Very Informative Article on How McClellan Outsmarted Lee at Antietam

Hoseman

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#21
Would you be so kind as to break down the manpower superiority? I know it's onerous, but I'd rather know where you're coming from before drilling down a bit.

It so happens that the commonly given force sizes at Antietam have a number of systemic problems with them, and this is in no small part because the ORs omit most of the period 2-20 September for reports so we do not have September 10 trimonthly returns for either participant. As such the force sizes have to be determined from secondary information, and errors can quickly creep in.

For example, the reports used by Ezra Carman included the strength of Jackson's division as 1,784 infantry and 310 artillery. This appears to have been the strength on the afternoon of the 16th, when Jackson's division arrived on the field, but the commander of Starkes' brigade (one of the four in Jackson's division) gave his strength when he actually went into action at about 1,400-1,500. This suggests that much of Jackson's division had closed up since his strength was measured for the 1,784 number.

Conversely, the main source for McClellan's numerical strength by unit is a list which gives 1st Corps' official strength as 14,856. However, Meade stated that only about 9,000 men actually went into battle on the 17th.

Thus I would like to see where your numbers come from, as it's quite likely errors like this are involved.
I have read multiple books which stated that when the battle commenced there were less than 30,000 Confederates on the field vs 85,000 Union soldiers. In the afternoon, reinforcements started to arrive after having hurriedly marched from Harper's Ferry. A quick google search showed 87,000 Union vs 38,000 CS (Wiki) and another site showed 87,000 Union vs 45,000 CS (battlefields.org). Many of these stated CS soldiers arrived late in the afternoon after the attacks on the CS left and center had been repulsed. So it was nearly a 3:1 advantage before noon when the fighting occurred at the Dunker Church, Cornfield on the CS left and the Bloody Lane in the center. Had the reinforcements not showed up at just the right time to check the attack on the CS right near Burnside bridge, the union forces most likely would have rolled up the ANV and it would have turned into a disaster for Lee.
 

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Saphroneth

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#22
'...major raid...' being the operative phrase. The viability of Washington could be threatened only if that link could be broken and HELD long enough to make DC untenable. And how long would that take? Destroying a rail bridge doesn't stop shipborne traffic.
Well, cutting the Washington supply route from a rail line to a long journey by ship down the Chesapeake and up again is a pretty good outcome, and setting up batteries on the lower Potomac can cut that route off as well.

Any '...raid...' that simply destroys and moves on allows the Union to restore service.
Perhaps, but not quickly. It took a long time to upgrade the destroyed rail lines down from Aquia to Richmond enough that they could supply a large army, for example.
 
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#23
Linear assets are quickly repaired once the destruction ends.
Washington is accessible by means of the Potomac and Annapolis.
Washington, D.C. was not equivalent of London, Paris, Frankfurt, Berlin or St. Petersburg. Nor was the idea that the loss of a capital decisive in concluding a war conclusively demonstrated.
The United States by July 1862 was a huge country. There were 17 contiguous paid labor states, plus California and Oregon. There were 4 border states well occupied by United States forces. The United States had re-established control over New Orleans, but that did not end the Civil War.
Washington, D.C. was a small, not very tidy city, located where it was because Virginia was the center of the country in 1787.
It was not New York, Boston, Philadelphia.
 

Saphroneth

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#24
I have read multiple books which stated that when the battle commenced there were less than 30,000 Confederates on the field vs 85,000 Union soldiers. In the afternoon, reinforcements started to arrive after having hurriedly marched from Harper's Ferry.


A quick google search showed 87,000 Union vs 38,000 CS (Wiki) and another site showed 87,000 Union vs 45,000 CS (battlefields.org).

Okay, thanks, so the 87,000 is the number of Union soldiers on the field at the start of the battle. Let's have a look at that number.

The number is directly from McClellan's report, which gives 87,164 as such:


1st Corps 14,856
2nd Corps 18,813
5th Corps (minus one division) 12,930
6th Corps 12,300
9th Corps 13,819
12th Corps 10,126
Cavalry Division 4,320

Now, immediately the problem should be clear - this is not a state for the morning of the 17th. It is a list of all forces who were present in the battle at all.

