Britain had recognized the CSA?

wausaubob

Lt. Colonel
Joined
Apr 4, 2017
Location
Denver, CO
I think the actual point here is that the Union army purchased more foreign weapons to 30 June 1862 than it had spares on 30 June 1862. It literally could not have armed the army it historically produced.
So the US was a good customer? Maybe the British were not interested in blockading a good customer, especially one buying so much nitre coming from India? But without the War Secretary's white paper, we are merely guessing.
 

wausaubob

Lt. Colonel
Joined
Apr 4, 2017
Location
Denver, CO
Great Britain did not bail out the Confederacy, nor did it bail out Napoleon III when he ended up fighting Prussia/Germany. The factors limiting support for each are not mysterious.
 

wausaubob

Lt. Colonel
Joined
Apr 4, 2017
Location
Denver, CO
I think the actual point here is that the Union army purchased more foreign weapons to 30 June 1862 than it had spares on 30 June 1862. It literally could not have armed the army it historically produced.
More seriously, the US knew how exposed they were, and took steps to remedy the situation. The strategic situation that existed in mid October 1862 was one the administration could have tolerated for several months, so threat was taken seriously. By October 13, 1862, it was probably too late for the British to do much to affect the US congressional elections. Beyond that, Europe was waiting for the US to spend too much money, or for the US Democrats to regain power.
 

Saphroneth

Major
Joined
Feb 18, 2017
More seriously, the US knew how exposed they were, and took steps to remedy the situation. The strategic situation that existed in mid October 1862 was one the administration could have tolerated for several months, so threat was taken seriously. By October 13, 1862, it was probably too late for the British to do much to affect the US congressional elections. Beyond that, Europe was waiting for the US to spend too much money, or for the US Democrats to regain power.
I think that to ascribe the strategic situation in October 1862 to worries about the British is incorrect. If the US was worried about possible British intervention on a high level then it would (1) have not embarked on amphibious campaigns in the first place, or (2) actually have mentioned that at some point during the discussion of amphibious campaigns.

Lincoln outlines his preferred ops plans at some length. He doesn't cite possible foreign intervention as a reason to go overland, even though it would be a telling point in his favour if that was a concern.
 

Belfoured

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
Technically it's a thesis.


Note that I'm not arguing, and have never argued, that British operations will be flawless. What I am arguing however is that any reasonable comparison indicates that the economic warfare attendant on a war between the Union and the British will be devastating to the US while merely being painful for the British, for a host of reasons from better British understanding of how to prevent commerce raiding to the extreme difficulty of commerce raiding in the specific diplomatic environment the US had created to the greater overall effectiveness of blockading than commerce raiding sans blockade.

Certainly in the War of 1812 the British had problems with the blockade of the Gulf; since they were able to do immense damage to the US economy in that war, it remains open to question however whether the reason for this was simply that the more important targets got more resources. It is also the case that in a Civil War intervention scenario the Gulf is not overall a valid export route; even if the Mississippi has been opened then blockading New Orleans specifically is easier than blockading the entire Gulf Coast.




This is a strange argument to me, because you seem to imply that the British seeking said buffer state was a war goal and that they would have been willing to keep fighting (in a war which was started by a US declaration of war and invasion of Canada) in order to secure said concessions. The fact that Tecumseh had been dead for over a year and that his confederacy had collapsed with his death can't have failed to influence that, and the negotiations didn't take place in a vacuum - there were concerns that war with France would reignite.


What actually happened in the War of 1812 was that (as the thesis notes) the US was incapable of further serious campaigning for economic reasons - meaning due to the damage the British had inflicted upon them chiefly through blockade - and they were thus compelled to a peace acceptable to the British negotiators, dropping their war aims.
I'm convinced that you could make an argument that the Sun actually rises on the western horizon. The British wanted the buffer state, and that was for obvious reasons. They didn't get it and the US expansion continued. I admire how you reconstruct things with verbiage so that the US "dropp[ed] their war aims" but the British did not. Seems to me that from your standpoint the British were in the position to force the return of much of their former colonies. Such generous sportsmanship in negotiating a treaty to end a war is rare indeed.
 

