Battle of Chancellorsville Campaign

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Battle of Chancellorsville Campaign

Battle of Chancellorsville Campaign: Civil War Virginia

Introduction

Chancellorsville Campaign Map
Battle of Chancellorsville, Virginia, Map.gif
Battle of Chancellorsville, Virginia, Map

The Chancellorsville Campaign  (aka Battle of Chancellorsville), April-May 1863, is known as Confederate General Robert E. Lee's greatest victory. The victory, however, came at a high cost with 13,000 Confederate casualties, that the South could not afford to lose, as well as the death of General Stonewall Jackson by friendly fire.

 

The Battle of Chancellorsville was a major battle that was fought from April 30 to May 6, 1863, in Spotsylvania County, Virginia, near the village of Chancellorsville and the area from there to the east at Fredericksburg. The Second Battle of Fredericksburg was fought on May 3, 1863, in Fredericksburg, and the Battle of Salem Church took place on May 3 and May 4, 1863, in Spotsylvania County.

 
The Chancellorsville Campaign consisted of the following engagements: Battle of Chancellorsville; Second Battle of Fredericksburg, also known as the Second Battle of Marye's Heights; Battle of Salem Church, also known as the Battle of Banks' Ford; and Stoneman's Raid of 1863.
 

The Chancellorsville Campaign began with the crossing of the Rappahannock River by the Union army on the morning of April 27, 1863. Crossing the Rapidan River via Germanna and Ely's Fords, the Federals concentrated near Chancellorsville on April 30 and May 1. Heavy fighting began on May 1 and did not end until the Union forces retreated across the river on the night of May 5–6.

 

Although Union forces under General Joseph Hooker suffered more than 17,000 casualties, those losses accounted for only 13% of his total strength. The Confederates, under General Robert E. Lee, suffered 13,000 casualties or 22% of Lee's army.

Setting the Stage

Chancellorsville Campaign Battlefield Map
Chancellorsville Campaign Map.jpg
Chancellorsville Civil War History

The locomotive ground to a halt at a little depot amidst a drenching downpour. An eager figure scanned the cars for two passengers who meant more to him than anyone else on earth.

The legendary "Stonewall" Jackson, renowned as the quintessential grim warrior, revealed his gentler nature on April 20, 1863, at Guinea Station, 12 miles south of Fredericksburg as he greeted his beloved wife and saw his infant daughter for the first time. The blissful family repaired to a nearby house and passed the next nine days enjoying the only domestic contentment they would ever share. In less than three weeks, at a small frame building near Guinea, Jackson would be dead.

Civil War Chancellorsville
Chancellorsville Virginia Civil War.jpg
Chancellorsville Battle

The campaign that resulted in Jackson's demise, paradoxically remembered as "Lee's greatest victory," emerged from the backwash of the Battle of Fredericksburg. That Federal debacle and subsequent political intrigue at army headquarters prompted a change of command in the Army of the Potomac. Major General Joseph Hooker, a 48-year-old Massachusetts native endowed with high courage and low morals, replaced Burnside in January. Within weeks, Hooker's able administrative skills restored the health and morale of his troops, whom he proudly proclaimed "the finest army on the planet."
 
The new commander crafted a brilliant plan for the spring that he expected would at least compel General Robert E. Lee to abandon his Fredericksburg entrenchments, and, possibly, prove fatal to the Army of Northern Virginia. First, Hooker would detach his cavalry, 10,000 strong, on a flying raid toward Richmond to sever Lee's communications with the Confederate capital. Then, he would send most of his infantry 40 miles upstream to cross the Rappahannock and Rapidan Rivers beyond the Confederate defenses, and sweep east against Lee's left flank. The rest of "Fighting Joe's" army would cross the river at Fredericksburg and menace the Confederate front as the second blade of a great pincers. "My plans are perfect," boasted Hooker "and when I start to carry them out may God have mercy on General Lee, for I will have none."
 
