revolutionary war tactics - Page 2




 
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May 18th, 2005  
danthepirate
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Claymore
Quote:
Originally Posted by danthepirate
I see. They lined up in large numbers with hopes of being able to use their amunition wisly. Saves amunition costs and all that. But, at the battle of Saratoga the british got a good lesson in the advantages of guerilla warfare. Horatio Gates' soldiers hid behind trees and rocks so that the idea of standing in a straight line so that you would hit something didn't work. The colonials were trained in accuracy and found it pretty easy to have the british forces surrender. Of course the ever so strange Horatio Gates excepted all the terms of the british surrender and even let them keep thier cannons and other munitions. That made it quite a hollow victory. Well, I see what you mean. The men at Saratoga did have rifled guns though makin it so almost every one of their shots told.
Just to be clear, the Colonial army won the Battle of Saratoga fighting in the European style (in lines using mostly smoothbore muskets). While the Riflemen were effective they certainly did not win the battle themselves (The riflemen in this engagement belonged to Morgan's rifles) and did not make up the bulk of the army. The battle was by no means easy! Horatio Gates had very little to do with the actual outcome (he could have competed with Ambrose Burnside for the title of the Worst General in American history as would be seen at Camden in 1780), the real hero was Benedict Arnold. In regards to the British being allowed to keep their weapons, I think you need to check your sources. Some of the officers were eventually exchanged with captured Colonial officers but most of the regular soldiers were prisoners until the end of the war (Gates agreed to allow the British to keep their colors and all of the soldiers return home but the Continental Congress didn't honor the agreement). Many of the guns were transported to West Point in 1778.

Check out these links:
http://www.saratoga.org/battle1777
http://www.britishbattles.com/battle-saratoga.htm
(that second one is for a British perspective)

If you want to read a good series on the American Revolution check out Christopher Ward's 2 volume set "The War of the Revolution" published in 1952.
i had a feeling that someone would post something like this


my over all point is that I think it is weird that they lined up and killed each other in bulk masses. I see they did that so save amunition and all that but I still think it is weird and I'm not trying to argue with any body
May 19th, 2005  
Desert_Eagle
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by danthepirate
Quote:
Originally Posted by Desert_Eagle
Three reasons tatics did not change.

1.Gun powder was relativley new. Tatics were just carried over. This way new strategies never needed to be thought up and older tactical books were useful.

2.The most effective way to use a musket is in big numbers. A smooth-bore musket's effective range was less than 50 yards. You couldn't pick off anyone so this was the only effective way of combat.

3.The British did not consider it honorable. The tatics served their purpose. They also did not think it honorable for somone to pick off the officers,
What do you mean by that?

oh and this insn't a question it is a statement.
May 20th, 2005  
Arclight
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by danthepirate
Quote:
Originally Posted by Claymore
Quote:
Originally Posted by danthepirate
I see. They lined up in large numbers with hopes of being able to use their amunition wisly. Saves amunition costs and all that. But, at the battle of Saratoga the british got a good lesson in the advantages of guerilla warfare. Horatio Gates' soldiers hid behind trees and rocks so that the idea of standing in a straight line so that you would hit something didn't work. The colonials were trained in accuracy and found it pretty easy to have the british forces surrender. Of course the ever so strange Horatio Gates excepted all the terms of the british surrender and even let them keep thier cannons and other munitions. That made it quite a hollow victory. Well, I see what you mean. The men at Saratoga did have rifled guns though makin it so almost every one of their shots told.
Just to be clear, the Colonial army won the Battle of Saratoga fighting in the European style (in lines using mostly smoothbore muskets). While the Riflemen were effective they certainly did not win the battle themselves (The riflemen in this engagement belonged to Morgan's rifles) and did not make up the bulk of the army. The battle was by no means easy! Horatio Gates had very little to do with the actual outcome (he could have competed with Ambrose Burnside for the title of the Worst General in American history as would be seen at Camden in 1780), the real hero was Benedict Arnold. In regards to the British being allowed to keep their weapons, I think you need to check your sources. Some of the officers were eventually exchanged with captured Colonial officers but most of the regular soldiers were prisoners until the end of the war (Gates agreed to allow the British to keep their colors and all of the soldiers return home but the Continental Congress didn't honor the agreement). Many of the guns were transported to West Point in 1778.

