150 years ago today, the battle of the Wilderness commenced 17 miles west of the city of Fredericksburg, Va. The Army of the Potomac, commanded by George Gordon Meade crossed into the Wilderness of Spotsylvania and Orange Counties accompanied by Ulysses S. Grant and the independent 9th Army Corps under Ambrose Burnside. Because Burnside technically outranked Meade by date of promotion, Burnside’s corps acted under the direct orders of Grant, which muddles the new chain of command.
Do you believe that Grant should have reassigned the 9th Corps commander prior to the outset of the campaign, or should the 9th Corps have been placed under Meade’s control? (If you relieve Burnside, who do you place command of the corps?)