The Project Gutenberg eBook of The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government, Volume 2

This ebook is for the use of anyone anywhere in the United States and most other parts of the world at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this ebook or online at If you are not located in the United States, you will have to check the laws of the country where you are located before using this eBook.

Title: The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government, Volume 2

Author: Jefferson Davis

Release date: March 12, 2013 [eBook #42315]

Language: English


Produced by Tricia Groeneveld Text prepared from Google


[Frontispiece: Jefferson Davis]





PART IV.—(Continued).


Review of 1861.—Summary of Hostile Acts of United States
Government.—Fuller Details of some of them.—Third Session of
Provisional Congress.—Message.—Subjugation of the Southern States
intended.—Obstinacy of the Enemy.—Insensibility of the North as
to the Crisis.—Vast Preparation of the Enemy.—Embargo and
Blockade.—Indiscriminate War waged.—Action of Confederate
Congress.—Confiscation Act of United States Congress.—Declared
Object of the War.—Powers of United States Government.—
Forfeitures inflicted.—Due Process of Law, how interpreted.—"Who
pleads the Constitution?"—Wanton Destruction of Private Property
unlawful—Adams on Terms of the Treaty of Ghent.—Sectional
Hatred.—Order of President Lincoln to Army Officers in Regard to
Slaves.—"Educating the People."—Fremont's Proclamation.—
Proclamation of General T. W. Sherman.—Proclamation of General
Halleck and others.—Letters of Marque.—Our Privateers.—Officers
tried for Piracy.—Retaliatory Orders.—Discussion in the British
House of Lords.—Recognition as a Belligerent of the Confederacy.—
Exchange of Prisoners.—Theory of the United States.—Views of
McClellan.—Revolutionary Conduct of United States Government.—
Extent of the War at the Close of 1861.—Victories of the Year.—
New Branches of Manufactures.—Election of Confederate States
President.—Posterity may ask the Cause of such Hostile Actions.—


Military Arrangements of the Enemy.—Marshall and Garfield.—
Fishing Creek.—Crittenden's Report.—Fort Henry; its Surrender.—
Fort Donelson; its Position.—Assaults.—Surrender.—Losses.


Results of the Surrender of Forts Henry and Donelson.—Retreat from
Bowling Green.—Criticism on General A. S. Johnston.—Change of
Plan necessary.—Evacuation of Nashville.—Generals Floyd and
Pillow.—My Letter to General Johnston.—His Reply.—My Answer.—
Defense of General Johnston.—Battle of Elkhorn.—Topography of


General Buell's March.—Object of General Johnston.—His Force.—
Advance from Corinth.-Line of Battle.—Telegram.—The Time of the
Battle of Shiloh.—Results of the First Day's Battle.—One
Encampment not taken.—Effects.—Reports on this Failure.—Death
of General Johnston.—Remarks.


Retirement of the Army.—Remnants of Grant's Army.—Its
Reënforcements.—Strength of our Army.—Strength of Grant's Army.—
Reorganization.—Corinth.—Advance of General Halleck.—Siege of
Corinth.—Evacuation.—Retreat to Tupelo.—General Beauregard
retires.-General Bragg in Command.—Positions on the Mississippi
River occupied by the Enemy.—New Madrid.—Island No. 10.—Fort
Pillow.—Memphis.—Attack at Hatteras Inlet.—Expedition of the
Enemy to Port Royal.—Expeditions from Port Royal.—System of Coast
Defenses adopted by us.—Fort Pulaski.


Advance of General McClellan toward Centreville; his Report.—Our
Forces ordered to the Peninsula.—Situation at Yorktown.—Siege by
General McCellan.—General Johnston assigned to Command; his
Recommendation.—Attack on General Magruder at Yorktown.—Movements
of McClellan.—The Virginia.—General Johnston retires.—Delay at
Norfolk.—Before Williamsburg.—Remark of Hancock.—Retreat up the
Peninsula.—Sub-terra Shells used.-Evacuation of Norfolk.—Its
Occupation by the Enemy.


A New Phase to our Military Problem.—General Johnston's Position.—
Defenses of James River.—Attack on Fort Drury.—Johnston crosses
the Chickahominy.—Position of McClellan.—Position of McDowell.—
Strength of Opposing Forces.—Jackson's Expedition down the
Shenandoah Valley.—Panic at Washington and the North.—Movements
to intercept Jackson.—His Rapid Movements.—Repulses Fremont.—
Advance of Shields.—Fall of Ashby.—Port Republic, Battle of.—
Results of this Campaign.


Condition of Affairs.—Plan of General Johnston.—The Field of
Battle at Seven Pines.—The Battle.—General Johnston wounded.—
Advance of General Sumner.—Conflict on the Right.—Delay of
General Huger.—Reports of the Enemy.—Losses.—Strength of
Forces.—General Lee in Command.


The Enemy's Position.—His Intention.—The Plan of Operations.— Movements of General Jackson.—Daring and Fortitude of Lee.— Offensive-Defensive Policy.—General Stuart's Movement.—Order of Attack.—Critical Position of McClellan.—Order of Mr. Lincoln creating the Army of Virginia.—Arrival of Jackson.—Position of the Enemy.—Diversion of General Longstreet.—The Enemy forced back south of the Chickahominy.—Abandonment of the Railroad.


Retreat of the Enemy.—Pursuit and Battle.-Night.—Further Retreat
of the Enemy.—Progress of General Jackson.—The Enemy at Frazier's
Farm.—Position of General Holmes.—Advance of General Longstreet.—
Remarkable Features of the Battle.—Malvern Hill.—Our Position.—The
Attack.—Expedition of General Stuart.—Destruction of the Enemy's
Stores.—Assaults on the Enemy.—Retreat to Westover on the James.—
Siege of Richmond raised.—Number of Prisoners taken.—Strength of our
Forces.—Strength of our Forces at Seven Pines and after.—Strength of
the Enemy.


Forced Emancipation.—Purposes of the United States Government at the Commencement of 1862.—Subjugation or Extermination.—The Willing Aid of United States Congress.—Attempt to legislate the Subversion of our Social Institutions.—Could adopt any Measure Self-Defense would justify.—Slavery the Cause of all Troubles, therefore must be removed.—Statements of President Lincoln's Inaugural.—Declaration of Sumner.—Abolition Legislation.—The Power based on Necessity.—Its Formula.—The System of Legislation devised.—Confiscation.—How permitted by the Law of Nations.— Views of Wheaton; of J. Q. Adams; of Secretary Marcy; of Chief-Justice Marshall.—Nature of Confiscation and Proceedings.— Compared with the Acts of the United States Congress.—Provisions of the Acts.—Five Thousand Millions of Property involved.—Another Feature of the Act.—Confiscates Property within Reach.—Procedure against Persons.—Held us as Enemies and Traitors.—Attacked us with the Instruments of War and Penalties of Municipal Law.— Emancipation to be secured.—Remarks of President Lincoln on signing the Bill.—Remarks of Mr. Adams compared.—Another Alarming Usurpation of Congress.—Argument for it.—No Limit to the War-Power of Congress; how maintained.—The Act to emancipate Slaves in the District of Columbia.—Compensation promised.—Remarks of President Lincoln.—The Right of Property violated.—Words of the Constitution.—The Act to prohibit Slavery in the Territories.-The Act making an Additional Article of War.-All Officers forbidden to return Fugitives.—Words of the Constitution.—The Powers of the Constitution unchanged in Peace or War.—The Discharge of Fugitives commanded in the Confiscation Act.—Words of the Constitution.


Forced Emancipation concluded.—Emancipation Acts of President
Lincoln.—Emancipation with Compensation proposed to Border
States.—Reasons urged for it.—Its Unconstitutionality.—Order of
General Hunter.—Revoked by President Lincoln.—Reasons.—"The
Pressure" on him.—One Cause of our Secession.—The Time to throw
off the Mask at Hand.—The Necessity that justified the President
and Congress also justified Secession.—Men united in Defense of
Liberty called Traitors.—Conference of President Lincoln with
Senators and Representatives of Border States.—Remarks of Mr.
Lincoln.—Reply of Senators and Representatives.—Failure of the
Proposition.—Three Hundred Thousand more Men called for.—
Declarations of the Antislavery Press.—Truth of our Apprehensions.—
Reply of President Lincoln.—Another Call for Men.—Further
Declarations of the Antislavery Press.—The Watchword adopted.—
Memorial of So-called Christians to the President.—Reply of
President Lincoln.—Issue of the Preliminary Proclamation of
Emancipation.—Issue of the Final Proclamation.—The Military
Necessity asserted.—The Consummation verbally reached.—Words of
the Declaration of Independence.—Declarations by the United States
Government of what it intended to do.—True Nature of the Party
unveiled.—Declarations of President Lincoln.—Vindication of the
Sagacity of the Southern People.—His Declarations to European
Cabinets.—Object of these Declarations.—Trick of the Fugitive
Thief.—The Boast of Mr. Lincoln calmly considered.


Naval Affairs.—Organization of the Navy Department.—Two Classes of Vessels.—Experiments for Floating Batteries and Rams.—The Norfolk Navy-Yard.—Abandonment by the Enemy.—The Merrimac Frigate made an Ironclad.—Officers.—Trial-Trip.—Fleet of the Enemy.—Captain Buchanan.—Resolves to attack the Enemy.—Sinks the Cumberland.—Burns the Congress.—Wounded.—Executive Officer Jones takes Command.—Retires for the Night.—Appearance of the Monitor.—The Virginia attacks her.—She retires to Shoal Water.— Refuses to come out.—Cheers of English Man-of-war.—Importance of the Navy-Yard.—Order of General Johnston to evacuate.—Stores saved.—The Virginia burned.—Harbor Defenses at Wilmington.— Harbor Defenses at Charleston.—Fights in the Harbor.—Defenses of Savannah.—Mobile Harbor and Capture of its Defenses.—The System of Torpedoes adopted.—Statement of the Enemy.—Sub-terra Shells placed in James River.—How made.—Used in Charleston Harbor; in Roanoke River; in Mobile Harbor.—The Tecumseh, how destroyed.


Naval Affairs (continued).—Importance of New Orleans.—Attack feared from up the River.—Preparations for Defense.—Strength of the Forts.—Other Defenses.-The General Plan.—Ironclads.— Raft-Fleet of the Enemy.—Bombardment of the Forts commenced.— Advance of the Fleet.—Its Passage of the Forts.—Batteries below the City.—Darkness of the Night.—Evacuation of the City by General Lovell on Appearance of the Enemy.—Address of General Duncan to Soldiers in the Forts.—Refusal to surrender.—Meeting of the Garrison of Fort Jackson.—The Forts surrendered.—Ironclad Louisiana destroyed.—The Tugs and Steamers.—The Governor Moore.— The Enemy's Ship Varuna sunk.—The McRae.—The State of the City and its Defenses considered.—Public Indignation.—Its Victims.— Efforts made for its Defense by the Navy Department.—The Construction of the Mississippi.


Naval Affairs (continued).—Farragut demands the Surrender of New
Orleans.—Reply of the Mayor.—United States Flag hoisted.—Advent
of General Butler.—Barbarities.—Antecedents of the People.—
Galveston.—Its Surrender demanded.—The Reply.—Another visit of
the Enemy's Fleet.—The Port occupied.—Appointment of General
Magruder.—Recapture of the Port.—Capture of the Harriet Lane.—
Report of General Magruder.—Position and Importance of Sabine
Pass.—Fleet of the Enemy.—Repulse by Forty-four Irishmen.—
Vessels captured.—Naval Destitution of the Confederacy at first.—
Terror of Gunboats on the Western Rivers.—Their Capture.—The most
Illustrious Example.—The Indianola.—Her Capture.—The Ram
Arkansas.—Descent of the Yazoo River.—Report of her Commander.—
Runs through the Enemy's Fleet.—Description of the Vessel.—Attack
on Baton Rouge.—Address of General Breckinridge.—Burning of the


Naval Affairs (continued).—Necessity of a Navy.—Raphael Semmes.—
The Sumter.—Difficulties in creating a Navy.—The Sumter at Sea.—
Alarm.—Her Captures.—James D. Bullock.—Laird's Speech in the
House of Commons.—The Alabama.—Semmes takes Command.—The Vessel
and Crew.—Goes to Sea.—Banks's Expedition.—Magruder at
Galveston.—The Steamer Hattaras Sunk.—The Alabama not a Pirate.—
An Aspinwall Steamer ransomed.—Other Captures.—Prizes burned.—
At Cherbourg.—Fight with the Kearsarge.—Rescue of the Men.—
Demand of the United States Government for the Surrender of the
Drowning Men.—Reply of the British Government.—Sailing of the
Oreto.—Detained at Nassau.—Captain Maffit.—The Ship Half
Equipped.—Arrives at Mobile.—Runs the Blockade.—Her Cruise.—
Capture and Cruise of the Clarence.—The Captures of the Florida.—
Captain C. M. Morris.—The Florida at Bahia.—Seized by the
Wachusett.—Brought to Virginia and sunk.—Correspondence.—The
Georgia.—Cruises and Captures.—The Shenandoah.—Cruises and
Captures.—The Atlanta.—The Tallahassee.—The Edith.


Naval Affairs (concluded).—Excitement in the Northern States on the
Appearance of our Cruisers.—Failure of the Enemy to protect their
Commerce.—Appeal to Europe not to help the So-called "Pirates."—
Seeks Iron-plated Vessels in England.—Statement of Lord Russell.—
What is the Duty of Neutrals?—Position taken by President
Washington.—Letter of Mr. Jefferson.—Contracts sought by United
States Government.—Our Cruisers went to Sea unarmed.—Mr. Adams
asserts that British Neutrality was violated.—Reply of Lord
Russell.—Rejoinder of Mr. Seward.—Duty of Neutrals relative to
Warlike Stores.—Views of Wheaton; of Kent.—Charge of the Lord
Chief Baron in the Alexandra Case.—Action of the Confederate
Government sustained.—Antecedents of the United States
Government.—The Colonial Commissions.—Build and equip Ships in
Europe.—Captain Conyngham's Captures.—Made Prisoner.—
Retaliation.—Numbers of Captures.—Recognition of Greece.—
Recognition of South American Cruisers.—Chief Act of Hostility
charged on Great Britain by the United States Government.—The
Queen's Proclamation: its Effect.—Cause of the United States
Charges.—Never called us Belligerents.—Why not?—Adopts a
Fiction. The Reason.—Why denounce our Cruisers as "Pirates"?—
Opinion of Justice Greer.—Burning of Prizes.—Laws of Maritime
War.—Cause of the Geneva Conference.—Statement of American
Claims.—Allowance.—Indirect Damages of our Cruisers.—Ships
transferred to British Registers.—Decline of American Tonnage.—
Decline of Export of Breadstuffs.—Advance of Insurance.


Attempts of the United States Government to overthrow States.—
Military Governor of Tennessee appointed.—Object.—Arrests and
Imprisonments.—Measures attempted.—Oath required of Voters.—A
Convention to amend the State Constitution.—Results.—Attempt in
Louisiana.—Martial Law.—Barbarities inflicted.—Invitation of
Plantations.—Order of General Butler, No. 28.—Execution of
Mumford.—Judicial System set up.—Civil Affairs to be administered
by Military Authority.—Order of President Lincoln for a Provisional
Court.—A Military Court sustained by the Army.—Words of the
Constitution.—"Necessity," the reason given for the Power to create
the Court.—This Doctrine fatal to the Constitution; involves its
Subversion.—Cause of our Withdrawal from the Union.—Fundamental
Principles unchanged by Force.—The Contest is not over; the Strife
not ended.—When the War closed, who were the Victors?—Let the
Verdict of Mankind decide.


Further Attempts of the United States Government to overthrow States.—Election of Members of Congress under the Military Governor of Louisiana.—The Voters required to take an Oath to support the United States Government.—The State Law violated.—Proposition to hold a State Convention; postponed.—The President's Plan for making a Union State out of a Fragment of a Confederate State.—His Proclamation.—The Oath required.—Message.—"The War-Power our Main Reliance."—Not a Feature of the Republican Government in the Plan.—What are the True Principles?—The Declaration of Independence asserts them.—Who had a Right to institute a Government for Louisiana?—Its People only.—Under what Principles could the Government of the United States do it?—As an Invader to subjugate.—Effrontery and Wickedness of the Administration.—It enforces a Fiction.—Attempt to make Falsehood as good as Truth.— Proclamation for an Election of State Officers.—Proclamation for a State Convention.—The Monster Crime against the Liberties of Mankind.—Proceedings in Arkansas.—Novel Method adopted to amend the State Constitution.—Perversion of Republican Principles in Virginia.—Proceedings to create the State of West Virginia.—A Falsehood by Act of Congress.—Proceedings considered under Fundamental Principles.—These Acts sustained by the United States Government.—Assertion of Thaddeus Stevens.—East Virginia Government.—Such Acts caused Entire Subversion of States.—Mere Fictions thus constituted.


Address to the Army of Eastern Virginia by the President.—Army of
General Pope.—Position of McClellan.—Advance of General
Jackson.—Atrocious Orders of General Pope.—Letter of McClellan on
the Conduct of the War.—Letter of the President to General Lee.—
Battle of Cedar Run.—Results of the Engagement.—Reënforcements to
the Enemy.—Second Battle of Manassas.—Capture of Manassas
Junction.—Captured Stores.—The Old Battle-Field.—Advance of
General Longstreet.—Attack on him.—Attack on General Jackson.—
Darkness of the Night.—Battle at Ox Hill.—Losses of the Enemy.


Return of the Enemy to Washington.—War transferred to the
Frontier.—Condition of Maryland.—Crossing the Potomac.—
Evacuation of Martinsburg.—Advance into Maryland.—Large Force of
the Enemy.—Resistance at Boonesboro.—Surrender of Harper's
Ferry.—Our Forces reach Sharpsburg.—Letter of the President to
General Lee.—Address of General Lee to the People.—Position of
our Forces at Sharpsburg.—Battle of Sharpsburg.—Our Strength.—
Forces withdrawn.—Casualties.


Efforts of the Enemy to obtain our Cotton.—Demands of European
Manufacturers.—Thousands of Operatives resorting to the
Poor-Rates.—Complaint of her Majesty's Secretary of State.—Letter
of Mr. Seward.—Promise to open all the Channels of Commerce.—
Series of measures adopted by the United States.—Act of Congress.—
Its Provisions.—Its Operation.—Unconstitutional Measures.—
President Lincoln an Accomplice.—Not authorized by a State of
War.—Case before Chief-Justice Taney.—His Decision.—Expeditions
sent by the United States Government to seize Localities.—An Act
providing for the Appointment of Special Agents to seize Abandoned or
Captured Property.—The Views of General Grant.—Weakening his
Strength One Third.—Our Country divided into Districts, and Federal
Agents Appointed.—Continued to the Close of the War.


The Enemy crosses the Potomac and concentrates at Warrenton.— Advances upon Fredericksburg.—Its Position.—Our Forces.—The Enemy crosses the Rappahannock.—Attack on General Jackson.—The Main Attack.—Repulse of the Enemy on the Right.—Assaults on the Left.—The Enemy's Columns broke and fled.—Recross the River.— Casualties.—Position during the Winter.—The Enemy again crosses the Rappahannock.—Also crosses at Kelly's Ford.—Converging toward Chancellorsville, to the Rear of our Position.—Inactivity on our Front.—Our Forces concentrate near Chancellorsville and encounter the Enemy.—Position of the Enemy.—Attempt to turn his Right.— The Enemy surprised and driven in the Darkness.—Jackson fired upon and wounded.—Stuart in Command.—Battle renewed.—Fredericksburg reoccupied.—Attack on the Heights.—Repulse of the Enemy.—The Enemy withdraws in the Night.—Our Strength.—Losses.—Death of General Jackson.—Another Account.


Relations with Foreign Nations.—The Public Questions.—Ministers abroad.—Usages of Intercourse between Nations.—Our Action.— Mistake of European Nations; they follow the Example of England and France.—Different Conditions of the Belligerents.—Injury to the Confederacy with a Single Exception.—These Agreements remained inoperative.—Extent of the Pretended Blockade.—Remonstrances against its Recognition.—Sinking Vessels to block up Harbors.— Every Proscription of Maritime Law violated by the United States Government.—Protest.—Addition made to the Law by Great Britain.— Policy pursued favorable to our Enemies.—Instances.—Mediation proposed by France to Great Britain, and Russian Letter of French Minister.—Reply of Great Britain.—Reply of Russia.—Letter to French Minister at Washington.—Various Offensive Actions of the British Government.—Encouraging to the United States.—Hollow Profession of Neutrality.


Advance of General E. K. Smith.—Advance of General Bragg.—Retreat
of General Buell to Louisville.—Battle at Perryville, Kentucky.—
General Morgan at Hartsville.—Advance of General Rosecrans.—
Battle of Murfreesboro.—General Van Dorn and General Price.—
Battle at Iuka.—General Van Dorn.—Battle of Corinth.—General
Little.—Captures at Holly Springs.—Retreat of Grant to Memphis.—
Operations against Vicksburg.—The Canal.—Concentration.—Raid of
Grierson.—Attack near Port Gibson.—Orders of General Johnston.—
Reply of General Pemberton.—Baker's Creek.—Big Black Bridge.—
Retreat to Vicksburg.—Siege.—Surrender.—Losses.—Surrender of
Port Hudson.—Some Movements for its Relief.


Inactivity in Tennessee.—Capture of Colburn's Expedition.—Capture of Streight's Expedition.—Advance of Rosecrans to Bridgeport.— Burnside in East Tennessee.—Our Force at Chattanooga.—Movement against Burnside.—The Enemy moves on our Rear near Ringgold.— Battle at Chickamauga.—Strength and Distribution of our Forces.— The enemy withdraws.—Captures.—Losses.—The Enemy evacuates Passes of Lookout Mountain.—His Trains captured.—Failure of General Bragg to pursue.—Reënforcements to the Enemy, and Grant to command.—His Description of the Situation.—Movements of the Enemy.—Conflict at Chattanooga.


Movement to draw forth the Enemy.—Advance to Culpeper
Court-House.—Cavalry Engagement at Beverly's and Kelly's Fords.—
Movement against Winchester.—Milroy's Force captured.—
Prisoners.—The Enemy retires along the Potomac.—Maryland
entered.—Advance into Pennsylvania.—The Enemy driven back toward
Gettysburg.—Position of the Respective Forces.—Battle at
Gettysburg.—The Army Retires.—Prisoners.—The Potomac swollen.—
No Interruption by the Enemy.—Strength of our Force.—Strength of
the Enemy.—The Campaign closed.—Observations.—Kelly's Ford.—
Attempt to surprise our Army.—System of Breastworks.—Prisoners.


Subjugation of the States of Tennessee, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Virginia.—Object of a State Government; its Powers are "Just Powers"; how exercised; its Duty; necessarily sovereign; its Entire Order; how founded; how destroyed.—The Crime against Constitutional Liberty.—What is the Government of the United States?—It partakes of the Nature of a Limited Partnership; its Peaceful Objects.— Distinction between the Governments of the States and that of the United States.—Secession.—The Government of the United States invades the State; refuses to recognize its Government; thus denies the Fundamental Principle of Popular Liberty.—Founded a New State Government based on the Sovereignty of the United States Government.—Annihilation of Unalienable Rights.—Qualification of Voters fixed by Military Power.—Condition of the Voter's Oath.— Who was the Sovereign in Tennessee?—Case of Louisiana.— Registration of Voters.—None allowed to register who could not or would not take a Certain Oath; its Conditions.—Election of State Officers.—Part of the State Constitution declared void.—All done under the Military Force of the United States Government.


Subjugation of the Border States, Maryland, Kentucky, and Missouri.—
A Military Force invades Maryland and occupies Baltimore.—Martial
Law declared.—A Military Order.—Banishment from the State.—
Civil Government of the State suspended.—Unalienable Rights of the
Citizens invaded.—Arrests of Citizens commenced.—Number.—Case
of John Merryman.—Opinion of Chief-Justice Taney.—Newspapers
seized.—Houses searched for Arms.—Order of Commanding General to
Marshals to put Test to Voters.—The Governor appeals to the
President.—His Reply.—Voters imprisoned.—Statement of the
Governor.—Result of the Election.—State Constitutional
Convention.—Emancipation hardly carried.—First Open Measures in
Kentucky.—Interference at the State Election by the United States
Government.—Voters excluded.—Martial Law declared.—Soldiers
keeping the Polls.—The Vote.—Statement of the Governor.—Attempt
to enroll Able-bodied Negroes.—The Governor visits Washington.—
The Result.—Arrests, Imprisonment, and Exile of Citizens.—
Suspension of the Writ of Habeas Corpus by President Lincoln.—
Interference with the State Election.—Order to the Sheriffs.—
Proclamation of the Governor.—Enlistment of Slaves.—Emancipation
by Constitutional Amendment.—Violent Measures in Missouri.—The
Governor calls out the Militia.—His Words.—The Plea of the
Invader.—"The Authority of the United States is Paramount," said
President Lincoln.—Bravery of the Governor.—Words of the
Commanding General.—Troops poured into the State.—Proceedings of
the State Convention.—Numberless Usurpations.—Provisional
Governor.-Emancipation Ordinance passed.


Subjugation of the Northern States.—Humiliating Spectacle of New York.—"Ringing of a Little Bell."—Seizure and Imprisonment of Citizens.—Number seized.—Paper Safeguards of Liberty.—Other Safeguards.—Suspension of the Writ of Habeas Corpus absolutely forbidden with One Exception.—How done.—Not able to authorize another.—Abundant Protective Provisions in New York, but all failed.—Case of Pierce Butler.—Arrest of Secretary Cameron.—The President assumes the Responsibility of the Crime.—No Heed given to the Writ of Habeas Corpus issued by the Court.—The Governor passive.—Words of Justice Nelson—Prison overflowing.—How relieved.—Oath required of Applicants for Relief.—Oath declined by some.—Reasons.—Order forbidding the Employment of Counsel by Prisoners.—Victims in almost Every Northern State.—Defeat at the Elections.—Result.—Suit for Damages commenced.—Congress interferes to protect the Guilty.—State Courts subjugated.—How suspend Habeas Corpus.—Congress violates the Constitution.—What was New York?—Writ suspended throughout the United States.-What is "Loyalty"?—Military Domination.—Correspondence between General Dix and Governor Seymour.—Seizure of Newspapers.—Governor orders Arrest of Offenders.—Interference with the State Election.—Vote of the Soldiers.—State Agents arrested.—Provost-Marshals appointed in Every Northern State.—Their Duties.—Sustained by Force.—Trials by Military Commission.—Trials at Washington.— Assassination of the President.—Trial of Henry Wirz.—Efforts to implicate the Author.—Investigation of a Committee of Congress as to Complicity in the Assassination.—Arrest, Trial, and Banishment of Clement C. Vallandigham.—Assertions of Governor Seymour on the Case.


Inactivity of the Army of Northern Virginia.—Expeditions of Custer, Kilpatrick, and Dahlgren for the Destruction of Railroads, the Burning of Richmond, and Killing the Officers of the Government.— Repelled by Government Clerks.—Papers on Dahlgren's Body.—Repulse of Butler's Raid from Bermuda Hundred.—Advance of Sheridan repulsed at Richmond.—Stuart resists Sheridan.—Stuart's Death.—Remarks on Grant's Plan of Campaign.—Movement of General Butler.—Drury's Bluff.—Battle there.—Campaign of Grant in Virginia.


General Grant assumes Command in Virginia.—Positions of the Armies.—Plans of Campaign open to Grant's Choice.—The Rapidan crossed.—Battle of the Wilderness.—Danger of Lee.—The Enemy driven back.—Flank Attack.—Longstreet wounded.—Result of the Contest.—Rapid Flank Movement of Grant.—Another Contest.— Grant's Reënforcements.—Hanover Junction.—The Enemy moves in Direction of Bowling Green.—Crosses the Pamunkey.—Battle at Cold Harbor.—Frightful Slaughter.—The Enemy's Soldiers decline to renew the Assault when ordered.—Loss.—Asks Truce to bury the Dead.—Strength of Respective Armies.—General Pemberton.—The Enemy crosses the James.—Siege of Petersburg begun.


Situation in the Shenandoah Valley.—March of General Early.—The
Object.—At Lynchburg.—Staunton.—His Force.—Enters Maryland.—
Attack at Monocacy.—Approach to Washington.—The Works.—
Recrosses the Potomac.—Battle at Kernstown.—Captures.—Outrages
of the Enemy.—Statement of General Early.—Retaliation on
Chambersburg, Pennsylvania.—Battle near Winchester.—Sheridan's
Force routed.—Attack subsequently renewed with New Forces.—
Incapacity of our Opponent.—Early falls back.—The Enemy
retires.—Early advances.—Report of a Committee of Citizens on
Losses by Sheridan's Orders.—Battle at Cedar Creek.—Losses,
Subsequent Movements, and Captures.—The Red River Campaign.—
Repulse and Retreat of General Banks.—Capture of Fort Pillow.


Assignment of General J. E. Johnston to the Command of the Army of
Tennessee.—Condition of his Army.—An Offensive Campaign
suggested.—Proposed Objects to be accomplished.—General
Johnston's Plans.—Advance of Sherman.—The Strength of the
Confederate Position.—General Johnston expects General Sherman to
give Battle at Dalton.—The Enemy's Flank Movement via Snake Creek
Gap to Resaca.—Johnston falls back to Resaca.—Further Retreat to
Adairsville.—General Johnston's Reasons.—Retreat to Cassville.—
Projected Engagement at Kingston frustrated.—Retreat beyond the
Etowah River.—Strong Position at Alatoona abandoned.—Nature of
the Country between Marietta and Dallas.—Engagements at New Hope
Church.—Army takes Position at Kenesaw.—Senator Hill's Letter.—
Death of Lieutenant-General Polk.—Battle at Kenesaw Mountain.—
Retreat beyond the Chattahoochee.—Results reviewed.—Popular
Demand for Removal of General Johnston.—Reluctance to remove him.—
Reasons for Removal.—Assignment of General J. B. Hood to the
Command.—He assumes the Offensive.—Battle of Peach-tree Creek.—
Death of General W. H. T. Walker.—Sherman's Movement to
Jonesboro.—Defeat of Hardee.—Evacuation of Atlanta.—Sherman's
Inhuman Order.—Visit to Georgia.—Suggested Operations.—Want of
coöperation by the Governor of Georgia.—Conference with Generals
Beauregard, Hardee, and Cobb, at Augusta.—Departure from Original
Plan.—General Hood's Movement against the Enemy's Communications.—
Partial Successes.—Withdrawal of the Army to Gadsden and Movement
against Thomas.—Sherman burns Atlanta and begins his March to the
Sea.—Vandalism.—Direction of his Advance.—General Wheeler's
Opposition.—His Valuable Service.—Sherman reaches Savannah.—
General Hardee's Command.—The Defenses of the City.—Assault and
Capture of Fort McAlister.—The Results.—Hardee evacuates Savannah.


Exchange of Prisoners.—Signification of the Word "loyal."—Who is the Sovereign?—Words of President Lincoln.—The Issue for which we fought.—Position of the United States Government.—Letters of Marque granted by us.—Officers and Crew First Prisoners of the Enemy.—Convicted as "Pirates."—My Letter to President Lincoln.— How received.—Act of Congress relating to Prisoners.—Exchanges, how made.-Answer of General Grant.—Request of United States Congress.—Result.—Commissioners sent.—Agreement.—Disputed Points.—Exchange arranged.—Order to pillage issued.—General Pope's Order.—Proceedings.—Letter of General Lee relative to Barbarities.—Answer of General Halleck.—Case of Mumford.—Effect of Threatened Retaliation.—Mission of Vice-President Stephens.—A Failure.—Excess of Prisoners.—Paroled Men.—Proposition made by us.—No Answer.—Another Arrangement.—Stopped by General Grant.— His words, "Put the Matter offensively."—Exchange of Slaves.— Proposition of Lee to Grant.—Reply of Grant.—Further Reply.—His Dispatch to General Butler.—Another Proposition made by us.—No Answer.—Proposition relative to Sick and Wounded.—Some exchanged.—The Worst Cases asked for to be photographed.— Proposition as to Medicines.—No Answer.—A Final Effort.— Deputation of Prisoners sent to Washington.—A Failure.— Correspondence between Ould and Butler.—Order of Grant.—Report of Butler.—Responsibility of Grant for Andersonville.—Barbarities of the United States Government.—Treatment of our Men in Northern Prisons.—Deaths on Each Side.


Subjugation the Object of the Government of the United States.—The only Terms of Peace offered to us.—Rejection of all Proposals.— Efforts of the Enemy.—Appearance of Jacques and Gilmore at Richmond.—Proposals.—Answer.—Commissioners sent to Canada.— The Object.—Proceedings.—Note of President Lincoln.—Permission to visit Richmond granted to Francis P. Blair.—Statement of my Interview with him.—My Letter to him.—Response of President Lincoln.—Three Persons sent by me to an Informal Conference.— Their Report.—Remarks of Judge Campbell.—Oath of President Lincoln.—The Provision of the Constitution and his Proclamation compared.—Reserved Powers spoken of in the Constitution.—What are they, and where do they exist?—Terms of Surrender offered to our Soldiers.


General Sherman leaves Savannah.—His March impeded.—Difficulty In
collecting Troops to oppose him.—The Line of the Salkehatchie.—
Route of the Enemy's Advance.—Evacuation of Columbia.—Its
Surrender by the Mayor.—Burning the City.—Sherman responsible.—
Evacuation of Charleston.—The Confederate Forces in North
Carolina.—General Johnston's Estimate.—General Johnston assigned
to the Command.—The Enemy's Advance from Columbia to Fayetteville,
North Carolina.—"Foraging Parties."—Sherman's Threat and
Hampton's Reply.—Description of Federal "Treasure-Seekers" by
Sherman's Aide-de-Camp.—Failure of Johnston's Projected Attack at
Fayetteville.—Affair at Kinston.—Cavalry Exploits.—General
Johnston withdraws to Smithfield.—Encounter at Averysboro.—
Battles of Bentonville.—Union of Sherman's and Schofield's
Forces.—Johnston's Retreat to Raleigh.


Siege of Petersburg.—Violent Assault upon our Position.—A Cavalry
Expedition.—Contest near Ream's Station.—The City invested with
Earthworks.—Position of the Forces.—The Mine exploded, and an
Assault made.—Attacks on our Lines.—Object of the Enemy.—Our
Strength.—Assault on Fort Fisher.—Evacuation of Wilmington.—
Purpose of Grant's Campaign.—Lee's Conference with the
President.—Plans.—Sortie against Fort Steadman.—Movements of
Grant farther to Lee's right.—Army retires from Petersburg.—The
Capitulation.—Letters of Lee.


General Lee advises the Evacuation of Richmond.—Withdrawal of the Troops. The Naval Force.—The Conflagration in Richmond.—Telegram of Lee to the President.—The Evacuation complete.—The Charge of the Removal of Supplies intended for Lee's Army.—The Facts.— Arrangement with General Lee.—Proclamation.—Reports of Scouts.


Invitation of General Johnston to a Conference.—Its Object.—Its
Result.—Provisions on the Line of Retreat.—Notice of President
Lincoln's Assassination.—Correspondence between Johnston and
Sherman.—Terms of the Convention.—Approved by the Confederate
Government.—Rejected by the United States Government.—
Instructions to General Johnston.—Disobeyed.—Statements of
General Johnston.—His Surrender.—Movements of the President
South.—His Plans.—Order of General E. E. Smith to his Soldiers.—
Surrender.—Numbers paroled.—The President overtakes his Family.—
His Capture.—Taken to Hampton Roads, and imprisoned in Fortress


Number of the Enemy's Forces in the War.—Number of the Enemy's
Troops from Maryland, Kentucky, Missouri, and Tennessee.—Cruel
Conduct of the War.—Statements in 1862.—Statements in 1863.—
Emancipation Proclamation.—Statements in 1864.—General Hunter's
Proceedings near Lynchburg.—Cruelties in Sherman's March through
South Carolina.


Final Subjugation of the Confederate States.—Result of the
Contest.—A Simple Process of Restoration.—Rejected by the United
States Government.—A Forced Union.—The President's Proclamation
examined.—The Guarantee, not to destroy.—Provisional Governors.—
Their Duties.—Voters.—First Movement made in Virginia.—
Government set up.—Proceedings.—Action of So-called Legislature.—
Constitutional Amendment.—Case of Dr. Watson.—Civil Rights Bill.—
Storm brewing.—Congress refuses to admit Senators and Representatives
to Seats.—Committee on "Reconstruction."—Freedmen's Bureau.—Report
of Committee.—Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution.—Extent of
Ratification.—Another Step taken by Congress.—Military Commanders
appointed over Confederate States, with Unlimited Powers.—
Reconstruction by the Bayonet.—Course of Proceedings required.—Two
Governments for Each State.—Major-Generals appointed.—Further Acts
of Congress.—Proceedings commenced by the Major-General at Richmond.—
Civil Governor appointed.—Military Districts and Sub-districts.—
Registration.—So-called State Convention.—So-called Legislature.—Its
Action.—Measures required by Congress for the Enfranchisement of
Negroes adopted by the So-called Legislature.—Assertion of Senator
Garret Davis.—State represented in Congress.


Final Subjugation of the Confederate States (continued).—Slaves declared free by Military Commanders in North Carolina.—Provisional Governor.—Convention.—Military Commander.—Governor-elect turned out.—His Protest.—Members of Congress admitted.—Proceedings in South Carolina.—Arrest of Judge Aldrich.—Military Reversal of Sentence of the Court.—Post Commanders.—Jurors.—Proceedings in Georgia.—President's Plan.—Plan of Congress enforced.—Other Events.—Proceedings in Florida.—Rival Conventions.—Plan of Congress enforced.—Proceedings in Alabama.—Suspension of Bishop Wilmer by the Military Commander.—Military Authority.—Action of Congress.—Proceedings in Mississippi.—Constitutionality of the Act of Congress before the Supreme Court.—Remarks of Chief-Justice Chase.—Military Arrests.—Removals.—The Chief-Justice of the State resigns.—The So-called Constitution rejected.—Ames appointed Governor.—Proceedings in Louisiana.—Plan of Congress enforced.—Other Measures.—Arkansas.—Texas.—Opinion of the United States Attorney-General on Military Commanders.—Consequences that followed the Measures of Congress.—Increase in State Debts.— Increase in Frauds and Crimes.—Examples.—Investigating Committees of Congress.—The Unalienable Rights of Man.—The Sovereignty of the People and the Supremacy of Law gone.


Jefferson Davis

General Braxton Bragg

Davis House, at Richmond

Lieutenant-General T. J. Jackson

Members of The Confederate Cabinet

Lieutenant-General James Longstreet

General Wade Hampton

General J. E. Johnston

General John B. Hood

Lieutenant-General William J. Hardee


Battle-Field of Fort Donelson

Map used by the Confederate Generals at Shiloh

Battle of Shiloh

Port Hudson

Yorktown and Williamsburg

Operations in Northern Virginia

Operations around Richmond and Petersburg

Battle of Fredericksburg

Operations in Mississippi

Operations in Kentucky and Tennessee

Battle-Field of Chickamauga

Battle of Gettysburg

Operations in Georgia and Tennessee

Fort Fisher


Retreat from Richmond and Petersburg

Operations in Georgia and South Carolina

PART IV—(Continued).



    Review of 1861.—Summary of Hostile Acts of United States
    Government.—Fuller Details of some of them.—Third Session of
    Provisional Congress.—Message.—Subjugation of the Southern States
    intended.—Obstinacy of the Enemy.—Insensibility of the North as
    to the Crisis.—Vast Preparation of the Enemy.—Embargo and
    Blockade.—Indiscriminate War waged.—Action of Confederate
    Congress.—Confiscation Act of United States Congress.—Declared
    Object of the War.—Powers of United States Government.—
    Forfeitures inflicted.—Due Process of Law, how interpreted.—"Who
    pleads the Constitution?"—Wanton Destruction of Private Property
    unlawful—Adams on Terms of the Treaty of Ghent.—Sectional
    Hatred.—Order of President Lincoln to Army Officers in Regard to
    Slaves.—"Educating the People."—Fremont's Proclamation.—
    Proclamation of General T. W. Sherman.—Proclamation of General
    Halleck and others.—Letters of Marque.—Our Privateers.—Officers
    tried for Piracy.—Retaliatory Orders.—Discussion in the British
    House of Lords.—Recognition as a Belligerent of the Confederacy.—
    Exchange of Prisoners.—Theory of the United States.—Views of
    McClellan.—Revolutionary Conduct of United States Government.—
    Extent of the War at the Close of 1861.—Victories of the Year.—
    New Branches of Manufactures.—Election of Confederate States
    President.—Posterity may ask the Cause of such Hostile Actions.—

The inauguration of the permanent government, amid the struggles of war, was welcomed by our people as a sign of the independence for which all their sacrifices had been made, and the increased efforts of the enemy for our subjugation were met by corresponding determination on our part to maintain the rights our fathers left us at whatever cost. We now enter upon those terrible scenes of wrong and blood in which the government of the United States, driven to desperation by our successful resistance, broke through every restraint of the Constitution, of national law, of justice, and of humanity. But, before commencing this fearful narration, let us sum up the hostile acts and usurpations committed during the first year.

Our people had been declared to be combinations of insurrectionists, and more than one hundred and fifty thousand men had been called to arms to invade our territory; our ports were blockaded for the destruction of our regular commerce, and we had been threatened with denunciation as pirates if we molested a vessel of the United States, and some of our citizens had been confined in cells to await the punishment of piracy; one of our States was rent asunder and a new State constructed out of the fragment; every proposition for a peaceful solution of pending issues had been spurned. An indiscriminate warfare had been waged upon our peaceful citizens, their dwellings burned and their crops destroyed; a law had been passed imposing a penalty of forfeiture on the owner of any faithful slave who gave military or naval service to the Confederacy, and forbidding military commanders to interfere for the restoration of fugitives; the United States Government had refused to agree to an exchange of prisoners, and suffered those we had captured to languish in captivity; it had falsely represented us in every court of Europe, to defeat our efforts to obtain a recognition from foreign powers; it had seized a portion of the members of the Legislature of one State and confined them in a distant military prison, because they were thought merely to sympathize with us, though they had not committed an overt act; it had refused all the propositions of another State for a peaceful neutrality, invaded her and seized important positions, where not even a disturbance of the peace had occurred, and perpetrated the most despotic outrages on her people; it rejected the most conciliatory terms offered for the sake of peace by the Governor of another State, claimed for itself an unrestricted right to move and station its troops whenever and wherever its officers might think it to be desirable, and persisted in its aggressions until the people were involved in conflicts, and a provisional government became necessary for their protection. Within the Northern States, which professed to be struggling to maintain the Union, the Constitution, its only bond, and the laws made in pursuance of it, were in peaceful, undisputed existence; yet even there the Government ruled with the tyrant's hand, and the provisions for the freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and the personal liberty of the citizen, were daily violated, and these sacred rights of man suppressed by military force.

But some of these hostile actions require here a more specific consideration. They were the antecedents of oppressive measures which the enemy strove to enforce upon us during the entire war.

The third session of the Provisional Congress commenced at Richmond on July 20, 1861, and ended on August 31st. At the previous session, a resolution had been passed authorizing the President to cause the several executive departments, with the archives thereof, to be removed to Richmond at such time as he might determine prior to July 20th. In my message to the Congress of that date, the cause of removal was stated to be, that the aggressive movements of the enemy required prompt, energetic action; that the accumulation of his forces on the Potomac sufficiently demonstrated that his first efforts were to be directed against Virginia, and from no point could necessary measures for her defense and protection be so effectively provided as from her own capital. My remarks to Congress at this session were confined to such important facts as had occurred during the recess, and to the matters connected with the public defense. "The odious features of the policy and purposes of the Government of the United States stood revealed; the recent grant of a half million of men and four hundred millions of dollars by their Congress, was a confession that their intention was a subjugation of the Southern States."

The fact thus briefly presented in the message was established by the course pursued since the first advent to power of those who had come into possession of the sword and the purse of the Union. Not only by the legislation cited was the intent to make war for the purpose of subjugating the Southern States revealed, but also, and yet more significantly, was the purpose manifested in the evasion and final rejection of every proposition of the Southern States for a peaceful solution of the issues arising from secession.

Such extreme obstinacy was unnatural, unreasonable, and contrary to the general precedents of history, except those which resulted in civil war. This unfavorable indication was also observable in the original party of abolition. Its intolerance had a violence which neither truth nor justice nor religion could restrain, and it was transferred undiluted to their successors. The resistance to the demands of the States and persistence in aggressions upon them were the occasion of constant apprehensions and futile warnings of their suicidal tendency on the part of the statesmen of the period. For thirty years had patriotism and wisdom pointed to dissolution by this perverse uncharitableness. Had the North been contending for a principle only, there would have been a satisfactory settlement, not indeed by compromising the principle, but by adjusting the manner of its operation so that only good results should ensue. But when the contest is for supremacy on one side and self-defense on the other— when the aim of the aggressor is "power, plunder, and extended rule"—there will be no concessions by him, no compromises, no adjustment of results. The alternative is subjugation by the sword, or peace by absolute submission. The latter condition could not be accepted by us. The former was, therefore, to be resisted as best we might.

An amazing insensibility seemed to possess a portion of the Northern people as to the crisis before them. They would not realize that their purpose of supremacy would be so resolutely resisted; that, if persisted in, it must be carried to the extent of bloodshed in sectional war. With them the lust of dominion was stronger than the sense of justice or of the fraternity and the equal rights of the States, which the Union was formed to secure, and so they were blind to palpable results. Otherwise they must have seen, when the remnants of the old Whig party joined hands with abolitionism, that it was like a league with the spirit of evil, in which the conditions of the bond were bestowal of power on one side, and the commission of deeds meet for disunion on the other. The honest masses should have remembered that when scheming leaders abandon principle, and adopt the ideas of dreamers and fanatics, the ladder on which they would mount to power is one on which they can not return, and upon which it would be a fatal delusion to follow.

The reality of armed resistance on our part the North was slow to comprehend. The division of sentiment at the South on the question of the expediency of immediate secession, was mistaken for the existence of a submission party, whereas the division was confined to expediency, and wholly disappeared when our territory was invaded. Then was revealed to them the necessity of defending their homes and liberties against the ruthless assault on both, and then extraordinary unanimity prevailed. Then, as Hamilton and Madison had stated, war against the States had effected the deprecated dissolution of the Union.

Adjustment by negotiation the United States Government had rejected, and had chosen to attempt our subjugation. This course, adopted without provocation, was pursued with a ferocity that disregarded all the laws of civilized warfare, and must permanently remain a stain upon the escutcheon of a Government once bright among the nations. The vast provision made by the United States in the material of war, the money appropriated, and the men enrolled, furnished a sufficient refutation to the pretense that they were only engaged in dispersing rioters, and suppressing unlawful combinations too strong for the usual course of judicial proceedings.

Further, they virtually recognized the separate existence of the Confederate States by an interdictive embargo, and blockade of all commerce between them and the United States, not only by sea but by land; not only with those who bore arms, but with the entire population of the Confederate States. They waged an indiscriminate war upon all: private houses in isolated retreats were bombarded and burned; grain-crops in the field were consumed by the torch; and, when the torch was not applied, careful labor was bestowed to render complete the destruction of every article of use or ornament remaining in private dwellings after their female inhabitants had fled from the insults of brutal soldiers; a petty war was made on the sick, including women and children, by carefully devised measures to prevent them from obtaining the necessary medicines. Were these the appropriate means by which to execute the laws, and in suppressing rioters to secure tranquillity and preserve a voluntary union? Was this a government resting on the consent of the governed?

At this session of the Confederate Congress additional forces were provided to repel invasion, by authorizing the President to accept the services of any number of volunteers not exceeding four hundred thousand men. Authority was also given for suitable financial measures hereafter stated, and the levy of a tax. An act of sequestration was also adopted as a countervailing measure against the operations of the confiscation law enacted by the Congress of the United States on August 6, 1861.

This act of the United States Congress, with its complement passed in the ensuing year, will be considered further on in these pages. One of the most indicative of the sections, however, provided that, whenever any person, claimed to be held to labor or service under the laws of any State, shall be permitted, by the person to whom such labor or service is claimed to be due, to take up arms against the United States, or to work, or to be employed in or upon any fort, intrenchment, etc., or in any military or naval service whatever against the Government of the United States, the person to whom such labor is claimed to be due shall forfeit his claim, and, to any attempt to enforce it, a statement of the facts shall be a sufficient answer. The President of the United States, in his message of December 3, 1861, stated that numbers of persons held to service had been liberated and were dependent on the United States, and must be provided for in some way. He recommended that steps be taken for colonizing them at some places in a climate congenial to them.

As the President and the Congress of the United States had declared this to be a war for the preservation of the Constitution, it may not be out of place to see what course they now undertook to pursue under the pretext of preserving the Constitution of the United States. It had been conceded in all time that the Congress of the United States had no power to legislate on slavery in the States, and that this was a subject for State legislation. It was one of the powers not granted in the Constitution, but "reserved to the States respectively." [1] All the powers of the Federal Government were delegated to it by the States, and all which were reserved were withheld from the Federal Government, as well in time of war as in peace. The conditions of peace or war made no change in the powers granted in the Constitution. The attempt, therefore, by Congress, to exercise a power of confiscation, one not granted to it, was a mere usurpation. The argument of forfeiture for treason does not reach the case, because there could be no forfeiture until after conviction, and the Constitution says, "No attainder of treason shall work corruption of blood or forfeiture except during the life of the person attainted." [2] The confiscation act of 1861 undertook to convict and sentence without a trial, and entirely to deprive the owner of slaves of his property by giving final freedom to the slaves. Still further to show how regardless the United States Government was of the limitations imposed upon it by the compact of Union, the reader is referred to the fifth article of the first amendment, being one of those cases in which the people of the several States, in an abundance of caution, threw additional protection around rights which the framers of the Constitution thought already sufficiently guarded. The last two clauses of the article read thus: No person "shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation."

Here was a political indictment and conviction by the Congress and President, with total forfeitures inflicted in palpable violation of each and of all the cited clauses of the Constitution.

One can scarcely anticipate such effrontery as would argue that "due process of law" meant an act of Congress, that judicial power could thus be conferred upon the President, and private property be confiscated for party success, without violating the Constitution which the actors had sworn to support.

The unconstitutionality of the measure was so palpable that, when the bill was under consideration, Mr. Thaddeus Stevens, a member of Congress from Pennsylvania, said: "I thought the time had come when the laws of war were to govern our action; when constitutions, if they stood in the way of the laws of war in dealing with the enemy, had no right to intervene. Who pleads the Constitution against our proposed action?" [3] This subject is further considered in subsequent chapters on the measures of emancipation adopted by the United States Government.

It is to be remembered in this connection that pillage and the wanton destruction of private property are not permitted by the laws of war among civilized nations. When prosecuting the war with Mexico, we respected private property of the enemy; and when in 1781 Great Britain, attempting to reduce her revolted American colonies, took possession of the country round and about Point Comfort (Fortress Monroe), the homes quietly occupied by the rebellious people were spared by the armies of the self-asserting ruler of the land. At a later date, war existed between Great Britain and the independent States of the Union, during which Great Britain got possession of various points within the States. At the Treaty of Ghent, 1815, by which peace was restored to the two countries, it was stipulated in the first article that all captured places should be restored "without causing any destruction, or carrying away any of the artillery or other public property originally captured in the said forts or places, and which shall remain therein upon the exchange of the ratifications of this treaty; or any slaves or other private property." Persistent efforts were made to avoid the return of deported slaves, and it was attempted to put them in the category of artillery which had been removed before the exchange of ratification. Mr. John Quincy Adams, first as United States Minister to England, and subsequently as United States Secretary of State, conducted with great vigor and earnestness a long correspondence to maintain the true construction of the treaty as recognizing and guarding the right of private property in slaves. In his letter to Viscount Castlereagh, the British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, after explaining the distinction between "artillery or other public property" and "slaves or other private property," as used in the treaty, and why it might be impracticable, if they had been removed, to return the former, but that the reasons did not apply to the latter, for, he proceeds to say, "Private property, not having been subject to legitimate capture with the places, was not liable to the reason of limitation." In the same letter, Mr. Adams writes: "Merchant-vessels and effects captured on the high-seas are, by the laws of war between civilized nations, lawful prize, and by the capture become the property of the captors. . . . But, as by the same usages of civilized nations, private property is not the subject of lawful capture in war upon the land, it is perfectly clear that, in every stipulation, private property shall be respected; or that, upon the restoration of places taken during the war, it shall not be carried away." (See "American State Papers," vol. iv, pp. 122, 123.) Sectional hostility and party zeal had not then so far undermined the feeling of fraternity which generated the Union as to make a public officer construe the Constitution as it might favor or injure one section or another, and Great Britain was, from a sense of right, compelled to recognize the wrong done in deporting slaves, the private property of American citizens.

On the 4th of December, 1861, the President of the United States issued an order to the commander-in-chief relative to slaves as above mentioned, in which he said, "Their arrest as fugitives from service or labor should be immediately followed by the military arrest of the parties making the seizure." Had Congress and the President made new laws of war?

Although the Government of the United States did not boldly proclaim the immediate emancipation of all slaves, the tendency of all its actions was directly to that end. To use a favorite expression of its leaders, the Northern people were not at that time "educated up to the point." A revolt from too sudden a revelation of its entire policy was apprehended. Even as late as July 7, 1862, General McClellan wrote to the authorities at Washington from the vicinity of Richmond, "A declaration of radical views, especially upon slavery, will rapidly disintegrate our armies." Nevertheless, when policy indicated it, the declaration came, as will be seen hereafter. Meantime, General Fremont, in command in Missouri, issued a proclamation on August 31, 1861, declaring the property, real and personal, of all persons in arms against the United States, or taking an active part with their enemies, to be confiscated, and their slaves to be free men. This was subsequently modified to conform to the terms of the above-mentioned confiscation act. General Thomas W. Sherman, commanding at Port Royal, in South Carolina, was instructed, on October 14, 1861, to receive all persons, whether slaves or not, and give them employment, "assuring all loyal masters that Congress will provide just compensation to them for the loss of the services of the persons so employed." To others no relief was to be given. This was, by confiscation, to punish a class of citizens, in the emancipation of every slave whose owner rendered support to the Confederate States. Finally, General Halleck, who succeeded Fremont, and General Dix, commanding near Fortress Monroe, issued orders not to permit slaves to come within their lines. They were speedily condemned for this action, because it put a stop to the current of emancipation, which will be hereafter narrated.

Reference has been made to our want of a navy, and the efforts made to supply the deficiency. The usual resort under such circumstances to privateers was, in our case, without the ordinary incentive of gain, as all foreign ports were closed against our prizes, and, our own ports being soon blockaded, our vessels, public or private, had but the alternative of burning or bonding their captures. To those who, nevertheless, desired them, letters of marque were granted by us, and there was soon a small fleet of vessels composed of those which had taken out these letters, and others which had been purchased and fitted out by the Navy Department. They hovered on the coasts of the Northern States, capturing and destroying their vessels, and filling the enemy with consternation. The President of the United States had already declared in his proclamation of April 19th, as above stated, that "any person, who, under the pretended authority of the said (Confederate) States, should molest a vessel of the United States, or the persons or cargo on board," should be held amenable to the laws of the United States for the prevention of piracy. This was another violation of international law, another instance of arrogant disregard for universal opinion. The threat, if meant for intimidation, and to deprive the Confederacy of one of the usual weapons of war, was unbecoming the head of a Government. To have executed it upon a helpless prisoner, would have been a crime intensified by its cowardice. Happily for the United States, the threat was not executed, but the failure to carry out the declared purpose was coupled with humiliation, because it was the result of a notice to retaliate as fully as might need be to stop such a barbarous practice. To yield to the notice thus served, was a practical admission by the United States Government that the Confederacy had become a power among the nations.

On June 3, 1861, the little schooner Savannah, previously a pilot-boat in Charleston Harbor and sailing under a commission issued by authority of the Confederate States, was captured by the United States brig Perry. The crew were placed in irons and sent to New York. It appeared, from statements made without contradiction, that they were not treated as prisoners of war, whereupon a letter was addressed by me to President Lincoln, dated July 6th, stating explicitly that, "painful as will be the necessity, this Government will deal out to the prisoners held by it the same treatment and the same fate as shall be experienced by those captured on the Savannah; and, if driven to the terrible necessity of retaliation by your execution of any of the officers or crew of the Savannah, that retaliation will be extended so far as shall be requisite to secure the abandonment of a practice unknown to the warfare of civilized man, and so barbarous as to disgrace the nation which shall be guilty of inaugurating it." A reply was promised to this letter, but none came. Still later in the year the privateer Jefferson Davis was captured, the captain and crew brought into Philadelphia, and the captain tried and found guilty of piracy and threatened with death. Immediately I instructed General Winder, at Richmond, to select one prisoner of the highest rank, to be confined in a cell appropriated to convicted felons, and treated in all respects as if convicted, and to be held for execution in the same manner as might be adopted for the execution of the prisoner of war in Philadelphia. He was further instructed to select thirteen other prisoners of the highest rank, to be held in the same manner as hostages for the thirteen prisoners held in New York for trial as pirates. By this course the infamous attempt made by the United States Government to commit judicial murder on prisoners of war was arrested.

The attention of the British House of Lords was also attracted to the proclamation of President Lincoln, threatening the officers and crew of privateers with the punishment of piracy. It led to a discussion in which the Earl of Derby said: "He apprehended that, if one thing was clearer than another, it was that privateering was not piracy; and that no law could make that piracy, as regarded the subjects of one nation which was not piracy by the law of nations. Consequently, the United States must not be allowed to entertain this doctrine, and to call upon her Majesty's Government not to interfere." The Lord Chancellor said: "There was no doubt that, if an Englishman engaged in the service of the Southern States, he violated the laws of his country and rendered himself liable to punishment, and that he had no right to trust to the protection of his native country to shield him from the consequences of his act. But, though that individual would be guilty of a breach of the law of his own country, he could not be treated as a pirate, and those who treated him as a pirate would be guilty of murder."

The appearance of this little fleet on the ocean made it necessary for the powers of Europe immediately to define their position relative to the contending powers. Great Britain, adopting a position of neutrality, and recognizing both as belligerents, interdicted the armed ships and privateers of both from carrying prizes into the waters of the United Kingdom or its colonies. All the other powers recognized the Confederate States to be belligerents, but closed their ports against the admission of prizes captured by either belligerent.

It is worthy of notice that the United States Government (though it had previously declined) at this time notified the English and French Governments that it was now willing to adhere to all the conditions of the Paris Congress of 1856, provided the clause abolishing privateers might apply to the Confederate States. The offer, with the proviso, was honorably declined by both France and England.

In the matter of the exchange of prisoners, which became important in consequence of these retaliatory measures, and the number taken by our troops at Manassas, the people of the Northern States were the victims of incessant mortification and distress through the vacillating and cruel conduct of their Government. It based all its immense military movements on the theory that "the laws of the United States have been for some time past and now are opposed and the execution thereof obstructed, . . . by combinations too powerful to be suppressed" by the ordinary methods. Under this theory the United States are assumed to be one nation, and the distinctions among them of States are as little recognized as if they did not exist. This theory was false, and thereby led its originators into constant blunders. When the leaders of a government aspire to the acquisition of absolute, unlimited power, and the sword is drawn to hew the way, it would be more logical and respectable to declare the laws silent than to attempt to justify unlawful acts by unwarranted legislation. If their theory had been true, then their prisoners of war were insurrectionists and rebels, and guilty of treason, and hanging would have been the legitimate punishment. Why were they not hung? Not through pity, but because the facts contradicted the theory. The "combinations" spoken of were great and powerful States, and the danger was that the North would be the greater sufferer by our retaliation. There was no humane course but to exchange prisoners according to the laws of war. With this the Government of the United States refused to comply, lest it might be construed into an acknowledgment of belligerent rights on our part, which would explode their theory of insurrectionary combinations, tend to restore more correct views of the rights and powers of the States, and expose in its true light their efforts to establish the supreme and unlimited sovereignty of the General Government. The reader may observe the tenacity with which the authorities at Washington, and, behind them, the Northern States, clung to this theory. Upon its strict maintenance depended the success of their bloody revolution to secure absolute supremacy over the States. Upon its failure, the dissolution of the Union would have been established; constitutional liberty would have been vindicated; the hopes of mankind in the modern institutions of federation fulfilled; and a new Union might have been formed and held together with a bond of fraternity and not by the sword, as under the above revolutionary theory.

By the exchange of prisoners, nothing was conceded except what was evident to the world—that actual war existed, and that a Christian people should at least conduct it according to the usages of civilized nations. But sectional hate and the vain conceit of newly acquired power led to the idle prophecy of our speedy subjection, and hence the Government of the United States refused to act as required by humanity and the usages of civilized warfare. At length, moved by the clamors of the relatives and friends of the prisoners we held, and by fears of retaliation, it covertly submitted to abandon its declared purpose, and to shut its eyes while the exchanges were made by various commanders under flags of truce. Thus some were exchanged in New York, Washington, Cairo, and Columbus, Kentucky, and by General McClellan in western Virginia and elsewhere. On the whole, the partial exchanges were inconsiderable and inconclusive as to the main question. The condition at the close of the year 1861, summarily stated, was that soldiers captured in battle were not protected by the usage of "exchange," and citizens were arrested without due process of law, deported to distant States, and incarcerated without assigned cause. All this by persons acting under authority of the United States Government, but in disregard of the United States Constitution, which provides that "no person shall be held to answer for a capital or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or an indictment of a grand jury, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law." [4] "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be violated." [5] These provisions were of no avail to protect the citizens from the outrages, because those who derived their authority from the Constitution used that authority to violate its guarantees. It has been stated that the rule upon which the United States Government was conducting affairs was entirely revolutionary. Its efforts to clothe the Government of the Union with absolute power involved the destruction of the rights of the States and the subversion of the Constitution. Hence on every occasion the provisions of the Constitution afforded no protection to the citizens: their rights were spurned; their persons were seized and imprisoned beyond the reach of friends; their houses sacked and burned. If they pleaded the Constitution, the Government of the Constitution was deaf to them, unsheathed its sword, and said the Union was at stake; and the Constitution, which was the compact of union, must stand aside. This was indeed a revolution. A constitutional government of limited powers derived from the people was transformed into a military despotism. The Northern people were docile as sheep under the change, reminding one of the words of the Psalmist: "All we, like sheep, have gone astray."

Posterity may ask with amazement. What cause could there have been for such acts by a government that was ordained "to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquillity, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity"? Posterity may further ask, Where could a government of limited powers, constructed only for certain general purposes—and on the principle that all power proceeds from the people, and that "the powers not delegated by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people"— find a grant of power, or an authority to perpetrate such injuries upon the States and the people? As to the first question, it may be said: There was no external cause for such acts. All foreign nations were at peace with the United States. No hostile fleets were hovering on her coasts, nor immense foreign armies threatening to invade her territory. The cause, if any plausible one existed, was entirely internal. It lay between it and its citizens. If it had treated them with injustice and oppression, and threatened so to continue, it had departed from the objects of its creation, and they had the resulting right to dissolve it.

Who was to be the umpire in such a case? Not the United States Government, for it was the creature of the States; it possessed no inherent, original sovereignty. The Constitution says, "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people." [6] The umpireship is, therefore, expressly on the side of the States, or the people. When the State of South Carolina, through a sovereign convention, withdrew from the Union, she exercised the umpireship which rightly belonged to her, and which no other could exercise for her. This involved the dissolution of the Union, and the extinction of the Government of the United States so far as she was concerned; but the officers of that Government, instead of justly acquiescing in that which was constitutionally and legally inevitable, drew the sword, and resolved to maintain by might that which had no longer existence by right. A usurpation thus commenced in wrong was the mother of all the usurpations and wrongs which followed. The unhallowed attempt to establish the absolute sovereignty of the Government of the United States, by the subjugation of States and their people, brought forth its natural fruit. Well might the victim of the guillotine exclaim, "O Liberty, what crimes are committed in thy name!"

As to the other question—Where could a government of limited powers find authority to perpetrate such injuries upon its own constituents?—an answer will be given in succeeding pages.

Up to the close of the year the war enlarged its proportions so as to include new fields, until it then extended from the shores of the Chesapeake to the confines of Missouri and Arizona. Sudden calls from the remotest points for military aid were met with promptness enough not only to avert disaster in the face of superior numbers, but also to roll back the tide of invasion on the border.

At the commencement of the war the enemy were possessed of certain strategic points and strong places within the Confederate States. They greatly exceeded us in numbers, in available resources, and in the supplies necessary for war. Military establishments had been long organized, and were complete; the navy and the army, once common to both, were in their possession. To meet all this we had to create not only an army in the face of war itself, but also military establishments necessary to equip and place it in the field. The spirit of the volunteers and the patriotism of the people enabled us, under Providence, to grapple successfully with these difficulties. A succession of glorious victories at Bethel, Manassas, Springfield, Lexington, Leesburg, and Belmont, checked the invasion of our soil. After seven months of war the enemy had not only failed to extend their occupancy of the soil, but new States and Territories had been added to our confederacy. Instead of their threatened march of unchecked conquest, the enemy were driven at more than one point to assume the defensive; and, upon a fair comparison between the two belligerents, as to men, military means, and financial condition, the Confederate States were relatively much stronger at the end of the year than when the struggle commenced.

The necessities of the times called into existence new branches of manufactures, and gave a fresh impulse to the activity of those previously in operation, and we were gradually becoming independent of the rest of the world for the supply of such military stores and munitions as were indispensable for war.

At an election on November 6, 1861, the chief executive officers of the provisional Government were unanimously chosen to similar positions in the permanent Government, to be inaugurated on the ensuing 22d of February, 1862.

[Footnote 1: Constitution of the United States, Article X.]

[Footnote 2: Ibid., Article III, section 3.]

[Footnote 3: Congress of the United States, July, 1861.]

[Footnote 4: Constitution of the United States, Article V.]

[Footnote 5: Ibid., Article IV.]

[Footnote 6: Constitution of the United States, Article X.]


    Military Arrangements of the Enemy.—Marshall and Garfield.—
    Fishing Creek.—Crittenden's Report.—Fort Henry; its Surrender.—
    Fort Donelson; its Position.—Assaults.—Surrender.—Losses.

Important changes in the military arrangements of the enemy were made about this time. Major-General George B. McClellan was assigned to the chief command of his army, in place of Lieutenant-General Scott, retired. A Department of Ohio was constituted, embracing the States of Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, and Kentucky east of the Cumberland and Tennessee Rivers; and Brigadier-General D. C. Buell was assigned to its command. At the same time. General Henry W. Halleck superseded General John C. Fremont in command of the United States Department of the West. General W. T. Sherman was removed from Kentucky and sent to report to General Halleck. General A. S. Johnston was now confronted by General Halleck in the West and by General Buell in Kentucky. The former, with armies at Cairo and Paducah, under Generals Grant and C. F. Smith, threatened equally Columbus, the key of the lower Mississippi River, and the water-lines of the Cumberland and the Tennessee, with their defenses at Forts Donelson and Henry. The right wing of General Buell also menaced Donelson and Henry, while his center was directed against Bowling Green, and his left was advancing against General Zollicoffer at Mill Spring, on the upper Cumberland. If the last-named position could be forced, the way seemed open to East Tennessee, by either the Jacksboro or the Jamestown routes, on the one hand, and to Nashville on the other. At the northeastern comer of Kentucky there was a force under Colonel Garfield, of Ohio, opposed to the Confederate force under General Humphrey Marshall.

The strength of Marshall's force in effective men was about sixteen hundred. Knowing that a body of the enemy under Colonel Garfield was advancing to meet him, and that a small force was moving to his rear, he fell back some fifteen miles, and took position on Middle Creek, near Prestonsburg. On January 10, 1862, Garfield attacked him. The firing was kept up, with some intervals, about four hours, and was occasionally very sharp and spirited. Marshall says in his report: "The enemy did not move me from any one position I assumed, and at nightfall withdrew from the field, leaving me just where I was in the morning. . . . He came to attack, yet came so cautiously that my left wing never fired a shot, and he never came up sufficiently to engage my center or left wing." Garfield was said to have fallen back fifteen miles to Paintsville, and Marshall seven miles, where he remained two days, then slowly pursued his retreat. He stated his loss at ten killed and fourteen wounded, and that of the enemy to have been severe.

The battle of Fishing Creek has been the subject of harsh criticism, and I think it will be seen by the report herein inserted that great injustice has been done to General George B. Crittenden, who commanded on that occasion.

In July, 1880, I wrote to him requesting a statement of the affair at Fishing Creek, and a short time before his decease he complied with my request by writing as follows:

"In November, 1862, I assumed, by assignment, the command of a portion of East Tennessee and southeastern Kentucky, which embraced the troops stationed at Mill Springs, on the Cumberland River, and under the command of General Zollicoffer, who, as I understood the matter, had been stationed there by General Johnston to prevent the enemy under Schopf, and confronting him on the opposite side of the river, from crossing and penetrating into Tennessee. Schopf's camp was at Somerset, on Fishing Creek, a tributary of the Cumberland, emptying into it a mile above Mill Springs. He was several miles away from the bank of the Cumberland, so that both the river and creek intervened between him and General Zollicoffer. While I was detained in Knoxville, on business connected with my command, I received an official communication from General Zollicoffer, informing me that he had crossed the Cumberland by fording, and was fortifying a camp on the right bank, etc. By the messenger who bore me this communication I ordered him to recross the river and resume his original position on the left bank. Early in January, I reached Mill Springs, and found, to my surprise. General Zollicoffer still on the right bank. He called on me immediately, and informed me that his messenger who bore back my order had lost several days in returning, and that when it was received he supposed that I would arrive almost immediately; and, hoping to be able to convince me that it would be better to remain on the right bank, he had postponed crossing until, by a rise in the river, it had become impossible to do so; that all his artillery and a large portion of his wagons were on the right bank, and his only means of transferring them to the other bank were a small ferry-boat and a very small stem-wheel steamer, entirely inadequate to the purpose. I was dissatisfied, but, as I knew that the General had been actuated by pure motives, I accepted his excuse. Details were promptly placed in the woods, to prepare timber for flat-boats to transport the artillery and wagons to the left bank of the river. The weather was execrable, and the men unskilled, so that the work progressed slowly.

"Such was the posture of affairs, when, on the 18th of January, I was informed that General Thomas was approaching with a large force of all arms, and would encamp that night within a few miles of us. Here was thrust upon me the very contingency which my order to General Zollicoffer was intended to obviate. It rained violently throughout this day until late in the afternoon. It occurred to me that Fishing Creek must so rise as to render it impossible for Schopf to connect with Thomas. Acting upon this idea, I summoned a council of superior officers, and, laying before them the circumstances of the case, asked their advice. There was not one of them who did not concur with me in the opinion that Thomas must be attacked immediately, and, if possible, by surprise; that such attack, if successful merely in repulsing him, would probably give us time to cross the Cumberland with artillery and wagons, by means of our boats, then being built.

"Accordingly, at twelve o'clock in the night, we marched for the position of the enemy, ascertained to be some six miles away. We had scarcely taken up the line of march, when the rain began to fall, the darkness became intense, and the consequent confusion great, so that day dawned before we reached his position. The attack, as a surprise, failed: nevertheless, it was promptly made. It rained violently throughout the action, rendering all the flint-lock guns useless. The men bearing them were allowed to fall back on the reserve.

"The action was progressing successfully, when the fall of General Zollicoffer was announced to me. Apprehending disastrous consequences, I hastened to the front. My apprehensions were well founded. I found the line of battle in confusion and falling back, and, after a vain effort to restore the line, yielded to necessity, and, by the interposition of the reserve, covered the shattered line and effected my retreat to camp without loss.

"I reached camp late in the afternoon. Not long afterward the enemy opened fire at long range; night coming on, he ceased to fire. The few shot and shells that fell in the camp so plainly demonstrated the demoralization of the men, that I doubted, even if I had had rations, which I had not, whether the camp could have been successfully defended for twenty-four hours. There was not, and had not been for some time in the camp, rations beyond the daily need. This state of affairs was due to the exhaustion of the neighboring country, and the impracticability of the roads.

"It became now my sole object to transfer the men with their arms, the cavalry-horses, and teams to the left bank of the river. This was successfully accomplished by dawn of the next day.

"I attributed the loss of the battle, in a great degree, to the inferiority of our arms and the untimely fall of General Zollicoffer, who was known and highly esteemed by the men, who were almost all Tennesseeans. I think I have shown that the battle of Fishing Creek was a necessity, and that I ought not to be held responsible for that necessity. As to how I managed it, I have nothing further to say."

General Crittenden's gallantry had been too often and too conspicuously shown in battle during the war with Mexico and on the Indian frontier to admit of question, and the criticism has been directed solely to the propriety of the attack at Fishing Creek. His explanation is conclusive against any arraignment of him for the presence of the troops on the right bank of the Cumberland, or for his not immediately withdrawing them to the left bank when his position was threatened. Under these circumstances, to attack one portion of the enemy, when a junction with the other part could not be effected, was to act in accordance with one of the best-settled rules of war.

The unforeseen accident of renewed rain, with intense darkness, delayed his march beyond reasonable expectation; and, whereas the whole force should have reached the enemy's encampment before dawn, the advance of two regiments only reached there after broad daylight. To hesitate, would have been to give the enemy time for preparation, and I think it was wisely decided to attack at once and rely upon the rear coming up to support the advance; but the rear, encumbered with their artillery, were so far behind that, though the advance were successful in their first encounter, they did not receive the hoped-for support until they had suffered severely, and then the long-known and trusted commander of the forces there, the gallant and most estimable Zollicoffer, fell; whence confusion resulted. General Crittenden had been but a few days with the troops, a disadvantage which will be readily appreciated. Had the whole force been in position at early dawn, so as to have surprised the enemy, the plan would have been executed, and victory would have been the probable result; after which, Schöpf's force might have been readily disposed of. But, had the attack done no more than to check the advance of Thomas until the boats under construction could have been finished, so as to enable Crittenden to save his artillery and equipments, it would have justified the attempt. I therefore think the strategy not only defensible but commendable, and the affair to be ranked with one of the many brilliant conceptions of the war. The reader will not fail to remark the evidence which General Crittenden's report affords of the fallacy of representing the South as having been prepared by supplying herself with the materiél necessary for war. The heart of even a noble enemy must be moved at the spectacle of citizens defending their homes, with muskets of obsolete patterns and shot-guns, against an invader having all the modern improvements in arms. The two regiments constituting the advance were Battle's Twentieth Tennessee and the Fifteenth Mississippi, commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel E. C. Walthall. With dauntless courage they engaged the whole array of the enemy, and drove him from his first position. When at length our forces fell back to their intrenched camp, it was with sullen determination, and the pursuit was so cautious that whenever it ventured too near it was driven back by our rear guard. The valiant advance—the Fifteenth Mississippi and Twentieth Tennessee—bore the burden of the day. The Mississippians lost two hundred and twenty out of four hundred engaged, and the Tennesseeans lost half as many, this being about three fourths the casualties in our force.

That night General Crittenden crossed his troops over the river, with the exception of those too badly wounded to travel. He was compelled to leave his artillery and wagons, not having the means of transporting them across, and moved with the remnant of his army toward Nashville.

Both by General Crittenden and those who have criticised him for making the attack at Fishing Creek, it is assumed that General Zollicoffer made a mistake in crossing to the right bank of the Cumberland, and that thence it resulted as a consequence that General Johnston's right flank of his line through Bowling Green was uncovered. I do not perceive the correctness of the conclusion, for it must be admitted that General Zollicoffer's command was not adequate to resist the combined forces of Thomas and Schopf, or that the Cumberland River was a sufficient obstacle to prevent them from crossing either above or below the position at Mill Springs. General Zollicoffer may well have believed that he could better resist the crossing of the Cumberland by removing to the right bank rather than by remaining on the left. The only difference, it seems to me, would have been that he could have retreated without the discomfiture of his force or the loss of his artillery and equipments, but, in either case, Johnston's right flank would have been alike uncovered.

To Zollicoffer and the other brave patriots who fell with him, let praise, not censure, be given; and to Crittenden, let tardy justice render the meed due to a gallant soldier of the highest professional attainments, and whose fault, if fault it be, was a willingness to dare much in his country's service.

When the State of Tennessee seceded, measures were immediately adopted to occupy and fortify all the strong points on the Mississippi, as Memphis, Randolph, Fort Pillow, and Island No. 10. As it was our purpose not to enter the State of Kentucky and construct defenses for the Cumberland and Tennessee Rivers on her territory, they were located within the borders of Tennessee, and as near to the Kentucky line as suitable sites could be found. On these were commenced the construction of Fort Donelson on the west side of the Cumberland, and Fort Henry on the east side of the Tennessee, and about twelve miles apart. The latter stood on the low lands adjacent to the river about high-water mark, and, being just below a bend in the river and at the head of a straight stretch of two miles, it commanded the river for that distance. It was also commanded by high ground on the opposite bank of the river, which it was intended should be occupied by our troops in case of a land attack. The power of ironclad gunboats against land defenses had not yet been shown, and the low position of the fort brought the battery to the water-level, and secured the advantage of ricochet firing, the most effective against wooden ships.

Fort Donelson was placed on high ground; and, with the plunging fire from its batteries, was thereby more effective against the ironclads brought to attack it on the water side. But on the land side it was not equally strong, and required extensive outworks and a considerable force to resist an attack in that quarter.

In September, 1861, Lieutenant Dixon, of the Engineer Corps, was instructed to make an examination of the works at the two forts. He reported that Fort Henry was nearly completed. It was built, not at the most favorable position, but it was a strong work, and, instead of abandoning it and building at another place, he advised that it should be completed, and other works constructed on the high lands just above the fort on the opposite side of the river. Measures for the accomplishment of this plan were adopted as rapidly as the means at disposal would allow.

In relation to Donelson, it was his opinion that, although a better position might have been chosen for this fortification on the Cumberland, under the circumstances surrounding the command, it would be better to retain and strengthen the position chosen.

General Polk, in a report to General Johnston just previous to the battle of Shiloh, said: "The principal difficulty in the way of a successful defense of the rivers, was the want of an adequate force— a force of infantry and a force of experienced artillerists." This was the unavoidable result of the circumstances heretofore related, but tells only half of the story. To match the vessels of the enemy (floating forts) we required vessels like theirs, or the means of constructing them. We had neither.

The efforts which were put forth to resist the operations on the Western rivers, for which the United States made such vast preparations, were therefore necessarily very limited. There was a lack of skilled labor, of ship-yards, and of materials for constructing ironclads, which could not be readily obtained or prepared in a beset and blockaded country. Proposals were considered both for building gunboats and for converting the ordinary side-wheel, high-pressure steamboats into gunboats. But the engineer department, though anxious to avail itself of this means of defense, decided that it was not feasible. There was not plate-iron with which to armor a single vessel, and even railroad-iron could not be spared from its uses for transportation. Unless a fleet could have been built to match the enemy's, we had to rely on land-batteries, torpedoes, and marching forces. It was thought best to concentrate the resources on what seemed practicable. One ironclad gunboat, however, the Eastport, was undertaken on the Tennessee River, but under so many difficulties that, after the surrender of Fort Henry, while still unfinished, it was destroyed, lest it should fall to the enemy.[7]

The fleet of gunboats prepared by the United States for the Mississippi and its tributaries consisted of twelve, seven of which were iron-clad, and able to resist all except the heaviest solid shot. The boats were built very wide in proportion to their length, so that in the smooth river-waters they might have almost the steadiness of land-batteries when discharging their heavy guns. This flotilla carried one hundred and forty-three guns, some sixty-four pounders, some thirty-two pounders, and some seven-inch rifled guns carrying eighty-pound shells.

On February 2d General Grant started from Cairo with seventeen thousand men on transports. Commodore Foote accompanied him with seven gunboats. On the 4th the landing of the troops commenced three miles or more below Fort Henry. General Grant took command on the east bank with the main column, while General Charles F. Smith, with two brigades of some five to six thousand men, landed on the left bank, with orders to take the earthwork opposite Fort Henry, known as Fort Hindman. On the 5th the landing was completed, and the attack was made on the next day. The force of General Tilghman, who was in command at Fort Henry, was about thirty-four hundred men. It is evident that on the 5th he intended to dispute Grant's advance by land; but on the 6th, before the attack by the gunboats, he changed his purpose, abandoned all hope of a successful defense, and made arrangements for the escape of his main body to Fort Donelson, while the guns of Fort Henry should engage the gunboats. He ordered Colonel Hindman to withdraw the command to Fort Donelson, while he himself would obtain the necessary delay for the movement by use of the battery, and standing a bombardment in Fort Henry. For this purpose he retained his heavy artillery company—seventy-five men—to work the guns, a number unequal to the strain and labor of the defense.[8]

Noon was the time fixed for the attack; but Grant, impeded by the overflow of water, and unwilling to expose his men to the heavy guns of the fort, held them back to await the result of the gunboat attack. In the mean time the Confederate troops were in retreat. Four ironclads, mounting forty-eight heavy guns, approached and took position within six hundred yards of the fort, firing as they advanced. About half a mile behind these came three unarmored gunboats, mounting twenty-seven heavy guns, which took a more distant position, and kept up a bombardment of shells that fell within the works. Some four hundred of the formidable missiles of the ironclad boats were also thrown into the fort. The officers and men inside were not slow to respond, and as many as fifty-nine of their shots were counted as striking the gunboats. On the ironclad Essex a cannon-ball ranged her whole length; another shot, passing through the boiler, caused an explosion that scalded her commander, Porter, and many of the seamen and soldiers on board.

[Map of the Battlefield of Fort Donelson]

Five minutes after the fight began, the twenty-four pounder rifled gun, one of the most formidable in the fort, burst, disabling every man at the piece. Then a shell exploded at the muzzle of one of the thirty-two pounders, ruining the gun, and killing or wounding all the men who served it. About the same moment a premature discharge occurred at one of the forty-two pounder guns, killing three men and seriously injuring others. The ten-inch columbiad, the only gun able to match the artillery of the assailants, was next rendered useless by a priming-wire that was jammed and broken in the vent. An heroic blacksmith labored for a long time to remove it, under the full fire of the enemy, but in vain. The men became exhausted and lost confidence; and Tilghman, seeing this, in person served a thirty-two pounder for some fifteen minutes. Though but four of his guns were disabled, six stood idle for want of artillerists, and but two were replying to the enemy. After an engagement of two hours and ten minutes, he ceased firing and lowered his flag. For this soldierly devotion and self-sacrifice the gallant commander and his brave band must be honored while patriotism has an advocate and self-sacrifice for others has a votary. Our casualties were five killed and sixteen wounded; those of the enemy were sixty-three of all kinds. Twelve officers and sixty-three non-commissioned officers and privates were surrendered with the fort. The Tennessee River was thus open, and a base by short lines was established against Fort Donelson.

The next movement was a combined attack by land and water upon Fort Donelson. This fort was situated on the left bank of the Cumberland, as has been stated, near its great bend, and about forty miles from the mouth of the river. It was about one mile north of the village of Dover, where the commissary and quartermaster's supplies were in depot. The fort consisted of two water-batteries on the hillside, protected by a bastioned earthwork of irregular outline on the summit, inclosing about one hundred acres. The water-batteries were admirably placed to sweep the river approaches, with an armament of thirteen guns; eight thirty-two pounders, three thirty-two pound carronade, one ten-inch columbiad, and one rifled gun of thirty-two pound caliber. The field-work, which was intended for infantry supports, occupied a plateau about one hundred feet above the river, commanding and protecting the water-batteries at close musket range. These works afforded a fair defense against gunboats; but they were not designed or adapted for resistance to a land attack or investment by an enemy.

Generals Pillow and Floyd were ordered with their separate commands to Fort Donelson. General Buckner also was sent with a division from Bowling Green; so that the Confederate effective force at the fort during the siege was between fourteen thousand five hundred and fifteen thousand men.[9] The force of General Grant was not less than thirty to thirty-five thousand men. On February 12th he commenced his movement across from Fort Henry, and the investment of Donelson was made without any serious opposition. On the 13th General Buckner reports that "the fire of the enemy's artillery and riflemen was incessant throughout the day; but was responded to by a well-directed fire from the intrenchments, which inflicted upon the assailant a considerable loss, and almost silenced his fire late in the afternoon." The object of the enemy undoubtedly was to discover the strength and position of our forces. The artillery-fire was continued at intervals during the night. Nearly every Confederate regiment reported a few casualties from the shot and shell which frequently fell inside of the works. Meanwhile, a gunboat of thirteen guns arrived in the morning, and, taking a position behind a headland, fired one hundred and thirty-eight shots, when our one hundred and twenty-eight pound shot crashed through one of her ports, injuring her machinery and crippling her. The enemy's fire did no damage to the fort itself, but a shot disabled a gun and killed Captain Dixon, a valuable engineer, whose loss was greatly deplored.

The weather became cold during the night, and a driving snow-storm prevailed, so that some of the soldiers were frozen, and the wounded between the lines suffered extremely. The fleet of gunboats under Commodore Foote arrived, bringing enforcements to the enemy. These were landed during the night and the next day, which was occupied with placing them in position. Nevertheless, though no assault was made, a rambling and ineffective fire was kept up. About 3 P.M. the commander of the naval force, expecting an easy victory, like that at Fort Henry, brought his four ironclads, followed by two gunboats, up to the attack. Each of the ironclads mounted thirteen guns and the gunboats nine. Any one of them was more than a match for the guns of the fort. Their guns were eight, nine, and ten inch, three in the bow of each. Our columbiad and the rifled gun were the only two pieces effective against the ironclads. The enemy moved directly toward the water-batteries, firing with great weight of metal. It was the intention of Commodore Foote to silence these batteries, pass by, and take a position where he could enfilade the fort with broadsides. The gunboats opened at a mile and a half distance, and advanced until within three or four hundred yards. The shot and shell of the fleet tore up the earthworks, but did no further injury. But the Confederate guns, aimed from an elevation of not less than thirty feet by cool and courageous hands, sent their shot with destructive power, and overcame all the enemy's advantages in number and weight of guns. The bolts of our two heavy guns went crashing through iron and massive timbers with resistless force, scattering slaughter and destruction through the fleet.[10] Hoppin, in his "Life of Commodore Foote," says:

"The Louisville was disabled by a shot, which cut away her rudder-chains, making her totally unmanageable, so that she drifted with the current out of action. Very soon the St. Louis was disabled by a shot through her pilot-house, rendering her steering impossible, so that she also floated down the river. The other two armored vessels were also terribly struck, and a rifled cannon on the Carondelet burst, so that these two could no longer sustain the action; and, after fighting for more than an hour, the little fleet was forced to withdraw. The St. Louis was struck fifty-nine times, the Louisville thirty-six times, the Carondelet twenty-six, the Pittsburg twenty, the four vessels receiving no less than one hundred and forty-one wounds. The fleet, gathering itself together, and rendering mutual help to its disabled members, proceeded to Cairo to repair damages."

The loss of the enemy was fifty-four killed and wounded. The report of Major Gilmer, who laid out these works, says:

"Our batteries were uninjured, and not a man in them killed. The repulse of the gunboats closed the operations of the day, except a few scattering shots along the land defenses."

In consequence of reënforcements to the enemy, the plan of operations for the next day was determined by the Confederate generals about midnight. The whole of the left wing of the army except eight regiments was to move out of the trenches, attack, turn, and drive the enemy's right until the Wynn's Ferry road, which led to Charlotte through a good country, was cleared, and an exit thus secured.

The troops, moving in the small hours of the night over the icy and broken roads, which wound through the obstructed area of defense, made slow progress, and delayed the projected operations. At 4 A.M. on the 15th, Pillow's troops were ready, except one brigade, which came late into action. By six o'clock, Baldwin's brigade was engaged with the enemy, only two or three hundred yards from his lines, and the bloody contest of the day had begun. At one o'clock the enemy's right was doubled back. The Wynn's Ferry road was cleared, and it only remained for the Confederates to do one of two things: The first was, to seize the golden moment and, adhering to the original purpose and plan of the sortie, move off rapidly by the route laid open by such strenuous efforts and so much bloodshed; the other depended on the inspiration of a master-mind, equal to the effort of grasping every element of the combat, and which should complete the partial victory by the utter rout and destruction of the enemy.

"While one or the other alternative seems to have been the only possible safe solution," says the author of "The Life of Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston," "the Confederate commander tried neither. A fatal middle policy was suddenly but dubiously adopted, and not carried out. The spirit of vacillation and divided counsels prevented that unity of action which is essential to success. For seven hours the Confederate battalions had been pushing over rough ground and through thick timber, at each step meeting fresh troops massed, where the discomfited regiments rallied. Hence the vigor of assault slackened, though the wearied troops were still ready and competent to continue their onward movement. Ten fresh regiments, over three thousand men, had not fired a musket. But in the turmoil of battle no one knew the relations of any command to the next, or indeed whether his neighbor was friend or foe.

"General Buckner had halted, according to the preconcerted plan, to allow the army to pass out by the opened road and to cover their retreat. At this point of the fight, Pillow, finding himself at Hindman's position, heard of (or saw) preparations by General C. F. Smith for an assault on the Confederate right; but, whether he understood this to be the purpose or construed the movement as the . . . signs of a flight, was left uncertain by his language at the time. He ordered the regiments which had been engaged to return to the trenches, and instructed Buckner to hasten to defend the imperiled point. Buckner, not recognizing him as a superior authorized to change the plan of battle, or the propriety of such change, refused to obey, and, after receiving reiterated orders, started to find Floyd, who at that moment joined him. He urged upon Floyd the necessity of carrying out the original plan of evacuation. Floyd assented to this view, and told Buckner to stand fast until he could see Pillow. He then rode back and saw Pillow, and, hearing his arguments, yielded to them. Floyd simply says that he found the movement so nearly executed that it was necessary to complete it. Accordingly, Buckner was recalled. In the mean time, Pillow's right brigades were retiring to their places in the trenches, under orders from the commanders."

The conflict on the left soon ended. Three hundred prisoners, five thousand stand of small-arms, six guns, and other spoils of victory, had been won by our forces. But the enemy, cautiously advancing, gradually recovered most of his lost ground. It was about 4 P.M. when the assault on the right was made by General C. F. Smith. The enemy succeeded in carrying the advanced work, which General Buckner considered the key to his position. The loss of the enemy during the siege was four hundred killed, seventeen hundred and eighty-five wounded, and three hundred prisoners. Our losses were about three hundred and twenty-five killed and one thousand and ninety-seven wounded; including missing, it was estimated at fifteen hundred.

