremont, encamped 50 miles away on the Pomme de Terre River, was <BR>
      > now aware of Zagonyis plan of attack and endorsed it. Frazier, now <BR>
      > reinforced with some 1,500 men set up an ambush for Zagonyi as he was <BR>
      > coming down the Mount Vernon Road. At 3:00 PM, Zagonyi's line was <BR>
      > suddenly struck by a hail of bullets coming from the bushes ahead. <BR>
      > Zagonyi raised his sword and ordered a headlong charge. The cavalrymen <BR>
      > poured into the Guard's line, sending the Missourians fleeing. At <BR>
      > Jordan Creek, the remainder of Frazier's line broke and ran back into <BR>
      > the town. Zagonyi's men poured through and rode into the town square, <BR>
      > where there was a wild, frenzied demonstration of the Federal <BR>
      > strength. Riding about in circles the Federals f!<BR>
      > > ired into the air and then one of them aimed at Professor John A. <BR>
      > Stephens, head of the Springfield Academy for Boys. Stephens was shot <BR>
      > and killed. However, units of Price's MSG unexpected arrived in the <BR>
      > town, and with a few shots fired at their direction, Zagonyi's boys <BR>
      > charged once more, but this time they charged all the way back to <BR>
      > Fremont's main camp. The entire ridiculous event had cost about 80 men <BR>
      > for both sides. The following day, Price withdrew from the town <BR>
      > towards Oak Hill, and Fremont occupied Springfield. It was there, some <BR>
      > 6 days later that John C. Fremont was relieved of command. <BR>
      > > <BR>
      > > Addison<BR>
      > > <BR>
      > <BR>
      > </tt>
      > <br>
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