|View single post by Captain Crow|
|Posted: Sat Nov 8th, 2008 02:44 am||
|who said anything about genius ole? I'll go ahead and take Sherman's word for it when he expressed his opinion of Grant's appointment of Grierson to lead the raid;"He is the best cavalry officer I have had yet". During the raid Grierson constantly kept the Confederates guessing by ordering well-planned diversions. He more than met Grant's expectations and did serious damage to not only Pemberton's supply lines but also to his confidence. Grierson continued to perform well and receive promotions up to and after the end of the war and had the distinction of being one of the few civilians, lacking any formal military education, to achieve the rank of brigadier general in the regular army.
"what was asked of him, and not much more than that"?
Grant: (the raid)"has been the most successful thing of this kind since the breaking out of the rebellion. Grierson has knocked the heart out of the state." Now maybe I'm mistaken but I don't recall Grant being given to hyperbole nor one to dole out praise lightly.
Sherman:"The most brilliant expedition of the war"
So as you can see I must respectfully disagree with your assessment of Grierson as a commander and of his raid as merely doing what he was asked to do.
Terrance J. Winschel (Vicksburg chief park historian)wrote an excellent essay entitled "Playing Smash With the Railroads" in his first collection, "Triumph and Defeat-the Vicksburg campaign"
Now I concede that Grierson may have not been a household name like Forrest, Sheridan, or Stewart, but I think it's safe to allow him his place as a solid, intelligent, and successful cavalry commander in his own right.
And with respect to the original question I think he was far better than "second string".
Last edited on Sat Nov 8th, 2008 02:46 am by Captain Crow