The Passion of General James Longstreet

As we prepare to celebrate the founding of this country we should keep in mind that a pivotal battle of the Civil war took place the same month as well celebrate the DoI……

Most Americans that follow the Civil War know that this is the time when the South faced off against the North in the town of Gettysburg…..some say that this battle was the beginning of the end of the South’s insurrection.

I thought I would throw a little more history at my readers during this time as we celebrate the founding of this country.

It is said that one of Lee’s generals, Longstreet, had tried to convince Lee to by-pass Gettysburg and attack DC which was not that far away.

Of course Lee did not take the advice and we all know the consequences the South played for this engagement.

Longstreet in my opinion was Lee’s best general and tactician……

Time’s unrelenting march is always ticking down to things known and unknown, never celebrating or mourning what once was. This is especially true regarding the nature of war. For General James Longstreet, the awful minutes passing before 2 p.m. on July 3rd, 1863, are marked by the roar of a cannonade whose concussions shake his broad frame. At least, that is why he hopes he is shaking. Weeks of marching and two days of vicious fighting over rocky hills and tidy fields wears on him. How their misadventure ends now falls to him. On this occasion, he knows too much.

Dark Pennsylvania soil plays host to Longstreet’s anxious boots as he paces. Amidst the trees around him, Pickett’s division huddles against Federal counter-battery fire. Pettigrew and Trimble’s boys do the same, completing a line of battle running north towards the old seminary. The rawest of them press themselves flat on the ground, seeking shelter against the Earth’s bosom. Ragged veterans stare off into the distance, content to pass the time reliving the glories and horrors of past battles. At some point, all of them will think of home. Longstreet shudders. Faith holds each man in place. It’s a faith born in those who trust the gun in their hands and the perceived miracles they have seen conjured up by their commanders. Commanders such as Longstreet. The Staff of Lee’s Right Hand. Why should this battle differ from all the others?

Source: The Passion of General James Longstreet | RealClearDefense

This was a fascinating time for us history buffs….there is so much that has not been studied about this war…..

Hope you learned something…..that is all I can ask….

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8 thoughts on “The Passion of General James Longstreet

  1. I have studied the US Civil War for most of my life. Gettysburg was undoubtedly Lee’s ‘great mistake’, but the Confederacy were destined to lose from the start; with a smaller population, less industry, and condemnation of slavery stopping any allies coming to their aid. Sherman was perhaps the most effective union general, as he understood the need for ‘total war’, by destroying industry, goods, and infrastructure, as well as beating armies in the field. Had Jackson not been killed at Chancellorsville (by his own side) he might well have been the man to lead the Confederacy to many more victories.
    The North had the benefit of being able to recruit immigrants, usually right off the ships, and this enabled them to sustain their tremendous loses early on in the war. They also had the populations of much larger cities to draw on to swell their ranks, and were later also able to utilise freed slaves in their army. My own interest is also in the border wars, between states like Kansas and Missouri, with irregular units settling old scores, under different flags. Not unlike the situation in the Balkans, in modern times.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    1. Good analogy…….well done. If Lee had listen to Longstreet and by-passed Gettysburg and attacked DC it would have been the psychological boost the South needed…even if it was a failure…I think that it would have made a difference but sine I was not there all I can do is guess…..chuq

  2. Let the dead bury their dead. None of what transpired back then is of any significance now because (a) “Facts” have changed, (b) Circumstances have changed, (c) People have changed.

      1. If the monuments cost money to maintain and if the land on which they sit can be used for something that will be of value to the nation and Her progress then wreck every one of the damned things …the sooner the better!

      2. Monuments are a monumental waste of time, money and resources. Besides civilizations have a habit of tearing down the monuments they dislike and replacing them with new ones ….Lets begin by razing that useless POS standing on the edge of Manhattan — We have enough damned immigrants and the message on that tablet at the base of that thing has not a single iota of relevance to today’s problems … that message was for the time when America needed those huddled masses to become great and strong as a nation . — The offal that comes here now mostly comes for the free stuff and the cushy lifestyle.

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