View single post by Hellcat
 Posted: Tue Jan 9th, 2007 07:28 am
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Hellcat
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If the list I have actually gave a date for the battles in the list, then I'd try to do that for ya, Cleburne. However, it gives a list of battles per state by year and then a supposed grand total for the war. I.E. you look up Virginia and it claims 30 for 1861, 40 for 1862, 116 for 1863, 205 for 1864, 28 for 1865, and a total of 519. 

Now the Civil War Handbook does include a chronology of battles that allows you to check losses for both sides by battle. However, it's largely geared towards Union forces as it lists KIA, wounded MIA, and total of all thee for the Union. For the Confederates it merely lists a total number of losses. The last battle it lists is Fort Blakely, Alabama, then lists the surrendering of six Confederate generals and their armies starting with Lee.

Like you, I have heard of Palmito Ranch as the last battle. And I've also read about the CSS Shenandoah and her adventures. In fact the CSS Shenandoah is the last regular "chapter" in Philip Van Doren Stern's Secret Missions of the Civil War, or at least the last that appeared in the 1990 edition. I say chapter for lack of a better word as the book is broken down by year with so many first hand accounts given for each year. The last chapter, on cryptology (actually it says Codes and Ciphers in the Civil War), is more of an appendix to the book. But in both the Battle of Palmito Ranch and the Shenandoah's activites in the Bering Straight cases we are faced with activities occuring after April 9, 1865 when the Handbook's timeline lists the last battle.

By now you will have already noted that in the first paragraph I emphasized supposed. This is because I have to question whether or not the list is just for land engagements, and if some were left out. The only copyright/publishing date I can find in my copy of the Handbook is 1961, but even at that time I'd have thought they'd have taken note of any and all battles and/or engagements and covered them. Checking the chronology alone certainly questions that as some battles, such as Big Bethel in 1861 and Roanoke Island in 1862 are not listed. That makes sense as to chronologically list all battles would doubtlesly fill the entire book, and probably then some (it's only seventy-two pages total). Meaning that you probably have to rely more on the list of battles per state.

Ah, but the rub seems to be as I already said, they might only be looking at land battles. The Shenandoah certainly isn't listed, as already mentioned above. But then in the chronology, the Monitor and the Virginia are not listed, nor is the Battle of Mobile Bay, or the battle between the Kearsarge and the Alabama. I know of a battle that occured in Portland, Maine, that was also naval and is also not listed. Maine is not listed in the Handbook as seeing any battles and/or engagements. And as it is a list of battles and/or engagements by state, France is obviously not listed. But it does raise the question of if naval battles were excluded from the list. Seems likely they were from the chronology.

 

Last edited on Tue Jan 9th, 2007 07:34 am by Hellcat

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