GDG- ISusquehanna River

George Connell georgeconnell at
Wed Jan 25 17:03:00 CST 2012


"I can't see him putting the bulk of his army on the wrong  side of the 

I think all the talk about Harrisburg was just that, talk put  out t 
distract people."

This is ridiculous. He told two of his corps commanders he wanted them on the east side of the river. That, without question, is the bulk of his army. And he told them with some degree of secrecy attached, not in the "Philadelphia Enquirer" for heaven sakes!

You're digging again!

26ª11'56"N   81ª48'19W"

On Jan 25, 2012, at 5:47 PM, CWMHTours at wrote:

> Esteemed GDG Member Contributes:
> Jim-
> You make good points.
> I have problems tho with the idea of Lee moving his whole army  into 
> Harrisburg and sitting there.
> Granted there was some military value to the state capital but  Lee's ace 
> was manueverabilty which he would lose if he occupies a town and then  has to 
> defend it.  I can see him sending in a detachment to destroy any  military 
> goods but Harrisburg was pretty much a pipsqueak town back  then.
> Plus I can't see him putting the bulk of his army on the wrong  side of the 
> river.
> I think all the talk about Harrisburg was just that, talk put  out t 
> distract people.
> I can't see him taking Baltimore either.  What are you  going to do with it 
> once you got it?
> A  Loyal Neo-Anti Unionist,
> Peter  
> In a message dated 1/25/2012 9:37:30 A.M. Eastern Standard Time,  
> cameron2 at writes:
> Esteemed  GDG Member Contributes:
> <<   If Lee intended to move  Ewell's Corps and Hill's Corps across the 
> river (as he stated) it's a pretty  safe bet he wasn't going to leave 
> Longstreet's on the other side of a water  barrier. I think it's not unreasonable to 
> speculate that Lee, the most  audacious commander of the war, might have 
> been willing to fight the AoP east  of the Susquehanna. There are some caveats, 
> however. He would need all his  cavalry with him; detailed information on 
> the locations of the various Union  corps; and the confidence that the AoP 
> corps were exhausted, strung out by a  rushed pursuit, and not in position to 
> provide meaningful support to one  another.  >>
> Which is quite a few caveats, and a lot of  stuff he didn't have, and 
> wasn't likely to get.  And if he does cross the  Susquehanna, getting back over 
> now involves the far shore still being hostile  territory, not VA.  
> Still, I do think he intended to cross a major  force, if possible.  I 
> wonder, though, if his preference wouldn't have  been to continue to maneuver, 
> and maybe fight against any isolated Union force  he might encounter, rather 
> than risk a general engagement under such  circumstances.  Although I can't 
> say I've ever devoted much thought to  the matter, since it never did 
> happen.  
> Just as a thought, while it  wouldn't have been something he could have 
> anticipated at the time, the  post-battle rains which made crossing back into 
> VA so difficult could have  created an extremely critical situation for Lee 
> if he need to recross the  Susquehanna in a hurry after a reverse on the 
> eastern side of the river and  had no bridges available.  
> Jim  Cameron
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