Infomotions, Inc.Captains of the Civil War; a chronicle of the blue and the gray / Wood, William (William Charles Henry), 1864-1947



Author: Wood, William (William Charles Henry), 1864-1947
Title: Captains of the Civil War; a chronicle of the blue and the gray
Publisher: Project Gutenberg
Tag(s): confederate; sherman; lee; confederates; jackson; mcclellan; federal; farragut; vicksburg; virginia; johnston; richmond; lincoln; union; fort; mississippi; grant; federals; army; cavalry; washington; tennessee; navy; bull run; harper's ferry; war; new orl
Contributor(s): Burton, Richard Francis, Sir, 1821-1890 [Translator]
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Title: Captains of the Civil War
       A Chronicle of the Blue and the Gray, Volume 31, The
       Chronicles Of America Series

Author: William Wood

Editor: Allen Johnson

Release Date: November 30, 2006 [EBook #2649]

Language: English

Character set encoding: ASCII

*** START OF THIS PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK CAPTAINS OF THE CIVIL WAR ***




Produced by Alev Akman, Diane Beane, James J. Kelly Library
of St. Gregory's University and Robert J. Hall





THIS BOOK WAS DONATED TO PROJECT GUTENBERG BY THE JAMES J. KELLY
LIBRARY OF ST. GREGORY'S UNIVERSITY; THANKS TO ALEV AKMAN.

Scanned by Dianne Bean.

------------------------------------------------------------------------

ABRAHAM LINCOLN EDITION

VOLUME 31
THE CHRONICLES OF AMERICA SERIES

ALLEN JOHNSON
EDITOR

GERHARD R. LOMER
CHARLES W. JEFFERYS
ASSISTANT EDITORS


[Illustration: _GENERAL U. S. GRANT_
Photograph by Brady. In the collection of L. C. Handy, Washington.]




CAPTAINS OF THE CIVIL WAR

A CHRONICLE OF THE BLUE AND THE GRAY

BY WILLIAM WOOD


NEW HAVEN: YALE UNIVERSITY PRESS
TORONTO: GLASGOW, BROOK & CO.
LONDON: HUMPHREY MILFORD
OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS
1921


TO MY AMERICAN FRIENDS OF THE BOONE AND CROCKETT CLUB




PREFACE

Sixty years ago today the guns that thundered round Fort Sumter began
the third and greatest modern civil war fought by English-speaking
people. This war was quite as full of politics as were the other
two--the War of the American Revolution and that of Puritan and
Cavalier. But, though the present Chronicle never ignores the vital
correlations between statesmen and commanders, it is a book of
warriors, through and through.

I gratefully acknowledge the indispensable assistance of Colonel
G. J. Fiebeger, a West Point expert, and of Dr. Allen Johnson,
chief editor of the series and Professor of American History at
Yale.

WILLIAM WOOD,

Late Colonel commanding 8th Royal Rifles, and Officer-in-charge,
Canadian Special Mission Overseas.

QUEBEC,
  April 18, 1921.




CONTENTS

I. THE CLASH: 1861

II. THE COMBATANTS

III. THE NAVAL WAR: 1862

IV. THE RIVER WAR: 1861

V. LINCOLN: WAR STATESMAN

VI. LEE AND JACKSON: 1862-3

VII. GRANT WINS THE RIVER WAR: 1863

VIII. GETTYSBURG: 1863

IX. FARRAGUT AND THE NAVY: 1863-4

X. GRANT ATTACKS THE FRONT: 1864

XI. SHERMAN DESTROYS THE BASE: 1864

XII. THE END: 1865

BIBLIOGRAPHICAL NOTE

INDEX




ILLUSTRATIONS

GENERAL U. S. GRANT

Photograph by Brady. In the collection of L. C. Handy, Washington.

GENERAL ROBERT E. LEE

Photograph. In the collection of L. C. Handy, Washington

GENERAL T. J. (STONEWALL) JACKSON

Photograph. In the collection of L. C. Handy, Washington.

NORTH AND SOUTH IN 1861

Map by W. L. G. Joerg, American Geographical Society.

ADMIRAL D. G. FARRAGUT

Photograph by Brady.

CIVIL WAR: CAMPAIGNS OF 1862

Map by W. L. G. Joerg, American Geographical Society.

CIVIL WAR: VIRGINIA CAMPAIGNS, 1862

Map by W. L. G. Joerg, American Geographical Society.

CIVIL WAR: CAMPAIGNS OF 1863

Map by W. L. G. Joerg, American Geographical Society.

GENERAL W. T. SHERMAN

Photograph by Brady. In the collection of L. C. Handy, Washington.

CIVIL WAR: CAMPAIGNS OF 1864

Map by W. L. G. Joerg, American Geographical Society.




CAPTAINS OF THE CIVIL WAR

CHAPTER I

THE CLASH: 1861

States which claimed a sovereign right to secede from the Union
naturally claimed the corresponding right to resume possession of
all the land they had ceded to that Union's Government for the use
of its naval and military posts. So South Carolina, after leading
the way to secession on December 20, 1860, at once began to work
for the retrocession of the forts defending her famous cotton port
of Charleston. These defenses, being of vital consequence to both
sides, were soon to attract the strained attention of the whole
country.

There were three minor forts: Castle Pinckney, dozing away, in
charge of a solitary sergeant, on an island less than a mile from
the city; Fort Moultrie, feebly garrisoned and completely at the
mercy of attackers on its landward side; and Fort Johnson over on
James Island. Lastly, there was the world-renowned Fort Sumter,
which then stood, unfinished and ungarrisoned, on a little islet
beside the main ship channel, at the entrance to the harbor, and
facing Fort Moultrie just a mile away. The proper war garrison of
all the forts should have been over a thousand men. The actual
garrison--including officers, band, and the Castle Pinckney
sergeant--was less than a hundred. It was, however, loyal to the
Union; and its commandant, Major Robert Anderson, though born in
the slave-owning State of Kentucky, was determined to fight.

The situation, here as elsewhere, was complicated by Floyd, President
Buchanan's Secretary of War, soon to be forced out of office on a
charge of misapplying public funds. Floyd, as an ardent Southerner,
was using the last lax days of the Buchanan Government to get the
army posts ready for capitulation whenever secession should have
become an accomplished fact. He urged on construction, repairs, and
armament at Charleston, while refusing to strengthen the garrison,
in order, as he said, not to provoke Carolina. Moreover, in November
he had replaced old Colonel Gardner, a Northern veteran of "1812," by
Anderson the Southerner, in whom he hoped to find a good capitulator.
But this time Floyd was wrong.

The day after Christmas Anderson's little garrison at Fort Moultrie
slipped over to Fort Sumter under cover of the dark, quietly removed
Floyd's workmen, who were mostly Baltimore Secessionists, and began
to prepare for defense. Next morning Charleston was furious and
began to prepare for attack. The South Carolina authorities at
once took formal possession of Pinckney and Moultrie; and three
days later seized the United States Arsenal in Charleston itself.
Ten days later again, on January 9, 1861, the _Star of the West_,
a merchant vessel coming in with reinforcements and supplies for
Anderson, was fired on and forced to turn back. Anderson, who had
expected a man-of-war, would not fire in her defense, partly because
he still hoped there might yet be peace.

While Charleston stood at gaze and Anderson at bay the ferment of
secession was working fast in Florida, where another tiny garrison
was all the Union had to hold its own. This garrison, under two
loyal young lieutenants, Slemmer and Gilman, occupied Barrancas
Barracks in Pensacola Bay. Late at night on the eighth of January
(the day before the _Star of the West_ was fired on at Charleston)
some twenty Secessionists came to seize the old Spanish Fort San
Carlos, where, up to that time, the powder had been kept. This
fort, though lying close beside the barracks, had always been
unoccupied; so the Secessionists looked forward to an easy capture.
But, to their dismay, an unexpected guard challenged them, and,
not getting the proper password in reply, dispersed them with the
first shots of the Civil War.

Commodore Armstrong sat idle at the Pensacola Navy Yard, distracted
between the Union and secession. On the ninth Slemmer received
orders from Winfield Scott, General-in-Chief at Washington, to
use all means in defense of Union property. Next morning Slemmer
and his fifty faithful men were landed on Santa Rosa Island, just
one mile across the bay, where the dilapidated old Fort Pickens
stood forlorn. Two days later the Commodore surrendered the Navy
Yard, the Stars and Stripes were lowered, and everything ashore fell
into the enemy's hands. There was no flagstaff at Fort Pickens; but
the Union colors were at once hung out over the northwest bastion,
in full view of the shore, while the _Supply_ and _Wyandotte_,
the only naval vessels in the bay, and both commanded by loyal
men, mastheaded extra colors and stood clear. Five days afterwards
they had to sail for New York; and Slemmer, whose total garrison
had been raised to eighty by the addition of thirty sailors, was
left to hold Fort Pickens if he could.

He had already been summoned to surrender by Colonel Chase and
Captain Farrand, who had left the United States Army and Navy for
the service of the South. Chase, like many another Southern officer,
was stirred to his inmost depths by his own change of allegiance.
"I have come," he said, "to ask of you young officers, officers of
the same army in which I have spent the best and happiest years
of my life, the surrender of this fort; and fearing that I might
not be able to say it as I ought, and also to have it in proper
form, I have put it in writing and will read it." He then began
to read. But his eyes filled with tears, and, stamping his foot,
he said: "I can't read it. Here, Farrand, you read it." Farrand,
however, pleading that his eyes were weak, handed the paper to the
younger Union officer, saying, "Here, Gilman, you have good eyes,
please read it." Slemmer refused to surrender and held out till
reinforced in April, by which time the war had begun in earnest.
Fort Pickens was never taken. On the contrary, it supported the
bombardment of the Confederate 'longshore positions the next New
Year (1862) and witnessed the burning and evacuation of Pensacola
the following ninth of May.

While Charleston and Pensacola were fanning the flames of secession
the wildfire was running round the Gulf, catching well throughout
Louisiana, where the Governor ordered the state militia to seize
every place belonging to the Union, and striking inland till it
reached the farthest army posts in Texas. In all Louisiana the
Union Government had only forty men. These occupied the Arsenal at
Baton Rouge under Major Haskins. Haskins was loyal. But when five
hundred state militiamen surrounded him, and his old brother-officer,
the future Confederate General Bragg, persuaded him that the Union
was really at an end, to all intents and purposes, and when he
found no orders, no support, and not even any guidance from the
Government at Washington, he surrendered with the honors of war
and left by boat for St. Louis in Missouri.

There was then in Louisiana another Union officer; but made of
sterner stuff. This was Colonel W. T. Sherman, Superintendent of
the State Seminary of Learning and Military Academy at Alexandria,
up the Red River. He was much respected by all the state authorities,
and was carefully watching over the two young sons of another future
Confederate leader, General Beauregard. William Tecumseh Sherman
had retired from the Army without seeing any war service, unlike
Haskins, who was a one-armed veteran of the Mexican campaign. But
Sherman was determined to stand by the Union, come what might.
Yet he was equally determined to wind up the affairs of the State
Academy so as to hand them over in perfect order. A few days after
the seizure of the Arsenal, and before the formal secession of
the State, he wrote to the Governor:

"Sir: As I occupy a _quasi_-military position under the laws of
the State, I deem it proper to acquaint you that I accepted such
position when Louisiana was a State of the Union, and when the motto
of this seminary was inserted in marble over the main door: "By
the liberality of the General Government of the United States. The
Union--_esto perpetua_." Recent events foreshadow a great change, and
it becomes all men to choose.... I beg you to take immediate steps
to relieve me as superintendent, the moment the State determines to
secede, for on no earthly account will I do any act or think any
thought hostile to, or in defiance of, the old Government of the
United States."

Then, to the lasting credit of all concerned, the future political
enemies parted as the best of personal friends. Sherman left everything
in perfect order, accounted for every cent of the funds, and received
the heartiest thanks and best wishes of all the governing officials,
who embodied the following sentence in their final resolution of
April 1, 1861: "They cannot fail to appreciate the manliness of
character which has always marked the actions of Colonel Sherman."
Long before this Louisiana had seceded, and Sherman had gone north
to Lancaster, Ohio, where he arrived about the time of Lincoln's
inauguration.

Meanwhile, on the eighteenth of February, the greatest of all surrenders
had taken place in Texas, where nineteen army posts were handed
over to the State by General Twiggs. San Antonio was swarming with
Secessionist rangers. Unionist companies were marching up and down.
The Federal garrison was leaving the town on parole, with the band
playing Union airs and Union colors flying. The whole place was
at sixes and sevens, and anything might have happened.

In the midst of this confusion the colonel commanding the Second
Regiment of United States Cavalry arrived from Fort Mason. He was
on his way to Washington, where Winfield Scott, the veteran
General-in-Chief, was anxiously waiting to see him; for this colonel
was no ordinary man. He had been Scott's Chief of Staff in Mexico,
where he had twice won promotion for service in the field. He had
been a model Superintendent at West Point and an exceedingly good
officer of engineers before he left them, on promotion, for the
cavalry. Very tall and handsome, magnificently fit in body and in
mind, genial but of commanding presence, this flower of Southern
chivalry was not only every inch a soldier but a leader born and
bred. Though still unknown to public fame he was the one man to
whom the most insightful leaders of both sides turned, and rightly
turned; for this was Robert Lee, Lee of Virginia, soon to become
one of the very few really great commanders of the world.

As Lee came up to the hotel at San Antonio he was warmly greeted
by Mrs. Darrow, the anxious wife of the confidential clerk to Major
Vinton, the staunch Union officer in charge of the pay and quartermaster
services. "Who are those men?" he asked, pointing to the rangers,
who wore red flannel shoulder straps. "They are McCulloch's," she
answered; "General Twiggs surrendered everything to the State this
morning." Years after, when she and her husband and Vinton had
suffered for one side and Lee had suffered for the other, she wrote
her recollection of that memorable day in these few, telling words:
"I shall never forget his look of astonishment, as, with his lips
trembling and his eyes full of tears, he exclaimed, 'Has it come
so soon as this?' In a short time I saw him crossing the plaza on
his way to headquarters and noticed particularly that he was in
citizen's dress. He returned at night and shut himself into his
room, which was over mine; and I heard his footsteps through the
night, and sometimes the murmur of his voice, as if he was praying.
He remained at the hotel a week and in conversations declared that
the position he held was a neutral one."

Three other Union witnesses show how Lee agonized over the fateful
decision he was being forced to make. Captain R. M. Potter says:
"I have seldom seen a more distressed man. He said, 'When I get
to Virginia I think the world will have one soldier less. I shall
resign and go to planting corn.'" Colonel Albert G. Brackett says:
"Lee was filled with sorrow at the condition of affairs, and, in a
letter to me, deploring the war in which we were about to engage,
made use of these words: 'I fear the liberties of our country will
be buried in the tomb of a great nation.'" Colonel Charles Anderson,
quoting Lee's final words in Texas, carries us to the point of parting:
"I still think my loyalty to Virginia ought to take precedence
over that which is due to the Federal Government; and I shall so
report myself in Washington. If Virginia stands by the old Union,
so will I. But if she secedes (though I do not believe in secession
as a constitutional right, nor that there is sufficient cause for
revolution) then I will still follow my native State with my sword,
and, if need be, with my life. I know you think and feel very
differently. But I can't help it. These are my principles; and I
must follow them."

Lee reached Washington on the first of March. Lincoln, delivering
his Inaugural on the fourth, brought the country one step nearer
war by showing the neutrals how impossible it was to reconcile
his principles as President of the whole United States with those
of Jefferson Davis as President of the seceding parts. "The power
confided to me will be used to hold, occupy, and possess the property
and places belonging to the government." Three days later the
provisional Confederate Congress at Montgomery in Alabama passed
an Army Act authorizing the enlistment of one hundred thousand
men for one year's service. Nine days later again, having adopted
a Constitution in the meantime, this Congress passed a Navy Act,
authorizing the purchase or construction of ten little gunboats.

In April the main storm center went whirling back to Charleston,
where Sherman's old friend Beauregard commanded the forces that
encircled Sumter. Sumter, still unfinished, had been designed for
a garrison of six hundred and fifty combatant men. It now contained
exactly sixty-five. It was to have been provisioned for six months.
The actual supplies could not be made to last beyond two weeks.
Both sides knew that Anderson's gallant little garrison must be
starved out by the fifteenth. But the excited Carolinians would
not wait, because they feared that the arrival of reinforcements
might balk them of their easy prey. On the eleventh Beauregard,
acting under orders from the Confederate Government, sent in a
summons to surrender. Anderson refused. At a quarter to one the
next morning the summons was repeated, as pilots had meanwhile
reported a Federal vessel approaching the harbor. Anderson again
refused and again admitted that he would be starved out on the
fifteenth. Thereupon Beauregard's aides declared immediate surrender
the only possible alternative to a bombardment and signed a note
at 3:20 A.M. giving Anderson formal warning that fire would be
opened in an hour.

Fort Sumter stood about half a mile inside the harbor mouth, fully
exposed to the converging fire of four relatively powerful batteries,
three about a mile away, the fourth nearly twice as far. At the northern
side of the harbor mouth stood Fort Moultrie; at the southern stood
the batteries on Cummings Point; and almost due west of Sumter stood
Fort Johnson. Near Moultrie was a four-gun floating battery with an
iron shield. A mile northwest of Moultrie, farther up the harbor,
stood the Mount Pleasant battery, nearly two miles off from Sumter.
At half-past four, in the first faint light of a gray morning,
a sudden spurt of flame shot out from Fort Johnson, the dull roar
of a mortar floated through the misty air, and the big shell--the
first shot of the real war--soared up at a steep angle, its course
distinctly marked by its burning fuse, and then plunged down on
Sumter. It was a capital shot, right on the center of the target,
and was followed by an admirable burst. Then all the converging
batteries opened full; while the whole population of perfervid
Charleston rushed out of doors to throng their beautiful East Battery,
a flagstone marine parade three miles in from Sumter, of which and
of the attacking batteries it had a perfect view.

But Sumter remained as silent as the grave. Anderson decided not to
return the fire till it was broad daylight. In the meantime all ranks
went to breakfast, which consisted entirely of water and salt pork.
Then the gun crews went to action stations and fired back steadily
with solid shot. The ironclad battery was an exasperating target;
for the shot bounced off it like dried peas. Moultrie seemed more
vulnerable. But appearances were deceptive; for it was thoroughly
quilted with bales of cotton, which the solid shot simply rammed
into an impenetrable mass. Wishing to save his men, in which he was
quite successful, Anderson had forbidden the use of the shell-guns,
which were mounted on the upper works and therefore more exposed.
Shell fire would have burst the bales and set the cotton flaming.
This was so evident that Sergeant Carmody, unable to stand such
futile practice any longer, quietly stole up to the loaded guns
and fired them in succession. The aim lacked final correction;
and the result was small, except that Moultrie, thinking itself
in danger, concentrated all its efforts on silencing these guns.
The silencing seemed most effective; for Carmody could not reload
alone, and so his first shots were his last.

At nightfall Sumter ceased fire while the Confederates kept on
slowly till daylight. Next morning the officers' quarters were set
on fire by red-hot shot. Immediately the Confederates redoubled
their efforts. Inside Sumter the fire was creeping towards the
magazine, the door of which was shut only just in time. Then the
flagstaff was shot down. Anderson ran his colors up again, but the
situation was rapidly becoming impossible. Most of the worn-out men
were fighting the flames while a few were firing at long intervals to
show they would not yet give in. This excited the generous admiration
of the enemy, who cheered the gallantry of Sumter while sneering
at the caution of the Union fleet outside. The fact was, however,
that this so-called fleet was a mere assemblage of vessels quite
unable to fight the Charleston batteries and without the slightest
chance of saving Sumter.

Having done his best for the honor of the flag, though not a man
was killed within the walls, Anderson surrendered in the afternoon.
Charleston went wild with joy; but applauded the generosity of
Beauregard's chivalrous terms. Next day, Sunday the fourteenth,
Anderson's little garrison saluted the Stars and Stripes with fifty
guns, and then, with colors flying, marched down on board a transport
to the strains of _Yankee Doodle_.

Strange to say, after being four years in Confederate hands, Sumter
was recaptured by the Union forces on the anniversary of its surrender.
It was often bombarded, though never taken, in the meantime.

The fall of Sumter not only fired all Union loyalty but made
Confederates eager for the fray. The very next day Lincoln called
for 75,000 three-month volunteers. Two days later Confederate letters
of marque were issued to any privateers that would prey on Union
shipping. Two days later again Lincoln declared a blockade of every
port from South Carolina round to Texas. Eight days afterwards he
extended it to North Carolina and Virginia.

[Illustration: _GENERAL ROBERT E. LEE_
Photograph. In the collection of L. C. Handy, Washington.]

But in the meantime Lincoln had been himself marooned in Washington.
On the nineteenth of April, the day he declared his first blockade,
the Sixth Massachusetts were attacked by a mob in Baltimore, through
which the direct rails ran from North to South. Baltimore was full
of secession, and the bloodshed roused its fury. Maryland was a
border slave State out of which the District of Columbia was carved.
Virginia had just seceded. So when the would-be Confederates of
Maryland, led by the Mayor of Baltimore, began tearing up rails,
burning bridges, and cutting the wires, the Union Government found
itself enisled in a hostile sea. Its own forces abandoned the Arsenal
at Harper's Ferry and the Navy Yard at Norfolk. The work of demolition
at Harper's Ferry had to be bungled off in haste, owing to shortness
of time and lack of means. The demolition of Norfolk was better
done, and the ships were sunk at anchor. But many valuable stores
fell into enemy hands at both these Virginian outposts of the Federal
forces. Through six long days of dire suspense not a ship, not a
train, came into Washington. At last, on the twenty-fifth, the
Seventh New York got through, having come south by boat with the
Eighth Massachusetts, landed at Annapolis, and commandeered a train
to run over relaid rails. With them came the news that all the
loyal North was up, that the Seventh had marched through miles of
cheering patriots in New York, and that these two fine regiments
were only the vanguard of a host.

But just a week before Lincoln experienced this inexpressible relief
he lost, and his enemy won, a single officer, who, according to
Winfield Scott, was alone worth more than fifty thousand veteran
men. On the seventeenth of April Virginia voted for secession.
On the eighteenth Lee had a long confidential interview with his
old chief, Winfield Scott. On the twentieth he resigned, writing
privately to Scott at the same time: "My resignation would have been
presented at once but for the struggle it has cost me to separate
myself from a service to which I have devoted the best years of my
life. During the whole of that time I have experienced nothing but
kindness from my superiors and a most cordial friendship from my
comrades. I shall carry to the grave the most grateful recollections
of your kind consideration, and your name and fame shall always be
dear to me. Save in the defense of my native State I never desire
again to draw my sword."

The three great motives which finally determined his momentous
course of action were: first, his aversion from taking any part
in coercing the home folks of Virginia; secondly, his belief in
State rights, tempered though it was by admiration for the Union;
and thirdly, his clear perception that war was now inevitable, and
that defeat for the South would inevitably mean a violent change
of all the ways of Southern life, above all, a change imposed by
force from outside, instead of the gradual change he wished to
see effected from within. He was opposed to slavery; and both his
own and his wife's slaves had long been free. Like his famous
lieutenant, Stonewall Jackson, he was particularly kind to the
blacks; none of whom ever wanted to leave, once they had been domiciled
at Arlington, the estate that came to him through his wife, Mary
Custis, great-granddaughter of Martha Washington. But, like Lincoln
before the war, he wished emancipation to come from the slave States
themselves, as in time it must have come, with due regard for
compensation.

On the twenty-third of this eventful April Lee was given the chief
command of all Virginia's forces. Three days later "Joe" Johnston
took command of the Virginians at Richmond. One day later again
"Stonewall" Jackson took command at Harper's Ferry. Johnston played
a great and noble part throughout the war; and we shall meet him
again and again, down to the very end. But Jackson claims our first
attention here.

Like all the great leaders on both sides Jackson had been an officer
of regulars. He was, however, in many ways unlike the army type.
He disliked society amusements, was awkward, shy, reserved, and
apparently recluse. Moderately tall, with large hands and feet,
stiff in his movements, ungainly in the saddle, he was a mere nobody
in public estimation when the war broke out. A few brother-officers
had seen his consummate skill and bravery as a subaltern in Mexico;
and still fewer close acquaintances had seen his sterling qualities
at Lexington, where, for ten years, he had been a professor at
the Virginia Military Institute. But these few were the only ones
who were not surprised when this recluse of peace suddenly became
a very thunderbolt of war--Puritan in soul, Cavalier in daring:
a Cromwell come to life again.

Harper's Ferry was a strategic point in northern Virginia. It was
the gate to the Shenandoah Valley as well as the point where the
Baltimore and Ohio Railroad crossed the Potomac some sixty miles
northwest of Washington. Harper's Ferry was known by name to North
and South through John Brown's raid two years before. It was now
coveted by Virginia for its Arsenal as well as for its command of
road, rail, and water routes. The plan to raid it was arranged at
Richmond on the sixteenth of April. But when the raiders reached
it on the eighteenth they found it abandoned and its Arsenal in
flames. The machine shops, however, were saved, as well as the
metal parts of twenty thousand stand of arms. Then the Virginia
militiamen and volunteers streamed in, to the number of over four
thousand. They were a mere conglomeration of semi-independent units,
mostly composed of raw recruits under officers who themselves knew
next to nothing. As usual with such fledgling troops there was no
end to the fuss and feathers among the members of the busybody
staffs, who were numerous enough to manage an army but clumsy enough
to spoil a platoon. It was said, and not without good reason, that
there was as much gold lace at Harper's Ferry, when the sun was
shining, as at a grand review in Paris.

Into this gaudy assemblage rode Thomas Jonathan Jackson, mounted
on Little Sorrel, a horse as unpretentious as himself, and dressed
in his faded old blue professor's uniform without one gleam of
gold. He had only two staff officers, both dressed as plainly as
himself. He was not a major-general, nor even a brigadier; just a
colonel. He held no trumpeting reviews. He made no flowery speeches.
He didn't even swear. The armed mob at Harper's Ferry felt that
they would lose caste on Sunday afternoons under a commandant like
this. Their feelings were still more outraged when they heard that
every officer above the rank of captain was to lose his higher
rank, and that all new reappointments were to be made on military
merit and direct from Richmond. Companies accustomed to elect their
officers according to the whim of the moment eagerly joined the
higher officers in passing adverse resolutions. But authorities who
were unanimous for Lee were not to be shaken by such absurdities
in face of a serious war. And when the froth had been blown off
the top, and the dregs drained out of the bottom, the solid mass
between, who really were sound patriots, settled down to work.

There was seven hours' drill every day except Sunday; no light task
for a mere armed mob groping its ignorant way, however zealously,
towards the organized efficiency of a real army. The companies had
to be formed into workable battalions, the battalions into brigades.
There was a deplorable lack of cavalry, artillery, engineers,
commissariat, transport, medical services, and, above all, staff.
Armament was bad; other munitions were worse. There would have been
no chance whatever of holding Harper's Ferry unless the Northern
conglomeration had been even less like a fighting army than the
Southern was.

Harper's Ferry was not only important in itself but still more
important for what it covered: the wonderfully fruitful Shenandoah
Valley, running southwest a hundred and forty miles to the neighborhood
of Lexington, with an average width of only twenty-four. Bounded
on the west by the Alleghanies and on the east by the long Blue
Ridge this valley was a regular covered way by which the Northern
invaders might approach, cut Virginia in two (for West Virginia
was then a part of the State) and, after devastating the valley
itself (thus destroying half the food-base of Virginia) attack
eastern Virginia through whichever gaps might serve the purpose
best. More than this, the only direct line from Richmond to the
Mississippi ran just below the southwest end of the valley, while
a network of roads radiated from Winchester near the northeast
end, thirty miles southwest of Harper's Ferry.

Throughout the month of May Jackson went on working his men into
shape and watching the enemy, three thousand strong, at Chambersburg,
forty-five miles north of Harper's Ferry, and twelve thousand strong
farther north still. One day he made a magnificent capture of rolling
stock on the twenty-seven miles of double track that centered in
Harper's Ferry. This greatly hampered the accumulation of coal at
Washington besides helping the railroads of the South. Destroying
the line was out of the question, because it ran through West Virginia
and Maryland, both of which he hoped to see on the Confederate
side. He was himself a West Virginian, born at Clarksburg; and it
grieved him greatly when West Virginia stood by the Union.

Apart from this he did nothing spectacular. The rest was all just
sheer hard work. He kept his own counsel so carefully that no one
knew anything about what he would do if the enemy advanced. Even
the officers of outposts were forbidden to notice or mention his
arrival or departure on his constant tours of inspection, lest a
longer look than usual at any point might let an awkward inference
be drawn. He was the sternest of disciplinarians when the good of
the service required it. But no one knew better that the finest
discipline springs from self-sacrifice willingly made for a worthy
cause; and no one was readier to help all ranks along toward real
efficiency in the kindest possible way when he saw they were doing
their best.

At the end of May Johnston took over the command of the increasing
force at Harper's Ferry, while Jackson was given the First Shenandoah
Brigade, a unit soon, like himself, to be raised by service into
fame.


On the first and third of May Virginia issued calls for more men;
and on the third Lincoln, who quite understood the signs of the
times, called for men whose term of service would be three years
and not three months.

Just a week later Missouri was saved for the Union by the daring
skill of two determined leaders, Francis P. Blair, a Member of
Congress who became a good major-general, and Captain Nathaniel Lyon,
an excellent soldier, who commanded the little garrison of regulars
at St. Louis. When Lincoln called upon Governor Claiborne Jackson
to supply Missouri's quota of three-month volunteers the Governor
denounced the proposed coercion as "illegal, unconstitutional,
revolutionary, inhuman, and diabolical"; and thereafter did his
best to make Missouri join the South. But Blair and Lyon were too
quick for him. Blair organized the Home Guards, whom Lyon armed
from the arsenal. Lyon then sent all the surplus arms and stores
across the river into Illinois, while he occupied the most commanding
position near the arsenal with his own troops, thus forestalling
the Confederates, under Brigadier-General D. M. Frost, who was now
forced to establish Camp Jackson in a far less favorable place. So
vigorously had Blair and Lyon worked that they had armed thousands
while Frost had only armed hundreds. But when Frost received siege
guns and mortars from farther south Lyon felt the time had come
for action.

Lyon was a born leader, though Grant and Sherman (then in St. Louis
as junior ex-officers, quite unknown to fame) were almost the only
men, apart from Blair, to see any signs of preeminence in this
fiery little redheaded, weather-beaten captain, who kept dashing
about the arsenal, with his pockets full of papers, making sure
of every detail connected with the handful of regulars and the
thousands of Home Guards.

On the ninth of May Lyon borrowed an old dress from Blair's
mother-in-law, completing the disguise with a thickly veiled sunbonnet,
and drove through Camp Jackson. That night he and Blair attended
a council of war, at which, overcoming all opposition, answering
all objections, and making all arrangements, they laid their plans
for the morrow. When Lyon's seven thousand surrounded Frost's seven
hundred the Confederates surrendered at discretion and were marched
as prisoners through St. Louis. There were many Southern sympathizers
among the crowds in the streets; one of them fired a pistol; and
the Home Guards fired back, killing several women and children
by mistake. This unfortunate incident hardened many neutrals and
even Unionists against the Union forces; so much so that Sterling
Price, a Unionist and former governor, became a Confederate general,
whose field for recruiting round Jefferson City on the Missouri
promised a good crop of enemies to the Union cause.

Lyon and Blair wished to march against Price immediately and smash
every hostile force while still in the act of forming. But General
Harney, who commanded the Department of the West, returned to St.
Louis the day after the shooting and made peace instead of war with
Price. By the end of the month, however, Lincoln removed Harney and
promoted Lyon in his place; whereupon Price and Governor Jackson at
once prepared to fight. Then sundry neutrals, of the gabbling kind
who think talk enough will settle anything, induced the implacables
to meet in St. Louis. The conference was ended by Lyon's declaration
that he would see every Missourian under the sod before he would
take any orders from the State about any Federal matter, however
small. "This," he said in conclusion, "means war." And it did.

Again a single week sufficed for the striking of the blow. The
conference was held on the eleventh of June. On the fourteenth
Lyon reached Jefferson City only to find that the Governor had
decamped for Boonville, still higher up the Missouri. Here, on
the seventeenth, Lyon attacked him with greatly superior numbers
and skill, defeated him utterly, and sent him flying south with
only a few hundred followers left. Boonville was, in itself, a
very small affair indeed. But it had immense results. Lyon had
seized the best strategic point of rail and river junction on the
Mississippi by holding St. Louis. He had also secured supremacy
in arms, munitions, and morale. By turning the Governor out of
Jefferson City, the State capital, he had deprived the Confederates
of the prestige and convenience of an acknowledged headquarters.
Now, by defeating him at Boonville and driving his forces south in
headlong flight he had practically made the whole Missouri River a
Federal line of communication as well as a barrier between would-be
Confederates to the north and south of it. More than this, the
possession of Boonville struck a fatal blow at Confederate recruiting
and organization throughout the whole of that strategic area; for
Boonville was the center to which pro-Southern Missourians were
flocking. The tide of battle was to go against the Federals at
Wilson's Creek in the southwest of the State, and even at Lexington
on the Missouri, as we shall presently see; but this was only the
breaking of the last Confederate waves. As a State, Missouri was
lost to the South already.

In Kentucky, the next border State, opinions were likewise divided;
and Kentuckians fought each other with help from both sides. Anderson,
of Fort Sumter fame, was appointed to the Kentucky command in May.
But here the crisis did not occur for months, while a border campaign
was already being fought in West Virginia.

West Virginia, which became a separate State during the war, was
strongly Federal, like eastern Tennessee. These Federal parts of
two Confederate States formed a wedge dangerous to the whole South,
especially to Virginia and the Carolinas. Each side therefore tried
to control this area itself. The Federals, under McClellan, of
whom we shall soon hear more, had two lines of invasion into West
Virginia, both based on the Ohio. The northern converged by rail,
from Wheeling and Parkersburg, on Grafton, the only junction in
West Virginia. The southern ran up the Great Kanawha, with good
navigation to Charleston and water enough for small craft on to
Gauley Bridge, which was the strategic point.

In May the Confederates cut the line near Grafton. As this broke
direct communication between the West and Washington, McClellan
sent forces from which two flying columns, three thousand strong,
converged on Philippi, fifteen miles south of Grafton, and surprised
a thousand Confederates. These thereupon retired, with little loss,
to Beverly, thirty miles farther south still. Here there was a
combat at Rich Mountain on the eleventh of July. The Confederates
again retreated, losing General Garnett in a skirmish the following
day. This ended McClellan's own campaign in West Virginia.

But the Kanawha campaign, which lasted till November, had only
just begun, with Rosecrans as successor to McClellan (who had been
recalled to Washington for very high command) and with General
Jacob D. Cox leading the force against Gauley. The Confederates
did all they could to keep their precarious foothold. They sent
political chiefs, like Henry A. Wise, ex-Governor of Virginia,
and John B. Floyd, the late Federal Secretary of War, both of whom
were now Confederate brigadiers. They even sent Lee himself in
general commend. But, confronted by superior forces in a difficult
and thoroughly hostile country, they at last retired east of the
Alleghanies, which thenceforth became the frontier of two warring
States.

The campaign in West Virginia was a foregone conclusion. It was not
marked by any real battles; and there was no scope for exceptional
skill of the higher kind on either side. But it made McClellan's
bubble reputation.

