Date of Award

1-29-2014

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ded)

Department

Professional Studies in Education

First Advisor

Robert Millward, D.Ed.

Second Advisor

George Bieger, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Kelli Paquette, Ed.D.

Abstract

For over 150 years General Richard S. Ewell's decision not to attack Cemetery Hill on the first day of the battle of Gettysburg has been debated. For 130 of those years, Ewell was vilified as a hesitant corps commander who was paralyzed by indecision. The last decade of the 20th century seemed to vindicate the Second Corps commander for his decision not to assault Cemetery Hill on July 1, 1863. However, several 21st century historians have been critical of the lieutenant general. After over 150 years of debate, we find ourselves no closer to a definitive conclusion as to Ewell's actions on July 1, 1863, until now. The problem is that everyone appears to have an opinion on this subject. What was needed was a standard set of military principles to determine if Ewell's actions were reasonable given the circumstances on the first day of the battle. This qualitative narrative has identified 8 combined military leadership principles and two "Units of Meaning" based upon the theories of Sun Tzu, Antoine Jomini, and the US Army Field Manual 3-0, C1 (USAFM). Their application to Ewell's decision not to attack Cemetery Hill on July 1, 1863, provided a far more objective conclusion in determining if Ewell acted reasonably on that fateful July afternoon and evening in 1863. The research indicated that contrary to the arguments of Ewell critics, the lieutenant general's decision not to attack Cemetery Hill on July 1 was reasonable. In fact, the Second Corps commander followed 88% of the combined military leadership principles and "Units of Meaning" of Sun Tzu, Jomini, and USAFM on July 1, 1863. This study refuted or questioned the motives of many of Ewell's most ardent detractors.

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