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Go Back   Armchair General and HistoryNet >> The Best Forums in History > Historical Events & Eras > American Age of Discovery, Colonization, Revolution, & Expansion > American Revolution

Notices and Announcements

American Revolution 1763-1789 The birth of a new nation - to commence at the Proclaimation of 1763 to the end of the Articles of Confederation.

View Poll Results: Who was the best?
George Washington 22 33.85%
Charles Lee 3 4.62%
Philip Schuyler 0 0%
Horatio Gates 0 0%
Nathanael Greene 6 9.23%
Anthony Wayne 1 1.54%
Benedict Arnold 6 9.23%
John Sullivan 0 0%
Benjamin Lincoln 2 3.08%
Israel Putnam 1 1.54%
Marquis de Lafayette 5 7.69%
Daniel Morgan 12 18.46%
Sir William Howe 1 1.54%
Sir Henry Clinton 0 0%
John Burgoyne 0 0%
Charles Lord Cornwallis 3 4.62%
Sir Guy Carlton 1 1.54%
Thomas Gage 0 0%
Friedrich Adolph, Baron von Riedesel 0 0%
Other 2 3.08%
Voters: 65. You may not vote on this poll

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  #31  
Old 31 Dec 15, 13:02
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No mention of Rochambeau, that Napoleon introduced to his generals as "our Master of all us", he was the precursor of the war of movement
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  #32  
Old 20 Feb 16, 13:38
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Cool Who was the first person to suggest we declare our Independence from England?

Quote:
Originally Posted by HiredGoon View Post
In your opinion who was the best general of the American Revolution, and why? For hypothetical reasons say the playing field is completely even. Which man would be the best?
Well, gee, it would probably be the only General who :

1) Willingly walked away from all his property in England including his pension
2) Told the King of England off to his face
3) Was the first person to suggest we declare our Independence from England
4) Was the first person to suggest we actually form an Army

If you don't know who that was then you don't know poop about the War of Independence...
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  #33  
Old 20 Feb 16, 15:29
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And you sir know shhhit about good manners.

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  #34  
Old 01 Mar 16, 01:29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by northern light View Post
I think Arnold was the best Field General. He was a very brave and determined leader. Even his defeat at Valcour Island proved to be a strategic victory as it postponed the British invasion down the Hudson Valley until 1777when the Continental army was stronger and more prepared.

After him, I would think Greene, Morgan, and Putnam. Washington being the best overall leader.
Field general at what level? "Wing" command (if in the Continental Army)? Division Command? Brigade? Regiment? One just cannot compare Washington to Arnold because of the difference in span of command.

Thus Washington can only be compared to Gage, Howe, Clinton, and Carleton at the strategic level. With Artemis Ward thrown in for good measure.

After that it gets complicated.

For example Continental Field Army Commanders (off the top of my head) at different times during the war were:

Washington (in duel roll as field army commander): Main Army
Montgomery: Canadian Army
Thomas: Canadian Army
Sullivan: Canadian Army, Eastern Army, and Western Army
Greene: Southern Army
Gates: Canadian/Northern Army, Southern Army
Schuyler: Northern Army
Howe: Southern Army
Lincoln: Southern Army
Spencer: Eastern Army
Lee: Southern Army

Note that the Canadian and Northern Armies were actually one in the same, but had different designations during the war.

Amongst Wing (or "Corps") commanders there were:

John Sullivan, Nathanael Greene, William Alexander, Horatio Gates, William Heath, and Charles Lee.

It is only until we reach division command does Arnold come into play, and his contemporaries (not counting division sized Armies) were Arthur St Clair, William Heath, Joseph Spencer, Nathanael Greene, John Sullivan, Anthony Wayne, Benjamin Lincoln, Adam Stephen, Horatio Gates, Alexander McDougall, Israel Putnam, William Alexander, Lafayette, Charles Lee, and John Thomas.

Given that organizational doctrine diverged during the war it is difficult to compare British and American "division" commanders, because a British division might actually be a "corps" in some instances.

Tuebor
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  #35  
Old 13 Mar 16, 11:59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiredGoon View Post
In your opinion who was the best general of the American Revolution, and why? For hypothetical reasons say the playing field is completely even. Which man would be the best?
George Washington had a reputation of losing every battle he ever fought in before he became commander in chief. He was against Colonial separation from England from the get go and didn't change his mind (regardless of what the established historians tell you) until Arnie tried to capture him and give him to the Brits - and the war was over in less than a year. He sent a Cavalry of 500 horsemen off the field of battle in the very first conflict with the Brits in New York (Fereling, Almost a Miracle) which is an act of treason, pure and simple. He changed "vital" parts of General Charles Lee plans on defending New York which led to that loss.

Benedict Arnold was a Merchant with no military training whatsoever. He lost the entire Champlain Fleet and then went on to lose Fortress Quebec. He was a traitor from the beginning and was actively trying to throw the war on behalf of the Crown. He was no hero nor military genius but he was an, "evil genius" according to his buddies. Gates knew exactly what he was doing in Saratoga and Arnie didn't know, or do, ****.

General Charles Lee walked away from his Pension and Property in England to join the cause of Liberty here. He is the first one to suggest we declare our Independence from the Crown (so they started his court martial exactly on July 4th) and was the first person to suggest we form an Army. He suggested that we confiscate the Tories property to fund the revolution (which is what the Brits did to us) which congress totally ignored. He drew up plans for the successful defense of Charle's Town and Sullivan Island would have been devastated - as he stated - except half the British fleet grounded on the sandbar in the river and couldn't bomb their flanks.
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