After nightfall a consultation of the commanding officers was held, and, after a consideration of the question in all its aspects as to what should be done, it was decided that a surrender was inevitable, and, that to accomplish its objects, it must be made before the assault, which was expected at daylight. General Buckner in his report, says:

"I regarded the position of the army as desperate, and that the attempt to extricate it by another battle, in the suffering and exhausted condition of the troops, was almost hopeless. The troops had been worn down with watching, with labor, with fighting. Many of them were frosted by the cold, all of them were suffering and exhausted by their incessant labors. There had been no regular issue of rations for several days, and scarcely any means of cooking. The ammunition was nearly expended. We were completely invested by a force fully four times the strength of our own."

The decision to surrender having been made, it remained to determine by whom it should be made. Generals Floyd and Pillow declared they would not surrender and become prisoners; the duty was therefore allotted to General Buckner. Floyd said, "General Buckner, if I place you in command, will you allow me to draw out my brigade?" General Buckner replied, "Yes, provided you do so before the enemy act upon my communication." Floyd said, "General Pillow, I turn over the command.". General Pillow, regarding this as a mere technical form by which the command was to be conveyed to Buckner, then said, "I pass it." Buckner assumed the command, sent for a bugler to sound the parley, for pen, ink, and paper, and opened the negotiations for surrender.

There were but two roads by which it was possible for the garrison to retire. If they went by the upper road, they would certainly have to cut through the main body of the enemy; if by the lower road, they would have to wade through water three feet deep. This, the medical director stated, would be death to more than one half the command, on account of the severity of the weather and their physical prostration.

To cut through the enemy, if effected, would, it was supposed, involve the loss of three fourths of the command, a sacrifice which, it was conceded, would not be justifiable.

The enemy had, in the conflict of the preceding day, gained possession of our rifle-pits on the right flank, and General Buckner, an experienced soldier, held that the fort would immediately fall when the enemy attacked in the morning. General Pillow dissented from this conclusion, believing that the fort could be defended until boats could be obtained to convey the garrison across the river, and also advocated an attempt to cut through the investing lines of the enemy. Being overruled on both points, he announced his determination to leave the post by any means available, so as to escape a surrender, and he advised Colonel N. B. Forrest, who was present, to go out with his cavalry regiment, and any others he could take with him through the overflow. General Floyd's brigade consisted of two Virginia regiments and one Mississippi regiment; these, as before mentioned, it was agreed that General Floyd might withdraw before the surrender. Two of the field-officers, Colonel Russell and Major Brown, of the Mississippi regiment, the twentieth, had been officers of the First Mississippi Riflemen in the war with Mexico; and the twentieth, their present regiment, was reputed to be well instructed and under good discipline. This regiment was left to be surrendered with the rest of the garrison, under peculiar circumstances, of which Major Brown, then commanding, gives the following narrative:

"About twelve o'clock of the night previous to the surrender, I received an order to report in person at headquarters. On arriving I met Colonel N. B. Forrest, who remarked: 'I have been looking for you; they are going to surrender this place, and I wanted you with your command to go out with me, but they have other orders for you.' On entering the room. Generals Floyd and Pillow also informed me of the proposed proceedings. General Floyd ordered me to take possession of the steamboat-landing with my command; that he had reserved the right to remove his brigade; that, after having guarded the landing, my command should be taken aboard the boat; the Virginia regiments, first crossing to the other side of the river, could make their way to Clarksville.

"I proceeded at once with my command to the landing; there was no steamboat there, but I placed my regiment in a semicircular line so as to cover the landing-place. About daylight the steamer came down, landed, and was soon loaded with the two Virginia regiments, they passing through my ranks. At the same time the General and staff, or persons claiming to belong to the staff, passed aboard. The boat, being a small one, was considerably crowded. While the staging of the boat was being drawn aboard. General Floyd hallooed to me, from the 'hurricane-roof,' that he would cross the river with the troops aboard and return for my regiment. But, about the time of the departure of the boat, General S. B. Buckner came and asserted that he had turned over the garrison and all the property at sunrise; that, if the boat was not away immediately, he would be charged by the enemy with violating the terms of the surrender. I mention this incident as furnishing, I suppose, the reason why my regiment was left on the bank of the river.

"Sorrowfully I gave the necessary orders to stack arms and surrender. . . .

"Both morally and materially the disaster was a severe blow to us. Many, wise after the event, have shown their skill in telling what all knew afterward, but nobody told before."

[Footnote 7: "The Life of Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston," by his son.]

[Footnote 8: "The Life of Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston," by his son.]

[Footnote 9: "The Life of Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston," by his son.]

[Footnote 10: "The Life of Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston," by his son.]


    Results of the Surrender of Forts Henry and Donelson.—Retreat from
    Bowling Green.—Criticism on General A. S. Johnston.—Change of
    Plan necessary.—Evacuation of Nashville.—Generals Floyd and
    Pillow.—My Letter to General Johnston.—His Reply.—My Answer.—
    Defense of General Johnston.—Battle of Elkhorn.—Topography of

The loss of Forts Henry and Donelson opened the river routes to Nashville and north Alabama, and thus turned the positions both at Bowling Green and Columbus. These disasters subjected General Johnston to very severe criticism, of which we shall take notice further on in these pages. A conference was held on February 7th by Generals Johnston, Beauregard (who had been previously ordered to report to Johnston), and Hardee, as to the future plan of campaign. It was determined, as Fort Henry had fallen and Donelson was untenable, that preparations should at once be made for a removal of the army to Nashville, in rear of the Cumberland River, a strong point some miles below that city being fortified forthwith to defend the river from the passage of gunboats and transports. From Nashville, should any further retrograde movement become necessary, it would be made to Stevenson, and thence according to circumstances.

As the possession of the Tennessee river by the enemy separated the array at Bowling Green from the one at Columbus, Kentucky, they must act independently of each other until they could be brought together: the first one having for its object the defense of the State of Tennessee along its line of operation; and the other, of that part of the State lying between the Tennessee River and the Mississippi. But, as the possession of the former river by the enemy rendered the lines of communication of the army at Columbus liable to be cut at any time by a movement from the Tennessee River as a base, and an overpowering force of the enemy was rapidly concentrating from various points on the Ohio, it was necessary, to prevent such a calamity, that the main body of the army should fall back to Humboldt, and thence, if necessary, to Grand Junction, so as to protect Memphis from either point and still have a line of retreat to the latter place, or to Grenada, and, if needful, to Jackson, Mississippi.

Captain Hollins's fleet of improvised gunboats and a sufficient garrison was to be left at Columbus for the defense of the river at that point, with transports near at hand for the removal of the garrison when the position became no longer tenable.

Every preparation for the retreat was silently made. The defenses of Bowling Green, originally slight, had been greatly enlarged by the addition of a cordon of detached forts, mounted with heavy field-guns; yet the garrison was only sufficiently strong to withstand an assault, and it was never proposed to submit to a siege. The ordnance and army supplies were quietly moved southward, and measures were taken to remove from Nashville the immense stores accumulated there. Only five hundred men were in the hospital before the army commenced to retreat, but, when it reached Nashville, five thousand four hundred out of fourteen thousand required the care of the medical officers. On February 11th the troops began to move, and at nightfall on the 16th General Johnston, who had established his headquarters at Edgeville, on the northern bank of the Cumberland, saw the last of his wearied columns defile across and safely establish themselves beyond the river. The evacuation was accomplished by a force so small as to make the feat remarkable, not a pound of ammunition nor a gun being lost, and the provisions were nearly all secured. The first intimation which the enemy had of the intended evacuation, so far as has been ascertained, was when Generals Hindman and Breckinridge, who were in advance near his camp, were seen suddenly to retreat toward Bowling Green. The enemy pursued, and succeeded in shelling the town, while Hindman was still covering the rear. Not a man was lost.[11] At the same time Crittenden's command was brought back within ten miles of Nashville, and thence to Murfreesboro.

Scarcely had the retreat to Nashville been accomplished, when the news of the fall of Donelson was received. The state of feeling which it produced is described by Colonel Munford, an aide-de-camp of General Johnston, in an address delivered in Memphis. "Dissatisfaction was general. Its mutterings, already heard, began to break out in denunciations. The demagogues took up the cry, and hounded on one another and the people in hunting down a victim. The public press was loaded with abuse. The Government was denounced for intrusting the public safety to hands so feeble. The Lower House of Congress appointed a select committee to inquire into the conduct of the war in the Western Department. The Senators and Representatives from Tennessee, with the exception of Judge Swann, waited upon the President." Their spokesman, Senator G. A. Henry, stated that they came for and in behalf of Tennessee to ask for the removal of General A. S. Johnston, and the assignment of a competent officer to the defense of their homes and people. It was further stated that they did not come to recommend any one as the successor; that it was conceded that the President was better able than they were to select a proper officer, and they only asked that he would give them a general.

Painfully impressed by this exhibition of distrust toward an officer whose place, if vacated, I was sure could not be filled by his equal, realizing how necessary public confidence was to success, and wounded by the injustice done to one I had known with close intimacy in peace and in war, and believed to be one of the noblest men with whom I had ever been associated, and one of the ablest soldiers I had ever seen in the field, I paused under conflicting emotions, and after a time merely answered, "If Sidney Johnston is not a general, the Confederacy has none to give you."

On February 17th the rear guard from Bowling Green reached Nashville, and on the 18th General Johnston wrote to the Secretary of War at Richmond, saying:

"I have ordered the army to encamp to-night midway between Nashville and Murfreesboro. My purpose is to place the force in such a position that the enemy can not concentrate his superior strength against the command, and to enable me to assemble as rapidly as possible such other troops in addition as it may be in my power to collect. The complete command which their gunboats and transports give them upon the Tennessee and Cumberland renders it necessary for me to retire my line between the rivers. I entertain the hope that this disposition will enable me to hold the enemy for the present in check, and, when my forces are sufficiently increased, to drive him back."

The fall of Fort Donelson made a speedy change of his plans necessary. General Johnston was now compelled to withdraw his forces from the north bank of the Cumberland, and to abandon the defense of Nashville; in a word, to evacuate Nashville or sacrifice the army. Not more than eleven thousand effective men were left to him with which to oppose General Buell with not less than forty thousand men, moving by Bowling Green, while another superior force, under General Thomas, was on the eastern flank; and the armies from Fort Donelson, with the gunboats and transport, had it in their power to ascend the Cumberland, so as to interrupt all communication with the south.

On February 17th and 18th the main body of the command was moved from Nashville to Murfreesboro, while a brigade remained under General Floyd to bring on the stores and property upon the approach of the enemy, all of which would have been saved except for the heavy and general rains. By the junction of the command of General Crittenden and the fugitives from Donelson, who were reorganized, the force of General Johnston was increased to seventeen thousand men. The stores not required for immediate use were ordered to Chattanooga, and those which were necessary on the march were ordered to Huntsville and Decatur. On February 28th the march was commenced for Decatur through Shelbyville and Fayetteville. Halting at those points for the purpose, he saved his provisions and stores, removed his depots and machine-shops, obtained new arms, and finally, at the close of March, joined Beauregard at Corinth with twenty thousand men, making their aggregate force fifty thousand.

Considering the great advantage which the means of transportation upon the Tennessee and Cumberland afforded the enemy, and the peculiar topography of the State, General Johnston found that he could not with the force under his command successfully defend the whole line against the advance of the enemy. He was, therefore, compelled to elect whether the enemy should be permitted to occupy Middle Tennessee, or turn Columbus, take Memphis, and open the valley of the Mississippi. Deciding that the defense of the valley was of paramount importance, he therefore crossed the Tennessee and united with Beauregard.

The evacuation of Nashville and the evident intention of General Johnston to retreat still further, created a panic in the public mind which spread over the whole State. Those who had refused to listen to his warning voice, when it called them to arms, were loudest in their passionate outcry at what they considered a base surrender of them to the mercies of the invader. He was accused of imbecility, cowardice, and treason. An appeal from every class was made to the President demanding his removal. Congress took the matter in hand, and, though the feeling there resulted merely in a committee of inquiry, it was evident that the case was prejudged. The Confederate House of Representatives created a special committee "to inquire into the military disasters at Fort Henry and Fort Donelson, and the surrender of Nashville to the enemy," and as to the conduct, number, and disposition of the troops under General Johnston. Great feeling was shown in the debates.

Generals Floyd and Pillow, the senior officers at Fort Donelson, after it had been decided to surrender, withdrew, to avoid being made prisoners. The Secretary of War (Mr. Benjamin) wrote, March 11th, to General Johnston as follows:

"The reports of Brigadier-Generals Floyd and Pillow are unsatisfactory, and the President directs that both these generals be relieved from command until further orders. In the mean time you will request them to add to their reports such statements as they may deem proper on the points submitted. You are further requested to make up a report, from all the sources of information accessible to you, of all the particulars connected with the unfortunate affair, which can contribute to enlighten the judgment of the Executive and of Congress, and to fix the blame, if blame there be, on those who were delinquent in duty."

This state of affairs, under the command of General Johnston, was the occasion of the following correspondence:

Letter from President Davis to General A. S. Johnston.

"RICHMOND, March 12, 1862.

"MY DEAR GENERAL: The departure of Captain Wickliffe offers an opportunity, of which I avail myself, to write you an unofficial letter. We have suffered great anxiety because of recent events in Kentucky and Tennessee, and I have been not a little disturbed by the repetitions of reflections upon yourself. I expected you to have made a full report of events precedent and consequent to the fall of Fort Donelson. In the mean time, I made for you such defense as friendship prompted, and many years of acquaintance justified; but I needed facts to rebut the wholesale assertions made against you to cover others and to condemn my administration. The public, as you are aware, have no correct measure for military operations, and the journals are very reckless in their statements.

"Your force has been magnified, and the movements of an army have been measured by the capacity for locomotion of an individual.

"The readiness of the people, among whom you are operating, to aid you in every method, has been constantly asserted; the purpose of your army at Bowling Green wholly misunderstood; and the absence of an effective force at Nashville ignored. You have been held responsible for the fall of Donelson and the capture of Nashville. It is charged that no effort was made to save the stores at Nashville, and that the panic of the people was caused by the army.

"Such representations, with the sad forebodings naturally belonging to them, have been painful to me, and injurious to us both; but, worse than this, they have undermined public confidence and damaged our cause. A full development of the truth is necessary for future success.

"I respect the generosity which has kept you silent, but would impress upon you that the question is not personal but public in its nature; that you and I might be content to suffer, but neither of us can willingly permit detriment to the country. As soon as circumstances will permit, it is my purpose to visit the field of your present operations; not that I shall expect to give you any aid in the discharge of your duties as a commander, but with the hope that my position would enable me to effect something in bringing men to your standard. With a sufficient force, the audacity which the enemy exhibits would no doubt give you the opportunity to cut some of his lines of communication, to break up his plan of campaign, and, defeating some of his columns, to drive him from the soil as well of Kentucky as of Tennessee.

"We are deficient in arms, wanting in discipline, and inferior in numbers. Private arms must supply the first want; time and the presence of an enemy, with diligence on the part of commanders, will remove the second; and public confidence will overcome the third. General Bragg brings you disciplined troops, and you will find in him the highest administrative capacity. General E. K. Smith will soon have in East Tennessee a sufficient force to create a strong diversion in your favor; or, if his strength can not be made available in that way, you will best know how to employ it otherwise. I suppose the Tennessee or the Mississippi River will be the object of the enemy's next campaign, and I trust you will be able to concentrate a force which will defeat either attempt. The fleet which you will soon have on the Mississippi River, if the enemy's gunboats ascend the Tennessee, may enable you to strike an effective blow at Cairo; but, to one so well informed and vigilant, I will not assume to offer suggestions as to when and how the ends you seek may be attained. With the confidence and regard of many years, I am very truly your friend,


Letter of General Johnston in answer to that above.

"DECATUR, ALABAMA, March 18, 1862.

"MY DEAR GENERAL: I received the dispatches from Richmond, with your private letter by Captain Wickliffe, three days since; but the pressure of affairs and the necessity of getting my command across the Tennessee prevented me from sending you an earlier reply.

"I anticipated all that you have told me as to the censure which the fall of Fort Donelson drew upon me, and the attacks to which you might be subjected; but it was impossible for me to gather the facts for a detailed report, or to spare time which was required to extricate the remainder of my troops and save the large accumulation of stores and provisions after that disheartening disaster.

"I transmitted the reports of Generals Floyd and Pillow without examining or analyzing the facts, and scarcely with time to read them.

"When about to assume command of this department, the Government charged me with the duty of deciding the question of occupying Bowling Green, Kentucky, which involved not only military but political considerations. At the time of my arrival at Nashville, the action of the Legislature of Kentucky had put an end to the latter by sanctioning the formation of camps menacing Tennessee, by assuming the cause of the Government at Washington, and by abandoning the neutrality it professed; and, in consequence of their action, the occupation of Bowling Green became necessary as an act of self-defense, at least in the first step.

"About the middle of September General Buckner advanced with a small force of about four thousand men, which was increased by the 15th of October to twelve thousand; and, though accessions of force were received, it continued at about the same strength until the end of November—measles and other diseases keeping down the effective force. The enemy's force then was reported to the War Department at fifty thousand, and an advance was impossible. No enthusiasm, as we imagined and hoped, but hostility, was manifested in Kentucky. Believing it to be of the greatest moment to protract the campaign, as the dearth of cotton might bring strength from abroad and discourage the North, and to gain time to strengthen myself by new troops from Tennessee and other States, I magnified my forces to the enemy, but made known my true strength to the department and the Governors of States. The aid given was small. At length, when General Beauregard came out in February, he expressed his surprise at the smallness of my force, and was impressed with the danger of my position. I admitted what was so manifest, and laid before him my views for the future, in which he entirely concurred, and sent me a memorandum of our conference, a copy of which I send to you. I determined to fight for Nashville at Donelson, and gave the best part of my army to do it, retaining only fourteen thousand men to cover my front, and giving sixteen thousand to defend Donelson. The force at Donelson is stated in General Pillow's report at much less, and I do not doubt the correctness of his statement, for the force at Bowling Green, which I supposed to be fourteen thousand effective men (the medical report showing only a little over five hundred sick in the hospital), was diminished more than five thousand by those who were unable to stand the fatigue of a march, and made my force on reaching Nashville less than ten thousand men. I inclose medical director's report. Had I wholly uncovered my front to defend Donelson, Buell would have known it, and marched directly on Nashville. There were only ten small steamers in the Cumberland, in imperfect condition, only three of which were available at Nashville, while the transportation of the enemy was great.

"The evacuation of Bowling Green was imperatively necessary, and was ordered before, and executed while the battle was being fought at Donelson. I had made every disposition for the defense of the fort my means allowed, and the troops were among the best of my forces. The generals, Floyd, Pillow, and Buckner, were high in the opinion of officers and men for skill and courage, and among the best officers of my command. They were popular with the volunteers, and all had seen much service. No reënforcements were asked. I awaited the event opposite Nashville. The result of the conflict each day was favorable. At midnight on the 15th I received news of a glorious victory; at dawn, of a defeat.

"My column during the day and night was thrown over the river—a battery had been established below the city to secure the passage. Nashville was incapable of defense, from its position, and from the forces advancing from Bowling Green and up the Cumberland. A rear guard was left, under General Floyd, to secure the stores and provisions, but did not completely effect the object. The people were terrified, and some of the troops were disheartened. The discouragement was spreading, and I ordered the command to Murfreesboro, where I managed, by assembling Crittenden's division and the fugitives from Donelson, to collect an army able to offer battle. The weather was inclement, the floods excessive, and the bridges were washed away, but most of the stores and provisions were saved and conveyed to new depots. This having been accomplished, though with serious loss, in conformity with my original design, I marched southward and crossed the Tennessee at this point, so as to coöperate or unite with General Beauregard for the defense of the valley of the Mississippi. The passage is almost completed, and the head of my column is already with General Bragg at Corinth. The movement was deemed too hazardous by the most experienced members of my staff; but the object warranted the risk. The difficulty of effecting a junction is not wholly overcome, but it approaches completion. Day after to-morrow (the 22d), unless the enemy intercepts me, my force will be with Bragg, and my army nearly fifty thousand strong. This must be destroyed before the enemy can attain his object.

"I have given this sketch, so that you may appreciate the embarrassment which surrounded me in my attempts to avert or remedy the disaster of Fort Donelson, before alluding to the conduct of the generals.

    "When the force was detached, I was in hopes that such disposition
    would have been made as would have enabled the forces to defend the
    fort or withdraw without sacrificing the army. On the 14th I ordered
    General Floyd, by telegraph, 'If he lost the fort, to get his troops
    to Nashville.' It is possible that might have been done, but justice
    requires us to look at events as they appeared at the time, and not
    alone by the light of subsequent information. All the facts in
    relation to the surrender will be transmitted to the Secretary of War
    as soon as they can be collected, in obedience to his order. It
    appears from the information received that General Buckner, being the
    junior officer, took the lead in advising the surrender, and that
    General Floyd acquiesced, and that they all concurred in the belief
    that their force could not maintain the position. All concurred that
    it would involve a great sacrifice of life to extricate the command.
        Subsequent events show that the investment was not so complete as
their information from their scouts led them to believe.

"The conference resulted in the surrender. The command was irregularly transferred, and devolved on the junior general; but not apparently to avoid any just responsibility or from any want of personal or moral intrepidity. The blow was most disastrous, and almost without a remedy. I therefore, in my first report, remained silent. This silence you were kind enough to attribute to my generosity. I will not lay claim to the motive to excuse my course. I observed silence, as it seemed to be the best way to serve the cause and the country. The facts were not fully known, discontent prevailed, and criticism and condemnation were more likely to augment than to cure the evil. I refrained, well knowing that heavy censures would fall upon me, but convinced that it was better to endure them for the present, and defer for a more propitious time an investigation of the conduct of the generals; for, in the mean time, their services were required and their influence was useful. For these reasons Generals Floyd and Pillow were assigned to duty, for I still felt confidence in their gallantry, their energy, and their devotion to the Confederacy.

"I have thus recurred to the motives by which I have been governed, from a deep personal sense of the friendship and confidence you have always shown me, and from the conviction that they have not been withdrawn from me in adversity.

"All the reports requisite for a full official investigation have been ordered. Generals Floyd and Pillow have been suspended from command.

"You mention that you intend to visit the field of operations here. I hope soon to see you, for your presence would encourage my troops, inspire the people, and augment the army. To me personally it would give the greatest gratification. Merely a soldier myself, and having no acquaintance with the statesmen or leaders of the South, I can not touch springs familiar to you. Were you to assume command, it would afford me the most unfeigned pleasure, and every energy would be exerted to help you to victory and the country to independence. Were you to decline, still your presence alone would be of inestimable advantage.

"The enemy are now at Nashville, about fifty thousand strong, advancing in this direction by Columbia. He has also forces, according to the report of General Bragg, landing at Pittsburg, from twenty-five to fifty thousand, and moving in the direction of Purdy.

"This army corps, moving to join Bragg, is about twenty thousand strong. Two brigades, Hindman's and Woods's, are, I suppose, at Corinth. One regiment of Hardee's division (Lieutenant-Colonel Patton commanding) is moving by cars to-day (March 20th), and Statham's brigade (Crittenden's division). The brigade will halt at Iuka, the regiment at Burnsville; Cleburne's brigade, Hardee's division, except the regiment, at Burnsville; and Carroll's brigade, Crittenden's division, and Helm's cavalry, at Tuscumbia; Bowen's brigade at Courtland; Breckinridge's brigade here; the regiments of cavalry of Adams and Wharton on the opposite bank of the river; Scott's Louisiana regiment at Pulaski, sending forward supplies; Morgan's cavalry at Shelbyville, ordered on.

"To-morrow Breckinridge's brigade will go to Corinth, then Bowen's. When these pass Tuscumbia and Iuka, transportation will be ready there for the other troops to follow immediately from those points, and, if necessary, from Burnsville. The cavalry will cross and move forward as soon as their trains can be passed over the railroad-bridge. I have troubled you with these details, as I can not properly communicate them by telegram.

"The test of merit in my profession, with the people, is success. It is a hard rule, but I think it right. If I join this corps to the forces of Beauregard (I confess a hazardous experiment), then those who are now declaiming against me will be without an argument.

"Your friend, A. S. JOHNSTON."

To this letter the following reply was made:

"RICHMOND, VIRGINIA, March 26, 1862.

"MY DEAR GENERAL: Yours of the 18th instant was this day delivered by your aide, Mr. Jack. I have read it with much satisfaction. So far as the past is concerned, it but confirms the conclusions at which I had already arrived. My confidence in you has never wavered, and I hope the public will soon give me credit for judgment, rather than continue to arraign me for obstinacy.

"You have done wonderfully well, and now I breathe easier in the assurance that you will be able to make a junction of your two armies. If you can meet the division of the enemy moving from the Tennessee before it can make a junction with that advancing from Nashville, the future will be brighter. If this can not be done, our only hope is that the people of the Southwest will rally en masse with their private arms, and thus enable you to oppose the vast army which will threaten the destruction of our country.

"I have hoped to be able to leave here for a short time, and would be much gratified to confer with you, and share your responsibilities. I might aid you in obtaining troops; no one could hope to do more unless he underrated your military capacity. I write in great haste, and feel that it would be worse than useless to point out to you how much depends on you.

"May God bless you, is the sincere prayer of your friend,


Let us now review the events which had brought such unmeasured censure on General Johnston for some months preceding this correspondence. We have seen him, with a force numerically much inferior to that of the enemy in his front, holding the position of Bowling Green, and, by active operations of detached commands, keeping up to foe and friend the impression that he had a large army in position. With self-sacrificing fortitude he remained silent under reproaches for not advancing to attack the enemy. When Forts Donelson and Henry were more immediately threatened, he gave reënforcements from his small command until his own line became more like one of skirmishers than an intrenched line of battle; and when those forts were surrendered, and his position became both untenable and useless, he withdrew in such order and with such skill that his retreat was unmolested by the enemy. Though he continued to be the subject of unreasoning vituperation, he sought not to justify himself by blaming others, or telling what he would have done if his Government had sent him the arms and munitions he asked for, but which his Government he learned did not possess.

There are yet those who, self-assured, demand why Johnston did not go himself to Donelson and Henry, and why his forces were not there concentrated. A slight inspection of the map would suffice to show that, Bowling Green abandoned, the direct road to Nashville would be open to the advance of Buell's army. Then the forts, if held, would cease to answer their purpose, and, being isolated, and also between hostile armies above and below, would be not only valueless but only temporarily tenable; and of his critics it may be asked, Who else than himself could, with the small force retained at Bowling Green, have held the enemy in check so long, and at last have retired without disaster?

To collect the widely separated troops of his command so as to form an army which might offer battle to the invading foe was a problem which must have been impossible, if the organized armies by which he was threatened had been guided by a capacity equal to his own. It was done, and, with the genius of a great soldier, he seized the opportunity, by the rapid combination of new levies and of forces never before united, to attack the armies of the enemy in detail while they were endeavoring to form a junction.

The Southwestern States presented a field peculiarly favorable for the application of a new power in war. Deep rivers, with banks frequently but little elevated above the water, traverse the country. On these rivers iron-plated steamboats with heavy guns may move with a rapidity incomparably greater than that of marching armies. It is as if forts, with armaments, garrison, and stores, were endowed with locomotion more swift and enduring than that of cavalry.

The Ohio, Mississippi, Cumberland, and Tennessee Rivers all were in the field of General Johnston's operations, and at the stage of water most suited to naval purposes. Apart from the heavy guns which could thus be brought to bear at interior places upon an army having only field-artillery, the advantage of rapid transportation for troops and supplies can hardly be over-estimated. It has been seen how these advantages were utilized by the enemy at Henry and Donelson, and not less did they avail him at Shiloh.

As has been elsewhere explained, the condition of the South did not enable the Confederacy to meet the enemy on the water except at great odds.

If it be asked, "Why did not General Johnston wait until the enemy marched from the river instead of attacking him at Shiloh or Pittsburg Landing?" the answer is, "That would have been to delay until the junction of the enemy's armies had been effected." To fight them in detail, it was necessary to attack the first where it lay, backed by its gunboats. That sound judgment and soldierly daring went hand in hand in this attack the sequel demonstrated.

Meantime some active operations had taken place in that part of General Johnston's command west of the Mississippi River. Detached conflicts with the enemy had been fought by the small forces under Generals Price and McCulloch, but no definite result had followed. General Earl Van Dorn had been subsequently assigned to the command, and assumed it on January 29, 1862. General Curtis was then in command of the enemy's forces, numbering about twelve thousand men. He had harassed General Price on his retreat to Fayetteville, Arkansas, and then had fallen back to Sugar Creek, where he proposed to make a stand. Van Dorn, immediately on his arrival at the Confederate camps on Boston Mountain, prepared to attack Curtis. His first movement, however, was to intercept General Sigel, then at Bentonville with sixteen thousand men. The want of coöperation in Van Dorn's forces enabled Sigel to escape. Curtis thus concentrated his forces at Sugar Creek, and, instead of taking him in detail, Van Dorn was obliged to meet his entire army. By a circuitous route, he led Price's army against the enemy's rear, moving McCulloch against the right flank; but his progress was so slow and embarrassed, that the enemy heard of it in season to make his dispositions accordingly.

The battle of Elkhorn, or Pea Ridge, was fought on the morning of March 5th. Van Dorn reported his force to be fourteen thousand men, and Curtis puts his force at about ten thousand. Van Dorn, with Price's division, encountered Carr's division which had already advanced, but was driven back steadily and with heavy loss. Meanwhile, McCulloch's command met a division under Osterhaus, and, after a sharp, quick struggle, swept it away. Pushing forward through the shrub-oak, his wide-extended line met Sigel's, Asboth's, and Davis's divisions. Here on the ragged spurs of the hills ensued a fearful combat. In the crisis of the struggle, McCulloch, dashing forward to reconnoiter, fell a victim to a sharpshooter. Almost at the same moment, McIntosh, his second in command, fell while charging a battery of the enemy with a regiment of Texas cavalry. Without direction or leader, the shattered lines of our forces left the field to rally, after a wide circuit, on Price's division. When Van Dorn heard of this misfortune, he urged his attack, pressing back the enemy until night closed the bloody combat. Van Dorn's headquarters were then at Elkhorn Tavern, where the enemy's headquarters had been in the morning. Each army was now on its opponent's line of communication. Van Dorn found his troops much disorganized and exhausted, short of ammunition, and without food, and made his arrangements to retreat. The wagon-trains and all the men not effective for the coming battle were started by a circuitous route for Van Buren. The effectives remained to cover the retreat. The battle was renewed at 7 A.M., and raged until 10 A.M. The gallant General Henry Little had the covering line with his own and Rives's Missouri brigades; this stout rear-guard holding off the whole army of the enemy. The trains, artillery, and most of the army were by that time well on the road. The order was given to the Missourians to withdraw, and "the gallant fellows faced about with cheers" retired steadily, and encamped ten miles from the battle-field at three o'clock. There was no real pursuit. The attack had failed. Van Dorn put his loss at six hundred killed and wounded, and two hundred prisoners. Curtis reported his loss at two hundred and three killed, nine hundred and seventy-two wounded, and a hundred and seventy-six missing—total, thirteen hundred and fifty-one.[12]

The object of Van Dorn had been to effect a diversion in behalf of General Johnston. This failed; but the enemy was badly crippled, and soon fell back to Missouri, of which he still retained possession.

General Van Dorn was now ordered to join General Johnston by the quickest route. Yet only one of his regiments arrived in time to be present at the battle of Shiloh. As has been already stated, General Beauregard left Nashville on February 14th to take charge in West Tennessee, and made his headquarters at Jackson, Tennessee, on February 17th. He was somewhat prostrated by sickness, which partially disabled him through the campaign. The two grand divisions of his army were commanded by the able Generals Bragg and Polk. On March 26th he permanently removed to Corinth. Under his orders the evacuation of Columbus by General Polk, and the establishment of a new line resting on New Madrid, Island No. 10, and Humboldt, was completed. On March 2d Brigadier-General J. P. McCown, an "old army" officer, was assigned to the command of Island No. 10, forty miles below Columbus, whither he removed his division. A. P. Stewart's brigade was sent to New Madrid. At these points some seven thousand troops were assembled, and the remainder marched under General Cheatham to Union City. General Polk says:

"In five days we moved the accumulations of six months, taking with us all our commissary and quartermaster's stores—an amount sufficient to supply my whole command for eight months—all our powder and other ammunition and ordnance stores, excepting a few shot, and gun-carriages, and every heavy gun in the fort, except two thirty-two pounders and three carronades in a remote outwork, which had been rendered useless."

The movement of the enemy up the Tennessee River commenced on March 10th. General C. F. Smith led the advance, with a new division under General Sherman. On the 13th Smith assembled four divisions at Savannah, on the west bank of the Tennessee, at the Great Bend. The ultimate design was to mass the forces of Grant and Buell against our army at Corinth. Buell was still in the occupation of Nashville. On the 16th Sherman disembarked at Pittsburg Landing, and made a reconnaissance to Monterey, nearly half-way to Corinth. On the next day General Grant took command. Two more divisions were added, and he assembled his army near Pittsburg Landing, which was the most advantageous base for a movement against Corinth. Here it lay inactive until the battle of Shiloh.

The Tennessee flows northwest for some distance, until, a little west of Hamburg, it takes its final bend to the north. Here two small streams, Owl and Lick Creeks, flowing nearly parallel, somewhat north of east, from three to five miles apart, empty into the Tennessee. Owl Creek forms the northern limit of the ridge, which Lick Creek bounds on the south. These streams, rising some ten or twelve miles back, toward Corinth, were bordered near their mouths by swamps filled with backwater from the Tennessee, and impassable except where the roads crossed them.

[Map used by the Confederate generals at Shiloh]

The inclosed space is a rolling table-land, about one hundred feet above the river-level, with its water-shed lying near Lick Creek, and either slope broken by deep and frequent ravines draining into two streams. The acclivities were covered with forests, and often thick set with undergrowth. Pittsburg Landing, containing three or four log-cabins, was situated about midway between the mouths of the creeks, in the narrow morass that borders the Tennessee. It was three or four miles below Hamburg, six or seven above Savannah, the depot of the enemy on the right bank, and twenty-two miles from Corinth. Thus the position of the enemy was naturally strong. With few and difficult approaches, guarded on either flank by impassable streams and morasses, protected by a succession of ravines and acclivities, commanded by eminences to the rear, it seemed safe against attack, and easy to defend. No defensive works were constructed.

[Footnote 11: Colonel R. W. Woolley, In "New Orleans Picayune," March, 1863.]

[Footnote 12: "The Life of Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston," by his son.]


    General Buell's March.—Object of General Johnston.—His Force.—
    Advance from Corinth.-Line of Battle.—Telegram.—The Time of the
    Battle of Shiloh.—Results of the First Day's Battle.—One
    Encampment not taken.—Effects.—Reports on this Failure.—Death
    of General Johnston.—Remarks.

General Buell, who was to make a junction with General Grant, deemed it best that his army should march through by land, as it would facilitate the occupation of the Memphis and Charleston Railroad through north Alabama, where General Mitchell had been assigned. Accordingly, Buell commenced his march from Nashville on March 15th, with a rapid movement of cavalry, followed by a division of infantry, to seize the bridges. The bridge over Duck River being destroyed, it was the 31st before his army crossed. His advance arrived at Savannah on Saturday, April 5th, and our attack on Grant at Pittsburg Landing was made on the next day, the 6th of April. The advance of General Buell anticipated his orders by two days, and likewise the calculations of our commanders.

It had been the object of General Johnston, since falling back from
Nashville, to concentrate his army at Corinth, and fight the enemy in
detail—Grant first, and Buell afterward. The army of General Polk
had been drawn back from Columbus. The War Department ordered General
Bragg from Pensacola, with his well-disciplined army, to the aid of
Johnston. A brigade was sent by General Lovell from Louisiana, and
Chalmers and Walker were already on the line of the Memphis and
Charleston road with considerable commands. These forces collected at
Corinth, and to them were added such new levies as the Governors had
in rendezvous, and a few regiments raised in response to General
Beauregard's call. General Bragg, in a sketch of the battle of
Shiloh, thus speaks of General Johnston's army:

[Picture of General Braxton Bragg]

"In a period of four weeks, fragments of commands from Bowling Green, Kentucky, under Hardee; Columbus, Kentucky, under Polk; and Pensacola, Mobile, and New Orleans, under Bragg, with such new levies as could be hastily raised, all badly armed and equipped, were united at and near Corinth, and, for the first time, organised as an army. It was a heterogeneous mass, in which there was more enthusiasm than discipline, more capacity than knowledge, and more valor than instruction. Rifles, rifled and smooth-bore muskets—some of them originally percussion, others hastily altered from flint-locks by Yankee contractors, many with the old flint and steel—and shot-guns of all sizes and patterns, held place in the same regiments. The task of organizing such a command in four weeks, and supplying it, especially with ammunition, suitable for action, was simply appalling. It was undertaken, however, with a cool, quiet self-control, calling to his aid the best knowledge and talent at his command, which not only inspired confidence, but soon yielded the natural fruits of system, order, and discipline."

This force, about forty thousand of all arms, was divided into four corps, commanded respectively by Major-Generals Polk, Bragg, and Hardee, and Brigadier-General Breckinridge. General Beauregard was second in command under General Johnston. General Beauregard says, "A want of general officers needful for the proper organization of divisions and brigades of an army brought thus suddenly together, and other difficulties in the way of effective organization, delayed the movements until the night of April 2d."

About one o'clock on the morning of April 3d preliminary orders were issued to hold the troops in readiness to move at a moment's notice, with five days' provisions and a hundred rounds of ammunition. The orders for march and battle were issued in the afternoon. At that time General Hardee led the advance, the Third Corps, from Corinth, by the northernmost route, known as the Ridge road. Bivouacking that night on the way, he arrived next morning at Mickey's, a house about eighteen miles from Corinth and four or five miles from Pittsburg. The Second Corps, under Bragg, marched by the direct road to Pittsburg through Monterey, which it reached about 11 A.M. on the 4th, and bivouacked that night near Mickey's in the rear of Hardee's corps. The First Corps, under General Polk, consisted of two divisions, under Cheatham and Clark. The latter was ordered to follow Hardee on the Ridge road at an interval of half an hour, and to halt near Mickey's, so as to allow Bragg's corps to fall in behind Hardee, at a thousand yards' interval, and form a second line of battle. Polk's corps was to form the left wing of the third line of battle; and Breckinridge's reserve the right wing. The other division of Polk, under Cheatham, was on outpost duty, at and near Bethel, on the Mobile and Ohio Railroad, about as far from Mickey's as Corinth was. He was ordered to assemble his forces at Purdy, and pursue the route to Monterey. He effected his junction on the afternoon of the 5th, and took position on the left wing of Polk's corps. Breckinridge's reserve corps moved from Burnsville early on April 4th, by way of Farmington toward Monterey, distant fourteen miles. It did not effect its junction with the other corps until late on the afternoon of Saturday the 5th, being delayed by the rains on Friday and Saturday. At daylight on the 5th Hardee moved, and by seven o'clock was sufficiently out of the way to allow Bragg to advance. Before ten o'clock Hardee's corps had reached the outposts and developed the lines of the enemy. The corps was immediately deployed into line of battle about a mile and a half west of Shiloh church, where Lick Creek and Owl Creek approach most nearly, and are about three miles apart. Gladden's brigade, of Bragg's corps, was on the right of Hardee's corps, which was not sufficiently strong to occupy the whole front. This line extended from creek to creek. Before seven o'clock Bragg's column was in motion, and the right wing of his line of battle formed about eight hundred yards in the rear of Hardee's line. But the division on the left was nowhere to be seen. Even as late as half-past twelve the missing column had not appeared, nor had any report from it been received. General Johnston, "looking first at his watch, then glancing at the position of the sun, exclaimed: 'This is not war! Let us have our horses!' He rode to the rear until he found the missing column standing stock-still, with its head some distance out in an open field. General Polk's reserves were ahead of it, with their wagons and artillery blocking up the road. General Johnston ordered them to clear the road, and the missing column to move forward. There was much chaffering among those implicated as to who should bear the blame. . . . It was about four o'clock when the lines were completely formed—too late, of course, to begin the battle then." [13]

The road was not clear until 2 P.M. General Polk got Clark's division of his corps into line of battle by four o'clock; and Cheatham, who had come up on the left, promptly followed. Breckinridge's line was then formed on Polk's right. Thus was the army arrayed in three lines of battle late Saturday afternoon.[14]

The purpose of General Johnston to attack promptly is evinced in the correspondence already introduced; it is further shown in his telegram of April 3d, as follows:

"To the PRESIDENT, Richmond.

"General Buell in motion, thirty thousand strong, rapidly from Colombia by Clifton to Savannah. Mitchell behind him, with ten thousand. Confederate forces forty thousand; ordered forward to offer battle near Pittsburg.

    "Division from Bethel, main body from Corinth, reserve from
    Burnsville, converging to-morrow, near Monterey, on Pittsburg.

    "Beauregard second in command, Polk the left, Bragg the center,
    Hardee the right wing, Breckinridge the reserve.

"Hope engagement before Buell can form junction." [15]

On the 6th of April I sent a telegram as follows:

"GENERAL A. S. JOHNSTON: Your dispatch of yesterday received. I hope you will be able to close with the enemy before his two columns unite."

[Map: Battle of Shiloh Part II]

Though much inquiry has been made, I have not been able to recover that dispatch "of yesterday" the 4th. It was anxiously sought because, in cipher (private between us), he explained distinctly his plan of battle, as the previous one had his proposed order of march. It was in every respect important to attack at the earliest moment after the advance of Buell's command became known. Every delay diminished the chances of surprising the enemy, and increased the probability of his being reënforced. Had the attack been made a day sooner, not only would Buell's army have been absent, but there would have been no prospect of their timely arrival; and who can measure the moral effect this would have produced? It would be useless to review the controversies as to who was responsible for the confusion and consequent detentions on the march, the evil of which might have been greater if the vigilance of the enemy had been equal to his self-sufficiency.

War has been called a fickle goddess, and its results attributed to chance. The great soldier of our century said, "Fortune favors the heavy battalions"; but is it not rather exact calculation than chance which controls the events of war, and the just determination of the relation of time, space, and motion in the application of force, which decides the effective weight of battalions? Had the battle of Shiloh opened a day sooner, it would have been better; had it been postponed a day, to attack then would have been impracticable. Had the several columns moved on different roads, converging toward the field of battle, the movements of some could not have been obstructed by others, so that the troops would have been in position and the battle have been commenced on Saturday morning. The programme and purpose of General Johnston appear from his dispatch of the 3d, and from the disappointment evinced by him at the failure of a portion of the command to be present on the field on the morning of the 5th (Saturday), as he expected.

General Bragg, in a monograph on the battle of Shiloh, says:

"During the afternoon of the 5th, as the last of our troops were taking position, a casual and partly accidental meeting of general officers occurred just in rear of our second line, near the bivouac of General Bragg. The Commander-in-Chief, General Beauregard, General Polk, General Bragg, and General Breckinridge, are remembered as present. In a discussion of the causes of the delay and its incidents, it was mentioned that some of the troops, now in their third day only, were entirely out of food, though having marched with five days' rations. General Beauregard, confident our movement had been discovered by the enemy, urged its abandonment, a return to our camps for supplies, and a general change of programme. In this opinion no other seemed fully to concur; and when it was suggested that 'the enemy's supplies were much nearer, and could be had for the taking,' General Johnston quietly remarked, 'Gentlemen, we shall attack at daylight to-morrow.' The meeting then dispersed upon an invitation of the commanding general to meet at his tent that evening. At that meeting a further discussion elicited the same views, and the same firm, decided determination. The next morning, about dawn of day, the 6th, as the troops were being put in motion, several generals again met at the camp-fire of the general-in-chief. The discussion was renewed. General Beauregard again expressing his dissent; when, rapid firing in the front indicating that the attack had commenced, General Johnston closed the discussion by remarking: 'The battle has opened, gentlemen; it is too late to change our dispositions.' He prepared to move to the front, and his subordinates promptly joined their respective commands, inspired by his coolness, confidence, and determination. Few men have equaled him in the possession and display, at the proper time, of these great qualities of the soldier."

The results of the first day of the famous battle thus began are very summarily presented in the following brief report of General Beauregard:

"At 5 A.M., on the 6th instant, a reconnoitering party of the enemy having become engaged with our advanced pickets, the commander of the forces gave orders to begin the movement and attack as determined upon, except that Trabue's brigade of Breckinridge's division was detached and advanced to support the left of Bragg's corps and line of battle then menaced by the enemy; and the other two brigades were directed to advance by the road to Hamburg to support Bragg's right; and at the same time Maney's regiment of Polk's corps was advanced by the same road to reënforce the regiment, of cavalry and battery of four pieces, already thrown forward to watch and guard Grier's, Tanner's, and Borland's Fords of Lick Creek.

"Thirty minutes after 5 A.M., our lines and columns were in motion, all animated evidently by a promising spirit. The front line was engaged at once, but advanced steadily, followed in due order, with equal resolution and steadiness, by the other lines, which were brought successively into action with rare skill, judgment, and gallantry by the several corps commanders, as the enemy made a stand with his masses rallied for the struggle for his encampments. Like an Alpine avalanche our troops moved forward, despite the determined resistance of the enemy, until after 6 P.M., when we were in possession of all his encampments between Owl and Lick Creeks but one; nearly all of his field-artillery, about thirty flags, colors, and standards, over three thousand prisoners, including a division commander (General Prentiss), and several brigade commanders, thousands of small-arms, an immense supply of subsistence, forage, and munitions of war, and a large amount of means of transportation, all the substantial fruits of a complete victory—such, indeed, as rarely have followed the most successful battles, for never was an army so well provided as that of our enemy.

"The remnant of his army had been driven in utter disorder to the immediate vicinity of Pittsburg, under the shelter of the heavy guns of his iron-clad gunboats, and we remained undisputed masters of his well-selected, admirably provided cantonments, after our twelve hours of obstinate conflict with his forces, who had been beaten from them and the contiguous covert, but only by the sustained onset of all the men we could bring into action."

There are two words in this report which, if they could have been truthfully omitted, it would have been worth to us the surrender of all "the substantial fruits of a complete victory." It says: "Our troops moved forward, despite the determined resistance of the enemy, until after 6 P.M., when we were in possession of all his encampments between Owl and lick Creeks but one." It was that "one" encampment that furnished a foothold for all the subsequent reënforcements sent by Buell, and gave occasion for the final withdrawal of our forces; whereas, if that had been captured, and the "waters of the Tennessee" reached, as General Johnston designed, it was not too much to expect that Grant's army would have surrendered; that Buell's forces would not have crossed the Tennessee; but with a skillful commander, like Johnston, to lead our troops, the enemy would have sought safety on the north bank of the Ohio; that Tennessee, Kentucky, and Missouri would have been recovered, the Northwest disaffected, and our armies filled with the men of the Southwest, and perhaps of the Northwest also.

Let us turn to reports and authorities. The author of "The Life of
Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston" says:

"Of the two armies, one was now an advancing, triumphant host, with arm uplifted to give the mortal blow; the other, a broken, mangled, demoralized mob, paralyzed and waiting for the stroke. While the other Confederate brigades, which had shared most actively in Prentiss's capture, were sending back the prisoners and forming again for a final attack, two brigades, under Chalmers and Jackson, on the extreme right, had cleared away all in front of them, and, moving down the river-bank, now came upon the last point where even a show of resistance was made. Being two very bold and active brigadiers, they at once closed with the enemy in their front, crossing a deep ravine and difficult ground to get at him. Here Colonel Webster, of Grant's staff, had gathered all the guns he could find from batteries, whether abandoned or still coherent, and with stout-hearted men, picked up at random, had prepared a resistance. Some infantry, similarly constituted, had been got together; and Ammen's brigade, the van of Nelson's division of Buell's corps, had landed, and was pushing its way through the throng of pallid fugitives at the landing to take up the battle where it had fallen from the hands of Grant and Sherman. It got into position in time to do its part in checking the unsupported assaults of Chalmers and Jackson."

General Chalmers, describing this final attack in his report, says:

"It was then about four o'clock in the evening, and, after distributing ammunition, we received orders from General Bragg to drive the enemy into the river. My brigade, together with that of Brigadier-General Jackson, filed to the right and formed facing the river, and endeavored to press forward to the water's edge; but in attempting to mount the last ridge we were met by a fire from a whole line of batteries, protected by infantry and assisted by shells from the gunboats."

In a subsequent memorandum General Chalmers writes:

"One more resolute movement forward would have captured Grant and his whole army, and fulfilled to the letter the battle-plan of the great Confederate general, who died in the belief that victory was ours. . . ."—("The Life of Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston," p. 637.)

Brigadier-General Jackson, in his report, says:

"My brigade was ordered to change direction again, face toward Pittsburg, where the enemy appeared to have made his last stand, and to advance upon him, General Chalmers's brigade being again on my right, and extending to the swamp of the Tennessee River. Without ammunition, and with only their bayonets to rely on, steadily my men advanced under a heavy fire from light batteries, siege-pieces, and gunboats. Passing through the ravine, they arrived near the crest of the opposite hill, upon which the enemy's batteries were, but could not be urged farther without support. Sheltering themselves against the precipitous sides of the ravine, they remained under this fire for some time. Finding an advance without support impracticable, remaining there under fire useless, and believing that any further forward movement should have been made simultaneously along our whole line, I proceeded to obtain orders from General Withers, but, after seeing him, was ordered by a staff-officer to retire. This order was communicated to me as coming from General Beauregard."

General Hardee, who commanded the first line, says in his report:

"Upon the death of General Johnston, the command having devolved upon General Beauregard, the conflict was continued until near sunset, and the advance divisions were within a few hundred yards of Pittsburg, where the enemy were huddled in confusion, when the order to withdraw was received. The troops were ordered to bivouac on the field of battle."

General Polk's report says:

"We had one hour or more of daylight still left, were within one hundred and fifty to four hundred yards of the enemy's position, and nothing seemed wanting to complete the most brilliant victory of the war but to press forward and make a vigorous assault on the demoralized remnant of his forces."

General Gilmer, the chief engineer of the Confederate States Army, in a letter to Colonel William Preston Johnston, dated September 17, 1872, writes as follows:

"It is my well-considered opinion that if your father had survived the day he would have crushed and captured General Grant's army before the setting of the sun on the 6th. In fact, at the time your father received the mortal wound, advancing with General Breckinridge's command, the day was ours. The enemy having lost all the strong positions on that memorable field, his troops fell back in great disorder on the banks of the Tennessee. To cover the confusion, rapid fires were opened from the gunboats the enemy had placed in the river; but the shots passed entirely over our devoted men, who were exultant and eager to be led forward to the final assault, which must have resulted in a complete victory, owing to the confusion and general disorganization of the Federal troops. I knew the condition of General Grant's army at the moment, as I had reached a high, projecting point on the bank of the river, about a mile above Pittsburg Landing, and could see the hurried movements to get the disordered troops across to the right bank. Several thousand had already passed, and a confused mass of men crowded to the landing to get on the boats that were employed in crossing. I rode rapidly to General Bragg's position to report what I had seen, and suggested that, if he would suspend the fire of his artillery and marshal his infantry for a general advance, the enemy must surrender. General Bragg decided to make the advance, and authorized me and other officers to direct the commanders of the batteries to cease firing.

"In the midst of the preparations, orders reached General Bragg from General Beauregard directing the troops to be withdrawn and placed in camp for the night—the intention being to resume the contest in the morning. This was fatal, as it enabled General Buell and General Wallace to arrive on the scene of action; that is, they came up in the course of the night. Had General Beauregard known the condition of the enemy as your father knew it when he received the fatal shot, the order for withdrawal would certainly not have been given, and, without such order, I know the enemy would have been crushed." [16]

To General Gilmer's opinion as a scientific engineer, a soldier of long experience, and a man of resolute will as well as calm judgment, the greatest respect will be accorded by those who knew him in the United States Army, as well as his associates in the Confederate Army.

General Bragg, in his official report, says:

"As soon as our troops could be again put in motion, the order was given to move forward at all points and sweep the enemy from the field. . . . Our troops, greatly exhausted by twelve hours' incessant fighting without food, mostly responded to the order with alacrity, and the movement commenced with every prospect of success, though a heavy battery in our front and the gunboats on our right seemed determined to dispute every inch of ground. Just at this time an order was received from the commanding General to withdraw the forces beyond the enemy's fire."

In addition to the statements and opinions cited above, I will introduce from a recent publication by Thomas Worthington, late colonel of the Forty-sixth Regiment of Ohio Volunteers, two statements showing the relative condition of the two armies in the afternoon of the day of battle. It may be proper to say that Colonel Worthington was regularly educated as a soldier, and had seen service in Mexico.

He quotes Colonel Geddes, of the Eighth Iowa Volunteers, as follows:

"About 3 P.M. all communications with the river (landing) ceased, and it became evident to me that the enemy was turning the right and left flanks of our army. . . . About 2 P.M. the whole Union right, comprising the Forty-sixth Ohio, which had held that flank two hours or more, was driven back in disorder, and the Confederate flanking force cut the center off from the landing, as stated by Colonel Geddes, soon after General Johnston's fall."

General Beauregard reports as follows:

"It was after 6 P.M. when the enemy's last position was carried, and his force finally broke and sought refuge behind a commanding eminence covering Pittsburg Landing, not more than half a mile distant, and under the guns of the gunboats, which opened on our eager columns a fierce and annoying fire with shot and shell of the heaviest description. Darkness was close at hand. Officers and men were exhausted by a combat of over twelve hours, without food, and jaded by the march of the preceding day through mud and water; it was, therefore, impossible to collect the rich and opportune spoils of war scattered broadcast on the field left in our possession, and impracticable to make any effective dispositions for their removal to the rear.

"I accordingly established my headquarters at the church of Shiloh, in the enemy's encampment, with Major-General Bragg, and directed our troops to sleep on their arms in such positions in advance and rear as corps commanders should determine, hoping, from news received by a special dispatch, that delays had been encountered by General Buell in his march from Columbia, and that his main forces, therefore, could not reach the field of battle in time to save General Grant's shattered fugitives from capture or destruction on the following day."

Such are the representations of those having the best means of information relative to the immediate causes of the failure to drive the enemy from his last foothold, and gain possession of it. Some of the more remote causes of this failure may be noticed. The first was the death of General Johnston, which is thus described by his son:

"General Johnston had passed through the ordeal (the charge upon the enemy) seemingly unhurt. His noble horse was shot in four places; his clothes were pierced by missiles; his boot-sole was cut and torn by a Minie ball; but, if he himself had received any severe wound, he did not know it. At this moment Governor Harris rode up from the right, elated with his own success, and with the vindication of his Tennesseeans. After a few words. General Johnston sent him with an order to Colonel Statham, which, having delivered, he speedily returned. In the mean time knots and groups of Federal soldiers kept up an angry discharge of firearms as they retreated upon their supports, and their last line, now yielding, delivered volley after volley as they retreated. By the chance of war a Minie ball from one of these did its fatal work As General Johnston, on horseback, sat there, knowing that he had crushed in the arch which had so long resisted the pressure of his forces, and waiting until they could collect sufficiently to give the final stroke, he received a mortal wound. It came in the moment of victory and triumph from a flying foe. It smote him at the very instant when he felt the full conviction that the day was won."

His wound consisted in the cutting of the artery that runs down through the thigh and divides at the knee, and passes along the separate bones of the lower part of the leg. The wound was just above the division or branch of the artery. It was fatal only because the flow of blood was not stopped by a tourniquet. The narrative continues:

"General Beauregard had told General Johnston that morning as he rode off, that if it should be necessary to communicate with him or for him to do anything, he would be found in his ambulance in bed. Governor Harris, knowing this, and how feeble General Beauregard's health was, went first to his headquarters—just in the rear of where the army had deployed into line the evening before. Beauregard and his staff were gone on horseback in the direction of Shiloh Church. He found them there. The Governor told General Beauregard that General Johnston had been killed. Beauregard expressed regret, and then remarked, 'Everything else seems to be going on well on the right.' Governor Harris assented. 'Then,' said Beauregard, 'The battle may as well go on.' The Governor replied that he certainly thought it ought. He offered his services to Beauregard, and they were courteously accepted. General Beauregard then remained where he was, waiting the issue of events." [17]

Sidney Johnston fell in sight of victory; the hour he had waited for, the event he had planned for, had arrived. His fame was vindicated, but far dearer than this to his patriotic spirit was it with his dying eyes to behold his country's flag, so lately drooping in disaster, triumphantly advancing. In his fall the great pillar of the Southern Confederacy was crushed, and beneath its fragments the best hope of the Southwest lay buried. A highly educated and richly endowed soldier, his varied experience embraced also civil affairs, and his intimate knowledge of the country and people of the Southwest so highly qualified him for that special command that it was not possible to fill the place made vacant by his death. Not for the first time did the fate of an army depend upon a single man, and the fortunes of a country hang, as in a balance, on the achievements of a single army. To take an example far from us, in time and place, when Turenne had, after months of successful manoeuvring, finally forced his enemy into a position which gave assurance of victory, and had marshaled his forces for a decisive battle, he was, when making a preliminary reconnaissance, killed by a chance shot; then his successor, instead of attacking, retreated, and all which the one had gained for France, the other lost.

To take another example, not quite so conclusive, it was epigrammatically said by Lieutenant Kingsbury, when writing of the battle of Buena Vista, that if the last shot, fired at the close of the second day's conflict, had killed General Taylor, the next morning's sun would have risen upon the strange spectacle of two armies in full retreat from each other, the field for which they had fought being in the possession of neither. What material consequences would have flowed from the supposed event—how the Mexican people would have been inspired by the retreat of our army, how far it would have brought out all their resources for war, and to what extent results might have been thereby affected—are speculative inquiries on a subject from which time and circumstance have taken the interest it once possessed.

The extracts which have been given sufficiently prove that, when General Johnston fell, the Confederate army was so fully victorious that, had the attack been vigorously pressed, General Grant and his army would before the setting of the sun have been fugitives or prisoners.

As our troops drew near to the river, the gunboats of the enemy became ineffective, because to fire over the bank required such elevation of the guns that the shot and shell passed high over the heads of our men, falling far away in the rear.

General Polk described the troops in advance for that reason as quite safe from the fire of the gunboats, though it might seem terrible to those far in the rear, and expressed the surprise and regret he felt at the order to retire.

Grant's army being beaten, the next step of General Johnston's programme should have followed, the defeat of Buell's and Mitchell's forces as they successively came up, and a return by our victorious army through Tennessee to Kentucky. The great embarrassment had been the want of good military weapons; these would have been largely supplied by the conquest hoped for, and, in the light of what had occurred, not unreasonably anticipated.

What great consequences would have ensued must be matter of conjecture, but that the people of Kentucky and Missouri generously sympathized with the South was then commonly admitted. Our known want of preparation for war and numerical inferiority may well have caused many to doubt the wisdom of our effort for independence, and to these a signal success would have been the makeweight deciding their course.

I believe that again in the history of war the fate of an army depended on one man; and more, that the fortunes of a country hung by the single thread of the life that was yielded on the field of Shiloh. So great was my confidence in his capacity for organization and administration, that I felt, when he was assigned to the Department of the West, that the undeveloped power of that region would be made sufficient not only for its own safety, but to contribute support if need be to the more seriously threatened East.

There have been various suppositions as to the neglect of the wound which caused General Johnston's death. My own opinion, founded upon the statements of those who were near him, and upon my long acquaintance with him and close observation of him under trying circumstances, is, that his iron nerve and extraordinary concentration of mind made him regardless of his wound, in the fixed purpose to dislodge the enemy from his last position, and, while thus struggling to complete the victory within his grasp, he unheedingly allowed his life-blood to flow away.

It often happens that men do not properly value their richest gifts until taken away. Those who had erroneously and unjustly censured Johnston, convicted of their error by the grandeur of his revealed character, joined in the general lamentation over his loss, and malignity even was silenced by the devoted manner of his death. My estimation of him was based on long and intimate acquaintance; beginning in our youth, it had grown with our growth without check or variation, and, when he first arrived in Richmond, was expressed to some friends yet living, in the wish that I had the power, by resigning, to transfer to him the Presidency of the Confederate States.

[Footnote 13: Colonel Munford's address at Memphis.]

[Footnote 14: "The Life of Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston," by his son.]

[Footnote 15: Original in the possession of Colonel W. P. Johnston.]

[Footnote 16: "The Life of Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston," pp. 635, 636.]

[Footnote 17: "The Life of Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston," p. 616.]


    Retirement of the Army.—Remnants of Grant's Army.—Its
    Reënforcements.—Strength of our Army.—Strength of Grant's Army.—
    Reorganization.—Corinth.—Advance of General Halleck.—Siege of
    Corinth.—Evacuation.—Retreat to Tupelo.—General Beauregard
    retires.-General Bragg in Command.—Positions on the Mississippi
    River occupied by the Enemy.—New Madrid.—Island No. 10.—Fort
    Pillow.—Memphis.—Attack at Hatteras Inlet.—Expedition of the
    Enemy to Port Royal.—Expeditions from Port Royal.—System of Coast
    Defenses adopted by us.—Fort Pulaski.

At the ensuing nightfall our victorious army retired from the front and abandoned its vantage-ground on the bluffs, which had been won at such a cost of blood. The enemy thereby had room and opportunity to come out from their corner, reoccupy the strong positions from which they had been driven, and dispose their troops on much more favorable ground. Called off by staff-officers, who gave no specific instructions, our brigades, according to circumstances, bivouacked on the battle-field, marched to the rear, or made themselves comfortable on the profuse spoils of the enemy's encampments. General Buell says:

"Of the army of not less than fifty thousand effective men, which Grant had on the west bank of the Tennessee River, not more than five thousand were in ranks and available on the battlefield at nightfall on the 6th, exclusive of Lew Wallace's division, say eight thousand five hundred men that only came up during the night. The rest were either killed, wounded, captured, or scattered in inextricable and hopeless confusion for miles along the banks of the river."

In addition to the arrival of Wallace's division, the entire divisions of Nelson and Crittenden got across the river during the night, and by daylight that of McCook began to arrive; all but the first named belonged to Buell's army. The work of reorganization of fragments of Grant's force also occupied the night. In the morning the arrival of reënforcements to the enemy continued.

On the morning of the 7th the enemy advanced about six o'clock, and opened a heavy fire of musketry and artillery, such as gave assurance that the reënforcements had arrived, to anticipate which the battle of the 6th had been fought. A series of combats ensued, in which the Confederates showed their usual valor; but, after the junction had been effected between Grant and Buell, which Johnston's movement was made to prevent, our force was unequal to resist the combined armies, and retreat was a necessity.

The field return of the Army of Mississippi before and after the battle of Shiloh was as follows: infantry and artillery, effective before the battle, 35,953; cavalry, 4,382; total, 40,335. Infantry and artillery, effective after the battle, 25,555; cavalry, 4,081; total, 29,636. Difference, 10,699. Casualties in battle: killed, 1,728; wounded, 8,012; missing, 959.

The effective force of General Grant's army engaged in the battles of April 6th and 7th at Shiloh was 49,314; reënforcements of General Buell, 21,579; total, 70,893. The casualties in the battle of April 6th in Grant's force were as follows: killed, 1,500; wounded, 6,634; missing, 3,086; total, 11,220; leaving, for duty on the 7th, 59,673.

On April 9th Major-General H. W, Halleck left St. Louis and proceeded to Pittsburg Landing to assume command of the enemy's forces in the field. A reorganization was made, in which General Grant's divisions formed the right wing, those of General Buell the center, and those of General Pope, brought from the west side of the Mississippi, the left wing; and an advance on Corinth was commenced.

Corinth, the position from which our forces had advanced to Shiloh or Pittsburg Landing, and to which they had now retired, was a small village in the northeast corner of the State of Mississippi. It was ninety miles east of Memphis and twenty or twenty-two west of the Tennessee River. The Memphis and Charleston Railroad ran from west to east through it, and the Mobile and Ohio road from south to north. The country between it and the Tennessee River was quite rugged, broken into ridges, and covered with a heavy forest. The position itself was flat, the water poor. Being the point at which two principal railroads crossed, it served admirably for the concentration of our forces.

Corinth was a strategic point of importance, and it was intended to be held as long as circumstances would permit; but it was untenable in the face of a largely superior force, owing to the ease with which the railroad communications in the rear could be cut by the enemy's cavalry. The small streams and contiguous flats in its front formed some obstacles which were not passed by the enemy until after the retreat of our army. The defenses were slight, consisting of rifle-pits and earthworks of little elevation or strength.

The movement of General Halleck against this position commenced from Pittsburg Landing on April 28th with a force exceeding eighty-five thousand effectives. On May 3d he had reached within eight miles of Corinth, and on the 21st his batteries were within three miles. This slow progress was probably the result of a conviction that our force was very large, rather than of the bad state of the roads. So great were his precautions, that every night his army lay in an intrenched camp, and by day it was assailed by skirmishers from our army in more or less force.

General Sherman, in his report of May 30th, says:

"My division has constructed seven distinct intrenched camps since leaving Shiloh, the men working cheerfully and well all the time, night and day. Hardly had we finished one camp before we were called on to move forward and build another. But I have been delighted at this feature in the character of my division, and take this method of making it known. Our intrenchments near Corinth and at Russell's, each built substantially in one night, are stronger works of art than the much-boasted forts of the enemy at Corinth."

The line of railroad on the north and east had been cut by the enemy, and an attempt made on the south. But so well was his apprehension of our strength maintained, that he continued his intrenched approaches until within one thousand yards of our main works.

General Sherman says:

"By 9 A.M. of the 29th our works were substantially done, and our artillery in position, and at 4 P.M. the siege-train was brought forward. . . . So near was the enemy that we could hear the sound of his drums and sometimes of voices in command; and the railroad-cars arriving and departing at Corinth were easily distinguished. For some days and nights cars have been arriving and departing very frequently, especially in the night; but last night (the 29th) more so than usual, and my suspicions were aroused. Before daybreak I instructed the brigade commanders and the field-officer of the day to feel forward as far as possible; but all reported the enemy's pickets still in force in the dense woods to our front. But about 6 A.M. a curious explosion, sounding like a volley of large siege-pieces, followed by others, singly, and in twos and threes, arrested our attention, and soon after a large smoke arose from the direction of Corinth, when I telegraphed to General Halleck to ascertain the cause. He answered that he could not explain it, but ordered me to advance my division and feel the enemy, if still in my front. I immediately put in motion two regiments of each brigade, by different roads, and soon after followed with the whole division—infantry, artillery, and cavalry. General M. L. Smith's brigade moved rapidly down the main road, entering the first redoubt of the enemy at 7 A.M. It was completely evacuated, and by 8 A.M. all my division was at Corinth and beyond."

The force of General Beauregard was less than forty-five thousand effective men. He estimated that of the enemy to be between eighty-five and ninety thousand men. All the troops of the enemy in reserve in Arkansas, Missouri, Kentucky, and Illinois were brought forward, except the force of Curtis, in Arkansas, and placed in front of our position. No definite idea of their number was formed. In the opinion of Beauregard, a general attack was not to be hazarded; but on May 3d an advance was made to attack the corps of General Pope, when only one of his divisions was in position, and that gave way so rapidly it could not be overtaken. Again, on May 9th, an advance was made, hoping to surprise the enemy. But a division, which should have been in position at three o'clock in the morning, or early dawn, was detained until three in the afternoon by the mistakes of the guide. The enemy thus became informed of the movement, and no surprise could be effected. General Beauregard commenced the removal of his sick, preparatory to an evacuation, on May 26th; on the next day arrangements for falling back were made, and the work completed on the 29th. So complete was the evacuation, that not only was the army successfully withdrawn, but also every piece of ordnance, only a quantity of damaged ammunition being left behind. The retreat was continued to Tupelo, without any serious conflict with the enemy; but during the retreat seven locomotives were reported to be lost by the burning of a bridge, and a number of cars, most of which were loaded with stores, were ordered to be burned.

On June 14th orders were sent to General Bragg, from Richmond, to proceed to Jackson, Mississippi, and temporarily to assume command of the department then under command of General Lovell. The order concluded as follows:

"After General Magruder joins, your further services there may be dispensed with. The necessity is urgent and absolute.


On application to General Beauregard for the necessary order, he replied:

"You can not possibly go. My health does not permit me to remain in charge alone here. This evening my two physicians were insisting that I should go away for one or two weeks, furnishing me with another certificate for that purpose, and I had concluded to go—intending to see you to-morrow on the subject, and leave you in command."

The certificate of the physicians was as follows:


"TUPELO, June 14, 1862.

"We certify that, after attendance on General Beauregard for the past four months, and treatment of his case, in our professional opinion he is incapacitated physically for the arduous duties of his present command, and we urgently recommend rest and recreation.

"R. L. Brodie, Surgeon, P. A. C. S.

"Sam Choppin, Surgeon, P. A. C. S."

These facts were telegraphed to me at once by General Bragg. Soon after, I sent a second dispatch to him, renewing the order, and expressing my surprise that he should have hesitated to obey, when the original order stated "the necessity is urgent and absolute." Before this second dispatch was received by General Bragg, General Beauregard had transferred the command to him, and had departed for Bladen Springs. General Bragg thus describes the subsequent proceedings:

"Prepared to move, I telegraphed back to the President that the altered conditions induced me to await his further orders. In reply to this, I was immediately notified by telegraph of my assignment to the 'permanent command of the army,' and was directed to send General Van Dorn to execute my first instructions."

From this statement it appears—1. That General Beauregard was not, as has been alleged, harshly deprived of his command, but that he voluntarily surrendered it, after being furnished with medical certificates of his physical incapacity for its arduous duties. 2. That he did not even notify his Government, still less ask permission to retire. 3. That the order, assigning another to the command he had abandoned, could not be sent through him, when he had departed and gone to a place where there was no telegraph, and rarely a mail. 4. That it is neither customary nor proper to send orders to the commander of an army through a general on sick-leave; and in this case it would have been very objectionable, as a similar order had just been sent and disobeyed.

Meanwhile some other events had occurred in the Western Department which should be mentioned. The movement of the forces of the enemy up the Tennessee River, as has been stated, thus flanking some of our positions on the Mississippi River, was followed by his fitting out a naval fleet to move down that river. This fleet, consisting of seven ironclads and one gun-boat, ten mortar-boats, each carrying a thirteen-inch mortar, a coal-barge, two ordnance-steamers, and two transports with troops, left Cairo on March 14th, and arrived at Hickman that evening. A small force of our cavalry left upon its approach. Columbus, as has been stated, had previously been evacuated by our forces and occupied by the enemy. In the morning the fleet continued down toward Island No. 10. This island is situated in that bend of the river which touches the border of Tennessee, a few miles further up the river than New Madrid, although nearly southeast of that point.

In the latter part of February a large force of the enemy under Major-General Pope left Commerce, Missouri, and moved south about fifty miles to New Madrid, with the object of capturing that place. Aided by the gunboats of Commander Hollins, our small force repulsed the assaults of the enemy three times, but such was the disparity of numbers that it soon became manifest that our forces could not successfully hold the position, and it was evacuated on the night of March 13th. Its defenses consisted of two earthworks, in which about twenty guns were mounted. These were spiked and rendered unfit for use.

The bombardment of Island No. 10, above described, commenced on March 15th, and was continued night and day. Up to April 1st the enemy fired several thousand thirteen-inch and rifle shells. On March 17th a general attack with five gunboats and four mortar-boats was made, and continued nine hours, without any serious result. Finally, the forces of the enemy were greatly increased, and began to occupy both banks of the river, and also the river above and below the island, when a portion of our force retired, and about April 7th the remainder surrendered.

The fleet, on April 12th, proceeded next to Fort Pillow, about a hundred and eighty miles below Island No. 10, and a bombardment was commenced on the next day. This was continued without effect until the night of June 4th, when both Forts Pillow and Randolph, the latter some twelve miles below the former, were evacuated—these positions having become untenable in consequence of the withdrawal of our forces from Corinth and the adjacent portion of Tennessee.

Nothing now remained to oppose the enemy's fleet but our gunboats at Memphis, which were, say, seventy miles farther down the river. The gallantry and efficiency displayed by our improvised river navy at New Madrid and Island No. 10 gave rise to hopes scarcely justified by the number of our vessels or their armament. Our boats had fewer guns than those of the enemy, and they were less substantially constructed, but their officers and crews took counsel of their country's need rather than of their own strength. They manfully engaged the enemy, and disabled one of his rams, but after an hour's conflict were compelled to retire.

The possession of Memphis being no longer disputed, its occupation by the enemy promptly followed.

At an early period of the war the Government of the United States organized some naval and military expeditions, with a view to capture our harbors, to occupy an extensive tract of country in their vicinity, and especially to obtain possession of a portion of our cotton-crop. The first movement of this kind was by a fleet of naval vessels and transports which appeared off Hatteras Inlet on August 27, 1861. This inlet is a gap in the sandy barrier that lines the coast of North Carolina about eighteen miles southwest of Cape Hatteras. It was the principal entrance to Pamlico Sound, a large body of water lying between the sandy beach and the mainland. The channel of the entrance had about seven feet of water, and was protected by two small forts constructed on the sand. Our forces were under the command of Captain Samuel Barron, an officer of distinction, formerly in the United States Navy. After a short bombardment, which developed the strength of the enemy and his own comparative weakness, he capitulated.

A much larger fleet of naval vessels and transports, carrying fifteen thousand men, appeared off the harbor of Port Royal, South Carolina, on November 4, 1861. This harbor is situated midway between the cities of Charleston and Savannah. It is a broad estuary, into which flow some two or three streams, the interlacing of which with creeks forms a group of numerous islands. The parish, of which these are the greater part, constituted the richest agricultural district in the State; its staples being sea-island cotton and rice. The principal defenses were Fort Walker, a strong earthwork on Hilton Head, and Fort Beauregard on Philip's Island. The attack was made by the enemy on the 7th, by a fleet consisting of eight steamers and a sloop-of-war in tow. Some of the steamers were of the first class, as the Wabash and the Susquehanna. The conflict continued for four hours, when the forts, because untenable, were abandoned.

In the early part of 1862 several reconnaissances were sent out from Port Royal, and subsequently an expedition visited Darien and Brunswick in Georgia, and Fernandina, Jacksonville, and St. Augustine in Florida. Its design was to take and keep under control this line of seacoast, especially in Georgia. Some small steamers and other vessels were captured, and some ports were occupied.

The system of coast defenses which was adopted and the preparations which had been at that time made by the Government to resist these aggressions of the enemy should be stated. By reference to the topography of our coast, it will be seen that, in the State of North Carolina, are Albemarle and Pamlico Sounds, penetrating far into the interior; then the Cape Fear River, connecting with the ocean by two channels, the southwest channel being defended by a small inclosed fort and a water-battery. On the coast of South Carolina are Georgetown and Charleston Harbors. A succession of islands extends along the coast of South Carolina and Georgia, separated from the mainland by a channel which is navigable for vessels of moderate draft from Charleston to Fernandina, Florida. There are fewer assailable points on the Gulf than on the Atlantic. Pensacola, Mobile, and the mouth of the Mississippi were defended by works that had hitherto been regarded as sufficiently strong to repulse any naval attack that might be made upon them. Immediately after the bombardment of Fort Sumter, the work of improving the seacoast defense was begun and carried forward as rapidly as the limited means of the Government would permit.

The work that was now done has been so summarily and satisfactorily described by General A. L. Long, chief of artillery, in a paper contributed to the Southern Historical Society, that I avail myself of a few extracts:[18]

"Roanoke Island and other points on Albemarle and Pamlico Sounds were fortified. Batteries were established on the southeast entrance of Cape Fear River, and the works on the southwest entrance strengthened. Defenses were constructed at Georgetown, and at all assailable points on the northeast coast of South Carolina. The works of Charleston Harbor were greatly strengthened by earthworks and floating batteries. The defenses from Charleston down the coast of South Carolina and Georgia were confined chiefly to the islands and salient points bearing upon the channels leading inland. Defensive works were erected at all important points along the coast. Many of the defenses, being injudiciously located and hastily erected, offered but little resistance to the enemy when attacked. These defeats were not surprising, when we take into consideration the inexperience of the engineers, and the long line of seacoast to be defended. As soon as a sufficient naval force had been collected, an expedition under the command of General E. F. Butler was sent to the coast of North Carolina, and captured several important points. A second expedition, under Admiral Dupont and General Thomas W. Sherman, was sent to make a descent on the coast of South Carolina. On the 7th of November Dupont attacked the batteries that were designed to defend Port Royal harbor, as stated above, and almost without resistance carried them and gained possession of Port Royal. This is the best harbor in South Carolina, and is the strategic key to all the South Atlantic coast. Later, Burnside captured Roanoke Island, and established himself in eastern North Carolina without resistance. The rapid fall of Roanoke Island and Port Royal Harbor struck consternation into the hearts of the inhabitants along the entire coast. The capture of Port Royal gave to the Federals the entire possession of Beaufort Island, which afforded a secure place of rest for the army, while the harbor gave a safe anchorage for the fleet. Beaufort Island almost fills a deep indenture in the main shore, being separated the greater part of its extent by a narrow channel, which is navigable its entire circuit. Its northern extremity extends to within a few miles of the Charleston and Savannah Railroad. The main road from Port Royal to Pocotaligo crosses the channel at this point. The evacuation of Hilton Head, on the southwestern extremity of Beaufort Island, followed the capture of Port Royal. This exposed Savannah, only about twenty-five miles distant, to an attack from that direction. At the same time, the Federals having command of Helena Bay, Charleston was liable to be assailed from North Edisto or Stono Inlet, and the railroad could have been reached without opposition by the route from Port Royal to Pocotaligo.

"Such was the state of affairs when General Lee reached Charleston, about December 1, 1861, to assume the command of the Department of North Carolina, Georgia, and Florida. His vigorous mind at once comprehended the situation, and, with his accustomed energy, he met the difficulties that presented themselves. Directing fortifications to be constructed on the Stono and the Edisto and the Combahee, he fixed his headquarters at Coosawhatchee, the point most threatened, and directed defenses to be erected opposite Hilton Head, and on the Broad and Salkehatchie, to cover Savannah. These were the points requiring immediate attention. He superintended in person the works overlooking the approach to the railroad from Port Royal, and soon infused into his troops a part of his own energy. The works he had planned rose with magical rapidity. A few days after his arrival at Coosawhatchee, Dupont and Sherman sent their first reconnaissance in that direction, which was met and repulsed by shots from the newly erected batteries; and now, whether the Federals advanced toward the railroad or turned in the direction of Charleston or Savannah, they were arrested by our batteries. The people, seeing the Federals repulsed at every point, regained their confidence, and with it their energy.

"The most important points being now secured against immediate attack, the General proceeded to organize a system of seacoast defense different from that which had been previously adopted. He withdrew the troops and material from those works which had been established on the islands and salient points which he could not defend to a strong interior line, where the effect of the Federal naval force would be neutralized. After a careful reconnaissance of the coast, he designated such points as he considered it necessary to fortify. The most important positions on this extensive line were Georgetown, Charleston, Pocotaligo, Coosawhatchee, and Savannah. Coosawhatchee, being central, could communicate with either Charleston or Savannah in two or three hours by railroad, and in case of an attack they could support each other. The positions between Coosawhatchee and Savannah, and those between the former and Charleston, could be reënforced from the positions contiguous to them; there was thus a defensive relation throughout the entire line, extending from Winyaw Bay to the mouth of St. Mary's River, in Georgia, a distance of about two hundred miles. These detached and supporting works covered a most important agricultural country, and sufficed to defend it from the smaller expeditions made against that region.

"About March 1st the gunboats of the enemy entered the Savannah River by way of the channel leading from Hilton Head. Our naval force was too weak to dispute the possession with them, and they thus cut off the communication of Fort Pulaski with the city. Soon after, the enemy landed a force, under General Gillmore, on the opposite side of the fort. By April 1st they had powerful batteries in position, and on that day opened fire on the fort. Having no hope of succor, Fort Pulaski, after striking a blow for honor, surrendered with about five hundred men." [19]

[Footnote 18: "Seacoast Defenses of the Carolinas and Georgia."]

[Footnote 19: General A. L. Long, in Historical Society Papers.]


    Advance of General McClellan toward Centreville; his Report.—Our
    Forces ordered to the Peninsula.—Situation at Yorktown.—Siege by
    General McCellan.—General Johnston assigned to Command; his
    Recommendation.—Attack on General Magruder at Yorktown.—Movements
    of McClellan.—The Virginia.—General Johnston retires.—Delay at
    Norfolk.—Before Williamsburg.—Remark of Hancock.—Retreat up the
    Peninsula.—Sub-terra Shells used.-Evacuation of Norfolk.—Its
    Occupation by the Enemy.

In a previous chapter the retreat of our army from Centreville has been described, and reference has been made to the anticipation of the commanding general, J. E. Johnston, that the enemy would soon advance to attack that position. Since the close of the war we have gained information not at that time to us attainable, which shows that, as early as the 31st of January, 1862, the commanding General of the enemy's forces presented to his President an argument against that line of operations, setting forth the advantages of a movement by water-transports down the Chesapeake into the Rappahannock; and that in the following February, by the direction of President Lincoln, General McClellan held a council with twelve of the generals of that army, who decided in favor of the movement by way of Annapolis, and thence to the Rappahannock, to which their President gave his assent. When General McClellan, then in the city of Washington, heard that our army had retired, he ordered a general movement of his troops toward the position we had lately occupied. A detachment was sent to make reconnaissance as far as the line of the Rappahannock, by which it was ascertained that our troops had passed beyond that river. His account of this movement was given in the following report:

"FAIRFAX COURT-HOUSE, March 11, 1862, 8.30 P.M.

"I have just returned from a ride of more than forty miles. Have examined Centreville, Union Mills, Blackburn's Ford, etc. The rebels have left all their positions, and, from the information obtained during our ride to-day, I am satisfied that they have fallen behind the Rapidan, holding Fredericksburg and Gordonsville. Their movement from here was very sudden. They left many wagons, some caissons, clothing, ammunition, personal baggage, etc. Their winter-quarters were admirably constructed, many not yet quite finished. The works at Centreville are formidable; more so than at Manassas. Except the turnpike, the roads are horrible. The country entirely stripped of forage and provisions. Having fully consulted with General McDowell, I propose occupying Manassas with a portion of Banks's command, and then at once throwing all forces I can concentrate upon the line agreed upon last week. The Monitor justifies this course. I telegraphed this morning to have the transports brought to Washington, to start from there. I presume you will approve this course. Circumstances may keep me out here some little time longer.[20]

"G. B. MCCLELLAN, Major-General.

"Hon. E. M. STANTON, Secretary of War."

The reference to the Monitor is to be explained by the condition previously made in connection with the proposition of going to Fortress Monroe, that the Merrimac, our Virginia, should first be neutralized. The order to bring the "transports" to Washington was due to the fact that they had not dared to run by our batteries on the Potomac, and intended to avoid them by going to Annapolis for embarkation. The withdrawal of our batteries from the banks of the Potomac had removed the objection to going down that river, and the withdrawal of our forces across the Rappahannock was fatal to the programme of landing on that river, and marching to Richmond before our forces could be in position to resist an attack on the capital. Notwithstanding the assurance given that the destruction of railroads and bridges proved that our army could not intend to advance, apprehension was still entertained of an attack upon Washington.

As soon as we ascertained that the enemy was concentrating his forces at Fortress Monroe, to advance upon our capital by that line of approach, all our disposable force was ordered to the Peninsula, between the James and York Rivers, to the support of General John B. Magruder, who, with a force of seven to eight thousand men, had, by availing himself of the Warwick River, a small stream which runs through a low, marshy country, from near Yorktown to the James River, constructed an intrenched line across the Peninsula, and with equal skill and intrepidity had thus far successfully checked every attempt to break it, though the enemy was vastly superior in numbers to the troops under General Magruder's command. Having a force entirely inadequate to occupy and defend the whole line, over thirteen miles long, he built dams in the Warwick River, so as to form pools, across which the enemy, without bridges, could not pass, and posted detachments at each dam to prevent the use of them by attacking columns of the enemy. To defend the left of his line, where the stream became too small to present a serious obstacle to the passage of troops, redoubts were constructed, with curtains connecting them.

Between Yorktown and Gloucester Point, on the opposite shore, the York River is contracted to less than a mile in width, and General Magruder had constructed batteries at both places, which, by their cross fire, presented a formidable obstacle to the accent of ordinary vessels. The fortifications at Norfolk and the navy-yard, together with batteries at Sewell's Point and Craney Island, in conjunction with the navy, offered means of defense against any attempt to land troops on the south side of James River. After the first trial of strength with our Virginia, there had been an evident disinclination on the part of the enemy's vessels to encounter her, so that, as long as she floated, the deep water of the roads and mouth of James River. was not likely to be invaded by ships of war.

As a second line of defense, a system of detached works had been constructed by General Magruder near to Williamsburg, where the width of the Peninsula, available for the passage of troops, was only three or four miles. The advantage thus secured to his forces, if they should be compelled to retreat, will be readily appreciated. I am not aware that torpedoes had been placed in York River to prevent the entrance of the enemy's vessels; indeed, at that time, but little progress had been made in the development of that means of harbor and river defense. General Rains, as will be seen hereafter, had matured his invention of sensitive fuse-primers for sub-terra shells, and proposed their use for floating torpedoes. Subsequently he did much to advance knowledge in regard to making torpedoes efficient against the enemy's vessels.

Such was the condition of the Virginia Peninsula between the York and James Rivers when General McClellan embarked the mass of the army he commanded in northern Virginia and proceeded to Fortress Monroe; and when the greater part of our army, under the command of General J. E. Johnston, was directed to move for the purpose of counteracting this new plan of the enemy.

Early in April, General McClellan had landed about one hundred thousand men at or near Fortress Monroe.[21] At this time General Magruder occupied the lower Peninsula with his force of seven or eight thousand men. Marshes, creeks, and dense wood gave to that position such advantage that, in his report, made at a subsequent period, he expressed the belief that with twenty or twenty-five thousand men he could have held it against any supposable attack. When McClellan advanced with his immense army, Magruder fell back to the line of Warwick River, which has been imperfectly described, and there checked the enemy; and the vast army of invasion, repulsed in several assaults by the most heroic conduct of our troops, commenced a siege by regular approaches. After the first advance of the enemy, General Magruder was reënforced by some troops from the south side of James River and General Wilcox's brigade, which had been previously detached from the army under General Johnston. On the 9th of April General Magruder's command, thus reënforced, amounted to about twelve thousand. On that day General Early joined with his division from the Army of Northern Virginia. It had gone by rail to Richmond and thence down the York and James Rivers in vessels towed by tugs—except the trains and artillery, which moved by land. This division had about eight thousand officers and men for duty. General Magruder's force was thus increased to about twenty thousand. This was the first detachment from the Army of Northern Virginia which arrived on the Peninsula.

General McClellan, in a cipher dispatch of the 7th of April, two days previous, informed Secretary Stanton that prisoners stated that General J. E. Wharton (no doubt, Johnston) had the day before arrived in Yorktown with strong reënforcements, and adds: "It seems clear that I shall have the whole force of the enemy on my hands, probably not less than one hundred thousand men, and possibly more. . . . When my present command all joins, I shall have about eighty-five thousand men for duty, from which a large force must be taken for guards, escort, etc." After some remarks about the strength of our intrenchments, and his conviction that the great battle which would decide the existing contest would be fought there, he urges as necessary for his success that there should be an attack on the rear of Gloucester Point, and adds: "My present strength will not admit of a detachment for this purpose without materially impairing the efficiency of this column. Commodore Goldsborough thinks the work too strong for his available vessels, unless I can turn Gloucester." [22]

In the cipher dispatch of the 7th of April to President Lincoln, General McClellan acknowledges a telegram of the previous day, and adds, "In reply, I have the honor to state that my entire force for duty only amounts to about eighty-five thousand men." [23] He then mentions the fact that General Wool's command is not under his orders, etc.

Subsequent correspondence clearly shows that General McClellan would not risk making a detachment from his army to turn the position at Gloucester Point, and that the navy would not attempt to operate against the battery at that place. He therefore urgently pressed for reënforcements to act on the north side of York River.

General Magruder had, up to and after the time of receiving the reënforcements before mentioned, worked day and night in constructing and strengthening his defenses. His small force had been assisted in this work by a considerable body of negro laborers, and an active participant and competent judge, General Early, thus wrote of his conduct:

"The assuming and maintaining this line by Magruder, with his small force, in the face of such overwhelming odds, was one of the boldest exploits ever performed by a military commander; and he had so manoeuvred his troops, by displaying them rapidly at different points, as to produce the impression on his opponent that he had a large army."

As soon as it was definitely ascertained that General McClellan, with his main army, was on the Peninsula, General J. E. Johnston was assigned to the command of the Department of the Peninsula and Norfolk, and directed to proceed thither to examine the condition of affairs there. After spending a day on General Magruder's defensive line, he returned to Richmond, and recommended the abandonment of the Peninsula, and that we should take a defensive position nearer to Richmond. The question was postponed, and an appointment made for its discussion, to which I proposed to invite the Secretary of War, General Randolph, and General Lee, then stationed in Richmond, and in general charge of army operations. General Johnston asked that he might invite General Longstreet and General G. W. Smith to be present, to which I assented.

At this meeting. General Johnston announced his plan to be, the withdrawal of General Magruder's troops from the Peninsula, and of General Huger's from Norfolk, to be united with the main body of the Army of Northern Virginia, and the withdrawal of the troops from South Carolina and Georgia, his belief being that General Magruder's line was indefensible with the forces we could concentrate there; that the batteries at Gloucester Point could not be maintained; that the enemy would turn the position at Yorktown by ascending the York River, if the defensive line there should possibly be maintained. To this plan the Secretary of War objected, because the navy-yard at Norfolk offered our best if not our only opportunity to construct in any short time gunboats for coastwise and harbor defense. General Lee, always bold in his views and unusually sagacious in penetrating the designs of the enemy, insisted that the Peninsula offered great advantages to a smaller force in resisting a numerically superior assailant, and, in the comprehensive view which he usually took of the necessities of other places than the one where he chanced to be, objected to withdrawing the troops from South Carolina and Georgia, as involving the probable capture of Charleston and Savannah. By recent service in that section he was well informed as to the condition of those important ports. General G. W. Smith, as well as I remember, was in full accord with General Johnston, and General Longstreet partially so.