Check out these links:
http://www.saratoga.org/battle1777
http://www.britishbattles.com/battle-saratoga.htm
(that second one is for a British perspective)

If you want to read a good series on the American Revolution check out Christopher Ward's 2 volume set "The War of the Revolution" published in 1952.
i had a feeling that someone would post something like this


my over all point is that I think it is weird that they lined up and killed each other in bulk masses. I see they did that so save amunition and all that but I still think it is weird and I'm not trying to argue with any body
The purpose of these forums is to promote discussion and debate on military history. Statements are fine, but you can't not expect others to post about the subject in hopes of creating a debate or a discussion, with perhaps differing views.
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May 20th, 2005  
Desert_Eagle
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by danthepirate
Quote:
Originally Posted by Claymore
Quote:
Originally Posted by danthepirate
I see. They lined up in large numbers with hopes of being able to use their amunition wisly. Saves amunition costs and all that. But, at the battle of Saratoga the british got a good lesson in the advantages of guerilla warfare. Horatio Gates' soldiers hid behind trees and rocks so that the idea of standing in a straight line so that you would hit something didn't work. The colonials were trained in accuracy and found it pretty easy to have the british forces surrender. Of course the ever so strange Horatio Gates excepted all the terms of the british surrender and even let them keep thier cannons and other munitions. That made it quite a hollow victory. Well, I see what you mean. The men at Saratoga did have rifled guns though makin it so almost every one of their shots told.
Just to be clear, the Colonial army won the Battle of Saratoga fighting in the European style (in lines using mostly smoothbore muskets). While the Riflemen were effective they certainly did not win the battle themselves (The riflemen in this engagement belonged to Morgan's rifles) and did not make up the bulk of the army. The battle was by no means easy! Horatio Gates had very little to do with the actual outcome (he could have competed with Ambrose Burnside for the title of the Worst General in American history as would be seen at Camden in 1780), the real hero was Benedict Arnold. In regards to the British being allowed to keep their weapons, I think you need to check your sources. Some of the officers were eventually exchanged with captured Colonial officers but most of the regular soldiers were prisoners until the end of the war (Gates agreed to allow the British to keep their colors and all of the soldiers return home but the Continental Congress didn't honor the agreement). Many of the guns were transported to West Point in 1778.

Check out these links:
http://www.saratoga.org/battle1777
http://www.britishbattles.com/battle-saratoga.htm
(that second one is for a British perspective)

If you want to read a good series on the American Revolution check out Christopher Ward's 2 volume set "The War of the Revolution" published in 1952.
i had a feeling that someone would post something like this


my over all point is that I think it is weird that they lined up and killed each other in bulk masses. I see they did that so save amunition and all that but I still think it is weird and I'm not trying to argue with any body
Refer to my earlier post. If you say they could have used rifles then I'll counter with saying rifles were expensive, took more skill and a bit more fragile (if you consider the fact that rifles are grooved).

And on the point "I'm not arguing with any body", didn't you say All opinions welcome?
May 20th, 2005  
danthepirate
 
ok ok okokok, srry, ill stop arguing, go ahead yes all opinions welcom but dont critisize me, im not looking at the subject from any perspective, i agree with all of you so there is no need to get of subject
May 23rd, 2005  
Urgannagru
 
As people have already said the musket was a very innaccurate weapon, so the only way to use it effectively is to use concentrated fire, as although skirmishers can use cover they cant put enough fire down and so wont be able to hold ground against an advancing opponent. I'm not to clued up on the revolutionary war, but I know that during the Napoleonic war the British generally favoured the line rather than the column which over countrys often used when advancing as it allowed every soldier to fire his weapon as well as the possibility of attacking the flanks of a column.
I know that during the napoleonic war most battalions had light companys as skirmishers to harrass advancing troops, anyone know if they were in use during the revolution?
May 24th, 2005  
danthepirate
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Urgannagru
As people have already said the musket was a very innaccurate weapon, so the only way to use it effectively is to use concentrated fire, as although skirmishers can use cover they cant put enough fire down and so wont be able to hold ground against an advancing opponent. I'm not to clued up on the revolutionary war, but I know that during the Napoleonic war the British generally favoured the line rather than the column which over countrys often used when advancing as it allowed every soldier to fire his weapon as well as the possibility of attacking the flanks of a column.
I know that during the napoleonic war most battalions had light companys as skirmishers to harrass advancing troops, anyone know if they were in use during the revolution?
im pretty sure that they were. and yes concentrated fire, the best way to use the musket.
May 24th, 2005  
Claymore
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by danthepirate
i had a feeling that someone would post something like this


my over all point is that I think it is weird that they lined up and killed each other in bulk masses. I see they did that so save amunition and all that but I still think it is weird and I'm not trying to argue with any body
Ok, I wasn't arguing with you. Based upon your posts, you didn't seem to understand what I was trying to say, and some of the statements you made were simply inaccurate. But enough of all that okay?

Desert Eagle is absolutely correct regarding the rifle. It was not a weapon that was widely used during the war, one of it's greatest drawbacks (in addition to be slow to load) being that you could not use a bayonet with it.

In regards to skimishers they were indeed used. One example of their effective use is the Battle of Cowpens. Daniel Morgan used both his skirmishers and the militia very effectively. I have seen occasion where skirmishers were referred to as the Light Infantry.
May 27th, 2005  
danthepirate
 
true true
September 8th, 2005  
Peterminator
 
I found a website about this topic check it out:
http://www.doublegv.com/ggv/battles/tactics.html