Discussion Sitrep may 4th 1863 Chancellorsville

atlantis

Sergeant Major
Joined
Nov 12, 2016
What am I missing? on the 5th the Potomac army recrossed the river and returned to the jump off point at Falmouth. What intel came in on the 4th to justify that. I was under the impression that a new strong position had been established that would have checked and assault by Lee.
 

jackt62

Captain
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Jul 28, 2015
Location
New York City
Not sure if there was any new intel. Hooker's Corps commanders advised against a withdrawal based on the fact that by May 4th, the AotP was positioned in a strong defensive arc with both flanks anchored at the Rapidan/Rappahannock rivers. But Hooker decided otherwise.
 

atlantis

Sergeant Major
Joined
Nov 12, 2016
Not sure if there was any new intel. Hooker's Corps commanders advised against a withdrawal based on the fact that by May 4th, the AotP was positioned in a strong defensive arc with both flanks anchored at the Rapidan/Rappahannock rivers. But Hooker decided otherwise.
Do you think he was suffering from effects of concussion.
 

jackt62

Captain
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Jul 28, 2015
Location
New York City
I think that Hooker threw in the towel much earlier, when he halted his advance through the Wilderness on May 1, and chose to adopt a defensive rather than offensive position. The effect of concussion didn't help his frame of mind but I don't think that was the critical component.
 

atlantis

Sergeant Major
Joined
Nov 12, 2016
I think that Hooker threw in the towel much earlier, when he halted his advance through the Wilderness on May 1, and chose to adopt a defensive rather than offensive position. The effect of concussion didn't help his frame of mind but I don't think that was the critical component.
I think the US army was in pretty good shape by end of the 4th and lee given his penchant for attacking would have overplayed his hand.
 

jackt62

Captain
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Jul 28, 2015
Location
New York City
True, Hooker's planned a very feasible campaign to envelop Lee's army. Problem was in the execution, starting with Stoneman's botched cavalry raid to cut communications, followed by Hooker's curious decision to switch gears by adopting a defensive position.
 

Lubliner

1st Lieutenant
Forum Host
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Nov 27, 2018
Location
Chattanooga, Tennessee
Not sure if there was any new intel. Hooker's Corps commanders advised against a withdrawal based on the fact that by May 4th, the AotP was positioned in a strong defensive arc with both flanks anchored at the Rapidan/Rappahannock rivers. But Hooker decided otherwise.
Do you think his confidence was so shattered that he feared Lee would get between him and Washington? Hence the fallback to Falmouth.
Lubliner.
 

jackt62

Captain
Joined
Jul 28, 2015
Location
New York City
I've been skeptical about the narrative that Hooker "lost confidence in himself." Supposedly that suggestion was based on a post-war conversation that General Abner Doubleday is alleged to have had with Hooker. Whether true or not, Hooker quickly switched from the offense to the defense in the hopes that the AotP would be in a more advantageous position with Lee hurling his army against it. But after Lee's repeated assaults and Hooker's pullback of Sickles' III Corps from Hazel Grove, perhaps Hooker (and given the stress imposed by the concussion he had suffered), decided that "saving" the AotP by crossing the river was his safest option.
 
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