Talk:Departments of the Continental Army

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Southern Department Commanders[edit]

I've been reviewing some sources I have, and they indicate that the order of Southern Department Commanders may be slightly off, and may be missing one -- namely James Moore (Continental Army officer). I don't have the books in front of me to determine this, but Moore may not have been officially appointed as were Howe and Lee; if that's the case, and his was a de facto command, I'd understand leaving him off. In addition, the insertion of Moore draws some confusion with the timeline of his, Howe's, and Lee's service. I'll note that the articles for Robert Howe (Continental Army officer) and Moore make conflicting claims of command in the Southern Division, but the main problem is the sources those articles are based on make the same conflicting claims. I'm trying to sort those two out as part of my attempt to build a featured topic out of NC's continental generals. Any help would be appreciated, and I'll go through my sources when I get home from work. Cdtew (talk) 18:19, 8 February 2013 (UTC)

Well, the statements on the subject in the Howe article are uncited, and those in the Moore article is cited to late 19th century biographic sketches. I wouldn't consider either statement particularly reliable as a consequence, and would look for biographic materials that detail the movements of all of the people involved. David Lee Russell in Oglethorpe and Colonial Georgia delves into the issues of the southern command succession in 1776-77. He claims Moore eventually got command after Lee (and John Armstrong) left, but this would be too late to organize the 1776 Florida expedition as claimed in the Moore article. Armstrong and Moore may have gotten the command by default, which could explain why the table from Wright given here doesn't include them. Magic♪piano 20:52, 8 February 2013 (UTC)
You're right about the Moore and Howe articles -- they're both atrocious. I'm working to improve them this month. I do have sources, however, that provide biographical details of both men, and they both have conflicting claims about being in command of the Southern Department. Moore was merely a brigadier, and if I recall correctly, Howe was promoted to Major General over Moore because of Moore being forced to stay in Charleston. As to whether Moore was acting as a proxy for Lee, or whether he was officially given command, I haven't the slightest. I'll be with my references later tonight and will try to do more digging. I just want to know because, if I'm to improve Moore and Howe's articles, this needs to be cleared up. Cdtew (talk) 20:56, 8 February 2013 (UTC)
I've dug up sources for both; even though Wright doesn't list them, it's apparent that all biographical sources on Howe state that he received at least de facto command after Moore's death; I think I'll edit and cite; obviously, Magic, I trust your opinion, so let me know your thoughts. Cdtew (talk) 00:39, 18 February 2013 (UTC)