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Author Topic: Some Late Summer History
Timothy-
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Post Re: Some Late Summer History
on: September 10, 2018, 11:33
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Yes, that is a surprise, especially given the time interval between the two. But it happens. Arthur MacArthur was military governor of the Philippines (where his son Douglas would later spend so much time). But he was also a hero of the Battle of Missionary Ridge leading a regiment, which is where he earned the Medal of Honor as a "boy colonel" (helped by his father being a graduate of West Point).

Timothy-
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Post Re: Some Late Summer History
on: September 11, 2018, 14:55
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On September 12, 1683, the Austrian and Imperial forces besieged in Vienna combined with a relieving force under Poland's greatest king (Jan Sobieski) to defeat the Ottomans, starting the latter on their way to being "the sick man of Europe". The war would last 16 years, and would end with a major defeat of the Ottomans, with Austria gaining the kingdom of Hungary (including Lower Hungary, the Banat of Temeszvar, and Croatia-Slavonia) as well as northern Serbia (which they would later give back to the Ottomans). The later stages of the war would also first bring to notice arguably the greatest general in Austrian history, the Franco-Italian Prince Eugene of Savoy. (His top rival for that position is probably the 19th Century Marshal Radetzky.)

On September 10-11, 1862, W. W. Loring defeated Federal forces on the Kanawha in the Gauley Bridge area, leading to a victory at Charleston on September 13. The Confederates would hold the city for 6 weeks. Meanwhile, the Army of Northern Virginia was closing on heavily defended, but virtually indefensible, Harpers Ferry, though not as quickly as Lee planned with his over-optimistic logistics.

Timothy-
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Post Re: Some Late Summer History
on: September 11, 2018, 16:23
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The fourth Confederate offensive in 1862 was beginning around now. Sterling Price with two divisions marched from Tupelo to Iuka to meet (eventually) with a division under Earl Van Dorn and then head into middle Tennessee and ultimately, perhaps, to join Bragg in Kentucky (which would have left Mississippi wide open to Grant with a pair of north-south railroads available to support an advance). He took Iuka September 13-14.

A year later, Bragg's best (and perhaps only) chance for a truly decisive victory against Rosecrans expired September 11 at Davis's Crossroads in northern Georgia. Rosecrans had scattered his 3 corps to seize the main gaps through Lookout Mountain, which extended over 40 miles. Thomas was in the middle, and had sent the division of James S. Negley into McLemore's Cove to prepare for a possible further pursuit to Lafayette, Georgia -- little knowing that most of Bragg's Army of Tennessee was in the way. Bragg would try to trap Negley (who was soon joined by a second hostage to fortune, Absalom Baird's division). In the end, after modest skirmishing, Negley and Baird escaped back to the rest of Thomas's XIV Corps at Stevens Gap. Bragg, who didn't get along with most of his generals (to put it mildly) and even less so with his troops, was definitely Not Pleased with this failure.

Kung Fu Zu
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Kung Fu Zu
Post Re: Some Late Summer History
on: September 11, 2018, 20:19
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arguably the greatest general in Austrian history, the Franco-Italian Prince Eugene of Savoy. (His top rival for that position is probably the 19th Century Marshal Radetzky.)

Prince Eugene of Savoy is still well known in Austria. His is probably most associated with his beautiful palace, Belvedere, which once housed a great collection of Klimt paintings. I know at least some have been returned to the families of the original Jewish owners.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belvedere%2C_Vienna

Radetzky is most associated with the Radetzky March by one of the Strauss family, I believe. It is a perennial at the New Year's Day Concert given by the Vienna Philharmonic in the Musik Verein Building each January 1st.

Timothy-
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Post Re: Some Late Summer History
on: September 11, 2018, 20:45
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I have a collection of marches (conducted by Leonard Bernstein, I think) that includes "The Radetzky March". I also had (back at my now-sold house) a biography of Eugen of Savoy that covered his art collection as well as his military record.

Kung Fu Zu
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Kung Fu Zu
Post Re: Some Late Summer History
on: September 11, 2018, 21:04
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Somewhere in the boxes stacked up in my house, I have an Austrian history which was the text for one of my courses when I studied in Vienna. Eugene of Savoy was considered one of the most important people in Austrian history. As I recall, he and Churchill, of Blenheim and cigarette fame, fought along side each other in some later campaigns.

