Tuesday, July 1, 2008

46th Ohio

46th Ohio Infantry
Commanded by Col. Thomas Worthington

On back of monument:
This regiment fell back from its camp and defended this position, where it did its most severe fighting, from about noon until 2 p.m., April 6, 1862. It had present for duty, officers and men, 701. Its loss was 2 officers and 35 men killed; 4 officers and 181 men wounded; 24 men missing; total, 246.

Worthington is one of the characters of Shiloh. Worthington was a 1827 graduate of West Point and believed he was just as smart as Sherman and Grant. He was arrogant and this led to his downfall. If he had kept his mouth shut he may have had a long history with the army, instead he quickly got in trouble. Four months after the battle he was on his way out of the army and he would use the rest of his life and fortune attempting to prove that he was right. And he actually was right. He thought that the army should prepare more for a Confederate attack, even going so far as to make repeated requests for picks and axes to make a defensive position. Each time his division commander, Sherman, rebuffed him. After the battle Worthington made sure he told everyone how right he was and how Sherman's actions had cost the lives of many men. Eventually Sherman had him court martialed. If Sherman had not become a great hero of the war Worthington might have been able to reclaim some measure of vindication. He tried vainly to do so though as he wrote a few books to give a "correct view" of Shiloh. His fight for vindication is also the subject of a recent (2001) book by James D. Brewer, Tom Worthington's Civil War: Shiloh, Sherman, and the Search for Vindication.

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