The condition of the Confederate army lent credence to Hooker's confidence. In February, Lee detached his stalwart lieutenant, James Longstreet, with two strong divisions to gather food and supplies in southeastern Virginia. The gray commander cherished the offensive, but could not hope to move north without Longstreet. In the meantime, Lee's 60,000 veterans at Fredericksburg would guard their long river line against 130,000 well-equipped Yankees.

The Opening of the Chancellorsville Campaign

Confederate dead at Marye's Heights
Battle of Chancellorsville Dead Confederates.jpg
(LOC)

General Joseph Hooker
General Joseph Hooker.jpg
(Nov. 13, 1814 - Oct. 31, 1879)

(Above) Photograph of Confederate dead behind the stone wall of Marye's Heights, Fredericksburg, Virginia, killed during the Battle of Chancellorsville, May 1863.
 
Hooker began the campaign on April 27 and within three days some 40,000 Federals had splashed through the upriver fords, their presence detected by Confederate cavalry. On April 29, a sizable Union force led by Major General John Sedgwick's Sixth Corps erected pontoon bridges below Fredericksburg and also moved to Lee's side of the river.

With both wings of the enemy across the Rappahannock, Lee faced a serious dilemma. Conventional military wisdom dictated that the understrength Army of Northern Virginia retreat south and escape Hooker's trap. Lee opted instead to meet the Federal challenge head-on. Correctly deducing that Hooker's primary threat lay to the west, "Marse Robert" assigned 10,000 troops under Major General Jubal A. Early to man the old Fredericksburg entrenchments. The balance of the army would turn west toward the tangled Wilderness to confront Hooker's flanking column.

By mid afternoon of April 30, that column, now containing 50,000 men and 108 artillery pieces, rendezvoused at the most important road junction in the Wilderness. A large brick tavern named Chancellorsville dominated this intersection of the Orange Turnpike with the Orange Plank, Ely's Ford, and River roads. "This is splendid," exulted one of Hooker's corps commanders, "Hurrah for Old Joe."
 
The Federals had encountered virtually no opposition to this point. Moreover, they could now press eastward, break clear of the Wilderness, and uncover Banks Ford downstream, thus significantly shortening the distance between their two wings. Hooker, however, decided to halt at Chancellorsville and await the arrival of additional Union troops. This fateful decision disheartened the Federal officers on the scene who recognized the urgency of maintaining the momentum they had thus far sustained.
 
"Stonewall" Jackson, gladly seizing the initiative that Hooker needlessly surrendered, left the Fredericksburg lines at 3:00 a.m., on May I and arrived at Zoan Church five hours later. There he found two divisions of Confederate infantry, Major General Richard H. Anderson's and Major General Lafayette McLaws', fortifying a prominent ridge covering the Turnpike and Plank Road. Although his corps had not yet appeared, Jackson ordered Anderson and McLaws to drop their shovels, pick up their rifles, and advance to the attack.   

Chancellorsville Battlefield Map on May 1, 1863
Chancellorsville Battlefield Map.jpg
Chancellorsville Battlefield on May 1, 1863, courtesy Civil War Trust (Civilwar.org)

Jackson's audacity dictated the shape of the Battle of Chancellorsville. When Hooker at last authorized an eastward movement late in the morning of May 1, his troops on the Turnpike and Plank Road ran flush against "Stonewall's", outgunned but aggressive brigades. Union front-line commanders had not expected this kind of resistance. They sent anxious messages to Hooker, who quickly ordered his generals to fall back to the Wilderness and assume a defensive posture. The Federal columns on the River Road marched almost to Bank's Ford without seeing a Rebel. They returned to Chancellorsville fuming, fully realizing the opportunity that had slipped through their fingers. 
 
Late in the day, as the blue infantry threw up entrenchments encircling Hooker's Chancellorsville headquarters, Major General Darius N. Couch approached his superior. As the army's senior corps commander, Couch had advocated an offensive strategy and shared his comrades' disappointment with "Fighting Joe's" judgment. "It is all right, Couch," Hooker reassured him, "I have got Lee just where I want him; he must fight me on my own ground."
 
