tv Politics Public Policy Today CSPAN August 22, 2014 9:00am-11:01am EDT
the infantry, the quartermaste captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2008 hood had no experience and reputation and the respect that johnston had at the beginning of the war. but he did not have the experience and reputation and respect that hood had. hood, as i said, had lost atlanta -- johnston had not suffered a visible battlefield defeat, so you are reduced the argument, well, he was going to be defeated, if he had remained in command. johnston also prevailed because his critics were in disrepute immediately after the war. jefferson davis was just reviled in the last years of the confederacy. he was the failed leader of the lost cause.
and had the federal authorities not arrested him, put him in a cell at fort monroe, clamped him in irons and made a martyr out of him, he would have been denounced through much of southern history. but they turned him into the man who was persecuted for the white south but made him a hero. even so, post-war confederates did not like to air their dirty linen in public and most of them did not do so. johnston was also praised in the writings of his federal opponents. william t. sherman had good things to say about johnston in his memoirs published in 1875. u.s. grant had good things to say about johnston. i mean, after all, grant said i worried more when joe johnston was in command in front of my army than when robert e. lee was. i don't know if grant actually
said that or not, but if he did, that alone should take his reputation down many notches. because among other things, johnston almost never commanded troops in front of grant's army. only for a few weeks in january and february 1864 did johnston command troops in front of grant and those troops that time sat in their winter quarters and had snowball battles with each other. i don't know why grant was so worried. johnston's men are attacking with snowballs. we have to worry about that. johnston benefited from a lot of the early writing about the war. one of the early prolific historians was edward a. pollard, a richmond journalist who absolutely hated jefferson davis and pollard was writing books almost by the month. i mean, almost as furiously as brian does here.
just books vomiting out of edward a. pollard. in which he denounced jefferson davis in very harsh terms especially for his treatment of joe johnston, and it's interesting to sit down with pollard's books because a lot of it sounds an awful like joe johnston. i had some pretty good indications that he and johnston spent a good deal of time talking. foot was another one of them. a member of the confederate congress. he wrote things about davis, vile things almost about jefferson davis in his treatment about joe johnston. even some of the northern writers took this up. one was greeley that wrote a book on the american conflict and his main source for writing about the atlanta campaign was edward a. pollard.
and greeley said i think pollard got his information from johnston so he knows it must be correct. this is not the critical thinking one would like among historical writers. johnston also benefited by his early biographers. johnston died in 1891. he had two quick biographies. one of them by bradly t., who a dear good friend of his and military subordinate, who confessed in his induction that i love joe johnston and the other one by his kinsman robert hughes and for 50 or 60 years those were the only two biographies of joe johnston that were available. hood didn't have a biography at all until the middle of the 20th century. so johnston benefits from all of these things. he also benefited from trends in civil war writing.
the overemphasis on virginia meant that people writing about the war in georgia and atlanta didn't have much to work with and didn't spend a lot of time trying to describe it. they grabbed quickly available sources. people like pollard and greeley and foot and others. these sources for writing the history of johnston's army are widely scattered. you could write a history of the confederate army of northern virginia, robert e. lee's army, and never go more than 150 miles from richmond. that would take you to raleigh, durham, chapel hill to the south and washington and baltimore to the north. and you couple that with charlottesville and the material in richmond itself, there's no point in going elsewhere to write a history of the confederate army in virginia. you want to write a history of
the confederate army of tennessee, you have to go all over the map. from austin to tallahassee, to raleigh to baton rouge to ralei raleigh, to nashville, to little rock, to new york, you have to go everywhere because that stuff was so scattered. we're getting collections now and published information on the confederate army in the west so it won't be quite as bad in the future as it has been in the past. but the result of all of this was that joe johnson's view the atlanta campaign was almost completely accepted for decades in the 20th century. in fact, you grow up in atlanta as i did in the 1930s and 1940s, that's what you hear. joe johnston was just the greatest thing since grits. if he had been left alone, if that idiot jefferson davis had not removed him from command, he would have defeated sherman
outside atlanta. he would have driven sherman back to chattanooga. he would have flanked him on to nashville. he would have forced him to retreat to louisville. pursued him across the ohio river. back up through illinois, across the great lakes. sherman, the remnants of sherman's pathetic army would have been drowned in hudson bay. after which joe johnston would have turned and marched on washington and forced abraham lincoln to acknowledge the independence of the confederacy. joe johnston was just great. it got into books and movies, and it's very difficult to get people to understand that what they see in movies and television is not necessarily so. i had an interesting experience along these lines one time. there was a movie made back i believe in the late '50s called "on the beach." one or two of you look like you
might be old enough to remember that. but it's a movie set in australia in the aftermath of the world war iii, the united states, they have killed everybody on earth except the people in australia. those blokes are down there drinking beer and singing and awaiting the arrival of a radioactive cloud to wipe them out, too. and this became the kind of pilot movie for a whole genre of films like this on wiping out all life on earth. there was one i was teaching at north carolina state. i think it was a made for television movie if i recall correctly called "the day after." same thing except they're in indiana or kansas or north dakota or somewhere. i had students come up and talk to me and say, what was it like growing up in the 1950s? what do you mean, what was it like? all you worried about being
wiped out. life snuffed out in an atomic blast. go off to school in the morning thinking you'll never see your family again. some of you remember this? you practiced getting under your desk in home room in case the russians drop a hydrogen bomb on the school. the students say, what was it like thinking about it that all the time. i said, i have no earthly idea. i didn't think about that. they said, what did you think about? i said, i thought about the scenario that began 800 million years ago when there was a massive rupture of the cosmic continuum out on the other side of the big dipper. and as a result of that, a gigantic killer asteroid was jarred out of its normal orbit around the star alpha sentauri on an intergalactic trajectory that in 1955 brought it hurtling into the solar system and
bounced off the planet pluto. pluto was a plan net 1955. ricocheted over. smashed into the earth throwing up a gigantic cloud of dirt, dust and debris. and when all that had settled down, there were only 12 people left on earth. only 12 people left on earth. who were they you ask? elizabeth taylor. natalie wood, jane russell, susan haywood. marilyn monroe. kim novak. eva gardener. audrey hepburn, sophia loren, jane mansfield and myself. [ applause ] that's what i thought about when i was in high school.
[ laughter ] but you put this into movies and television about johnston being such a great general and hood being such bad gun and people -- it's got to be true. i saw it in a movie. you know, kind of thing. you could ignore what hood wrote. i mean, after all, by that time hood was this pathetic creature in the history books. ambitious. not just normally ambitious but unscrupulously ambitious. a liar. incompetent. addicted to drugs because of his amputated leg. trying to prove himself a man because he was engaged to the beautiful sally buchanan preston, called buck preston. just a total worthless man hopping around on his one foot trying to impress her.
you could ignore hood. the problem is i found out in decades of research, the problem with ignoring hood is that the facts get in the way. facts are strange things. and when you get beyond this rather superficial stuff that people like pollard and greeley and some of the others have written and get down to looking at the facts, things begin to look quite different from what they were originally in your mind. we don't have time to get into a lot of this but let me just give you one example. at the very beginning of the campaign according to joseph e. johnston in his memoirs his army numbered about 43,000 men. on may 1st, at and near dalton in northwestern georgia. but there's a fact that in the official records there's a document dated april 30th, the
day before, in which johnston himself reported to the confederate government that he had 55,000 men present for duty. i don't know what happened to those 12,000 men on the night of april 30th-may 1st. mass desertion. who knew? maybe the radioactive atomic cloud got to dalton and wiped out 12,000 of the men. or the question of casualties. johnston had his medical director, johnston lost according to his medical director 9,972 men killed and wounded in his infantry and artillery in may and june. historians have taken that up. and said johnston lost 9,972 men and they ignore those qualifications. killed and wounded. infantry and artillery, may and june. what about prisoners?9à(9+,÷t what about men lost to sickness during the retreat? one time, johnston said he was losing 300 men a day to
sickness. what about deserters? hood said johnston lost 22,750 men. you make reasonable estimates for casualties in the cavalry, in the first two weeks of july which included the evacuation of kennesaw mountain. and the retreat across the chathachoochi river when there were a lot of desertions. you make reasonable estimates for number of prisoners. you wind up pretty close to the 22,750 men that hood had specified. what i'm getting at in all of this is that if you get into all the facts, johnston begins to look a lot less brilliant. hood tends to look a lot better. and a lot of the writing about the atlanta campaign in the last 20 or 30 years has been moving in that direction. so that the view of the campaign that a lot of us were given or
read about when we were growing up is changing, and it turns out that joseph e. johnston is not regarded now by a lot of people as the greatest thing since grits. he was regarded as a general who retreated into the very heart of the confederacy. it is true he did not lose any great battles in 1864 or at any other time, but it is also true that his retreat into the atlanta area was a political and logistical disaster for the confederacy and johnston's once exalted reputation has begun to come down. why do i call this the general in the jar? many years ago, the folks at the dallas-ft. worth roundtable were kind enough to invite me to come and speak. i was speaking on the atlanta campaign.