McClellan was an ex-captain of United States Engineers who had
done very well at West Point, had distinguished himself in Mexico,
had represented the American army with the Allies in the Crimea,
had written a good official report on his observations there, had
become manager of a big railroad after leaving the service, and had
so impressed people with his ability and modesty on the outbreak
of war that his appointment to the chief command in West Virginia
was hailed with the utmost satisfaction. Then came the two affairs
at Philippi and Rich Mountain, the first of which was planned and
carried out by other men, while the second was, if anything, spoiled
by himself; for here, as afterwards on a vastly greater scene of
action, he failed to strike home at the critical moment.

Yet though he failed in arms he won by proclamations; so much so,
in fact, that _Words not Deeds_ might well have been his motto. He
began with a bombastic address to the inhabitants and ended with
another to his troops, whom he congratulated on having "annihilated
two armies, commanded by educated and experienced soldiers, intrenched
in mountain fastnesses fortified at their leisure."

It disastrously happened that the Union public were hungering for
heroes at this particular time and that Union journalists were itching
to write one up to the top of their bent. So all McClellan's tinsel
was counted out for gold before an avaricious mob of undiscriminating
readers; and when, at the height of the publicity campaign, the
Government wanted to retrieve Bull Run they turned to the "Man
of Destiny" who had been given the noisiest advertisement as the
"Young Napoleon of the West." McClellan had many good qualities
for organization, and even some for strategy. An excited press and
public, however, would not acclaim him for what he was but for
what he most decidedly was not.


Meanwhile, before McClellan went to Washington and Lee to West
Virginia, the main Union army had been disastrously defeated by
the main Confederate army at Bull Run, on that vital ground which
lay between the rival capitals.

In April Lincoln had called for three-month volunteers. In May the
term of service for new enlistments was three years. In June the
military chiefs at Washington were vainly doing all that military
men could do to make something like the beginnings of an army out of
the conglomerating mass. Winfield Scott, the veteran General-in-Chief,
rightly revered by the whole service as a most experienced, farsighted,
and practical man, was ably assisted by W. T. Sherman and Irvin
McDowell. But civilian interference ruined all. Even Lincoln had
not yet learned the quintessential difference between that civil
control by which the fighting services are so rightly made the
real servants of the whole people and that civilian interference
which is very much the same as if a landlubber owning a ship should
grab the wheel repeatedly in the middle of a storm. Simon Cameron,
then Secretary of War, was good enough as a party politician, but
all thumbs when fumbling with the armies in the field. The other
members of the Cabinet had war nostrums of their own; and every
politician with a pull did what he could to use it. Behind all these
surged a clamorous press and an excited people, both patriotic
and well meaning; but both wholly ignorant of war, and therefore
generating a public opinion that forced the not unwilling Government
to order an armed mob "on to Richmond" before it had the slightest
chance of learning how to be an army.

The Congress that met on the Fourth of July voted five hundred
thousand men and two hundred and fifty million dollars. This showed
that the greatness of the war was beginning to be seen. But the
men, the money, and the Glorious Fourth were so blurred together
in the public mind that the distinction between a vote in Congress
and its effect upon some future battlefield was never realized.
The result was a new access of zeal for driving McDowell "on to
Richmond." Making the best of a bad business, Scott had already
begun his preparations for the premature advance.

By the end of May Confederate pickets had been in sight of Washington,
while McDowell, crossing the Potomac, was faced by his friend of
old West Point and Mexican days, General Beauregard, fresh from the
capture of Fort Sumter. By the beginning of July General Patterson,
a veteran of "1812" and Mexico, was in command up the Potomac near
Harper's Ferry. He was opposed by "Joe" Johnston, who had taken
over that Confederate command from "Stonewall" Jackson. Down the
Potomac and Chesapeake Bay there was nothing to oppose the Union
navy. General Benjamin Butler, threatening Richmond in flank, along
the lower Chesapeake, was watched by the Confederates Huger and
Magruder. Meanwhile, as we have seen already, the West Virginian
campaign was in full swing, with superior Federal forces under
McClellan.

Thus the general situation in July was that the whole of northeastern
Virginia was faced by a semicircle of superior forces which began
at the Kanawha River, ran northeast to Grafton, then northeast
to Cumberland, then along the Potomac to Chesapeake Bay and on
to Fortress Monroe. From the Kanawha to Grafton there were only
roads. From Grafton to Cumberland there was rail as well. From
Cumberland to Washington there were road, rail, river, and canal.
From Washington to Fortress Monroe there was water fit for any
fleet. The Union armies along this semicircle were not only twice
as numerous as the Confederates facing them but they were backed
by a sea-power, both naval and mercantile, which the Confederates
could not begin to challenge, much less overcome. Lee was the military
adviser to the Confederate Government at Richmond as Scott then
was to the Union Government at Washington.

Such was the central scene of action, where the first great battle
of the war was fought. The Union forces were based on the Potomac
from Washington to Harper's Ferry. The Confederates faced them
from Bull Run to Winchester, which points were nearly sixty miles
apart by road and rail. The Union forces were fifty thousand strong,
the Confederate thirty-three thousand. The Union problem was how to
keep "Joe" Johnston in the Winchester position by threatening or
actually making an invasion of the Shenandoah Valley with Patterson's
superior force, while McDowell's superior force attacked or turned
Beauregard's position at Bull Run. The Confederate problem was how to
give Patterson the slip and reach Bull Run in time to meet McDowell
with an equal force. The Confederates had the advantage of interior
lines both here and in the semicircle as a whole, though the Union
forces enjoyed in general much better means of transportation. The
Confederates enjoyed better control from government headquarters,
where the Cabinet mostly had the sense to trust in Lee. Scott, on
the other hand, was tied down by orders to defend Washington by
purely defensive means as well as by the "on to Richmond" march.
Patterson was therefore obliged to watch the Federal back door
at Harper's Ferry as well as the Confederate side doors up the
Shenandoah: an impossible task, on exterior lines, with the kind
of force he had. The civilian chiefs at Washington did not see
that the best of all defense was to destroy the enemy's means of
destroying _them_, and that his greatest force of fighting _men_,
not any particular _place_, should always be their main objective.

On the fourteenth of June Johnston had destroyed everything useful
to the enemy at Harper's Ferry and retired to Winchester. On the
twentieth Jackson's brigade marched on Martinsburg to destroy the
workshops of the Baltimore and Ohio Railway and to support the
three hundred troopers under J. E. B. Stuart, who was so soon to
be the greatest of cavalry commanders on the Confederate side.
Unknown at twenty-nine, killed at thirty-one, "Jeb" Stuart was a
Virginian ex-officer of United States Dragoons, trained in frontier
fighting, and the perfect type of what a cavalry commander should
be: tall, handsome, splendidly supple and strong, hawk-eyed and
lion-hearted, quick, bold, determined, and inspiring, yet always
full of knowledge and precaution too; indefatigable at all times,
and so persistent in carrying out a plan that the enemy could no
more shake him off than they could escape their shadows.

On the second of July the first brush took place at Falling Waters,
five miles south of the Potomac, where Jackson came into touch
with Patterson's advanced guard. As Jackson withdrew his handful
of Virginian infantry the Federal cavalry came clattering down
the turnpike and were met by a single shot from a Confederate gun
that smashed the head of their column and sent the others flying.
Meanwhile Stuart, who had been reconnoitering, came upon a company
of Federal infantry resting in a field. Galloping among them suddenly
he shouted, "Throw down your arms or you are all dead men!" Whereupon
they all threw down their arms; and his troopers led them off.
Patterson, badly served by his very raw staff, reported Jackson's
little vanguard as being precisely ten times stronger than it was.
He pushed out cautiously to right and left; and when he tried to
engage again he found that Jackson had withdrawn. Falling Waters was
microscopically small as a fight. But it served to raise Confederate
morale and depress the Federals correspondingly.

Patterson occupied Martinsburg, while Johnston, drawn up in line
of battle, awaited his further advance four days before retiring.
Then, with his fourteen thousand, Patterson advanced again, stood
irresolute under distracting orders from the Government in Washington,
and finally went to Charlestown on the seventeenth of July--almost
back to Harper's Ferry. Johnston, with his eleven thousand, now
stood fast at Winchester, fifteen miles southwest, while Stuart,
like a living screen, moved to and fro between them.

Meanwhile McDowell's thirty-six thousand had marched past the President
with bands playing and colors flying amid a scene of great enthusiasm.
The press campaign was at its height; so was the speechifying;
and ninety-nine people out of every hundred thought Beauregard's
twenty-two thousand at Bull Run would be defeated in a way that
would be sure to make the South give in. McDowell had between two
and three thousand regulars: viz., seven troops of cavalry, nine
batteries of artillery, eight companies of infantry, and a little
battalion of marines. Then there was the immense paper army voted
on the Glorious Fourth. And here, for the general public to admire,
was a collection of armed and uniformed men that members of Congress
and writers in the press united in calling one of the best armies
the world had ever seen. Moreover, the publicity campaign was kept
up unflaggingly till the very clash of arms began. Reporters marched
along and sent off reams of copy. Congressmen, and even ladies,
graced the occasion in every way they could. "The various regiments
were brilliantly uniformed according to the aesthetic taste of peace,"
wrote General Fry, then an officer on McDowell's staff, and "during
the nineteenth and twentieth the bivouacs at Centreville, almost
within cannon range of the enemy, were thronged with visitors,
official and unofficial, who came in carriages from Washington,
were under no military restraint, and passed to and fro among the
troops as they pleased, giving the scene the appearance of a monster
military picnic."

Had McDowell been able to attack on either of these two days he
must have won. But previous Governments had never given the army
the means of making proper surveys; so here, within a day's march
of the Federal capital, the maps were worthless for military use.
Information had to be gleaned by reconnaissance; and reconnaissance
takes time, especially without trustworthy guides, sufficient cavalry,
and a proper staff. Moreover, the army was all parts and no whole,
through no fault of McDowell's or of his military chiefs. The
three-month volunteers, whose term of service was nearly over,
had not learned their drill as individuals before being herded
into companies, battalions, and brigades, of course becoming more
and more inefficient as the units grew more and more complex. Of
the still more essential discipline they naturally knew still less.
There was no lack of courage; for these were the same breed of
men as those with whom Washington had won immortal fame, the same
as those with whom both Grant and Lee were yet to win it. But,
as Napoleon used to say, mere men are not the same as soldiers.
Nor are armed mobs the same as armies.

The short march to the front was both confused and demoralizing.
No American officer had ever had the chance even of seeing, much
less handling, thirty-six thousand men under arms. This force was
followed by an immense and unwieldy train of supplies, manned by
wholly undisciplined civilian drivers; while other, and quite
superfluous, civilians clogged every movement and made confusion
worse confounded. "The march," says Sherman, who commanded a brigade,
"demonstrated little save the general laxity of discipline; for,
with all my personal efforts, I could not prevent the men from
straggling for water, blackberries, or anything on the way they
fancied." In the whole of the first long summer's day, the sixteenth
of July, the army only marched six miles; and it took the better
part of the seventeenth to herd its stragglers back again. "I wished
them," says McDowell, "to go to Centreville the second day [only
another six miles out] but the men were foot-weary, not so much
by the distance marched as by the time they had been on foot."
That observant private, Warren Lee Goss, has told us how hard it
is to soldier suddenly. "My canteen banged against my bayonet; both
tin cup and bayonet badly interfered with the butt of my musket,
while my cartridge-box and haversack were constantly flopping up
and down--the whole jangling like loose harness and chains on a
runaway horse." The weather was hot. The roads were dusty. And
many a man threw away parts of his kit for which he suffered later
on. There was food in superabundance. But, with that unwieldy and
grossly undisciplined supply-and-transport service, the men and
their food never came together at the proper time.

Early on the eighteenth McDowell, whose own work was excellent
all through, pushed forward a brigade against Blackburn's Ford,
toward the Confederate right, in order to distract attention from
the real objective, which was to be the turning of the left. The
Confederate outposts fell back beyond the ford. The Federal brigade
followed on; when suddenly sharp volleys took it in front and flank.
The opposing brigade, under Longstreet (of whom we shall often
hear again), had lain concealed and sprung its trap quite neatly.
Most of the Federals behaved extremely well under these untoward
circumstances. But one whole battery and another whole battalion,
whose term of service expired that afternoon, were officially reported
as having "moved to the rear to the sound of the enemy's cannon."
Thereafter, as military units, they simply ceased to exist.

At one o'clock in the morning of this same day Johnston received
a telegram at Winchester, from Richmond, warning him that McDowell
was advancing on Bull Run, with the evident intention of seizing
Manassas Junction, which would cut the Confederate rail communication
with the Shenandoah Valley and so prevent all chance of immediate
concentration at Bull Run. Johnston saw that the hour had come.
It could not have come before, as Lee and the rest had foreseen;
because an earlier concentration at Bull Run would have drawn the
two superior Federal forces together on the selfsame spot. There
was still some risk about giving Patterson the slip. True, his
three-month special-constable array was semi-mutinous already; and
its term of service had only a few more days to run. True, also,
that the men had cause for grievance. They were all without pay,
and some of them were reported as being still "without pants." But,
despite such drawbacks, a resolute attack by Patterson's fourteen
thousand could have at least held fast Johnston's eleven thousand,
who were mostly little better off in military ways. Patterson,
however, suffered from distracting orders, and that was his undoing.
Johnston, admirably screened by Stuart, drew quietly away, leaving
his sick at Winchester and raising the spirits of his whole command
by telling them that Beauregard was in danger and that they were
to "make a forced march to save the country."

Straining every nerve they stepped out gallantly and covered mile
after mile till they reached the Shenandoah, forded it, and crossed
the Blue Ridge at Ashby's Gap. But lack of training and march discipline
told increasingly against them. "The discouragement of that day's
march," said Johnston, "is indescribable. Frequent and unreasonable
delays caused so slow a rate of marching as to make me despair of
joining General Beauregard in time to aid him." Even the First
Brigade, with all the advantages of leading the march and of having
learnt the rudiments of drill and discipline, was exhausted by a
day's work that it could have romped through later on. Jackson
himself stood guard alone till dawn while all his soldiers slept.

As Jackson's men marched down to take the train at Piedmont, Stuart
gayly trotted past, having left Patterson still in ignorance that
Johnston's force had gone. By four in the afternoon of the nineteenth
Jackson was detraining at Manassas. But, as we shall presently
see, it was nearly two whole days before the last of Johnston's
brigades arrived, just in time for the crisis of the battle. When
Johnston had joined Beauregard their united effective total was
thirty thousand men. There had been a wastage of three thousand.
McDowell also had no more than thirty thousand effectives present
on the twenty-first; for he left one division at Centreville and
lost the rest by straggling and by the way in which the battery
and battalion already mentioned had "claimed their discharge" at
Blackburn's Ford. Throughout the nineteenth and twentieth, while,
sorely against his will, the Federals were having their "monster
military picnic" at Centreville, he was reconnoitering his constantly
increasing enemy under the greatest difficulties, with his ill-trained
staff, bad maps, and lack of proper guides.

Lee had chosen six miles of Bull Run as a good defensive position.
But Beauregard intended to attack, hoping to profit by the Federal
disjointedness. Consequently none of the eight fords were strongly
defended except at Union Mills on the extreme right and the Stone
Bridge on the extreme left, where the turnpike from Centreville
to Warrenton crossed the Run. Bull Run itself was a considerable
obstacle, having fairly high banks and running along the Confederate
front like the ditch of a fortress. Three miles in rear stood Manassas
Junction on a moderate plateau intersected by several creeks. The
most important of these creeks, Young's Branch, joined Bull Run on
the extreme left, near the Stone Bridge and Warrenton turnpike,
after flowing through the little valley between the Henry Hill
and Matthews Hill. Three miles in front, across Bull Run, stood
Centreville, the Federal camp and field base during the battle.

Sunday, July 21, 1861, was a beautiful midsummer day. Both armies
were stirring soon after dawn. But a miscarriage of orders delayed
the Confederate offensive so much that the initiative of attack passed
to the Federals, who advanced against the Stone Bridge shortly after
six. This attack, however, though made by a whole division against a
single small brigade, was immediately recognized as a mere feint
when, two hours later, Evans, commanding the Confederate brigade,
saw dense clouds of dust rising above the woods on his left front,
where the road crossed Sudley Springs, nearly two miles beyond his
own left. Perceiving that this new development must be a regular
attempt to turn the whole Confederate left by crossing Bull Run, he
sent back word to Beauregard, posted some men to hold the Stone
Bridge, and marched the rest to crown the Matthews Hill, facing
Sudley Springs a mile away. Meanwhile four of "Joe" Johnston's five
Shenandoah brigades--Bee's, Bartow's, Bonham's, and Jackson's--had
been coming over from the right reserve to strengthen Evans at the
Bridge. As the great Federal turning movement developed against the
Confederate left these brigades followed Evans and were themselves
followed by other troops, till the real battle raged not along Bull
Run but across the Matthews Hill and Henry Hill.

Forming the new front at right angles to the old, so as to attack
and defend the Confederate left on the Matthews and Henry Hills,
caused much confusion on both sides; but more on the Federal, as
the Confederates knew the ground better. By eleven Bee had reached
Evans and sent word back to hurry Bartow on. But the Federals,
having double numbers and a great preponderance in guns, soon drove
the Confederates off the Matthews Hill. As the Confederates recrossed
Young's Branch and climbed the Henry Hill the regular artillery of
the Federals limbered up smartly, galloped across the Matthews
Hill, and from its nearer slope plied the retreating Confederates
on the opposite slope with admirably served shell. Under this fire
the raw Confederates ran in confusion, while their uncovered guns
galloped back to find a new position.

[Illustration: _GENERAL T. J. (STONEWALL) JACKSON_
Photograph. In the collection of L. C. Handy, Washington.]

"Curse them for deserting the guns," snapped Imboden, whose battery
came face to face with Jackson's brigade. "I'll support you," said
Jackson, "unlimber right here." At the same time, half-past eleven,
Bee galloped up on his foaming charger, saying, "General, they're
beating us back." "Then, Sir," said Jackson, "we'll give them the
bayonet"; and his lips shut tight as a vice.

Bee then went back behind the Henry Hill, where his broken brigade
was trying to rally, and, pointing toward the crest with his sword,
shouted in a voice of thunder: "Rally behind the Virginians! Look!
There's Jackson standing like a stone wall!" From that one cry
of battle Stonewall Jackson got his name.

While the rest of the Shenandoahs were rallying, in rear of Jackson,
Beauregard and Johnston came up, followed by two batteries. Miles
behind them, all the men that could be spared from the fords were
coming too. But the Federals on the Matthews Hill were still in
more than double numbers; and they enjoyed the priceless advantage
of having some regulars among them. If the Federal division at the
Stone Bridge had only pushed home its attack at this favorable
moment the Confederates must have been defeated. But the division
again fumbled about to little purpose; and for the second time
McDowell's admirable plan was spoilt.

It was now past noon on that sweltering midsummer day; and there
was a welcome lull for the rallying Confederates while the Federals
were coming down the Matthews Hill, struggling across the swamps
and thickets of Young's Branch, and climbing the Henry Hill. Within
another hour the opposing forces were at close grips again, and
the Federals, flushed with success and steadied by the regulars,
seemed certain to succeed.

Imboden has vividly described his meeting Jackson at this time.
"The fight was just then hot enough to make him feel well. His
eyes fairly blazed. He had a way of throwing up his left hand with
the open palm towards the person he was addressing; and, as he told
me to go, he made this gesture. The air was full of flying missiles,
and as he spoke he jerked down his hand, and I saw that blood was
streaming from it. I exclaimed, 'General, you are wounded.' 'Only
a scratch--a mere scratch,' he replied; and, binding it hastily
with a handkerchief, he galloped away along his line."

Five hundred yards apart the opposing cannon thundered, while the
musketry of the long lines of infantry swelled the deafening roar.
Suddenly two Federal batteries of regulars dashed forward to even
shorter range, covered by two battalions on their flank. But the
gaudy Zouaves of the outer battalion lost formation in their advance;
whereupon "Jeb" Stuart, with only a hundred and fifty horsemen,
swooped down and smashed them to pieces by a daring charge. Then,
just as the scattered white turbans went wildly bobbing about,
into the midst of the inner battalion, out rushed the Thirty-third
Virginians, straight at the guns. The battery officers held their
fire, uncertain in the smoke whether the newcomers were friend or
foe, till a deadly volley struck home at less than eighty yards.
Down went the gunners to a man; down went the teams to a horse;
and off ran the Zouaves and the other supporting battalion,
helter-skelter for the rear.

But other Federals were still full of fight and in superior numbers.
They came on with great gallantry, considering they were raw troops
who were now without the comfort of the guns. Once more a Federal
victory seemed secure; and if the infantry had only pressed on
(not piecemeal, by disjoined battalions, but by brigades) without
letting the Confederates recover from one blow before another struck
them, the day would have certainly been theirs. Moreover, they
would have inflicted not simply a defeat but a severe disaster
on their enemy, who would have been caught in flank by the troops
at the Stone Bridge; for these troops, however dilatory, must have
known what to do with a broken and flying Confederate flank right
under their very eyes. Premonitory symptoms of such a flight were
not wanting. Confederate wounded, stragglers, and skulkers were
making for the rear; and the rallied brigades were again in disorder,
with Bee and Bartow, two first-rate brigadiers, just killed, and
other seniors wounded. Another ominous sign was the limbering up
of Confederate guns to cover the expected retreat from the Henry
Hill.

But on its reverse slope lay Jackson's Shenandoahs, three thousand
strong, and by far the best drilled and disciplined brigade that
either side had yet produced--apart, of course, from regulars.
Jackson had ridden up and down before them, calm as they had ever
seen him on parade, quietly saying, "Steady, men, steady! All's
well." In this way he had held them straining at the leash for
hours. Now, at last, their time had come. Riding out to the center
of his line he gave his final orders: "Reserve your fire till they
come within fifty yards. Then fire and give them the bayonet; and yell
like furies when you charge!" Five minutes later, as the triumphant
Federals topped the crest, the long gray line rose up, stood fast,
fired one crashing point-blank volley, and immediately charged home
with the first of those wild, high rebel yells that rang throughout
the war. The stricken and astounded Federal front caved in, turned
round, and fled. At the same instant the last of the Shenandoahs--Kirby
Smith's brigade, detrained just in the nick of time--charged the
wavering flank. Then, like the first quiver of an avalanche, a
tremor shook the whole massed Federals one moment on that fatal
hill: the next, like a loosened cliff, they began the landslide
down.

There, in the valley, along Young's Branch, McDowell established
his last line of battle, based on the firm rock of the regulars.
But by this time the Confederates had brought up troops from the
whole length of their line; the balance of numbers was at last in
their favor; and nothing could stay the Federal recoil. Lack of
drill and discipline soon changed this recoil into a disorderly
retreat. There was no panic; but most of the military units dissolved
into a mere mob whose heart was set on getting back to Washington in
any way left open. The regulars and a few formed bodies in reserve
did their best to stem the stream. But all in vain.

One mile short of Centreville there was a sudden upset and consequent
block on the bridge across Cub Run. Then the stream of men retreating,
mixed with clogging masses of panic-struck civilians, became a
torrent.


Bull Run was only a special-constable affair on a gigantic scale.
The losses were comparatively small--3553 killed and wounded on both
sides put together: not ten per cent of the less than forty thousand
who actually fought. Moreover, the side that won the battle lost
the war. And yet Bull Run had many points of very great importance.
In spite of all shortcomings it showed the good quality of the
troops engaged: if not as soldiers, at all events as men. It proved
that the war, unlike the battle, would not be fought by special
constables, some of whom first fired their rifles when their target
was firing back at them. It brought one great leader--Stonewall
Jackson--into fame. Above all, it profoundly affected the popular
points of view, both North and South. In the South there was undue
elation, followed by the absurd belief that one Southerner could
beat two Northerners any day and that the North would now back
down _en masse_, as its army had from the Henry Hill. A dangerous
slackening of military preparation was the unavoidable result.
In the North, on the other hand, a good many people began to see
the difference between armed mobs and armies; and the thorough
Unionists, led by the wise and steadfast Lincoln, braced themselves
for real war.




CHAPTER II.

THE COMBATANTS

No map can show the exact dividing line between the actual combatants
of North and South. Eleven States seceded: Virginia, the Carolinas,
Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, Louisiana, Texas,
and Arkansas. But the mountain folk of western Virginia and eastern
Tennessee were strong Unionists; and West Virginia became a State
while the war was being fought. On the other hand, the four border
States, though officially Federal under stress of circumstances,
were divided against themselves. In Maryland, Kentucky, Missouri,
and Kansas, many citizens took the Southern side. Maryland would
have gone with the South if it had not been for the presence of
overwhelming Northern sea-power and the absence of any good land
frontier of her own. Kentucky remained neutral for several months.
Missouri was saved for the Union by those two resourceful and determined
men, Lyon and Blair. Kansas, though preponderantly Unionist, had
many Confederates along its southern boundary. On the whole the
Union gained greatly throughout the borderlands as the war went on;
and the remaining Confederate hold on the border people was more
than counterbalanced by the Federal hold on those in the western
parts of old Virginia and the eastern parts of Tennessee. Among
the small seafaring population along the Southern coast there were
also some strongly Union men.

Counting out Northern Confederates and Southern Federals as canceling
each other, so far as effective fighting was concerned a comparison
made between the North and South along the line of actual secession
reveals the one real advantage the South enjoyed all through--an
overwhelming party in favor of the war. When once the die was cast
there was certainly not a tenth of the Southern whites who did not
belong to the war party; and the peace party always had to hold
its tongue. The Southerners formed simpler and far more homogeneous
communities of the old long-settled stock, and were more inclined
to act together when once their feelings were profoundly stirred.

The Northern communities, on the other hand, being far more complex
and far less homogeneous, were plagued with peace parties that
grew like human weeds, clogging the springs of action everywhere.
There were immigrants new to the country and therefore not inclined
to take risks for a cause they had not learned to make their own.
There were also naturalized, and even American-born, aliens, aliens
in speech, race, thought, and every way of life. Then there were the
oppositionists of different kinds, who would not support any war
government, however like a perfect coalition it might be. Among these
were some Northerners who did business with the South, especially
the men who financed the cotton and tobacco crops. Others, again,
were those loose-tongued folk who think any vexed question can be
settled by unlimited talk. Next came those "defeatist" cranks who
always think their own side must be wrong, and who are of no more
practical use than the out-and-out "pacifists" who think everybody
wrong except themselves. Finally, there were those slippery folk who
try to evade all public duty, especially when it smacks of danger.
These skulkers flourish best in large and complex populations,
where they may even masquerade as patriots of the kind so well
described by Lincoln when he said how often he had noticed that
the men who were loudest in proclaiming their readiness to shed
their last drop of blood were generally the most careful not to
shed the first.

Many of these fustian heroes formed the mushroom secret societies
that played their vile extravaganza right under the shadow of the
real tragedy of war. Worse still, not content with the abracadabra
of their silly oaths, the busybody members made all the mischief
they could during Lincoln's last election. Worst of all, they not
only tried their hands at political assassination in the North but
they lured many a gallant Confederate to his death by promising to
rise in their might for a "Free Northwest" the moment the Southern
troopers should appear. Needless to say, not a single one of the whole
bombastic band of cowards stirred a finger to help the Confederate
troopers who rode to their doom on Morgan's Raid through Indiana and
Ohio. The peace party wore a copper as a badge, and so came to be known
as "Copperheads," much to the disgust of its more inflated members,
who called themselves the Sons of Liberty. The war party, with a
better appreciation of how names and things should be connected,
used their own descriptive "Copperhead" in its appropriate meaning
of a poisonous snake in the grass behind.

The Indians would have preferred neutrality between the two kinds
of inevitably dispossessing whites. But neutrality was impossible
in what was then the Far West. Not ten thousand Indians fought
for both sides put together. On the whole they fought well as
skirmishers, though they rarely withstood shell fire, even when
their cover was good and their casualties small.

The ten times more numerous negroes were naturally a much more
serious factor. The North encouraged the employment of colored labor
corps and even colored soldiers, especially after Emancipation.
But the vast majority of negroes, whether slave or free, either
preferred or put up with their Southern masters, whom they generally
served faithfully enough either in military labor corps or on the
old plantations. As the colored population of the South was three
and a half millions this general fidelity was of great importance
to the forces in the field.

The total population of the United States in 1861 was about thirty-one
and a half millions. Of this total twenty-two and a half belonged to
the North and nine to the South. The grand total odds were therefore
five against two. The odds against the South rise to four against
one if the blacks are left out. There were twenty-two million whites
in the North against five and a half in the South. But to reach
the real fighting odds of three to one we must also eliminate the
peace parties, large in the North, small in the South. If we take
a tenth off the Southern whites and a third off the Northern grand
total we shall get the approximate war-party odds of three to one;
for these subtractions leave fifteen millions in the North against
only five in the South.

This gives the statistical key to the startling contrasts which
were so often noted by foreign correspondents at the time, and
which are still so puzzling in the absence of the key. The whole
normal life of the South was visibly changed by the war. But in
the North the inquiring foreigner could find, on one hand, the
most steadfast loyalty and heroic sacrifice, both in the Northern
armies and among their folks at home, while on the other he could
find a wholly different kind of life flaunting its most shameless
features in his face. The theaters were crowded. Profiteers abounded,
taking their pleasures with ravenous greed; for the best of their
blood-money would end with the war. Everywhere there was the same
fundamental difference between the patriots who carried on the war
and the parasites who hindered them. Of course the two-thirds who
made up the war party were not all saints or even perfect patriots.
Nor was the other third composed exclusively of wanton sinners. There
were, for instance, the genuine settlers whom the Union Government
encouraged to occupy the West, beyond the actual reach of war. But
the distinction still remains.

Though sorely hampered, the Union Government did, on the whole,
succeed in turning the vast and varied resources of the North against
the much smaller and less varied resources of the South. The North
held the machinery of national government, though with the loss of
a good quarter of the engineers. In agriculture of, all kinds both
North and South were very strong for purposes of peace. Each had
food in superabundance. But the trading strength of the South lay
in cotton and tobacco, neither of which could be turned into money
without going north or to sea. In finance the North was overwhelmingly
strong by comparison, more especially because Northern sea-power
shut off the South from all its foreign markets. In manufactures
the South could not compare at all. Northern factories alone could
not supply the armies. But finance and factories together could.
The Southern soldier looked to the battlefield and the raiding
of a base for supplying many of his most pressing needs in arms,
equipment, clothing, and even food--for Southern transport suffered
from many disabilities. Fierce wolfish cries would mingle with
the rebel yell in battle when the two sides closed. "You've got
to leave your rations!"--"Come out of them clothes!"--"Take off
them boots, Yank!"--"Come on, blue bellies, we want them blankets!"

It was the same in almost every kind of goods. The South made next
to none for herself and had to import from the North or overseas.
The North could buy silk for balloons. The South could not. The
Southern women gave in their whole supply of silk for the big balloon
that was lost during the Seven Days' Battle in the second year of
the war. The Southern soldiers never forgave what they considered
the ungallant trick of the Northerners who took this many-hued
balloon from a steamer stranded on a bar at low tide down near
the mouth of the James. Thus fell the last silk dress, a queer
tribute to Northern sea-power! Northern sea-power also cut off
nearly everything the sick and wounded needed; which raised the
death rate of the Southern forces far beyond the corresponding death
rate in the North. Again, preserved rations were almost unknown in
the South. But they were plentiful throughout the Northern armies:
far too plentiful, indeed, for the taste of the men, who got "fed
up" on the dessicated vegetables and concentrated milk which they
rechristened "desecrated vegetables" and "consecrated milk."

There is the same tale to tell about transport and munitions. Outside
the Tredegar Iron Works at Richmond the only places where Southern
cannon could be made were Charlotte in North Carolina, Atlanta and
Macon in Georgia, and Selma in Alabama. The North had many places,
each with superior plant, besides which the oversea munition world
was far more at the service of the open-ported North than of the
close-blockaded South. What sea-power meant in this respect may be
estimated from the fact that out of the more than three-quarters of
a million rifles bought by the North in the first fourteen months
of the war all but a beggarly thirty thousand came from overseas.

[Illustration: North and South in 1861.]

Transport was done by road, rail, sea, and inland waters. Other
things being equal, a hundred tons could be moved by water as easily
as ten by rail or one by road. Now, the North not only enjoyed
enormous advantages in sea-power, both mercantile and naval, but
in road, rail, canal, and river transport too. The road transport
that affected both sides most was chiefly in the South, because most
maneuvering took place there. "Have you been through Virginia?--Yes,
in several places" is a witticism that might be applied to many
another State where muddy sloughs abounded. In horses, mules, and
vehicles the richer North wore out the poorer and blockaded South.
Both sides sent troops, munitions, and supplies by rail whenever
they could; and here, as a glance at the map will show, the North
greatly surpassed the South in mileage, strategic disposition,
and every other way.

The South had only one through line from the Atlantic to the
Mississippi; and this ran across that Northern salient which threatened
the South from the southwestern Alleghanies. The other rails all had
the strategic defect of not being convenient for rapid concentration
by land; for most of the Southern rails were laid with a view to
getting surplus cotton and tobacco overseas. The strategic gap
at Petersburg was due to a very different cause; for there, in
order to keep its local transfers, the town refused to let the most
important Virginian lines connect.

Taking sea-power in its fullest sense, to include all naval and
mercantile parts on both salt and fresh water, we can quite understand
how it helped the nautical North to get the strangle-hold on the
landsman's South. The great bulk of the whole external trade of
the South was done by shipping. But, though the South was strong in
exportable goods, it was very weak in ships. It owned comparatively
few of the vessels that carried its rice, cotton, and tobacco crops
to market and brought back made goods in return. Yankees, Britishers,
and Bluenoses (as Nova Scotian craft were called) did most of the
oversea transportation.

Moreover, the North was vastly stronger than the South on all the
inland waters that were not "Secesh" from end to end. The map shows
how Northern sea-power could not only divide the South in two but
almost enisle the eastern part as well. Holding the Mississippi
would effect the division, while holding the Ohio would make the
eastern part a peninsula, with the upper end of the isthmus safe in
Northern hands between Pittsburgh, the great coal and iron inland
port, and Philadelphia, the great seaport, less than three hundred
miles away. The same isthmus narrows to less than two hundred miles
between Pittsburgh and Harrisburg (on the Susquehanna River); and
its whole line is almost equally safe in Northern hands. A little
farther south, along the disputed borderlands, it narrows to less
than one hundred miles, from Pittsburgh to Cumberland (on the Potomac
canal). Even this is not the narrowest part of the isthmus, which
is less than seventy miles across from Cumberland to Brownsville
(on the Monongahela) and less than fifty from Cumberland to the
Ohiopyle Falls (on the Youghiogheny). These last distances are
measured between places that are only fit for minor navigation.
But even small craft had an enormous advantage over road and rail
together when bulky stores were moved. So Northern sea-power could
make its controlling influence felt in one continuous line all
round the eastern South, except for fifty miles where small craft
were concerned and for two hundred miles in the case of larger
vessels. These two hundred miles of land were those between the
Ohio River port of Wheeling and the Navy Yard at Washington.

Nor was this virtual enislement the only advantage to be won. For
while the strong right arm of Union sea-power, facing northward
from the Gulf, could hold the coast, and its sinewy left could
hold the Mississippi, the supple left fingers could feel their
way along the tributary streams until the clutching hand had got
its grip on the whole of the Ohio, Cumberland, Tennessee, Missouri,
Arkansas, and Red rivers. This meant that the North would not only
enjoy the vast advantages of transport by water over transport
by land but that it would cause the best lines of invasion to be
opened up as well.

Of course the South had some sea-power of her own. Nine-tenths of
the United States Navy stood by the Union. But, with the remaining
tenth and some foreign help, the South managed to contrive the
makeshift parts of what might have become a navy if the North had
only let it grow. The North, however, did not let it grow.

