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COULD GRANT HAVE WON WITHOUT SHERMAN?

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  • COULD GRANT HAVE WON WITHOUT SHERMAN?

    What do you think?

    Personally, I think McPherson could have done well against Johnston, but overall the March to the Sea was a decisive blow to Confederate morale. It was usual for them to say they gave up fighting because they did not have the means at their disposal, and Sherman’s March proved that beyond a shadow of a doubt.

    So yes, he could have won in my opinion, but it would have taken longer.

    8
    Yes
    87.50%
    7
    No
    12.50%
    1
    "It is a fine fox chase, my boys"

    "It is well that war is so terrible-we would grow too fond of it"

  • #2
    Sherman was not indispensable to the war effort. Thomas was a better general it seems to me and there were other skilled commanders such as Schofield, McPherson, and Logan in the western theater.
    We are not now that strength which in old days
    Moved earth and heaven; that which we are we are; One equal temper of heroic hearts
    Made weak by time and fate but strong in will
    To strive to seek to find and not to yield.

    Comment


    • #3
      Had Sherman followed Thomas's plan to flank Johnson in May 1864, Atlanta would have fallen earlier. Sherman sent McPherson in, but without the 20th corps that Thomas offered to join the move. Mac failed to follow through, Johnson fell back rather than being cut off, and, as Uncle Billy said "Mac, you blew it."

      Comment


      • #4
        Grant could probably have won without Sherman. As others have already stated, there were other competent commanders in the west who could have filled his boots.

        Separate from that is the question of whether Sherman was an asset or hinderance when viewing his career during the Civil War. Like every other army commander he had his good and bad moments, but taken as a whole he was a plus for the Union during the conflict.

        Regards,
        Dennis
        If stupid was a criminal offense Sea Lion believers would be doing life.

        Shouting out to Half Pint for bringing back the big mugs!

        Comment


        • #5
          He did prove himself to be a more-than-competent army group commander, which was essentially what he commanded during the Atlanta campaign-McPherson, Schofield, and Thomas being the subordinate army commanders; Howard replacing McPherson after the latter was killed. Grant had been an army group commander in the Chattanooga campaign, the subordinate army commanders being Thomas and Sherman.
          We are not now that strength which in old days
          Moved earth and heaven; that which we are we are; One equal temper of heroic hearts
          Made weak by time and fate but strong in will
          To strive to seek to find and not to yield.

          Comment


          • #6
            COULD GRANT HAVE WON WITHOUT SHERMAN?
            Yes!
            Trying hard to be the Man, that my Dog believes I am!

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Massena View Post
              Sherman was not indispensable to the war effort. Thomas was a better general it seems to me and there were other skilled commanders such as Schofield, McPherson, and Logan in the western theater.
              For Thomas, every battlefield success seemed to stir controversy or the jealousy of ambitious rivals. Unlike other noted generals, he had no home-state politicians to lobby on his behalf in Washington. Ulysses S. Grant, for example, was championed by Illinois congressman Elihu Washburne, and Sherman by his brother, Ohio senator John Sherman. For Thomas, every step upward depended solely on his performance in the field.

              Unlike Grant, Sherman, George McClellan and some other ranking Union officers who had broken their military service with years as civilians, Thomas had been a soldier since the day he entered West Point. Yet when his name came up for promotion, the president, restrained by Northern radicals and surrounded in the Federal bureaucracy by Southerners, said, "let the Virginian wait."

              When Thomas was promoted to major general, an advancement that would soon create friction with his old roommate "Cump" Sherman and Grant, who had become so close that an affront to either was resented by both.

              When Lincoln called Grant in East to become general-in-chief of all the armies in the North. No one was surprised that Grant's friend, Sherman, rather than Thomas, replaced him as commander in the West, even though as a major general, Thomas was superior to Sherman. Former Colonel Donn Piatt, a nineteenth-century booster and Thomas' biographer, called it "the most naked favoritism that has ever dishonored a service".