and there's a gentlemen in that round table whose hobby is making little figures about yea high of civil war people. if you've got a speaker on jefferson davis, he will make a little figure of jefferson davis like this, and he will mount that figure on a wooden disk, a circular disk and put a glass bell jar over it and present it to the speaker. it's a nice gesture. so he had seen i was speaking on the atlanta campaign, and he was certain that i was going to tell him what a great general joseph e. johnston was. when i finished my talk, they introduced him and he got up to give me this little figure of joe johnston that he had made. he had a rather sheepish look on his face, and he said, would you
like me to take this and make one of hood? what are you going to do saw off one of the legs? i mean, that's what the doctor did. but it's a wonderful little thing. it's a nice item. anybody interested in the civil war would like to have this to put on the mantle piece. i was very glad to get it. i thanked him for it. took it back to the motel that night. i was going down to waco to speak to the roundtable down there and do some research at baylor. wrapped it up in an old dirty t-shirt, put it very carefully in my suitcase. went down to waco in the rental car the next day. spoke there, came back. went to the airport at dfw. checked the bag to go to washington because i was going up there to a smithsonian program, spend a few days at my brother's doing research in the archives. did that. jar still wrapped up in its t-shirt. went back after i finished to the airport, checked the bag to
go back to my home. changed planes in atlanta. they change the bag to the little world war i plane that they use between atlanta and albany, georgia. got down to albany, picked up my suitcase, put it in the car, and drove back. i was convinced that bell jar had broken, and it would be a million pieces of glass i would have to throw out everything in the suitcase. but i got home. opened the suitcase. very carefully unwrapped the bell jar. the glass bell jar was fine, but somewhere in the jarring around the little figure of joe johnston had gone -- that seems very symbolic. thank you people. i hope i've given you something to think about. [ applause ]
friday night on "american history tv," slavery and the cinema. beginning at 8:00 eastern with a look at the depiction of slavery in the films since 1930s and then lincoln and the end of slavery and a discussion about the 1939 movie "gone with the wind." all friday night beginning at 8:00 eastern beginning here on c-span3. this weekend on "american history tv," we take a look back to 200 years ago this week when british military forces set the white house and u.s. capitol on fire. join us for a live panel discussion saturday at 1:00 p.m. and sunday at 6:00 and 10:00 p.m. eastern, a discussion about british admiral george coburn and how he used washington,
d.c.'s waterways to invade the city. all here on c-span3. next, how general sherman brought the war to the south and the impact of the union army's capture of atlanta. as sherman's troops set towns on fire and destroyed the countryside, he established a code of conduct for how the union army was to behave. anne sarah rubin discusses the march hosted by the u.s. capitol historical society. this is an hour. thank you very much, paul. and thank you all very much for coming. merchant of terror, demon, a atill la. if you type was sherman a into google the auto complete includes war criminal, hero or
villain. and if you add a couple more letters you get terrorist. the urban dictionary, a popular website, describes general william t. sherman as having employed the vicious tactic of targeting civilians. continuing, such tactics had previously been deemed morally unacceptable. the deliberate targeting of civilians for attack was taken up in world war ii ending in the deaths of millions. the bombing of european cities by both sides of the war and japanese cities by the u.s., as well as attacks on civilians in china, the philippines and korea by japan were consistent with and encouraged by sherman's precedent. the logic of saving lives in the long run by these tactics seems to have been refuted by history. finally, if you scroll through this entry, the words related to general william t. sherman tags
at the bottom include collateral damage, modern warfare, murder, terrorist and war criminal. now, let me be a little more modest and fair here. this is not the best source out there on sherman. it was written by somebody named tex in text. it was written and misquotes sherman at one point. and i'll always concede it does also include war hero. but what this does represent is a really popularly held view that william t. sherman and the march through georgia and the carolinas during the finally months of the civil war have something to do with the creation of total war. and the millions of civilian deaths in the wars of the 20th and 21st century can somehow be laid at his feet. nor does this view reside
entirely on the internet, noted repository of kind of crackpot theories. a history of henry county, georgia, explains sherman's march to the sea was the first hint of the content of total war which was to come to full fruition during the second world war in which civilian infrastructure is considered a legitimate military target. later writers, notably james reston junior, tried to connect sherman's march to the atrocities in vietnam. and reston made the argument. he said that when a rash confederate ventured a shot on his trains from a courthouse, the courthouse was burned. when a lady burned her corn crib, she lost her house. the proportionality, this is again still reston, of the retaliation is roughly the same if geometrically less as hostile fire from a jungle rifle being greeted by b-52 strike.
one of the issues that comes into play when we talk about sherman and these questions of total war and the laws of war is that people seem to use pretty slippery definitions. often sherman seems to be judged by the standards of today, rather than of his own time. often when -- not as much historians but when people use "total war" they seem to be referring to the degree of mobilization rather than the range of targets. what i want to do is take closer look at sherman's march in the context of changing union policies over the course of the war and see what he was doing and whether that fell within the bounds of kind of civilized warfare. so, in 1864, there were no hague or geneva conventions to govern the actions of belligerents.
and that is not to say that there were no guides for military behavior and conduct. but these rules were very fluid and evolving and changing as the very nature of the civil war changed. so initially, union policy towards the confederacy and its civilians has been one of known as conciliation. the idea behind it was lincoln believed that there was this kind of silent majority of unionists in the confederate states and that all he needed to do was animate them and they would rise up and the states would rejoin the union. this conciliation policy, therefore, meant a really sort of narrow focus on targeting the confederate armies rather than antagonizing southern civilians. and in effect southern civilians were still being treated as though they were american citizens rather than the citizens of a belligerent nation. as early as 1862, that had began to change and during that
summer, union general john pope had issued a series of orders that allow virginia to assist on the produce of the local countryside and lincoln was frustrated by the progress of the war to that point so he approved these orders. pope's soldiers went on a tear of destruction and violence, reminiscent actually of the stories that would come out of georgia and the carolinas two years later. and so great were the abuses perpetrated on civilians that pope actually had to kind of backtrack and condemn his men for being so out of control. so that's happened. at the same time in the summer of 1862 lincoln has come to the realization that he needs to use emancipation as a war measure. and once he issued the preliminary emancipation proclamation in september of 1862, the opportunity for this policy of conciliation to work was pretty much over and the war would become in historian mark
grimsly's phrase, hard handed. at the same time -- so all of this is all happening simultaneously in different levels. the union war department had begun consulting with a prussian born professor named francis lieber about devising a military code. lieber then, in turn, called his 1863 work a code for the government of armies. but the war department issued it as general orders number 100, and it's more popularly become to be known as the lieber code. so the lieber code was designed to codify the laws of war and particularly as they pertain to the interactions between civilians and soldiers. one of the most significant sections of the code are articles 14 through 16 which very carefully delineate military necessity. lieber has a pretty broad definition of that that deplores
cruelty and deplores acts of vengeance as he would put it, but did allow for the making of war in civilians in specific situations. and, in fact, there is a sort of tension internal to the lieber code over what's military necessity and what's going too far. so he does explain further in article 17. he says war is not carried on by arms alone. it is lawful to starve the hostile belligerent, armed or unarmed, so that it leads to the speedier subjection of the enemy. he talks about also in a later article, he says the citizen or native of a hostile country is thus an enemy. as one of the constituents of the hostile state of nations and as such is subjected to the hardships of war. so it's ct%,qçp&q from lieber'se that there are ways that
civilians can be targeted because of the fact that civilians are presumed to be inherently helping their military. that being said, among the code's prohibitions, however, were the theft and/or destruction of artworks and the like. and now under punishment of death, this again is lieber's language, all destruction of property not commanded by the authorized officer, all robbery, all pillage or sacking even after taking place by main force, a rape, wounding, maiming or killing of such inhabitants. so there is a line and that line seems to be physical violence against civilians. you can destroy their property, some of it. not their art. which is nice. i mean -- but there is limits. now, confederates when they read the lieber code complain that
it's so broad that as to license mischief under the grounds of military necessity. also, by 1864 when sherman is preparing for the march, lincoln and the union in general had become comfortable with a high degree of destruction of private property. cotton could be burned easily. the contents of homes. if not the homes themselves in areas like missouri and the shenandoah valley. so one can argue that the lieber code, at least as it pertained to the treatment of civilians and their property, was probably honored more in the breach than it was followed to the letter. just after the war, something called field service in war by francis j. lippet was published. a manual specifically on military logistics. and he also leans on this doctrine of military necessity to justify foraging.