After hearing fully the views of the several officers named, I decided to resist the enemy on the Peninsula, and, with the aid of the navy, to hold Norfolk and keep the command of the James River as long as possible. Arrangements were made, with such force as our means permitted, to occupy the country north of Richmond, and the Shenandoah Valley, and, with the rest of General Johnston's command, to make a junction with General Magruder to resist the enemy's forces on the Peninsula. Though General J. E. Johnston did not agree with this decision, he did not ask to be relieved, and I had no wish to separate him from the troops with whom he was so intimately acquainted, and whose confidence I believed he deservedly possessed.

To recur to General Magruder: soon after the landing of the enemy, skirmishes commenced with our forces, and the first vigorous attempt was made to break the line at Lee's Mills, where there were some newly constructed defenses. The enemy was so signally repulsed that he described them as very strong works, and thereafter commenced the construction of parallels and regular approaches, having an exaggerated idea as well of the number of our troops as of the strength of our works at that time. General Magruder, in his report, notices a serious attempt to break his line of the Warwick at Dam No. 1, about the center of the line, and its weakest point. Opening with a heavy bombardment at nine in the morning, which continued until three P.M., heavy masses of infantry then commenced to deploy, and, with musketry-fire, were thrown forward to storm our six-pounder battery, which had been effectively used, and was the only artillery we had there in position. A portion of the column charged across the dam, but Brigadier-General Howell Cobb met the attack with great firmness, the enemy was driven with the bayonet from some of our rifle-pits of which he had gained possession, and the assaulting column recoiled with loss from the steady fire of our troops.

The enemy's skirmishers pressed closely in front of the redoubts on the left of our line, and with their long-range rifles had a decided advantage over our men, armed with smooth-bore muskets. In addition to the rifle-pits they dug, they were covered by a dwelling-house and a large peach-orchard which extended to within a few hundred yards of our works. On the 11th of April General Magruder ordered sorties to be made from all the main points of his line. General Wilcox sent out a detachment from Wynne's Mill which encountered the advance of the enemy in his front and drove it back to the main line. Later in the day General Early sent out from Redoubt No. 5 Colonel Ward's Florida regiment and the Second Mississippi Battalion, under Colonel Taylor. They drove the sharpshooters from their rifle-pits and pursued them to the main road from Warwick Court-House, encountered a battery posted at an earthwork, and compelled it precipitately to retire. On the approach of a large force of the enemy's infantry, Colonel Ward returned to our works, after having set fire to the dwelling-house above mentioned. These affairs developed the fact that the enemy was in strong force, both in front of Wynne's Mill and Redoubts Nos. 4 and 5. On the next night General Early sent out Colonel Terry's Virginia regiment to cut down the peach-orchard and burn the rest of the houses which had afforded shelter to the assailants; and on the succeeding night Colonel McRae, with his North Carolina regiment, went farther to the front and felled the cedars along the main road which partially hid the enemy's movements, and subsequently our men were not annoyed by the sharpshooters. About the middle of April a further reënforcement of two divisions from the Army of Northern Virginia was added to our forces on the Peninsula, which amounted, when General Johnston assumed command, to something over fifty thousand.

The work of strengthening the defenses was still continued. On the 16th of April an assault was made on our line, to the right of Yorktown, which was repulsed with heavy loss to the enemy, and such serious discomfiture that henceforward his plan seemed to be to rely upon bombardment, for which numerous batteries were prepared.

The views of the enemy, as revealed by the testimony before the Committee on the Conduct of the War, were that he could gain possession of Gloucester Point only by reënforcements operating on the north side of York River, or by the previous reduction of Yorktown. In addition to the answer given by General McClellan, I quote from the testimony of General Keyes. He said, "The possession of Gloucester Point by the enemy retarded the taking of Yorktown, and it also enabled the enemy to close the river at that point," and added, "Gloucester must have fallen upon our getting possession of Yorktown, and the York River would then have been open." [24]

With the knowledge possessed by us, General McClellan certainly might have sent a detachment from his army which, after crossing the York River, could have turned the position at Gloucester Point and have overcome our small garrison at that place; but this is but one of the frequent examples of war in which the immunity of one army is derived from the mistakes of the other.

An opinion has existed among some of our best-informed officers that Franklin's division was kept on transports for the purpose of landing on the north side of York River to capture our battery at Gloucester Point, and thus open the way to turn our position by ascending the York River. Upon the authority of Swinton, the fairest and most careful of the Northern writers on the war, it appears that Franklin's division had disembarked before the evacuation of Yorktown; and, upon the authority of the Prince de Joinville, serving on the staff of General McClellan, it appears that his commanding general was not willing to intrust that service to a single division, and plaintively describes the effect produced by the refusal of President Lincoln to send McDowell's corps to reënforce McClellan. He writes thus:

"The news was received by the Federal army with dissatisfaction, although the majority could not then foresee the deplorable consequences of an act performed, it must be supposed, with no evil intention, but with inconceivable recklessness. . . . It was the mainspring removed from a great work already begun. It deranged everything. Among the divisions of the corps of McDowell, there was one—that of Franklin—which was regretted more than all the rest. . . . He [the commander-in-chief] held it in great esteem, and earnestly demanded its restoration. It was sent back to him without any explanation, in the same manner as it had been withheld. This splendid division, eleven thousand strong, arrived, and for a moment the commander thought of intrusting to it alone the storming of Gloucester, but the idea was abandoned."

On the 28th of April General J. E. Johnston wrote to Flag-Officer Tatnall, commanding the naval forces in the James River, requesting him, if practicable, to proceed with the Virginia to York River for the purpose of destroying the enemy's transports, to which Commodore Tatnall replied that it could only be done in daylight, when he would be exposed to the fire of the forts, and have to contend with the squadron of men-of-war stationed below them, and that, if this should be safely done, according to the information derived from the pilots, it would not be possible for the Virginia to reach the enemy's transports at Poquosin, while the withdrawal of the Virginia would be to abandon the defense of Norfolk, and to remove the obstacles she opposed to "the enemy's operations in the James River." [25]

Meanwhile, the brilliant movements of the intrepid Jackson created such apprehension of an attack upon Washington City by the Army of the Shenandoah, that President Lincoln refused the repeated requests of General McClellan to send him McDowell's corps to operate on the north side of the York River against our battery at Gloucester Point.

On the 28th of the following June, Mr. Lincoln, noticing what he regarded as ungenerous complaint, wrote to General McClellan: "If you have had a drawn battle or a repulse, it is the price we pay for the enemy not being in Washington. We protected Washington, and the enemy concentrated on you." [26]

The month of April was cold and rainy, and our men poorly provided with shelter, and with only the plainest rations; yet, under all these discomforts, they steadily labored to perfect the defenses, and, when they were not on the front line, were constantly employed in making traverses and epaulments in the rear. Whether General McClellan, under the pressure from Washington, would have made an early assault,[27] or have adhered to the policy of regular approaches, and, relying on his superiority in artillery, have waited to batter our earthworks in breach, and whether all which had been done, or which it was practicable under the circumstances to do, to strengthen the main line would have made it sufficiently strong to resist the threatened bombardment, is questionable; and how soon that bombardment would have commenced is now indeterminate. A telegram from President Lincoln to General McClellan is suggestive on this point. It reads thus:

"WASHINGTON, May 1, 1862.

"Your call for Parrott guns from Washington alarms me—chiefly because it argues indefinite procrastination. Is anything to be done?" [28]

By the following telegram sent by me to General J. E. Johnston, commanding at Yorktown, the contents of that which I had received from him, and of which I am not now possessed, will be readily inferred:


"General J. E. JOHNSTON, Yorktown, Virginia.

"Accepting your conclusion that you must soon retire, arrangements are commenced for the abandonment of the navy-yard and removal of public property both from Norfolk and Peninsula. Your announcement to-day that you would withdraw to-morrow night takes us by surprise, and must involve enormous losses, including unfinished gunboats. Will the safety of your army allow more time?


My next step was to request the Secretary of War, General Randolph, and the Secretary of the Navy, Mr. Mallory, to proceed to Yorktown and Norfolk to see whether the evacuation could not be postponed, and to make all practicable arrangements to remove the machinery, material, ordnance, and supplies for future use. At the suggestion of the Secretary of War, I agreed that he should first go with the Secretary of the Navy to Norfolk and thence pass over to Yorktown.

On the next morning they left for Norfolk. General Randolph, in his testimony before a joint special committee of the Confederate Congress, said:

"A few hours after we arrived in Norfolk, an officer from General Johnston's army made his appearance, with an order for General Huger to evacuate Norfolk immediately. . . . As that would have involved heavy losses in stores, munitions, and arms, I took the responsibility of giving General Huger a written order to delay the evacuation until he could remove such stores, munitions, and arms as could be carried off. . . . Mr. Mallory was with me and gave similar instructions to the commandant of the navy yard. . . . The evacuation was delayed for about a week. . . . When the council of war met [the conference with the President heretofore referred to], it was supposed that, if the enemy assaulted our army at the Warwick River line, we should defeat them; but that, if instead of assaulting they made regular approaches to either flank of the line and took advantage of their great superiority of heavy artillery, the probability would be that one flank or both of the army would be uncovered, and thus the enemy, ascending the York and James Rivers in transports, could turn the flank of the army and compel it to retreat. . . . They made regular approaches, mounted the largest-sized guns, such as we could not compete with, and made the position of Yorktown untenable. Nearly all of our heavy rifled guns burst during the siege. The remainder of the heavy guns were in the water-batteries," etc.

The permanent occupation of Norfolk after our army withdrew from the lower Peninsula and the enemy possessed it was so obviously impossible as not to require explanation; but, while the enemy was engaged in the pursuit of our retreating columns, it was deemed justifiable to delay the evacuation of Norfolk for the purposes indicated in the above answer of the Secretary of War. The result justified the decision.

The order for the withdrawal of the army from the line of the Warwick River on the night of the 2d of April was delayed until the next night, because, as I have been informed, some of the troops were not ready to move. Heavy cannonading, both on the night of the 2d and 3d, concealed the fact of the purpose to withdraw, and the evacuation was made so successfully, as appears by the testimony before the United States Congressional Committee on the Conduct of the War, that the enemy was surprised the next morning to find the lines unoccupied.

The loss of public property, as was anticipated, was great, the steamboats expected for its transportation not having arrived before the evacuation was made. From a narrative by General Early I make the following extract:

"A very valuable part of the property so lost, and which we stood much in need of, consisted of a very large number of picks and spades, many of them entirely new. All of our heavy guns, including some recently arrived and not mounted, together with a good deal of ammunition piled up on the wharf, had to be left behind."

The land transportation was quite deficient. General Magruder's troops had scarcely any, and others of the more recent organizations were in a like condition; as no supplies had been accumulated at Williamsburg, this want of transportation would necessarily involve want of rations in the event of delays on the retreat.

At Williamsburg, about twelve miles from Yorktown, General Magruder, as has been mentioned, had constructed a line of detached works. The largest of these, Fort Magruder, was constructed at a point a short distance beyond where the Lee's Mill and Yorktown roads united, and where the enemy in his pursuit first encountered our retiring forces, and were promptly repulsed. General Magruder, whose arduous service and long exposure on the Peninsula has been noticed, was compelled by illness to leave his division. His absence at this moment was the more to be regretted, as it appears that the positions of the redoubts he had constructed were not all known to the commanding General, and some of them being unoccupied were seized by the enemy, and held subsequently to our disadvantage. General McClellan, in his official report from "bivouac in front of Williamsburg, May 5, 1862," says, "General Hancock has taken two redoubts and repulsed Early's rebel brigade by a real charge of the bayonet, taking one colonel and one hundred and fifty other prisoners," etc. As this is selected for the brilliant event in the affair before Williamsburg, I will extract fully from General Early's report:

"LYNCHBURG, June 9, 1862.

"In accordance with orders received the evening before, my brigade was in readiness to take up the line of march from its camp west of Williamsburg toward Richmond on the 5th of May. . . . I was directed by Major-General D. H. Hill not to move my infantry, and in a short time I was ordered by him to march back, and report with my regiments to Major-General Longstreet at Williamsburg. . . . Between three and four o'clock, P.M., I was ordered by General Longstreet to move to the support of Brigadier-General Anderson of his division, at or near Fort Magruder. . . . Before my command had proceeded far toward its destination, I received an order from General Longstreet to send him two regiments. . . . With the remainder of my command, being my brigade proper, I proceeded, as near as practicable, to the position designated by General Longstreet on the left and rear of Fort Magruder. . . . In a short time Major-General Hill arrived, and, having ascertained that the enemy had a battery in front of us, he informed me that he wished me to attack and capture the battery with my brigade, but before doing so he must see General Longstreet on the subject. . . . General Hill being on the right and accompanying the brigade, I placed myself on the left with the Twenty-fourth Virginia Regiment for the purpose of directing its movements, as I was satisfied from the sound of the enemy's guns that this regiment would come directly on the battery. . . . In an open field, in view of Fort Magruder, at the end farthest from the fort, the enemy had taken position with a battery of six pieces . . . supported by a brigade of infantry under the command of Brigadier-General Hancock. In this field were two or three redoubts, previously built by our troops, of one, at least, of which the enemy had possession, his artillery being posted in front of it, near some farmhouses, and supported by a body of infantry, the balance of the infantry being in the redoubt, and in the edge of the woods close by. The Twenty-fourth Virginia Regiment, as I had anticipated, came directly upon the battery. . . . This regiment, without pausing or wavering, charged upon the enemy under a heavy fire, and drove back his guns and the infantry supporting them to the cover of the redoubt. … I sent orders to the other regiments to advance; these orders were anticipated by Colonel McRae of the Fifth North Carolina Regiment, who was on the extreme right of my brigade, and marched down to the support of the Twenty-fourth, traversing the whole front that should have been occupied by the other two regiments."

General Early, having received a severe wound, soon after the Twenty-fourth Virginia Regiment charged the battery, was compelled by exhaustion from loss of blood and intense pain to leave the field just as the Fifth North Carolina Regiment, led by its gallant colonel, charged on the enemy's artillery and infantry. Of that charge General Early writes:

"This North Carolina Regiment, in conjunction with the Twenty-fourth Virginia Regiment, made an attack upon the vastly superior forces of the enemy, which for its gallantry is unsurpassed in the annals of warfare: their conduct was such as to elicit from the enemy himself the highest praise."

This refers to the chivalric remark made by General Hancock to Dr. Cullen, left in charge of our wounded, viz., "The Fifth North Carolina and Twenty-fourth Virginia deserve to have the word immortal inscribed on their banners." Colonel McRae, who succeeded to the command after General Early retired, states in his report that he sent to General Hill for reënforcements in order to advance, and in reply received an order to retire: that his men were holding the enemy to his shelter in such way that they were not at all suffering, but, when he commenced retiring, the enemy rose and fired upon his men, doing the greatest damage that was done. Some of them obliqued too far to the right in going back, and met a regiment of the enemy concealed in the woods, and were thus captured. General Early writes: "The two regiments that united in the assault were not repulsed at all. They drove the enemy to the cover of the redoubt and the shelter of the woods near it, where he was held at bay by my two regiments, which had suffered comparatively little at that time." He confidently expresses the opinion that, had his attack been supported promptly and vigorously, the enemy's force there engaged must have been captured, as it had crossed over to that point on a narrow mill-dam, and had only that way to escape.

The claim of the enemy to have achieved a victory at Williamsburg is refuted by the fact that our troops remained in possession of the field during the night, and retired the next morning to follow up the retreat, which was only interrupted by the necessity of checking the enemy until our trains could proceed far enough to be out of danger. The fact of our wounded being left at Williamsburg was only due to our want of ambulances in which to remove them.

Though General McClellan at this time estimated our force as "probably greater a good deal" than his own, the fact is, it was numerically less than half the number he had for duty. Severe exposure and fatigue must, by sickness, have diminished our force more than it was increased by absentees returning to duty after the middle of April, so that at the end of the month the number was probably less than fifty thousand present for duty. General McClellan's report on the 30th of April, 1862, as shown by the certified statement, gives the aggregate present for duty at one hundred and twelve thousand three hundred and ninety-two.[29]

When the Confederates evacuated Yorktown, General Franklin's division had just been disembarked from the transports. It was reembarked, and started on the morning of the 6th up the York River.[30]

After the battle of Williamsburg our army continued its retreat up the Peninsula. Here, for the first time, sub-terra shells were employed to check a marching column. The event is thus described by General Rains, the inventor:

"On the day we left Williamsburg, after the battle, we worked hard to get our artillery and some we had captured over the sloughs about four miles distant. On account of the tortuous course of the road, we could not bring a single gun to bear upon the enemy who were pursuing us, and shelling the road as they advanced. Fortunately, we found in a mud-hole a broken-down ammunition-wagon containing five loaded shells. Four of these, armed with a sensitive fuse-primer, were planted in our rear, near some trees cut down as obstructions to the road. A body of the enemy's cavalry came upon these sub-terra shells, and they exploded with terrific effect.

"The force behind halted for three days, and finally turned off from the road, doubtless under the apprehension that it was mined throughout. Thus our rear was relieved of the enemy. No soldier will march over mined land, and a corps of sappers, each man having two ten-inch shells, two primers, and a mule to carry them, could stop any army."

Accounts, contemporaneously published at the North, represent the terror inspired by these shells, extravagantly describe the number of them, and speak of the necessity of leaving the road to avoid them.

The next morning after the battle of the 5th, at Williamsburg, Longstreet's and D. H. Hill's divisions, being those there engaged, followed in the line of retreat, Stuart's cavalry moving after them— they marched that day about twelve miles. In the mean time Franklin's division had gone up the York River, and landed a short distance below West Point, on the south side of York River, and moved into a thick wood in the direction of the New Kent road, thus threatening the flank of our line of march. Two brigades of General G. W. Smith's division, Hampton's and Hood's, were detached under the command of General Whiting to dislodge the enemy, which they did after a short conflict, driving him through the wood to the protection of his gunboats in York River.

On the next morning the rear divisions joined those in advance at Barhamsville, and the retreat of the whole army was resumed—Smith's and Magruder's divisions moving by the New Kent Court-House to the Baltimore Cross Roads, and Longstreet's and Hill's to the Long Bridge, where the whole army remained in line facing to the east for five days.

The retreat had been successfully conducted. In the principal action, that at Williamsburg, our forces, after General Hill's division had been brought back to the support of General Longstreet, did not exceed, probably was not equal to, one half that of the enemy. Yet, as has been seen, the position was held as long as was necessary for the removal of our trains, and our troops slept upon the field of battle. The loss of the enemy greatly exceeded our own, which was about twelve hundred; while General Hooker, commanding one division of the Federal army, in his testimony stated the loss in his division to have been seventeen hundred.[31]

Among the gallant and much regretted of those lost by us, was Colonel
Ward, of Florida, whose conduct at Yorktown has been previously
noticed, and of whom General Early, in his report of the battle of
Williamsburg, says:

"On the list of the killed in the Second Florida Regiment is found the name of its colonel, George T. Ward, as true a gentleman and as gallant a soldier as has drawn a sword in this war, and whose conduct under fire it was my fortune to witness on another occasion. His loss to his regiment, to his State, and to the Confederacy can not be easily compensated."

Colonel Ward, with his regiment, had been detached from General Early's command in the early part of the action. I regret that I have not access to the report of General Longstreet, where, no doubt, may also be found due notice of Colonel Christopher Mott, whom I knew personally. In his youth he served in the regiment commanded by me during the war with Mexico. He was brave, cheerful, prompt, and equal to every trial to which he was subjected, giving early promise of high soldierly capacity. He afterward held various places of honor and trust in civil life, and there were many in Mississippi who, like myself, deeply lamented his death in the height of his usefulness.

General Huger, commanding at Norfolk, and Captain Lee, commanding the navy-yard, by the authority of the Secretaries of War and Navy, delayed the evacuation of both, as stated by General Randolph, Secretary of War, for about a week after General Johnston sent orders to General Huger to leave immediately. While he was employed in removing the valuable stores and machinery, as we learn from the work of the Comte de Paris, President Lincoln and his Secretary of War arrived at Fortress Monroe, and on the 8th of May an expedition against Norfolk by the troops under General Wool was contemplated. He writes:

"Being apprised by the columns of smoke which rose on the horizon that the propitious moment had arrived, Wool proposed to the President to undertake an expedition against Norfolk. Max Weber's brigade was speedily embarked, and, to protect his descent, Commodore Goldsborough's fleet was ordered to escort it. But the Confederate batteries, not yet having been abandoned, fired a few shots in reply, while the Virginia, which, since the wounding of the brave Buchanan, had been commanded by Commodore Tatnall, showed her formidable shell, and the expedition was countermanded. Two more days were consumed in waiting. Finally, on the morning of the 10th, Weber disembarked east of Sewell's Point. This time the enemy's artillery was silent. There was found an intrenched camp mounting a few guns, but absolutely deserted. General Wool reached the city of Norfolk, which had been given up to its peaceful inhabitants the day previous, and hastened to place a military governor there." [32]

Reposing on these cheaply won laurels, the expedition returned to Fortress Monroe, leaving Brigadier-General Viele, with some troops brought from the north side of the river, to hold the place. The navy-yard and workshops had been set on fire before our troops withdrew, so as to leave little to the enemy save the glory of capturing an undefended town. The troops at Fortress Monroe were numerically superior to the command of General Huger, and could have been readily combined, with the forces at and about Roanoke Island, for a forward movement on the south side of the James River. In view of this probability, General Huger, with the main part of his force, was halted for a time at Petersburg, but, as soon as it was ascertained that no preparations were being made by the enemy for that campaign, so palpably advantageous to him, General Huger's troops were moved to the north side of the James River to make a junction with the army of General Johnston.

Previously, detachments had been sent from the force withdrawn from Norfolk to strengthen the command of Brigadier-General J. B. Anderson, who was placed in observation before General McDowell, then at Fredericksburg, threatening to advance with a force four or five times as great as that under General Anderson, and another detachment had been sent to the aid of Brigadier-General Branch, who, with his brigade, had recently been brought up from North Carolina and sent forward to Gordonsville, for the like purpose as that for which General Anderson was placed near Fredericksburg.

[Footnote 20: See "Report on the Conduct of the War," Part I, pp. 10-12, 309-311.]

[Footnote 21: See "Report on the Conduct of the War," p. 319. Letter of
President Lincoln to General McClellan, April 6, 1862.]

[Footnote 22: "Report on the Conduct of the War," Part I, p. 320.]

[Footnote 23: Ibid., p. 321.]

[Footnote 24: "Report on the Conduct of the War," Part I, pp. 601, 602.]

[Footnote 25: "Life of Commodore Tatnall," pp. 166, 167.]

[Footnote 26: "Report on the Conduct of the War," p. 340.]

[Footnote 27: On April 6, 1862, President Lincoln wrote to General McClellan as follows: "You now have over one hundred thousand troops with you, independent of General Wool's command. I think you had better break the enemy's line from Yorktown to Warwick River at once. They will probably use time as advantageously as you can."—("Report on the Conduct of the War," pp. 319, 320.)]

[Footnote 28: "Report on the Conduct of the War," p. 324.]

[Footnote 29: "Report on the Conduct of the War," pp. 323, 324.]

[Footnote 30: "Army of the Potomac," Swinton, p. 117.]

[Footnote 31: "Report on the Conduct of the War," p. 579.]

[Footnote 32: "History of the Civil War in America," Comte de Paris, vol. ii, p. 30.]


    A New Phase to our Military Problem.—General Johnston's Position.—
    Defenses of James River.—Attack on Fort Drury.—Johnston crosses
    the Chickahominy.—Position of McClellan.—Position of McDowell.—
    Strength of Opposing Forces.—Jackson's Expedition down the
    Shenandoah Valley.—Panic at Washington and the North.—Movements
    to intercept Jackson.—His Rapid Movements.—Repulses Fremont.—
    Advance of Shields.—Fall of Ashby.—Port Republic, Battle of.—
    Results of this Campaign.

The withdrawal of our army to the Chickahominy, the abandonment of Norfolk, the destruction of the Virginia, and opening of the lower James River, together with the fact that McClellan's army, by changing his base to the head of York River, was in a position to cover the approach to Washington, and thus to remove the objections which had been made to sending the large force, retained for the defense of that city, to make a junction with McClellan, all combined to give a new phase to our military problem.

Soon after, General Johnston took position on the north side of the Chickahominy; accompanied by General Lee, I rode out to his headquarters in the field, in order that by conversation with him we might better understand his plans and expectations. He came in after we arrived, saying that he had been riding around his lines to see how his position could be improved. A long conversation followed, which was so inconclusive that it lasted until late in the night, so late that we remained until the next morning. As we rode back to Richmond, reference was naturally made to the conversation of the previous evening and night, when General Lee confessed himself, as I was, unable to draw from it any more definite purpose than that the policy was to improve his position as far as practicable, and wait for the enemy to leave his gunboats, so that an opportunity might be offered to meet him on the land.

In consequence of the opening of the James River to the enemy's fleet, the attempts to utilize this channel for transportation, so as to approach directly to Richmond, soon followed. We had then no defenses on the James River below Drury's Bluff, about seven miles distant from Richmond. There an earthwork had been constructed and provided with an armament of four guns. Rifle-pits had been made in front of the fort, and obstructions had been placed in the river by driving piles, and sinking some vessels. The crew of the Virginia, after her destruction, had been sent to this fort, which was then in charge of Commander Farrand, Confederate States Navy.

On the 15th of April the enemy's fleet of five ships of war, among the number, their much-vaunted Monitor, took position and opened fire upon the fort between seven and eight o'clock. Our small vessel, the Patrick Henry, was lying above the obstruction, and coöperated with the fort in its defense—the Monitor and ironclad Galena steamed up to about six hundred yards' distance; the others, wooden vessels, were kept at long range.

The armor of the flag-ship Galena was badly injured, and many of the crew killed or wounded. The Monitor was struck repeatedly, but the shot only bent her plates. At about eleven o'clock the fleet abandoned the attack, returning discomfited whence they came. The commander of the Monitor, Lieutenant Jeffers, in his report, says that "the action was most gallantly fought against great odds, and with the usual effect against earthworks." . . . He adds, "It was impossible to reduce such works, except with the aid of a land force." The enemy in their reports recognized the efficiency of our fire by both artillery and riflemen, the sincerity of which was made manifest in the failure to renew the attempt.

[Illustration: The Davis House, at Richmond.]

The small garrison at Fort Drury, only adequate to the service it had performed, that of repelling an attempt by the fleet to pass up James River, was quite insufficient to prevent the enemy from landing below the fort, or to resist an attack by infantry. To guard against its sudden capture by such means, the garrison was increased by the addition of Bryan's regiment of Georgia Rifles.

After the repulse of the enemy's gunboats at Drury's Bluff, I wrote to General Johnston a letter to be handed to him by my aide, Colonel G. W. C. Lee, an officer of the highest intelligence and reputation— referring to him for full information in regard to the affair at Drury's Bluff, as well as to the positions and strength of our forces on the south side of the James River. After some speculations on the probable course of the enemy, and expressions of confidence, I informed the General that my aide would communicate freely to him and bring back to me any information with which he might be intrusted. Not receiving any definite reply, I soon thereafter rode out to visit General Johnston at his headquarters, and was surprised in the suburbs of Richmond, viz., on the other side of Gillis's Creek, to meet a portion of light artillery, and to learn that the whole army had crossed the Chickahominy.

General Johnston's explanation to this (to me) unexpected movement was, that he thought the water of the Chickahominy unhealthy, and had directed the troops to cross and halt at the first good water on the southern side, which he supposed would be found near to the river. He also adverted to the advantage of having the river in front rather than in the rear of him—an advantage certainly obvious enough, if the line was to be near to it on either of its banks.

The considerations which induced General McClellan to make his base on the York River had at least partly ceased to exist. From the corps for which he had so persistently applied, he had received the division which he most valued, and the destruction of the Virginia had left the James River open to his fleet and transports as far up as Drury's Bluff, and the withdrawal of General Johnston across the Chickahominy made it quite practicable for him to transfer his army to the James River, the south side of which had then but weak defenses, and thus by a short march to gain more than all the advantages which, at a later period of the war, General Grant obtained at the sacrifice of a hecatomb of soldiers.

Referring, again, to the work of the Comte de Paris, who may be better authority in regard to what occurred in the army of the enemy than when he writes about Confederate affairs, it appears that this change of base was considered and not adopted because of General McClellan's continued desire to have McDowell's corps with him. The Count states:

"The James River, which had been closed until then by the presence of the Virginia, as York River had been by the cannon of Yorktown, was opened by the destruction of that ship, just as York River had been by the evacuation of the Confederate fortress. But it was only open as far as Drury's Bluff; in order to overcome this last obstacle interposed between Richmond and the Federal gunboats, the support of the land forces was necessary. On the 19th of May Commodore Goldsborough had a conference with General McClellan regarding the means to be employed for removing that obstacle. . . . General McClellan, as we have stated above, might have continued to follow the railway line, and preserved his depots at Whitehouse, on the Pamunkey, . . . but he could also now go to reestablish his base of operations on James River, which the Virginia had hitherto prevented him from doing. By crossing the Chickahominy at Bottom's Bridge, and some other fords situated lower down, . . . could have reached the borders of the James in two or three days. . . . This flank march effected at a sufficient distance from the enemy, and covered by a few demonstrations along the upper Chickahominy, offered him great advantages without involving any risk. . . . If McClellan could have foreseen how deceptive were the promises of reënforcement made to him at the time, he would undoubtedly have declined the uncertain support of McDowell, to carry out the plan of campaign which offered the best chances of success with the troops which were absolutely at his disposal." [33]

Without feeling under any obligations for kind intentions on the part of the Government of the North, it was fortunate for us that it did, as its friend the Comte de Paris represents, deceive General McClellan, and prevent him from moving to the south side of the James River, so as not only to secure the coöperation of his gunboats in an attack upon Richmond, but to make his assault on the side least prepared for resistance, and where it would have been quite possible to cut our line of communication with the more Southern States on which we chiefly depended for supplies and reënforcements.

It is hardly just to treat the failure to fulfill the assurance given by President Lincoln about reënforcements as "deceptive promises," for, as will be seen, the operations in the Valley by General Jackson, who there exhibited a rapidity of movement equal to the unyielding tenacity which had in the first great battle won for him the familiar name "Stonewall," had created such an alarm in Washington, as, if it had been better founded, would have justified the refusal to diminish the force held for the protection of their capital. Indeed, our cavalry, in observation near Fredericksburg, reported that on the 24th McDowell's troops started southward, but General Stuart found that night that they were returning. This indicated that the anticipated junction was not to be made, and of this the Prince of Joinville writes:

"It needed only an effort of the will: the two armies were united, and in the possession of Richmond certain! Alas! this effort was not made. I can not recall those fatal moments without a real sinking of the heart." [34]

General McClellan, in his testimony December 10, 1862, before the court-martial in the case of General McDowell, said:

"I have no doubt, for it has ever been my opinion, that the Army of the Potomac would have taken Richmond had not the corps of General McDowell been separated from it. It is also my opinion that, had the command of General McDowell joined the Army of the Potomac in the month of May, by the way of Hanover Court-House, from Fredericksburg, we would have had Richmond within a week after the junction." [35]

Let us first inquire what was the size of this army so crippled for want of reënforcement, and then what the strength of that to which it was opposed. On the 30th of April, 1862, the official report of McClellan's army gives the aggregate present for duty as 112,392;[36] that of the 20th of June—omitting the army corps of General Dix, then, as previously, stationed at Fortress Monroe, and including General McCall's division, which had recently joined, the strength of which was reported to be 9,514—gives the aggregate present for duty as 105,825, and the total, present and absent, as 156,838.[37]

Two statements of the strength of our army under General J. E. Johnston during the month of May—in which General McClellan testified that he was greatly in need of McDowell's corps—give the following results: First, the official return, 21st May, 1862, total effective of all arms, 53,688; subsequently, five brigades were added, and the effective strength of the army under General Johnston on May 31, 1862, was 62,696.[38]

I now proceed to inquire what caused the panic at Washington.

On May 23d, General Jackson, with whose force that of General Ewell had united, moved with such rapidity as to surprise the enemy, and Ewell, who was in advance, captured most of the troops at Front Royal, and pressed directly on to Winchester, while Jackson, turning across to the road from Strasburg, struck the main column of the enemy in flank and drove it routed back to Strasburg. The pursuit was continued to Winchester, and the enemy, under their commander-in-chief, General Banks, fled across the Potomac into Maryland. Two thousand prisoners were taken in the pursuit. General Banks in his report says, "There never were more grateful hearts in the same number of men, than when, at mid-day on the 26th, we stood on the opposite shore."

When the news of the attack on Front Royal, on May 23d, reached General Geary, charged with the protection of the Manassas Gap Railroad, he immediately moved to Manassas Junction. At the same time, his troops, hearing the most extravagant stories, burned their tents and destroyed a quantity of arms. General Duryea, at Catlett's Station, becoming alarmed on hearing of the withdrawal of Geary, took his three New York regiments, leaving a Pennsylvania one behind, hastened back to Centreville, and telegraphed to Washington for aid. He left behind a large quantity of army stores. The alarm spread to Washington, and the Secretary of War, Stanton, issued a call to the Governors of the "loyal" States for militia to defend that city.

[Illustration: Lieutenant-General T. J. Jackson.]

The following is the dispatch sent to the Governor of Massachusetts:

"WASHINGTON, Sunday, May 25, 1862.

"To the Governor of Massachusetts.

"Intelligence from various quarters leaves no doubt that the enemy in great force are marching on Washington. You will please organize and forward immediately all the militia and volunteer force in your State.

"EDWIN M. STANTON, Secretary of War."

This alarm at Washington, and the call for more troops for its
defense, produced a most indescribable panic in the cities of the
Northern States on Sunday the 25th, and two or three days afterward.
The Governor of New York on Sunday night telegraphed to Buffalo,
Rochester, Syracuse, and other cities, as follows:

    "Orders from Washington render it necessary to send to that city all
    the available militia force. What can you do?


Governor Curtin, of Pennsylvania, issued the following order:



"Harrisburg, May 26, 1862.

"On pressing requisition of the President of the United States in the present emergency, it is ordered that the several major-generals, brigadier-generals, and colonels of regiments throughout the Commonwealth muster without delay all military organizations within their respective divisions or under their control, together with all persons willing to join their commands, and proceed forthwith to the city of Washington, or such other points as may be designated by future orders. By order:


"Governor and Commander-in-Chief."

The Governor of Massachusetts issued the following proclamation:

"Men of Massachusetts!

"The wily and barbarous horde of traitors to the people, to the Government, to our country, and to liberty, menace again the national capital. They have attacked and routed Major-General Banks, are advancing on Harper's Ferry, and are marching on Washington. The President calls on Massachusetts to rise once more for its rescue and defense.

"The whole active militia will be summoned by a general order, issued from the office of the adjutant-general, to report on Boston Common to-morrow. They will march to relieve and avenge their brethren and friends, and to oppose, with fierce zeal and courageous patriotism, the progress of the foe. May God encourage their hearts and strengthen their arms, and may he inspire the Government and all the people!

"Given at headquarters, Boston, eleven o'clock, this (Sunday) evening. May 25, 1862.


The Governor of Ohio issued the following proclamation:

"COLUMBUS, Ohio, May 26, 1862.

"To the gallant men of Ohio.

"I have the astounding intelligence that the seat of our beloved Government is threatened with invasion, and am called upon by the Secretary of War for troops to repel and overwhelm the ruthless invaders. Rally, then, men of Ohio, and respond to this call, as becomes those who appreciate our glorious Government! . . . The number wanted from each county has been indicated by special dispatches to the several military committees.

"DAVID TOD, Governor."

At the same time the Secretary of War at Washington caused the following order to be issued:

"WASHINGTON, Sunday, May 25, 1862.

"Ordered: By virtue of the authority vested by an act of Congress, the President takes military possession of all the railroads in the United States from and after this date, and directs that the respective railroad companies, their officers and servants, shall hold themselves in readiness for the transportation of troops and munitions of war, as may be ordered by the military authorities, to the exclusion of all other business.

"By order of the Secretary of War:



At the first moment of the alarm, the President of the United States issued the following order:

"WASHINGTON, May 24 1862.

"Major-General MCDOWELL.

"General Fremont has been ordered by telegraph to move to Franklin and Harrisonburg to relieve General Banks and capture or destroy Jackson's and Ewell's forces. You are instructed, laying aside for the present the movement on Richmond, to put twenty thousand men in motion at once for the Shenandoah, moving on the line or in advance of the line of the Manassas Gap Railroad. Your object will be to capture the forces of Jackson and Ewell, either in coöperation with General Fremont, or, in case want of supplies or transportation has interfered with his movement, it is believed that the force which you move will be sufficient to accomplish the object alone. The information thus far received here makes it probable that, if the enemy operates actively against General Banks, you will not be able to count upon much assistance from him, but may have even to release him. Reports received this morning are that Banks is fighting with Ewell, eight miles from Harper's Ferry.


When the panic thus indicated in the headquarters of the enemy had disseminated itself through the military and social ramifications of Northern society, the excitement was tumultuous. Meanwhile, General Jackson, little conceiving the alarm his movements had caused in the departments at Washington and in the offices of the Governors of States, in addition to the diversion of McDowell from coöperation in the attack upon Richmond, after driving the enemy out of Winchester, pressed eagerly on, not pausing to accept the congratulations of the overjoyed people at the sight of their own friends again among them, for he learned that the enemy had garrisons at Charlestown and Harper's Ferry, and he was resolved they should not rest on Virginia soil. General Winder's brigade in the advance found the enemy drawn up in line of battle at Charlestown. Without waiting for reënforcements, he engaged them, and after a short conflict drove them in disorder toward the Potomac. The main column then moved on near to Harper's Ferry, where General Jackson received information that Fremont was moving from the west, and the whole or a part of General McDowell's corps from the east, to make a junction in his rear and thus cut off his retreat. At this time General Jackson's effective force was about fifteen thousand men, much less than either of the two armies which were understood to be marching to form a junction against him. We now know that General McDowell had been ordered to send to the relief of General Banks in the Valley twenty to thirty thousand men. The estimated force, of General Fremont when at Harrisonburg was twenty thousand. General Jackson had captured in his campaign down the Valley a very large amount of valuable stores, over nine thousand small-arms, two pieces of artillery, many horses, and, besides the wounded and sick, who had been released on parole, was said to have twenty-three hundred prisoners. To secure these, as well as to save his army, it was necessary to retreat beyond the point where his enemies could readily unite. The amount of captured stores and other property which he was anxious to preserve were said to require a wagon-train twelve miles long. This, under the care of a regiment, was sent forward in advance of the army, which promptly retired up the Valley.

On his retreat, General Jackson received information confirmatory of the report of the movements of the enemy, and of the defeat of a small force he had left at Front Royal in charge of some prisoners and captured stores—the latter, however, the garrison before retreating had destroyed. Strasburg being General Jackson's objective point, he had farther to march to reach that position than either of the columns operating against him. The rapidity of movement which marked General Jackson's operations had given to his command the appellation of "foot cavalry"; and never had they more need to show themselves entitled to the name of Stonewall.

On the night of the 31st of May, by a forced march, General Jackson arrived with the head of his column at Strasburg, and learned that General Fremont's advance was in the immediate vicinity. To gain time for the rest of his army to arrive, General Jackson decided to check Fremont's march by an attack in the morning. This movement was assigned to General Ewell, General Jackson personally giving his attention to preserving his immense trains filled with captured stores. The repulse of Fremont's advance was so easy that General Taylor describes it as offering a temptation to go beyond General Jackson's orders and make a serious attack upon Fremont's army, but recognizes the justice of the restraint imposed by the order, "as we could not waste time chasing Fremont," for it was reported that General Shields was at Front Royal with troops of a different character from those of Fremont's army, who had been encountered near Strasburg, id est, the corps "commanded by General O. O. Howard, and called by both sides 'the flying Dutchmen.'" This more formidable command of General Shields therefore required immediate attention.

Leaving Strasburg on the evening of June 1st, always intent to prevent a junction of the two armies of the enemy, Jackson continued his march up the Valley. Fremont followed in pursuit, while Shields moved slowly up the Valley via Luray, for the purpose of reaching New Market in advance of Jackson. On the morning of the 5th Jackson reached Harrisonburg, and, passing beyond that town, turned toward the east in the direction of Port Republic. General Ashby had destroyed all the bridges between Front Royal and Port Republic, to prevent Shields from crossing the Shenandoah to join Fremont. The troops were now permitted to make shorter marches, and were allowed some halts to refresh them after their forced marches and frequent combats. Early on the 6th of June Fremont's reënforced cavalry attacked our cavalry rear-guard under General Ashby. A sharp conflict ensued, which resulted in the repulse of the enemy and the capture of Colonel Percy Wyndham, commanding the brigade, and sixty-three others. General Ashby was in position between Harrisonburg and Port Republic, and, after the cavalry combat just described, there were indications of a more serious attack. Ashby sent a message to Ewell, informing him that cavalry supported by infantry was advancing upon his position. The Fifty-eighth Virginia and the First Maryland Regiments were sent to his support. Ashby led the Fifty-eighth Virginia to attack the enemy, who were under cover of a fence. General Ewell in the mean time had arrived, and, seeing the advantage the enemy had of position, directed Colonel Johnson to move with his regiment so as to approach the flank instead of the front of the enemy, and he was now driven from the field with heavy loss. Our loss was seventeen killed, fifty wounded, and three missing. Here fell the stainless, fearless cavalier, General Turner Ashby, of whom General Jackson in his report thus forcibly speaks:

"As a partisan officer I never knew his superior. His daring was proverbial; his power of endurance almost incredible; his tone of character heroic; and his sagacity almost intuitive in divining the purposes and movements of the enemy."

The main body of General Jackson's command had now reached Port Republic, a village situated in the angle formed by the junction of the North and South Rivers, tributaries of the South Fork of the Shenandoah. Over the North River was a wooden bridge, connecting the town with Harrisonburg. Over the South River there was a ford. Jackson's immediate command was encamped on the high ground north of the village and about a mile from the river. Ewell was some four miles distant, near the road leading from Harrisonburg to Port Republic. General Fremont had arrived with his forces in the vicinity of Harrisonburg, and General Shields was moving up the east side of the Shenandoah, and had reached Conrad's Store. Each was about fifteen miles distant from Jackson's position. To prevent a junction, the bridge over the river, near Shields's position, had been destroyed.

As the advance of General Shields approached on the 8th, the brigades of Taliaferro and Winder were ordered to occupy positions immediately north of the bridge. The enemy's cavalry, accompanied by artillery, then appeared, and, after directing a few shots toward the bridge, crossed South River, and, dashing into the village, planted one of their pieces at the southern entrance of the bridge. Meantime our batteries were placed in position, and, Taliaferro's brigade having approached the bridge, was ordered to dash across, capture the piece, and occupy the town. This was gallantly done, and the enemy's cavalry dispersed and driven back, abandoning another gun. A considerable body of infantry was now seen advancing, when our batteries opened with marked effect, and in a short time the infantry followed the cavalry, falling back three miles. They were pursued about a mile by our batteries on the opposite bank, when they disappeared in a wood.

This attack of Shields had scarcely been repulsed when Ewell became seriously engaged with Fremont, moving on the opposite side of the river. The enemy pushed forward, driving in the pickets, which, by gallant resistance, checked their advance until Ewell had time to select his position on a commanding ridge, with a rivulet and open ground in front, woods on both flanks, and the road to Port Republic intersecting his line. Trimble's brigade was posted on the right, the batteries of Courtney, Lusk, Brockenbrough, and Rains in the center, Stuart's brigade on the left, and Elzey's in rear of the center. Both wings were in the woods. About ten o'clock the enemy posted his artillery opposite our batteries, and a fire was kept up for several hours, with great spirit on both sides. Meantime a brigade of the enemy advanced, under cover, upon General Trimble, who reserved his fire until they reached short range, when he poured forth a deadly volley, under which they fell back; Trimble, supported by two regiments of Elzey's reserve, now advanced, with spirited skirmishing, more than a mile from his original line, driving the opposing force back to its former position. Ewell, finding no attack on his left was designed by the enemy, advanced and drove in their skirmishers, and at night was in position on ground previously occupied by the foe. This engagement has generally been known as the battle of Cross Keys.

As General Shields made no movement to renew the action of the 8th, General Jackson determined to attack him on the 9th. Accordingly, Ewell's forces were moved at an early hour toward Port Republic, and General Trimble was left to hold Fremont in check, or, if hard pressed, to retire across the river and burn the bridge, which subsequently was done, under orders to concentrate against Shields.

Meanwhile the enemy had taken position about two miles from Port Republic, their right on the river-bank, their left on the slope of the mountain which here threw out a spur, between which and the river was a smooth plain of about a thousand yards wide. On an elevated plateau of the mountain was placed a battery of long-range guns to sweep the plain over which our forces must pass to attack. In front of that plateau was a deep gorge, through which flowed a small stream, trending to the southern side of the promontory, so as to leave its northern point in advance of the southern. The mountain-side was covered with dense wood.

Such was the position which Jackson must assail, or lose the opportunity to fight his foe in detail—the object for which his forced marches had been made, and on which his best hopes depended.

General Winder's brigade moved down the river to attack, when the enemy's battery upon the plateau opened, and it was found to rake the plain over which we must approach for a considerable distance in front of Shields's position. Our guns were brought forward, and an attempt made to dislodge the battery of the enemy, but our fire proved unequal to theirs; whereupon General Winder, having been reënforced, attempted by a rapid charge to capture it, but encountered such a heavy fire of artillery and small-arms as to compel his command, composed of his own and another brigade, with a light battery, to fall back in disorder. The enemy advanced steadily, and in such numbers as to drive back our infantry supports and render it necessary to withdraw our guns. Ewell was hurrying his men over the bridge, and there was no fear, if human effort would avail, that he would come too late. But the condition was truly critical. General Taylor describes his chief at that moment thus: "Jackson was on the road, a little in advance of his line, where the fire was hottest, with reins on his horse's neck, seemingly in prayer. Attracted by my approach, he said, in his usual voice, 'Delightful excitement.'" He then briefly gave Taylor instructions to move against the battery on the plateau, and sent a young officer from his staff as a guide. The advance of the enemy was checked by an attack on his flank by two of our regiments, under Colonel Scott; but this was only a temporary relief, for this small command was soon afterward driven back to the woods, with severe loss. Our batteries during the check were all safely withdrawn except one six-pounder gun.

In this critical condition of Winder's command, General Taylor made a successful attack on the left and rear of the enemy, which diverted attention from the front, and led to a concentration of his force upon him. Moving to the right along the mountain acclivity, he was unseen before he emerged from the wood, just as the loud cheers of the enemy proclaimed their success in front. Although opposed by a superior force in front and flank, and with their guns in position, with a rush and shout the gorge was passed, impetuously the charge was made, and the battery of six guns fell into our hands. Three times was this battery lost and won in the desperate and determined efforts to capture and recover it, and the enemy finally succeeded in carrying off one of the guns, leaving both caisson and limber. Thus occupied with Taylor, the enemy halted in his advance, and formed a line facing to the mountain. Winder succeeded in rallying his command, and our batteries were replaced in their former positions. At the same time reënforcements were brought by General Ewell to Taylor, who pushed forward with them, assisted by the well-directed fire of our artillery.

Of this period in the battle, than which there has seldom been one of greater peril, or where danger was more gallantly met, I copy a description from the work of General Taylor:

"The fighting in and around the battery was hand-to-hand, and many fell from bayonet-wounds. Even the artillerymen used their rammers in a way not laid down in the manual, and died at their guns. I called for Hayes, but he, the promptest of men, and his splendid regiment could not be found. Something unexpected had occurred, but there was no time for speculation. With a desperate rally, in which I believe the drummer-boys shared, we carried the battery for the third time, and held it. Infantry and riflemen had been driven off, and we began to feel a little comfortable, when the enemy, arrested in his advance by our attack, appeared. He had countermarched, and, with left near the river, came into full view of our situation. Wheeling to the right, with colors advanced, like a solid wall he marched straight upon us. There seemed nothing left but to set our back to the mountain and die hard. At the instant, crashing through the underwood, came Ewell, outriding staff and escort. He produced the effect of a reënforcement, and was welcomed with cheers. The line before us halted and threw forward skirmishers. A moment later a shell came shrieking along it, loud Confederate cheers reached our delighted ears, and Jackson, freed from his toils, rushed up like a whirlwind." [39]

The enemy, in his advance, had gone in front of the plateau where his battery was placed, the elevation being sufficient to enable the guns without hazard to be fired over the advancing line; so, when he commenced retreating, he had to pass by the position of this battery, and the captured guns were effectively used against him—that dashing old soldier, "Ewell, serving as a gunner." Mention was made of the inability to find Hayes when his regiment was wanted. It is due to that true patriot, who has been gathered to his fathers, to add Taylor's explanation: "Ere long my lost Seventh Regiment, sadly cut up, rejoined. This regiment was in rear of the column when we left Jackson to gain the path in the woods, and, before it filed out of the road, his thin line was so pressed that Jackson ordered Hayes to stop the enemy's rush. This was done, for the Seventh would have stopped a herd of elephants—but at a fearful cost."

The retreat of the enemy, though it was so precipitate as to cause him to leave his killed and wounded on the field, was never converted into a rout. "Shields's brave 'boys' preserved their organization to the last; and, had Shields himself, with his whole command, been on the field, we should have had tough work indeed."

The pursuit was continued some five miles beyond the battle-field, during which we captured four hundred and fifty prisoners, some wagons, one piece of abandoned artillery, and about eight hundred muskets. Some two hundred and seventy-five wounded were paroled in the hospitals near Port Republic. On the next day Fremont withdrew his forces, and retreated down the Valley. The rapid movements of Jackson, the eagle-like stoop with which he had descended upon each army of the enemy, and the terror which his name had come to inspire, created a great alarm at Washington, where it was believed he must have an immense army, and that he was about to come down like an avalanche upon the capital. Milroy, Banks, Fremont, and Shields were all moved in that direction, and peace again reigned in the patriotic and once happy Valley of the Shenandoah.

The material results of this very remarkable campaign are thus summarily stated by one who had special means of information:

"In three months Jackson had marched six hundred miles, fought four pitched battles, seven minor engagements, and daily skirmishes; had defeated four armies, captured seven pieces of artillery, ten thousand stand of arms, four thousand prisoners, and a very great amount of stores, inflicting upon his adversaries a known loss of two thousand men, with a loss upon his own part comparatively small." [40]

The general effect upon the affairs of the Confederacy was even more important, and the motives which influenced Jackson present him in a grander light than any military success could have done. Thus, on the 20th of March, 1862, he learned that the large force of the enemy before which he had retired was returning down the Valley, and, divining the object to be to send forces to the east side of the mountain to coöperate in the attack upon Richmond, General Jackson, with his small force of about three thousand infantry and two hundred and ninety cavalry, moved with his usual celerity in pursuit. He overtook the rear of the column at Kernstown, attacked a very superior force he found there, and fought with such desperation as to impress the enemy with the idea that he had a large army; therefore, the detachments, which had already started for Manassas, were recalled, and additional forces were also sent into the Valley. Nor was this all. McDowell's corps, under orders to join McClellan, was detained for the defense of the Federal capital.

Jackson's bold strategy had effected the object for which his movement was designed, and he slowly retreated to the south bank of the Shenandoah, where he remained undisturbed by the enemy, and had time to recruit his forces, which, by the 28th of April, amounted to six or seven thousand men. General Banks had advanced and occupied Harrisonburg, about fifteen miles from Jackson's position. Fremont, with a force estimated at fifteen thousand men, was reported to be preparing to join Banks's command.

The alarm at Washington had caused McDowell's corps to be withdrawn from the upper Rappahannock to Fredericksburg. Jackson, anxious to take advantage of the then divided condition of the enemy, sent to Richmond for reënforcements, but our condition there did not enable us to furnish any, except the division of Ewell, which had been left near Gordonsville in observation of McDowell, now by his withdrawal made disposable, and the brigade of Edward Johnson, which confronted Schenck and Milroy near to Staunton. Jackson, who, when he could not get what he wanted, did the best he could with what he had, called Ewell to his aid, left him to hold Banks in check, and marched to unite with Johnson; the combined forces attacked Milroy and Schenck, who, after a severe conflict, retreated in the night to join Fremont. Jackson then returned toward Harrisonburg, having ordered Ewell to join him for an attack on Banks, who in the mean time had retreated toward Winchester, where Jackson attacked and defeated him, inflicting great loss, drove him across the Potomac, and, as has been represented, filled the authorities at Washington with such dread of its capture as to disturb the previously devised plans against Richmond, and led to the operations which have already been described, and brought into full play Jackson's military genius. In all these operations there conspicuously appears the self-abnegation of a devoted patriot. He was not seeking by great victories to acquire fame for himself; but, always alive to the necessities and dangers elsewhere, he heroically strove to do what was possible for the general benefit of the cause he maintained. His whole heart was his country's, and his whole country's heart was his.

[Footnote 33: "History of the Civil War in America," Comte de Paris, vol. ii, pp. 32-34.]

[Footnote 34: "Campaign on the Peninsula," Prince de Joinville, 1862.]

[Footnote 35: Court-Martial of General McDowell, Washington, December 10, 1862.]

[Footnote 36: "Report on the Conduct of the War," Part I, p. 322.]

[Footnote 37: Ibid., p. 337.]

[Footnote 38: "Four Years with General Lee," by Walter H. Taylor, p. 50.]

[Footnote 39: "Destruction and Reconstruction" pp. 75, 76.]

[Footnote 40: "Stonewall Jackson," military biography by John Esten
Cooke, p. 194.]


    Condition of Affairs.—Plan of General Johnston.—The Field of
    Battle at Seven Pines.—The Battle.—General Johnston wounded.—
    Advance of General Sumner.—Conflict on the Right.—Delay of
    General Huger.—Reports of the Enemy.—Losses.—Strength of
    Forces.—General Lee in Command.

Our army having retreated from the Peninsula, and withdrawn from the north side of the Chickahominy to the immediate vicinity of Richmond, I rode out occasionally to the lines and visited the headquarters of the commanding General. There were no visible preparations for defense, and my brief conversations with the General afforded no satisfactory information as to his plans and purposes. We had, under the supervision of General Lee, perfected as far as we could the detached works before the city, but these were rather designed to protect it against a sudden attack than to resist approaches by a great army. They were, also, so near to the city that it might have been effectually bombarded by guns exterior to them. Anxious for the defense of the ancient capital of Virginia, now the capital of the Confederate States, and remembering a remark of General Johnston, that the Spaniards were the only people who now undertook to hold fortified towns, I had written to him that he knew the defense of Richmond must be made at a distance from it. Seeing no preparation to keep the enemy at a distance, and kept in ignorance of any plan for such purpose, I sent for General B. E. Lee, then at Richmond, in general charge of army operations, and told him why and how I was dissatisfied with the condition of affairs.

He asked me what I thought it was proper to do. Recurring to a conversation held about the time we had together visited General Johnston, I answered that McClellan should be attacked on the other side of the Chickahominy before he matured his preparations for a siege of Richmond. To this he promptly assented, as I anticipated he would, for I knew it had been his own opinion. He then said: "General Johnston should of course advise you of what he expects or proposes to do. Let me go and see him, and defer this discussion until I return."

It may be proper here to say that I had not doubted that General
Johnston was fully in accord with me as to the purpose of defending
Richmond, but I was not content with his course for that end. It had
not occurred to me that he meditated a retreat which would uncover
the capital, nor was it ever suspected until, in reading General
Hood's book, published in 1880, the evidence was found that General
Johnston, when retreating from Yorktown, told his volunteer aide, Mr.
McFarland, that "he [Johnston] expected or intended to give up
Richmond." [41]

When General Lee came back, he told me that General Johnston proposed, on the next Thursday, to move against the enemy as follows: General. A. P. Hill was to move down on the right flank and rear of the enemy. General G. W. Smith, as soon as Hill's guns opened, was to cross the Chickahominy at the Meadow Bridge, attack the enemy in flank, and by the conjunction of the two it was expected to double him up. Then Longstreet was to cross on the Mechanicsville Bridge and attack him in front. From this plan the best results were hoped by both of us.

On the morning of the day proposed, I hastily dispatched my office business, and rode out toward the Meadow Bridge to see the action commence. On the road I found Smith's division halted, and the men dispersed in the woods. Looking for some one from whom I could get information, I finally saw General Hood, and asked him the meaning of what I saw. He told me he did not know anything more than that they had been halted. I asked him where General Smith was; he said he believed he had gone to a farmhouse in the rear, adding that he thought he was ill. Riding on to the bluff which overlooks the Meadow Bridge, I asked Colonel Anderson, posted there in observation, whether he had seen anything of the enemy in his front. He said that he had seen only two mounted men across the bridge, and a small party of infantry on the other side of the river, some distance below, both of whom, he said, he could show me if I would go with him into the garden back of the house. There, by the use of a powerful glass, were distinctly visible two cavalry videttes at the further end of the bridge, and a squad of infantry lower down the river, who had covered themselves with a screen of green boughs. The Colonel informed me that he had not heard Hill's guns; it was, therefore, supposed he had not advanced. I then rode down the bank of the river, followed by a cavalcade of sight-seers, who, I supposed, had been attracted by the expectation of a battle. The little squad of infantry, about fifteen in number, as we approached, fled over the ridge, and were lost to sight. Near to the Mechanicsville Bridge I found General Howell Cobb, commanding the support of a battery of artillery. He pointed out to me on the opposite side of the river the only enemy he had seen, and which was evidently a light battery. Riding on to the main road which led to the Mechanicsville Bridge, I found General Longstreet, walking to and fro in an impatient, it might be said fretful, manner. Before speaking to him, he said his division had been under arms all day waiting for orders to advance, and that the day was now so far spent that he did not know what was the matter. I afterward learned from General Smith that he had received information from a citizen that the Beaver-dam Creek presented an impassable barrier, and that he had thus fortunately been saved from a disaster. Thus ended the offensive-defensive programme from which Lee expected much, and of which I was hopeful.

In the mean while the enemy moved up, and, finding the crossing at Bottom's Bridge unobstructed, threw a brigade of the Fourth Corps across the Chickahominy as early as the 20th of May, and on the 23d sent over the rest of the Fourth Corps; on the 25th he sent over another corps, and commenced fortifying a line near to Seven Pines. In the forenoon of the 31st of May, riding out on the New Bridge road, I heard firing in the direction of Seven Pines. As I drew nearer, I saw General Whiting, with part of General Smith's division, file into the road in front of me; at the same time I saw General Johnston ride across the field from a house before which General Lee's horse was standing. I turned down to the house, and asked General Lee what the musketry-firing meant. He replied by asking whether I had heard it, and was answered in the affirmative; he said he had been under that impression himself, but General Johnston had assured him that it could be nothing more than an artillery duel. It is scarcely necessary to add that neither of us had been advised of a design to attack the enemy that day.

We then walked out to the rear of the house to listen, and were satisfied that an action, or at least a severe skirmish, must be going on. General Johnston states in his report that the condition of the air was peculiarly unfavorable to the transmission of sound.

General Lee and myself then rode to the field of battle, which may be briefly described as follows:

The Chickahominy flowing in front is a deep, sluggish, and narrow river, bordered by marshes, and covered with tangled wood. The line of battle extended along the Nine-mile road, across the York River Railroad and Williamsburg stage-road. The enemy had constructed redoubts, with long lines of rifle-pits covered by abatis, from below Bottom's Bridge to within less than two miles of New Bridge, and had constructed bridges to connect his forces on the north and south sides of the Chickahominy. The left of his forces, on the south side, was thrown forward from the river; the right was on its bank, and covered by its slope. Our main force was on the right flank of our position, extending on both sides of the Williamsburg road, near to its intersection with the Nine-mile road. This wing consisted of Hill's, Huger's, and Longstreet's divisions, with light batteries, and a small force of cavalry; the division of General G. W. Smith, less Hood's brigade ordered to the right, formed the left wing, and its position was on the Nine-mile road. There were small tracts of cleared land, but most of the ground was wooded, and much of it so covered with water as to seriously embarrass the movements of troops.

When General Lee and I riding down the Nine-mile road reached the left of our line, we found the troops hotly engaged. Our men had driven the enemy from his advanced encampment, and he had fallen back behind an open field to the bank of the river, where, in a dense wood, was concealed an infantry line, with artillery in position. Soon after our arrival, General Johnston, who had gone farther to the right, where the conflict was expected, and whither reënforcement from the left was marching, was brought back severely wounded, and, as soon as an ambulance could be obtained, was removed from the field.

Our troops on the left made vigorous assaults under most disadvantageous circumstances. They made several gallant attempts to carry the enemy's position, but were each time repulsed with heavy loss.

After a personal reconnaissance on the left of the open in our front, I sent one, then another, and another courier to General Magruder, directing him to send a force down by the wooded path, just under the bluff, to attack the enemy in flank and reverse. Impatient of delay, I had started to see General Magruder, when I met the third courier, who said he had not found General Magruder, but had delivered the message to Brigadier-General Griffith, who was moving by the path designated to make the attack.

On returning to the field, I found that the attack in front had ceased; it was, therefore, too late for a single brigade to effect anything against the large force of the enemy, and messengers were sent through the woods to direct General Griffith to go back.

The heavy rain during the night of the 30th had swollen the Chickahominy; it was rising when the battle of Seven Pines was fought, but had not reached such height as to prevent the enemy from using his bridges; consequently, General Sumner, during the engagement, brought over his corps as a reënforcement. He was on the north side of the river, had built two bridges to connect with the south side, and, though their coverings were loosened by the upward pressure of the rising water, they were not yet quite impassable. With the true instinct of the soldier to march upon fire, when the sound of the battle reached him, he formed his corps and stood under arms waiting for an order to advance. He came too soon for us, and, but for his forethought and promptitude, he would have arrived too late for his friends. It may be granted that his presence saved the left wing of the Federal army from defeat.

As we had permitted the enemy to fortify before our attack, it would have been better to have waited another day, until the bridges should have been rendered impassable by the rise of the river.

General Lee, at nightfall, gave instructions to General Smith, the senior officer on that part of the battle-field, and left with me to return to Richmond.

Thus far I have only attempted to describe events on the extreme left of the battle-field, being that part of which I had personal observation; but the larger force and, consequently, the more serious conflict were upon the right of the line. To these I will now refer. Our force there consisted of the divisions of Major-Generals D. H. Hill, Huger, and Longstreet, the latter in chief command. In his report, first published in the "Southern Historical Society Papers," vol. iii, pp. 277, 278, he writes:

"Agreeably to verbal instructions from the commanding General, the division of Major-General D. H. Hill was, on the morning of the 31st ultimo, formed at an early hour on the Williamsburg road, as the column of attack upon the enemy's front on that road. . . . The division of Major-General Huger was intended to make a strong flank movement around the left of the enemy's position, and attack him in rear of that flank. . . . After waiting some six hours for these troops to get into position, I determined to move forward without regard to them, and gave orders to that effect to Major-General D. H. Hill. The forward movement began about two o'clock, and our skirmishers soon became engaged with those of the enemy. The entire division of General Hill became engaged about three o'clock, and drove the enemy steadily back, gaining possession of his abatis and part of his intrenched camp, General Rodes, by a movement to the right, driving in the enemy's left. The only reënforcements on the field in hand were my own brigades, of which Anderson's, Wilcox's, and Kemper's were put in by the front on the Williamsburg road, and Colston's and Pryor's by my right flank. At the same time the decided and gallant attack made by the other brigades gained entire possession of the enemy's position, with his artillery, camp-equipage, etc. Anderson's brigade, under Colonel Jenkins, pressing forward rapidly, continued to drive the enemy till nightfall. . . . The conduct of the attack was left entirely to Major-General Hill. The entire success of the affair is sufficient evidence of his ability, courage, and skill."

This tribute to General Hill was no more than has been accorded to him by others who knew of his services on that day, and was in keeping with the determined courage, vigilance, and daring exhibited by him on other fields.

The reference, made, without qualification, in General Longstreet's report, to the failure of General Huger to make the attack expected of him, and the freedom with which others have criticised him, renders it proper that some explanation should be given of an apparent dilatoriness on the part of that veteran soldier, who, after long and faithful service, now fills an honored grave.

It will be remembered that General Huger was to move by the Charles City road, so as to turn the left of the enemy and attack him in flank. The extraordinary rain of the previous night had swollen every rivulet to the dimensions of a stream, and the route prescribed to General Huger was one especially affected by that heavy rain, as it led to the head of the White-Oak Swamp. The bridge over the stream flowing into that swamp had been carried away, and the alternatives presented to him was to rebuild the bridge or leave his artillery. He chose the former, which involved the delay that has subjected him to criticism. If any should think an excuse necessary to justify this decision, they are remanded to the accepted military maxim, that the march must never be so hurried as to arrive unfit for service; and, also, they may be reminded that Huger's specialty was artillery, he being the officer who commanded the siege-guns with which General Scott marched from Vera Cruz to the city of Mexico. To show that the obstacles encountered were not of such slight character as energy would readily overcome, I refer to the report of an officer commanding a brigade on that occasion, Brigadier-General R. E. Rodes, whose great merit and dashing gallantry caused him to be admired throughout the army of the Confederacy. He said:

"On the morning of the 31st the brigade was stationed on the Charles City road, three and a half miles from the point on the Williamsburg road from which it had been determined to start the columns of attack. . . . I received a verbal order from General Hill to conduct my command at once to the point at which the attack was to be made. . . . The progress of the brigade was considerably delayed by the washing away of a bridge near the head of White-Oak Swamp, by reason of which the men had to wade in water waist-deep, and a large number were entirely submerged. At this point the character of the crossing was such that it was absolutely necessary to proceed with great caution to prevent the loss of both ammunition and life. In consequence of this delay, and notwithstanding that the men were carried at double-quick time over very heavy ground for a considerable distance to make up for it, when the signal for attack was given, only my line of skirmishers, the Sixth Alabama and the Twelfth Mississippi Regiments, was in position. . . . The ground over which we were to move being covered with thick undergrowth, and the soil being marshy—so marshy that it was with great difficulty that either horses or men could get over it—and being guided only by the fire in front, I emerged from the woods from the Williamsburg road under a heavy fire of both artillery and musketry, with only five companies of the Fifth Alabama."

General Huger's line of march was farther to the right, therefore nearer to White-Oak Swamp, and the impediments consequently greater than where General Rodes found the route so difficult as to be dangerous even to infantry.

On the next day, the 1st of June, General Longstreet states that a serious attack was made on our position, and that it was repulsed. This refers to the works which Hill's division had captured the day before, and which the enemy endeavored to retake.

From the final report of General Longstreet, already cited, it appears that he was ordered to attack on the morning of the 31st, and he explains why it was postponed for six hours; then he states that it was commenced by the division of General D. H. Hill, which drove the enemy steadily back, pressing forward until nightfall. The movement of Rodes's brigade on the right flank is credited with having contributed much to the dislodgment of the enemy from their abatis and first intrenchments. As just stated. General Longstreet reports a delay of some six hours in making this attack, because he was waiting for General Huger, and then made it successfully with Hill's division and some brigades from his own. These questions must naturally arise in the mind of the reader: Why did not our troops on the left, during this long delay, as well as during the period occupied by Hill's assault, coöperate in the attack? and Why, the battle having been preconceived, were they so far removed as not to hear the first guns? The officers of the Federal army, when called before a committee appointed by their Congress to inquiry into the conduct of the war, have by their testimony made it quite plain that the divided condition of their troops and the length of time required for their concentration after the battle commenced, rendered it practicable for our forces, if united—as, taking the initiative, they well might have been—to have crushed or put to flight first Keyes's and then Heintzelman's corps before Sumner crossed the Chickahominy, between five and six o'clock in the evening.

By the official reports our aggregate loss was, "killed, wounded, and missing," 6,084, of which 4,851 were in Longstreet's command on the right, and 1,233 in Smith's command on the left.

The enemy reported his aggregate loss at 5,739. It may have been less than ours, for we stormed his successive defenses.

Our success upon the right was proved by our possession of the enemy's works, as well as by the capture of ten pieces of artillery, four flags, a large amount of camp-equipage, and more than one thousand prisoners.

Our aggregate of both wings was about 40,500. The force of the enemy confronting us may be approximated by taking his returns for the 20th of June and adding thereto his casualties on the 31st of May and 1st of June, because between the last-named date and the 20th of June no action had occurred to create any material change in the number present. From these data, viz., the strength of Heintzelman's corps, 18,810, and of Keyes's corps, 14,610, on June 20th, by adding their casualties of the 31st of May and 1st of June—4,516—we deduce the strength of these two corps on the 31st of May to have been 37,936 as the aggregate present for duty.

It thus appears that, at the commencement of the action on the 31st of May, we had a numerical superiority of about 2,500. Adopting the same method to calculate the strength of Sumner's corps, we find it to have been 18,724, which would give the enemy in round numbers a force of 16,000 in excess of ours after General Sumner crossed the Chickahominy.

Both combatants claimed the victory. I have presented the evidence in support of our claim. The withdrawal of the Confederate forces on the day after the battle from the ground on which it was fought certainly gives color to the claim of the enemy, though that was really the result of a policy much broader than the occupation of the field of Seven Pines.

On the morning of June 1st I rode out toward the position where General Smith had been left on the previous night, and where I learned from General Lee that he would remain. After turning into the Nine-mile road, and before reaching that position, I was hailed by General Whiting, who saw me at a distance, and ran toward the road to stop me. He told me I was riding into the position of the enemy, who had advanced on the withdrawal of our troops, and there, pointing, he said, "is a battery which I am surprised has not fired on yon." I asked where our troops were. He said his was the advance, and the others behind him. He also told me that General Smith was at the house which had been his (Whiting's) headquarters, and I rode there to see him. To relieve both him and General Lee from any embarrassment, I preferred to make the announcement of General Lee's assignment to command previous to his arrival.

After General Lee arrived, I took leave, and, being subsequently joined by him, we rode together to the Williamsburg road, where we found General Longstreet, his command being in front, and then engaged with the enemy on the field of the previous day's combat. The operations of that day were neither extensive nor important, save in the collection of the arms acquired in the previous day's battle.

General R. E. Lee was now in immediate command, and thenceforward directed the movements of the army in front of Richmond. Laborious and exact in details, as he was vigilant and comprehensive in grand strategy, a power, with which the public had not credited him, soon became manifest in all that makes an army a rapid, accurate, compact machine, with responsive motion in all its parts. I extract the following sentence from a letter from the late Colonel R. H. Chilton, adjutant and inspector-general of the army of the Confederacy, because of his special knowledge of the subject:

"I consider General Lee's exhibition of grand administrative talents and indomitable energy, in bringing up that army in so short a time to that state of discipline which maintained aggregation through those terrible seven days' fights around Richmond, as probably his grandest achievement."

[Footnote 41: For recital and correspondence of 1874, see "Advance and Retreat," by J. B. Hood, Lieutenant-General in the Confederate Army, pp. 153-156.]


The Enemy's Position.—His Intention.—The Plan of Operations.— Movements of General Jackson.—Daring and Fortitude of Lee.— Offensive-Defensive Policy.—General Stuart's Movement.—Order of Attack.—Critical Position of McClellan.—Order of Mr. Lincoln creating the Army of Virginia.—Arrival of Jackson.—Position of the Enemy.—Diversion of General Longstreet.—The Enemy forced back south of the Chickahominy.—Abandonment of the Railroad.

When riding from the field of battle with General Robert E. Lee on the previous day, I informed him that he would be assigned to the command of the army, vice General Johnston, wounded, and that he could make his preparations as soon as he reached his quarters, as I should send the order to him as soon as arrived at mine. On the next morning, as above stated, he proceeded to the field and took command of the troops. During the night our forces on the left had fallen back from their position at the close of the previous day's battle, but those on the right remained in the one they had gained, and some combats occurred there between the opposing forces. The enemy proceeded further to fortify his position on the Chickahominy, covering his communication with his base of supplies on York River. His left was on the south side of the Chickahominy, between White-Oak Swamp and New Bridge, and was covered by a strong intrenchment, with heavy guns, and with abatis in front. His right wing was north of the Chickahominy, extending to Mechanicsville, and the approaches defended by strong works.

Our army was in line in front of Richmond, but without intrenchments. General Lee immediately commenced the construction of an earthwork for a battery on our left flank, and a line of intrenchment to the right, necessarily feeble because of our deficiency in tools. It seemed to be the intention of the enemy to assail Richmond by regular approaches, which our numerical inferiority and want of engineer troops, as well as the deficiency of proper utensils, made it improbable that we should be able to resist. The day after General Lee assumed command, I was riding out to the army, when I saw at a house on my left a number of horses, and among them one I recognized as belonging to him. I dismounted and entered the house, where I found him in consultation with a number of his general officers. The tone of the conversation was quite despondent, and one, especially, pointed out the inevitable consequence of the enemy's advance by throwing out boyaux and constructing successive parallels. I expressed, in marked terms, my disappointment at hearing such views, and General Lee remarked that he had, before I came in, said very much the same thing. I then withdrew and rode to the front, where, after a short time, General Lee joined me, and entered into conversation as to what, under the circumstances, I thought it most advisable to do. I then said to him, substantially, that I knew of nothing better than the plan he had previously explained to me, which was to have been executed by General Johnston, but which was not carried out; that the change of circumstances would make one modification necessary—that, instead, as then proposed, of bringing General A. P. Hill, with his division, on the rear flank of the enemy, it would, because of the preparation for defense made in the mean time, now be necessary to bring the stronger force of General T. J. Jackson from the Valley of the Shenandoah. So far as we were then informed, General Jackson was hotly engaged with a force superior to his own, and, before he could be withdrawn, it was necessary that the enemy should be driven out of the Valley. For this purpose, as well as to mask the design of bringing Jackson's forces to make a junction with those of Lee, a strong division under General Whiting was detached to go by rail to the Valley to join General Jackson, and, by a vigorous assault, to drive the enemy across the Potomac. As soon as he commenced a retreat which unmistakably showed that his flight would not stop within the limits of Virginia, General Jackson was instructed, with his whole force, to move rapidly on the right flank of the enemy north of the Chickahominy. The manner in which the division was detached to reënforce General Jackson was so open that it was not doubted General McClellan would soon be apprised of it, and would probably attribute it to any other than the real motive, and would confirm him in his exaggerated estimate of our strength.

By the rapidity of movement and skill with which General Jackson handled his troops, he, after several severe engagements, finally routed the enemy before the reënforcement of Whiting arrived; and he then, on the 17th of June, proceeded, with that celerity which gave to his infantry its wonderful fame and efficiency, to execute the orders which General Lee had sent to him.

As evidence of the daring and unfaltering fortitude of General Lee, I will here recite an impressive conversation which occurred between us in regard to this movement. His plan was to throw forward his left across the Meadow Bridge, drive back the enemy's right flank, and then, crossing by the Mechanicsville Bridge with another column, to attack in front, hoping by his combined forces to be victorious on the north side of the Chickahominy; while the small force on the intrenched line south of the Chickahominy should hold the left of the enemy in check. I pointed out to him that our force and intrenched line between that left flank and Richmond was too weak for a protracted resistance, and, if McClellan was the man I took him for when I nominated him for promotion in a new regiment of cavalry, and subsequently selected him for one of the military commission sent to Europe during the War of the Crimea, as soon as he found that the bulk of our army was on the north side of the Chickahominy, he would not stop to try conclusions with it there, but would immediately move upon his objective point, the city of Richmond. If, on the other hand, he should behave like an engineer officer, and deem it his first duty to protect his line of communication, I thought the plan proposed was not only the best, but would be a success. Something of his old esprit de corps manifested itself in General Lee's first response, that he did not know engineer officers were more likely than others to make such mistakes, but, immediately passing to the main subject, he added, "If you will hold him as long as you can at the intrenchment, and then fall back on the detached works around the city, I will be upon the enemy's heels before he gets there."

Thus was inaugurated the offensive-defensive campaign which resulted so gloriously to our arms, and turned from the capital of the Confederacy a danger so momentous that, looking at it retrospectively, it is not seen how a policy less daring or less firmly pursued could have saved the capital from capture.

To resume the connected thread of our narrative. Preparatory to this campaign, a light intrenchment for infantry cover, with some works for field-guns, was constructed on the south side of the Chickahominy, and General Whiting, with two brigades, as before stated, was sent to reënforce General Jackson in the Valley, so as to hasten the expulsion of the enemy, after which Jackson was to move rapidly from the Valley so as to arrive in the vicinity of Ashland by the 24th of June, and, by striking the enemy on his right flank, to aid in the proposed attack. The better to insure the success of this movement, General Lawton, who was coming with a brigade from Georgia to join General Lee, was directed to change his line of march and unite with General Jackson in the Valley.

As General Whiting went by railroad, it was expected that the enemy would be cognizant of the fact, but not, probably, assign to it the real motive; and that such was the case is shown by an unsuccessful attack of the 26th, made on the Williamsburg road, with the apparent intention of advancing by that route to Richmond.

To observe the enemy, as well as to prevent him from learning of the approach of General Jackson, General J. E. B. Stuart was sent with a cavalry force on June 8th to cover the route by which the former was to march, and to ascertain whether the enemy had any defensive works or troops in position to interfere with the advance of those forces. He reported favorably on both these points, as well as to the natural features of the country. On the 26th of June General Stuart received confidential instructions from General Lee, the execution of which is so interwoven with the seven days' battles as to be more appropriately noticed in connection with them, of which it is proposed now to give a brief account.

Our order of battle directed General Jackson to march from Ashland on the 25th toward Slash Church, encamping for the night west of the Central Railroad; to advance at 3 A.M. on the 26th, and to turn Beaver-Dam Creek. General A. P. Hill was to cross the Chickahominy at Meadow Bridge when Jackson advanced beyond that point, and to move directly upon Mechanicsville. As soon as the bridge there should be uncovered, Longstreet and D. H. Hill were to cross, the former to proceed to the support of A. P. Hill and the latter to that of Jackson.

The four commands were directed to sweep down the north side of the Chickahominy toward the York River Railroad—Jackson on the left and in advance; Longstreet nearest the river and in the rear. Huger, McLaws, and Magruder, remaining on the south side of the Chickahominy, were ordered to hold their positions as long as possible against any assault of the enemy; to observe his movements, and to follow him closely if he should retreat. General Stuart, with the cavalry, was thrown out on Jackson's left to guard his flank and give notice of the enemy's movements. Brigadier-General Pendleton was directed to employ the reserve artillery so as to resist any advance toward Richmond, to superintend that portion of it posted to aid in the operations on the north bank, and hold the remainder for use where needed. The whole of Jackson's command did not arrive in time to reach the point designated on the 25th. He had, therefore, more distance to move on the 26th, and he was retarded by the enemy.

Not until 3 P.M. did A. P. Hill begin to move. Then he crossed the river and advanced upon Mechanicsville. After a sharp conflict he drove the enemy from his intrenchments, and forced him to take refuge in his works, on the left bank of Beaver Dam, about a mile distant. This position was naturally strong, the banks of the creek in front being high and almost perpendicular, and the approach to it was over open fields commanded by the fire of artillery and infantry under cover on the opposite side. The difficulty of crossing the stream had been increased by felling the fringe of woods on its banks and destroying the bridges. Jackson was expected to pass Beaver Dam above, and turn the enemy's right, so General Hill made no direct attack. Longstreet and D. H. Hill crossed the Mechanicsville Bridge as soon as it was uncovered and could be repaired, but it was late before they reached the north bank of the Chickahominy. An effort was made by two brigades, one of A. P. Hill and the other Ripley's of D. H. Hill, to turn the enemy's left, but the troops were unable in the growing darkness to overcome the obstructions, and were withdrawn. The engagement ceased about 9 P.M. Our troops retained the ground from which the foe had been driven.

According to the published reports, General McClellan's position was regarded at this time as extremely critical. If he concentrated on the left bank of the Chickahominy, he abandoned the attempt to capture Richmond, and risked a retreat upon the White House and Yorktown, where he had no reserves, or reason to expect further support. If he moved to the right bank of the river, he risked the loss of his communications with the White House, whence his supplies were drawn by railroad. He would then have to attempt the capture of Richmond by assault, or be forced to open new communications by the James River, and move at once in that direction. There he would receive the support of the enemy's navy. This latter movement had, it appears, been thought of previously, and transports had been sent to the James River. During the night, after the close of the contest last mentioned, the whole of Porter's baggage was sent over to the right bank of the river, and united with the train that set out on the evening of the 27th for the James River.

It would almost seem as if the Government of the United States
anticipated, at this period, the failure of McClellan's expedition.
On June 27th President Lincoln issued an order creating the "Army of
Virginia," to consist of the forces of Fremont, in their Mountain
Department; of Banks, in their Shenandoah Department; and of
McDowell, at Fredericksburg. The command of this army was assigned to
Major-General John Pope. This cut off all reënforcements from
McDowell to McClellan.

In expectation of Jackson's arrival on the enemy's right, the battle was renewed at dawn, and continued with animation about two hours, during which the passage of the creek was attempted, and our troops forced their way to its banks, where their progress was arrested by the nature of the stream and the resistance encountered. They maintained their position while preparations were being made to cross at another point nearer the Chickahominy. Before these were completed, Jackson crossed Beaver Dam above, and the enemy abandoned his intrenchments, and retired rapidly down the river, destroying a great deal of property, but leaving much in his deserted camps.

After repairing the bridges over Beaver Dam, the several columns resumed their advance, as nearly as possible, as prescribed in the order. Jackson, with whom D. H. Hill had united, bore to the left, in order to cut off reënforcements to the enemy or intercept his retreat in that direction. Longstreet and A. P. Hill moved nearer the Chickahominy. Many prisoners were taken in their progress; and the conflagration of wagons and stores marked the course of the retreating army. Longstreet and Hill reached the vicinity of New Bridge about noon. It was ascertained that the enemy had taken a position behind Powhite Creek, prepared to dispute our progress. He occupied a range of hills, with his right resting in the vicinity of McGhee's house, and his left near that of Dr. Gaines, on a wooded bluff, which rose abruptly from a deep ravine. The ravine was filled with sharpshooters, to whom its banks gave protection. A second line of infantry was stationed on the side of the hill, overlooking the first, and protected by a breastwork of logs. A third occupied the crest, strengthened with rifle-trenches, and crowned with artillery. The approach to this position was over an open plain, about a quarter of a mile wide, commanded by a triple line of fire, and swept by the heavy batteries south of the Chickahominy. In front of his center and right the ground was generally open, bounded on the side of our approach by a wood, with dense and tangled undergrowth, and traversed by a sluggish stream, which converted the soil into a deep morass. The woods on the further side of the swamp were occupied by sharpshooters, and trees had been felled to increase the difficulty of its passage, and detain our advancing columns under the fire of infantry massed on the slopes of the opposite hills, and of the batteries on their crests.

Pressing on toward the York River Railroad, A. P. Hill, who was in advance, reached the vicinity of New Cold Harbor about 2 P.M., where he encountered the foe. He immediately formed his line nearly parallel to the road leading from that place toward McGhee's house, and soon became hotly engaged. The arrival of Jackson on our left was momentarily expected, and it was supposed that his approach would cause the extension of the opposing line in that direction. Under this impression, Longstreet was held back until this movement should commence. The principal part of the enemy's army was now on the north side of the Chickahominy. Hill's single division met this large force with the impetuous courage for which that officer and his troops were distinguished. They drove it back, and assailed it in its strong position on the ridge. The battle raged fiercely, and with varying fortune, more than two hours. Three regiments pierced the enemy's line, and forced their way to the crest of the hill on his left, but were compelled to fall back before overwhelming numbers. This superior force, assisted by the fire of the batteries south of the Chickahominy, which played incessantly on our columns as they pressed through the difficulties that obstructed their way, caused them to recoil. Though most of the men had never been under fire until the day before, they were rallied, and in turn repelled the advance of our assailant Some brigades were broken, others stubbornly maintained their positions, but it became apparent that the enemy was gradually gaining ground. The attack on our left being delayed by the length of Jackson's march and the obstacles he encountered, Longstreet was ordered to make a diversion in Hill's favor by a feint on the enemy's left. In making this demonstration, the great strength of the position already described was discovered, and General Longstreet perceived that, to render the diversion effectual, the feint must be converted into an attack. He resolved, with his characteristic determination, to carry the heights by assault. His column was quickly formed near the open ground, and, as his preparations were completed, Jackson arrived, and his right division—that of Whiting—took position on the left of Longstreet. At the same time, D. H. Hill formed on our extreme left, and, after a short but bloody conflict, forced his way through the morass and obstructions, and drove the foe from the woods on the opposite side. Ewell advanced on Hill's right, and became hotly engaged. The first and fourth brigades of Jackson's own division filled the interval between Ewell and A. P. Hill. The second and third were sent to the right. The arrival of these fresh troops enabled A. P. Hill to withdraw some of his brigades, wearied and reduced by their long and arduous conflict. The lines being now complete, a general advance from right to left was ordered. On the right, the troops moved forward with steadiness, unchecked by the terrible fire from the triple lines of infantry on the hill, and the cannon on both sides of the river, which burst upon them as they emerged upon the plain. The dead and wounded marked the line of their intrepid advance, the brave Texans leading, closely followed by their no less daring comrades. The enemy were driven from the ravine to the first line of breastworks, over which our impetuous column dashed up to the intrenchments on the crest. These were quickly stormed, fourteen pieces of artillery captured, and the foe driven into the field beyond. Fresh troops came to his support, and he endeavored repeatedly to rally, but in vain. He was forced back with great slaughter until he reached the woods on the banks of the Chickahominy, and night put an end to the pursuit. Long lines of dead and wounded marked each stand made by the enemy in his stubborn resistance, and the field over which he retreated was strewed with the slain. On the left, the attack was no less vigorous and successful. D. H. Hill charged across the open ground in front, one of his regiments having first bravely carried a battery whose fire enfiladed his advance. Gallantly supported by the troops on his right, who pressed forward with unfaltering resolution, he reached the crest of the ridge, and, after a sanguinary struggle, broke the enemy's line, captured several of his batteries, and drove him in confusion toward the Chickahominy, until darkness rendered further pursuit impossible. Our troops remained in undisturbed possession of the field, covered with the dead and wounded of our opponent; and his broken forces fled to the river or wandered through the woods. Owing to the nature of the country, the cavalry was unable to participate in the general engagement. It, however, rendered valuable service in guarding Jackson's flank, and took a large number of prisoners.

On the morning of the 28th it was ascertained that none of the enemy remained in our front north of the Chickahominy. As he might yet intend to give battle to preserve his communications, the Ninth Cavalry, supported by Ewell's division, was ordered to seize the York River Railroad, and General Stuart with his main body to coöperate. When the cavalry reached Dispatch Station, the enemy retreated to the south bank of the Chickahominy, and burned the railroad-bridge. During the forenoon, columns of dust south of the river showed that he was in motion. The abandonment of the railroad and destruction of the bridge proved that no further attempt would be made to hold that line. But, from the position the enemy occupied, the roads which led toward the James River would also enable him to reach the lower bridges over the Chickahominy, and retreat down the Peninsula. In the latter event, it was necessary that our troops should continue on the north bank of the river, and, until the intention of General McClellan was discovered, it was deemed injudicious to change their disposition. Ewell was therefore ordered to proceed to Bottom's Bridge, to guard that point, and the cavalry to watch the bridges below. No certain indications of a retreat to the James River were discovered by our forces on the south side of the Chickahominy, and late in the afternoon the enemy's works were reported to be fully manned. The strength of these fortifications prevented Generals Huger and Magruder from discovering what was passing in their front. Below the enemy's works the country was densely wooded and intersected by swamps, concealing his movements and precluding reconnaissances except by the regular roads, all of which were strongly guarded. The bridges over the Chickahominy in rear of the enemy were destroyed, and their reconstruction by us was impracticable in the presence of his whole army and powerful batteries. We were therefore compelled to wait until his purpose should be developed. Generals Huger and Magruder were again directed to use the utmost vigilance, and to pursue the foe vigorously should they discover that he was retreating. During the afternoon of the 28th the signs were suggestive of a general movement, and, no indications of his approach to the lower bridges of the Chickahominy having been discovered by the pickets in observation at those points, it became inferable that General McClellan was about to retreat to the James River.


Retreat of the Enemy.—Pursuit and Battle.-Night.—Further Retreat of the Enemy.—Progress of General Jackson.—The Enemy at Frazier's Farm.—Position of General Holmes.—Advance of General Longstreet.—Remarkable Features of the Battle.—Malvern Hill.— Our Position.—The Attack.—Expedition of General Stuart.— Destruction of the Enemy's Stores.—Assaults on the Enemy.—Retreat to Westover on the James.—Siege of Richmond raised.—Number of Prisoners taken.—Strength of our Forces.—Strength of our Forces at Seven Pines and after.—Strength of the Enemy.

During the night I visited the several commands along the intrenchment on the south side of the Chickahominy. General Huger's was on the right, General McLaws's in the center, and General Magruder's on the left. The night was quite dark, especially so in the woods in front of our line, and, in expressing my opinion to the officers that the enemy would commence a retreat before morning, I gave special instructions as to the precautions necessary in order certainly to hear when the movement commenced. In the confusion of such a movement, with narrow roads and heavy trains, a favorable opportunity was offered for attack. It fell out, however, that the enemy did move before morning, and that the fact of the works having been evacuated was first learned by an officer on the north side of the river, who, the next morning, the 29th, about sunrise, was examining their works by the aid of a field-glass.

Generals Longstreet and A. P. Hill were promptly ordered to recross the Chickahominy at New Bridge, and move by the Darbytown and Long Bridge roads. General Lee, having sent his engineer. Captain Meade, to examine the condition of the abandoned works, came to the south side of the Chickahominy to unite his command and direct its movements.

Magruder and Huger found the whole line of works deserted, and large quantities of military stores of every description abandoned or destroyed. They were immediately ordered in pursuit, the former by the Charles City road, so as to take the enemy's army in flank; and the latter by the Williamsburg road, to attack his rear. Jackson was directed to cross the "Grapevine" Bridge, and move down the south side of the Chickahominy. Magruder reached the vicinity of Savage Station, where he came upon the rear-guard of the retreating army. Being informed that it was advancing, he halted and sent for reënforcements. Two brigades of Huger's division were ordered to his support, but were subsequently withdrawn, it having been ascertained that the force in Magruder's front was merely covering the retreat of the main body.

Jackson's route led to the flank and rear of Savage Station, but he was delayed by the necessity of reconstructing the "Grapevine" Bridge.

