The Tactical Operations Center

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The Tactical Operations Center

The War Between the States

 

The Second American Revolution

The foundations of American democracy decreed the equality and freedom inherent in all people, except slaves. American slavery was a typical example of cognitive dissonance. Reasonable people understood that it was morally wrong, yet economics dictated that there was no other method for people to prosper through farming. Racism was a cloak for hiding fear that freed slaves could and would become an economic, political and social force to be reckoned with. A showdown was inevitable, with each side believing that what they fought for was right. While most Southerners did not own slaves (only 30% of Southerners did), they bristled at the idea of Yankees telling them what they could and could not do. For many Northerners, slavery mattered little, yet the idea of the Union being dissolved was reason enough to fight. In the end, the Northern abandonment of Reconstruction was a failure to follow up on the victories hard won on the battlefield. In the 1950s and 60s, African American blacks and moderate whites would fight a continuation of the War in lunchrooms, on buses and in the streets against corrupt police and a fearful white society.

Tom Custer

Tom Custer's story of service is overshadowed by his brother's exploits, both during the War and afterwards, including the fight at the Little Big Horn. Custer had the distinction of earning two Congressional Medals of Honor during the Civil War. This story was originally published in the Washington Times Civil War Times.

 

The Battle of Upperville As the War continued, both sides, without realizing it, began to modify tactics and traditional units' missions in order to gain the advantage over a tough opponent. The Battle of Upperville exemplifies this change, plus the way warfare changed: Multi-day battles over a wide area with combined arms forces cooperating together on both offense and defense.

First and Second Manassas

Mention Bull Run (or as the Confederates called it, Manassas), and the reaction you’ll probably get is: “Yeah, the first battle, where Stonewall Jackson got his name.”But beyond the first battle was the second battle, which occurred one year later, on virtually the same ground, with much the same results as the first. Woven into and beyond these two battles is a synergy that presents an insightful view of the war. This can be gained by walking the same ground and viewing these two similar, yet disparate, battles from different vantage points.

Sherman's Baptism of Fire The name William Tecumseh Sherman primarily summons vision of Atlanta burning and the celebrated, or infamous, March to the Sea. What is less known is that Sherman got his first taste of Civil War combat at the First Battle of Bull Run in July 1861.

Thoroughfare Gap In late August 1862, as General John Pope pursued Stonewall Jackson’s corps on the plains of Manassas , General James Ricketts’ Second Division of the Second Corps was dispatched towards the Bull Run mountains. Colonel Percy Wyndham, commanding the 1 st Regiment, New Jersey Cavalry , had reported Confederate units (James Longstreet’s corps marching towards Stonewall Jackson’s position at Bull Run) marching towards Thoroughfare Gap.

Preserving our battlefields As America continues to pave over and build on top of our national battlefields, we continue to lose our ability to examine our past in order to understand where we are today. Visiting these fields and taking an interest in our history helps preserve these treasures.

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