The regular navy of the United States, though very small to start
with, was always strong enough to keep the command of the sea and
to prevent the makeshift Southern parts of a navy from ever becoming
a whole. Privateers took out letters of marque to prey on Northern
shipping. But privateering soon withered off, because prizes could
not be run through the blockade in sufficient numbers to make it
pay; and no prize would be recognized except in a Southern port.
Raiders did better and for a much longer time. The _Shenandoah_
was burning Northern whalers in Bering Sea at the end of the war.
The _Sumter_ and the _Florida_ cut a wide swath under instructions
which "left much to discretion and more to the torch." The famous
_Alabama_ only succumbed to the U.S.S. _Kearsarge_ after sinking
the _Hatteras_ man-of-war and raiding seventy other vessels. Yet
still the South, in spite of her ironclads, raiders, and rams, in
spite of her river craft, of the home ships or foreigners that
ran the blockade, and of all her other efforts, was a landsman's
country that could make no real headway against the native sea-power
of the North.

Perhaps the worst of all the disabilities under which the abortive
Southern navy suffered was lubberly administration and gross civilian
interference. The Administration actually refused to buy the beginnings
of a ready-made sea-going fleet when it had the offer of ten British
East Indiamen specially built for rapid conversion into men-of-war.
Forty thousand bales of cotton would have bought the lot. The
Mississippi record was even worse. Five conflicting authorities
divided the undefined and overlapping responsibilities between
them: the Confederate Government, the State governments, the army,
the navy, and the Mississippi skippers. A typical result may be seen
in the fate of the fourteen "rams" which were absurdly mishandled by
fourteen independent civilian skippers with two civilian commodores.
This "River Defense Fleet" was "backed by the whole Missouri delegation"
at Richmond, and blessed by the Confederate Secretary of War, Judah
P. Benjamin, that very clever lawyer-politician and ever-smiling
Jew. Six of the fourteen "rams" were lost, with sheer futility,
at New Orleans in April, '62; the rest at Memphis the following
June.

As a matter of fact the Confederate navy never had but one real
man-of-war, the famous _Merrimac_; and she was a mere razee, cut
down for a special purpose, and too feebly engined to keep the
sea. Even the equally famous _Alabama_ was only a raider, never
meant for action with a fleet. Over three hundred officers left
the United States Navy for the South; but, as in the case of the
Army, they were followed by very few men. The total personnel of the
regular Confederate navy never exceeded four thousand at any one time.
The irregular forces afloat often did gallant, and sometimes even
skillful, service in little isolated ways. But when massed together
they were always at sixes and sevens; and they could never do more
than make the best of a very bad business indeed. The Secretary of
the Confederate navy, Stephen R. Mallory, was not to blame. He was
one of the very few civilians who understood and tried to follow
any naval principles at all. He had done good work as chairman of
the Naval Committee in the Senate before the war, and had learnt
a good deal more than his Northern rival, Gideon Welles. He often
saw what should have been done. But men and means were lacking.

Men and means were also lacking in the naval North at the time
the war began. But the small regular navy was invincible against
next to none; and it enjoyed many means of expansion denied to
the South.

On the outbreak of hostilities the United States Navy had ninety
ships and about nine thousand men--all ranks and ratings (with
marines) included. The age of steam had come. But fifty vessels
had no steam at all. Of the rest one was on the Lakes, five were
quite unserviceable, and thirty-four were scattered about the world
without the slightest thought of how to mobilize a fleet at home.
The age of ironclads had begun already overseas. But in his report
to Congress on July 4, 1861, Gideon Welles, Secretary of the Navy,
only made some wholly non-committal observations in ponderous
"officialese." In August he appointed a committee which began its
report in September with the sage remark that "Opinions differ
amongst naval and scientific men as to the policy of adopting the
iron armament for ships-of-war." In December Welles transmitted this
report to Congress with the still sager remark that "The subject
of iron armature for ships is one of great general interest, not
only to the navy and country, but is engaging the attention of the
civilized world." Such was the higher administrative preparation
for the ironclad battle of the following year.

It was the same in everything. The people had taken no interest in
the navy and Congress had faithfully represented them by denying
the service all chance of preparing for war till after war had
broken out. Then there was the usual hurry and horrible waste.
Fortunately for all concerned, Gideon Welles, after vainly groping
about the administrative maze for the first five months, called
Gustavus V. Fox to his assistance. Fox had been a naval officer of
exceptional promise, who had left the service to go into business,
who had a natural turn for administration, and who now made an
almost ideal Assistant Secretary of the Navy. He was, indeed, far
more than this; for, in most essentials, he acted throughout the
war as a regular Chief of Staff.

One of the greatest troubles was the glut of senior officers who
were too old and the alarming dearth of juniors fit for immediate
work afloat. It was only after the disaster at Bull Run that Congress
authorized the formation of a Promotion Board to see what could be
done to clear the active list and make it really a list of officers
fit for active service. Up to this time there had been no system
of retiring men for inefficiency or age. An officer who did not
retire of his own accord simply went on rising automatically till
he died. The president of this board had himself turned sixty.
But he was the thoroughly efficient David Glasgow Farragut, a man
who was to do greater things afloat than even Fox could do ashore.
How badly active officers were wanted may be inferred from the
fact that before the appointment of Farragut's promotion board
the total number of regular officers remaining in the navy was
only 1457. Intensive training was tried at the Naval Academy. Yet
7500 volunteer officers had to be used before the war was over.
These came mostly from the merchant service and were generally
brave, capable, first-rate men. But a nautical is not the same as
a naval training; and the dearth of good professional naval officers
was felt to the end. The number of enlisted seamen authorized by
Congress rose from 7600 to 51,500. But the very greatest difficulty
was found in "keeping up to strength," even with the most lavish
use of bounties.

The number of vessels in the navy kept on growing all through.
Of course not nearly all of them were regular men-of-war or even
fighting craft "fit to go foreign." At the end of the first year
there were 264 in commission; at the end of the second, 427; at
the end of the third, 588; and at the end of the fourth, 671.

Bearing this in mind, and remembering the many other Northern odds,
one might easily imagine that the Southern armies fought only with
the courage of despair. Yet such was not the case. This was no
ordinary war, to be ended by a treaty in which compromise would
play its part. There could be only two alternatives: either the
South would win her independence or the North would have to beat
her into complete submission. Under the circumstances the united
South would win whenever the divided North thought that complete
subjugation would cost more than it was worth. The great aim of
the South was, therefore, not to conquer the North but simply to
sicken the North of trying to conquer her. "Let us alone and we'll
let you alone" was her insinuating argument; and this, as she knew
very well, was echoed by many people in the North. Thus, as regards
her own objective, she began with hopes that the Northern peace
party never quite let die.

Then, so far as her patriotic feelings were concerned, the South
was not fighting for any one point at issue--not even for slavery,
because only a small minority held slaves--but for her whole way
of life, which, rightly or wrongly, she wanted to live in her own
Southern way; and she passionately resented the invasion of her
soil. This gave her army a very high morale, which, in its turn,
inclined her soldiers the better to appreciate their real or imagined
advantages over the Northern hosts. First, they and their enemies
both knew that they enjoyed the three real advantages of fighting
at home under magnificent leaders and with interior lines. Robert
Lee and Stonewall Jackson stood head and shoulders above any Northern
leaders till Grant and Sherman rose to greatness during the latter
half of the war. Lee himself was never surpassed; and he, like
Jackson and several more, made the best use of home surroundings
and of interior lines. Anybody can appreciate the prime advantage of
interior lines by imagining two armies of equal strength operating
against each other under perfectly equal conditions except that one
has to move round the circumference of a circle while the other
moves to meet it along the shorter lines inside. The army moving
round the circumference is said to be operating on exterior lines,
while the army moving from point to point of the circumference
by the straighter, and therefore shorter, lines inside is said
to be operating on interior lines. In more homely language the
straight road beats the crooked one. In plain slang, it's best to
have the inside track.

Of course there is a reverse to all this. If the roads, rails,
and waterways are better around the circle than inside it, then
the odds may be turned the other way; and this happens most often
when the forces on the exterior lines are the better provided with
sea-power. Again, if the exterior forces are so much stronger than
the interior forces that these latter dare not leave any strategic
point open in case the enemy breaks through, then it is evident
that the interior forces will suffer all the disadvantages of being
surrounded, divided, worn out, and defeated.

This happened at last to the South, and was one of the four advantages
she lost. Another was the hope of foreign intervention, which died
hard in Southern hearts, but which was already moribund halfway
through the war. A third was the hope of dissension in the North,
a hope which often ran high till Lincoln's reelection in November,
'64, and one which only died out completely with the surrender of
Lee. The fourth was the unfounded belief that Southerners were
the better fighting men. They certainly had an advantage at first
in having a larger proportion of men accustomed to horses and arms
and inured to life in the open. But, other things being equal, there
was nothing to choose between the two sides, so far as natural
fighting values were concerned.

Practically all the Southern "military males" passed into the ranks;
and a military male eventually meant any one who could march to
the front or do non-combatant service with an army, from boys in
their teens to men in their sixties. Conscription came after one
year; and with very few exemptions, such as the clergy, Quakers,
many doctors, newspaper editors, and "indispensable" civil servants.
Lee used to express his regret that all the greatest strategists
were tied to their editorial chairs. But sterner feelings were
aroused against that recalcitrant State Governor, Joseph Brown
of Georgia, who declared eight thousand of his civil servants to
be totally exempt. From first to last, conscripts and volunteers,
nearly a million men were enrolled: equaling one-fifth of the entire
war-party white population of the seceding States.

All branches of the service suffered from a constant lack of arms
and munitions. As with the ships for the navy so with munitions
for the army, the South did not exploit the European markets while
her ports were still half open and her credit good, Jefferson Davis
was spotlessly honest, an able bureaucrat, and full of undying zeal.
But, though an old West Pointer, he was neither a foresightful
organizer nor fit to exercise any of the executive power which he
held as the constitutional commander-in-chief by land and sea. He
ordered rifles by the thousand instead of by the hundred thousand;
and he actually told his Cabinet that if he could only take one
wing while Lee took the other they would surely beat the North.
Worse still, he and his politicians kept the commissariat under
civilian orders and full of civilian interference, even at the
front, which, in this respect, was always a house divided against
itself.


The little regular army of '61, only sixteen thousand strong, stood
by the Union almost to a man; though a quarter of the officers
went over to the South. Yet the enlisted man was despised even
by the common loafers who would not fight if they could help it.
"Why don't you come in?" asked a zealous lady at a distribution
of patriotic gifts, "aren't you one of our heroes?" "No, ma'am,"
answered the soldier, "I'm only a regular."

The question of command was often a very vexed one; and many mistakes
were made before the final answers came. The most significant of
all emergent facts was this: that though the officers who had been
regulars before the war did not form a hundredth part of all who
held commissions during it, yet these old regulars alone supplied
every successful high commander, Federal and Confederate alike,
both afloat and ashore.

The North had four times as many whites as the South; it used more
blacks as soldiers; and the complete grand total of all the men
who joined its forces during the war reached two millions and
three-quarters. But this gives a quite misleading idea of the real
odds in favor of the North, especially the odds available in battle.
A third of the Northern people belonged to the peace party and
furnished no recruits at all till after conscription came in. The
late introduction of conscription, the abominable substitution
clause, and the prevalence of bounty-jumping combined to reduce
both the quantity and quality of the recruits obtained by money or
compulsion. The Northerners that did fight were generally fighting
in the South, among a very hostile population, which, while it made
the Southern lines of communication perfectly safe, threatened
those of the North at every point and thus obliged the Northern
armies to leave more and more men behind to guard the communications
that each advance made longer still. Finally, the South generally
published the numbers of only its actual combatants, while the
Northern returns always included every man drawing pay, whether
a combatant or not. On the whole, the North had more than double
numbers, even if compared with a Southern total that includes
noncombatants. But it should be remembered that a Northern army
fighting in the heart of the South, and therefore having to guard
every mile of the way back home, could not meet a Southern one
with equal strength in battle unless it had left the North with
fully twice as many.

Conscription came a year later (1863) in the North than in the
South and was vitiated by a substitution clause. The fact that a
man could buy himself out of danger made some patriots call it "a
rich man's war and a poor man's fight." And the further fact that
substitutes generally became regular bounty-jumpers, who joined
and deserted at will, over and over again, went far to increase the
disgust of those who really served. Frank Wilkeson's _Recollections
of a Private Soldier in the Army of the Potomac_ is a true voice from
the ranks when he explains "how the resort to volunteering, the
unprincipled dodge of cowardly politicians, ground up the choicest
seed-corn of the nation; how it consumed the young, the patriotic,
the intelligent, the generous, and the brave; and how it wasted
the best moral, social, and political elements of the Republic,
leaving the cowards, shirkers, egotists, and moneymakers to stay
at home and procreate their kind."

That is to say, it was so arranged that the foxy-witted lived, while
the lion-hearted died.

The organization of the vast numbers enrolled was excellent whenever
experts were given a free hand. But this free hand was rare. One
vital point only needs special notice here: the wastefulness of
raising new regiments when the old ones were withering away for
want of reinforcements. A new local regiment made a better "story"
in the press; and new and superfluous regiments meant new and
superfluous colonels, mostly of the speechifying kind. So it often
happened that the State authorities felt obliged to humor zealots
set on raising those brand-new regiments which doubled their own
difficulties by having to learn their lesson alone, halved the
efficiency of the old regiments they should have reinforced, and
harassed the commanders and staff by increasing the number of units
that were of different and ever-changing efficiency and strength.
It was a system of making and breaking all through.


The end came when Northern sea-power had strangled the Southern
resources and the unified Northern armies had worn out the fighting
force. Of the single million soldiers raised by the South only two
hundred thousand remained in arms, half starved, half clad, with the
scantiest of munitions, and without reserves of any kind. Meanwhile
the Northern hosts had risen to a million in the field, well fed,
well clothed, well armed, abundantly provided with munitions, and
at last well disciplined under the unified command of that great
leader, Grant. Moreover, behind this million stood another million
fit to bear arms and obtainable at will from the two millions of
enrolled reserves.

The cost of the war was stupendous. But the losses of war are not
to be measured in money. The real loss was the loss of a million
men, on both sides put together, for these men who died were of
the nation's best.




CHAPTER III

THE NAVAL WAR: 1862

Bull Run had riveted attention on the land between the opposing
capitals and on the armies fighting there. Very few people were
thinking of the navies and the sea. And yet it was at sea, and not
on land, that the Union had a force against which the Confederates
could never prevail, a force which gradually cut them off from
the whole world's base of war supplies, a force which enabled the
Union armies to get and keep the strangle-hold which did the South
to death.

The blockade declared in April was no empty threat. The sails of
Federal frigates, still more the sinister black hulls of the new
steam men-of-war, meant that the South was fast becoming a land
besieged, with every outwork accessible by water exposed to sudden
attack and almost certain capture by any good amphibious force
of soldiers and sailors combined.

Sea-power kept the North in affluence while it starved the South.
Sea-power held Maryland in its relentless grip and did more than
land-power to keep her in the Union. Sea-power was the chief factor
in saving Washington. Seapower enabled the North to hold such points
of vantage as Fortress Monroe right on the flank of the South.
And sea-power likewise enabled the North to take or retake other
points of similar importance: for instance, Hatteras Island.

In a couple of days at the end of August, 1861, the Confederate
forts at Hatteras Inlet, North Carolina, were compelled to surrender
to a joint naval and military expedition under Flag-Officer Stringham
and Major-General B. F. Butler. The immediate result, besides the
capture of seven hundred men, was the control of the best entrance
to North Carolina waters, which entailed the stoppage of many oversea
supplies for the Confederate army. The ulterior result was the
securing of a base from which a further invasion could be made with
great advantage.


The naval campaign of the following year was truly epoch-making;
for the duel between the _Monitor_ and _Merrimac_ in Hampton Roads
on March 9, 1862, was the first action ever fought between ironclad
steam men-of-war.

Eleven months earlier the Federal Government had suddenly abandoned
the Norfolk Navy Yard; though their strongest garrison was at Fortress
Monroe, only twelve miles north along a waterway which was under
the absolute control of their navy, and though the Confederates'
had nothing but an inadequate little untrained force on the spot.
Among the spoils of war falling into Confederate hands were twelve
hundred guns and the _Merrimac_, a forty-gun steam frigate. The
_Merrimac_, though fired and scuttled by the Federals, was hove
up, cut down, plated over, and renamed the _Virginia_. (History,
however, knows her only as the _Merrimac_.) John L. Porter, Naval
Constructor to the Confederate States, had made a model of an ironclad
at Pittsburgh fifteen years before; and he now applied this model
to the rebuilding of the _Merrimac_. He first cut down everything
above the water line, except the gun deck, which he converted into a
regular citadel with flat top, sides sloping at thirty-five degrees,
and ends stopping short of the ship's own ends by seventy feet fore
and aft. The effect, therefore, was that of an ironclad citadel
built on the midships of a submerged frigate's hull. The four-inch
iron plating of the citadel knuckled over the wooden sides two
feet under water. The engines, which the South had no means of
replacing, were the old ones which had been condemned before being
sunk. A four-foot castiron ram was clamped on to the bow. Ten guns
were mounted: six nine-inch smooth-bores, with two six-inch and
two seven-inch rifles. Commodore Franklin Buchanan took command
and had magnificent professional officers under him. But the crew,
three hundred strong, were mostly landsmen; for, as in the case
of the Army, the men of the Navy nearly all took sides with the
North, and the South had very few seamen of any other kind.

To oppose the _Merrimac_ the dilatory North contracted with John
Ericsson the Swede, who had to build the _Monitor_ much smaller
than the Merrimac owing to pressure of time. He enjoyed, however,
enormous advantages in every other respect, owing to the vastly
superior resources of the North in marine engineering, armor-plating,
and all other points of naval construction. The _Monitor_ was launched
at New York on January 30, 1862, the hundredth day after the laying
of her keel-plate. Her length over all was 172 feet, her beam was
41, and her draught only 10--less than half the draught of the
_Merrimac_. Her whole crew numbered only 58; but every single one
was a trained professional naval seaman who had volunteered for
dangerous service under Captain John L. Worden. She was not a good
sea boat; and she nearly foundered on her way down from New York to
Fortress Monroe. Her underwater hull was shipshape enough; but her
superstructure--a round iron tower resting on a very low deck--was
not. Contemptuous eyewitnesses described her very well as looking
like a tin can on a shingle or a cheesebox on a raft. She carried
only two guns, eleven-inchers, both mounted inside her turret,
which revolved by machinery; but their 180-pound shot were far
more powerful than any aboard the _Merrimac_. In maneuvering the
_Monitor_ enjoyed an immense advantage, with her light draft, strong
engines, and well-protected screws and rudder.

On the eighth of March, a lovely spring day, the _Merrimac_ made
her trial trip by going into action with her wheezy old engines,
lubberly crew, and the guns she had never yet fired. She shoveled
along at only five knots; but the Confederate garrisons cheered
her to the echo. Seven miles north she came upon the astonished
fifty-gun _Congress_ and thirty-gun _Cumberland_ swinging drowsily
at anchor off Newport News, with their boats alongside and the
men's wash drying in the rigging. Yet the surprised frigates opened
fire at twelve hundred yards and were joined by the shore batteries,
all converging on the _Merrimac_, from whose iron sides the shot
glanced up without doing more than hammer her hard and start a few
rivets. Closing in at top speed--barely six knots--the _Merrimac_
gave the _Congress_ a broadside before ramming the _Cumberland_
and opening a hole "wide enough to drive in a horse and cart."
Backing clear and turning the after-pivot gun, the _Merrimac_ then
got in three raking shells against the _Congress_, which grounded
when trying to escape. Meanwhile the _Cumberland_ was listing over
and rapidly filling, though she kept up the fight to the very last
gasp. When she sank with a roar her topmasts still showed above
water and her colors waved defiance. An hour later the terribly
mauled _Congress_ surrendered; whereupon her crew was rescued and
she was set on fire. By this time various smaller craft on both
sides had joined the fray. But the big _Minnesota_ still remained,
though aground and apparently at the mercy of the _Merrimac_. The
great draught of the _Merrimac_ and the setting in of the ebb tide,
however, made the Confederates draw off for the night.

Next morning they saw the "tin can on the shingle" between them and
their prey. The _Monitor_ and _Merrimac_ then began their epoch-making
fight. The patchwork engines of the deep-draught _Merrimac_ made her
as unhandy as if she had been water-logged, while the light-draught
_Monitor_ could not only play round her when close-to but maneuver
all over the surrounding shallows as well. The _Merrimac_ put her
last ounce of steam into an attempt to ram her agile opponent.
But a touch of the _Monitor's_ helm swung her round just in time
to make the blow perfectly harmless. The _Merrimac_ simply barged
into her, grated harshly against her iron side, and sheered off
beaten. The firing was furious and mostly at pointblank range.
Once the _Monitor_ fired while the sides were actually touching.
The concussion was so tremendous that all the _Merrimac's_ gun-crews
aft were struck down flat, with bleeding ears and noses. But in
spite of this her boarders were called away; whereupon every man
who could handle cutlass and revolver made ready and stood by. The
_Monitor_, however, dropped astern too quickly; and the wallowing
_Merrimac_ had no chance of catching her. The fight had lasted all
through that calm spring morning when the _Monitor_ steamed off,
across the shallows, still keeping carefully between the _Merrimac_
and _Minnesota_. It was a drawn battle. But the effect was that
of a Northern victory; for the _Merrimac_ was balked of her easy
prey, and the North gained time to outbuild the South completely.

Outbuilding the South of course meant tightening the "anaconda"
system of blockade, in the entangling coils of which the South
was caught already. Three thousand miles of Southern coastline
was, however, more than the North could blockade or even watch to
its own satisfaction all at once. Fogs, storms, and clever ruses
played their part on behalf of those who ran the blockade, especially
during the first two years; and it was almost more than human nature
could stand to keep forever on the extreme alert, day after dreary
day, through the deadly boredom of a long blockade. Like caged
eagles the crews passed many a weary week of dull monotony without
the chance of swooping on a chase. "Smoke ho!" would be called
from the main-topgallant cross-tree. "Where away?" would be called
back from the deck. "Up the river, Sir!"--and there it would stay,
the very mark of hope deferred. Occasionally a cotton ship would
make a dash, with lights out on a dark night, or through a dense
fog, when her smoke might sometimes be conned from the tops.
Occasionally, too, a foreigner would try to run in, and not seldom
succeed, because only the fastest vessels tried to run the blockade
after the first few months. But the general experience was one of
utter boredom rarely relieved by a stroke of good luck.

The South could not break the blockade. But the North could tighten
it, and did so repeatedly, not only at sea but by establishing
strong strategic centers of its own along the Southern coast. We
have seen already how Hatteras Island was taken in '61, five weeks
after Bull Run. Within another three weeks Ship Island was also taken,
to the great disadvantage of the Gulf ports and the corresponding
advantage of the Federal fleet blockading them; for Ship Island
commanded the coastwise channels between Mobile and New Orleans,
the two great scenes of Farragut's success. Then, on the seventh
of November, the day that Grant began his triumphant career by
dealing the Confederates a shrewd strategic blow at Belmont in
Missouri, South Carolina suffered a worse defeat at Port Royal
(where she lost Forts Beauregard and Walker) than North Carolina
had suffered at Hatteras Island. Admiral S. F. Du Pont managed
the naval part of the Port Royal expedition with consummate skill,
especially the fine fleet action off Hilton Head against the Southern
ships and forts. He was ably seconded by General Thomas West Sherman,
commanding the troops.

North Carolina's turn soon came again, when she lost Roanoke Island
(and with it the command of Albemarle Sound) on February 8, 1862;
and when she also had Pamlico Sound shut against her by a joint
expedition that struck down her defenses as far inland as Newbern
on the fourteenth of March. Then came the turn of Georgia, where
Fort Pulaski, the outpost of Savannah, fell to the Federals on
the eleventh of April. Within another month Florida was even more
hardly hit when the pressure of the Union fleet and army on Virginia
compelled the South to use as reinforcements the garrison that
had held Pensacola since the beginning of the war.

These were all severe blows to the Southern cause. But they were
nothing to the one which immediately followed.

The idea of an attack on New Orleans had been conceived in June,
'61, by Commander (afterwards Admiral) D. D. Porter, of the U.S.S.
_Powhatan_, when he was helping to blockade the Mississippi. The
Navy Department had begun thinking over the same idea in September
and had worked out a definite scheme. New Orleans was of immense
strategic importance, as being the link between the sea and river
systems of the war. The mass of people and their politicians, on
both sides, absurdly thought of New Orleans as the objective of a
land invasion from the north. Happily for the Union cause, Gustavus
Fox, Assistant Secretary of the Navy, knew better and persuaded
his civilian chief, Gideon Welles, that this was work for a joint
expedition, with the navy first, the army second. The navy could
take New Orleans. The army would have to hold it.

The squadron destined for this enterprise was commanded by David
Glasgow Farragut, who arrived at Ship Island on February 20, 1862,
in the _Hartford_, the famous man-of-war that carried his flag in
triumph to the end. Unlike Lee and Jackson, Grant and Sherman,
the other four great leaders in the Civil War, Farragut was not an
American whose ancestors on both sides had come from the British
Isles. Like Lee, however, he was of very ancient lineage, one of
his ancestors, Don Pedro Farragut, having held a high command under
the King of Aragon in the Moorish wars of the thirteenth century.
Farragut's father was a pure-blooded Spaniard, born under the British
flag in Minorca in 1755. Half Spanish, half Southern by descent,
Farragut was wholly Southern by family environment. His mother,
Elizabeth Shine, was a native of North Carolina. He spent his early
boyhood in New Orleans. Both his first and second wives came from
Virginia; and he made his home at Norfolk. On the outbreak of the
war, however, he immediately went North and applied for employment
with the Union fleet.

Farragut was the oldest of the five great leaders, being now sixty
years of age, while Lee was fifty-five, Sherman forty-two, Grant
forty, and Jackson thirty-eight. He was, however, fit as an athlete
in training, able to turn a handspring on his birthday and to hold
his own in swordsmanship against any of his officers. Of middle
height, strong build, and rather plain features, he did not attract
attention in a crowd. But his alert and upright carriage, keenly
interested look, and genial smile impressed all who ever knew him
with a sense of native kindliness and power. Though far too great
a master of the art of war to interfere with his subordinates he
always took care to understand their duties from their own points
of view so that he could control every part of the complex naval
instruments of war--human and material alike--with a sure and inspiring
touch. His one weakness as a leader was his generous inclination
to give subordinates the chance of distinguishing themselves when
they could have done more useful service in a less conspicuous
position.

[Illustration: _ADMIRAL D. G. FARRAGUT_
Photograph by Brady.]

Farragut's base at Ship Island was about a hundred miles east from
the Confederate Forts Jackson and St. Philip. These forts guarded
the entrance to the Mississippi. Ninety miles above them stood
New Orleans, to which they gave protection and from which they
drew all their supplies. The result of a conference at Washington
was an order from Welles to "reduce the defenses which guard the
approaches to New Orleans." But Farragut's own infinitely better
plan was to run past the forts and take New Orleans first. By doing
this he would save the extra loss required for reducing the forts
and would take the weak defenses of New Orleans entirely by surprise.
Then, when New Orleans fell, the forts, cut off from all supplies,
would have to surrender without the firing of another shot. Everything
depended on whether Farragut could run past without too much loss.
Profoundly versed in all the factors of the problem, he foresaw
that his solution would prove right, while Washington's would as
certainly be wrong. So, taking the utmost advantage of all the
freedom that his general instructions allowed, he followed a course
in which anything short of complete success would mean the ruin
of his whole career.

The forts were strong, had ninety guns that would bear on the fleet,
and were well placed, one on each side of the river. But they suffered
from all the disadvantages of fixed defenses opposed by a mobile
enemy, and their own mobile auxiliaries were far from being
satisfactory. The best of the "River Defense Fleet," including
several rams, had been ordered up to Memphis, so sure was the
Confederate Government that the attack would come from the north.
Two home-made ironclads were failures. The _Louisiana's_ engines
were not ready in time; and her captain refused to be towed into the
position near the boom where he could do the enemy most harm. The
_Mississippi_, a mere floating house, built by ordinary carpenters,
never reached the forts at all and was burnt by her own men at New
Orleans.

Farragut felt sure of his fleet. He had four splendid new men-of-war
that formed a homogeneous squadron, four other sizable warships, and
nine new gunboats. All spars and rigging that could be dispensed
with were taken down; all hulls camouflaged with Mississippi mud; and
all decks whitened for handiness at night. A weak point, however,
was the presence of mortar-boats that would have been better out
of the way altogether. These boats had been sent to bombard the
forts, which, according to the plan preferred by the Government,
were to be taken before New Orleans was attacked. In other words,
the Government wished to cut off the branches first; while Farragut
wished to cut down the tree itself, knowing the branches must fall
with the trunk.

On the eighteenth of April the mortar-boats began heaving shells
at the forts. But, after six days of bombardment, the forts were
nowhere near the point of surrendering, and the supply of shells
had begun to run low.

Meanwhile the squadron had been busy preparing for the great ordeal.
The first task was to break the boom across the river. This boom
was placed so as to hold the ships under the fire of the forts;
and the four-knot spring current was so strong that the eight-knot
ships could not make way enough against it to cut clear through
with certainty. Moreover, the middle of the boom was filled in by
eight big schooners, chained together, with their masts and rigging
dragging astern so as to form a most awkward entanglement. Farragut's
fleet captain, Henry H. Bell, taking two gunboats, _Itasca_ and
_Pinola_, under Lieutenants Caldwell and Crosby, slipped the chains
of one schooner; whereupon this schooner and the _Itasca_ swung
back and grounded under fire of the forts. The _Pinola_ gallantly
stood by, helping _Itasca_ clear. Then Caldwell, with splendid
audacity and skill, steamed up through the narrow gap, turned round,
put on the _Itasca's_ utmost speed, and, with the current in his
favor, charged full tilt against the chains that still held fast.
For one breathless moment the little _Itasca_ seemed lost. Her
bows rose clear out, as, quivering from stem to stern, she was
suddenly brought up short from top speed to nothing. But, in another
fateful minute, with a rending crash, the two nearest schooners
gave way and swept back like a gate, while the _Itasca_ herself
shot clear and came down in triumph to the fleet.

The passage was made on the twenty-fourth, in line-ahead (that
is, one after another) because Farragut found the opening narrower
than he thought it should be for two columns abreast, at night, under
fire, and against the spring current. Owing to the configuration of
the channel the starboard column had to weigh first, which gave
the lead to the 500-ton gunboat _Cayuga_. This was the one weak
point, because the leading vessel, drawing most fire, should have
been the strongest. The fault was Farragut's; for his heart got
the better of his head when it came to placing Captain Theodorus
Bailey, his dauntless second-in-command, on board a vessel fit
to lead the starboard column. He could not bear to obscure any
captain's chances of distinction by putting another captain over
him. So Bailey was sent to the best vessel commanded by a lieutenant.

The _Cayuga's_ navigating officer, finding that the guns of the
forts were all trained on midstream, edged in towards Fort St.
Philip. His masts were shot to pieces, but his hull drew clear
without great damage. "Then," he says, "I looked back for some
of our vessels; and my heart jumped up into my mouth when I found
I could not see a single one. I thought they must all have been
sunk by the forts." But not a ship had gone down. The three big
ones of the starboard column--_Pensacola, Mississippi_, and
_Oneida_--closed with the fort (so that the gunners on both sides
exchanged jeers of defiance) and kept up a furious fire till the
lighter craft astern slipped past safely and joined the _Cayuga_
above.

Meanwhile the _Cayuga_ had been attacked by a mob of Mississippi
steamers, six of which belonged to the original fourteen blessed
with their precious independence by Secretary Benjamin, "backed
by the whole Missouri Delegation." So when the rest of the Federal
light craft came up, "all sorts of things happened" in a general
free fight. There was no lack of Confederate courage; but an utter
absence of concerted action and of the simplest kind of naval skill,
except on the part of the two vessels commanded by ex-officers
of the United States Navy. The Federal light craft cut their way
through their unorganized opponents as easily as a battalion of
regulars could cut through a mob throwing stones. But the only
two Confederate naval officers got clear of the scrimmage and did
all that skill could do with their makeshift little craft against
the Federal fleet. Kennon singled out the _Varuna_ (the only one of
Farragut's vessels that was not a real man-of-war), raked her stern
with the two guns of his own much inferior vessel, the _Governor
Moore_, and rammed her into a sinking condition. Warley flew at
bigger game with his little ram, the _Manassas_, trying three of
the large men-of-war, one after another, as they came upstream. The
_Pensacola_ eluded him by a knowing turn of her helm that roused
his warmest admiration. The _Mississippi_ caught the blow glancingly
on her quarter and got off with little damage. The _Brooklyn_ was
taken fair and square amidships; but, though her planking was crushed
in, she sprang no serious leak and went on with the fight. The
wretched little Confederate engines had not been able to drive the
ram home.

The _Brooklyn_ was the flagship _Hartford's_ next-astern and the
_Richmond's_ next-ahead, these three forming the main body of Farragut's
own port column, which followed hard on the heels of the starboard
one, so hard, indeed, that there were only twenty minutes between
the first shot fired by the forts at the _Cayuga_ and the first
shot fired by the _Hartford_ at the forts. Besides the forts there
was the _Louisiana_ floating battery that helped to swell the storm
of shot and shell; and down the river came a fire-raft gallantly
towed by a tug. The _Hartford_ sheered off, over towards Fort St.
Philip, under whose guns she took ground by the head while the
raft closed in and set her ablaze. Instantly the hands on fire
duty sprang to their work. But the flames rushed in through the
ports; and the men were forced a step back. Farragut at once called
out: "Don't flinch from the fire, boys. There's a hotter fire than
that for those who don't do their duty!" Whereupon they plied their
hoses to such good effect that the fire was soon got under control.
Farragut calmly resumed his walk up and down the poop, while the
gunners blew the gallant little tug to bits and smashed the raft
in pieces. Then he stood keenly watching the _Hartford_ back clear,
gather way, and take the lead upstream again. Every now and then
he looked at the pocket compass that hung from his watch chain;
though, for the most part, he tried to scan a scene of action lit
only by the flashes of the guns. The air was dense and very still;
so the smoke of guns and funnels hung like a pall over both the
combatants while the desperate fight went on.

At last the fleet fought through and reached the clearer atmosphere
above the forts; all but the last three gunboats, which were driven
back by the fire. Then Farragut immediately sent word to General
Benjamin F. Butler that the troops could be brought up by the bayous
that ran parallel to the river out of range of the forts. But the
General, having taken in the situation at a glance from a transport
just below the scene of action, had begun to collect his men at
Sable Island, twelve miles behind Fort St. Philip, long before
Farragut's messenger could reach him by way of the Quarantine Bayou.
From Sable Island the troops were taken by the transports to a
point on the Mississippi five miles above Fort St. Philip.

After a well-earned rest the whole fleet moved up to New Orleans
on the twenty-fifth, turning the city's lines five miles downstream
without the loss of a man, for the simple reason that these had
been built only to resist an army, and so lay with flanks entirely
open to a fleet. General Lovell (the able commander who had so
often warned the Confederate Government of the danger from the sea)
at once evacuated the defenseless city. The best of the younger men
were away with the armies. The best of the older men were too few for
the storm. And so pandemonium broke loose. Burning boats, blazing
cotton, and a howling mob greeted Farragut's arrival. But after the
forts (now completely cut off from their base) had surrendered
on the twenty-eighth a landing party from the fleet soon brought
the mob to its senses by planting howitzers in the streets and
lowering the Confederate colors over the city hall. On the first
of May a garrison of Federal troops took charge of New Orleans
and kept it till the war was over.