But worse is that these numbers are not the number of troops actually on the field - they're something else. 1st Corps only took about 9,000 men into battle, and indeed on the 18th Meade reported his strength in officers and men present for duty as 6,364 - it's a few days later that his strength is reported much higher, after stragglers have closed up, and indeed it looks like the strength reports above are more or less the September 22 states plus reported casualties.

So the list from McClellan's report is the strength of all forces who were in the battle, before straggling. (ED: I suspect it's his PFD strength from the missing 10 September report.)

Is the same true of Lee's strength?

Well, no. Not at all. The 38,000 number is based on Carman, who gave the breakdown as 3,629 artillery, 4,500 cavalry and 29,222 infantry. Note that this is "engaged" infantry, not all infantry - Carman explicitly disregarded Armistead's brigade and two brigades of AP Hill as they were not "engaged".

Since only AP Hill's division arrived late in the day, I'll disregard them but look at all other Confederate units.


McLaws - this is estimated based off McLaws' AAR, and is infantry actually present on the field (2,823 infantry).
RH Anderson's division - Carman bases this estimate off DH Hill saying that Anderson brought 3000-4000 infantry to support him. Since Armistead was detached he is not counted here, and was not counted where he actually was either. Anderson's division was 5,324 PFD on the 22nd, and suffered about 1,300 casualties at Antietam - it's hard to justify lower than 5,000 on the field counting Armistead.
DH Hill claimed he had 3,000 infantry, but Carman refutes this and calculates 5,449 infantry based off reports - this has interesting implications for RH Anderson's division, as this size is based off a report from DH Hill. In fact it looks like Carman did not go far enough:
Ripley's brigade, Carman determined from correspondence that there were 1,349 officers and men in action.
Rodes' brigade, Carman accepted Rodes' claims of less than 800 but in fact three of the five regiments (in correspondence with Carman) claimed numbers which totalled 840. This suggests that Rodes' brigade was larger than Carman thought, perhaps up to 1,400 strong.
Colquitt's brigade - adding up regimental strengths and accepting Carman's guess for the 13th Alabama gives about 1,800 or so.
Garland's brigade is given 756 by Caman, but the 5th NC alone had 625 men at Antietam and there were four other regiments in the brigade. An estimate of 1,800 seems a safe lowball, on September 2 they had over 2,500 PFD
GB Anderson's brigade was given by Carman as 1,174
Thus a reasonable total for DH Hill's brigade is more like 6,500 infantry.
Walker's division is given by Carman at 3,764.
DR Jones
' division is another one which is problematic. Carman estimates 3,311 infantry, while going by brigade:
Toombs' brigade was estimated as being 357 in the 2nd and 20th Georgia, 281 in the 15th and 17th Georgia, and 140 men present in the 11th Georgia (of which only 5 companies were present). Total 781.
Garnett's brigade is given as only 261 officers and men.
Kemper's brigade was estimated by adding together regimental reports and estimating the 28th Virginia (to be 443), but others reported the brigade at 500-600 muskets which implies that the 58th was a strong regiment. Use 500 here.
GT Anderson was actually under someone else at this point, Carman estimates 597.
Drayton was estimated by Carman at 465, excluding the 11th Georgia (detached), but he used 200 for the 15th SC when he'd been told by a veteran that the number should be 300. He also did not include the Phillips' Legion, which was 135 men ("To Honour These Men") and thus the total should be 700 (465, plus the 100 dropped from the 15th SC, plus 135 in the Legion).
Jenkins' brigade - Carman quoted a newspaper for 755, but the brigadier reported 1,250 exclusive of the 1st SC (at 106). So 1,356.
So the total actually with Jones was 3,600, with one brigade elsewhere.
Evans was where GT Anderson's brigade had gone.
Hood claimed about 2,000 men in both brigades.
Evans is someone for whom Carman reports 284 infantry.
And as before GT Anderson is 597.
So this is about 2,880 infantry.
Jackson is given by Carman as 1,784 infantry, but as I've already mentioned this appears to be the state as of arrival on the field, with Starkes claiming 1,400-1,500 in his brigade actually in action.
Taking Starkes' brigade as being about 1,400 on the morning of the 17th and expanding the other brigades pro-rata gives about 4,400.
Ewell
was claimed by Carman as 3,904 infantry, and I'll accept it despite some irregularities.
And AP Hill had not arrived yet.

