Civil War Strategy and Tactics

Status: Completed

Instructor: Jeffery Seymour, Auburn

This course is a study of the American Civil War with emphasis on operational contributions of Union and Confederate military leadership. Students examine Civil War battles on two levels: the strategic doctrine as formed by the major commanders and tactical developments that affected the conduct of battle at a lower echelon of command. Special emphasis is on the interplay between these levels in order to gain a comprehensive view of strategy and tactics in both armies from 1861-1865.

Required Texts:

Griffith, Paddy. Battle Tactics of the Civil War. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1989. ISBN 0-300-04247-7
Harsh, Joseph L. Taken at the Flood: Robert E. Lee & Confederate Strategy in the Maryland Campaign of 1862.  Kent, OH: The Kent State University Press, 1999.  ISBN: 0-87338-631-0
Jones, Archer. Civil War Command & Strategy: The Process of Victory and Defeat. NY: The Free Press, 1992. ISBN 0-02-916635-7
McMurry, Richard M. Two Great Rebel Armies: An Essay in Confederate Military History. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 1989. ISBN 0-8078-1819-4
McWhiney, Grady, and Perry D. Jamieson. Attack and Die: Civil War Military Tactics and the Southern Heritage. Tuscaloosa, AL: The University of Alabama Press, 1984. ISBN 0-8173-0229-8
Williams, T. Harry. Lincoln and His Generals.  NY: Random House, 1967. ISBN 0-394-70362-6 (Paperback)
Donald, David, H., ed. Why the North Won the Civil War. Westwood, MA: PaperBook Press, 1962. ISBN 0-684-82506-8


Jones, Archer. “Jomini and the Strategy of the American Civil War, A Reinterpretation.” Military Affairs 34 (December 1970): 127-131.
Shy, John. “Jomini.” In Makers of Modern Strategy from Machiavelli to the Nuclear Age, ed. Peter Paret, 143-185. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1986.
Williams, T. Harry. “The Return of Jomini–Some Thoughts on Recent Civil War Writing.” Military Affairs 39 (December 1975): 204-206.

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