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Thread: November 30, 1864: Confederates Lose 14 Generals and 1/3 of Troops at the Battle of F

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    November 30, 1864: Confederates Lose 14 Generals and 1/3 of Troops at the Battle of F

    November 30, 1864: Confederates Lose 14 Generals and 1/3 of Troops at the Battle of Franklin

    This is not a battle that I ever studied. Each side had roughly 27,000 troops. LTG Hood ordered a reckless charge against MG Bedford Forrest's advice and ended up with heavy casualties especially to his officer corps: 6 generals KIA, another 7 MIA, and 1 captured. 55 regimental commanders were killed.

    A Brief History

    On November 30, 1864, Confederate Lieutenant General John Bell Hood set what has to be a record for an American general for getting his subordinate generals killed and wounded after ordering an epic fail charge against Union forces led by Major General John M. Schofield at the Battle of Franklin in Tennessee during the American Civil War.


    Digging Deeper

    The opposing forces started out virtually dead even, with 27,000 troops on each side. Hood planned to attack the Union forces with a frontal assault even though his cavalry commander, Major General Nathan Bedford Forrest, counseled instead for an envelopment of the dug-in Union troops and a cut-off their escape route.


    The attack was brave, but ill considered. The slaughter totaled tremendous losses among the Confederate officers not seen in any other battle in U.S. history. Besides the 6 generals killed, another 7 generals were wounded, and 1 was captured. Going down the line of command, 55 regimental commanders were killed or wounded! Although the Union Army suffered over 2,300 casualties, less than 200 of those were deaths. An additional 1,100 Union troops were captured or missing, bringing the number of casualties up to 9%.


    In contrast, 1,750 Confederate soldiers were killed and another 3,800 wounded. Adding in 702 for those captured or missing brings the number up to 6,252, a third of the total number of troops used in the attack (several thousand Confederate troops were not yet in position to participate in the attack). The action became known as “The Pickett’s Charge of the West,” a comparison to the futile assault on Union lines at Gettysburg a year earlier.

    Read the rest of the article at the link.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter1469 View Post
    November 30, 1864: Confederates Lose 14 Generals and 1/3 of Troops at the Battle of Franklin

    This is not a battle that I ever studied. Each side had roughly 27,000 troops. LTG Hood ordered a reckless charge against MG Bedford Forrest's advice and ended up with heavy casualties especially to his officer corps: 6 generals KIA, another 7 MIA, and 1 captured. 55 regimental commanders were killed.




    Read the rest of the article at the link.
    Franklin was a disaster for the Army of Tennessee. Hood was a great divisional commander but made a poor army commander. His aggressive posture at Franklin is, IMO, hard to explain. He wrecked the army. There are claims that he frequently used laudanum by 1864. They aren't proven but considering his extensive injuries (shrapnel at Gettysburg, shattered femur at Chickamauga) it's at least plausible.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mister D View Post
    Franklin was a disaster for the Army of Tennessee. Hood was a great divisional commander but made a poor army commander. His aggressive posture at Franklin is, IMO, hard to explain. He wrecked the army. There are claims that he frequently used laudanum by 1864. They aren't proven but considering his extensive injuries (shrapnel at Gettysburg, shattered femur at Chickamauga) it's at least plausible.
    This is a problem the US military has always had: promoting people above their skill set. I am don't mean ability. Being a great tactical commander has nothing to do with being a great strategic commander. More often that not, if you are either, you are one or the other. It is very rare to find a man than can do both at the level of excellence.

    Despite his other issues, MG Bedford Forrest was great at both.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter1469 View Post
    This is a problem the US military has always had: promoting people above their skill set. I am don't mean ability. Being a great tactical commander has nothing to do with being a great strategic commander. More often that not, if you are either, you are one or the other. It is very rare to find a man than can do both at the level of excellence.

    Despite his other issues, MG Bedford Forrest was great at both.
    Agreed. IIRC, Jefferson Davis promoted Hood precisely because of his aggressive generalship. He was frustrated with the relative lack thereof of Bragg and then Johnston (not the one killed at Shiloh). Morale was declining and he gambled on Hood restoring the army's confidence. Instead, he wrecked it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mister D View Post
    Agreed. IIRC, Jefferson Davis promoted Hood precisely because of his aggressive generalship. He was frustrated with the relative lack thereof of Bragg and then Johnston (not the one killed at Shiloh). Morale was declining and he gambled on Hood restoring the army's confidence. Instead, he wrecked it.
    A lot of our Army bases in the US are named after "failures." I put that in quotes because they were promoted above their means.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter1469 View Post
    A lot of our Army bases in the US are named after "failures." I put that in quotes because they were promoted above their means.
    lol Typing Bragg made me think immediately of Fort Bragg.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mister D View Post
    lol Typing Bragg made me think immediately of Fort Bragg.
    A lot of our bases are named after Confederate generals. With the take down Confederate movement, the SJW demand that those bases are renamed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter1469 View Post
    This is a problem the US military has always had: promoting people above their skill set. I am don't mean ability. Being a great tactical commander has nothing to do with being a great strategic commander. More often that not, if you are either, you are one or the other. It is very rare to find a man than can do both at the level of excellence.

    Despite his other issues, MG Bedford Forrest was great at both.
    " more often than not if you are either you are one or the other"

    True. I suppose a fair analogy would be the game of baseball. Great player does not equal great coach.


    I didnt know u were a Civil War buff. My great great and a few more great.grandfather was a
    POW at Andersonville as a Union. Soldier. He weighed 60-65 pounds but survived and was released weighing 65 pounds. What he did not survive was the journey home.
    I dont want a Teddy Bear that you pull. String to make it talk. I want one you pull a string that makes it STFU. ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cotton1 View Post
    " more often than not if you are either you are one or the other"

    True. I suppose a fair analogy would be the game of baseball. Great player does not equal great coach.


    I didnt know u were a Civil War buff. My great great and a few more great.grandfather was a
    POW at Andersonville as a Union. Soldier. He weighed 60-65 pounds but survived and was released weighing 65 pounds. What he did not survive was the journey home.
    I live 15 minutes away from Bull Run and maybe 45 from Fredericksburg. Gettysburg isn't all that far away. So much to see and learn.
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