Longstreet as football returns...

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Tascosa

Private
Joined
Feb 6, 2012
I see one of old "Lee's War Horse" as villain books is back on the shelves. Dowdey's old DEATH OF A NATION is back, re titled Lee And His Men at GETTYSBURG. For a couple of generations, many tried using Longstreet as the man who was most to blame for the failure at Gettysburg. By the 1940s, Freeman and others started easing off a bit, yet in the '50s Glen Tucker and Clifford Dowdey started the finger pointing again. Tucker finally eased off with Lee And Longstreet at Gettysburg.
Dowdey never did, and his book (in time for the 150 year thing) with the old arguments is back.

Now, many charges against him on day 2 seem quite wrong, there is the lingering questions about the Pickett\Pettigrew attack. Did Hill have much say in which units would go forward? Seems some units not in all that bad shape stayed back. Who made the odd decision to put the very weak Brockenbrough brigade on the left flank?
At least Longstreet can't be blamed for the miserable handling of the guns...
 

oldpete63

Sergeant Major
Joined
Jan 17, 2012
In my opinion - those books are the anti-Longstreet crowd, the books are good reading, but revisionism. Now that they're out again - I guess they're revisionist revisionism:wink: I would say that in the last 15 years or so - Longstreet has made a good comeback, and has a lot more pro-Longstreet backers (per - the fairly new monument at Gettysburg). In the case of Hill - it's become a mystery of where he was the 2nd and 3rd days. Even of the 1st day, his illness had him bed-ridden (should have been temporarily replaced, those divisions needed a Corps commander as a guiding hand). I believe it was Marse Robert who made the decisions on who was to go - and in the case of Hill's Corps participants - what the lineup would be. Back to Longstreet - they say Longstreet, Ewell, Stuart, Heth etc. were all at fault for the loss - but if I recall, Lee was the most honest person that day, by his words "It is all my fault". The buck stops there - a commander wins, he gets the pat on the back - same thing if he loses - he has to take the hit. At least Lee was man enough to admit who's fault it was. Old Pete's politics after the war made him fair game for blame. <<<< that's my story, and I'm sticking to it :tongue: .
 
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