I tend to agree with you, except that Grant was not “soundly beaten” at the Wilderness. It was a tactical draw, but a strategic Union victroy, since the South could not afford to fight draws. Grant however claimed Vicksburg was more important strategically even than Gettysburg.
I loved reading both Grant and Longsteet’s memoirs. They were, IMHO, the first “modern” generals who understood the implcations of the new technology on warfare. Longstreet was sadly underappreciated and vilified by many in the South.
They mostly disliked Longstreet because of what he did after the war. He became one of those hated Republicans. They hated him so much, they blamed the loss of the war on Gettysburg, and blamed their loss at Gettysburg on Longstreet.
Certainly he did well during the war, and fought and bled for the insurrection. He commanded over half of Lee’s army during the Penninsula battles, when Jackson turned in a relatively poor performance.
Grant became acquainted with and courted Longstreet’s fourth cousin, Julia Dent, and the couple eventually married. Historians agree that Longstreet attended the Grant wedding on August 22, 1848 in St. Louis, but his role at the ceremony remains unclear. Grant biographer Jean Edward Smith asserted that Longstreet served as Grant’s best man at the wedding.John Y. Simon, editor of Julia Grant’s memoirs, concluded that Longstreet “may have been a groomsman,” and Longstreet biographer Donald Brigman Sanger called the role of best man “uncertain” while noting that neither Grant nor Longstreet mentioned any such role in either of their memoirs.