New Orleans was a most pregnant Federal victory; for it established a
Union base at the great strategic point where sea-power and land-power
could meet most effectively in Mississippi waters.

But it was followed by a perfect anti-climax; for the Federal
Government, having planned a naval concentration at Vicksburg,
determined to put the plan in operation; though all the naval and
military means concerned made such a plan impossible of execution in
1862. Amphibious forces--fleets and armies combined--were essential.
There was no use in parading up and down the river, however
triumphantly, so long as the force employed could only hold the part
of the channel within actual range of its guns. The Confederates
could be driven off the Mississippi at any given point. But there
was nothing to prevent them from coming back again when once the
ships had passed. An army to seize and hold strategic points ashore
was absolutely indispensable. Then, and only then, Farragut's long
line of communication with his base at New Orleans would be safe,
and the land in which the Mississippi was the principal highway
could itself be conquered.

"If the Mississippi expedition from Cairo shall not have descended
the river, you will take advantage of the panic to push a strong
force up the river to take all their defenses in rear." These were
the orders Farragut had to obey if he succeeded in taking New Orleans.
They were soon reinforced by this reminder: "The only anxiety we feel
is to know if you have followed up your instructions and pushed a
strong force up the river to meet the Western flotilla." Farragut
therefore felt bound to obey and do all that could be done to carry
on a quite impossible campaign. So, with a useless landing party
of only fifteen hundred troops, he pushed up to Vicksburg, four
hundred miles above New Orleans. The nearest Federal army had been
halted by the Confederate defenses above Memphis, another four
hundred higher still.

There were several reasons why Farragut should not have gone up.
His big ships would certainly be stranded if he went up and waited
for the army to come down; moreover, when stranded, these ships
would be captured while waiting, because both banks were swarming
with vastly outnumbering Confederate troops. Then, such a disaster
would more than offset the triumph of New Orleans by still further
depressing Federal morale at a time when the Federal arms were
doing none too well near Washington. Finally, all the force that
was being worse than wasted up the Mississippi might have been
turned against Mobile, which, at that time, was much weaker than
the defenses Farragut had already overcome. But the people of the
North were clamorous for more victories along the line to which
the press had drawn their gaze. So the Government ordered the fleet
to carry on this impossible campaign.

Farragut did his best. Within a month of passing the forts he had
not only captured New Orleans and repaired the many serious damages
suffered by his fleet but had captured Baton Rouge, and taken even
his biggest ships to Vicksburg, five hundred miles from the Gulf,
against a continuous current, and right through the heart of a
hostile land. Finding that there were thirty thousand Confederates
in, near, or within a day of Vicksburg he and General Thomas Williams
agreed that nothing could be done with the fifteen hundred troops
which formed the only landing party. Sickness and casualties had
reduced the ships' companies; so there were not even a few seamen
to spare as reinforcements for these fifteen hundred soldiers, whom
Butler had sent, under Williams, with the fleet. Then Farragut
turned back, his stores running dangerously short owing to the
enormous difficulties of keeping open his long, precarious line of
communications. "I arrived in New Orleans with five or six days'
provisions and one anchor, and am now trying to procure others....
Fighting is nothing to the evils of the river--getting on shore,
running foul of one another, losing anchors, etc." In a confidential
letter home he is still more outspoken. "They will keep us in this
river till the vessels break down and all the little reputation
we have made has evaporated. The Government appears to think that
we can do anything. They expect me to navigate the Mississippi
nine hundred miles in the face of batteries, ironclad rams, etc.;
and yet with all the ironclad vessels they have North they could
not get to Norfolk or Richmond."

Back from Washington came still more urgent orders to join the
Mississippi flotilla which was coming down to Vicksburg from the
north under Flag Officer Charles H. Davis. So once more the fleet
worked its laboriously wasteful way up to Vicksburg, where it passed
the forts with the help of Porter's flotilla of mortar-boats on
the twenty-eighth of June and joined Davis on the first of July.
There, in useless danger, the joint forces lay till the fifteenth,
the day on which Grant's own "most anxious period of the war" began
on the Memphis-Corinth line, four hundred miles above.

Farragut, getting very anxious about the shoaling of the water,
was then preparing to run down when he heard firing in the Yazoo,
a tributary that joined the Mississippi four miles higher up. This
came from a fight between one of his reconnoitering gunboats, the
_Carondelet_, and the _Arkansas_, an ironclad Confederate ram that
would have been very dangerous indeed if her miserable engines had
been able to give her any speed. She was beating the _Carondelet_,
but getting her smoke-stack so badly holed that her speed dropped
down to one knot, which scarcely gave her steerage way and made
her unable to ram. Firing hard she ran the gauntlet of both fleets
and took refuge under the Vicksburg bluffs, whence she might run
out and ram the Union vessels below. Farragut therefore ran down
himself, hoping to smash her by successive broadsides in passing.
But the difficulties of the passage wasted the daylight, so that
he had to run by at night. She therefore survived his attack, and
went downstream to join the Confederates against Baton Rouge. But
her engines gave way before she got there; and she had to be blown
up.

Farragut was back at New Orleans before the end of July. On the
fifth of August the Confederates made their attack on Baton Rouge;
but were beaten back by the Union garrison aided by three of Farragut's
gunboats and two larger vessels from Davis's command. The losses
were not very severe on either side; but the Union lost a leader
of really magnificent promise in its commanding general, Thomas
Williams, a great-hearted, cool-headed man and most accomplished
officer. The garrison of Baton Rouge, being too small and sickly
and exposed, was withdrawn to New Orleans a few days later.

Then Farragut at last returned to the Gulf blockade. Davis went back
up the river, where he was succeeded by D. D. Porter in October.
And the Confederates, warned of what was coming, made Port Hudson
and Vicksburg as strong as they could. Vicksburg was now the only
point they held on the Mississippi where there were rails on both
sides; and the Red River, flowing in from the West between Vicksburg
and Port Hudson, was the only good line of communication connecting
them with Texas, whence so much of their meat was obtained.

For three months Farragut directed the Gulf blockade from Pensacola,
where, on the day of his arrival, the twentieth of August, he was the
first American to hoist an admiral's flag. The rank of rear-admiral
in the United States Navy had been created on the previous sixteenth
of July; and Farragut was the senior of the first three officers
upon whom it was conferred.

Farragut became the ranking admiral just when the United States
Navy was having its hardest struggle to do its fivefold duty well.
There was commerce protection on the high seas, blockade along the
coast, cooeperation with the army on salt water and on fresh, and
of course the destruction of the nascent Confederate forces afloat.
But perhaps a knottier problem than any part of its combatant duty
was how to manage, in the very midst of war, that rapid expansion
of its own strength for which no government had let it prepare in
time of peace. During this year the number of vessels in commission
grew from 264 to 427. Yet such a form of expansion was much simpler
than that of the enlisted men; and the expansion of even the most
highly trained enlisted personnel was very much simpler than the
corresponding expansion of the officers. Happily for the United
States Navy it started with a long lead over its enemy. More happily
still it could expand with the help of greatly superior resources.
Most happily of all, the sevenfold expansion that was effected
before the war was over could be made under leaders like Farragut:
leaders, that is, who, though in mere numbers they were no more, in
proportion to their whole service, than the flag as mere material
is to a man-of-war, were yet, as is the flag, the living symbol
of a people's soul.

Commerce protection on the high seas was an exceedingly harassing
affair. A few swift raiders, having the initiative, enjoyed great
advantages over a far larger number of defending vessels. Every
daring raid was trumpeted round the world, bringing down unmeasured,
and often unmerited, blame on the defense. The most successful
vigilance would, on the other hand, pass by unheeded. The Union
navy lacked the means of patrolling the sea lanes of commerce over
millions and millions of desolate square miles. Consequently the
war-risk insurance rose to a prohibitive height on vessels flying
the Stars and Stripes; and, as a further result, enormous transfers
were made to other flags. The incessant calls for recruits, afloat
and ashore, and to some extent the lure of the western lands, also
robbed the merchant service of its men. Thus, one way and another,
the glory of the old merchant marine departed with the Civil War.

Blockade was more to the point than any attempt to patrol the sea
lanes. Yet it was even more harassing; for it involved three distinct
though closely correlated kinds of operation: not only the seizure,
in conjunction with the army, of enemy ports, and the patrolling of
an enemy coastline three thousand miles long, but also the patrolling
of those oversea ports from which most contraband came. This oversea
patrol was the most effective, because it went straight to the
source of trouble. But it required extraordinary vigilance, because
it had to be conducted from beyond the three-mile limit, and with
the greatest care for all the rights of neutrals.

By mid-November Farragut was back at New Orleans. A month later
General Banks arrived with reinforcements. He superseded General
Butler and was under orders to cooeperate with McClernand, Grant's
second-in-command, who was to come down the Mississippi from Cairo.
But the proposed meeting of the two armies never took place. Banks
remained south of Port Hudson, McClernand far north of Vicksburg;
for, as we shall see in the next chapter, Sherman's attempt to take
Vicksburg from the North failed on the twenty-ninth of December.

The naval and river campaigns of '62 thus ended in disappointment
for the Union. And, on New Year's Day, Galveston, which Farragut had
occupied in October without a fight and which was lightly garrisoned
by three hundred soldiers, fell into Confederate hands under most
exasperating circumstances. After the captain and first lieutenant
of the U.S.S. _Harriet Lane_ had been shot by the riflemen aboard two
cotton-clad steamers the next officer tamely surrendered. Commander
Renshaw, who was in charge of the blockade, amply redeemed the honor
of the Navy by refusing to surrender the _Westfield_, in spite
of the odds against him, and by blowing her up instead. But when
he died at the post of duty the remaining Union vessels escaped;
and the blockade was raised for a week.

After that Commodore H. H. Bell, one of Farragut's best men, closed
in with a grip which never let go. Yet even Bell suffered a reverse
when he sent the U.S.S. _Hatteras_ to overhaul a strange vessel that
lured her off some fifteen miles and sank her in a thirteen-minute
fight. This stranger was the _Alabama_, then just beginning her famous
or notorious career. Nor were these the only Union troubles in the
Gulf during the first three weeks of the new year. Commander J.
N. Matt ran the _Florida_ out of Mobile, right through the squadron
that had been specially strengthened to deal with her; and the
shore defenses of the Sabine Pass, like those of Galveston, fell
into Confederate hands again, to remain there till the war was
over.

In spite of all failures, however, Farragut still had the upper
hand along the Gulf, and up the Mississippi as far as New Orleans,
without which admirable base the River War of '69. could never
have prepared the way for Grant's magnificent victory in the River
War of '63.




CHAPTER IV

THE RIVER WAR: 1862

The military front stretched east and west across the border States
from the Mississippi Valley to the sea. This immense and fluctuating
front, under its various and often changed commanders, was never a
well cooerdinated whole. The Alleghany Mountains divided the eastern
or Virginian wing from the western or "River" wing. Yet there was
always more or less connection between these two main parts, and
the fortunes of one naturally affected those of the other. Most
eyes, both at home and abroad, were fixed on the Virginian wing,
where the Confederate capital stood little more than a hundred
miles from Washington, where the greatest rival armies fought,
and where decisive victory was bound to have the most momentous
consequences. But the River wing was hardly less important; for
there the Union Government actually hoped to reach these three
supreme objectives in this one campaign: the absolute possession of
the border States, the undisputed right of way along the Mississippi
from Cairo to the Gulf, and the triumphant invasion of the lower
South in conjunction with the final conquest of Virginia.

We have seen already how the Union navy, aided by the army, won
its way up the Mississippi from the Gulf to Baton Rouge, but failed
to secure a single point beyond. We shall now see how the Union
army, aided by the navy, won its way down the Mississippi from
Cairo to Memphis, and fairly attained the first objective--the
possession of the border States; but how it also failed from the
north, as the others had failed from the south, to gain a footing
on the crucial stretch between Vicksburg and Port Hudson. One more
year was required to win the Mississippi; two more to invade the
lower South; three to conquer Virginia.


Just after the fall of Fort Sumter the Union Government had the
foresight to warn James B. Eads, the well-known builder of Mississippi
jetties, that they would probably draw upon his "thorough knowledge
of our Western rivers and the use of steam on them." But it was
not till August that they gave him the contract for the regular
gunboat flotilla; and it was not till the following year that his
vessels began their work. In the meantime the armies were asking for
all sorts of transport and protective craft. So the first flotilla on
Mississippi waters started under the War (not the Navy) Department,
though manned under the executive orders of Commander John Rodgers,
U. S. N., who bought three river steamers at Cincinnati, lowered
their engines, strengthened their frames, protected their decks,
and changed them into gunboats.

The first phase of the clash in this land of navigable rivers had
ended, as we have seen already, with the taking of Boonville on
the Missouri by that staunch and daring Union regular, General
Nathaniel Lyon, on June 17, 1861. Boonville was a stunning blow
to secession in those parts. Confederate hopes, however, again
rose high when the news of Bull Run came through. At this time
General John C. Fremont was taking command of all the Union forces
in the "Western Department," which included Illinois and everything
between the Mississippi and the Rockies. Fremont's command, however,
was short and full of trouble. Round his headquarters at St. Louis
the Confederate colors were flaunted in his face. His requisitions
for arms and money were not met at Washington. Union regiments
marched in without proper equipment and with next to no supplies.
There were boards of inquiry on his contracts. There were endless
cross-purposes between him and Washington. And early in November he
was transferred to West Virginia just as he was about to attack with
what seemed to him every prospect of success. He had not succeeded.
But he had done good work in fortifying St. Louis; in ordering
gunboats, tugs, and mortar-boats; in producing some kind of system
out of utter confusion; in trusting good men like Lyon; and in
sending the then unknown Ulysses Grant to take command at Cairo,
the excellent strategic base where the Ohio joins the Mississippi.

The most determined fighting that took place during Fremont's command
was brought on by Lyon, who attacked Ben McCulloch at Wilson's Creek,
in southwest Missouri, on the tenth of August. Though McCulloch had
ten thousand, against not much over five, Lyon was so set on driving
the Confederates away from such an important lead-bearing region
that he risked an attack, hoping by surprise, skillful maneuvers,
and the help of his regulars to shake the enemy's hold, even if
he could not thoroughly defeat him. Disheartened by his repeated
failure to get reinforcements, and very anxious about the fate
of his flanking column under Sigel, whose attack from the rear
was defeated, he expressed his forebodings to his staff. But the
light of battle shone bright as ever in his eyes; he was killed
leading a magnificent charge; and when, after his death, his little
army drew off in good order, the Confederates, by their own account,
"were glad to see him go."

On the twentieth of September the Confederates under Sterling Price
won a barren victory by taking Lexington, Missouri, where Colonel
James Mulligan made a gallant defense. That was the last Confederate
foothold on the Missouri; and it could not be maintained.

In October, Anderson, who had never recovered from the strain of
defending Fort Sumter, turned over to Sherman the very troublesome
Kentucky command. Sherman pointed out to the visiting Secretary of
War, Simon Cameron, that while McClellan had a hundred thousand
men for a front of a hundred miles in Virginia, and Fremont had
sixty thousand for about the same distance, he (Sherman) had been
given only eighteen thousand to guard the link between them, although
this link stretched out three hundred miles. Sherman then asked for
sixty thousand men at once; and said two hundred thousand would
be needed later on. "Good God!" said Cameron, "where are they to
come from?" Come they had to, as Sherman foresaw. Cameron made
trouble at Washington by calling Sherman's words "insane"; and
Sherman's "insanity" became a stumbling-block that took a long time
to remove.

Grant, in command at Cairo, began his career as a general by cleverly
forestalling the enemy at Paducah, where the Tennessee flows into the
Ohio. Then, on the seventh of November, he closed the first confused
campaign on the Mississippi by attacking Belmont, Missouri, twenty
miles downstream from Cairo, in order to prevent the Confederates at
Columbus, Kentucky, right opposite, from sending reinforcements to
Sterling Price in Arkansas. There was a stiff fight, in which the
Union gunboats did good work. Grant handled his soldiers equally
well; and the Union objective was fully attained.


Halleck, the Federal Commander-in-Chief for the river campaign
of '62, fixed his headquarters at St. Louis. From this main base
his right wing had rails as far as Rolla, whence the mail road
went on southwest, straight across Missouri. At Lebanon, near the
middle of the State, General Samuel R. Curtis was concentrating,
before advancing still farther southwest against the Confederates
whom he eventually fought at Pea Ridge. From St. Louis there was
good river, rail, and road connection south to Halleck's center in
the neighborhood of Cairo, where General Ulysses S. Grant had his
chief field base, at the junction of the Mississippi and Ohio. A
little farther east Grant had another excellent position at Paducah,
beside the junction of the Ohio and the Tennessee. Naval forces
were of course indispensable for this amphibious campaign; and in
Flag-Officer Andrew Hull Foote the Western Flotilla had a commander
able to cooeperate with the best of his military colleagues. Halleck's
left--a semi-independent command--was based on the Ohio, stretched
clear across Kentucky, and was commanded by a good organizer and
disciplinarian, General Don Carlos Buell, whose own position at
Munfordville was not only near the middle of the State but about
midway between the important railway junctions of Louisville and
Nashville.

Henry W. Halleck was a middle-aged, commonplace, and very cautious
general, who faithfully plodded through the war without defeat or
victory. He looked so long before he leaped that he never leaped at
all--not even on retreating enemies. Good for the regular office-work
routine, he was like a hen with ducklings for this river war, in
which Curtis, Grant, Buell, and his naval colleague Foote, were
all his betters on the fighting line.

His opponent, Albert Sidney Johnston, was also middle-aged, being
fifty-nine; but quite fit for active service. Johnston had had
a picturesque career, both in and out of the army; and many on
both sides thought him likely to prove the greatest leader of the
war. He was, however, a less formidable opponent than Northerners
were apt to think. He was not a consummate genius like Lee. He had
inferior numbers and resources; and the Confederate Government
interfered with him. Yet they did have the good sense to put both
sides of the Mississippi under his unified command, including not
only Kentucky and Tennessee, Missouri and Arkansas, but the whole
of the crucial stretch from Vicksburg to Port Hudson. In this they
were wiser than the Federal Government with Halleck's command,
which was neither so extensive nor so completely unified.

Johnston took post in his own front line at Bowling Green, Kentucky,
not far south of Buell's position at Munfordville. He was very
anxious to keep a hold on Kentucky and Missouri, along the southern
frontiers of which his forces were arrayed. His extreme right was
thrown northward under General Marshall to Prestonburg, near the
border of West Virginia, in the dangerous neighborhood of many
Union mountain folk. His southern outpost on the right was also
in the same kind of danger at Cumberland Gap, a strategic pass
into the Alleghanies at a point where Kentucky, Tennessee, and
Virginia meet. Halfway west from there, to Bowling Green the
Confederates hoped to hold the Cumberland near Logan's Cross Roads
and Mill Springs. Westwards from Bowling Green Johnston's line held
positions at Fort Donelson on the Cumberland, Fort Henry on the
Tennessee, and Columbus on the Mississippi. All his Trans-Mississippi
troops were under the command of the enthusiastic Earl Van Dorn,
who hoped to end his spring campaign in triumph at St. Louis.


The fighting began in January at the northeastern end of the line,
where the Union Government, chiefly for political reasons, was
particularly anxious to strengthen the Unionists that lived all
down the western Alleghanies and so were a thorn in the side of
the solid South beyond. On the tenth Colonel James A. Garfield, a
future President, attacked and defeated Marshall near Prestonburg
and occupied the line of Middle Creek. The Confederates, half starved,
half clad, ill armed, slightly outnumbered, and with no advantage
except their position, fought well, but unavailingly. Only some
three thousand men were engaged on both sides put together. Yet
the result was important because it meant that the Confederates
had lost their hold on the eastern end of Kentucky, which was now
in unrestricted touch with West Virginia.

Within eight days a greater Union commander, General G. H. Thomas,
emerged as the victor of a much bigger battle at Mill Springs and
Logan's Cross Roads on the upper Cumberland, ninety miles due east
of Bowling Green. The victory was complete, and Thomas's name was
made. Thomas, indeed, was known already as a man whose stentorian
orders had to be obeyed; and a clever young Confederate prisoner
used this reputation as his excuse for getting beaten: "We were doing
pretty good fighting till old man Thomas rose up in his stirrups,
and we heard him holler out: 'Attention, Creation! By kingdoms,
right wheel!' Then we knew you had us."

There were only about four thousand men a side. But in itself, and
in conjunction with Garfield's little victory at Prestonburg, the
battle of Logan's Cross Roads was important as raising the Federal
morale, as breaking through Johnston's right, and as opening the road
into eastern Tennessee. Short supplies and almost impassable roads,
however, prevented a further advance. One brigade was therefore
detached against Cumberland Gap, while the rest joined Buell's
command, which was engaged in organizing, drilling hard, and keeping
an eye on Johnston.

In February the scene of action changed to Johnston's left center,
where Forts Donelson and Henry were blocking the Federal advance
up the Cumberland and the Tennessee.

On the fourth, Flag-Officer Foote, with seven gunboats, of which
four were ironclads, led the way up the Tennessee, against Fort
Henry. That day the furious current was dashing driftwood in whirling
masses against the flotilla, which had all it could do to keep
station, even with double anchors down and full steam up. Next
morning a new danger appeared in the shape of what looked like a
school of dead porpoises. These were Confederate torpedoes, washed
from their moorings. As it was now broad daylight they were all
successfully avoided; and the crews felt as if they had won the
first round.

The sixth of February dawned clear, with just sufficient breeze to
blow the smoke away. The flotilla steamed up the swollen Tennessee
between the silent, densely wooded banks. Not a sound was heard
ashore until, just after noon, Fort Henry came into view and answered
the flagship's signal shot with a crashing discharge of all its
big guns. Then the fire waxed hot and heavy on both sides, the
gunboats knocking geyser-spouts of earth about the fort, and the
fort knocking gigantic splinters out of the gunboats. The _Essex_
ironclad was doing very well when a big shot crashed into her middle
boiler, which immediately burst like a shell, scalding the nearest
men to death, burning others, and sending the rest flying overboard
or aft. With both pilots dead and Commander W. D. Porter badly
scalded, the _Essex_ was drifting out of action when the word went
round that Fort Henry had surrendered: and there, sure enough,
were the Confederate colors coming down. Instantly Porter rallied
for the moment, called for three cheers, and fell back exhausted
at the third.

The Confederate General Tilghman surrendered to Foote with less
than a hundred men, all the rest, over twenty-five hundred, having
started towards Fort Donelson before the flag came down. The Western
Flotilla had won the day alone. But it was the fear of Grant's
approaching army that hurried the escaping garrison. An hour after
the surrender Grant rode in and took command. That night victors
and vanquished were dining together when a fussy staff officer came
in to tell Grant that he could not find the Confederate reports.
On this Captain Jesse Taylor, the chief Confederate staff officer,
replied that he had destroyed them. The angry Federal then turned
on him with the question, "Don't you know you've laid yourself
open to punishment?" and was storming along, when Grant quietly
broke in: "I should be very much surprised and mortified if one
of my subordinate officers should allow information which he could
destroy to fall into the hands of the enemy."

The surrender of Fort Henry, coming so soon after Prestonburg and
Logan's Cross Roads, caused great rejoicing in the loyal North. The
victory, effective in itself, was completed by sending the ironclad
_Carondelet_ several miles upstream to destroy the Memphis-Ohio
railway bridge, thus cutting the shortest line from Bowling Green to
the Mississippi. But the action, in which the army took no part,
was only a preliminary skirmish compared with the joint attack of
the fleet and army on Fort Donelson. Fort Donelson was of great
strategic importance. If it held fast, and the Federals were defeated,
then Johnston's line would probably hold from Bowling Green to
Columbus, and the rails, roads, and rivers would remain Confederate
in western Tennessee. If, on the other hand, Fort Donelson fell,
and more especially if its garrison surrendered, then Johnston's
line would have to be withdrawn at once, lest the same fate should
overtake the outflanked remains of it. Both sides understood this
perfectly well; and all concerned looked anxiously to see how the
new Federal commander, General Grant, would face the crisis.


Ulysses Simpson Grant came of sturdy New England stock, being eighth
in descent from Matthew Grant, who landed in 1630 and was Surveyor
of Connecticut for over forty years. Grant's mother was one of
the Simpsons who had been Pennsylvanians for several generations.
His family was therefore as racy of the North as Lee's was of the
South. His great-grandfather and great-granduncle, Noah and Solomon
Grant, held British commissions during the final French-and-Indian
or Seven Years' War (1756-63) when both were killed in the same
campaign. His grandfather Noah served all through the Revolutionary
War. Financial reverses and the death of his grandmother broke up
the family; and his father, Jesse Grant, was given the kindest
of homes by Judge Tod of Ohio. Jesse, being as independent as he
was grateful, turned his energies into the first business at hand,
which happened to be a tannery at Deerfield owned by the father of
that wild enthusiast John Brown. A great reader, an able contributor
to the Western press, and a most public-spirited citizen, Jesse
Grant was a good father to his famous son, who was born on April
27, 1822, at Point Pleasant, Clermont County, Ohio. Young Grant
hated the tannery, but delighted in everything connected with horses;
so he looked after the teams. One day, after swapping horses many
miles from home, he found himself driving a terrified bolter that
he only just managed to stop on the edge of a big embankment. His
grown-up companion, who had no stomach for any more, then changed
into a safe freight wagon. But Ulysses, tying his bandanna over
the runaway's eyes, stuck to the post of danger.

After passing through West Point without any special distinction,
except that he came out first in horsemanship, Grant was disappointed
at not receiving the cavalry commission which he would have greatly
preferred to the infantry one he was given instead. Years later,
when already a rising general, he vainly yearned for a cavalry
brigade. Otherwise he had curiously little taste for military life;
though at West Point he thought the two finest men in the world
were Captain C. F. Smith, the splendidly smart Commandant, and,
even more, that magnificently handsome giant, Winfield Scott, who
came down to inspect the cadets. Some years after having served
with credit all through the Mexican War (when, like Lee, he learnt
so much about so many future friends and foes) he left the army,
not to return till he and Sherman had seen Blair and Lyon take
Camp Jackson. After wisely declining to reenter the service under
the patronage of General John Pope, who was full of self-importance
about his acquaintance with the Union leaders of Illinois, Grant
wrote to the Adjutant-General at Washington offering to command
a regiment. Like Sherman, he felt much more diffident about the
rise from ex-captain of regulars to colonel commanding a battalion
than some mere civilians felt about commanding brigades or directing
the strategy of armies. He has himself recorded his horror of sole
responsibility as he approached what might have been a little
battlefield on which his own battalion would have been pitted against
a Southern one commanded by a Colonel Harris. "My heart kept getting
higher and higher until it felt as though it was in my throat. I
would have given anything then to have been back in Illinois; but
I had not the moral courage to halt and consider what to do. When
we reached a point from which the valley below was in full view
... the troops were gone. My heart resumed its place. It occurred
to me at once that Harris had been as much afraid of me as I had
been of him. This was a view of the question I never forgot."

Grant's latent powers developed rapidly. Starting with a good stock
of military knowledge he soon added to it in every way he could. He
had the insight of genius. Above all, he had an indomitable will
both in carrying out practicable plans in spite of every obstacle
and in ruthlessly dismissing every one who failed. Not tall, not
handsome, in no way striking at first sight, he looked the leader
born only by reason of his square jaw, keen eye, and determined
expression. Lincoln's conclusive answer to a deputation asking
for Grant's removal simply was, "he fights." And, when mounted on
his splendid charger Cincinnati, Grant even looked what he was--"a
first-class fighting man."


Grant marched straight across the narrow neck of land between the
forts, which were only twelve miles apart. Foote of course had
to go round by the Ohio--fifteen times as far. His vanguard, the
dauntless _Carondelet_, now commanded by Henry Walke, arrived on
the twelfth and fired the first shots at the fort, which stood on
a bluff more than a hundred feet high and mounted fifteen heavy
guns in three tiers of fire. Grant's infantry was already in position
round the Confederate entrenchments; and when his soldiers heard
the naval guns they first gave three rousing cheers and then began
firing hard, lest the sailors should get ahead of them again. Birge's
sharpshooters, the snipers of those days, were particularly keen.
They never drilled as a battalion, but simply assembled in bunches
for orders, when Birge would ask: "Canteens full? Biscuits for
all day?" After which he would sing out: "All right, boys, hunt
your holes"; and off they would go to stalk the enemy with their
long-range rifles.

Early next morning Grant sent word to Walke that he was establishing
the rest of his batteries and that he was ready to take advantage
of any diversion which the _Carondelet_ could make in his favor.
Walke then fired hard for two hours under cover of a wooded point.
The fort fired back equally hard; but with little effect except
for one big solid shot which stove in a casemate, knocked down a
dozen men, burst the steam heater, and bounded about the engine
room "like a wild beast pursuing its prey." Forty minutes later
the _Carondelet_ was again in action, firing hard till dark. Late
that night Foote arrived with the rest of the flotilla.

The fourteenth was another naval day. Foote's flotilla advanced
gallantly, the four ironclads leading in line abreast, the two
wooden gunboats half a mile astern. The ironclads closed in to less
than a quarter-mile and hung on like bulldogs till the Confederates
in the lowest battery were driven from their guns. But the plunging
fire from the big guns on the bluff crashed down with ever increasing
effect. Davits were smashed like matches, boats knocked into kindling
wood, armor dented, started, ripped, stripped, and sent splashing
overboard as if by strokes of lightning. Before the decks could
be re-sanded there was so much blood on them that the gun crews
could hardly work for slipping. Presently the _Pittsburgh_ swung
round, ran foul of the _Carondelet_, and dropped downstream. The
pilot of the _St. Louis_ was killed, and Foote, who stood beside
him, wounded. The wheel-ropes of the _St. Louis_, like those of
the _Louisville_, were shot away. The whole flotilla then retired,
still firing hard; and the Confederates wired a victory to Richmond.

Both sides now redoubled their efforts; for Donelson was a great
prize and the forces engaged were second only to those at Bull Run.
Afloat and ashore, all ranks and ratings on both sides together,
there were fifty thousand men present at the investment from first
to last. The Confederates began with about twenty thousand, Grant
with fifteen thousand. But Grant had twenty-seven thousand fit for
duty at the end, in spite of all his losses. He was fortunate in
his chief staff officer, the devoted and capable John A. Rawlins,
afterwards a general and Secretary of War. Two of his divisional
commanders, Lew Wallace and, still more, C. F. Smith, the old Commandant
of Cadets, were also first-rate. But the third, McClernand, here
began to follow those distorting ideas which led to his dismissal
later on. The three chief Confederates ranked in reverse order
of efficiency: Floyd first and worst, cantankerous Pillow next,
and Buckner best though last.

The Federal prospect was anything but bright on the evening of
the fourteenth. Foote had just been repulsed; while McClernand had
fought a silly little battle on his own account the day before,
to the delight of the Confederates and the grievous annoyance of
Grant. The fifteenth dawned on a scene of midwinter discomfort
in the Federal lines, where most of the rawest men had neither
great-coats nor blankets, having thrown them away during the short
march from Fort Henry, regardless of the fact that they would have
to bivouac at Donelson. Thus it was in no happy frame of mind that
Grant slithered across the frozen mud to see what Foote proposed;
and, when Foote explained that the gunboats would take ten days for
indispensable repairs, Grant resigned himself to the very unwelcome
idea of going through the long-drawn horrors of a regular winter
siege.

But, to his intense surprise, the enemy saved him the trouble. At
first, when they had a slight preponderance of numbers, they stood
fast and let Grant invest them. Now that he had the preponderance
they tried to cut their way out by the southern road, upstream, where
McClernand's division stood guard. As Grant came ashore from his
interview with Foote an aide met him with the news that McClernand
had been badly beaten and that the enemy was breaking out. Grant
set spurs to his horse and galloped the four muddy miles to his
left, where that admirable soldier, C. F. Smith, was as cool and
wary as ever, harassing the enemy's new rear by threatening an
assault, but keeping his division safe for whatever future use
Grant wanted. Wallace had also done the right thing, pressing the
enemy on his own front and sending a brigade to relieve the pressure
on McClernand. These two generals were in conversation during a lull
in the battle when Grant rode up, calmly returned their salutes,
attentively listened to their reports, and then, instead of trying
the Halleckian expedient of digging in farther back before the enemy
could make a second rush, quietly said: "Gentlemen, the position
on the right must be retaken."

Grant knew that Floyd was no soldier and that Pillow was a
stumbling-block. He read the enemy's mind like an open book and
made up his own at once by the flash of intuition which told him
that their men were mostly as much demoralized by finding their
first attempt at escape more than half a failure as even McClernand's
were by being driven back. He decided to use Smith's fresh division
for an assault in rear, while McClernand's, stiffened by Wallace's,
should re-form and hold fast. Before leaving the excited officers and
men, who were talking in groups without thinking of their exhausted
ammunition, he called out cheerily "Fill your cartridge boxes quick,
and get into line. The enemy is trying to escape and he must not
be permitted to do so." McClernand's division, excellent men, but
not yet disciplined soldiers, responded at once to the touch of a
master hand; and as Grant rode off to Smith's he had the satisfaction
of seeing the defenseless groups melt, change, and harden into
well-armed lines.

Smith, ready at all points, had only to slip his own division from
the leash. Buckner, who was to have covered the Confederate escape,
was also ready with the guns of Fort Donelson and the rifles of
defenses that "looked too thick for a rabbit to get through." Smith,
knowing his unseasoned men would need the example of a commander
they could actually see, rode out in front of his center as if
at a formal review. "I was nearly scared to death," said one of
his followers, "but I saw the old man's white moustache over his
shoulder, and so I went on." As the line neared the Confederate
abatis a sudden gust of fire seemed to strike it numb. In an instant
Smith had his cap on the point of his sword. Then, rising in his
stirrups to his full gigantic height, he shouted in stentorian
tones: "No flinching now, my lads! Here--this way in! Come on!"
In, through, and out the other side they went, Smith riding ahead,
holding his sword and cap aloft, and seeming to bear a charmed life
amid that hail of bullets. Up the slope he rode, the Confederates
retiring before him, till, unscathed, he reached the deadly crest,
where the Union colors waved defiance and the Union troops stood
fast.

Floyd, being under special indictment at Washington for misconduct
as Secretary of War, was so anxious to escape that he turned over
the command to Pillow, who declined it in favor of Buckner. That
night Floyd and Pillow made off with all the river steamers; Forrest's
cavalry floundered past McClernand's exposed flank, which rested on
a shallow backwater; and Buckner was left with over twelve thousand
men to make what terms he could. Next morning, the sixteenth, he wrote
to Grant proposing the appointment of commissioners to agree upon
terms of surrender. But Grant had made up his mind that compromise
was out of place in civil war and that absolute defeat or victory
were the only alternatives. So he instantly wrote back the famous
letter which quickly earned him the appropriate nickname--suggested
by his own initials--of Unconditional Surrender Grant.


                 Hd Qrs., Army in the Field
                 Camp near Donelson Feb'y 16th 1882

Gen. S. B. Buckner,
  Confed. Army.

Sir: Yours of this date proposing armistice, and appointment of
Commissioners to settle terms of capitulation is just received.
No terms except an unconditional and immediate surrender can be
accepted. I propose to move immediately upon your works

    I am, Sir, very respectfully,
                Your obt. sert.,
                   U. S. GRANT
                       Brig. Gen.


Grant and Buckner were old army friends; so their personal talk
was very pleasant at the little tavern where Buckner and his staff
had just breakfasted off corn bread and coffee, which was all the
Confederate stores afforded.

