Question of the Week: What do you think the biggest blunder of 1864 was?

What is the biggest battlefield blunder from the 1864 campaigns?

20 Responses to Question of the Week: What do you think the biggest blunder of 1864 was?

  1. Either Hood going on the attack in front of Atlanta or the Army of the Potomac losing the race to Spotsylvania Court House.

  2. Meade’s lethargic and uncoordinated attacks on Petersburg, 15-18 June … after stealing a march on R.E. Lee, Meade misses the opporunity to take Petersburg and make life very uncomfortable for the ANV and the Confederate government in Richmond.

  3. Union General Nathaniel Prentice Banks’ 1864 Red River campaign in Louisiana because it was one blunder from beginning to end.

  4. Hoods entire Tennessee campaign.. adding indult to injury, continuing the campaign after the horrendous losses at Franklin.

  5. As Pat comments above – the missed opportunity at Resaca. My understanding is that Thomas urged an aggressive movement at Snake Creek Gap, and both Sherman and McPherson are responsible for failing to exploit the opportunity to trap Johnston at that point.

  6. The events involving Bermuda Hundred. Had Butler been a more capable commander, or if a more capable commander had been charge of that force there, Petersburg might have been taken sooner, and then, well, who knows?

  7. Strategically to me it was Hood failing to stick with hounding Sherman after the Fall of Atlanta. Tactically, it was the icing on the cake of the fumbling Overland Campaign, the “hey, let’s give Lee a few days to move to Petersburg, we can wait” moment.

  8. The selection of putting Andrew Johnson on ticket with Abraham Lincoln. After Lincoln’s death, he managed to undo everything that the war was fought for. To see what all was possible after the war never came to happen. John Wilkes Booth and Andrew Johnson were the worse combination to happen.

  9. Maj. AVE Johnston leading the 39th Missouri Infantry (Mounted) into a 3-sided ambush on the outskirts of Centralia.

  10. Sherman’s failure to take out the Augusta Powder Works. TP Savas says the war could have ended tons sooner had it been done. But there were enough blunders to go around for everyone. Just listing them could be a book, right? One I would be highly qualified to write based upon my experience and the many, nay, multitudinous blunders I’ve done in my life.

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  11. Robert E Lee’s decision to remove his artillery from the Mule Shoe salient on the evening of May 11. Lee was not enamored by the Mule Shoe but We’ll felt it could be held with adequate artillery support.

  12. Hunter fleeing the Vally leaving an open access to Washington instead of at least slowing early down Early until reenforced.

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