Late in the afternoon Magruder attacked the enemy with one of his divisions and two regiments of another. A severe action ensued, and continued about two hours, when night put an end to the conflict. The troops displayed great gallantry, and inflicted heavy loss; but, owing to the lateness of the hour and the small force engaged, the result was not decisive, and the enemy continued his retreat under cover of night, leaving several hundred prisoners, with his dead and wounded, in our hands. Our loss was small in numbers but great in value. Among others who could ill be spared, here fell the gallant soldier, the useful citizen, the true friend and Christian gentleman, Brigadier-General Richard Griffith. He had served with distinction in foreign war, and, when the South was invaded, was among the first to take up arms in defense of our rights.

At Savage Station were found about twenty-five hundred men in hospital, and a large amount of property. Stores of much value had been destroyed, including the necessary medical supplies for the sick and wounded. The night was so dark that, before the battle ended, it was only by challenging that on several occasions it was determined whether the troops in front were friends or foes. It was therefore deemed unadvisable to attempt immediate pursuit.

Our troops slept upon their arms, and in the morning it was found that the enemy had retreated during the night, and, by the time thus gained, he was enabled to cross the White-Oak Creek, and destroy the bridge.

Early on the 30th Jackson reached Savage Station. He was directed to pursue the enemy on the road he had taken, and Magruder to follow Longstreet by the Darbytown road. As Jackson advanced, he captured so many prisoners and collected so large a number of arms, that two regiments had to be detached for their security. His progress at White-Oak Swamp was checked by the enemy, who occupied the opposite side, and obstinately resisted the rebuilding of the bridge.

Longstreet and A. P. Hill, continuing their advance, on the 30th came upon the foe strongly posted near the intersection of the Long Bridge and Charles City roads, at the place known in the military reports as Frazier's Farm.

Huger's route led to the right of this position, Jackson's to the rear, and the arrival of their commands was awaited, to begin the attack.

On the 29th General Holmes had crossed from the south side of the James River, and, on the 30th, was reënforced by a detachment of General Wise's brigade. He moved down the River road, with a view to gain, near to Malvern Hill, a position which would command the supposed route of the retreating army.

It is an extraordinary fact that, though the capital had been threatened by an attack from the seaboard on the right, though our army had retreated from Yorktown up to the Chickahominy, and, after encamping there for a time, had crossed the river and moved up to Richmond, yet, when at the close of the battles around Richmond McClellan retreated and was pursued toward the James River, we had no maps of the country in which we were operating; our generals were ignorant of the roads, and their guides knew little more than the way from their homes to Richmond. It was this fatal defect in preparation, and the erroneous answers of the guides, that caused General Lee first to post Holmes and Wise, when they came down the River road, at New Market, where, he was told, was the route that McClellan must pursue in his retreat to the James. Subsequently learning that there was another road, by the Willis church, which would better serve the purpose of the retreating foe, Holmes's command was moved up to a position on that road where, at the foot of a hill which concealed from view the enemy's line, he remained under the fire of the enemy's gunboats, the huge, shrieking shells from which dispersed a portion of his cavalry and artillery, though the faithful old soldier remained with the rest of his command, waiting, according to his orders, for the enemy with his trains to pass; but, taking neither of the roads pointed out to General Lee, he retreated by the shorter and better route, which led by Dr. Poindexter's house to Harrison's Landing. It has been alleged that General Holmes was tardy in getting into position, and failed to use his artillery as he had been ordered. Both statements are incorrect. He first took position when and where he was directed, and, soon after, he moved to the last position to which he was assigned. The dust of his advancing column caused a heavy fire from the gunboats to be opened upon him, and, in men who had never before seen the huge shells then fired, they inspired a degree of terror not justified by their effectiveness. The enemy, instead of being a straggling mass moving toward the James River, as had been reported, were found halted between West's house and Malvern Hill on ground commanding Holmes's position, with an open field between them.

General Holmes ordered his chief of artillery to commence firing upon the enemy's infantry, which immediately gave way, but a heavy fire of twenty-five or thirty guns promptly replied to our battery, and formed, with the gunboats, a cross-fire upon General Holmes's command. The numerical superiority of the opposing force, both in infantry and artillery, would have made it worse than useless to attempt an assault unless previously reënforced, and, as no reënforcements arrived, Holmes, about an hour after nightfall, withdrew to a point somewhat in advance of the one he had held in the morning. Though the enemy continued their cannonade until after dark, and most of the troops were new levies, General Holmes reported that they behaved well under the trying circumstances to which they were exposed, except a portion of his artillery and cavalry, which gave way in disorder, probably from the effect of the ten-inch shells, which were to them a novel implement of war; for when I met them, say half a mile from the point they had left, and succeeded in stopping them, another shell fell and exploded near us in the top of a wide-spreading tree, giving a shower of metal and limbs, which soon after caused them to resume their flight in a manner that plainly showed no moral power could stop them within the range of those shells. It was after a personal and hazardous reconnaissance that General Lee assigned General Holmes to his last position; and when I remonstrated with General Lee, whom I met returning from his reconnaissance, on account of the exposure to which he had subjected himself, he said he could not get the required information otherwise, and therefore had gone himself.

After the close of the battle of Malvern Hill, General Holmes found that a deep ravine led up to the rear of the left flank of the enemy's line, and expressed his regret that it had not been known, and that he had not been ordered, when the attack was made in front, to move up that ravine and simultaneously assail in flank and reverse. It was not until after he had explained with regret the lost, because unknown, opportunity, that he was criticised as having failed to do his whole duty at the battle of Malvern Hill.

He has passed beyond the reach of censure or of praise, after serving his country on many fields wisely and well. I, who knew him from our schoolboy days, who served with him in garrison and in the field, and with pride watched him as he gallantly led a storming party up a rocky height at Monterey, and was intimately acquainted with his whole career during our sectional war, bear willing testimony to the purity, self-abnegation, generosity, fidelity, and gallantry which characterized him as a man and a soldier.

General Huger reported that his progress was delayed by trees which his opponent had felled across the Williamsburg road. In the afternoon, after passing the obstructions and driving off the men who were still cutting down trees, they came upon an open field (P. Williams's), where they were assailed by a battery of rifled guns. The artillery was brought up, and replied to the fire. In the mean time a column of infantry was moved to the right, so as to turn the battery, and the combat was ended. The report of this firing was heard at Frazier's Farm, and erroneously supposed to indicate the near approach of Huger's column, and, it has been frequently stated, induced General Longstreet to open fire with some of his batteries as notice to General Huger where our troops were, and that thus the engagement was brought on. General A. P. Hill, who was in front and had made the dispositions of our troops while hopefully waiting for the arrival of Jackson and Huger, states that the fight commenced by fire from the enemy's artillery, which swept down the road, etc. This not only concurs with my recollection of the event, but is more in keeping with the design to wait for the expected reënforcements.

The detention of Huger, as above stated, and the failure of Jackson to force a passage of the White-Oak Swamp, left Longstreet and Hill, without the expected support, to maintain the unequal conflict as best they might. The superiority of numbers and advantage of position were on the side of the enemy. The battle raged furiously until 9 P.M. By that time the enemy had been driven with great slaughter from every position but one, which he maintained until he was enabled to withdraw under cover of darkness. At the close of the struggle nearly the entire field remained in our possession, covered with the enemy's dead and wounded. Many prisoners, including a general of division, were captured, and several batteries with some thousands of small-arms were taken.

After this engagement, Magruder, who had been ordered to go to the support of Holmes, was recalled, to relieve the troops of Longstreet and Hill. He arrived during the night, with the troops of his command much fatigued by the long, hot march.

In the battle of Frazier's Farm the troops of Longstreet and Hill, though disappointed in the expectation of support, and contending against superior numbers advantageously posted, made their attack successful by the most heroic courage and unfaltering determination.

Nothing could surpass the bearing of General Hill on that occasion, and I often recur with admiration to the manner in which Longstreet, when Hill's command seemed about to be overborne, steadily led his reserve to the rescue, as he might have marched on a parade. The mutual confidence between himself and his men was manifested by the calm manner in which they went into the desperate struggle. The skill and courage which made that corps illustrious on former as well as future fields were never more needed or better exemplified than on this.

The current of the battle which was then setting against us was reversed, and the results which have been stated were gained. That more important consequences would have followed had Huger and Jackson, or either of them, arrived in time to take part in the conflict, is unquestionable; and there is little hazard in saying that the army of McClellan would have been riven in twain, beaten in detail, and could never, as an organized body, have reached the James River.

Our troops slept on the battle-field they had that day won, and couriers were sent in the night with instructions to hasten the march of the troops who had been expected during the day.

Valor less true or devotion to their cause less sincere than that which pervaded our army and sustained its commanders would, in this hour of thinned ranks and physical exhaustion, have thought of the expedient of retreat; but, so far as I remember, no such resort was contemplated. To bring up reënforcements and attack again was alike the expectation and the wish.

During the night, humanity, the crowning grace of the knightly soldier, secured for the wounded such care as was possible, not only to those of our own army, but also to those of the enemy who had been left upon the field.

This battle was in many respects one of the most remarkable of the war. Here occurred on several occasions the capture of batteries by the impetuous charge of our infantry, defying the canister and grape which plowed through their ranks, and many hand-to-hand conflicts, where bayonet-wounds were freely given and received, and men fought with clubbed muskets in the life-and-death encounter.

The estimated strength of the enemy was double our own, and he had the advantage of being in position. From both causes it necessarily resulted that our loss was very heavy. To the official reports and the minute accounts of others, the want of space compels me to refer the reader for a detailed statement of the deeds of those who in our day served their country so bravely and so well.

During the night those who fought us at Frazier's Farm fell back to the stronger position of Malvern Hill, and by a night-march the force which had detained Jackson at White-Oak Swamp effected a junction with the other portion of the enemy. Early on the 1st of July Jackson reached the battlefield of the previous day, having forced the passage of White-Oak Swamp, where he captured some artillery and a number of prisoners. He was directed to follow the route of the enemy's retreat, but soon found him in position on a high ridge in front of Malvern Hill. Here, on a line of great natural strength, he had posted his powerful artillery, supported by his large force of infantry, covered by hastily constructed intrenchments. His left rested near Crew's house and his right near Binford's. Immediately in his front the ground was open, varying in width from a quarter to half a mile, and, sloping gradually from the crest, was completely swept by the fire of his infantry and artillery. To reach this open ground our troops had to advance through a broken and thickly wooded country, traversed nearly throughout its whole extent by a swamp passable at only a few places and difficult at these. The whole was within range of the batteries on the heights and the gunboats in the river, under whose incessant fire our movements had to be executed.

Jackson formed his line with Whiting's division on his left and D. H. Hill's on his right, one of Ewell's brigades occupying the interval. The rest of Ewell's and Jackson's own division were held in reserve. Magruder was directed to take position on Jackson's right, but before his arrival two of Huger's brigades came up and were placed next to Hill. Magruder subsequently formed on the right of these brigades, which, with a third of Huger's, were placed under his command. Longstreet and A. P. Hill were held in reserve, and took no part in the engagement. Owing to ignorance of the country, the dense forests impeding necessary communications, and the extreme difficulty of the ground, the whole line was not formed until a late hour in the afternoon. The obstacles presented by the woods and swamp made it impracticable to bring up a sufficient amount of artillery to oppose successfully the extraordinary force of that arm employed by the enemy, while the field itself afforded us few positions favorable for its use, and none for its proper concentration.

General W. N. Pendleton, in whom were happily combined the highest characteristics of the soldier, the patriot, and the Christian, was in chief command of the artillery, and energetically strove to bring his long-range guns and reserve artillery into a position where they might be effectively used against the enemy, but the difficulties before mentioned were found insuperable.

Orders were issued for a general advance at a given signal, but the causes referred to prevented a proper concert of action among the troops. D. H. Hill pressed forward across the open field, and engaged the enemy gallantly, breaking and driving back his first line; but, a simultaneous advance of the other troops not taking place, he found himself unable to maintain the ground he had gained against the overwhelming numbers and numerous batteries opposed to him. Jackson sent to his support his own division and that part of Ewell's which was in reserve; but, owing to the increasing darkness and intricacy of the forest and swamp, they did not arrive in time to render the desired assistance. Hill was therefore compelled to abandon part of the ground he had gained, after suffering severe loss and inflicting heavy damage.

On the right the attack was gallantly made by Huger's and Magruder's commands. Two brigades of the former commenced the action, the other two were subsequently sent to the support of Magruder and Hill. Several determined efforts were made to storm the hill at Crew's house. The brigade advanced bravely across the open field, raked by the fire of a hundred cannon and the musketry of large bodies of infantry. Some were broken and gave way; others approached close to the guns, driving back the infantry, compelling the advance batteries to retire to escape capture, and mingling their dead with those of the enemy. For want of coöperation by the attacking columns, their assaults were too weak to break the enemy's line; and, after struggling gallantly, sustaining and inflicting great loss, they were compelled successively to retire. Night was approaching when the attack began, and it soon became difficult to distinguish friend from foe. The firing continued until after 9 P.M., but no decided result was gained.

Part of our troops were withdrawn to their original positions; others remained in the open field; and some rested within a hundred yards of the batteries that had been so bravely but vainly assailed. The lateness of the hour at which the attack necessarily began gave the foe the full advantage of his superior position, and augmented the natural difficulties of our own.

At the cessation of firing, several fragments of different commands were lying down and holding their ground within a short distance of the enemy's line, and, as soon as the fighting ceased, an informal truce was established by common consent. Numerous parties from both armies, with lanterns and litters, wandered over the field seeking for the wounded, whose groans and calls on all sides could not fail to move with pity the hearts of friend and foe.

The morning dawned with heavy rain, and the enemy's position was seen to have been entirely deserted. The ground was covered with his dead and wounded, and his route exhibited evidence of a precipitate retreat. To the fatigue of hard marches and successive battles, enough to have disqualified our troops for rapid pursuit, was added the discomfort of being thoroughly wet and chilled by rain. I sent out to the neighboring houses to buy, if it could be had, at any price, enough whisky to give to each of the men a single gill, but it could not be found.

The foe had silently withdrawn in the night by a route which had been unknown to us, but which was the most direct road to Harrison's Landing, and he had so many hours the start, that, among the general officers who expressed to me their opinion, there was but one who thought it was possible to pursue effectively. That was General T. J. Jackson, who quietly said, "They have not all got away if we go immediately after them." During the pursuit, which has just been described, the cavalry of our army had been absent, having been detached on a service which was reported as follows: After seizing the York River Railroad, on June 28th, and driving the enemy across the Chickahominy, the force under General Stuart proceeded down the railroad to ascertain if there was any movement of the enemy in that direction. He encountered but little opposition, and reached the vicinity of the White House on the 29th. On his approach the enemy destroyed the greater part of the immense stores accumulated at that depot, and retreated toward Fortress Monroe. With one gun and some dismounted men General Stuart drove off a gunboat, which lay near the White House, and rescued a large amount of property, including more than ten thousand stand of small-arms, partially burned. General Stuart describes his march down the enemy's line of communication with the York River as one in which he was but feebly resisted. He says:

"We advanced until, coming in view of the White House (a former plantation residence of General George Washington), at a distance of a quarter of a mile, a large gunboat was discovered lying at the landing. . . . I was convinced that a few bold sharpshooters could compel the gunboat to leave. I accordingly ordered down about seventy-five, partly of the First and Fourth Virginia Cavalry, and partly of the Jeff Davis Legion, armed with the rifled carbines. They advanced on this monster so terrible to our fancy, and a body of sharpshooters was sent ashore from the boat to meet them. . . . To save time I ordered up the howitzer, a few shells from which, fired with great accuracy, and bursting directly over her decks, caused an instantaneous withdrawal of the sharpshooters, and a precipitous flight under headway of steam down the river. . . . An opportunity was here offered for observing the deceitfulness of the enemy's pretended reverence for everything associated with the name of Washington—for the dwelling-house was burned to the ground, not a vestige left except what told of desolation and vandalism.

"Nine large barges, laden with stores, were on fire as we approached; immense numbers of tents, wagons, and cars in long trains, loaded, and five locomotives; a number of forges; quantities of every species of quartermaster's stores and property, making a total of many millions of dollars—all more or less destroyed. . . . I replied (to a note from the commanding General) that there was no evidence of a retreat of the main body down the Williamsburg road, and I had no doubt that the enemy, since his defeat, was endeavoring to reach the James as a new base, being compelled to surrender his connection with the York. If the Federal people can be convinced that this was a part of McClellan's plan, that it was in his original design for Jackson to turn his right flank, and our generals to force him from his strongholds, they certainly never can forgive him for the millions of public treasure that his superb strategy cost."

Leaving one squadron at the White House, he returned to guard the lower bridges of the Chickahominy. On the 30th he was directed to recross and coöperate with Jackson. After a long march, he reached the rear of the enemy at Malvern Hill, on the night of July 1st, at the close of the engagement.

On the 2d of July the pursuit was commenced, the cavalry under General Stuart in advance. The knowledge acquired since the event renders it more than probable that, could our infantry, with a fair amount of artillery, during that day and the following night, have been in position on the ridge which overlooked the plain where the retreating enemy was encamped on the bank of the James River, a large part of his army must have dispersed, and the residue would have been captured. It appears, from the testimony taken before the United States Congressional Committee on the Conduct of the War, that it was not until July 3d that the heights which overlooked the encampment of the retreating army were occupied, and, from the manuscript notes on the war by General J. E. B. Stuart, we learn that he easily gained and took possession of the heights, and with his light howitzer opened fire upon the enemy's camp, producing great commotion. This was described by the veteran soldier, General Casey, of the United States Army, thus:

"The enemy had come down with some artillery upon our army massed together on the river, the heights commanding the position not being in our possession. Had the enemy come down and taken possession of those heights with a force of twenty or thirty thousand men, they would, in my opinion, have taken the whole of our army except that small portion of it that might have got off on the transports."

General Lee was not a man of hesitation, and they have mistaken his character who suppose caution was his vice. He was prone to attack, and not slow to press an advantage when he gained it. Longstreet and Jackson were ordered to advance, but a violent storm which prevailed throughout the day greatly retarded their progress. The enemy, harassed and closely followed by the cavalry, succeeded in gaining Westover, on the James River, and the protection of his gunboats. His position was one of great natural and artificial strength, after the heights were occupied and intrenched. It was flanked on each side by a creek, and the approach in front was commanded by the heavy guns of his shipping, as well as by those mounted in his intrenchments. Under these circumstances it was deemed inexpedient to attack him; and, in view of the condition of our troops, who had been marching and fighting almost incessantly for seven days, under the most trying circumstances, it was determined to withdraw, in order to afford to them the repose of which they stood so much in need.

Several days were spent in collecting arms and other property abandoned by the enemy, and, in the mean time, some artillery and cavalry were sent below Westover to annoy his transports. On July 8th our army returned to the vicinity of Richmond.

Under ordinary circumstances the army of the enemy should have been destroyed. Its escape was due to the causes already stated. Prominent among these was the want of correct and timely information. This fact, together with the character of the country, enabled General McClellan skillfully to conceal his retreat, and to add much to the obstructions with which nature had beset the way of our pursuing columns. We had, however, effected our main purpose. The siege of Richmond was raised, and the object of a campaign which had been prosecuted after months of preparation, at an enormous expenditure of men and money, was completely frustrated.[42]

More than ten thousand prisoners, including officers of rank, fifty-two pieces of artillery, and upward of thirty-five thousand stand of small-arms were captured. The stores and supplies of every description which fell into our hands were great in amount and value, but small in comparison with those destroyed by the enemy. His losses in battle exceeded our own, as attested by the thousands of dead and wounded left on every field, while his subsequent inaction shows in what condition the survivors reached the protection of the gunboats.

In the archive office of the War Department in Washington there are on file some of the field and monthly returns of the strength of the Army of Northern Virginia. These are the original papers which were taken from Richmond. They furnish an accurate statement of the number of men in that army at the periods named. They were not made public at the time, as I did not think it to be judicious to inform the enemy of the numerical weakness of our forces. The following statements have been taken from those papers by Major Walter H. Taylor, of the staff of General Lee, who supervised for several years the preparation of the original returns.

A statement of the strength of the troops under General Johnston shows that on May 21, 1862, he had present for duty as follows:

  Smith's division, consisting of the brigades of Whiting,
  Hood, Hampton, Hatton, and Pettigrew . . . . . . . . . . . . 10,592

  Longstreet's division, consisting of the brigades of A. P.
  Hill, Pickett, R. H. Anderson, Wilson, Colston, and Pryor . . 13,816

  Magruder's division, consisting of the brigades of McLaws,
  Kershaw, Griffith, Cobb, Toombs, and D. R. Jones . . . . . . 15,680

  D. H. Hill's division, consisting of the brigades of Early,
  Rodes, Raines, Featherston, and the commands of Colonels Ward
  and Crump . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11,151

Cavalry brigade . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,289

  Reserve artillery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,160
  Total effective men . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53,688

Statement of the Strength of the Army Commanded by General R. E. Lee on July 20, 1862.

  Department of Northern Virginia . . . . . . . . Present for Duty
  and North Carolina Officers Enlisted men
  Department of North Carolina . . . . . . . . 722 . . . . 11,509
  Longstreet's division . . . . . . . . . . . . 557 . . . . 7,929
  D. H. Hill's division . . . . . . . . . . . . 550 . . . . 8,998
  McLaws's division . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 514 . . . . 7,188
  A. P. Hill's division . . . . . . . . . . . . 519 . . . . 10,104
  Anderson's division . . . . . . . . . . . . . 357 . . . . 5,760
  D. R. Jones's division . . . . . . . . . . . 213 . . . . 3,500
  Whiting's division . . . . . . . . . . . . . 252 . . . . 3,600
  Stuart's cavalry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 295 . . . . 3,740
  Pendleton's artillery . . . . . . . . . . . . 103 . . . . 1,716
  Rhett's artillery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 78 . . . . 1,355
                                               ——- ———
  Total, including Department of North Carolina 4,160 . . . 65,399

Army of Northern Virginia, September 22, 1862.
                                                  Present for Duty
                                                Officers Enlisted men
  Longstreet's command . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,410 . . . 19,001
  Jackson's command:
     D. H. Hill's division . . . . . . . . . . . 310 . . . . 4,739
     A. P. Hill's division . . . . . . . . . . . 318 . . . . 4,435
     Ewell's division . . . . . . . . . . . . . 280 . . . . 3,144
     Jackson's division . . . . . . . . . . . . 183 . . . . 2,367
                                                ——- ——-
  Total . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2,501 . . . 33,686

Army of Northern Virginia, September 30, 1862.
                                                  Present for Duty
                                                Officers Enlisted men

  Longstreet's command . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,927 . . . 26,489
  Jackson's command . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,629 . . . 21,728
  Reserve artillery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 . . . 716
                                                ——- ———
  Total[43] . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3,606 . . . 48,933

Major Taylor, in his work,[44] states:

"In addition to the troops above enumerated as the strength of General Johnston on May 21, 1862, there were two brigades subject to his orders then stationed in the vicinity of Hanover Junction, one under the command of General Branch; they were subsequently incorporated into the division of General A. P. Hill, and participated in the battles around Richmond."

He has no official data by which to determine their numbers, but, from careful estimates and conference with General Anderson, he estimates the strength of the two at 4,000 effective.

Subsequent to the date of the return of the army around Richmond, heretofore given, but previous to the battle of Seven Pines, General Johnston was reënforced by General Huger's division of three brigades. The total strength of these three brigades, according to the "Reports of the Operations of the Army of Northern Virginia," was 5,008 effectives. Taylor says:

"If the strength of these five be added to the return of May 21st, we shall have sixty-two thousand six hundred and ninety-six (62,696) as the effective strength of the army under General Johnston on May 31, 1862.

"Deduct the losses sustained in the battle of Seven Pines as shown by the official reports of casualties, say 6,084, and we have 56,612 as the effective strength of the army when General Lee assumed command."

There have been various attempts made to point out the advantage which might have been obtained if General Lee, in succeeding to the command, had renewed on the 1st of June the unfinished battle of the 31st of May; and the representation that he commenced his campaign, known as the "Seven Days' Battles," only after he had collected a great army, instead of moving with a force not greatly superior to that which his predecessor had, has led to the full exposition of all the facts bearing upon the case. In the "Southern Historical Society Papers," June, 1876, is published an extract from an address of Colonel Charles Marshall, secretary and aide-de-camp to General R. E. Lee, before the Virginia Division of the Army of Northern Virginia. In it Colonel Marshall quotes General J. E. Johnston as saying:

"General Lee did not attack the enemy until the 26th of June, because he was employed from the 1st until then in forming a great army by bringing to that which I had commanded 15,000 men from North Carolina under Major-General Holmes, 22,000 men from South Carolina and Georgia, and above 16,000 men from the 'Valley,' in the divisions of Jackson and Ewell," etc.

These numbers added together make 53,000. Colonel Marshall then proceeds, from official reports, to show that all these numbers were exaggerated, and that one brigade, spoken of as seven thousand strong—that of General Drayton—was not known to be in the Army of Virginia until after the "seven days," and that another brigade, of which General Johnston admitted he did not know the strength, Colonel Marshall thought it safer to refer to as the "unknown brigade," which, he suggests, may have been "a small command under General Evans, of South Carolina, who did not join the army until after it moved from Richmond."

General Holmes's report, made July 15, 1862, states that on the 29th of June he brought his command to the north side of the James River, and was joined by General Wise's brigade. With this addition, his force amounted to 6,000 infantry and six batteries of artillery. General Ransom's brigade had been transferred from the division of General Holmes to that of General Huger a short time before General Holmes was ordered to join General Lee. The brigade of General Branch had been detached at an earlier period; it was on duty near to Hanover Junction, and under the command of General J. E. Johnston before the battle of Seven Pines. These facts are mentioned to account for the small size of General Holmes's division, which had been reduced to two brigades. Ripley's brigade on the 26th of June was reported to have an aggregate force of 2,366, including pioneers and the ambulance corps. General Lawton's brigade, when moving up from Georgia to Richmond, was ordered to change direction, and join General Jackson in the Valley. He subsequently came down with General Jackson, and reports the force which he led into the battle of Cold Harbor, on the 27th of June, 1862, as 3,500 men.

General Lee, after the battle of Seven Pines, had sent two large brigades under General Whiting to coöperate with General Jackson in the Valley, and to return with him, according to instructions furnished. These brigades were in the battle of Seven Pines, and were counted in the force of the army when General Lee took command of it. Lawton's Georgia brigade, as has been stated, was diverted from its destination for a like temporary service, and is accounted for as reënforcements brought from the south. These three brigades, though coming with Jackson and Ewell, were not a part of their divisions, and, if their numbers are made to swell the force which Jackson brought, they should be elsewhere subtracted.

General J. A. Early, in the same number of the "Historical Society Papers," in a letter addressed to General J. E. Johnston, February 4, 1875, makes an exhaustive examination from official reports, and applies various methods of computation to the question at issue. Among other facts, he states:

"Drayton's brigade did not come to Virginia until after the battles around Richmond. It was composed of the Fifteenth South Carolina and the Fiftieth and Fifty-first Georgia Regiments and Third South Carolina Battalion. A part, if not all, of it was engaged in the fight at Secessionville, South Carolina, on the 16th of June, 1862. Its first engagement in Virginia was on the Rappahannock, 25th of August, 1862. After Sharpsburg, it was so small that it was distributed among some other brigades in Longstreet's corps."

After minute inquiry, General Early concludes that "the whole command that came from the Valley, including the artillery, the regiment of cavalry, and the Maryland regiment and a battery, then known as 'The Maryland Line,' could not have exceeded 8,000 men." In this, General Early does not include either Lawton's brigade or the two brigades with Whiting, and reaches the conclusion that "the whole force received by General Lee was about 23,000—about 30,000 less than your estimate."

Taking the number given by General Early as the entire reënforcement received by General Lee after the battle of Seven Pines and before the commencement of the seven days' battles—which those who know his extreme accuracy and minuteness of inquiry will be quite ready to do—and deducting from the 23,000 the casualties in the battle of Seven Pines (6,084), we have 16,916; if to this be added whatever number of absentees may have joined the army in anticipation of active operations, a number which I have no means of ascertaining, the result will be the whole increment to the army with which General Lee took the offensive against McClellan.

It appears from the official returns of the Army of the Potomac that on June 20th General McClellan had present for duty 115,102 men. It is stated that McClellan reached the James River with "between 85,000 and 90,000 men," and that his loss in the seven days' battles was 15,249; this would make the army 105,000 strong at the commencement of the battles.[45] Probably General Dix's corps of 9,277 men, stationed at Fortress Monroe, is not included in this last statement.

[Footnote 42: Reports of Generals Robert E. Lee, Pendleton, A. P. Hill, Huger, Alexander, and Major W. H. Taylor, in his "Four Years with Lee," have been drawn upon for the foregoing.]

[Footnote 43: No report of cavalry]

[Footnote 44: "Four Years with General Lee."]

[Footnote 45: Swinton's "History of the Army of the Potomac."]


Forced Emancipation.—Purposes of the United States Government at the Commencement of 1862.—Subjugation or Extermination.—The Willing Aid of United States Congress.—Attempt to legislate the Subversion of our Social Institutions.—Could adopt any Measure Self-Defense would justify.—Slavery the Cause of all Troubles, therefore must be removed.—Statements of President Lincoln's Inaugural.—Declaration of Sumner.—Abolition Legislation.—The Power based on Necessity.—Its Formula.—The System of Legislation devised.—Confiscation.—How permitted by the Law of Nations.— Views of Wheaton; of J. Q. Adams; of Secretary Marcy; of Chief-Justice Marshall.—Nature of Confiscation and Proceedings.— Compared with the Acts of the United States Congress.—Provisions of the Acts.—Five Thousand Millions of Property involved.—Another Feature of the Act.—Confiscates Property within Reach.—Procedure against Persons.—Held us as Enemies and Traitors.—Attacked us with the Instruments of War and Penalties of Municipal Law.— Emancipation to be secured.—Remarks of President Lincoln on signing the Bill.—Remarks of Mr. Adams compared.—Another Alarming Usurpation of Congress.—Argument for it.—No Limit to the War-Power of Congress; how maintained.—The Act to emancipate Slaves in the District of Columbia.—Compensation promised.—Remarks of President Lincoln.—The Right of Property violated.—Words of the Constitution.—The Act to prohibit Slavery in the Territories.-The Act making an Additional Article of War.—All Officers forbidden to return Fugitives.—Words of the Constitution.—The Powers of the Constitution unchanged in Peace or War.—The Discharge of Fugitives commanded in the Confiscation Act.—Words of the Constitution.

At the commencement of the year 1862 it was the purpose of the United States Government to assail us in every manner and at every point and with every engine of destruction which could be devised. The usual methods of civilized warfare consist in the destruction of an enemy's military power and the capture of his capital. These, however, formed only a small portion of the purposes of our enemy. If peace with fraternity and equality in the Union, under the Constitution as interpreted by its framers, had been his aim, this was attainable without war; but, seeking supremacy at the cost of a revolution in the entire political structure, involving a subversion of the Constitution, the subjection of the States, the submission of the people, and the establishment of a union under the sword, his efforts were all directed to subjugation or extermination. Thus, while the Executive was preparing immense armies, iron-clad fleets, and huge instruments of war, with which to invade our territory and destroy our citizens, the willing aid of an impatient, enraged Congress was invoked to usurp new powers, to legislate the subversion of our social institutions, and to give the form of legality to the plunder of a frenzied soldiery.

That body had no sooner assembled than it brought forward the doctrine that the Government of the United States was engaged in a struggle for its existence, and could therefore resort to any measure which a case of self-defense would justify. It pretended not to know that the only self-defense authorized in the Constitution for the Government created by it, was by the peaceful method of the ballot-box; and that, so long as the Government fulfilled the objects of its creation (see preamble of the Constitution), and exercised its delegated powers within their prescribed limits, its surest and strongest defense was to be found in that ballot-box.

The Congress next declared that our institution of slavery was the cause of all the troubles of the country, and therefore the whole power of the Government must be so directed as to remove it. If this had really been the cause of the troubles, how easily wise and patriotic statesmen might have furnished a relief. Nearly all the slaveholding States had withdrawn from the Union, therefore those who had been suffering vicariously might have welcomed their departure, as the removal of the cause which disturbed the Union, and have tried the experiment of separation. Should the trial have brought more wisdom and a spirit of conciliation to either or both, there might have arisen, as a result of the experiment, a reconstructed fraternal Union such as our fathers designed.

The people of the seceded States had loved the Union. Shoulder to shoulder with the people of the other States, they had bled for its liberties and its honor. Their sacrifices in peace had not been less than those in war, and their attachment had not diminished by what they had given, nor were they less ready to give in the future. The concessions they had made for many years and the propositions which followed secession proved their desire to preserve the peace.

The authors of the aggressions which had disturbed the harmony of the Union had lately acquired power on a sectional basis, and were eager for the spoil of their sectional victory. To conceal their real motive, and artfully to appeal to the prejudice of foreigners, they declared that slavery was the cause of the troubles of the country, and of the "rebellion" which they were engaged in suppressing. In his inaugural address in March, 1861, President Lincoln said: "I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the States where it exists. I believe I have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so." The leader (Sumner) of the Abolition party in Congress, on February 25, 1861, said in the Senate, "I take this occasion to declare most explicitly that I do not think that Congress has any right to interfere with slavery in a State." The principle thus announced had regulated all the legislation of Congress from the beginning of its first session in 1789 down to the first session of the Thirty-seventh Congress, commencing July 4, 1861.

A few months after the inaugural address above cited and the announcement of the fact above quoted were made, Congress commenced to legislate for the abolition of slavery. If it had the power now to do what it before had not, whence was it derived? There had been no addition in the interval to the grants in the Constitution; not a word or letter of that instrument had been changed since the possession of the power was disclaimed; yet after July 4, 1861, it was asserted by the majority in Congress that the Government had power to interfere with slavery in the States. Whence came the change? The answer is, It was wrought by the same process and on the same plea that tyranny has ever employed against liberty and justice—the time-worn excuse of usurpers—necessity; an excuse which is ever assumed as valid, because the usurper claims to be the sole judge of his necessity.

The formula under which it was asserted was as follows:

"Whereas the laws of the United States have been for some time past and now are opposed, and the execution thereof obstructed, etc., by combinations too powerful to be suppressed by the ordinary course of judicial proceedings," etc.

Therefore, says the plea of necessity, a new power is this day found under the Constitution of the United States. This means that certain circumstances had transpired in a distant portion of the Union, and the powers of the Constitution had thereby become enlarged. The inference follows with equal reason that, when the circumstances cease to exist, the powers of the Constitution will be contracted again to their normal state; that is, the powers of the Constitution of the United States are enlarged or contracted according to circumstances. Mankind can not be surprised at seeing a Government, administered on such an interpretation of powers, blunder into a civil war, and approach the throes of dissolution.

Nevertheless, these views were adopted by the Thirty-seventh Congress of the United States, and a system of legislation was devised which embraced the following usurpations: universal emancipation in the Confederate States through confiscation of private property of all kinds; prohibition of the extension of slavery to the Territories; emancipation of slavery in all places under the exclusive control of the Government of the United States; emancipation with compensation in the border States and in the District of Columbia; practical emancipation to follow the progress of the armies; all restraints to be removed from the slaves, so that they could go free wherever they pleased, and be fed and clothed, when destitute, at the expense of the United States, literally to become a "ward of the Government."

The emancipation of slaves through confiscation in States where the United States Government had, under the Constitution, no authority to interfere with slavery, was a problem which the usurpers found it difficult legally or logically to solve, but these obstacles were less regarded than the practical difficulty in States where the Government had no physical power to enforce its edicts. The limited powers granted in the Constitution to the Government of the United States were not at all applicable to such designs, or commensurate with their execution. Now, let us see the little possibility there was for constitutional liberties and rights to survive, when intrusted to such unscrupulous hands.

In Article I, section 8, the Constitution says:

"The Congress shall have power to declare war, grant letters of marque and reprisal, and make rules concerning captures on land and water; to raise and support armies; to provide and maintain a navy; to make rules for the government and regulation of the land and naval forces," etc.

This is the grant of power under which the Government of the United States makes war upon a foreign nation. If it had not been given in the Constitution, there would not have been any power under which to conduct a foreign war, such as that of 1812 against Great Britain or that of 1846 against Mexico. In such conflicts the nations engaged recognize each other as separate sovereignties and as public enemies, and use against each other all the powers granted by the law of nations. One of these powers is the confiscation of the property of the enemy. Under the law of nations of modern days this confiscation is limited in extent, made under a certain form, and for a defined object.

For the modern laws of war one must look to the usages of civilized states and to the publicists who have explained and enforced them. These usages constitute themselves the laws of war.

In relation to the capture and confiscation of private property on land, in addition to what has been said in previous pages, it may be added that the whole matter has never been better stated than by our great American publicist, Mr. Wheaton, in these words:

"By the modern usages of nations, which have now acquired the force of law, temples of religion, public edifices devoted to civil purposes only, monuments of art, and repositories of science, are exempted from the general operations of war. Private property on land is also exempt from confiscation, with the exception of such as may become booty in special cases, when taken from enemies in the field or in besieged towns, and of military contributions levied upon the inhabitants of the hostile territory. This exemption extends even to the case of an absolute and unqualified conquest of the enemy's country,"—("Elements of International Law," p. 421.)

Mr. John Quincy Adams, in a letter to the Secretary of State, dated
August 22, 1815, says:

"Our object is the restoration of all the property, including slaves, which, by the usages of war among civilized nations, ought not to have been taken. All private property on shore was of that description. It was entitled by the laws of war to exemption from capture."—(4 "American State Papers," 116, etc.)

Again, Mr. William L. Marcy, Secretary of State, in a letter to the
Count de Sartiges, dated July 28, 1856, says:

"The prevalence of Christianity and the progress of civilization have greatly mitigated the severity of the ancient mode of prosecuting hostilities. . . . It is a generally received rule of modern warfare, so far at least as operations upon land are concerned, that the persons and effects of non-combatants are to be respected. The wanton pillage or uncompensated appropriation of individual, property by an army even in possession of an enemy's country is against the usage of modern times. Such a proceeding at this day would be condemned by the enlightened judgment of the world, unless warranted by particular circumstances."

The words of the late Chief-Justice Marshall on the capture and confiscation of private property should not be omitted:

"It may not be unworthy of remark that it is very unusual, even in cases of conquest, for the conqueror to do more than displace the sovereign, and assume dominion over the country. The modern usage of nations, which has become law, would be violated; that sense of justice and of right which is acknowledged and felt by the whole civilized world would be outraged, if private property should be generally confiscated and private rights annulled. The people change their allegiance; their relation to their ancient sovereign is dissolved; but their relations to each other and their rights of property remain undisturbed."—("United States vs. Percheman," 7 Peters, 51.)

The Government of the United States recognized us as under the law of nations by attempting to use against us one of the powers of that law. Yet, if we were subject to this power, we were most certainly entitled to its protection. This was refused. That Government exercised against us all the severities of the law, and outraged that sense of justice and of right which is acknowledged and felt by the whole civilized world by rejecting the observance of its ameliorations. The act of confiscation is a power exercised under the laws of war for the purpose of indemnifying the captor for his expense and losses; and it is upon this basis that it is recognized. At the same time there is a mode of procedure attached to its exercise by which it is reserved from the domain of plunder and devastation. As has been already shown, there are, under the law, exemptions of certain classes of property. It is further required that the property subject to confiscation shall be actually captured and taken possession of. It shall then be adjudicated as prize by a proper authority, then sold, and the money received must be deposited in the public Treasury. Such are the conditions attached by the law of nations to legal confiscation.

Now, compare these conditions with the act of Congress, that in its true light the usurpations of that body may be seen. The act of Congress allowed no exemptions of private property, but confiscated all the property of every kind belonging to persons residing in the Confederate States who were engaged in hostilities against the United States or who were aiding or abetting those engaged in hostilities. This includes slaves as well as other property. The act provided that the slaves should go free; that is, they were exempted from capture, from being adjudicated and sold, and no proceeds of sale were to be put into the public Treasury. The following sections are from the act of the United States Congress, passed on August 6, 1861:

"Section 1. That if, during the present or any future insurrection against the Government of the United States after the President of the United States shall have declared by proclamation that the laws of the United States are opposed and the execution thereof obstructed by combinations too powerful to be suppressed by the ordinary course of judicial proceedings or by the power vested in the marshals by law, any person, or persons, his, her, or their agent, attorney, or employee shall purchase or acquire, sell or give, any property, of whatsoever kind or description, with intent to use or employ the same, or suffer the same to be used or employed in aiding, abetting, or promoting such insurrection or resistance to the laws, or any person or persons engaged therein, or if any person or persons, being the owner or owners of any such property, shall knowingly use or employ or consent to the use or employment of the same as aforesaid, all such property is hereby declared to be lawful subject of prize and capture wherever found; and it shall be the duty of the President of the United States to cause the same to be seized, confiscated, and condemned.

    "Section 3. The proceedings in court shall be for the benefit of the
    United States and the informer equally.

"Section 4. That whenever hereafter, during the present insurrection against the Government of the United States, any person claimed to be held to labor or service under the law of any State shall be required or permitted by the person to whom such labor or service is claimed to be due, or by the lawful agent of such person, to take up arms against the United States, or shall be required or permitted by the person to whom such labor or service is claimed to be due, or his lawful agent, to work or to be employed in or upon any fort, navy-yard, dock, armory, ship, intrenchment, or in any military or naval service whatsoever against the Government and lawful authority of the United States, then, and in every such case, the person to whom such labor or service is claimed to be due shall forfeit his claim to such labor, any law of the State or of the United States to the contrary notwithstanding. And, whenever thereafter the person claiming such labor or service shall seek to enforce his claim, it shall be a full and sufficient answer to such claim that the person whose service or labor is claimed had been employed in hostile service against the Government of the United States contrary to the provisions of this act."

The following sections are from the act of Congress passed on July 17, 1862:

"Section 6. That if any person, within any State or Territory of the United States other than those named aforesaid" (Confederate officers, etc.), "after the passage of this act, being engaged in armed rebellion against the Government of the United States or aiding or abetting such rebellion, shall not within sixty days after public warning and proclamation duly given and made by the President of the United States, cease to aid, countenance, and abet such rebellion and return to his allegiance to the United States, all the estate and property, moneys, stocks, and credits of such person shall be liable to seizure as aforesaid, and it shall be the duty of the President to seize and use them as aforesaid, or the proceeds thereof. And all sales, transfers, or conveyances of any such property, after the expiration of the said sixty days from the date of such warning and proclamation, shall be null and void; and it shall be a sufficient bar to any suit brought by such person for the possession or use of such property, or any of it, to allege and prove that he is one of the persons described in this section.

"Section 7. That to secure the condemnation and sale of any such property, after the same shall have been seized, so that it may be made available for the purpose aforesaid, proceedings in rem shall be instituted in the name of the United States in any district court thereof, or in any territorial court, or in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, within which the property above described, or any part thereof, may be found, or into which the same, if movable, may first be brought, which proceedings shall conform as nearly as may be to proceedings in admiralty or revenue cases; and if said property, whether real or personal, shall be found to have belonged to a person engaged in rebellion, or who has given aid or comfort thereto, the same shall be condemned as enemy's property and become the property of the United States, and may be disposed of as the court shall decree, and the proceeds thereof paid into the Treasury of the United States for the purposes aforesaid.

"Section 9. That all slaves of persons who shall hereafter be engaged in rebellion against the Government of the United States, or who shall in any way give aid or comfort thereto, escaping from such persons and taking refuge within the lines of the army; and all slaves captured from such persons or deserted by them and coming under the control of the Government of the United States; and all slaves of such persons found or being within any place occupied by rebel forces and afterward occupied by the forces of the United States, shall be deemed captives of war, and shall be for ever free of their servitude, and not again held as slaves.

"Section 10. That no slave escaping into any State, Territory, or the District of Columbia from any other State, shall be delivered up, or in any way impeded or hindered of his liberty, except for crime or some offense against the laws, unless the person claiming said fugitive shall first make oath that the person, to whom the labor or service of such fugitive is alleged to be due, is his lawful owner, and has not borne arms against the United States in the present rebellion, nor in any way given aid and comfort thereto; and no person engaged in the military and naval service of the United States shall, under any pretense whatever, assume to decide on the validity of the claim of any person to the service or labor of any other person, or surrender up any such person to the claimant, on pain of being dismissed from the service."

These above-mentioned proceedings violated all the principles of the law of nations, without a shadow of authority for it under the Constitution of the United States. The armies of the United States were literally authorized to invade the Confederate States, to seize all property as plunder, and to let the negroes go free. Our posterity, reading that history, will blush that such facts are on record. It was estimated on the floor of the House of Representatives that the aggregate amount of property within our limits subject to be acted upon by the provisions of this act would affect upward of six million people, and would deprive them of property of the value of nearly five thousand million dollars.

Said Mr. Garrett Davis, of Kentucky:

"Was there ever, in any country that God's sun ever beamed upon, a legislative measure involving such an amount of property and such numbers of property-holders?"

But this is only one feature of the confiscation act which was applied to persons who were within the Confederate States, in such a position that the ordinary process of the United States courts could not be served upon them. They could be reached only by the armies. There was another feature equally flagrant and criminal. It was extended to all that class of persons giving aid and comfort, who could be found within the United States, or in such position that the ordinary process of law could be served on them. It was derived from Article III, section 3, of the Constitution, which says:

"The Congress shall have the power to declare the punishment of treason, but no attainder of treason shall work corruption of blood, or forfeiture, except during the life of the person attainted."

The mode of procedure against persons under this power was determined by other clauses of the Constitution. Article III, section 2, declared that—

"The trial of all crimes, except in cases of impeachment, shall be by jury; and such trial shall be held in the State where the said crimes shall have been committed."

In section 3, of the same article, it was provided that—

"No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court."

This feature of the confiscation act, passed by the Congress of the United States, provided for the punishment of the owner of property, on the proof of the crime, but excluded the trial by jury, and made the forfeiture of the property absolute instead of a forfeiture for life. Heavy fines were imposed, and property was sold in fee. The property to which the act applied was not a prize under the law of nations, nor booty, nor contraband of war, nor enforced military contributions, nor used or employed in the war or in resistance to the laws. It was private property, outside of the conflict of arms, and forfeited, not because it was the instrument of offense, but as a penalty for the assertion of his rights by the owner, which was imputed to him as a crime. Such proceeding was, in effect, punishment by the forfeiture of a man's entire estate, real and personal, without trial by jury, and in utter disregard of the provisions of the Constitution. It was an attempt to get a man's property, real and personal, "silver spoons" included, into a prize court, to be tried by the laws of war.

It will be seen that we were treated by the Congress of the United States as holding the twofold relation of enemies and traitors, and that they used against us all the instruments of war, and all the penalties of municipal law which made the punishment of treason to be death. The practical operation, therefore, of these laws was that, under a Constitution which defined treason to consist in levying war against the United States, which would not suffer the traitor to be condemned except by the judgment of his peers, and, when condemned, would not forfeit his estate except during his life, the Government of the United States did proceed against six million people, without indictment, without trial by jury, without the proof of two witnesses, did adjudge our six millions of people guilty of treason in levying war, and decree to deprive us of all our estate, real and personal, for life, and in fee, being nearly five thousand million dollars. And, after we had been thus punished, without trial by jury, and by the loss in fee of our whole estate, the Government of the United States assumed the power, on the same charge of levying war, to try us and to hang us.

The first object to be secured by this act of confiscation was the emancipation of all our slaves. Upon his approval of the bill, President Lincoln sent a message to Congress, in which he said:

"It is startling to say that Congress can free a slave within a State, and yet, if it were said the ownership of the slave had first been transferred to the nation, and Congress had then liberated him, the difficulty would at once vanish. And this is the real case. The traitor against the General Government forfeits his slave at least as justly as he does any other property; and he forfeits both to the Government against which he offends. The Government, so far as there can be ownership, thus owns the forfeited slaves, and the question for Congress in regard to them is, 'Shall they be made free or sold to new masters?'"

It is amazing to see the utter forgetfulness of all constitutional obligations and the entire disregard of the conditions of the laws of nations manifested in these words of the President of the United States. Was he ignorant of their existence, or did he seek to cover up his violation of them by a deceptive use of language. It may not be unseasonable to repeat here the words of John Quincy Adams, in his letter of August 22, 1815, as above stated:

"Our object is the restoration of all the property, including slaves, which, by the usages of war among civilized nations, ought not to have been taken."

Let posterity answer the questions: Who were the revolutionists? Who were really destroying the Constitution of the United States?

The agitation of this subject brought out another still more alarming usurpation in Congress, and showed that the majority were ready to throw aside the last fragments of the Constitution in order to secure our subjugation. The argument for this usurpation was thus framed: Assuming that the state of the "nation" was one of general hostility, and that, being so involved, it possessed the power of self-defense, it was asserted that the supreme power of making and conducting war was expressly placed in Congress by the Constitution. "The whole powers of war are vested in Congress."—("United States Supreme Court, Brown vs. United States," 1 Cranch.) There is no such power in the judiciary, and the Executive is simply "commander-in-chief of the army and navy"; all other powers not necessarily implied in the command of the military and naval forces are expressly given to Congress.

The theory was that the contingency of actual hostilities suspended the Constitution and gave to Congress the sovereign power of a nation creating new relations and conferring new rights, imposing extraordinary obligations on the citizens, and subjecting them to extraordinary penalties. There is, under that view, therefore, no limit on the power of Congress; it is invested with the absolute powers of war—the civil functions of the Government are, for the time being, in abeyance when in conflict, and all State and "national" authority subordinated to the extreme authority of Congress, as the supreme power, in the peril of external or internal hostilities. The ordinary provisions of the Constitution peculiar to a state of peace, and all laws and municipal regulations, were to yield to the force of martial law, as resolved by Congress. This was designated as the "war power" of the United States Government.

I should deem an apology to be due to my readers, in offering for their perusal such insane extravagances, under a constitutional Government of limited powers, had not this doctrine been adopted by the United States Government, and subsequently made the basis of some most revolutionary measures for the emancipation of the African slaves and the enslavement of the free citizens of the South. One must allow that the Chamber of Deputies of the French National Assembly of 1798 had some claims to a respectable degree of political virtue when compared with the Thirty-seventh Congress and the Executive of the United States.

The specious argument for this tremendous and sweeping usurpation, designated as the "war power," as presented by its adherents, may be stated in a few words, thus: The Constitution confers on Congress all the specific powers incident to war, and then further authorizes it "to make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers." The words are these:

"Congress shall have power to declare war; to grant letters of marque and reprisal; to make rules concerning captures on land and water; to raise and support armies; to provide and maintain a navy; to make rules for the government and regulation of the land and naval forces; to provide for calling forth the militia to execute the laws of the Union, suppress insurrections, and repel invasion; and to make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers and all other powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any department or officer thereof." [46]

It will be seen that this unlimited, despotic power was claimed for Congress in the conduct of the war under the last clause above, viz., "to make all laws which," etc; whereas no one familiar with the rules of legal interpretation will seriously contend that the powers of Congress are one atom greater by the insertion of this provision than they would have been if it had not appeared in the Constitution. The delegation of a power gives the incidental means necessary for its execution.

Another step in the usurpations begun for the destruction of slavery was the passage by Congress of an act for the emancipation of slaves in the District of Columbia. The act emancipated all persons of African descent held to service within the District, immediately upon its passage. Those owners of slaves who had not sympathized with us were allowed ninety days to prepare and present to commissioners, appointed for that purpose, the names, ages, and personal description of their slaves, who were to be valued by commissioners. No single slave could be estimated to be worth more than three hundred dollars. One million dollars was appropriated to carry the act into effect. All claims were to be presented within ninety days after the passage of the act, and not thereafter; but there was no saving clause for minors, femmes covert, insane or absent persons. On his approval of the act, the Executive of the United States sent a message to Congress, in which he said:

"I have never doubted the constitutional authority of Congress to abolish slavery in the District, and I have ever desired to see the national capital freed from the institution in some satisfactory way. Hence there never has been in my mind any questions upon the subject, except those of expediency, arising in view of all the circumstances."

For the previous twenty-five or thirty years the subject had again and again been presented in Congress, and was always rejected. One of the incidents that led to our withdrawal from the Union was the apprehension that it was the intention of the United States Government to violate the constitutional right of each State to adopt and maintain, to reject or abolish slavery, as it pleased. This step showed the justness of our apprehensions.

Among the rights guaranteed to every citizen of the United States, including the District of Columbia, was the right of property. No one could be deprived of his property by the Government, except in the manner prescribed and authorized by the Constitution. Its words are these:

"No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation." [47]

Whenever it was necessary in the administration of affairs that the Government should take private property for public use, it had the right to take that private property on the condition of making compensation for it, and on no other condition. Also, it could not be taken except for public use, even by making just compensation for it; nor could it be taken to be destroyed. The simple and sole condition on which the inviolability of private property could be broken by the Government itself was, that it was necessary for public use. Otherwise, there was no constitutional right on the part of the Government to take the property at all.

Again, this property, thus necessary, must be taken by due process of law. The Government had not the right to declare the mode, and arbitrarily fix the limit of price which should be paid. The negro could be taken only as other property, even admitting that he could be taken for emancipation. The due process of law required that the citizen's property should be appraised judicially. A court must proceed judicially in every case, summon a jury, appoint commissioners, and, under the supervision and sanction of the court, the valuation of the slave by them must proceed as it does in relation to any other property of the citizen that might be taken by the lawful exercise of the power of Congress or of the United States Government. Thus it will be seen that by this usurpation of power the Constitution was violated, not only by taking private property for other purposes than for public use, but in the neglect to observe the due process of law which the Constitution required.

The next step in the usurpation of power for the destruction of the right of citizens to hold property in slaves was the passage by Congress of an act which declared that, after its passage—

"There shall be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude in any of the Territories of the United States now existing, or which may at any time hereafter be formed or acquired by the United States, otherwise than in the punishment of crimes," etc.

The subject had been brought forward at every session of Congress for a number of years, and was uniformly resisted by the advocates of equality among the States. We claimed an equal right with the other States to the occupation and settlement of the Territories which were the common property of the Union; and that any infringement of this right was not only a violation of the spirit of the Constitution, but destructive of that equality of the States so necessary for the maintenance of their Union. We further claimed our right under this express provision of the Constitution:

"The Congress shall have power to dispose of and make all needful rules and regulations respecting the Territory or other property belonging to the United States; and nothing in this Constitution shall be so construed as to prejudice any claims of the United States or of any particular States." [48]

The obstinate resistance of the consolidation school to our views was an evidence of their aggressive purposes, and justified still further our apprehensions of their intention to violate our constitutional rights.

Another step taken to accomplish the emancipation of our slaves was the passage by Congress of an act making an additional article of war for the government of the army of the United States. It was in these words:

"All officers or persons in the military or naval service of the United States are prohibited from employing any of the forces under their respective commands for the purpose of returning fugitives from service or labor, who may have escaped from any persons to whom such service or labor is claimed to be due; and any officer who shall be found guilty by a court-martial of violating this article shall be dismissed from the service."

The Constitution of the United States expressly declares that all such persons

    "Shall be delivered up on claim of the party to whom such service or
    labor may be due." [49]

In this instance Congress passed an act declaring that they shall not be delivered up on such claim; and, as a penalty for disobedience, any officer of the army or navy should be dismissed from the service. Thus an act of Congress directly forbade that which the Constitution commanded. A more flagrant outrage upon the constitutional obligation could not be committed.

But, it may be said, a state of war existed. That does not diminish the crime of the Congress. The commands of the Constitution are positive, direct, unchanged, and unrelaxed by circumstances. They are equally in force in a state of war and in a state of peace. The powers are delegated, and can not be amended or changed by war or peace. Its words are these:

"This Constitution, and the laws of the United States, which shall be made in pursuance thereof, shall be the supreme law, and the judges in every State shall be bound thereby, anything in the Constitution or laws of any State to the contrary notwithstanding. The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by oath or affirmation to support this Constitution." [50]

It declares itself to be, within its province, the supreme law of the United States, not merely during the condition of peace, but continuing through all times and events supreme throughout the Union, until it should be altered or amended in the manner prescribed.

Another instance of the like flagrant violation of the Constitution is to be found in the ninth and tenth sections of the confiscation act previously referred to. The Constitution of the United States in Article IV, section 3, says:

"No person held to service or labor in one State, under the laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in consequence of any law or regulation therein, be discharged from such service or labor."

It will be seen, by reference to the Constitution, that the first part of the clause here referred to forbids the discharge of the fugitive, and the second part commands his delivery to the claimant. It has just been stated in what manner Congress commanded the claim for delivery to be repudiated. The "discharge from such service and labor," in consequence of any State law or regulation, is forbidden. This is a part of the Constitution, and it is thereby made the duty of the executive, legislative, and judicial departments of the United States Government to enforce the prohibition, to make sure that the fugitive is not discharged by any action of a State.

Will the friends of constitutional liberty believe our assertion that these acts, the execution of which it was so expressly made the duty of the United States Government to prevent, that Government itself did do in the most explicit and effective manner? The Constitution forbids the discharge; Congress and the Executive, each, not only commanded the discharge, but, to make it sure and thorough, forbade the incipiency of an apprehension—not even permitting the shadow of an occasion for a discharge. Could human ingenuity devise a method for a more perfect subversion of a constitutional duty? The provisions of the act are in these words:

"All slaves of persons who shall hereafter be engaged in rebellion against the Government of the United States, or who shall in any way give aid or comfort thereto, escaping from such persons and taking refuge within the lines of the army; and all slaves captured from such persons or deserted by them and coming under the control of the Government of the United States; and all slaves of such persons found or being within any place occupied by rebel forces and afterward occupied by the forces of the United States, shall be deemed captives of war, and shall be for ever free of their servitude, and not again held as slaves."

Again, the next section of the same act says:

"No slave escaping into any State, Territory, or the District of Colombia from any other State, shall be delivered up, or in any way impeded or hindered of his liberty, except for crime or some offense against the laws, unless the person claiming said fugitive shall first make oath that the person, to whom the labor or service of such fugitive is alleged to be due, is his lawful owner, and has not borne arms against the United States in the present rebellion, nor in any way given aid and comfort thereto." [51]

In this connection it is worth while to read again the words of the

"No person held to service or labor in one State, under the laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in consequence of any law or regulation therein, be discharged from such service or labor, but shall be delivered up on claim of the party to whom such service or labor may be due."

Let it be observed that there is no limitation, no qualification, no condition whatever attached to this clause of the Constitution. The words "no person held to service" included every slave in the United States. In Article I, section 9, and in Article V, are exceptions suspending the operation of the general provision. But in this provision there are none, because it was intended there should be none. The provision was designed to include every slave, and to be in force under all circumstances.

Perhaps it may be urged as an objection to this assertion, that the Confederate States were out of the Union and beyond the protection of the provisions of the Constitution. This objection can not be admitted in extenuation of this crime of Congress and the Executive; for there was, thus far, no act of Congress, nor proclamation of the President in existence, showing that either of them regarded the Confederate States in any other position than as States within the Union, whose citizens were subject to all the penalties contained in the Constitution, and therefore entitled to the benefit of all its provisions for their protection. Unhesitatingly it may be said, and as will be still more apparent farther on in these pages, that all the conduct of the Confederate States, pertaining to the war, consisted in just efforts to preserve to themselves and their posterity rights and protections guaranteed to them in the Constitution of the United States; and that the actions of the Federal Government consisted in efforts to subvert those rights, destroy those protections, and subjugate us to compliance with its arbitrary will; and that this conduct on their part involved the subversion of the Constitution and the destruction of the fundamental principles of liberty. Who is the criminal? Let posterity answer.

[Footnote 46: Constitution of the United States, Article I, section 8.]

[Footnote 47: Constitution of the United States, Article V.]

[Footnote 48: Constitution of the United States, Article IV, section 3, clause 2.]

[Footnote 49: Constitution of the United States, Article IV, section 2.]

[Footnote 50: Ibid., Article VI.]

[Footnote 51: Laws of the United States, 1862.]


    Forced Emancipation concluded.—Emancipation Acts of President
    Lincoln.—Emancipation with Compensation proposed to Border
    States.—Reasons urged for it.—Its Unconstitutionality.—Order of
    General Hunter.—Revoked by President Lincoln.—Reasons.—"The
    Pressure" on him.—One Cause of our Secession.—The Time to throw
    off the Mask at Hand.—The Necessity that justified the President
    and Congress also justified Secession.—Men united in Defense of
    Liberty called Traitors.—Conference of President Lincoln with
    Senators and Representatives of Border States.—Remarks of Mr.
    Lincoln.—Reply of Senators and Representatives.—Failure of the
    Proposition.—Three Hundred Thousand more Men called for.—
    Declarations of the Antislavery Press.—Truth of our
    Apprehensions.—Reply of President Lincoln.—Another Call for
    Men.—Further Declarations of the Antislavery Press.—The Watchword
    adopted.—Memorial of So-called Christians to the President.—Reply
    of President Lincoln.—Issue of the Preliminary Proclamation of
    Emancipation.—Issue of the Final Proclamation.—The Military
    Necessity asserted.—The Consummation verbally reached.—Words of
    the Declaration of Independence.—Declarations by the United States
    Government of what it intended to do.—True Nature of the Party
    unveiled.—Declarations of President Lincoln.—Vindication of the
    Sagacity of the Southern People.—His Declarations to European
    Cabinets.—Object of these Declarations.—Trick of the Fugitive
    Thief.—The Boast of Mr. Lincoln calmly considered.

The attention of the reader is now invited to a series of usurpations in which the President of the United States was the principal actor. On March 6, 1862, he began a direct and unconstitutional interference with slavery by sending a message to Congress recommending the adoption of a resolution which should declare that the United States ought to coöperate with any State which might adopt the gradual abolition of slavery, giving to such State pecuniary aid, to be used by such State in its discretion, to compensate for the inconvenience, public and private, produced by such change of system. The reason given for the recommendation of the adoption of the resolution was that the United States Government would find its highest interest in such a measure as one of the most important means of self-preservation. He said, in explanation, that "the leaders of the existing rebellion entertain the hope that this Government will ultimately be forced to acknowledge the independence of some part of the disaffected region, and that all the slave States north of such part will then say, 'The Union for which we have struggled being already gone, we now choose to go with the Southern section.' To deprive them of this hope substantially ends the rebellion, and the initiation of emancipation deprives them of it and of all the States initiating it."

When it was asked where the power was found in the Constitution to appropriate the money of the people to carry out the purposes of the resolution, it was replied that the legislative department of the Government was competent, under these words in the preamble of the Constitution, "to provide for the general welfare," to do anything and everything which could be considered as promoting the general welfare. It was further said that this measure was to be consummated under the war power; that whatever was necessary to carry on the war to a successful conclusion might be done without restraint under the authority, not of the Constitution, but as a military necessity. It was further said that the President of the United States had thus far failed to meet the just expectations of the party which elected him to the office he held; and that his friends were to be comforted by the resolution and the message, while the people of the border slave States could not fail to observe that with the comfort to the North there was mingled an awful warning to them. It was denied by the President that it was an interference with slavery in the States. It was an artful scheme to awaken a controversy in the slave States, and to commence the work of emancipation by holding out pecuniary aid as an inducement. In every previous declaration the President had said that he did not contemplate any interference with domestic slavery within the States. The resolution was passed by large majorities in each House.

This proposition of President Lincoln was wholly unconstitutional, because it attempted to do what was expressly forbidden by the Constitution. It proposed a contract between the State of Missouri and the Government of the United States which, in the language of the act, shall be "irrepealable without the consent of the United States." The words of the Constitution are as follows:

"No State shall enter into any treaty, alliance, or confederation, grant letters of marque and reprisal, coin money, etc." [52]

This is a prohibition not only upon the power of one State to enter into a compact, alliance, confederation, or agreement with another State, but also with the Government of the United States.

Again, if the State of Missouri could enter into an irrepealable agreement or compact with the United States, that slavery should not therein exist after the acceptance on the part of Missouri of the act, then it would be an agreement on the part of that State to surrender its sovereignty and make the State unequal in its rights of sovereignty with the other States of the Union. The other States would have the complete right of sovereignty over their domestic institutions while the State of Missouri would cease to have such right. The whole system of the United States Government would be abrogated by such legislation. Again, it is a cardinal principle of the system that the people in their sovereign capacity may, from time to time, change and alter their organic law; and a provision incorporated in the Constitution of Missouri that slavery should never thereafter exist in that State could not prevent a future sovereign convention of its people from reestablishing slavery within its limits.

It will be observed, from what has been said in the preceding pages, that the usurpations by the Government of the United States, both by the legislative and executive departments, had not only been tolerated but approved. Feeling itself, therefore, fortified in its unlimited power from "necessity," the wheels of the revolution were now to move with accelerated velocity in their destructive work. Accordingly, a manifesto soon comes from the Executive on universal emancipation. On April 25, 1862, the United States Major-General Hunter, occupying a position at Hilton Head, South Carolina, issued an order declaring the States of Georgia, Florida, and South Carolina under martial law. On May 9th the same officer issued another order, declaring "the persons held as slaves in those States to be for ever free." The Executive of the United States, on May 19th, issued a proclamation declaring the order to be void, and said:

"I further make known that, whether it be competent for me as commander-in-chief of the army and navy to declare the slaves of any State or States free, and whether at any time or in any case it shall have become a necessity indispensable to the maintenance of the Government to examine such supposed power, are questions which, under my responsibility, I reserve to myself, and which I can not feel justified in leaving to the decision of commanders in the field."

Speaking of this order of Major-General Hunter soon afterward,
President Lincoln, in remarks on July 12, 1862, to the border States
Representatives, said:

"In repudiating it, I gave dissatisfaction, if not offense, to many whose support the country can not afford to lose. And this is not the end of it. The pressure in this direction is still upon me, and is increasing."

This pressure consisted in the demand of his extreme partisans that the whole authority of the Government should be exerted for the immediate and universal emancipation of the slaves.

By a reference to the statement of the causes of our withdrawal from the Union of the United States, it will be seen that one of them consisted in the conviction that the newly elected officers of the Government would wield its powers for the destruction of the institutions of the Southern States. The facts already related in these pages furnish ample proofs of the justice and accuracy of this conviction.

The time was now close at hand when the mask was to be thrown off, and, at a single dash of the pen, four hundred millions of our property was to be annihilated, the whole social fabric of the Southern States disrupted, all branches of industry to be disarranged, good order to be destroyed, and a flood of evils many times greater than the loss of property to be inflicted upon the people of the South, thus consummating the series of aggressions which had been inflicted for more than thirty years. All constitutional protections were to be withdrawn, and the powers of a common government, created for common and equal protection to the interests of all, were to be arrayed for the destruction of our institutions. The President of the United States says: "This is not the end. The pressure in this direction is still upon me, and is increasing." How easy it would have been for the Northern people, by a simple, honest obedience to the provisions of the Constitution, to have avoided the commission of all these crimes and horrors! For the law which demands obedience to itself guarantees in return life and safety. It is not necessary to ask again where the President of the United States or the Congress found authority for their usurpations. But it should be remembered that, if the necessity which they pleaded was an argument to justify their violations of all the provisions of the Constitution, the existence of such a necessity on their part was a sufficient argument to justify our withdrawal from union with them. If necessity on their part justified a violation of the Constitution, necessity on our part justified secession from them. If the preservation of the existence of the Union by coercion of the States was an argument to justify these violent usurpations by the United States Government, it was still more forcibly an argument to justify our separation and resistance to invasion; for we were struggling for our natural rights, but the Government of the United States has no natural rights.

How can a people who glory in a Declaration of Independence which broke the slumbers of a world declare that men united in defense of liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness are "traitors"? Is it henceforth to be a dictum of humanity that man may no more take up arms in defense of rights, liberty, and property? Shall it never again in the course of human events become lawful "for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature's God entitle them"? Is the highwayman, henceforth, to be the lord of the highway, and the poor, plundered traveler to have no property which he may defend at the risk of the life of the highwayman?

On July 12, 1862, the President of the United States, persistent in his determination to destroy the institution of slavery, invited the Senators and Representatives of the border slaveholding States to the Executive Mansion, and addressed them on emancipation in their respective States. He said:

"I intend no reproach or complaint when I assure you that, in my opinion, if you all had voted for the resolution in the gradual emancipation message of last March, the war would now be substantially ended. And the plan therein proposed is yet one of the most potent and swift means of ending it. Let the States which are in rebellion see definitely and certainly that in no event will the States you represent ever join their proposed confederacy, and they can not much longer maintain the contest. But you can not divest them of their hope to ultimately have you with them so long as you show a determination to perpetuate the institution within your own States. Beat them at elections as you have overwhelmingly done, and, nothing daunted, they still claim you as their own. You and I know what the lever of their power is. Break that lever before their faces, and they can shake you no more for ever."

He further said that the incidents of the war might extinguish the institution in their States, and added:

"How much better for you as seller and the nation as buyer to sell out and buy out that without which the war could never have been, than to sink both the thing to be sold and the price of it in cutting one another's throats!"

The reply of the majority, consisting of twenty of the twenty-nine Senators and Representatives, subsequently made to the President, is worthy of notice. They said that they were not of the belief that funds would be provided for the object, or that their constituents would reap the fruits of the promise held out, and added:

"The right to hold slaves is a right appertaining to all the States of the Union. They have the right to cherish or abolish the institution, as their tastes or their interests may prompt, and no one is authorized to question the right, or limit its enjoyment. And no one has more clearly affirmed that right than you have. Your inaugural address does you great honor in this respect, and inspired the country with confidence in your fairness and respect for law."

After asserting that a large portion of our people were fighting because they believed the Administration was hostile to their rights, and was making war on their domestic institutions, they further said:

"Remove their apprehensions; satisfy them that no harm is intended to them and their institutions; that this Government is not making war on their rights of property, but is simply defending its legitimate authority, and they will gladly return to their allegiance."

This measure of emancipation with compensation soon proved a failure. A proposition to appropriate five hundred thousand dollars to the object was voted down in the United States Senate with great unanimity. The Government was, step by step, "educating the people" up to a proclamation of emancipation, so as to make entire abolition one of the positive and declared issues of the contest.

The so-called pressure upon the President was now organized for a final onset. The Governors of fifteen States united in a request that three hundred thousand more men should be called out to fill up the reduced ranks, and it was done. The anti-slavery press then entered the arena. Charges were made against the President, in the name of

"Twenty millions of people, that a groat proportion of those who triumphed in his election were sorely disappointed and deeply pained by the policy he seemed to be pursuing with regard to the slaves of the rebels."

This is a simple statement of the progress of events, and it shows to the world how well founded were our apprehensions, at the hour of its election, that the Administration intended the destruction of our property and community independence. They further said:

"You are strangely and disastrously remiss in the discharge of your official and imperative duty with regard to the emancipation provisions of the new confiscation act."

They further boldly added:

"We complain that the Union cause has suffered, and is now suffering, immensely from mistaken deference to rebel slavery. Had you, sir, in your inaugural address, unmistakably given notice that, in case the rebellion already commenced was persisted in, and your efforts to preserve the Union and enforce the laws should be resisted by armed force, you would recognize no loyal person as rightfully held in slavery by a traitor, we believe the rebellion would therein have received a staggering if not fatal blow."

The President replied at length, saying:

"I shall do less whenever I shall believe what I am doing hurts the cause, and I shall do more whenever I shall believe doing more will help the cause. I shall try to correct errors when shown to be errors; and I shall adopt new views so fast as they shall appear to be true views. I have here stated my purpose according to my view of official duty; and I intend no modification of my oft-expressed personal wish that all men everywhere could be free."

The education of the conservative portion of the Northern people up to emancipation was becoming more complete every day, notwithstanding the professed reluctance of the President. Another call for three hundred thousand men was made, but enlistments were slow, so that threats of a draft and most liberal bounties were required. The champions of emancipation sought to derive an advantage from this circumstance. They asserted that the reluctance of the people to enter the army was caused by the policy of the Government in not adopting bold emancipation measures. If such were adopted, the streets and by-ways would be crowded with volunteers to fight for the freedom of the "loyal blacks," and thrice three hundred thousand could be easily obtained. They said that slavery in the seceded States should be treated as a military question; it contributed nearly all the subsistence which supported the Southern men in arms, dug their trenches, and built their fortifications. The watchword which they now adopted was, "The abolition of slavery by the force of arms for the sake of the Union."

Meantime, on September 13th, a delegation from the so-called "Christians" in Chicago, Illinois, presented to President Lincoln a memorial, requesting him to issue a proclamation of emancipation, and urged in its favor such reasons as occurred to their minds. President Lincoln replied:

"What good would a proclamation of emancipation from me do, especially as we are now situated? I do not want to issue a document that the whole world would see must necessarily be inoperative, like the Pope's bull against the comet. Would my word free the slaves, when I can not even enforce the Constitution in the rebel States? Is there a single court, or magistrate, or individual that would be influenced by it there? And what reason is there to think it would have any greater effect upon the slaves than the late law of Congress which I approved, and which offers protection and freedom to the slaves of rebel masters who come within our lines? Yet I can not learn that that law has caused a single slave to come over to us. And suppose they could be induced by a proclamation of freedom from me to throw themselves upon us, what should we do with them? How can we feed and care for such a multitude? . . .

"If, now, the pressure of the war should call off our forces from New Orleans to defend some other point, what is to prevent the masters from reducing the blacks to slavery again? . . . Now, then, tell me, if you please, what possible result of good would follow the issuing of such a proclamation as you desire? I have not decided against a proclamation of liberty to the slaves, but hold the matter under advisement."

Nine days after these remarks were made—on September 22, 1862—the preliminary proclamation of emancipation was issued by the President of the United States. It declared that at the next session of Congress the proposition for emancipation in the border slaveholding States would be again recommended, and that on January 1, 1863—

"All persons held as slaves within any State or designated part of a State, the people whereof shall then be in rebellion against the United States, shall be then, thenceforward, and for ever free; and the Executive Government of the United States, including the military and naval authority thereof, will recognize and maintain the freedom of such persons, and will do no act or acts to repress such persons, or any of them, in any efforts they may make for their actual freedom."

Also, all persons engaged in the military and naval service were ordered to obey and enforce the article of war and the sections of the confiscation act before mentioned. On January 1, 1863, another proclamation was issued by the President of the United States declaring the emancipation to be absolute within the Confederate States, with the exception of a few districts. The closing words of the proclamation were these:

"And upon this act, sincerely believed to be an act of justice, warranted by the Constitution upon military necessity, I invoke the considerate judgment of mankind and the gracious favor of Almighty God."

Let us test the existence of the military necessity here spoken of by a few facts. The white male population of the Northern States was then 13,690,364. The white male population of the Confederate States was 5,449,463. The number of troops which the United States had called into the field exceeded one million men. The number of troops which the Confederate Government had then in the field was less than four hundred thousand men. The United States Government had a navy which was only third in rank in the world. The Confederate Government had a navy which at that time consisted of a single small ship on the ocean. The people of the United States had a commerce afloat all over the world. The people of the Confederate States had not a single port open to commerce. The people of the United States were the rivals of the greatest nations in all kinds of manufactures. The people of the Confederate States had few manufactures, and those were of articles of inferior importance. The Government of the United States possessed the Treasury of a Union of eighty years with its vast resources. The Confederate States had to create a Treasury by the development of financial resources. The ambassadors and representatives of the former were welcomed at every court in the world. The representatives of the latter were not recognized anywhere.

Thus the consummation of the original antislavery purposes was verbally reached; but even that achievement was attended with disunion, bloodshed, and war. In the words of the Declaration of Independence:

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that, whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends" (life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness), "it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute a new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness. . . . When a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security."

It is thus seen what the United States Government did, and our view of this subject would not be complete if we should omit to present their solemn declarations of that which they intended to do. In his proclamation of April 15, 1861, calling for seventy-five thousand men, the President of the United States Government said:

"In any event, the utmost care will be observed, consistently with the objects aforesaid, to avoid any devastation, any destruction of or interference with property, or any disturbance of peaceful citizens in any part of the country."

On the 22d of July, 1861, Congress passed a resolution relative to the war, from which the following is an extract:

"That this war is not waged on our part in any spirit of oppression, or for any purpose of conquest or subjugation, or purpose of overthrowing or interfering with the rights or established institutions of those [Confederate] States; but to defend and maintain the supremacy of the Constitution, and to preserve the Union with all the dignity, equality, and rights of the several States unimpaired; and that, as soon as these objects are accomplished, the war ought to cease."

The vote in favor of the resolution was: in the Senate, yeas 30, nays 4; in the House of Representatives, yeas 117, nays 2.

It may further be observed that these proclamations cited above afforded to our whole people the complete and crowning proof of the true nature of the designs of the party which elevated to power the person then occupying the Presidential chair at Washington, and which sought to conceal its purposes by every variety of artful device and by the perfidious use of the most solemn and repeated pledges on every possible occasion. A single example may be cited from the declaration made by President Lincoln, under the solemnity of his oath as Chief Magistrate of the United States, on March 4, 1861:

"Apprehension seems to exist among the people of the Southern States that, by the accession of a Republican Administration, their property and their peace and personal security are to be endangered. There has never been any reasonable cause for such apprehensions. Indeed, the most ample evidence to the contrary has all the while existed and been open to their inspection. It is found in nearly all the public speeches of him who now addresses you. I do but quote from one of those speeches when I declare that I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the States where it exists. I believe I have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so. Those who nominated and elected me did so with full knowledge that I had made this and many similar declarations, and had never recanted them. And more than this, they placed in the platform for my acceptance, and as a law to themselves and to me, the clear and emphatic resolution which I now read:

"Resolved, That the maintenance inviolate of the rights of the States, and especially the right of each State to order and control its own domestic institutions according to its own judgment exclusively, is essential to that balance of power on which the perfection and endurance of our political fabric depend, and we denounce the lawless invasion by armed force of the soil of any State or Territory, no matter under what pretext, as among the gravest crimes."

Nor was this declaration of the want of power or disposition to interfere with our social system confined to a state of peace. Both before and after the actual commencement of hostilities, the Executive of the United States repeated in formal official communications to the Cabinets of Great Britain and France, that it was utterly without constitutional power to do the act which it subsequently committed, and that in no possible event, whether the secession of these States resulted in the establishment of a separate Confederacy or in the restoration of the Union, was there any authority by virtue of which it could either restore a disaffected State to the Union by force of arms, or make any change in any of its institutions. I refer especially for the verification of this assertion to the dispatches addressed by the Secretary of State of the United States, under direction of the President, to the Ministers of the United States at London and Paris, under date of the 10th and 22d of April, 1861.

This proclamation was therefore received by the people of the
Confederate States as the fullest vindication of their own sagacity
in foreseeing the uses to which the dominant party in the United
States intended from the beginning to apply their power.

For what honest purpose were these declarations made? They could deceive no one who was familiar with the powers and duties of the Federal Government; they were uttered in the season of invasion of the Southern States, to coerce them to obedience to the agent established by the compact between the States, for the purpose of securing domestic tranquillity and the blessings of liberty. The power to coerce States was not given, and the proposition to make that grant received no favor in the Convention which formed the Constitution; and it is seen by the proceedings in the States, when the Constitution was submitted to each of them for their ratification or rejection as they might choose, that a proposition which would have enabled the General Government, by force of arms, to control the will of a State, would have been fatal to any effort to make a more perfect Union. Such declarations as those cited from the diplomatic correspondence, though devoid of credibility at home, might avail in foreign countries to conceal from their governments the real purpose of the action of the majority. Meanwhile, the people of the Confederacy plainly saw that the ideas and interests of the Administration were to gain by war the empire that would enable it to trample on the Constitution which it professed to defend and maintain.

It was by the slow and barely visible approaches of the serpent seeking its prey that the aggressions and usurpations of the United States Government moved on to the crimes against the law of the Union, the usages of war among civilized nations, the dictates of humanity and the requirements of justice, which have been recited. The performance of this task has been painful, but persistent and widespread misrepresentation of the cause and conduct of the South required the exposure of her slanderer. To unmask the hypocrisy of claiming devotion to the Constitution, while violating its letter and spirit for a purpose palpably hostile to it, was needful for the defense of the South. In the future progress of this work it will be seen how often we have been charged with the very offenses committed by our enemy—offenses of which the South was entirely innocent, and of which a chivalrous people would be incapable. There was in this the old trick of the fugitive thief who cries "Stop thief!" as he runs.

In his message to Congress one year later, on December 8, 1863, the
President of the United States thus boasts of his proclamation:

"The preliminary emancipation proclamation, issued in September, was running its assigned period to the beginning of the new year. A month later the final proclamation came, including the announcement that colored men of suitable condition would be received into the war service. The policy of emancipation and of employing black soldiers gave to the future a new aspect, about which hope and fear and doubt contended in uncertain conflict. According to our political system, as a matter of civil administration, the General Government had no lawful power to effect emancipation in any State, and for a long time it had been hoped that the rebellion could be suppressed without resorting to it as a military measure. . . . Of those who were slaves at the beginning of the rebellion, full one hundred thousand are now in the United States military service, about one half of which number actually bear arms in the ranks, thus giving the double advantage of taking so much labor from the insurgent cause, and supplying the places which otherwise must be filled with so many white men. So far as tested, it is difficult to say they are not as good soldiers as any."

Let the reader pause for a moment and look calmly at the facts presented in this statement. The forefathers of these negro soldiers were gathered from the torrid plains and malarial swamps of inhospitable Africa. Generally they were born the slaves of barbarian masters, untaught in all the useful arts and occupations, reared in heathen darkness, and, sold by heathen masters, they were transferred to shores enlightened by the rays of Christianity. There, put to servitude, they were trained in the gentle arts of peace and order and civilization; they increased from a few unprofitable savages to millions of efficient Christian laborers. Their servile instincts rendered them contented with their lot, and their patient toil blessed the land of their abode with unmeasured riches. Their strong local and personal attachment secured faithful service to those to whom their service or labor was due. A strong mutual affection was the natural result of this life-long relation, a feeling best if not only understood by those who have grown from childhood under its influence. Never was there happier dependence of labor and capital on each other. The tempter came, like the serpent in Eden, and decoyed them with the magic word of "freedom." Too many were allured by the uncomprehended and unfulfilled promises, until the highways of these wanderers were marked by corpses of infants and the aged. He put arms in their hands, and trained their humble but emotional natures to deeds of violence and bloodshed, and sent them out to devastate their benefactors. What does he boastingly announce?—"It is difficult to say they are not as good soldiers as any." Ask the bereaved mother, the desolate widow, the sonless aged sire, to whom the bitter cup was presented by those once of their own household. With double anguish they speak of its bitterness. What does the President of the United States further say?—"According to our political system, as a matter of civil administration, the General Government had no lawful power to effect emancipation in any State." And further on, as if with a triumphant gladness, he adds, "Thus giving the double advantage of taking so much labor from the insurgent cause, and supplying the places which otherwise must be filled with so many white men." A rare mixture of malfeasance with traffic in human life! It is submitted to the judgment of a Christian people how well such a boast befits the President of the United States, a federation of sovereigns under a voluntary compact for specific purposes.

[Footnote 52: Article I, section 10.]


Naval Affairs.—Organization of the Navy Department.—Two Classes of Vessels.—Experiments for Floating Batteries and Rams.—The Norfolk Navy-Yard.—Abandonment by the Enemy.—The Merrimac Frigate made an Ironclad.—Officers.—Trial-Trip.—Fleet of the Enemy.—Captain Buchanan.—Resolves to attack the Enemy.—Sinks the Cumberland.—Burns the Congress.—Wounded.—Executive Officer Jones takes Command.—Retires for the Night.—Appearance of the Monitor.—The Virginia attacks her.—She retires to Shoal Water.— Refuses to come out.—Cheers of English Man-of-war.—Importance of the Navy-Yard.—Order of General Johnston to evacuate.—Stores saved.—The Virginia burned.—Harbor Defenses at Wilmington.— Harbor Defenses at Charleston.—Fights in the Harbor.—Defenses of Savannah.—Mobile Harbor and Capture of its Defenses.—The System of Torpedoes adopted.—Statement of the Enemy.—Sub-terra Shells placed in James River.—How made.—Used in Charleston Harbor; in Roanoke River; in Mobile Harbor.—The Tecumseh, how destroyed.

The organization of the Navy Department comprised under its general supervision a bureau of orders and details, one of ordnance and hydrography, one of provisions and clothing, and one of medicine and surgery. The grades of officers consisted of admirals, captains, commanders, surgeons, lieutenants, and midshipmen. Of the officers at the close of the first year there were one admiral, twelve captains, thirty commanders, and one hundred and twelve first and second lieutenants. All of the principal officers had belonged to the United States Navy. Owing to the limited number of vessels afloat, many of these officers were employed on shore-duties.

The vessels of the navy may be reduced to two classes: those intended for river and harbor defense, as ironclads, rams, floating batteries, or river-steamboats transformed into gunboats; and sea-going steamers of moderate size, some of them of great speed, but, not having been designed for war purposes, were all unsuited for a powerful armament, and could not be expected to contend successfully with ships of war.

Early in 1861 discussions and experiments were instituted by the Navy Department to determine how floating batteries and naval rams could be best constructed and protected by iron plates. Many persons had submitted plans, according to which cotton-bales might be effectively used as a shield against shot. Our deficiency in iron, and also in rolling-mills to prepare it into plates, caused cotton to be sometimes so employed; though the experiments had satisfied the Navy Department that, instead of cotton being rendered impenetrable by compression, it was really less so than in looser condition, and that iron must needs be of great thickness to resist the direct impact of heavy shot at short ranges. An officer of the navy, as skillful in ordnance as he was in seamanship, and endowed with high capacity for the investigation of new problems—Lieutenant Catesby Ap R. Jones— had conducted many of these experiments, and, as will be seen hereafter, made efficient use of his knowledge both in construction and in battle.

After Virginia had seceded from the United States, but before she had acceded to the Confederate States—viz., on the 19th of April, 1861—General Taliaferro, in command of Virginia forces, arrived at Norfolk. Commodore McCauley, United States Navy, and commandant of the navy-yard, held a conference with General Taliaferro, the result of which was "that none of the vessels should be removed, nor a shot fired except in self-defense." The excitement which had existed in the town was quieted by the announcement of this arrangement; but it was soon ascertained that the Germantown and Merrimac, frigates in the port, had been scuttled, and the former otherwise injured. About midnight, as elsewhere stated, a fire was started in the navy-yard, which continued to increase, involving the destruction of the ship-houses, a ship of the line, and the unfinished frame of another; several frigates, in addition to those mentioned, had been scuttled and sunk; and other property destroyed, to an amount estimated at several million dollars. The Pawnee, which arrived on the 19th, had been kept under steam, and, taking the Cumberland in tow, retired down the harbor, freighted with a great portion of valuable munitions and the commodore and other officers of the yard.[53] In the haste and secrecy of the conflagration, a large amount of material remained uninjured. The Merrimac, a beautiful frigate, in the yard for repairs, was raised by the Virginians, and the work immediately commenced, on a plan devised by Lieutenant Brooke, Confederate States Navy, to convert her hull, with such means as were available, into an iron-clad vessel. Two-inch plates were prepared, and she was covered with a double-inclined roof of four inches thickness. This armor, though not sufficiently thick to resist direct shot, sufficed to protect against a glancing ball, and was as heavy as was consistent with the handling of the ship. The shield was defective in not covering the sides sufficiently below the water-line, and the prow was unfortunately made of cast-iron; but, when all the difficulties by which we were surrounded are remembered, and the service rendered by this floating battery considered, the only wonder must be that so much was so well done under the circumstances.

Her armament consisted of ten guns, four single-banded Brooke rifles, and six nine-inch Dahlgren shell-guns. Two of the rifles, bow and stern pivots, were seven inch; the other two were six and four tenths inch, one on each broadside. The nine-inch gun on each side, nearest the furnaces, was fitted for firing hot shot. The work of construction was prosecuted with all haste, the armament and crew were put on board, and the vessel started on her trial-trip as soon as the workmen were discharged. She was our first ironclad; her model was an experiment, and many doubted its success. Her commander, Captain (afterward Admiral) Franklin Buchanan, with the wisdom of age and the experience of sea-service from his boyhood, combined the daring and enterprise of youth, and with him was Lieutenant Catesby Ap R. Jones, who had been specially in charge of the battery, and otherwise thoroughly acquainted with the ship. His high qualifications as an ordnance officer were well known in the "old navy," and he was soon to exhibit a like ability as a seaman in battle.

Now the first Confederate ironclad was afloat, the Stars and Bars were given to the breeze, and she was new-christened "the Virginia." She was joined by the Patrick Henry, six guns, Commander John R. Tucker; the Jamestown, two guns. Lieutenant-commanding John N. Barney; the Beaufort, one gun, Lieutenant-commanding W. H. Parker; the Raleigh, one gun, Lieutenant-commanding J. W. Alexander; the Teaser, one gun, Lieutenant-commanding W. A. Webb.

The enemy's fleet in Hampton Roads consisted of the Cumberland, twenty-four guns; Congress, fifty guns; St. Lawrence, fifty guns; steam-frigates Minnesota and Roanoke, forty guns each. The relative force was as twenty-one guns to two hundred and four, not counting the small steamers of the enemy, though they had heavier armament than the small vessels of our fleet, which have been enumerated. The Cumberland and the Congress lay off Newport News; the other vessels were anchored about nine miles eastward, near to Fortress Monroe. Strong shore-batteries and several small steamers, armed with heavy rifled guns, protected the frigates Cumberland and Congress.

Buchanan no doubt felt the inspiration of a sailor when his vessel bears him from the land, and the excitement of a hero at the prospect of battle, and thus we may understand why the trial-trip was at once converted into a determined attack upon the enemy. After the plan of the Virginia had been decided upon, the work of her construction was pushed with all possible haste. Her armament was on board, and she was taken out of the dock while the workmen were still employed upon her—indeed, the last of them were put ashore after she was started on her first experimental trip. Few men, conscious as Flag-officer Buchanan was of the defects of his vessel, would have dared such unequal conflict. Slowly—about five knots an hour—he steamed down to the roads. The Cumberland and Congress, seeing the Virginia approach, prepared for action, and, from the flag-ship Roanoke, signals were given to the Minnesota and St. Lawrence to advance. The Cumberland had swung so as to give her full broadside to the Virginia, which silently and without any exhibition of her crew, moved steadily forward. The shot from the Cumberland fell thick upon her plated roof, but rebounded harmless as hailstones. At last the prow of the Virginia struck the Cumberland just forward of her starboard fore-chains. A dull, heavy thud was heard, but so little force was given to the Virginia that the engineer hesitated about backing her. It was soon seen, however, that a gaping breach had been made in the Cumberland, and that the sea was rushing madly in. She reeled, and, while the waves ingulfed her, her crew gallantly stood to their guns and vainly continued their fire. She went down in nine fathoms of water, and with at least one hundred of her gallant crew, her pennant still flying from her mast-head.

