Murfreesboro Murfreesboro — Which Side won?

Belfoured

Sergeant Major
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
The point is that if Bragg’s dispirited veterans could make it to Shelbyville, the fresh troops from Lebanon & the Nashville garrison could have as well. Because Bragg had ordered no rally point, the bulk of the army retreated south of Shelbyville. The Elk River was raising as well. Elements of the A of TN could have been overcome in detail, pinned against the Elk. Shelbyville, the key to southern Middle TN was there for the taking. It was only after it became clear that Rosecrsns had stopped short, ten miles away, that Bragg ordered his army to about face & reoccupy Shelbyville.
As a guy who has recently defended Meade for not more aggressively going after Lee following Gettysburg, I felt a duty to come to Rosey's defense - and that of Mendenhall and the Redlegs who would have had to pull their toys through that muck. 😎
 

Will Carry

First Sergeant
Joined
Jun 1, 2015
Location
The Tar Heel State.
Braxton Bragg came really close to defeating an army twice his size. It was a bold move to attack instead of finding a defensive position and wait for them Yanks to attack him.
 

Rhea Cole

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 2, 2019
Location
Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Braxton Bragg came really close to defeating an army twice his size. It was a bold move to attack instead of finding a defensive position and wait for them Yanks to attack him.
Had Bragg & Jefferson Davis not frittered away their advantages, there would have been parity. The forces engaged in the battle were close to one on one.
 

uaskme

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 9, 2016
Location
SE Tennessee
Both Lincoln & Grant were correct. The Emancipation Proclamation came into effect on January 1st 1863. For political purposes, a military victory had to accompany the Proclamation. As my coach used to say, it’s a win, not this kind or that kind, it’s a win.

What Grant understood is that your opponent is just as tired & scared as you are. There is nothing more vulnerable than a defeated force in retreat. As Forrest said, once you get a skeer on ‘em... All the men & land that Rosecrans did not take when he could had to be fought & fought at great cost later.

Lincoln & Grant understood the other’s point of view & acted accordingly.

Grant was a biased witness. One would have to study a few prior battles to understand that.

Militarily it is hard to denounce what Rosecrans did. He led from the front. Tactically maneuvered during the first day, and recovered. Adjusted after the first day and clocked Bragg. Braggs problem washer could not react. He could develop a battle plan but he couldn’t react to what the other guy was doing.

Lincoln was afraid that after the military reverses in 62 that England might recognize the South. Bragg marched to KY and held ground in Murphreesboro. Reclaiming much of what they had lost. A Confederate win here was through to of been the Game Changer the Confederates needed. That is why the win was so important to Lincoln.

Greeley was courting Rosecrans to run for President. Rosecrans became a Political Threat to Grant. Rosecrans tried to get Grant to support his movement to go to Vicksburg after the second battle of Corinth. Grant stopped Rosecrans pursuit of Price. It took Grant a year to take Vicksburg. Could of been done in 62. Rosecrans supply depot was at Louisville during the battle of Stones River. Bragg had twice the Calvary. Stones River was a brutal Battle which cut both sides up. So Rosecrans had good reasons to stop and rebuild his Army. Which he did in those 6 months. All contributed to the Tullahoma Campaign which was maybe the best Tactical maneuver during the War.
 

Rhea Cole

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 2, 2019
Location
Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Grant was a biased witness. One would have to study a few prior battles to understand that.

Militarily it is hard to denounce what Rosecrans did. He led from the front. Tactically maneuvered during the first day, and recovered. Adjusted after the first day and clocked Bragg. Braggs problem washer could not react. He could develop a battle plan but he couldn’t react to what the other guy was doing.

Lincoln was afraid that after the military reverses in 62 that England might recognize the South. Bragg marched to KY and held ground in Murphreesboro. Reclaiming much of what they had lost. A Confederate win here was through to of been the Game Changer the Confederates needed. That is why the win was so important to Lincoln.

