George Stoneman's cavalry raid is often viewed as one of the more egregious Union failures during the Chancellorsville campaign. Poorly conceived by Hooker and indifferently executed by Stoneman, according to the common argument, it denied the Army of the Potomac vital cavalry screening while garnering no compensatory advantage. This chapter takes issue with much of the conventional interpretation, dismissing, for example, the notion that the presence of more Federal cavalry would have changed the tactical situation on Hooker's right flank on May 2. While making no extravagant claims about the positive impact of Stoneman's activities, the chapter points to a number of solid accomplishments. It argues that Stoneman's raid rather than Brandy Station marked the beginning of a transformation within the ranks of the Union cavalry.
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