The Bayonet -Cold Steel

The Civil War Bayonet was nothing more than a sharpened piece of steel that infantrymen were issued. They would simply stick it on the muzzle of their rifles and off they go. It’s effectiveness was more psychological then physical.

Seeing a few thousand people running at you with large knives on the end of rifles could have a pretty frighting effect. However despite this only about 1% of Civil War casualties were actually a result of a bayonet wound.

Soldiers used the bayonet more often as an everyday tool around their camp rather than a weapon. There were a few instances where the bayonet made a prominent appearance. Such as during the Battle of Gettysburg when Union General Joshua Chamberlain ordered his men to fix bayonets and then charged down little round top completely routing the confederates there. These instances though were few and far between.

The use of “cold steel” to force the enemy to retreat was very successful in numerous small unit engagements at short range in the American Civil War, as most troops would retreat when charged while reloading (which could take up to a minute with loose powder even for trained troops). Although such charges inflicted few casualties, they often decided short engagements, and tactical possession of important defensive ground features. Additionally, bayonet drill could be used to rally men temporarily discomfited by enemy fire.

The Bloody Crucible of Courage: Fighting Methods and Combat Experience of the Civil War

http://www.civilwaracademy.com/civil-war-bayonet.html

  1. busterskull reblogged this from thecivilwarparlor
  2. foxesmateforlife13 reblogged this from thecivilwarparlor
  3. smashingradios reblogged this from thecivilwarparlor
  4. ultraeverlastinggopstopper reblogged this from thecivilwarparlor
  5. oldphilistine reblogged this from thecivilwarparlor
  6. keep-on-chooglin reblogged this from thecivilwarparlor
  7. daehe reblogged this from thecivilwarparlor
  8. hennerspenners reblogged this from thecivilwarparlor
  9. dcy3 reblogged this from thecivilwarparlor
  10. palmetto-64 reblogged this from southcarolinadove
  11. enjoy003 reblogged this from southcarolinadove
  12. southcarolinadove reblogged this from southcarolinadove
  13. zombieaana reblogged this from nekromosh
  14. nekromosh reblogged this from thecivilwarparlor
  15. themetaphormachine reblogged this from southcarolinadove
  16. zeldareine reblogged this from joachimmurat
  17. mablair reblogged this from jeanfivintage
  18. seacowboy reblogged this from jeanfivintage
  19. nativejupiter reblogged this from jeanfivintage
  20. wepno reblogged this from jeanfivintage
  21. genghis-khanye reblogged this from viktor-sbor
  22. skankdude reblogged this from peashooter85
  23. cupboardindian reblogged this from peashooter85
« Next post Previous post »