The Red River Campaign of 1864 and the Loss by the Confederacy of the Civil War
About the Book
The Union Army’s Red River Campaign began on March 12, 1864, with a two-pronged attack aimed at gaining control of Shreveport, Louisiana. It lasted until May 22, 1864, when, after suffering significant casualties, the Union army retreated to Simmesport, Louisiana. The campaign was an attempt to prevent Confederate alliance with the French in Mexico, deny supplies to Confederate forces, and secure vast quantities of Louisiana and Texas cotton for Northern mills.
With this examination of Confederate leadership and how it affected the Red River Campaign, the author argues against the standard assumption that the campaign had no major effect on the outcome of the war. In fact, the South had—and lost—an excellent opportunity to inflict a decisive defeat that might have changed the course of history. With this campaign as an ideal example, the politics of military decision-making in general are also analyzed.
About the Author(s)
Michael J. Forsyth
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Bibliographic Info: 13 photos, 14 maps, appendices, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2010 
Table of Contents
1 A Lost Opportunity? 7
2 The Antagonists 24
3 Pressure in Both Camps 40
4 “10,000 Damned Gorillas” 53
5 “The State of Things … Was Very Discouraging” 68
6 Three Wasted Opportunities 89
7 “A Protecting Shield” 109
8 “This Fatal Campaign” 119
Appendix 1: Campaign Chronology 129
Appendix 2: Order of Battle 133
Appendix 3: Maps 139
Book Reviews & Awards
“thorough examination…well researched…informative…very useful”—The Civil War News; “concerns the might-have-beens of the Red River Campaign…provocative thesis”—Blue & Gray; “recommended”—Colorado Libraries.