Greeley was courting Rosecrans to run for President. Rosecrans became a Political Threat to Grant. Rosecrans tried to get Grant to support his movement to go to Vicksburg after the second battle of Corinth. Grant stopped Rosecrans pursuit of Price. It took Grant a year to take Vicksburg. Could of been done in 62. Rosecrans supply depot was at Louisville during the battle of Stones River. Bragg had twice the Calvary. Stones River was a brutal Battle which cut both sides up. So Rosecrans had good reasons to stop and rebuild his Army. Which he did in those 6 months. All contributed to the Tullahoma Campaign which was maybe the best Tactical maneuver during the War.
You are mistaken, due to the misuse of cavalry, The Army of Tennessee’s overwhelming advantage in cavalry meant that it had virtually no impact on the battle. If you refer to the map at the head of my first post, there was an intact force in Lebanon that Rosecrans could have ordered to pursue Bragg. The A of TN was SOUTH of Shelbyville & in no condition to regroup. Instead, Bragg was able to get his wits about him & reoccupy southern Middle TN unmolested.
 

uaskme

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 9, 2016
Location
SE Tennessee
You are mistaken, due to the misuse of cavalry, The Army of Tennessee’s overwhelming advantage in cavalry meant that it had virtually no impact on the battle. If you refer to the map at the head of my first post, there was an intact force in Lebanon that Rosecrans could have ordered to pursue Bragg. The A of TN was SOUTH of Shelbyville & in no condition to regroup. Instead, Bragg was able to get his wits about him & reoccupy southern Middle TN unmolested.
Rosecrans let Morgan leave to go on his raid to OH before he advanced to Murphreesboro. One of his pre conditions was to negate Some of Braggs Calvary advantage.

So, I don’t guess the following happened? Pp210 The Edge of Glory by Lamers. Wheelers Raid.


You seem to discount the Casualties at Stones River. Percentage wise it was worse that SHiloh. Wonder if Grant thought Shiloh was a Federal Victory? It took Halleck 20 days to advance from Shiloh to Corinth with a triple Force Advantage. Federals had 170k Troops at Corinth and they had 125 paddle wheeled steamers and a Navy at Pittsburg Landing. What did they do with it. Nothing. Yet Grant and Halleck spew this nonsense. It wasn’t the Military Capability that bothered Grant and Halleck about Rosecrans.

Another page from Lamers. Tells of Rosecrans losses. He didn’t have the substance to advance. Plus it was winter and mid TN was Confederate.

E89988F9-3EE7-42A8-9FE8-B76FD0A9AC61.jpeg


74121238-18E5-4077-AE7B-E81EC4C8B96B.jpeg
 

Rhea Cole

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 2, 2019
Location
Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Rosecrans let Morgan leave to go on his raid to OH before he advanced to Murphreesboro. One of his pre conditions was to negate Some of Braggs Calvary advantage.

So, I don’t guess the following happened? Pp210 The Edge of Glory by Lamers. Wheelers Raid.


You seem to discount the Casualties at Stones River. Percentage wise it was worse that SHiloh. Wonder if Grant thought Shiloh was a Federal Victory? It took Halleck 20 days to advance from Shiloh to Corinth with a triple Force Advantage. Federals had 170k Troops at Corinth and they had 125 paddle wheeled steamers and a Navy at Pittsburg Landing. What did they do with it. Nothing. Yet Grant and Halleck spew this nonsense. It wasn’t the Military Capability that bothered Grant and Halleck about Rosecrans.

Another page from Lamers. Tells of Rosecrans losses. He didn’t have the substance to advance. Plus it was winter and mid TN was Confederate.

View attachment 395919

View attachment 395922
Let me make something clear, I have been a living history volunteer at Stones River NB for over 25 years. For 20 years, I participated in the Hallowed Ground Lantern Tour of Stones River National Cemetery. I have an intimate knowledge of the fates of casualties of the battle.

I have been privileged to have ED Bearss discuss the battle with me on several occasions. What I am discussing in this thread is not the usual boilerplate. Look at the maps. Bragg’s much ballyhooed flank attack was, in fact, a diversion that guaranteed defeat. Once you grasp that tactical reality, the entire narrative of the battle changes profoundly. I haven’t forgotten how the battle was written about, I do however, evaluate it differently.
 

uaskme

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 9, 2016
Location
SE Tennessee
Let me make something clear, I have been a living history volunteer at Stones River NB for over 25 years. For 20 years, I participated in the Hallowed Ground Lantern Tour of Stones River National Cemetery. I have an intimate knowledge of the fates of casualties of the battle.

