Orders of Battle
The Orders of Battle at Beyond the Crater are an ambitious project to say the least. Over time, you will see regimental level orders of battle for all nine of Grant’s Petersburg Offensives, as well as OOBs for the Bermuda Hundred and Appomattox Campaigns. The plan is to start from the top down. Look for high level commands such as armies, departments, and corps to appear first. After this initial level of construction, divisions will be follwed by brigades until finally each and every regiment, battalion, company, battery, and section is accounted for. In reading about the Petersburg Campaign over the years, I have been frustrated by the substandard orders of battle in many books. Rendering one order of battle for a nine and a half month campaign is ridiculous and does not tell the reader what happened as units were mustered out, merged, or changed parent organizations. The perfect example is the complete reorganization of the Army of the James on December 3, 1864. The X Corps1 and XVIII Corps2 of the army were discontinued. A new all-White XXIV Corps3 and a new all-Black XXV Corps4 were formed in their place. One recent book on Petersburg shows all four corps in the one OOB at the back of the book! Clearly this would cause confusion for someone studing the campaign for the first time. In any event, all organizations in Beyond the Crater’s orders of battle will be fully sourced. When sources disagree, a choice will be made and the reader will be notified of the nature of the disagreement. As you may have guessed by now, I intend these to be the most complete orders of battle on the Petersburg Campaign anywhere.
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