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Re: Understanding Vicksburg

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  • brooksdsimpson@yahoo.com
    ... want ... Perhaps ... I think that it is true that the lead-up to the April movements would be slow going for some people -- I know that I found myself
    Message 1 of 28 , Nov 13, 2001
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      --- In civilwarwest@y..., "Dave Smith" <dmsmith001@y...> wrote:

      > I've also thought that perhaps a Gordon Rhea-style approach - a
      > series of relative standalone books, which encompasses the whole,
      > might well work. The problem is, I think, that the part people
      want
      > to get to - post Bruinsburg - comes later in such a series.
      Perhaps
      > they'd have to be written out of order.
      >
      > I'd be interested to hear Brooks's thoughts on this.

      I think that it is true that the lead-up to the April movements would
      be slow going for some people -- I know that I found myself impatient
      to get on to the crossing when I wrote my chapter on Vicksburg -- and
      that the period after May 22 is largely ignored (which is one reason
      the Yazoo bender story gets so much play -- the assumption is that
      nothing was going on, when in fact a great deal was going on).

      There's probably room for two solid single-volume studies. One would
      be primarily a military study, not as detailed as that offered in
      Ed's OR-bound narrative; I found the recent James Arnold book to be a
      disappointment in that it simply reoffered what was offered before.
      The second would be a study that took a larger view of the campaign,
      complete with its relation to politics and social change -- life
      inside Vicksburg, what happened along the line of march, the
      induction and training of black soldiers, and so on.

      The military study might also shift the camera from Grant to
      Pemberton once in a while. Too often the Confederate leaders are
      treated as objects, awaiting Grant's next decision. Put yourself in
      Pemberton's place on April 15, 1863, and tell me what you do for the
      next five weeks.

      Finally, I don't think people appreciate how this was truly Grant's
      finest hour. We give that notion lip service, but the fact is that
      Grant was simply brilliant during the campaign. Not flawless, but
      brilliant -- with a good bit of guts thrown in.
    • Michael Mason
      Grant was at his finest hour,but there was little or no margin of error in this campaign. The Baron On 13-Nov-01, brooksdsimpson@yahoo.com wrote:
      Message 2 of 28 , Nov 13, 2001
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        Grant was at his finest hour,but there was little or no margin
        of error in this campaign. The Baron


        On 13-Nov-01, brooksdsimpson@... wrote:
        <html><body>
        <tt>
        --- In civilwarwest@y..., "Dave Smith" <dmsmith001@y...> wrote:<BR>
        <BR>
        > I've also thought that perhaps a Gordon Rhea-style approach - a <BR>
        > series of relative standalone books, which encompasses the whole, <BR>
        > might well work.� The problem is, I think, that the part people <BR>
        want <BR>
        > to get to - post Bruinsburg - comes later in such a series.� <BR>
        Perhaps <BR>
        > they'd have to be written out of order.<BR>
        > <BR>
        > I'd be interested to hear Brooks's thoughts on this.<BR>
        <BR>
        I think that it is true that the lead-up to the April movements would <BR>
        be slow going for some people -- I know that I found myself impatient <BR>
        to get on to the crossing when I wrote my chapter on Vicksburg -- and <BR>
        that the period after May 22 is largely ignored (which is one reason <BR>
        the Yazoo bender story gets so much play -- the assumption is that <BR>
        nothing was going on, when in fact a great deal was going on).� <BR>
        <BR>
        There's probably room for two solid single-volume studies.� One would <BR>
        be primarily a military study, not as detailed as that offered in <BR>
        Ed's OR-bound narrative; I found the recent James Arnold book to be a <BR>
        disappointment in that it simply reoffered what was offered before.� <BR>
        The second would be a study that took a larger view of the campaign, <BR>
        complete with its relation to politics and social change -- life <BR>
        inside Vicksburg, what happened along the line of march, the <BR>
        induction and training of black soldiers, and so on. <BR>
        <BR>
        The military study might also shift the camera from Grant to <BR>
        Pemberton once in a while.� Too often the Confederate leaders are <BR>
        treated as objects, awaiting Grant's next decision.� Put yourself in <BR>
        Pemberton's place on April 15, 1863, and tell me what you do for the <BR>
        next five weeks. <BR>
        <BR>
        Finally, I don't think people appreciate how this was truly Grant's <BR>
        finest hour.� We give that notion lip service, but the fact is that <BR>
        Grant was simply brilliant during the campaign.� Not flawless, but <BR>
        brilliant -- with a good bit of guts thrown in.��� <BR>
        <BR>
        </tt>

