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00000174-b11b-ddc3-a1fc-bfdbb1a20000The Schreiner University Department of History is honoring the sesquicentennial of the American Civil War with a series of short vignettes focusing on events from 1861 through 1865. The Civil War was the most destructive conflict in American history, but it was also one of our most defining moments as a people and as a nation. Let us know what you think about "This Week in the Civil War." E-mail your comments to Dr. John Huddleston at jhuddles@schreiner.edu.Airs: Weekdays at 5:19 a.m., 8:19 a.m., 4:19 p.m. on KTXI and 4:49 a.m., 9:29 p.m. on KSTX.

This Week in the Civil War - 600

On Thursday, June 25, 1863, Robert E. Lee sent General Jeb Stuart to reconnoiter with his Confederate cavalry, passing between the Federal army and Washington, D.C.  Such a raid would, of course, panic the North. 

Thus began an operation which deprived Lee of his cavalry for much of the Gettysburg campaign.  Lee, a masterful tactician who knew by heart every topographical feature of his beloved Virginia, knew little about Northern geography, and Confederate maps proved to be inaccurate.

By authorizing Stuart’s raid, Lee deprived himself of valuable intelligence about his enemies’ strengths and about the ground upon which subsequent battles would be fought.  The decision to allow Stuart to temporarily leave his army was one of the most critical mistakes which Lee made in the entirety of the American Civil War.