Stonewall or Reynolds. Bigger loss??

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#1
Let me put this out there. First off I know I'm talking about one of the legends of the confederacy here. More of a myth than a man anymore, but hear me out. Both men were taken out in their primes, mid war. We all know the debates and what if's, when it comes to stonewall. Some speculate the entire war might have been different. I'm not one of these, but I do think his continued impact after Chancellorsville could have changed somethings. But when I think of the Union side, and when Reynolds was killed it's totally different. The Union was on it's heels, needing a win and now had Bobby Lee on their own turf. We all know the story, but coming very close to victory in Gettysburg. The confederacy was riding high in July 1863. They had proven leadership and had several large victories. The Union was short on proven leadership, and Reynolds was one of the only proven leaders around for the Union. Many have said including Shelby Foote he might have been the finest general in the Union at this time. He fell the first day at Gettysburg and I wonder what happens if he's there all three days or the rest of the war. So putting all the lore, hero worship aside. Tactically speaking, military leadership speaking, who was the bigger loss?
 

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matthew mckeon

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#4
It's tough to pick. The Army of the Potomac needed good corps commanders, and was stuck with ones that were mediocre, such as Slocum, or amateurs like Sickles. So Reynolds was missed, especially July 2nd, in the pursuit, and in 1864.

But the Confederate bench was shallow, and who could really replace Jackson? Both Hill and Ewell struggled.

My vote: Jackson.
 

whitworth

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#5
I look at it as it happened and is unchangeable. Armies have to adapt. Commanders change; it's inevitable in war.

I once read that every Union corps commander at Gettysburg was not in command at the end of the war, having either been killed, wounded or replaced. A rather obscure fact. Even Meade wasn't the overall commander of his army at the end.
 
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#6
Let me put this out there. First off I know I'm talking about one of the legends of the confederacy here. More of a myth than a man anymore, but hear me out. Both men were taken out in their primes, mid war. We all know the debates and what if's, when it comes to stonewall. Some speculate the entire war might have been different. I'm not one of these, but I do think his continued impact after Chancellorsville could have changed somethings. But when I think of the Union side, and when Reynolds was killed it's totally different. The Union was on it's heels, needing a win and now had Bobby Lee on their own turf. We all know the story, but coming very close to victory in Gettysburg. The confederacy was riding high in July 1863. They had proven leadership and had several large victories. The Union was short on proven leadership, and Reynolds was one of the only proven leaders around for the Union. Many have said including Shelby Foote he might have been the finest general in the Union at this time. He fell the first day at Gettysburg and I wonder what happens if he's there all three days or the rest of the war. So putting all the lore, hero worship aside. Tactically speaking, military leadership speaking, who was the bigger loss?
Both great Generals , I would have to vote Jackson, I believe his loss affected the Army of Northern Virginia for the remainder of the war. On the other hand, Grant would soon show up with the Army of the Potomac and be looking over the shoulder of George Meade and his Corps Commanders ( I believe there's actually a photo of that ! )
 
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#7
Both great Generals , I would have to vote Jackson, I believe his loss affected the Army of Northern Virginia for the remainder of the war. On the other hand, Grant would soon show up with the Army of the Potomac and be looking over the shoulder of George Meade and his Corps Commanders ( I believe there's actually a photo of that ! )
ls this the picture you mean mate ?

General US Grant & Staff Massaponax Church Va 1864.jpg
 
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#10
I look at it as it happened and is unchangeable. Armies have to adapt. Commanders change; it's inevitable in war.

I once read that every Union corps commander at Gettysburg was not in command at the end of the war, having either been killed, wounded or replaced. A rather obscure fact. Even Meade wasn't the overall commander of his army at the end.
Meade was always in command of the Army of the Potomac after Gettysburg, however Grant located his HQ with the army so the common misconception is that he was in command, he was not, he just suggested (probably ordered) Meade to do certain things but technically Meade was never replaced as the commander.
 

truthckr

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#11
No doubt U S Grant made all the difference for the Union. I'm a Southern Sympathizer, but I truly admire Grant for his unpretentious workman-like style. Jackson's loss I believe cost the CSA more than Reynold's loss cost the USA. As others have stated, both were good commanders and made a difference. The South never found an effective replacement for "Stonewall."
 

Carronade

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#13
Intriguing question. I'd say Jackson. I have a lot of regard for Reynolds, but by then the Union and AofP were developing a good crop of corps commanders like Hancock and Sedgewick - or for that matter Hooker. The command problem for the AofP was mainly just the top position, and by the time Reynolds died that was being resolved also.

I don't want to fall completely into the "Jackson woulda won the war" routine, but the Confederacy needed a decisive stroke, and he was a strong candidate to deliver it.
 

Mark F. Jenkins

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#14
I'll go with Jackson also. Not to disparage Reynolds' abilities, which were considerable, but Stonewall was both a valuable lieutenant of Lee's and something of a popular icon (even in his lifetime), so his loss impacted both Lee's operational capabilities and also general morale.
 

Georgia Sixth

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#15
Stonewall.

Both gents were tremendous generals, but with the disparity in manpower, leadership made a greater difference for the South, IMHO. Imagine Jackson at Gettysburg. At the Wilderness. At North Anna (that trap would have been sprung!).

Or, he might have been the answer to the West. Imagine Jackson squaring off with Sherman in 1864. Hmmmm.
 

CSA Today

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#16
Unquestionably Jackson, his loss forced Lee to reorganize the ANV and then launch a major campaign into enemy territory with two-thirds of his corps commanders untested in their new commands and without the proven support of a general of Stonewall Jackson’s ability.

"Up, men! Up, Virginians! Hold your fire until they are within fifty yards, and then give them the bayonet! And when you charge, yell like furies!"
General Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson
 
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#17
I would say Jackson
It's tough to pick. The Army of the Potomac needed good corps commanders, and was stuck with ones that were mediocre, such as Slocum, or amateurs like Sickles. So Reynolds was missed, especially July 2nd, in the pursuit, and in 1864.

But the Confederate bench was shallow, and who could really replace Jackson? Both Hill and Ewell struggled.

My vote: Jackson.
 

Poor Private

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#18
I hate doing the would have bit. they both died before they could affect Gettysburg. Now some say Jackson would have made a difference the south would have won. But Reynolds would have made a difference also in day 1. how do we know if he would have lived thaqt the south might have lost even bigger. And maybe there might have been no day 2 or 3.
 

Robtweb1

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#20
Jackson. The Confederacy was short on everything and Jackson's battlefield talents leveled the field to a great measure.
 



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