Total infantry count: 32,871 on the field on the morning of the 17th, minimizing Confederate size in many cases.
Plus the artillery (-337 for the artillery with AP Hill) and cavalry, this gives about 40,500, based either off Carman, or Carman's sources, or in places direct sources Carman rejected.

But, you may claim, isn't this still much weaker than McClellan? Well, yes, but McClellan's strength is before straggling while the strength as above is after straggling. With straggling so bad (more than a third of Meade's division didn't show up to fight, and some corps seem to have been even worse) the two numbers are simply not comparable.


So what is?

Well, Carman of course! Carman also calculated numbers for the Federals, and he estimated 46,146 Federal infantry engaged at Antietam. This has the opposite problem to the Rebels that in some cases Carman used PFD strength to calculate Engaged (which means the strengths of 2nd and 9th Corps are a bit dubious) but we'll use it for now, and we also need to add in most of 5th and 6th Corps as they were not Engaged.
5th Corps can be estimated at about 7,000 infantry (most of which is Morell at 5,407 PFD, with Buchanan and Lovell's brigades assumed to be about 2,500 between them and the 2nd and 10th NY very small) and 6th Corps was about 9,000 infantry if no straggling took place (Battles and Losses II p 595 holds that 75%-80% of 6th Corps were combatants). Since Irwin's Brigade was engaged and was about 1,700 (Carman) along with Buchanan's brigade the same at about 1,600, this means about an extra 12,700 to Carman's number.

Thus McClellan's infantry present, counting everyone, is not more than 59,000, and infantry to infantry on the morning of the 17th it's 32,000 Confederate to 59,000 Union.

Except there's another problem. See, some of those hadn't arrived yet when the battle starts - at about 11 AM Morell is just closing up and Franklin's column is entering Keedysville.

Cutting them out again means that the troops actually available to McClellan in the morning phase are... pretty much Carman's estimated engaged, plus Lovell's brigade but minus Irwin's, so it's a wash.

Thus, in infantry it's
32,000 Confederate to 46,000 Union. About a 3:2 advantage until Morell and Franklin arrive, whereupon it becomes about a 2:1 advantage until AP Hill shows up.

This is what happens if you measure both sides in the same way, and you're careful about it.

Taking whole campaign strengths instead you can get it much closer, with Confederate strengths around 78,000 (that's October 10 plus add-back of casualties) and Union strength more like 110,000 if you get really liberal with who you include. (September 20th report ~93,000 PFD, plus 13,000 casualties, this includes Couch.)
 
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67th Tigers

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#25
I have read multiple books which stated that when the battle commenced there were less than 30,000 Confederates on the field vs 85,000 Union soldiers. In the afternoon, reinforcements started to arrive after having hurriedly marched from Harper's Ferry. A quick google search showed 87,000 Union vs 38,000 CS (Wiki) and another site showed 87,000 Union vs 45,000 CS (battlefields.org). Many of these stated CS soldiers arrived late in the afternoon after the attacks on the CS left and center had been repulsed. So it was nearly a 3:1 advantage before noon when the fighting occurred at the Dunker Church, Cornfield on the CS left and the Bloody Lane in the center. Had the reinforcements not showed up at just the right time to check the attack on the CS right near Burnside bridge, the union forces most likely would have rolled up the ANV and it would have turned into a disaster for Lee.
The number of Federal effectives engaged according to Carman was

"That these figures correctly state the number reported as “present for duty” is not questioned; that they correctly give the number “in action” is an error. Every old soldier who served in the war of 1861-1865 knows the difference between the number of those who answered the roll-call in camp, or were accounted for as present, and the number of those who went onto the fighting line, a difference of from 20 to 40 per cent, depending upon the discipline of the organization, some of the very best in the Union army considering themselves very fortunate in getting four-fifths of their men in action. 2

Clemens, Thomas G.; Carman, Ezra A.. The Maryland Campaign of September 1862: Vol. II: Antietam (Kindle Locations 12104-12109). Casemate Publishers. Kindle Edition.

