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At Washington's Gates: Jubal Early's Chance to Take the Capitol

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  • At Washington's Gates: Jubal Early's Chance to Take the Capitol

    From the August 2007 issue of Civil War Times magazine:

    At Washington's Gates: Jubal Early's Chance to Take the Capitol
    A Confederate army came within hours of capturing the Federal capital and dramatically altering the 1864 presidential election, the war and the ultimate fate of two American nations.
    Diane Tira

  • #2
    The article doesn't even attempt to answer a major question, maybe the major question. That is, did Jubal Early think he had enough men to take Washington?

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    • #3
      Early's veteran troops hadn't intimidated Lew Wallace's generally untested forces at Monocacy Junction, although they eventually took the field, and he would have been up against the fixed defenses around the nation's capital. But taking the capital would have been public image gold, especially overseas, and might have forced Grant and Meade to divert a significant number of troops to defending the Union seat of government, perhaps even weakening the blockade of Richmond enough to allow Lee some room for maneuver.

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      • #4
        If enough Union forces left Richmond/Petersburg, Lee might have been able to manuver, but Early could have been swamped before long Oct.

        And where would Lee manuver, try to hit the flank/rear of fortified lines?
        The beseiged don't have a lot of options in those situations.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Nicholas Wood View Post
          Early's veteran troops hadn't intimidated Lew Wallace's generally untested forces at Monocacy Junction, although they eventually took the field, and he would have been up against the fixed defenses around the nation's capital. But taking the capital would have been public image gold, especially overseas, and might have forced Grant and Meade to divert a significant number of troops to defending the Union seat of government, perhaps even weakening the blockade of Richmond enough to allow Lee some room for maneuver.
          While it is true that Washington DC was indeed surrounded and protected by numerous forts, all of those "fixed defenses" had been evacuated earlier in the year by General Grant, who reinforced his Army of the Potomac by incorporating all of those "Heavy Artillery" troops into his depleted ranks.
          "Profanity is but a linguistic crutch for illiterate motherbleepers"

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          • #6
            All of those "abandoned defenses" could have been held by the Sick and Wounded veterans in the DC area. Grant was able to send enough help to prevent an embarassment.

            Jubal Early was doing the unexpected and having everything go his way. The first time it did not, his goose was cooked.

            Pruitt
            Pruitt, you are truly an expert! Kelt06

            Have you been struck by the jawbone of an ASS lately?

            by Khepesh "This is the logic of Pruitt"

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