and he argues that foragings was a, quote, well-established right of war. he does concede though there need to be restraints placed on foraging because, as he put it to do otherwise would be to bring dishonor upon the country. and lip it's work, i know it's published after the war but it will all make sense it. lip pet's work demonstrates the complexity of the moral issues that surround foraging. by its very nature, when you see supplies of civilians, you are inflicting hardship on that civilian population. and so, in order to inflict sort of the magical right amount of hardship, enough but not undue, to operate within the moral boundaries of civilized warfare, officers need to maintain very tight control.
and lippet explains that without defined foraging parties and centralized distribution systems chaos could ensue and the army would really descend into a sort of armed mob engaging in pillage and so forth. so what's interesting is that you would have expected lippet to use sherman's march as his examples as he's making this complicated case. he doesn't. he actually goes back to napoleon's russian campaign. and in fact, though, he doesn't ignore the march when he's talking about a arm can descend into chaos. that's where he uses napoleon. he actually defends sherman's march and he claims that when first getting household goods, explains how to men carefully discriminated and this is the language from sherman's orders.
discriminated between the rich who were generally hostile to us, meaning the union, and the poor and industrious who were usually friendly or at least neutral. and he also describes sherman as having this very organized system. and with rules and receipts. and he explains that any deviations from this nice, orderly foraging system on the march as he put it were the fault of a few bad apples, stragglers and the like. not the main force of the marchers. kind of talk about that in a minute. the otherr piece i want to include in here is that white southerners during the march and immediately afterwards frequently drew comparisons between sherman's march and robert e. lee's invasion of maryland in 1862 and pennsylvania in 1963 and often quoted lee's general order 72
to his soldiers in the gettysburg campaign. and reminded them the duties expected of us by civilization and christianity are not less obligatory in the area of the enemy than in our own. and we make war only upon armed men, and we cannot take vengeance for the wrongs our people have suffered without lowering ourselves in the eyes of all whose abhorrence has been excited by the atrocities of our enemies. so lee is often praised for these orders, right? that he's restraining his men and relying on their inherent gentility. that's a pretty selective reading, of course, of what actually happened and many of these defenders of lee ignore the many wrongs perpetrated by lee's men, specifically, when they kidnapped african americans to sell into slavery in virginia. so we'll set that aside.
okay. i've gotten a little ahead of myself and a little off track. let's talk now specifically about sherman and his march. despite many allegations to the contrary, sherman himself was very well aware that war was governed by rules. these charges against sherman, you know, is sherman a war criminal, generally focus on two events. they focus on the march, obviously, which i'll talk about. but they also focus on his expulsion of civilians from atlanta. so sherman's army took control of the city of atlanta on september 2, 1864. they weren't planning to stay for very long. but he did want his men to use their time in the city for sort of recharging, to rest a little bit after the rigors of the campaign to take atlanta. and he didn't want his men
distracted by either confederate operatives or women and children. he didn't want to have to feed women and children. and he didn't want to have to leave any men behind to hold onto the city of atlanta when he pulled out of the city. so he famously ordered civilians, unionists and confederates out of the city and gave them ten days which to comply. and it was about 1,200 people who were affected by this. many people have used his september 12, 1864, letter to the mayor of atlanta in which he famously wrote, quote, war is cruelty and you cannot refine it, to make the argument that he was willing to do whatever worked, wreak all kinds of havoc on civilians in order to end the war. but in other letters written at the same time, sherman's quite explicit about following the rules and laws of war.
in fact,he was quite angry when confederate general john bell hood challenged the legitimacy of evicting civilians from atlanta and he wrote, i think i understand the laws of civilized nations and the customs of war. and then he suggested, in fact, that maybe the confederates ought to be taking better care of prisoners at andersonville. in his final letter to hood, in fact, sherman wrote he was not by the wars because he said the city had been fortified and was being used for military purposes. see the books, he testily concluded. so what of the march itself? before sherman left atlanta on november 15th, 1864, he set some ground rules for his 62,000 men. and he did them in the form of
his special field orders number 120. there are nine articles altogether. the first several describe how he is going to divide up the army and their marching orders and there's some center sections that, in fact, deal explicitly with what the army could and could not do along the march. so the men were instructed to, quote, forage liberally on the country and destroy mills, houses, cotton gins, et cetera, but within limits. the foraging parties were supposed on the regularized and under the control of discrete officers. soldiers were not supposed to enter homes, as long as -- and if the army was left unmolested, southern property was also supposed to be left alone. so if essentially what sherman is saying, is if a group of union foragers came on to a farm or plantation and they were
allowed on and nobody was shooting at them or smarting off to them, then they were supposed to just leave all the property. and again, sherman also ordered that when seizing livestock in particular, his men, as i said earlier, ought to discriminate between the rich, who are usually hostile, and the poor and industrious, usually neutral or friendly. and if the army was well-treated during their foraging, they were instructed to quote, leave with each family a reasonable portion for their maintenance. so he is setting parameters. now, most of these rules were really more -- more honored in the breach than in reality. they are pretty elastic. but i think that their very existence of these rules gave sherman and to a lesser extent his men a degree of i think
moral cover. or at least that's what sherman's trying to achieve. they also allow for a certain elasticity. so you could treat some people more harshly and other people more leniently. and there is pretty good evidence that, in fact, the march does have a sort of ebb and flow to it. certainly it is pretty harsh in georgia. it is extremely harsh in south carolina. and then the men are ordered to really pull back and be less destructive in north carolina because north carolina was perceived to have a lot of unionists. so i don't really want to come away from today thinking i'm a kind of apologist for sherman's march or that i in any way am trying to minimize the very real damage and devastation that the soldiers left in their wake. but what i am trying to say that the men were bound by rules and they knew they were bound by rules.
