Did Hood’s 1864 Tennessee Campaign ever have a chance?

Dr. Steven E. Woodworth

The Civil War Gazette continues to engage prominent historian and author Steven E. Woodworth on questions and issues related to Hood’s Tennessee Campaign (fall 1864).

We recently asked Dr. Woodworth this question:  Did Hood’s Tennessee Campaign ever have a chance?

With Lincoln’s reelection, the North had demonstrated that it had the will to continue the war, if necessary, for another four years. Can anyone imagine that the Confederacy could possibly have resisted that long? Or, to put it another way, what would have had to happen, after Lincoln’s reelection, for the Confederacy to win its independence? Can we come up with any plausible scenario in which Hood’s Tennessee campaign could have started a chain of events leading to Confederate independence? If Hood had trapped and annihilated Schofield at Spring Hill, it certainly would have been an unwelcome development for the Union, but would it have enabled Hood to defeat Thomas in the fortifications of Nashville? I can’t imagine that it would have. What if Hood had pressed on into Kentucky or even Ohio? Would Union morale have collapsed, prompting Lincoln to sue for peace? Again, I can’t imagine such a reaction. And how might Hood’s ill-clad troops have fared in Ohio in December?

Here are some other posts on the CWG related to Professor Woodworth.

Check out the books on Amazon Dr. Woodworth has authored.

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