Donelson at once became, like Grant, a name to conjure with. The
fact that the Union had at last won a fight in which the numbers
neared, and the losses much exceeded, those at Bull Run itself, the
further fact that this victory made a fatal breach in the defiant
Southern line beyond the Alleghanies, and the delight of discovering
another, and this time a genuine, hero in "Unconditional Surrender
Grant," all combined to set the loyal North aflame with satisfaction,
pride, and joyful expectation. Great things were expected in Virginia,
where the invasion had not yet begun. Great things were expected
in the Gulf, where Farragut had not yet tried the Mississippi.
And great things were expected to result from Donelson itself,
whence the Union forces were to press on south till they met other
Union forces pressing north. The river campaign was then to end
in a blaze of glory.

Donelson did have important results. Johnston, who had already
abandoned Bowling Green for Nashville, had now to abandon Nashville,
with most of its great and very sorely needed stores, as well as
the rest of Tennessee, and take up a new position along the rails
that ran from Memphis to Chattanooga, whence they forked northeast
to Richmond and Washington and southeast to Charleston and Savannah.
Columbus was also abandoned, and the only points left to the
Confederates anywhere near the old line were Island Number Ten in
the Mississippi and the Boston Mountains in Arkansas.

But the triumphant Union advance from the north did not take place
in '62. Grant was for pushing south as fast as possible to attack the
Confederates before they had time to defend their great railway junction
at Corinth. But Halleck was too cautious; and misunderstandings,
coupled with division of command, did the rest. Halleck was the
senior general in the West. But the three, and afterwards four,
departments into which the West was divided were never properly
brought under a single command. Then telegrams went wrong at the
wire-end advancing southwardly from Cairo, the end Grant had to
use. A wire from McClellan on the sixteenth of February was not
delivered till the third of March. Next day Grant was thunderstruck
at receiving this from Halleck: "Place C. F. Smith in command of
expedition and remain yourself at Fort Henry. Why do you not obey
my orders to report strength and positions of your command?" And
so it went on till McClellan authorized Halleck to place Grant
under arrest for insubordination. Then the operator at the wire-end
suddenly deserted, taking a sheaf of dispatches with him. He was
a clever Confederate.

Explanations followed; and on the seventeenth of March Grant rejoined
his army, which was assembling round Pittsburg Landing on the Tennessee,
near the future battlefield of Shiloh, and some twenty miles northeast
of Corinth.

Meanwhile Van Dorn and Sterling Price, thinking it was now or never
for Missouri, decided to attack Curtis. They had fifteen against
ten thousand men, and hoped to crush Curtis utterly by catching
him between two fires. But on the seventh of March the Federal left
beat off the flanking attack of McCulloch and McIntosh, both of
whom were killed. The right, furiously assailed by the Confederate
Missourians under Van Dorn and Price, fared badly and was pressed
back. Yet on the eighth Curtis emerged victorious on the hard-fought
field that bears the double name of Elkhorn Tavern and Pea Ridge.
This battle in the northwest corner of Arkansas settled the fate
of Missouri.

A month later the final attack was made on Island Number Ten. Foote's
flotilla had been at work there as early as the middle of March,
when the strong Confederate batteries on the island and east shore
bluffs were bombarded by ironclads and mortarboats. Then the Union
General John Pope took post at New Madrid, eight miles below the
island, on the west shore, which the Confederates had to evacuate
when he cut their line of communications farther south. They now
held only the island and the east shore opposite, with no line
of retreat except the Mississippi, because the land line on the
east shore was blocked by swamps and flanked by the Union armies
in western Tennessee.

On the night of the fourth of April the _Carondelet_ started to
cut this last line south. She was swathed in hawsers and chain
cables. Her decks were packed tight with every sort of gear that
would break the force of plunging shot; and a big barge, laden
with coal and rammed hay, was lashed to her port side to protect
her magazine. Twenty-three picked Illinoisian sharpshooters went
aboard; while pistols, muskets, cutlasses, boarding-pikes, and hand
grenades were placed ready for instant use. The escape-pipe was
led aft into the wheel-house, so as to deaden the noise; and hose
was attached to the boilers ready to scald any Confederates that
tried to board. Then, through the heart of a terrific thunderstorm,
and amid a furious cannonade, the _Carondelet_ ran the desperate
gauntlet at full speed and arrived at New Madrid by midnight.

The Confederates were now cut off both above and below; for the
position of Island Number Ten was at the lower point of a V-shaped
bend in the Mississippi, with Federal forces at the two upper points.
But the Federal troops could not close on the Confederates without
crossing over to the east bank; and their transports could not run
the gauntlet like the ironclads. So the Engineer Regiment of the West
cut out a water road connecting the two upper points of the V. This
admirable feat of emergency field engineering was effected by sawing
through three miles of heavy timber to the nearest bayou, whence a
channel was cleared down to New Madrid. Then the transports went
through in perfect safety and took Pope's advanced guard aboard. The
ironclad _Pittsburg_ had come down, through another thunderstorm,
this same morning of the seventh; and when the island garrison
saw their position completely cut off they surrendered to Foote.
Next day Pope's men cut off the greater part of the Confederates
on the mainland. Thus fell the last point near Johnston's original
line along the southern borders of Missouri and Kentucky.

Just before it fell Johnston made a desperate counterattack from
his new line at Corinth, in northwest Mississippi, against Grant's
encroaching force at Shiloh, fifteen miles northeast, on the Tennessee
River.

Writing "A. S. Johnston, 3d April, 62, _en avant_" on his pocket
map of Tennessee, the Confederate leader, anguished by the bitter
criticism with which his unavoidable retreat had been assailed, cast
the die for an immediate attack on Grant before slow Halleck reinforced
or ready Buell joined him. Johnston's lieutenants, Beauregard and
Bragg, had obtained ten days for reorganization; and their commands
were as ready as raw forces could be made in an extreme emergency.
They hoped to be joined by Van Dorn, whose beaten army was working
east from Pea Ridge. But on the second they heard that Buell was
approaching Grant from Nashville; and on the third Johnston's advanced
guard began to move off. Van Dorn arrived too late.

The march, which it was hoped to complete on the fourth, was not
completed till the fifth. The roads were ankle-deep in clinging
mud, the country densely wooded and full of bogs and marshes. The
forty thousand men were not yet seasoned; and, though full of
enthusiasm, they neither knew nor had time to learn march discipline.
Moreover, Johnston allowed his own proper plan of attacking in
columns of corps to be changed by Beauregard into a three-line
attack, each line being formed by one complete corps. This meant
certain and perhaps disastrous confusion. For in an attack by columns
of corps the firing line would always be reinforced by successive
lines of the same corps; while attacking by lines of corps meant
that the leading corps would first be mixed up with the second,
and then both with the third.

In the meantime Grant was busier with his own pressing problems
of organization for an advance than with any idea of resisting
attack. He lacked the prevision of Winfield Scott and Lee, both of
whom expected from the first that the war would last for years. His
own expectation up to this had been that the South would collapse
after the first smashing blow, and that its western armies were
now about to be dealt such a blow. He was not unmindful of all
precautions; for he knew the Confederates were stirring on his
front. Yet he went downstream to Savannah without making sure that
his army was really safe at Shiloh.

Pittsburg Landing was at the base of the Shiloh position. But the
point at which, by the original orders, Buell was to join was Savannah,
nine miles north along the Tennessee. So Grant had to keep in touch
with both. He had not ignored the advantage of entrenching. But
the best line for entrenching was too far from good water; and
he thought he chose the lesser of two evils when he devoted the
time that might have been used for digging to drilling instead. His
army was raw as an army; many of the men were still rawer recruits;
and, as usual, the recruiting authorities had sent him several
brand-new battalions, which knew nothing at all, instead of sending
the same men as reinforcements to older battalions that could "learn
'em how." Grant's total effectives at first were only thirty-three
thousand. This made the odds five to four in favor of Johnston's
attack. But the rejoining of Lew Wallace's division, the great
reinforcement by Buell's troops, and the two ironclad gunboats
on the river, raised Grant's final effective grand total to sixty
thousand. The combined grand totals therefore reached a hundred
thousand--double the totals at Donelson and far exceeding those
at Bull Run.

After a horrible week of cold and wet the sun set clear and calm
on Saturday, the eve of battle. The woods were alive with forty
thousand Confederates all ready for their supreme attack on the
thirty-three thousand Federals on their immediate four-mile front.
Grant's front ran, facing south, between Owl and Lick Creeks, two
tributaries that joined the Tennessee on either side of Pittsburg
Landing. Buell's advance division, under Nelson, was just across the
Tennessee. But Grant was in no hurry to get it over. His reassuring
wire that night to Halleck said: "The main force of the enemy is at
Corinth. I have scarcely the faintest idea of an attack (general
one) being made upon us." But the skirmishing farther south on Friday
had warned Grant, as well as Sherman and the vigilant Prentiss,
that Johnston might be trying a reconnaissance in force--the very
thing that Beauregard wished the Confederates to do.

Long before the beautiful dawn of Sunday, the fateful sixth of
April, Prentiss had thrown out from the center a battalion which
presently met and drove in the vanguard of the first Confederate
line of assault. The Confederate center soon came up, overwhelmed
this advanced battalion, and burst like a storm on the whole of
Prentiss's division. Then, above the swelling roar of multitudinous
musketry, rose the thunder of the first big guns. "Note the hour,
please, gentlemen," said Johnston; and a member of his staff wrote
down: "5:14 A.M."

Johnston's admirable plan was, first, to drive Grant's left clear
of Lick Creek, then drive it clear of Pittsburg Landing, where the
two Federal ironclads were guarding the ferry. This, combined with
a determined general assault on the rest of Grant's line, would huddle
the retreating Federals into the cramped angle between Owl Creek and
the Tennessee and force them to surrender. But there were three
great obstacles to this: Sherman on the right, the "Hornet's Nest"
in the center, and the gunboats at the Landing. Worse still for the
Confederates, Buell was now too close at hand. Three days earlier
Johnston had wired from Corinth to the Government at Richmond:
"Hope engagement before Buell can form junction." But the troubles
of the march had lost him one whole priceless day.

The Confederate attack was splendidly gallant and at first pushed
home regardless of loss. The ground was confusing to both sides:
a bewilderment of ups and downs, of underbrush, woods, fields,
and clumps of trees, criss-cross paths, small creeks, ravines,
and swamps, without a single commanding height or any outstanding
features except the two big creeks, the river, and the Pittsburg
Landing.

At the first signs of a big battle Grant hurried to the field,
first sending a note to Buell, whom he was to have met at Savannah,
then touching at Crump's Landing on the way, to see Lew Wallace
and make sure whether this, and not the Pittsburg Landing, was the
point of attack. Arrived on the field of Shiloh, calm and determined
as ever, he was reassured by finding how well Sherman was holding
his raw troops in hand at the extremely important point of Shiloh
itself, next to Owl Creek.

But elsewhere the prospect was not encouraging, though the men
got under arms very fast and most of them fought very well. The
eager gray lines kept pressing on like the rising tide of an angry
sea, dashing in fury against all obstructing fronts and swirling
round the disconnecting flanks. The blue lines, for the most part,
resisted till the swift gray tide threatened to cut them off. Half
of Prentiss's remaining men were in fact cut off that afternoon and
forced to surrender with their chief, whose conduct, like their
own, was worthy of all praise. Back and still back the blue lines
went before the encroaching gray, each losing heavily by sheer hard
fighting at the front and streams of stragglers running towards
the rear.

Sherman, like others, gave ground, but still held his men together,
except for the stragglers he could not control. In the center C.
F. Smith's division, with Hurlbut's in support, and all that was
left of Prentiss's, defended themselves so desperately that their
enemies called their position the Hornet's Nest. Here the fight
swayed back and forth for hours, with ghastly losses on both sides.
C. F. Smith himself was on his deathbed at Savannah. But he heard
the roar of battle. His excellent successor, W. H. L. Wallace,
was killed; and battalions, brigades, and even divisions, soon
became inextricably mixed together. There was now the same confusion
on the Confederate side, where Johnston was wounded by a bullet
from the Hornet's Nest. It was not in itself a mortal wound. But,
knowing how vital this point was, he went on encouraging his men
till, falling from the saddle, he was carried back to die.

Grant still felt confident; though he had seen the worst in the rear
as well as the best at the front. Two of his brand-new battalions,
the very men who afterwards fought like heroes, when they had learned
the soldier's work, now ran like hares. "During the day," says Grant,
"I rode back as far as the river and met General Buell, who had
just arrived. There probably were as many as four or five thousand
stragglers lying under cover of the river bluff, panic-stricken. As
we left the boat Buell's attention was attracted by these men. I
saw him berating them and trying to shame them into joining their
regiments. He even threatened them with shells from the gunboats
nearby. But all to no effect. Most of these men afterward proved
themselves as gallant as any of those who saved the battle from
which they had deserted."

By half-past five, after twelve hours' fighting, Grant at last
succeeded in forming a new and shorter line, a mile behind that
morning's front, but without any dangerous gaps. There were three
reorganized divisions--Sherman's, McClernand's, and Hurlbut's, one
fresh division under Nelson, and a strong land battery of over
twenty field guns helping the two ironclad gunboats in the defense
of Pittsburg Landing. The Confederate effectives, reduced by heavy
losses and by as many stragglers as the Federals, were now faced
by five thousand fresh men on guard at the Landing. Beauregard,
who had succeeded Johnston, then stopped the battle for the day,
with the idea of retiring next morning to Corinth. But, before
his orders reached it, his battle-worn right made a desperate,
fruitless, and costly attack on the immensely strengthened Landing.

That night the rain came down in torrents; and the Confederates
sought shelter in the tents the Federals had abandoned. They found
little rest there, being harassed all through the bleak dark by
the big shells that the gunboats threw among them.

At dawn Grant, now reinforced by twenty-five thousand fresh men under
Buell and Lew Wallace, took the offensive. Beauregard, hopelessly
outnumbered and without a single fresh man, retired on Corinth,
magnificently covered by Bragg's rearguard, which held the Federals
back for hours near the crucial point of Shiloh Church.

Shiloh was the fiercest battle ever fought in the River War. The
losses were over ten thousand a side in killed and wounded; while a
thousand Confederates and three thousand Federals were captured. It
was a Confederate failure; but hardly the kind of victory the Federals
needed just then, before the consummate triumph of Farragut at New
Orleans. It brought together Federal forces that the Confederates
could not possibly withstand, even on their new line east from Memphis.
But it did not raise the Federal, or depress the Confederate, morale.


Four days after the battle Halleck arrived at Pittsburg Landing
and took command of the combined armies. He was soon reinforced
by Pope; whereupon he divided the whole into right and left wings,
center, and reserve, each under its own commander. Grant was made
second in command of the whole. But, as Halleck dealt directly
with his other immediate subordinates, Grant simply became the
fifth wheel of the Halleckian slow-coach, which, after twenty days
of preparation, began, with most elaborate precautions, its crawl
toward Corinth.

Grant's position became so nearly unbearable that he applied more
than once for transfer to some other place. But this was refused.
So he strove to do his impossible duty till the middle of July,
when his punishment for Shiloh was completed by his promotion to
command a depleted remnant of Halleck's Grand Army. It is not by
any means the least of Grant's claims to real greatness that, as
a leader, he was able to survive his most searching trials: the
surprise at Shiloh, the misunderstandings and arrest that followed
Shiloh, the slur of being made a fifth-wheel second-in-command,
the demoralizing strain of that "most anxious period of the war"
when his depleted forces were thrown back on the defensive, and
the eight discouraging months of Sisyphean offensive which preceded
his triumph at Vicksburg. No one who has not been in the heart of
things with fighting fleets or armies can realize what it means
to all ranks when there is, or even is supposed to be, "something
wrong" with the living pivot on which the whole force turns. And
only those who have been behind the scenes of war's all-testing
drama can understand what it means for even an imagined "failure"
to "come back."

Corinth was of immense importance to both sides, as it commanded
the rails not only east and west, from the Tennessee to Memphis,
but north and south, from the Ohio to New Orleans and Mobile. Though
New Orleans was taken by Farragut on the twenty-fifth of April, the
rails between Vicksburg and Port Hudson remained in Confederate
hands till next year; while Mobile remained so till the year after
that.

Beauregard collected all the troops he could at Corinth. Yet, even
with Van Dorn's and other reinforcements, he had only sixty thousand
effectives against Halleck's double numbers. Moreover, the loss of
three States and many battles had so shaken the Confederate forces
that they stood no chance whatever against Halleck's double numbers
in the open. All the same, Halleck burrowed slowly forward like a
mole, entrenching every night as if the respective strengths and
victories had been reversed.

After advancing nearly a mile a day Halleck closed in on Corinth.
He was so deeply entrenched that no one could tell from appearances
which side was besieging the other. Towards the end of May many
Federal railwaymen reported that empty trains could be heard running
into Corinth and full trains running out. But, as the Confederates
greeted each arriving "empty" with tremendous cheers, Halleck felt
sure that Beauregard was being greatly reinforced. The Confederate
bluff worked to admiration. On the twenty-sixth Beauregard issued
orders for complete evacuation on the twenty-ninth. On the thirtieth
Halleck drew up his whole grand army ready for a desperate defense
against an enemy that had already gone a full day's march away.

In the meantime the Federal flotilla had been fighting its way
down the Mississippi, under (the invalided) Foote's very capable
successor, Flag-Officer Charles Henry Davis. The Confederates had
very few naval men on the river, but many of their Mississippi
skippers were game to the death. They rammed Federal vessels on
the tenth of May at Fort Pillow, eighty miles above Memphis. Eight
of their fighting craft were strongly built and heavily armored,
though very deficient in speed. The Federal flotilla was very well
manned by first-class naval ratings, and was reinforced early in
June by seven fast new rams, commanded by their designer, Colonel
Charles Ellet, a famous civil engineer.

At sunrise on the lovely sixth of June the Federal flotilla, having
overcome the Confederate posts farther north and being joined by
Ellet's rams, lay near Memphis. The Confederates came upstream to
the attack, expecting to ram the gunboats in the stern as they
had at Fort Pillow. But Ellet suddenly darted down on the eight
Confederate ironclads, caught one of them on the broadside, sank
her, and disabled two others. The action then became general. The
overmatched Confederates kept up a losing battle for more than an
hour, in full view of many thousands of ardent Southerners ashore.
The scene, at its height, was appalling. The smoke, belching black
from the funnels and white from the guns, made a suffocating pall
overhead; while the dark, squat, hideous ironclad hulls seemed to
have risen from a submarine inferno to stab each other with livid
tongues of flame--so deadly close the two flotillas fought. When
the awful hour was over the Confederates were not only defeated but
destroyed; and a wail went up from the thousands of their anguished
friends, as if the very shores were mourning.


For the next month Grant held the command at Memphis. Then, on
the eleventh of July, Halleck was recalled to Washington as
General-in-Chief of the whole army; while Pope was transferred to
Virginia. The Federal invasion of Virginia under that "Young Napoleon,"
McClellan, had not been a success against Lee and Stonewall Jackson.
Nor did it improve with Pope at the front and Halleck in the rear,
as we shall presently see; though Halleck had declared that Pope's
operations at Island Number Ten were destined to immortal fame, and
Pope himself admitted his own greatness in sundry proclamations
to the world.

The campaign now entered its second phase. The Virginian wing (of
the whole front reaching from the Mississippi to the sea) was checked
this summer; and was to remain more or less checked for many a long
day. The river wing, under the general direction of Halleck, had
also reached its limit for '62 about the same time, after having
conquered Kentucky and western Tennessee as well as the Mississippi
down to Memphis.

This river wing was now depleted of some excellent troops and again
divided into quite separate commands. Buell commanded the Army
of the Ohio. Grant commanded his own Army of the Tennessee and
Rosecrans's Army of the Mississippi. Buell's scene of action lay
between the tributary streams--Ohio, Cumberland, and Tennessee--with
Chattanooga as his ultimate objective. Grant's scene of action
lay along the southward rails and Mississippi, with Vicksburg as
his ultimate objective.

[Illustration: Civil War Campaigns of 1862]

The Confederates were of course set on recovering complete control
of the line of Southern rails that made direct connections between
the Mississippi Valley and the sea: crossing the western tributaries
of the St. Francis and White Rivers; then running east from Memphis,
through Grand Junction, Corinth, and Iuka, to Chattanooga; thence
forking off northeast, through Knoxville, to Washington, Richmond,
and Norfolk; and southeast to Charleston and Savannah. Confederate
attention had originally been fixed on Corinth and Chattanooga.
But General O. M. Mitchel's abortive raid, just after Shiloh, had
also drawn it to the part between. The Federals therefore found
their enemy alert at every point.

Braxton Bragg, Beauregard's successor and Buell's opponent, basing
himself on Chattanooga, tried to drive his line of Confederate
reconquest through the heart of Tennessee and thence through
mid-Kentucky, with the Ohio as his ultimate objective. His colleagues
near the Mississippi, Van Dorn and Sterling Price, meanwhile tried
to effect the reconquest of the Memphis-Corinth rails that Grant
and Rosecrans were holding.

All main offensives, on both sides, ultimately failed in this latter
half of the river campaign of '62. So nothing but the bare fact
that they were attempted needs any notice here.

In August, about the time that Lee and Jackson were maneuvering
in Virginia to bring on the Second Bull Run, Price and Bragg began
their respective advances against Grant and Buell. Buell was at
Murfreesboro, defending Nashville. Bragg, screened by the hills of
eastern Tennessee, made for the Ohio at Louisville and Cincinnati.
Pivoting on his left he wheeled his whole army round and raced for
Louisville. Buell enjoyed the advantage of rails over roads and
of interior lines as well. But Bragg had stolen several marches
on him at the start and he only won by a head.

The Union Government, now thoroughly alarmed, sent Thomas to supersede
Buell. But Thomas declined to take over the command, and on the
eighth of October Buell fought Bragg at Perryville. There was no
tactical defeat or victory; but Bragg retired on Chattanooga. The
Government now urged Buell to enter east Tennessee. He protested
that lack of transport and supplies made such a move impossible.
William S. Rosecrans then replaced him. Buell was never employed
again. He certainly failed fully to appreciate the legitimate bearing
of statesmanship on strategy; but, for all that, he was an excellent
organizer and a good commander.

In the meantime Grant had been experiencing his "most anxious period
of the war." During this anxious period, which lasted from July to
October, Rosecrans defeated Price at Iuka. This happened on the
nineteenth of September. Van Dorn then joined Price and returned
to the attack but was defeated by Rosecrans at Corinth on the fourth
of October. The Confederates, who had come near victory on the
third, retired in safety, because Grant still lacked the means of
resuming the offensive.

As soon as he had the means Grant marched his army south for Vicksburg.
There were three converging forces: Grant's from Grand Junction,
Sherman's from Memphis, and a smaller one from Helena in Arkansas.
But the Confederate General, J. C. Pemberton, who had replaced Van
Dorn, escaped the trap they tried to set for him. He was strongly
entrenched on the south side of the Tallahatchie, north of Oxford,
on the Mississippi Central rails. While Grant and Sherman converged
on his front, the force from Helena rounded his rear and cut the
rails. But the damage was quickly repaired; and Pemberton retired
south toward Vicksburg before Grant and Sherman could close and
make him fight.

Then Grant tried again. This time Sherman advanced on board of
Mississippi steamers, with the idea of meeting the Union expedition
coming up from New Orleans. But Van Dorn cut Grant's long line
of land communications at Holly Springs, forcing Grant back for
supplies and leaving Sherman, who had made his way up the Yazoo,
completely isolated. Grant fared well enough, so far as food was
concerned; for he found such abundant supplies that he at once
perceived the possibility of living on the country without troubling
about a northern base. He spent Christmas and New Year at Holly
Springs, and then moved back to Memphis.

In the meantime Sherman's separated force had come to grief. On the
twenty-ninth of December its attempt to carry the Chickasaw Bluffs,
just north of Vicksburg, was completely frustrated by Pemberton; for
Sherman could not deploy into line on the few causeways that stood
above the flooded ground.

On the eleventh of January this first campaign along the Mississippi
was ended by the capture of Arkansas Post. McClernand was the senior
there. But Sherman did the work ashore as D. D. Porter did afloat.

Meanwhile Bragg had brought the campaign to a close among the eastern
tributaries by a daring, though abortive, march on Nashville. Rosecrans,
now commanding the army of the Cumberland, stopped and defeated him
at Stone's River on New Year's Eve.


The "War in the West," that is, in those parts of the Southwest
which lay beyond the navigable tributaries of the Mississippi system,
was even more futile at the time and absolutely null in the end.
Its scene of action, which practically consisted of inland Texas,
New Mexico, and Arizona, was not in itself important enough to be
a great determining factor in the actual clash of arms. But Texas
supplied many good men to the Southern ranks; and the Southern
commissariat missed the Texan cattle after the fall of Vicksburg
in '63. New Mexico might also have been a good deal more important
than it actually was if it could have been made the base of a real,
instead of an abortive, invasion of California, the El Dorado of
Confederate finance.

We have already seen what happened on February 15, 1861, when General
Twiggs handed over to the State authorities all the army posts in
Texas. On the first of the following August Captain John R. Baylor,
who had been forming a little Confederate army under pretext of a
big buffalo hunt, proclaimed himself Governor of New Mexico (south
of 34 deg.) and established his capital at Mesilla. In the meantime the
Confederate Government itself had appointed General H. H. Sibley
to the command of a brigade for the conquest of all New Mexico.
Not ten thousand men were engaged in this campaign, Federals and
Confederates, whites and Indians, all together; but a decisive
Confederate success might have been pregnant of future victories
farther west. Some Indians fought on one side, some on the other;
and some of the wilder tribes, delighted to see the encroaching
whites at loggerheads, gave trouble to both.

On February 21, 1862, Sibley defeated Colonel E. R. S. Canby at
Valverde near Fort Craig. But his further advance was hindered
by the barrenness of the country, by the complete destruction of
all Union stores likely to fall into his hands, and by the fact
that he was between two Federal forts when the battle ended. On
the twenty-eighth of March there was a desperate fight in Apache
Canon. Both sides claimed the victory. But the Confederates lost
more men as well as the whole of their supply and ammunition train.
After this Sibley began a retreat which ended in May at San Antonio.
His route was marked by bleaching skeletons for many a long day; and
from this time forward the conquest of California became nothing
but a dream.


The "War in the West" was a mere twig on the Trans-Mississippi
branch; and when the fall of Vicksburg severed the branch from the
tree the twig simply withered away.


The sword that ultimately severed branch and twig was firmly held
by Union hands before the year was out; and this notwithstanding
all the Union failures in the last six months. Grant and Porter
from above, Banks and Farragut from below, had already massed forces
strong enough to make the Mississippi a Union river from source to
sea, in spite of all Confederates from Vicksburg to Port Hudson.




CHAPTER V

LINCOLN: WAR STATESMAN

Lincoln was one of those men who require some mighty crisis to call
their genius forth. Though more successful than Grant in ordinary
life, he was never regarded as a national figure in law or politics
till he had passed his fiftieth year. He had no advantages of birth;
though he came of a sturdy old English stock that emigrated from
Norfolk to Massachusetts in the seventeenth century, and though
his mother seems to have been, both intellectually and otherwise,
above the general run of the Kentuckians among whom he was born
in 1809. His educational advantages were still less. Yet he soon
found his true affinities in books, as afterwards in life, not
among the clever, smart, or sentimental, but among the simple and
the great. He read and reread Shakespeare and the Bible, not because
they were the merely proper things to read but because his spirit
was akin to theirs. This meant that he never was a bookworm. Words
were things of life to him; and, for that reason, his own words
live.

He had no artificial graces to soften the uncouth appearance of his
huge, gaunt six-foot-four of powerful bone and muscle. But he had
the native dignity of straightforward manhood; and, though a champion
competitor in feats of strength, his opinion was always sought as
that of an impartial umpire, even in cases affecting himself. He
"played the game" in his frontier home as he afterwards played
the greater game of life-or-death at Washington. His rough-hewn,
strong-featured face, shaped by his kindly humor to the finer ends
of power, was lit by a steady gaze that saw yet looked beyond,
till the immediate parts of the subject appeared in due relation
to the whole. Like many another man who sees farther and feels more
deeply than the rest, and who has the saving grace of humor, he knew
what yearning melancholy was; yet kept the springs of action tense
and strong. Firm as a rock on essentials he was extremely tolerant
about all minor differences. His policy was to live and let live
whenever that was possible. The preservation of the Union was his
master-passion, and he was ready for any honorable compromise that
left the Union safe. Himself a teetotaller, he silenced a temperance
delegation whose members were accusing Grant of drunkenness by
saying he should like to send some of his other generals a keg of
the same whisky if it would only make them fight.

When he took arms against the sea of troubles that awaited him at
Washington he had dire need of all his calm tolerance and strength.
To add to his burdens, he was beset by far more than the usual
horde of office-seekers. These men were doubly ravenous because
their party was so new to power. They were peculiarly hard to place
with due regard for all the elements within the coalition. And each
appointment needed most discriminating care, lest a traitor to
the Union might creep in. While the guns were thundering against
Fort Sumter, and afterwards, when the Union Government was marooned
in Washington itself, the vestibules, stairways, ante-rooms, and
offices were clogged with eager applicants for every kind of civil
service job. And then, when this vast human flood subsided, the
"interviewing" stream began to flow and went on swelling to the
bitter end. These war-time interviewers claimed most of Lincoln's
personal attention just when he had the least to spare. But he would
deny no one the chance of receiving presidential aid or comfort and
he gladly suffered many fools for the chance of relieving the sad
or serious others. Add to all this the ceaseless work of helping to
form public opinion, of counteracting enemy propaganda, of shaping
Union policy under ever-changing circumstances, of carrying it
out by coalition means, and of exercising civil control over such
vast armed forces as no American had hitherto imagined: add these
extra burdens, and we can begin to realize what Lincoln had to
do as the chief war statesman of the North.

A sound public opinion is the best embattlement of any home front.
So Lincoln set out to help in forming it. War on a national scale
was something entirely new to both sides, and especially unwelcome
to many people in the North, though the really loyal North was
up at Lincoln's call. Then came Bull Run; and Lincoln's renewed
determination, so well expressed in Whitman's words: "The President,
recovering himself, begins that very night--sternly, rapidly sets
about the task of reorganizing his forces, and placing himself in
positions for future and surer work. If there was nothing else
of Abraham Lincoln for history to stamp him with, it is enough to
send him with his wreath to the memory of all future time, that he
endured that hour, that day, bitterer than gall--indeed a crucifixion
day--that it did not conquer him that he unflinchingly stemmed it,
and resolved to lift himself and the Union out of it."

Bull Run was only the beginning of troubles. There were many more
rocks ahead in the stormy sea of public opinion. The peace party
was always ready to lure the ship of state out of its true course
by using false lights, even when certain to bring about a universal
wreck in which the "pacifists" would suffer with the rest. But
dissensions within the war party were worse, especially when caused
by action in the field. Fremont's dismissal in November, '61, caused
great dissatisfaction among three kinds of people: those who thought
him a great general because he knew how to pose as one and really
had some streaks of great ability, those who were fattening on
the army contracts he let out with such a lavish hand, and those
who hailed him as the liberator of the slaves because he went
unwarrantably far beyond what was then politically wise or even
possible. He was the first Unionist commander to enter the Northern
Cave of Adullam, already infested with Copperhead snakes.

There he was joined by McClellan exactly a year later; and there
the peace-at-current-prices party continued to nurse and cry their
grievances till the war was over. McClellan's dismissal was a matter
of dire necessity because victory was impossible under his command.
But he was a dangerous reinforcement to the Adullamites; for many
of the loyal public had been fooled by his proclamations, the press
had written him up to the skies as the Young Napoleon, and the
great mass of the rank and file still believed in him. He took
the kindly interest in camp comforts that goes to the soldier's
heart; and he really did know how to organize. Add his power of
passing off tinsel promises for golden deeds, and it can be well
understood how great was the danger of dismissing him before his
defects had become so apparent to the mass of people as to have
turned opinion decisively against him. We shall presently meet
him in his relation to Lincoln during the Virginian campaign, and
later on in his relation to Lee. Here we may leave him with the
reminder that he was the Democratic candidate for President in
'64, that he was still a mortal danger to the Union, even though
he had rejected the actual wording of his party's peace plank.

The turn of the tide at the fighting front came in '63; but not
at the home front, where public opinion of the most vocal kind
was stirred to its dregs by the enforcement of the draft. The dime
song books of the Copperhead parts of New York expressed in rude
rhymes very much the same sort of apprehension that was voiced
by the official opposition in the Presidential campaign of '64.

  Abram Lincoln, what yer 'bout?
  Stop this war, for it's played out.

Another rhyme, called "The Beauties of Conscription," was a more
decorous expression of such public opinion.

  And this, the "People's Sovereignty,"
  Before a despot humbled!
  . . . .
  Well have they cashed old Lincoln's drafts,
  Hurrah for the Conscription!
  . . . .
  Is not this war--this MURDER--for
  The negro, _nolens volens?_

So, carrying out their ideas to the same sort of logical conclusion,
the New York mob of '63 not only burnt every recruiting office they
found undefended but burnt the negro orphan asylum and killed all
the negroes they could lay their hands on.

Public opinion did veer round a little with the rising tide of
victory in the winter of '63 and '64. But, incredible as it may
seem to those who think the home front must always reflect the
fighting front, the nadir of public opinion in the North was reached
in the summer of '64, when every expert knew that the resources of
the South were nearing exhaustion and that the forces of the North
could certainly wear out Lee's dwindling army even if they could
not beat it. The trumpet gave no uncertain sound from Lincoln's
lips. "In this purpose to save the country and its liberties no
class of people seem so nearly unanimous as the soldiers in the
field and the sailors afloat. Do they not have the hardest of it?
Who should quail while they do not?" But the mere excellence of a
vast fighting front means a certain loss of the nobler qualities in
the home front, from which so many of the staunchest are withdrawn.
And then war-weariness breeds doubts, doubts breed fears, and fears
breed the spirit of surrender.

There seemed to be more Copperheads in the conglomerate opposition
than Unionists ready to withstand them. The sinister figure of
Vallandigham loomed large in Ohio, where he openly denounced the
war in such disloyal terms that the military authorities arrested
him. An opposition committee, backed by the snakes in the grass of
the secret societies, at once wrote to Lincoln demanding release.
Lincoln thereupon offered release if the committee would sign a
declaration that, since rebellion existed, and since the armed forces
of the United States were the constitutional means of suppressing
rebellion, each member of the committee would support the war till
rebellion was put down. The committee refused to sign. More people
then began to see the self-contradictions of the opposition, and
most of those "plain people" to whom Lincoln consciously appealed
were touched to the heart by his pathetic question: "Must I shoot
the simple-minded soldier boy who deserts, while I must not touch
a hair of the wily agitator who induces him to desert?"

But there was still defection on the Union side, and among many
"plain people" too; for Horace Greeley, the best-known Union editor,
lost his nerve and ran away. And Greeley was not the only Union
journalist who helped, sometimes unwittingly, to pervert public
opinion. The "writing up" of McClellan for what he was not, though
rather hysterical, was at least well meant. But the reporters who
"wrote down" General Cox, because he would not make them members
of his staff in West Virginia, disgraced their profession. The
lies about Sherman's "insanity" and Grant's "intoxication" were
shamelessly excused on the plea that they made "good stories."
Sherman's insanity, as we have seen already, existed only in the
disordered imagination of blabbing old Simon Cameron. Grant, at
the time these stories were published, was strictly temperate.