sherman certainly believed that he was operating within the laws of war and the parameters of civilized behavior. he's also willing to push exactly up to those boundaries of those rules. framing people, stealing their supplies, burning their barn, burning their houses even was one thing for sherman. i do think this the kind of wholesale killing, sexual violence as happened in areas ridden by gorilla violence, like missouri, for example, was really beyond the pale for sherman's men by and large. sherman biographer michael fellman has argued that while the march quote stopped well short of a total war in the 20th century nazi sense, sherman's rhetoric of destruction implied that he could make war on whomever he chose and that
southern whites would be powerless to stop him. and sherman is certainly well aware of the psychological impact of what he allowed his men to do and encouraged his men to do. does that make sherman a terrorist? he used his calculated brutality to terrorize the southern population. fellman, i think, really tries to split hairs as much as possible and describes sherman as having, quote, terrorist capacities. i also think there is some responsibility, clearly, for both destroying and reigning themselves in that accrues to the soldiers themselves on the march. and part of the reason that the march was not "total" in the 20th century sense was because the veterans limited themselves, held back by own internal and cultural sense of morality. i've done a lot of reading on the march because i have this book coming out this summer. and i will tell you there are
very few instances of -- there is not murdering. there is not killing. there is not lining people up and shooting them. there is definitely some violence but not the kind of violence that's associated with wars in the 20th and centuries. so sherman himself may have overstepped the bounds of legality a few times. each time actually in retaliation for confederate actions and these charges again are regarding his use of prisoners of war. in the first instance sherman learned that torpedos or mines had been buried in the roads outside of savannah and called for prisoners of war to be brought up to clear the mines, not wanting to risk his own men. and then in the second, a group of union foragers had been captured and killed by some of tta:éta
but, i would argue, what keeps sherman from being a terrorist in the modern sense of the word is that he was operating during wartime with full sanction and full support of his government. and when the war ended, so too did his hostilities and his destruction. i mean, in many ways i think that a better analogy to terrorism in the wake of the civil war would be the waves of violence that confronted african americans during reconstruction as they thought to exercise their new economic and social and political freedoms. and so this notion that sherman brought forth some new kind of war with the march really only makes sense in retrospect. it wasn't -- at the time people didn't perceive it as such. as the 19th century became the 20th and as wars of increasing deadliness and destructive power broke out around the globe, the march seemed to reappear again and again.
and often the analogies surrounding the march are strained. but what they do is they reveal, i think, this evolving notion of the march that somehow the march becomes increasingly destructive as it is repeatedly compared to more modern or more current wars. and i'm going to just suggest a few things, give you a few examples of this. so sherman's march was invoked frequently when germany marched into belgium in 1914. often to actually remind americans of the costs of involvement of war, even when justifiable. once the united states became involved in world war i this usable past of sherman's march ceased to be a significant point of discussion. although, it did reappear briefly after the war and i'm excited to talk about this in
this room, which was that during testimony before the senate committee on propaganda in 1919, grant squires, a new york lawyer who visited belgium, testified to the atrocities he saw with the germans. men and women beat within rifle butts, children and babies murdered and families starving without shelter. he was then asked to counter testimony that had been given earlier by a german sympathizer, dr. edmund van ma. to quote that sherman's march quote had also been a cruel outrage. and american soldiers had quote, never killed women and children. whatever they did, they did not do that. and nelson, specifically asked squires to address van mach's charge that is germans were no worse than sherman's men and
squires then confirmed that the germans were different from sherman's march. so what i'm -- what i see coming out of this is this sense that there is a new standard set for violations of civilians. that where once sherman's men's thefts and fires were the worst that people could imagine, the great war issued horrors of an entirely different order of magnitude. interestingly, there are very few mentions of the march during world war ii i was able to come across. but in the vietnam era perhaps because it coincided with the centennial of the civil war raised all sorts of analogies to sherman's march. a variety of cultural critics and opponents of the war in vietnam compared sherman's actions in georgia to the actions of american soldiers in vietnam. the most detailed and culturally
significant exploration of this relationship somehow between sherman and vietnam came in james reston jr.'s 1984 book, "sherman's march and vietnam," where reston retraces the march through georgia and he's looking at the past to try to explain the turbulent present, this post-vietnam world he's living in and he seems at times to draw this straight line, this straight connection, between 19th and 20th century violence. and here is a passage from this. general williams tecumseh sherman is considered by many to be the author of totally war. the first general of modern human history to dairy logic of war to ultimate extreme. the first to scorch the earth. the first to wreck an economy in order to starve soldiers. he was our first merchant of terror and our spiritual father. and the spiritual father some
contend of our vietnam concept of search and destroy, pacification, strategic hamlets, free fire zones. as such he remains a cardboard figure of our history. a monstrous arch villain to unreconstructed southerners, an embarrassment to northerners who wonder if civilized war died with him. whether without sherman the atom bomb might not have been dropped or vietnam entered. now reston concedes after this passage that maybe he is getting -- this is a more metaphorical than real. but he's -- he is really trying to argue that there is, once you loose the bounds, the bounds were constantly loosed. he's trying to make an argument, too, that sherman's veterans -- that sherman's soldiers and as
he put them west moreland soldiers has an desire for vengeance and reprisal and where they differed according to function of technology than of desire. that it seems worse in the 20th century because they had weapons of mass destruction and in the in the 19th they didn't. i don't buy it completely. let me just conclude by evoking something, what if today? where does sherman fit today? he sometimes is invoked in discussions of the iraq war. a terrible sort of war. again, this would be the dark reaches of internet where people are saying things like if only sherman had been in iraq or afghanistan. okay. just the other day though my --
on tuesday, actually, my trusty google alert for sherman's march pointed me to a column written on foreign policy entitled "sherman as a counterinsurgent." he argued he was embarking on a counter insurgency. not a soft heart and minds campaign. but instead a tough minded, you are either with us or against us approach with clear political and psychological dimensions. i read his column over a bunch of times. i'm not really convinced by his argument. but where i think his work is useful and what i am convinced of is that sherman's march and its relationship to what americans think about war is still very much alive and very much relevant today. thank you very much. [ applause ]
i'm happy to answer any questions. there we go. >> yeah. can you address a little -- you talked a lot about the topic from the standpoint of what sherman ordered. can you address kind of what actually was happening on the ground for the union troops? in particular, as they marched through the swath of the south, they obviously disrupted the society that was going on. but, in particular, how did his men handle african american slaves? >> that, that is a great question.
and, actually, in my book i have a whole chapter on the relationship between the march and african americans. as sherman's men marched through -- the first thing i would say is there is this misconception that people say oh, sherman's men cut a swath 50 miles wide or 60 miles wide. that is -- i always tell my students, you don't want to think of it like a lawn mower strip. it is not 50 miles wide of lawn mower. it is 50 miles from the edge of one column through four columns to the furthest edge of the other. so in many ways it is very -- what is the word i'm looking for. not sporadic or episodic. but sometimes a house is targeted and other houses a mile away are not targeted. that being said, where sherman's men and him and african american african americans is a really interesting question. i love paul's formulation that in fact sherman's army was probably one to great armies of liberation. they are not probably very willing liberators.
sherman was not, certainly not a fan of racial equality or after the war according civil rights to african americans. he did not -- he was perfectly content as they went on the to plantations to have his men liberate the slaves and announce that they were free. but then he was always telling them to stay put. they need to stay put. because he doesn't want them following after his army. of course he's unable to present african americans from following his army. so by the time he gets to atlanta, georgia there are probably about 25,000 african americans who have followed his army. and he doesn't want them. he's perfectly willing, and actually there is a section in his orders to take able-bodied african american men and put them in his pioneer corps and have them work as teamsters and things like that. he does not want to have to feed women and children or elderly people. he tries to leave them behind. there is a horrific episode
outside of savannah at a place called ebenezer creek where sherman's men, you have sherman's army, or a section of his army under the command of sherman's subordinate general, jefferson davis -- no relation -- and then you have the african americans who are following them. and then you have wheeler's confederate cavalry kind of behind that. and what happens is they use pontoon bridges to get through this river or swampy area. it's kind of a cypress swamp. and then davis orders the pontoon bridges pulled up so that the african americans can't cross. and they are being chased by wheeler's cavalry. hundreds of them wind up drowning in the swamp. hundreds end up being recaptured by the cavalry. when the news gets out, sherman is condemned for not condemning davis. so it is tangled, i guess is the short answer.
