2nd Lieutenant Duties

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#1
Hoping the expertise on this forum can help me find information on the duties of a 2nd Lieutenant in the Union Army. Thanks so much!
 

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#2
Hoping the expertise on this forum can help me find information on the duties of a 2nd Lieutenant in the Union Army. Thanks so much!
IIRC, the 2nd lieutenant (assuming there were both a captain and 1st lieutenant present) would assist the captain with handling the 1st Platoon or could command the platoon in the captain's absence or if he were busy with other duties or concerns.

Ryan
 
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Joined
May 18, 2011
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Carlisle, PA
#4
Doesnt a Capt lead a Company?
And a Lt is a platoon leader?
I glanced at the school of tactics booklet and it appears that the captain commands 1st Platoon as well as the Company and the 1st lieutenant commands 2nd Platoon. The 2nd lieutenant's position was to the rear of the center of 1st Platoon but he has no clear command responsibilities.

Ryan
 
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#5
As a follow up, it appears that the 2nd lieutenant acted as the XO for the 1st Platoon (under the captain) and the 3rd lieutenant did the same for the 1st lieutenant in the 2nd Platoon.

Ryan
 
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#6
I hate to tell you guys this but you are wrong about this. Command and control of the company is not like modern times. The company was the only formal unit. Things like Platoon and section breaks were only means to break the company into smaller tactical units as the situation dictated. Yes, when the company broke into platoon the Captain would take charge of one and the most senior lieutenant the other, but this was really the extent of it. The concept of Soldiers belong to a specific platoon with a specific Lieutenant, and several platoons reporting to the commander with an executive officer for administrative duties did not exist in the American Civil War. I don't think I have seen the term XO or executive officer used in a civil war book.

If one reads the regs you don't find many specific duties for the Lieutenants. Sure, they could be officers of the day or take charge of details, but it's pretty much assist the Captain in whatever he needs you to do. The Lt's main job was to wait until his commander was killed or promoted so they could take charge. Also staff officers usually were taken from line LTs.
 



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