Re my post on Carter’s claim that the revolution was an “Unnecessary war,” I received this e-mail:
Dear Mr. Owens
General Joseph Wheeler, who was in a position to know, counted the losses in all the battles of the seven years of the Revolution as 2,200 killed, 6,500 wounded; of 1812, 1,877 killed, 3,737 wounded; of the Mexican War 1,049 killed, 7,929 wounded; for a total of 19,227 men killed or wounded in all American wars before 1860 (The Causes of the War, speech delivered in the House of Representatives, Friday, July 13th, 1894, published in the Richmond Dispatch, July 31, 1894).
Gen. Wheeler noted that the total of 19,227 men killed or wounded in all wars before 1860 added up to less than half of Gen. Grant’s losses at the Wilderness and Spotsylvania (May 5 to May 12, 1864), “which should really be called one battle”. Losses on the Union side alone from that one battle totalled 9,774 killed, 41,150 wounded, and 13,254 missing and never identified.
That’s General “Fightin’ Joe” Wheeler (1836-1906) of the Confederate States of America (16 horses shot out from under him), Brigadier General in the Army during the Spanish-American War, Alabama Congressman for 18 years. There’s a statue of him in Statuary Hall in the Capitol in Washington, too.
Kevin Orlin Johnson, Ph.D.