Belfoured

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
Was that after they knew about the peace settlement or prior to that point? If the former it could have been due to dispute over the terms of the treaty, which would explain why London revoked the seizures if the local forces had exceeded their authority under the agreement. If before knowledge of the treaty reached them then such seizures would have been rightly revoked before the two nations were no longer at war.
The dates I'm aware of were after they knew of Ghent. As indicated, I haven't seen anything regarding seizures of fishing vessels - as opposed to merchantmen - before that.
 

Saphroneth

Major
Joined
Feb 18, 2017
I'm convinced that you could make an argument that the Sun actually rises on the western horizon. The British wanted the buffer state, and that was for obvious reasons. They didn't get it and the US expansion continued. I admire how you reconstruct things with verbiage so that the US "dropp[ed] their war aims" but the British did not. Seems to me that from your standpoint the British were in the position to force the return of much of their former colonies. Such generous sportsmanship in negotiating a treaty to end a war is rare indeed.
Well, no, because there is a difference of events here.

What you have in 1812 is that:

- British merchants were selling weapons to Tecumseh and the associated tribes.
- An independent Indian state had strategic merit.
- But the British were not willing to go to war over it.
- Supporting it while at war, however, was a "no-brainer" decision.
- The British had war declared upon them.


- The US wanted to obtain Canada.
- They also wanted an end to Impressment (or the understanding of Impressment in the PR world which was mostly fairly different to the reality in terms of the magnitude involved).
- These were the key things which drove the war.
- In order to suppress Tecumseh's Confederacy, a war with Britain was neither necessary nor, in fact, desirable, since the support available to Tecumseh while he was allied with a Britain at war was greater than the support available to Tecumseh while he was buying things from British merchants.
- The suppression of Tecumseh's Confederacy was already largely complete by 1811 (Tippecanoe, which put an end to Tecumseh's efforts to establish a wider confederacy).
- The US declared war on Britain.


- The primary British objective in the war was for things to go back to how they were at the start of the war (that is, a white peace/Status Quo Ante).
- They got this.
- Sufficiently good battlefield performance might have allowed them to press for additional goals, and nations are never really going to run out of ideas for war goals under those circumstances.
- But it is transparently obvious that if a nation actively declares war on you, you need to do better than that nation is expecting to get a status quo peace. (Otherwise they would not have declared war.)
- The primary US objective in the war was for the formal end to Impressment, or the annexation of part or all of Canada, or both.
- They did not get either of these things.
- They thus underperformed relative to their own expectations in a war they started.

And:

- If the British wanted to continue the war and seek harsher concessions, it was obviously within their means to do so; they still had a large army, a robust economy and so on.
- It was not what they wanted to do.
- If the US wanted to continue the war and seek harsher concessions, the collapse of their economy would limit their means to do so.


So the British were attacked by surprise while at war with a significant fraction of Europe, defended themselves for two years before launching a series of counterattacks, and forced a status quo peace from attackers who (obviously) wanted other significant war goals.

If the war had been started by Britain, with an uproar over the plight of Indians being responsible, then there'd be a lot more grounds for claiming the establishment of an Indian buffer state as a significant British war aim.
 

wausaubob

Lt. Colonel
Joined
Apr 4, 2017
Location
Denver, CO
I think that to ascribe the strategic situation in October 1862 to worries about the British is incorrect. If the US was worried about possible British intervention on a high level then it would (1) have not embarked on amphibious campaigns in the first place, or (2) actually have mentioned that at some point during the discussion of amphibious campaigns.