>> one consequence of the march is the rise in diversion rates from soldiers whose homes were in the areas that sherman's army went through. was this a circumstance or one of the goals? >> i don't think sherman was directly hoping to influence the army of northern virginia. where i think sherman actually was directly trying to target the army of northern virginia was not through desertion but through supplies. that by, first of all, breaking the rail line from atlanta which had been a major supply line up to petersburg, and then by just raiding through, you know, this relatively untouched area to deprive them of supplies.
and i think, also, there was a sense -- he definitely was cognizant of the psychological impact, that he wanted people to know that he could not be stopped. and that, in fact, any kind of rumors that might have come out about how vicious they were or how violent, he was comfortable with that because he felt there would be this deeper psychological impact. doesn't matter. >> 50 years before the event you are talking about we had an episode similar to here. literally next door, when the british came to washington after the battle of the braidanceburg and the sewell belmont house. somebody took a pot shot at general ross as he arrived in the capital plaza. killed his horse and general ross made a order of that house burned.
but made a point to not specifically damage other property. and contrasted that to the uncivilized behavior of americans at york and other canadian towns they burned and looted. he said we are so far more civilized than those terrible americans he said. so is general ross ahead of his time? was he unique at his time? or what was going on then? >> i'm far from an expert on the war of 1812. but i don't think that ross was ahead of his time. i mean, i think that -- ross ahead of his time? do you mean in burning the civilian house or? not burning everything else? no, i mean, there is an argument to be made for only limiting your destruction to private buildings. i will also say that with sherman, the vast majority of buildings or structures that sherman's men burned were not it was again, the sort of -- the places that gave material support to the confederacy.
barns, gin houses, cotton -- big bails of cotton. they burn remarkably few houses. and it is fascinating to me one of the areas that i explore in my book. because my book is actually really about the cultural memory of sherman's march is the reason that all of the houses along sherman's route were saved. you can't have it both ways. you sknt have sherman cutting this swath and houses surviving. there's reasons why this house was spared or that house was spared. >> i'm also a tour guide. i take people past the statue of the guy on horse, william tecumseh sherman, the house. the revisionist history, i say, war is a pathway to a more perfect peace.
from savannah. and i wonder if this psychological effect, when he brought his children, when the family came to chattanooga, and his son died, another son named willie, how much of a psychological effect do you think that had in making -- some say it made him manic and mean. what do you think? >> i think it was tragic for him, as losing a child would be for anybody. i think that -- i don't think sherman was mean. i think that sherman was clear-eyed. which is to say that i think sherman recognized that the way you stop a war is you make the war too costly. and that in so doing, he also really did believe that he was saving his men, because, look, his men, they thought the march was great. they loved it. you know, they had more to eat than they normally did. they marched less each day than
they normally did. and with very few exceptions, nobody ever shot at them. so from sherman's perspective, this is saving his men's lives while bringing the war to a more rapid close, so i, i don't think he's mean. i think he's -- he has a job, and he's willing to do what it takes. >> could you speak to how, in 1864, northern papers were covering the march, and were there lincoln opponents who singled out the march to pointed out anything different than had been happening? >> that's a great question. there's very little coverage of the march itself, because from november 15th, until he's right outside of savannah, there's almost no news coming out of the march. the northern paper i've looked at the most in terms of its coverage of the march has been
harper's weekly, mostly because i was looking for images, and it does have great images of the march. but it's largely celebratory. i'll be perfectly honest with you, i've not looked specifically at democratic newspapers. there's not a sense at the time that sherman is doing anything beyond the pale, or anything radically -- no one thinks that sherman's created this new kind of warfare. what sherman is doing of what, say, sheridan had done earlier in the valley in 1864. grant, famously instructs sheridan, destroy the valley such that a crow flying over will have to carry his own provender with him. they see in the progress of sherman that his progress is helping to win the war. i mean, the reason that he turns at savannah and goes up through the carolinas, he's trying to
get to petersburg, ultimately, to help out grant. and not to steal any of matt's thunder, but that was my frustration with the movie "lincoln" is that there was no sherman in it. >> one of my favorite cities in america is savannah, georgia. can you talk about his decision to save that beautiful city, and give it to president lincoln as a christmas gift? >> wow, that is the nicest, most gentile description i've ever heard of that. because normally, sherman didn't decide to save savannah. sherman said, look, you can surrender, or i'm going to shell you into submission. he gave them a choice. and savannahans said, okay, we're going to surrender. in fact, they earned the enmity of every other place in the south. because they were weak and they gave up. that's just the nicest way i've ever heard that played. >> i'm just going to -- a quick
question. of course, natchez does the same thing. but i have another question. in 1863, confederate troops went out of their way and, in fact, arrived late at gettysburg, because they're busy burning down thaddeus stephens' house. chasing free blacks all over pennsylvania and rounding them up. is there anything equivalent in sherman's march? that is, does his army target politicians' house, do they march out of their way just to seek revenge against particular politicians and are they rounding up any white confederates and enslaving them? >> they are not rounding up white con fed rates and enslaving them. no, i wouldn't say they go out of their way, but sherman takes a particular delight, and he has a long passage about it in his
memoirs about camping for a night in georgia, and freeing cobb's slaves. and then the other place that comes in for a lot of destruction, the south carolina poet simms. they destroy his house. i read a diary that soldiers were dismayed, because it's one thing if they sort of trash the house, but they burn a lot of the books in simms' library, and he feels that that's beyond the pale. i think those are the two. the other thing is that when they take millageville, sherman's men actually go into the georgia state house and they have a mock convention, where they bring georgia back into the union. it's really interesting. what they don't do, though, is they don't talk about emancipation at all in this mock convention. they just bring georgia back in. >> there were women and children from the south who were shipped via rail train to the north, who never made it back home again. has any research been done to
follow up on what happened to them after the war? >> not that i'm aware of. and by shipped, i mean, they go willingly. it's not as if sherman is refugeeing women and children out to the north. no, i've not seen much on that. the only thing i can recall, a long time ago when i was working on my dissertation, i read a diary of a woman who had been from georgia and had gone and spent time with family in brooklyn and came back to georgia and was upset that the minister's wife wouldn't talk to her, that she was seen as having been sort of a traitor. but, no, i'm not familiar with that. >> there's a professor, i believe it's mississippi state, who recently came out with a book on sherman. and advances that one of his motives, since he had taught school in louisiana, to a
military school, knew many of the confederate officers. and had many friendships and personal relationships. that part of his motivation in the south certainly was to protect his own troops, certainly to break the will of the south, because it was obvious the war going on for four years, what we had been doing wasn't completely working. and then i think back to after the overland campaign, grant still hung on for almost a year, and all the loss and destruction and loss of life that went on there, to take the approach to break the will of the south to continue to fight. and all that that entailed. but also he did not want -- and also to project his own troops. but he did not want to take on many of his friends and do battle on the field of battle. >> i've not heard that theory, that he didn't want to take on
his friends. i mean, those friendships, of course, are legendary. not so much because sherman had taught at lsu, but almost all of these officers had been at west point together over the years. i don't think that sherman -- that doesn't sort of ring true to me, personally. but i'm not familiar with the -- is it the -- "the demon of the loss cause," is that the one? that's the most recent one that i know of that came out. i'd love to see it. thank you. >> when the question arose about press coverage, did walt whitman cover anything having to do with sherman? did he comment on it? and the other question i have is, can you address the mythologizing of sherman, when it began? i think maybe reston -- i think there's a big mythology in america surrounding sherman. so when did that begin? >> okay.