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      • carlw4514@yahoo.com
        I do think, though, that Grant had an exit strategy, should things not go so well; no one seems to know or say what that was, to my knowledge. I have my own
        Message 3 of 28 , Nov 14, 2001
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          I do think, though, that Grant had an exit strategy, should things
          not go so well; no one seems to know or say what that was, to my
          knowledge. I have my own guesses - pure speculations - that at one
          point he could fall back and join Banks, or at one point actually go
          north and crush Fort Pemberton and be back to getting regular
          supplies. Both scenarios would have meant a longer war as his
          noted brilliance shortened it.
          carl
          --- In civilwarwest@y..., "Michael Mason" <richthofen@b...> wrote:
          > Grant was at his finest hour,but there was little or no margin
          > of error in this campaign. The Baron
          >
          >
          > On 13-Nov-01, brooksdsimpson@y... wrote:
          > <html><body>
          > <tt>
          > --- In civilwarwest@y..., "Dave Smith" <dmsmith001@y...> wrote:<BR>
          > <BR>
          > > I've also thought that perhaps a Gordon Rhea-style approach - a
          <BR>
          > > series of relative standalone books, which encompasses the whole,
          <BR>
          > > might well work.  The problem is, I think, that the part people
          <BR>
          > want <BR>
          > > to get to - post Bruinsburg - comes later in such a series.  <BR>
          > Perhaps <BR>
          > > they'd have to be written out of order.<BR>
          > > <BR>
          > > I'd be interested to hear Brooks's thoughts on this.<BR>
          > <BR>
          > I think that it is true that the lead-up to the April movements
          would <BR>
          > be slow going for some people -- I know that I found myself
          impatient <BR>
          > to get on to the crossing when I wrote my chapter on Vicksburg --
          and <BR>
          > that the period after May 22 is largely ignored (which is one reason
          <BR>
          > the Yazoo bender story gets so much play -- the assumption is that
          <BR>
          > nothing was going on, when in fact a great deal was going on).  <BR>
          > <BR>
          > There's probably room for two solid single-volume studies.  One
          would <BR>
          > be primarily a military study, not as detailed as that offered in
          <BR>
          > Ed's OR-bound narrative; I found the recent James Arnold book to be
          a <BR>
          > disappointment in that it simply reoffered what was offered before. 
          <BR>
          > The second would be a study that took a larger view of the campaign,
          <BR>
          > complete with its relation to politics and social change -- life
          <BR>
          > inside Vicksburg, what happened along the line of march, the <BR>
          > induction and training of black soldiers, and so on. <BR>
          > <BR>
          > The military study might also shift the camera from Grant to <BR>
          > Pemberton once in a while.  Too often the Confederate leaders are
          <BR>
          > treated as objects, awaiting Grant's next decision.  Put yourself in
          <BR>
          > Pemberton's place on April 15, 1863, and tell me what you do for the
          <BR>
          > next five weeks. <BR>
          > <BR>
          > Finally, I don't think people appreciate how this was truly Grant's
          <BR>
          > finest hour.  We give that notion lip service, but the fact is that
          <BR>
          > Grant was simply brilliant during the campaign.  Not flawless, but
          <BR>
          > brilliant -- with a good bit of guts thrown in.    <BR>
          > <BR>
          > </tt>
          >
          > <br>
          >
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        • Michael Mason
          I doubt if thru the whole campaign,the thought of falling back ever once entered Grants mind,thats what sets Grant apart,do you think Grant ever once thought
          Message 4 of 28 , Nov 14, 2001
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            I doubt if thru the whole campaign,the thought of falling
            back ever once entered Grants mind,thats what sets Grant
            apart,do you think Grant ever once thought of falling back
            after The two days of Wilderness,The only time Grant
            fell back was the very first attempt at Vicksburg,when
            his supply line was cut,he never did that again,I think
            thats when he felt he made a mistake by,falling back
            and should have kept going and live off the land'
            The Baron



            On 14-Nov-01, carlw4514@... wrote:
            <html><body>
            <tt>
            I do think, though, that Grant had an exit strategy, should things <BR>
            not go so well; no one seems to know or say what that was, to my <BR>
            knowledge. I have my own guesses - pure speculations - that at one <BR>
            point he could fall back and join Banks, or at one point actually go <BR>
            north and crush Fort Pemberton and be back to getting regular <BR>
            supplies. Both scenarios would have meant a longer war as his <BR>
            noted brilliance shortened it.<BR>
            carl<BR>
            --- In civilwarwest@y..., "Michael Mason" <richthofen@b...> wrote:<BR>
            > Grant was at his finest hour,but there was little or no margin<BR>
            > of error in this campaign.� The Baron<BR>
            > <BR>
            > <BR>
            > On 13-Nov-01, brooksdsimpson@y... wrote:<BR>
            > <html><body><BR>
            > <tt><BR>
            > --- In civilwarwest@y..., "Dave Smith" <dmsmith001@y...> wrote:<BR><BR>
            > <BR><BR>
            > > I've also thought that perhaps a Gordon Rhea-style approach - a <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > > series of relative standalone books, which encompasses the whole, <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > > might well work.� The problem is, I think, that the part people <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > want <BR><BR>
            > > to get to - post Bruinsburg - comes later in such a series.� <BR><BR>
            > Perhaps <BR><BR>
            > > they'd have to be written out of order.<BR><BR>
            > > <BR><BR>
            > > I'd be interested to hear Brooks's thoughts on this.<BR><BR>
            > <BR><BR>
            > I think that it is true that the lead-up to the April movements <BR>
            would <BR><BR>
            > be slow going for some people -- I know that I found myself <BR>
            impatient <BR><BR>
            > to get on to the crossing when I wrote my chapter on Vicksburg -- <BR>
            and <BR><BR>
            > that the period after May 22 is largely ignored (which is one reason <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > the Yazoo bender story gets so much play -- the assumption is that <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > nothing was going on, when in fact a great deal was going on).� <BR><BR>
            > <BR><BR>
            > There's probably room for two solid single-volume studies.� One <BR>
            would <BR><BR>
            > be primarily a military study, not as detailed as that offered in <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > Ed's OR-bound narrative; I found the recent James Arnold book to be <BR>
            a <BR><BR>
            > disappointment in that it simply reoffered what was offered before.� <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > The second would be a study that took a larger view of the campaign, <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > complete with its relation to politics and social change -- life <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > inside Vicksburg, what happened along the line of march, the <BR><BR>
            > induction and training of black soldiers, and so on. <BR><BR>
            > <BR><BR>
            > The military study might also shift the camera from Grant to <BR><BR>
            > Pemberton once in a while.� Too often the Confederate leaders are <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > treated as objects, awaiting Grant's next decision.� Put yourself in <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > Pemberton's place on April 15, 1863, and tell me what you do for the <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > next five weeks. <BR><BR>
            > <BR><BR>
            > Finally, I don't think people appreciate how this was truly Grant's <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > finest hour.� We give that notion lip service, but the fact is that <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > Grant was simply brilliant during the campaign.� Not flawless, but <BR>
            <BR><BR>
            > brilliant -- with a good bit of guts thrown in.��� <BR><BR>
            > <BR><BR>
            > </tt><BR>
            > <BR>
            > <br><BR>
            > <BR>
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          • Bob Huddleston
            I also think that the Holly Springs debacle, and the ease with which Grant was able to live off the Mississippi land provided the proof -- and the confidence
            Message 5 of 28 , Nov 14, 2001
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              I also think that the Holly Springs debacle, and the ease with which Grant
              was able to live off the Mississippi land provided the proof -- and the
              confidence -- to forget bases and strike out overland.