Carman calculated 46,146 infantry and 258 artillery pieces engaged, thus:

Carman%2BEngaged.png


Now, some of these numbers are high, as all that could be found was official PFD numbers and Carman noted they were high but didn't modify them. The unengaged units were not counted. Thus we can modify the figures:

1st Corps is solid

2nd Corps contains one of the signal issues. The colonel of the new 132nd Pa says he had 750 PFD (the number Carman used), but when they did a headcount after the action there were 364 men after suffering 152 casualties. Thus he actually carried 516 men into action. This is fully in line with percentages of 1st, 5th and 6th Corps as known.

5th Corps - I used to so some maths with but Dan Vermilya found a statement from the 17th that the Corps had 8,000 effectives, including artillery. This equates to 7,400 infantry effectives

6th Corps - Franklin says he had 8,100 effectives at South Mountain, and deducting SM casualties (533) and the arty (880) Franklin should have had 6,687 infantry.

9th Corps strength is all over the place.

12th Corps - Greene stated his aggregate present, which Carman took as effectives

A good estimate of the real Federal effective strength on the field would be:

Carman%2BEngaged%2BCorrected.png


The rebels likely held the field that morning with around 35,000 infantry effectives, 225 guns and 4,500 cavalry (Lee says around 40,000 men). 5-6,000 stragglers rejoined during the day and AP Hill with 4,000 infantry and 18 guns to give 45,000 infantry effectives that fought ca. 51,000 Federal effectives, including those not engaged.

This is a ratio of the rebels being 88% of the infantry strength of the Federals, which is close to the marching strength of ca. 86%.
 

Saphroneth

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#27
Washington, D.C. was not equivalent of London, Paris, Frankfurt, Berlin or St. Petersburg. Nor was the idea that the loss of a capital decisive in concluding a war conclusively demonstrated.
It behooves me to point out that the loss of DC would be an enormous hit to the prestige of the government, and historically speaking dissatisfaction with the war reduced the Republican minority considerably (for example).
 
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#28
It behooves me to point out that the loss of DC would be an enormous hit to the prestige of the government, and historically speaking dissatisfaction with the war reduced the Republican minority considerably (for example).
It would have been very embarrassing. I think it would have led to an armistice. But it would not have materially impaired the military capability of the United States. It would have changed history. Maybe it would have been the United States that formed a militaristic, nationalist party and conquered the nation.
I don't know why the United States did not move the capital voluntarily to New York once Virginia seceded.
 

Saphroneth

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#29
I don't know why the United States did not move the capital voluntarily to New York once Virginia seceded.
Again, prestige. It's an important part of how people think, and an important part of how people thought.

It would have been very embarrassing. I think it would have led to an armistice.
Then, surely, you can see why Lee would aim to do it? Quite apart from anything else, it demonstrates that the Confederacy has the ability to make a name for itself...
 

Saphroneth

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#31
And outfoxed by Grant when the AotP got across the James.
That did make me start thinking about what it is which could define outmanoeuvering someone. I think it's probably in being able to:

Close down enemy options
Open up opportunities for yourself
Force the enemy to take an unwanted decision
Keep open your own contingencies
and exploit how the enemy reacts

So Napoleon would typically launch his attacks by striking at the junctions of enemy coalitions, forcing them both to retreat towards their own centres of gravity. He would also tend to fix an enemy in place with one part of his army and then manoeuvre around the flank with another part, say.

In this light, assuming Lee wanted to do something more in the Maryland campaign than take Harpers Ferry, McClellan managed by his manoeuvres before Antietam to close off Lee's options and compel him to retreat across the Potomac. There were also a couple of places where Lee was nearly forced into an unwanted decision or otherwise further outmanoeuvred (such as when McLaws was nearly pinned in the Pleasant Valley) but they didn't come to pass and are thus only really of interest academically in exploring what McClellan's other options were.
I'd also argue that McClellan outmanoeuvred Lee by anticipating his attempt to recross the Potomac at Williamsburg, which he blocked with his fresh troops.

Burnside could not be said to have outmanouevred Lee in any sense.

The next battle on the list is Chancellorsville, and Hooker got outmanoeuvred there - Lee closed off all avenues of advance.

Gettysburg is a bit trickier. It's basically a meeting engagement, though Meade earns some points for blocking the junction which would otherwise have allowed Lee to move north past his army. Lee wasn't really compelled to take any unwanted decisions, while Meade ended up without any uncommitted reserve so didn't really have much of a contingency.
The campaign (especially post-Gettysburg) is a bit more clear cut, though - Lee avoided being cut off in his escape all the way south to Confederate territory by dint of manoeuvering, though he was aided in this by Meade's quick concentration at Gettysburg (as Meade had left his trains behind).

