Franklin-The "brutalest" battle of them all.

Jamieva

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#21
The one battle that eclipses even the extreme ones we've discussed here is Spotsylvania Courthouse. The day-long hand to hand battle at the muleshoe salient. Every time I read about that one, it has a surreal quality, more like a horror story set in the lower levels of hell.
The Mule Shoe to me has always been the most brutal part of the war. The accounts of the men in there just is appalling.
 

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mobile_96

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#22
I am just coming to the end of Wiley Sword's "The Confederacy's Last Hurrah". The battle of Nashville has just started but I know it will be totally anti-climatic because of where Sword has just before taken me-The Battle of Frankin. As I read of the ferocity, intensity, brutality and sheer terror of the battle I found my jaw dropping in absolute awe.
This must surely have been the most ferocious contest of arms of the whole war. Micky.
Next you Must read "For Cause & Country-A Study of the Affair at Spring Hill and the Battle of Franklin" by Eric Jacobson and co-authored by Richard Rupp. When you finish reading the approx. 100pg chapter (just on the fighting) I believe your jaw will continue its downward fall, to land, with a thud, on the floor. Am not ashamed to say... that the reading of that one chapter, left me shaking. I sometimes wonder if Eric was able to write that segment in one sitting, or had to break, from time to time, to get away from the carnage!
 

mobile_96

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#23
The slaughters at Franklin, Cold Harbor, Fredericksburg, and Pickett's Charge were horrendous to say the least, but each assault was preformed and fought out differently.

Pickett's Charge is much more like the attack on July 3 at Cold Harbor, both lasted a short amount of time,

The thing about Franklin is that you had 5 divisions, stretching about a mile in width, converging in on a line of works less than half a mile in width. And the distance traveled was well over a mile, further than the Pickett's charge.
I don't have my notes in front of me but.....the approx. 8,000 casualties at Cold Harbor were for the entire Cold Harbor campaign, which was from May 26-June 3. Also, more recent studies have also determined that there were approx. 3,500 casualties for the main attack, which was Not a 15 min event, but actually several charges over a period of hours.
Cold Harbor-Grant and Lee, May 26-June 3, 1864 by Gordon Rhea, I believe might cover this. (although I might be thinking of the wrong book at this moment.)
 

Chattahooch33

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#24
Next you Must read "For Cause & Country-A Study of the Affair at Spring Hill and the Battle of Franklin" by Eric Jacobson and co-authored by Richard Rupp. When you finish reading the approx. 100pg chapter (just on the fighting) I believe your jaw will continue its downward fall, to land, with a thud, on the floor. Am not ashamed to say... that the reading of that one chapter, left me shaking. I sometimes wonder if Eric was able to write that segment in one sitting, or had to break, from time to time, to get away from the carnage!
Thats how I read it. I didn't want to read more than a few pages at a time. I would read a bit, then take a few hours off to let it "soak in".
 

Karen Lips

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#25
The slaughters at Franklin, Cold Harbor, Fredericksburg, and Pickett's Charge were horrendous to say the least, but each assault was preformed and fought out differently.

Pickett's Charge is much more like the attack on July 3 at Cold Harbor, both lasted a short amount of time, very few men broke through, and both saw similar casualty numbers. Pickett's Charge stretched only for about half a mile in length and in width, whereas the attack on July 3 at Cold Harbor stretched for almost a mile and a half in width.

Fredericksburg was divided up into two separate fronts - Marye's Heights and Prospect Hill/Slaughter Pen - but Marye's Heights is known for its separate, piecemeal attacks by each of the three divisions of the II Corps at a time as they melted away one by one. None of the Federals attacking Marye's Heights reached the stone wall.

The thing about Franklin is that you had 5 divisions, stretching about a mile in width, converging in on a line of works less than half a mile in width. That's what made Franklin such a fierce and chaotic battle, so many men were stacked in around such a small area and were blown away in only a few hours. You had around 20,000 Confederates converging on a point less than 3,000 feet in width (not counting Bate's Division attacking the Federal right later).

Because the brigades were so stacked up, the assault continued for as long as it did; as one brigade would melt away the other behind it would run up and get shot to pieces. The men would retreat and regroup, or take their place in the next regiment running up and attack again. To the Federals, it gave the impression that the Confederates were being sent in almost piecemeal. Another thing about Franklin is the large amount of close range combat over the earthworks. Unlike any of the other three assaults, the Confederates managed to reach the Federal works all across the line, but were stuck outside in the ditch and fought right over the works.
My gg grandfather, Alfred Phillips, and his brother fought at the battle of Franklin on the CSA side. When I read of the brutality of that battle, I realize it is a miracle that he survived. I shudder when I think about how close he came to death.
 

Nathanb1

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#28
Karen, to answer your question from the chat room, there are two very good documentaries available. One is about the battle, and one is about the unknown soldier who was recovered and buried a few years ago--with some scenes from the original documentary woven in to explain it all. I use that with my history kids.

http://www.carnton.org/novelties.htm

I keep thinking someone will make Widow of the South into a film.....so far, no takers. :smile:
 

Karen Lips

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#29
Karen, to answer your question from the chat room, there are two very good documentaries available. One is about the battle, and one is about the unknown soldier who was recovered and buried a few years ago--with some scenes from the original documentary woven in to explain it all. I use that with my history kids.

http://www.carnton.org/novelties.htm

I keep thinking someone will make Widow of the South into a film.....so far, no takers. :smile:
Thanks
 

gunny

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Spring Hill, Tennessee
#30
I think a movie should be made about the battle of Franklin.
There actually was a movie made by ---- Griffin. The same guy that did Metropolis I think. They actually filmed it on location I believe. It was said that the scenes got "out of hand" and actually got a few people hurt in the process.

I'm having a hard time remembering the name of the movie, but I think " Mill" was in the title.

The footage was supposedly lost or destroyed.

Jamie
 

Pat Answer

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#33
I have always said that the enlisted common soldiers in the AOT were just as good and as hard of a fighter as the soldiers of the ANV. As for the leadership of the AOT compared to the ANV now that is a different story. Bragg, Polk, etc. enough said. The common soldier in the AOT certainly deserved better.
Good point. This was pretty much the thesis statement of Horn's The Army of Tennessee.
 

Georgia Sixth

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#34
Next you Must read "For Cause & Country-A Study of the Affair at Spring Hill and the Battle of Franklin" by Eric Jacobson and co-authored by Richard Rupp.
Dang you! You just cost me $10.99. Seriously, I took my daughter to Barnes and Noble and I used their free hour with any nook book to check this out. Jumped to the rarely discussed fight at Spring Hill and was hooked almost immediately. I LOVE all the research the author did on the "nobodies" involved. Really brings it to life.
 

Buckeye Bill

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#37
Thank you, sir!

Do you think the park will be completed by the 150th anniversary?

I can't find any websites with updates about this new venue.
 



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