Ok, Thomas and Forrest. The last I heard both Grant and Sherman reached their heights in the East. Almost all the discussion, however, seemed focused on the East. The war was lost in the West.
Jubal Early, Wade Hampton, and John Gordon spring immediately to mind.
Not against Sheridan.
Well that is certainly a low threshold. My dead cat could have provided competition to Sheridan. Now Sheridan's army on the other hand was quite good, or at least the disparity in cavalry was such by that time in the war it was simply quite difficult for the South to compete against the Cavalry Corp of the AoP.Not against Sheridan.
I strongly disagree. Consider the odds against Early. He had 15,000 men against 40,000, longer odds than Lee ever faced in any of his battles. Sheridan's men were also lethally better equipped and his cavalry mounts were vastly superior. Considering all this, I think Early did much better than anyone had a right to expect. At Third Winchester, he fought tooth-and-nail all day long and made the Yankees pay a heavy price for their victory. And even after the disasters at Third Winchester and Fisher's Hill, Early was still game enough to come back a month later and launch one of the best executed surprise attacks of the entire war and nearly rout Sheridan's army at Cedar Creek.
Early did as well as anyone else could have done against Sheridan. In fact, I can't think of a single Confederate commander who could have done better.
Lee. Could anyone short of Jesus Christ himself have managed the collection of prima donnas and politician general wantabes had he had to work with and simply stay inside the head of the enemy like he did? The only Federal commander to actually surprise Lee was Hooker. And we see how that turned out.
I seem to recall Early losing every battle against Sheridan and being chased up the Valley. Do you have a different version of those events?
At odds of 15,000 to 40,000, even the best general will probably lose, especially considering Sheridan's additional advantages in logistics and cavalry. What impresses me about Early is that he did as well as he did. Most other generals would have lost much more decisively and much more quickly.
Are you saying that Grant or Lee would have won the battles in question, with the same odds?