Wednesday, December 26, 2012


This is coolbert:

From that prior blog entry, Mc Clellan a manager and organizer of repute unquestioned. The man realizing the war was going to be a war of attrition and needed to be fought by a well disciplined and trained force, drilled in all the essentials and beyond that. 

"Mc Clellan was NOT in favor of the volunteer units rallying to the Union cause consisting of troops enlisted for a three month or six month period. Mc Clellan preferred and for good reason a more professional and well trained force which was the Army of the Potomac."

That authoritative source Shelby Foote commenting on the comportment of the Union army at Fredericksburg, rushing defenses in a repeated fashion obeying orders even when the plan was terribly flawed, the casualties very heavy, even catastrophic!!

"Whatever truth there might once have been in the Confederate claim that Southerners made better soldiers, or anyhow started from a better scratch because they came directly from life in the open and were familiar with the use of firearms, applied no longer. After six months of army drill, a factory hand was indistinguishable from a farmer. Individually, the Northerners knew, they were at least as tough as any men the South could bring against them, and probably as a whole they were better drilled . . . McClellan's men were aware of the changes he had wrought and they were proud of them."

"More credit is given to Confederate soldiers: they're supposed to have had more elan [spirited action] and dash. Actually I know of no braver men in either army than the Union troops at Fredericksburg, which was a serious Union defeat. But to keep charging that wall at the foot of Marye's Heights after all the failures there'd been is a singular instance of valor. It was different from southern elan. It was a steadiness under fire, a continuing to press the point."

And the retirement from the battlefield, done NOT in a shambles, a pell-mell rush to the rear. That Union army continuing to act as disciplined soldiers in contrast to the behavior of the Federals at First Manassas, etc. That manner with which a beaten military force executing a retrograde maneuver [movement to the rear] very telling, Burnside beaten as a commander but that army as an organic entity intact and living to fight another day!!


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