A House Divided: Bloody Civil War Tactics II

 

Lead: One hundred and fifty years ago the Republic was facing its greatest crisis. This continuing series examines the American Civil War. It is "A House Divided."

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: In later years, General Daniel Harvey Hill remembered the Confederate dead stacked like cordwood before Yankee lines at Gaines Mill east of Richmond during the Seven Days Battles in 1862. He said, “It was thought to be a great thing to charge a battery of artillery or an earthwork lined with infantry….We were very lavish of blood in those days.” But, in fact, it was the tactics of Hill and his fellow leaders as much as the gallantry of their men that caused such a surfeit of gore. Union and Confederate leaders alike threw men into horrendously fatal charges against breastworks filled with vigilant enemy soldiers armed to the teeth over and over and over again. It was calculated that a charging enemy had to have a 3-1 advantage if it was to overcome troops dug and ready.

 

A House Divided: Bloody Civil War Tactics I

Lead: One hundred and fifty years ago the Republic was facing its greatest crisis. This continuing series examines the American Civil War. It is "A House Divided."

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: In the course of military history it has often been the case that armies prepare for the last war. Unable to see into the future, changes in strategy, tactics and weaponry come only with the experience of the current war. It is one of the great tragedies of the American Civil War that the learning curve among military leaders was so slow that tactics even up until the last year produced a grisly ingathering of causalities on both sides – more than 600,000 dead over a four-year period. Recognizing that disease was one of the most vicious of executioners in both Rebel and Yankee armies, leaders still were painfully slow on the uptake, not realizing that the tactics they were using increased casualty rates.

A House Divided (Civil War): The Great Congress II

Lead: One hundred and fifty years ago the Republic was facing its greatest crisis. This continuing series examines the American Civil War. It is "A House Divided."

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Despite its reputation for inertia, the U.S. Congress on occasion is capable of electrifying and revolutionary activity. But if the truth be known, such seasons of spectacular innovation occur more often than not when a single political party is in close to absolute control of the levers of congressional power and Congress is driven by an determined President of the majority party with visionary ambitions.

A House Divided (Civil War): The Great Congress I

 

Lead: One hundred and fifty years ago the Republic was facing its greatest crisis. This continuing series examines the American Civil War. It is "A House Divided."

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The position of a legislature in a republic is essentially conservative. Elected representatives tend to reflect the sentiments of their constituents who are not particularly inclined toward revolutionary enterprise. This is not difficult to understand as voters are usually required to pay the price in blood and treasure for their leaders’ ambitions. In U.S. history this has tended to insure that Congress has acted as a brake on Executive pretension. Presidents propose, Congresses dispose, or more often reject, the motivations of Chief Executives.

 

LFM: Sarah Edmonds, Civil War Spy

Lead: For 400 years service men and women have fought to carve out and defend freedom and the civilization we know as America. This series on A Moment in Time is devoted to the memory of those warriors, whose devotion gave, in the words of Lincoln at Gettysburg, the last full measure.

Intro: A Moment In Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Civil War Union spy Sarah Edmonds spent a good part of her life disguised as a man. In the Army she often disguised her disguise. Although women were not permitted to enlist as soldiers in either army during the Civil War, perhaps as many as 400 did so by bending their gender. In April 1861 Sarah Edmonds, after four attempts, was able to enlist in Flint, Michigan, as a male volunteer named Private Frank Thompson.

 

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Buffalo Soldiers II (African American Soldiers after the Civil War)

 

Lead: During the Indian wars, the Buffalo Soldiers, units made up of African Americans, served with great distinction.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Of the Native American clans who inhabited the West during the white settlement of the frontier, none were more resistant than the Apache. Unlike northern plains Indians, Sioux, Cheyenne, or Commanche, who fought mostly to keep miners, ranchers and hunters off their reserved territory, the Apache had lived for centuries alongside Spanish and then Mexican villages, sometimes attacking, sometimes trading with their white neighbors. They were consummate mountain guerrilla warriors, able to spring from ambushes with deadly effect and then cleverly elude their pursuers.

Buffalo Soldiers I (African American Soldiers after the Civil War)

Lead: Following the Civil War, U.S. Army regiments made up of African American soldiers proved themselves among the most efficient and professional fighting men in the Indian Wars.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: During the Civil War over 180,000 blacks served in volunteer regiments fighting with the U.S. Army. They filled out units and even comprised one entire corps, the 25th, which helped occupy Richmond in the closing days of the war. Despite valiant and faithful service in the face of great danger, no African American troops were allowed to serve in regular army units. That all changed in the summer of 1866 when four infantry and two cavalry regiments were created by Congress to be made up exclusively of black enlisted men. Most of their service was on the frontier where Indian opponents nicknamed them Buffalo Soldiers.

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Mary Walker

Lead: Brilliant, stubborn, and independent, Mary Walker led the way in more ways than simple fashion.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: “Why don’t you wear proper clothing? That toggery is neither one thing nor the other!” General William Tecumseh Sherman to Mary Walker, who was the first woman to be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor. In her long life Mary Charles Walker rarely bent to society’s demands. She became one of the first women physicians in the U.S., served as an army combat surgeon, and was a life-long participant in the fight for women’s rights. Women need two things, she thought, the right to vote and the right to wear any clothes they desire. She was almost always wore trousers.