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Celebrate the 151st Anniversary of Lee's Surrender

Sherman123

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This is the 151st Anniversary of Lee's Surrender at Appomattox and one of the last death rattles of the Confederacy. I encourage every American to celebrate this victory and remember those who fought to save the Republic. This is one day that I really think should be commemorated as a national holiday.
 

Jack Hays

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Outgeneraled, outsmarted and outfought, Lee's luck ran out 151 years ago.
 

Jredbaron96

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Long Live the Republic!

 

blackjack50

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Outgeneraled, outsmarted and outfought, Lee's luck ran out 151 years ago.

He was neither out generated or out smarted. He didn't have the money or industry to win. Recognizing those advantages should not have taken that long. But it did. Lee was a genius and had he been fighting for the union...he likely could have ended the war much sooner.
 

Frank Apisa

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Outgeneraled, outsmarted and outfought, Lee's luck ran out 151 years ago.

The "traveler" thing above your avatar is appropriate in this thread.

But the thread should not have been written this way. A war was fought...one side surrendered. The man who defeated Lee rightly treated him with a lot more respect than the OP...which is an unnecessary call to anger and division at a time when it is less welcome than usual.
 

Jack Hays

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He was neither out generated or out smarted. He didn't have the money or industry to win. Recognizing those advantages should not have taken that long. But it did. Lee was a genius and had he been fighting for the union...he likely could have ended the war much sooner.

Had Lee faced Grant rather than McClellan on the Peninsula he would have been defeated in 1862 and the war ended then.
 

Jack Hays

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The "traveler" thing above your avatar is appropriate in this thread.

But the thread should not have been written this way. A war was fought...one side surrendered. The man who defeated Lee rightly treated him with a lot more respect than the OP...which is an unnecessary call to anger and division at a time when it is less welcome than usual.

Confederate "Lost Cause" mythology remains a pernicious factor in our national life.
 

Frank Apisa

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Confederate "Lost Cause" mythology remains a pernicious factor in our national life.

Considering the thread, I gotta ask again about the "Traveler" thing above your avatar. Is it just coincidence?
 

Jack Hays

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Considering the thread, I gotta ask again about the "Traveler" thing above your avatar. Is it just coincidence?

I lived outside the US for a total of 18 years, resident in seven countries. Visited or passed through another 30 or so.
 

Frank Apisa

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I lived outside the US for a total of 18 years, resident in seven countries. Visited or passed through another 30 or so.

Sorry, Jack...I should have been more clear.

Traveler is to Robert E. Lee...what Silver is to the Lone Ranger or Trigger to Roy Rogers.

I just thought that was a well-known fact. My apologies.
 

Jack Hays

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Sorry, Jack...I should have been more clear.

Traveler is to Robert E. Lee...what Silver is to the Lone Ranger or Trigger to Roy Rogers.

I just thought that was a well-known fact. My apologies.

I'm aware of Lee's horse; he's buried in Lexington, Virginia and visitors to the grave leave carrots for the ghost of Traveler to munch on. In any case, now you know why my avatar carries the "Traveler" tag.
 

blackjack50

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Had Lee faced Grant rather than McClellan on the Peninsula he would have been defeated in 1862 and the war ended then.

Really? You mean the Grant whose only abilities were essentially to lay siege to the west until there were not enough resources in the east? The fact that Lee was able to do what he did speaks volumes to his abilities. Not to mention his knowledge of the terrain and his abilities with his staff.

You are talking about comparing a general who understood his advantages were numbers and that once he faced Lee...that he must defeat Lee's army at all costs (regardless of the cost). And Lee who understood he was outmanned from the beginning. He was under supplied. And he was under gunned. Let's put it this way...had Lee been in command of the Union army...what do you think would have happened in the East? Now ask yourself what would have happened had you put Grant in Lee's shoes?
 

blackjack50

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Confederate "Lost Cause" mythology remains a pernicious factor in our national life.

And those who typically find themselves as anti southern...love to ignore that Lee was an outstanding general. He is only a lightning rod because the cause for which he fought was negative. Objectively denying that he was beyond spectacular is simply insane.
 