The Overland is trickier because the core concept (certainly as expressed by Halleck) was to totally eschew manoeuvres and just beat the hell out of the Army of Northen Virginia. Both sides performed all right, though Lee generally managed to dig in before Grant's force got there and wasn't caught in a position that was difficult to defend.

The move to and crossing of the James was a good move as it reduced Lee's viable options, though the resultant months of near-immobility was probably not a good thing from the manoeuvre standpoint (being attritional instead).


Returning to Antietam, it's interesting to consider whether McClellan's rapid marches (which caused so much straggling) can be considered to be an overall "plus" for manoeuvre or not. They appear to have hit both sides equally in terms of the amount of straggling caused.
 
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#32
Lee himself stated that McClellan took offensive action "immediately" after he became aware of the Lost Order:

A copy of the order directing the movement of the army from Fredericktown had fallen into that hands of General McClellan, and disclosed to him the disposition of our forces. He immediately began to push forward rapidly, and on the afternoon of the 13th was reported approaching the pass in South Mountain, on the Boonsborough and Fredericktown road. (Official Records, serial 027, p. 0146, https://ehistory.osu.edu/books/official-records/027/0146)
Regarding McClellan's supposed "failure" to engage Lee on the 18th, historians rarely mention the fact that McClellan was waiting on ammo resupply from Washington on the 18th and that there was a suspicious, inexplicable delay in the arrival of the ammo. McClellan was low on small-arms ammo and very low on artillery ammo. The arty ammo should have reached him by around 6:00 AM at the latest, but it didn't arrive at Hagerstown, 6 miles from McCellan's camp, until 1:00 PM, and the small-arms ammo arrived even later. Heysinger discusses this strange incident in detail in Antietam and the Maryland and Virginia Campaigns of 1862 (pp. 145-149.)
 

Saphroneth

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#33
Regarding McClellan's supposed "failure" to engage Lee on the 18th
This is mostly explicable by the fact that the majority of McClellan's brigades had been sent in assault and routed, while Lee had a solid line. McClellan can be viewed as resting up his routed brigades and bringing in stragglers (since entire corps were down to a few thousand muskets in some cases on the 18th) with the intent of attacking on the 19th.
 
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#34
Again, prestige. It's an important part of how people think, and an important part of how people thought.


Then, surely, you can see why Lee would aim to do it? Quite apart from anything else, it demonstrates that the Confederacy has the ability to make a name for itself...
For all of his regret about the Second Confiscation Act, and the Proclomation that was sure to follow at some point, McClellan did his duty. He got the Army of Potomac in the way of the Army of No. Virginia, and made it impossible for the Confederates to stay in Maryland. Thus Lee's threat to Washington, D.C. was ended. British mediation was postponed once again, and there was time to issue the preliminary E.P.
More could have been accomplished, but what General McClellan accomplished was sufficient. There is occasionally a gap between wants and needs.
 

BlueandGrayl

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#35
It would have been very embarrassing. I think it would have led to an armistice. But it would not have materially impaired the military capability of the United States. It would have changed history. Maybe it would have been the United States that formed a militaristic, nationalist party and conquered the nation.
I don't know why the United States did not move the capital voluntarily to New York once Virginia seceded.
Don't want to offend you but, says the guy who though the Union had a 4:1 ratio in recruitment in West Virginia only to be corrected by 16thVA by that it was 1:1 on one thread.

