American Civil War Guerrilla Tactics by Sean McLachlan

By Sean McLachlan

Whereas the enormous armies of the Union and the Confederacy have been battling over towns and strategic strongholds, plenty of warriors from either side have been combating, smaller, extra own battles. starting with the violent fight often called ''Bleeding Kansas,'' armed bands of abnormal warring parties started to salary struggle in each nook of the us. a few of the names in their commanders became mythical, together with William Quantrill, ''Bloody Bill'' Anderson, and John S. Mosby, ''The gray Ghost.'' To their very own humans they have been heroes; to others they have been the 1st of a brand new iteration of untamed west outlaw. Their strategies together with robbing banks and trains, kidnapping squaddies and civilians, rustling farm animals, and slicing telegraph strains. actually, it really is in the course of the violence of the battle that lots of America's destiny outlaw legends will be born, so much particularly Cole more youthful and Frank and Jesse James. during this ebook, new Osprey writer Sean McLachlan explores the numerous and infrequently bold strategies hired via those recognized warriors.

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Sturgis had 5,200 infantry, 3,300 cavalry, 22 cannon and 200 wagons. Forrest commanded 4,900 veteran cavalry. On June 10, 1864, Forrest decided to attack Sturgis at Brice's Crossroads about 15 miles east of Tupelo. Forrest knew the Union cavalry rode far ahead of their infantry; the muddy roads would hamper infantry movement, and since that day dawned hot the infantry would be tired out before they got into the fight. Tishomingo Creek lay not far to the west, crossed by a single bridge, and patches of thick woodland would screen his movements.

Nor was river traffic safe from the guerrillas, who would snipe from the heavily forested riverbanks, forcing captains to add armor to their steamboats. If the guerrillas were lucky they might capture a boat as it lay moored at one of the many small river towns, stripping it of any supplies before sinking it. While guerrillas often enjoyed superior firepower, the superior discipline of Federal troops usually carried the day if they got into an extended fight, and there are reports of the guerrillas retreating in the face of saber- and bayonet-charges.

Union officers in Missouri began to respond during the summer of 1862, when guerrillas had revealed a weakness during several failed attempts to take fortified buildings. Most western towns had a large brick courthouse in the middle of a wide square at the center of town; filling its windows with DEFENDING A COURTHOUSE 2 : The guerrillas surround the courthouse square and snipe at M a n y Union garrisons discovered that the safest place in t o w n t h e garrison from w i n d o w s and doorways.

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