Interview: Longstreet on his post-Gettysburg Relationship with Lee

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lelliott19

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On the occasion of Longstreet's visit to Antietam in 1893, a correspondent of the Washington Post recorded the General's opinions on a number of topics. In this part of the interview, General Longstreet discusses his relationship with Lee after Gettysburg.

"What were your relations General Lee subsequently to Gettysburg, general; were they as cordial and confidential as before?" I asked.

"Every bit," the general answered quickly and unhesitatingly. "They continued to be of the closest and most affectionate character. I was unaware of the slightest diminution of confidence in my military judgement. These friendly relations continued until long after the close of the war. My disagreement with him with some of the details of the Gettysburg campaign had no more effect to estrange us than my dissent from the Sharpsburg tactics of the previous year. Instead of being discredited with Lee, he suggested to President Davis that I command the consolidated forces against Rosecrans in place of Bragg. But Bragg, probably suspecting something of the kind, precipitated the battle Chickamauga before my corps were all up. Some of General Lee's original correspondence with me proves these facts beyond all controversy."​

Interview: Reprinted from the Washington Post of June 1893, the interview appeared in The Times Dispatch. (Richmond, VA.), November 12, 1911, page 3.
Image: https://dphseng11myblog.wordpress.com/2011/02/03/killer-angels-part-ii-lee/

Note: This post is Part 17 of a series on Longstreet's opinions of various Generals, expressed during an interview with a Washington Post corespondent in 1893. Longstreet's opinions on various generals are posted in separate threads so they can be easily located - Bragg, Jackson, A P Hill, Early, Ewell, Pickett, Sheridan, Joe Johnston, Beauregard, Hood, Jeff Davis, Lee, Meade, McClellan, and more. Here are the links to Parts 1-16, posted previously:
Part 1 - Intro to the article
Part 2 - Longstreet on Bragg
Part 3 - Longstreet on Jackson
Part 4 - Longstreet on AP Hill
Part 5 - Longstreet on Ewell & Early
Part 6 - Longstreet on Pickett, Sheridan, Five Forks & the Timing of the Surrender
Part 7 - Longstreet on Joe Johnston
Part 8 - Longstreet on Beauregard
Part 9 - Longstreet on Hood
Part 10 - Longstreet on Lee's military attributes
Part 11 - Lee's Best Battle
Part 12 - Lee's Poorest Generalship
Part 13 - Lee's greatest weakness as tactical commander
Part 14 - Lee's tactical weakness at Gettysburg
Part 15 - Meade's Lost Opportunity
Part 16 - Gettysburg Controversies

<Up next - Longstreet on McClellan>
@Eleanor Rose @Union_Buff @FarawayFriend @War Horse @novushomus @GELongstreet @LeesWarhorse @Tom Elmore @Coonewah Creek @Yankeedave @Andy Cardinal @PeterT @Zella If you aren't tagged and would like to receive notification when these are posted, let me know and Ill tag you in future ones.
 
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James N.

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"... Instead of being discredited with Lee, he suggested to President Davis that I command the consolidated forces against Rosecrans in place of Bragg. But Bragg, probably suspecting something of the kind, precipitated the battle Chickamauga before my corps were all up. Some of General Lee's original correspondence with me proves these facts beyond all controversy."
I think his memory of the situation involving Bragg and Rosecrans is faulty at best and disingenuous at worst, however - Rosecrans' moves precipitating Chickamauga left Bragg little choice but to respond, especially when Rosecrans had left himself open to the possibility of defeat by detail, which Bragg might've actually pulled off but for the caution or incompetence of some of his subordinates.
 
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