As usual, some thoughts on Mississippi (the state):
1. Corinth, Mississippi served as a important a junction of the Mobile & Ohio and Memphis & Charleston railroads. It was nicknamed "Crossroads of the Confederacy" and witnessed two major battles in IRL Civil War. The problem with Corinth is that, much like Harpers Ferry, it's strategically important, but the town itself is really, really small. I think you can draw the railways (Chattanooga-Corinth-Memphis, and Corinth-Meridian-Mobile), and replace Tishomingo with Corinth - the two towns are very close, and Corinth is much larger and more important compare to Tishomingo (Tishomingo's population never exceed 500).
2. New Orleans can have some fortress facing the Gulf as naval defense.
3. Vicksburg was crucial during IRL Civil War as the Gibraltar of the Mississippi. However, in 1876, the Mississippi River had a major flood and changed its route, bypassing the Vicksburg. The city lost its strategic position on the river and fell into stagnation for a time. You can see that Vicksburg is at a small inlet/Yazoo River of Mississippi, rather than on its main course, on Google Maps. As far as I can tell, not even an independent South can prevent a major natural disaster; the in-game unnavigable nature of Mississippi also reduced the strategic importance of the town. I would suggest that change Vicksburg into a normal small city, and if lower Mississippi River needs a fortress, puts it at the Arkansas Post; or at least make it a smaller fortified town.
4. In terms of an unnavigable Mississippi, I wonder how to make the crossing of Mississippi harder in-game; crossing a river hex is much easier than crossing a sea hex. If I remember correctly, in WaW, the Yangtze River and Yellow River in China are very hard to cross, as the rivers are flanked by mountains and marshes, which will take lots of action points. Would it be possible to adjust Mississippi in this way, flanking it with hard-to-cross terrain features?
(Forest, marsh, hill, bush, and bocage all take 1 action point; lake and jungle take 2 points.)
1. Cards on the table: I have a bad habit of putting in stuff that I've heard songs about, and "Tishomingo Blues" is a song I've heard (I also read the book by the same title). You're right, Corinth is probably a better choice. One thing that's weird from a European perspective is seeing places in the US that have become depopulated or not grown at all since the 19th Century, which seems to have happened to a lot of eastern towns, in Europe people tend to be more tied down to specific locations and less mobile, so you rarely see actual depopulation.
3. Hadn't known about the flood, will think about changing it to a town - mostly I just had it as a fortified town because I'd heard of the battle there.
4. Yeah, I wish there was a river-level one-up from "Major River" that was even harder to cross, but applying Bocage/Marsh terrain along and besides the lower Mississippi will have to do for now.
ETA: one of the things I really love about this particular map-build is learning all the geography and history of North America whilst doing it. I spend half my time just with wiki and Google Earth open trying to see whether town X existed in 1914 and what it was called.
< Message edited by FOARP -- 6/12/2020 9:18:31 PM >