The Virginia then ran up stream a short distance, in order to turn and have sufficient space to get headway, and come down on the Congress. The enemy, supposing that she had retired at the sight of the vessels approaching to attack her, cheered loudly, both ashore and afloat. But, when she turned to descend upon the Congress, as she had on the Cumberland, the Congress slipped her cables and ran ashore, bows on. The Virginia took position as near as the depth of water would permit, and opened upon her a raking fire. The Minnesota was fast aground about one mile and a half below. The Roanoke and St. Lawrence retired toward the fort. The shore-batteries kept up their fire on the Virginia, as did also the Minnesota at long range, and quite ineffectually. The Congress, being aground, could but feebly reply. Several of our small vessels came up and joined the Virginia, and the combined fire was fearfully destructive to the Congress. Her commander was killed, and soon her colors were struck, and the white flag appeared both at the main and spanker gaff. The Beaufort, Lieutenant-commanding W. H. Parker, and the Raleigh, Lieutenant-commanding J. W. Alexander, tugs which had accompanied the Virginia, were ordered to the Congress to receive the surrender. The flag of the ship and the sword of its then commander were delivered to Lieutenant Parker, by whom they were subsequently sent to the Navy Department at Richmond. Other officers delivered their swords in token of surrender, and entreated that they might return to assist in getting their wounded out of the ship. The permission was granted to the officers, and they then took advantage of the clemency shown them to make their escape. In the mean time the shore-batteries fired upon the tugs, and compelled them to retire. By this fire five of their own men, our prisoners, were wounded. Flag-officer Buchanan had stopped the firing upon the Congress when she struck her flag, and ran up the white flag, as heretofore described. Lieutenant Jones in his official report, referring to the Congress, writes: "But she fired upon us with the white flag flying, wounding Lieutenant Minor and several of our men. We again opened fire upon her, and she is now in flames." The crew of the Congress escaped, as did that of the Cumberland, by boats, or by swimming, and generously our men abstained from firing on them while so exposed. Flag-officer Buchanan was wounded by a rifle-ball, and had to be carried below. His intrepid conduct won the admiration of all. The executive and ordnance officer, Lieutenant Catesby Ap R. Jones, succeeded to the command. It was now so near night and the change of the tide that nothing further could be attempted on that day. The Virginia, with the smaller vessels attending her, withdrew and anchored off Sewell's Point. She had sunk the Cumberland, left the Congress on fire, had blown up a transport-steamer, sunk one schooner, and had captured another. Casualties, reported by Lieutenant Jones, were two killed and eight wounded. The prow of the Virginia was somewhat damaged, her anchor and all her flag-staffs were shot away, and her smoke-stack and steam-pipe were riddled; otherwise, the vessel was uninjured, and, as will be seen, was ready for action on the next morning. The prisoners and wounded were immediately sent up to the hospital at Norfolk.

During the night the Monitor, an iron-clad turret-steamer, of an entirely new model, came in, and anchored near the Minnesota. Like our Virginia she was an invention, and her merits and demerits were to be tested in the crucible of war. She was of light draught, and very little save the revolving turret was visible above the water, was readily handled, and had good speed; but, also, like the Virginia, was not supposed by nautical men to be capable of braving rough weather at sea.

The Virginia was the hull of a frigate, modified into an ironclad vessel. She was only suited to smooth water, and it had not been practicable to obtain for her such engines as would have given her the requisite speed. Her draught, twenty-two feet, was too great for the shoal water in the roads, and the apprehension which was excited lest she should go up to Washington might have been allayed by a knowledge of the deep water necessary to float her. Her great length, depth, and want of power, caused difficulty in handling to be anticipated. In many respects she was an experiment, and, had we possessed the means to build a new vessel, no doubt a better model could have been devised. Commander Brooke, who united much science to great ingenuity, was not entirely free in the exercise of either. Our means restricted us to making the best of that which chance had given us.

In the morning the Virginia, with the Patrick Henry, the Jamestown, and the three little tugs, jestingly called the "mosquito fleet," returned to the scene of the previous day's combat, and to the completion of the work, the destruction of the Minnesota, which had, the evening before, been interrupted by the change of tide and the coming of night. The Monitor, which had come in during the previous night, and had been seen by the light of the burning Congress, opened fire on the Virginia when about the third of a mile distant. The Virginia sought to close with her, but the greater speed of the Monitor and the celerity with which she was handled made this impracticable. The ships passed and repassed very near each other, and frequently the Virginia delivered her broadside at close quarters, but with no perceptible effect. The Monitor fired rapidly from her revolving turret, but not with such aim as to strike successively in the same place, and the armor of the Virginia, therefore, remained unbroken. Lieutenant-commanding Catesby Jones, to whom Buchanan had intrusted the ship when he was removed to the hospital, soon discovered that the Monitor was invulnerable to his shells. He had a few solid shot, which were intended only to be fired from the nine-inch guns as hot shot, and therefore had necessarily so much windage that they would be ineffective against the shield of the Monitor. He, therefore, determined to run her down, and got all the headway he could obtain for that purpose, but the speed was so small that it merely pushed her out of her way. It was then decided to board her, and all hands were piped for that object. Then the Monitor slipped away on to shoal water where the Virginia could not approach her, and Commander Jones, after waiting a due time, and giving the usual signals of invitation to combat, without receiving any manifestation on the part of the Monitor of an intention to return to deep water, withdrew to the navy-yard.

In the two days of conflict our only casualties were from the Cumberland as she went down valiantly fighting to the last, from the men on shore when the tugs went to the Congress to receive her surrender, or from the perfidious fire from the Congress while her white flags were flying. None were killed or wounded in the fight with the Monitor.

As this was the first combat between two iron-clad vessels, it attracted great attention and provoked much speculation. Some assumed that wooden ships were henceforth to be of no use, and much has been done by the addition of armor to protect seagoing vessels; but certainly neither of the two which provoked the speculation could be regarded as seaworthy, or suited to other than harbor defense.

A new prow was put on the Virginia, she was furnished with bolts and solid shot, and the slight repairs needed were promptly made. The distinguished veteran. Commodore Josiah Tatnall, was assigned to the command of the Virginia, vice Admiral Buchanan, temporarily disabled. The Virginia, as far as possible, was prepared for battle and cruise in the Roads, and, on the 11th of April, Commodore Tatnall moved down to invite the Monitor to combat. But her officers kept the Monitor close to the shore, with her steam up, and under the guns of Fortress Monroe. To provoke her to come out, the little Jamestown was sent in and pluckily captured many prizes, but the Monitor lay safe in the shoal water under the guns of the formidable fortress. An English man-of-war, which was lying in the channel, witnessed this effort to draw the Monitor out into deep water in defense of her weaker countrymen, and, as Barney on the Jamestown passed with his prizes, cut out in full view of the enemy's fleet, the Englishmen, with their national admiration of genuine "game," as a spectator described it, "unable to restrain their generous impulses, from the captain to the side-boy, cheered our gunboat to the very echo." I quote further from the same witness: "Early in May, a magnificent Federal fleet, the Virginia being concealed behind the land, had ventured across the channel, and some of them, expressly fitted to destroy our ship, were furiously bombarding our batteries at Sewell's Point. Dashing down comes old Tatnall on the instant, as light stepping and blithe as a boy. . . . But the Virginia no sooner draws into range than the whole fleet, like a flushed covey of birds, flatters off into shoal water and under the guns of the forts"—where they remained. After some delay, and there being no prospect of active service, the Commodore ordered the executive officer to fire a gun to windward and take the ship back to her buoy. Here, ready for service, waiting for an enemy to engage her, but never having the opportunity, she remained until the 10th of the ensuing month.

The Norfolk Navy-Yard, notwithstanding the injury done to it by conflagration, was yet the most available and equipped yard in the Confederacy. A land-force under General Huger had been placed there for its protection, and defensive works had also been constructed with a view to hold it as well for naval construction and repair as for its strategic importance in connection with the defense of the capital, Richmond. On the opposite side of the lower James, on the Peninsula between the James and York Rivers, we occupied an intrenched position of much natural strength. The two positions, Norfolk and the Peninsula, were necessary to each other, and the command of the channel between them essential to both. As long as the Virginia closed the entrance to the James River, and the intrenchment on the Peninsula was held, it was deemed possible to keep possession of Norfolk.

On the 1st of May General Johnston, commanding on the Peninsula, having decided to retreat, sent an order to General Huger to evacuate Norfolk. The Secretary of War, General Randolph, having arrived just at that time in Norfolk, assumed the authority of postponing the execution of the order "until he [General Huger] could remove such stores, munitions, and arms as could be carried off." The Secretary of the Navy, Mr. Mallory, was there also, and gave like instructions to the commandant of the yard. To the system and energy with which General Huger conducted the removal of heavy guns, machinery, stores, and munitions, we were greatly indebted in our future operations, both of construction and defense. A week was thus employed in the removal of machinery, etc, and the enemy, occupied with the retreating army on the Peninsula, did not cross the James River above, either to interrupt the transportation or to obstruct the retreat of the garrisons of the forts at Norfolk and its surroundings. When our army had been withdrawn from the Peninsula, and Norfolk had been evacuated, and the James River did not furnish depth of channel which would suffice for the Virginia to ascend it more than a few miles, her mission was ended. It is not surprising that her brilliant career created a great desire to preserve her, and that it was contemplated to lighten her and thus try to take her up the river, but the pilots declared this to be impracticable, and the court which subsequently investigated the matter sustained their opinion that "the only alternative was then and there to abandon and burn the ship." The statement of Commodore Tatnall shows that the Virginia could not have been taken seaward, and that such was the opinion of her first commander. He said: "I consulted Commodore Buchanan on the character and power of the ship. He expressed the distinct opinion that she was unseaworthy, that she was not sufficiently buoyant, and that in a common sea she would founder." She could not, it therefore appears, ascend the river, was unseaworthy, and was uncovered by the retreat of the troops with whom she had coöperated. So, on the 10th of May, the Virginia was taken to Craney Island, one mile above, and there her crew were landed; they fell in and formed on the beach, and, in the language of the eye-witness heretofore quoted, "then and there, on the very field of her fame, within sight of the Cumberland's top-gallant-masts, all awash, within sight of that magnificent fleet still cowering on the shoal, with her laurels all fresh and green, we hauled down her drooping colors, and, with mingled pride and grief, we gave her to the flames." [54]

At Wilmington, North Carolina, the Southwest bar was defended by Fort Caswell, and New Inlet bar by Fort Fisher. The naval defenses consisted of two ironclads, the North Carolina and the Raleigh. The former could not cross any of the bars in consequence of her draught of water. Her steam-power hardly gave propulsion. She sank during the war off Smithville. The Raleigh's services were almost valueless in consequence of her deep draught and her feeble steam-power. She made one futile trip out of New Inlet, and after a few hours attempted to return, but was wrecked upon the bar.

The brave and invincible defense of Fort Sumter gave to the city of Charleston, South Carolina, additional luster. For four years that fort, located in its harbor, defied the army and navy of the United States. When the city was about to be abandoned to the army of General Sherman, the forts defending the harbor were embraced in General Hardee's plan of evacuation. The gallant commander of Fort Sumter, Colonel Stephen Elliott, Jr., with unyielding fortitude, refused to be relieved, after being under incessant bombardment day and night for weeks. It was supposed he must be exhausted, and he was invited to withdraw for rest, but, on receiving the general order of retreat, he assembled his brave force on the rugged and shell-crushed parade-ground, read his instructions, and, in a voice that trembled with emotion, addressed his men in the glowing language of patriotism and unswerving devotion to the Confederate cause. The cheers, which responded to the utterances of their colonel, came from manly and chivalric throats. Yielding to the inevitable, they claimed for the Stars and Bars a salute of one hundred guns. As it was fired from Sumter, it was reëchoed by all the Confederate batteries, and startled the outside blockaders with the idea that a great victory had been won by the Confederacy.

The naval force of the Confederacy in Charleston Harbor consisted of three ironclads. Their steam-power was totally inadequate for the effective use of the vessels. In fact, when the wind and tide were moving in the same direction, it was impossible for the vessels to advance against them, light though the wind might be. Under such circumstances it was necessary to come to an anchor. On one occasion the ironclads Palmetto State and Chicora ran out of Charleston Harbor under favorable circumstances. The Palmetto State assaulted the Mercideta, commanded by Captain Stellwagen, who unconditionally surrendered. But the ironclad being under orders to follow her consort in chase of the enemy, and having no boats to which to transfer her prisoners, the parole of the officers and men was accepted, with their promise to observe the same until its return. The surrender was accepted, and an honest parole was the consideration for not being sunk on the spot. Captain Stellwagen abided but a short time, when, getting up steam, he broke his plighted word, and ran off with the captured vessel. The deficiency of speed on the part of the Confederate ironclads frustrated their efforts to relieve the city of Charleston from continued blockade.

The harbor defenses of Savannah were intrusted to Commodore Tatnall, who defended the approach to the city with a small steamer of one gun, an inefficient floating battery and ironclad, which had been constructed from a blockade-runner. Several attempts were made to attack the enemy's vessels with the ironclad, but these were frustrated by the delay in opening a passage through the obstructions in the river when tide and opportunity were offered. Her draught was too great for the depth of water, except at high tides, and these were at long intervals. The ironclad was armed with a battery of four guns, two seven-inch and two six-inch. Her force consisted of some twenty-one officers and twenty-four men, when she was fully furnished. Another vessel was under construction and nearly completed, and Commodore Tatnall, notwithstanding his well-known combative instincts, was understood to be unwilling to send the Atlanta alone against the enemy's blockading vessels. Lieutenant Webb, who had been lately placed in command of the Atlanta, took her to Warsaw Sound to deliver battle singly to the two ironclads Weehawken and Nahant, which awaited her approach. The Atlanta got twice aground—the second time, inextricably so. In this situation she was attacked, and, though hopelessly, was bravely defended, but was finally forced to surrender.

Mobile Harbor was thought to be adequately provided for, as torpedoes obstructed the approach, and Forts Morgan and Gaines commanded the entrance, aided by the improvised fleet of Admiral Buchanan, which consisted of the wooden gunboats Morgan and Gaines, each carrying six guns, and Selma four guns, with the ram Tennessee of six guns—in all, twenty-two guns and four hundred and seventy men. On August 4, 1864, Fort Gaines was assaulted by the United States force from the sea-side of the beach. The resistance made was feeble, and the fort soon surrendered. On the next day Admiral Farragut stood into the bay with a force consisting of four monitors, or ironclads, and fourteen steamers, carrying one hundred and ninety-nine guns and twenty-seven hundred men. One ironclad was sunk by a torpedo. Admiral Buchanan advanced to meet this force, and sought to run into the larger vessels with the Tennessee, but they avoided him by their superior speed. Meanwhile the gunboats became closely engaged with the enemy, but were soon dispersed by his overwhelming force. The Tennessee again stood for the enemy and renewed the attack with the hope of sinking some of them with her prow, but she was again foiled by their superior speed in avoiding her. The engagement with the whole fleet soon became general, and lasted an hour. Frequently the Tennessee was surrounded by the enemy, and all her guns were in action almost at the same moment. Four of their heaviest vessels ran into her under full steam with the view of sinking her. While surrounded by six of these heavy vessels which were suffering fearfully from her heavy battery, the steering-gear of the Tennessee was shot away, and her ability to manoeuvre was completely destroyed, leaving the formidable Confederate entirely at the disposal of the enemy. This misfortune, it was believed, saved the greater part of Farragut's fleet. Further resistance becoming unavailable, the wounded Admiral was under the painful necessity of ordering a surrender. His little fleet became a prey to the enemy, except the Morgan, which made good her escape to Mobile.

This unequal contest was decidedly creditable to the Confederacy. The entire loss of the enemy, most of which is ascribed to the Tennessee, amounted to quite three hundred in killed and wounded, exclusive of one hundred lost on the sunken ironclad, making a number almost as large as the entire Confederate force. On August 22d, Fort Morgan was bombarded from the land, also by ironclads at sea, and by the fleet inside. Thus Forts Powel, Morgan, and Gaines shared the fate of the Confederate fleet, and the enemy became masters of the bay. On this as on other occasions, the want of engines of sufficient power constituted a main obstacle to the success which the gallantry and skill of the seamen so richly deserved.

The system of torpedoes adopted by us was probably more effective than any other means of naval defense. The destructiveness of these little weapons had long been known, but no successful modes for their application to the destruction of the most powerful vessels of war and ironclads had been devised. It remained for the skill and ingenuity of our officers to bring the use of this terrible instrument to perfection. The success of their efforts is very frankly stated by one of the most distinguished of the enemy's commanders—Admiral Porter.[55] He says:

"Most of the Southern seaports fell into our possession with comparative facility; and the difficulty of capturing Charleston, Savannah, Wilmington, and Mobile was in a measure owing to the fact that the approaches to these places were filled with various kinds of torpedoes, laid in groups, and fired by electricity. The introduction of this means of defense on the side of the Confederates was for a time a severe check to our naval forces, for the commanders of squadrons felt it their duty to be careful when dealing with an element of warfare of which they knew so little, and the character and disposition of which it was so difficult to discover. In this system of defense, therefore, the enemy found their greatest security; and, notwithstanding all the efforts of Du Pont and Dahlgren, Charleston, Wilmington, and Savannah remained closed to our forces until near the close of the war."

In 1862, while General McClellan was in command of the enemy's forces below Richmond, it was observed that they had more than a hundred vessels in the James River, as if they were about to make an advance by that way upon the city. This led to an order placing General G. J. Rains in charge of the submarine defenses; and, on the James River opposite Drewry's Bluff, the first submarine torpedo was made. The secret of all his future success consisted in the sensitive primer, which is unrivaled by any other means to explode torpedoes or sub-terra shells.

The torpedoes were made of the most ordinary material generally, as, beer-barrels fixed with conical heads, coated within and without with rosin dissolved in coal-tar; some were made of cast-iron, copper, or tin; and glass demijohns were used. There were three essentials to success, viz., the sensitive fuse-primer, a charge of sixty pounds of gunpowder, and actual contact between the torpedo and the bottom of the vessel.

There were one hundred and twenty-three of these torpedoes placed in Charleston Harbor and Stono River. It was blockaded by thirteen large ships and ironclads, with six or seven storeships, and some twenty other vessels. The position of each one was known, and they could be approached within a half-mile, which made it easy to attack, destroy, or disperse them at night by floating torpedoes, connected together by twos by a rope one hundred and thirty yards long, buoyed up and stretched across the current by two boats, which were to be dropped in ebbing tide, to float down among the vessels. This plan, says General Rains, was opposed by General Gilmer, of the engineer corps, on the ground that "they might float back and destroy our own boat." One was sent down to go in the midst of the fleet, and made its mark. An act of devoted daring was here performed by Commander W. T. Glassell, Confederate States Navy, which claims more than a passing notice. While the enemy was slowly contracting his lines around Charleston, his numerous ships of war kept watch-and-ward outside of the harbor. Our few vessels, almost helpless by their defective engines, could effect little against their powerful opponents. The New Ironsides, the pride of their fleet, lay off Morris's Island. This Glassell resolved to attack with a steam-launch carrying a torpedo spar at the bow. With an engineer, pilot, and fireman, he steered for the Ironsides under cover of a hazy night. As he approached, he was hailed by the lookout, and the next moment struck the Ironsides, exploding the torpedo about fifteen feet from the keel. An immense volume of water was thrown up, covering the little boat, and, pieces of timber falling in the engine, it was rendered entirely unmanageable, so as to deprive Commander Glassell of the means of escape on which he had relied. A rapid fire was concentrated upon him from the deck of the ship, and there remained no chance except to attempt an escape by swimming ashore. To secure liberty to his country, he risked and lost his own, and found, for the indignity to which he was subjected, compensation, inasmuch as the famous New Ironsides was long rendered useless to the enemy.

One hundred and one torpedoes were planted in Roanoke River, North Carolina, after a flotilla of twelve vessels had started up to capture Fort Branch. The torpedoes destroyed six of the vessels and frustrated the attack.

Every avenue to the outworks or to the city of Mobile was guarded by submarine torpedoes, so that it was impossible for any vessel drawing three feet of water to get within effective cannon-range of the defenses. Two ironclads attempted to get near enough to Spanish Fort to take part in the bombardment. They both struck torpedoes, and went to the bottom on Apalachie bar; thenceforward the fleet made no further attempt to encounter the almost certain destruction which they saw awaited any vessel which might attempt to enter the torpedo-guarded waters. But many were sunk when least expecting it. Some went down long after the Confederate forces had evacuated Mobile. The Tecumseh was probably sunk, says Major-General D. H. Maury,[56] on her own torpedo. While steaming in lead of Farragut's fleet she carried a torpedo affixed to a spar, which projected some twenty feet from her bows; she proposed to use this torpedo against the Tennessee, our only formidable ship; but, while passing Fort Morgan, a shot from that fort cut away the stays by which the torpedo was secured; it then doubled under her, and, exploding fairly under the bottom of the ill-fated ship, she careened and sank instantly in ten fathoms of water. Only six or eight of her crew of a hundred or more were saved. The total number of vessels sunk by torpedoes in Mobile Bay was twelve, viz., three ironclads, two tinclads, and seven transports. Fifty-eight vessels were destroyed in Southern waters by torpedoes during the war; these included ironclads and others of no mean celebrity.

[Footnote 53: See "Annual Cyclopaedia," 1861, p. 536.]

[Footnote 54: "The Story of the Confederate Ship Virginia," by William
Norris, Colonel Signal Corps, Confederate Army.]

[Footnote 55: See "Torpedo Warfare," "North American Review,"
September-October, 1878.]

[Footnote 56: Southern Historical Society Papers, January, 1877.]


Naval Affairs (continued).—Importance of New Orleans.—Attack feared from up the River.—Preparations for Defense.—Strength of the Forts.—Other Defenses.-The General Plan.—Ironclads.— Raft-Fleet of the Enemy.—Bombardment of the Forts commenced.— Advance of the Fleet.—Its Passage of the Forts.—Batteries below the City.—Darkness of the Night.—Evacuation of the City by General Lovell on Appearance of the Enemy.—Address of General Duncan to Soldiers in the Forts.—Refusal to surrender.—Meeting of the Garrison of Fort Jackson.—The Forts surrendered.—Ironclad Louisiana destroyed.—The Tugs and Steamers.—The Governor Moore.— The Enemy's Ship Varuna sunk.—The McRae.—The State of the City and its Defenses considered.—Public Indignation.—Its Victims.— Efforts made for its Defense by the Navy Department.—The Construction of the Mississippi.

New Orleans was the most important commercial port in the Confederacy, being the natural outlet of the Mississippi Valley, as well to the ports of Europe as to those of Central and Southern America. It was the depot which, at an early period, had led to controversies with Spain, and its importance to the interior had been a main inducement to the purchase of Louisiana. It had become before 1861 the chief cotton-mart of the United States, and its defense attracted the early attention of the Confederate Government. The approaches for an attacking party were numerous. They could through several channels enter Lake Pontchartrain, to approach the city in rear for land-attack, could ascend the Mississippi from the Gulf, or descend it from the Northwest, where it was known that the enemy was preparing a formidable fleet of iron-clad gunboats. In the early part of 1862, so general an opinion prevailed that the greatest danger to New Orleans was by an attack from above, that General Lovell sent to General Beauregard a large part of the troops then in the city.

At the mouth of the Mississippi there is a bar, the greatest depth of water on which seldom exceeded eighteen feet, and it was supposed that heavy vessels of war, with their armament and supplies, would not be able to cross it. Such proved to be the fact, and the vessels of that class had to be lightened to enable them to enter the river. In that condition of affairs, an inferior fleet might have engaged them with a prospect of success. Captain Hollins, who was in command of the squadron at New Orleans, and who had on a former occasion shown his fitness for such service, had been sent with the greater part of his fleet up the river to join the defense there being made. Two powerful vessels were under construction, the Louisiana and the Mississippi, but neither of them was finished. A volunteer fleet of transport-vessels had been fitted up by some river-men, but it was in the unfortunate condition of not being placed under the orders of the naval commander. A number of fire-rafts had been also provided, which were to serve the double purpose of lighting up the river in the event of the hostile fleet attempting to pass the forts under cover of the night, and of setting fire to any vessel with which they might become entangled.

After passing the bar, there was nothing to prevent the ascent of the river until Forts Jackson and St. Philip were reached. These works, constructed many years before, were on opposite banks of the river. Their armament, as reported by General Lovell, December 5, 1861, consisted of—Fort Jackson: six forty-two-ponders, twenty-six twenty-four-pounders, two thirty-two-pounder rifles, sixteen thirty-two-pounders, three eight-inch columbiads, one ten-inch columbiad, two eight-inch mortars, one ten-inch mortar, two forty-pounder howitzers, and ten twenty-four-pounder howitzers. Fort St. Philip: six forty-two-ponders, nine thirty-two-pounders, twenty-two twenty-four-pounders, four eight-inch columbiads, one eight-inch mortar, one ten-inch mortar, and three field-guns.

General Duncan reported that, on the 27th of March, he was informed by Lieutenant-Colonel Higgins, commanding Forts Jackson and St. Philip, of the coast-defenses, which were under his (General Duncan's) command, that the enemy's fleet was crossing the bars, and entering the Mississippi River in force; whereupon he repaired to Fort Jackson. After describing the condition of the forts from the excess of water and sinking of the entire site, as well as the deficiency of guns of heavy caliber in the forts, he proceeds:

"It became necessary in their present condition to bring in and mount, and to build the platforms for, the three ten-inch and three eight-inch columbiads, the rifled forty-two-pounder, and the five ten-inch seacoast mortars recently obtained from Pensacola on the evacuation of that place, together with the two rifled seven-inch guns temporarily borrowed from the naval authorities in New Orleans. It was also found necessary to repair the old water-battery to the rear of and below Fort Jackson, which had never been completed, for the reception of a portion of these guns, as well as to construct mortar-proof magazines, and shell-rooms within the same."

One of the seven-inch rifled guns borrowed from the navy was subsequently returned, so that, when the forts were attacked, the armament was one hundred and twenty-eight guns and mortars.

The garrisons of Forts Jackson and St. Philip were about one thousand men on December 5, 1861; afterward, so far as I know, the number was not materially changed.

The prevailing belief that vessels of war, in a straight, smooth channel, could pass batteries, led to the construction of a raft between the two forts which, it was supposed, would detain the ships under fire of the forts long enough for the guns to sink them, or at least to compel them to retire. The power of the river when in flood, and the drift-wood it bore upon it, broke the raft; another was constructed, which, when the drift-wood accumulated upon it, met a like fate. Whether obstructions differently arranged—such as booms secured to the shores, with apparatus by which they could be swung across the channel when needful, or logs such as were used, except that, being unconnected together, but each separately secured by chain and anchor, they might severally yield to the pressure of the driftwood, sinking, so as to allow it to pass over them, and, when relieved of the weight, rising again—or whether other expedient could have been made permanent and efficient, is a problem which need not be discussed, as the time for its application has passed from us.

The general plan for the defense of New Orleans consisted of two lines of works: an exterior one, passing through the forts near the month of the river, and the positions taken to defend the various water approaches; nearer to the city was the interior line, embracing New Orleans and Algiers, which was intended principally to repel an attack by land, but also, by its batteries on the river-bank, to resist approach by water. The total length of the intrenchments on this interior line was more than eight miles. When completed, it formed, in connection with impassable swamps, a very strong line of defense. At the then high stage of the river, all the land between it and the swamps was so saturated with water, that regular approaches could not have been made. The city, therefore, was at the time supposed to be doubly secure from a land-attack.

In the winter of 1861-'62 I sent one of my aides-de-camp to New Orleans to make a general inspection, and hold free conference with the commanding General. Upon his return, he reported to me that General Lovell was quite satisfied with the condition of the land-defenses—so much so as to say that his only fear was that the enemy would not make a land-attack.

Considered since the event, it may seem strange that, after the fall of Donelson and Henry, and the employment of the enemy's gunboats in the Tennessee and Cumberland, it was still generally argued that the danger to New Orleans was that the gunboats would descend the Mississippi, and applications were made to have the ship Louisiana sent up the river as soon as she was completed.

The interior lines of defense mounted more than sixty guns of various caliber, and were surrounded by wide and deep ditches. On the various water approaches, including bays and bayous on the west and east sides of the river, there were sixteen different forts, and these, together with those on the river and the batteries of the interior line, had in position about three hundred guns.

One ironclad, the Louisiana, mounting sixteen guns of heavy caliber, though she was not quite completed, was sent down to coöperate with the forts. Her defective steam-power and imperfect steering apparatus prevented her from rendering active coöperation. The steamship Mississippi, then under construction at New Orleans, was in such an unfinished condition as to be wholly unavailable when the enemy arrived. In the opinion of naval officers she would have been, if completed, the most powerful ironclad then in the world, and could have driven the enemy's fleet out of the river and raised the blockade at Mobile. There were also several small river-steamers which were lightly armed, and their bows were protected so that they could act as rams and otherwise aid in the defense of the river; but, from the reports received, they seem, with a few honorable exceptions, to have rendered little valuable service.

The means of defense, therefore, mainly relied on were the two heavy-armed forts, Jackson and St. Philip, with the obstruction placed between them: this was a raft consisting of cypress-trees, forty feet long, and averaging four or five feet at the larger end. They were placed longitudinally in the river, about three feet apart, and held together by gunwales on top, and strung upon two two-and-a-half-inch chain cables fastened to their lower sides. This raft was anchored in the river, abreast of the forts.

The fleet of the enemy below the forts consisted of seven steam sloops of war, twelve gunboats, and several armed steamers, under Commodore Farragut; also, a mortar-fleet consisting of twenty sloops and some steam-vessels. The whole force was forty-odd vessels of different kinds, with an armament of three hundred guns of heavy caliber, of improved models.

The bombardment of the forts by the mortar-fleet commenced on April 18th, and, after six days of vigorous and constant shelling, the resisting power of the forts was not diminished in any perceptible degree. On the 23d there were manifest preparations by the enemy to attempt the passage of the forts. This, as subsequently developed, was to be done in the following manner. The sloops of war and the gunboats were each formed in two divisions, and, selecting the darkest hour of the night, between 3 and 4 A.M. of the 24th, moved up the river in two columns. The commanders of the forts had vainly endeavored to have the river lighted up in anticipation of an attack by the fleet.

In the mean time, while the fleet moved up the river, there was kept up from the mortars a steady bombardment on the forts, and these opened a fire on the columns of ships and gunboats, which, from the failure to send down the fire-rafts to light up the river, was less effective than it otherwise would have been. The straight, deep channel enabled the vessels to move at their greatest speed, and thus the forts were passed.

Brigadier-General J. K. Duncan, commanding the coast defenses, says, in his report of the passing of Forts Jackson and St. Philip by the enemy's fleet:

"The enemy evidently anticipated a strong demonstration to be made against him with fire-barges. Finding, upon his approach, however, that no such demonstration was made, and that the only resistance offered to his passage was the anticipated fire of the forts—the broken and scattered raft being no obstacle—I am satisfied that he was suddenly inspired, for the first time, to run the gantlet at all hazards, although not a part of his original design. Be that as it may, a rapid rush was made by him in columns of twos in echelon, so as not to interfere with each other's broadsides. The mortar-fire was furiously increased upon Fort Jackson, and, in dashing by, each of the vessels delivered broadside after broadside, of shot, shell, grape, canister, and spherical case, to drive the men from our guns.

"Both the officers and men stood up manfully under this galling and fearful hail, and the batteries of both forts were promptly opened at their longest range, with shot, shell, hot shot, and a little grape, and most gallantly and rapidly fought, until the enemy succeeded in getting above and beyond our range. The absence of light on the river, together with the smoke of the guns, made the obscurity so dense that scarcely a vessel was visible, and, in consequence, the gunners were obliged to govern their firing entirely by the flashes of the enemy's guns. I am fully satisfied that the enemy's dash was successful mainly owing to the cover of darkness, as a frigate and several gunboats were forced to retire as day was breaking. Similar results had attended every previous attempt made by the enemy to pass or to reconnoiter when we had sufficient light to fire with accuracy and effect."

The vessels which passed the fort anchored at the quarantine station about six miles above, and in the forenoon proceeded up the river. Batteries had been constructed where the interior line of defense touched both the right and the left bank of the river. The high stage of the river gave to its surface an elevation above that of the natural bank; but a continuous levee to protect the land from inundation existed on both sides of the river. When the ascending fleet approached these batteries, a cross-fire, which drove two of the vessels back, was opened upon it, and continued until all the ammunition was exhausted. The garrison was then withdrawn-casualties, one killed and one wounded. The regret which would naturally arise from the fact of these batteries not having a sufficient supply of ammunition is modified, if not removed, by the statement of the highly accomplished and gallant officer, Major-General M. L. Smith, who was then in command of them. He reported:

"Had the fall of New Orleans depended upon the enemy's first taking Forts Jackson and Philip, I think the city would have been safe from an attack from the Gulf. The forts, in my judgment, were impregnable as long as they were in free and open communication with the city. This communication was not endangered while the obstruction existed. The conclusion, then, is briefly this: While the obstruction existed, the city was safe; when it was swept away, as the defenses then existed, it was within the enemy's power."

On the other hand, General Duncan, whose protracted, skillful, and gallant defense of the forts is above all praise, closes his official report with the following sentence: "Except for the cover afforded by the obscurity of the darkness, I shall always remain satisfied that the enemy would never have succeeded in passing Forts Jackson and St. Philip." The darkness to which he referred was not only that of night, but also the absence of the use of the means prepared to light up the river. As further proof of the intensity of the darkness, and the absence of that intelligent design and execution which had been claimed, I will quote a sentence from the report of Commodore Farragut: "At length the fire slackened, the smoke cleared off, and we saw to our surprise that we were above the forts."

On the 25th of April the enemy's gunboats and ships of war anchored in front of the city and demanded its surrender. Major-General M. Lovell, then in command, refused to comply with the summons, but, believing himself unable to make a successful defense, and in order to avoid a bombardment, agreed to withdraw his forces, and turn it over to the civil authorities. Accordingly, the city was evacuated on the same day. The forts still continued defiantly to hold their position. By assiduous exertion the damage done to the works was repaired, and the garrisons valiantly responded to the resolute determination of General Duncan and Colonel Higgins to defend the forts against the fleet still below, as well as against that which had passed and was now above. On the 26th Commodore Porter, commanding the mortar-fleet below, sent a flag-of-truce boat to demand the surrender of the forts, saying that the city of New Orleans had surrendered. To this Colonel Higgins replied, April 27th, that he had no official information that New Orleans had been evacuated, and until such notice was received he would not entertain for a moment a proposition to surrender the forts. On the same day General Duncan, commanding the coast-defenses, issued the following address:

"SOLDIERS OF FORTS JACKSON AND ST. PHILIP: You have nobly, gallantly, and heroically sustained with courage and fortitude the terrible ordeals of fire, water, and a hail of shot and shell wholly unsurpassed during the present war. But more remains to be done. The safety of New Orleans and the cause of the Southern Confederacy—our homes, families, and everything dear to man—yet depend upon our exertions. We are just as capable of repelling the enemy to-day as we were before the bombardment. Twice has the enemy demanded your surrender, and twice has he been refused.

"Your officers have every confidence in your courage and patriotism, and feel every assurance that you will cheerfully and with alacrity obey all orders, and do your whole duty as men and as becomes the well-tried garrisons of Forts Jackson and St. Philip. Be vigilant, therefore, stand by your guns, and all will yet be well.


"Brigadier-General, commanding coast-defenses."

Not less lofty and devoted was the spirit evinced by Colonel Higgins. His naval experience had been energetically applied in the attempts to preserve and repair the raft. As immediate commander of Fort St. Philip he had done all which skill and gallantry could achieve, and, though for forty-eight hours during the bombardment he never left the rampart, yet, with commendable care for his men, he kept them so under cover that, notwithstanding the long and furious assault to which the fort was subjected, the total of casualties in it was two killed and four wounded. Their conduct was such as was to be anticipated, for, had these officers been actuated by a lower motive than patriotism, had they been seeking the rewards which power confers, they would not have taken service with the weaker party. Their meed was the consciousness of duty well done in a righteous cause, and the enduring admiration and esteem of a people who had only these to confer.

During the 25th, 26th, and 27th, there had been an abatement of fire on the forts, and with it had subsided the excitement which imminent danger creates in the brave. A rumor became current that the city had surrendered, and no reply had been received to inquiries sent on the 24th and 25th. About midnight on the 27th the garrison of Fort Jackson revolted en masse, seized upon the guard, and commenced to spike the guns. Captain S. O. Comay's company, the Louisiana Cannoneers of St. Mary's Parish, and a few others remained true to their cause and country. The mutiny was so general that the officers were powerless to control it, and therefore decided to let those go who wished to leave, and after daybreak to communicate with the fleet below and negotiate for the terms which had been previously offered and declined.

Under the incessant fire to which the forts had been exposed, and the rise of the water in the casemates and lower part of the works, the men had been not only deprived of sleep, but of the opportunity to prepare their food. Heroically they had braved alike dangers and discomfort; had labored constantly to repair damages; to extinguish fires caused by exploding shells; to preserve their ammunition by bailing out the water which threatened to submerge the magazine: yet, in a period of comparative repose, these men, who had been cheerful and obedient, as suddenly as unexpectedly, broke out into open mutiny. Under the circumstances which surrounded him, General Duncan had no alternative. It only remained for him to accept the proposition which had been made for a surrender of the forts. As this mutiny became known about midnight of the 27th, soon after daylight of the 28th a small boat was procured, and notice of the event was sent to Captain Mitchell, on the Louisiana, and also to Fort St. Philip. The officers of that fort concurred in the propriety of the surrender, though none of their men had openly revolted.

A flag of truce was sent to Commodore Porter to notify him of a willingness to negotiate for the surrender of the forts. The gallantry with which the defense had been conducted was recognized by the enemy, and the terms were as liberal as had been offered on former occasions.

The garrisons were paroled, the officers were to retain their side-arms, and the Confederate flags were left flying over the forts until after our forces had withdrawn. If this was done as a generous recognition of the gallantry with which the forts had been defended, it claims acknowledgment as an instance of martial courtesy—the flower that blooms fairest amid the desolations of war.

Captain Mitchell, commanding the Confederate States naval forces, had been notified by General Duncan of the mutiny in the forts and of the fact that the enemy had passed through a channel in rear of Fort St. Philip and had landed a force at the quarantine, some six miles above, and that, under the circumstances, it was deemed necessary to surrender the forts. As the naval forces were not under the orders of the general commanding the coast-defenses, it was optional with the naval commander to do likewise or not as to his fleet. After consultation with his officers. Captain Mitchell decided to destroy his flagship, the Louisiana, the only formidable vessel he had, rather than allow her to fall into the hands of the enemy. The crew was accordingly withdrawn, and the vessel set on fire.

Commodore Porter, commanding the fleet below, came up under a flag of truce to Fort Jackson, and, while negotiations were progressing for the surrender, the Louisiana, in flames, drifted down the river, and, when close under Fort St. Philip, exploded and sank.

The defenses afloat, except the Louisiana, consisted of tugs and river-steamers, which had been converted to war purposes by protecting their bows with iron so as to make them rams, and putting on them such armament as boats of that class would bear; and these were again divided into such as were subject to control as naval vessels, and others which, in compliance with the wish of the Governor of Louisiana and many influential citizens, were fitted out to a great extent by State and private sources, with the condition that they should be commanded by river-steamboat captains, and should not be under the control of the naval commander. This, of course, impaired the unity requisite in battle. For many other purposes they might have been used without experiencing the inconvenience felt when they were brought together to act as one force against the enemy. The courts of inquiry and the investigation by a committee of Congress have brought out all the facts of the case, but with such conflicting opinions as render it very difficult, in reviewing the matter, to reach a definite and satisfactory conclusion. This much it may be proper to say, that expectations, founded upon the supposition that these improvised means could do all which might fairly be expected from war-vessels, were unreasonable, and a judgment based upon them is unjust to the parties involved. The machinery of the Louisiana was so incomplete as to deprive her of locomotion, but she had been so well constructed as to possess very satisfactory resisting powers, as was shown by the fact that the broadsides of the enemy's vessels, fired at very close quarters, had little or no effect upon her shield. Without power of locomotion, her usefulness was limited to employment as a floating battery. The question as to whether she was in the right position, or whether, in her unfinished condition, she should have been sent from the city, is one, for an answer to which I must refer the inquirer to the testimony of naval men, who were certainly most competent to decide the issue.

One of the little river-boats, the Governor Moore, commanded by lieutenant Beverly Kennon, like the others, imperfectly protected at the bow, struck and sunk the Varuna, in close proximity to other vessels of the enemy's fleet. Such daring resulted in his losing, in killed and wounded, seventy-four out of a crew of ninety-three. Then finding that he must destroy his ship to prevent her from falling into the hands of the enemy, he set her on fire, and testified as follows:

"I ordered the wounded to be placed in a boat, and all the men who could to save themselves by swimming to the shore and hiding themselves in the marshes. I remained to set the ship on fire. After doing so, I went on deck with the intention of leaving her, but found the wounded had been left with no one to take care of them. I remained and lowered them into a boat, and got through just in time to be made a prisoner. The wounded were afterward attended by the surgeons of the Oneida and Eureka."

This, he says, was the only foundation for the accusation of having burned his wounded with his ship. Another, the Manassas, lieutenant-commanding Warley, though merely an altered "tug-boat," stoutly fought the large ships; but, being wholly unprotected, except at her bow, was perforated in many places, as soon as the guns were brought to bear upon her sides, and floated down the river a burning wreck. Another of the same class is thus referred to by Colonel Higgins:

"At daylight, I observed the McRae, gallantly fighting at terrible odds, contending at close quarters with two of the enemy's powerful ships. Her gallant commander, Lieutenant Thomas B. Huger, fell during the conflict, severely, but I trust not mortally, wounded."

This little vessel, after her unequal conflict, was still afloat, and, with permission of the enemy, went up to New Orleans to convey the wounded as well from our forts as from the fleet.

On the 23d of April, 1862, General Lovell, commanding the military department, had gone down to Fort Jackson, where General Duncan, commanding the coast-defenses, then made his headquarters. The presence of the department commander did not avail to secure the full coöperation between the defenses afloat and the land-defenses, which was then of most pressing and immediate necessity.

When the enemy's fleet passed the forts, he hastened back to New Orleans, his headquarters. The confusion which prevailed in the city, when the news arrived that the forts had been passed by the enemy's fleet, shows how little it was expected. There was nothing to obstruct the ascent of the river between Forts Jackson and St. Philip and the batteries on the river where the interior line of defense rested on its right and left banks, about four miles below the city. The guns were not sufficiently numerous in these batteries to inspire much confidence; they were nevertheless well served until the ammunition was exhausted, after which the garrisons withdrew, and made their way by different routes to join the forces withdrawn from New Orleans.

Under the supposition entertained by the generals nearest to the operations, the greatest danger to New Orleans was from above, not from below, the city; therefore, most of the troops had been sent from the city to Tennessee, and Captain Hollins, with the greater part of the river-fleet, had gone up to check the descent of the enemy's gunboats.

Batteries like those immediately below the city had been constructed where the interior line touched the river above, and armed to resist an attack from that direction. Doubtful as to the direction from which, and the manner in which, an attempt might be made to capture the city, such preparations as circumstances suggested were made against many supposable dangers by the many possible routes of approach. To defend the city from the land, against a bombardment by a powerful fleet in the river before it, had not been contemplated. All the defensive preparations were properly, I think, directed to the prevention of a near approach by the enemy. To have subjected the city to bombardment by a direct or plunging fire, as the surface of the river was then higher than the land, would have been exceptionally destructive. Had the city been filled with soldiers whose families had been sent to a place of safety, instead of being filled with women and children whose natural protectors were generally in the army and far away, the attempt might have been justified to line the levee with all the effective guns and open fire on the fleet, at the expense of whatever property might be destroyed before the enemy should be driven away. The case was the reverse of the hypothesis, and nothing could have been more unjust than to censure the commanding General for withdrawing a force large enough to induce a bombardment, but insufficient to repel it. His answer to the demand for the surrender showed clearly enough the motives by which he was influenced. His refusal enabled him to withdraw the troops and most of the public property, and to use them, with the ordnance and ordnance stores thus saved, in providing for the defense of Vicksburg, but especially it deprived the enemy of any pretext for bombarding the town and sacrificing the lives of the women and children. It appears that General Lovell called for ten thousand volunteers from the citizens, but failed to get them. There were many river-steamboats at the landing, and, if the volunteers called for were intended to man these boats and board the enemy's fleet before their land-forces could arrive, it can not be regarded as utterly impracticable. The report of General Butler shows that he worked his way through one of the bayous in rear of Fort St. Philip to the Mississippi River above the forts so as to put himself in communication with the fleet at the city, and to furnish Commodore Farragut with ammunition. From this it is to be inferred that the fleet was deficient in ammunition, and the fact would have rendered boarding from river-boats the more likely to succeed. In this connection it may be remembered that, during the war, John Taylor Wood, Colonel and A. D. C. to the President, who had been an officer of high repute in the "old Navy," did in open boats attack armed vessels, board and capture them, though found with nettings up, having been warned of the probability of such an attack.[57]

Many causes have been assigned for the fall of New Orleans. Two of them are of undeniable force: First, the failure to light up the channel; second, the want of an obstruction which would detain the fleet under fire of the forts. General Duncan's report and testimony justify the conclusion that to the thick veil of darkness the enemy was indebted for his ability to run past the forts.

The argument that the guns were not of sufficiently large caliber to stop the fleet is not convincing. If all the guns had been of the largest size, that would not have increased the accuracy but would have diminished the rapidity of the fire, and therefore in the same degree would have lessened the chances of hitting objects in the dark. Further, it appears that the forts always crippled or repulsed any vessels which came up in daylight.

The forts would have been better able to resist bombardment if they had been heavily plated with iron; but that would not have prevented the fleet from passing them as they did. Torpedoes might have been placed on the bar at the mouth of the river before the enemy got possession of it, and subsequently, if attached to buoys, they might have been used in the deep channel above. Many other things which were omitted might and probably would have been done had attention been earlier concentrated on the danger which at last proved fatal. If the volunteer river-defense fleet was ineffective, as alleged, because it was not subject to the orders of the naval commander, that was an evil without a remedy. The Governor of Louisiana had arranged with the projectors that they should not be subject to the naval commander, and the alternative of not accepting them with that condition was that they would not agree to convert their steamers into war-vessels. Unless, therefore, it can be shown that they were worse than none, their presence can not be properly enumerated among the causes of the failure.

The fall of New Orleans was a great disaster, over which there was general lamentation, mingled with no little indignation. The excited feeling demanded a victim, and conflicting testimony of many witnesses most nearly concerned made it convenient to select for censure those most removed and least active in their own justification. Thus the naval constructors of the Mississippi and the Secretary of the Navy became the special objects of attack. The selection of these had little of justice in it, and could not serve to relieve others of their responsibility, as did the old-time doom of the scapegoat. New Orleans had never been a ship-building port, and when the Messrs. Tift, the agents to build the iron-dad steamer Mississippi, arrived there, they had to prepare a ship-yard, procure lumber from a distance, have the foundries and rolling-mills adapted to such iron-work as could be done in the city, and contract elsewhere for the balance. They were ingenious, well informed in matters of ship-building, and were held in high esteem in Georgia and Florida, where they had long resided. They submitted a proposition to the Secretary of the Navy to build a vessel on a new model. The proposition was accepted after full examination of the plan proposed, the novelty of which made it necessary that they should have full control of the work of construction. To the embarrassments above mentioned were added interruptions by calling off the workmen occasionally for exercise and instruction as militiamen, the city being threatened by the enemy. From these causes, unexpected delay in the completion of the ship resulted, regret for which increased as her most formidable character was realized.

These constructors—the brothers Tift—hoped to gain much reputation by the ship which they designed, and, from this motive, agreed to give their full service and unremitted attention in its construction without compensation or other allowance than their current expenses. It would, therefore, on the face of it, seem to have been a most absurd suspicion that they willingly delayed the completion of the vessel, and at last wantonly destroyed it.

Mr. E. C. Murray, who was the contractor for building the Louisiana, in his testimony before a committee of the Confederate Congress, testified that he had been a practical ship-builder for twenty years and a contractor for the preceding eighteen years, having built about a hundred and twenty boats, steamers, and sailing-vessels. There was only a fence between his shipyard and that where the Mississippi was constructed. Of this latter vessel he said:

"I think the vessel was built in less time than any vessel of her tonnage, character, and requiring the same amount of work and materials, on this continent. That vessel required no less than two million feet of lumber, and, I suppose, about one thousand tons of iron, including the false works, blockways, etc. I do not think that amount of materials was ever put together on this continent within the time occupied in her construction. I know many of our naval vessels, requiring much less materials than were employed in the Mississippi, that took about six or twelve months in their construction. She was built with rapidity, and had at all times as many men at work upon her as could work to advantage—she had, in fact, many times more men at work upon her than could conveniently work. They worked on nights and Sundays upon her, as I did upon the Louisiana, at least for a large portion of the time."

The Secretary of the Navy knew both of the Tifts, but had no near personal relations or family connection with either, as was recklessly alleged.

He, in accepting their proposition, connected with it the detail of officers of the navy to supervise expenditures and aid in procuring materials. Assisted by the chief engineer and constructor of the navy, minute instructions were given as to the manner in which the work was to be conducted. As early as the 19th of September he sent twenty ship-carpenters from Richmond to New Orleans to aid in the construction of the Mississippi. On the 7th of October authority was given to have guns of heaviest caliber made in New Orleans for the ship. Frequent telegrams were sent in November, December, and January, showing great earnestness about the work on the ship. In February and March notice was given of the forwarding from Richmond of capstan and main-shaft, which could not be made in New Orleans. On March 22d the Secretary, by telegraph, directed the constructors to "strain every nerve to finish the ship," and added, "work day and night." April 5th he again wrote: "Spare neither men nor money to complete her at the earliest moment. Can not you hire night-gangs for triple wages?" April 10th the Secretary again says: "Enemy's boats have passed Island 10. Work day and night with all the force you can command to get the Mississippi ready. Spare neither men nor money." April 11th he asks, "When will you launch, and when will she be ready for action?" These inquiries indicate the prevalent opinion, at that time, that the danger to New Orleans was from the ironclad fleet above, and not the vessels at the mouth of the river; but the anxiety of the Secretary of the Navy and the efforts made by him were of a character applicable to either or both the sources of danger. Thus we find as early as the 24th of February, 1862, that he instructed Commander Mitchell to make all proper exertions to have guns and carriages ready for both the iron-clad vessels the Mississippi and the Louisiana. Reports having reached him that the work on the latter vessel was not pushed with sufficient energy, on the 15th of March he authorized Commander Mitchell to consult with General Lovell, and, if the contractors were not doing everything practicable to complete her at the earliest moment, that he should take her out of their hands, and, with the aid of General Lovell, go on to complete her himself. On the 5th of April, 1862, Secretary Mallory instructed Commander Sinclair, who had been assigned to the command of the Mississippi, to urge on by night and day the completion of the ship. In March, 1861, the Navy Department sent from Montgomery officers to New Orleans, with instructions to purchase steamers and fit them for war purposes. Officers were also sent to the North to purchase vessels suited to such uses, and in the ensuing May an agent was dispatched to Canada and another to Europe for like objects; and in April, 1861, contracts were made with foundries at Richmond and New Orleans to make guns for the defense of New Orleans. On the 8th of May, 1861, the Secretary of the Navy communicated at some length to the Committee on Naval Affairs of the Confederate Congress his views in favor of iron-clad vessels, arguing as sell for their efficiency as the economy in building them, believing that one such vessel could successfully engage a fleet of the wooden vessels which constituted the enemy's navy. His further view was that we could not hope to build wooden fleets equal to those with which the enemy were supplied. The committee, if it should be deemed expedient to construct an iron-clad ship, was urged to prompt action by the forcible declaration, "Not a moment should be lost."

Commander George Minor, Confederate States Navy, Chief of the Bureau of Ordnance, reported the number of guns sent by the Navy Department to New Orleans, between July 1, 1861, and the fall of the city, to have been one hundred and ninety-seven, and that before July twenty-three guns had been sent there from Norfolk, being a total of two hundred and twenty guns, of which forty-five were of large caliber, supplied by the Navy Department for the defense of New Orleans.

Very soon after the Government was removed to Richmond, the Secretary of the Navy, with the aid of Commander Brooke, designed a plan for converting the sunken frigate Merrimac into an iron-clad vessel. She became the famous Virginia, the brilliant career of which silenced all the criticisms which had been made upon the plan adopted. On May 20, 1861, the Secretary of the Navy instructed Captain Ingraham, Confederate States Navy, to ascertain the practicability of obtaining wrought-iron plates suited for ships' armor. After some disappointment and delay, the owners of the mills at Atlanta were induced to make the necessary changes in the machinery, and undertake the work. Efforts at other places in the West had been unsuccessful, and this was one of the difficulties which an inefficient department would not have overcome. The iron-clad gunboats Arkansas and Tennessee were commenced at Memphis, but the difficulty in obtaining mechanics so interfered with their construction, that the Secretary of the Navy was compelled, December 24, 1861, to write to General Polk, who was commanding at Columbus, Kentucky, asking that mechanics might be detached from his forces, so as to insure the early completion of the vessels. So promptly had the iron-clad boats been put under contract, that the arrangements had all been made in anticipation of the appropriation, and the contract was signed "on the very day the law was passed."

On December 25, 1861, Lieutenant Isaac N. Brown, Confederate States Navy, a gallant and competent officer, well and favorably known in his subsequent service as commander of the ram Arkansas, was sent to Nashville. Information had been received that four river-boats were there, and for sale, which were suited for river defense. Lieutenant Brown was instructed to purchase such as should be adaptable to the required service, "and to proceed forthwith with the necessary alteration and armament."

In the latter part of 1861, it having been found impossible with the means in Richmond and Norfolk to answer the requisitions for ordnance and ordnance stores required for the naval defenses of the Mississippi, a laboratory was established in New Orleans, and authority given for the casting of heavy cannon, construction of gun-carriages, and the manufacture of projectiles and ordnance equipments of all kinds. On December 12, 1861, the Secretary of the Navy submitted an estimate for an appropriation to meet the expenses incurred "for ordnance and ordnance stores for the defense of the Mississippi River."

Secretary Mallory, in answer to inquiries of a joint committee of
Congress, in 1863, replied that he had sent a telegram to Captain
Whittle, April 17, 1862, as follows:

    "Is the boom, or raft, below the forts in order to resist the enemy,
    or has any part of it given way? State condition."

On the next day the following answer was sent:

    "I hear the raft below the forts is not in best condition; they are
    strengthening it by additional lines. I have furnished anchors."

To further inquiry about the raft by the Committee, the Secretary answered:

"The commanding General at New Orleans had exclusive charge of the construction of the raft, or obstruction, in question, and his correspondence with the War Department induced confidence in the security of New Orleans from the enemy. I was aware that this raft had been injured, but did not doubt that the commanding General would renew it, and place an effectual barrier across the river, and I was anxious that the navy should afford all possible aid. . . . A large number of anchors were sent to New Orleans from Norfolk for the raft."

Though much more might be added, it is hoped that what has been given above will sufficiently attest the zeal and capacity of the Secretary of the Navy, and his anxiety, in particular, to protect the city of New Orleans, whether assailed by fleets descending or ascending the river.

Having thus reviewed at length the events, immediate and remote, which were connected with the great catastrophe, the fall of our chief commercial city, and the destruction of the naval vessels on which our hopes most rested for the protection of the lower Mississippi and the harbors of the Gulf, the narrative is resumed of affairs at the city of New Orleans.

[Footnote 57: Captain Wood had a number of light row-boats built, holding each about twenty men. They were fitted with cradles to wagons, and could be quickly moved to any point by road or rail. He writes: "In August, 1863, I left Richmond with four boats and sixty men for the Rappahannock, to look after one or two gunboats that had been operating in that river. Finding always two cruising together, I determined to attempt the capture of both at once. About midnight, with muffled oars, we pulled for them at anchor near the mouth of the river. They discovered us two hundred yards off. We dashed alongside, cut our way through and over the boarder nettings with the old navy cutlass, gained the deck, and, after a sharp, short fight, drove the enemy below. The prizes proved to be the gunboats Satellite and Reliance, two guns each. Landing the prisoners, we cruised for two days in the Chesapeake Bay. A number of vessels were captured and destroyed."]


    Naval Affairs (continued).—Farragut demands the Surrender of New
    Orleans.—Reply of the Mayor.—United States Flag hoisted.—Advent
    of General Butler.—Barbarities.—Antecedents of the People.—
    Galveston.—Its Surrender demanded.—The Reply.—Another visit of
    the Enemy's Fleet.—The Port occupied.—Appointment of General
    Magruder.—Recapture of the Port.—Capture of the Harriet Lane.—
    Report of General Magruder.—Position and Importance of Sabine
    Pass.—Fleet of the Enemy.—Repulse by Forty-four Irishmen.—
    Vessels captured.—Naval Destitution of the Confederacy at first.—
    Terror of Gunboats on the Western Rivers.—Their Capture.—The most
    Illustrious Example.—The Indianola.—Her Capture.—The Ram
    Arkansas.—Descent of the Yazoo River.—Report of her Commander.—
    Runs through the Enemy's Fleet.—Description of the Vessel.—Attack
    on Baton Rouge.—Address of General Breckinridge.—Burning of the

Sad though the memory of the fall of New Orleans must be, the heroism, the fortitude, and the patriotic self-sacrifice exhibited in the eventful struggle at the forts must ever remain the source of pride and of such consolation as misfortune gathers from the remembrance of duties well performed.

After the troops had been withdrawn and the city restored to the administration of the civil authorities, Commodore Farragut, on April 26, 1862, addressed the Mayor, repeating his demand for the surrender of the city. In his letter he said: "It is not within the province of a naval officer to assume the duties of a military commandant," and added, "The rights of persons and property shall be secured." He proceeded then to demand "that the emblem of sovereignty of the United States be hoisted over the City Hall, Mint, and Custom-House by meridian this day. All flags and other emblems of sovereignty other than those of the United States must be removed from all the public buildings by that hour." To this the Mayor replied, and the following extracts convey the general purport of his letter:

"The city is without the means of defense, and is utterly destitute of the force and material that might enable it to resist an overpowering armament displayed in sight of it. . . . To surrender such a place were an idle and unmeaning ceremony. . . . As to hoisting any flag other than the flag of our own adoption and allegiance, let me say to you that the man lives not in our midst whose hand and heart would not be paralyzed at the mere thought of such an act; nor could I find in my entire constituency so wretched and desperate a renegade as would dare to profane with his hand the sacred emblem of our aspirations. . . . Peace and order may be preserved without resort to measures which I could not at this moment prevent. Your occupying the city does not transfer allegiance from the government of their choice to one which they have deliberately repudiated, and they yield the obedience which the conqueror is entitled to extort from the conquered.


"JOHN T. MONROE, Mayor."

On the 29th of April Admiral Farragut adopted the alternative presented by the answer of the Mayor, and sent a detachment of marines to hoist the United States flag over the Custom-House, and to pull down the Confederate flag from the staff on the City Hall. An officer and some marines remained at the Custom-House to guard the United States flag hoisted over it until the land-forces under General Butler arrived. On the 1st of May General Butler took possession of the defenseless City; then followed the reign of terror, pillage, and a long train of infamies, too disgraceful to be remembered without a sense of shame by any one who is proud of the name American.

Had the population of New Orleans been vagrant and riotous, the harsh measures adopted might have been excused, though nothing could have justified the barbarities which were practiced; but, notable as the city had always been for freedom from tumult, and occupied as it then was mainly by women and children, nothing can extenuate the wanton insults and outrages heaped upon them. That those not informed of the character of the citizens may the better comprehend it, a brief reference is made to its history.

When Canada, then a French colony, was conquered by Great Britain, many of the inhabitants of greatest influence and highest cultivation, in a spirit of loyalty to their flag, migrated to the wilds of Louisiana. Some of them established themselves in and about New Orleans, and their numerous descendants formed, down to a late period, the controlling element in the body-politic. Even after they had ceased, because of large immigration, to control in the commercial and political affairs of the city, their social standard was still the rule. No people were more characterized by refinement, courtesy, and chivalry. Of their keen susceptibility the Mayor informed Commodore Farragut in his correspondence with that officer.

When the needy barbarians of the upper plains of Asia descended upon the classic fields of Italy, their atrocities were such as shocked the common-sense of humanity; but, if any one shall inquire minutely into the conduct of Butler and his followers at New Orleans, he will find there a history yet more revolting.

Soon thereafter, on May 17, 1862, Captain Eagle, United States Navy, commanding the naval forces before Galveston, summoned it to surrender, "to prevent the effusion of blood and the destruction of property which would result from the bombardment of the town," adding that the land and naval forces would appear in a few days. The reply was that, "when the land and naval forces made their appearance, the demand would be answered." The harbor and town of Galveston were not prepared to resist a bombardment, and, under the advice of General Herbert, the citizens remained quiet, resolved, when the enemy should attempt to penetrate the interior, to resist his march at every point. This condition remained without any material change until the 8th of the following October, when Commander Renshaw with a fleet of gunboats, consisting of the Westfield, Harriet Lane, Owasco, Clifton, and some transports, approached so near the city as to command it with his guns. Upon a signal, the Mayor pro tem, came off to the flag-ship and informed Commander Renshaw that the military and civil authorities had withdrawn from the town, and that he had been appointed by a meeting of citizens to act as mayor, and had come for the purpose of learning the intentions of the naval commander. In reply he was informed that there was no purpose to interfere with the municipal affairs of the city; that he did not intend to occupy it before the arrival of a military commander, but that he intended to hoist the United States flag upon the public buildings, and claim that it should be respected. The acting Mayor informed him that persons over whom he had no control might take down the flag, and he could not guarantee that it should be respected. Commander Renshaw replied that, to avoid any difficulty like that which occurred in New Orleans, he would send with the flag a sufficient force to protect it, and would not keep the flag flying for more than a quarter or half an hour.

The vessels of the fleet were assigned to positions commanding the town and the bridge which connected the island with the mainland, and a battalion of Massachusetts volunteers was posted on one of the wharves.

Late in 1862 General John B. Magruder, a skillful and knightly soldier, who had at an earlier period of the year rendered distinguished service by his defense of the peninsula between the James and York Rivers, Virginia, was assigned to the command of the Department of Texas. On his arrival, he found the enemy in possession of the principal port, Galveston, and other points upon the coast. He promptly collected the scattered arms and field artillery, had a couple of ordinary high-pressure steamboats used in the transportation of cotton on Buffalo Bayou protected with cotton-bales piled from the main deck to and above the hurricane-roof, and these, under the command of Captain Leon Smith, of the Texas Navy, in coöperation with the volunteers, were relied upon to recapture the harbor and island of Galveston. Between night and morning on the 1st of January, 1863, the land-forces entered the town, and the steamboats came into the bay, manned by Texas cavalry and volunteer artillery. The field artillery was ran down to the shore, and opened fire upon the boats. The battalion of the enemy having torn up the plank of the wharf, our infantry could only approach them by wading through the water, and climbing upon the wharf. The two steamboats attacked the Harriet Lane, the gunboat lying farthest up the bay. They were both so frail in their construction that their only chance was to close and board. One of them was soon disabled by collision with the strong vessel, and in a sinking condition ran into shoal water. The other closed with the Harriet Lane, boarded and captured the vessel. The flag-ship Westfield got aground and could not be got off, though assisted by one of the fleet for that purpose. General Magruder then sent a demand that the enemy's vessels should surrender, except one, on which the crews of all should leave the harbor, giving until ten o'clock for compliance with his demand, to enforce which he put a crew on the Harriet Lane, then the most efficient vessel afloat of the enemy's fleet, and, while waiting for an answer, ceased firing. This demand was communicated by a boat from the Harriet Lane to the commander on the Clifton, who said that he was not the commander of the fleet, and would communicate the proposal to the flag-officer on the Westfield. Flags of truce were then flying on the enemy's vessels, as well as on shore. Commander Renshaw refused to accede to the proposition, directing the commander of the Clifton to get all the vessels, including the Corypheus and Sachem, which had recently joined, out of port as soon as possible, and that he would blow up the Westfield, and leave on the transports lying near him with his officers and crew. In attempting to execute this purpose, Commander Renshaw and ten or fifteen others perished soon after leaving the ship, in consequence of the explosion being premature. The General commanding made the following preliminary report:


"This morning, the 1st January, at three o'clock, I attacked the enemy's fleet and garrison at this place, captured the latter and the steamer Harriet Lane, two barges, and a schooner. The rest, some four or five, escaped ignominiously under cover of a flag of truce. I have about six hundred prisoners and a large quantity of valuable stores, arms, etc. The Harriet Lane is very little injured. She was carried by boarders from two high-pressure cotton-steamers, manned by Texas cavalry and artillery. The line troops were gallantly commanded by Colonel Green, of Sibley's brigade, and the ships and artillery by Major Leon Smith, to whose indomitable energy and heroic daring the country is indebted for the successful execution of a plan which I had considered for the destruction of the enemy's fleet. Colonel Bagby, of Sibley's brigade, also commanded the volunteers from his regiment for the naval expedition, in which every officer and every man won for himself imperishable renown.


"Major General."

The conduct of Commander Renshaw toward the inhabitants of Galveston had been marked by moderation and propriety, and the closing act of his life was one of manly courage and fidelity to the flag he bore.

Commander Wainright and Lieutenant-commanding Lea, who fell valiantly defending their ship, were buried in the cemetery with the honors of war: thus was evinced that instinctive respect which true warriors always feel for their peers. The surviving officers were paroled.

It would be a pleasing task, if space allowed, to notice the many instances of gallantry in this affair, as daring as they were novel, but want of space compels me to refer the reader to the full accounts which have been published of the "cavalry charge upon a naval fleet."

The capture of the enemy's fleet in Galveston Harbor, by means so novel as to excite surprise as well as grateful admiration, was followed by another victory on the coast of Texas, under circumstances so remarkable as properly to be considered marvelous. To those familiar with the events of that time and section, it is hardly necessary to say that I refer to the battle of Sabine Pass.

The strategic importance to the enemy of the possession of Sabine River caused the organization of a large expedition of land and naval forces to enter and ascend the river. If successful, it gave the enemy short lines for operation against the interior of Texas, and relieved them of the discomfiture resulting from their expulsion from Galveston Harbor.

The fleet of the enemy numbered twenty-three vessels. The forces were estimated to be ten thousand men. No adequate provision had been made to resist such a force, and, under the circumstances, none might have been promptly made on which reliance could have been reasonably placed. A few miles above the entrance into the Sabine River, a small earthwork had been constructed, garrisoned at the time of the action by forty-two men and two lieutenants, with an armament of six guns. The officers and men were all Irishmen, and the company was called the "Davis Guards." The captain, F. H. Odlum, was temporarily absent, so that the command devolved upon Lieutenant E. W. Dowling. Wishing to perpetuate the history of an affair, in which I believe the brave garrison did more than an equal force had ever elsewhere performed, I asked General Magruder, when I met him after the war, to write out a full account of the event; he agreed to do so, but died not long after I saw him, and before complying with my request. From the publications of the day I have obtained the main facts, as they were then printed in the Texas newspapers, and, being unwilling to summarize the reports, give them at length.

Captain F. H. Odlum's Official Report.


"September 9, 1863.

"Captain A. N. MILLS, Assistant Adjutant-General.

"SIR: I have the honor to report that we had an engagement with the enemy yesterday and gained a handsome victory. We captured two of their gunboats, crippled a third, and drove the rest out of the Pass. We took eighteen fine guns, a quantity of smaller arms, ammunition and stores, killed about fifty, wounded several, and took one hundred and fifty prisoners, without the loss or injury of any one on our side or serious damage to the fort.

"Your most obedient servant,

"F. H. ODLUM, Captain, commanding Sabine Pass."

Commodore Leon Smith's Official Report.

"Captain E. P. TURNER, Assistant Adjutant-General.

"SIR: After telegraphing the Major-General before leaving Beaumont, I took a horse and proceeded with all haste to Sabine Pass, from which direction I could distinctly hear a heavy firing. Arriving at the Pass at 3 P.M., I found the enemy off and inside the bar, with nineteen gunboats and steamships and other ships of war, carrying, as well as I could judge, fifteen thousand men. I proceeded with Captain Odlum to the fort, and found Lieutenant Dowling and Lieutenant N. H. Smith, of the engineer corps, with forty-two men, defending the fort. Until 3 P.M. our men did not open on the enemy, as the range was too distant. The officers of the fort coolly held their fire until the enemy had approached near enough to reach them. But, when the enemy arrived within good range, our batteries were opened, and gallantly replied to a galling and most terrific fire from the enemy. As I entered the fort, the gunboats Clifton, Arizona, Sachem, and Granite State, with several others, came boldly up to within one thousand yards, and opened their batteries, which were gallantly and effectively replied to by the Davis Guards. For one hour and thirty minutes a most terrific bombardment of grape, canister, and shell was directed against our heroic and devoted little band within the fort. The shot struck in every direction, but, thanks be to God! not one of the noble Davis Guards was hurt. Too much credit can not be awarded Lieutenant Dowling, who displayed the utmost heroism in the discharge of the duty assigned him and the defenders of the fort. God bless the Davis Guards, one and all! The honor of the country was in their hands, and nobly they sustained it. Every man stood at his post, regardless of the murderous fire that was poured upon them from every direction. The result of the battle, which lasted from 3.30 to 5 P.M., was the capturing of the Clifton and Sachem, eighteen heavy guns, one hundred and fifty prisoners, and the killing and wounding of fifty men, and driving outside the bar the enemy's fleet, comprising twenty-three vessels in all. I have the honor to be your obedient servant,


"Commanding Marine Department of Texas."

    TEXAS, September 9, 1863.


"Another glorious victory has been won by the heroism of Texans. The enemy, confident of overpowering the little garrison at Sabine Pass, boldly advanced to the work of capture. After a sharp contest he was entirely defeated, one gunboat hurrying off in a crippled condition, while two others, the Clifton and Sachem, with their armaments and crews, including the commander of the fleet, surrendered to the gallant defenders of the fort. The loss of the enemy has been heavy, while not a man on our side has been killed or wounded. Though the enemy has been repulsed in his naval attacks, his land-forces, reported as ten thousand strong, are still off the coast waiting an opportunity to land.

"The Major-General calls on every man able to bear arms to bring his guns or arms, no matter of what kind, and be prepared to make a sturdy resistance to the foe.

"Major-General J. B. MAGRUDER.

"EDMUND P. TURNER, Assistant Adjutant-General."

The "Daily Post," Houston, Texas, of August 22, 1880, has the following:

    "A few days after the battle each man that participated in the fight
    was presented with a silver medal inscribed as follows: On one side
    'D. G.,' for the Davis Guards, and on the reverse Side, 'Sabine Pass,
    September 8, 1863.'

    "Captain Odlum and Lieutenant R. W. Dowling have gone to that bourn
    whence no traveler returns, and but few members of the heroic band
    are in the land of the living, and those few reside in the city of
    Houston, and often meet together, and talk about the battle in which
    they participated on the memorable 8th of September, 1863.

    "The following are the names of the company who manned the guns in
    Fort Grigsby, and to whom the credit is due for the glorious victory:

    "Lieutenants R. W. Dowling and N. H. Smith; Privates Timothy
    McDonough, Thomas Dougherty, David Fitzgerald, Michael Monahan, John
    Hassett, John McKeefer, Jack W. White, Patrick McDonnell, William
    Gleason, Michael Carr, Thomas Hagerty, Timothy Huggins, Alexander
    McCabe, James Flemming, Patrick Fitzgerald, Thomas McKernon, Edward
    Pritchard, Charles Rheins, Timothy Hurley, John McGrath, Matthew
    Walshe, Patrick Sullivan, Michael Sullivan, Thomas Sullivan, Patrick
    Clare, John Hennessey, Hugh Deagan, Maurice Powers, Abner Carter,
    Daniel McMurray, Patrick Malone, James Corcoran, Patrick Abbott, John
    McNealis, Michael Egan, Daniel Donovan, John Wesley, John Anderson,
    John Flood, Peter O'Hare, Michael Delaney, Terence Mulhern."

The inquiry may naturally arise how this small, number of men could take charge of so large a body of prisoners. This required that to their valor they should add stratagem. A few men were placed on the parapet as sentinels, the rest were marched out as a guard to receive the prisoners and their arms. Thus was concealed the fact that the fort was empty. The report of the guns bombarding the fort had been heard, and soon after the close of the battle reinforcements arrived, which relieved the little garrison from its embarrassment.

Official reports of officers in the assaulting column, as published in the "Rebellion Record," vol. vii, page 425, et seq., refer to another fort, and steamers in the river, coöperating in the defense of Fort Grigsby. The success of the single company which garrisoned the earthwork is without parallel in ancient or modern war. It was marvelous; but it is incredible—more than marvelous—that another garrison in another fort, with cruising steamers, aided in checking the advance of the enemy, yet silently permitted the forty-two men and two officers of Fort Grigsby to receive all the credit for the victory which was won. If this be supposable, how is it possible that Captain Odlum, Commander Smith, General Magruder, and Lieutenant Dowling, who had been advised to abandon the work, and had consulted their men as to their willingness to defend it, should nowhere have mentioned the putative fort and coöperating steamers?

The names of the forty-four must go down to posterity, unshorn of the honor which their contemporaries admiringly accorded.

At the commencement of the war the Confederacy was not only without a navy, all the naval vessels possessed by the States having been, as explained elsewhere, left in the hands of our enemies; but worse than this was the fact that ship-building had been almost exclusively done in the Northern States, so that we had no means of acquiring equality in naval power. The numerous deep and wide rivers traversing the Southern States gave a favorable field for the operation of gunboats suited to such circumstances. The enemy rapidly increased their supply of these by building on the Western waters, as well as elsewhere, and converting existing vessels into iron-dad gunboats. The intrepidity and devotion of our people met the necessity by new expedients and extraordinary daring. This was especially seen in the operations of western Louisiana, where numerous bayous and rivers, with difficult land-routes, gave an advantage to the enemy which might well have paralyzed anything less than the most resolute will.

In the earlier period of the war, the gunboats had inspired a terror which their performances never justified. There was a prevailing opinion that they could not be stopped by land-batteries, or resisted on water by anything else than vessels of their own class. Against the first opinion General Richard Taylor, commanding in Louisiana, south of Red River, stoutly contended, and maintained his opinion by the repulse and capture of some of the enemy's vessels by land-batteries having guns of rather light caliber.

One by one successful conflicts between river-boats and gunboats impaired the estimate which had been put upon the latter. The most illustrious example of this was the attack and capture of the Indianola, a heavy ironclad, with two eleven-inch guns forward, and two nine-inch aft, all in iron casemates. She had passed the batteries at Vicksburg, and was in the section of the river between Vicksburg and Port Hudson, which, in February, 1863, was the only gate of communication which the Confederacy had between the east and west sides of the Mississippi. The importance of keeping open this communication, always great, became vital from the necessity of drawing commissary's stores from the trans-Mississippi.

Major Brent, of General Taylor's staff, proposed, with the tow-boat Webb, which had been furnished as a ram, and the Queen of the West, which had been four or five days before captured by the land-battery at Fort De Russy, to go to the Mississippi and attack the Indianola. On the 19th of February the expedition started, though mechanics were still working upon the needed repairs of the Queen of the West. The service was so hazardous that volunteers only formed the crews, but of these more offered than were wanted. On the 24th, while ascending the Mississippi, Major Brent learned, when about sixty miles below Vicksburg, that the Indianola was a short distance ahead, with a coal-barge lashed on either side. He determined to attack in the night, being assured that, if struck by a shell from one of the eleven- or nine-inch guns, either of his boats would be destroyed. At 10 P.M. the Queen, followed by the Webb, was driven at full speed directly upon the Indianola. The momentum of the Queen was so great as to cut through the coal-barge, and indent the iron plates of the Indianola. As the Queen backed out, the Webb dashed in at full speed, and tore away the remaining coal-barge. Both the forward guns fired at the Webb, but missed her. Again the Queen struck the Indianola, abaft the paddle-box, crushing her frame and loosening some plates of armor, but received the fire of the guns from the rear casemates. One shot carried away a dozen bales of cotton on the right side; the other, a shell, entered the forward port-hole and exploded, killing six men and disabling two field-pieces. Again the Webb followed the Queen, struck near the same spot, pushing aside the iron plates and crushing timbers. Voices from the Indianola announced the surrender, and that she was sinking. The river here sweeps the western shore, and there was deep water up to the bank. General Grant's army was on the west side of the river, and, for either or both of these reasons. Major Brent towed the Indianola to the opposite side, where she sank on a bar, her gun-deck above water. Both boats were much shattered in the conflict, and Major Brent returned to the Red River to repair them. A tender accompanied the Queen and the Webb, and a frail river-boat without protection for her boilers, which was met on the river, turned back and followed them, but, like the tender, could be of no service in the battle. For these particulars I am indebted to General Richard Taylor's book, "Destruction and Reconstruction," pages 123-125.

The ram Arkansas, which has been previously noticed as being under construction at Memphis, was removed before she was finished to the Yazoo River, events on the river above having rendered this necessary for her security. After she was supposed to be ready for service, Commander Brown, then as previously in charge of her, went down the Yazoo to enter the Mississippi and proceed to Vicksburg. The enemy's fleet of some twelve or thirteen rams, gunboats, and sloops of war, were in the river above Vicksburg, and below the point where the Yazoo enters the Mississippi. Anticipating the descent of the Arkansas, a detachment had been made from this fleet to prevent her exit. The annexed letter of Commander Brown describes what occurred in the Yazoo River:

"STEAMER ARKANSAS, July 15, 1862.

"GENERAL: The Benton, or whatever ironclad we disabled, was left with colors down, evidently aground to prevent sinking, about one mile and a half above the mouth of the Yazoo (in Old River), on the right-hand bank, or bank across from Vicksburg.

"I wish it to be remembered that we whipped this vessel, made it run out of the fight and haul down colors, with two less guns than they had; and at the same time fought two rams, which were firing at us with great guns and small-arms; this, too, with our miscellaneous crew, who had never, for the most part, been on board a ship, or at big guns.

"I am, General, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


"Lieutenant commanding.

    "To Brigadier-General M. L. SMITH, commanding defenses at

When entering the Mississippi the fleet of the enemy was found disposed as a phalanx, but the heroic commander of the Arkansas moved directly against it; and, though in passing through this formidable array he was exposed to the broadsides of the whole fleet, the vessel received no other injury than from one eleven-inch shot which entered the gun-room, and the perforation in many places of her smoke-stack. The casualties to the crew were five killed, four wounded—among the latter was the gallant commander. General Van Dorn, commanding the department, in a dispatch from Vicksburg, July 15th, states the number of the enemy's vessels above Vicksburg, pays a high compliment to the officers and men, and adds:

"All the enemy's transports and all the vessels of war of the lower fleet (i. e., the fleet just below Vicksburg), except a sloop of war, have got up steam, and are off to escape from the Arkansas."

A vessel inspiring such dread is entitled to a special description. She was an iron-clad steamer, one hundred feet in her length, her armament ten Parrott guns, and her crew one hundred men, who had volunteered from the land-forces for the desperate service proposed. Her commander had been from his youth in the navy of the United States, and his capacity was such as could well supplement whatever was wanted of naval knowledge in his crew. The care and skill with which the vessel had been constructed were tested and proved under fire. Had her engines been equal to the hull and armor of the vessel, it is difficult to estimate the value of the service she might have performed. At this period the enemy occupied Baton Rouge, with gunboats lying in front of it to coöperate with the troops in the town. The importance of holding a section of the Mississippi, so as to keep free communication between the eastern and western portions of the Confederacy, has been heretofore noticed. To this end it was deemed needful to recover the possession of Baton Rouge, and it was decided to make a land-attack in coöperation with the Arkansas, to be sent down against the enemy's fleet.

Major-General J. C. Breckinridge was assigned to the command of the land-forces. This distinguished citizen and alike distinguished soldier, surmounting difficulties which would have discouraged a less resolute spirit, approached Baton Rouge, and moved to the attack at the time indicated for the arrival of the Arkansas. In his address to the officers and soldiers of his command, after the battle, viz., on August 6, 1862, he compliments the troops on the fortitude with which they had borne a severe march, on the manner in which they attacked the enemy, superior in numbers and admirably posted, drove him from his positions, taking his camps, and forcing him to seek protection under cover of the guns of his fleet. Major-General Breckinridge attributes his failure to achieve entire success to the inability of the Arkansas to coöperate with his forces, and adds:

"You have given the enemy a severe and salutary lesson, and now those who so lately were ravaging and plundering this region do not care to extend their pickets beyond the sight of their fleet."

The Arkansas in descending the river moved leisurely, having ample time to meet her appointment; but, when about fifteen miles above Baton Rouge, her starboard engine broke down. Repairs were immediately commenced, and, by 8 A.M. on the 5th of August, were partially completed. General Breckinridge had commenced the attack at four o'clock, and the Arkansas, though not in condition to engage the enemy, moved on, and, when in sight of Baton Rouge, her starboard engine again broke down, and the vessel was run ashore. The work of repair was resumed, and next morning the Federal fleet was seen coming up. The Arkansas was moored head down-stream and cleared for action. The Essex approached and opened fire; at that moment the engineers reported the engines able to work half a day. The lines were cut, and the Arkansas started for the Essex, when the other— the larboard—engine suddenly stopped, and the vessel was again secured to the shore stern-down. The Essex now valiantly approached, pouring a hot fire into her disabled antagonist. Lieutenant Stevens, then commanding the Arkansas, ordered the crew ashore, fired the vessel, and, with her flag flying, turned her adrift—a sacrificial offering to the cause she had served so valiantly in her brief but brilliant career. Lieutenant Reed, of the ram Arkansas, in his published account of the affair, states, "After all hands were ashore, the Essex fired upon the disabled vessel most furiously."


    Naval Affairs (continued).—Necessity of a Navy.—Raphael Semmes.—
    The Sumter.—Difficulties in creating a Navy.—The Sumter at Sea.—
    Alarm.—Her Captures.—James D. Bullock.—Laird's Speech in the
    House of Commons.—The Alabama.—Semmes takes Command.—The Vessel
    and Crew.—Goes to Sea.—Banks's Expedition.—Magruder at
    Galveston.—The Steamer Hattaras Sunk.—The Alabama not a Pirate.—
    An Aspinwall Steamer ransomed.—Other Captures.—Prizes burned.—
    At Cherbourg.—Fight with the Kearsarge.—Rescue of the Men.—
    Demand of the United States Government for the Surrender of the
    Drowning Men.—Reply of the British Government.—Sailing of the
    Oreto.—Detained at Nassau.—Captain Maffit.—The Ship Half
    Equipped.—Arrives at Mobile.—Runs the Blockade.—Her Cruise.—
    Capture and Cruise of the Clarence.—The Captures of the Florida.—
    Captain C. M. Morris.—The Florida at Bahia.—Seized by the
    Wachusett.—Brought to Virginia and sunk.—Correspondence.—The
    Georgia.—Cruises and Captures.—The Shenandoah.—Cruises and
    Captures.—The Atlanta.—The Tallahassee.—The Edith.

To maintain the position assumed by the Confederate States as a separate power among the nations, it was obviously necessary to have a navy, not only for the defense of their coast, but also for the protection of their commerce. These States, after their secession from the Union, were in that regard in a destitute condition, similar to that of the United States after their Declaration of Independence.

It has been shown that among the first acts of the Confederate Administration was the effort to buy ships which could be used for naval purposes. The policy of the United States Government being to shut up our commerce rather than protect their own, induced the wholesale purchase of the vessels found in the Northern ports—not only such as could be made fit for cruisers, but also any which would serve even for blockading purposes. There was little shipping of any kind in the Southern ports, and to that scanty supply we were, for the time, restricted.

A previous reference has been made to the Sumter, Commander Raphael Semmes, but a more extended notice is considered due. Educated in the naval service of the United States, Raphael Semmes had attained the rank of commander, and was distinguished for his studious habits and varied acquirements. When Alabama passed her ordinance of secession, he was on duty at Washington as a member of the Lighthouse Board; he promptly tendered his resignation, and, at the organization of the Confederate Government, repaired to Montgomery and tendered his services to it. The efforts which had been made to obtain steamers suited to cruising against the enemy's commerce had been quite unsuccessful, none being found which the naval officers charged with their selection regarded fit for the service. One of the reports described a small propeller-steamer of five hundred tons burden, sea-going, low-pressure engine, sound, and capable of being so strengthened as to carry an ordinary battery of four or five guns; speed between nine and ten knots, but the board condemned her because she could carry but five days' fuel, and had no accommodations for the crew.

The Secretary of the Navy showed this to Commander Semmes, who said: "Give me that ship; I think I can make her answer the purpose." She was to be christened the Sumter, in commemoration of our first victory, and had the honor of being the first ship of war commissioned by the Confederate States, and the first to display the Stars and Bars of the Confederacy on the high-seas. The Sumter was at New Orleans, to which place Commander Semmes repaired; and, as forcibly presenting the difficulties under which we labored in all attempts to create a navy, I will quote from his memoirs the account of his effort to get the Sumter ready for sea:

"I now took my ship actively in hand and set gangs of mechanics at work to remove her upper cabins and other top hamper, preparatory to making the necessary alterations. These latter were considerable, and I soon found that I had a tedious job on my hands. It was no longer the case, as it had been in former years, when I had had occasion to fit out a ship, that I could go into a navy-yard, with well-provided workshops and skilled workmen, ready with all the requisite materials at hand to execute my orders. Everything had to be improvised, from the manufacture of a water-tank to the kids and cans of the berth-deck messes, and from a gun-carriage to a friction-primer. . . . Two long, tedious months were consumed in making alterations and additions. My battery was to consist of an eight-inch-shell gun, to be pivoted amidships, and of four light thirty-two-pounders of thirteen hundred weight each, in broadside."

On the 3d of June, 1861, the Sumter was formally put in commission, and a muster-roll of the officers and men transmitted to the Navy Department. On the 18th of June she left New Orleans and steamed down and anchored near the mouth of the river. While lying at the head of the passes, the commander reported a blockading squadron outside, of three ships at Passe a l'Outre, and one at the Southwest Pass. The Brooklyn, at Passe a l'Outre, was not only a powerful vessel, but she had greater speed than the Sumter. The Powhatan's heavy armament made it very hazardous to pass her in daylight, and the absence of buoys and lights made it next to impossible to keep the channel in darkness. The Sumter, therefore, had been compelled to lie at the head of the passes and watch for some opportunity in the absence of either the Brooklyn or the Powhatan to get to sea. Fortunately, neither of these vessels came up to the head of the passes, where, there being but a single channel, it would have been easy to prevent the exit of the Sumter.

On the 30th of June, one bright morning, a boatman reported that the Brooklyn had gone off in chase of a sail. Immediately the Sumter was got under way, when it was soon discovered that the Brooklyn was returning, and that the two vessels were about equally distant from the bar. By steady courage and rare seamanship the Sumter escaped from her more swift pursuer, and entered on her career of cutting the enemy's sinews of war by destroying his commerce.

Numerous armed vessels of the enemy were hovering on our coast, yet this one little cruiser created a general alarm, and, though a regularly commissioned vessel of the Confederacy, was habitually denounced as a "pirate," and the many threats to destroy her served only to verify the adage that the threatened live long.

During her cruise up to January 17, 1862, she captured three ships, five brigs, six barks, and three schooners, but the property destroyed formed a very small part of the damage done to the enemy's commerce. Her appearance on the seas created such alarm that Northern ships were, to a large extent, put under foreign flags, and the carrying-trade, in which the United States stood second only to Great Britain, passed rapidly into other hands. The Sumter, while doing all this mischief, was nearly self-sustaining, her running expenses to the Confederate Government being but twenty-eight thousand dollars when, at the close of 1861, she arrived at Gibraltar. Not being able to obtain coal, she remained there until sold.

Captain James D. Bullock, an officer of the old navy, of high ability as a seaman, and of an integrity which stood the test under which a less stern character might have given way, was our naval agent at Liverpool. In his office he disbursed millions, and, when there was no one to whom he could be required to render an account, paid out the last shilling in his hands, and confronted poverty without prospect of other reward than that which he might find id a clear conscience. He contracted with the Messrs. Laird, of Birkenhead, to build a strong steam merchant-ship—the same which was afterward christened "The Alabama" when, in a foreign port, she had received her armament and crew. So much of puerile denunciation has been directed against the builder and the ship, which, in the virulent language of the day, our enemies denominated a "pirate," that the case claims at my hands a somewhat extended notice.

The senior Mr. Laird was a member of the British Parliament, and, because of the complaints made by the United States Government, and the abuse heaped upon him by the Northern newspapers, he made a speech in the House of Commons, in which he stated that, in 1861, he was applied to to build vessels for the Northern Government, first, by personal application, and subsequently by a letter from Washington, asking him, on the part of the United States Navy Department, to give the terms on which he would build an iron-plated ship, "to be finished complete, with guns and everything appertaining." Mr. Laird continued: "On the 14th of August I received another letter from the same gentleman, from which the following is an extract: 'I have this morning a note from the Assistant-Secretary of the Navy, in which he says, "I hope your friends will tender for the two iron-plated steamers."'" Mr. Laird then said that, while he would not give the name of his correspondent, who was a gentleman of the highest respectability, he was willing, in confidence, to submit the original letters to the Speaker of the House or the first Minister of the Crown; that, as "the American Government is making so much work about other parties whom they charge with violating or evading the law, when in reality they have not done so, I think it only right to state these facts."

Those who have listened with credulity to the abuse of the Confederate Government, as well as that of Great Britain, the one for contracting for the building of the Alabama and the other for permitting her to leave a British port, will thus see how little of sincerity there was in the complaints of the United States Government. For more than a generation the British people have been the great ship-builders of the world, and it is a matter of surprise that they should have given respectful consideration to charges of a breach of neutrality because they allowed a merchantman to be built in one of their ports and to leave it without any armament or crew, which could have enabled it, in that condition, to make war upon a country with which Great Britain was at peace.