as to the poetry question, walt whitman has one poem that obliquely references sherman, it's ethiopia so saluting the colors. from the perspective of an african-american woman watching sherman's men marching through north carolina. actually, melville, herman melville in battle pieces has two poems about sherman's march. i think there's two, that are pretty powerful. in terms of the mythologizing of sherman, i think it begins as the war concludes. i mean, he's seen as just such a hero of the war, and they march in the grand review. at the very end of the war, they march, and then they have all these, like, captured cows and sheep and stuff marching behind them. certainly when sherman dies in 1891 or '2 now, i can't remember, but when sherman dies,
there's the outpouring, sort of national outpouring of grief. it's tremendous. during the 1870s, 1860s, and 1870s, he's not reviled in the south. he makes a tour of the south in 1879, he goes back to atlanta, actually. he's welcomed with open arms. there's balls in his honor. the papers are funny because there's people like ha, ha, ha, hide the matches. sherman's coming. but he's really -- he's welcomed by white southerners because of the fact that he did not support equality for african-americans. and he wanted in fact a very soft piece for the south. so going back to his time at lsu and his time earlier when he had been in the army in the south, he loved the south. he loved southerners. southern whites. let me be more clear. thank you all very much. [ applause ] friday night on "american history tv," slavery and the
cinema, beginning at 8:oo eastern, with a look at the depiction of slavery and films since the 1930s. then the 2012 movie "lincoln" and its portrayal of the debate and passage of the 13th amendment. and a discussion about the 1939 movie "gone with the wind" and its depiction of southern society, friday night, beginning at 8:00 eastern, here on c-span3. this weekend on "american history tv," we take a look back 200 years ago this week, when british military forces set the white house and the capitol on fire. we'll also hear about british admiral coburn used the waterways to invade and burn the city. coburn's idea is to make use of several different waterways in an attack on washington. if the british force simply
sailed up the potomac, everybody would know that washington was the ultimate target. coburn decides that -- or recommends that the force be split up. that one squadron sail up the potomac river and threaten the capitol and the city of alexandria. the main force is going to go up the potungset river in maryland. and the advantage of te hpotungset is that it would kind of shield the ultimate british intention. because a move up the potungsset could mean anything. it could mean an attack on washington, but it could also mean an overland attack on baltimore, or attack on annapolis. or it could mean that the british were simply chasing after commedore joshua barney, who was the american commander of the chesapeake flotilla, who had a flotilla of shallow draft barges that were perfectly
suited for navigating the shallow waters of the chesapeake and the rivers feeding into it. barney, by the summer of 1814, had been trapped in the patuksin river. he was further up river than the british. the british could use barney's presence in the river to more or less shield their movement toward the capital. and that's exactly what coburn recommended. and it's what the british commanders, general ross and admiral alexander cochran, who was in charge of the entire fleet here in north america, agreed to do. this weekend live coverage of a panel of authors and historians as they discuss the 1814 british burning of washington. live saturday at 1:00 p.m. eastern. then more from author steve 4znc vogel on how the british used washington's waterways during
the invasion, sunday at 6:00 and 10:00 p.m., eastern all here on c-span3. next, historian jim ogden talks about confederate weapons manufacturing in central georgia. in the fall of 1964 sherman destroyed much of this infrastructure, crippling the confederate army's ability to wage war. this hour-long talk was hosted by the civil war center at kennesaw state university in georgia. [ applause ] as many of you all know from coming to some of my programs over the years, i have a tendency to use a few props of one sort or another. so i couldn't resist that opportunity today as well.
to help illustrate a few points. mike and some of the staff are -- oh, my goodness. we even recruited craig into distributing handouts. i should get a picture of this. i have a historian friend who once had trace adkins as a sound man at an event. i have a naval academy professor as a map hander-outer. so that's kind of like bob crick as an easel in the western theater. brian, i do thank you for the introduction. as brian noted, my day job is staff historian at chickamauga national military park. even though i'm here today, just as a self-interested historian and citizen, and learner, because i've enjoyed making a few notes about things already yet again from richard and now craig.
and look forward to hearing steve's talk in a few minutes. and i'm not here today as a national military park employee, but because i think the place that i work is an important historic site in the shaping of our nation, i couldn't miss an opportunity of hawking my day job. chickamauga and chattanooga national military park. and i've already seen that some of you all have discovered that out on the table in the lobby there are piles of brochures for chickamauga and chattanooga military park. the old one is currently in use, and the new one which some day will be in use. and so you can pick these up at some point. and i hope to see you on the ground studying those battlefields frequently and often. also coming around is that
handout, which hopefully everybody will get a copy of pretty soon. and i also have a power point. and let's see, mike -- okay. let's see here. let's try this. aha! there we go. that's the one that works. oh, no. i've already -- there we go. okay. well, i'll only use the advance button. for the events that were, and would be unfolding in the year we are considering today in this symposium, the year now a century and a half ago, this past week of march, 1864, would prove to be a momentous one.
not only on march 17 did the newly appointed general ulysses s. grant assume command of the armies of the united states and the next day, the 18th, his most trusted subordinate, major general william tecumseh sherman, assumed command of his new responsibility, grant's just vacated seat as the commander of the vast military division of the mississippi, that western theater that richard so well described a few minutes ago, the area between the appalachian mountains on the east and the mississippi river on the west. but two days ago, on the 20th of march, 1864, in a series of what one of the participants called "full conversations," those conversations drew to a close with some important conclusions. that, in the end, would turn out indeed to do much towards
determining the course of events over the coming year. those full conversations, as william tecumseh sherman would characterize them had begun two days earlier in nashville. and ironically in the recent ly abandoned and recently constructed renaissance revival home of one of the very men, confederate quartermaster george w. cunningham, who would seen feel as if he personally had a target painted on his chest. because at that time, cunningham was working for the new confederate government in atlanta. concluding on march 20, two days ago, in the burnett house hotel in cincinnati, where the conversations had moved, including being continued on the rail line between nashville and louisville, and then on to
cincinnati, these full conversations set the strategy for the coming campaign season. two weeks later, grant, the principal in those full conversations, having relocated to the east, would reiterate the substance of those discussions as a general directive. in a letter to sherman, dated washington april 4, 1864, and marked "private and confidential." grant would write, it is my design if the enemy keep quiet and allow me to take the offensive in the spring campaign to work all parts of the army together and somewhat towards a common center. for your information, i now write you my program as to present -- or as at present determined upon.
he then outlines briefly what richard had outlined about the many prongs of grant's planned spring offensive. but then he gets in the end of the second paragraph to the important part of it. and he tells william tecumseh sherman what you see on the screen. you, i propose, to move against johnston's army, to break it up, and get into the interior of the enemy's country as far as you can, inflicting all the damage you can against their war resources. six days later, sherman, wanting to make sure that he understood this, and doing something that would not be really codified in military art and science, until much later, although some of us who work with groups of military personnel today can tell you we have to continually teach this.
but sherman essentially will do a brief back in a letter to grant on april the 10th, from his then headquarters at the cunningham house in nashville. sherman having occupied the same residence after grant had vacated it. and sherman, too, marking the letter private and confidential. sherman will say, your letter of april 4th is now before me, and affords me an infinite satisfaction, that we are now all to act in common plan, converging on a common center. looks like enlightened war. most specifically he will say, like yourself, you take the biggest road -- or biggest load, and from you shall have thorough and hardy -- or from me you shall have thorough and hearty cooperation. i will not let side issues draw
me off from your main plan in which i am to knock joe johnston and do as much damage to the resources of the enemy as possible. i think william tecumseh sherman understands what is expected of him in the coming campaign. and joseph johnston's army of tennessee is indeed to be the first target for sherman's combined army group of the military division of the mississippi. and he'll later summarize this strategy by saying he was to go for lee, and i was to go for joe johnston. that was the plan. the confederate armies would be the first target. but there had by 1864 to be a second target, and that was the war resources that are mentioned in this order. because by 1864, the confederate states of america had created a
capacity, principally in central georgia and central alabama -- and now you can turn to the handout that i've provided you, and in particular the side that is in the lower right-hand corner labeled number 1. the side with the map of the southeast of the united states on it principally. you'll notice there in central georgia and central alabama, at places like augusta, athens, macon, and montgomery and selma, i've drawn another symbol by those cities, a solid square with a straight line off one of the upper corners of that square, a symbol to represent, what? factories, manufacturing, processing, transportation, warehousing, and distribution. by 1864, the new confederate government had created in