Lincoln outlines his preferred ops plans at some length. He doesn't cite possible foreign intervention as a reason to go overland, even though it would be a telling point in his favour if that was a concern.
I don't care what they said or wrote. The administration backed down in December 1861. Then a secret plan to capture New Orleans was launched and succeeded. The ironclad and ram fleet was built and deployed and assisted in clearing the internal rivers in places the British could never reach. Expeditions from Colorado and California secured what was then New Mexico for the US.
Meanwhile the US was buying as much war material from Britain as it could afford.
While the threat of intervention was substantial, Lincoln declined to pardon the slave trader, Nathaniel Gordon, who died by hanging. The product of a year or work by Lyons and Seward was introduced and passed on a voice vote. Britain gained the right to stop and inspect suspected slave smugglers who were tempted to use an American flag to conceal their activity.
Eventually McClellan was withdrawn from Virginia, and the was no US army that could be cut off at sea and isolated from Washington and the US population centers.
What they said was garbage. What they did was to conform as much as the could to the PMs priorities and prepare for the contingency that the British might have to intervene to protect their textile industry.
 

Saphroneth

Major
Joined
Feb 18, 2017
I don't care what they said or wrote. The administration backed down in December 1861. Then a secret plan to capture New Orleans was launched and succeeded. The ironclad and ram fleet was built and deployed and assisted in clearing the internal rivers in places the British could never reach. Expeditions from Colorado and California secured what was then New Mexico for the US.
Meanwhile the US was buying as much war material from Britain as it could afford.
While the threat of intervention was substantial, Lincoln declined to pardon the slave trader, Nathaniel Gordon, who died by hanging. The product of a year or work by Lyons and Seward was introduced and passed on a voice vote. Britain gained the right to stop and inspect suspected slave smugglers who were tempted to use an American flag to conceal their activity.
Eventually McClellan was withdrawn from Virginia, and the was no US army that could be cut off at sea and isolated from Washington and the US population centers.
What they said was garbage. What they did was to conform as much as the could to the PMs priorities and prepare for the contingency that the British might have to intervene to protect their textile industry.
But there is no proof whatsoever that your hypothesis (that McClellan was withdrawn from the Virginia Peninsula over concerns of British intervention) is true. Furthermore, there is strong circumstantial evidence that the hypothesis is false (in that McClellan went to Virginia, thus raising the possible risk of British intervention; the New Orleans operation also raises the possible risk of British intervention, as do all US amphibious operations) and nobody ever mentions the concern over British intervention in any of the correspondence we have on the matter.
 

Belfoured

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
Well, no, because there is a difference of events here.

What you have in 1812 is that:

- British merchants were selling weapons to Tecumseh and the associated tribes.
- An independent Indian state had strategic merit.
- But the British were not willing to go to war over it.
- Supporting it while at war, however, was a "no-brainer" decision.
- The British had war declared upon them.


- The US wanted to obtain Canada.
- They also wanted an end to Impressment (or the understanding of Impressment in the PR world which was mostly fairly different to the reality in terms of the magnitude involved).
- These were the key things which drove the war.
- In order to suppress Tecumseh's Confederacy, a war with Britain was neither necessary nor, in fact, desirable, since the support available to Tecumseh while he was allied with a Britain at war was greater than the support available to Tecumseh while he was buying things from British merchants.
- The suppression of Tecumseh's Confederacy was already largely complete by 1811 (Tippecanoe, which put an end to Tecumseh's efforts to establish a wider confederacy).
- The US declared war on Britain.


- The primary British objective in the war was for things to go back to how they were at the start of the war (that is, a white peace/Status Quo Ante).
- They got this.
- Sufficiently good battlefield performance might have allowed them to press for additional goals, and nations are never really going to run out of ideas for war goals under those circumstances.
- But it is transparently obvious that if a nation actively declares war on you, you need to do better than that nation is expecting to get a status quo peace. (Otherwise they would not have declared war.)
- The primary US objective in the war was for the formal end to Impressment, or the annexation of part or all of Canada, or both.
- They did not get either of these things.
- They thus underperformed relative to their own expectations in a war they started.