              One of the secrets of USG was that he was always learning and always willing
              to try something new.

              Take care,

              Bob

              Judy and Bob Huddleston
              10643 Sperry Street
              Northglenn, CO 80234-3612
              303.451.6276 Adco@...



              I doubt if thru the whole campaign,the thought of falling
              back ever once entered Grants mind,thats what sets Grant apart,do you think
              Grant ever once thought of falling back after The two days of
              Wilderness,The only time Grant fell back was the very first attempt at
              Vicksburg,when his supply line was cut,he never did that again,I think thats
              when he felt he made a mistake by,falling back and should have kept going
              and live off the land' The Baron
            • Bob Huddleston
              Which is why VB is still an object of study by the Military. Grabau s book started as a Second Army Commander s Staff Ride in 1989. Take care, Bob Judy and Bob
              Message 6 of 28 , Nov 14, 2001
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                Which is why VB is still an object of study by the Military.

                Grabau's book started as a Second Army Commander's Staff Ride in 1989.

                Take care,

                Bob

                Judy and Bob Huddleston
                10643 Sperry Street
                Northglenn, CO 80234-3612
                303.451.6276 Adco@...

                SNIP

                Finally, I don't think people appreciate how this was truly Grant's
                finest hour. We give that notion lip service, but the fact is that
                Grant was simply brilliant during the campaign. Not flawless, but
                brilliant -- with a good bit of guts thrown in.
              • Bob Huddleston
                I would also suggest that Grierson s Raid was the finest strategic cavalry raid of the Civil War, overshadowing anything that either Forrest or Stuart did in
                Message 7 of 28 , Nov 14, 2001
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                  I would also suggest that Grierson's Raid was the finest strategic cavalry
                  raid of the Civil War, overshadowing anything that either Forrest or Stuart
                  did in its impact on the course of the war.

                  One of the hard parts of doing a campaign -- or a battle -- is keeping
                  everything in perspective, things happening at the same time, often
                  scattered apart by miles. How many think of Morgan's Raid into Ohio as being
                  part of the Gettysburg Campaign?

                  Take care,

                  Bob

                  Judy and Bob Huddleston
                  10643 Sperry Street
                  Northglenn, CO 80234-3612
                  303.451.6276 Adco@...

                  SNIP
                  Finally, I don't think people appreciate how this was truly Grant's
                  finest hour. We give that notion lip service, but the fact is that
                  Grant was simply brilliant during the campaign. Not flawless, but
                  brilliant -- with a good bit of guts thrown in.
                • M. E. Heatherington
                  Yessss!!!! Not the least aspect of Grant s brilliance in the Vbg campaign was his ordering of what came to be called Grierson s Raid -- and the selection of
                  Message 8 of 28 , Nov 14, 2001
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                    Yessss!!!!

                    Not the least aspect of Grant's brilliance in the Vbg campaign was his
                    ordering of what came to be called Grierson's Raid -- and the selection of
                    Grierson to lead it. Anyone interested in more details on this magnificent
                    two-week-long foray through Mississippi and Louisiana should read D.
                    Alexander Brown's definitive, and thoroughly enjoyable, GRIERSON'S RAID.

                    Regards from your Union-cavalry-in-the-West & all-'round Grierson person,
                    Madelon

                    PS: From Robert Novak's column of 11/14/2001, headlined "The cavalry rides
                    again": "Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld . . . revealed [at] a recent
                    private . . . dinner that . . . . . he had flown over the rugged terrain
                    [in Afghanistan] . . . , where U.S. [special operations] troops were in
                    combat -- riding horses."