Amid all the hindrances--and encouragements, for the Union press
generally did noble service in the Union cause--of an uncensored
press, and all the complexities of public opinion, Lincoln kept
his head and heart set firmly on the one supreme objective of the
Union. He foresaw from the first that if all the States came through
the war United, then all the reforms for which the war was fought
would follow; but that if any particular reform was itself made
the supreme objective, then it, and with it all the other reforms,
would fail, because only part of the Union strength would be involved,
whereas the whole was needed. Moreover, he clearly foresaw the
absolute nature of a great civil war. Foreign wars may well, and
often do, end in some sort of compromise, especially when the home
life of the opponents can go on as before. But a great civil war
cannot end in compromise because it radically changes the home
life of one side or the other. Davis stood for "Independence or
extermination"; Lincoln simply for the Union, which, in his clear
prevision, meant all that the body politic could need for a new and
better life. He accepted the word "enemy" as descriptive of a passing
phase. He would not accept such phraseology as Meade's, "driving the
invader from our soil." "Will our generals," he complained, "never
get that idea out of their heads? The whole country is our soil."

He was a life-long advocate of Emancipation, first, with compensation,
now as part of the price to be paid for rebellion. Emancipation,
however, depended on the Union, not the Union on it. His Proclamation
was ready in the summer of '62. But to publish it in the midst of
defeat would make it look like an act of despair. In September,
when the Confederates had to recross the Potomac after Antietam, the
Proclamation was given to the world. Its first effect was greater
abroad than at home; for now no foreign government could say, and
rightly say, that the war, not being fought on account of slavery,
might leave that issue still unsettled. This was a most important
point in Lincoln's foreign policy, a policy which had been haunted
by the fear of recognition for the South or the possibility of
war with either the French or British, or even both together.

Lincoln's Cabinet was composed of two factions, one headed by Seward,
the Secretary of State, the other by Chase, the Secretary of the
Treasury. Both the fighting services were under War Democrats:
the Army under Stanton, the Navy under Welles. All these ministers
began by thinking that Lincoln had the least ability among them.
Seward and Welles presently learnt better. Stanton's exclamation
at Lincoln's death speaks for itself "Now he belongs to the ages!"
But Chase never believed that Lincoln could even be his equal.
Chase and the Treasury were a thorn in the side of the Government;
Chase because it was his nature, the Treasury because its notes fell
to thirty-nine cents in the dollar during the summer of '64. Welles,
hard-working and upright, was guided by an expert assistant. Stanton,
equally upright and equally hardworking, made many mistakes. And
yet, when all is said and done, Stanton was a really able patriot
who worked his hardest for what seemed to him the best.

Such were the four chief men in that Cabinet with which Lincoln
carried out his Union policy and over which he towered in what
became transcendent statesmanship--the head, the heart, the genius
of the war. He never, for one moment, changed his course, but kept
it fixed upon the Union, no matter what the winds and tides, the
currents and cross-currents were. Thus, while so many lesser minds
were busy with flotsam and jetsam of the controversial storm, his
own serener soul was already beyond the far horizon, voyaging toward
the one sure haven for the Ship of State.


But Lincoln was more than the principal civilian war statesman: he
was the constitutional Commander-in-Chief of all the Union forces,
afloat and ashore. He was responsible not only for raising, supplying,
and controlling them, but for their actual command by men who, in
the eyes of the law, were simply his own lieutenants. The problem
of exercising civil control without practicing civilian interference,
always and everywhere hard, and especially hard in a civil war,
was particularly hard in his case, in view of public opinion, the
press, his own war policy, and the composition of his Cabinet.
His solution was by no means perfect; but the wonder is that he
reached it so well in spite of such perverting factors. He began
with the mere armed mob that fought the First Bull Run beset with
interference. He ended with Farragut, Grant, and Sherman, combined
in one great scheme of strategy that included Mobile, Virginia,
and the lower South, and that, while under full civil control,
was mostly free from interference with its naval and military
work--except at the fussy hands of Stanton.

The fundamental difference between civil control, which is the
very breath of freedom, and civilian interference, which means
the death of all efficiency, can be quite simply illustrated by
supposing the proverbial Ship of State to be a fighting man-of-war.
The People are the owners, with all an owner's rights; while their
chosen Government is their agent, with all an agent's delegated
power. The fighting Services, as the word itself so properly implies,
are simply the People's servants, though they take their orders
from the Government. So far, so good, within the limits of civil
control, under which, and which alone, any national resources--in
men, money, or material--can lawfully be turned to warlike ends.
But when the ship is fitting out, still more when she is out at sea,
and most of all when she is fighting, then she should be handled only
by her expert captain with his expert crew. Civilian interference
begins the moment any inexpert outsider takes the captain's place;
and this interference is no less disastrous when the outsider remains
at home than when he is on the actual spot.

Lincoln and Stanton were out of their element in the strategic
fight with Lee and Stonewall Jackson, as the next chapter abundantly
proves. But they will bear, and more than bear, comparison with
Davis and Benjamin, their own special "opposite numbers." Benjamin,
when Confederate Secretary of War in '62, nearly drove Jackson
out of the service by ordering him to follow the advice of some
disgruntled subordinates who objected to being moved about for
strategic reasons which they could not understand. To make matters
worse, Benjamin sent this precious order direct to Jackson without
even informing his immediate superior, "Joe" Johnston, or even Lee
himself. Thus discipline, the very soul of armies, was attacked
from above and beneath by the man who should have been its chief
upholder. Luckily for the South things were smoothed over, and
Benjamin learnt something he should have known at first.

Davis had none of Lincoln's diffidence about his own capacity for
directing the strategy of armies. He had passed through West Point
and commanded a battalion in Mexico without finding out that his
fitness stopped there. He interfered with Lee and Jackson, sometimes
to almost a disabling extent. He forced his enmity on "Joe" Johnston
and superseded him at the very worst time in the final campaign. He
interfered more than ever just when Lee most required a free hand.
And when he did make Lee a real Commander-in-Chief the Southern
cause had been lost already. Lincoln's war statesmanship grew with
the war. Davis remained as he was.

Lincoln had to meet the difficulties that always occur when
professionals and amateurs are serving together. How much Lincoln,
Stanton, professionals, and amateurs had to do with the system that
was evolved under great stress is far too complex for discussion
here. Suffice it to say this: Lincoln's clear insight and openness
of mind enabled him to see the universal truth, that, other things
being equal, the trained and expert professional must excel the
untrained and inexpert amateur. But other things are never precisely
equal; and a war in which the whole mass-manhood is concerned brings
in a host of amateurs. Lincoln was as devoid of prejudice against
the regular officers as he was against any other class of men; and
he was ready to try and try again to find a satisfactory commander
among them, in spite of many failures. The plan of campaign proposed
by General Winfield Scott (and ultimately carried out in a modified
form) was dubbed by wiseacre public men the "Anaconda policy"; witlings
derided it, and the people were too impatient for anything except "On
to Richmond!" Scott, unable to take the field at seventy-five, had
no second-in-command. Halleck was a very poor substitute later on.
In the meantime McDowell was chosen and generously helped by Lincoln
and Stanton. But after Bull Run the very people whose impatience
made victory impossible howled him down.

Then the choice fell on McClellan, whose notorious campaign fills
much of our next chapter. There we shall see how refractory
circumstances, Stanton's waywardness among them, forced Lincoln
to go beyond the limits of civil control. Here we need only note
McClellan's personal relations with the President. Instead of summoning
him to the White House Lincoln often called at McClellan's for
discussion. McClellan presently began to treat Lincoln's questions
as intrusions, and one day sent down word that he was too tired to
see the President. Lincoln had told a friend that he would hold
McClellan's stirrups for the sake of victory. But he could not
abdicate in favor of McClellan or any one else.

It was none of Lincoln's business to be an actual Commander-in-Chief.
Yet night after weary night he sat up studying the science and art
of war, groping his untutored way toward those general principles
and essential human facts which his native genius enabled him to
reach, but never quite understanding--how could he?--their practical
application to the field of strategy. His supremely good common
sense saved him from going beyond his depth whenever he could help
it. His Military Orders were forced upon him by the extreme pressure
of impatient public opinion. He told Grant "he did not know but
they were all wrong, and he did know that some of them were."

McClellan was not the only failure in Virginia. Burnside and Hooker
also failed against Lee and Jackson. All three suffered from civilian
interference as well as from their own defects. At last, in the
third year of the war, a victor appeared in Meade, a good, but
by no means great, commander. In the fourth year Lincoln gave the
chief command to Grant, whom he had carefully watched and wisely
supported through all the ups and downs of the river campaigns.

Grant's account of his first conference alone with Lincoln is eloquent
of Lincoln's wise war statesmanship:


He stated that he had never professed to be a military man or
to know how campaigns should be conducted, and never wanted to
interfere in them.... All he wanted was some one who would take
the responsibility and act, and call on him for all the assistance
needed, pledging himself to use all the power of the government
in rendering such assistance.... He pointed out on the map two
streams which empty into the Potomac, and suggested that the army
might be moved on boats and landed between the mouths of these
streams. We would then have the Potomac to bring our supplies and
the tributaries would protect our flanks while we moved out. I
listened respectfully, but did not suggest that the same streams
would protect Lee's flanks while he was shutting us up. I did not
communicate my plans to the President; nor did I to the Secretary
of War or to General Halleck.


Trust begot trust; and some months later Grant showed war statesmanship
of the same magnificent kind. McClellan had become the Democratic
candidate for President, to the well-founded alarm of all who put
the Union first. In June, when Grant and Lee were at grips round
Richmond, Lincoln was invited to a public meeting got up in honor
of Grant with only a flimsy disguise of the ominous fact that Grant,
and not Lincoln, might be the Union choice. Lincoln sagaciously wrote
back: "It is impossible for me to attend. I approve nevertheless
of whatever may tend to strengthen and sustain General Grant and
the noble armies now under his command. He and his brave soldiers
are now in the midst of their great trial, and I trust that at
your meeting you will so shape your good words that they may turn
to men and guns, moving to his and their support." The danger to
the Union of taking Grant away from the front moved Lincoln deeply
all through that anxious summer of '64, though he never thought
Grant would leave the front with his work half done. In August an
officious editor told Lincoln that he ought to take a good long
rest. Lincoln, however, was determined to stand by his own post of
duty and find out from Grant, through their common friend, John
Eaton, what Grant's own views of such ideas were. This is Eaton's
account of how Grant took it:


We had been talking very quietly. But Grant's reply came in an
instant and with a violence for which I was not prepared. He brought
his clenched fists down hard on the strap arms of his camp chair.
"They can't do it. They can't compel me to do it." Emphatic gesture
was not a strong point with Grant. "Have you said this to the
President?" "No," said Grant, "I have not thought it worth while
to assure the President of my opinion. I consider it as important
for the cause that he should be elected as that the army should
be successful in the field."


When Eaton brought back his report Lincoln simply said, "I told you
they could not get him to run till he had closed out the rebellion."

On the twenty-third of this same gloomy August, lightened only
by the taking of Mobile, Lincoln asked his Cabinet if they would
endorse a memorandum without reading it. They all immediately signed.
After his reelection in November he read it out: "This morning,
as for some days past, it seems exceedingly probable that this
Administration will not be reelected. Then it will be my duty to
so cooeperate with the President-elect as to save the Union between
the election and the inauguration, as he will have secured his
election on such ground that he cannot possibly save it afterwards."
He added that he would have asked McClellan to throw his whole
influence into getting enough recruits to finish the war before
the fourth of March. "And McClellan," was Seward's comment, "would
have said 'Yes, yes,' and then done nothing."

Lincoln's reelection was helped by Farragut's victory in August,
Sherman's in September, and Sheridan's raid through the Shenandoah
Valley in October. But it was also helped by that strange, vivifying
touch which passes, no one knows how, from the man who best embodies
a supremely patriotic cause to the masses of his fellow patriots,
and then, at some great crisis, when they scale heights which he
has long since trod, comes back in flood and carries him to power.

Lincoln stories were abroad; the true were eclipsing the false; and
all the true ones gained him increasing credit. Naval reformers,
and many others too, enjoyed the homely wit with which he closed
the first conference about such a startlingly novel craft as the
plans for the _Monitor_ promised: "Well, Gentlemen, all I have to
say is what the girl said when she put her foot into the stocking:
'It strikes me there's something in it.'" The army enjoyed the joke
against the three-month captain whom Sherman threatened to shoot
if he went home without leave. The same day Lincoln, visiting the
camp, was harangued by this prospective deserter in presence of many
another man disheartened by Bull Run. "Mr. President: this morning
I spoke to Colonel Sherman and he threatened to shoot me, Sir!"
Lincoln looked the two men over, and then, in a stage whisper every
listener could hear, said: "Well, if I were you, and he threatened
to shoot me, I wouldn't trust him; for I'm sure he'd do it." Both
Services were not only pleased with the "rise" Lincoln took out
of a too inquisitive politician but were much reassured by its
model discretion. This importunate politician so badgered Lincoln
about the real destination of McClellan's transports that Lincoln
at last promised to tell everything he could if the politician
would promise not to repeat it. Then, after swearing the utmost
secrecy, the politician got the news: "They are going to sea."

The whole home front as well as the Services were touched to the
heart by tales of Lincoln's kindness in his many interviews with
the war-bereaved; and letters like these spoke for themselves to
every patriot in the land:

                          Executive Mansion, November 21, 1864.

Mrs. Bixby, Boston, Massachusetts.

Dear Madam: I have been shown in the files of the War Department
a statement of the Adjutant-General of Massachusetts that you are
the mother of five sons who have died gloriously on the field of
battle. I feel how weak and fruitless must be any words of mine
which should attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so
overwhelming. But I cannot refrain from tendering to you the consolation
that may be found in the thanks of the Republic they died to save.
I pray that our heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your
bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved
and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid
so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom.

         Yours very sincerely and respectfully,
                             Abraham Lincoln.


Nor did the Lincoln touch stop there. It even began to make its
quietly persuasive way among the finer spirits of the South from
the very day on which the Second Inaugural closed with words which
were the noblest consummation of the prophecy made in the First.
This was the prophecy: "The mystic chords of memory, stretching
from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and
hearthstone, all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus
of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the
better angels of our nature." And this the consummation: "With
malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the
right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish
the work we are in, to bind up the nation's wounds, to care for him
who shall have borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan--to
do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among
ourselves and with all nations."




CHAPTER VI

LEE AND JACKSON: 1862-3

Most Southerners remained spellbound by the glamour of Bull Run
till the hard, sharp truths of '62 began to rouse them from their
flattering dream. They fondly hoped, and even half believed, that
if another Northern army dared to invade Virginia it would certainly
fail against their entrenchments at Bull Run. If, so ran the argument,
the North failed in the open field it must fail still worse against
a fortified position.

The Southern generals vainly urged their Government to put forth
its utmost strength at once, before the more complex and less united
North had time to recover and begin anew. They asked for sixty
thousand men at Bull Run, to be used for a vigorous counterstroke
at Washington. They pointed out the absurdity of misusing the Bull
Run (or Manassas) position as a mere shield, fixed to one spot,
instead of making it the hilt of a sword thrust straight at the heart
of the North. Robert E. Lee, now a full general in the Confederate
Army and adviser to the President, grasped the whole situation
from the first and urged the right solution in the official way.
Stonewall Jackson, still a junior general, was in full accord with
Lee, as we know from the confidential interview (at the end of
October, '61) between him and his divisional commander, General G.
W. Smith, who made it public many years later. The gist of Jackson's
argument was this: "McClellan won't come out this year with his
army of recruits. We ought to invade now, not wait to be invaded
later on. If Davis would concentrate every man who can be spared
from all other points and let us invade before winter sets in,
then McClellan's recruits couldn't stand against us in the field.
Let us cross the upper Potomac, occupy Baltimore, and, holding
Maryland, cut the communications of Washington, force the Federal
Government out of it, beat McClellan if he attacks, destroy industrial
plants liable to be turned to warlike ends, cut the big commercial
lines of communication, close the coal mines, seize the neck of
land between Pittsburg and Lake Erie, live on the country by
requisition, and show the North what it would cost to conquer the
South." On asking Smith if he agreed, Smith answered: "I will tell
you a secret; for I am sure it won't be divulged. These views were
rejected by the Government during the conference at Fairfax Court
House at the beginning of the month." Jackson thereupon shook Smith's
hand, saying, "I am sorry, very sorry," and, mounting Little Sorrel
without another word, rode sadly away.

Jefferson Davis probably, and some of his Cabinet possibly, understood
what Lee, "Joe" Johnston, Beauregard, Smith, and Jackson so strongly
urged. But they feared the outcry that would assuredly be raised by
people in districts denuded of troops for the grand concentration
elsewhere. So they remained passive when they should have been active,
and, trying to strengthen each separate part, fatally weakened the
whole.

Meanwhile the North was collecting the different elements of warlike
force and changing its Secretary of War. Cameron was superseded
by Stanton on the fifteenth of January. Twelve days later Lincoln
issued the first of those military orders which, as we have just
seen, he afterwards told Grant that the impatience of the loyal
North compelled him to issue, though he knew some were certainly, and
all were possibly, wrong. This first order was one of the certainly
wrong. McClellan's unready masses were to begin an unlimited mud
march through the early spring roads of Virginia on the twenty-second
of February, in honor of Washington's birthday. A reconnoitering
staff officer reported the roads as being in their proper places;
but he guessed the bottom had fallen out. So McClellan was granted
some delay.

His grand total was now over two hundred thousand men. The Confederate
grand total was estimated at a hundred and fifteen thousand by the
civilian detectives whom the Federal Government employed to serve
in place of an expert intelligence staff. The detective estimate
was sixty-five thousand men out. The real Confederate strength
at this time was only fifty thousand. There was little chance of
getting true estimates in any other way, as the Federal Government
had no adequate cavalry. Most of the few cavalry McClellan commanded
were as yet a mere collection of men and horses, quite unfit for
reconnoitering and testing an enemy's force.

McClellan's own plan, formed on the supposition that the Confederates
held the Bull Run position with at least a hundred thousand men,
involved the transfer of a hundred and fifty thousand Federals by
sea from Washington to Fortress Monroe, on the historic peninsula
between the York and James rivers. Then, using these rivers as
lines of communication, his army would take Richmond in flank.
Lincoln's objection to this plan was based on the very significant
argument that while the Federal army was being transported piecemeal
to Fortress Monroe the Confederates might take Washington by a
sudden dash from their base at Centreville, only thirty miles off.
This was a valid objection; for Washington was not only the Federal
Headquarters but the very emblem of the Union cause--a sort of living
Stars and Stripes--and Washington lost might well be understood to
mean almost the same as if the Ship of State had struck her colors.

On the ninth of March the immediate anxiety about Washington was
relieved. That day came news that the _Monitor_ had checkmated the
_Merrimac_ in Hampton Roads and that "Joe" Johnston had withdrawn
his forces from the Bull Run position and had retired behind the
Rappahannock to Culpeper. On the tenth McClellan began a reconnoitering
pursuit of Johnston from Washington. Having found burnt bridges and
other signs of decisive retirement, he at last persuaded the reluctant
Lincoln to sanction the Peninsula Campaign. On the seventeenth his
army began embarking for Fortress Monroe, ten thousand men at a
time, that being all the transports could carry. For a week the
movement of troops went on successfully; while the Confederates
could not make out what was happening along the coast. Everything
also seemed quite safe, from the Federal point of view, in the
Shenandoah Valley, where General Banks commanded. And both there
and along the Potomac the Federals were in apparently overwhelming
strength; even though the detectives doing duty as staff officers
still kept on doubling the numbers of all the Confederates under
arms.

Suddenly, on the twenty-third, a fight at Kernstown in the Shenandoah
Valley gave a serious shock to the victorious Federals, not only
there but all over the semicircle of invasion, from West Virginia
round by the Potomac and down to Fortress Monroe. The fighting on
both sides was magnificent. Yet Kernstown itself was a very small
affair. Little more than ten thousand men had been in action: seven
thousand Federals under Shields against half as many Confederates
under Stonewall Jackson. The point is that Jackson's attack, though
unsuccessful, was very disconcerting elsewhere. From Kernstown the
area of disturbance spread like wildfire till the tactical victory
of seven thousand Federals had spoilt the strategy of thirty times
as many. Shields reported: "I set to work during the night to bring
together all the troops within my reach. I sent an express after
Williams's division, requesting the rear brigade, about twenty miles
distant, to march all night and join me in the morning. I swept the
posts in rear of almost all their guards, hurrying them forward
by forced marches, to be with me at daylight." Banks, now on his
way to Washington, halted in alarm at Harper's Ferry. McClellan,
perceiving that Jackson's little force was more than a mere corps of
observation, approved Banks and added: "As soon as you are strong
enough push Jackson hard and drive him well beyond Strasburg,"
that is, west of the Massanuttons, where Fremont could close in
and finish him. Lincoln had already been thinking of transferring
nine thousand men from McClellan to Fremont. Kernstown decided
it; so off they went to West Virginia. Still fearing an attack
on Washington, Lincoln halted McDowell's army corps, thirty-seven
thousand strong, on the march overland to join McClellan on the
Peninsula, and kept them stuck fast round Centreville, near Bull
Run. And so McClellan's Peninsular force was suddenly reduced by
forty-six thousand men.

April was a month of maneuvers and suspense. By the end of it McClellan,
based on Fortress Monroe, had accumulated a hundred and ten thousand
men. The Confederates on the Peninsula, holding Yorktown, numbered
fifty thousand. McClellan sadly missed McDowell, whose corps was to
have taken the fort at Gloucester Point that prevented the Federal
gunboats from turning the enemy's lines at Yorktown. McDowell moved
south to Fredericksburg, leaving a small force near Manassas Junction
to connect him with the garrison of Washington. The Confederates
could spare only twelve thousand men to watch him. Meanwhile Banks
occupied the Shenandoah Valley, having twenty thousand men at
Harrisonburg and smaller forces at several points all round, from
southwest to northeast, each designed to form part of the net that
was soon to catch Jackson. Beyond Banks stood Fremont's force in
West Virginia, also ready to close in. Jackson's complete grand
total was less than that of Banks's own main body. Yet, with one
eye on Richmond, he lay in wait at Swift Run Gap, crouching for a
tiger-spring at Banks. Virginia was semicircled by superior forces.
But everywhere inside the semicircle the Confederate parts all
formed one strategic whole; while the Federal parts outside did not.
Moreover, the South had already decided to call up every available
man; thus forestalling the North by more than ten months on the
vital issue of conscription.

In May the preliminary clash of arms began on the Peninsula. The
Confederates evacuated the Yorktown lines on the third. On the
fifth McClellan's advanced guard fought its way past Williamsburg.
On the seventh he began changing his base from Fortress Monroe to
White House on the Pamunkey. Here on the sixteenth he was within
twenty miles of Richmond, while all the seaways behind him were safe
in Union hands. The fate not only of Richmond but of the whole South
seemed trembling in the scales. The Northern armies had cleared
the Mississippi down to Memphis. The Northern navy had taken New
Orleans, the greatest Southern port. And now the Northern hosts
were striking at the Southern capital. McClellan with double numbers
from the east, McDowell with treble numbers from the north, and the
Union navy, with more than fourfold strength on all the navigable
waters, were closing in. The Confederate Government had even decided
to take the extreme step of evacuating Richmond, hoping to prolong
the struggle elsewhere. The official records had been packed. Davis
had made all arrangements for the flight of his family. And from
Drewry's Bluff, eight miles south of Richmond, the masts of the
foremost Federal vessels could be seen coming up the James, where,
on the eleventh, the _Merrimac_, having grounded, had been destroyed
by her own commander.

But the General Assembly of Virginia, passionately seconded by
the City Council, petitioned the Government to stand its ground
"till not a stone was left upon another." Every man in Richmond who
could do a hand's turn and who was not already in arms marched out
to complete the defenses of the James at Drewry's Bluff. Senators,
bankers, bondmen and free, merchants, laborers, and ministers of
all religions, dug earthworks, hauled cannon, piled ammunition,
or worked, wet to the waist, at the big boom that was to stop the
ships and hold them under fire. The Government had changed its mind.
Richmond was to be held to the last extremity. And the Southern
women were as willing as the men.

In the midst of all this turmoil Lee calmly reviewed the situation.
He saw that the Federal gunboats coming up the James were acting
alone, as the disconnected vanguard of what should have been a
joint advance, and that no army was yet moving to support them.
He knew McClellan and Banks and read them like a book. He also
knew Jackson, and decided to use him again in the Shenandoah Valley
as a menace to Washington. Writing to him on the sixteenth of May,
the very day McClellan reached White House, only twenty miles from
Richmond, he said: "Whatever movement you make against Banks, do it
speedily, and, if successful, drive him back towards the Potomac,
and create the impression, as far as possible, that you design
threatening that line." Moreover, out of his own scanty forces, he
sent Jackson two excellent brigades. Thus, while the great Federal
civilians who knew nothing practical of war were all agog about
Richmond, a single point at one end of the semicircle, the great
Confederate strategist was forging a thunderbolt to relieve the
pressure on it by striking the Federal center so as to threaten
Washington. The fundamental idea was a Fabian defensive at Richmond,
a vigorous offensive in the Valley, to produce Federal dispersion
between these points and Washington; then rapid concentration against
McClellan on the Chickahominy.

The unsupported Federal gunboats were stopped and turned back at
the boom near Drewry's Bluff. McClellan, bent on besieging Richmond
in due form, crawled cautiously about the intervening swamps of the
oozy Chickahominy. McDowell, who could not advance alone, remained
at Fredericksburg. Shields stood behind him, near Catlett's Station,
to keep another eye on nervous Washington.


In the meantime Stonewall Jackson, still in the Shenandoah, had
fought no battles since his tactical defeat at Kernstown on the
twenty-third of March had proved such a pregnant strategic victory
elsewhere. But late in April he had a letter from Lee, telling of
the general situation and suggesting an attack on Banks. Banks,
however, still had twenty thousand men at Harrisonburg, with twenty-five
thousand more in or within call of the Valley. Jackson's complete
grand total was less than eighteen thousand. The odds against him
therefore exceeded five against two; and direct attack was out of
the question. But he now began his maneuvers anew and on a bolder
scale than ever. He had upset the Federal strategy at Kernstown,
when there were less than eight thousand Confederates in the Valley.
What might he not do with ten thousand more? His wonderful Valley
Campaign, famous forever in the history of war, gives us the answer.

He had five advantages over Banks. First, his own expert knowledge
and genius for war, backed by a dauntless character. Banks was a
very able man who had worked his way up from factory hand to Speaker
of the House of Representatives and Governor of Massachusetts. But
he had neither the knowledge, genius, nor character required for
high command; and he owed his present position more to his ardor
as a politician than to his ability as a general. Jackson's second
advantage was his own and his army's knowledge of the country for
which they naturally fought with a loving zeal which no invaders could
equal. The third advantage was in having Turner Ashby's cavalry.
These were horsemen born and bred, who could make their way across
country as easily as the "footy" Federals could along the road.
In answer to a peremptory order a Federal cavalry commander could
only explain: "I can't catch them. They leap fences and walls like
deer. Neither our men nor our horses are so trained." The fourth
advantage was in discipline. Jackson habitually spared his men more
than his officers, and his officers more than himself, whenever
indulgence was possible. But when discipline had to be sternly
maintained he maintained it sternly, throughout all ranks, knowing
that the flower of discipline is self-sacrifice, from the senior
general down, and that the root is due subordination, from the
junior private up. After the Conscription Act had come into force
a few companies, who were time-expired as volunteers, threw down
their arms and told their colonel they wouldn't serve another day.
On hearing this officially Jackson asked: "Why does Colonel Grigsby
refer to me to learn how to deal with mutineers? He should shoot
them where they stand." The rest of the regiment was then paraded
with loaded arms, facing the mutineers, who were given the choice
of complete submission or instant death. They chose submission. That
was the last mutiny under Stonewall Jackson. Both sides suffered from
straggling, the Confederates as much as the Federals. But Confederate
stragglers rejoined the better of the two; and in downright desertion
the Federals were the worse, simply because their own peace party
was by far the stronger. The final advantage brings us back to
strategy, on which the whole campaign was turning. Lee and Jackson
worked the Confederates together. Lincoln and Stanton worked the
Federals apart.

On the last of April Jackson slipped away from Swift Run Gap while
Ewell quietly took his place and Ashby blinded Banks by driving the
Federal cavalry back on Harrisonburg. Jackson's men were thoroughly
puzzled and disheartened when they had to leave the Valley in full
possession of the enemy while they ploughed through seas of mud
towards Richmond. What was the matter? Were they off to Richmond?
No; for they presently wheeled round. "Old Jack's crazy, sure,
this time." Even one of his staff officers thought so himself, and
put it on paper, to his own confusion afterwards. The rain came
down in driving sheets. The roads became mere drains for the oozing
woods. Wheels stuck fast; and Jackson was seen heaving his hardest
with an exhausted gun team. But still the march went on--slosh,
slosh, squelch; they slogged it through. _Close up, men!--close up
in rear!--close up, there, close up!_

On the fourth of May Jackson got word from Edward Johnson, commanding
his detached brigade near Staunton, that Milroy, commanding Fremont's
advanced guard, was coming on from West Virginia. Jackson at once
seized the chance of smashing Milroy by railing in to Staunton before
Banks or Fremont could interfere. This would have been suicidal
against a great commander with a well-trained force. But Banks,
grossly exaggerating Jackson's numbers, was already marching north
to the railhead at New Market, where he would be nearer his friends
if Jackson swooped down. Detraining at Staunton the Confederates
picketed the whole neighborhood to stop news getting out before
they made their dash against Milroy. On the seventh they moved
off. The cadets of the Virginia Military Institute, where Jackson
had been a professor for so many years, had just joined to gain
some experience of the real thing, and as they stepped out in their
smart uniforms, with all the exactness of parade-ground drill,
they formed a marked contrast to the gaunt soldiers of the Valley,
half fed, half clad, but wholly eager for the fray.

[Illustration: CIVIL WAR: VIRGINA CAMPAIGNS, 1862]

That night Milroy got together all the men he could collect at
McDowell, a little village just beyond the Valley and on the road to
Gauley Bridge in West Virginia. He sent posthaste for reinforcements.
But Fremont's men were divided too far west, fearing nothing from
the Valley, while Banks's were thinking of a concentration too
far north.

In the afternoon of the eighth, Milroy attacked Jackson with great
determination and much skill. But after a stern encounter, in which
the outnumbered Federals fought very well indeed, the Confederates
won a decisive victory. The numbers actually engaged--twenty-five
hundred Federals against four thousand Confederates--were even
smaller than at Kernstown. But this time the Confederates won the
tactical victory on the spot as well as the strategic victory all
over the Valley; and the news cheered Richmond at what, as we have
seen already, was its very darkest hour. The night of the battle
Jackson sent out strong working parties to destroy all bridges and
culverts and to block all roads by which Fremont could reach the
Valley. In some places bowlders were rolled down from the hills.
In one the trees were felled athwart the path for a mile. A week
later Jackson was back in the Valley at Lebanon Springs, while
Fremont was blocked off from Banks, who was now distractedly groping
for safety and news.

The following day, the famous sixteenth, we regain touch with Lee,
who, as mentioned already, then wrote to Jackson about attacking
Banks in order to threaten Washington. This dire day at Richmond,
the day McClellan reached White House, was also the one appointed by
the Southern Government as a day of intercession for God's blessing
on the Southern arms. None kept it more fervently, even in beleaguered
Richmond, than pious Jackson in the Valley. Then, like a giant
refreshed, he rose for swift and silent marches and also sudden
hammer-strokes at Banks.

Confident that all would now go well, Washington thought nothing
of the little skirmish at McDowell, because it apparently disturbed
nothing beyond the Shenandoah Valley. The news from everywhere
else was good; and Federals were jubilant. So were the civilian
strategists, particularly Stanton, who, though tied to his desk
as Secretary of War, was busy wire-pulling Banks's men about the
Valley. Stanton ordered Banks to take post at Strasburg and to
hold the bridges at Front Royal with two detached battalions. This
masterpiece of bungling put the Federals at Front Royal in the air,
endangered their communications north to Winchester, and therefore
menaced the Valley line toward Washington. But Banks said nothing;
and Stanton would have snubbed him if he had.

On the twenty-third of May a thousand Federals under Colonel Kenly
were sweltering in the first hot weather of the year at Stanton's
indefensible position of Front Royal when suddenly a long gray line
of skirmishers emerged from the woods, the Confederate bugles rang
out, and Jackson's battle line appeared. Then came a crashing volley,
which drove in the Federal pickets for their lives. Colonel Kenly
did his best. But he was outflanked and forced back in confusion. A
squadron of New York cavalry came to the rescue; but were themselves
outflanked and helpless on the road against the Virginian horsemen,
who could ride across country. Kenly had just made a second stand,
when down came the Virginians, led by Colonel Flournoy at racing
speed over fence and ditch, scattering the Federal cavalry like
chaff before the wind and smashing into the Federal infantry. Two
hundred and fifty really efficient cavalry took two guns (complete
with limbers, men, and horses), killed and wounded a hundred and
fifty-four of their opponents, and captured six hundred prisoners
as well--and all with a loss to themselves of only eleven killed
and fifteen wounded.

Ashby's cavalry, several hundreds strong, pushed on and out to the
flanks, cutting the wires, destroying bridges, and blocking the
roads against reinforcements from beyond the Valley. Three hours
after the attack a dispatch-rider dashed up to Banks's headquarters
at Strasburg. But Banks refused to move, saying, when pressed by
his staff to make a strategic retreat on Winchester, "By God, sir,
I will not retreat! We have more to fear from the opinions of our
friends than from the bayonets of our enemies!" The Cabinet backed
him up next day by actually proposing to reinforce him at Strasburg
with troops from Washington and Baltimore. Nevertheless he was
forced to fly for his life to Winchester. His stores at Strasburg
had to be abandoned. His long train of wagons was checked on the
way, with considerable loss. And some of his cavalry, caught on
the road by horsemen who could ride across country, were smashed
to pieces.

Jackson pressed on relentlessly to Winchester with every one who
could march like "foot cavalry," as his Valley men came to be called.
On the twenty-fifth, the third day of unremitting action, he carried
the Winchester heights and drove Banks through the town. Only the
Second Massachusetts, which had already distinguished itself during
the retreat, preserved its formation. Ten thousand Confederate
bayonets glittered in the morning sun. The long gray lines swept
forward. The piercing rebel yell rose high. And the people, wild
with joy, rushed out of doors to urge the victors on.

By the twenty-sixth, the first day on which Stanton's reinforcements
from Baltimore and Washington could possibly have fought at Strasburg,
the Confederates had reached Martinsburg, fifty miles beyond it.
Banks had already crossed the Potomac, farther on still. The newsboys
of the North were crying, _Defeat of General Banks! Washington in
danger!_ Thirteen Governors were calling for special State militia,
for which a million men were volunteering, spare troops were hurrying
to Harper's Ferry, a reserve corps was being formed at Washington,
the Federal Government was assuming control of all the railroad
lines, and McClellan was being warned that he must either take
Richmond at once or come back to save the capital. Nor did the
strategic disturbance stop even there; for the Washington authorities
ordered McDowell's force at Fredericksburg to the Valley just as
it was coming into touch with McClellan.

On the twenty-eighth Jackson might have taken Harper's Ferry. But
the storm was gathering round him. A great strategist directing
the Federal forces could have concentrated fifty thousand men, by
sunset on the first of June, against Jackson's Army of the Valley,
which could not possibly have mustered one-third of such a number.
McDowell arrived that night at Front Royal. He had vainly protested
against the false strategy imposed by the Government from Washington,
and he was not a free agent now. Yet, even so, his force was at
least a menace to Jackson, who had only two chances of getting
away to aid in the defeat of McClellan and the saving of Richmond.
One was to outmarch the converging Federals, gain interior lines
along the Valley, and defeat them there in detail. The other was to
march into friendly Maryland, trusting to her Southern sentiments
for help and reinforcements. He decided on the Valley route and
marched straight in between his enemies.