To be fair, any capture of Washington, D.C. (which I find unlikely, another city would have instead been the target) by the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia (under Robert E. Lee) likely mean morale goes downhill and the Republican Party becomes the scapegoat since their pro-war position becomes less and less sensible of course as you mentioned probably an armistice is brought about coupled with the British and French mediation/recognition means a Confederate victory assuming no Lost Order 191 occurs as you said it probably would have changed history however not in the way you would imagine the United States unlike the one we saw in OTL this alternate timeline USA probably now has to share a border/continent with it's rival the CSA so it doesn't become the militaristic, nationalist party that conquered the nation since that was primarily a result of how the Civil War ended here things are different and as for American-Confederate relations well the best example I can compare is East Germany-West Germany of the Cold War in the sense that these are two nations dominated by a single group (White Anglo-Saxon Protestants/Germans) tied to each other but are struggling over the legacy and history tied to each other (Who represented the Founding Fathers' visions and ideals/Who represented the true "Germany") and share a common border that is metaphorically the divide between the two nations culturally, politically, economically, and ideologically (The Mason-Dixon Line/The Berlin Wall) but aren't always in conflict, the USA serves as the West Germany analogue a much more developed and larger nation while the CSA serves as the East Germany analogue a nation that has a unique culture and lifestyle as well as moving on to build itself up and doing at least fine, though the difference between America-Confederacy/East Germany-West Germany is that the latter two were a result of two competing powers (United States and Soviet Union) fighting one another in a conflict and thus wanted their piece of the pie (in this case Germany) and the two would later reunify but the former two are already so apart in many ways there's no need for a reunification movement.

If you ever want to know why the United States never relocated their capital to New York City when Virginia (home to the Confederate capital of Richmond) seceded well here's the thing 1. Washington, D.C. was home to every government department and was well-established, 2. There had been a buildup of defences to keep the capital safe (though not entirely invincible as shown when Jubal Early tried to raid the place), and 3. New York City had a lot of pro-Southern sentiment (see Complicity: How the North Promoted, Prolonged, and Profited from Slavery) since many of its businesses had a lot of ties to the South there was also a secessionist movement led by Fernando Wood (anti-war Copperhead Democrat) to secede and become a city-state called the Free City of Tri-Insula though when Fort Sumter hit it didn't happen it was also where the strongest resistance to the Union war effort called the Draft Riots occurred. So if Abraham Lincoln and his cabinet fled Washington, D.C. in the event of a Confederate capture I'd say that logically speaking it would be Philadelphia that would serve as the voluntary capital since 1. It was already a U.S. national capital for 10 years from 1790 until 1800 and 2. It is a historically significant city in American history having served as the site for the signing of the Declaration of Independence at Independence Hall, the Second Continental Congress, and the Philadelphia Convention which led to the creation of the Constitution, perhaps Philadelphia would serve as the de facto capital of America while Washington, D.C. has a de jure/ceremonial role.

In the armistice you mentioned, I would say the role of Britain and France in American-Confederate relations post-war is like the international version of a mom and dad trying to break up quarrels between two rowdy siblings who hate each other, both countries were drawn to recognition of Confederate independence in OTL for two reasons 1. Lincoln refused to take direct action to abolish slavery because he needed to appeal to the border states of Kentucky and Missouri's residents who were Conditional Unionists in the sense they would stay but not see their peculiar institution interfered as shown when he had to rescind John C. Fremont's emancipation order in August 1861 at a time when there was still a Confederate presence in both states (until February 1862) since he and his fellow Unionists knew it would hurt their cause there and since Lincoln took a moderate approach to slavery that of simply compensating slaveholders and sending blacks back to Africa the British and French were not pleased at the Union approach of handling the institution prior to Antietam, 2. Cotton, the South tended to send a lot of cotton to the mills of Britain and France as much as they did to the North and so when a blockade was imposed upon the Southern states it soon led to the cotton famine in which a lack of cotton caused unemployment and thus hurt mill business so the British and French were convinced that the only way to restart the cotton trade with the South was to meditate in the war long before Indian and Egyptian cotton would ever be used, 3. The aristocratic nature of the South/CSA reflected that of European aristocracies of old and Britain/France were no exception both were already ruled by monarchies and given that Southerners tended to take pride in their class-based system there existed support there some wanted to resume cotton trading while others were concerned about the United States as a threat to British dominance and there were those who thought that the North was the aggressor and the South were simply independent-minded people seeking to be independent, and 4. Most European observers highly doubted that the North could conquer the South many in the British and French cabinets though this was impossible and some events that occurred in the summer-fall pre-Antietam 1862 in the East and West had validated such beliefs. The British would be neutral while they certainly held a lot of trade ties to the CSA through cotton so too was the case with the USA with grain and they would not want to appear harmful to either side so they would serve as the middleman between the two the French on the other hand were more pro-Confederate as Napoleon III always wanted to recognize the Confederates since the beginning of the war and given his adventures in Mexico it would serve as a way to balance American power there assuming though the Liberal Republicans win over the Conservative Monarchists in the invasion of Mexico as well as France defeated in the Franco-Prussian War then he would be overthrown and the French Republic is restored and as far as attitudes towards the Confederacy go well probably it will be like Britain in meditating America-Confederacy relations.

