Re: Vicksburg and Gettysburg / a question
- In 1863 I would think that the reb RR would have been usable if not
wonderful . certainly they were having plenty of problems maintaining
the system, so if there IS an expert out there please enlighten us.
I too am not convinced that the time could not be made to work. After
Chancellorsville [May 1-3] the Federals were in a defensive mode in
the east and it was time to put out the fire in Mississippi going all
out . much better prospects than in PA, I agree (if I still say
hindsight is what makes this clear I also say the right decision could
have been but was not made, just on the basis that Grant was clearly
taking huge risks). I can see the troops getting there mid-may; no
wonder Johnston was bummed out, he must have disagreed totally with
the PA invasion.
-About that game, I am beloved of the discontinued game Avalon Hill /
Victory Games / THE CIVIL WAR 1861-1865, called by some the best board
game of all time and certainly the best board game on the civil war
with the scope it has which is (optionally) the entire geographical
area, with (optionally) the full time period 1861-65 as the title
suggests. I am talking it up now because I just recently found out
that the games are traded on ebay all the time, I had assumed that
they were NOT available.
--- In civilwarwest@y..., "wh_keene" <wh_keene@y...> wrote:
> I am not an expert on the rail networks, but Bragg was able to move
> considerable forces from Tupelo to Chattanooga by way of Meridian
> and Mobile in the summer of 62. Don't see why Longstreet couldn't
> move from Georgia to Mississippi in the summer of 63. Would
> certainly take longer then the few days it would take him to get
> Lee to Bragg, but I think it would be a better use of his force than
> flailing around Pennsylvania.
> I guess I also disagree over what was the critical time. In the end
> of April and beginning of May there was still too much uncertainity
> over what Grant was up to and whether he would get anywhere.
> Additional forces would have helped, but I think its assuming too
> much hindsight. The critical time I think is once Grant had played
> his hand--two weeks into May it was apparent what Grant was doing.
> The question became what to do about it. Johnston feels too weak to
> do much but he does reoccupy Jackson after Grant moves westward.
> opts for making a diversion by marching north. If he had decided
> Longstreet could have joined Bragg by the first of June, before
> Rosecrans had stirred. I think sending Longstreet to Bragg in late
> May, would have been the smart move.
> If reinforcenments were sent to Johnston, then they might have
> there by mid June. This might have given time to disrupt the seige
> of Vicksburg before it had to give in, but its riskier than making a
> stronger, earlier move against Rosecrans.
> PS: Interested to know of boardgame mentioned by Carl!
- --- In civilwarwest@y..., "wh_keene" <wh_keene@y...> wrote:
> I always thought Grant had something to do with the initial
> evacuation of Nashville. Maybe score the point for Foote with an
> assist by Grant. (Sorry, basketball terminology sneaks in
> With an alternative outcome to Stone's River and a recapture of
> Nashville, I think the challenge for Bragg would be to contest any
> effort of Grant to cross the Tennessee.
1. Of course, it was Grant who captured Fort Donelson, opening the
Cumberland R. all the way to Nashville. But when A.S. Johnston
retreated from Bowling Green, he didn't even try to defend Nashville
against Buell coming down from Kentucky. He knew he couldn't do
anything to stop Foote's flotilla, nor could he keep them from
helping Buell to cross the river. So Johnston chose to abandon the
city and hook up with Beauregard at Corinth. (Here's another what if:
what if Beauregard had come to Nashville instead, and their combined
forces struck Buell after he crossed the Cumberland?)
2. Assuming, in our hypothetical scenario, that Bragg scores a
knockout at Stone's River, and recaptures Nashville, I think the best
next move on his part would be to go after Grant who is still in
northern Mississippi at this time, hopefully linking up with
Pemberton's army. Here again, we see that an overall commander in
this theater would be needed. Logically, that would be Bragg. Do
you think he could have managed a hook-up with Pemberton? What do
you think Grant's reaction to all this would be?