His fortnight's work, from the nineteenth of May to the first of
June, inclusive, is worth summing up. In these fourteen days he
had marched 170 miles, routed 12,500 men, threatened an invasion
of the North, drawn McDowell off from Fredericksburg, taken or
destroyed all Federal stores at Front Royal, Winchester, and
Martinsburg, and brought off safely a convoy seven miles long.
Moreover, he had done all this with the loss of only six hundred,
though sixty thousand enemies lay on three sides of his own sixteen
thousand men.

His remaining problem was harder still. It was how to mystify,
tire out, check short, and then immobilize the converging Federals
long enough to let him slip secretly away in time to help Johnston
and Lee against McClellan. Jackson, like his enemies, moved through
what has been well called the Fog of War--that inevitable uncertainty
through which all commanders must find their way. But none of his
enemies equaled him in knowledge, genius, or character for war.

The first week in June saw desperate marches in the Valley, with
the outnumbering Federals hot-foot on the trail of Jackson, who
turned to bay one moment and at the next was off again. On the
sixth the Federals got home against his rear guard. It began to
waver, and Ashby ordered the infantry to charge. As he gave the
order his horse fell dead. In a flash he was up, waving his sword
and shouting: "Charge, for God's sake, charge!" The Confederate
line swept forward gallantly. But, just as it left the wood, Ashby
was shot through the heart. His men avenged him. Yet none could
fill his place as a born leader of irregular light horse.

Next morning the hounds were hot upon the scent again: Shields
and Fremont converging on Jackson, whom they would run to earth
somewhere north of Staunton. But on the eighth and ninth Jackson
turned sharply and bit back, first at Fremont close to Cross Keys,
then at Shields near Port Republic. Each was caught alone, just
before their point of junction, and each was defeated in detail
as well.

Fully to appreciate Jackson's strategy we must compare the strategical
and tactical numbers concerned throughout this short but momentous
Valley Campaign. The strategic numbers are those at the disposal
of the commander within the theater of operations. The tactical
numbers are those actually present on the field of battle, whether
engaged or not. At McDowell the Federals had 30,000 in strategic
strength against 17,000 Confederates; yet the Confederates got 6000
on to the field of battle against no more than 2500. At Winchester
the Federal strategic strength was 60,000 against 16,000; yet the
Confederate tactical strength was every man of the 16,000 against
7500--only one-eighth of Banks's grand total. At Cross Keys the
strategic strengths were 23,000 Federals against 13,000 Confederates;
yet 12,750 Federals were beaten by 8000 Confederates. Finally, at
Port Republic, the Federals, with a strategic strength of 22,000
against the Confederate 12,700, could only bring a tactical strength
of 4500 to bear on 6000 Confederates. The grand aggregate of these
four remarkable actions is well worth adding up. It comes to this
in strategic strength: 135,000 Federals against 58,700 Confederates.
Yet in tactical strength the odds are reversed; for they come to
this: 36,000 Confederates against only 27,250 Federals. Therefore
Stonewall Jackson, with strategic odds of nearly seven to three
against him, managed to fight with tactical odds of four to three
in his favor.


While Jackson was fighting in the Valley the Confederates at Richmond
were watching the nightly glow of Federal camp fires. McClellan
had 30,000 men north of the Chickahominy, waiting for McDowell to
come back from his enterprise against Jackson, and 75,000 south
of it. What could the 65,000 Confederates do, except hold fast to
their lines? TO RICHMOND 4-1/2 MILES: so read the sign-post at
the Mechanicsville bridge, and there stood the nearest Federal
picket. Johnston and Lee knew, however, that McClellan's alarmist
detectives swore to a Confederate army three times its actual strength
at this time; and there was reason to hope that the consequent
moral ascendancy would help the shock of an attack suddenly made
on one of McClellan's two wings while the flooded Chickahominy
flowed between them and its oozy swamps bewildered his staff.

Hearing that McDowell need not be feared, Johnston attacked at
daylight on the thirty-first of May. The battle of Seven Pines
(known also as Fair Oaks) was not unlike Shiloh. The Federals were
taken by surprise on the first day and only succeeded in holding
their own by hard fighting and with a good deal of loss. A mistake
was made by the Confederate division told off for the attack on the
key to the Federal front (an attack which, if completely successful,
would have split the Federals in two) and the main bodies were
engaged before this fatal error could be rectified. So the surprised
Federals gradually recovered from the first shock and began to
feel and use their hitherto unrealized strength. On the second
day (the first of June) Johnston, who had been severely wounded,
was plainly defeated and compelled to fall back on Richmond again.

On the morrow of this defeat Lee was appointed to "the immediate
command of the armies in eastern Virginia and North Carolina."
Davis was not war statesman enough to make him Commander-in-Chief
till '65--four years too late. Johnston did not reappear till he
tried to relieve Vicksburg from the determined attacks of Grant
in '63.

The twelfth of June will be remembered forever in the annals of
cavalry for Stuart's first great ride round McClellan's host. With
twelve hundred troopers and two horse artillery guns he stole out
beyond the western flank of the Federals and reached Taylorsville that
evening, twenty-two miles north of Richmond. Next day he rode right in
among the Federal posts in rear, discovering that McClellan's right
stretched little north of the Chickahominy, that it was not fortified,
and that it did not rest on any strong natural feature, such as a
swampy stream. This was exactly the information Lee required. So
far, so good. The Federals met with up to this time had simply been
ridden down. But now the whole country was alarmed and McClellan
had forces out to cut Stuart off on his return, while General Cooke
(Stuart's father-in-law) began to pursue him from Hanover Court
House.

Then Stuart took the boldest step of all, deciding to go clear round
the rest of the Federal army. At Tunstall's Station on the York
River Railroad he routed the guard, tore up the track, destroyed the
stores and wagons, cut the wires, burnt the bridge, and replenished
his supplies. Thence southeast, by the Williamsburg road, his column
marched under a full summer moon, the people running out of doors,
wild with joy at his daring. At sunrise he reached the Chickahominy,
only to find it flooded, full of timber, and spanned by nothing
better than a broken bridge. But, using the materials of a warehouse
to make a footway, the troopers crossed in single file, leading
their chargers, which swam. Waving his hand to the Federals, who had
just arrived too late, Stuart pushed on the remaining thirty-five
miles to Richmond, rounding the Federal flank within range of Federal
gunboats on the James.

This magnificent raid not only procured in three days information
that McClellan's civilian detectives could not have procured in
three years but raised Confederate morale and depressed the Federals
correspondingly. Moreover, it drove the first nail into McClellan's
coffin. For in October, just after another Stuart raid, the following
curious incident occurred on board the _Martha Washington_ when
Lincoln was returning from an Alexandria review which had cheered
him up considerably, coming, as it did, after Lee had failed in
Maryland. By way of answering the very pertinent question--"Mr.
President, how about McClellan?"--Lincoln simply drew a ring on
the deck, quietly adding: "When I was a boy we used to play a game
called 'Three times round and out.' Stuart has been round McClellan
twice. The third time McClellan will be out."

Stuart rode ahead of his troopers, straight to Lee, who immediately
wrote to Jackson suggesting that the Army of the Valley, while
keeping the Federals alarmed to the last about an attack on the
line of the Potomac, might secretly slip away and join a combined
attack on McClellan. Jackson, who had of course foreseen this, was
ready with every blind known to the art of war. Even his staff
and generals knew nothing of their destination. The first move was
so secret that the enemy never suspected anything till it was too
late, while friends thought there was to be another surprise in
the Valley. The second move led various people to suspect a march
on Washington--no bad news to leak out; and nothing but misleading
items did leak out. The Army of the Valley moved within a charmed
circle of cavalry which prevented any one from going forward, ahead
of the advance, and swept before it all stragglers through whom
the news might leak out by the rear. On the twenty-third of June,
only eight days after Stuart had reported his raid to Lee, Jackson
attended Lee's conference at the same place, Richmond. The Valley
Army was then on its thirty-mile march from Frederick's Hall to
Ashland, where it arrived on the twenty-fifth, fifteen miles north.

McClellan had over a hundred thousand men. Lee had less than ninety
thousand, even after Jackson had joined him. To attack McClellan's
strongly fortified front, with its almost impregnable flanks, would
have been suicide. But McClellan's farther right, commanded by that
excellent officer, FitzJohn Porter, lay north of the Chickahominy,
with its own right open for junction with McDowell. So Lee, knowing
McClellan and the state of this Federal right, decided on the
twenty-fourth to attack Porter and threaten McClellan's communications
not only with McDowell to the north but with White House, the Federal
base twenty miles northeast. This was an exceedingly bold move,
first, because McClellan had plenty of men to take Richmond during
Lee's march north, secondly, because it meant the convergence of
separate forces on the field of battle (Jackson being at Ashland,
fifteen miles from Richmond) and, thirdly, because the Confederates
were inferior in armament and in supplies of all kinds as well
as in actual numbers. Magruder, who had held the Yorktown lines
so cleverly with such inferior forces, was to hold Richmond (on
both sides of the James) with thirty-five thousand men against
McClellan's seventy-five thousand, while Lee and Jackson converged
on Porter's twenty-five thousand with over fifty thousand.

Then followed the famous Seven Days, beginning on the twenty-sixth
of June near the signpost at the Mechanicsville bridge--TO RICHMOND
4-1/2 MILES--and ending at Harrison's Landing on the second of July.
On the twenty-sixth the attack was made with consummate strategic
skill. But it was marred by bad staff work, by the great obstructions
in Jackson's path, and by A. P. Hill's premature attack with ten
thousand men against Porter's admirable front at Beaver Dam Creek.
Hill's men moved down their own side of the little valley in dense
masses till every gun and rifle on Porter's side was suddenly unmasked.
No scythe could have mowed the leading Confederates better. Two
thousand went down in the first few minutes, and the rest at once
retreated.

Porter fell back on Gaines's Mill, where, after being reinforced,
he took up a strong position on the twenty-seventh. Again there
was failure in combining the attack. Jackson found obstructions
that even he could not overcome quickly enough. Hill attacked again
with the utmost gallantry, wave after wave of Confederates rushing
forward only to melt away before the concentrated fire of Porter's
reinforced command.

But at last the Confederates--though checked and roughly
handled--converged under Lee's own eye; and an inferno of shot
and shell loosened and shook the steadfast Federal defense. Lee
and Jackson, though far apart, gave the word for the final charge
at almost the same moment. As Jackson's army suddenly burst into
view and swept forward to the assault the joyful news was shouted
down the ranks: "The Valley men are here!" Thereupon Lee's men took
up the double-quick with "Stonewall Jackson! Jackson! Jackson!"
as their battle cry. The Federals fought right valiantly till their
key-point suddenly gave way, smashed in by weight of numbers; for
Lee had brought into action half as many again as Porter had, even
with his reinforcements. On the gallantly defended hill the long
blue lines rocked, reeled, and broke to right and left all but
the steadfast regulars, whose infantry fell back in perfect order,
whose cavalry made a desperate though futile attempt to stay the
rout by charging one against twenty, and whose four magnificent
batteries, splendidly served to the very last round, retired unbroken
with the loss of only two guns. Then the Confederate colors waved
in triumph on the hard-won crest against the crimson of the setting
sun.

The victorious Confederates spent the twenty-eighth and twenty-ninth
in finding the way to McClellan's new base. His absolute control
of all the waterways had enabled him to change his base from White
House on the Pamunkey to Harrison's Landing on the James. When the
Confederates discovered his line of retreat by the Quaker Road they
pressed in to cut it. On the thirtieth there was severe fighting
in White Oak Swamp and on Frayser's Farm. But the Federals passed
through, and made a fine stand on Malvern Hill next day. Finally,
when they turned at bay on the Evelington Heights, which covered
Harrison's Landing, they convinced their pursuers that it would
be fatal to attack again; for now Northern sea-power was visibly
present in flotillas of gunboats, which made the flanks as hopelessly
strong as the front.

McClellan therefore remained safely behind his entrenchments, with
the navy in support. He had to his own credit the strategic success
of having foiled Lee by a clever change of base; and to the credit
of his army stood some first-rate fighting besides some tactical
success, especially at Malvern Hill. Nevertheless the second invasion
of Virginia was plainly a failure; though by no means a glaring
disaster, like the first invasion at Bull Run.

McClellan, again reinforced, still professed his readiness to take
Richmond under conditions that suited himself. But the most promising
Northern force now seemed to be Pope's Army of Virginia, coming
down from the line of the Potomac, forty-seven thousand strong,
composed of excellent material, and heralded by proclamations which
even McClellan could never excel. John Pope, Halleck's hero of Island
Number Ten, came from the West to show the East how to fight. "I
presume that I have been called here to lead you against the enemy,
and that speedily. I hear constantly of taking strong positions
and holding them--of lines of retreat and bases of supplies. Let
us discard such ideas. Let us study the probable line of retreat
of our opponents, and leave our own to take care of themselves."
His Army of Virginia contained Fremont's (now Sigel's) corps, as
well as those of Banks and McDowell--all experts in the art of
"chasing Jackson."

Jackson was soon ready to be chased again. The Confederate strength
had been reduced by the Seven Days and not made good by reinforcement;
so Lee could spare Jackson only twenty-four thousand men with whom
to meet the almost double numbers under Pope. But Jackson's men had
the better morale, not only on account of their previous service but
because of their rage to beat Pope, who, unlike other Northerners,
was enforcing the harshest rules of war. His lieutenant, General von
Steinwehr, went further, not only seizing prominent civilians as
hostages (to be shot whenever he chose to draw his own distinctions
between Confederate soldiers and guerillas) but giving his German
subordinates a liberty that some of them knew well how to turn
into license. This, of course, was most exceptional; for nearly
all Northerners made war like gentlemen. Unhappily, those who did
not were bad enough and numerous enough to infuriate the South.

Halleck, who had now become chief military adviser to the Union
Government, was as cautious as McClellan and had so little discernment
that he thought Pope a better general than Grant. Lincoln, Stanton,
and Halleck put their heads together; and an order soon followed
which had the effect of relieving the pressure on Richmond and
giving the initiative to Lee. Halleck ordered McClellan to withdraw
from Harrison's Landing, take his Army of the Potomac round by sea
to Aquia Creek, and join Pope on the Rappahannock--an operation
requiring the whole month of August to complete.

Lee lost no time. His first move was to get Pope's advanced troops
defeated by Jackson, who brought more than double numbers against
Banks at Cedar Run on the ninth of August. The Federals fought
magnificently, nine against twenty thousand men. After the battle
Jackson marched across the Rapidan, and Halleck wisely forbade
Pope from following him, even though the first of Burnside's men
(now the advanced guard of McClellan's army) had arrived at Aquia
and were marching overland to Pope. Then followed some anxious days
at Federal Headquarters. Jackson vanished; and Pope's cavalry,
numerous as it was, wore itself out trying to find the clue. McClellan
was still busy moving his men from Harrison's Landing to Fortress
Monroe, whence detachments kept sailing to Aquia. What would Lee
do now?

On the thirteenth he began entraining Longstreet's troops for
Gordonsville. On the fifteenth he conferred with his generals.
And on the seventeenth, from the lookout on Clark's Mountain, he
saw Pope's unsuspecting army camped round Slaughter Mountain within
fifteen miles of the united Confederates. Halleck had just given
Pope the fatal order to "fight like the devil" till McClellan came
up. Pope was full of confidence. And there he lay, in a bad strategic
and worse tactical position, and with slightly inferior numbers,
just within reach of Jackson and Lee. Pope was, however, saved from
immediate disaster by an oversight on the part of Stuart. In ordering
Fitzhugh Lee's cavalry brigade to rendezvous at Verdierville that
night Stuart forgot to make the order urgent and the missing brigade
came in late. Stuart, anxious to see the enemy's position for himself,
rode out and was nearly taken prisoner. His dispatch-box fell into
Pope's hands, with a memorandum of Jackson's reinforcements. Jackson
was for attacking next day in any case and groaned aloud when Lee
decided not to, owing to the failure of cavalry combination in
front and the belated supplies in the rear. Pope retired safely on
the eighteenth, and on the nineteenth a thick haze hid his rear
from Lee's lookout.

Lee was now in a very difficult position, apparently face to face
with what would soon be the joint forces of Pope, McClellan, and
probably another corps from Washington: the whole well fed, well
armed, and certainly more than twice as strong as the united
Confederates. But Jackson and Stuart multiplied their forces by
skillful maneuvers and mystifying raids, and presently Stuart had
his revenge for the affront he had suffered on the seventeenth.
On the tempestuous night of the twenty-second he captured Pope's
dispatches. On the twenty-fourth, at Jefferson, Lee and Jackson
discussed the situation with these dispatches before them. Dr.
Hunter McGuire, the Confederate staff-surgeon, noticed that Jackson
was unusually animated, drawing curves in the sand with the toe
of his boot while Lee nodded assent. Perhaps it was Jackson who
suggested the strategic idea of that wonderful last week in August.
However that may have been, Lee alone was responsible for its adoption
and superior direction.

With a marvelous insight into the characters of his opponents,
a consummate knowledge of the science and art of war, and--quite
as important--an exact appreciation of the risks worth running,
Lee actually divided his 55,000 men in face of Pope's 80,000, of
20,000 more at Washington and Aquia, and of 50,000 available
reinforcements. Then, by the well-deserved results obtained, he
became one of the extremely few really great commanders of all
time.

The "bookish theorick" who, with all the facts before him, revels
in the fond delights of retrospective prophecy, will never understand
how Lee succeeded in this enterprise, except by sheer good luck.
Only those who themselves have groped their perilous way through
the dense, distorting fog of war can understand the application
of that knowledge, genius, and character for war which so rarely
unite in one man.

Lee sent Jackson north, to march at utmost speed under cover of
the Bull Run Mountains, to cross them at Thoroughfare Gap, and
to cut Pope's line at Manassas, where the enormous Federal field
base had been established. Unknown to Pope, Longstreet then slipped
into Jackson's place, so as to keep Pope in play till the raid on
Manassas and threat against Washington would draw him northeast,
away from McClellan at Aquia. The final move of this profound,
though very daring, plan was to take advantage of the Federal
distractions and consequent dispersions so as to effect a junction
on the field of battle against a conquerable force.

Jackson moved off by the first gray streak of dawn on the twenty-fifth,
and that day made good the six-and-twenty miles to Salem Church.
Screened by Stuart's cavalry, and marching through a country of
devoted friends on such an errand as a commonplace general would
never suspect, Jackson stole this march on Pope in perfect safety.
The next day's march was far more dangerous. Roused while the stars
were shining the men moved off in even greater wonder as to their
destination. But when the first flush of dawn revealed the Bull
Run Mountains, with the well-known Thoroughfare Gap straight to
their front, they at once divined their part of Lee's stupendous
plan: a giant raid on Manassas, the Federal base of superabundant
supplies. The news ran down the miles of men, and with it the thrill
that presaged victory. Mile after mile was gained, almost in dead
silence, except for the clank of harness, the rumble of wheels, the
running beat of hoofs, and that long, low, ceaselessly rippling sound
of multitudinous men's feet. Hungry, ill-clad, and worn to their
last spare ounce, the gaunt gray ranks strained forward, slipped
from their leash at last and almost in sight of their prey. So far
they were undiscovered. But the Gap was only ten miles by airline
from Pope's extreme right, and the tell-tale cloud of dust, floating
down the mountain side above them, must soon be sighted, signaled,
noted, and attended to. Only speed, the speed of "foot-cavalry,"
could now prevail, and not a man must be an inch behind. _Close
up, men, close up!--Close up there in rear!--Close up! Close up!_

By noon the head of the column had already crossed those same
communications which Pope had told his army to disregard in favor
of the much more interesting enemy line of retreat. Little did he
think that the man he had come to chase was about to burn the bridge
at Bristoe Station and thus cut the line between the Federal front
at Warrenton and the Federal base at Manassas. All went well with
Jackson, except that some news escaped to Washington and Warrenton
sooner than he expected. A Federal train dashed on to Washington
before the rails could be torn up. The next two trains were both
derailed and wrecked. But the fourth put all brakes down and speeded
back to Warrenton. Jackson quickly took up a very strong position
on the north side of Broad Run, behind the burnt railway bridge,
and sent Stuart's troopers with two battalions of "foot-cavalry"
to raid the base at Manassas, replenish the exhausted Confederate
supplies, and do the northward scouting.

The situation of the rival armies on the night of the twenty-seventh
forms one of the curiosities of war. Jackson was concentrating
round Manassas Junction. Lee was following Jackson's line of march,
but was still beyond Thoroughfare Gap. Between them stood part of
Pope's army, the whole of which occupied an irregular quadrilateral
formed by lines joining the following points: Warrenton Junction,
Bristoe Station, Gainesville, and Thoroughfare Gap. Thirty miles
northeast were the twenty thousand Federals who joined Pope too
late. Thirty miles southeast the rear of McClellan's forces were
still massing at Aquia. In Pope's opinion Jackson was clearly trapped
and Lee cut off.

But when Pope began to close his cumbrous net the following day
Jackson had disappeared again. Orders and counter-orders thereupon
succeeded each other in bewildering confusion. McClellan could
be left out: and a very good thing too, thought Pope, who wanted
the victory all to himself, and whose own army greatly outnumbered
Lee's and Jackson's put together. But Washington was nervous again;
it contained the reinforcements; and it had suddenly become
indispensable to Pope as an immediate base of supplies now that the
base at Manassas had been so completely destroyed. Pope's troops
therefore mostly drew east during the twenty-eighth, forming by
nightfall a long irregular line, facing west, with its right beyond
Centreville and its extreme left held by Banks's mauled divisions
south of Catlett's Station. Meanwhile Jackson had slipped into
place in the curve of Bull Run, facing southeast, with his left
near Stone Bridge, his back to Sudley Springs, and his right open
to junction with Lee, who was waiting for daylight to force the
Gap against the single division left there on guard.

During the afternoon, while Jackson's tired men were lying sound
asleep in their ranks, Jackson himself was roused to see captured
orders which showed that some Federals were crossing his front.
Reading these orders to his divisional commanders he immediately
ordered one to attack and another to support. If the Federals concerned
were exposing an unguarded flank they should be attacked at a
disadvantage. If they were screening larger forces trying to join
the reinforcements from Washington or Aquia, then they should be
attacked so as to distract Pope's attention and draw him on before
the Federal union became complete, though not before Lee had reached
the new Bull Run position the following day. The attack was consequently
made from the woods around Groveton not too long before dark. It
resulted in a desperate frontal fight, neither side knowing what
the other had in its rear or on its flanks. Again the Federals
were outnumbered: twenty-eight against forty-five hundred men in
action. But again they fought with the utmost resolution and drew
off in good order. The strategic advantage, however, was wholly
Confederate; for Pope, who thought Jackson must now be falling
back to the Gap, at once began confusedly trying to concentrate
for pursuit on the twenty-ninth--the very thing that suited Lee
and Jackson best.

Early that morning the two-days' Battle of Second Manassas (or
Second Bull Run) began with Pope's absurd attempt to pursue an
army drawn up in line of battle. Moreover, Jackson's position was
not only strong in itself but well adapted for giving attackers a
shattering surprise. The left rested on Bull Run at Sudley Ford.
The center occupied the edge of the flat-topped Stony Ridge. A
quarter-mile in front of it, and some way lower down, were the
embankments and cuttings of an unfinished railroad. On the right
was Stuart's Hill, where Lee was to join by sending Longstreet in.
The approaches in rear were hidden from the eyes of an enemy in
front. The cuttings and embankments made excellent field works for
the defense. And the forward edge of the Ridge was wooded enough
to let counter-attackers mass under cover and then run down to
surprise the attackers by manning the cuttings and embankments.

Sigel's Germans, supported by the splendid Pennsylvanians under
Reynolds, advanced from the Henry Hill to hold Jackson till Pope
could come up and finish him. The numbers were about even, with slight
odds in favor of Jackson. But the shock was delivered piecemeal.
Each part was roughly handled and driven back in disorder. And
by the time Reynolds had come to the front Lee's advanced guard
was arriving. Then eighteen thousand Federals marched in from
Centreville under Reno, Kearny, and "fighting Joe Hooker," of whom
we shall hear again. Pope came up in person with the rest of his
available command, rode along his line, and explained the situation
as founded on his ignorance and colored by his fancy. At this very
moment Longstreet came up on Jackson's right. Reynolds went into
action against what he thought was Jackson's extended right but
what was really Longstreet's left. Meanwhile the Centreville troops
attacked near Bull Run. But that dashing commander, Philip Kearny,
was held up by Jackson's concentrated guns; so Hooker and Reno
advanced alone, straight for the railroad line. The Confederates
behind it poured in a tremendous hail of bullets, and the long
dry grass caught fire. But nothing stopped Hooker till bayonets
were crossed on the rails and the Confederate line was broken. Then
the Confederate reserves charged in and drove the Federals back.
No sooner was this seen than, with a burst of cheering, another
blue line surged forward. Again the Confederate front was broken,
but again their reserves drove back the Federals. And so the fight
went on, with stroke and counterstroke, till, at a quarter past
five, twelve hours after Pope's first men had started from the
Henry Hill, his thirty thousand attackers found themselves unable
to break through.

Pope wished to make one more effort to round up Jackson's supposedly
open right. But Porter quite properly sent back word that it was
far too strong for his own ten thousand. In reply Pope angrily
ordered an immediate attack. But it was now too dark, and the battle
ended for the day.

Strangely enough, Lee was also having trouble with his subordinate
on the same flank at the same time, but with this difference, that
Porter was right while Longstreet was wrong. Lee saw his chance of
rolling up Pope's left and ordered Longstreet to do it. But, after
reconnoitering the ground, Longstreet came back to say the chance
was "not inviting." Again Lee ordered an attack. But Longstreet
wasted time, looking for needlessly favorable ground till long after
dark. Meanwhile the Federals were also feeling their way forward
over the same ground to get into a good flanking position for next
day's battle. So the two sides met; and it was past midnight when
Longstreet settled down. Lee wanted a sword thrust. Longstreet gave
a pin prick. We shall meet Longstreet again, in the same character
of obstructive subordinate, at Gettysburg. But he was, for the
most part, a very good officer indeed; and the South, with its
scanty supply of trained leaders, could not afford to make changes
like the North. The fault, too, was partly Lee's; for his one weak
point with good but wayward subordinates was a tendency to let his
sensitive consideration for their feelings overcome his sterner
insight into their defects.

At noon on the fatal thirtieth of August, Pope, self-deluded and
self-sufficient as before, dismayed his best officers by ordering
his sixty-five thousand men to be "immediately thrown forward in
pursuit of the enemy," whose own fifty thousand were now far readier
than on the previous day.

Then the dense blue masses marched to their doom. Twenty thousand
bayonets shone together from Groveton to Bull Run. Forty thousand
more supported them on the slopes in rear, while every Federal
gun thundered forth protectingly from the heights behind. The
Confederate batteries were pointed out as the objective of attack.
Not one glint of steel appeared between these batteries and the
glittering Federal host. To the men in the ranks and to Pope himself
victory seemed assured. But no sooner had that brave array come
within rifle range of the deserted railroad line than, high and
clear, the Confederate bugles called along the hidden edges of
the flat-topped Ridge; when instantly the great gray host broke
cover, ran forward as one man, and held the whole embankment with
a line of fire and steel.

A shock of sheer amazement ran through the Federal mass. Then,
knightly as any hero of romance, a mounted officer rode out alone,
in front of the center, and, with his sword held high, continued
leading the advance, which itself went on undaunted. The Confederate
flank batteries crossed their fire on this devoted center. Bayonets
flashed out of line in hundreds as their owners fell. Colors were
cut down, raised high, cut down again. But still that gallant horse
and man went on, unswerving and untouched. Even the sweeping volleys
spared them both, though now, as the Federals closed, these volleys
cut down more men than the cross-fire of the guns. At last the
unscathed hero waved his sword and rode straight up the deadly
embankment, followed by the charging line. "Don't kill him! Don't
kill him!" shouted the admiring Confederates as his splendid figure
stood, one glorious moment, on the top. The next, both horse and man
sank wounded, and were at once put under cover by their generous
foes.

For thirty-five dire minutes the fight raged face to face. One
Federal color rose, fell, and rose again as fast as living hands
could take it from the dead. Over a hundred men lay round it when
the few survivors drew back to re-form. Pope fed his front line
with reserves, who advanced with the same undaunted gallantry, but
also with the same result. As if to make this same result more sure
he never tried to win by one combined assault, wave after crashing
wave, without allowing the defense to get its second wind; but let
each unit taste defeat before the next came on. Federal bravery
remained. But Federal morale was rapidly disintegrating under the
palpable errors of Pope. Misguided, misled, and mishandled, the
blue lines still fought on till four, by which time every corps,
division, and brigade had failed entirely.

Then, at the perfect moment and in the perfect way, Lee's counterstroke
was made: the beaten Federals being assailed in flank as well as
front by every sword, gun, bayonet, and bullet that could possibly
be brought to bear. Only the batteries remained on the ridge, firing
furiously till the Federals were driven out of range. The infantry
and cavalry were sent in--wave after wave of them, without respite,
till the last had hurled destruction on the foe.

As at the First Bull Run, so here, the regulars fell back in good
order, fighting to the very end. But the rest of Pope's Army of
Virginia was no longer an organized unit. Even strong reinforcements
could do nothing for it now. On the second of September, three days
after the battle, its arrival at Washington, heralded by thousands
of weary stragglers, threw the whole Union into gloom.


The first counter-invasion naturally followed. Southern hopes ran
high. Bragg's invasion of Kentucky seemed to be succeeding at this
time. The trans-Mississippi line still held at Vicksburg and Port
Hudson. Richmond had been saved. Washington was menaced. And most
people on both sides thought so much more of the land than of the
sea that the Federal victories along the coast and up the Mississippi
were half forgotten for the time being; and so was the strangling
blockade. Lee, of course, saw the situation as a whole; and, as a
whole, it was far from bright. But though the counter-invasion was
now a year too late it seemed worth making. Maryland was full of
Southern sympathizers; and campaigning there would give Virginia a
chance to recuperate, while also preventing the North from recovering
too quickly from its last reverse. Thus it was with great expectations
that the Confederates crossed the Potomac singing _Maryland, my
Maryland!_

But Maryland did not respond to this appeal. The women, it is true,
were mostly Southern to the core and ready to serve the Confederate
cause in every way they could. But the men, reflecting more, knew
they were in the grip of Northern sea-power. Nor could they fail
to notice the vast difference between the warlike resources of
the North and South. Northern armies had been marching through for
many months, well fed, well armed, and superabundantly supplied.
The Confederates, on the other hand, were fewer in numbers, half
starved, in ragged clothing, less well armed, and far less abundantly
supplied in every way. A Northerner who fell sick could generally
count on the best of medical care, not to mention a profusion of
medical comforts. But the blockade kept medicines and surgical
instruments out of the Southern ports; and the South could make
few of her own. So, to be very sick or badly wounded meant almost
a sentence of death in the South. Eighteen months of war had
disillusioned Maryland. The expected reinforcements never came.

Lee had again divided his army in the hope of snatching victory by
means of better strategy. On the thirteenth of September Jackson
was bombarding the Federals at Harper's Ferry, Longstreet was at
Hagerstown, and Stuart was holding the gaps of South Mountain.

The same day McClellan, whose whole army was at Frederick, received
a copy of Lee's orders. They had been wrapped round three cigars
and lost by a careless Confederate staff officer. Had McClellan
forced the gaps immediately, maneuvered with reasonable skill, and
struck home with every available man, he might have annihilated
Lee. But he let the thirteenth pass quietly; and when he did take the
passes on the fourteenth it cost him a good deal, as the Confederate
infantry had reinforced Stuart. On the fifteenth Jackson took Harper's
Ferry. On the sixteenth he joined Lee at Antietam. And on the
seventeenth, when the remaining availables had also joined Lee,
McClellan made up his mind to attack. "Ask me for anything but
time," said the real Napoleon. The "Young Napoleon" did not even
need the asking.

Antietam (so called from the Antietam Creek) or Sharpsburg (so
called from the Confederate headquarters there) was one of the
biggest battles of the Civil War; and it might possibly have been
the most momentous. But, as things turned out, it was in itself an
indecisive action, spoilt for the Federals, first, by McClellan's
hesitating strategy, and then by his failure to press the attack home
at all costs, with every available man, in an unbroken succession
of assaults. He had over 80,000 men with 275 guns against barely
40,000 with 194 guns of inferior strength. But though the Federals
fought with magnificent devotion, and though the losses were very
serious on both sides, the tactical result was a mutual checkmate.
The strategic result, however, was a Confederate defeat; for, with
his few worn veterans, Lee had no chance whatever of keeping his
precarious hold on a neutral Maryland.

October was a quiet month, each side reorganizing without much
interference from the other, except for Stuart's second raid round
the whole embattled army of McClellan. This time Stuart took nearly
two thousand men and four horse artillery guns. Crossing the Potomac
at McCoy's Ford on the tenth he reached Chambersburg that night,
destroyed the Federal stores, took all the prisoners he wanted,
cut the wires, obstructed the rails, and went on with hundreds
of Federal horses. Next day he circled the Federal rear toward
Gettysburg, turned south through Emmitsburg, and crossed McClellan's
line of communications with Washington at Hyattstown early on the
twelfth. By this time the Federal cavalry were riding themselves to
exhaustion in vain pursuit; while many other forces were trying to
close in and cut him off. But he reached the mouth of the Monocacy
and crossed White's Ford in safety, fighting off all interference.
The information he brought back was of priceless value. Lee now
learned that McClellan was not falling back on Washington but being
reinforced from there, and that consequently no new Peninsula Campaign
was to be feared at present. This alone was worth the effort, risk,
and negligible loss. Stuart had marched a hundred and twenty-six
miles on the Federal side of the Potomac--eighty of them without
a single halt; and he had been fifty-six hours inside the Federal
lines, mostly within four riding hours of McClellan's own headquarters.

This second stinging raid roused the loyal North to fury; and by
November a new invasion of Virginia was in full swing on the old
ground, with McClellan at Warrenton, Lee at Culpeper, and Jackson
in the Valley.

But McClellan's own last chance had gone. Late at night on the
seventh he was sitting alone in his tent, writing to his wife, when
Burnside asked if he could come in with General C. P. Buckingham,
the confidential staff officer to the War Department. After some
forced conversation Buckingham handed McClellan a paper ordering his
supersession by Burnside. McClellan simply said: "Well, Burnside,
I turn the command over to you." The eighth and ninth were spent in
handing over; and on the tenth McClellan made his official farewell.
Next day he was entraining at Warrenton Junction when the men,
among whom he was immensely popular, broke ranks and swarmed round
his car, cursing the Government and swearing they would follow
no one but their "Old Commander." McClellan, with all his faults
in the field, was a good organizer, an extremely able engineer,
a very brave soldier, a very sympathetic comrade in arms, and a
regular father to his men, whose personal interests were always his
first care. The moment was critical. McClellan, had he chosen, might
have imitated the Roman generals who led the revolts of Praetorian
Guards. But he stepped out on the front platform of the car, held
up his hand, and, amid tense silence, asked the men to "stand by
General Burnside as you have stood by me." The car they had uncoupled
to prevent his departure was run up and coupled again; and then,
amid cheers of mournful farewell, they let him go.