Referring to the Alabama, as she was when she left the Mersey, Mr.
Laird said:

"If a ship without guns and without arms is a dangerous article, surely rifled guns and ammunition of all sorts are equally and even more dangerous. I have referred to the bills of entry in the custom-houses of London and Liverpool, and I find that there have been vast shipments of implements of war to the Northern States through the celebrated houses of Baring & Co.; Brown, Shipley & Co.; and a variety of other names. . . . I have obtained from the official custom-house returns some details of the sundries exported from the United Kingdom to the Northern States of America from the 1st of May, 1861, to the 31st of December, 1862. There were—muskets, 41,500; rifles, 341,000; gun-flints, 26,500; percussion-caps, 49,982,000; and swords, 2,250. The best information I could obtain leads me to believe that one third to a half may be added to these numbers for items which have been shipped to the Northern States as hardware . . . so that, if the Southern States have got two ships unarmed, unfit for any purpose of warfare—for they procured their armament somewhere else—the Northern States have been well supplied from this country, through the agency of some most influential persons."

The speech of Mr. Laird, exposing the hypocrisy of the representations which had been made, as well by commercial bodies as by the highest officers of the United States, called forth repeated cheers from the Parliament.

There had been no secrecy about the building of the Alabama. The same authority above quoted states that she was frequently visited while under construction, and it is known that the British Government was applied to to prevent her from leaving port. It was feared that she might be delayed; but it was not considered possible that British authorities would prevent an unarmed merchant-ship from leaving her coast, lest she might elsewhere procure an armament, and, in the service of a recognized belligerent, revive the terror in the other belligerent which the little Sumter had recently inspired.

When the Alabama was launched and ready for sea, Captain Bullock summoned Captain Semmes, lately commander of the Sumter, to Liverpool, where he spent a few days in financial arrangements, and in collecting the old officers of the Sumter. The Alabama, then known as the 290, had proceeded a few days before to her rendezvous, the Portuguese Island of Terceira, one of the group of the Azores. The story that the name 290 belonged to the fact that she had been built by two hundred and ninety Englishmen, sympathizers in our struggle, was a mere fiction. She was built under a contract with the Confederate States, and paid for with Confederate money. She happened to be the two hundred and ninetieth ship built by the Lairds, and, not having been christened, was called 290. Captain Semmes followed her, accompanied by Captain Bullock on the steamer Bahama, and found her at the place of rendezvous, also a sailing-ship which had been dispatched before the Alabama with her battery and stores. Captain Semmes, with a sailor's enthusiasm, describes his first impression on seeing the ship which was to be his future home. The defects of the Sumter had been avoided, so that he found his new ship "a perfect steamer and a perfect sailing-ship, at the same time neither of her two modes of locomotion being at all dependent upon the other. . . . She was about nine hundred tons burden, two hundred and thirty feet in length, thirty-two feet in breadth, twenty feet in depth, and drew, when provisioned and coaled for a cruise, fifteen feet of water. Her model was of the most perfect symmetry, and she sat upon the water with the lightness and grace of a swan." She was yet only a merchant-ship, and the men on board of her, as well as those who came out with the Captain on the Bahama, were only under articles for the voyage. She therefore had no crew for future service. When her armament and stores had been put on board, she steamed from the harbor out to the open sea, where she was to be christened and put in commission. Captain Bullock went out on her and stood sponsor at the ceremony. He had just cause to be proud of the ship, and we to be thankful to him for the skill and care with which he had designed her and supervised her construction. The scantling of the vessel was comparatively light, having been intended for a scourge to the enemy's commerce rather than for battle, and merely to defend herself if it became necessary. Her masts were proportioned so as to carry large canvas, and her engine was of three hundred horse-power, with an apparatus for condensing vapor to supply the crew with all the fresh water requisite. The coal, stores, and armament having been received from the supply-ships, she steamed out to sea on Sunday morning, August 24, 1862. There, more than a marine league from the shore, on the blue water over which man holds no empire, Captain Semmes read the commission of the President of the Confederacy appointing him a captain, and the order of the Secretary of the Navy assigning him to the command of the Alabama. There, where no government held jurisdiction, where the commission of the Confederacy was as valid as that of any power, the Alabama was christened, and was henceforth a ship of war in the navy of the Confederate States. The men who had come thus far under articles no longer binding were left to their option whether to be paid off with a free passage to Liverpool, or to enlist in the crew of the Alabama. Eighty of the men who had come out in the several vessels enrolled themselves in the usual manner. Captain Semmes had a full complement of officers, and with this, though less than the authorized crew, he commenced his long and brilliant cruise. The ship's armament consisted of six thirty-two-pounders in broadsides and two pivot-guns amidships, one of them a smooth-bore eight-inch, the other a hundred-pounder rifled Blakely.

Captain Semmes, from his varied knowledge of affairs both on sea and land, did not sail by chance in quest of adventure, but directed his course to places where the greatest number of the enemy's merchantmen were likely to be found, and to this the large number of captures he made is in no small degree attributable. On board one of the ships captured they got New York papers, from which he learned that General Banks, with a large fleet of transports, was to sail on a certain day for Galveston. On this he decided to go to the rendezvous appointed for his coal-ship, and make all due preparation for a dash into the fleet when they should arrive at the harbor of Galveston, and therefore directed his course into the Gulf of Mexico.

In the mean time General Magruder had recaptured Galveston, so that on his arrival the lookout informed him that, instead of a fleet, there were five ships of war blockading the harbor and throwing shells into the town, from which his keen perception drew the proper conclusion that we had possession of the town, and that he was confronted by ships of war, not transports laden with troops. As each of the five ships observed by the lookout were supposed to be larger than his own, he had of course no disposition to run into that fleet. It therefore only remained to tempt one of the ships to follow him beyond supporting distance. The hope was soon realized, as a vessel was seen to come out from the fleet. The Alabama was under sail, and Captain Semmes says: "To carry out my design of decoying the enemy, I now wore ship as though I were fleeing from his pursuit, and lowered the propeller into the water. When about twenty miles from the fleet, the Alabama was prepared for action, and wheeled to meet her pursuer. To the first hail made, the answer from the Alabama was, 'This is her Britannic Majesty's steamer Petrel,' and the answer was, 'This is the United States ship, ———' name not heard." Captain Semmes then directed the first lieutenant to call out through his trumpet, "This is the Confederate States steamer Alabama." A broadside was instantly returned by the enemy. Captain Semmes describes the state of the atmosphere as highly favorable to the conduct of sound, and the wind blowing in the direction of the enemy's fleet. The Federal Admiral, as afterward learned, immediately got under way with the Brooklyn and two others of his steamers to go to the rescue. The crews of both ships must have been standing at their guns, as the broadsides so instantly followed each other. In thirteen minutes after firing the first gun the enemy hoisted a light and fired an off-gun as a signal that he had been beaten. Captain Semmes steamed quite close to the Hatteras and asked if he had surrendered; then, if he was in want of assistance. An affirmative answer was given to both questions. The boats of the Alabama were lowered with such promptitude and handled with such care that, though the Hatteras was sunk at night, none of her crew were drowned. When her captain came on board, Captain Semmes learned that he had been engaged with the United States steamer Hatteras, "a larger ship than the Alabama by one hundred tons," with an equal number of guns, and a crew numbering two less than that of the Alabama. There was a "considerable disparity between the two ships in the weight of their pivot-guns, and the Alabama ought to have won the fight, which she did in thirteen minutes." The Alabama had received no appreciable injury, and, continuing her cruise to the Island of Jamaica, entered the harbor of Port Royal, where, by the permission of the authorities. Captain Semmes landed his prisoners, putting them on parole.

As an answer to the stereotyped charges against Captain Semmes as a "pirate" and robber, I will select from the many unarmed ships captured by him one case. He had gone to the track of the California steamers between Aspinwall and New York, in the hope of capturing a vessel homeward bound with Government treasure. On the morning before such a vessel was expected, a large steamer, the Ariel, was seen, but unfortunately not going in the right direction. An exciting chase occurred, when she was finally brought to, but, instead of the million of dollars in her safe, she was outward bound, with a large number of women and children on board. A boarding officer was sent on her, and returned, giving an account of great alarm, especially among the ladies. Captain Semmes sent a lieutenant on board to assure them that they had "fallen into the hands of Southern gentlemen, under whose protection the were entirely safe." Among the passengers were a battalion of marines and some army and navy officers. These were all paroled, rank and file numbering one hundred and forty, and the vessel was released on ransom-bond. Captain Semmes states that there were five hundred passengers on board. It is fair to presume that each passenger had with him a purse of from three to five hundred dollars. Under the laws of war all this money would have been good prize, but not one dollar of it was touched, or indeed so much as a passenger's baggage examined.

The Alabama now proceeded to run down the Spanish Main, thence bore eastward into the Indian Ocean, and, after a cruise into every sea where a blow at American commerce could be struck, came around the Cape of Good Hope, and, sailing north, ran up to the thirtieth parallel, where so many captures had been made at a former time. Of the ship at this date Captain Semmes wrote: "The poor old Alabama was not now what she had been then. She was like the wearied fox-hound, limping back after a long chase, foot-sore, and longing for quiet repose."

She had, in her mission to cripple the enemy's commerce and cut his sinews of war, captured sixty-three vessels, among them one of the enemy's gunboats, the Hatteras, sunk in battle, had released nine under ransom-bond, and had paroled all prisoners taken.

All neutral ports being closed against her prizes, the rest of the vessels were, of necessity, burned at sea. Much complaint was made on account of the burning of these merchantmen, though very little reflection would have taught the complainants that the interests of the captor would have induced him to save the vessels, and send them into the nearest port for condemnation as prizes; and, therefore, whatever grievance existed was the result of the blockade and of the rule which prevented the captures from being sent into a neutral port to await the decision of a prize court.

On the morning of the 11th of June, 1864, the Alabama entered the harbor of Cherbourg. "An officer was sent to call on the port admiral, and ask leave to land the prisoners from the last two ships captured; this was readily granted." The next day Captain Semmes went on shore to consult the port admiral "in relation to docking and repairing" the Alabama. As there were only government docks at Cherbourg, the application had to be referred to the Emperor. Before an answer was received, the Kearsarge steamed into the harbor, sent a boat ashore, and then ran out and took her station off the breakwater. Captain Semmes learned that the boat from the Kearsarge sent on shore had borne a request that the prisoners discharged from the Alabama might be delivered to the Kearsarge. It will be remembered that the Government of the United States, in many harsh and unjust phrases, had refused to recognize the Alabama as a ship of war, and held that the paroles given to her were void. This request was therefore regarded by Captain Semmes as an attempt to recruit for the Kearsarge from the prisoners lately landed by the Alabama, and he so presented the facts to the port admiral, who rejected the application from the Kearsarge.

Captain Semmes sent notice to Captain Winslow, of the Kearsarge, whose presence in the offing was regarded as a challenge, that, if he would wait until the Alabama could receive some coal on board, she would come out and give him battle.

As has been shown by extracts previously made, Captain Semmes knew that, after his long cruise, the Alabama needed to go into dock for repairs. It had not been possible for him, on account of the rigid enforcement of "neutrality," to replenish his ammunition. Unless the niter is more thoroughly purified than is usually, if ever, done by those who manufacture for an open market, it is sure to retain nitrate of soda, and the powder, of which it is the important ingredient, to deteriorate by long exposure to a moist atmosphere. The Kearsarge was superior to the Alabama in size, and, having in stanchness of construction, her armament was also greater, the latter being measured, not by the number of guns, but by the amount of metal she could throw at a broadside. The crew of the Kearsarge, all told, was one hundred and sixty-two; that of the Alabama, one hundred and forty-nine. Captain Semmes says: "Still the disparity was not so great but that I might hope to beat my enemy in a fair fight. But he did not show me a fair fight, for, as it afterward turned out, his ship was iron-clad." This expression "iron-clad" refers to the fact that the Kearsarge had chains on her sides, which Captain Semmes describes as concealed by planking, the forward and after ends of which so accorded with the lines of the ship as not to be detected by telescopic observation. Many of that class of critics whose wisdom is only revealed after the event have blamed Captain Semmes for going out under the circumstances. Like most other questions, there are two sides to this. If he had gone into dock for repairs, the time required would have resulted in the dispersion of his crew, and, from the known improvidence of sailors, it would have been more than doubtful whether they could have been reassembled. It was, moreover, probable that other vessels would have been sent to aid the Kearsarge in effectually blockading the port, so that, if his crew had returned, the only chance would have been to escape through the guarding fleet. Proud of his ship, and justly confiding in his crew, surely something will be conceded to the Confederate spirit so often exhibited and so often triumphant over disparity of force.

On the 19th of June, 1864, the Alabama left the harbor of Cherbourg to engage the Kearsarge, which had been lying off and on the port for several days previously. Captain Semmes in his report of the engagement writes:

"After the lapse of about one hour and ten minutes, our ship was ascertained to be in a sinking condition . . . to reach the French coast, I gave the ship all steam, and set such of the fore and aft sails as were available. The ship filled so rapidly, however, that, before we had made much progress, the fires were extinguished. I now hauled down my colors, and dispatched a boat to inform the enemy of our condition. Although we were now but four hundred yards from each other, the enemy fired upon me five times after my colors had been struck. It is charitable to suppose that a ship of war, of a Christian nation, could not have done this intentionally."

Captain Semmes states that, his waist-boats having been torn to pieces, he sent the wounded, and such of the boys of the ship as could not swim, in his quarter-boats, off to the enemy's ship, and, as there was no appearance of any boat coming from the enemy, the crew, as previously instructed, jumped overboard, each to save himself if he could. All the wounded—twenty-one—were saved; ten of the crew were ascertained to have been drowned. Captain Semmes stood on the quarter-deck until his ship was settling to go down, then threw his sword into the sea, there to lie buried with the ship he loved so well, and leaped from the deck just in time to avoid being drawn down into the vortex created by her sinking. He and many of his crew were picked up by a humane English gentleman in the boats of his yacht, the Deerhound. Others were saved by two French pilot-boats which were near the scene. The remainder, it is hoped, were picked up by the enemy. Captain Semmes states in his official report, two days after the battle, that about the time of his rescue by the Deerhound the "Kearsarge sent one and then tardily another boat." The reader is invited to compare this with the conduct of Captain Semmes when he sank the Hatteras, and when, though it was in the night, by ranging up close to her, and promptly using all his boats, he saved her entire crew.

Mention has been made of the defective ammunition of the Alabama, and in that connection I quote the following passage from Captain Semmes's book, on which I have so frequently and largely drawn for facts in regard to the Sumter and the Alabama (pages 761, 762):

"I lodged a rifle percussion shell near to her [the Kearsarge's] sternpost—where there were no chains—which failed to explode because of the defect of the cap. If the cap had performed its duty, and exploded the shell, I should have been called upon to save Captain Winslow's crew from drowning, instead of his being called upon to save mine."

As it appears by the same authority that the Kearsarge had greater speed than the Alabama, it followed that, though the Captain of the Kearsarge might have closed with and boarded the Alabama, the Captain of the Alabama could not board the Kearsarge, unless by consent.

The Alabama, built like a merchant-ship, sailed in peaceful garb from British waters, on a far-distant sea received her crew and armament, fitted for operations against the enemy's commerce. On "blue-water" she was christened, and in the same she was buried. She lived the pride of her friends and the terror of her enemies. She went out to fight a wooden vessel and was sunk by one clad in secret armor. Those rescued by the Deerhound from the water were landed at Southampton, England.

The United States Government then, through its minister, Mr. Charles Francis Adams, made the absurd demand of the English Government that they should be delivered up to her as escaped prisoners. To this demand Lord John Russell replied as follows:

"With regard to the demand made by you, by instructions from your Government, that those officers and men should now be delivered up to the Government of the United States, as being escaped prisoners of war, her Majesty's Government would beg to observe that there is no obligation by international law which can bind the government of a neutral state to deliver up to a belligerent prisoners of war who may have escaped from the power of such belligerent, and may have taken refuge within the territory of such neutral. Therefore, even if her Majesty's Government had any power, by law, to comply with the above-mentioned demand, her Majesty's Government could not do so without being guilty of a violation of the duties of hospitality. In point of fact, however, her Majesty's Government have no lawful power to arrest and deliver up the persons in question. They have been guilty of no offense against the laws of England, and they have committed no act which would bring them within the provisions of a treaty between Great Britain and the United States for the surrender of the offenders; and her Majesty's Government are, therefore, entirely without any legal means by which, even if they wished to do so, they could comply with your above-mentioned demand."

It will be observed that her Majesty's Minister mercifully forbore to expose the pretensions that "the persons in question" had been prisoners, and confined his answer to the case as it would have been had that allegation been true. There are other points in this transaction which will be elsewhere presented.

The Oreto, which sailed from Liverpool about the 23d of March, 1862, was, while under construction at Liverpool, the subject of diplomatic correspondence and close scrutiny by the customs officers. After her arrival off Nassau, upon representations by the United States consul at that port, she was detained and again examined, and, it being found that she had none of the character of a vessel of war, she was released. Captain Maffitt, who had gone out with a cargo of cotton, here received a letter which authorized him to take charge of the Oreto and get her promptly to sea. She was a steamer of two hundred and fifty horse-power, tonnage five hundred and sixty, bark-rigged; speed, under steam, eight to nine knots; with sail, in a fresh breeze, fourteen knots; crew twenty-two, all told. The United States Minister, Mr. Adams, had made a report to the British Government, which, it was apprehended, would cause her seizure at once. This was soon done, and with great difficulty the vessel was saved to the Confederacy by her commander. She arrived at Nassau on the 28th of April, and was detained until the session of the Admiralty Court in August. As soon as discharged by the proceedings therein, she sailed for the uninhabited island "Green Kay," ninety miles to the southward of Providence Island, with a tender in tow having equipments provided by a Confederate merchant, where she anchored the next day, and proceeded to take on board her military armament sent out on the tender. She now became a ship of the Confederate Navy, and was christened Florida. Her long detention in Nassau had caused the ship to be infected with yellow fever, and, as she had no surgeon on board, the vessel was directed to the Island of Cuba, and ran into the harbor of Cardenas for aid. The crew was reduced to one fireman and two seamen, and eventually the Captain was prostrated by the fever. The Governor of Cardenas, under his view of the neutrality proclaimed by his Government, refused to send a physician aboard, and warned the steamer that she must leave in twenty-four hours. Lieutenant Stribling, executive officer of the ship, had been sent to Havana to report her condition to the Captain-General, Marshal Serrano. That chivalrous gentleman, soldier, and statesman, at once invited the ship to the hospitalities of the harbor of Havana, whither she repaired and received the kindness which her forlorn situation required.

On the 1st of September, 1862, the vessel left Havana to obtain a crew; and, to complete her equipment, which was so imperfect that her guns could not all be used, the vessel was directed to the harbor of Mobile. On approaching that harbor she found several blockading vessels on the station, and boldly ran through them, escaping, with considerable injury to her masts and rigging, to the friendly shelter of Fort Morgan, where, while in quarantine, Lieutenant Stribling was attacked with fever and died. He was an officer of great merit, and his loss was much regretted, not only by his many personal friends, but by all who foresaw the useful service he could render to his country if his life were prolonged. Under the disadvantages of being an infected ship and remote from the workshops, repairs were commenced, and the equipment of the ship completed.

In the mean time the blockading squadron had been increased, with the boastful announcement that the cruiser should be "hermetically sealed" in the harbor of Mobile. Some impatience was manifested after the vessel was ready for sea that she did not immediately go out, but Captain Maffitt, with sound judgment and nautical skill, decided to wait for a winter storm and a dark night before attempting to pass through the close investment. When the opportunity offered, he steamed out into a rough sea and a fierce north wind. As he passed the blockading squadron he was for the first time discovered, when a number of vessels gave chase, and continued the pursuit throughout the night and the next day. In the next evening all except the two fastest had hauled off, and, as night again closed in, the smoke and canvas of the Florida furnished their only guide. Captain Maffitt thus describes the ruse by which he finally escaped: "The canvas was secured in long, neat bunts to the yards, and the engines were stopped. Between high, toppling seas, clear daylight was necessary to enable them to distinguish our low hull. In eager pursuit the Federals swiftly passed us, and we jubilantly bade the enemy good night, and steered to the northward." She was now fairly on the high-seas, and after long and vexatious delays entered on her mission to cruise against the enemy's commerce. She commenced her captures in the Gulf of Mexico, then progressed through the Gulf of Florida to the latitude of New York, and thence to the equator, continuing to 12 deg. south, and returned again within thirty miles of New York. When near Cape St. Roque, Captain Maffitt captured a Baltimore brig, the Clarence, and fitted her out as a tender. He placed on her Lieutenant C. W. Read, commander, fourteen men, armed with muskets, pistols, and a twelve-pound howitzer. The instructions were to proceed to the coast of America, to cruise against the enemy's commerce. Under these orders he destroyed many Federal vessels. Of him Captain Maffitt wrote: "Daring, even beyond the point of martial prudence, he entered the harbor of Portland at midnight, and captured the revenue cutter Caleb Cushing; but, instead of instantly burning her, ran her out of the harbor; being thus delayed, he was soon captured by a Federal expedition sent out against him." While under the command of Captain Maffitt, the Florida, with her tenders, captured some fifty-five vessels, many of which were of great value. The Florida being built of light timbers, her very active cruising had so deranged her machinery, that it was necessary to go into some friendly harbor for repairs. Captain Maffitt says: "I selected Brest, and, the Government courteously consenting to the Florida having the facilities of the navy-yard, she was promptly docked." The effects of the yellow fever from which he had suffered and the fatigue attending his subsequent service had so exhausted his strength that he asked to be relieved from command of the ship. In compliance with this request, Captain C. M. Morris was ordered to relieve him.

After completing all needful repairs, Captain Morris proceeded to sea and sighted the coast of Virginia, where he made a number of important captures. Turning from that locality he crossed the equator, destroying the commerce of the Northern States on his route to Bahia. Here he obtained coal, and also had some repairs done to the engines, when the United States steamship Wachusett entered the harbor. Not knowing what act of treachery might be attempted by her commander on the first night after his arrival, the Florida was kept in a watchful condition for battle.

This belligerent demonstration in the peaceful harbor of a neutral power alarmed both the governor and the admiral, who demanded assurances that the sovereignty of Brazil and its neutrality should be strictly observed by both parties. The pledge was given. In the evening, with a chivalric belief in the honor of the United States commander, Captain Morris unfortunately permitted a majority of his officers to accompany him to the opera, and also allowed two thirds of the crew to visit the shore on leave. About one o'clock in the morning the Wachusett was surreptitiously got under way, and her commander, with utter abnegation of his word of honor, ran into the Florida, discharging his battery and boarding her. The few officers on board and small number of men were unable to resist this unexpected attack, and the Florida fell an easy prey to this covert and dishonorable assault. She was towed to sea amid the execrations of the Brazilian forces, army and navy, who, completely taken by surprise, fired a few ineffectual shots at the infringer upon the neutrality of the hospitable port of Bahia. The Confederate was taken to Hampton Roads.

Brazil instantly demanded her restoration intact to her late anchorage in Bahia. Mr. Lincoln was confronted by a protest from the different representatives of the courts of Europe, denouncing this extraordinary breach of national neutrality, which placed the Government of the United States in a most unenviable position. Mr. Seward, with his usual diplomatic insincerity and Machiavellianism, characteristically prevaricated, while he plotted with a distinguished admiral as to the most adroit method of disposing of the "elephant." The result of these plottings was that an engineer was placed in charge of the stolen steamer, with positive orders to "open her sea-cock at midnight, and not to leave the engine-room until the water was up to his chin, as at sunrise the Florida must be at the bottom." The following note was sent to the Brazilian chargé d'affaires by Mr. Seward:

"While awaiting the representations of the Brazilian Government, on the 28th of November she [the Florida] sank, owing to a leak, which could not be seasonably stopped. The leak was at first represented to have been caused, or at least increased, by collision with a war-transport. Orders were immediately given to ascertain the manner and circumstances of the occurrence. It seemed to affect the army and navy. A naval court of inquiry and also a military court of inquiry were charged with the investigation. The naval court has submitted its report, and a copy thereof is herewith communicated. The military court is yet engaged. So soon as its labors shall have ended, the result will be made known to your Government. In the mean time it is assumed that the loss of the Florida was in consequence of some unforeseen accident, which casts no responsibility on the Government of the United States."

The restitution of the ship having thus become impossible, the President expressed his regret that "the sovereignty of Brazil had been violated; dismissed the consul at Bahia, who had advised the offense; and sent the commander of the Wachusett before a court-martial." [58]

The commander of the Wachusett experienced no annoyance, and was soon made an admiral.

The Georgia was the next Confederate cruiser that Captain Bullock succeeded in sending forth. She was of five hundred and sixty tons, and fitted out on the coast of France. Her commander, W. L. Maury, Confederate States Navy, cruised in the North and South Atlantic with partial success. The capacity of the vessel in speed and other essentials was entirely inadequate to the service for which she was designed. She proceeded as far as the Cape of Good Hope, and returned, after having captured seven ships and two barks. Then she was laid up and sold.

The Shenandoah, once the Sea King, was purchased by Captain Bullock, and placed under the command of Lieutenant-commanding J. J. Waddell, who fitted her for service under many difficulties at the barren island of Porto Santo, near Madeira. After experiencing great annoyances, through the activity of the American consul at Melbourne, Australia, Captain Waddell finally departed, and commenced an active and effective cruise against American shipping in the Okhotak Sea and Arctic Ocean. In August, 1865, hearing of the close of the war, he ceased his pursuit of United States commerce, sailed for Liverpool, England, and surrendered his ship to the English Government, which transferred it to the Government of the United States. The Shenandoah was a full-rigged ship of eight hundred tons, very fast under canvass. Her steam-power was merely auxiliary.

This was the last but not the first appearance of the Confederate flag in Great Britain; the first vessel of the Confederate Government which unfurled it there was the swift, light steamer Nashville, E. B. Pegram, commander. Having been constructed as a passenger-vessel, and mainly with reference to speed and the light draught suited to the navigation of the Southern harbors, she was quite too frail for war purposes and too slightly armed for combat.

On her passage to Europe and back, she, nevertheless, destroyed two merchantmen. Nearing the harbor on her return voyage, she found it blockaded, and a heavy vessel lying close on her track. Her daring commander headed directly for the vessel, and ran so close under her guns that she was not suspected in her approach, and had passed so far before the guns could be depressed to bear upon her that none of the shots took effect. Being little more than a shell, a single shot would have sunk her; and she was indebted to the address of her commander and the speed of his vessel for her escape. Wholly unsuited for naval warfare, this voyage terminated her career.

A different class of vessels than those adapted to the open sea was employed for coastwise cruising. In the month of July, 1864, a swift twin-screw propeller called the Atlanta, of six hundred tons burden, was purchased by the Secretary of the Navy, and fitted out in the harbor of Wilmington, North Carolina, for a cruise against the commerce of the Northern States. Commander J. Taylor Wood, an officer of extraordinary ability and enterprise, was ordered to command her, and her name was changed to "The Tallahassee." This extemporaneous man-of-war ran safely through the blockade, and soon lit up the New England coast with her captures, which consisted of two ships, four brigs, four barks, and twenty schooners. Great was the consternation among Northern merchants. The construction of the Tallahassee exclusively for steam made her dependent on coal; her cruise was of course brief, but brilliant while it lasted.

About the same time another fast double-screw propeller of five hundred and eighty-five tons, called the Edith, ran into Wilmington, North Carolina, and the Navy Department requiring her services, bought her and gave to her the name of "Chickamauga." A suitable battery was placed on board, with officers and crew, and Commander John Wilkinson, a gentleman of consummate naval ability, was ordered to command her. When ready for sea, he ran the blockade under the bright rays of a full moon. Strange to say, the usually alert sentinels neither hailed nor halted her. Like the Tallahassee, though partially rigged for sailing, she was exclusively dependent upon steam in the chase, escape, and in all important evolutions. She captured seven vessels, despite the above-noticed defects.

[Footnote 58: M. Bernard's "Neutrality of Great Britain during the American
Civil War."]


    Naval Affairs (concluded).—Excitement in the Northern States on the
    Appearance of our Cruisers.—Failure of the Enemy to protect their
    Commerce.—Appeal to Europe not to help the So-called "Pirates."—
    Seeks Iron-plated Vessels in England.—Statement of Lord Russell.—
    What is the Duty of Neutrals?—Position taken by President
    Washington.—Letter of Mr. Jefferson.—Contracts sought by United
    States Government.—Our Cruisers went to Sea unarmed.—Mr. Adams
    asserts that British Neutrality was violated.—Reply of Lord
    Russell.—Rejoinder of Mr. Seward.—Duty of Neutrals relative to
    Warlike Stores.—Views of Wheaton; of Kent.—Charge of the Lord
    Chief Baron in the Alexandra Case.—Action of the Confederate
    Government sustained.—Antecedents of the United States
    Government.—The Colonial Commissions.—Build and equip Ships in
    Europe.—Captain Conyngham's Captures.—Made Prisoner.—
    Retaliation.—Numbers of Captures.—Recognition of Greece.—
    Recognition of South American Cruisers.—Chief Act of Hostility
    charged on Great Britain by the United States Government.—The
    Queen's Proclamation: its Effect.—Cause of the United States
    Charges.—Never called us Belligerents.—Why not?—Adopts a
    Fiction. The Reason.—Why denounce our Cruisers as "Pirates"?—
    Opinion of Justice Greer.—Burning of Prizes.—Laws of Maritime
    War.—Cause of the Geneva Conference.—Statement of American
    Claims.—Allowance.—Indirect Damages of our Cruisers.—Ships
    transferred to British Registers.—Decline of American Tonnage.—
    Decline of Export of Breadstuffs.—Advance of Insurance.

The excitement produced in the Northern States by the effective operations of our cruisers upon their commerce was such as to receive the attention of the United States Government. Reasonably, it might have been expected that they would send their ships of war out on the high-seas to protect their commerce by capturing or driving off our light cruisers, but, instead of this, their fleets were employed in blockading the Confederate ports, or watching those in the West Indies, from which blockade-runners were expected to sail, and, by capturing which, either on the high-seas or at the entrance of a Confederate port, a harvest of prizes might be secured. For this dereliction of duty, in the failure to protect commerce, no better reason offers itself than greed and malignity. There was, however, in this connection, a more humiliating feature in the conduct of the United States Government.

While, from its State Department, the Confederacy was denounced as an insurrection soon to be suppressed, and the cruisers, regularly commissioned by the Confederate States, were called "pirates," diplomatic demands were made upon Great Britain to prevent the so-called "pirates" from violating international law, as if it applied to pirates. Appeals to that Government were also made to prevent the sale of the materials of war to the Confederacy, and thus indirectly to aid the United States in performing what, according to the representation, was a police duty, to suppress a combination of some evil-disposed persons—gallantly claiming that they, armed cap-a-pie, should meet their adversary in the list, he to be without helmet, shield, or lance.

To one who from youth to age had seen, with exultant pride, the flag of his country as it unfolded, disclosing to view the stripes recordant of the original size of the family of States, and the Constellation, which told of that family's growth, it could but be deeply mortifying to witness such paltry exhibition of deception and unmanliness in the representatives of a Government around which fond memories still linger, despite the perversion of which it was the subject.

If this attempt, on the part of the United States, to deny the existence of war after having, by proclamation of blockade, compelled all nations to take notice that war did exist, and to claim that munitions should not be sold to a country because there were some disorderly people in it, had been all, the attempt would have been ludicrously absurd, and the contradiction too bald to require refutation; but this would have been but half of the story. Subsequently the United States Government claimed reclamation from Great Britain for damage inflicted by vessels which had been built in her ports, and which had elsewhere been armed and equipped for purposes of war. International law recognizes the right of a neutral to sell an unarmed vessel, without reference to the use to which the purchaser might subsequently apply it. The United States Government had certainly not practiced under a different rule, but had gone even further than this—so much further as to transgress the prohibition against armed vessels.

It has already been stated that the Government of the United States, at the commencement of the war, sought to contract for the construction of iron-plated vessels in the ports of England, which were to be delivered fully armed and equipped to her. To this it may be added that her armies were recruited from almost all the countries of Europe, down almost to the last month of the war; a portion of their arms were of foreign manufacture, as well as the munitions of war; a large number of the sailors of her fleets came from the seaports of Great Britain and Germany; in a word, whatever could be of service to her in the conflict was unhesitatingly sought among neutrals, regardless of the law of nations. At the same time an effort was made on her part to make Great Britain responsible for the damage done by our cruisers, and for the warlike stores sold to our Government.

Some statements of Lord Russell on this point, in a letter to
Minister Adams, dated December 19, 1862, deserve notice. He says:

"It is right, however, to observe that the party which has profited by far the most by these unjustifiable practices, has been the Government of the United States, because that Government, having a superiority of force by sea, and having blockaded most of the Confederate ports, has been able, on the one hand, safely to receive all the warlike supplies which it has induced British manufacturers and merchants to send to the United States ports in violation of the Queen's proclamation; and, on the other hand, to intercept and capture a great part of the supplies of the same kind which were destined from this country to the Confederate States.

"If it be sought to make her Majesty's Government responsible to that of the United States because arms and munitions of war have left this country on account of the Confederate Government, the Confederate Government, as the other belligerent, may very well maintain that it has a just cause of complaint against the British Government because the United States arsenals have been replenished from British sources. Nor would it be possible to deny that, in defiance of the Queen's proclamation, many subjects of her Majesty, owing allegiance to her crown, have enlisted in the armies of the United States. Of this fact you can not be ignorant. Her Majesty's Government, therefore, has just ground for complaint against both of the belligerent parties, but most especially against the Government of the United States, for having systemically, and in disregard of the comity of nations which it was their duty to observe, induced subjects of her Majesty to violate those orders which, in conformity with her neutral position, she has enjoined all her subjects to obey."

Perhaps it may be well to inquire what is, under international law, the duty of neutral nations with regard to the construction and equipment of cruisers for either belligerent, and the supply of warlike stores. Thus the groundlessness of the claims put forth by the Government of the United States for damages to be paid by Great Britain will be more manifest, and the lawfulness of the acts of the Confederate Government demonstrated.

After the outbreak of the French Revolution in 1789, the Government of France, owing to the temporary inferiority of her naval force, openly and deliberately equipped privateers in our ports. These privateers captured British vessels in United States waters, and brought them as prizes into United States ports. These facts formed the basis of demands made upon the United States by the British plenipotentiary. The demands had reference, not to the accidental evasion of a municipal law of the United States by a particular ship, but to a systematic disregard of international law upon some of the most important points of neutral obligation.

To these demands Mr. Jefferson, then Secretary of State under
President Washington, thus replied on September 3, 1793:

"We are bound by our treaties with three of the belligerent nations, by all the means in our power, to protect and defend their vessels and effects in our ports or waters, or on the seas near our shores, and to recover and restore the same to the right owners when taken from them. If all the means in our power are used, and fail in this effort, we are not bound by our treaties with those nations to make compensation. Though we have no similar treaty with Great Britain, it was the opinion of the President that we should use toward that nation the same rule which, under this Article, was to govern us with other nations, and even to extend it to the captures made on the high-seas and brought into our ports, if done by vessels which had been armed within them."

It will be observed that the justice of restitution, or compensation, for captures made on the high-seas and brought into our ports, is only admitted by President Washington upon one condition, which is expressed in these words: "If done by vessels which had been armed within them." The terms of the contract, which the Government of the United States endeavored to make at the ship-yards of England, were for the delivery of the ship or ships of war, "to be finished complete, with guns and everything appertaining." The contract was not taken, as too little time was allowed for its execution. But, if entered into and executed, it would have been a direct violation of international law.

In the instance of our cruisers built in the ports of England, it will be observed that they went to sea without arms or warlike stores, and, at other ports than those of Great Britain, they were converted into ships of war and put into commission by the authority of the Confederate Government. The Government of the United States asserted that they were built in the ports of Great Britain, and thereby her duty of neutrality was violated, and the Government made responsible for the damages sustained by private citizens of the United States in consequence of her captures on the seas. To this declaration of Mr. Adams, Earl Russell (he had been made an earl) replied on September 14, 1863, thus:

"When the United States Government assumes to hold the Government of Great Britain responsible for the captures made by vessels which may be fitted out as vessels of war in a foreign port, because such vessels were originally built in a British port, I have to observe that such pretensions are entirely at variance with the principles of international law, and with the decisions of American courts of the highest authority; and I have only, in conclusion, to express my hope that you may not be instructed again to put forward claims which her Majesty's Government can not admit to be founded on any grounds of law or justice."

On October 6, 1863, Mr. Seward, the Secretary of State of the United States Government, replied to this declaration of Earl Russell, saying:

"The United States do insist, and must continue to insist, that the British Government is justly responsible for the damages which the peaceful, law-abiding citizens of the United States [!] sustain by the depredations of the Alabama."

Earl Russell answered on October 26, 1863, thus:

"I must request you to believe that the principle contended for by her Majesty's Government is not that of commissioning, equipping, and manning vessels in our ports to cruise against either of the belligerent parties—a principle which was so justly and unequivocally condemned by the President of the United States in 1793. . . . But the British Government must decline to be responsible for the acts of parties who fit out a seeming merchant-ship, send her to a port or to waters far from the jurisdiction of British courts, and there commission, equip, and man her as a vessel of war."

The duty of neutral nations relative to the supply of warlike stores is expressed in these words:

"It is not the practice of nations to undertake to prohibit their own subjects by previous laws from trafficking in articles contraband of war. Such trade is carried on at the risk of those engaged in it, under the liabilities and penalties prescribed by the law of nations or particular treaties." [59]

We now quote from the great American commentator on the Constitution of the United States and on the law of nations:

"It is a general understanding that the powers at war may seize and confiscate all contraband goods, without any complaint on the part of the neutral merchant, and without any imputation of a breach of neutrality in the neutral sovereign himself. It was contended on the part of the French nation, in 1796, that neutral governments were bound to restrain their subjects from selling or exporting articles contraband of war to the belligerent powers. But it was successfully shown, on the part of the United States, that neutrals may lawfully sell at home to a belligerent power, or carry themselves to the belligerent powers, contraband articles, subject to the right of seizure in transitu. This right has been explicitly declared by the judicial authorities of this country [United States]. The right of the neutral to transport, and of the hostile power to seize, are conflicting rights, and neither party can charge the other with a criminal act." [60]

In accordance with these principles, President Pierce's message of
December 31, 1855, contains the following passage:

"In pursuance of this policy, the laws of the United States do not forbid their citizens to sell to either of the belligerent powers articles contraband of war, to take munitions of war or soldiers on board their private ships for transportation; and, although in so doing the individual citizen exposes his property or person to some of the hazards of war, his acts do not involve any breach of international neutrality, nor of themselves implicate the Government."

Perhaps it may not be out of place here to notice the charge of the Lord Chief Baron of the Exchequer to the jury in the case of the Alexandra, a vessel of one hundred and twenty tons, under construction at Liverpool for our Government. The case came on for trial on June 22, 1863, in the Court of Exchequer, sitting at nisi prius, before the Lord Chief Baron and a special jury. After it had been summed up, the Lord Chief Baron said:

"This is an information on the part of the Crown for the seizure and confiscation of a vessel that was in the course of preparation but had not been completed. It is admitted that it was not armed, and the question is, whether the preparation of the vessel in its then condition was a violation of the Foreign Enlistment Act. The main question you will have to decide is this: Whether, under the seventh section of the act of Parliament, the vessel, as then prepared at the time of seizure, was liable to seizure? The statute was passed in 1819, and upon it no question has ever arisen in our courts of justice; but there have been expositions of a similar statute which exists in the United States. I will now read to you the opinions of some American lawyers who have contributed so greatly to make law a science. [His lordship then read a passage from Story and others.] These gentlemen are authorities which show that, when two belligerents are carrying on a war, a neutral power may supply, without any breach of international law and without a breach of the Foreign Enlistment Act, munitions of war—gunpowder, every description of arms, in fact, that can be used for the destruction of human beings.

"Why should ships be an exception? I am of opinion, in point of law, they are not. The Foreign Enlistment Act was an act to prevent the enlistment or engagement of his Majesty's subjects to serve in foreign armies, and to prevent the fitting out and equipping in his Majesty's dominions vessels for warlike purposes without his Majesty's license. The title of an act is not at all times an exact indication or explanation of the act, because it is generally attached after the act is passed. But, in adverting to the preamble of the act, I find that provision is made against the equipping, fitting out, furnishing, and arming of vessels, because it may be prejudicial to the peace of his Majesty's dominions.

"The question I shall put to you is, Whether you think that vessel was merely in a course of building to be delivered in pursuance of a contract that was perfectly lawful, or whether there was any intention in the port of Liverpool, or any other English port, that the vessel should be fitted out, equipped, furnished, and armed for purposes of aggression. Now, surely, if Birmingham, or any other town, may supply any quantity of munitions of war of various kinds for the destruction of life, why object to ships? Why should ships alone be in themselves contraband? I asked the Attorney-General if a man could not make a vessel intending to sell it to either of the belligerent powers that required it, and which would give the largest price for it, would not that be lawful? To my surprise, the learned Attorney-General declined to give an answer to the question, which I think a grave and pertinent one. But you, gentlemen, I think, are lawyers enough to know that a man may make a vessel and offer it for sale. If a man may build a vessel for the purpose of offering it for sale to either belligerent party, may he not execute an order for it? That appears to be a matter of course. The statute is not made to provide means of protection for belligerent powers, otherwise it would have said, 'You shall not sell powder or guns, and you shall not sell arms'; and, if it had done so, all Birmingham would have been in arms against it. The object of the statute was this: that we should not have our ports in this country made the ground of hostile movements between the vessels of two belligerent powers, which might be fitted out, furnished, and armed in these ports. The Alexandra was clearly nothing more than in the course of building.

"It appears to me that, if true that the Alabama sailed from Liverpool without any arms at all, as a mere ship in ballast, and that her armament was put on board at Terceira, which is not in her Majesty's dominions, then the Foreign Enlistment Act was not violated at all."

After reading some of the evidence, his lordship said:

"If you think that the object was to furnish, fit out, equip, and arm that vessel at Liverpool, that is a different matter; but if you think the object really was to build a ship in obedience to an order, in compliance with a contract, leaving those who bought it to make what use they thought fit of it, then it appears to me that the Foreign Enlistment Act has not been broken."

The jury immediately returned a verdict for the defendants. An appeal was made, but the full bench decided that there was no jurisdiction. Against this decision an appeal was taken to the House of Lords, and there dismissed on some technical ground.

Sufficient has been said to show that the action of the Confederate Government relative to these cruisers is sustained and justified by international law. The complaints made by the Government of the United States against the Government of Great Britain for acts involving a breach of neutrality find no support in the letter of the law or in its principles, and were conclusively answered by the interpretations of American jurists. At the same time they are condemned by the antecedent acts of the United States Government. Some of these will be presented.

In the War of the American Revolution, Dr. Franklin and Silas Deane were sent to France as commissioners to look after the interests of the colonies. In the years 1776 and 1777 they became extensively connected with naval movements. They built, and purchased, and equipped, and commissioned ships, all in neutral territory; even filling up blank commissions sent out to them by the Congress for the purpose. Among expeditions fitted out by them was one under Captain Wickes to intercept a convoy of linen-ships from Ireland. He went first into the Bay of Biscay, and afterward entirely around Ireland, sweeping the sea before him of everything that was not of force to render the attack hopeless. Mr. Deane observes to Robert Morris that it "effectually alarmed England, prevented the great fair at Chester, occasioned insurance to rise, and even deterred the English merchants from shipping in English bottoms at any rate, so that, in a few weeks, forty sail of French ships were loading in the Thames, on freight, an instance never before known."

In the spring of 1777 the Commissioners sent an agent to Dover, who purchased a fine, fast-sailing English-built cutter, which was taken across to Dunkirk. There she was privately equipped as a cruiser, and put in command of Captain Gustavus Conyngham, who was appointed by filling up a blank commission from John Hancock, the President of Congress. This commission bore date March 1, 1777, and fully entitled Mr. Conyngham to the rank of captain in the navy. His vessel, although built in England, like many of our cruisers, was not armed or equipped there, nor was his crew enlisted there, but in the port of a neutral. This vessel was finally seized under some treaty obligations between France and England. The Commissioners immediately fitted out another cruiser, and still another. It was also affirmed that the money advanced to Mr. John Adams for traveling expenses, when he arrived in Spain a year or two later, was derived from the prizes of these vessels, which had been sent into the ports of Spain.

Captain Conyngham was a very successful commander, but he was made a prisoner in 1779. The matter was brought before Congress in July of the same year, and a committee reported that this "late commander of an armed vessel in the service of the States, and taken on board of a private armed cutter, had been treated in a manner contrary to the dictates of humanity, and the practice of Christian civilized nations." Whereupon it was resolved to demand of the British Admiral in New York that good and sufficient reason be given for this conduct, or that he be immediately released from his rigorous and ignominious confinement. If a satisfactory answer was not received by August 1st, so many persons as were deemed proper were ordered to be confined in safe and close custody, to abide the fate of the said Gustavus Conyngham. No answer having been received, one Christopher Hale was thus confined. In December he petitioned Congress for an exchange, and that he might procure a person in his room. Congress replied that his petition could not be granted until Captain Conyngham was released, "as it had been determined that he must abide the fate of that officer." Conyngham was subsequently released.

The whole number of captures made by the United States in this contest is not known, but six hundred and fifty prizes are said to have been brought into port. Many others were ransomed, and some were burned at sea.

Prescribed limits will not permit me to follow out in detail the past history of the United States as a neutral power. It must suffice to recall the memory of readers to a few significant facts in our more recent history:

The recognition of the independence of Greece in her struggle with
Turkey, and the voluntary contributions of money and men sent to her;
the recognition of the independence of the Spanish provinces of South
America, and the war-vessels equipped and sent from the ports of the
United States to Brazil during the struggle with Spain for
independence; the ships sold to Russia during her war with England,
France, and Turkey; the arms and munitions of war manufactured at New
Haven, Connecticut, and Providence, Rhode Island, sold and shipped to
Turkey to aid her in her late struggle with Russia.

The reader will observe the promptitude with which the Government of the United States not only accorded belligerent rights, but, even more, recognized the independence of nations struggling for deliverance from oppressive rulers. The instances of Greece and the South American republics are well known, and that of Texas must be familiar to every one. One could scarcely believe, therefore, that the chief act of hostility, or, rather, the great crime of the Government of Great Britain in the eyes of the Government of the United States, was the recognition by the latter of the Confederate States as a belligerent power, and that a state of war existed between them and the United States. This was the constantly repeated charge against the British Government in the dispatches of the United States Government from the commencement of the war down nearly to the session of the Geneva Conference in 1872. In the correspondence of the Secretary, in 1867, he says:

"What is alleged on the part of the United States is, that the Queen's proclamation, which, by conceding belligerent rights to the insurgents, lifted them up for the purpose of insurrection to an equality with the nation which they were attempting to overthrow, was premature because it was unnecessary, and that it was, in its operation, unfriendly because it was premature."

Again he says, and, if sincerely, shows himself to be utterly ignorant of the real condition of our affairs:

"Before the Queen's proclamation of neutrality, the disturbance in the United States was merely a local insurrection. It wanted the name of war to enable it to be a civil war and to live, endowed as such, with maritime and other belligerent rights. Without the authorized name, it might die, and was expected not to live and be a flagrant civil war, but to perish a mere insurrection."

The first extract in itself contains a fiction. If the Queen's proclamation possessed such force as to raise the Confederate States to an equality with the United States as a belligerent, perhaps another proclamation of the Queen might have possessed such force, if it had been issued, as to have lifted the Confederate States from the state of equality to one of independence. This is a novel virtue to be ascribed to a Queen's proclamation. This idea must have been borrowed from our neighbors of Mexico, where a pronunciamiento dissolves one and establishes a rival administration. How much more rational it would have been, to say that the resources and the military power of the Confederate States placed them, at the outset, on the footing of a belligerent, and the Queen's proclamation only declared a fact which the announcement of a blockade of the Southern ports by the Government of the United States had made manifest!— blockade being a means only applicable as against a foreign foe.

Nevertheless, the Government of the United States, although refusing to concede belligerent rights to the Confederate States, was very ready to take advantage of such concession by other nations, whenever an opportunity offered. The voluminous correspondence of the Secretary of State of the United States Government, relative to the Confederate cruisers and their so-called "depredations," was filled with charges of violations of international law, which could be committed only by a belligerent, and which, it was alleged, had been allowed to be done in the ports of Great Britain. On this foundation was based the subsequent claim for damages, advanced by the Government of the United States against that of Great Britain; and, for the pretended lack of "due diligence" in watching the actions of this Confederate belligerent in her ports, she was mulcted in a heavy sum by the Geneva Conference, and paid it to the Government of the United States.

It is a remarkable fact that the Government of the United States, in no one instance, from the opening to the close of the war, formally spoke of the Confederate Government or States as belligerents. Although on many occasions it acted with the latter as a belligerent, yet no official designations were ever given to them or their citizens but those of "insurgents," or "insurrectionists." Perhaps there may be something in the signification of the words which, combined with existing circumstances, would express a state of affairs that the authorities of the Government of the United States were in no degree willing to admit, and vainly sought to prevent from becoming manifest to the world.

The party or individuality against which the Government of the United States was conducting hostilities consisted of the people within the limits of the Confederate States. Was it against them as individuals in an unorganized condition, or as organized political communities? In the former condition they might be a mob; in the latter condition they formed a State. By the actions of unorganized masses may arise insurrections, and by the actions of organized people or states, arise wars.

The Government of the United States adopted a fiction when it declared that the execution of the laws in certain States was impeded by "insurrection." The persons whom it designated as insurrectionists were the organized people of the States. The ballot-boxes used at the elections were State boxes. The judges who presided at the elections were State functionaries. The returns of the elections were made to the State officers. The oaths of office of those elected were administered by State authority. They assembled in the legislative chambers of the States. The results of their deliberations were directory to the State, judicial, and executive officers, and by them put in operation. Is it not evident that, only by a fiction of speech, such proceedings can be called an insurrection?

Why, then, did an intelligent and powerful Government, like that of the United States, so outrage the understanding of mankind as to adopt a fiction on which to base the authority and justification of its hostile action? The United States Government is the result of a compact between the States—a written Constitution. It owes its existence simply to a delegation of certain powers by the respective States, which it is authorized to exercise for their common welfare. One of these powers is to "suppress insurrections"; but there is no power delegated to subjugate States, the authors of its existence, or to make war on any of the States. If, then, without any delegated power or lawful authority for its proceedings, the Government of the United States commenced a war upon some of the States of the Union, how could it expect to be justified before the world? It became the aggressor—the Attila of the American Continent. Its action inflicted a wound on the principles of constitutional liberty, a crashing blow to the hopes that men had begun to repose in this latest effort for self-government, which its friends should never forgive nor ever forget. To palliate the enormity of such an offense, its authors resorted to a vehement denial that their hostile action was a war upon the States, and persistently asserted the fiction that their immense armies and fleets were merely a police authority to put down insurrection. They hoped to conceal from the observation of the American people that the contest, on the part of the central Government, was for empire, for its absolute supremacy over the State governments; that the Constitution was roiled up and laid away among the old archives; and that the conditions of their liberty, in the future, were to be decided by the sword or by "national" control of the ballot-box.

With like disregard for truth, our cruisers were denounced as "pirates" by the Government of the United States. A pirate, or armed piratical vessel, is by the law of nations the enemy of mankind, and can be destroyed by the ships of any nation. The distinction between a lawful cruiser and a pirate is that the former has behind it a government which is recognized by civilized nations as entitled to the rights of war, and from which the commander of the cruiser receives his commission or authority, but the pirate recognizes no government, and is not recognized by any one. As the Attorney-General of Great Britain said in the Alexandra case:

"Although a recognition of the Confederates as an independent power was out of the question, yet it was right they should be admitted by other nations within the circle of lawful belligerents—that is to say, that their forces should not be treated as pirates, nor their flag as a piratical flag. Therefore, as far as the two belligerents were concerned, on the part of this and other governments, they were so far put on a level that each was to be considered as entitled to the right of belligerents—the Southern States as much as the other."

The Government of the United States well knew that, after the issue of the Queen's proclamation recognizing our Government, the application of the word pirate to our cruisers was simply an exhibition of vindictive passion on its part. A de facto Government by its commission legalizes among nations a cruiser. That there was such a Government even its own courts also decided. In a prize case (2 Black, 635), Justice Greer delivered the opinion of the Supreme Court, saying:

"It [the war] is not less a civil war, with belligerent parties in hostile array, because it may be called an 'insurrection' by one side, and the insurgents be considered as rebels and traitors. It is not necessary that the independence of the revolted province or State be acknowledged in order to constitute it a party belligerent in a war, according to the laws of nations. Foreign nations acknowledge it a war by a declaration of neutrality. The condition of neutrality can not exist unless there be two belligerent parties."

In the case of the Santissima Trinidad (7 Wheaton, 337), the United
States Supreme Court says:

"The Government of the United States has recognized the existence of a civil war between Spain and her colonies, and has avowed her determination to remain neutral between the parties. Each party is therefore deemed by us a belligerent, having, so far as concerns us, the sovereign rights of war."

The belligerent character of the Confederate States was thus fully acknowledged by the highest judicial tribunal of the United States. This involved an acknowledgment of the Confederate Government as a Government de facto having "the sovereign rights of war," yet the Executive Department of the United States Government, with reckless malignity, denounced our cruisers as "pirates," our citizens as "insurgents" and "traitors," and the action of our Government as an "insurrection."

It has been stated that during the war of the colonies with Great Britain many of the prizes of the colonial cruisers were destroyed. This was done by Paul Jones and other commanders, although during the entire period of the war some of the colonial ports were open, into which prizes could be taken. In that war Great Britain did not attempt to blockade all the ports of the colonies. Sailing-vessels only were then known, and with these a stringent blockade at all seasons could not have been maintained. But, at the later day of our war, the powerful steamship had appeared, and revolutionized the commerce and the navies of the world. During the first months of the war all the principal ports of the Confederacy were blockaded, and finally every inlet was either in possession of the enemy or had one or more vessels watching it. The steamers were independent of wind and weather, and could hold their positions before a port day and night. At the same time the ports of neutrals had been closed against the prizes of our cruisers by proclamations and orders in council. Says Admiral Semmes:

"During my whole career upon the sea, I had not so much as a single port open to me, into which I could send a prize."

Our prizes had been sent into ports of Cuba and Venezuela under the hope that they might gain admittance, but they were either handed over to the enemy under some fraudulent pretext, or expelled. Thus, by the action of the different nations and by the blockade with steamers, no course was left to us but to destroy the prizes, as was done in many instances under the Government of the United States Confederation.

The laws of maritime war are well known. The enemy's vessel when captured becomes the property of the captor, which he may immediately destroy; or he may take the vessel into port, have it adjudicated by an admiralty court as a lawful prize, and sold. That adjudication is the basis of title to the purchaser against all former owners. In these cases the captor sends his prizes to a port of his own country or to a friendly port for adjudication. But, if the ports of his own country are under blockade by his enemy, and the recapture of the prizes, if sent there, most probable, and if, at the same time, all friendly ports are closed against the entrance of his prizes, then there remains no alternative but to destroy the prizes by sinking or burning. Courts of admiralty are established for neutrals; not for the enemy, who has no right of appearance before them. If, therefore, any neutrals suffered during our war for want of adjudication, the fault is with their own Government, and not with our cruisers.

Many other objections were advanced by the United States Government as evidence that we committed a breach of international law with our cruisers, but their principles are embraced in the preceding remarks, or they were too frivolous to deserve notice. Suffice it to say that, if the Confederate Government had been successful in taking to sea every vessel which it built, it would have swept from the oceans the commerce of the United States, would have raised the blockade of at least some of our ports, and, if by such aid our independence had been secured, there is little probability that such complaints as have been noticed would have received attention, if, indeed, they would have been uttered.

In January, 1871, the British Government proposed to the Government of the United States that a joint commission should be convened to adjust certain differences between the two nations relative to the fisheries, the Canadian boundary, etc. To this proposition the latter acceded, on condition that the so-called Alabama claims should also be considered. To this condition Great Britain assented. In the Convention the American Commissioners proposed an arbitration of these claims. The British Commissioners replied that her Majesty's Government could not admit that Great Britain had failed to discharge toward the United States the duties imposed on her by the rules of international law, or that she was justly liable to make good to the United States the losses occasioned by the acts of the cruisers to which the American Commissioners referred.

Without following the details, it may be summarily stated that the Geneva Conference ensued. That decided that "England should have fulfilled her duties as a neutral by the exercise of a diligence equal to the gravity of the danger," and that "the circumstances were of a nature to call for the exercise, on the part of her Britannic Majesty's Government, of all possible solicitude for the observance of the rights and duties involved in the proclamation of neutrality issued by her Majesty on May 18, 1861." The Conference also added: "It can not be denied that there were moments when its watchfulness seemed to fail, and when feebleness in certain branches of the public service resulted in great detriment to the United States."

The claims presented to the Conference for damages done by our several cruisers were as follows: The Alabama, $7,050,293.76; the Boston, $400; the Chickamauga, $183,070.73; the Florida, $4,057,934.69; the Clarence, tender of the Florida, $66,736.10; the Tacony, tender of the Florida, $169,198.81; the Georgia, $431,160.72; the Jefferson Davis, $7,752; the Nashville, $108,433.95; the Retribution, $29,018.53; the Sallie, $5,540; the Shenandoah, $6,656,838.81; the Sumter, $179,697.67; the Tallahassee, $836,841.83. Total, $19,782,917.60. Miscellaneous, $479,033; increased insurance, $6,146,19.71. Aggregate, $26,408,170.31.

The Conference rejected the claims against the Boston, the Jefferson Davis, and the Sallie, and awarded to the United States Government $15,500,000 in gold.

But the indirect damages upon the commerce of the United States produced by these cruisers were far beyond the amount of the claims presented to the Geneva Conference. The number of ships owned in the United States at the commencement of the war, which were subsequently transferred to foreign owners by a British register, was 715, and the amount of their tonnage was 480,882 tons. Such are the laws of the United States that not one of them has been allowed to resume an American register.

In the year 1860 nearly seventy per cent. of the foreign commerce of the country was carried on in American ships. But, in consequence of the danger of capture by our cruisers to which these ships were exposed, the amount of this commerce carried by them had dwindled down in 1864 to forty-six per cent. It continued to decline after the war, and in 1872 it had fallen to twenty-eight and a half per cent.

Before the war the amount of American tonnage was second only to that of Great Britain, and we were competing with her for the first place. At that time the tonnage of the coasting trade, which had grown from insignificance, was 1,735,863 tons. Three years later, in 1864, it had declined to about 867,931 tons.

The damage to the articles of export is illustrated by the decline in breadstuffs exported from the Northern States. In the last four months of each of the following years the value of this export was as follows: 1861, $42,500,000; 1862, $27,842,090; 1863, $8,909,043; 1864, $1,850,819. Some of this decline resulted from good crops in England; but, in other respects, it was a consequence of causes growing out of the war.

The increase in the rates of marine insurance, in consequence of the danger of capture by the cruisers, was variable. But the gross amount so paid was presented as a claim to the Conference, as given above.

[Footnote 59: Wheaton's "International Law" sixth edition, p. 571, 1855.]

[Footnote 60: Ken's "Commentaries," vol i, p. 145, 1854.]


    Attempts of the United States Government to overthrow States.—
    Military Governor of Tennessee appointed.—Object.—Arrests and
    Imprisonments.—Measures attempted.—Oath required of Voters.—A
    Convention to amend the State Constitution.—Results.—Attempt in
    Louisiana.—Martial Law.—Barbarities inflicted.—Invitation of
    Plantations.—Order of General Butler, No. 28.—Execution of
    Mumford.—Judicial System set up.—Civil Affairs to be administered
    by Military Authority.—Order of President Lincoln for a Provisional
    Court.—A Military Court sustained by the Army.—Words of the
    Constitution.—"Necessity," the reason given for the Power to create
    the Court.—This Doctrine fatal to the Constitution; involves its
    Subversion.—Cause of our Withdrawal from the Union.—Fundamental
    Principles unchanged by Force.—The Contest is not over; the Strife
    not ended.—When the War closed, who were the Victors?—Let the
    Verdict of Mankind decide.

On the capture of Nashville, on February 25, 1862, Andrew Johnson was made military Governor of Tennessee, with the rank of brigadier-general, and immediately entered on the duties of his office. This step was taken by the President of the United States under the pretense of executing that provision of the Constitution which is in these words:

"The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a republican form of government."

The administration was conducted according to the will and pleasure of the Governor, which was the supreme law. Public officers were required to take an oath of allegiance to the United States Government, and upon refusal were expelled from office. Newspaper-offices were closed, and their publication suppressed. Subsequently the offices were sold out under the provisions of the confiscation act. All persons using "treasonable and seditious" language were arrested and required to take the oath of allegiance to the Government of the United States, and give bonds for the future, or to go into exile. Clergymen, upon their refusal to take the oath, were confined in the prisons until they could be sent away. School-teachers and editors and finally large numbers of private citizens were arrested and held until they took the oath. Conflicts became frequent in the adjacent country. Murders and the violent destruction of property ensued.

On October 21, 1862, an order for an election of members of the United States Congress in the ninth and tenth State districts was issued. Every voter was required to give satisfactory evidence of "loyalty" to the Northern Government. Two persons were chosen and admitted to seats in that body.

That portion of the State in the possession of the forces of the United States continued without change, under the authority of the military Governor, until the beginning of 1864. Measures were then commenced by the Governor for an organization of a State government in sympathy with the Government of the United States. These measures were subsequently known as the "process for State reconstruction." The Governor issued his proclamation for an election of county officers on March 5th, to be held in the various counties of the State whenever it was practicable. "It is not expected," says the Governor, "that the enemies of the United States will propose to vote, nor is it intended that they be permitted to vote or hold office." In addition to the possession of the usual qualifications, the voter was required to take the following oath:

"I solemnly swear that I will henceforth support the Constitution of the United States, and defend it against the assaults of all its enemies; that I will hereafter be, and conduct myself as, a true and faithful citizen of the United States, freely and voluntarily claiming to be subject to all the duties and obligations, and entitled to all the rights and privileges, of such citizenship; that I ardently desire the suppression of the present insurrection and rebellion against the Government of the United States, the success of its armies, and the defeat of all those who oppose them; and that the Constitution of the United States, and all laws and proclamations made in pursuance thereof, may be speedily and permanently established and enforced over all the people, States, and Territories thereof; and, further, that I will hereafter aid and assist all loyal people in the accomplishment of these results."

Thus to invoke the Constitution was like Satan quoting Scripture. The election was a failure, and all further efforts at reconstruction were for a time suspended. An attempt was made at the end of 1864 to obtain a so-called convention to amend the State Constitution, and a body was assembled which, without any regular authority, adopted amendments. These were submitted to the voters on February 22, 1865, and declared to be ratified by a vote of twenty-five thousand, in a State where the vote, in 1860, was one hundred and forty-five thousand. Slavery was abolished, other changes made, so-called State officers elected, and this body of voters was proclaimed as the reconstructed State of Tennessee, and one of the United States. Such was the method adopted in Tennessee to execute the provision of the Constitution which says:

"The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a republican form of government."

The next attempt to guarantee "a republican form of government" to a State was commenced in Louisiana by the military occupation of New Orleans, on May 1, 1862. The United States forces were under the command of Major-General Benjamin F. Butler. Martial law was declared, and Brigadier-General George F. Shepley was appointed military Governor of the State. It is unnecessary to relate in detail the hostile actions which were committed, as they had no resemblance to such warfare as is alone permissible by the rules of international law or the usages of civilization. Some examples taken from contemporaneous publications of temperate tone, will suffice.

Peaceful and aged citizens, unresisting captives, and noncombatants, were confined at hard labor with chains attached to their limbs, and held in dungeons and fortresses; others were subjected to a like degrading punishment for selling medicine to the sick soldiers of the Confederacy. The soldiers of the invading force were incited and encouraged by general orders to insult and outrage the wives and mothers and sisters of the citizens; and helpless women were torn from their homes and subjected to solitary confinement, some in fortresses and prisons-and one, especially, on an island of barren sand, under a tropical sun—and were fed with loathsome rations and exposed to vile insults. Prisoners of war, who surrendered to the naval forces of the United States on the agreement that they should be released on parole, were seized and kept in close confinement. Repeated pretexts were sought or invented for plundering the inhabitants of the captured city, by fines levied and collected under threat of imprisonment at hard labor with ball and chain. The entire population were forced to elect between starvation by the confiscation of all their property and taking an oath against their conscience to bear allegiance to the invader. Egress from the city was refused to those whose fortitude stood the test, and even to lone and aged women and to helpless children; and, after being ejected from their houses and robbed of their property, they were left to starve in the streets or subsist on charity. The slaves were driven from the plantations in the neighborhood of New Orleans, until their owners consented to share their crops with the commanding General, his brother, and other officers. When such consent had been extorted, the slaves were restored to the plantations and compelled to work under the bayonets of a guard of United States soldiers. Where that partnership was refused, armed expeditions were sent to the plantations to rob them of everything that could be removed; and even slaves too aged and infirm for work were, in spite of their entreaties, forced from the homes provided by their owners, and driven to wander helpless on the highway. By an order (No. 91), the entire property in that part of Louisiana west of the Mississippi River was sequestrated for confiscation, and officers were assigned to the duty, with orders to gather up and collect the personal property, and turn over to the proper officers, upon their receipts, such of it as might be required for the use of the United States army; and to bring the remainder to New Orleans, and cause it to be sold at public auction to the highest bidders. This was an order which, if it had been executed, would have condemned to punishment, by starvation, at least a quarter of a million of persons, of all ages, sexes, and conditions. The African slaves, also, were not only incited to insurrection by every license and encouragement, but numbers of them were armed for a servile war, which in its nature, as exemplified in other lands, far exceeds the horrors and merciless atrocities of savages. In many instances the officers were active and zealous agents in the commission of these crimes, and no instance was known of the refusal of any one of them to participate in the outrages.

The order of Major-General Butler, to which reference is made above, was as follows:


"As officers and soldiers of the United States have been subject to repeated insults from women, calling themselves ladies, of New Orleans, in return for the most scrupulous non-interference and courtesy on our part, it is ordered hereafter, when any female shall, by mere gesture or movement, insult, or show contempt for any officers or soldiers of the United States, she shall be regarded and held liable to be treated as a woman about town plying her vocation.

"By command of Major-General BUTLER."

This order was issued on May 15, 1862, and known as General Order No. 28.

Another example was the cold-blooded execution of William B. Mumford on June 7th. He was an unresisting and noncombatant captive, and there was no offense ever alleged to have been committed by him subsequent to the date of the capture of the city. He was charged with aiding and abetting certain persons in hauling down a United States flag hoisted on the mint, which was left there by a boat's crew on the morning of April 26th, and five days before the military occupation of the city. He was tried before a military commission, sentenced, and afterward hanged.

On December 15, 1862, Major-General N. P. Banks took command of the military forces, and Major-General Butler retired. The military Governor, early in August, had attempted to set on foot a judicial system for the city and State. For this purpose he appointed judges to two of the district courts, of which the judges were absent, and authorized a third, who held a commission dated anterior to 1861, to resume the sessions. This was an establishment of three new courts, with the jurisdiction and powers pertaining to the courts that previously bore their names, by a military officer representing the Executive of the United States. These were the only courts within the territory of the State held by the United States forces which claimed to have civil jurisdiction. But this jurisdiction was limited to citizens of the parish of Orleans as against defendants residing in the State. As to other residents of the State, outside the parish of Orleans, there was no court in which they could be sued. In this condition several parishes were held by the United States forces.

It was therefore necessary to take another step in order to enable the military power to administer civil affairs. This involved, as every reader must perceive, a complete subversion of the fundamental principles of social organization. According to this advanced step, the military power, instituted by an organization of its own, creates for itself a new nature, fixes at will its rules and modes of action, and determines the limits of its power. It absorbs by force the civil functions, with absolute disregard of the fundamental principle that the military shall be subject to the civil authority.

This attempt to administer civil affairs on the basis of military authority involved, as has been said, the subversion of fundamental principles. The military power may remove obstacles to the exercise of the civil authority; but, when these are removed, it can not enter the forum, put on the toga, and sit in judgment upon civil affairs, any more than the hawk becomes the dove by assuming her plumage.

However, the next step was taken. It consisted in the publication of the following order by the President of the United States:


"The insurrection which has for some time prevailed in several of the States of this Union, including Louisiana, having temporarily subverted and swept away the civil institutions of that State, including the judiciary and the judicial authorities of the Union, so that it has become necessary to hold the State in military occupation; and it being indispensably necessary that there shall be some judicial tribunal existing there capable of administering justice, I have therefore thought it proper to appoint, and I do hereby constitute a provisional court, which shall be a court of record for the State of Louisiana; and I do hereby appoint Charles A. Peabody, of New York, to be a provisional judge to hold said court, with authority to hear, try, and determine all causes civil and criminal, including causes in law, equity, revenue, and admiralty, and particularly with all such powers and jurisdiction as belong to the District and Circuit Courts of the United States, conforming his proceedings, so far as possible, to the course of proceedings and practice which has been customary in the courts of the United States and Louisiana—his judgment to be final and conclusive. And I do hereby authorize and empower the said judge to make and establish such rules and regulations as may be necessary for the exercise of his jurisdiction, and to appoint a prosecuting attorney, marshal, and clerk of the said court, who shall perform the functions of attorney, marshal, and clerk according to such proceedings and practice as before mentioned, and such rules and regulations as may be made and established by said judge. These appointments are to continue during the pleasure of the President, not extending beyond the military occupation of the city of New Orleans, or the restoration of the civil authority in that city and in the State of Louisiana. These officers shall be paid out of the contingent fund of the War Department, and compensation shall be as follows.

"By the President: ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

"W. H. SEWARD, Secretary of State."

This so-called court, as its judge said, "was always governed by the rules and principles of law, adhering to all the rules and forms of civil tribunals, and avoiding everything like a military administration of justice. In criminal matters it summoned a grand jury, and submitted to it all charges for examination." Yet, when its judgments and mandates were to be executed, that execution could come only from the same power by which the court was constituted, and that was the military power of the United States holding the country in military occupation. Therefore, to this end the military and naval forces were pledged. Hence it was the military power, as has been said, administering civil affairs.

The Constitution of the United States says:

"The judicial power of the United States shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and in such inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish," [61]

This provisional court was neither ordained nor established by Congress; it had not, therefore, vested in it any of the judicial power of the United States. Neither does the Constitution give to Congress any power by which it can constitute an independent State court within the limits of any State in the Union, as Louisiana was said to be.

This provisional court, therefore, was a mere instrument of martial law, constituted by the Commander-in-Chief of the United States forces, not for the usual purposes which justify the establishment of such courts, but to enter the domain of civil affairs and administer justice between man and man in the ordinary transactions of peaceful life. The ministers of martial law are only the representatives of the conqueror, and they sit in his seat of authority to relieve him from the burden of excessive duties, and to administer justice to offenders against his authority and the social welfare, during his presence. On such grounds the existence of such courts is justified; but, for the establishment of a court like this provisional one, no legitimate authority is to be found either in the Constitution of the United States or outside of it, "Inter arma silent leges" is a maxim nearly two thousand years old; it means that, under the exercise of military power, the civil administration ceases.

When called upon to state any just grounds for such a measure, the invader has usually replied that he had, ex necessitate rei, the right to establish such a tribunal. Thus said the Commander-in-Chief of the United States, and Congress acquiesced—indeed, leading the way, it had urged the same plea to justify the passage of its confiscation act. The judiciary has observed the silence of acquiescence. Thus the doctrine of necessity—the rule that, in the administration of affairs, both military and civil, the necessity of the case may and does afford ample authority and power to subvert or to suspend the provisions of the Constitution, and to exercise powers and do acts unwarranted by the grants of that instrument—has apparently become incorporated as an unwritten clause of the Constitution of the United States.

What, then, is this necessity? Its definition would require an explanation, from the persons who act under it, of the objects for which, in every instance, they act. Suffice it to say that the political wisdom of mankind has consecrated this truth as a fundamental maxim, that no man can be trusted with the exercise of power and be, at the same time, the final judge of the limits within which that power may be exercised. It has fortified this with other maxims, such as, "Necessity is the plea of despotism"; "Necessity knows no law." The fathers of the Constitution of the United States sought to limit every grant of power so exactly that it should observe its bounds as invariably as a planetary body does its orbit. Yet within the first hundred years of its existence all these limits have been disregarded, and the people have silently accepted the plea of necessity.

It must be manifest to every one that there has been a fatal subversion of the Constitution of the United States. In estimating the results of the war, this is one of the most deplorable; because it is self-evident that, when a constitutional Government once oversteps the limits fixed for the exercise of its powers, there is nothing beyond to check its further aggression, no place where it will voluntarily halt until it reaches the subjugation of all who resist the usurpation. This was the sole issue involved in the conflict of the United States Government with the Confederate States; and every other issue, whether pretended or real, partook of its nature, and was subordinate to this one. Let us repeat an illustration: In strict observance of their inalienable rights, in abundant caution reserved, when they formed the compact or Constitution—whichever the reader pleases to call it—of the United States, the Confederate States sought to withdraw from the Union they had assisted to create, and to form a new and independent one among themselves. Then the Government of the United States broke through all the limits fixed for the exercise of the powers with which it had been endowed, and, to accomplish its own will, assumed, under the plea of necessity, powers unwritten and unknown in the Constitution, that it might thereby proceed to the extremity of subjugation. Thus it will be perceived that the question still lives. Although the Confederate armies may have left the field, although the citizen soldiers may have retired to the pursuits of peaceful life, although the Confederate States may have renounced their new Union, they have proved their indestructibility by resuming their former places in the old one, where, by the organic law, they could only be admitted as republican, equal, and sovereign States of the Union. And, although the Confederacy as an organization may have ceased to exist as unquestionably as though it had never been formed, the fundamental principles, the eternal truths, uttered when our colonies in 1776 declared their independence, on which the Confederation of 1781 and the Union of 1788 were formed, and which animated and guided in the organization of the Confederacy of 1861, yet live, and will survive, however crushed they may be by despotic force, however deep they may be buried under the debris of crumbling States, however they may be disavowed by the time-serving and the fainthearted; yet I believe they have the eternity of truth, and that in God's appointed time and place they will prevail.

The contest is not over, the strife is not ended. It has only entered on a new and enlarged arena. The champions of constitutional liberty must spring to the struggle, like the armed men from the seminated dragon's teeth, until the Government of the United States is brought back to its constitutional limits, and the tyrant's plea of "necessity" is bound in chains strong as adamant:

  "For Freedom's battle once begun,
  Bequeathed by bleeding sire to son,
  Though baffled oft, it ever won."

When the war closed, who were the victors? Perhaps it is too soon to answer that question. Nevertheless, every day, as time rolls on, we look with increasing pride upon the struggle our people made for constitutional liberty. The war was one in which fundamental principles were involved; and, as force decides no truth, hence the issue is still undetermined, as has been already shown. We have laid aside our swords; we have ceased our hostility; we have conceded the physical strength of the Northern States. But the question still lives, and all nations and peoples that adopt a confederated agent of government will become champions of our cause. While contemplating the Northern States—with their Federal Constitution gone, ruthlessly destroyed under the tyrant's plea of "necessity," their State sovereignty made a byword, and their people absorbed in an aggregated mass, no longer, as their fathers left them, protected by reserved rights against usurpation—the question naturally arises: On which side was the victory? Let the verdict of mankind decide.

[Footnote 61: Constitution of the United States, Article III, section 1.]


Further Attempts of the United States Government to overthrow States.—Election of Members of Congress under the Military Governor of Louisiana.—The Voters required to take an Oath to support the United States Government.—The State Law violated.—Proposition to hold a State Convention; postponed.—The President's Plan for making a Union State out of a Fragment of a Confederate State.—His Proclamation.—The Oath required.—Message.—"The War-Power our Main Reliance."—Not a Feature of the Republican Government in the Plan.—What are the True Principles?—The Declaration of Independence asserts them.—Who had a Right to institute a Government for Louisiana?—Its People only.—Under what Principles could the Government of the United States do it?—As an Invader to subjugate.—Effrontery and Wickedness of the Administration.—It enforces a Fiction.—Attempt to make Falsehood as good as Truth.— Proclamation for an Election of State Officers.—Proclamation for a State Convention.—The Monster Crime against the Liberties of Mankind.—Proceedings in Arkansas.—Novel Method adopted to amend the State Constitution.—Perversion of Republican Principles in Virginia.—Proceedings to create the State of West Virginia.—A Falsehood by Act of Congress.—Proceedings considered under Fundamental Principles.—These Acts sustained by the United States Government.—Assertion of Thaddeus Stevens.—East Virginia Government.—Such Acts caused Entire Subversion of States.—Mere Fictions thus constituted.

But to resume our narration. On December 3d, in compliance with an order of the military Governor Shepley, a so-called election was held for members of the United States Congress in the first and second State districts, each composed of about half the city of New Orleans and portions of the surrounding parishes. Those who had taken the oath of allegiance were allowed to vote. In the first district, Benjamin F. Flanders received 2,370 votes, and all others 273. In the second district, Michael Hahn received 2,799 votes, and all others 2,318. These persons presented themselves at Washington, and resolutions to admit them to seats were reported by the Committee on Elections in the House of Representatives. It was urged that the military Governor had conformed in every particular to the Constitution and laws of Louisiana, so that the election had every essential of a regular election in a time of most profound peace, with the exception of the fact that the proclamation for the election was issued by the military instead of the civil Governor of the State. The law required the proclamation to be issued by the civil Governor; so that, if these persons were admitted to seats after an election called by a military Governor, Congress thereby recognized as valid a military order of a so-called Executive that unceremoniously set aside a provision of the State civil law, and was anti-republican and a positive usurpation. Again, all the departments of the United States Government had acted on the theory that the Confederate States were in a state of insurrection, and that the Union was unbroken; under this theory, they could come back to the Union only with all the laws unimpaired which they themselves had made for their own government. Congress was as much bound to uphold the laws of Louisiana, in all their extent and in all their parts, as it was to uphold the laws of New York, or any other State, whose civil policy had not been disturbed. Both those persons, however, were admitted to seats—yeas, 92; nays, 44.

The work of constituting the State of Louisiana out of the small portion of her population and of her territory held by the forces of the United States still went on. The proposition now was to hold a so-called State Convention and frame a new Constitution, but its advocates were so few that nothing was accomplished during the year 1863. The object of the military power was to secure such civil authority as to enforce the abolition of slavery; and, until the way was clear to that result, every method of organization was held in abeyance.

Meanwhile, on December 8, 1863, the President of the United States issued a proclamation which contained his plan for making a Union State out of a fragment of a Confederate State, and also granting an amnesty to the general mass of the people on taking an oath of allegiance. His plan was in these words:

"And I do further proclaim, declare, and make known that, whenever, in any of the States of Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, and North Carolina, a number of persons, not less than one tenth in number of the votes cast in such State at the Presidential election of 1860, each having taken the following oath and not having since violated it, and being a qualified voter by the election laws of the State existing immediately before the so-called act of secession, and excluding all others, shall reestablish a State government which shall be republican, and in nowise contravening said oath, such shall be recognized as the true government of the State, and the State shall receive thereunder the benefits of the constitutional provision which declares that The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a republican form of government, and shall protect each of them against invasion; and, on application of the Legislature or the Executive (when the Legislature can not be convened), against domestic violence."

The oath required to be taken was as follows:

"I, ——- ——-, do solemnly swear, in presence of Almighty God, that I will henceforth support, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Union of the States thereunder; and that I will in like manner abide by and faithfully support all acts of Congress, passed during the existing rebellion, with reference to slaves, so long and so far as not repealed, modified, or held void by Congress, or by decision of the Supreme Court, and that I will, in like manner, abide by and faithfully support all proclamations of the President, made during the existing rebellion, having reference to slaves, so long and so far as not modified or declared void by decision of the Supreme Court. So help me God!"

In a message to Congress, of the same date with the preceding proclamation, the President of the United States, after explaining the objects of the proclamation, says:

"In the midst of other cares, however important, we must not lose sight of the fact that the war-power is still our main reliance. To that power alone can we look, for a time, to give confidence to the people in the contested regions that the insurgent power will not again overrun them."

The intelligent reader will observe that this plan of the President of the United States to restore States to the Union, to occupy the places of those which he had been attempting to destroy, does not contain a single feature to secure a republican form of government, nor a single provision authorized by the Constitution of the United States. With his usurped war-power to sustain him in the work of destruction, he found it easy to destroy; but he was powerless to create or to restore. In the former case, he had gone imperiously forward, trampling under foot every American political principle, and breaking through every constitutional limitation. In the latter case, he could not advance one step without recognizing sound political principles and complying with their dictates. On each foundation he must construct, or his work would be like the house founded on the sand.

It will now be shown what the true principles are, and then that the President of the United States perverted them, misstated them, and sought to reach his ends by groundless fabrications—as if he would enforce a fiction or establish a fallacy to be as good as truth. It might be still farther shown, if it had not already become self-evident, that this method was pursued with such a perversity and wickedness as to render it a characteristic feature of that war administration on whose skirts is the blood of more than a million of human beings.

The whole science of a republican government is to be found in this sentence of the Declaration of Independence, made by the representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled, on July 4, 1776. It says:

"That, to secure these rights [certain unalienable rights], governments are instituted among men—deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed; that, whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute a new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness."

Thus it will be seen that civil and political sovereignty was held to be implanted by our Creator in the individual, and no human government has any original, inherent, just sovereignty whatever, and no acquired sovereignty either, beyond that which may be granted to it by the individuals as "most likely to effect their safety and happiness." "Deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed," says the Declaration of Independence. All other powers than those thus derived are not "just powers." Any government exercising powers "not just" has no right to survive. "It is the right of the people to alter or abolish it," says the Declaration of Independence, "and to institute a new government."

Who, then, had a right to "institute" a republican government for Louisiana? No human beings whatever but the people of Louisiana; not the strangers, not the slaves, but the manhood that knew its rights and dared to maintain them. Under what principles, then, could a citizen of Massachusetts, whether clothed in regimentals or a civilian's dress, come into Louisiana and attempt to set up a State government? Under no principles, but only by the power of the invader and the usurper. If the true principles of a republican government had prevailed and could have been enforced when Major-General Butler appeared at New Orleans, he would have been hanged on the first lamp-post, and his successor, Major-General Banks, would have been hanged on the second.

Under what principles, then, could the Government of the United States appear in Louisiana and attempt to institute a State government? As has been said above, it was the act of an invader and a usurper. Yet it proposed to "institute" a republican State government. The absurdity of such intention is too manifest to need argument. How could an invader attempt to "institute" a republican State government? an act which can be done only by the free and unconstrained action of the people themselves. It has been charged that this and every similar act of the President of the United States was in violation of his duty to maintain and observe the requirements and restrictions of the Constitution, and to uphold in each State a republican form of government. To specify, the following is offered as an example. He did "proclaim, declare, and make known—

that, whenever any number of persons, not less than one tenth of the number of voters at the last Presidential election, shall reestablish a State government, which shall be republican [!] and in no wise contravening said oath, such shall be recognized as the true government of the State."

One tenth of the voters can not establish a republican State government, which requires the consent of the people of the State to make its powers just, as has been shown above. Therefore, such a government had not one element of republicanism in it. But what is astonishingly remarkable is the stultification of requiring the one tenth of the people to "reestablish a State government, which shall be republican and in no wise contravening said oath." Either he did not know how a republican State government was "instituted," or, if he knew, then he was a participant in that perversity and wickedness, which was above charged to be the characteristic of his war Administration.

It will now be shown how he sought "to enforce a fiction or establish a fallacy to be as good as truth." Of the government thus established by one tenth of the voters, he says:

"Such shall be recognized as the true government of the State, and the State shall receive thereunder the benefits of the constitutional provision which declares that 'the United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a republican form of government.'"

It is proper here to inquire who and what was the tenth to whom this power to rule the State was to be given. It will be seen, by reference to the proclamation, that each voter of the one tenth, in order to be qualified, is required to take an oath with certain promises in it, which are prescribed by an outside or foreign authority. This condition of itself is fatal to a republican State government, that "derives its just powers from the consent of the governed." Free consent—not cheerful consent, but unconstrained and unconditioned consent—is required that "just powers" may be derived from it. In this instance, the invader prescribes the requisite qualifications of the voter, and makes it a condition that the government established shall "in no wise contravene" certain stipulations expressed in the oath taken to give the qualification. A State government thus formed derives its powers from the consent of the invader, and not "from the consent of the governed." It has no "just powers" whatever. It is a groundless fabrication. Yet the President of the United States declared, "The State shall receive thereunder the benefits of the constitutional provision which declares that 'the United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a republican form of government.'" Is not this an attempt, while pretending to establish, to destroy true republicanism?

Now, let the reader bear in mind that these remarks relate to Louisiana alone, of which more remains to be told; and that there were eleven States that withdrew from the Union, whose restoration was to be effected on this rotten system, in addition to several constitutional amendments, the adoption of which was to be effected and secured by the votes of these groundless fabrications, in which a fiction was to be considered as good as the truth. Having attained all these facts which are yet to be stated, he may begin to form some estimate of the remnants of the Constitution, and of the probable existence of any true union of the States.

To proceed with the narration. Under the above-mentioned proclamation of the President of the United States, Major-General Banks issued at New Orleans, on January 11, 1864, a proclamation for an election of State officers, and for members of a State Constitutional Convention. The State officers, when elected, were to constitute, as the proclamation said, "the civil government of the State under the Constitution and laws of Louisiana, except so much of the said Constitution and laws as recognize, regulate, or relate to slavery, which, being inconsistent with the present condition of public affairs, and plainly inapplicable to any class of persons now existing within its limits, must be suspended." The number of votes given for State officers was 10,270. The population of the State in 1860 was 708,902. The so-called Government was inaugurated on March 4th, and on March 11th he was invested with the powers hitherto exercised by the military Governor for the President of the United States. On the same day Major-General Banks issued an order relative to the election of delegates to a so-called State Convention. The most important provisions of it defined the qualifications of voters. The delegates were elected entirely within the army lines of the forces of the United States. The so-called Convention assembled and adopted a so-called Constitution, declaring "instantaneous, universal, uncompensated, unconditional emancipation of slaves." The meager vote on the Constitution was, for its adoption, 6,836; for its rejection, 1,566. The vote of New Orleans was, yeas 4,664, nays 789. This state of affairs continued after the close of the war. Violent disputes arose as to the validity of the so-called Constitution. The so-called Legislature elected under it adopted Article XIII as an amendment to the Constitution of the United States, prohibiting the existence of slavery in the United States.

It will be seen from these facts that the State of Louisiana was not a republican State instituted by the consent of the governed; that its Legislature was an unconstitutional body, without any "just powers," and that the vote which it gave for the amendment of the Constitution of the United States was no vote at all; for it was given by a body that had no authority to give it, because it had no "just powers" whatever. Yet this vote was counted among those necessary to secure the passage of the constitutional amendment. Was this an attempt to enforce a fiction or to establish the truth? Such are the deeds which go to make up the record of crime against the liberties of mankind.

The proceedings in Arkansas to "institute" a republican State government were inaugurated by an order from the President of the United States to Major-General Steele, commanding the United States forces in Arkansas. At this time the regular government of the State, established by the consent of the people, was in fall operation outside the lines of the United States army. The military order of the President, dated January 20, 1864, said:

"Sundry citizens of the State of Arkansas petitioned me that an election may be held in that State, in which to elect a Governor; that it be assumed at that election, and thenceforward, that the Constitution and laws of the State, as before the rebellion, are in full force, except that the Constitution is so modified as to declare that there shall be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude," etc.

The order then directs the election to be held for State officers, prescribes the qualifications of voters and the oath to be taken, and directs the General to administer to the officers thus chosen an oath to support the Constitution of the United States, and the "modified Constitution of the State of Arkansas," when they shall be declared qualified and empowered immediately to enter upon the duties of their offices.

The reader can scarcely fail to notice the novel method here adopted to modify or amend the State Constitution. It should be called the process by "assumption"—that is, assume it to be modified, and it is so modified. Then the President orders the officers-elect to be required to swear, on their oath, to support "the modified Constitution of the State of Arkansas." Now, unless the Constitution was thus modified by assuming it to be modified, these State officers were required by oath to support that which did not exist. But it was not so modified. No Constitution or other instrument in the world containing a grant of powers can be modified by assumption, unless it be the Constitution of the United States, as shown by recent experience. Yet the chief object for which these officers were elected and qualified was to carry out these so-called modifications of the State Constitution. This adds another to the deeds of darkness done in the name of republicanism.

Meantime some persons in the northern part of Arkansas, acting under the proclamation of December 8, 1863, got together a so-called State Convention on January 8, 1864, and adopted a revised Constitution, containing the slavery prohibition, etc. This was ordered to be submitted to a popular vote, and at the same time State officers were to be elected. President Lincoln acceded to these proceedings after they had been placed under the direction of the military commander, General Steele. The election was held, the Constitution received twelve thousand votes, and the State officers were declared to be elected. Then Arkansas came forth a so-called republican State, "instituted" by military authority, and, of course, received the benefit of the constitutional provision, which declares that "the United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a republican form of government." It should be added that Arkansas, thus "instituted" a State, was regarded by the Government of the United States as competent to give as valid a vote as New York, Massachusetts, or any other Northern State, for the ratification of Article XIII, as an amendment to the Constitution of the United States, prohibiting the existence of slavery in the United States. The vote was thus given; it was counted, and served to make up the exact number deemed by the managers to be necessary. Thus was fraud and falsehood triumphant over popular rights and fundamental law.

