Includes pictures of important people, places, and events.
Includes maps of the battles.
Analyzes the generalship of the battles' most important leaders, including Lee, Longstreet, McDowell, Pope, Stonewall Jackson, and more.
Includes descriptions of the fighting from the post-battle reports and memoirs of some of the leading generals, including Pope, Lee, Jackson, Longstreet, and others.
Includes a Bibliography of each battle for further reading.
After Fort Sumter, the Lincoln Administration pushed for a quick invasion of Virginia, with the intent of defeating Confederate forces and marching toward the Confederate capitol of Richmond. Lincoln pressed Irvin McDowell to push forward. Despite the fact that McDowell knew his troops were inexperienced and unready, pressure from the Washington politicians forced him to launch a premature offensive against Confederate forces in Northern Virginia. McDowell's strategy during the First Battle of Bull Run was grand, and in many ways it was the forerunner of a tactic Robert E. Lee, Stonewall Jackson and James Longstreet executed brilliantly on nearly the same field during the Second Battle of Bull Run in August 1862. McDowell's plan called for parts of his army to pin down Beauregard's Confederate soldiers in front while marching another wing of his army around the flank and into the enemy's rear, rolling up the line. McDowell assumed the Confederates would be forced to abandon Manassas Junction and fall back to the next defensible line, the Rappahannock River. In July 1861, however, this proved far too difficult for his inexperienced troops to carry out effectively.
The Second Battle of Bull Run (August 28-30, 1862) was one of the most decisive battles fought during the Civil War, and it was also one of the most unlikely. Less than three months before the battle, Joseph E. Johnston's Army of Northern Virginia had been pushed back nearly all the way to Richmond by George B. McClellan's Army of the Potomac, so close that Union soldiers could see the church steeples of the Confederate capital. And yet, at the end of Second Manassas, Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia found itself in the field unopposed about 20 miles away from the Union capital of Washington D.C. How could such a remarkable reversal of fortunes take place so quickly?
After Lee succeeded the wounded Johnston, he pushed McClellan's Army of the Potomac away from Richmond and back up the Peninsula in late June, only to then swing his army north to face a second Union army, John Pope's Army of Virginia. Needing to strike out before the Army of the Potomac successfully sailed back to Washington and linked up with Pope's army, Lee daringly split his army to threaten Pope's supply lines, forcing Pope to fall back to Manassas to protect his flank and maintain his lines of communication. At the same time, it left half of Lee's army (under Stonewall Jackson) potentially exposed against the larger Union army until the other wing (under James Longstreet) linked back up. Thus, in late August 1862, the Army of Northern Virginia and the Army of Virginia found themselves fighting over nearly the exact same land the South and North fought over in the First Battle of Bull Run 13 months earlier.
Debacles at Bull Run comprehensively covers both campaigns, the events that led up to the battles, the fighting itself, and the aftermath of both battles. Accounts of the battles by important participants are also included, along with maps of the battles and pictures of important people, places, and events. You will learn about First Manassas and Second Manassas like you never have before, in no time at all.
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