Template talk:American Civil War

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WikiProject United States / American Civil War / Military history (Rated Template-class)
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Rationale and usage guidelines[edit]

(Please keep this section at the top of the Talk page and do not archive it.)

This section records the rationale for American Civil War inclusions or omissions. It is obvious that this large menu could become dramatically larger and unusable if new entries are added without discrimination. We would like to establish the precedent that any changes to the menu are discussed in this Talk page prior to implementation.

General Usage: This list is exclusively for active Wikimedia article and category links. Do not include external URLs. Do not include red links (Wikipedia articles that have not been written yet). Links to stubs and multiple redirects to the same article are discouraged.

Rationale for the major headings in the menu:

Issues & Combatants
The subcategories Prelude and Slavery should be pretty obvious. The Combatants are intended to be only the "countries" and their highest level armies and navies. We cannot afford to include military units smaller than this (e.g., regional armies, corps, regiments).
Theaters & Campaigns
The Theaters are those named by the five articles plus the Union naval blockade. The Campaigns are those that have articles written about them. Since there are no campaign articles describing, say, the Battle of Chancellorsville or the Battle of Fredericksburg, these battles are covered only in the following section. If new campaign articles are written (and they are not simply redirects), they will be legitimate additions to this subcategory.
Major Battles
In our judgment, the current list represents the most important battles of the war, with unique strategic or political consequences. Please discuss any proposed changes to this list here in the Talk page, citing your justification, before editing the menu.
Key CSA Leaders
The Confederate leaders are listed before the United States leaders because of alphabetical order and to give them a gray background. The Military leaders selected commanded major armies or corps, were cavalry leaders with strategic significance, or in a few cases (Gorgas, Cooper) had important positions in CSA headquarters. There is also the single most important naval captain. This list will quickly become useless if people add their favorite commanders, ancestors, or movie characters at lower levels in the hierarchy.
Key USA Leaders
The United States leaders come second so that they can have a blue background. The Military leaders are those with the highest positions in the Army and Navy, with only a few exceptions. Hunt had unique significance as an artillery leader. Meigs is included for the same reason as Gorgas. The same warning about adding favorite commanders applies.
This row is limited to significant social and political articles about the postbellum era, with demonstrable links to the war.
Other Topics
This row is difficult to characterize. New entries or subcategories should not be added without discussion on the Talk page. The State involvement subcategory is intended only for comprehensive articles, such as the current entries.
This row is intended to include, indirectly, all of the smaller units and biographies not explicitly named above. Please do not include subcategories of categories that are already in this list without discussion on the Talk page.
Obvious. Please do not change.

Add comments below this line[edit]

I think the link to CSA General R H Anderson is the wrong one. Brig. General Robert Houstoun Anderson led the 5th Georgia Cavalry in the battle of Browns Mill under Wheeler (he was also wounded there) - his Wiki page is Robert H. Anderson. Thanks! Kevinakling (talk) 21:50, 10 February 2015 (UTC)

The link is the correct one. The link is to Richard Heron Anderson, a West Pointer from South Carolina who had significantly more influential commands than the Georgian User:Kevinakling links. Appreciate the eyes, however. BusterD (talk) 22:49, 10 February 2015 (UTC)

Joseph E. Brown consideration for civilian leader[edit]

I certainly should have read the Template Talk page before trying to insert Joseph E. Brown into the list of (Southern) civilian leaders. I did not realize that there is such an active community here. Given that, the revert is both understandable and appropriate. So, starting over, let me propose Brown for consideration. Yes, he was "only" a governor. But a governor who (because of his strong states' rights beliefs) may not have viewed the national government as the highest or ultimate authority. The model of a weak central government and strong individual state governments would place Brown higher to the top on your list. At least, in the minds of those who thought like Brown. And that number, in the war years, was not inconsiderable. Brown influenced the thoughts and actions of other Southern governors with his stongly-held states' rights actions and beliefs. But you probably know that. So, without haranguing, I'll just submit Brown for your consideration. Gulbenk (talk) 01:23, 12 November 2013 (UTC)