                    >From: "Bob Huddleston" <adco12@...>
                    >Reply-To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
                    >To: <civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com>
                    >Subject: RE: [civilwarwest] Re: Understanding Vicksburg
                    >Date: Wed, 14 Nov 2001 11:17:10 -0700
                    >
                    >I would also suggest that Grierson's Raid was the finest strategic cavalry
                    >raid of the Civil War, overshadowing anything that either Forrest or Stuart
                    >did in its impact on the course of the war.
                    >
                    >One of the hard parts of doing a campaign -- or a battle -- is keeping
                    >everything in perspective, things happening at the same time, often
                    >scattered apart by miles. How many think of Morgan's Raid into Ohio as
                    >being
                    >part of the Gettysburg Campaign?
                    >
                    >Take care,
                    >
                    >Bob

                    _________________________________________________________________
                    Get your FREE download of MSN Explorer at http://explorer.msn.com/intl.asp
                  • Dave Smith
                    ... Carl, With all due respect, Fort Pemberton was not going to work - especially a movement north through hostile country - no supply line, no way to
                    Message 9 of 28 , Nov 15, 2001
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                      --- In civilwarwest@y..., carlw4514@y... wrote:
                      > I do think, though, that Grant had an exit strategy, should things
                      > not go so well; no one seems to know or say what that was, to my
                      > knowledge. I have my own guesses - pure speculations - that at one
                      > point he could fall back and join Banks, or at one point actually
                      > go
                      > north and crush Fort Pemberton and be back to getting regular
                      > supplies. Both scenarios would have meant a longer war as his
                      > noted brilliance shortened it.

                      Carl,

                      With all due respect, Fort Pemberton was not going to work -
                      especially a movement north through hostile country - no supply line,
                      no way to replenish ammunition, and no way to use the rail lines. He
                      would have been dead meat.

                      Fall back and join Banks? And become subordinate to Banks? I doubt
                      that, too. A portion of the movement on Jackson was simply to avoid
                      doing that.

                      Dave

                      Dave Smith
                      Villa Hills, KY
                    • Thomas A Hardy
                      Bob, et al, An interesting note from my Masters Degree studies is that Grant learned how to do this from Winfield Scott in Mexico. Scott cut himself off from
                      Message 10 of 28 , Nov 15, 2001
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                        Bob, et al,

                        An interesting note from my Masters Degree studies is that Grant learned
                        how to do this from Winfield Scott in Mexico. Scott cut himself off from
                        the coast and Vera Cruz, then advanced and captured Mexico City. It was
                        a very near run thing.

                        Grant served as a quartermaster and saw how the army supplied itself. He
                        also stuck his nose into the combat and learned how to operate on a
                        battlefield.

                        Tom Hardy
                        Kansas City


                        On Wed, 14 Nov 2001 11:17:10 -0700 "Bob Huddleston"
                        <adco12@...> writes:
                        > I also think that the Holly Springs debacle, and the ease with which
                        > Grant
                        > was able to live off the Mississippi land provided the proof -- and
                        > the
                        > confidence -- to forget bases and strike out overland.
                        >
                        > One of the secrets of USG was that he was always learning and always
                        > willing
                        > to try something new.
                        >
                        > Take care,
                        >
                        > Bob
                        >
                        > Judy and Bob Huddleston
                        > 10643 Sperry Street
                        > Northglenn, CO 80234-3612
                        > 303.451.6276 Adco@...
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > I doubt if thru the whole campaign,the thought of falling
                        > back ever once entered Grants mind,thats what sets Grant apart,do
                        > you think
                        > Grant ever once thought of falling back after The two days of
                        > Wilderness,The only time Grant fell back was the very first attempt
                        > at
                        > Vicksburg,when his supply line was cut,he never did that again,I
                        > think thats
                        > when he felt he made a mistake by,falling back and should have kept
                        > going
                        > and live off the land' The Baron
                        >
                        >
                        >
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                      • carlw4514@yahoo.com
                        I guess I knew that I was going to get clobbered LOL. Since it s pure speculation I can t really defend myself except to say that in military matters it seems
                        Message 11 of 28 , Nov 16, 2001
                        • 0 Attachment
                          I guess I knew that I was going to get clobbered LOL. Since it's pure
                          speculation I can't really defend myself except to say that in
                          military matters it seems that there are certain things that just
                          aren't overlooked by professionals. One always has reserves. One does
                          not get himself into a situation where retreat is impossible, even if
                          fully confident that retreat is not in the cards. One does
                          not try to "live off the land" indefinitely. Certainly "living off the
                          land" gives the appearance that one has thrown caution to the winds,
                          but I sincerely doubt that this was the case with Grant. There is a
                          point at which "living off the land" is no longer possible; he simply
                          couldn't allow it to happen that he would get stalemated east of the
                          Big Black. Subordinate to Banks, say, beats being out of ammo and
                          starving; Porter had warned him that the transports were not making
                          the trip back up the Mississippi; would he have blown this off as "who
                          cares?" This bothering anybody else?