The perversion of true republican principles was greater in Virginia than in any other State, through the coöperation of the Government of the United States. In the winter of 1860-'61 a special session of the Legislature of the State convened at Richmond and passed an act directing the people to elect delegates to a State Convention to be held on February 14, 1861. The Convention assembled, and was occupied with the subject of Federal relations and the adjustment of difficulties until the call for troops by President Lincoln was made, when an ordinance of secession was passed. The contiguity of the northwestern counties of the State to Ohio and Pennsylvania led to the manifestation of much opposition to the withdrawal of the State from the Union, and the determination to reorganize that portion into a separate State. This resulted in the assembling of a so-called convention of delegates at Wheeling on June 11th. One of its first acts was to provide for a reorganization of the State government of Virginia by declaring its offices vacant, and the appointment of new officers throughout. This new organization assumed to be the true representative of the State of Virginia, and, after various fortunes, was recognized as such by President Lincoln, as will be presently seen. The next act of the Convention was "to provide for the formation of a new State out of a portion of the territory of this State." Under this act delegates were elected to a so-called Constitutional Convention which framed a so-called Constitution for the new State of West Virginia, which was submitted to a vote of the people in April, 1862, and carried by a large majority of that section. Meantime the Governor of the reorganized government of Virginia, above mentioned, issued his proclamation calling for an election of members, and the assembling of an extra session of the so-called Legislature. This body assembled on May 6, 1862, and, adopting the new Federal process of assumption, it assumed to be the Legislature of the State of Virginia. This body, or Legislature, so called, immediately passed an act giving its consent to the formation of a new State out of the territory of Virginia. The formal act of consent and the draft of the new Constitution of West Virginia above mentioned were ordered by this so-called Legislature to be sent to the Congress of the United States, then in session, with the request that "the said new State be admitted into the Union." On December 31, 1862, the President of the United States approved an act of Congress entitled "An act for the admission of the State of West Virginia into the Union," etc. The act recited as follows:

"Whereas, The Legislature of Virginia, by an act passed May 13, 1862, did give its consent to the formation of a new State within the jurisdiction of the said State of Virginia, to be known by the name of West Virginia," etc.

Again it recites:

"And whereas both the Convention and the Legislature aforesaid have requested that the new State should be admitted into the Union, and the Constitution aforesaid being republican in form, Congress doth hereby consent that the said forty-eight counties may be formed into a separate and independent State."

It were well to pause for a moment and consider these proceedings in the light of fundamental republican principles. The State of Virginia was not a confederation, but a republic, or nation. Its government was instituted with the consent of the governed, and its powers, therefore, were "just powers." When the State Convention at Richmond passed an ordinance of secession, which was subsequently ratified by sixty thousand majority, it was as valid an act for the people of Virginia as was ever passed by a representative body. The legally expressed decision of the majority was the true voice of the State. When, therefore, disorderly persons in the northwestern counties of the State assembled and declared the ordinance of secession "to be null and void," they rose up against the authority of the State. When they proceeded to elect delegates to a convention to resist the act of the State, and that Convention assembled and organized and proceeded to action, an insurrection against the government of Virginia was begun. When the Convention next declared the State offices to be vacant, and proceeded to fill them by the choice of Francis H. Pierpont for Governor, and other State officers, assuming itself to be the true State Convention of Virginia, it not only declared what notoriously did not exist, but it committed an act of revolution. And, when the so-called State officers elected by it entered upon their duties, they inaugurated a revolution. The subsequent organization of the State of West Virginia and its separation from the State of Virginia were acts of secession. Thus we have, in these movements, insurrection, revolution, and secession.

The reader, in his simplicity, may naturally expect to find the Government of the United States arrayed, with all its military forces, against these illegitimate proceedings. Oh, no! It made all the difference in the world, with the ministers of that Government, "whose ox it was that was gored by the bull." She was the nursing-mother to the whole thing, and to insure its vitality fed it, not, like the fabled bird, with her own blood, but by the butchery of the mother of States. The words of the Constitution of the United States applicable to this case are these:

"No new State shall be formed or erected within the jurisdiction of any other State; nor any State be formed by the junction of two or more States, or parts of States, without the consent of the Legislatures of the States concerned, as well as of the Congress." [61]

Will any intelligent person assert that the consent of the State of Virginia was given to the formation of this new State, or that the government of Francis H. Pierpont held the true and lawful jurisdiction of the State of Virginia? Yet the Congress of the United States asserted in the act above quoted that "the Legislature of Virginia did give its consent to the formation of a new State within the jurisdiction of the State of Virginia." This was not true, but was an attempt, by an act of Congress, to aid a fraud and perpetuate a monstrous usurpation. For there is no grant of power to Congress in the Constitution nor in the American theory of government to justify it. If it is said that the government of Francis H. Pierpont was the only one recognized by Congress as the government of the State of Virginia, that does not alter the fact. The recognition of Congress can not make a State of an organization which is not a State. There is no grant of power to Congress in the Constitution for that purpose. If it is said that the government of Francis H. Pierpont was established by the only qualified voters in the State of Virginia, that is as equally unfounded as the other assertions. Neither the Congress of the United States nor the Government of the United States can determine the qualifications of voters at an election for delegates to a State Constitutional Convention, or for the choice of State officers. There was no grant of power either to the President or to Congress for that purpose. All these efforts were usurpations, by which it was sought, through groundless fabrications, to reach certain ends, and they add to the multitude of deeds which constitute the crime committed against States and the liberties of the people.

When the question of the admission of West Virginia was before the
House of Representatives of the United States Congress, Mr. Thaddeus
Stevens, of Pennsylvania, declared, with expiatory frankness, that he
would not stultify himself by claiming the act to be constitutional.
He said, "We know that it is not constitutional, but it is necessity."

It now became necessary for the Government of Virginia, represented by Francis H. Pierpont, to emigrate; for the new State of West Virginia embraced the territory in which he was located. He therefore departed, with his carpet-bag, and located at Alexandria, on the Potomac, which became the seat of government of so-called East Virginia. On February 13, 1864, a convention, consisting of a representative from each of the ten counties in part or wholly under the control of the United States forces, assembled at Alexandria to amend the Constitution of the State of Virginia. Some sections providing for the abolition of slavery were declared to be added to the Constitution, and the so-called Convention adjourned. Nothing of importance occurred until after the occupation of Richmond by the United States forces. On May 9, 1865, President Johnson issued an "Executive order to reestablish the authority of the United States, and execute the laws within the geographical limits known as the State of Virginia." The order closed in these words:

"That, to carry into effect the guarantee of the Federal Constitution of a republican form of State government, and afford the advantage of the security of domestic laws, as well as to complete the reestablishment of the authority of the laws of the United States and the full and complete restoration of peace within the limits aforesaid, Francis H. Pierpont, Governor of the State of Virginia, will be aided by the Federal Government, so far as may be necessary, in the lawful measures which he may take for the extension and administration of the State government throughout the geographical limits of said State."

This order recognized the factitious organization, which was begun in West Virginia and then transplanted to Alexandria, as the true government of the State of Virginia, and, by the aid of the United States Government, was now removed to Richmond and set up there. No person was allowed to take any part in this government or to vote under it unless he had previously taken the purgatorial oath above mentioned, and had not held office under the Confederate or any State government. Thus, the taking of this oath, which was prescribed by the President of the United States, became the most important of the qualifications of a voter. Here was a condition prescribed by a foreign authority as necessary to be fulfilled before the first act could be done by a citizen relative to his State government. Such a government was not republican, for its powers were not derived from the consent of the governed. Its powers were derived from voters who had, under oath, said:

"I will abide by and faithfully support all acts of Congress, passed during the existing rebellion with reference to slaves, so long and so far as not repealed, modified, or held void by Congress or by decision of the Supreme Court; and that I will in like manner abide by and faithfully support all proclamations of the President, made during the existing rebellion having reference to slaves, so long and so far as not modified or declared void by decision of the Supreme Court."

Such a State government was not in the interest of the people, but in the interest of the United States Government. The true republican organization, which had been "instituted" by the free "consent of the governed to effect their safety and happiness," had been repudiated by the Government of the United States as in rebellion to it; and this fiction had been set up, not by the free consent of the people, which alone could give to it any "just powers," not "to effect their safety and happiness," for which alone a republican State government can be instituted, but solely to secure the safety and supremacy of the Government of the United States. The qualification of the voter was prescribed by the United States Government, and the oath required him to recognize allegiance to the Union as supreme over that to the State of which he was a citizen. Thus the voters under the State government of Virginia were required first to protect the Government of the United States, and then they were at liberty to look after their own interests through the State government.

Now, it is charged that such acts on the part of the United States Government were not only entirely unconstitutional, but they caused the complete subversion of the States. The Constitution of the United States knows States in the Union only as they are republican States. The Government of the United States was conscious of this fact, and publicly recognized it when it promised to guarantee a republican form of government to each one that it sought to reconstruct. But it violated the Constitution when it sought to place in the Union mere fictions which had' not the first element of a republic, which were groundless fabrications of its own minions that could not have existed a day without the military support which they received. Further, it is to be remembered that it does not come within the grants of the Constitution, consequently not within the powers of the Government of the United States, to institute a republican form of government at any time or in any place. Such an act is neither contemplated nor known in the Constitution, as such a government can be instituted only by the free consent of those who are to be governed by it. Any interference on the part of the United States to limit, modify, or control this consent goes directly to the nature and objects of the State government, and it ceases to be republican. To admit a State under such a government is entirely unauthorized, revolutionary, subversive of the Constitution, and destructive of the Union of States.

[Footnote 61: Constitution of the United States, Article IV, section 3.]


    Address to the Army of Eastern Virginia by the President.—Army of
    General Pope.—Position of McClellan.—Advance of General
    Jackson.—Atrocious Orders of General Pope.—Letter of McClellan on
    the Conduct of the War.—Letter of the President to General Lee.—
    Battle of Cedar Run.—Results of the Engagement.—Reënforcements to
    the Enemy.—Second Battle of Manassas.—Capture of Manassas
    Junction.—Captured Stores.—The Old Battle-Field.—Advance of
    General Longstreet.—Attack on him.—Attack on General Jackson.—
    Darkness of the Night.—Battle at Ox Hill.—Losses of the Enemy.

This defeat of McClellan's army led me to issue the following address:

"RICHMOND, July 5, 1862.

"To the Army of Eastern Virginia.

"SOLDIERS: I congratulate you on the series of brilliant victories which, under the favor of Divine Providence, you have lately won, and, as the President of the Confederate States, do heartily tender to you the thanks of the country, whose just cause you have so skillfully and heroically served. Ten days ago an invading army, vastly superior to you in numbers and the materials of war, closely beleaguered your capital and vauntingly proclaimed its speedy conquest; you marched to attack the enemy in his intrenchments; with well-directed movements and death-defying valor you charged upon him in his strong positions, drove him from field to field over a distance of more than thirty-five miles, and despite his reënforcements compelled him to seek safety under the cover of his gunboats, where he now lies cowering before the army so lately derided and threatened with entire subjugation. The fortitude with which you have borne toil and privation, the gallantry with which you have entered into each successive battle, must have been witnessed to be fully appreciated; but a grateful people will not fail to recognize you, and to bear you in loved remembrance. Well may it be said of you that you have 'done enough for glory'; but duty to a suffering country and to the cause of constitutional liberty claims from you yet further effort. Let it be your pride to relax in nothing which can promote your future efficiency; your one great object being to drive the invader from your soil, and, carrying your standards beyond the outer boundaries of the Confederacy, to wring from an unscrupulous foe the recognition of your birthright, community independence.


After the retreat of General McClellan to Westover, his army remained inactive about a month. His front was closely watched by a brigade of cavalry, and preparations made to resist a renewal of his attempt upon Richmond from his new base. The main body of our army awaited the development of his intentions, and no important event took place.

Meantime, another army of the enemy, under Major-General Pope, advanced southward from Washington, and crossed the Rappahannock as if to seize Gordonsville, and move thence upon Richmond. Contemporaneously the enemy appeared in force at Fredericksburg, and threatened the railroad from Gordonsville to Richmond, apparently for the purpose of coöperating with the movements of General Pope. To meet the advance of the latter, and restrain, as far as possible, the atrocities which he threatened to perpetrate upon our defenseless citizens, General Jackson, with his own and Ewell's division, was ordered to proceed on July 13th toward Gordonsville.

The nature of the atrocities here alluded to may be inferred from the orders of Major-General Pope, which were as follows:



"Hereafter, as far as practicable, the troops of this command will subsist upon the country in which their operations are carried on. In all cases supplies for this purpose will be taken by the officers to whose department they properly belong, under the orders of the commanding officer of the troops for whose use they are intended. Vouchers will be given to the owners, stating on their face that they will be payable at the close of the war upon sufficient testimony being furnished that such owners have been loyal citizens of the United States since the date of the vouchers. . . .

"By command of Major-General Pope:


"Colonel, A. A.-General, and Chief of Staff."



"Hereafter, in any operations of the cavalry forces in this command, no supply or baggage trains of any description will be used, unless so stated especially in the order for the movement. Two days' cooked rations will be carried on the persons of the men, and all villages and neighborhoods through which they pass will be laid under contribution in the manner specified by General Orders, No. 5, current series, from these headquarters, for the subsistence of men and horses. . . .

"By command of Major-General Pope:


"Colonel, A. A.-General, and Chief of Staff."



"The people of the Valley of the Shenandoah and throughout the region of operations of this army, living along the lines of railroad and telegraph, and along routes of travel in the rear of United States forces, are notified that they will be held responsible for any injury done the track, line, or road, or for any attacks upon the trains or straggling soldiers, by bands of guerrillas in their neighborhood. . . . Evil-disposed persons in the rear of our armies, who do not themselves engage directly in these lawless acts, encourage by refusing to interfere, or give any information by which such acts can be prevented or the perpetrators punished. Safety of the life and property of all persons living in the rear of our advancing army depends upon the maintenance of peace and quiet among themselves, and upon the unmolested movements through their midst of all pertaining to the military service. They are to understand distinctly that the security of travel is their only warrant of personal safety. . . . If a soldier or legitimate follower of the army be fired upon from any house, the house shall be razed to the ground and the inhabitants sent prisoners to the headquarters of this army. If such an outrage occur at any place distant from settlements, the people within five miles around shall be held accountable, and made to pay an indemnity sufficient for the case; and any person detected in such outrages, either during the act or at any time afterward, shall be shot, without waiting civil process. . . .

"By command of Major-General Pope:




"Commanders of army corps, divisions, brigades, and detached commands will proceed immediately to arrest all disloyal male citizens within their lines, or within their reach in the rear of their respective stations.

"Such as are willing to take the oath of allegiance to the United States, and will furnish sufficient security for its observance, shall be permitted to remain at their homes, and pursue in good faith their accustomed avocations. Those who refuse shall be conducted south beyond the extreme pickets of the army, and be notified that, if found again anywhere within our lines or at any point in the rear, they will be considered spies, and subjected to the extreme rigor of the military law. . . .

"By command of Major-General Pope:


"Colonel, A. A.-General, and Chief of Staff."

Thus was announced a policy of pillage, outrage upon unarmed, peaceable people, arson, and ruthless insult to the defenseless. Had the vigor of the campaign been equal to the bombastic manifesto of this disgrace to the profession of arms, the injuries inflicted would have been more permanent; the conduct could scarcely have been more brutal.

In recurring to the letter of General George B. McClellan, written at "Camp near Harrison's Landing, Virginia, July 7, 1862," to the President of the United States, one must be struck with the strong contrast between the suggestions of General McClellan and the orders of General Pope. The inquiry naturally arises, Was it because of this difference that Pope had been assigned to the command of the Army of Virginia? McClellan wrote:

"This rebellion has assumed the character of a war; as such it should be regarded, and it should be conducted upon the highest principles known to Christian civilization. It should not be a war looking to the subjugation of the people of any State, in any event. It should not be at all a war upon population, but against armed forces and political organizations. Neither confiscation of property, political executions of persons, territorial organizations of States, or forcible abolition of slavery, should be contemplated for a moment.

"In prosecuting the war, all private property and unarmed persons should be strictly protected, subject only to the necessity of military operations; all private property taken for military use should be paid or receipted for; pillage and waste should be treated as high crimes; all unnecessary trespass sternly prohibited, and offensive demeanor by the military toward citizens promptly rebuked. Military arrests should not be tolerated, except in places where active hostilities exist; and oaths, not required by enactments constitutionally, should be neither demanded nor received."

Had these views been accepted, and the conduct of the Government of the United States been in accordance with them, the most shameful chapters in American history could not have been written, and some of the more respectable newspapers of the North would not have had the apprehensions they expressed of the evils which would befall the country when an army habituated to thieving should be disbanded.

On the reception of copies of the orders issued by General Pope, inserted above, I addressed to General Lee, commanding our army in Virginia, the following letter:

"RICHMOND, VIRGINIA, July 31, 1862.

"SIR: On the 23d of this month a cartel for a general exchange of prisoners of war was signed between Major-General D. H. Hill, in behalf of the Confederate States, and Major-General John A. Dix, in behalf of the United States.

"By the terms of that cartel, it is stipulated that all prisoners of war hereafter taken shall be discharged on parole until exchanged.

"Scarcely had that cartel been signed, when the military authorities of the United States commenced a practice changing the character of the war, from such as becomes civilized nations, into a campaign of indiscriminate robbery and murder.

"The general order issued by the Secretary of War of the United States, in the city of Washington, on the very day that the cartel was signed in Virginia, directs the military commanders of the United States to take the private property of our people for the convenience and use of their armies, without compensation.

"The general order issued by Major-General Pope, on the 23d of July, the day after the signing of the cartel, directs the murder of our peaceful inhabitants as spies, if found quietly tilling their farms in his rear, even outside of his lines; and one of his brigadier-generals, Steinwehr, has seized upon innocent and peaceful inhabitants, to be held as hostages, to the end that they may be murdered in cold blood if any of his soldiers are killed by some unknown persons, whom he designates as 'bushwhackers.'

"Under this state of facts, this Government has issued the inclosed general order, recognizing General Pope and his commissioned officers to be in the position which they have chosen for themselves, that of robbers and murderers, and not that of public enemies, entitled, if captured, to be considered as prisoners of war.

"We find ourselves driven by our enemies in their steady progress toward a practice which we abhor, and which we are vainly struggling to avoid. Some of the military authorities of the United States seem to suppose that better success will attend a savage war in which no quarter is to be given and no sex to be spared than has hitherto been secured by such hostilities as are alone recognized to be lawful by civilized men in modern times.

"For the present, we renounce our right of retaliation on the innocent, and shall continue to treat the private enlisted soldiers of General Pope's army as prisoners of war; but if, after notice to the Government at Washington of our confining repressive measures to the punishment only of commissioned officers, who are willing participants in these crimes, these savage practices are continued, we shall reluctantly be forced to the last resort of accepting the war on the terms chosen by our foes, until the outraged voice of a common humanity forces a respect for the recognized rules of war.

"While these facts would justify our refusal to execute the generous cartel, by which we have consented to liberate an excess of thousands of prisoners held by us beyond the number held by the enemy, a sacred regard to plighted faith, shrinking from the mere semblance of breaking a promise, prevents our resort to this extremity. Nor do we desire to extend to any other forces of the enemy the punishment merited alone by General Pope and such commissioned officers as choose to participate in the execution of his infamous orders.

"You are therefore instructed to communicate to the commander-in-chief of the armies of the United States the contents of this letter and a copy of the inclosed general order, to the end that he may be notified of our intention not to consider any officers hereafter captured from General Pope's army as prisoners of war. Very respectfully, yours, etc.,


When General Jackson arrived near Gordonsville on July 19, 1862, he was at his request reënforced by Major-General A. P. Hill. Receiving information that only a part of General Pope's army was at Culpeper Court-House, General Jackson, hoping to defeat it before reënforcements should arrive, moved in that direction the divisions of Ewell, Hill, and Jackson, on August 7th, from their encampments near Gordonsville. As the enemy's cavalry displayed unusual activity and the train of Jackson's division was seriously endangered, General Lawton with his brigade was ordered to guard it. On August 9th Jackson arrived within eight miles of Culpeper Court-House and found the foe in his front near Cedar Run and a short distance west and north of Slaughter Mountain. When first seen, the cavalry in large force occupied a ridge to the right of the road. A battery opened upon it and soon forced it to retire. Our fire was responded to by some guns beyond the ridge from which the advance had just been driven. Soon after, the cavalry returned to the position where it was first seen, and General Early was ordered forward, keeping near the Culpeper road, while General Ewell with his two remaining brigades diverged from the road to the right, advancing along the western slope of Slaughter Mountain. General Early, forming his brigade in line of battle, moved into the open field, and, passing a short distance to the right of the road but parallel to it, pushed forward, driving the opposing cavalry before him to the crest of a hill which overlooked the ground between his troops and the opposite hill, along which the enemy's batteries were posted, and opened upon him as soon as he reached the eminence. Early retired his troops under the protection of the hill, and a small battery of ours, in advance of his right, opened. Meantime General Winder with Jackson's brigade was placed on the left of the road, Campbell's brigade, Lieutenant-Colonel Garnett commanding, being on the left, Taliaferro's parallel to the road, supporting the batteries, and Winder's own brigade under Colonel Roland in reserve. The battle opened with a fierce fire of artillery, which continued about two hours, during which Brigadier-General Charles S. Winder, while directing the positions of his batteries, received a wound, from the effects of which he expired in a few hours. General Jackson thus spoke of him in his report:

"It is difficult, within the proper reserve of an official report, to do justice to the merits of this accomplished officer. Urged by the medical director to take no part in the movements of the day, because of the then enfeebled state of his health, his ardent patriotism and military pride could bear no restraint. Richly endowed with those qualities of mind and person which fit an officer for command, and which attract the admiration and excite the enthusiasm of troops, he was rapidly rising to the front rank of his profession. His loss has been severely felt."

Charles Winder had attracted my special notice, when I was Secretary of War of the United States, by an act of heroism and devotion to duty which it gives me pleasure to record. A regiment of artillery, in which he was a second-lieutenant, being under orders for California, embarked on the steamer San Francisco, and in a storm became disabled; drifting helplessly at sea, she was approached by a bark which, to give succor, hove to. Not being able to receive all the passengers, the commissioned officers left, as the Colonel naively reported, in the order of their rank. Winder alone remained with the troops; in great discomfort and by strenuous exertion the wreck was kept afloat until a vessel bound for Liverpool came to the relief of the sufferers.

Arriving at Liverpool, Winder left the soldiers there, went to the American consul in London, got means to provide for their needs, and returned with them. Soon afterward, four regiments were added to the army, and, for his good conduct so full of promise, he was nominated to be a captain of infantry, and, notwithstanding his youth, was confirmed and commissioned accordingly. He died manifesting the same spirit as on the wreck—that which holds life light when weighed against honor.

The enemy's infantry advanced about 5 P.M., and attacked General Early in front, while another body, concealed by the inequality of the ground, moved upon his right. Thomas's brigade, of A. P. Hill's division, which had now arrived, was sent to his support, and the contest soon became animated. In the mean time the main body of the opposing army, under cover of a wood and the undulations of the field, gained the left of Jackson's division, now commanded by Brigadier-General Taliaferro, and poured a destructive fire into its flank and rear. Campbell's brigade fell back in confusion, exposing the flank of Taliaferro's, which also gave way, as did the left of Early's. The rest of his brigade, however, firmly held its ground.

Winder's brigade, with Branch's, of A. P. Hill's division, on its right, advanced promptly to the support of Jackson's division, and after a sanguinary struggle the assailants were repulsed with loss. Pender's and Archer's brigades, also of Hill's division, came up on the left of Winder's, and by a general charge the foe was driven back in confusion, leaving the ground covered with his dead and wounded. General Ewell, with the two brigades on the extreme right, had been prevented from advancing by the fire of our own artillery, which swept his approach to the enemy's left. The obstacle being now removed, he pressed forward under a hot fire, and came gallantly into action. Repulsed and vigorously followed on our left and center, and now hotly pressed on our right, the whole line of the enemy gave way, and was soon in full retreat. Night had now set in, but General Jackson, desiring to enter Culpeper Court-House before morning, determined to pursue. Hill's division led the advance; but, owing to the darkness, it was compelled to move slowly and with caution.

The enemy was found about a mile and a half in the rear of the field of battle, and information was received that reënforcements had arrived. General Jackson thereupon halted for the night, and the next day, becoming satisfied that the enemy's force had been so largely increased as to render a further advance on his part imprudent, he sent his wounded to the rear, and proceeded to bury the dead and collect the arms from the battlefield. On the 11th the enemy asked and received permission to bury those of his dead not already interred. General Jackson remained in position during the day, and at night returned to the vicinity of Gordonsville. In this engagement 400 prisoners, including a brigadier-general were captured, and 5,300 stand of small-arms, one piece of artillery, several caissons, and three colors, fell into our hands. Our killed were 229, wounded 1,047, total 1,276. The loss on the other side exceeded 1,500, of whom nearly 300 were taken prisoners.

The victory of Cedar Run effectually checked the invader for the time; but it soon became apparent that his army was receiving a large increase. The corps of Major-General Burnside, from North Carolina, which had reached Fredericksburg, was reported to have moved up the Rappahannock, a few days after the battle, to unite with General Pope, and a part of General McClellan's army had left Westover for the same purpose. It therefore seemed that active operations on the James were no longer contemplated, and that the most effectual way to relieve Richmond from any danger of an attack would be to reënforce General Jackson and advance upon General Pope.

Accordingly, on August 13th, Longstreet, Anderson, and Stuart were ordered to proceed to Gordonsville. On the 16th the troops began to move from the vicinity of Gordonsville toward the Rapidan, on the north side of which, extending along the Orange and Alexandria Railroad in the direction of Culpeper Court-House, the army of invasion lay in great force. It was determined, with the cavalry, to destroy the railroad-bridge over the Rappahannock in rear of the enemy, while Jackson and Longstreet crossed the Rapidan and attacked his left flank. But, the enemy becoming apprised of our design, hastily retreated beyond the Rappahannock. On the 21st our forces moved toward that river, and some sharp skirmishing ensued with our cavalry that had crossed at Beverly's Ford. As it had been determined in the mean time not to attempt the passage of the river at that point with the army, the cavalry withdrew to the south side. Soon afterward the enemy appeared in great strength on the opposite bank, and an active fire was kept up during the rest of the day between his artillery and the batteries attached to Jackson's leading division, under Brigadier-General Taliaferro.

But, as our positions on the south bank of the Rappahannock were commanded by those on the north bank, and which served to guard all the fords, General Lee determined to seek a more favorable place to cross higher up the river, and thus gain his adversary's right. Accordingly, General Longstreet was directed to leave Kelly's Ford on the 21st, and take the position in the vicinity of Beverly's Ford and the Orange and Alexandria Railroad bridge, then held by Jackson, in order to mask the movement of the latter, who was instructed to ascend the river. On the 22d Jackson proceeded up the Rappahannock, leaving Trimble's brigade near Freeman's Ford to protect his train. In the afternoon Longstreet sent General Hood with his own and Whiting's brigade to relieve Trimble. Hood had just reached the position, when he and Trimble were attacked by a considerable force which had crossed at Freeman's Ford. After a short but spirited engagement, the enemy was driven precipitately over the river with heavy loss. General Jackson attempted to cross at Warrenton Springs Ford, but was interrupted by a heavy rain, which caused the river to rise so rapidly as to be impassable for infantry and artillery, and he withdrew the troops that had reached the opposite side. General Stuart, who had been directed to cut the railroad in rear of General Pope's army, crossed the Rappahannock on the morning of the 22d, about six miles above the Springs, with parts of Lee's and Robertson's brigades. He reached Catlet's Station that night, but was prevented destroying the railroad-bridge there by the same storm that arrested Jackson's movements. He captured more than three hundred prisoners, including a number of officers. Apprehensive of the effect of the rain upon the streams, he recrossed the Rappahannock at Warrenton Springs. The rise of the river, rendering the lower fords impassable, enabled the enemy to concentrate his main body opposite General Jackson, and on the 24th Longstreet was ordered by General Lee to proceed to his support. Although retarded by the swollen condition of Hazel River and other tributaries of the Rappahannock, he reached Jeffersonton in the afternoon. General Jackson's command lay between that place and the Spring's Ford, and a warm cannonade was progressing between the batteries of General A. P. Hill's division and those in his front. The enemy was massed between Warrenton and the Springs, and guarded the fords of the Rappahannock as far above as Waterloo.

The army of General McClellan had left Westover, and a part had marched to join General Pope. It was reported that the rest would soon follow. The greater part of the army of General Cox had also been withdrawn from the Kanawha Valley for the same purpose. Two brigades of D. H. Hill's division, under General Ripley, had already been ordered from Richmond, and the remainder were to follow; also, McLaws's division, two brigades under General Walker, and Hampton's cavalry brigade. In pursuance of the plan of operations now determined upon, Jackson was directed, on the 25th, to cross above Waterloo and move around the enemy's right, so as to strike the Orange and Alexandria Railroad in his rear. Longstreet, in the mean time, was to divert his attention by threatening him in front, and to follow Jackson as soon as the latter should be sufficiently advanced.

General Jackson crossed the Rappahannock on the 25th, about four miles above Waterloo, and, after sunset on the 26th, reached the railroad at Bristoe Station. At Gainesville he was joined by General Stuart, with the brigades of Robertson and Fitzhugh Lee, who continued with him during his operations, and effectually guarded both his flanks.

General Jackson was now between the large army of General Pope and Washington City, without having encountered any considerable force. At Bristoe two trains of cars were captured and a few prisoners taken. Determining, notwithstanding the darkness of the night and the long and arduous march of the day, to capture the depot of the enemy at Manassas Junction, about seven miles distant, General Trimble volunteered to proceed at once to that place with the Twenty-first North Carolina and the Twenty-first Georgia Regiments. The offer was accepted, and, to render success more certain, General Stuart was directed to accompany the expedition with part of his cavalry. About midnight the place was taken with little difficulty. Eight pieces of artillery, with their horses, ammunition, and equipments were captured; more than three hundred prisoners, one hundred and seventy-five horses, besides those belonging to the artillery, two hundred new tents, and immense quantities of commissary and quartermaster's stores, fell into our hands.

Ewell's division, with the Fifth Virginia Cavalry under Colonel Bosser, were left at Bristoe Station, and the rest of the command arrived at the Junction early on the 27th. Soon a considerable force of the enemy, under Brigadier-General Taylor, of New Jersey, approached from the direction of Alexandria, and pushed forward boldly to recover the stores. After a sharp engagement he was routed and driven back, leaving his killed and wounded on the field. The troops remained at Manassas Junction during the day, and supplied themselves with everything they required. In the afternoon, two brigades advanced against General Ewell, at Bristoe, from the direction of Warrenton Junction, but were broken and repulsed. Their place was soon supplied with fresh troops, but it was apparent that the commander had now become aware of the situation of affairs, and had turned upon General Jackson with his whole force. General Ewell, perceiving the strength of the column, withdrew and rejoined General Jackson, having first destroyed the railroad-bridge over Broad Run. The enemy halted at Bristoe. General Jackson, having a much inferior force to General Pope, retired from Manassas Junction and took a position west of the turnpike-road from Warrenton to Alexandria, where he could more readily unite with the approaching column of Longstreet. Having supplied the wants of his troops, he was compelled, through lack of transportation, to destroy the rest of the captured property. Many thousand pounds of bacon, a thousand barrels of corned beef, two thousand barrels of salt pork, and two thousand barrels of floor, besides other property of great value, were burned.

During the night of the 27th of August Taliaferro's division crossed the turnpike near Groveton and halted on the west side, near the battle-field of July 21, 1861, where it was joined on the 28th by the divisions of Hill and Ewell. During the afternoon the enemy, approaching from the direction of Warrenton down the turnpike toward Alexandria, exposed his left flank, and General Jackson determined to attack him. A fierce and sanguinary conflict ensued which continued until about 9 P.M., when he slowly fell back and left us in possession of the field, the loss on both sides was heavy. On the next morning (the 29th) the enemy had taken a position to interpose his army between General Jackson and Alexandria, and about 10 A.M. opened with artillery upon the right of Jackson's line. The troops of the latter were disposed in rear of Groveton, along the line of the unfinished branch of the Manassas Gap Railroad, and extending from a point a short distance west of the turnpike toward Sudley Mill, Jackson's division under Brigadier-General Starke being on the right, Swell's under General Lawton in the center, and A. P. Hill on the left. The attacking columns were evidently concentrating on Jackson with the design of overwhelming him before the arrival of Longstreet. This latter officer left his position opposite Warrenton Springs on the 26th and marched to join Jackson. On the 28th, arriving at Thoroughfare Gap, he found the enemy prepared to dispute his progress. Holding the eastern extremity of the pass with a large force, the enemy directed a heavy fire of artillery upon the road leading to it and upon the sides of the mountain. An attempt was made to turn his right, but, before our troops reached their destination, he advanced to the attack, and, being vigorously repulsed, withdrew to his position at the eastern end of the Gap, keeping up an active fire of artillery until dark. He then retreated. On the morning of the 29th Longstreet's command resumed its march, the sound of cannon at Manassas announcing that Jackson was already engaged. The head of the column came upon the field in rear of the enemy's left, which had already opened with artillery upon Jackson's right, as above stated. Longstreet immediately placed some of his batteries in position, but, before he could complete his dispositions to attack the force before him, it withdrew to another part of the field. He then took position on the right of Jackson, Hood's two brigades, supported by Evans, being deployed across the turnpike and at right angles to it. These troops were supported on the left by three brigades under General Wilcox, and by a like force on the right under General Kemper. D. B. Jones's division formed the extreme right of the line, resting on the Manassas Gap Railroad. The cavalry guarded our right and left flanks, that on the right being under General Stuart in person. After the arrival of Longstreet the enemy changed his position and began to concentrate opposite Jackson's left, opening a brisk artillery-fire, which was responded to by some of A. P. Hill's batteries.

Soon afterward General Stuart reported the approach of a large force from the direction of Bristoe Station, threatening Longstreet's right. But no serious attack was made, and, after firing a few shots, that force withdrew. Meanwhile a large column advanced to assail the left of Jackson's position, occupied by the division of General A. P. Hill. The attack was received by his troops with their accustomed steadiness, and the battle raged with great fury. The enemy was repeatedly repulsed, but again pressed on the attack with fresh troops. Once he succeeded in penetrating an interval between General Gregg's brigade on the extreme left and that of General Thomas, but was quickly driven back with great slaughter by the Fourteenth South Carolina Regiment, then in reserve, and the Forty-ninth Georgia of Thomas's brigade. The contest was close and obstinate; the combatants sometimes delivered their fire at a few paces. General Gregg, who was most exposed, was reënforced by Hays's brigade under Colonel Forno. Gregg had successfully and most gallantly resisted the attack until the ammunition of his brigade was exhausted and all his field-officers but two killed or wounded. The reënforcement was of like high-tempered steel, and together in hand-to-hand fight they held their post until they were relieved, after several hours of severe fighting, by Early's brigade and the Eighth Louisiana Regiment. General Early drove the enemy back with heavy loss, and pursued about two hundred yards beyond the line of battle, when he was recalled to the position on the railroad, where Thomas, Pender, and Archer had firmly held their ground against every attack. While the battle was raging on Jackson's left, Hood and Evans were ordered by Longstreet to advance, but, before the order could be obeyed, Hood was himself attacked, and his command became at once warmly engaged. The enemy was repulsed by Hood after a severe contest, and fell back, closely followed by our troops.

The battle continued until 9 P.M., the foe retreating until he reached a strong position, which he held with a large force. Our troops remained in their advanced position until early next morning, when they were withdrawn to their first line. One piece of artillery, several stands of colors, and a number of prisoners were captured. Our loss was severe. On the morning of the 30th the enemy again advanced, and skirmishing began along the line. The troops of Jackson and Longstreet maintained their position of the previous day. At noon the firing of the batteries ceased, and all was quiet for some hours.

About 3 P.M. the enemy, having massed his troops in front of General Jackson, advanced against his position in strong force. His front line pushed forward until it was engaged at close quarters by Jackson's troops, when its progress was cheeked, and a fierce and bloody struggle ensued. A second and third line of great strength moved up to support the first, but in doing so came within easy range of a position a little in advance of Longstreet's left. He immediately ordered up two batteries, and, two others being thrown forward about the same time by Colonel S. D. Lee, the supporting lines were broken, and fell back in confusion under their well-directed and destructive fire. Their repeated efforts to rally were unavailing, and Jackson's troops, being thus relieved from the pressure of overwhelming numbers, began to press steadily forward, driving everything before them. The enemy retreated in confusion, suffering severely from our artillery, which advanced as he retired. General Longstreet, anticipating the order for a general advance, now threw his whole command against the center and left. The whole line swept steadily on, driving the opponents with great carnage from each successive position, until 10 P.M., when darkness put an end to the battle and the pursuit.

The obscurity of the night and the uncertainty of the fords of Bull Run rendered it necessary to suspend operations until morning, when the cavalry, being pushed forward, discovered that the retreat had continued to the strong position of Centreville, about four miles beyond Bull Run. The prevalence of a heavy rain, which began during the night, threatened to render Bull Bun impassable, and to impede our movements. Longstreet remained on the battle-field to engage attention and to protect parties for the burial of the dead and the removal of the wounded, while Jackson proceeded by Sudley's Ford to the Little River turnpike to turn the enemy's right, and intercept his retreat to Washington. Jackson's progress was retarded by the inclemency of the weather and the fatigue of his troops. He reached the turnpike in the evening, and the next day (September 1st) advanced by that road toward Fairfax Court-House. The enemy in the mean time was falling back rapidly toward Washington, and had thrown a strong force to Germantown, on the Little River turnpike, to cover his line of retreat from Centreville. The advance of Jackson encountered him at Ox Hill, near Germantown, about 5 P.M. Line of battle was at once formed, and two brigades were thrown forward to attack and ascertain the strength of the position. A cold and drenching rain-storm drove in the faces of our troops as they advanced and gallantly engaged. They were subsequently supported, and the conflict was obstinately maintained until dark, when the enemy retreated, having lost two general officers, one of whom— Major-General Kearney—was left dead on the field. Longstreet's command arrived after the action was over, and the next morning it was found that the retreat had been so rapid that the attempt to intercept was abandoned. The proximity of the fortifications around Alexandria and Washington was enough to prevent further pursuit. Our army rested during the 2d near Chantilly, the retreating foe being followed only by our cavalry, who continued to harass him until he reached the shelter of his intrenchments.

In the series of engagements on the plains of Manassas more than seven thousand prisoners were taken, in addition to about two thousand wounded left in our hands. Thirty pieces of artillery, upward of twenty thousand stand of small-arms, numerous colors, and a large amount of stores, besides those taken by General Jackson at Manassas Junction, were captured.

Major-General Pope in his report says:

"The whole force that I had at Centreville, as reported to me by the corps commanders, on the morning of the 1st of September, was as follows: McDowell's corps, 10,000 men; Sigel's corps, about 7,000; Heintzelman's corps, about 6,000; Reno's, 6,000; Banks's, 5,000; Sumner's, 11,000; Porter's, 10,000; Franklin's, 8,000—in all, 63,000 men. . . . The small fraction of 20,500 men was all of the 91,000 veteran troops from Harrison's landing which ever drew trigger under my command."

Our losses in the engagement at Manassas Plains were considerable. The number killed was 1,090; wounded, 6,154—total, 7,244. The loss of the enemy in killed, wounded, and missing was estimated between 15,000 and 20,000. The strength of our army in July and September is stated on a preceding page.


    Return of the Enemy to Washington.—War transferred to the
    Frontier.—Condition of Maryland.—Crossing the Potomac.—
    Evacuation of Martinsburg.—Advance into Maryland.—Large Force of
    the Enemy.—Resistance at Boonesboro.—Surrender of Harper's
    Ferry.—Our Forces reach Sharpsburg.—Letter of the President to
    General Lee.—Address of General Lee to the People.—Position of
    our Forces at Sharpsburg.—Battle of Sharpsburg.—Our Strength.—
    Forces withdrawn.—Casualties.

The enemy having retired to the protection of the fortifications around Washington and Alexandria, Lee's army marched, on September 3d, toward Leesburg. The armies of Generals McClellan and Pope had now been brought back to the point from which they set out on the campaign of the spring and summer. The objects of those campaigns had been frustrated, and the hostile designs against the coast of North Carolina and in western Virginia, thwarted by the withdrawal of the main body of the forces from those regions.

Northeastern Virginia was freed from the presence of the invader. His forces had withdrawn to the intrenchments of Washington. Soon after the arrival of our army at Leesburg, information was received that the hostile troops which had occupied Winchester had retired to Harper's Ferry. The war was thus transferred from the interior to the frontier, and the supplies of rich and productive districts were made accessible to our army. To prolong a state of affairs, in every way desirable, and not to permit the season for active operations to pass without endeavoring to impose further check on our assailant, the best course appeared to be the transfer of our army into Maryland. Although not properly equipped for invasion, lacking much of the material of war, and deficient in transportation, the troops poorly provided with clothing, and thousands of them without shoes, it was yet believed to be strong enough to detain the opposing army upon the northern frontier until the approach of winter should render its advance into Virginia difficult, if not impracticable.

The condition of Maryland encouraged the belief that the presence of our army, though numerically inferior to that of the North, would induce the Washington Government to retain all its available force to provide against contingencies which its conduct toward the people of that State gave reason to apprehend. At the same time it was hoped that military success might afford us an opportunity to aid the citizens of Maryland in any efforts they should be disposed to make to recover their liberty. The difficulties that surrounded them were fully appreciated, and we expected to derive more assistance in the attainment of our object from the just fears of the Washington Government than from any active demonstration on the part of the people of Maryland, unless success should enable us to give them assurance of continued protection. Influenced by these considerations, the army was put in motion.

It was decided to cross the Potomac east of the Blue Ridge, in order, by threatening Washington and Baltimore, to cause the enemy to withdraw from the south bank, where his presence endangered our communications and the safety of those engaged in the removal of our wounded and the captured property from the late battle-field. Having accomplished this result, it was proposed to move the army into western Maryland, establish our communication with Richmond through the Valley of the Shenandoah, and, by threatening Pennsylvania, induce the enemy to withdraw from our territory for the protection of his own.

General D. H. Hill's division, being in advance, crossed the Potomac, between September 4th and 7th, at the ford near Leesburg, and encamped in the vicinity of Frederick. It had been supposed that this advance would lead to the evacuation of Martinsburg and Harper's Ferry, thus opening the line of communication through the Shenandoah Valley. This not having occurred, it became necessary to dislodge the garrisons from those positions before concentrating the army west of the mountains. For this purpose General Jackson marched very rapidly, crossed the Potomac near Williamsport on the 11th, sent Hill's division directly to Martinsburg, and disposed of the rest of the command so as to cut off retreat to the westward. The enemy evacuated Martinsburg and retired to Harper's Ferry on the night of the 11th, and Jackson entered the former on the 12th. Meanwhile General McLaws had been ordered to seize Maryland Heights on the north side of the Potomac, opposite Harper's Ferry, and General Walker took possession of Loudon Heights, on the east side of the Shenandoah, where it unites with the Potomac, and was in readiness to open fire upon Harper's Ferry. But McLaws found the heights in possession of the foe, with infantry and artillery, protected by intrenchments. On the 13th he assailed the works, and after a spirited contest they were carried; the troops made good their retreat to Harper's Ferry, and on the next day its investment was complete.

At the same time that the march of these troops upon Harper's Ferry began, the remainder of General Longstreet's command and the division of D. H. Hill crossed the South Mountain and moved toward Boonsboro. General Stuart with the cavalry remained east of the mountains to observe the enemy and retard his advance. Longstreet continued his march to Hagerstown, and Hill halted near Boonsboro to support the cavalry and to prevent the force invested at Harper's Ferry from escaping through Pleasant Valley. The advance of the hostile army was then so slow as to justify the belief that the reduction of Harper's Ferry would be accomplished and our troops concentrated before they would be called upon to meet the foe. In that event it had not been intended to oppose his passage through South Mountain, as it was desired to engage him as far as possible from his base. But a copy of Lee's order, directing the movement of the army from Frederick, happening to fall into the hands of McClellan, disclosed to him the disposition of our forces. He immediately began to push forward rapidly, and on the afternoon of the 13th was reported as approaching the pass in South Mountain on the Boonsboro and Frederick road. General Stuart's cavalry impeded his progress, and time was thus gained for preparations to oppose his advance.

In Taylor's "Four Years with General Lee" some facts relative to this lost order are stated. An order of battle was issued, stating in detail the position and duly assigned to each command of the army:

"It was the custom to send copies of such orders, marked 'confidential,' to the commanders of separate corps or divisions only, and to place the address of such separate commander in the bottom left-hand comer of the sheet containing the order. General D. H. Hill was in command of a division which had not been attached to nor incorporated with either of the two wings of the Army of Northern Virginia. A copy of the order was, therefore, in the usual course, sent to him. After the evacuation of Frederick City by our forces, a copy of General Lee's order was found in a deserted camp by a soldier, and was soon in the hands of General McClellan. The copy of the order, it was stated at the time, was addressed to 'General D. H Hill, commanding division.' General Hill has assured me that it could not have been his copy, because he still has the original order received by him in his possession." [62]

General D. H. Hill guarded the Boonsboro Gap, and Longstreet was ordered to support him, in order to prevent a force from penetrating the mountains at this point, in the rear of McLaws, so as to relieve the garrison at Harper's Ferry. Early on the 14th a large body of the enemy attempted to force its way to the rear of the position held by Hill, by a road south of the Boonsboro and Frederick turnpike. The small command of Hill, with Garland's brigade, repelled the repeated assaults of the army, and held it in check for five hours. Longstreet, leaving a brigade at Hagerstown, hurried to the assistance of Hill, and reached the scene of action between 3 and 4 P.M. The battle continued with great animation until night. On the south of the turnpike the assailant was driven back some distance, and his attack on the center repulsed with loss. Darkness put an end to the contest.

The effort to force the pass of the mountain had failed, but it was manifest that without reënforcements Lee could not hazard a renewal of the engagement; for McClellan, by his great superiority of numbers, could easily turn either flank. Information was also received that another large body of his troops had, during the afternoon, forced its way through Crampton Gap, only five miles in rear of McLaws. Under these circumstances it was determined to retire to Sharpsburg, where we would be on the flank and rear of the enemy should he move against McLaws, and where we could more readily unite with the rest of our army. This movement, skillfully and efficiently covered by the cavalry brigade of General Fitzhugh Lee, was accomplished without interruption. The advance of McClellan's army did not appear on the west side of the pass at Boonsboro until about 8 A.M. on the following morning.

The resistance that our troops had offered there secured sufficient time to enable General Jackson to complete the reduction of Harper's Ferry. The attack on the garrison began at dawn on the 15th. A rapid and vigorous fire was opened by the batteries of General Jackson, in conjunction with those on Maryland and Loudon Heights. In about two hours, the garrison, consisting of more than eleven thousand men, surrendered. Seventy-three pieces of artillery, about thirteen thousand small-arms, and a large quantity of military stores fell into our hands. General A. P. Hill remained formally to receive the surrender of the troops and to secure the captured property.

The commands of Longstreet and D. H. Hill reached Sharpsburg on the morning of the 15th. General Jackson arrived early on the 16th, and General J. G. Walker came up in the afternoon. The movements of General McLaws were embarrassed by the presence of the enemy in Crampton Gap. He retained his position until the 14th, when, finding that he was not to be attacked, he gradually withdrew his command toward the Potomac, then crossed at Harper's Ferry, and marched by way of Shepardstown. His progress was slow, and he did not reach the battle-field at Sharpsburg until some time after the engagement of the 17th began.

At this time the letter, from which the following extract is made, was addressed by me to General R. E. Lee, commanding our forces in Maryland:

"SIR: It is deemed proper that you should, in accordance with established usage, announce, by proclamation, to the people of Maryland, the motives and purposes of your presence among them at the head of an invading army; and you are instructed in such proclamation to make known," etc.

In obedience to instructions, General Lee issued the following address:

    September 8, 1862.

"TO THE PEOPLE OF MARYLAND: It is right that you should know the purpose that has brought the army under my command within the limits of your State, so far as that purpose concerns yourselves.

"The people of the Confederate States have long watched, with the deepest sympathy, the wrongs and outrages that have been inflicted upon the citizens of a Commonwealth allied to the States of the South by the strongest social, political, and commercial ties, and reduced to the condition of a conquered province.

"Under the pretense of supporting the Constitution, but in violation of its most valuable provisions, your citizens have been arrested and imprisoned upon no charge, and contrary to the forms of law.

"A faithful and manly protest against this outrage, made by a venerable and illustrious Marylander, to whom in his better days no citizen appealed for right in vain, was treated with scorn and contempt.

"The government of your chief city has been usurped by armed strangers; your Legislature has been dissolved by the unlawful arrest of its members; freedom of the press and of speech has been suppressed; words have been declared offenses by an arbitrary decree of the Federal Executive; and citizens ordered to be tried by military commissions for what they may dare to speak.

"Believing that the people of Maryland possess a spirit too lofty to submit to such a Government, the people of the South have long wished to aid yon in throwing off this foreign yoke, to enable you again to enjoy the inalienable rights of freemen, and restore the independence and sovereignty of your State.

"In obedience to this wish, our army has come among you, and is prepared to assist yon with the power of its arms in regaining the rights of which you have been so unjustly despoiled.

"This, citizens of Maryland, is our mission, so far as yon are concerned. No restraint upon your free-will is intended; no intimidation will be allowed within the limits of this army at least. Marylanders shall once more enjoy their ancient freedom of thought and speech. We know no enemies among you, and will protect all of you in every opinion.

"It is for you to decide your destiny freely and without constraint. This army will respect your choice, whatever it may be; and while the Southern people will rejoice to welcome you to your natural position among them, they will only welcome you when you come of your own free will.

"R. E. LEE, General commanding."

The commands of Longstreet and D. H. Hill, on their arrival at Sharpsburg, were placed in position along the range of hills between the town and the Antietam, nearly parallel to the course of that stream, Longstreet on the right of the road to Boonsboro and Hill on the left. The advance of the enemy was delayed by the determined opposition he encountered from Fitzhugh Lee's cavalry, and he did not appear on the opposite side of the Antietam until about 2 P.M. During the afternoon the batteries on each side were partially engaged. On the 16th the artillery-fire became warm, and continued throughout the day. A column crossed the Antietam beyond the reach of our batteries and menaced our left. In anticipation of this movement Hood's two brigades had been transferred from the right and posted between D. H. Hill and the Hagerstown road. General Jackson was now directed to take position on Hood's left, and formed his line with his right resting on the Hagerstown road and his left extending toward the Potomac, protected by General Stuart with the cavalry and horse-artillery. General Walker with his two brigades was stationed on Longstreet's right. As evening approached, the enemy fired more vigorously with his artillery and bore down heavily with his infantry upon Hood, but the attack was gallantly repulsed. At 10 P.M. Hood's troops were relieved by the brigades of Lawton and Trimble, of Ewell's division, commanded by General Lawton. Jackson's own division, under General J. K. Jones, was on Lawton's left, supported by the remaining brigades of Ewell.

At early dawn on the 17th his artillery opened vigorously from both sides of the Antietam, the heaviest fire being directed against our left. Under cover of this fire a large force of infantry attacked General Jackson's division. They were met by his troops with the utmost resolution, and for several hours the conflict raged with intense fury and alternate success. Our troops advanced with great spirit; the enemy's lines were repeatedly broken and forced to retire. Fresh troops, however, soon replaced those that were beaten, and Jackson's men were in turn compelled to fall back. Nearly all the field officers, with a large proportion of the men, were killed or wounded. Our troops slowly yielded to overwhelming numbers, and fell back, obstinately disputing every point. General Early, in command of Ewell's division, was ordered with his brigade to take the place of Jackson's division, most of which was withdrawn, its ammunition being nearly exhausted and its numbers much reduced. The battle now raged with great violence, the small commands under Hood and Early holding their ground against many times their own infantry force and under a tremendous fire of artillery. Hood was reënforced; then the enemy's lines were broken and driven back, but fresh numbers advanced to their support, and they began to gain ground. The desperate resistance they encountered, however, delayed their progress until the troops of McLaws arrived, and those of General J. G. Walker could be brought from the right. Hood's brigade, though it had suffered extraordinary loss, only withdrew to replenish their ammunition, their supply being entirely exhausted. They were relieved by Walker's command, who immediately attacked vigorously, driving his combatant back with much slaughter. Upon the arrival of the reënforcements under McLaws, General Early attacked resolutely the large force opposed to him. McLaws advanced at the same time, and the forces before them were driven back in confusion, closely followed by our troops beyond the position occupied at the beginning of the engagement.

The attack on our left was speedily followed by one in heavy force on the center. This was met by part of Walker's division and the brigades of G. B. Anderson and Rodes, of D. H. Hill's command, assisted by a few pieces of artillery. General R, H. Anderson's division came to Hill's support, and formed in rear of his line. At this time, by a mistake of orders, Rodes's brigade was withdrawn from its position; during the absence of that command a column pressed through the gap thus created, and G. B. Anderson's brigade was broken and retired. The heavy masses moved forward, being opposed only by four pieces of artillery, supported by a few hundred of our men belonging to different brigades rallied by Hill and other officers, and parts of Walker's and B. H. Anderson's commands. Colonel Cooke, with the Twenty-seventh North Carolina Regiment, stood boldly in line without a cartridge. The firm front presented by this small force and the well-directed fire of the artillery checked the progress of the enemy, and in about an hour and a half he retired. Another attack was made soon afterward a little farther to the right, but was repulsed by Miller's guns, of the Washington Artillery, which continued to hold the ground until the close of the engagement, supported by a part of R. H. Anderson's troops. The corps designated the Washington Artillery was composed of Louisiana batteries, organized at New Orleans in the beginning of the war, under Colonel I. B. Walton. It was distinguished by its services in the first great battle of Manassas, and in nearly every important conflict, as well of the army of Virginia as that of Tennessee, to the close of the war. In the official reports and in the traditions of both armies the names of the batteries of the Washington Artillery have frequent and honorable mention.

While the attack on the center and left was in progress, repeated efforts were made to force the passage of the bridge over the Antietam, opposite the right wing of Longstreet, commanded by Brigadier-General D. R. Jones. The bridge was defended by General Toombs with two regiments of his brigade and the batteries of General Jones. This small command repulsed five different assaults, made by a greatly superior force. In the afternoon the enemy, in large numbers, having passed the stream, advanced against General Jones, who held the ridge with less than two thousand men. After a determined and brave resistance, he was forced to give way, and the summit was gained. General A. P. Hill, having arrived from Harper's Ferry, was now ordered to reënforce General Jones. He moved to his support and attacked the force now flushed with success. Hill's batteries were thrown forward and united their fire with those of Jones, and one of D. H. Hill's also opened with good effect from the left of the Boonsboro road. The progress of the enemy was immediately arrested, and his line began to waver. At this moment General Jones ordered Toombs to charge the flank, while Archer, supported by Branch and Gregg, moved on the front of the enemy's line. After a brief resistance, he broke and retreated in confusion toward the Antietam, pursued by the troops of Hill and Jones, until he reached the protection of the batteries on the opposite side of the river.

It was now nearly dark, and McClellan had massed a number of batteries to sweep the approach to the Antietam, on the opposite side of which the corps of General Porter, which had not been engaged, now appeared to dispute our advance. Our troops were much exhausted, and greatly reduced in numbers by fatigue and the casualties of battle. Under these circumstances it was deemed injudicious to push our advantage further in the face of these fresh troops added to an army previously much exceeding the number of our own. Ours were accordingly recalled, and formed on the line originally held by General Jones. The repulse on the right ended the engagement, a protracted and sanguinary conflict in which every effort to dislodge us from our position had been defeated with severe loss.

This great battle was fought by less than forty thousand men on our side, all of whom had undergone the greatest labors and hardships in the field and on the march. Nothing could surpass the determined valor with which they met the large army of the enemy, fully supplied and equipped, and the result reflected the highest credit on the officers and men engaged.[63]

On the 18th our forces occupied the position of the preceding day, except in the center, where our line was drawn in about two hundred yards, our ranks were increased by the arrival of a number of troops, who had not been engaged the day before, and, though still too weak to assume the offensive, Lee waited without apprehension a renewal of the attack. The day passed without any hostile demonstration. During the night of the 18th our army was withdrawn to the south side of the Potomac, crossing near Shepardstown, without loss or molestation. The enemy advanced on the next morning, but was held in check by General Fitzhugh Lee with his cavalry. The condition of our troops now demanded repose, and the army marched to the Opequan, near Martinsburg, where it remained several days, and then moved to the vicinity of Bunker Hill and Winchester. General McClellan seemed to be concentrating in and near Harper's Ferry, but made no forward movement.

The contest on our left in this battle was the most violent. This and the deprivation of our men are very forcibly shown in the following account of Major-General Hood:[64]

"On the morning of the 15th my forces were again in motion. My troops at this period were sorely in need of shoes, clothing, and food. We had had issued to us no meat for several days, and little or no bread; the men had been forced to subsist principally on green corn and green apples. Nevertheless, they were in high spirits and defiant as we contended with the advanced guard of McClellan on the 15th and forenoon of the 16th. During the afternoon of this day I was ordered, after great fatigue and hunger endured by my soldiers, to take position near the Hagerstown turnpike, in open field in front of the Dunkard church. General Hooker's corps crossed the Antietam, swung round with its front on the pike, and about an hour before sunset encountered my division. I had stationed one or two batteries on a hillock in a meadow, near the edge of a corn-field, and just by the pike. The Texas Brigade had been disposed on the left, and that of Law on the right. We opened fire, and a spirited action ensued, which lasted till a late hour in the night. When the firing had in a great measure ceased, we were so close to the enemy that we could distinctly hear him massing his heavy bodies in our immediate front.

"The extreme suffering of my troops for want of food induced me to ride back to General Lee, and request him to send two or more brigades to our relief, at least for the night, in order that the soldiers might have a chance to cook their meager rations. He said that he would cheerfully do so, but he knew of no command that could be spared for the purpose; he, however, suggested that I should see General Jackson, and endeavor to obtain assistance from him. After riding a long time in search of the latter, I finally discovered him alone, lying upon the ground asleep by the root of a tree. I aroused him, and made known the half-starved condition of my troops; he immediately ordered Lawton's, Trimble's, and Hays's brigades to our relief. He exacted of me, however, a promise that I would come to the support of these forces the moment I was called upon. I quickly rode off in search of my wagons that the men might prepare and cook their flour, as we were still without meat; unfortunately, the night was then far advanced, and, although every effort was made in the darkness to get the wagons forward, dawn of the morning of the 17th broke upon us before many of the men had time to do more than prepare the dough. Soon, thereafter, an officer of Lawton's staff dashed up to me, saying, 'General Lawton sends his compliments, with the request that you come at once to his support.' 'To arms!' was instantly sounded, and quite a large number of my brave soldiers were again obliged to march to the front, leaving their uncooked rations in camp.

"Not far distant in our front were drawn up, in close array, heavy columns of Federal infantry; not leas than two corps were in sight to oppose my small command, numbering approximately two thousand effectives. However, with the trusty Law on my right, in the edge of the wood, and the gallant Colonel Wafford in command of the Texas Brigade on the left, near the pike, we moved forward to the assault. Notwithstanding the overwhelming odds of over ten to one against us, we drove the enemy from the wood and corn-field back upon his reserves, and forced him to abandon his guns on our left. This most deadly combat raged till our last round of ammunition was expended. The First Texas Regiment had lost in the corn-field fully two thirds of its number; and whole ranks of brave men, whose deeds were unrecorded save in the hearts of loved ones at home, were mowed down in heaps to the right and left. Never before was I so continually troubled with fear that my horse would further injure some wounded fellow-soldier lying helpless upon the ground. Our right flank, during this short but seemingly long space of time, was toward the main line of the Federals, and, after several ineffectual efforts to procure reënforcements and our last shot had been fired, I ordered my troops back to Dunkard church for the same reason which had previously compelled Lawton, Hays, and Trimble to retire (a want of cartridges). Upon the arrival of McLaws's division we marched to the rear, renewed our supply of ammunition, and returned to our position in the wood near the church, which ground we held till a late hour in the afternoon, when we moved somewhat farther to the right and bivouacked for the night. With the close of this bloody day ceased the hardest-fought battle of the war."

The following account of Colonel Taylor, in his "Four Years with General Lee," is more comprehensive, embracing the other forces besides Hood's brigade:

"On the afternoon of the 16th, General McClellan directed an attack by Hooker's corps on the Confederate left—Hood's two brigades—and during the whole of the 17th the battle was waged, with varying intensity, along the entire line. When the issue was first joined, on the afternoon of the 16th, General Lee had with him less than eighteen thousand men, consisting of the commands of Longstreet and D. H. Hill, the two divisions of Jackson, and two brigades under Walker. Couriers were sent to the rear to hurry up the divisions of A. P. Hill, Anderson, and McLaws, hastening from Harper's Ferry, and these several commands, as they reached the front at intervals during the day, on the 17th, were immediately deployed and put to work. Every man was engaged. We had no reserve.

"The fighting was heaviest and most continuous on the Confederate left. It is established by Federal evidence that the three corps of Hooker, Mansfield, and Sumner were completely shattered in the repeated but fruitless efforts to turn this flank, and two of these corps were rendered useless for further aggressive movements. The aggregate strength of the attacking column at this point reached forty thousand men, not counting the two divisions of Franklin's corps, sent at a late hour in the day to rescue the Federal right from the impending danger of being itself destroyed; while the Confederates, from first to last, had less than fourteen thousand men on this flank, consisting of Jackson's two divisions, McLaws's division, and the two small divisions, of two brigades each, under Hood and Walker, with which to resist their fierce and oft-repeated assaults. The disproportion in the center and on our right was as great as, or even more decided than, on our left."

In the "Report of Committee on the Conduct of the War," Part I, p. 368, General Sumner testifies as follows:

"General Hooker's corps was dispersed; there is no question about that. I sent one of my staff-officers to find where they were, and General Rickets, the only officer he could find, said that he could not raise three hundred men of the corps. There were troops lying down on the left, which I took to belong to Mansfield's command. In the mean time General Mansfield had been killed, and a portion of his corps had also been thrown into confusion."

The testimony of General McClellan, in the same report, Part I, p. 441, is to the same effect:

"The next morning (the 18th) I found that our loss had been so great, and there was so much disorganization in name of the commands, that I did not consider it proper to renew the attack that day, especially as I was sure of the arrival that day of two fresh divisions, amounting to about fifteen thousand men. As an instance of the condition of some of the troops that morning, I happen to recollect the returns of the First Corps. General Hooker's, made on the morning of the 18th, by which there were thirty-five hundred men reported present for duty. Four days after that, the returns of the same corps showed thirteen thousand five hundred."

On the night of the 19th our forces crossed the Potomac, and some brigades of the enemy followed. In the morning General A. P. Hill, who commanded the rear-guard, was ordered to drive them back. Having disposed his forces, an attack was made, and, as the foe massed in front of General Pender's brigade and endeavored to turn his flank, General Hill says, in his report:

"A simultaneous daring charge was made, and the enemy driven pell-mell into the river. Then commenced the most terrible slaughter that this war has yet witnessed. The broad surface of the Potomac was blue with the floating bodies of our foe. But few escaped to tell the tale. By their own account, they lost three thousand men killed and drowned from one brigade alone. Some two hundred prisoners were taken."

General McClellan states, in his official report, that he had in this battle, in action, 87,164 men of all arms.

The official reports of the commanding officers of our forces, made at the time, show our total effective infantry to have been 27,255. The estimate made for the cavalry and artillery, which is rather excessive, is 8,000. This would make General Lee's entire strength 35,255.

The official return of the Army of Northern Virginia, on September 22, 1862, after its return to Virginia, and when the stragglers had rejoined their commands, shows present for duty, 36,187 infantry and artillery; the cavalry, of which there is no report, would perhaps increase these figures to 40,000 of all arms.[65]

The return of the United States Army of the Potomac on September 20, 1862, shows present for duty, at that date, of the commands that participated in the battle of Sharpsburg, 85,930 of all arms.[66]

The loss of the enemy at Boonsboro and Sharpsburg was 14,794.[67]

[Footnote 62: To these remarks Colonel W. H. Taylor adds the following note: "Colonel Venable, one of my associates on the staff of General Lee, says in regard to this matter: 'This is very easily explained. One copy was sent directly to Hill from headquarters. General Jackson sent him a copy, as he regarded Hill in his command. It is Jackson's copy, in his own handwriting, which General Hill has. The other was undoubtedly left carelessly by some one at Hill's quarters." says General McClellan, "Upon learning the contents of this order, I at once gave orders for a vigorous pursuit."—(General McClellan's testimony, "Report on the Conduct of the War," Part I, p. 440.)]

[Footnote 63: Report of General R. E. Lee.]

[Footnote 64: "Advance and Retreat," by J. B. Hood, p. 41.]

[Footnote 65: Taylor's "Four Years with General Lee."]

[Footnote 66: Official return from Adjutant-General's office, United
States Army. "Report of Committee on Conduct of the War," Part I, p. 492.]

[Footnote 67: Ibid., p. 42.]


    Efforts of the Enemy to obtain our Cotton.—Demands of European
    Manufacturers.—Thousands of Operatives resorting to the
    Poor-Rates.—Complaint of her Majesty's Secretary of State.—Letter
    of Mr. Seward.—Promise to open all the Channels of Commerce.—
    Series of measures adopted by the United States.—Act of Congress.—
    Its Provisions.—Its Operation.—Unconstitutional Measures.—
    President Lincoln an Accomplice.—Not authorized by a State of
    War.—Case before Chief-Justice Taney.—His Decision.—Expeditions
    sent by the United States Government to seize Localities.—An Act
    providing for the Appointment of Special Agents to seize Abandoned or
    Captured Property.—The Views of General Grant.—Weakening his
    Strength One Third.—Our Country divided into Districts, and Federal
    Agents Appointed.—Continued to the Close of the War.

A class of measures was adopted by the Government of the United States, the object of which was practically and effectually to plunder us of a large portion of our crop of cotton, and secure its transportation, to the manufacturers of Europe. The foreign necessity for our cotton is represented in these words of her Majesty's Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, on May 6, 1862, when speaking of the blockade of our ports:

"Thousands are now obliged to resort to the poor-rates for subsistence, owing to this blockade, yet her Majesty's Government have not sought to take advantage of the obvious imperfections of this blockade, in order to declare it ineffective. They have, to the loss and detriment of the British nation, scrupulously observed the duties of Great Britain to a friendly state."

The severity of the distress thus alluded to was such, both in Great Britain and France, as to produce an intervention of the Governments of those countries to alleviate it. Instead, however, of adopting those measures required in the exercise of justice to the Confederacy, and which would have been sustained by the law of nations, by declaring the blockade "ineffective," as it really was, they sought, through informal applications to Mr. Seward, the Secretary of State for the United States, to obtain opportunities for an increased exportation of cotton from the Confederacy. This is explained by Mr. Seward in a letter to Mr. Adams, the Minister at London, dated July 28, 1862, in which he writes as follows:

"The President has given respectful consideration to the desire informally expressed to me by the Governments of Great Britain and France for some farther relaxation of the blockade in favor of that trade. They are not rejected, but are yet held under consideration, with a view to ascertain more satisfactorily whether they are really necessary, and whether they can be adopted without such serious detriment to our military operations as would render them injurious rather than beneficial to the interests of all concerned."

In the same letter Mr. Seward had previously said:

"We shall speedily open all the channels of commerce, and free them from military embarrassments; and cotton, so much desired by all nations, will flow forth as freely as heretofore. We have ascertained that there are three and a half millions of bales yet remaining in the region where it was produced, though large quantities of it are yet unginned and otherwise unprepared for market. We have instructed the military authorities to favor, so far as they can consistently with the public safety, its preparation for and dispatch to the markets where it is so much wanted."

It has been stated elsewhere in these pages that "it became apparent that by some understanding, express or tacit, Europe had decided to leave the initiative in all actions touching the contest on this continent to the two powers just named (Great Britain and France), who were recognized to have the largest interest involved." By the preceding extracts the demands of the Governments of Great Britain and France for increased facilities, by which to obtain a greater supply of cotton, are evident; at the same time the determination of the Government of the United States to fulfill those demands is apparent, although it placed itself under the necessity of fitting out some military expeditions against those portions of our territory where it was supposed the foraging for cotton would be likely to meet with the greatest success.

By reference to the series of measures adopted by the Government of the United States to secure possession of our cotton, it will be seen that it was inaugurated as early as July 13, 1861. This was within ten days after the commencement of the first and extra session of Congress, under the Administration of President Lincoln. It is scarcely credible that that Government, at so early a day, foresaw the pressing demand from Europe for cotton which would ensue a year later. Yet it would seem that we must suppose such to have been its foresight, or else conclude that the first of these measures was the inauguration of a grand scheme for the plunder of our cotton-crop, to enrich whomsoever it might concern.

The act of the United States Congress of July 13, 1861, above mentioned, was entitled "An act to provide for the collection of duties on imports, and for other purposes." Under the "other purposes" the important features of the act are contained. Section 5 provides that—

"when said insurgents claim to act under the authority of any State or States, and such claim is not disclaimed or repudiated by the persons exercising the functions of government in such State or States, or in the part or parts thereof in which said combination exists, or such insurrection suppressed by said State or States, then and in such case it may and shall be lawful for the President, by proclamation, to declare that the inhabitants of such State, or any section or part thereof, where such insurrection exists, are in a state of insurrection against the United States, and thereupon all commercial intercourse by and between the same and the citizens thereof and the citizens of the rest of the United States shall cease, and be unlawful, so long as such condition of hostility shall continue; and all goods and chattels, wares and merchandise, coming from said State or section into the other parts of the United States, and all proceeding to such State or section, by land or water, shall, together with the vessel or vehicle conveying the same, or conveying persons to or from such State or section, be forfeited to the United States: Provided, however, That the President may, in his discretion, license and permit commercial intercourse with any such part of said State or section, the inhabitants of which are so declared in a state of insurrection, in such articles, and for such time, and by such persons, as he, in his discretion, may think most conducive to the public interest; and such intercourse, so far as by him licensed, shall be conducted and carried on only in pursuance of rules and regulations prescribed by the Secretary of the Treasury. And the Secretary of the Treasury may appoint such officers at places where officers of the customs are not now authorized by law, as may be needed to carry into effect such licenses, rules, and regulations."

It was provided in Section 9 as follows:

"Proceedings on seizures for forfeitures, under this act, may be pursued in the courts of the United States in any district into which the property so seized may be taken, and proceedings instituted."

It will be seen, by reference to the provisions of this section, that the President of the United States was authorized to issue his proclamation, declaring the inhabitants of any of our States, or of a portion of any one of them, to be in insurrection, and thereupon all commercial intercourse became unlawful, and was required to cease, and all goods and chattels, wares and merchandise, on the way to, or from, the State or part of a State, were forfeited to the United States, together with the vessel, or vehicle, in which they were conveyed. Two effects follow this proclamation: first, the cessation of all commercial intercourse with the citizens of the United States; second, the forfeiture of all goods in transitu. When this condition has been reached, the act then authorizes the President, in his discretion, by license, to reopen the trade in such articles, and for such time, and by such persons, as he may think most conducive to the public interest. The articles of trade were to be chiefly cotton and tobacco; the time during which it might be continued was evidently so long as it could be used for the purpose in view; the persons were those who would most skillfully advance the end to be accomplished; and the public interest was the collection and transportation of the cotton to the European manufacturers.

One may search the Constitution of the United States in vain to find any grant of power to Congress, by which it could be authorized to pass this act; much less to find any authority conferred upon the President to approve the act, or to justify him in a violation of the oath he had taken to support and maintain the provisions of the Constitution. Congress was guilty of a most flagrant usurpation by the passage of the act, and the President, instead of being a check upon their unconstitutional measures, for which object the veto power was granted to him, became, by his approval, an accomplice in their usurpation. For nothing is more evident than that it is one of the powers reserved to the States to regulate the commercial intercourse between their citizens, to the extent even of the establishment of inspection and quarantine regulations. The former of these is a benefit to commerce, and the latter, in some special cases, only retards it temporarily, to secure the health of a community.

Neither did a state of war authorize the Government of the United States to interfere with the commercial intercourse between the citizens of the States, although under the law of nations it might be so justified with regard to foreign enemies. But this relation it persistently refused to concede to the Confederate States or to their citizens. It constantly asserted that they were its subjects, in a state of insurrection; and, if so, they were equally entitled to the provisions of the Constitution for their protection as well as to its penalties. Still less could the Government make an absolute forfeiture of the goods seized, as has already been shown when treating of the Confiscation Act.

But that a state of war did not enlarge the powers of the Government, as was assumed by this act, was expressly decided by Chief-Justice Taney, in a case that arose under this act. The Secretary of the Treasury issued the regulations for trade, as the act assumed the power to authorize him to do, in the section presented on a previous page. One Carpenter neglected or refused to obtain the permit required, and his goods were seized. He contested the right of seizure, and the Chief-Justice gave a decision at Baltimore, in May, 1863. He said:

"If these regulations had been made directly by Congress, they could not be sustained by a court of justice, whose duty it is to administer the law according to the Constitution of the United States. For from the commencement of the Government to this day it has been admitted on all hands, and repeatedly decided by the Supreme Court, that the United States have no right to interfere with the internal and domestic trade of a State. They have no right to compel it to pass through their custom-houses, nor to tax it. This is so plainly set forth in the Constitution, that it has never been supposed to be open to controversy or question. Undoubtedly, the United States authorities may take proper measures to prevent trade or intercourse with the enemy. But it does not by any means follow that they disregard the limits of all their own powers as prescribed by the Constitution, or the rights and powers reserved to the States and the people.

"A civil war, or any other, does not enlarge the powers of the Federal Government over the States or the people beyond what the compact has given to it in time of war. A state of war does not annul the tenth article of the amendment to the Constitution, which declares that 'the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.' Nor does a civil war, or any other war, absolve the judicial department from the duty of maintaining with an even and firm hand the rights and powers of the Federal Government, and of the States, and of the citizens, as they are written in the Constitution, which every judge is sworn to support. Upon the whole the Court is of opinion that the regulations in question are illegal and void, and that the seizure of the goods of Carpenter, because he refused to comply with them, can not be sustained. The judgment of the District Court must, therefore, be reversed, and the goods delivered to the claimant, his agent, or proctor."

The proclamation of the President required by the act was issued on August 16, 1861, declaring certain States and parts of States to be in insurrection, etc. Under it some licenses were issued to places in Kentucky and Missouri where the United States forces were located, without any fruitful results. Some strong military and naval expeditions were fitted out to invade us and occupy the ports where cotton and other valuable products were usually shipped. An advance was made up the Cumberland and Tennessee Rivers and down the Mississippi, as has been stated elsewhere. The ports of Beaufort, North Carolina, Port Royal, South Carolina, and New Orleans, Louisiana, were declared by proclamation of the President of the United States to be open for trade under the new system. Licenses were granted to foreign vessels by United States consuls and to coasting vessels by the Treasury Department, and the blockade was relaxed so far as related to those ports, except as "to persons, property, and information contraband of war." Collectors were appointed at the above-mentioned ports, and a circular was addressed to the foreign Ministers at Washington announcing the reopening of communication with conquered Southern localities.

Again, on March 3, 1863, an act was passed which authorized the Secretary of the Treasury to appoint special agents to receive and collect all abandoned or captured property in any State or portion of a State designated as in insurrection. Under this act a paper division of the whole of our territory was made into five special districts, and to each a special agent was appointed with numerous assistants. Abandoned property was defined to be that which had been deserted by the owners, or that which had been voluntarily abandoned by them to the civil or military authorities of the United States. Property which had been seized or taken from hostile possession by the military or naval forces was also to be turned over to the special agents to be sold. All property not transported in accordance with the Treasury regulations was forfeitable. All expenses incurred in relation to the property were charged upon it.

The views of General Grant on the operation of this system of measures, as tending to retard the success of subjugation, which was the object of the war, were presented to the Secretary of the United States Treasury in a letter dated at Vicksburg on July 21, 1863. He writes:

"My experience in West Tennessee has convinced me that any trade whatever with the rebellious States is weakening to us at least thirty-three per cent. of our force. No matter what restrictions are thrown around trade, if any whatever is allowed, it will be made the means of supplying to the enemy what they want. Restrictions, if lived up to, make trade unprofitable, and hence none but dishonest men go into it. I will venture to say that no honest man has made money in West Tennessee in the last year, while many fortunes have been made there during the time. The people in the Mississippi Valley are now nearly subjugated. Keep trade out for a few months, and I doubt not but that the work of subjugation will be so complete that trade can be opened freely with the States of Arkansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi."

On September 11, 1863, revised regulations were issued by the Secretary which divided the country into thirteen districts, from Wheeling, West Virginia, to Natchez, on the Mississippi, and a complete system of trade and transportation was organized. In December, 1864, new regulations were issued, which authorized the purchase of our products at certain points from any person with bonds furnished by the Treasury. The products were sold, transportation was allowed, and the proceeds were made to constitute a fund for further purchases. A vigorous traffic sprang up under these regulations, which were suspended by an order of General Grant, issued on March 10, 1865, and revoked on April 11th by himself. On April 29, 1865, all restrictions upon internal, domestic, and coastwise commercial intercourse with all the country east of the Mississippi River were discontinued.


The Enemy crosses the Potomac and concentrates at Warrenton.— Advances upon Fredericksburg.—Its Position.—Our Forces.—The Enemy crosses the Rappahannock.—Attack on General Jackson.—The Main Attack.—Repulse of the Enemy on the Right.—Assaults on the Left.—The Enemy's Columns broke and fled.—Recross the River.— Casualties.—Position during the Winter.—The Enemy again crosses the Rappahannock.—Also crosses at Kelly's Ford.—Converging toward Chancellorsville, to the Rear of our Position.—Inactivity on our Front.—Our Forces concentrate near Chancellorsville and encounter the Enemy.—Position of the Enemy.—Attempt to turn his Right.— The Enemy surprised and driven in the Darkness.—Jackson fired upon and wounded.—Stuart in Command.—Battle renewed.—Fredericksburg reoccupied.—Attack on the Heights.—Repulse of the Enemy.—The Enemy withdraws in the Night.—Our Strength.—Losses.—Death of General Jackson.—Another Account.

About the middle of October, 1862, General McClellan crossed the Potomac east of the Blue Ridge and advanced southward, seizing the passes of the mountains as he progressed. In the latter part of the month he began to incline eastwardly from the mountains, moving in the direction of Warrenton, about which he finally concentrated, his cavalry being thrown forward beyond the Rappahannock in the direction of Culpeper Court-House.

On November 15th the enemy was in motion. The indications were that
Fredericksburg was again to be occupied. Sumner's corps had marched
in the direction of Falmouth, and gunboats and transports had entered
Acquia Creek.

McLaws's and Ransom's divisions were ordered to proceed to that city; and on the 21st it became apparent that the whole army—under General Burnside, who had succeeded General McClellan—was concentrating on the north side of the Rappahannock.

About November 26th Jackson was directed to advance toward Fredericksburg, and, as some of the enemy's gunboats had appeared in the river at Port Royal, and it was possible that an attempt might be made to cross in that vicinity, D. H. Hill's division was stationed near that place, and the rest of Jackson's corps so disposed as to support Hill or Longstreet, as occasion might require. The fords of the Rappahannock above Fredericksburg were closely guarded by our cavalry, and the brigade of General W. H. F. Lee was stationed near Port Royal to watch the river above and below. The interval before the advance of the foe was employed in strengthening our lines, extending from the river about a mile and a half above Fredericksburg along the range of hills in the rear of the city to the Richmond Railroad, As these hills were commanded by the opposite heights, in possession of General Burnside's force, earthworks were constructed on their crest at the most eligible positions for artillery. To prevent gunboats ascending the river, a battery, protected by epaulements, was placed on the bank four miles below the city. The plain of Fredericksburg is so completely commanded by the Stafford Heights, that no effectual opposition could be made to the passage of the river without exposing our troops to the destructive fire of the numerous batteries on the opposite heights. At the same time, the narrowness of the Rappahannock and its winding course presented opportunities for laying down pontoon-bridges at points secure from the fire of our artillery. Our position was therefore selected with a view to resist an advance after crossing, and the river was guarded by detachments of sharpshooters to impede the laying of pontoons until our army could be prepared for action.

Before dawn, on December 11th, General Burnside was in motion. About 2 A.M. he commenced preparations to throw two bridges over the Rappahannock opposite Fredericksburg, and one about a mile and a quarter below, near the month of Deep Run. From daybreak until 4 P.M., the troops, sheltered behind the houses on the river-bank, repelled his repeated efforts to lay bridges opposite the town, driving back his working parties and their supports with great slaughter. At the lower point, where there was no such protection, he was successfully resisted until nearly noon, when, being exposed to the severe fire of the batteries on the opposite heights and a superior force of infantry on the river-banks, our troops were withdrawn, and about 1 P.M. the bridge was completed. Soon afterward, one hundred and fifty pieces of artillery opened a furious fire upon the city, causing our troops to retire from the river-bank about 4 P.M. The enemy then crossed in boats, and proceeded rapidly to lay down the bridges. His advance into the town was bravely contested until dark, when our troops were recalled, the necessary time for concentration having been gained.

Brigadier-General William Barksdale, who commanded the force placed in Fredericksburg to resist the crossing, performed that service with his well-known gallantry. The enemy was prevented from constructing bridges, and his attempts to cross in boats, under the cover of artillery and musketry fire, were repelled until late in the afternoon, when General Barksdale was ordered to retire; he had directed Lieutenant-Colonel Fizer, commanding the Seventeenth Mississippi Regiment, of Barksdale's brigade, to select some skillful marksmen, and proceed to check the operations of the pioneers, who had commenced to lay pontoons above the city. Colonel Fizer described to me the novel and bold expedient to which he successfully resorted. He said his sharpshooters were placed in rifle-pits, on the bank opposite to that from which the bridge was started; that his men were instructed to aim only at the bridge-builders. At dawn the workmen came forward to lay the cover on the bridge; fire was opened, some were killed, and the rest of the party driven ashore. Then the enemy's batteries and riflemen opened a heavy fire on his position, when his men would sit down in the rifle-pits and remain quiet until the cannonade ceased. Probably under the supposition that our sharpshooters had been driven off, the workmen would return; our sharpshooters would arise and repeat the lesson lately given. This, he said, with intervals of about an hour, during which a continuous and heavy fire of artillery was kept up, occurred nine times, with the same result—a repulse with severe loss; and that, for twelve hours, every attempt to construct a bridge at that point was defeated. Then, under orders, they withdrew.

During the night and the succeeding day the enemy crossed in large numbers at and below the town, secured from material interruption by a dense fog. Longstreet's corps constituted our left, with Anderson's division resting on the river, and those of McLaws, Pickett, and Hood extending to the right. A. P. Hill, of Jackson's corps, was posted between Hood's right and Hamilton's Crossing, on the railroad. His front line occupied the edge of a wood. Early and Taliaferro's divisions constituted Jackson's second line, D. H. Hill's division his reserve. His artillery was distributed along his line in the most eligible positions, so as to command the open ground in front.

Shortly after 9 A.M., the partial rising of the mist disclosed a large force moving in line of battle against Jackson. Dense masses appeared in front of A. P. Hill, stretching far up the river in the direction of Fredericksburg. As they advanced, Major Pellham, of Stuart's horse-artillery, opened a rapid and well-directed enfilade fire, which arrested their progress. Four batteries immediately turned upon him, and, upon his withdrawal, the enemy extended his left down the Port Royal road, and his numerous batteries opened with vigor upon Jackson's line. Eliciting no response, his infantry moved forward to seize the position occupied by Lieutenant-Colonel Walker. The latter, reserving the fire of his fourteen pieces until their line had approached within less than eight hundred yards, opened upon it with such destructive effect as to cause it to waver and soon retreat in confusion.

About 1 P.M., the main attack on the right began by a furious cannonade, under cover of which three compact lines of infantry advanced against Hill's front. They were received as before and momentarily checked, but, soon recovering, they pressed forward, until, coming within range of our infantry, the contest became fierce and bloody. Archer and Lane, who occupied the edge of a wood, repulsed those portions of the line immediately in front of them; but, before the interval between these commands could be closed, the assailants pressed through in overwhelming numbers and turned the left of Archer and the right of Lane. Attacked in front and flank, two regiments of the former and a brigade of the latter, after a brave resistance, gave way. Archer held his line until the arrival of reënforcements. Thomas came to the relief of Lane and repulsed the column that had broken his line, and drove it back to the railroad. In the mean time a large force had penetrated the wood as far as Hill's reserve, where it was met by a fire for which it was not unprepared. General Hill says:[68] "The advancing columns of the enemy encountered an obstacle at the military road which they little expected. Gregg's brigade of South Carolinians stood in the way." The advancing Federals were allowed to approach quite near, when that brigade poured a withering fire into the faces of Meade's men, and Early's division from the second line swept forward, and the contest in the woods was short and decisive. The enemy was quickly routed and driven out with very heavy loss, and, though largely reënforced, was pressed back and pursued to the shelter of the railroad embankment. Here he was gallantly charged by the brigades of Hoke and Atkinson, and driven across the plain to his batteries. The attack on Hill's left was repulsed by the artillery on that part of the line, against which a hot fire from twenty-four guns was directed. The repulse of the foe on our right was decisive and the attack was not renewed, but his batteries kept up an active fire at intervals, and sharpshooters skirmished along the front during the afternoon.

While these events were transpiring on our right, the enemy, in formidable numbers, made repeated and desperate assaults upon the left of our line. About 11 A.M., having massed his troops under cover of the houses of Fredericksburg, he moved forward in strong columns to seize Marye's and Willis's Hills. All his batteries on the Stafford Heights directed their fire upon the positions occupied by our artillery, with a view to silence it, and cover the movement of the infantry. Without replying to this furious cannonade, our batteries poured a rapid and destructive fire into the dense lines of the infantry as they advanced to the attack, frequently breaking their ranks, and forcing them to retreat to the shelter of the houses. Six times did he, notwithstanding the havoc inflicted by our batteries, press on with great determination to within one hundred yards of the foot of the hill; but here, encountering the deadly fire of our infantry, his columns were broken, and fled in confusion to the town. The last assault was made shortly before dark. This effort met the fate of those that preceded it, and, when night closed in, his shattered masses had disappeared in the town, leaving the field covered with his dead and wounded.

During the night our lines were strengthened by the construction of earthworks at exposed points, and preparations made to receive the enemy on the next day. The 14th passed, however, without a renewal of the attack. The hostile batteries on both sides of the river played upon our lines at intervals, our own firing but little. On the 15th General Burnside still retained his position, apparently ready for battle, but the day passed as the preceding. But, on the morning of the 16th, it was discovered that he had availed himself of the darkness of the night and the prevalence of a violent storm of wind and rain to recross the river. The town was immediately reoccupied, and our positions on the river-bank resumed.

In the engagement we captured more than 900 prisoners and 9,000 stand of arms. A large quantity of ammunition was found in Fredericksburg, On our side 458 were killed and 3,743 wounded; total, 4,201. The loss of the enemy was 1,152 killed, 9,101 wounded, and 3,234 missing; total, 13,771.

General Burnside testified before the Committee on the Conduct of the War that he "had about 100,000 men on the south side of the river, and every single man of them was under artillery-fire, and about half of them were at different times formed in columns of attack." [69]

Lee's then 20,000 Confederate troops were actively engaged. This number composed about one fourth of the army under General Lee, The returns of the Army of Northern Virginia show that on the 10th of December, 1862, General Lee had present for duty 78,228, and, on December 20th, 75,524 of all arms.[70]

Upon being asked what causes he assigned for the failure of his attack, General Burnside replied to the Committee on the Conduct of the War: "It was found impossible to get the men up to the works. The enemy's fire was too hot for them." [71]

After the battle of Fredericksburg the Army of Northern Virginia remained encamped on the south side of the Rappahannock until the latter part of April, 1863. The Federal army occupied the north side of the river opposite Fredericksburg, extending to the Potomac. Two brigades of Anderson's division—those of Mahone and Posey—were stationed near United States Mine or Bank Mill Ford. The cavalry was distributed on both flanks—Fitzhugh Lee's brigade picketing the Rappahannock above the mouth of the Rapidan and W. H. F. Lee's near Port Royal. General Longstreet, with two divisions of his corps, was detached for service south of James River in February, and did not rejoin the army until after the battle of Chancellorsville. Excepting a cavalry engagement near Kelly's Ford, on March 17th, nothing of interest transpired during this period of inactivity. On April 14, 1863, the enemy's cavalry was concentrating on the upper Rappahannock, but his efforts to establish himself on the south side of the river were successfully resisted. About the 21st, small bodies of infantry appeared at Kelly's Ford and the Rappahannock Bridge; at the same time a demonstration was made opposite Port Royal. These, movements indicated that the army, now commanded by Major-General Hooker, was about to resume active operations. On the 28th, early in the morning, the enemy crossed the river in boats near Fredericksburg, laid a pontoon-bridge, and built another about a mile below. A considerable force crossed on these bridges during the day, and was massed under the high banks of the river, which afforded protection from our artillery, while the batteries on the opposite heights completely commanded the wide plain between our lines and the narrow river. As in the first battle at Fredericksburg, our dispositions were made with a view to resist a direct advance against us. But the indications were that the principal effort would be made in some other quarter. On the 29th it was reported that he had crossed in force near Kelly's Ford, and that a heavy column was moving from Kelly's toward Germania Ford on the Rapidan, and another toward Ely's Ford. The routes they were pursuing, after crossing the Rapidan, converged near Chancellorsville, whence several roads led to the rear of our position at Fredericksburg. General Anderson proceeded to cover these roads on the 29th, but, learning that the enemy had crossed the Rapidan and was approaching in strong force, he retired early on the next morning to the intersection of the Mine and plank roads near Tabernacle Church, and began to intrench himself. His rear-guard, as he left Chancellorsville, was attacked by cavalry, but, being vigorously repulsed, offered no further opposition to his march.

The enemy on our front near Fredericksburg continued inactive, and it was now apparent that the main attack would be made upon our flank and rear. It was therefore determined to leave sufficient troops to hold our lines, and with the main body of the army to give battle to the approaching column. Early's division of Jackson's corps and Barksdale's brigade of McLaws's division, with part of the reserve artillery under General Pendleton, were intrusted with the defense of our position at Fredericksburg, and at midnight on the 30th General McLaws marched with the rest of his command toward Chancellorsville. General Jackson followed at dawn next morning with the remaining divisions of his corps. He reached the position occupied by General Anderson at 8 A.M., and immediately began to make preparations to advance. At 11 A.M. the troops moved forward on the plank and old turnpike roads. The enemy was soon encountered on both roads, and heavy skirmishing with infantry and artillery ensued, our troops pressing steadily forward. A strong attack upon McLaws was repulsed with spirit by Semmes's brigade; and General Wright, by direction of General Anderson, diverging to the left of the plank-road, marched by way of the unfinished railroad from Fredericksburg to Gordonsville and turned the Federal right. His whole line thereupon retreated rapidly, vigorously pursued by our troops until they arrived within about one mile of Chancellorsville. Here the enemy had assumed a position of great natural strength, surrounded on all sides by a dense forest filled with a tangled undergrowth, in the midst of which breastworks of logs had been constructed with trees felled in front so as to form an almost impenetrable abatis. His artillery swept the few narrow roads by which his position could be approached from the front, and commanded the adjacent woods. The left of his line extended from Chancellorsville toward the Rappahannock, covering the Bank Mill Ford, where he communicated with the north bank of the river by a pontoon-bridge. His right stretched westward along the Germania Ford road more than two miles. Darkness was approaching before the strength and extent of his line could be ascertained; and, as the nature of the country rendered it hazardous to attack by night, our troops were halted and formed in line of battle in front of Chancellorsville at right angles to the plank-road, extending on the right to the Mine road, and to the left in the direction of the "Furnace."