Couch could barely believe his ears. "To hear from his own lip that the advantages gained by the successful marches of his lieutenants were to culminate in fighting a defensive battle in that nest of thickets was too much, and I retired from his presence with the belief that my commanding general was a whipped man."

The Flank Attack

Battle of Chancellorsville Flank Attack Map
Battle of Chancellorsville Flank Attack Map.jpg
Battle of Chancellorsville Flank Attack on May 2, 1863, courtesy Civil War Trust (Civilwar.org)

Chancellorsville Flank Attack Map
Chancellorsville Flank Attack Map.jpg
Chancellorsville Flank Attack

Hooker's confidence had faded to caution, but whether he was "whipped" depended upon Lee and Jackson. Those two officers reined up along the Plank Road at its intersection with a byway call the Furnace Road on the evening of May 1. Transforming discarded Federal cracker boxes into camp stools, the generals examined their options.
 
Confederate scouts verified the Federals' strong positions extending from the Rappahannock River, around Chancellorsville, to the high, open ground at Hazel Grove. This was the bad news. The Southern army could not afford a costly frontal attack against prepared fortifications.

Stonewall Jackson & Chancellorsville Map
Civil War Chancellorsville Map.jpg
Stonewall Jackson & Chancellorsville Flank Attack

Then, about midnight, Lee's cavalry chief, "Jeb" Stuart, galloped up to the little campfire. The flamboyant Virginian carried thrilling intelligence. The Union right flank was "in the air" -- that is, resting on no natural or artificial obstacle! From that moment on, the generals thought of nothing but how to gain access to Hooker's vulnerable flank. Jackson consulted with staff officers familiar with the area, dispatched his topographical engineer to explore the roads to the west, and tried to snatch a few hours rest at the chilly bivouac.
 
Before dawn, Lee and Jackson studied a hastily drawn map and decided to undertake one of the biggest gambles in American military history. Jackson's corps, about 30,000 troops, would follow a series of country roads and woods paths to reach the Union right. Lee, with the remaining 14,000 infantry, would occupy a position more than three miles long and divert Hooker's attention during Jackson's dangerous trek.
 
Once in position, "Stonewall" would smash the Federals with his full strength while Lee cooperated as best he could. The Army of Northern Virginia would thus be fractured into three pieces, counting Early's contingent at Fredericksburg, any one of which might be subject to rout or annihilation if the Yankees resumed the offensive. 
   
Jackson led his column past the bivouac early on the morning of May 2. He conferred briefly with Lee, then trotted down the Furnace Road with the fire of battle kindled in his eyes. After about one mile, as the Confederates traversed a small clearing, Union scouts perched in treetops at Hazel Grove spotted the marchers. The Federals lobbed artillery shells at Jackson's men and notified Hooker of the enemy movement.

Chancellorsville Campaign Map on May 2, 1863
Battle of Chancellorsville Map.jpg
Battle of Chancellorsville on May 2, 1863, Map

General Robert E. Lee
General Robert E. Lee.jpg
(January 19, 1807 - October 12, 1870)

"Fighting Joe" correctly identified Jackson's maneuver as an effort to reach his right flank. He advised the area commander, Major General Oliver O. Howard, to be on the lookout for an attack from the west. As the morning progressed, however, the Union chief grew to believe that Lee was actually withdrawing - the course of events Hooker most preferred. Worries about his right disappeared. Instead, he ordered his Third Corps to harass the tail end of Lee's "retreating" army.
 
Colorful Major General Daniel E. Sickles commanded the Third Corps. He probed cautiously from Hazel Grove toward a local iron manufacturer called Catharine Furnace. In mid-afternoon the Federals overwhelmed Jackson's rearguard beyond the furnace along the cut of an unfinished railroad, capturing nearly an entire Georgia regiment. The action at Catharine Furnace, however, eventually attracted some 20,000 Bluecoats onto the scene thus effectively isolating Howard's Eleventh Corps on the right with no nearby support. 
 