                          --- In civilwarwest@y..., "Dave Smith" <dmsmith001@y...> wrote:
                          > --- In civilwarwest@y..., carlw4514@y... wrote:
                          > > I do think, though, that Grant had an exit strategy, should things
                          > > not go so well; no one seems to know or say what that was, to my
                          > > knowledge. I have my own guesses - pure speculations - that at one
                          > > point he could fall back and join Banks, or at one point actually
                          > > go
                          > > north and crush Fort Pemberton and be back to getting regular
                          > > supplies. Both scenarios would have meant a longer war as his
                          > > noted brilliance shortened it.
                          >
                          > Carl,
                          >
                          > With all due respect, Fort Pemberton was not going to work -
                          > especially a movement north through hostile country - no supply
                          line,
                          > no way to replenish ammunition, and no way to use the rail lines.
                          He
                          > would have been dead meat.
                          >
                          > Fall back and join Banks? And become subordinate to Banks? I doubt
                          > that, too. A portion of the movement on Jackson was simply to avoid
                          > doing that.
                          >
                          > Dave
                          >
                          > Dave Smith
                          > Villa Hills, KY
                        • Michael Mason
                          Who cares ,isn t what Grant felt.Grant s role model,Zach Taylor always got by with what he had,Grant was doing the same.But had anything gone wrong,this
                          Message 12 of 28 , Nov 16, 2001
                          • 0 Attachment
                            "Who cares",isn't what Grant felt.Grant's role model,Zach
                            Taylor always got by with what he had,Grant was doing the same.But had anything gone wrong,this campaign could
                            have been a disaster.By the way 137yrs ago.The Western
                            Army headed east,on Sherman's March to the Sea.
                            The Baron




                            On 16-Nov-01, carlw4514@... wrote:
                            <html><body>
                            <tt>
                            I guess I knew that I was going to get clobbered LOL. Since it's pure <BR>
                            speculation I can't really defend myself except to say that in <BR>
                            military matters it seems that there are certain things that just <BR>
                            aren't overlooked by professionals. One always has reserves. One does <BR>
                            not get himself into a situation where retreat is impossible, even if <BR>
                            fully confident that retreat is not in the cards. One does <BR>
                            not try to "live off the land" indefinitely. Certainly "living off the <BR>
                            land" gives the appearance that one has thrown caution to the winds, <BR>
                            but I sincerely doubt that this was the case with Grant. There is a <BR>
                            point at which "living off the land" is no longer possible; he simply <BR>
                            couldn't allow it to happen that he would get stalemated east of the <BR>
                            Big Black. Subordinate to Banks, say, beats being out of ammo and <BR>
                            starving; Porter had warned him that the transports were not making <BR>
                            the trip back up the Mississippi; would he have blown this off as "who <BR>
                            cares?" This bothering anybody else?<BR>
                            <BR>
                            --- In civilwarwest@y..., "Dave Smith" <dmsmith001@y...> wrote:<BR>
                            > --- In civilwarwest@y..., carlw4514@y... wrote:<BR>
                            > > I do think, though, that Grant had an exit strategy, should things <BR>
                            > > not go so well; no one seems to know or say what that was, to my <BR>
                            > > knowledge. I have my own guesses - pure speculations - that at one <BR>
                            > > point he could fall back and join Banks, or at one point actually <BR>
                            > > go <BR>
                            > > north and crush Fort Pemberton and be back to getting regular <BR>
                            > > supplies. Both scenarios would have meant a longer war as his <BR>
                            > > noted brilliance shortened it.<BR>
                            > <BR>
                            > Carl,<BR>
                            > <BR>
                            > With all due respect, Fort Pemberton was not going to work - <BR>
                            > especially a movement north through hostile country - no supply <BR>
                            line, <BR>
                            > no way to replenish ammunition, and no way to use the rail lines.� <BR>
                            He <BR>
                            > would have been dead meat.<BR>
                            > <BR>
                            > Fall back and join Banks?� And become subordinate to Banks?� I doubt <BR>
                            > that, too.� A portion of the movement on Jackson was simply to avoid <BR>
                            > doing that.<BR>
                            > <BR>
                            > Dave<BR>
                            > <BR>
                            > Dave Smith<BR>
                            > Villa Hills, KY<BR>
                            <BR>
                            </tt>

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                          • Dave Smith
                            ... Well, I can only hope there wasn t a sense of clobbering going on in my response . . . :-) ... This is an interesting point. Grant was indeed living
                            Message 13 of 28 , Nov 21, 2001
                            • 0 Attachment
                              --- In civilwarwest@y..., carlw4514@y... wrote:
                              > I guess I knew that I was going to get clobbered LOL.

                              Well, I can only hope there wasn't a sense of "clobbering" going on
                              in my response . . . :-)


                              > Since it's
                              > pure speculation I can't really defend myself except to say that in
                              > military matters it seems that there are certain things that just
                              > aren't overlooked by professionals. One always has reserves. One
                              > does not get himself into a situation where retreat is impossible,
                              > even if fully confident that retreat is not in the cards. One does
                              > not try to "live off the land" indefinitely. Certainly "living off
                              > the land" gives the appearance that one has thrown caution to the
                              > winds, but I sincerely doubt that this was the case with Grant.

                              This is an interesting point. Grant was indeed "living off the
                              land," to a fairly large degree. But he wasn't living that way,
                              exclusively; he had cut and curderoyed (sp?) roads through Louisiana
                              in order to facilitate the movement of supplies down the western bank
                              of the Mississippi. Those transport vessels were unloading at Grand
                              Gulf while the campaign was unfolding.