It was evident that a direct attack by us would be attended with great difficulty and loss, in view of the strength of his position and his superiority of numbers. It was therefore resolved to endeavor to turn his right flank and gain his rear, leaving a force in front to hold him in check and conceal the movement. The execution of this plan was intrusted to Lieutenant-General Jackson with his three divisions. The commands of Generals McLaws and Anderson, with the exception of Wilcox's brigade which during the night had been ordered hack to Banks's Ford, remained in front of the enemy. Early on the morning of the 2d General Jackson marched by the Furnace and Brock roads, his movement being effectually covered by Fitzhugh Lee's cavalry under General Stuart in person. As the rear of his train was passing the furnace a large force of the enemy advanced from Chancellorsville and attempted its capture, but this advance was arrested. After a long and fatiguing march General Jackson's leading division under General Rodes reached the old turnpike about three miles in rear of Chancellorsville at 4 P.M. As the different divisions arrived, they were formed at right angles to the road— Rodes's in front, Trimble's, under Brigadier-General Colston, in the second, and A. P, Hill's in the third line. At 6 P.M. the advance was ordered. The enemy was taken by surprise, and fled after a brief resistance. General Rodes's men pushed forward with great vigor and enthusiasm, followed closely by the second and third lines. Position after position was carried, the guns captured, and every effort of the foe to rally defeated by the impetuous rush of our troops. In the ardor of pursuit through the thick and tangled woods, the first and second lines at last became mingled and moved on together as one. The fugitives made a stand at a line of breastworks across the road, but the troops of Rodes and Colston dashed over the intrenchments together, and the flight and pursuit were resumed and continued until our advance was arrested by the abatis in front of the line of works near the central position at Chancellorsville. It was now dark, and General Jackson ordered the third line under General Hill to advance to the front and relieve the troops of Rodes and Colston, who were completely blended and in such disorder from their advance through intricate woods and over broken ground that it was necessary to reform them. As Hill's men moved forward, General Jackson, with his staff and escort, returning from the extreme front, met the skirmishers advancing, and in the obscurity of the night were mistaken for the enemy and fired upon. Captain Boswell, chief engineer of the corps, and several others, were killed and a number wounded, among whom was General Jackson, who was borne from the field. The command devolved upon Major-General Hill, whose division under General Heath was advanced to the line of intrenchments which had been reached by Rodes and Colston. A furious fire of artillery was opened upon them, under cover of which infantry advanced to the attack, but were handsomely repulsed. General Hill was soon afterward disabled, and the command was turned over to General Stuart. He immediately proceeded to reconnoiter the ground and make himself acquainted with the disposition of the troops. The darkness of the night and the difficulty of moving through the woods and undergrowth rendered it advisable to defer further operations until morning, and the troops rested on their arms in line of battle.

As soon as the sound of cannon gave notice of Jackson's attack on the enemy's right, the troops in front began to press strongly on the left to prevent reënforcements being sent to the point assailed. They advanced up to the intrenchments, while several batteries played with good effect until prevented by the increasing darkness.

Early on the morning of May 3d General Stuart renewed the attack upon General Hooker, who had strengthened his right wing during the night with additional breastworks, while a large number of guns, protected by intrenchments, were posted so as to sweep the woods through which our troops had to advance. Hill's division was in front, with Colston in the second line, and Rodes in the third. The second and third lines soon advanced to the support of the first, and the whole became hotly engaged. The breastworks at which the attack was suspended on the preceding evening were carried by assault, under a terrible fire of musketry and artillery. In rear of these breastworks was a barricade, from which the enemy was quickly driven. The troops on the left of the plank-road, pressing through the woods, attacked and broke the next line, while those on the right bravely assailed the extensive earthworks behind which General Hooker's artillery was posted. Three times were these works carried, and as often were the brave assailants compelled to abandon them—twice by the retirement of the troops on their left, who fell back after a gallant struggle with superior numbers, and once by a movement of the enemy on their right caused by the advance of General Anderson. The left, being reënforced, finally succeeded in driving back the enemy, and the artillery under Lieutenant-Colonels Carter and Jones, being thrown forward to occupy favorable positions secured by the advance of the infantry, began to play with great precision and effect. Anderson, in the mean time, pressed gallantly forward directly upon Chancellorsville, his right resting upon the plank-road and his left extending around the furnace, while McLaws made a strong demonstration to the right of the road. As the troops advancing upon the enemy's front and right converged upon his central position, Anderson effected a junction with Jackson's corps, and the whole line pressed irresistibly. General Hooker's army was driven from all its fortified positions with heavy loss in killed, wounded, and prisoners, and retreated toward the Rappahannock. By 10 A.M. we were in full possession of the field. The troops, having become somewhat scattered by the difficulties of the ground and the ardor of the contest, were immediately reformed, preparatory to renewing the attack. The enemy had withdrawn to a strong position nearer to the Rappahannock, which he had fortified. His superiority of numbers, the unfavorable nature of the ground, which was densely wooded, and the condition of our troops, after the arduous and sanguinary conflict in which they had been engaged, rendered great caution necessary. Our operations were just completed, when further movements were arrested by intelligence received from Fredericksburg.

Before dawn, on the morning of the 3d, it was known that the enemy had occupied Fredericksburg in large force, and laid down a bridge at the town. He made a demonstration against the extreme right of the force left to hold our lines, which was easily repulsed by General Early. Soon afterward a column moved from Fredericksburg along the river-banks, as if to gain the heights on the extreme left which commanded those immediately in rear of the town. This attempt was foiled. Very soon the enemy advanced in large force against Marye's, and the hills to the right and left of it. Two assaults were gallantly repulsed. After the second, a flag of truce was sent from the town to obtain permission to provide for the wounded. Three heavy lines advanced immediately upon the return of the flag and renewed the attack. They were bravely repulsed on the right and left, but the small force at the foot of Marye's Hill, overpowered by more than ten times their numbers, was captured after an heroic resistance and the hill carried. The success of the enemy enabled him to threaten our communications by moving down the Telegraph road, or to come upon our rear at Chancellorsville by the plank-road. He began to advance on the plank-road, his progress being gallantly disputed by the brigade of General Wilcox, who fell back slowly until he reached Salem Church on the plank-road, about five miles from Fredericksburg.

In this state of affairs in our rear, General Lee led General McLaws with his three brigades to reënforce General Wilcox. He arrived at Salem Church early in the afternoon, where he found General Wilcox in line of battle, with a large force of the enemy—consisting, as was reported, of one army corps and part of another—in his front. The enemy's artillery played vigorously upon our position for some time, when his infantry advanced in three strong lines, the attack being directed mainly against General Wilcox, but partially involving the brigades on his left. The assault was met with the utmost firmness, and after a fierce struggle the first line was repulsed with great slaughter. The second then came forward, but immediately broke under the close and deadly fire which it encountered, and the whole mass fled in confusion to the rear. They were pursued by the brigades of Wilcox and Semmes, which advanced nearly a mile, when they were halted to reform in the presence of the hostile reserve, which now appeared in large force. It being quite dark, General Wilcox deemed it imprudent to push the attack with his small numbers, and retired to his original position, the enemy making no attempt to follow. The next morning General Early advanced along the Telegraph road, and recaptured Marye's and the adjacent hills without difficulty, thus gaining the rear of the enemy's left. In the mean time General Hooker had so strengthened his position near Chancellorsville, that it was deemed inexpedient to assail it with less than our whole force, which had been reduced by the detachment led to Fredericksburg to relieve us from the danger that menaced our rear.

It has been heretofore stated that General Longstreet had been sent with two divisions of Lee's array to coöperate with General French on the south side of the James River, in the capture of Suffolk, the occupation of which by the enemy interrupted our collection of supplies in the eastern counties of North Carolina and Virginia. When the advance of Hooker threatened General Lee's front, instructions were sent to General Longstreet to hasten his return to the army with the large force detached with him. These instructions were repeated with urgent insistence, yet his movements were so delayed that, though the battle of Chancellorsville did not occur until many days after he was expected to join, his force was absent when it occurred. Had he rejoined his command in due time, Lee need not have diminished his force in front of Hooker, so as to delay the renewal of the attack and force him to a precipitate retreat, involving the loss of his artillery and trains. It was accordingly resolved still further to reënforce the troops in front, in order, if possible, to drive Hooker across the Rappahannock. Some delay occurred in getting the troops into position, owing to the broken and irregular nature of the ground, and the difficulty of ascertaining the disposition of the opposing forces. The attack did not begin until 6 P.M., when the enemy's troops were rapidly driven across the plank-road in the direction of the Rappahannock. The speedy approach of darkness prevented General McLaws from perceiving the success of the attack, until the foe began to recross the river a short distance below Banks's Ford, where he had laid one of his pontoon-bridges. His right brigades advanced through the woods in the direction of the firing, but the retreat was so rapid that they could only join in the pursuit. A dense fog settled over the field, increasing the obscurity and rendering great caution necessary to avoid collision between our own troops. Their movements were consequently slow. The next morning it was found that the enemy had made good his escape and removed his bridges. Fredericksburg was evacuated, and our rear no longer threatened. But, as General Hooker had it in his power to recross, it was deemed best to leave a force to hold our lines as before. McLaws and Anderson being directed to return to Chancellorsville, they reached their destination during the afternoon, in the midst of a violent storm, which continued throughout the night and most of the following day. Preparations were made to assail the enemy's works at daylight on the 6th, but, on advancing our skirmishers, it was found that, under cover of the storm and darkness of the night, he had retreated over the river. A detachment was left to guard the battle-field, while the wounded were removed and the captured property collected. The rest of the army returned to its former position.

The loss of the enemy, according to his own statement, was 1,512 killed and 9,518 wounded; total, 11,030. His dead and a large number of wounded were left on the field. About 5,000 prisoners, exclusive of the wounded, were taken, and 13 pieces of artillery, 19,500 stand of arms, 17 colors, and a large quantity of ammunition fell into our hands.

Our loss was much less in killed and wounded than that of the enemy, but of the number was one, a host in himself, Lieutenant-General Jackson, who was wounded, and died on May 10th. Of this great captain, General Lee, in his anguish at his death, justly said, "I have lost my right arm." As an executive officer he had no superior, and war has seldom shown an equal. Too devoted to the cause he served to have any personal motive, he shared the toils, privations, and dangers of his troops when in chief command; and in subordinate position his aim was to understand the purpose of his commander and faithfully to promote its success. He was the complement of Lee; united, they had achieved such results that the public felt secure under their shield. To us his place was never filled.

The official return of the Army of Northern Virginia, on March 31, 1863, shows as present for duty 57,112, of which 6,509 were cavalry and 1,621 reserve artillery. On May 20th, two weeks after the battle, and when Pickett's and Hood's divisions had rejoined the army, the total infantry force numbered but 55,261 effective men, from which, if the strength of Hood's and Pickett's divisions is deducted, there would remain 41,358 as the strength of the commands that participated in the battles of Chancellorsville.[72]

The Army of the Potomac numbered 120,000 men, infantry and artillery, with a body of 12,000 well-equipped cavalry, and an artillery force of four hundred guns.[73]

A brief and forcible account of this battle is given by Taylor:[74]

"A formidable force under General Sedgwick was thrown across the river below Fredericksburg, and made demonstrations of an intention to assail the Confederate front. Meanwhile, with great celerity and secrecy, General Hooker, with the bulk of his array, crossed at the upper fords, and, in an able manner and wonderfully short time, had concentrated four of his seven army corps, numbering fifty-six thousand men, at Chancellorsville, about ten miles west of Fredericksburg. His purpose was now fully developed to General Lee, who, instead of awaiting its further prosecution, immediately determined on the movement the least expected by his opponent. He neither proceeded to make strong his left against an attack from the direction of Chancellorsville nor did he move southward so as to put his army between that of General Hooker and the Confederate capital, but, leaving General Early, with about nine thousand men, to take care of General Sedgwick, he moved with the remainder of his army, numbering forty-eight thousand men, toward Chancellorsville. As soon as the advance of the enemy was encountered, it was attacked with vigor, and very soon the Federal army was on the defensive in its apparently impregnable position. It was not the part of wisdom to attempt to storm this stronghold; but Sedgwick would certainly soon be at work in the rear, and Early, with his inadequate force, could not do more than delay and harass him. It was, therefore, imperatively necessary to strike—to strike boldly, effectively, and at once. There could be no delay. Meanwhile, two more army corps had joined General Hooker, who now had about Chancellorsville ninety-one thousand men—six corps except one division of the Second Corps (Conch's), which had been left with Sedgwick at Fredericksburg. It was a critical position for the Confederate commander, but his confidence in his trusted lieutenant and brave men was such that he did not long hesitate. Encouraged by the counsel and confidence of General Jackson, he determined to still further divide his army; and, while he, with the divisions of Anderson and McLaws, less than fourteen thousand men, should hold the enemy in his front, he would hurl Jackson upon his flank and rear, and crush and crumble him as between the upper and nether millstone. The very boldness of the movement contributed much to insure its success.

"The flank movement of Jackson's wing was attended with extraordinary success. On the afternoon of the 2d of May, he struck such a blow to the enemy on their extreme right as to cause dismay and demoralization to their entire army; this advantage was promptly and vigorously followed up the next day, when Generals Lee and Stuart (the latter then in command of Jackson's wing) joined elbows; and, after most heroic and determined effort, their now united forces finally succeeded in storming and capturing the works of the enemy.

"Meantime Sedgwick had forced Early out of the heights at Fredericksburg, and had advanced toward Chancellorsville, thus threatening the Confederate rear. General Lee, having defeated the greater force and driven it from its stronghold, now gathered up a few of the most available of his victorious brigades and turned upon the lesser. On May 3d Sedgwick's force was encountered near Salem Church, and its further progress checked by General McLaws, with the five brigades detached by General Lee for this service, including Wilcox's, which had been stationed at Banks's Ford. On the next day. General Anderson was sent to reënforce McLaws with three additional brigades. Meanwhile, General Early had connected with these troops, and in the afternoon, so soon as dispositions could be made for attack, Sedgwick's lines were promptly assailed and broken, the main assault being made on the enemy's left by Early's troops. The situation was now a critical one for the Federal lieutenant. Darkness came to his rescue, and on the night of the 4th be crossed to the north side of the river.

"On the 5th General Lee concentrated for another assault on the new line taken up by General Hooker; but on the morning of the 6th it was ascertained that the enemy, in General Lee's language, 'had sought safety beyond the Rappahannock,' and the river flowed again between the hostile hosts."

[Footnote 68: "Reports of the Army of Northern Virginia," vol. ii, p. 463.]

[Footnote 69: "Report of Committee on the Conduct of the War," Part I, p. 656.]

[Footnote 70: Taylor's "Four year with General Lee."]

[Footnote 71: "Report of Committee on the Conduct of the War," Part I, p. 656.]

[Footnote 72: Taylor's "Four Years with General Lee."]

[Footnote 73: Swinton's "Army of the Potomac," p. 269.]

[Footnote 74: "Four Years with General Lee."]


Relations with Foreign Nations.—The Public Questions.—Ministers abroad.—Usages of Intercourse between Nations.—Our Action.— Mistake of European Nations; they follow the Example of England and France.—Different Conditions of the Belligerents.—Injury to the Confederacy with a Single Exception.—These Agreements remained inoperative.—Extent of the Pretended Blockade.—Remonstrances against its Recognition.—Sinking Vessels to block up Harbors.— Every Proscription of Maritime Law violated by the United States Government.—Protest.—Addition made to the Law by Great Britain.— Policy pursued favorable to our Enemies.—Instances.—Mediation proposed by France to Great Britain, and Russian Letter of French Minister.—Reply of Great Britain.—Reply of Russia.—Letter to French Minister at Washington.—Various Offensive Actions of the British Government.—Encouraging to the United States.—Hollow Profession of Neutrality.

The public questions arising out of our foreign relations were too important to be overlooked. At the end of the first year of the war the Confederate States had been recognized by the leading governments of Europe as a belligerent power. This continued unchanged to the close. Mr. Mason became our representative in London, Mr. Slidell in Paris, Mr. Rost in Spain, and Mr. Mann in Belgium. They performed with energy and skill the positions, but were unsuccessful in obtaining our recognition as an independent power.

The usages of intercourse between nations require that official communication be made to friendly powers of all organic changes in the constitution of states. To those who are familiar with the principles upon which the States known as the United States were originally constituted, as well as those upon which the Union was formed, the organic changes made by the secession and confederation of the Southern States are very apparent. But to others an explanation may be necessary. Each of the States was originally declared to be sovereign and independent. In this condition, at a former period, all of those then existing were severally recognized by name by the only one of the powers which had denied their right to independence. This gave to each a recognized national sovereignty. Subsequently they formed a compact of voluntary union, whereby a new organization was constituted, which was made the representative of the individual States in all general intercourse with other nations. So long as the compact continued in force, this agent represented merely the sovereignty of the States. But, when a portion of the States withdrew from the compact and formed a new one under the name of the Confederate States, they had made such organic changes in their Constitution as to require official notice in compliance with the usages of nations.

For this purpose the Provisional Government took early measures for sending to Europe Commissioners charged with the duty of visiting the capitals of the different powers and making arrangements for the opening of more formal diplomatic intercourse. Prior, however, to the arrival abroad of these Commissioners, the Government of the United States had addressed communications to the different Cabinets of Europe, in which it assumed the attitude of being sovereign over the Confederate States, and alleged that these independent States were in rebellion against the remaining States of the Union, and threatened Europe with manifestations of its displeasure if it should treat the Confederate States as having an independent existence. It soon became known that these pretensions were not considered abroad to be as absurd as they were known to be at home; nor had Europe yet learned what reliance was to be placed in the official statements of the Cabinet at Washington. The delegation of power granted by the States to the General Government to represent them in foreign intercourse had led European nations into the grave error of supposing that their separate sovereignty and independence had been merged into one common sovereignty, and had ceased to have a distinct existence. Under the influence of this error, which all appeals to reason and historical fact were vainly used to dispel, our Commissioners were met by the declaration that foreign Governments could not assume to judge between the conflicting representations of the two parties as to the true nature of their previous relations. The Governments of Great Britain and France accordingly signified their determination to confine themselves to recognizing the self-evident fact of the existence of a war, and to maintain a strict neutrality during its progress. Some of the other powers of Europe pursued the same course of policy, and it became apparent that by some understanding, express or tacit, Europe had decided to leave the initiative in all action touching the contest on this continent to the two powers just named, who were recognized to have the largest interests involved, both by reason of proximity to and of the extent of intimacy of their commercial relations with the States engaged in war.

It was manifest that the course of action adopted by Europe, while based on an apparent refusal to determine the question or to side with either party, was, in point of fact, an actual decision against our rights and in favor of the groundless pretensions of the United States. It was a refusal to treat us as an independent government. If we were independent States, the refusal to entertain with us the same international intercourse which was maintained with our enemy was unjust, and was injurious in its effects, whatever might have been the motive which prompted it. Neither was it in accordance with the high moral obligations of that international code, whose chief sanction is the conscience of sovereigns and the public opinion of mankind, that those eminent powers should have declined the performance of a duty peculiarly incumbent on them, from any apprehension of the consequences to themselves. One immediate and necessary result of their declining the responsibility of a decision, which must have been adverse to the extravagant pretensions of the United States, was the prolongation of hostilities to which our enemies were thereby encouraged, and which resulted in scenes of carnage and devastation on this continent and of misery and suffering on the other such as have scarcely a parallel in history. Had those powers promptly admitted our right to be treated as all other independent nations, none can doubt that the moral effect of such action would have been to dispel the pretension under which the United States persisted in their efforts to accomplish our subjugation.

There were other matters in which less than justice was rendered to the Confederacy by "neutral" Europe, and undue advantage conferred on the aggressors in a wicked war. At the inception of hostilities, the inhabitants of the Confederate States were almost exclusively agriculturists; those of the United States were also to a large extent mechanics, merchants, and navigators. We had no commercial marine, while their merchant-vessels covered the ocean. We were without a navy, while they had powerful fleets built by the money we had in full share contributed. The power which they possessed for inflicting injury on our coasts and harbors was thus counterbalanced in some measure by the exposure of their commerce to attack by private armed vessels. It was known to Europe that within a very few years past the United States had peremptorily refused to accede to proposals for the abolition of privateering, on the ground, as alleged by them, that nations owning powerful fleets would thereby obtain undue advantage over those possessing inferior naval force. Yet no sooner was war flagrant between the Confederacy and the United States than the maritime powers of Europe issued orders prohibiting either party from bringing prizes into their ports. This prohibition, directed with apparent impartiality against both belligerents, was in reality effective against, the Confederate States only, for they alone could find a hostile commerce on the ocean. Merely nominal against the United States, the prohibition operated with intense severity on the Confederacy by depriving it of the only means of maintaining its struggle on the ocean against the crashing superiority of naval force possessed by its enemies. The value and efficiency of the weapon which was thus wrested from our grasp by the combined action of "neutral" European powers, in favor of a power which professes openly its intention of ravaging their commerce by privateers in any future war, is strikingly illustrated by the terror inspired among commercial classes of the United States by a single cruiser of the Confederacy. One small steamer, commanded by officers and manned by a crew who were debarred by the closure of neutral ports from the opportunity of causing captured vessels to be condemned in their favor as prizes, sufficed to double the rates of marine insurance in Northern ports, and consign to forced inaction numbers of Northern vessels, in addition to the direct damage inflicted by captures at sea.

But it was especially in relation to the so-called blockade that the policy of European powers was so shaped as to cause the greatest injury to the Confederacy, and to confer signal advantages on the United States. A few words in explanation may here be necessary.

Prior to the year 1856 the principles regulating this subject were to be gathered from the writings of eminent publicists, the decisions of admiralty courts, international treaties, and the usages of nations. The uncertainty and doubt which prevailed in reference to the true rules of maritime law, in time of war, resulting from the discordant and often conflicting principles announced from such varied and independent sources, had become a grievous evil to mankind. Whether a blockade was allowable against a port not invested by land as well as by sea, whether a blockade was valid by sea if the investing fleet was merely sufficient to render ingress to the blockaded port evidently dangerous, or whether it was further required for its legality that it should be sufficient "really to prevent access," and numerous other similar questions, had remained doubtful and undecided.

Animated by the highly honorable desire to put an end "to differences of opinion between neutrals and belligerents, which may occasion serious difficulties and even conflicts" (such was the official language), the five great powers of Europe, together with Sardinia and Turkey, adopted in 1856 the following declaration of principles:

"1. Privateering is and remains abolished.

"2. The neutral flag covers enemy's goods, with the exception of contraband of war.

"3. Neutral goods, with the exception of contraband of war, are not liable to capture under enemy's flag.

"4. Blockades, in order to be binding must be effective, that is to say, maintained by a force sufficient really to prevent access to the coast of the enemy."

Not only did this solemn declaration announce to the world the principles to which the signing powers agreed to conform in future wars, but it contained a clause to which these powers gave immediate effect, and which provided that the states, not parties to the Congress of Paris, should be invited to accede to the declaration. Under this invitation every independent state in Europe yielded its assent—at least, no instance is known to me of a refusal; and the United States, while declining to assent to the proposition which prohibited privateering, declared that the three remaining principles were in entire accordance with their own views of international law.

No instance is known in history of the adoption of rules of public law under circumstances of like solemnity, with like unanimity, and pledging the faith of nations with a sanctity so peculiar.

When, therefore, this Confederacy was formed, and when neutral powers, while deferring action on its demand for admission into the family of nations, recognized it as a belligerent power, Great Britain and France made informal proposals, about the same time, that their own rights as neutrals should be guaranteed by our acceding, as belligerents, to the declaration of principles made by the Congress of Paris. The request was addressed to our sense of justice, and therefore met immediate and favorable response in the resolutions of the Provisional Congress of the 13th of August, 1861, by which all the principles announced by the Congress of Paris were adopted as the guide of our conduct during the war, with the sole exception of that relative to privateering. As the right to make use of privateers was one in which neutral nations had, as to the then existing war, no interest; as it was a right which the United States had refused to abandon, and which they remained at liberty to employ against us; as it was a right of which we were already in actual enjoyment, and which we could not be expected to renounce flagrante bello against an adversary possessing an overwhelming superiority of naval forces— it was reserved with entire confidence that neutral nations could not fail to perceive that just reason existed for the reservation. Nor was this confidence misplaced; for the official documents published by the British Government contained the expression of the satisfaction of that Government with the conduct of officials who conducted successfully the delicate transaction confided to their charge.

These solemn declarations of principle, this implied agreement between the Confederacy and the two powers just named, were suffered to remain inoperative against the menaces and outrages on neutral rights committed by the United States with unceasing and progressing arrogance during the whole period of the war. Neutral Europe remained passive when the United States, with a naval force insufficient to blockade effectively the coast of a single State, proclaimed a paper blockade of thousands of miles of coast, extending from the Capes of the Chesapeake to those of Florida, and encircling the Gulf of Mexico from Key West to the mouth of the Rio Grande. Compared with this monstrous pretension of the United States, the blockades known in history under the names of the Berlin and Milan Decrees, and the British Orders in Council, in the years 1806 and 1807, sink into insignificance. Those blockades were justified by the powers that declared them, on the sole ground that they were retaliatory; yet they have since been condemned by the publicists of those very powers as violations of international law. It will be remembered that those blockades evoked angry remonstrances from neutral powers, among which the United States were the most conspicuous, and were in their consequences the chief cause of the war between Great Britain and the United States in 1812; also, that they formed one of the principal motives that led to the declaration of the Congress of Paris in 1856, in the fond hope of imposing an enduring check on the very abuse of maritime power which was renewed by the United States in 1861 and 1862, under circumstances and with features of aggravated wrong without precedent in history.

Repeated and formal remonstrances were made by the Confederate Government to neutral powers against the recognition of that blockade. It was shown by evidence not capable of contradiction, and which was furnished in part by the officials of neutral nations, that the few ports of the Confederacy, before which any naval forces at all were stationed, were invested so inefficiently that hundreds of entries were effected into them after the declaration of the blockade; that our enemies admitted the inefficiency of their blockade in the most forcible manner, by repeated official complaints of the sale to us of goods contraband of war—a sale which could not possibly have affected their interests if their pretended blockade had been sufficient "really to prevent access to our coasts"; that they alleged their inability to render their paper blockade effective as the excuse for the odious barbarity of destroying the entrance to one of the harbors by sinking vessels loaded with stone in the channel; that our commerce with foreign nations was interrupted, not by the effective investment of our ports, but by watching the ports of the West Indies; not only by the seizure of ships in the attempt to enter the Confederate ports, but by the capture on the high-seas of neutral vessels by the cruisers of our enemies, whenever supposed to be bound to any point on our extensive coast, without inquiry whether a single blockading vessel was to be found at such point; that blockading vessels had left the ports at which they were stationed for distant expeditions, were absent for many days, and returned without notice either of the cessation or renewal of the blockade; in a word, that every prescription of maritime law and every right of neutral nations to trade with a belligerent under the sanction of principles heretofore universally respected were systematically and persistently violated by the United States. Neutral Europe received our remonstrances, and submitted in almost unbroken silence to all the wrongs that the United States chose to inflict on its commerce. The Cabinet of Great Britain, however, did not confine itself to such implied acquiescence in these breaches of international law which resulted from simple inaction, but, in a published dispatch of the Minister for Foreign Affairs, assumed to make a change in the principle enunciated by the Congress of Paris, to which the faith of the British Government was considered to be pledged. The change was so important and so prejudicial to the interests of the Confederacy that, after a vain attempt to obtain satisfactory explanations from that Government, I directed a solemn protest to be made.

[Illustration: Members of the Confederate Cabinet]

In a published dispatch from her Majesty's Foreign Office to her Minister at Washington, under date of February 11th, 1862, occurred the following passage:

"Her Majesty's Government, however, are of opinion that, assuming that the blockade was duly notified, and also that a number of ships is stationed and remains at the entrance of a port sufficient really to prevent access to it, or to create an evident danger of entering it or leaving it, and that these ships do not voluntarily permit ingress or egress, the fact that various ships may have successfully escaped through it (as in the particular instance here referred to), will not of itself prevent the blockade from being an effectual one by international law."

The words which I have italicized were an addition made by the British Government of its own authority to a principle, the exact terms of which were settled with deliberation by the common consent of civilized nations, and by implied convention with our Government, as already explained, and their effect was clearly to reopen to the prejudice of the Confederacy one of the very disputed questions on the law of blockade which the Congress of Paris proposed to settle. The importance of this change was readily illustrated by taking one of our ports as an example. There was "evident danger," in entering the port of Wilmington, from the presence of a blockading force, and by this test the blockade was effective. "Access is not really prevented" by the blockading fleet to the same port; for steamers were continually arriving and departing, so that, tried by this test, the blockade was ineffective and invalid. Thus, while every energy of our country was evoked in the struggle for maintaining its existence, the neutral nations of Europe pursued a policy which, nominally impartial, was practically most favorable to our enemies and most detrimental to us.

The exercise of the neutral right of refusing entry into their ports to prizes taken by both belligerents was especially hurtful to the Confederacy. It was sternly adhered to and enforced.

The assertion of the neutral right of commerce with a belligerent, whose ports are not blockaded by fleets sufficient really to prevent access to them, would have been eminently beneficial to the Confederate States, and only thus hurtful to the United States. It was complaisantly abandoned.

The duty of neutral states to receive with cordiality and recognize with respect any new confederation that independent states may think proper to form, was too clear to admit of denial, but its postponement was equally beneficial to the United States and detrimental to the Confederacy. It was postponed.

In this statement of our relations with the nations of Europe, it has been my purpose to point out distinctly that the Confederacy had no complaint to make that those nations declared their neutrality. It could neither expect nor desire more. The complaint was, that the declared neutrality was delusive, not real; that recognized neutral rights were alternately asserted and waived in such manner as to bear with great severity on us, while conferring signal advantages on our enemy.

Perhaps it may not be out of place here to notice a correspondence between the Cabinets of France, Great Britain, and Russia, relative to a mediation between the Confederacy and the United States. On October 30, 1862, the French Minister of Foreign Affairs, Drouyn de l'Huys, addressed a note to the ambassadors of France at London and St. Petersburg. In this dispatch he stated that the Emperor had followed with painful interest the struggle which had then been going on for more than a year on this continent. He observed that the proofs of energy, perseverance, and courage, on both sides, had been given at the expense of innumerable calamities and immense bloodshed; to the accompaniments of civil conflict was to be added the apprehension of servile war, which would be the climax of so many irreparable misfortunes.

If these calamities affected America only, these sufferings of a friendly nation would be enough to excite the anxiety and sympathy of the Emperor; but Europe also had suffered in one of the principal branches of her industry, and her artisans had been subjected to most cruel trials. France and the maritime powers had, during the struggle, maintained the strictest neutrality, but the sentiments by which they were animated, far from imposing on them anything like indifference, seem, on the contrary, to require that they should assist the two belligerent parties in an endeavor to escape from a position which appeared to have no issue. The forces of the two sides had hitherto fought with balanced success, and the latest accounts did not show any prospect of a speedy termination of the war.

These circumstances, taken together, seemed to favor the adoption of measures which might bring about a truce. The Emperor of the French, therefore, was of the opinion that there was now an opportunity of offering to the belligerents the good offices of the maritime powers. He, therefore, proposed to her Majesty, as well as to the Emperor of Russia, that the three courts should endeavor, both at Washington and in communication with the Confederate States, to bring about a suspension of arms for six months, during which time every act of hostility, direct or indirect, should cease, at sea as well as on land. This armistice might, if necessary, be renewed for a further period.

This proposal, he proceeded to say, would not imply, on the part of the three powers, any judgment on the origin of the war, or any pressure on the negotiations for peace, which it was hoped would take place during the armistice. The three powers would only interfere to smooth the obstacles, and only within the limits which the two interested parties would prescribe. The French Government was of the opinion that, even in the event of a failure of immediate success, those overtures might have proved useful in leading the minds of men heated by passion to consider the advantages of conciliation and peace.

The reply of Great Britain, through Lord John Russell, on November 13, 1862, is really contained in this extract:

"After weighing all the information which has been received from America, her Majesty's Government are led to the conclusion that there is no ground at the present moment to hope that the Federal Government would accept the proposal suggested, and a refusal from Washington at the present time would prevent any speedy renewal of the offer."

The Russian Government, in reply, said:

"According to the information we have hitherto received, we are inclined to believe that a combined step between France, England, and Russia, no matter bow conciliatory, and how cautiously made, if it were taken with an official and collective character, would run the risk of causing precisely the very opposite of the object of pacification, which is the aim of the wishes of the three courts."

The unfavorable reception of the proposal was communicated by the
French Minister of Foreign Affairs to the representative of France at
Washington. In this communication he said:

"Convinced as we were that an understanding between the three powers in the sense presented by us would answer as much the interests of the American people as our own; that even that understanding was, in the existing circumstances, a duty of humanity, you will easily form an idea of our regret at seeing the initiative we have taken after mature reflection remain without results. Being also desirous of informing Mr. Dayton, the United States Minister, of our project, I confidently communicated it to him, and even read in his presence the dispatch sent to London and St. Petersburg. I could not but be surprised that the Minister of the United States should oppose his objections to the project I communicated to him, and to hear him express personally some doubts as to the reception which would be given by the Cabinet at Washington to the joint offers of the good offices of France, Russia, and Great Britain."

It has already been stated that, by common understanding, the initiative in all action touching the contest on this continent had been left by foreign powers to the two great maritime nations of Western Europe, and that the Governments of these two nations had agreed to take no measures without previous concert. The result of these arrangements, therefore, placed it in the power of either France or England to obstruct at pleasure the recognition to which the Confederacy was justly entitled, or even to prolong the continuance of hostilities on this side of the Atlantic, if the policy of either could be promoted by the postponement of peace. Each, too, thus became possessed of great influence in so shaping the general exercise of neutral rights in Europe as to render them subservient to the purpose of aiding one of the belligerents, to the detriment of the other. Perhaps it may not be out of place to present a few examples by which to show the true nature of the neutrality professed in this war.

In May, 1861, the Government of her Britannic Majesty assured our enemies that "the sympathies of this country [Great Britain] were rather with the North than with the South."

On June 1, 1861, the British Government interdicted the use of its ports to "armed ships and privateers, both of the United States and the so-called Confederate States," with their prizes. The Secretary of State of the United States fully appreciated the character and motive of this interdiction, when he observed to Lord Lyons, who communicated it, that "this measure and that of the same character which had been adopted by France would probably prove a death-blow to Southern privateering"—a means, it will be remembered, which the United States had refused to abandon for themselves.

On the 12th of June, 1861, the United States Minister in London informed her Majesty's Minister for Foreign Affairs that the fact of his having held interviews with the Commissioners of our Government had given "great dissatisfaction, and that a protraction of this would be viewed by the United States as hostile in spirit, and to require some corresponding action accordingly." In response to this intimation her Majesty's Minister gave assurance that "he had no expectation of seeing them any more."

Further extracts will show the marked encouragement to the United States to persevere in its paper blockade, and unmistakable intimations that her Majesty's Government would not contest its validity.

On May 21, 1801, Earl Russell pointed out to the United States Minister in London that "the blockade might, no doubt, be made effective, considering the small number of harbors on the Southern coast, even though the extent of three thousand miles were comprehended in the terms of that blockade."

On January 14, 1862, her Majesty's Minister in Washington communicated to his Government that, in extenuation of the barbarous attempt to destroy the port of Charleston by sinking a stone fleet in the harbor, Mr. Seward had explained that "the Government of the United States had, last spring, with a navy very little prepared for so extensive an operation, undertaken to blockade upward of three thousand miles of coast. The Secretary of the Navy had reported that he could stop up the 'large holes' by means of his ships, but that he could not stop up the 'small ones.' It has been found necessary, therefore, to close some of the numerous small inlets by sinking vessels in the channel."

On May 6, 1862, so far from claiming the right of British subjects as neutrals to trade with us as belligerents, and to disregard the blockade on the ground of this explicit confession by our enemy of his inability to render it effective, her Majesty's Minister for Foreign Affairs claimed credit with the United States for friendly action in respecting it. His lordship stated that—

"The United States Government, on the allegation of a rebellion pervading from nine to eleven States of the Union, have now, for more than twelve months, endeavored to maintain a blockade of three thousand miles of coast. This blockade, kept up irregularly, but, when enforced, enforced severely, has seriously injured the trade and manufactures of the United Kingdom.

"Thousands are now obliged to resort to the poor-rates for subsistence owing to this blockade. Yet her Majesty's Government have never sought to take advantage of the obvious imperfections of this blockade, in order to declare it ineffective. They have, to the loss and detriment of the British nation, scrupulously observed the duties of Great Britain toward a friendly state."

It is not necessary to pursue this subject further. Suffice it to say that the British Government, when called upon to redeem its pledge made at Paris in 1856, and renewed to the Confederacy in 1861, replied that it could not regard the blockade of Southern ports as having been otherwise than "practically effective in February, 1862," and that "the manner in which it has since been enforced gives to neutral governments no excuse for asserting that the blockade had not been effectively maintained."

The partiality of her Majesty's Government in favor of our enemies was further evinced in the marked difference of its conduct on the subject of the purchase of supplies by the two belligerents. This difference was conspicuous from the very commencement of the war. As early as May 1, 1861, the British Minister in Washington was informed by the Secretary of State of the United States that he had sent agents to England, and that others would go to France, to purchase arms; and this fact was communicated to the British Foreign Office, which interposed no objection. Yet, in October of the same year, Earl Russell entertained the complaint of the United States Minister in London, that the Confederate States were importing contraband of war from the Island of Nassau, directed inquiry into the matter, and obtained a report from the authorities of the island denying the allegations, which report was inclosed to Mr. Adams, and received by him as satisfactory evidence to dissipate "the suspicion thrown upon the authorities by that unwarrantable act." So, too, when the Confederate Government purchased in Great Britain, as a neutral country (with strict observance both of the law of nations and the municipal law of Great Britain), vessels which were subsequently armed and commissioned as vessels of war after they had been far removed from English waters, the British Government, in violation of its own laws, and in deference to the importunate demands of the United States, made an ineffectual attempt to seize one vessel, and did actually seize and detain another which touched at the Island of Nassau, on her way to a Confederate port, and subjected her to all unfounded prosecution, at the very time when cargoes of munitions of war were openly shipped from British ports to New York, to be used in warfare against us. Further instances need not be adduced to show how detrimental to us, and advantageous to our enemy, was the manner in which the leading European power observed its hollow profession of neutrality toward the belligerents.


    Advance of General E. K. Smith.—Advance of General Bragg.—Retreat
    of General Buell to Louisville.—Battle at Perryville, Kentucky.—
    General Morgan at Hartsville.—Advance of General Rosecrans.—
    Battle of Murfreesboro.—General Van Dorn and General Price.—
    Battle at Iuka.—General Van Dorn.—Battle of Corinth.—General
    Little.—Captures at Holly Springs.—Retreat of Grant to Memphis.—
    Operations against Vicksburg.—The Canal.—Concentration.—Raid of
    Grierson.—Attack near Port Gibson.—Orders of General Johnston.—
    Reply of General Pemberton.—Baker's Creek.—Big Black Bridge.—
    Retreat to Vicksburg.—Siege.—Surrender.—Losses.—Surrender of
    Port Hudson.—Some Movements for its Relief.

Operations in the West now claim attention. General Bragg, soon after taking command, as has been previously stated, advanced from Tupelo and occupied Chattanooga. Meantime General E. K. Smith with his force held Knoxville, in East Tennessee. Subsequently, in August, he moved toward Kentucky, and entered that State through Big Creek Gap, some twenty miles south of Cumberland Gap. After several small and successful affairs, he reached Richmond in the afternoon of August 30th. Here a force of the enemy had been collected to check his progress, but it was speedily routed, with the loss of some hundred killed and several thousand made prisoners, and a large number of small-arms, artillery, and wagons were captured. Lexington was next occupied; thence he advanced to Frankfort; and, moving forward toward the Ohio River, a great alarm was created in Cincinnati, then so little prepared for defense that, had his campaign been an independent one, he probably could and would have crossed the Ohio and captured that city. His division was but the advance of General Bragg's, and his duty to coöperate with it was a sufficient reason for not attempting so important a movement.

General Bragg marched from Chattanooga on September 5th, and, without serious opposition, entered Kentucky by the eastern route, thus passing to the rear of General Buell in Middle Tennessee, who, becoming concerned for his line of communication with Nashville and Louisville, and especially for the safety of the latter city, collected all his force and retreated rapidly to Louisville. This was a brilliant piece of strategy on the part of General Bragg, by which he manoeuvered the foe out of a large and to us important territory. By it north Alabama and Middle Tennessee were relieved from the presence of the enemy, without necessitating a single engagement.

General Buell in his retreat followed the line of the railroad from Nashville to Louisville. General Bragg moved more to the eastward, so as to unite with the forces under General E. K. Smith, which was subsequently effected when the army was withdrawing from Kentucky.

On September 18th General Bragg issued an address to the citizens of Kentucky. Some recruits joined him, and an immense amount of supplies was obtained, which he continued to send to the rear until he withdrew from the State. The enemy, having received reënforcements, as soon as our army began to retire, moved out and pressed so heavily on its rear, under Major-General Hardee, that he halted and checked them near Perryville. General Bragg then determined there to give battle.

Concentrating three of the divisions of his old command, then under Major-General Polk, he directed him to attack on the morning of October 8th. The two armies were formed on opposite sides of the town. The action opened at 12.30 P.M., between the skirmishers and artillery on both sides. Finding the enemy indisposed to advance, General Bragg ordered him to be assailed vigorously. The engagement became general soon after, and was continued furiously until dark. Although greatly outnumbered, our troops did not hesitate to engage at any odds, and, though the battle raged with varying fortune, our men eventually carried every position, and drove the Federals about two miles. The intervention of night terminated the action. Our force captured fifteen pieces of artillery, killed one and wounded two brigadier-generals and a very large number of inferior officers and men, estimated at no lees than four thousand, and captured four hundred prisoners. Our loss was twenty-five hundred killed, wounded, and missing.

Ascertaining that the enemy was heavily reënforced during the night, General Bragg on the next morning withdrew his troops to Harrodsburg. General Smith arrived the next day with most of his forces, and the whole were then withdrawn to Bryantsville, the foe following slowly but not closely. General Bragg finally took position at Murfreesboro, and the hostile forces concentrated at Nashville, General Buell having been superseded by General Rosecrans.

Meantime, on November 30th, General Morgan with thirteen hundred men made an attack on a brigade of the enemy at Hartsville. It was found strongly posted on a hill in line of battle. Our line was formed under fire, and the advance was made with great steadiness. The enemy was driven from his position, through his camps, losing a battery of Parrott guns, and finally hemmed in on the river-bank, where he surrendered. The contest was severe, and lasted an hour and a half. The prisoners numbered twenty-one hundred.

Late in the month of December General Rosecrans commenced his advance from Nashville upon the position of General Bragg at Murfreesboro. His movement began on December 26th by various routes, but such was the activity of our cavalry as to delay him four days in reaching the battle-field, a distance of twenty-six miles. On the 29th General Wheeler with his cavalry brigade gained the rear of Rosecrans's army, and destroyed several hundreds of wagons loaded with supplies and baggage. After clearing the road, he made the circuit of the enemy and joined our left. Their strength, as we have ascertained, was 65,000 men. The number of fighting men we had on the field on December 31st was 35,000, of which 30,000 were infantry and artillery.

Our line was formed about two miles from Murfreesboro, and stretched transversely across Stone River, which was fordable from the Lebanon pike on the right to the Franklin road on the left. As General Rosecrans made no demonstration on the 30th, General Bragg determined to begin the conflict early on the morning of the 31st by the advance of his left. The enemy was taken completely by surprise, and his right was steadily driven until his line was thrown entirely back at a right angle to his first position and near to the railroad, along which he had massed reserves. Their resistance after the first surprise was most gallant and obstinate. At night he had been forced from every position except the one on his extreme left, which rested on Stone River, and was strengthened by a concentration of artillery, and now seemed too formidable for assault.

On the next day (January 1st) the cannonading opened on the right center about 8 A.M., and after a short time subsided. The enemy had withdrawn from the advanced position occupied by his left flank; one or two short contests occurred on the 3d, but his line was unchanged. Our forces had now been in line of battle five days and nights, with little rest, as there were no reserves. Their tents had been packed in the wagons, which were four miles to the rear. The rain was continuous, and the cold severe. Intelligence was received that heavy reënforcements were coming to Rosecrans by a rapid transfer of all the troops from Kentucky, and for this and the reasons before stated General Bragg decided to fall back to Tullahoma, and the army was withdrawn in good order.

In the series of engagements near Murfreesboro we captured over 6,000 prisoners, 30 pieces of artillery, 6,000 small-arms, a number of ambulances, horses, and mules, and a large amount of other property. Our losses exceeded 10,000, and that of the enemy was estimated at over 25,000.

After the battle of Shiloh, West Tennessee and north Mississippi were occupied by a force under General Grant. Subsequently this force was increased, and General Rosecrans assigned to its command. Many positions were held in West Tennessee and north Mississippi, extending from Memphis to the northeastern part of the State of Mississippi, with garrisons aggregating about 42,000 men. The most important of these positions was that of the fortified town of Corinth. As part of the plan to subjugate the Southwestern States, extensive preparations were made for an advance through Mississippi and an attack on Vicksburg by combined land and naval forces. A large number of troops occupied Middle Tennessee and north Alabama. To defeat their general plan, and to relieve the last-mentioned places of the presence of the enemy, General Bragg moved his army into Kentucky, which, by this time, the Federal Government thought it needless to overawe by the presence of garrisons. General Van Dorn and General Price commanded the Confederate troops then in north Mississippi. General Bragg, when he advanced into Kentucky, had left them with instructions to operate against the Federals in that region, and especially to guard against their junction with Buell in Middle Tennessee. Though Van Dorn was superior in rank, he had no power to command General Price, unless they should happen to join in the field and do duty together. General Price on this as on other occasions manifested his entire willingness to make a junction with his superior officer, and about the last of August proposed to General Van Dorn to join him, but at that time Van Dorn's available force for the field had been sent with General Breckinridge in his campaign against Baton Rouge. After that force had rejoined General Van Dorn, he wrote to Price, inviting him to unite with him, that, with their two divisions, they might make an attack upon Corinth, by the capture of which main position of the enemy in that section of the country he hoped to be subsequently able to drive him from north Mississippi and West Tennessee. Price felt constrained by his instructions to observe and if possible to prevent Rosecrans's forces in Mississippi from effecting a junction with Buell's in Tennessee; therefore the invitation was unfortunately postponed to a future time.

Subsequently General Price learned that Rosecrans was moving to cross the Tennessee and join Buell; he therefore marched from Tupelo and reached Iuka on the 19th of September. His cavalry advance found the place occupied by a force, which retreated toward Corinth, abandoning a considerable amount of stores. On the 24th Van Dorn renewed in urgent terms his request for Price to come with all his forces to unite with him and make an attack upon Corinth. On the same day Price received a letter from General Ord, informing him that "Lee's army had been destroyed at Antietam; that, therefore, the rebellion must soon terminate, and that, in order to spare the further effusion of blood, he gave him this opportunity to lay down his arms." Price replied, correcting the rumor about Lee's army, thanked Ord for his kind feeling, and promised to "lay down his arms whenever Mr. Lincoln should acknowledge the independence of the Southern Confederacy, and not sooner." On that night General Price held a council of war, at which it was agreed on the next morning to fall back and make a junction with Van Dorn, it being now satisfactorily shown that the enemy was holding the line on our left instead of moving to reënforce Buell. The cavalry pickets had reported that a heavy force was moving from the south toward Iuka on the Jacinto road, to meet which General Little had advanced with his Missouri brigade, an Arkansas battalion, the Third Louisiana Infantry, and the Texas Legion. It proved to be a force commanded by General Rosecrans in person. A bloody contest ensued, and the latter was driven back, with the loss of nine guns. Our own loss was very serious. General Maury states that the Third Louisiana regiment lost half its men, that Whitfield's legion suffered heavily, and adds that these two regiments and the Arkansas battalion of about a hundred men had charged and captured the enemy's guns. In this action General Henry Little fell, an officer of extraordinary merit, distinguished on many fields, and than whom there was none whose loss could have been more deeply felt by his Missouri brigade, as well as by the whole army, whose admiration he had so often attracted by gallantry and good conduct. It was afterward ascertained that this movement of Rosecrans was intended to be made in concert with one by Grant moving from the west, but the former had been beaten before the latter arrived. Before dawn Price moved to make the proposed junction with Van Dorn, which was effected at Ripley on the 28th of September, at which time Van Dorn in his report says: "Field returns showed my strength to be about 22,000. Rosecrans at Corinth had about 15,000, with about 8,000 additional men at outposts from twelve to fifteen miles distant." In addition to this force, the enemy had at Memphis, under Sherman, about 6,000 men; at Bolivar, under Ord, about 8,000; at Jackson, Tennessee, under Grant, about 3,000; at bridges and less important points, 2,000 or 3,000—making an aggregate of 42,000 in West Tennessee and north Mississippi.

Corinth, though the strongest, was from its salient position the point it was most feasible to attack, and, under the circumstances, the most important to gain. Van Dorn, therefore, decided to move so rapidly upon it as to take it by surprise, and endeavor to capture it before reënforcements could arrive. In a previous chapter notice has been taken of the character and conduct of General Price; here it is proposed in like manner to say something of General Van Dorn, rendered the more appropriate because of the criticism to which his attack upon Corinth has been subjected. He was an educated soldier, had served with marked distinction in the war with Mexico; indeed, had been quite as often noticed in official reports for gallantry and good conduct as any officer who served in that war. After its close he had served on the Western frontier, and in Indian warfare exhibited a like activity and daring as that shown in the greater battles with Mexico. Immediately on the secession of his native State, Mississippi, he resigned from the United States Army, and, together with his veteran commander in Texas, General Twiggs, commenced recruiting men for the anticipated war. He was among the first to leave the service of the United States, and came to offer his sword to Mississippi. In the military organization there authorized, he was appointed a brigadier-general, and, when the State troops were transferred to the Confederacy, he entered its service. Gentle as he was brave, and generous, freely sharing all the dangers and privations to which his troops were subjected, he possessed, like his associate Price, both the confidence and affection of his men. Without entering into details of the disposition of his troops in the attack on the works at Corinth, the result shows that they were skillfully made, and, though final success did not crown the effort, the failure was due to other causes than the defect of plan or want of energy and personal effort on the part of Van Dorn. His opponent, Rosecrans, was an engineer of high ability, and proved himself one of the best generals in the United States Army. He had materially strengthened the works around Corinth, and had interposed every possible obstacle to an assault. Our army had moved rapidly from Ripley, its point of junction, had cut the railroad between Corinth and Jackson, Tennessee, and at daybreak on the 3d of March was deployed for attack. By ten o'clock our force confronted the enemy inside his intrenchments. In half an hour the whole line of outer works was carried, the obstructions passed, and the battle opened in earnest; the foe, obstinately disputing every point, was finally driven from his second line of detached works, and at sunset had retreated to the innermost lines.

The battle had been mainly fought by Price's division on our left. The troops had made a quick march of ten miles over dusty roads without water; the line of battle had been formed in forests with undergrowth; the combats of the day had been so severe that General Price thought his troops unequal to further exertion on that day, and it was decided to wait until morning. Of this, General Van Dorn says:

"I saw with regret the sun sink behind the horizon as the last shot of our sharpshooters followed the retreating foe into their innermost lines. One hour more of daylight, and victory would have soothed our grief for the loss of the gallant dead who sleep on that lost but not dishonored field."

During the night batteries were put in position to open on the town at 4 A.M. At daybreak the action was to begin on the left, to be immediately followed by an advance on the extreme right. The order was not executed, the commander of the wing which was to make the attack failed to do so, and another officer was sent to take his place. In the mean time the center became engaged, and the action extended to the left. The plan had been disarranged; nevertheless, the center and left pushed forward and planted their colors on the last stronghold of the enemy; his "heavy guns were silenced, and all seemed about to be ended, when a heavy fire from fresh troops that had succeeded in reaching Corinth was poured into our thin ranks," and, with this combined assault on Price's exhausted corps, which had sustained the whole conflict, those gallant troops were driven back. The day was lost. The enemy, reënforced, was concentrated against our left, and Lovell's division, which was at this time advancing, pursuant to orders, and was on the point of assaulting the works, was ordered to move to the left to prevent a sortie, and cover their retreat. Our army retired during the day to Chewalla without pursuit, and rested for the night free from molestation.

Our loss was very heavy of gallant men and officers. In the fierce conflicts the officers displayed not only daring, but high military skill, their impetuous charges being marked by judicious selection of time and place. Colonel William S. Barry, who, as commander of the burial party, visited General Rosecrans, was courteously received by that officer, who, while declining to admit the command within his lines, sent assurance to General Van Dorn that "every becoming respect should be shown to his dead and wounded. . . . He had the grave of Colonel Rodgers, who led the Second Texas sharpshooters, inclosed and marked with a slab, in respect to the gallantry of his charge. Rodgers fell before Gates called on me to reënforce him on the edge of the ditch of Battery Robbinet." [75] This officer, W. P. Rodgers, was a captain in the First Regiment of Mississippi Rifles in the war with Mexico, and the gallantry which attracted the admiration of the enemy at Corinth was in keeping with the character he acquired in the former service referred to. Of this retreat, that able soldier and military critic, General Dabney H. Maury, in a contribution to the "Annals of the War," wrote:

"Few commanders have ever been so beset as Van Dorn was in the forks of the Hatchie, and very few would have extricated a beaten army as he did then. One, with a force stated at ten thousand men, headed him at the Hatchie Bridge; while Rosecrans, with twenty thousand men, was attacking his rear at the Tuscumbia Bridge, only five miles off. The whole road between was occupied by a train of nearly four hundred wagons, and a defeated army of about eleven thousand muskets. But Van Dorn was never for a moment dismayed. He repulsed Ord, and punished him severely; while he checked Rosecrans at the Tuscumbia, until he could turn his train and army short to the left, and cross the Hatchie by the Boneyard road, without the loss of a wagon."

He then moved near Holly Springs, Mississippi, to await farther developments. In the mean time General Grant massed a heavy force, estimated at eighty thousand men, at various points on the Memphis and Charleston Railroad. Thence he moved south, through the interior of Mississippi, until he encamped near Water Valley. The country was teeming with great quantities of breadstuffs and forage, and he accumulated an immense depot of supplies at Holly Springs, and hastened every preparation necessary to continue his advance southward. Unless his progress was arrested, the interior of the State, its capital, Jackson, Vicksburg, and its railroads, would fall into his possession. As we had no force in front sufficient to offer battle, our only alternative was to attack his communications. For this purpose. General Van Dorn, on the night of December 15th, quietly withdrew our cavalry, amounting to less than twenty-five hundred men, from the enemy's front, and marched for Holly Springs. That place was occupied by a brigade of infantry and a portion of the Seventh Illinois Cavalry. The movement of Van Dorn was so rapid that early on the morning of the 19th he surprised and captured the garrison, and before eight o'clock was in quiet possession of the town. The captured property, amounting to millions of dollars, was burned before sunset, with the exception of the small quantity used in arming and equipping his command. General Grant was thus forced to abandon his campaign and to retreat hastily from the State.

After the battle of Murfreesboro, which closed in the first days of 1863, there was a cessation of active operations in that portion of Tennessee, and attention was concentrated upon the extensive preparations which were in progress for a campaign into Mississippi, with Vicksburg as the objective point. The plan, as it was developed, was for a combined movement by land and river, the former passing through the interior of Mississippi to approach Vicksburg in rear, the latter to descend the Mississippi River and attack the city in front. General Pemberton, with the main body of his command, held the position on the Tallahatchie and Yazoo Rivers, and among the various devices to turn that position was one more ingenious than ingenuous. It was an offer to furnish, at prices lower than ruled in our markets, provisions of which we stood in need, to be sent through the Yazoo Pass and transported in boats through to the Yazoo River if we should desire. I had, some time before, directed that cypress rafts, as far as practicable, of sinking timber, should be thrown into the main channel leading down from the Yazoo Pass; and saw that, if it was not the purpose of the proposer, the effect of accepting the proposition would be to open a water line of approach from the Mississippi, below Memphis, then in the hands of the enemy, to the interior in rear of Vicksburg: for that reason, I resisted much importunity in favor of allowing the supplies to be brought in that manner.

In the latter part of December General Sherman, having descended the Mississippi River, entered the Yazoo with four divisions of land troops and five gunboats, the object being to reduce our work at Haines's Bluff and turn Vicksburg so as to attack it in rear. The first point at which the range of hills extending from Vicksburg up the Yazoo approaches near to the river is at Haines's Bluff, some twenty miles by the course of the Yazoo from the Mississippi River. Here the troops were landed the 26th of December to attack the redoubts which had been built upon the bluff.

On the 27th little progress was made. On the 28th the attempt, by one division, to approach the causeway north of the Chickasaw Bayou, was repulsed with heavy loss. The troops were withdrawn and moved down the river to a point below the bayou, there to unite with the rest of the command. At daylight on the 29th the attack was resumed and continued throughout the most of the day; the enemy were again repulsed with heavy loss. On the next day there was firing on both sides without conclusive results. On the 31st General Sherman sent in a flag of trace to bury the dead.

[Illustration: Map of action of December 26-31]

Thereafter nothing important occurred until the latter part of January, when the troops under General Grant embarked at Memphis and moved down the Mississippi River to Young's Point, on the Louisiana shore, a few miles above Vicksburg. The expected coöperation by his forces with those of Sherman had been prevented by the brilliant cavalry expedition under Van Dorn, which captured and destroyed the vast supplies collected at Holly Springs for the use of Grant's forces in the land movement referred to. This compelled Grant to retreat to Memphis, and frustrated the combined movement which had been projected, in connection with the river campaign, by Sherman, and a new plan of operations resulted therefrom, in which, however, still prominently appears the purpose of turning Vicksburg on the north. After General Grant, descending the Mississippi from Memphis, arrived (2d of February, 1863) in the neighborhood of Vicksburg and assumed command of the enemy's forces, an attempt was made, by removing obstructions to the navigation of the Yazoo Pass and Cold Water, small streams which flow from the Mississippi into the Tallahatchie River, to pass to the rear of Fort Pemberton at the mouth of the latter. The never-to-be-realized hope was to reduce that work, and thus open the way down the Yazoo River to the right flank of the defenses of Vicksburg.

[Illustration: Map of action north of Vicksburg]

At the same time another attempt was made, by means of the network of creeks and bayous on the north side of the Yazoo, to pass around and enter the Yazoo above Haines's Bluff; but our sharpshooters, availing themselves of every advantageous position, picked off the men upon the boats, and Colonel (afterward General) Ferguson, with a few men and a section of field-pieces, so harassed and beset them that they were driven back utterly discomfited.

Admiral Porter had, with his fleet, gone some distance up Deer Creek, and, but for the land-forces sent to sustain him, would probably never have returned, an adventurous party having passed in below him with axes to fell trees so as to prevent his egress. He is described as follows:[76]

"I soon found Admiral Porter, who was on the deck of one of his ironclads, with a shield made of the section of a smoke-stack, and I doubt if he was ever more glad to meet a friend than he was to see me. He explained that he had almost reached the Rolling Fork, when the woods became full of sharpshooters, who, taking advantage of trees, stumps, and the levee, would shoot down every man that poked his nose outside the protection of their armor. . . . He informed me at one time things looked so critical that he had made up his mind to blow up the gunboats, and to escape with his men through the swamp to the Mississippi River."

This attempt to get through to Yazoo, above Haines's Bluff, had so signally failed, that the expedition was ordered back to the Louisiana shore above Vicksburg, where they arrived on the 27th of March, 1863. General Grant was now in command of a large army, holding various positions on the Mississippi River opposite to Vicksburg, extending from Milliken's Bend above to New Carthage below, with a fleet of gunboats in the river above Vicksburg, and another some eight miles below. Lieutenant-General Pemberton's military district included Vicksburg, and Major-General Gardner was in command at Port Hudson. These posts, as long as they could be maintained, gave us some control over the intermediate space of the river, about two hundred and sixty miles in length, and to that extent secured our communication with the trans-Mississippi. The enemy, after his repeated and disastrous attempts to turn the right flank of Vicksburg, applied his attention to the opposite direction. General Grant first endeavored to divert the Mississippi from its channel, by cutting a canal across the peninsula opposite to Vicksburg, so as to make a practicable passage for transport-vessels from a point above to one below the city. His attempt was quite unsuccessful, and, whatever credit may be awarded to his enterprise, none can be given to his engineering skill, as the direction given to his ditch was such that, instead of being washed out by the current of the river, it was filled up by its sediment.

[Illustration: Map of area north of Vicksburg]

Another attempt to get into the Mississippi, without passing the batteries at Vicksburg, was by digging a canal to connect the river with the bayou in rear of Milliken's Bend, so as to have water communication by way of Richmond to New Carthage. These indications of a purpose to get below Vicksburg caused General Pemberton, early in February, 1863, to detach Brigadier-General John S. Bowen, with his Missouri Brigade, to Grand Gulf, near the mouth of the Big Black, and establish batteries there to command the mouth of that small river, which might be used to pass to the rear of Vicksburg, and also by their fire to obstruct the navigation of the Mississippi.

On the 19th of March the flag-ship of Admiral Farragut, with one gunboat from the fleet at New Orleans, passed up the river in defiance of our batteries; but, on the 25th, four gunboats from the upper fleet attempted to pass down and were repulsed, two of them completely disabled.

On the 16th of April a fleet of ironclads with barges in tow, Admiral Porter commanding, under cover of the night ran the Vicksburg batteries. One of the vessels was destroyed, and another one crippled, but towed out of range. Subsequently, on the night of the 26th, a fleet of transports with loaded barges was floated past Vicksburg. One or more of them was sunk, but enough escaped to give the enemy abundant supplies below Vicksburg and boats enough for ferriage uses. On the 20th of April the movement of the enemy commenced through the country on the west side of the river to their selected point of crossing below Grand Gulf.

On the 29th the enemy's gunboats came down and took their stations in front of our batteries and rifle-pits at Grand Gulf. A furious cannonade was continued for many hours, and the fleet withdrew, having one gunboat disabled, and otherwise receiving and inflicting but little damage. Among the casualties on our side was that of Colonel William Wade, the chief of artillery, an officer of great merit, alike respected and beloved, whose death was universally regretted.

In a short time the fleet reappeared from behind a point which had concealed them from view. The gunboats now had transports lashed to their farther side, and, protected by their iron shields, ran by our batteries at full speed, losing but one transport on the way.

On the evening of the 29th of April the enemy commenced ferrying over troops from the Louisiana to the Mississippi shore to a landing just below the mouth of Bayou Pierre. General Green with his brigade moved thither, and, when the enemy on the night of the 30th commenced his advance, General Green attacked him with such impressive vigor as to render their march both cautious and slow. As additional forces came up, Green retired, skirmishing. In the mean time Generals Tracy and Baldwin, with their brigades, had by forced marches joined General Green, and about daylight a more serious conflict occurred, lasting some two hours and a half, during which General Tracy, a distinguished citizen of Alabama, of whom patriotism made a soldier, fell while gallantly leading his brigade in the unequal combat in which it was engaged. Step by step, disputing the ground, Green retired to the range of hills three miles southwest of Port Gibson, where General Bowen joined him and arranged a new line of battle. The enemy's forces were steadily augmented by the arrival of reënforcements from the rear. Our troops continued most valiantly to resist until, between nine and ten o'clock, outflanked both on our right and left, their condition seemed almost hopeless, when, by a movement to which desperation gave a power quite disproportionate to the numbers, the right wing of the enemy was driven back, and our forces made good their retreat across the bridge over Bayou Pierre. General Cockerell, commanding our left wing, led this forlorn hope in person, and to the fortune which favors the brave must be attributed the few casualties which occurred in a service so hazardous. General Bowen promptly intrenched his camp on the east side of Bayou Pierre and waited for future developments. The relative forces engaged in the battle of the 1st of May were, as nearly as I have been able to learn, fifty-five hundred Confederates and twenty thousand Federals. Fresh troops were reported to be joining Grant's army, and one of his corps had been sent to cross by a ford above so as to get in rear of our position. The reënforcements which were en route to Bowen had not yet approached so near as to give him assurance of coöperation.

To divert notice from this movement to get in the rear of Bowen, on the morning of the 2d, Grant ordered artillery-fire to be opened on our intrenchments across Bayou Pierre. It was quite ineffectual, and probably was not expected to do more than occupy attention. During the forenoon Bowen sent a flag of truce to ask suspension of hostilities for the purpose of burying the dead. This was refused, and a demand made for surrender. That was as promptly as decidedly rejected, and, as the day wore away without the arrival of reënforcement, Bowen, under cover of night, commenced a retreat, his march being directed toward Grand Gulf. General Loring with his division soon joined him. Directions were sent to the garrison at Grand Gulf to dismantle the fortifications and evacuate the place. On the morning of the 3d General Grant commenced a pursuit of the retreating force, which, however, was attended with only unimportant skirmishes; Bowen, with the reënforcements which were marching to his support, recrossed the Big Black at Hankinson's Ferry, and all, under the orders of General Pemberton, were assigned to their respective positions in the army he commanded.

While the events which have just been narrated were transpiring, Colonel Grierson with three regiments of cavalry made a raid from the northern border of Mississippi through the interior of the State, and joined General Banks at Baton Rouge in Louisiana. Among the expeditions for pillage and arson this stands prominent for savage outrages against defenseless women and children, constituting a record alike unworthy a soldier and a gentleman.

Grant with his large army was now marching into the interior of Mississippi, his route being such as might either be intended to strike the capital (Jackson) or Vicksburg. The country through which he had to pass was for some distance composed of abrupt hills, and all of it poorly provided with roads. There was reasonable ground to hope that, with such difficult communications with his base of supplies, and the physical obstacles to his progress, he might be advantageously encountered at many points and be finally defeated. In such warfare as was possible, that portion of the population who were exempt or incapable of full service in the army could be very effective as an auxiliary force. I therefore wrote to the Governor, Pettus, a man worthy of all confidence, as well for his patriotism as his manhood, requesting him to use all practicable means to get every man and boy, capable of aiding their country in its need, to turn out, mounted or on foot, with whatever weapons they had, to aid the soldiers in driving the invader from our soil. The facilities the enemy possessed in river transportation and the aid which their iron-clad gunboats gave to all operations where land and naval forces could be combined were lost to Grant in this interior march which he was making. Success gives credit to military enterprises; had this failed, as I think it should, it surely would have been pronounced an egregious blunder. Other efforts made to repel the invader will be noticed in the course of the narrative.

After the retreat of Bowen which has been described. General Pemberton, anticipating an attack on Vicksburg from the rear, concentrated all the troops of his command for its defense. All previous demonstrations indicated the special purpose of the enemy to be its capture. Its strategic importance justified the belief that he would concentrate his efforts upon that object, and this opinion was enforced by the difficulty of supplying his army in the region into which he was marching, and the special advantages of Vicksburg as his base. The better mode of counteracting his views, whatever they might be, it would be more easy now to determine than it was when General Pemberton had to decide that question. The superior force of the enemy enabled him at the same time, while moving the main body of his troops through Louisiana to a point below Vicksburg, to send a corps to renew the demonstration against Haines's Bluff. Finding due preparation made to resist an attack there, this demonstration was merely a feint, but, had Pemberton withdrawn his troops, that feint could have been converted into a real attack, and the effort so often foiled to gain the heights above Vicksburg would have become a success. When that corps retired, and proceeded to join the rest of Grant's army which had gone toward Grand Gulf, Pemberton commenced energetically to prepare for what was now the manifest object of the enemy. From his headquarters at Jackson, Mississippi, he, on the 23d of April, directed Major-General Stevenson, commanding at Vicksburg, "that communications, at least for infantry, should be made by the shortest practicable route to Grand Gulf. The indications now are that the attack will not be made on your front or right, and all troops not absolutely necessary to hold the works at Vicksburg should be held as a movable force for either Warrenton or Grand Gulf." On the 28th Brigadier-General Bowen, commanding at Grand Gulf, reported that "transports and barges loaded down with troops are landing at Hard-Times on the west bank." Pemberton replied by asking: "Have you force enough to hold your position? If not, give me the smallest additional number with which you can." At this time the small cavalry force remaining in Pemberton's command compelled him to keep infantry detachments at many points liable to be attacked by raiding parties of the enemy's mounted troops, a circumstance seriously interfering with the concentration of the forces of his command. Instructions were sent to all the commanders of his cavalry detachments to move toward Grand Gulf, to harass the enemy in flank and rear, obstructing, as far as might be, communications with his base. A dispatch was sent to Major-General Buckner, commanding at Mobile, asking him to protect the Mobile and Ohio Railroad, as Pemberton required all the troops he could spare to strengthen General Bowen. A dispatch was also sent to General J. E. Johnston, at Tullahoma, saying that the Army of Tennessee must be relied on to guard the approaches through north Mississippi. To Major-General Stevenson, at Vicksburg, he sent a dispatch: "Hold five thousand men in readiness to move to Grand Gulf, and, on the requisition of Brigadier-General Bowen, move them; with your batteries and rifle-pits manned, the city front is impregnable." At the same time the following was sent to General Bowen: "I have directed General Stevenson to have five thousand men ready to move on your requisition, but do not make requisition unless absolutely necessary for your position. I am also making arrangements for sending you two or three thousand men from this direction in case of necessity."

The policy was here manifested of meeting the enemy in the hills east of the point of his debarkation, yet all unfriendly criticism has treated General Pemberton's course on that occasion as having been voluntarily to withdraw his troops to within the intrenchments of Vicksburg. His published reports show what early and consistent efforts he made to avoid that result.

After General J. E. Johnston had recovered from the wound received at Seven Pines, he was on the 24th of November, 1862, by special order No. 275, assigned to the command of a geographical department including the States of Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama, and parts of Louisiana, Georgia, and North Carolina. The order gives authority to establish his headquarters wherever, in his judgment, will best secure facilities for ready communication with the troops of his command; and provides that he "will repair to any part of said command whenever his presence may for the time be necessary or desirable." While the events which have been described were occurring in Pemberton's command, he felt seriously the want of cavalry, and was much embarrassed by the necessity for substituting portions of his infantry to supply the deficiency of cavalry.

These embarrassments and the injurious consequences attendant upon them were frequently represented. In his report he states, after several other applications for cavalry, that on March 25th he wrote to General Johnston, commanding department, "urgently requesting that the division of cavalry under Major-General Van Dorn, which had been sent to the Army of Tennessee for special and temporary purposes, might be returned." He gives the following extract from General Johnston's reply of April 3d to his request:

"In the present aspect of affairs, General Van Dorn's cavalry is much more needed in this department than in that of Mississippi and East Louisiana, and can not be sent back as long as this state of things exists. You have now in your department five brigades of the troops you most require, viz., infantry, belonging to the Army of Tennessee. This is more than a compensation for the absence of General Van Dorn's cavalry command."

To this Pemberton rejoined that cavalry was dispensable, stating the positions where the enemy was operating on his communications, and the impossibility of defending the railroads by infantry. Referring to the advance of the enemy from Bruinsburg, Pemberton, in his report, makes the following statement:

"With a moderate cavalry force at my disposal, I am firmly convinced that the Federal army under General Grant would have been unable to maintain its communication with the Mississippi River, and that the attempt to reach Jackson and Vicksburg would have been as signally defeated in May, 1863, as a like attempt from another base had, by the employment of cavalry, been defeated in December, 1862."

Pemberton commenced, after the retreat of Bowen, to concentrate all his forces for the great effort of checking the invading army, and on the 6th of May telegraphed to the Secretary of War that the reënforcements sent to him were very insufficient, adding: "The stake is a great one; I can see nothing so important." On the 12th of May he sent a telegram to General J. E. Johnston, and a duplicate to the President, announcing his purpose to meet the enemy then moving with heavy force toward Edwards's Depot, and indicated that as the battle-field; he urgently asked for more reënforcements: "Also, that three thousand cavalry be at once sent to operate on this line. I urge this as a positive necessity. The enemy largely outnumbers me, and I am obliged to hold back a large force at the ferries on Big Black." This was done to prevent the foe passing to his rear.

Large bodies of troops continued to descend the river, land above Vicksburg, and, to avoid our batteries at that place, to move on the west side of the river to reënforce General Grant. This seemed to justify the conclusion that the main effort in the West was to be made by that army, and, supposing that General Johnston would be convinced of the fact if he repaired to that field in person, as well as to avail ourselves of the public confidence felt in his military capacity, he was ordered, on the 9th of May, 1863, to "proceed at once to Mississippi and take chief command of the forces, giving to those in the field, as far as practicable, the encouragement and benefit of your personal direction. Arrange to take, for temporary service, with you, or to be followed without delay, three thousand good troops," etc.

On the 12th, the same day General Pemberton had applied for reënforcements, he instructed Major-General Stevenson as follows:

"From information received, it is evident that the enemy is advancing in force on Edwards's Depot and Big Black Bridge; hot skirmishing has been going on all the morning, and the enemy are at Fourteen-Mile Creek. You must move with your whole division to the support of Loring and Bowen at the bridge, leaving Baldwin's and Moore's brigades to protect your right."

In consequence of that information, Brigadier-General Gregg, who was near Raymond, received cautionary instruction; notwithstanding which, he was attacked by a large body of the enemy's forces, and his single brigade, with great gallantry and steadiness, held them in check for several hours, and then retired in such good order as to attract general admiration. Meantime, bodies of the enemy's troops were sent into the interior villages, and much damage was done in them, and to the defenseless, isolated homes in the country.

General Johnston arrived at Jackson on the 13th of May, 1863, and telegraphed to J. A. Seddon, Secretary of War, as follows:

"I arrived this evening, finding the enemy in force between this place and General Pemberton, cutting off the communication. I am too late."

In the order assigning General Johnston to the geographical Department of the West, he was directed to repair in person to any part of his command, whenever his presence might be for the time necessary or desirable. On the 9th of May, 1863, he was ordered to proceed at once to Mississippi and take chief command of the forces in the field.

When he reached Jackson, learning that the enemy was between that place and the position occupied by General Pemberton's forces, about thirty miles distant, he halted there and opened correspondence with Pemberton, from which a confusion with consequent disaster resulted, which might have been avoided had he, with or without his reënforcements, proceeded to Pemberton's headquarters in the field. What that confusion or want of co-intelligence was, will best appear from citing the important part of the dispatches which passed between them. On May 13th General Johnston, then at Jackson, sent the following dispatch to General Pemberton, which was received on the 14th:

"I have lately arrived, and learn that Major-General Sherman is between us, with four divisions at Clinton. It is important to reestablish communications, that you may be reënforced. If practicable, come up in his rear at once—to beat such a detachment would be of immense value. Troops here could coöperate. All the troops you can quickly assemble should be brought. Time is all-important."

On the same day, the 14th, General Pemberton, then at Bovina, replied:

"I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of your communication. I moved at once with whole available force, about sixteen thousand, leaving Vaughan's brigade, about fifteen hundred, at Big Black Bridge; Tilghman's brigade, fifteen hundred, now at Baldwin's Ferry, I have ordered to bring up the rear of my column; he will be, however, from fifteen to twenty miles behind it. Baldwin's Ferry will be left, necessarily, unprotected. To hold Vicksburg are Smith's and Forney's divisions, extending from Snyder's Mills to Warrenton, numbering effectives seven thousand eight hundred men. . . . I do not think that you fully comprehend the position that Vicksburg will be left in; but I comply at once with your order."

On the same day, General Pemberton, after his arrival at Edwards's Depot, called a council of war of all the general officers present. He placed General Johnston's dispatch before them, and stated his own views against the propriety of an advance, but expressed the opinion that the only possibility of success would be by a movement on the enemy's communications. A majority of the officers present expressed themselves favorable to the plan indicated by General Johnston. The others, including Major-Generals Loring and Stevenson, "preferred a movement by which the army might attempt to cut off the enemy's supplies from the Mississippi River." General Pemberton then sent the following dispatch to General Johnston:

EDWARDS'S DEPOT, May 14, 1863.

"I shall move as early to-morrow morning as practicable, with a column of seventeen thousand men, to Dillon's, situated on the main road leading from Raymond to Port Gibson, seven and a half miles below Raymond, and nine and a half miles from Edwards's Depot. The object is to cut the enemy's communication and to force him to attack me, as I do not consider my force sufficient to justify an attack on the enemy in position, or to attempt to cut my way to Jackson. At this point your nearest communication would be through Raymond."

The movement commenced about 1 P.M. on the 15th, General Pemberton states that the force at Clinton was an army corps, numerically greater than his whole available force in the field; that—

"The enemy had at least an equal force to the south, on my right flank, which would be nearer Vicksburg than myself, in case I should make the movement proposed. I had, moreover, positive information that he was daily increasing his strength. I also learned, on reaching Edwards's Depot, that one division of the enemy (A. J. Smith's) was at or near Dillon's."

On the morning of the 16th, about 6.30 o'clock, Colonel Wirt Adams, commanding the cavalry, reported to General Pemberton that his pickets were skirmishing with the enemy on the Raymond road in our front. At the same moment a courier arrived and delivered the following dispatch from General Johnston:


"May 15, 1863, 8.30 o'clock A.M.

    "Our being compelled to leave Jackson makes your plan impracticable.
    The only mode by which we can unite is by your moving directly to
    Clinton and informing me, that we may move to that point with about
    six thousand."

Pemberton reversed his column to return to Edwards's Depot and take the Brownsville road, so as to proceed toward Clinton on the north side of the railroad, and sent a reply to General Johnston to notify him of the retrograde movement and the route to be followed. Just as the reverse movement commenced, the enemy drove in the cavalry pickets and opened fire with artillery.

The continuance of the movement was ordered, when, the demonstrations of the enemy becoming more serious, orders were issued to form a line of battle, with Loring on the right, Bowen in the center, and Stevenson on the left. Major-General Stevenson was ordered to make the necessary dispositions for protecting the trains on the Clinton road and the crossing of Baker's Creek. The line of battle was quickly formed in a position naturally strong, and the approaches from the front well covered. The enemy made his first demonstration on the right, but, after a lively artillery duel for an hour or more, this attack was relinquished, and a large force was thrown against the left, where skirmishing became heavy. About ten o'clock the battle began in earnest along Stevenson's entire front. About noon Loring was ordered to move forward and crush the enemy in his front, and Bowen to coöperate. No movement was made by Loring; he said the force was too strongly posted to be attacked, but that he would seize the first opportunity to assault if one should offer. Stevenson soon found that unless reënforced he would be unable to resist the heavy and repeated attacks along his line. Aid was sent to him from Bowen, and for a time the tide of battle turned in our favor. The enemy still continued to move troops from his left to his right, thus increasing on that flank his vastly superior forces. General Pemberton, feeling assured that there was no important force in front of Loring, again ordered him to move to the left as rapidly as possible. To this order, the answer was given that the enemy was in strong force and endeavoring to turn his flank. As there was no firing on the right, the order was repeated. Much time was lost in exchanging these messages. At 4 P.M. a part of Stevenson's division broke badly and fell back. Some assistance finally came from Loring, but it was too late to save the day, and the retreat was ordered. Had the left been promptly supported when it was first so ordered, it is not improbable that the position might have been maintained and the enemy possibly driven back, although his increasing numbers would have rendered it necessary to withdraw during the night to save our communications with Vicksburg unless promptly reënforced. The dispatch of the 15th from General Johnston, in obedience to which Pemberton reversed his order of march, gave him the first intelligence that Johnston had left Jackson; but, while making the retrograde movement, a previous dispatch from Johnston, dated "May 14, 1863, camp seven miles from Jackson," informed Pemberton that the body of Federal troops, mentioned in his dispatch of the 13th, had compelled the evacuation of Jackson, and that he was moving by the Canton road; he refers to the troops east of Jackson as perhaps able to prevent the enemy there from drawing provisions from that direction, and that his command might effect the same thing in regard to the country toward Panola, and then asks these significant questions:

"Can he supply himself from the Mississippi? Can you not cut him off from it? Above all, should he be compelled to fall back for want of supplies, beat him? As soon as the reënforcements are all up, they must be united to the rest of the army. . . . If prisoners tell the truth, the force at Jackson must be half of Grant's array. It would decide the campaign to beat it, which can only be done by concentrating, especially when the remainder of the eastern troops arrive. They are to be twelve or thirteen thousand."

From Pemberton's communication it is seen that he did not feel his army strong enough to attack the corps in position at Clinton, and that he hoped by the course adopted to compel the enemy to attack our force in position. Whether the movement toward Dillon's was well or ill advised, it was certainly a misfortune to reverse the order of march in the presence of the enemy, as it involved the disadvantage of being attacked in rear. As has been described, the dispositions for battle were promptly made, and many of the troops fought with a gallantry worthy of all praise. Though defeated, they were not routed.

Stevenson's single division for a long time resisted a force estimated by him at "more than four times" his own. In the afternoon he was reënforced by the unfaltering troops of Bowen's division. Cockerell, commanding the First Missouri Brigade, fought with like fortitude under like disadvantage. When Pemberton saw that the masses assailing his left and left center by their immense numbers were pressing our forces back into old fields, where the advantages of position would be in his adversary's favor, he directed his troops to retire, and sent to Brigadier-General Lloyd Tilghman instructions to hold the Raymond road to protect the retreat. General Pemberton says of him:

"It was in the execution of this important duty, which could not have been confided to a fitter man, that the lamented General bravely lost his life."

He was the officer whose devoted gallantry and self-sacrificing generosity were noticed in connection with the fall of Fort Henry. This severe battle was signalized by so many feats of individual intrepidity that its roll of honor is too long for the limits of these pages.

Though some gave way in confusion, and others failed to respond when called on, the heroism of the rest shed luster on the field, and "the main body of the troops retired in good order." The gallant brigades of Green and Cockerell covered the rear.

The topographical features of the position at the railroad-bridge across the Big Black were such as, with the artificial strength given to it, made it quite feasible to defend it against a direct approach even of an army as much superior in numbers to that of Pemberton as was that of Grant; but the attack need not be made by a direct approach. The position could be turned by moving either above or below by fords and ferries, and thus advancing upon Vicksburg by other and equally eligible routes. From what has already been quoted, it will be understood that General Pemberton considered the occupation of Vicksburg vitally important in connection with the command of the Mississippi River, and the maintenance of communication with the country beyond it. It was therefore that he had been so reluctant to endanger his connection with that point as his base. Pressed as he was by the enemy, whose object, it had been unmistakably shown, was to get possession of Vicksburg and its defenses, the circumstances made it imperative that he should abandon a position, the holding of which would not effect his object, and that he should withdraw his forces from the field to unite them with those within the defenses of Vicksburg, and endeavor, as speedily as possible, to reorganize the depressed and discomfited troops.

One of the immediate results of the retreat from Big Black was the necessity of abandoning our defenses on the Yazoo, at Snyder's Mills; this position and the line of Chickasaw Bayou were no longer tenable. All stores that could be transported were ordered to be sent into Vicksburg as rapidly as possible, the rest, including heavy guns, to be destroyed. During the night of the 17th nothing of importance occurred. On the morning of the 18th the troops were disposed from right to left on the defenses. On the entire line, one hundred and two pieces of artillery of different caliber, principally field-guns, were placed in position at such points as were deemed most suitable to the character of the gun. Instructions had been given from Bovina that all the cattle, sheep, and hogs, belonging to private parties, and likely to fall into the hands of the enemy, should be driven within our lines. Grant's army appeared on the 18th.

The development of the intrenched line from our extreme right was about eight miles, the shortest defensible line of which the topography of the country admitted. It consisted of a system of detached works, redans, lunettes, and redoubts, on the prominent and commanding points, with the usual profile of raised field-works, connected in most cases by rifle pits. To hold the entire line there were about eighteen thousand five hundred infantry, but these could not all be put in the trenches, as it was necessary to keep a reserve always ready to reënforce any point heavily threatened.

The campaign against Vicksburg had commenced as early as November, 1862, and reference has been made to the various attempts to capture the position both before and after General Grant arrived and took command in person. He had now by a circuitous march reached the rear of the city, established a base on the Mississippi River a few miles below, had a fleet of gunboats in the river, and controlled the navigation of the Yazoo up to Haines's Bluff, and was relieved from all danger in regard to supplying his army. We had lost the opportunity to cut his communications while he was making his long march over the rugged country between Bruinsburg and the vicinity of Vicksburg. Pemberton had by wise prevision endeavored to secure supplies sufficient for the duration of an ordinary siege, and, on the importance which he knew the Administration attached to the holding of Vicksburg, he relied for the coöperation of a relieving army to break any investment which might be made. Disappointed in the hope which I had entertained that the invading army would be unable to draw its supplies from Bruinsburg or Grand Gulf, and be driven back before crossing the Big Black, it now only remained to increase as far as possible the relieving army, and depend upon it to break the investment. The ability of the Federals to send reënforcements was so much greater than ours, that the necessity for prompt action was fully realized; therefore, when General Johnston on May 9th was ordered to proceed to Mississippi, he was directed to take from the Army of Tennessee three thousand good troops, and informed that he would find reënforcements from General Beauregard. On May 12th a dispatch was sent to him at Jackson, stating, "In addition to the five thousand men originally ordered from Charleston [Beauregard], about four thousand more will follow. I fear more can not be spared to you." On May 22d I sent the following dispatch to General Bragg, at Tullahoma, Tennessee:

"The vital issue of holding the Mississippi at Vicksburg is dependent on the success of General Johnston in an attack on the investing force. The intelligence from there is discouraging. Can you aid him?"

To this he replied on the 23d of May, 1863:

"Sent thirty-five hundred with the General, three batteries of artillery and two thousand cavalry since; will dispatch six thousand more immediately."

In my telegram to General Bragg, after stating the necessity, I submitted the whole question to his judgment, having full reliance in the large-hearted and comprehensive view which his self-denying nature would take of the case, and I responded to him:

"Your answer is in the spirit of patriotism heretofore manifested by you. The need is sore, but you must not forget your own necessities."

On the 1st of June General Johnston telegraphed to me that the troops at his disposal available against Grant amounted to twenty-four thousand one hundred, not including Jackson's cavalry command and a few hundred irregular cavalry. Mr. Seddon, Secretary of War, replied to him stating the force to be thirty-two thousand. In another dispatch, of June 5th, the Secretary says his statement rested on official reports of numbers sent, regrets his inability to promise more, as we had drained our resources even to the danger of several points, and urged speedy action. "With the facilities and resources of the enemy time works against us." Again, on the 16th, Secretary Seddon says:

"If better resources do not offer, you must hazard attack."

On the 18th, while Pemberton was inspecting the intrenchments along which his command had been placed, he received by courier a communication from General Johnston, dated "May 17, 1863, camp between Livingston and Brownsville," in answer to Pemberton's report of the result of the battles of Baker's Creek and Big Black, and the consequent evacuation of Snyder's Mills. General Johnston wrote:

"If Haines's Bluff is untenable, Vicksburg is of no value and can not be held. If, therefore, you are invested in Vicksburg, you must ultimately surrender. Under such circumstances, instead of losing both troops and place, we must, if possible, save the troops. If it is not too late, evacuate Vicksburg and its dependencies, and march to the northeast."

Pemberton, in his report, remarks:

    "This meant the fall of Port Hudson, the surrender of the Mississippi
    River, and the severance of the Confederacy."

He recurs to a former correspondence with myself in which he had suggested the possibility of the investment of Vicksburg by land and water, and the necessity for ample supplies to stand a siege, and says his application met my favorable consideration, and that additional ammunition was ordered. Confident in his ability, with the preparations which had been made, to stand a siege, and firmly relying on the desire of the President and of General Johnston to raise it, he "felt that every effort would be made, and believed it would be successful." He, however, summoned a council of war, composed of all his general officers, laid before them General Johnston's communication, and desired their opinion on "the question of practicability," and on the 18th replied to General Johnston that he had placed his instructions before the general officers of the command, and that "the opinion was unanimously expressed that it was impossible to withdraw the army from this position with such morale and material as to be of further service to the Confederacy." He then announces his decision to hold Vicksburg as long as possible, and expresses the hope that he may be assisted in keeping this obstruction to the enemy's free navigation of the Mississippi River. He closes his letter thus:

    "I still conceive it to be the most important point in the

While the council of war was assembled, the guns of the enemy opened on the works, and the siege proper commenced.

Making meager allowance for a reserve, it required the whole force to be constantly in the trenches, and, when they were all on duty, it did not furnish one man to the yard of the developed line. On the 19th two assaults were made at the center and left. Both were repulsed and heavy loss inflicted; our loss was small. At the game time the mortar-fleet of Admiral Porter from the west side of the peninsula kept up a bombardment of the city.

Vicksburg is built upon hills rising successively from the river. The intrenchments were upon ridges beyond the town, only approaching the river on the right and left flanks, so that the fire of Porter's mortar-fleet was mainly effective upon the private dwellings, and the women, the children, and other noncombatants.

The hills on which the city is built are of a tenacious calcareous clay, and caves were dug in these to shelter the women and children, many of whom resided in them during the entire siege. From these places of refuge, heroically facing the danger of shells incessantly bursting over the streets, gentlewomen hourly went forth on the mission of humanity to nurse the sick, the wounded, and to soothe the dying of their defenders who were collected in numerous hospitals. Without departing from the softer character of their sex, it was often remarked that, in the discharge of the pious duties assumed, they seemed as indifferent to danger as any of the soldiers who lined the trenches.

During the 20th, 21st, and the forenoon of the 22d, a heavy fire of artillery and musketry was kept up by the besiegers, as well as by the mortar- and gun-boats in the river. On the afternoon of the 22d preparation was made for a general assault. The attacking columns were allowed to approach to within good musket-range, when every available gun was opened with grape and canister, and our infantry, "rising in the trenches, poured into their ranks volley after volley with so deadly an effect that, leaving the ground literally covered in some places with their dead and wounded, they [the enemy] precipitately retreated." One of our redoubts had been breached by their artillery previous to the assault, and a lodgment made in the ditch at the foot of the redoubt, on which two colors were planted. General Stevenson says i