Meanwhile the bulk of Jackson's column snaked its way along uncharted trails barely wide enough to accommodate four men abreast. "Stonewall" contributed to Hooker's faith in a Confederate retreat by twice turning away from the Union line - first at Catharine Furnace, then again at the Brock Road. After making the desired impression, Jackson ducked under the Wilderness canopy and continued his march toward Howard's insensible soldiers.
 
Acting upon a personal reconnaissance recommended by cavalry general Fitzhugh Lee, Jackson kept his column northbound on the Brock Road to the Orange Turnpike where the Confederates would at last be beyond the Union right. The exhausting march, which altogether traversed more, than 12 miles, ended about 3 p.m. when "Old Jack's" warriors began deploying into battle lines astride the Turnpike. Jackson, however, did not authorize an attack for some two hours, providing 11 of his 15 brigades time to take position in the silent forest. The awe-inspiring Confederate front measured nearly two miles across.

General Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson
General Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson.jpg
(January 21, 1824 - May 10, 1863)

Although individual Northern officers and men warned of Jackson's approach, Eleventh Corps headquarters dismissed the reports as frightened exaggerations from alarmists or cowards. Hooker's shortage of cavalry hampered the Federal's ability to penetrate the Wilderness and uncover the Confederate presence with certainty. Only two small regiments and half a New York battery faced west in the direction of Jackson's corps.
 
Suddenly, a bugle rang out in the afternoon shadows. Bugles everywhere echoed the notes up and down the line. As waves of sweat-soaked soldiers rolled forward, the high defiance of the Rebel Yell pierced the gloomy woods. Jackson's Corps erupted from the trees and sent the astonished Unionists reeling. "Along the road it was pandemonium," recalled a Massachusetts soldier, "and on the side of the road it was chaos."
 
Most of Howard's men fought bravely, drawing three additional battle lines across Jackson's path. But the overmatched Federals occupied an untenable position. The screaming gray legions overwhelmed each Union stand and eventually drove the Eleventh Corps completely from the field.
 
Sunset and the inevitable intermingling of "Stonewall's" brigades compelled Jackson to call a reluctant halt to the advance about 7:15. He summoned Major General A.P. Hill's division to the front and, typically, determined to renew his attack despite the darkness. Jackson hoped to maneuver between Hooker and his escape routes across the rivers and then, with Lee's help, grind the Army of the Potomac into oblivion.
 
While Hill brought his brigades forward, Jackson rode ahead of his men to reconnoiter. When he attempted to return, a North Carolina regiment mistook his small party for Union cavalry. Two volleys burst forth in the blackness and Jackson tottered in his saddle, suffering from three wounds. Shortly thereafter a Federal shell struck Hill, incapacitating him, and direction of the corps devolved upon Stuart. The cavalryman wisely canceled "Stonewall's" plans for a night attack.

Hazel Grove, Fairview, and the Second Battle of Fredericksburg

Civil War Chancellorsville Battlefield Map
Chancellorsville Campaign Battlefield Map.jpg
Chancellorsville Battlefield Map on May 3-4, 1863

Stonewall Jackson Mortally Wounded
General Stonewall Jackson Mortally Wounded.jpg
(Historical Marker)

Despite his misfortune on May 2, Hooker still held the advantage at Chancellorsville. He received reinforcements during the night and the Third Corps moved back from Catharine Furnace to reoccupy Hazel Grove. Sickles' troops thus divided the Confederates into separate wings controlled by Stuart and Lee. Hooker, if he chose, could defeat each fraction of his out manned enemy in detail.
 
The Confederate commanders understood the need to connect their divisions, and Stuart prepared an all-out assault against Hazel Grove at dawn. Hooker made it easy for him. As the Southerners approached the far crest of Hazel Grove they witnessed Sickles' men retiring in an orderly fashion. "Fighting Joe" had directed that his troops surrender the key ground and fall back to Fairview, an elevated clearing closer to Chancellorsville. 
 