central georgia and central alabama what we in our day would think of and call a military industrial complex. a military industrial complex that was keeping southern armies in the field. a capacity that had allowed the confederate states of america, just three months after the surrender of the garrison of vicksburg, to return most of those men surrendered there on the mississippi to the field. for grant and sherman, at chattanooga, it was some of these same surrendered, paroled, exchanged, reorganized and reequipped vicksburg troops who had helped, as we've heard from craig just a few minutes ago, they had helped patrick clayburn stop what was supposed to be grant's main effort. much of carter stevenson's
division that was on the tunnel hill portion on the missionary ridge battlefield just south of where clayburn's brigade was located. in particular, the georgia brigade, and the alabama brigade, they had helped stop sherman's men. firing into the flank of sherman's assaulting columns on tunnel hill, was rome, georgia's cherokee light artillery, rearmed with products of the confederate military industrial complex. and less than five months after their surrender to the very troops who were assaulting them on that november 25, 1863, were now firing to stop those very assaults. this military industrial complex was the capacity that caused one -- or someone walking the
line of confederate cannon, captured on lookout mountain and missionary ridge, and displayed as trophies in front of the army of the cumberland's headquarters on walnut street in chattanooga, to observe that over one-half of the three dozen artillery pieces just captured in that fighting around chattanooga were products of confederate manufacturing. in fact, all of the standard -- or all of the standard cannon of the day, the 12-pound napoleon, were southern manufacturers. 13 of the 19 12-ound napoleons captured had been produced in georgia. in fact, on a clear copy of this photograph, you can read stenciled on the trail, macon arsenal, macon, georgia. this military industrial complex was a capacity which, in april of 1864, was one of its principal architects, if not the
principal architect, general gorgok summarized as -- in a report to the confederate government, it is three years today since i took charge of the ordnance department of the confederate states at montgomery. three years of constant work and application. i have succeeded beyond my utmost expectations, from being the worst supplied bureau of the war department, it is now the best. large arsenals have been fayetteville, augusta, richmond, charleston, macon, atlanta, and selma, and smaller ones at danville, lynchburg, montgomery, besides other establishments. a superb powder mill has been built at augusta, the credit of which is due george washington raines.8syel smelting works were established by me at petersburg. a cannon foundry established at macon for heavy guns and bronze
foundaries at macon, columbus, and augusta. and saulsbury, north carolina. and corksville, virginia. in fayetteville, a manufacturing of carbine has been built up in richmond, and a rifle factory at asheville, north carolina. and a new very large armory at macon, including a pistol factory built up under contract here and sent to atlanta, and thence transferred under purchase to macon. a second pistol factory at columbus, georgia. all of these have required incessant toil and attention, but have borne such fruit as relieves the country from fear of want in these respects. where three years ago, we were not making a gun, pistol nor saber, nor shot, nor shell,
except at the works, a pound of powder. now we make all of these in quantities to meet the demands of our large army. in looking over all of this, i feel that my three years of labor have not passed in vain. i want to spend a few minutes, or the rest of my time principally elaborating on what this confederate achievement, principally in central georgia and central alabama, was. because in the end it can be argued, and certainly many federal soldiers who fought at alatoona and dalton and decatur and franklin and nashville, probably would agree, engagements that occurred after the atlanta campaign, it is in the end that sherman's greater success was probably with the second part of grant's directive rather than the first. the army of tennessee was still
a potentially dangerous force, even after sherman was es conched in atlanta. you can, of course, locate many of these places, i know lots of you all are georgians, and hopefully all of you georgians can locate these principal places in what was considered by many the empire state of the south. but in general, i'll be working from east to west. i'm going to start off with augusta. augusta turns out to be, in the end, one of the most important military industrial centers for the new confederate government. it was when georgia seceded and declared independence. it was already the home of a very important facility. a united states arsenal had been
established there early in the 1800s. its first location right on the banks of the savannah river. but because of disease, it had been moved up from the valley, and perhaps a little ironically and also reflective of what we heard just a few minutes ago from craig, it wound up on the land of the -- or land of walker, sold to the united states government. it's on walker's plantation. and some of you all may know walker, after his death in the atlanta campaign, in the battle of atlanta, will wind up being interred on the family cemetery that is still on this piece of ground. but augusta was already the location of a principal united states arsenal in the south in the antebellum period. and with georgia's secession,
the state of georgia sees that arsenal in january of 1861. and in so doing, brought 22,000 arms to the state of georgia, and then the new confederate government. it is worth noting that 12 months before, in early 1860, there were only 2,000 arms in the augusta arsenal. why the jump between january of 1860 and january of 1861 from 2,000 to 22,000? it was in response to pleas by governor joseph e. brown to the united states war department, in particular, to the virginia secretary of war john floyd to ship more arms south in the aftermath of john brown's insurrection at harper's ferry.
there was the fear that there would be more john brown's and more harper's ferries. so the state of georgia, and then the confederate government will get this already existing facility, but will almost immediately begin to expand its capability. first by making contracts with other industrial facilities, including two foundries in the -- in augusta. but soon those foundries will be purchased by the confederate authorities, and then incorporated, administratively, into this ever-growing confederate state's augusta arsenal that is located there. and the slide here on the screen shows the plan of the augusta arsenal as it developed during the course of the war. one of the reasons that this subject doesn't get a great deal
of attention today, is that so many of these facilities were destroyed in the last year of the war. but believe it or not, this one in augusta is one that you can actually still walk and visit and get some idea about its size and scale. and some of you-all may have already visited this site without knowing that you have. this is now the main campus of georgia regents university in augusta. and, in fact, the old complex towards the -- as you view it, left edge of the image is still there. most of those buildings are still present. the walls enclosing it are still there. and you can walk that ground. during the course of the war, the confederate government will expand the facility, and build across one end of it, a very large structure that appears here in a post-war photograph.
but for this facility incorporated additional workshops, and capabilities as well, another post-war image of that structure. this structure is long gone. but because the street pattern around the campus is still pretty much still the same, you can see and sense where this structure was located. as all arsenals, it had both in-house ability to produce materiel, but also served as an administrative center for the contracting of production of war materiel. and the augusta arsenal will become one of the most productive. just in 1863 and 1864, to give you a couple of ideas about its capability, it will produce 174
artillery carriages, 115 casons, 10,500 wooden shipping boxes for gunpowder, 11,800 wooden shipping boxes for small arms ammunition, 73,500 horseshoes, arsenals also are where the ammunition is prepared. 85,800 rounds of artillery ammunition will be prepared. 200,000 timed fuses. 15 million small arms cartridges. and in addition to some male laborers working in the cartridge factory, they employed dozens, hundreds of women, girls, and young boys as well. 1864 as the threat to the empire
and eventually, particularly in 1864 as the threat to the empire state increased, they expanded the ammunition production aspect of the arsenal by opening a cartridge rolling facility right in downtown augusta. so that it would be closer to where much of the labor was, where people could come in and work. and when you've seen, at a national battlefield park or civil war site, an individual do a firing demonstration, as you know, civil war soldiers to load and fire their single-shot rifle muskets would reach in their cartridge box, pull out that paper tube containing the lead projectile and the powder charge. they tear the end of that paper tube open and then to pour the powder down the bore. well, it was mostly women, boys and girls in factories north and south who took those trapezoid-shaped pieces of paper, rolled one up around the
wooden form, twist at the end, tied it off, picked up that lead bullet which had been cast, or stamped, and then trimmed and lubricated by a man, and then place that lead bullet on the end of that now paper-wrapped former, rolled that up around a second trapezoid piece of paper, twisted it, tied it off, removed the former and stuck that completed tube in the box to be sent to another part of the factory where men would put the powder in, and then fold them up. how long do you think it would take you to roll up those two pieces of trapezoid paper around that former and that lead ball? well, if you're going to get paid to do it, you're going to have to do 90 an hour, or one every 45 seconds. and when you think about just in augusta, 15,000 -- or excuse me, 15 million rounds of ammunition being produced, how many man,
women, girl and boy days, and hours were expended doing that. the augusta arsenal will also develop the important capability of producing those -- the principal and main and most important artillery piece of civil war armies north and south from the beginning of the war to the end of the war. and that is the 12-pound napoleon. now, as the confederate government, a little bit belatedly, adopted the 12-pound napoleon as its principle artillery piece, they will make a few refinements to their design of the 12-pound napoleon, primarily to reduce the amount of machining necessary, and also the amount of material necessary. the back side of your paper handout, you'll notice the profile on the left, the model
1857, 12-pound napoleon, as developed in europe, and the concept brought back to the united states and refined somewhat and adopted by the united states army in 1857. you'll notice most specifically that on the model 1857 12-pound napoleon, there at the muzzle, the muzzle is flared. that is purely decorative, to make it rather attractive. but if you look at the profile of the confederate manufactured 12-pound napoleon, you'll notice that the muzzle is sands that flare. to not have the flare on the muzzle, reduce the amount of machining that was necessary. and if you are short materiel, how many pounds of bronze is in that flare.