And:

- If the British wanted to continue the war and seek harsher concessions, it was obviously within their means to do so; they still had a large army, a robust economy and so on.
- It was not what they wanted to do.
- If the US wanted to continue the war and seek harsher concessions, the collapse of their economy would limit their means to do so.


So the British were attacked by surprise while at war with a significant fraction of Europe, defended themselves for two years before launching a series of counterattacks, and forced a status quo peace from attackers who (obviously) wanted other significant war goals.

If the war had been started by Britain, with an uproar over the plight of Indians being responsible, then there'd be a lot more grounds for claiming the establishment of an Indian buffer state as a significant British war aim.
And the word-smithing obfuscation just goes on and on and on. This is easy. You ignore the decades of British strategy to secure a barrier or buffer Indian state to block US expansion in the Old Northwest. They asked for it at Ghent and they didn't get it. I'll try this in my next negotiation. I'll demand something I've wanted for a good while. The other side refuses. No problem - I just say I "won". get it. I claim a win.
 

wausaubob

Lt. Colonel
Joined
Apr 4, 2017
Location
Denver, CO
But there is no proof whatsoever that your hypothesis (that McClellan was withdrawn from the Virginia Peninsula over concerns of British intervention) is true. Furthermore, there is strong circumstantial evidence that the hypothesis is false (in that McClellan went to Virginia, thus raising the possible risk of British intervention; the New Orleans operation also raises the possible risk of British intervention, as do all US amphibious operations) and nobody ever mentions the concern over British intervention in any of the correspondence we have on the matter.
Everything the US did after December 1861 was done to minimize the risk of British intervention, to minimize the damage to the war effort if they did intervene, and to prepare a status quo that could be tolerated while they were intervening.
When the US captured New Orleans it substantially reduced the benefit to the British of intervention with respect to opening cotton exports, while also disrupting US sugar production, which industry was competing with Caribbean sugar producers.
You have stated your view clearly enough and I don't consider your arguments to contain much merit.
 

wausaubob

Lt. Colonel
Joined
Apr 4, 2017
Location
Denver, CO
By October 1862, the Indian solution to the cotton shortage was probably going to produce faster and more predictable results than British intimidating the US.
 

wausaubob

Lt. Colonel
Joined
Apr 4, 2017
Location
Denver, CO
By October of 1862 the US had the much larger population, control of the west, republican political institutions and a much better educational system. By 1862 there were perhaps 700K slaves in a population of about 21M in US controlled territory. The Confederacy contained about 3.2M slaves in a population that was now substantially less than 9M people. It would be easy to speculate which nation and experimental nation was likely to be to abolish slavery. The British no longer thought slavery was a viable system. The slaves either revolt, of the slave nation collapses due to outside pressures.
 

Saphroneth

Major
Joined
Feb 18, 2017
Everything the US did after December 1861 was done to minimize the risk of British intervention, to minimize the damage to the war effort if they did intervene, and to prepare a status quo that could be tolerated while they were intervening.
The Peninsular campaign wasn't.
 

wausaubob

Lt. Colonel
Joined
Apr 4, 2017
Location
Denver, CO
The Peninsular campaign wasn't.
McClellan never got the entire army he wanted. The treaty was in the works in March 1862, and the Monitor was nearing completion.
Eventually McClellan's expedition was ended, with White House emptied of all supplies and no position on the James was saved. The administration did not want any troops in eastern Virginia and never allowed Grant to use water transport to deploy his whole force to Petersberg/Richmond. McClellan was sort of allowed to campaign on the York peninsula, but the attempt was only slightly more than half hearted. The real campaign was in Louisiana. And McClellan's requests that additional forces from the west be sent to him was flatly refused. But no more enclaves on the Atlantic coast were formed or expanded. That seems very conservative to me, in contrast to what had already occurred.
Therefore the arguments you make were always in kept in mind Washington. The British were not likely to intervene, but what if they did.
 