Stuart immediately exploited the opportunity by placing 31 cannon on Hazel Grove. Combined with artillery located west along the Turnpike, the gunners at Hazel Grove pounded Fairview with a spectacular bombardment. The Federals responded with 34 pieces of their own and soon the Wilderness trembled with a discordant symphony of iron. 
 
The bloodiest fighting of the battle occurred between 6:30 and 9:30 a.m. on May 3. Stuart launched brigade after brigade against entrenched Union lines on both sides of the Turnpike. Troops lost their way in the tangled underbrush and the woods caught fire, confronting the wounded with a horrible fate.
 
The see-saw fighting began to favor the Southerners as, one by one, Union artillery pieces dropped out of the contest. Hooker failed to resupply his cannoneers with ammunition or shift sufficient infantry reserves to critical areas. A Confederate projectile abetted this mental paralysis when it struck a pillar at Chancellorsville, throwing the Union commander violently to the ground. The impact stunned Hooker, physically removing him from a battle in which he had not materially been engaged for nearly 48 hours. Before relinquishing partial authority to Couch, Hooker instructed the army to assume a prepared position in the rear, protecting the bridgehead across the Rappahannock.

General Stonewall Jackson Memorial
General Stonewall Jackson Memorial.jpg
Stonewall Jackson died by friendly fire from North Carolina soldiers

(Located at Heritage Park on 3rd Street NE in Ft. Meade Florida.)

General Stonewall Jackson History
General Stonewall Jackson Memorial Civil War.jpg
General Stonewall Jackson Memorial

Stuart pressed forward first to Fairview and then against the remaining Union units at Chancellorsville. Lee's wing advanced simultaneously from the south and east. The Bluecoats receded at last and thousands of powder-smeared Confederates poured into the clearing, illuminated by flames from the burning Chancellorsville mansion.
 
Lee emerged from the smoke and elicited a long, unbroken cheer from the gray multitudes that recognized him as the architect of their improbable victory. A Confederate staff officer, watching the unbridled expression of so much admiration, reverence, and love, thought that, "it must have been from such a scene that men in ancient times rose to the dignity of gods."
 
The Southern commander wasted little time on reflection. He prepared to pursue Hooker and seal the success achieved since dawn. A courier bearing news from Fredericksburg shattered Lee's plans. Sedgwick had driven Early's contingent from Marye's Heights and now threatened the Confederate rear. This changed everything. Lee assigned Stuart to watch Hooker's host and sent McLaws eastward to deal with the Sixth Corps menace.
 
Sedgwick, slowed by Wilcox's single Alabama brigade retreating stubbornly from Fredericksburg, came to grips with the Confederates four miles west of town at Salem Church. The Federals swept into the churchyard but a powerful counterattack drove them back and ended the day's combat. The next day Lee shoved Sedgwick across the Rappahannock at Banks Ford and once again focused on the main Union army in the Wilderness.

Hooker Bows Out

The room where Stonewall Jackson died.
Where Stonewall Jackson died.jpg
(NPS)

Hooker, however, had seen enough. Despite the objections of most of his corps commanders, he ordered a withdrawal across the river. The Federals conducted their retreat under cover of darkness and arrived back in Stafford County on May 6. Ironically, this decision may have been Hooker's most serious blunder of the campaign. Lee's impending assault on May 6 might have failed and completely reversed the outcome of the battle.

(Right) Picture of the exact room and bed where General "Stonewall" Jackson died.

Confederate leadership during the Chancellorsville Campaign may represent the finest generalship of the Civil War, but the luster of "Lee's greatest victory" tarnishes upon examination of the battle's tangible results. In truth, the Army of the Potomac had not been so thoroughly defeated - some 40,000 Federals had done no fighting whatsoever. Although Hooker suffered more than 17,000 casualties, those losses accounted for only 13% of his total strength. Lee's 13,000 casualties amounted to 22% of his army, men difficult to replace. Of course, Jackson's death on May 10 created a vacancy that could never be filled. Finally, Lee's triumph at Chancellorsville imbued him with the belief that his army was invincible. He convinced the Richmond government to endorse his proposed offensive into Pennsylvania. Within six weeks, the Army of Northern Virginia confidently embarked on a journey northward to keep an appointment with destiny at a place known as Gettysburg. See also: Battle of Chancellorsville Homepage and Chancellorsville Campaign: Virginia and Civil War.