I'm not sure Brown is in a tier with the people we have listed in this template. There are probably a dozen governors we would have to include if we included Brown. pbp 01:43, 12 November 2013 (UTC)
I don't think we have room for individual state governors on the template, but if we included them, I could see an argument for Brown. I appreciate User:Gulbenk's understanding; the danger here is mission creep. If that user would look at Template:Gettysburg figures, the risk of including every possible biography would be made apparent. However, I think a compromise could be made. When Hal Jespersen and I were creating this tool, I announced an aspiration to make this a "two click tool," that is, every important pagespace would either appear on the template, or be linked from a significant survey article or category which did appear on the template. I noticed that there does not exist a category or list for either Confederate States governors or Union state governors. This seems like a serious omission. I propose to create a category for both Union and Confederate governors. Once those categories are filled, two lists could be created (tables of names, states, terms of office and citation). Those two lists would certainly deserve placement on this template, perhaps after the individual civilian leader links. Anybody disagree or see a better way? BusterD (talk) 02:39, 12 November 2013 (UTC)

That sounds reasonable, BusterD. Hope that it comes to pass. Thanks for hearing me out. I'm not quite sure that Puplebackpack89 caught the full drift of my short soapbox speech. But I think it would be interesting, in your two-click universe, if the Northern politicians were arranged Governors<Federal while Southern politicians were arranged Governors>Federal. It would simply appear to be an error to most folks, I suppose. But it is actually an ideologically-based statement (or perhaps "recognition") of the two opposing governmental models. That may be asking a bit much of one template, so I'll leave it at that. Again, thanks so much for your proposal of a middle ground. Gulbenk (talk) 04:35, 12 November 2013 (UTC)

That's a very profound idea. Let's gather consensus to see what our community thinks before taking action. Thanks for your good work on Brown. Perhaps you'd be willing to help me when I start accumulating information about governors. When we started the template Wikipedia was very new. Hal and I chose a strategy intended to prevent the template from being overly complex and unstable. I have been accused of carrying a "terrible swift sword" in my defense of the work many users have done in this template space. I hope we can come up with a workable solution to get pages like Brown's better exposure. BusterD (talk) 04:54, 12 November 2013 (UTC)
I would be happy to help, any way that I can, with your work regarding governors. Just give me a shout when you're ready. Gulbenk (talk) 05:34, 13 November 2013 (UTC)
I'll start the categorization this weekend. I'm away from my computer until Saturday. Thanks. BusterD (talk) 01:42, 15 November 2013 (UTC)

No hurry. I have a similar situation. Away until late Tuesday. Gulbenk (talk) 02:54, 15 November 2013 (UTC)

Major insertion by User:Deisenbe[edit]

Today there have been over a dozen dozens of entry insertions. When I reverted them giving an explanation, I was rebuffed. I'd like to discuss changes, individually if necessary to prevent the template from getting bloated. Historically major changes have been discussed in talk before being made in live template space. Since this is a very frequently used device, it would be well to come up with consensus before wholesale changes are made. BusterD (talk) 14:11, 29 June 2015 (UTC)

I am the one that made these changes, fourteen, not "dozens". Most are additional abolitionists and a few on issues. I was not aware of the statement that changes should be presented on the Talk page before making them (nor do I think that's a good policy; we're supposed to be bold).

The template becoming "bloated"? When it is collapsible, and starts collapsed?

This is o f course a very important topic, and I think more good is done by this expansion than the good would be done by omitting them. deisenbe (talk) 14:20, 29 June 2015 (UTC)

An editor can indent replies on talk by adding a full colon before the line. This allows for easier to read threading. I'd say we get to bloating when we insert Alexander Hamilton in a template about the American Civil War. Many of the entries added today have this distantly but not directly related quality. I'd like other editors to weigh in on these sorts of changes. BusterD (talk) 14:33, 29 June 2015 (UTC)

The article on Hamilton says he was a "fervent abolitionist" and president of the Manumission Society. But he died in 1804. I've removed him. deisenbe (talk) 16:09, 29 June 2015 (UTC)

Apparent duplicate template[edit]

There is also a Template:Events leading to US Civil War. There is a similar list at Timeline of events leading to the American Civil War. There seems to be redundancy. deisenbe (talk) 14:31, 29 June 2015 (UTC)

I'd take that discussion to the talk pages of those articles/templates. As far as I can see, this template only links to the article. Specific topics might have their own templates; this is where more minor figure could be included, the subjects having specific relevance to the more narrowly focused subject. BusterD (talk) 14:37, 29 June 2015 (UTC)