Operational Art and the Gettysburg Campaign - Endnotes
1. Histories of the Gettysburg campaign abound. Because this chapter is only a synopsis of the more important events that shaped the campaign at the operational level, I have omitted many details. I have used citations that will direct the reader to sources helpful for those who desire a more complete understanding of the events. For a description of the Confederate cabinet discussions with Lee, see, for example, John H. Reagan, Memoirs, With Special Reference to Secession and the Civil War (New York: The Neale Publishing Co., 1906), p. 121. The best overall source for the Gettysburg campaign is Edwin B. Coddington, The Gettysburg Campaign: A Study in Command (New York: Scribner’s, 1968). This was published in a paperback edition in 1984 and is widely available.
3. It is interesting to note that these discussions reflect precisely what Clausewitz advocated in one section of On War. Lee, the commander, was participating in strategic discussions with the cabinet. Did the results of these discussions support or refute Clausewitz’s admonition? Instead of adding clarity, the discussions may have contributed to cloudy strategic thinking. See Carl von Clausewitz, On War, ed. and trans. Michael Howard and Peter Paret (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1984), p. 608.
5. Douglas S. Freeman, R. E. Lee: A Biography, 4 vols. (New York: C. Scribner’s Sons, 1934), 2: 19; U.S. War Department, The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, 69 vols. (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1880–1901), ser. 1, vol. 25, pt. 2, p. 782 (hereafter cited as OR); Jones, Confederate Strategy, pp. 205–06.
16. Dowdey and Manarin, Wartime Papers, pp. 501–03. On 7 June Lee asked President Davis to return to his army Pickett’s division of Longstreet’s corps. Even at this late date, the unit had been proposed to be sent to help the situation at Vicksburg and still had not returned to Lee’s control. It is impossible to tell how important the proposal to reinforce the west was in Lee’s recommendation to invade the North. Detaching forces from Lee’s army had been a strong possibility, supported initially by the Secretary of War. Lee had to do something spectacular to convince the government that he needed more forces than he previously had available to him at Chancellorsville. A proposal simply to continue to defend along the Rappahannock River probably would not prove that he could not afford to send part of his army to someone else. The invasion of the North provided him with that proof.
17. Dowdey and Manarin, Wartime Papers, p. 496. In Washington, General in Chief Halleck hoped Dix would accomplish much more than he did. Dix believed that his force was too small to accomplish much. He burned some bridges near Ashland, Virginia, and captured some supplies at Hanover Court House, but that was the extent of the threat. See OR, vol. 27, pt. 1, pp. 18–19.
21. Ibid., pt. 3, pp. 27–28, and pt. 1, p. 904; Henry B. McClellan, The Life and Campaigns of Major General J. E. B. Stuart (New York: Houghton, Mifflin and Co., 1885), pp. 264–69, 294; Freeman, R. E. Lee, 3: 8–13, 19.
23. Ibid., pt. 2, pp. 297–98; Kenneth P. Williams, Lincoln Finds a General: A Military Study of the Civil War, 5 vols. (New York: Macmillan, 1959), 2: 630; John W. Thomason, Jeb Stuart (New York: C. Scribner’s Sons, 1930), pp. 413–21; Coddington, Gettysburg Campaign, pp. 69–70.
40. George R. Agassiz, ed., Inside Meade’s Headquarters, 1863–1865: Letters of Colonel Theodore Lyman (Boston: The Atlantic Monthly Press, 1922), p. 25; W. A. Swanberg, Sickles the Incredible (New York: Scribner, 1956), p. 195.
47. Much historical controversy surrounds the misuse of the Confederate cavalry during this stage of the campaign. The safest to say is that Lee and Stuart share the blame. Lee had sufficient cavalry with the army to keep him informed. Their orders, however, did not tell them specifically to maintain contact with the Union army and report its movements. Stuart’s share of the blame is that he actually did not pass around the Union army without hindrance. Soon after setting out, he ran into part of Hancock’s II Federal Corps and had to make a detour. Arguably, he also took the best brigade commanders with him. Moreover, he captured 125 supply wagons, which he decided to take with him. This seriously decreased his rate of march. Clearly, the Confederate cavalry was not used properly during this stage of the campaign; the eyes and ears of the Army of Northern Virginia were not focused on the campaign objectives.
55. During a courtesy call at Chambersburg by one of Longstreet’s division commanders, John B. Hood, Lee exclaimed “Ah! General, the enemy is a long time finding us; if he does not succeed soon, we must go in search of him.” See John B. Hood, Advance and Retreat (New Orleans, La.: G. T. Beauregard, 1886), p. 55; Coddington, Gettysburg Campaign, p. 195.
61. After the battle, many Southerners searched for opportunities they had missed during the battle — opportunities that would have turned the defeat into a victory. (Ewell’s decision not to attack was generally viewed as a missed opportunity.) See, for example, Henry Kyd Douglas, I Rode with Stonewall (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1940), p. 247. It is impossible to say with any degree of certainty that Ewell’s attack would have been successful. The report of the approach of the Federal V Corps later turned out to be false. But the positions on Cemetery Hill were formidable. Ewell and his division commanders were experienced combat leaders who at that time considered an attack not practicable. See also Jubal A. Early, Autobiographical Sketch and Narrative of the War Between the States (Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott Co., 1912), p. 270.
79. Lee’s situation on the fourth was similar to that which might have faced him if he had adopted Longstreet’s earlier proposal to move around the Federal flank, set up in a defensive position, and let the Federals attack the Confederates. In theory, it was an interesting plan. But if the Federals chose not to attack and instead looked for the enemy’s lines of communications, the Army of Northern Virginia had few alternatives except to retreat. Even after decisively defeating the rebels on 1–3 July, Meade was reluctant to attack frontally. There is no reason to believe that he would have decided differently if he had faced the situation Longstreet had advocated earlier in the campaign.
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