(Sources and related reading listed below.)

Recommended Reading: Chancellorsville, by Stephen W. Sears. Description: Chancellorsville was one of the Civil War's pivotal campaigns, a great victory for the South that also led directly to the death of top Confederate general Stonewall Jackson. It hasn't generated the amount of literature devoted to most major Civil War battles, largely because John Bigelow's 1910 classic, The Campaign of Chancellorsville, seemed for years to offer the last word. But Sears, employing a mix of published and unpublished primary accounts to buttress secondary studies, manages to offer more than one new word in a thoroughly engaging text. Most notable is his use of Union military intelligence reports to show how General Joseph Hooker was fed a stream of accurate information about Robert E. Lee's troops; conversely, Sears points out the battlefield communications failures that hampered the Union army at critical times. Continued below...

He also examines the roles of Hooker and his corps commanders, finding that half of the latter poorly served their commander during the campaign. Regarding the Confederate command, Sears analyzes Lee's faulty intelligence and his relationships with his subordinates. Throughout, he highlights Lee's marvelous good luck, as well as his army's tenacious fighting capability. One of the book's three appendices explores several of the battle's "romances", e.g., Jackson's wounding, Alfred Pleasonton's false stories, while two other appendices present orders of battle and casualties. A model campaign study, Sears's account of Chancellorsville is likely to remain the standard for years to come… It also includes numerous previously non-published maps and photos.

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Recommended Reading: Chancellorsville: The Battle and Its Aftermath (Military Campaigns of the Civil War). Description: A variety of important but lesser-known dimensions of the Chancellorsville campaign of spring 1863 are explored in this collection of eight original essays. Departing from the traditional focus on generalship and tactics, the contributors address the campaign's broad context and implications and revisit specific battlefield episodes that have in the past been poorly understood. Chancellorsville was a remarkable victory for Robert E. Lee's troops, a fact that had enormous psychological importance for both sides, which had met recently at Fredericksburg and would meet again at Gettysburg in just two months. But the achievement, while stunning, came at an enormous cost: more than 13,000 Confederates became casualties, including Stonewall Jackson, who was wounded by friendly fire and died several days later. Continued below...

The topics covered in this volume include the influence of politics on the Union army, the importance of courage among officers, the impact of the war on children, and the state of battlefield medical care. Other essays illuminate the important but overlooked role of Confederate commander Jubal Early, reassess the professionalism of the Union cavalry, investigate the incident of friendly fire that took Stonewall Jackson's life, and analyze the military and political background of Confederate colonel Emory Best's court-martial on charges of abandoning his men. Contributors: Keith S. Bohannon, Pennsylvania State University; Gary W. Gallagher, Pennsylvania State University; A. Wilson Greene, Petersburg, Virginia; John J. Hennessy, Fredericksburg, Virginia; Robert K. Krick, Fredericksburg, Virginia; James Marten, Marquette University; Carol Reardon, Pennsylvania State University; James I. Robertson, Jr., Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.
 

Recommended Reading: The Chancellorsville Campaign (VA): The Nation's High Water Mark (Civil War Sesquicentennial). Description: The Chancellorsville Campaign was the true high water mark for both the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia and the Union Army of the Potomac. The campaign would be the Confederates' greatest battle, though it came at the cost of losing General Stonewall Jackson at the height of his military success and public popularity. Continued below…

Although the Confederacy prevailed at Chancellorsville, 'Fighting Joe' Hooker used the defeat to institute a multitude of reforms in the Army of the Potomac, which paved the way for the hard-fought victory at Gettysburg and heavily influenced the Union winning the war. Shenandoah University professor James Bryant weaves together a concise yet comprehensive account of the engagement, one brought to life by excerpts from the letters of Lee, Jackson and Hooker, as well as many other soldiers.

