One in Ten Men in America Was a Casualty in the American Civil War, Why?

Discussion in 'Military' started by Weatherman2020, Sep 19, 2018.

  1. Weatherman2020
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    Weatherman2020 Educating Libs Since 1978

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    Tactics lagged behind technology. All with a few years tremendous leaps in technology were made, sending centuries old tactics into tatters.

    Rifling of gun barrels - Tactics were based upon a 50-100 yard accuracy of rifles. It suddenly became 1,000 yards.

    Trains - Troops and supplies could be moved about in mass and no longer limited to how fast an army could march.

    Telegraph- Communications that used to be a rider on a horse could now be made instantly over hundreds of miles.

    Industrial Revolution- now things could be made in mass - guns, ammo, farm equipment to supply food, etc etc.

    Other things to minor effect - use of balloons for air recon, gattaling guns, dynamite, TNT.

    Near the end of the war tactics were finally catching up. They became very much like what we saw 50 years later in WW1, trench warfare. Battlefield medicine caught up quickly. If you lived long enough to get to a field hospital you had the same survivability rate as a Vietnam combat soldier did.

    What’s ironic is the Europeans laughed at America’s casualties of the Civil War saying how inept we were. But just as our technologies outpaced our military tactics, the same thing occurred with the Europeans in WW1. And then the carnage was even greater.
     
  2. OldLady
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    OldLady Platinum Member

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    Twice as many soldiers in the Civil War died from diseases like dysentery and typhiod, as bullets. Or did your count already eliminate all of them?
     
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  3. Weatherman2020
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    Weatherman2020 Educating Libs Since 1978

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    More American soldiers in WW1 died from phenomena than combat.
     
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  4. Asclepias
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    Asclepias Diamond Member

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    I thought some died because they were Drumpfed into fighting to protect the rights of wealthy whites that wanted to own slaves and others died to keep the traitors and slavery supporters from leaving the Union?
     
  5. Weatherman2020
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    Weatherman2020 Educating Libs Since 1978

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    Some of my sources:
    A9428348-19C5-4250-B5A9-22B4B1F4C190.jpeg A5210E6A-3E92-417F-B6D0-4A5B7933D74A.jpeg
     
  6. Weatherman2020
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    Weatherman2020 Educating Libs Since 1978

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    I was just talking about the dumbass millennials in another thread, good timing.
     
  7. Pogo
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    Another crucial technology you didn't mention but bears notation is the invention of the Minié Ball, which wrote a whole new page in ammunition being far more accurate and far more deadly than the old musket. The first war exercises of that new technology were the Crimean War and the US Civil War, which goes a long way to explaining the severity of injuries and the many amputations.
     
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  8. Weatherman2020
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    Repeatability of the ball dimensions in manufacturing was a factor, but the barrel rifling was the huge leap. A lot of huge leaps occurred culminating as you point out things we were not ready for.
     
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    Last edited: Sep 19, 2018
  9. ABikerSailor
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    Tactics may have played a part of it, but the biggest killer wasn't the bullets as much as it was the infections that they contracted and usually died from. Back in 1863, there wasn't much in the way of good medical supplies or knowledge.

    Shoot, penicillin wasn't discovered until 1928, and that is the one thing that could have saved a whole bunch of lives if they had known of it back then.
     
  10. Weatherman2020
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    For the period, medical technology was pretty good. As I pointed out, mortality rates between Vietnam and the Civil War were comparable for those that got to a hospital.

    The big problem was accessibility. Gettysburg, population 2,400, suddenly had 53,000 wounded soldiers on their door steps.
     
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