In this Issue:
Their Loss Was Necessarily Severe
The 12th New Hampshire at Chancellorsville
By Nathan A. Marzoli
Discipline Rather Than Justice
Courts-Martial and the Army of Occupation at
Corpus Christi, 1845–1846
By Charles N. Pede
CMH - Publications
Army History Magazine
Fall 2016 Edition
CMH, September 2016
In the Fall 2016 issue of Army History, we offer two engaging articles that examine very interesting topics. The first article, by Nathan Marzoli, dissects the activities of the 12th New Hampshire Volunteer Infantry Regiment at the Battle of Chancellorsville. Utilizing an array of primary sources, Marzoli is able to reconstruct the regiment’s activities and positions on 3 May 1863, during some of the most intense fighting of the war. Due to the confusing nature of the battle, and because many of the unit’s officers were wounded or killed, the 12th’s actions and exact locations during this time have been lost to history. The regiment’s account is absent from the official records and its brigade and division commanders were either absent during the fighting or were killed before they could submit a report. Marzoli endeavors to fill this gap, and in doing so, provides a gripping narrative of a regiment that participated in a pivotal moment during the battle while taking horrendous casualties.
The second article looks at a lesser-known aspect of the Mexican War. While Bvt. Brig. Gen. Zachary Taylor’s army was camped on the beaches of Corpus Christi, Texas, in July 1845 it conducted numerous courts-martial in an effort to stem a growing discipline problem. Brig. Gen. Charles Pede, the commanding general and commandant of the Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center and School, examines the American military legal system that was showcased at Corpus Christi, highlighting the brutality of the punishments, the differences with today’s court-martial, and some of the surprising similarities with our Army’s current legal process. General Pede’s access to the original disciplinary records of Taylor’s army, housed in the Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center and School library, offers readers a rare glimpse at a part of Army history that few get to see.
This issue’s Army Art Spotlight looks at the artwork of Joseph Hirsch. Additionally, in his Chief’s Corner, Mr. Bowery discusses the value of Army historians as well as some of the Center’s near- and mid-term priorities. In our Guest Historian’s Footnote, Dr. R. Scott Moore examines the state of Army record keeping with some thoughts as to its improvement.
As always, I invite readers to submit articles, inquire about book reviews, and send us their comments on this publication.
Bryan J. Hockensmith