and if you save that amount of bronze for each tube, how soon might you have enough bronze to cast another 12-pound napoleon. so there is a little bit of savings in materiel there as well. in this central georgia military industrial complex, the production of these weapons will begin in the spring of 1863. and at augusta, which produces as many as 115 of these 12-pound napoleons by the end of the war, they had produced at least 57 by the end of 1863. and at least 77 were in the field by may of 1864. and almost all of them are in the army of tennessee, and the other western armies. although, today, if you're looking for the best collection
of these products of the confederate military industrial complex, you have to go to the eastern theater, and you have to go to the grounds of that -- of the scene of that small engagement outside that south central pennsylvania college town. but that gets to a whole other story which we can talk about another time. these guns begin to be fielded in the late summer and spring of 1863. and as i noted, by the time of the confederate defeat on missionary ridge in november of 1863, many are in the confederate army of tennessee's artillery compliment, because 13 of the three dozen guns lost at chattanooga are these chattanooga are these 12-pound napoleons.
there was also in augusta a clothing production facility that employed 1,500 women, producing uniform items for confederate soldiers. but perhaps the most important of all of the industrial facilities in augusta was the confederate state's powder works that was developed there. gorgus would slightly exaggerate the case by saying that at the beginning of the war, no powder was produced in the southern states. there were really only some very small powder mills, like the one to the northwest of nashville. but one of the most critical resources that the new nation would need, even if as they fought in 1860, one, it would be a short war, would be gunpowder. and george washington rains was
tasked with deciding on a location, and also the construction of a powder works. raines made a quick trip of the industrial cities of the south, and decided on augusta as the location. not only is augusta well served by railroads, and in fact, the whole military industrial complex in central georgia is in part located there because of the railroad network, but augusta, being located on the fall line of the savannah river, and having developed that river's potential industrial power by the construction of the augusta canal, had the potential power base as well to support this powder works operation. although, in the end, most of
the power for the works was going to come from steam power and not water power. but also, as it turns out, augusta is going to be a well-chosen city because it is going to be well behind what will become the front lines very quickly, and for much of the war. the complex stretched along the bank of the savannah river, upstream of downtown, and also along the augusta canal. and on your handout, you've got a black-and-white copy of this image. both of the powder works images that i have here come out of a very wonderful and rich volume that the university of south carolina press published in 2007. "never for the want of a powder, the history of the augusta powder works."
and you can find this in many libraries, and there are lots of things that you can dig out of that volume. but by the spring of 1862, the powder works quickly constructed by incorporating the industrial capacity of much of the south by having the individual parts of the factory produced in different places, including some of the incorporating wheels, the big, what you can kind of think of as grinding wheels in nashville, the drive shaft in the incorporating house building which was in segments, which is almost 300 feet long, was cast in segments in chattanooga, and then shipped by rail to augusta and assembled in the complex. there was a refinery for refining, removing impurities
from the principal component of gunpowder at that time, potassium nitrate. and then large cooling magazines, and also storage magazines. and the complex was laid out essentially so that all the materiel progressed from downstream to upstream, and the finished product, and also the most dangerous part of the product, was also located furthest away from the city of augusta. during the course of the war, this powder mill will produce 3.3 million pounds of gunpowder for the confederate government. in may of 1863, it was one of the principal places that the
english military officer wanted, in particular, to visit. he happened to be in augusta on sunday and was disappointed, because at that time, all of the needs for gunpowder for the confederate army nationally had been met, and there was no need to operate the powder factory on sunday. so they were keeping the sabbath and kept it closed. now, if you remember kind of the look of the color image of one of the buildings i showed you, you might wonder where the confederates get some of these ideas. i just flashed past it again. but this is the national armory in vienna, austria. and notice the kren lated and square turreted form of this. think back to the powder works images that i showed you, and
also the arsenal images. in the aftermath of the -- as a result of the crimean war, jefferson davis, then secretary of war of the united states, had sent officers to europe for one of the things they saw was some new ways of making gun powder and also producing a lot of other war material. this engraving comes out of the report of the three officer team, richard delafield, alfred mortiky and george mcclellan. one of the first times that many of the observations from these officers about how to produce war material on the newest practice are going to be implemented is by the new nation the confederate states of america. macon, georgia is another
important facility. macon too will go through the same development process where first existing private firms like the d.c. hodgkin's and skofield facility is contracted by hodgkin's and eventually will be bought out by the confederate government and other facilities established be incorporated into what is on paper the macon arsenal there. also to be located in macon is an armory for the production of small arms and after a search of some time, it was decided to locate the national armory of the new confederate states of america at macon, georgia, to build an armory just like that
at springfield and what had been at harpers ferry in virginia to locate that at macon. and property was acquired for the armory and construction began. these are two buildings that were used by the confederate states laboratory, part of the arsenal complex producing some of the ordinance items but they also begin construction of this national armory because it is the production of small arms where the confederates will have the greatest challenges. in macon, they also will produce the 12 pound napoleon, as many as 80 during the course of the war going into production again spring of 1863. by the end of 1863 having produced at least 37 and by may
of 1864 having at least 44 tubes in the field. columbus, georgia will also be another major arsenal and armory complex. it too goes through the same process of first by contract and then by purchase and consolidation of individual works, and much to craig's joy, i'm sure, you'll be satisfied to know that the confederate navy liked columbus also and the confederate navy will develop an important industrial complex there in that city on the river. columbus arsenal will produce the 12 pound napoleon as many as 60 with at least 23 by the end of 1863 and a couple of dozen in the field by may have 1864. columbus was also the location
of some very large textile mills like the eagle manufacturing company and that product was then shipped to various places to be used to produce uniforms, tents, and other cloth items. columbus also had another very important military industrial manufacturing complex and that was the rock island paper mill. why is paper important? what did the soldier expend a piece of paper. how much paper was expended by the confederate army a large pot jar work in terrell county, the georgia state armory, outside of macon a cotton gin manufacturing became the confederacy's largest pistol making factory making
3600 during the course of the war. in greensburg, georgia, the rigden company would produce pistols as well and this complex extended over into alabama, also there were facilities located in montgomery and nearby points like the textile mills at prattville and another very large complex would be developed both by the confederate states army and the navy at selma, alabama. and the factories in selma itself, and the activities that were operated out of selma, such as some of the functions of the confederate in the mining bureau, by 1865, the operations right at selma itself and in the
greater region had as many as 10,000 employees. not all right in selma, but at facilities in that greater region. the industrial capacity at selma was capable of producing larger sea coast weapons which were very important to the confederate naval operation. then, of course, there are all of the facilities in this the gate city of atlanta or the nearby gate city of atlanta. and while atlanta had some key facilities itself like the rolling mill depicted here as a
result of the abandonment of the city of atlanta in early september of 1864 in ruins, atlanta was primarily an administrative center for the confederate military production. offices here in atlanta contracted with firms large and small throughout the region and then received the product of those operations and then distributed them to the armies in the field as-needed. but one of the most important facilities in all of the atlanta complex was the quarter master clothing depot. run by that tennessee now confederate quarter master george washington cunningham who was then sherman's headquarters in nashville in late 1863 and
early 1864. cunningham operated a facility in atlanta that was capable of producing 130,000 complete suits of uniforms in a 12 month time period. and he did this mostly by piece work. vsvnother staff cutting out fabric in warehouses in atlanta and then all of the pieces of a given garment like a jacket or a pair
of trousers would be bundled together along with the necessary thread to sew them together and the buttons and other bits of trim and women would come in and check out these bundles of unfinished garments, take them home, sew them together and then bring them back in and receive pay for them once they were inspected and found to meet are standard. by the spring of 1863 this operation in atlanta employed 3,000 women a month. sewing uniform items together. and if we do not discount the sundays just crude math means on a daily basis about 100 women were arriving and departing in the atlanta clothing depot, delivering finished products and checking out more bundles and taking them home. it was a pretty busy street corner scene there in 1863 and
1864. now while this complex that i have described have set in place, and while it was so successful the product of really the hard work of not only of others but george washington rains and george h. burton, john mallett and george washington cunningham and isaac m. st. john and a host of others, while that capacity to produce war material had reached such a point that between july 1, 1864 and january 21 much i