It is especially important to note what happened prior to the Lost Order, South Mountain Gap, and Antietam:
Eastern Theatre:
* Drove Nathaniel P Banks army out of Shenandoah Valley.
* McClellan proves he cannot capture Richmond and so is beaten back.
* A major victory against John Pope at Bull Run/Manassas II.
* Union Army of the Potomac could have been split in two at Glendale but is stopped due to Huger’s corps getting into bad weather and Jackson falling asleep.
* Invaded Maryland.

Western Theatre:
* Vicksburg, Mississippi and Chattanooga, Tennessee secure, Union attempts to take them end in failure.
* CSS Arkansas drives away the Union fleet under David Farragut by surprising them.
* Union soldiers getting harassed by cavalry raids under John Hunt Morgan cutting supply lines and tearing it up due to being deep in enemy territory as well as being scattered and depleted.
* Kentucky has two Confederate victories (Richmond and Munfordville) as well as the capture of Lexington and the state capital of Frankfort, a pro-Confederate government was about to be installed and as Don Carlos Buell noted they had possession of the state outside Louisville and Covington. Buell's control of Middle Tennessee (which included the industrial city of Nashville) was threatened not only by Kentucky invasion but also the area itself.
* Panic in Louisville and Cincinnati the former city’s residents are fleeing to Indiana and the latter city is put under a state of emergency.

Non-military:
* Post-Seven Days, a panic on Wall Street ensues with the greenback dollar and stock going into a temporary free fall and the Treasury finds itself $10 million in debt.
* Britain and France both are prepared to give mediation in the Civil War because of the cotton famine as well as the suffering of mill workers (before Egyptian and Indian cotton was used).
* Confederates are able to secure contracts with British shipbuilding companies to build them powerful ironclads.
* Demoralization prevalent amongst civilians, soldiers, and enthusiastic supporters of the war from post-Seven Days to post-Bull Run/Manassas II early September.

For the books I recommend reading these include: Crossroads of Freedom, Rise to Greatness: Abraham Lincoln and America' Most Perilous Year, Abraham Lincoln: A Life, To Antietam Creek: The Maryland Campaign of September 1862, The Long Road to Antietam: How the Civil War Became a Revolution, Tried By War: Abraham Lincoln as Commander in Chief, Return to Bull Run: The Campaign and Battle of Second Manassas, Abraham Lincoln and Civil War America, The Civil War: The Second Year As Told By Those Lived It, Tempest at Ox Hill, Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville: The Dare Mark Campaign, The Unpopular Mr. Lincoln: The Story of America's Most Unpopular President (as well as the Civil War Trust article) and the New York Times article "The Position of the Union Cause" to get a good understanding as to how Union soldiers, civilians, and enthusiastic supporters of the war knew what was going on during that period.
 

Saphroneth

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#37
Something I find it's always worth thinking about is how a commander could have manoeuvred differently, whether with hindsight or not.

I think a possible "hindsight" move might have been for Franklin (with the whole of his corps) to cross the Potomac at Harpers Ferry and aim to block Lee's move back over the Potomac. The reason this is a hindsight move is that it's only with hindsight that we know he'd have had the chance - and we don't know if Lee would have reacted differently.
 
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#39
Something I find it's always worth thinking about is how a commander could have manoeuvred differently, whether with hindsight or not.

I think a possible "hindsight" move might have been for Franklin (with the whole of his corps) to cross the Potomac at Harpers Ferry and aim to block Lee's move back over the Potomac. The reason this is a hindsight move is that it's only with hindsight that we know he'd have had the chance - and we don't know if Lee would have reacted differently.
No just no my friend , Old Mac was convinced Lee outnumbered him by most accounts Mac believed Lee had over 100k men I personally think he never intended to move regardless of the mysterious Ammo crates that of course were also Lee's problem.

McClellan gets low on ammo cant move must wait for more men and ammo resupply regardless of the fact that Lee must have been low on ammo as well + his men had just done a 15 day footslog and bust a gut to converge on Sharpsburg and fought a battle where nearly every CSA unit was engaged.