                              It was a slow, laborious process - but it was a process.

                              When Pemberton attempted his ill-fated move to Dillon's Plantation to
                              attack Blair's division, it was to attempt to cut that very supply
                              line. Not that it would have mattered much, because it wasn't a
                              supply line in the more traditional sense . . .

                              > There is a
                              > point at which "living off the land" is no longer possible; he
                              > simply couldn't allow it to happen that he would get stalemated
                              > east of the Big Black.

                              I realize what you're saying, and agree that there is a point where
                              such "living off the land" becomes pointless. Grant had that problem
                              rapidly approaching him in mid-May, 1863. That things nicely
                              resolved themselves by Confederate stumbling and bumbling at Champion
                              Hill and Big Black Bridge, and opened the Big Black River to him,
                              made the issue moot. But I think Grant was closer to having to move
                              back towards his base at Grand Gulf, or hastily attack Pemberton,
                              then we often think, given the known results.

                              > Subordinate to Banks, say, beats being out of ammo and
                              > starving; Porter had warned him that the transports were not making
                              > the trip back up the Mississippi; would he have blown this off
                              > as "who cares?" This bothering anybody else?

                              I suspect (and of course I may be wrong) that much of the inland move
                              by Grant was more a response to the recgonition that he needed to do
                              something about Halleck and Banks, and the options were few and
                              undesired. So he improvised, realizing that some good could come out
                              of such a move. He rolled the dice, and came up sevens - repeatedly.

                              Dave

                              Dave Smith
                              Villa Hills, KY
                            • carlw4514@yahoo.com
                              Dave, you are the man when it comes to Vicksburg and you have proved it again; you get the lion s share of credit for getting me so interested in Vicksburg.
                              Message 14 of 28 , Nov 24, 2001
                              • 0 Attachment
                                Dave, you are "the man" when it comes to Vicksburg and you have proved
                                it again; you get the lion's share of credit for getting me so
                                interested in Vicksburg. You are undoubtedly correct that a stymied
                                Grant could have fallen back and functioned at Grand Gulf, not that
                                there was any real doubt in Grant's mind that he was going to pull
                                this thing off.
                                I wonder what sort of situation the Federals would have had, had
                                they moved back to Grand Gulf. Would it have been similar to
                                Chattanooga before the "cracker line" was opened? I have to assume
                                that 1) Porter's warning had some meaning 2) the famous 7 attempts to
                                crack the Vicksburg nut outlined by Foote and others showed that the
                                situation of having "some" kind of supply situation through the
                                Louisiana side was not considered the answer; Grant's last move before
                                this one was to try another failed canal (IIRC). There must have been
                                a reason to try these canals etc. Am I all wet?
                                Carl
                                --- In civilwarwest@y..., "Dave Smith" <dmsmith001@y...> wrote:
                                [snips]

                                > This is an interesting point. Grant was indeed "living off the
                                > land," to a fairly large degree. But he wasn't living that way,
                                > exclusively; he had cut and curderoyed (sp?) roads through Louisiana
                                > in order to facilitate the movement of supplies down the western
                                bank
                                > of the Mississippi. Those transport vessels were unloading at Grand
                                > Gulf while the campaign was unfolding.
                                >
                                > It was a slow, laborious process - but it was a process.
                                >
                                > When Pemberton attempted his ill-fated move to Dillon's Plantation
                                to
                                > attack Blair's division, it was to attempt to cut that very supply
                                > line. Not that it would have mattered much, because it wasn't a
                                > supply line in the more traditional sense . . . [...] But I think
                                Grant was closer to having to move
                                > back towards his base at Grand Gulf, or hastily attack Pemberton,
                                > then we often think, given the known results.
                              • Dave Smith
                                ... Here s the situation vis-a-vis Grand Gulf. The key to the Confederate defense of Vicksburg was the Big Black River, period. As long as the Union forces
                                Message 15 of 28 , Nov 26, 2001
                                • 0 Attachment
                                  --- In civilwarwest@y..., carlw4514@y... wrote:
                                  > Dave, you are "the man" when it comes to Vicksburg and you have
                                  > proved
                                  > it again; you get the lion's share of credit for getting me so
                                  > interested in Vicksburg. You are undoubtedly correct that a stymied
                                  > Grant could have fallen back and functioned at Grand Gulf, not that
                                  > there was any real doubt in Grant's mind that he was going to pull
                                  > this thing off.

                                  Here's the situation vis-a-vis Grand Gulf.

                                  The key to the Confederate defense of Vicksburg was the Big Black
                                  River, period. As long as the Union forces were south and east of
                                  the Big Black River, the Confederate defenses at Haine's Bluff
                                  (Drumgould / Snyder's Bluffs) remain intact, and the potential Yazoo
                                  supply base remains denied to Grant.

                                  And as long as supplies for a 55,000-man army have to be carted down
                                  the western bank of the Mississippi, it's a recipe for disaster.
                                  Remember Milliken's Bend? Disrupt those supplies by Confederates
                                  operating in Louisiana, and Grant's in trouble.

                                  Did Grant ever doubt? I don't know, but I know he had some doubts
                                  vis-a-vis Johnston, once the siege had started.

