View single post by 39th Miss. Walker
 Posted: Mon Jan 14th, 2008 04:06 pm
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39th Miss. Walker

Joined: Tue May 1st, 2007
Location: South Carolina
Posts: 80

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The Americans freely borrowed from the French which were head and shoulders above just about any else in publishing and defining fortifications.
The Civil War was intensively studied both during and after the war by many of the European powers and the end result was the doctrines used by both sides in WWI.
Interestingly some of the actual philosohies used by Robert E. Lee in South Carolina during his stay in 1861 were borrowed from his father Lighthorse Harry Lee. Then when he went on to Virginia he encountered a different kind of warfare than what he put into place in South Carolina. This lasted until after Gettysburg.
If the doctrine of the use of field fortifications and trench warfare had been put into effect across the South much earlier in the war the outcome may have been quite different.
The Confederacy was able to protect the Charleston to Savannah RR despite being outnumbered at times by more than 10 to 1 until the very end of the war. The Charleston to Savannah RR was the main supply line and link for both cities.
Field fortifications could be very sophisticated. While in most cases engineers laid out the works they were not always available, particularly on the Confederate side. Some of the Confederate field fortifications, thought to be crude in comparison with the Union fortifications, upon study have been found to be remarkable.
Rarely do you see just the simple rifle pit. Both sides fully appreciated the terrain and the use thereof.

Last edited on Mon Jan 14th, 2008 08:40 pm by 39th Miss. Walker

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