Or are you telling me the logistics of the CSA were far superior to the Union logistics?.
 

Saphroneth

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#40
No just no my friend , Old Mac was convinced Lee outnumbered him by most accounts Mac believed Lee had over 100k men
To be specific, what McClellan thought was that Lee had slightly more men than McClellan's reported 87,000, campaign strength. Lee's actual campaign strength (October 10 strength plus casualties added back - thus, PFD before straggling) was about 75,000 to 80,000, while McClellan's campaign strength as reported was about 87,000 (that's PFD before straggling from the units which actually reached Antietam).

McClellan's estimate was wrong for two reasons. The main one was that McClellan assumed that Lee had concentrated everything in theatre; in fact, some men of Lee's field army were left back in Richmond (GW Smith's division, which was about 15,000 PFD at the time).
The other reason is genuine overestimation, but it's not by much. McClellan only creates about 7,000 Confederates out of thin air, which is actually much better than most contemporary estimates - Halleck was telling McClellan at the time not to go too far from Washinton for fear of an attack by the army Halleck thought was on the Rappanahock.

The core point is that the two forces were of close to the same size at the time, and this was true.


Pinkerton at this time overestimated Jackson by 4,000, underestimated Longstreet by 1,500, underestimated DH Hill by 2,000, overestimated Stuart by 800, underestimated Ransom and Jenkins by 2,100, overestimated the regiments which were actually with GW Smith by about 3,400, and did not detect that the only separate artillery with the Confederate force was their artillery reserve (thus overestimated this by about 4,000).

Net: overestimate of 7,000, plus 15,000 assumed to be with the army but actually in Richmond.

AABOY%2FqFuEc_PUvsI6GKX58-OnxoDUF0g2t49TQCLcBGAs%2Fs1600%2FMaryland%252Bestimate%252Bvs%252Breal.png




McClellan's actions reflect his overall belief that the two armies at Antietam and in the campaign were of roughly equal size, thus why he launched heavy attacks.

McClellan gets low on ammo cant move must wait for more men and ammo resupply regardless of the fact that Lee must have been low on ammo as well + his men had just done a 15 day footslog and bust a gut to converge on Sharpsburg and fought a battle where nearly every CSA unit was engaged.

Or are you telling me the logistics of the CSA were far superior to the Union logistics?.
Well, Lee didn't exactly go on the offensive himself on the 18th, did he?
Of course, Lee had just captured a major Union supply depot, Harpers Ferry. He fell back across the Potomac to reunite with his trains (which he'd been sending across the river during the battle) and after a bit more manoeuvering by both sides they both settle down to recuperate.

You're quite welcome to suggest that McClellan should have sent his badly riven divisions in on a second consecutive day with low ammunition, but I don't think that's a common thing to do in the Civil War...






How McClellan could have got a better picture of how many Confederates there were is interesting - certainly he couldn't look at them directly. Reports varied wildly, with the same force (Jackson's) being estimated at "15,000" and "not less than 25,000", while the force attacking Harpers Ferry was described as "40,000 men".

csArmySize2.jpg



(strengths on this graphic are Oct 10 strengths plus add-back of confirmed casualties.)

The highest estimate one could form of the strength of the Confederates purely from these reports is:

8,000 (Steiner estimate of DH Hill)
+ 6,000 (OR p233 estimate of Walker)
+ 30,000 (Baltimore Sun estimate of DR Jones plus Hood)
+ 25,000 (OR p559 estimate of Jackson, Ewell, AP Hill)
+ 30,000 (OR 107 P829 estimate of McLaws plus Anderson)
+ 5,000 for Stuart's cavalry

= 104,000.


The lowest estimate one could form purely from the reports (assuming all units properly localized) is:

8,000 (DH Hill)
+ 20,000 (DR Jones + Hood/Evans)
+ 15,000 (Jackson, Ewell, AP Hill)
+ 12,000 + 8,000 (McLaws + Anderson)
+ 6,000 (Walker)
+ 5,000 for Stuart


= 74,000.

There may be some combination which is lower but I haven't found it.

Unless you believe the Baltimore American, who seem to have thought there were only 5,000 invading troops!
 
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