Jack Hays

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Really? You mean the Grant whose only abilities were essentially to lay siege to the west until there were not enough resources in the east? The fact that Lee was able to do what he did speaks volumes to his abilities. Not to mention his knowledge of the terrain and his abilities with his staff.

You are talking about comparing a general who understood his advantages were numbers and that once he faced Lee...that he must defeat Lee's army at all costs (regardless of the cost). And Lee who understood he was outmanned from the beginning. He was under supplied. And he was under gunned. Let's put it this way...had Lee been in command of the Union army...what do you think would have happened in the East? Now ask yourself what would have happened had you put Grant in Lee's shoes?

Grant's Vicksburg campaign was the preeminent masterpiece of the war. His selection of and support for Sherman was a superb executive decision at the strategic level. His 1864-65 campaign against Lee was decisive. Lee's soldiering mirrored the greatest commanders of the past to that time, but Grant's presaged the great commanders of the 20th century. The future defeated the past.
 

Jack Hays

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And those who typically find themselves as anti southern...love to ignore that Lee was an outstanding general. He is only a lightning rod because the cause for which he fought was negative. Objectively denying that he was beyond spectacular is simply insane.

He did his best but he was overmatched.
 

Sherman123

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Really? You mean the Grant whose only abilities were essentially to lay siege to the west until there were not enough resources in the east? The fact that Lee was able to do what he did speaks volumes to his abilities. Not to mention his knowledge of the terrain and his abilities with his staff.

You are talking about comparing a general who understood his advantages were numbers and that once he faced Lee...that he must defeat Lee's army at all costs (regardless of the cost). And Lee who understood he was outmanned from the beginning. He was under supplied. And he was under gunned. Let's put it this way...had Lee been in command of the Union army...what do you think would have happened in the East? Now ask yourself what would have happened had you put Grant in Lee's shoes?

That analysis shows a catastrophic lack of understanding for Grants capabilities. I'm not sure I agree that Lee was 'out-generalled' given the paucity of options available to him but to malign Grant like that is inappropriate. You make it sound as though all Grant did was waltz up to Vicksburg (or Donelson) and dig a series of entrenchments.

Grant's Vicksburg campaign is considered one of the masterpieces of complex maneuver and is widely studied at military academies and among historians. The brilliance of Grant lay with his ability to cut through the fog of war and make decisive decisions and decisive movements despite uncertainty and an inability to break under pressure. This quality is rare in the commanders of armies and is worthy of high regard. It was also matched with a serene understanding of the strategic realities of the war and a shockingly competent military mind.

Grant conducted a dangerous and rapid movement through dense terrain west of Vicksburg along the western bank of the Mississippi, cut off from his base of operations and the normal flow of supply and support. He then launched one of the largest and riskiest amphibious operations in American history (until Normandy) by directly challenging Confederate defenses across the Mississippi and upon succeeding transferred his entire base of operations to the south of the Vicksburg, deep in Confederate territory, something that had been thought impossible.

Not waiting to heavily consolidate his position he launched a rapid march inland which surprised both Pemberton and Johnston and drove a wedge between their armies. Striking eastward he seized Jackson (the railroad junction there being critical) and thereby destroyed the efforts of the steadily concentrating army under Johnston to relieve Vicksburg or harass the would be besiegers. The swift sledgehammer blows to the west with little delay for rest for his army prevented Pemberton (if he had been so inclined) to contemplate a withdrawal of the city by bringing his army into contact with the Vicksburg lines and thus commencing the siege.

This massive campaign and all of its accomplishments was conducted in roughly 18 days. It was a highly complex, shockingly fast, daring, and wildly successful campaign of maneuver. It is rightly regarded as one of the greatest military campaigns in American history.
 

Sherman123

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Really? You mean the Grant whose only abilities were essentially to lay siege to the west until there were not enough resources in the east? The fact that Lee was able to do what he did speaks volumes to his abilities. Not to mention his knowledge of the terrain and his abilities with his staff.

You are talking about comparing a general who understood his advantages were numbers and that once he faced Lee...that he must defeat Lee's army at all costs (regardless of the cost). And Lee who understood he was outmanned from the beginning. He was under supplied. And he was under gunned. Let's put it this way...had Lee been in command of the Union army...what do you think would have happened in the East? Now ask yourself what would have happened had you put Grant in Lee's shoes?

