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Extra info for Chancellorsville: The Battle and Its Aftermath
The theory (based, perhaps, on the positive British experience during the Crimean War) was that the small army of mules would shuttle materiel between the wagon trains and the front, easing the flow of supplies and disencumbering the army of part of its huge complement of wagons. The mule-shuttle would also eliminate the rumbling of wagons near the front, giving the enemy one less hint at the army's activities. Theoretical benefits aside, few outside army headquarters embraced the idea. " Another man suggested that the scheme was more "a whim .
James Crole to Hiram Averell, April 12,1863, William Woods Averell Papers, NYSL. Wrote David Acheson of the i4Oth New York, "All the boys are satisfied that Hooker intends to keep them fat if he don't do anything else" (Walters, Inscription at Gettysburg, 62). 33. Letter of George Breck, Rochester Union and Advertiser, April 17, 1863. For a summary of Letterman's improvements, see OR 25(i):239~4O, and Bigelow, Campaign of Chancellorsville, 39-51. 34. Charles F. Morse, Letters Written During the Civil War (Boston, 1898), 121-22.
57 Butterfield undeniably did good work as Hooker's chief of staff. Indeed, none of the army's chiefs of staff would ever wield greater influence. "58 It is equally true, however, that many of Butterfield's colleagues considered him pretentious and obnoxious. In May Charles Wainwright, who had expected good things of the army's chief staff man, concluded that Butterfield "does not seem to have practical common sense in all points" and "is most thoroughly hated by all ... " Charles Francis Adams wrote pointedly, "Sickles, Butterfield, and Hooker are the disgrace and bane of this army.