GDG- ISusquehanna River

CWMHTours at CWMHTours at
Wed Jan 25 20:09:32 CST 2012

Good story George-  pet her for me....
A  Loyal Neo-Anti Unionist,

In a message dated 1/25/2012 9:08:41 P.M. Eastern Standard Time,  
georgeconnell at writes:

Esteemed  GDG Member Contributes:
I have forded the Potomac twice at White's Ford,  once on the date Lee 
crossed there in 1862. My dog was with me so I renamed  her Traveller. She was 
confused by that, but was a good sport (as Goldens  always are).


26ª11'56"N    81ª48'19W"

On Jan 25, 2012, at 7:52 PM, CWMHTours at  wrote:

> Esteemed GDG Member Contributes:
> Tom-
> I don't have a problem with the idea of Lee crossing the Pot R   at 
> Ford (Ford- not Ferry- n the Ferry was mile+ down the river  from the  
> Plus you had several other fords all the  way down to Rowsers S of  
> Creek.
> I can  see that.  Plus it would scare the beejeeezers out  of Lincoln &  
> Stanton.
> A  Loyal Neo-Anti Unionist,
>  Peter  
> In a message dated 1/25/2012 5:25:41  P.M. Eastern Standard Time,  
> pennmardel at  writes:
> Esteemed  GDG Member Contributes:
> Just  to add a couple of points to what has already  been said, further  
> evidence that Lee planned to cross the Susquehanna was  Early  ordering 
Gordon to 
> capture the Wrightsville-Columbia Bridge, a few  miles  northeast of 
> However, PA militia burned the  bridge before Gordon  could capture it.  
> is what Early  said about this incident in his  report (OR, 27, II, p. 
> "I regretted very much the failure to  secure this bridge, as,  finding 
> defenseless condition of the country  generally, and  the little obstacle 
> likely to be afforded by the militia to our   progress, I had determined, 
if I 
> could get possession of the Columbia  Bridge,  to cross my division over 
> Susquehanna, and cut the  Pennsylvania Central  Railroad, march upon 
> [about 15  miles east of the river], lay that  town under contribution, 
>  then attack Harrisburg in the rear while it  should be attacked in the  
> by the rest of the corps...."
> This   statement seems to give credence to the plan for Lee to send his 
>  troops across  the Susquehanna, and, at the very least, attack and  
> Harrisburg.   It should also be noted that Gordon  later wrote that he 
planned to 
> send a  contingent toward  Philadelphia, however, there appears to be no 
> to  determine  whether this was an exaggeration on his part.
> At any  rate,  Early continues in his report:
> "...relying, in  the worst contingency  that might happen, upon being 
> to  mount my division from the immense  number of horses that had been 
> across the river, and then move to the  west, destroying the  railroads 
> canals, and returning back again to a place  of  safety."
> The way I read this last part of his statement is  that his  division, 
> by extension the rest of the army, would  stay on the east side  of the 
> accomplishing whatever goals  General Lee had in mind.   However, if the 
> ran into  trouble in the form of a large number of Union  troops, then 
> could still retreat back across the bridge which had been   secured to 
> west bank and onward "to a place of safety."   Those ANV  troops further 
> around Harrisburg would  presumably retreat across the  river in the same 
> they forded  the river initially.
> In addition,  when this subject  came up on the GDG a while ago, I argued 
> that Lee did not  have  to rely on a single direction of retreat, 
> retracing  his  steps back across South Mountain, but could have 
>  moved south toward  Washington and crossed the Potomac in that  
vicinity.  As I 
> recall there  were few, if any, who agreed  with this scenario.  But, as 
> recall, there  was no  evidence given that this route of march was not 
> feasible for Lee's  army  to travel.
> Regards, Tom  Ryan
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