The Fight For Tennessee: July 1863 to January 1864

Siege of Knoxville

Where did Longstreet move from there?

By rights, he should have brought his corps back to the Tennessee–Georgia border to assist Bragg and the Army of Tennessee. Longstreet really did not wish to return there, however, and for once the geographic circumstances argued in favor of his decision. Because it was too risky to move his corps back to the area around Chattanooga, Longstreet was allowed to take his corps through the mountains back to Virginia. This, of course, begs another question: How much had Longstreet accomplished?

Longstreet and his men were a major disappointment to Bragg and the Army of Tennessee. Perhaps it was difficult integrating these “men from the East” with those of the Western theater; even so, the Union was able to do so much more effectively. That Longstreet was a good leader of men cannot be denied. He seems to have been best, however, when serving under Lee and in the Army of Northern Virginia.

A Southern camp overlooking the Tennessee River near Knoxville during the siege of that city.


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