              Thomas commanded about two-thirds of Sherman's infantry; his army was the center force, the sledgehammer in the four-month campaign, and led the way into Atlanta. But neither Sherman, Grant, Secretary of War Edwin Stanton nor Lincoln cited Thomas in their congratulations. As in the 1864 Virginia campaign, where all the official praise and headlines went to Grant, in Georgia it was all Sherman. In his special order announcing the victory, Sherman credited Maj. Gen. Henry W. Slocum's corps with entering the city first—although Slocum was under Thomas' command and had headed the corps for only six days.

              Thomas "comes down in history...as the great defensive fighter, the man who could never be driven away but who was not much on the offensive. That may be a correct appraisal," wrote Catton, an admirer and biographer of Grant. "Yet it may also be worth making note that just twice in all the war was a major Confederate army driven away from a prepared position in complete rout—at Chattanooga and at Nashville. Each time the blow that finally routed it was launched by Thomas."

              Nashville was the only engagement in which one army virtually annihilated another. Thomas B. Buell, a student of Civil War generalship, wrote that in Tennessee, Thomas performed the war's "unsurpassed masterpiece of theater command and control....So modern in concept, so sweeping in scope, it would become a model for strategic maneuver in 20th-century warfare." After it, there was no more large-scale fighting west of the Blue Ridge.

              When the bloodshed was over at last, after Lincoln was assassinated and the nation was recovering from the shock, 150,000 soldiers of all the Union armies converged on Washington for the most memorable victory parade in the nation's history. All of them, that is, except the Army of the Cumberland. When Sherman proudly passed in review before Grant, President Andrew Johnson and multitudes of cheering onlookers, Thomas had already said goodbye to his few remaining troops.

              After Thomas died, Grant was able to say that he was "one of the great names of our history, one of the greatest heroes of our war." Sherman relented so far as to write that "during the whole war his services were transcendent." Yet even then, the two generals seldom mentioned his name without repeating their assertions of his caution.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by daddut roger View Post

                For Thomas, every battlefield success seemed to stir controversy or the jealousy of ambitious rivals. Unlike other noted generals, he had no home-state politicians to lobby on his behalf in Washington. Ulysses S. Grant, for example, was championed by Illinois congressman Elihu Washburne, and Sherman by his brother, Ohio senator John Sherman. For Thomas, every step upward depended solely on his performance in the field.

                Unlike Grant, Sherman, George McClellan and some other ranking Union officers who had broken their military service with years as civilians, Thomas had been a soldier since the day he entered West Point. Yet when his name came up for promotion, the president, restrained by Northern radicals and surrounded in the Federal bureaucracy by Southerners, said, "let the Virginian wait."

                When Thomas was promoted to major general, an advancement that would soon create friction with his old roommate "Cump" Sherman and Grant, who had become so close that an affront to either was resented by both.

                When Lincoln called Grant in East to become general-in-chief of all the armies in the North. No one was surprised that Grant's friend, Sherman, rather than Thomas, replaced him as commander in the West, even though as a major general, Thomas was superior to Sherman. Former Colonel Donn Piatt, a nineteenth-century booster and Thomas' biographer, called it "the most naked favoritism that has ever dishonored a service"...................
                A partial quote, just to thank you for a fine post!

                Regards,
                Dennis

                If stupid was a criminal offense Sea Lion believers would be doing life.

                Shouting out to Half Pint for bringing back the big mugs!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Sherman gave Lincoln a huge defeat by capturing Atlanta. This gave the northern population hope that the war was almost over. and therefore in the presidential election in November of 1864 Lincoln was reelected

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                  • #10
                    My first post. I'm a rookie here.

                    The march to the sea was a strategic success for the north and yes it did bring down the morale of the citizens and the confederate army. Sherman was a warrior and he got the job done with his flair for punishing his enemy. There were other generals who could have done the job, but Sherman was probably the best choice with his battle record compared to others.