Timothy-
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Post Re: Some Late Summer History
on: September 11, 2018, 21:58
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Marlborough and Eugene were together at Blenheim, Malplaquet, and Oudenarde. He also fought many other battles on his own, especially in Italy. ("Great praise the Duke of Marlborough won, and our good Prince Eugene.")

Timothy-
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Post Re: Some Late Summer History
on: September 12, 2018, 13:45
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September 12 is when Lee's Maryland campaign began to heat up. All 3 columns attacking Harpers Ferry (under Jackson, McLaws, and Walker) were supposed to take up their positions on the heights surrounding the town on this day, though none could make it. Lafayette McLaws, with 2 divisions (10 brigades) available, set up to attack and carry Maryland Heights, which he did the next day. The others also started arriving then.

September 13 is also the day when a XII Corps soldier found 3 cigars wrapped by what turned out to be the copy of Lee's orders for the campaign, and managed to get them eventually to McClellan, who now felt his usual momentary overconfidence. (On the other hand, considering Little Mac's sluggish pace afterward, historian Kenneth Williams hoped some capable smokers got more out of the cigars than McClellan did from the orders.) Not until next day did the Army of the Potomac advance on Lee's screening positions on South Mountain. Eventually they seized them, and Lee began to prepare for an ignominious end to the campaign -- until he received Jackson's message reporting that they were about ready to take Harpers Ferry and a LOT of prisoners (over 12,000 in the end).

Lee retreated to Sharpsburg, and prepared to defend there. Harpers Ferry fell September 15, and the forces there began to march to join Lee, helped by McClellan's sluggish failure to attack before they joined. Jackson and Walker were there with 3 divisions by the end of September 16, and McLaws showed up with 2 more divisions the following morning. Naturally that's when McClellan finally attacked. Late in the day he was finally on the verge of victory on Lee's right when the last Confederate division, A. P. Hill's, showed up with 5 brigades from Harpers Ferry. That was enough to reduce the battle to a draw.

Timothy-
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Post Re: Some Late Summer History
on: September 13, 2018, 08:20
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On September 12, 1814, British forces began their effort to take Baltimore. It began with attempts to advance on the city which were stopped on September 12 (North Point) and 13 (Hampstead Hill). They began bombarding Fort McHenry, the main harbor defensive work, on September 13. After that failed, the departed September 15. What would have happened if they had succeeded in capturing this major port will never (fortunately) be known, but would certainly have been bad and might even have proven fatal.

And on September, inspired by the sight of the large American flag raised over Fort McHenry for reveille, a lawyer aboard a British ship seeking to get someone released from custody started writing a poem he titled "The Defense of Fort McHenry". After it was put to music (the old British drinking song "To Anacreon in Heaven", which most people can only sing properly if they're drunk), Francis Scott Key became famous as its writer, not for whatever he accomplished as a lawyer.

His son, Philip Barton Key, would later suffer a similar fate in a darker version. He was the District Attorney for the District of Columbia, but is most famous for being murdered by Rep. Daniel E. Sickles (D-NY). Sickles got away with it when his brilliant and unscrupulous lawyer (Edwin Stanton) came up with the concept of what has become known as the "unwritten law" -- the right of a man to avenge his wife's honor. (Much to the disgust of Washington society, Sickles then took his wife back. Still, he rose to command the III Corps at Gettysburg, and later was occupation commander in the Carolinas for a few years.)

Timothy-
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Post Re: Some Late Summer History
on: September 14, 2018, 09:05
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The Kentucky campaign of 1862 took another bad turn for the Union in a battle starting September 14. A Confederate brigade under James Chalmers attacked the Union fortifications under John T. Wilder (later commander of the Lightning Brigade, which played a key role in the Chickamauga campaign) at the Munfordville railroad bridge. He failed badly, and Bragg decided the embarrassment wouldn't be a good beginning to his invasion. So he brought his whole army there on September 16

Wilder, unsure what he should do, came under a flag of truce to the Confederate lines to ask one of their division commanders, Simon Bolivar Buckner (later Gold Democrat VP candidate in 1896, his running mate being Union General John M. Palmer), what he should do. (Buckner had a very good reputation for personal integrity.) Buckner took him to Bragg, who let Wilder count the guns in the Confederate works. The formal surrender was September 17, bringing another 4000 prisoners as well as supplies and equipment (and a key railroad bridge).

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