many of the rules applicable in European
contests would fail him here.
He discovered, years before the Germans, the necessity of open order fighting; his troops became proficient in field fortifications; his cavalry was used to the system, afterwards so successfully employed by the Uhlans, of mounted infantry; he limited the use of artillery; he perceived that that the day for cavalry charges was nearly past.
He also invented the long campaigns without a base, which astonished the enemy and the world.
But above all, he understood that he was engaged in a people's war, and that the people as well as the armies of the South
must be conquered, before the war could end. Slaves, supplies, crops, stock, as well as arms and ammunition—everything that was necessary in order to carry on the war, was a weapon in the hands of the enemy; and of every weapon the enemy must be deprived.
This was a view of the situation which Grant
's predecessors in chief command had failed to grasp.
Most of the national generals in every theatre, prior to him, had attempted to carry on their operations as if they were fighting on foreign fields.
They sought to out-manoeuvre armies, to capture posts, to win by strategy pure and simple.
But this method was not sufficient in a civil war. The passions were too intense, the stake was too great, the alternatives were too tremendous.
It was not victory that either side was playing for, but existence.
If the rebels won, they destroyed a nation; if the government succeeded, it annihilated a rebellion.
It was not enough at this emergency to fight as men fight when their object is merely to outwit or even outnumber the enemy.
This enemy did not yield because he was