LSU Press


The Pentagon dictionary defines logistics as “the science of planning and carrying out the movement and maintenance of forces.” It then further qualifies the details as “a. design and development, acquisition, storage, movement, distribution, maintenance, evacuation, and disposition of materiel; b. movement, evacuation, and hospitalization of personnel; c. acquisition or construction, maintenance, operation, and disposition of facilities; and, d. acquisition or furnishing of services.” The army’s official logistics historian James A. Huston preset that broader definition in Sinews of War; Army Logistics 1775-1953 admitting that the subject “covers a vast range of subjects” that “one could not hope to cover them all “in a single volume (page vii). Indeed, the perceptive and widely published Civil War historian Earl J. Hess embraces Huston’s latter thought by maintaining logistics is really about military transportation (his subtitle) and that the war can be aptly studied through that lens.