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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,Colwyn Dane BS: Was Custer a Scumbag? (109* d) RE: BS: Was Custer a Scumbag? 23 Oct 00


After Gettysburg the army under Lee's command still existed albeit with a bloody nose - just like it did after Antietam.
So, for me, Gettysburg was a important event for the Union but not strategically important - more important was the surrender of Vicksburg on July 4th.

The problem for the Union was how to get to grips with Lee and how to deliver a knockout blow.
Do you think the Halleck/Meade combination would have brought Lee to bay after Gettysburg?
My reading suggests, to me, that Union generals were in the main better in defence than attack.
If Halleck/Meade had opened an 'on to Richmond' offensive in Viginia, they of course still would have have had to face the problems
that the Grant/Meade/Butler/Sheridan combination did face when the 1864 campaign was up and running only of course the director of the campaign was Grant.
Grant made the difference between military success and failure for the Union; he was an attacking fighter and as Sherman put it in a letter to Grant:

"I believe you are as brave,patriotic, and just as the great prototype Washington - as unselfish, kind-hearted, and honest as a man should be -
but the chief characteristic is the simple faith in success you have always manifested, which I can liken to nothing else than the faith a Christian has in the Savior.
This faith gave you victory at Shiloh and Vicksburg. Also, when you have completed your best preparations, you go into battle without hesitation, as at Chattanooga -
no doubts - no reserves; and I tell you, it was this that made us act with confidence..."

Grant in his Memoirs writes about Thomas:

"...He gained the confidence of all who served under him, and almost their love.
Thomas's dispositions were deliberately made, and always good. He could not be driven from a point he was given to hold.
He was not as good, however, in pursuit as he was in action.
I do not believe that he could ever have conducted Sherman's army from Chattanooga to Atlanta against the defences and the commander guarding that line in 1864.
On the other hand, if it had been given him to hold the line which Johnston tried to hold, neither that general nor Sherman, nor any other officer could have done it better."


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