Furthermore as for the Overland Campaign:

The Wilderness was a disastrous battle for both sides and an engagement which nearly ended in the destruction of the Confederate army. Grant recognized that he needed to pull Lee away from his fortifications and move him along the chord of defense to a more desirable location. The terrain that separated Washington and Richmond ensured that only a few approaches were possible and Lee was at an advantage in anticipating Grants movements. That being said Lee did withdraw from his fortifications at Mine Run and were it not for the timely arrival of Longstreet he would have been splintered and forced to retreat with heavy loss. That the battle was as close as it was and over such awful terrain is a testament to the rapidity of Grants movement and his lack of fear for the security of his army.

The only options available to Grant were to continue to move and engage an enemy who would always be able to move more quickly along the interior lines of the chord than he could from without. As other commanders had realized before him it was highly unlikely to find a scenario where a Union army would not encounter a defensively positioned Confederate army in any offensive movement. Furthermore the shift towards heavy fortifications and away from maneuver action (the Wilderness being among Lee's last major field offensives that wasn't meant to simply recover the line) increased the difficulty for federal forces. The numbers Grant possessed weren't a luxury they were a requirement for the type of ground and type of offensive action that was required of them.

Despite all of this he still nearly managed to destroy the Confederate army at Spotsylvania by a keen recognition of the possibilities posed by Uptons assault on the heavily fortified Mule Shoe and followed it up with a well prepared, well planned, and well executed that nearly shattered the Confederate center. It was a decision and assault that struck fear into Lee (by his own admission) as the lines buckled.

At Cold Harbor he made a grievous and horrendous error--just as Lee did at Malvern Hill and at Pickett's Charge. Resorting to massive frontal assaults when confronted with great frustration was a trait shared by both Lee and Grant.

In the successive battles at North Anna, Yellow Tavern, Hanovertown, etc, Grant displayed a mastery of the division of force and celerity of movement as he forced Lee into successive retreats with marginal Federal loss while managing to savage irreplaceable Confederate detachments at the same time. In the space of two months Grant had pushed Lee back from Northern Virginia and placed himself in a position to besiege the last lifeline of the capital. All while inflicting 60-70% of the casualties his own army took on a heavily entrenched enemy.

It was a bloody campaign, but it was always going to be exceedingly bloody. However it was also a masterful display of strategic maneuver and tactical alacrity on the part of Grant.
 

blackjack50

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Grant's Vicksburg campaign was the preeminent masterpiece of the war. His selection of and support for Sherman was a superb executive decision at the strategic level. His 1864-65 campaign against Lee was decisive. Lee's soldiering mirrored the greatest commanders of the past to that time, but Grant's presaged the great commanders of the 20th century. The future defeated the past.

So let me ask you. How do you think he would have done in Lee's shoes?
 

blackjack50

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That analysis shows a catastrophic lack of understanding for Grants capabilities. I'm not sure I agree that Lee was 'out-generalled' given the paucity of options available to him but to malign Grant like that is inappropriate. You make it sound as though all Grant did was waltz up to Vicksburg (or Donelson) and dig a series of entrenchments.

Grant's Vicksburg campaign is considered one of the masterpieces of complex maneuver and is widely studied at military academies and among historians. The brilliance of Grant lay with his ability to cut through the fog of war and make decisive decisions and decisive movements despite uncertainty and an inability to break under pressure. This quality is rare in the commanders of armies and is worthy of high regard. It was also matched with a serene understanding of the strategic realities of the war and a shockingly competent military mind.

Grant conducted a dangerous and rapid movement through dense terrain west of Vicksburg along the western bank of the Mississippi, cut off from his base of operations and the normal flow of supply and support. He then launched one of the largest and riskiest amphibious operations in American history (until Normandy) by directly challenging Confederate defenses across the Mississippi and upon succeeding transferred his entire base of operations to the south of the Vicksburg, deep in Confederate territory, something that had been thought impossible.

