Interview: Longstreet says Beauregard never had the full confidence of Jeff Davis

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lelliott19

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Longstreet on Beauregard.JPG

On the occasion of Longstreet's visit to Antietam in 1893, a correspondent of the Washington Post recorded the General's opinions and criticisms on a number of topics. Here is what General Longstreet had to say about P.G.T. Beauregard.

"The same may be said of Beauregard, a brave, mettlesome soldier in action, and a strategist of the first order. He was, like Johnston, equal to any command. He labored under the same disadvantage with Johnston-- he had aroused the personal displeasure and jealousy of the President, and never had his full confidence. He was very resourceful, made excellent plans, and was intensely patriotic. His military suggestions received little heed at Richmond. He undoubtedly saved the capital from Butler."
Note: This post is Part 8 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, McClellan, and more. Here are the links to Parts 1-7, 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

Source: Reprinted from the Washington Post of June 1893, the article appeared in The Times Dispatch. (Richmond, VA.), November 12, 1911, page 3.

@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 know when these are posted, let me know and Ill tag you in future ones. <Up next, Longstreet on Hood.>
 

nc native

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I've been reading this interview with interest and must say that Longstreet hits the nail on
the head with his evaluation of his fellow Confederate generals for the most part. I believe
that Beauregard was not used to his fullest potential and Joe Johnston was not given a
fair shake because of Jefferson Davis's interference in the military affairs of the Confederacy.
Lincoln did a much better job of letting his generals win the war for him although he was
too patient with certain commanders (McCllean). Davis on the other hand was too impatient
(removing Joe Johnston during the Atlanta campaign) and let personal grudges get in the
way of selecting the best man for command in many situations.

I do believe that Longstreet's evaluation of Early was a bit harsh and Early was not
the incompetent general that Longstreet believed he was. Early's force was not exactly
the cream of the crop in 1864 when it came to manpower. (his cavalry was especially
inferior compared to what was facing him) Longstreet's judgment is probably colored
by his verbal and written feud with Jubal Early after the war.
 
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rbasin

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I've been reading this interview with interest and must say that Longstreet hits the nail on
the head with his evaluation of his fellow Confederate generals for the most part. I believe
that Beauregard was not used to his fullest potential and Joe Johnston was not given a
fair shake because of Jefferson Davis's interference in the military affairs of the Confederacy.
Lincoln did a much better job of letting his generals win the war for him although he was
too patient with certain commanders (McCllean). Davis on the other hand was too impatient
(removing Joe Johnston during the Atlanta campaign) and let personal grudges get in the
way of selecting the best man for command in many situations.

I do believe that Longstreet's evaluation of Early was a bit harsh and Early was not
the incompetent general that Longstreet believed he was. Early's force was not exactly
the cream of the crop in 1864 when it came to manpower. (his cavalry was especially
inferior compared to what was facing him) Longstreet's judgment is probably colored
by his verbal and written feud with Jubal Early after the war.
To be fair, Early wasn't the cream of the crop either. Had Hill been healthy, he may have been a better choice. Even Stuart may have been a better choice, but that's very debatable.

Where did I read that Early got his commands later in the war because he had survived?
 
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Coonewah Creek

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He was very resourceful, made excellent plans, and was intensely patriotic.
Can you imagine the humiliation he must have felt, being named Theater Commander prior to Hood's Nashville Campaign, and yet being bypassed, kept in the dark and basically ignored by Hood? And yet he must have been devoted to the Confederacy to the end, because he still did his best to try and compensate for Hood's complete lack of army logistical support by forwarding all the war materiel he could to the AoT.
 

Saruman

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View attachment 208183
On the occasion of Longstreet's visit to Antietam in 1893, a correspondent of the Washington Post recorded the General's opinions and criticisms on a number of topics. Here is what General Longstreet had to say about P.G.T. Beauregard.

"The same may be said of Beauregard, a brave, mettlesome soldier in action, and a strategist of the first order. He was, like Johnston, equal to any command. He labored under the same disadvantage with Johnston-- he had aroused the personal displeasure and jealousy of the President, and never had his full confidence. He was very resourceful, made excellent plans, and was intensely patriotic. His military suggestions received little heed at Richmond. He undoubtedly saved the capital from Butler."
Note: This post is Part 8 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, McClellan, and more. Here are the links to Parts 1-7, 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

Source: Reprinted from the Washington Post of June 1893, the article appeared in The Times Dispatch. (Richmond, VA.), November 12, 1911, page 3.

@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 know when these are posted, let me know and Ill tag you in future ones. <Up next, Longstreet on Hood.>
To be fair to Jefferson Davis, I think Beauregard was largely responsible for the poisoning their relationship. In October 1861, Beauregard submitted his report on the battle of Manassas. He claimed that before the battle he had conceived a brilliant plan that would have resulted in the capture of Washington and Baltimore but that he had been prevented from carrying it out by Davis.

This completely unrealistic and overly complex plan was never put into writing and was actually relayed to Davis verbally by one of Beauregard's excited aides. Davis rightfully dismissed it. However, Beauregard leaked his battle report to the press in a shameless act of self-promotion which destroyed any trust and future relationship with the President.
 
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WJC

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Can you imagine the humiliation he must have felt, being named Theater Commander prior to Hood's Nashville Campaign, and yet being bypassed, kept in the dark and basically ignored by Hood? And yet he must have been devoted to the Confederacy to the end, because he still did his best to try and compensate for Hood's complete lack of army logistical support by forwarding all the war materiel he could to the AoT.
Beauregard most certainly was committed and loyal to the rebel cause and- in my opinion- not allowed to contribute to his full potential.
 

WJC

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Lincoln did a much better job of letting his generals win the war for him although he was
too patient with certain commanders (McCllean). Davis on the other hand was too impatient
(removing Joe Johnston during the Atlanta campaign) and let personal grudges get in the
way of selecting the best man for command in many situations.
The key difference between Lincoln and Davis, both of whom began with inflated opinions of their military abilities, seems to be that Lincoln learned from his mistakes while Davis never did.
 

rbasin

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The key difference between Lincoln and Davis, both of whom began with inflated opinions of their military abilities, seems to be that Lincoln learned from his mistakes while Davis never did.
Did Lincoln learn? When did he finally dump Butler?
 
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WJC

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Did Lincoln learn? When did he finally dump Butler?
Thanks for your response.
Neither Lincoln, Stanton, nor Grant 'dumped' Butler. However, he was kept where he could inflict minimal harm.
The reasons for that and questions of the wisdom of keeping him might make a good thread.
 

rbasin

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Thanks for your response.
Neither Lincoln, Stanton, nor Grant 'dumped' Butler. However, he was kept where he could inflict minimal harm.
The reasons for that and questions of the wisdom of keeping him might make a good thread.
Wasn't he dumped after ft Fisher?
 
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WJC

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Wasn't he dumped after ft Fisher?
Thanks for your response.
Yes, finally, although they kept him around with the idea of making him prosecutor in the expected trial of Jefferson Davis.
 
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