 

Recommended Reading: Guide to the Battles of Chancellorsville and Fredericksburg. Description: The battles of Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville, 1862-63, were remarkable in several respects. Both revealed the problems of mounting a serious attack at night and provided the first examples of the now-familiar trench warfare. Fredericksburg featured street fighting and river crossings under fire. Chancellorsville was marked by Stonewall Jackson's death and the rare instance of mounted cavalry attacking infantry. In addition, the latter battle also demonstrated in striking fashion the profound influence of the commander on the battle. The Union committed more soldiers, supplies, money, and better equipment than did the Confederacy, and yet Lee won. Continued below...

Eyewitness accounts by battle participants make these guides an invaluable resource for travelers and non-travelers who want a greater understanding of five of the most devastating yet influential years in our nation's history. Explicit directions to points of interest and maps--illustrating the action and showing the detail of troop position, roads, rivers, elevations, and tree lines as they were 130 years ago--help bring the battles to life. In the field, these guides can be used to recreate each battle's setting and proportions, giving the reader a sense of the tension and fear each soldier must have felt as he faced his enemy.

 
Recommended Reading: Chancellorsville 1863: The Souls of the Brave. Description: Ferguson's book about Chancellorsville reads much like a vintage Stephen Sears book. Meticulous detail is crafted with primary accounts and combined with author analysis, and the book has a detailed narrative with human elements. Reading these types of accounts concerning Civil War battles is always enjoyable. Where Furgurson's book differs from Sears's book is, of course, the analysis of Joe Hooker's management of the campaign. Continued below...
While Sears blames subordinates, most notably Howard, and points to Hooker's concussion, Furgurson mentions the exploding pillar incident, adds soldier accounts of seeing Hooker looking drunk and unresponsive at headquarters and takes Hooker to task. Given Hooker's pre-victory celebratory orders and his subsequent defeat, I think it's hard to let Hooker completely off the hook. Furgurson also mentions near the end of the book that Jackson's death affected Gettysburg and ultimately the war. Had Jackson lived and taken Culp's Hill on July 1 in place of the inactive Ewell, the Union would have been forced to retreat, likely to the line of defense around Pipe Creek that Meade was aiming for in the first place. Would the Confederates have won the battle of Gettysburg in that case?

Sources: Dupuy, R. Ernest, Dupuy, Trevor N., and Braim, Paul F., Military Heritage of America, McGraw-Hill, 1956, ISBN 0-8403-8225-1; Eicher, David J., The Longest Night: A Military History of the Civil War, Simon & Schuster, 2001, ISBN 0-684-84944-5; Esposito, Vincent J., West Point Atlas of American Wars, Frederick A. Praeger, 1959; Livermore, Thomas L., Numbers and Losses in the Civil War in America 1861-65, reprinted with errata, Morningside House, 1986, ISBN 0-527-57600-X; Foote, Shelby, The Civil War, A Narrative: Fredericksburg to Meridian, Random House, 1958, ISBN 0-394-49517-9; Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park; Furgurson, Ernest B., Chancellorsville 1863: The Souls of the Brave, Knopf, 1992, ISBN 0-394-58301-9; Hebert, Walter H., Fighting Joe Hooker, University of Nebraska Press, 1999, ISBN 0-8032-7323-1; McGowen, Stanley S., "Battle of Chancellorsville", Encyclopedia of the American Civil War: A Political, Social, and Military History, Heidler, David S., and Heidler, Jeanne T., eds., W. W. Norton & Company, 2000, ISBN 0-393-04758-X; McPherson, James M., Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era (Oxford History of the United States), Oxford University Press, 1988, ISBN 0-19-503863-0; Salmon, John S., The Official Virginia Civil War Battlefield Guide, Stackpole Books, 2001, ISBN 0-8117-2868-4; Sears, Stephen W., Chancellorsville, Houghton Mifflin, 1996, ISBN 0-395-87744-X; National Park Service; Civil War Preservation Trust (CivilWar.org); Library of Congress.

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