                                  > I wonder what sort of situation the Federals would have had,
                                  > had
                                  > they moved back to Grand Gulf. Would it have been similar to
                                  > Chattanooga before the "cracker line" was opened?

                                  It would have been much worse, IMO. It may well could have spelled
                                  the end of Grant's command, as well.

                                  > I have to assume
                                  > that 1) Porter's warning had some meaning 2) the famous 7 attempts
                                  > to crack the Vicksburg nut outlined by Foote and others showed that
                                  > the situation of having "some" kind of supply situation through the
                                  > Louisiana side was not considered the answer; Grant's last move
                                  > before this one was to try another failed canal (IIRC). There must
                                  > have been a reason to try these canals etc. Am I all wet?

                                  Grant knew he had to try some means to get to Vicksburg - sitting
                                  still with an army would smack of McClellanism. And if Gtant didn't
                                  know of the relationship between Lincoln and McClellan, he doubtless
                                  understood the general aspects of it.

                                  Dang - don't check in for a Holiday weekend, and all heck breaks
                                  loose.

                                  Dave

                                  Dave Smith
                                  Villa Hills, KY
                                • Aurelie1999@aol.com
                                  In a message dated 11/26/01 2:25:39 PM, dmsmith001@yahoo.com writes:
                                  Message 16 of 28 , Nov 26, 2001
                                  • 0 Attachment
                                    In a message dated 11/26/01 2:25:39 PM, dmsmith001@... writes:

                                    << Grant knew he had to try some means to get to Vicksburg - sitting
                                    still with an army would smack of McClellanism. >>

                                    Grant was very much aware of this and explained it to Sherman who opposed the
                                    idea completely. Gettysburg had not yet been won, the AoP was a mess and the
                                    public was restless. Grant was well apprised through men such as Washbourne
                                    and John Sherman, Charles Dana and Sylvanus Cadwallader of what was happening
                                    and the goings on in Washington. Grant may have been taciturn and
                                    undemonstrative, but he was a keen observer of men and events. Sherman urged
                                    him to return to Memphis to restructure his campaign and while Grant was
                                    certain that it was the "book" thing to do, he was equally certain that any
                                    backward movement no matter what the reason would be perceived as retreat or
                                    even worse defeat. He felt that the administration was in trouble and that
                                    it needed a win to stay afloat. He decided to wage his career on the outcome.

                                    Connie
                                  • Dave Smith
                                    Very well put. I think we often lose sight on exactly how great Grant s gamble really was. DAve ... sitting ... opposed the ... mess and the ... Washbourne
                                    Message 17 of 28 , Nov 26, 2001
                                    • 0 Attachment
                                      Very well put. I think we often lose sight on exactly how great
                                      Grant's gamble really was.

                                      DAve

                                      --- In civilwarwest@y..., Aurelie1999@a... wrote:
                                      >
                                      > In a message dated 11/26/01 2:25:39 PM, dmsmith001@y... writes:
                                      >
                                      > << Grant knew he had to try some means to get to Vicksburg -
                                      sitting
                                      > still with an army would smack of McClellanism. >>
                                      >
                                      > Grant was very much aware of this and explained it to Sherman who
                                      opposed the
                                      > idea completely. Gettysburg had not yet been won, the AoP was a
                                      mess and the
                                      > public was restless. Grant was well apprised through men such as
                                      Washbourne
                                      > and John Sherman, Charles Dana and Sylvanus Cadwallader of what was
                                      happening
                                      > and the goings on in Washington. Grant may have been taciturn and
                                      > undemonstrative, but he was a keen observer of men and events.
                                      Sherman urged
                                      > him to return to Memphis to restructure his campaign and while
                                      Grant was
                                      > certain that it was the "book" thing to do, he was equally certain
                                      that any
                                      > backward movement no matter what the reason would be perceived as
                                      retreat or
                                      > even worse defeat. He felt that the administration was in trouble
                                      and that
                                      > it needed a win to stay afloat. He decided to wage his career on
                                      the outcome.
                                      >
                                      > Connie
                                    • Michael Mason
                                      McClellanism isn t that something like acute constipation?? The Baron On 26-Nov-01, Dave Smith wrote: ...
                                      Message 18 of 28 , Nov 26, 2001
                                      • 0 Attachment
                                        "McClellanism" isn't that something like acute constipation??
                                        The Baron