I have been privileged to have ED Bearss discuss the battle with me on several occasions. What I am discussing in this thread is not the usual boilerplate. Look at the maps. Bragg’s much ballyhooed flank attack was, in fact, a diversion that guaranteed defeat. Once you grasp that tactical reality, the entire narrative of the battle changes profoundly. I haven’t forgotten how the battle was written about, I do however, evaluate it differently.
You have used Grants Narrative that Rosecrans lost the battle of Stones River. I have advanced the discussion as directed at me. You said Confederate Calvary had little effect. Said that Grant was correct that Rosecrans was a failure. Said that Rosecrans should of advanced and destroyed Braggs Army after Stones River.

Maybe you can share with us All the occasions during the Civil War where a battle was followed with a pursuit which destroyed an opposing Army.

I hope Bearss didn’t use Grants Memoirs as a primary Source. Be very Disappointed if he did.

Party on with your unique analysis of Stones River. You might want to get you a good book on Rosecrans.
 

Rhea Cole

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 2, 2019
Location
Murfreesboro, Tennessee
You have used Grants Narrative that Rosecrans lost the battle of Stones River. I have advanced the discussion as directed at me. You said Confederate Calvary had little effect. Said that Grant was correct that Rosecrans was a failure. Said that Rosecrans should of advanced and destroyed Braggs Army after Stones River.

Maybe you can share with us All the occasions during the Civil War where a battle was followed with a pursuit which destroyed an opposing Army.

I hope Bearss didn’t use Grants Memoirs as a primary Source. Be very Disappointed if he did.

Party on with your unique analysis of Stones River. You might want to get you a good book on Rosecrans.
I haven’t used Grant’s narrative at all. Rosecrans did the same thing in every battle he fought. After achieving a tactical victory, no small thing, he pauased & regrouped. It is when an opponent is retreating that they are the most vulnerable if you maintain contact. Loose contact & you allow the opponent to regroup & youhave to fight them all over again. Rosecrans’ brilliant Tullahoma Campaign had to be fought because he did not take Shelbyville when he could have.

I have studied Rosecrans for over 20 years. In my opinion, his creation of the Army of the Cumberland during the winter & spring of 1863 was a master class in leadership. The 240,000 men in the Department of the Cumberland, under his guidance, laid the groundwork for victory in the West. No other general achieved an organizational victory on that scale.

As has been amply documented, under the stress of combat, Rosecrans flitted around the battlefield giving nonsense commands in a staccato stutter. Ironically, it was the game board like tool that Garfield created to counter Rosecrans’ over excitement that triggered the misalignment at Chickamauga.

My analysis of Rosecrans is the fruit of a long, in depth study. I give lectures on his Signal Corps, logistics & intelligence system. If someone has written a new book or discovered new documentation, I want to hear about it. For now, however, I am still analyzing & drawing conclusions from the data I already have at my disposal.
 

Rhea Cole

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 2, 2019
Location
Murfreesboro, Tennessee
@Rhea Cole, what was the tool Garfield created to mitigate Rosecrans' over excitement?
Garfield was Rosecrans’ chief of staff. Between the two of them they came up with a graphic way to depict the battlefield. I always envision it looking like an Avalon Hill game board. I have read numerous references to it, but haven’t a source on how it actually worked. The concept was to interpret reports & use a gridded map to display the position of units. Via this tool, Rosecrans & his staff could have situational awareness at the HQ.

Rosecrans had approached officers & confounded them by shouting confusing orders on a jackhammer stutter during past battles. Apparently it was a stress reaction. He had the blood & brains of an aide splattered on him as he rode along the firing line at Stones River. Leading from the front had obvious limitations. The graphic device appears to have been a way to avoid the stress reaction.
 

