Did the Union or Confederacy Produce Better All-Around Soldiers?

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#41
Here's a question: during the war did one unit regiment/battalion/company/platoon do so well that it developed into a special forces unit. To my knowledge, special forces units weren't established here in America until the 1960s, but there had been a unit on either side or both sides that was earmarked for special combat assignments during the CW.
Most definitely the 3rd Indian Home Guard comes to mind. The Union utilized part time indigenous troops for counterinsurgency. Very similar to the latter "Civilian Irregular Defense Group" that I detail in my thread in the moderated thread forum " Compare and Contrast the American Civil War to the Vietnam War of 1957 to 1975.
Leftyhunter
 

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#42
Eh? Of course you can get it by training, the British army trained it into their men.



Not just that, it's a count of all enlistments - meaning that the same man could be counted three times if he was a 90 day man, then a three year man, then re-upped. It also doesn't count bounty jumpers and deserters, and there were a lot of deserters.
Good catch:smile coffee:
Leftyhunter
 

USS ALASKA

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#44
Discipline is a most important characteristic of good troops. There is something to be said for raw 'un-field savvy' recruits - they have less to un-learn. One of the most dangerous things on the battlefield is someone who THINKS he knows what he should be doing instead of his orders.

Now whether he gets that training is another thread...
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Cheers,
USS ALASKA
 
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#45
Regiments formed from people that lived on farms and small towns were more vulnerable to camp diseases.
In the first 18 months of the war, city men were the most likely to arrive in camp with pre-developed immunity.
This effect was the most devastating in the west.
As an example, disease could knock entire regiments out of the Order Of battle. The 20th Maine missed Chancellorsville because they were under quarantine for Smallpox. (Imagine if they had been unavailable for Gettysburg!? ... not impossible it was apparently a delayed reaction to a bad vaccine batch.)
They also lost as many men to disease as the enemy, which is actually a much better ratio than the average rate, about 2/3 lost.

(If you want another what if, George Pickett died of Scarlet Fever in 1875, however he had also been exposed in 1862 when 3 of General Longstreet's children died from the same cause. He and his future wife, who nursed the surviving child, were in the Longstreet's company throughout the affair. And arranged the funeral for the grief stricken family.)
 

lurid

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#46
Most definitely the 3rd Indian Home Guard comes to mind. The Union utilized part time indigenous troops for counterinsurgency. Very similar to the latter "Civilian Irregular Defense Group" that I detail in my thread in the moderated thread forum " Compare and Contrast the American Civil War to the Vietnam War of 1957 to 1975.
Leftyhunter
I used to teach a course on American Involvement in Vietnam: Chinese invasions, French colonization, Japanese occupation and American involvement. I would love to read that thread.
 
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#47
I used to teach a course on American Involvement in Vietnam: Chinese invasions, French colonization, Japanese occupation and American involvement. I would love to read that thread.
Just go to the moderated thread section and scroll down. I had friends who fought there. It's a fascinating and misunderstood war.
Leftyhunter
 
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#50
It had poor commanding generalship for the majority of those 4 years.
Are you just referring to Virginia?

Virginia was the only place where the Confederacy had anything resembling success. In the West the Confederacy spent the entirety of the war losing. The army with the worst record in the war in fact was not federal. That would be Confederate Army of Tennessee, which aside from Chickamauga was defeated in every major battle it fought.
 

Lost Cause

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#51
The Union Army had a lot more on it's plate then just taking Richmond.
It had poor commanding generalship for the majority of those 4 years.
Are you just referring to Virginia?

Virginia was the only place where the Confederacy had anything resembling success. In the West the Confederacy spent the entirety of the war losing. The army with the worst record in the war in fact was not federal. That would be Confederate Army of Tennessee, which aside from Chickamauga was defeated in every major battle it fought.
Yes.
 

CSA Today

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#52
So what a win is a win. We have many threads devoted to the subject of why the Union took four years to win.As you well know a four year civil war is a very short war.
Leftyhunter
Yes, I know, nowhere near as many as those with slavery or the cause of the war as the central theme, but there has been a number as to why the union took so long to win despite its vast superiority in war materiel and manpower recourses. You have been an important contributor to this thread, your statistical information and “metrics” are interesting and I look forward to your continued posting on the topic.

