View single post by Hellcat
 Posted: Fri Apr 11th, 2014 06:33 pm
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Hellcat
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Joined: Tue Nov 15th, 2005
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What were the numbers engaged? It seems like classifying Honey Hill as the most lopsided battle merely because of the results. The results of the battle certainly are lopsided with the casualties csamillerp posted, but then with Mark's Confederate casualties in his first post the results are nearly 4:1 to 5:1. Look at Wikipedia and you can actually top csamillerp's casualties ratio at nearly 16:1 (they list the casualties for the Confederacy as 47 KIA and WIA combined). But then you look here and you get a ratio of nearly 17:1 (Ms. Dhalle puts Federal casualties at 754 for KIA, WIA, and MIA combined and Confederate casualties at only 44 for KIA and WIA combined). Then you have Gary W. Myers summary of the battle which actually lists three possible ratios. First Mr. Myers backs up what csamillerp said of about a 15:1 ratio with 746 Federal to 50 Confederate casualties. But he then points out that other sources list the Confederate casualties at 100 to 200 (almost identical to what Mark said) which would then put the ratios at nearly 4:1 to 7:1. What a big difference those fifty men makes in Mark's 150 to 200 mark. And then you have this ratio, 20:1 HUGE difference and this is based on what Confederate General Gustavus W. Smith reported as the casualties for both sides (he put Confederate casualties at 50 and Federal at 1,000). This comes from this site. I'm not even going to attempt to make heads or tails of that Federal table they posted.

My point is that not all sources are always going to be the same on the casualties. Nor will they be the same on those engaged. Wikipedia and Mr. Myers do both put the total engaged at 5,000 Federal and 1,400 Confederate, that's a ratio of nearly 4:1 in favor of the Federals. However, Myers doe state that other sources put Confederate forces at nearly 2,000 which would change the ratio to nearly 3:1. That last site I linked to puts the engaged at 5,520 Federal and 1,400 Confederate for a ratio of nearly 4:1. In those engaged the battle wasn't that lopsided, in the results it was.

But was it the most lopsided? I think there might have been a battle where the number engaged was more lopsided and the results, while not as high as some of these for Honey Hill, was still lopsided enough to make that battle more lopsided than Honey Hill when you look at the two combined.

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