Joseph Eggleston Johnston Essay Outline

Satisfactory Essays
Joseph Eggleston Johnston, born on February 3, 1807, was believed to be the most skilled commander in the Confederate army by his adversaries. His career was erratic at best, often involving clashes with CSA president Jefferson Davis and bitterness over being ranked below other generals, even though he was the highest rank out of all of them in the Union army before the Civil War. He was also the only Confederate general to command armies in both the Eastern and Western Theaters of the war.
Johnston served in the U.S. army and was a veteran of the Mexican-American war. He has always been known to be a bullet magnet, being that he was injured many times throughout his military career. Although he did not support succession, when his home state of Virginia seceded from the Union and joined the Confederacy Johnston resigned from his post and joined the Confederate army as a brigadier general. His first post in the Confederate army was in command of troops garrisoned at Harpers Ferry. His first major victory in command of troops was at the First Battle of Bull Run where he reinforced P.G.T. Beauregard, a Confederate general, and oversaw the capture and pursuit of Union troops. Johnston’s performance at Bull Run earned him a promotion to full general. Johnston was enraged when he learned that he had been placed below three other generals, Samuel Cooper, Robert E. Lee, and Albert Sidney Johnston. He believed that he was entitled to the lead of the Confederate army because he was the most senior Union officer who had joined the Confederate cause. This was the spark that ignited the hatred between Johnston and CSA president Jefferson Davis (History). Johnston felt that his low rank in the army was a personal insult from Jefferson Davis....

... middle of paper ...

... Tennessee in 1865, but only for a short time. Johnston and P.G.T. Beauregard attempted to surprise Union forces at the Battle of Bentonville in March 1865. For awhile the battle was close and Johnston was making good progress through Union lines, but eventually Union reinforcements arrived out numbering Confederate forces three to one. Learning that Robert E. Lee had surrendered at Appomattox several days earlier, Johnston surrendered the rest of his forces as well and effectively ending the American Civil War.
Joseph Johnston’s brilliant strategies and tactics were overshadowed by his feud with Jefferson Davis and bitterness over being ranked lower than others. A man that did not support succession but felt it was his duty to his state to help with the war efforts. He was one of the main generals for the Confederacy and very important in the American Civil War.
Get Access