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History Question

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History Question
Post by viciokie   » Thu Sep 29, 2016 10:07 am

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Ok guys it is a given that Gatlings was brought into play during the civil war. What would been the effect if the union forces would have had a battery or two of these devices in play during the fighting at the critical areas of say Gettysburg?
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Re: History Question
Post by MAD-4A   » Thu Sep 29, 2016 12:39 pm

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viciokie wrote:Ok guys it is a given that Gatlings was brought into play during the civil war. What would been the effect if the union forces would have had a battery or two of these devices in play during the fighting at the critical areas of say Gettysburg?

Well, depends on where and when.
1st day was a surprise meeting engagement so they probably wouldn't have been unlimbered, possibly overran and captured by the South.
2nd day, in the center, no real effect. on Cemetery or Culp's Hill, the South would've had a shorter advance before being thrown back with heavy losses, may have stopped Day 3 from happening. Little Round Top, not likely, too cumbersome to take up the hill. The peach Orchard may have made a difference as that area may not have been overrun.
3rd day, in the center, no real effect, Pickett was thrown back with most of his troops lost anyway, he wouldn't have breached the line. Though I would hope he wouldn't have been sent in with those things there (assuming it was known from the day before).
the real place they would have been of use was the Battle of New Market.
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Re: History Question
Post by HB of CJ   » Thu Sep 29, 2016 2:30 pm

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OR ... from a Southern point of view, what if Jeb had hung around close like he was supposed to and HIS fast calvary had some choppers with him?

So close. So far. I also wonder what would have happened if Grants supply train had been captured by the South on the first day ... using Gattlings?

Lots of interesting cusps of time and space with history. What if Custer had retained his Gattlings? What if he had not split his forces? Who knows.

Sometimes it is best to not wish for something to have been different. One might just get what he was wishing for. Then what? Yikes!!
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Re: History Question
Post by Weird Harold   » Thu Sep 29, 2016 5:22 pm

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HB of CJ wrote:Sometimes it is best to not wish for something to have been different. One might just get what he was wishing for. Then what? Yikes!!



Harry Turtledove gets rich?
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Answers! I got lots of answers!

(Now if I could just find the right questions.)
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Re: History Question
Post by MAD-4A   » Fri Sep 30, 2016 9:45 am

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HB of CJ wrote:So close. So far. I also wonder what would have happened if Grants supply train had been captured by the South on the first day ... using Gattlings?
They may have been able to yse them for 1, maybe 2 fights but then they would've run dry (the reason the North disdained them was their high rate of fire and thus high support requirement and the South wouldn't have reloads). If captured, thier best bet would have been to ship them off to Richmond for reverse engeneering and adding to the city defences.
Last edited by MAD-4A on Mon Oct 31, 2016 12:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: History Question
Post by Dilandu   » Tue Oct 04, 2016 3:49 am

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viciokie wrote:Ok guys it is a given that Gatlings was brought into play during the civil war. What would been the effect if the union forces would have had a battery or two of these devices in play during the fighting at the critical areas of say Gettysburg?


There were a nubmer of problems... first, the tactical use of machineguns was a complete mystery at this time. Basically the officers did not consider them as infantry support weaponry (yet); they considered them as part of artillery, which must be deployed from the secured position in the rear. The same mistake was repeated by French in 1871; their mitrailleuse's were considered so secret, that field officers have no experiense with them, and only a few used them as supposed.

So to use Gatlings right, they need some bright young officer, who would stumble upon the idea of moving them with infantry and use to smash rebel charges (and provide covering fire for Union charges).

There is also a technical problem. The smoke. They used old black powder in catriges... so, the battery of Gatlings were basically unable to provide aimed fire, only "fire in direction".
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- Scarecrow from Oz; he was strawman before it became political.

P.S. - And he have Russian twin, to watch his back)
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Re: History Question
Post by HB of CJ   » Tue Oct 04, 2016 2:54 pm

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Smoke was a real tactical problem. (So was humid/wet weather and bow strings.) Gettysburg weather was hot, humid and still with little wind?

Yep ... nobody knew what to do with the Gattlings. Like already said, ammo resupply would have been very difficult IF the choppers had been mobile.

We spent weeks at Gettysburg and walked pretty much all of it. A horrible time in my nations history indeed. It could have turned out very different.
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Re: History Question
Post by Dilandu   » Wed Oct 05, 2016 4:37 pm

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HB of CJ wrote:
We spent weeks at Gettysburg and walked pretty much all of it. A horrible time in my nations history indeed. It could have turned out very different.


Probably not. Of course, I'm not American, so my point of view is not close one, but... Union was, basically, MUCH MORE POWERFULL than Confederacy. In long therms, the Confederacy may won battles, but they have no chances to actually won the war. They simply lacked manpower, industrial power, logistics, resources and even internal order to do anything. They have some really good generals; but this was thei one and only real advantage, and tactical superiority could never beat superior strategy, much less superior logistic.

And even if - somehow - South won... How long South would exist as independent state? The Confederacy was completely based on extra high cotton prices; but they started to fell already before the war, and it was only a matter of time before they would drop forewer. Without high cotton prices - no reasons for slavery. No reasons for slavery - no reasosn for Confederacy to exist. No money to make any kind of industrialization. No power for central government to save situation (they declared this in their constitution!)

In a few years after "sucessful" secession, the South would degrade into the balkanized chaos of conflicting states with no source of cash and millions of blacks who have nothing to do at all. This would led to social collapse, local power struggle...

And a few years later the Union army would march to South, and former rebels would greet them as saviors.
------------------------------

- Who would won in battle between strawman Liberal-Democrat and strawman Conservative-Republican?
- Scarecrow from Oz; he was strawman before it became political.

P.S. - And he have Russian twin, to watch his back)
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Re: History Question
Post by HB of CJ   » Wed Oct 05, 2016 9:06 pm

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Years ago we got to shoot off a Gatling gun. .45-70 black powder using ... black powder. Tall stick mags. Hard to crank. Clouds of dense white smoke. We could not see the target set at 1000 yards, (an old car) in no time at all.

The owner told us all that when using real black powder the gun fouled out in about 500 rounds. Then each barrel and chamber had to be scrubbed out with boiling water. Not fun during close combat at all. Also expensive to hand load for.

Still lots of fun! :)
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Re: History Question
Post by MAD-4A   » Mon Oct 31, 2016 1:02 pm

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Dilandu wrote:Probably not. Of course, I'm not American, so my point of view is not close one, but... Union was, basically, MUCH MORE POWERFULL than Confederacy. In long therms, the Confederacy may won battles, but they have no chances to actually won the war. They simply lacked manpower, industrial power, logistics, resources and even internal order to do anything. They have some really good generals; but this was thei one and only real advantage, and tactical superiority could never beat superior strategy, much less superior logistic...
Not really, initially the South had a major advantage in both manpower and financing. They planned to use the same Naval strategy that had served the US in both the revolution and 1812, privateering. The problem was the Blockade. The blockade, combined with a strict neutrality policy in Europe - led by the British, made privateering unprofitable while making blockade running very high profit, so all those crews who would have been used on the offensive (converting Union Supplies into Confederate supplies) were instead placed on the defensive (running the blockade). At the same time the Confederate supply of European recruits was cut off (why sign up for the South and likely end up a prisoner before you even arrive when you can sign up for the North?) The North didn't have a manpower advantage, they had a link to Europe, who had a manpower surplus.
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