Question of the Week: 5/13-5/19/19

Jackson or Stuart? These two Confederate generals both died in May – “Stonewall” Jackson in 1863 and J.E.B. Stuart in 1864.

In your opinion, which general’s death had the most significant impact on the Army of Northern Virginia and the campaigns in Virginia? Why?

8 Responses to Question of the Week: 5/13-5/19/19

  1. As much as an asset as Stuart was to Lee he was adequately replaced by Wade Hampton, Lee was never able to adequately replace Stonewall.

  2. Clearly Jackson, as his death led to the disastrous command problems during the Gettysburg Campaign. Lee did not realize the degree to which he was going to be required to make hands on decisions for his new appointees.

  3. Who is more significant, your plumber or your roofer? Jackson & Stewart were two very different commanders doing very different jobs. Lee needed both of them working together. The loss of one or the other crippled his command structure in critical ways.

  4. I would say Jackson. Stewart was often just where he needed to be, but sometimes he kind of got lost in the weeds. Jackson was Lee’s right hand and he knew instinctively often when to attack and when to wait.

  5. Gettysburg alone provides a strong indicator…Jackson’s absence undermined Lee’s command structure, communications, & tactical drive of key subordinates…Stuart’s presence undermined Lee’s intelligence gathering, screening, & knowledge of enemy’s positions.

  6. Jackson – only because, as Mr. Pilla points out, Lee found an able replacement for Stuart. Ewell and A.P. Hill did not rise to Jackson’s level. Note: this is not homage to the Stonewall mythology. He proved himself repeatedly to be a mediocre tactician and even his flank march at Chancellorsville was executed in less than Grade A fashion – it was discovered, and should have been acted on, well before arrival at the point of attack and there’s a reason Jackson was riding around reconnoitering in the gloaming which led to his mortal wounding.

  7. Jackson — they had great chemistry…General Lee would start a sentence, General Jackson would finish it.

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