I know as well that several of the bloodiest, hardest fought wars in history were four year or very short wars.
 

CSA Today

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#53
Your figures are misleading. Many of the Union enlisted that joined early in the war only served from three to six months. As I mentioned many times the Union Army had to retake an area the size of Western Europe and had to conduct a sizable counterinsurgency Campaign. I have pointed out to you many times the post that showed that the average manpower superiority ratio on the battlefield was indeed only 1.86 to one. The ideal manpower superiority ratio is three to one.
Wars are not boxing match's . There is no fixed number of rounds and no time limits. All that matters is the win. There are no rewards for " holding out for four years".
Leftyhunter
Actual numbers never equal enlistments, it was true for both armies. With the exception of perhaps bonuty jumping, the reasons why there were more enlistments that actual numbers were pretty much the same for both armies.
 

thomas aagaard

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#54
The 2,778,304 number is the total number of enlistments signed. Not the total number of different men joining the army.

A union soldier could have 3 enlistment without doing anything wrong.
Large numbers of union enlistments ended in spring/summer of 64.
Many of them reenlisted and as a result count two times in the statistics.
And if a man had serve a 90day enlisted at the start of the war, he would count 3 times.

Having two enlistments as a soldier in the CSA was rare. because of the way they changed the rules in 62.
 
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#55
Actual numbers never equal enlistments, it was true for both armies. With the exception of perhaps bonuty jumping, the reasons why there were more enlistments that actual numbers were pretty much the same for both armies.
Not exactly; Confederate soldiers had to fight for the duration of the war. Union soldiers can and did go home once their enlistments expired. Union soldiers could receive a cash bonus if they reenlisted in a Veteran's Regiment.
Leftyhunter
 
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#56
Yes, I know, nowhere near as many as those with slavery or the cause of the war as the central theme, but there has been a number as to why the union took so long to win despite its vast superiority in war materiel and manpower recourses. You have been an important contributor to this thread, your statistical information and “metrics” are interesting and I look forward to your continued posting on the topic.

I know as well that several of the bloodiest, hardest fought wars in history were four year or very short wars.
The Union did not have an overwhelming manpower advantage. 1.86 to one average manpower superiority ratio in a conventional battle is hardly overwhelming. As I mentioned many times the Union Army had to occupy land and protect their supplies and fend of guerrillas in addition to conventional war. Still by 1862 the Union Army captured much important Territory such has New Orleans.
Leftyhunter
 
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#57
It had poor commanding generalship for the majority of those 4 years.
No really. Every single year of the war the Confederacy lost Territory. The Union Army even win battles when outnumbered I.e. Prairie Grove, Pea Ridge, Mills Springs and a few others.
Even the AnV did not sure and hold enemy territory. In conventional warfare the name of the game is seizing the enemies Territory.
Leftyhunter
 

CSA Today

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#58
Not exactly; Confederate soldiers had to fight for the duration of the war. Union soldiers can and did go home once their enlistments expired. Union soldiers could receive a cash bonus if they reenlisted in a Veteran's Regiment.
Leftyhunter
The North had nearly four million enlistments, the South perhaps one million enlistments if we discount exaggerated Southern pro-unionism, the North could better afford to let men go home at the end of enlistments.
 
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#59
The North had nearly four million enlistments, the South perhaps one million enlistments if we discount exaggerated Southern pro-unionism, the North could better afford to let men go home at the end of enlistments.
Yes but many of these Union enlistments were short term. That still does not change the fact that on the battlefield the Confederate Army mostly faced an enemy that only outnumbered them 1.86 to one.
Leftyhunter
 

CSA Today

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#60
Yes but many of these Union enlistments were short term. That still does not change the fact that on the battlefield the Confederate Army mostly faced an enemy that only outnumbered them 1.86 to one.
Leftyhunter
The Confederate could only achieve this by concentrating the bulk of their armies at vital threatened points, but in doing so leaving vast swaths of their country undefended or poorly defended and vulnerable to the much larger Federal armies. You have mentioned this vulnerability in many of your posts. It wasn't the case that any Confederate force was only outnumbered 1.86 to 1 in those areas. You have to look at the bigger reality, not just battles and campaigns such as the beginning of the Overland Campaign (Grant 118,000 to Lee 60,000) and similar odds for Sherman and Johnston at the beginning of the Atlanta campaign.
 



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