Not waiting to heavily consolidate his position he launched a rapid march inland which surprised both Pemberton and Johnston and drove a wedge between their armies. Striking eastward he seized Jackson (the railroad junction there being critical) and thereby destroyed the efforts of the steadily concentrating army under Johnston to relieve Vicksburg or harass the would be besiegers. The swift sledgehammer blows to the west with little delay for rest for his army prevented Pemberton (if he had been so inclined) to contemplate a withdrawal of the city by bringing his army into contact with the Vicksburg lines and thus commencing the siege.

This massive campaign and all of its accomplishments was conducted in roughly 18 days. It was a highly complex, shockingly fast, daring, and wildly successful campaign of maneuver. It is rightly regarded as one of the greatest military campaigns in American history.

Is at as catastrophic as trying to undercut Lee's abilities as a general? It is a disturbing trend to me. And it is especially common amongst those who want to make it a way to stick to "southerners." Lee had one of the most difficult commands for any general in American history. Do you think Grant could have done better in Lee's shoes? I certainly don't. I think Lee was one of the only Generals who was even remotely able to do what he did for as long as he did.

I agree that Grant was a masterful general, but is simply not true to say that he "out generaled" Lee. He didn't. By the time he got to Lee...Lee was in dire straights in a campaign where he had no chance of winning. Lee's army was the only thing holding the Confederacy together at that point.
 

Jack Hays

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So let me ask you. How do you think he would have done in Lee's shoes?

To be in Lee's shoes Grant would have had to be someone else. While it is conceivable to imagine Lee fighting for the North, it is impossible to imagine Grant fighting for the South.
 

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The South had it coming. The north had better: manufacturing, population, transportation, technology, etc.

The only things the South had that were superior overall were: Tactics, and defender's advantage (you fight harder when you fight for your home)

Those two can only take you so far before your face gets pummeled in the ****ing sand.
 

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the math didn't work, and Pickett's charge was a disaster. i will say that i admire Lee for his loyalty to his state and home. i'll also say that the Confederacy did more with less than any other American rebellion will probably ever do again. if today's idiot partisan morons mounted another rebellion, they'd be put down in about ten minutes if they tried to do it with firearms. back then, they actually had a brief chance of victory.

but **** slavery right in the ear, and yeah, that was a major reason for the Civil War.
 

Jack Hays

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And those who typically find themselves as anti southern...love to ignore that Lee was an outstanding general. He is only a lightning rod because the cause for which he fought was negative. Objectively denying that he was beyond spectacular is simply insane.

Is at as catastrophic as trying to undercut Lee's abilities as a general? It is a disturbing trend to me. And it is especially common amongst those who want to make it a way to stick to "southerners." Lee had one of the most difficult commands for any general in American history. Do you think Grant could have done better in Lee's shoes? I certainly don't. I think Lee was one of the only Generals who was even remotely able to do what he did for as long as he did.

I agree that Grant was a masterful general, but is simply not true to say that he "out generaled" Lee. He didn't. By the time he got to Lee...Lee was in dire straights in a campaign where he had no chance of winning. Lee's army was the only thing holding the Confederacy together at that point.

There's nothing anti-Southern in this. I'm among those who regard Nathan Bedford Forrest as the Confederacy's best, a soldier of true genius. My problem with Lee is that he represented the finest soldiering of an era that was passing from the scene, and he seems not to have understood that. Whether Grant understood this evolution consciously can be debated, but he was a "modern" general in a way Lee was not. The difference can even be captured in a single moment, IMHO. In 1864, after the Wilderness, Grant's famous right turn toward Spotsylvania (rather than left to rest and refit as had hitherto been the custom after a major battle) was the first glimpse of the continuous combat engagement that would characterize the warfare of the 20th century.
 

Jack Hays

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the math didn't work, and Pickett's charge was a disaster. i will say that i admire Lee for his loyalty to his state and home. i'll also say that the Confederacy did more with less than any other American rebellion will probably ever do again. if today's idiot partisan morons mounted another rebellion, they'd be put down in about ten minutes if they tried to do it with firearms. back then, they actually had a brief chance of victory.

but **** slavery right in the ear, and yeah, that was a major reason for the Civil War.

The original American revolutionaries of 1776 did more with less.
 
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