David Moore

Sergeant Major
Joined
Mar 26, 2014
Location
Washington, DC
I haven’t used Grant’s narrative at all. Rosecrans did the same thing in every battle he fought. After achieving a tactical victory, no small thing, he pauased & regrouped. It is when an opponent is retreating that they are the most vulnerable if you maintain contact. Loose contact & you allow the opponent to regroup & youhave to fight them all over again. Rosecrans’ brilliant Tullahoma Campaign had to be fought because he did not take Shelbyville when he could have.

I have studied Rosecrans for over 20 years. In my opinion, his creation of the Army of the Cumberland during the winter & spring of 1863 was a master class in leadership. The 240,000 men in the Department of the Cumberland, under his guidance, laid the groundwork for victory in the West. No other general achieved an organizational victory on that scale.

As has been amply documented, under the stress of combat, Rosecrans flitted around the battlefield giving nonsense commands in a staccato stutter. Ironically, it was the game board like tool that Garfield created to counter Rosecrans’ over excitement that triggered the misalignment at Chickamauga.

My analysis of Rosecrans is the fruit of a long, in depth study. I give lectures on his Signal Corps, logistics & intelligence system. If someone has written a new book or discovered new documentation, I want to hear about it. For now, however, I am still analyzing & drawing conclusions from the data I already have at my disposal.
I can recommend a book to you. Well documented too.
 

David Moore

Sergeant Major
Joined
Mar 26, 2014
Location
Washington, DC
I haven’t used Grant’s narrative at all. Rosecrans did the same thing in every battle he fought. After achieving a tactical victory, no small thing, he pauased & regrouped. It is when an opponent is retreating that they are the most vulnerable if you maintain contact. Loose contact & you allow the opponent to regroup & youhave to fight them all over again. Rosecrans’ brilliant Tullahoma Campaign had to be fought because he did not take Shelbyville when he could have.

I have studied Rosecrans for over 20 years. In my opinion, his creation of the Army of the Cumberland during the winter & spring of 1863 was a master class in leadership. The 240,000 men in the Department of the Cumberland, under his guidance, laid the groundwork for victory in the West. No other general achieved an organizational victory on that scale.

As has been amply documented, under the stress of combat, Rosecrans flitted around the battlefield giving nonsense commands in a staccato stutter. Ironically, it was the game board like tool that Garfield created to counter Rosecrans’ over excitement that triggered the misalignment at Chickamauga.

My analysis of Rosecrans is the fruit of a long, in depth study. I give lectures on his Signal Corps, logistics & intelligence system. If someone has written a new book or discovered new documentation, I want to hear about it. For now, however, I am still analyzing & drawing conclusions from the data I already have at my disposal.
Do you believe Grant got drunk in Chattanooga?
 

David Moore

Sergeant Major
Joined
Mar 26, 2014
Location
Washington, DC
Put it out there! Fair warning, between seminars, book forums, CW Roundtable lecture tours & authors who have visited Stone's River, I have probably met the author & read their book sometime during the last 25 years.
C’est moi.
Ive been to Stones River for book signings a couple of times. Ive met or conversed on line with most of the current authors who’ve written about Rosecrans. I’ve lectured all over the country. More importantly I have researched for over 30 years in all the important libraries that pertain to Rosecrans including of course UCLA. My goal is to back with documentation my conclusions.
 

Rhea Cole

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 2, 2019
Location
Murfreesboro, Tennessee
C’est moi.
Ive been to Stones River for book signings a couple of times. Ive met or conversed on line with most of the current authors who’ve written about Rosecrans. I’ve lectured all over the country. More importantly I have researched for over 30 years in all the important libraries that pertain to Rosecrans including of course UCLA. My goal is to back with documentation my conclusions.
Cool, always happy to run into someone interested in Rosecrans. He is, without a doubt, one of the most interesting characters of that period, which is saying something.
 

Sbc

First Sergeant
Joined
Aug 18, 2015
Location
Easley, South Carolina
Per T. Harry Williams, in an early 1865 cabinet meeting, President Lincoln recounted a number of Union victories including Stones River. Grant interjected “Stones River was not a victory.” Lincoln replied “On that we will have to disagree.”

Who was right?
The under takers won. Tactical draw by 1/2/63. Strategic stalemate for nearly 6 months afterward.
 

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