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                    • #11
                      Welcome aboard!

                      Regards,
                      Dennis
                      If stupid was a criminal offense Sea Lion believers would be doing life.

                      Shouting out to Half Pint for bringing back the big mugs!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Yes.
                        Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Sherman’s total force is 62,000 officers and men. There are 186 regiments in total, in 40 brigades, in 14 divisions.

                          November 1864: skirmishes break out at Jonesborough... East Point... near Rough and Ready... near Atlanta... Lovejoy’s Station... Bear Creek Station... Cotton River Bridge... Towaliga Bridge...
                          Sherman’s columns skirmish with local militia and cavalry troops at Clinton... Walnut Creek... East Macon, Griswoldville...
                          Confederate General Joseph Wheeler engages Union General Kilpatrick’s cavalry in two days of fighting at Waynesborough... Buckhead Church... Buckhead Creek. Kilpatrick’s cavalry continues fighting near Davisborough and Waynesborough.

                          December, 1864: heavy engagement at Waynesborough... small skirmish at the Little Ogeechee River... Jenks’ Bridge on the Ogeechee... Buck Creek... Cypress Swamp... near Sister’s Ferry... Ogeechee Canal... Cuyler’s Plantation... Monteith Swamp...

                          The March to the Sea ends when the Army of Georgia reaches the Confederate defensive works around Savannah, Georgia. Sherman’s army has traveled 285 miles in 25 days of marching, averaging 12-15 miles a day.

                          Union losses in the 36 days of the campaign are 103 killed, 428 wounded and 809 missing in action. Confederate casualties are 2,300 killed, wounded and missing: 800 in the siege of Savannah, 550 at Griswoldville, 200 at Ft. McAllister, 100 in miscellaneous actions, and 596 in General Wheeler’s campaign. General Sherman put the total economic loss to the South during the campaign at $100,000,000.

                          January, 1865: Victory for the Union is virtually assured, with Grant at Petersburg, Thomas in Tennessee, and Sherman at Savannah. The Union Navy controls the Atlantic and Gulf coasts.

                          The Union Army stands at more than 600,000 soldiers ready for active duty. More than 300,000 are in reserve, for a total of nearly 960,000 soldiers. The Confederate forces total approximately 160,000 soldiers ready for active duty and a total force of 358,000.

                          Sherman begins march from Savanna to North Carolina. His forces number approximately 60,000 officers and men.
                          The total opposing Confederate forces in the Carolinas number more than 30,000 Confederates. Sherman is opposed by the following Confederate generals: General P. G. Beauregard, General William J. Hardee, General Daniel H. Hill, General Gustavus W. Smith, and others.



                          Bentonville (19-21 March 1865) is the last battle of the Army of Georgia
                          The Confederation is in agony. Joseph E Johnston must fight 1 against 3 (20,000 Confederates / 60,000 Federals)
                          And yet we are far from a big win for Sherman, but rather a draw.
                          Sherman was essentially a strategist, a master of maneuver and logistics. If he had supported Mower, he would have won a great victory...

                          If the March to Sea had taken place at the start of the conflict, what would have been the result?
                          Last edited by daddut roger; 15 Sep 20, 00:44.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by daddut roger View Post

                            If the March to Sea had taken place at the start of the conflict, what would have been the result?
                            A bad Union defeat. Southern leadership somewhat outclasses the Union at that stage. The Grant/Sherman partnership isn't possible at that point, as Grant isn't even in the service at the outbreak of hostilities. Other commanders have yet to emerge based on performance rather than seniority, especially in the Army of the Potomac.

                            I believe the result would have been the same if the scenario was reversed. In reality, neither side is in a position to conduct a large, lengthy campaign in the other's territory at that point.

                            Regards,
                            Dennis
                            If stupid was a criminal offense Sea Lion believers would be doing life.

                            Shouting out to Half Pint for bringing back the big mugs!

                            Comment

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