Saphroneth

Major
Joined
Feb 18, 2017
McClellan never got the entire army he wanted. The treaty was in the works in March 1862, and the Monitor was nearing completion.
Eventually McClellan's expedition was ended, with White House emptied of all supplies and no position on the James was saved. The administration did not want any troops in eastern Virginia and never allowed Grant to use water transport to deploy his whole force to Petersberg/Richmond. McClellan was sort of allowed to campaign on the York peninsula, but the attempt was only slightly more than half hearted. The real campaign was in Louisiana. And McClellan's requests that additional forces from the west be sent to him was flatly refused. But no more enclaves on the Atlantic coast were formed or expanded. That seems very conservative to me, in contrast to what had already occurred.

So, to be clear, sending ~170 regiments to the Peninsular over the course of the campaign, and Burnside's expedition, and the Louisiana expedition - totalling about a third of the Union army as of June 1862 sent to positions where it was supplied only by sea, movements which all happened after Trent had died down - qualifies as "very conservative".

In contrast to the movements which took place before Trent, consisting of ~30 regiments to positions where they were supplied only by sea.
 

steve59p

Sergeant
Joined
Oct 21, 2016
The dates I'm aware of were after they knew of Ghent. As indicated, I haven't seen anything regarding seizures of fishing vessels - as opposed to merchantmen - before that.

I have seen mention of restrictions on fishing access, think largely to the Grand Banks but could be wrong and it being relaxed because the New England area was bitterly opposed to the war and parts of it desperately needed access to the fish. However that was a few years ago so can't remember exactly where it was.
 

steve59p

Sergeant
Joined
Oct 21, 2016
And the word-smithing obfuscation just goes on and on and on. This is easy. You ignore the decades of British strategy to secure a barrier or buffer Indian state to block US expansion in the Old Northwest. They asked for it at Ghent and they didn't get it. I'll try this in my next negotiation. I'll demand something I've wanted for a good while. The other side refuses. No problem - I just say I "won". get it. I claim a win.

What decades of British strategy? As Saphroneth said it was something that Britain would have favoured as it would have protected British trade in the region and also acted as a buffer against an aggressive neighbour but was never a British policy except briefly during the war when early US disasters made it a possibility. By 1814 this had passed.

So British merchants sold guns to Indian hunters they bought furs from. That's simple logic and good business. Never any sign of any government support for the Indians seeking to protect their independence from the US army. Its just that it makes an excuse for US actions against both the Indians and the British so the myth keeps getting repeated.
 

steve59p

Sergeant
Joined
Oct 21, 2016
Everything the US did after December 1861 was done to minimize the risk of British intervention, to minimize the damage to the war effort if they did intervene, and to prepare a status quo that could be tolerated while they were intervening.
When the US captured New Orleans it substantially reduced the benefit to the British of intervention with respect to opening cotton exports, while also disrupting US sugar production, which industry was competing with Caribbean sugar producers.
You have stated your view clearly enough and I don't consider your arguments to contain much merit.

Well since you continue to ignore arguments that counter your beliefs and make often stupid and factually inaccurate statements you should understand why people decide your statements have no merit.

Your at it again here. Seizing New Orleans helped tighten the blockade and markedly hurt the southern cause. However it made such a force very vulnerable to any British intervention until there was a land link between it and the northern forces. Ditto with the other lodgements that the US made in this period. As such the facts are totally different to your proposed plan to counter any British intervention by Lincoln.
 

steve59p

Sergeant
Joined
Oct 21, 2016
One small question to the American ubermen supporters? If Britain did intervene, even as late as 1863 how the hell does the union fund its war programme? Its lost probably its primary source of government revenue and also going to have serious problems getting any foreign loans on anything but the most ruinous terms. At the same time the blockade will hamper a lot of other economic activity.
 
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