                                        On 26-Nov-01, Dave Smith <dmsmith001@...> wrote:
                                        <html><body>
                                        <tt>
                                        --- In civilwarwest@y..., carlw4514@y... wrote:<BR>
                                        > Dave, you are "the man" when it comes to Vicksburg and you have <BR>
                                        > proved <BR>
                                        > it again; you get the lion's share of credit for getting me so <BR>
                                        > interested in Vicksburg. You are undoubtedly correct that a stymied <BR>
                                        > Grant could have fallen back and functioned at Grand Gulf, not that <BR>
                                        > there was any real doubt in Grant's mind that he was going to pull <BR>
                                        > this thing off. <BR>
                                        <BR>
                                        Here's the situation vis-a-vis Grand Gulf.� <BR>
                                        <BR>
                                        The key to the Confederate defense of Vicksburg was the Big Black <BR>
                                        River, period.� As long as the Union forces were south and east of <BR>
                                        the Big Black River, the Confederate defenses at Haine's Bluff <BR>
                                        (Drumgould / Snyder's Bluffs) remain intact, and the potential Yazoo <BR>
                                        supply base remains denied to Grant.<BR>
                                        <BR>
                                        And as long as supplies for a 55,000-man army have to be carted down <BR>
                                        the western bank of the Mississippi, it's a recipe for disaster.� <BR>
                                        Remember Milliken's Bend?� Disrupt those supplies by Confederates <BR>
                                        operating in Louisiana, and Grant's in trouble.<BR>
                                        <BR>
                                        Did Grant ever doubt?� I don't know, but I know he had some doubts <BR>
                                        vis-a-vis Johnston, once the siege had started.<BR>
                                        <BR>
                                        >������ I wonder what sort of situation the Federals would have had, <BR>
                                        > had <BR>
                                        > they moved back to Grand Gulf. Would it have been similar to <BR>
                                        > Chattanooga before the "cracker line" was opened? <BR>
                                        <BR>
                                        It would have been much worse, IMO.� It may well could have spelled <BR>
                                        the end of Grant's command, as well.<BR>
                                        <BR>
                                        > I have to assume <BR>
                                        > that 1) Porter's warning had some meaning 2) the famous 7 attempts <BR>
                                        > to crack the Vicksburg nut outlined by Foote and others showed that <BR>
                                        > the situation of having "some" kind of supply situation through the <BR>
                                        > Louisiana side was not considered the answer; Grant's last move <BR>
                                        > before this one was to try another failed canal (IIRC). There must <BR>
                                        > have been a reason to try these canals etc. Am I all wet?<BR>
                                        <BR>
                                        Grant knew he had to try some means to get to Vicksburg - sitting <BR>
                                        still with an army would smack of McClellanism.� And if Gtant didn't <BR>
                                        know of the relationship between Lincoln and McClellan, he doubtless <BR>
                                        understood the general aspects of it.<BR>
                                        <BR>
                                        Dang - don't check in for a Holiday weekend, and all heck breaks <BR>
                                        loose.<BR>
                                        <BR>
                                        Dave<BR>
                                        <BR>
                                        Dave Smith<BR>
                                        Villa Hills, KY<BR>
                                        <BR>
                                        </tt>



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                                      • carlw4514@yahoo.com
                                        well, Dave, that s something, I thought you would say it wouldn t be as bad as Chatanooga pre-cracker line. It s really something to sit here and think that
                                        Message 19 of 28 , Nov 26, 2001
                                        • 0 Attachment
                                          well, Dave, that's something, I thought you would say it wouldn't be
                                          as bad as Chatanooga pre-cracker line. It's really something to sit
                                          here and think that the whole campaign could have turned into some
                                          kind of quagmire; the success of it was essential to Union war aims
                                          IMHO.
                                          carl

                                          --- In civilwarwest@y..., "Dave Smith" <dmsmith001@y...> wrote:
                                          [Would it have been similar to Chattanooga before the "cracker line"
                                          was opened? ]

                                          > It would have been much worse, IMO. It may well could have spelled
                                          > the end of Grant's command, as well.
                                        • Michael Mason
                                          It could have ended up like Napolean in Moscow,without the snow! Longest chance taken in the war! The Baron On 26-Nov-01, carlw4514@yahoo.com wrote:
                                          Message 20 of 28 , Nov 26, 2001
                                          • 0 Attachment
                                            It could have ended up like Napolean in Moscow,without the snow! Longest chance taken in the war!
                                            The Baron

                                            On 26-Nov-01, carlw4514@... wrote:
                                            <html><body>
                                            <tt>
                                            well, Dave, that's something, I thought you would say it wouldn't be <BR>
                                            as bad as Chatanooga pre-cracker line. It's really something to sit <BR>
                                            here and think that the whole campaign could have turned into some <BR>
                                            kind of quagmire; the success of it was essential to Union war aims <BR>
                                            IMHO.<BR>
                                            carl<BR>
                                            <BR>
                                            --- In civilwarwest@y..., "Dave Smith" <dmsmith001@y...> wrote:<BR>
                                            [Would it have been similar to Chattanooga before the "cracker line" <BR>
                                            was opened? ]<BR>
                                            <BR>
                                            > It would have been much worse, IMO.� It may well could have spelled <BR>
                                            > the end of Grant's command, as well.<BR>
                                            <BR>
                                            <BR>
                                            </tt>

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                                          • Dave Smith
                                            ... Indeed. Of course it s all speculation, since it didn t happen, but one wonders what the course of events would have been had Grant found himself at Grand
                                            Message 21 of 28 , Nov 26, 2001
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                                              --- In civilwarwest@y..., carlw4514@y... wrote:
                                              > well, Dave, that's something, I thought you would say it wouldn't
                                              > be
                                              > as bad as Chatanooga pre-cracker line. It's really something to sit
                                              > here and think that the whole campaign could have turned into some
                                              > kind of quagmire; the success of it was essential to Union war aims
                                              > IMHO.

                                              Indeed. Of course it's all speculation, since it didn't happen, but
                                              one wonders what the course of events would have been had Grant found
                                              himself at Grand Gulf, on the wrong side of the Big Black River, on
                                              May 21.

                                              Brooks?

                                              Dave
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