155 Years Ago - Ewell Earns His Spurs At 2nd Winchester


Jun 2019
Chicago Suburbs
Let me pose a question. Jackson was a notoriously bad teacher at VMI, but a surprising number of his subordinates rose to become corps commanders: AP Hill, DH Hill, Ewell, Early, and Gordon. Robert Rodes was also highly esteemed and may have commanded a corps if he had lived long enough. By comparison, First Corps produced only Hood and Anderson. If we don't count Heth, Third Corps produced no corps commanders at all. Was Jackson a better teacher in the field than in the classroom or is there some other explanation for why Second Corps produced so many good officers?
Jackson was famous for giving very precise, meticulous orders to his subordinates. That's part of the reason Ewell didn't do as well under Lee, who gave broad instructions and left the details to his subordinates. Maybe those precise instructions of Stonewall's served as a textbook for those who served under him.