General Ambrose E. Burnside was expected to smash Lee, take Richmond,
and end the war at once. He was a good subordinate, but quite unfit
for supreme command, which he accepted only under protest. Moreover,
he was not supported as he should have been by the War Department,
nor even by the Headquarter Staff. While changing his position from
Warrenton to Fredericksburg he was hampered by avoidable delays.
So when he reached Falmouth he found Lee had forestalled him on
the opposing heights of Fredericksburg itself.

The disastrous thirteenth of December was dull, calm, and misty.
But presently the sun shone down with unwonted warmth; the mists
rolled up like curtains; and there stood 200,000 men, arrayed in
order of battle: 80,000 Confederates awaiting the onslaught of
120,000 Federals.

On came the solid masses of the Federals, eighty thousand strong,
with forty in support, amid the thunder of five hundred attacking
and defending guns. The sunlight played upon the rising tide of
Federal bayonets as on sea currents when they turn inshore. The
colors waved proudly as ever; and to the outward eye the attack
seemed almost strong enough to drive the stern and silent gray
Confederates clear off the crest. But the indispensable morale was
wanting. For this was the end of a long campaign, full of drawn
battles and terrible defeats. Burnside was an unpopular substitute
for McClellan; he was not in any way a great commander; and he was
acting under pressure against his own best judgment. His army knew
or felt all this; and he knew they knew or felt it. The Federals,
for all their glorious courage, felt, when the two fronts met at
Fredericksburg, that they were no more than sacrificial pawns in
the grim game of war. After much useless slaughter they reeled
back beaten. But they could and did retire in safety, skillfully
"staffed" by their leaders and close to their unconquerable sea.

Lee could make no counterstroke. The Confederate Government had
not dared to let him occupy the far better position on the line
of the North Anna, from which a vigorous counterstroke might have
almost annihilated a beaten attacker, who would have been exposed
on both flanks, beyond the sure protection of the sea. Thus fear of
an outcry against "abandoning" the country between Fredericksburg
and the North Anna caused the Southern politicians to lose their
chance at home. But without a decisive victory they could not hope
for foreign intervention. So losing their chance at home made them
lose it abroad as well.

Burnside was dazed by his defeat and the appalling loss of life
in vain. But after five weeks of most discouraging inaction he
tried to surprise Lee by crossing the Rappahannock several miles
higher up. On the twentieth and twenty-first of that miserable
January the Federal army ploughed its dreary way through sloughs
of gluey mud under torrents of chilling rain. Then, when the pace
had slackened to a funereal crawl, and the absurdly little chance of
surprising Lee had vanished altogether, this despairing "Mud March"
came to its wretched end. Four days later Burnside was superseded by
one of his own subordinates, General Joseph Hooker, known to all
ranks as "Fighting Joe Hooker."


Fredericksburg, the spell of relaxing winter quarters beside the
fatal Rappahannock, and then the fatal "Mud March," combined to
lower Federal morale. Yet the mass of the men, being composed of
fine human material, quickly recovered under "Fighting Joe Hooker,"
who knew what discipline meant. Numbers and discipline tell. But
disciplined numbers were not the only or even the greatest menace
to the South. For here, as farther west, the Confederate Government
was beginning to be foolish just as the Federal Government showed
signs of growing wise. Lincoln and Stanton were giving Joe Hooker a
fairly free hand just when Davis and Seddon (his makeshift minister
of war) were using Confederate forces as puppets to be pulled about
by Cabinet strings from Richmond. Here again (as later on at
Chattanooga) Longstreet was sent away on a useless errand just
when he was needed most by Lee. Good soldier though he was in many
ways he was no such man as Stonewall Jackson; and, in this one
year, he failed his seniors thrice.

It is true enough that the April situation of 1863 might well shake
governmental nerves; for Richmond was being menaced from three
points--north, southeast, and south: Fredericksburg due north,
Suffolk southeast, Newbern south. Newbern in North Carolina was
a long way off. But its possession by an active enemy threatened
the rail connection from Richmond south to Wilmington, Charleston,
and Savannah, the only three Atlantic ports through which the South
could get supplies from overseas. Suffolk was nearer. It covered
the landward side of Norfolk, which, with Fortress Monroe, might
become the base of a new Peninsula Campaign. But Fredericksburg
was nearest; nearest to Richmond, nearest to Washington, nearest
to the main Southern force; and not only nearest but strongest, in
every way strongest and most to be feared. "Fighting Joe Hooker" was
there, with a hundred and thirty thousand men, already stirring for
the spring campaign that was to wipe out memories of Fredericksburg,
make short work of Lee, and end the war at Richmond.

Yet Longstreet cheerfully marched off, pleased with his new command,
to see what he could do to soothe the Government by winning laurels
for himself at Suffolk. On the seventeenth, just two weeks before
the supreme test came on Lee's weakened army at Chancellorsville,
Longstreet reported to Seddon that Suffolk would cost three thousand
men, if taken by assault, or three days' heavy firing if subdued by
bombardment. Shrinking from such expenditure of life or ammunition,
Davis, Seddon, and Longstreet fell back on a siege, which, preventing
all junction with Lee, might well have cost the ruin of their cause.

Lee and Jackson then prepared to make the best of a bad business
along the Rappahannock, and to snatch victory once more, if possible,
from the very jaws of death. The prospect was grimmer than before.
Hooker was a better fighter than McClellan and wiser than Burnside
or Pope. Moreover, after two years of war, the Union Government
had at last found out that civilian detectives knew less about
armies than expert staff officers know, and that cavalry which
was something more than mere men on horses could collect a little
information too. Hooker knew Lee's strength as well as his own.
So he decided to hold Lee fast with one part of the big Federal
army, turn his flank with another, and cut his line of supply and
retreat with Stoneman's ten thousand sabers as well. The respective
grand totals were 130,000 Federals against 62,000 Confederates.

So far, so good; so very good indeed that Hooker and his staff
were as nearly free from care on May Day as headquarter men can
ever be in the midst of vital operations. Hooker had just reason to
be proud of the Army of the Potomac and of his own work in reviving
it. He had, indeed, issued one bombastic order of the day in which
he called it "the finest on the planet." But even this might be
excused in view of the popular call for encouraging words. What
was more to the point was the reestablishment of Federal morale,
which had been terribly shaken after the great Mud March. Hooker's
sworn evidence (as given in the official _Report of Committee on
the Conduct of the War_) speaks for itself: "The moment I was placed
in command I caused a return to be made of the absentees of the
army, and found the number to be 2922 commissioned officers and
81,964 non-commissioned officers and privates. They were scattered
all over the country, and the majority were absent from causes
unknown."

On the twenty-eighth of April Stuart saw the redisciplined Federals
in motion far up the Rappahannock, while next day Jackson saw others
laying pontoons thirty miles lower down, just on the seaward side
of Fredericksburg. Lee took this news with genial calm, remarking
to the aide: "Well, I heard firing and was beginning to think it
was time some of your lazy young fellows were coming to tell me
what it was about. Tell your good general he knows what to do with
the enemy just as well as I do." On the thirtieth it became quite
clear that Hooker was bent on turning Lee's left and that he had
divided his army to do so. Jackson wished to attack Sedgwick's
35,000 Federals still on the plains of Fredericksburg. But Lee
convinced him that the better way would be to hold these men with
10,000 Confederates in the fortified position on the confronting
heights while the remaining 52,000 should try to catch Hooker himself
between the jaws of a trap in the forest round Chancellorsville,
where the Federal masses would be far more likely to get out of
hand. It was an extremely daring maneuver to be setting this trap
when Sedgwick had enough men to storm the heights of Fredericksburg,
when Stoneman was on the line of communication with the south,
and when Hooker himself, with superior numbers, was gaining Lee's
rear. But Lee had Jackson as his lieutenant, not Longstreet, as
he was to have at Gettysburg.

Hooker's movements were rapid, well arranged, and admirably executed
up to the evening of the first of May, when, finding those of the
enemy very puzzling among the dense woods, he chose the worst of
three alternatives. The first and best, an immediate counter-attack,
would have kept up his army's morale and, if well executed, revealed
his own greater strength. The second, a continued advance till he
reached clearer ground, might have succeeded or not. The third
and worst was to stand on his defense, a plan which, however sound
in other places, was fatal here, because it not only depressed
the spirits of his army but gave two men of genius the initiative
against him in a country where they were at home and he was not.
The absence of ten thousand cavalry baffled his efforts to get
trustworthy information on the ground, while the dense woods baffled
his balloons from above. On the second of May he still thought
the initiative was his, that the Confederates were retreating,
and that his own jaws were closing on them instead of theirs on
him.

Meanwhile, owing to miscalculations of the space that had to be
held in force, his right was not only thrown forward too far but
presented a flank in the air. This was the flank round which Stonewall
Jackson maneuvered with such consummate skill that it was taken on
three sides and rolled up in fatal confusion. Its commander, the
very capable General O. O. Howard, who perceived the mistake he
could not correct, tried hard to stay the rout. But, as his whole
reserve had been withdrawn by Hooker to join an attack elsewhere,
his lines simply melted away.

The three days' battle that followed (ending on the fifth of May)
was bravely fought by the bewildered Federals. Yet all in vain.
Hooker was caught like a bull in a net; and the more he struggled
the worse it became. At 6 P.M. on the second the cunning trap was
sprung when a single Confederate bugle rang out. Instantly other
bugles repeated the call at regular intervals through miles of
forest. Then, high and clear on the silent air of that calm May
evening, the rebel yell rose like the baying of innumerable hounds,
hot on the scent of their quarry, with Jackson leading on. Nothing
could stop the eager gray lines, wave after wave of them pressing
through the woods; not even the gallant fifty guns that fought with
desperation in defense of Hazel Grove, where Hooker was rallying
his men.

For two days more the tide of battle ebbed and flowed; but always
against the Federals in the end, till, broken, bewildered, and
disheartened, they retired as best they could. Lee was unable to
pursue. Longstreet's men were still missing; and so were many supplies
that should have been forwarded from Richmond. There the Government
clung to the fond belief that this mere victory had won the war,
and that pursuit was useless. Thus Lee's last chance of crushing
the invaders was taken from him by his friends.

At the same time the Southern cause suffered another irreparable
loss; but in this case at the purely accidental hands of Southern
men. Jackson's staff, suddenly emerging from a thicket as the first
night closed in, was mistaken for Federal cavalry and shot down.
Jackson himself was badly wounded in three places and carried from
the field. He never heard the rebel yell again. Next Sunday, when the
staff-surgeon told him that he could not possibly live through the
night, he simply answered: "Very good, very good; it is all right."
Presently he asked Major Pendleton what chaplain was preaching at
headquarters. "Mr. Lacy, sir; and the whole army is praying for
you." "Thank God," said Jackson, "they are very kind to me." A
little later, rousing himself as if from sleep, he called out:
"Order A. P. Hill to prepare for action! Pass the infantry to the
front! Tell Major Hawks--" There his strength failed him. But after
a pause he said quietly, "Let us cross over the river and rest
under the shade of the trees." And with these words he died.




CHAPTER VII

GRANT WINS THE RIVER WAR: 1863

We have seen already how the River War of '62 ended in a double
failure of the Federal advance on Vicksburg: how Grant and Sherman,
aided by the flanking force from Helena in Arkansas, failed to
catch Pemberton along the Tallahatchie; and then how Sherman alone,
moving down the Mississippi, was defeated by Pemberton at Chickasaw
Bayou, just outside of Vicksburg.

Leaving Memphis for good, Grant took command in the field again
on the thirtieth of January. His army was strung out along seventy
miles of the Mississippi just north of Vicksburg, so hard was it to
find enough firm ground. The first important move was made when, in
Grant's own words, "the entire Army of the Tennessee was transferred
to the neighborhood of Vicksburg and landed on the opposite or
western bank of the river at Milliken's Bend."

Grant, everywhere in touch with Admiral D. D. Porter's fleet and
plentifully supplied with water transport of all kinds, thus commanded
the peninsula or tongue of low land round which the mighty river took
its course in the form of an elongated U right opposite Vicksburg.
His farthest north base was still at Cairo; and the whole line of
the Mississippi above him was effectively held by Union forces
afloat and ashore. Four hundred miles south lay Farragut and Banks,
preparing for an attack on Port Hudson and intent on making junction
with the Union forces above.

Two bad generals stood very much in Grant's way, one on either
side of him in rank--McClernand, his own second-in-command, and
Banks, his only senior in the Mississippi area. McClernand presently
found rope enough to hang himself. Our old friend Banks, who had
not yet learnt the elements of war, though schooled by Stonewall
Jackson, never got beyond Port Hudson, and so could not spoil Grant's
command in addition to his own. Fortunately, besides Sherman and
other professional soldiers of quite exceptional ability, Grant had
three of the best generals who ever came from civil life: Logan,
Blair, and Crocker. Logan shed all the vices, while keeping all
the virtues, of the lawyer when he took up arms. Blair knew how
to be one man as an ambitious politician and another as a general
in the field. Crocker was in consumption, but determined to die in
his boots and do his military best for the Union service first.
The personnel of the army was mostly excellent all through. The
men were both hardy and handy as a rule, being to a large extent
farmers, teamsters, railroad and steamboat men, well fitted to meet
the emergencies of the severe and intricate Vicksburg campaign.

Throughout this campaign the army and navy of the Union worked
together as a single amphibious force. Grant's own words are no
mere compliment, but the sober statement of a fact. "The navy, under
Porter, was all it could be during the entire campaign. Without
its assistance the campaign could not have been successfully made
with twice the number of men engaged. It could not have been made
at all, in the way it was, with any number of men, without such
assistance. The most perfect harmony reigned between the two arms
of the Service. There never was a request made, that I am aware
of, either of the Flag-Officer or any of his subordinates, that
was not promptly complied with." And what is true of Porter is at
least as true of Farragut, who was the greater man and the senior
of every one afloat.

Grant could take Vicksburg only by reaching good ground, and the
only good ground was below and in rear of the fortress. There was no
foothold for his army on the east bank of the Mississippi anywhere
between Memphis and Vicksburg. This meant that he must either start
afresh from Memphis and try again to push overland by rail or cross
the swampy peninsula in front of him and circle round his enemy. A
retirement on Memphis, no matter how wise, would look like another
great Union defeat and consequently lower a public morale which,
depressed enough by Fredericksburg, was being kept down by the
constant naval reverses that opened '63. Circling the front was
therefore very much to be preferred from the political point of view.
On the other hand, it was beset by many alarming difficulties; for it
meant starting from the flooded Mississippi and working through the
waterlogged lowlands, across the peninsula, till a foothold could be
seized on the eastern bank below Vicksburg. Moreover, this circling
attack, though feasible, might depress the morale of the troops by
the way. Burnside's disastrous "Mud March" through the January
sloughs of Virginia, made in the vain hope of outflanking Lee, had
lowered the morale of the army almost as much as Fredericksburg
itself had lowered the morale of the people.

Through the depth of winter the army toiled "in ineffectual efforts,"
says Grant, "to reach high land above Vicksburg from which we could
operate against that stronghold, and in making artificial waterways
through which a fleet might pass, avoiding the batteries to the
south of the town, in case the other efforts should fail." A wetter
winter had never been known. The whole complicated network of bends
and bayous, of creeks, streams, runs, and tributary rivers, was
overflowing the few slimy trails through the spongy forest and
threatening the neglected levees which still held back the encroaching
waters. There was nothing to do, however, but to keep the men busy
and the enemy confused by trying first one line and then another
for two weary months. By April, writes Grant, "the waters of the
Mississippi having receded sufficiently to make it possible to
march an army across the peninsula opposite Vicksburg, I determined
to adopt this course, and moved my advance to a point below the
town."

Meanwhile, far below, Farragut and Banks were at work round Port
Hudson: Farragut to good effect; Banks as usual. On the fourteenth
of March Farragut started up the river with seven men-of-war and
wanted the troops to make a demonstration against Port Hudson from
the rear while the fleet worked its way past the front. But, just
as Farragut was weighing anchor, Banks, who had had ample time
for preparation, sent word to say he was still five miles from
Port Hudson. "He'd as well beat New Orleans," muttered Farragut,
"for all the good he's doing us."

Six of the vessels were lashed together in pairs, the heavier ones
next the enemy, the lighter ones secured well aft so as to mask the
fewest guns. This arrangement also gave each pair the advantage
of having twin screws. Farragut's flagship, the _Hartford_, leading
the line-ahead, suffered least from the dense smoke on that damp,
calm, moonless night. But the others were soon groping blindly up
the tortuous channel. The _Hartford_ herself took the ground for
a critical moment. But, with her own screw going ahead and that
of the _Albatross_ going astern, she drew clear and won through.
Not so, however, the other five ships. Only the _Hartford_ and
_Albatross_ reached the Red River. Yet even this was of great
importance, as it completely cut off Port Hudson from all chance of
relief. Farragut went on up the Mississippi to see Grant, destroying
all riverside stores on the way. Grant was delighted, and, in the
absence of Porter, who was up the Yazoo, sent Farragut an Ellet
ram and some sorely needed coal.

Grant's seventh (and first successful) effort to get a foothold (from
which to carry out one of the boldest and most brilliant operations
recorded in the history of war) began with a naval operation on the
sixteenth of April, when Porter ran past the Vicksburg batteries
by night. Though Porter had the four-knot current in his favor he
needed all his skill and moral courage to take a regular flotilla
round the elongated U made by the Mississippi at Vicksburg, with
such a bend as to keep vessels under more or less distant fire
for five miles, and under much closer fire for nearly nine. At
the bend the vessels could be caught end-on. For nearly five miles
after that they were subject to a plunging fire. Porter led the
way on board the flagship _Benton_. He had seven ironclads, of
which three were larger vessels and four were gunboats built by
Eads, a naval constructor with orignal ideas and great executive
ability. One ram and three transports followed. Coal barges were
lashed alongside or taken in tow. Some of these were lost and one
transport was sunk. But the rest got through, though not unscathed.
It seemed like a miracle to the tense spectators that any flotilla
should survive this dash down a river of death flowing through a
furnace. But the ironclads, magnificently handled, stood up to
their work unflinchingly, fired back with regulated vigor, and
took their terrific pounding without one vital wound.

Porter presently relieved Farragut, who went back to New Orleans.
From this time, till after the fall of Vicksburg and Port Hudson,
Porter commanded three flotillas, each with a base of its own:
first, a flotilla remaining north of Vicksburg for work on the
Yazoo; secondly, the main body between Vicksburg and Grand Gulf;
thirdly, the Red River flotilla. This combined naval force commanded
all lines of communication north, south, and west of Vicksburg,
thus enabling Grant to concentrate entirely against the eastern
side.

On the thirtieth of April Grant landed with twenty thousand men at
Bruinsburg, on the east side of the Mississippi, about sixty miles
below Vicksburg. A week later Sherman reinforced him to thirty-three
thousand. Before the fall of Vicksburg his total strength reached
seventy-five thousand. The Confederate total also fluctuated; but
not so much. There were about sixty thousand Confederates in the
whole strategic area between Vicksburg and Jackson (fifty miles
east) when Grant made his first daring move, and about the same when
Vicksburg surrendered. The scene of action was almost triangular;
for it lay between the three lines joining Jackson, Haynes's Bluff,
Rodney, and Jackson again. The respective lengths of these straight
lines are forty, fifty, and seventy miles. But roundabout ways
by land and water multiplied these distances, and much fighting
and many obstacles vastly increased Grant's difficulties.

An army, however, that had managed to reach Bruinsburg from the
north and west was assuredly fit for more hard work of any kind;
while a commander who had left a safe base above Vicksburg and
landed below, to live on (as well as in) an enemy country till
victory should give him a new land line to the north, must, in
view of the resultant triumph, be counted among the master-minds
of war. Grant's marvelous skill in massing, dividing, forwarding,
and concentrating his forces over a hundred miles of intricate
passages between Milliken's Bend and Bruinsburg was only excelled
by his consummate genius in carrying out this daring operation,
forcing his way through his enemies, into full possession of interior
lines, between their great garrison of Vicksburg and their field
army from Jackson. He had to create two fronts in spite of his
doubled enemy and live on that enemy's country without any land
base of his own.

Grant knew the country was quite able to support his army if he
could only control enough of it. Bread, beef, and mutton would be
almost unobtainable. But chickens, turkeys, and ducks were abundant,
while hard-tack would do instead of bread. Bird-and-biscuit of course
became unpopular; and after weeks of it Grant was not surprised
to hear a soldier mutter "hard-tack" loudly enough for others to
take up the cry. By this time, however, he luckily knew that the
bread ration was about to be resumed; and when he told the men
they cheered as only men on service can--men to whom battles are
rare events but rations the very stuff of daily existence. Coffee,
bacon, beef, and mutton came next in popular favor when full rations
were renewed. So when the Northern land line was reopened towards
the end of the siege, and friends came into camp with presents
from home, they found, to their amazement, that even the tenderest
spring chicken was loathsome to their boys in blue.

Grant set to work immediately on landing. His first objective was
Grand Gulf, which he wanted as a field base for further advance.
But in order to get it he had to drive away the enemy from Port
Gibson, which was by no means easy, even with superior numbers,
because the whole country thereabouts was so densely wooded and
so intricately watered that concerted movements could only be made
along the few and conspicuous roads. On the first of May, however,
the Confederates were driven off before their reinforcements could
arrive. McClernand bungled brigades and divisions out of mutual
support. But Grant personally put things right again.

By the third of May the bridge burnt by the enemy had been repaired
and Grant's men were crossing to press them back on Vicksburg, so
as to clear Grand Gulf. Grant's supply train (raised by impressing
every horse, mule, ox, and wheeled thing in the neighborhood) looked
more like comic opera than war. Fine private carriages, piled high
with ammunition, and sometimes drawn by mules with straw collars
and rope lines, went side by side with the longest plantation wagons
drawn by many oxen, or with a two-wheeled cart drawn by a thoroughbred
horse.

Before any more actions could be fought news came through that
the Federals in Virginia had been terribly beaten by Lee, who was
now expected to invade the North. The South was triumphant; so
much so, indeed, that its Government thought the war itself had
now been won. But Lincoln, Grant, and Lee knew better.

Swiftly, silently, and with a sure strategic touch, Grant marched
northeast on Jackson, to make his rear secure before he turned on
Vicksburg. On the twelfth he won at Raymond and on the fourteenth
at Jackson itself. Here he turned back west again. On the sixteenth
he won the stubborn fight of Champion's Hill, on the seventeenth
he won again at Big Black River, and on the eighteenth he appeared
before the lines of Vicksburg. With the prestige of five victories
in twenty days, and with the momentum acquired in the process, he
then tried to carry the lines by assault on the spot. But the attack
of the nineteenth failed, as did its renewal on the twenty-second.
Next day both sides settled down to a six weeks' siege.

The failure of the two assaults was recognized by friend and foe
as being a mere check; and Grant's men all believed they had now
found the looked-for leader. So they had. Like Lee and Stonewall
Jackson in Virginia, Grant, with as yet inferior numbers (but with
the immense advantage of sea-power), had seized, held, and acted
on interior lines so ably that his forty-three thousand men had
out-maneuvered and out-fought the sixty thousand of the enemy,
beating them in detail on ground of their own besides inflicting a
threefold loss. Grant lost little over four thousand. The Confederates
lost nearly twelve thousand, half of whom were captured.

The only real trouble, besides the failure to carry the lines by
assault, was with the two bad generals, McClernand and Banks. McClernand
had promulgated an order praising his own corps to the skies and
conveying the idea that he and it had won the battles. Moreover,
he hinted that he had succeeded in the assault while the others had
failed. This was especially offensive because Grant, at McClernand's
urgent request, had sent reinforcements from other corps to confirm a
success that he found nonexistent on the spot, except in McClernand's
own words. To crown this, McClernand had sent his official order,
with all its misleading statements, to be published in the Northern
press; and the whole army was now supplied with the papers containing
it. So gross a breach of discipline could not go unpunished; and
McClernand was sent back to Springfield in disgrace.

Banks, unfortunately, was senior to Grant and of course independent
of Farragut; so he could safely vex them both--Grant, by spoiling
the plan of concerting the attacks on Port Hudson and Vicksburg in
May; Farragut, by continual failure in cooeperation and by leaving
big guns exposed to capture on the west bank. But things turned out
well, after all. The guns were saved by the naval vessels that beat
off a Confederate attack on Donaldsonville; and Grant's army was saved
from coming under Banks's command by Banks's own egregious failure
in cooeperation. This failure thus became a blessing in disguise: a
disguise too good for Halleck, whose reprimand from Washington
on the twenty-third of May shows what dangers lurked beneath the
might-have-been. "The Government is exceedingly disappointed that
you and General Grant are not acting in conjunction. It thought to
secure that object by authorizing you to assume the entire command
as soon as you and General Grant could unite."

In the end the Confederates suffered much more than the Federals
from civilian interference; for the orders of their Government
came through in time to confuse a situation that was already bad
and growing worse. Between Porter afloat and Grant ashore Vicksburg
was doomed unless "Joe" Johnston came west with sufficient force
to relieve it in time. Johnston did come early enough, but not
in sufficient force; so the next best thing was to destroy all
stores, abandon Vicksburg, and save the garrison. The Government,
however, sent positive orders to hold Vicksburg to the very last
gasp. Johnston had meanwhile sent Pemberton (the Vicksburg commander)
orders to combine with him in free maneuvering for an attack in
the field. But Pemberton's own idea was to await Grant on the Big
Black River, where, with Johnston's help, he thought he could beat
him. Then followed hesitation, a futile attempt to harmonize the
three incompatible schemes; and presently the division of the
Confederates into separated armies, driven apart by Grant, whose
own army soon dug itself in between them and quickly grew stronger
than both.

Grant's lines, facing both opponents, from Haynes's Bluff to Warrenton,
were fifteen miles long, which gave him one man per foot when his
full strength was reached Pemberton's were only seven; and his
position was strong, both towards the river, where the bluffs rose
two hundred feet, and on the landward side, where the slopes were
sharp and well fortified. Grant closed in, however, and pressed
the bombardment home. Except for six 32-pounders and a battery of
big naval guns he had nothing but field artillery. Yet the abundance
of ammunition, the closeness of the range, and the support of his
many excellent snipers, soon gave him the upper hand. Six hundred
yards was the farthest the lines were apart. In some places they
nearly touched.

All ranks worked hard, especially at engineering, in which there
was such a dearth of officers that Grant ordered every West Pointer
to do his turn with the sappers and miners as well as his other
duty. This brought forth a respectful protest from the enormously
fat Chief Commissary, who said he could only be used as a sap-roller
(the big roller sappers shove protectingly before them when snipers
get their range). The real sap-rollers came to grief when an ingenious
Confederate stuffed port-fires with turpentined cotton and shot them
into rollers only a few yards off. But after this the Federals
kept their rollers wet; and sapped and burrowed till the big mine
was fully charged and safe from the Confederate countermine, which
had missed its mark.

While trying to blow each other up the men on both sides exchanged
amenities and chaff like the best of friends. Each side sold its
papers to the other; and the wall-paper newsprint of Vicksburg
made a good war souvenir for both. There was a steady demand for
Federal bread and Confederate tobacco. When market time was over the
Confederates would heave down hand-grenades, which agile Federals,
good at baseball, would heave uphill again before they exploded. And
woe to the man whose head appeared out of hours; for snipers were
always on the watch, especially that prince of snipers, Lieutenant H.
C. Foster, renowned as "Coonskin" from the cap he wore. A wonderful
stalker and dead shot he was a terror to exposed Confederates at
all times; but more particularly towards the end, when (their front
artillery having been silenced by Grant's guns) Coonskin built a
log tower, armored with railway iron, from which he picked off
men who were safe from ordinary fire.

On the twenty-first of June Pemberton planned an escape across the
Mississippi and built some rough boats. But Grant heard of this;
the flotilla grew more watchful still; and before any attempt at
escape could be made the great mine was fired on the twenty-fifth.
The whole top of the hill was blown off, and with it some men who
came down alive on the Federal side. Among these was an unwounded
but terrified colored man, who, on being asked how high he had
gone, said, "Dunno, Massa, but t'ink 'bout t'ree mile." An immense
crater was formed. But there was no practicable breach; so the
assault was deferred. A second mine was exploded on the first of
July. But again there was no assault; for Grant had decided to
wait till several huge mines could be exploded simultaneously.
In the meantime an intercepted dispatch warned him that Johnston
would try to help Pemberton to cut his way out. But by the time
the second mine was exploded Pemberton was sounding his generals
about the chances of getting their own thirty thousand to join
Johnston's thirty thousand against Grant's seventy-five thousand.
The generals said No. Negotiations then began.

On the third of July Grant met Pemberton under the "Vicksburg Oak,"
which, though quite a small tree, furnished souvenir-hunters with
many cords of sacred wood in after years. Grant very wisely allowed
surrender on parole, which somewhat depleted Confederate ranks in
the future by the number of men who, returning to their homes,
afterwards refused to come back when the exchange of prisoners
would have permitted them to do so.

That was a great week of Federal victory--the week including the
third, fourth, and eighth of July. On the third Lee was defeated at
Gettysburg. On the now doubly "Glorious Fourth" Vicksburg surrendered
and the last Confederate attack was repulsed at Helena in Arkansas. On
the eighth Port Hudson surrendered. With this the whole Mississippi
fell into Federal hands for good. On the first of August Farragut
left New Orleans for New York in the battle-scarred _Hartford_
after turning over the Mississippi command to Porter's separate
care.


Meanwhile the Confederates in Tennessee, weakened by reinforcing
Johnston against Grant, had been obliged to retire on Chattanooga.
To cover this retirement and make what diversion he could, Bragg sent
John H. Morgan with twenty-five hundred cavalry to raid Kentucky,
Indiana, and Ohio. Perplexing the outnumbering Federals by his
daring, "Our Jack Morgan" crossed the Ohio at Brandenburg, rode
northeast through Indiana, wheeled south at Hamilton, Ohio, rode
through the suburbs of Cincinnati, reached Buffington Island on the
border of West Virginia, and then, hotly pursued by ever-increasing
forces, made northeast toward Pennsylvania. On the twenty-sixth of
July he surrendered near New Lisbon with less than four hundred
men left.

The Confederate main body passed the summer vainly trying to stem
the advance of the Army of the Cumberland, with which Rosecrans and
Thomas skillfully maneuvered Bragg farther and farther south till
they had forced him into and out of Chattanooga. In the meantime
Burnside's Army of the Ohio cleared eastern Tennessee and settled
down in Knoxville.

But in the middle of September Longstreet came to Bragg's rescue;
and a desperate battle was fought at Chickamauga on the nineteenth
and twentieth. The Confederates had seventy thousand men against
fifty-six thousand Federals: odds of five to four. They were determined
to win at any price; and it cost them eighteen thousand men, killed,
wounded, and missing; which was two thousand more than the Federals
lost. But they felt it was now or never as they turned to bay with,
for once, superior numbers. As usual, too, they coveted Federal
supplies. "Come on, boys, and charge!" yelled an encouraging sergeant,
"they have cheese in their haversacks!" Yet the pride of the soldier
stood higher than hunger. General D. H. Hill stooped to cheer a
very badly wounded man. "What's your regiment?" asked Hill. "Fifth
Confederate, New Orleans, and a damned good regiment it is," came
the ready answer.

Rosecrans, like many another man who succeeds halfway up, failed
at the top. He ordered an immediate general retreat which would
have changed the hard-won Confederate victory into a Federal rout.
But Thomas, with admirable judgment and iron nerve, stood fast
till he had shielded all the others clear. From this time on both
armies knew him as the "Rock of Chickamauga."

The unexpected defeat of Chickamauga roused Washington to immediate,
and this time most sensible, action. Grant was given supreme command
over the whole strategic area. Thomas superseded Rosecrans. Sherman
came down with the Army of the Tennessee. And Hooker railed through
from Virginia with two good veteran corps. Meanwhile the Richmond
Government was more foolish than the Washington was wise; for it let
Davis mismanage the strategy without any reference to Lee. Bragg also
made a capital mistake by sending Longstreet off to Knoxville with
more than a third of his command just before Grant's final advance.
The result was that Bragg found himself with only thirty thousand men
at Chattanooga when Grant closed in with sixty thousand, and that
Longstreet was useless at Knoxville, which was entirely dependent
on Chattanooga. Whoever won decisively at Chattanooga could have
Knoxville too. Davis, as the highest authority, and Bragg, as the
most responsible subordinate, ensured their own defeat.

Chattanooga was the key to the whole strategic area of the upper
Tennessee; for it was the best road, rail, and river junction between
the lower Mississippi and the Atlantic ports of the South. It had
been held for some time by a Federal garrison which had made it
fairly strong. But toward the end of October it was short of supplies;
and Hooker had to fight Longstreet at Wauhatchie in the Lookout
Valley before it could be revictualed. When Hooker, Thomas, and
Sherman were there together under Grant in November it was of course
perfectly safe; and the problem changed from defense to attack. The
question was how to drive Bragg from his commanding positions on
Missionary Ridge and Lookout Mountain. The woods and hills offered
concealment to the attack in some places. But Lookout Mountain
was a splendid observation post, twenty-two hundred feet high and
crested with columns of rock. The Ridge was three miles east, the
Mountain three miles south, of Cameron Hill, which stood just west
of Chattanooga, commanding the bridge of boats that crossed the
Tennessee.

The battle, fought with great determination on both sides, lasted
three days--the twenty-third, twenty-fourth, and twenty-fifth of
November. Sherman made the flank attack on Missionary Ridge from the
north and Thomas the frontal attack from the west. Hooker attacked
the western flank of Lookout Mountain.

Thomas did the first day's fighting, which was all preliminary
work, by advancing a good mile, taking the Confederate lines on the
lower slopes of the Ridge, and changing their defensive features
to face the Ridge instead of Chattanooga.

At two the next morning Giles Smith's brigade dropped down the
Tennessee in boats and surprised the extreme north pickets placed
by Bragg at the mouth of the South Chickamauga to cover the right
of the Ridge. By noon Sherman's men were over the Tennessee ready
to cooeperate with Thomas. Sherman had hidden his camp among the
hills on the other side so well that his movements could not be
observed, even from the commanding height of Lookout Mountain. The
night surprise of Bragg's pickets and the drizzling rain of the
morning prevented the Confederates from hearing or seeing anything
of Sherman's attack in the early afternoon; so he found himself on
the northern flank of Missionary Ridge before Bragg's main body
knew what he was doing. When the Confederates did attack it was too
late; and the twenty-fourth ended with Sherman entrenched against
the flank on even higher ground than Thomas held against the center.
Sherman's cavalry had meanwhile moved round the flank, on the lower
level and much farther off, to cut Bragg's right rear connection
with Chickamauga Station, whence the rails ran east to Cleveland,
Knoxville, and Virginia.

Hooker's work this second day was to feel the Confederate force
on Lookout Mountain while keeping the touch with Thomas, who kept
the touch with Sherman. Mists hid his earlier maneuvers. He closed
in successfully, handled his men to admiration, and gained more
ground than either he or Grant had expected. Having succeeded so
well he changed his demonstration into a regular attack, which
became known as the "Battle above the Clouds." Step by step he
fought his way up, over breastworks and rifle pits, felled trees
and bowlders, through ravines and gullies, till the vanguard reached
the giant palisades of rock which ramparted the top. The roar of
battle was most distinctly heard four miles away, on Orchard Knob,
where Grant and Thomas were anxiously waiting. But nothing could
be seen until a sudden breeze blew the clouds aside just as the
long blue lines charged home and the broken gray retreated. Then,
from thirty thousand watching Federals, went up a cheer that even
cannon could not silence.

At midnight Grant sent a word of encouragement to Burnside at Knoxville.
He then wrote his orders for what he now hoped would be a completely
victorious attack. The twenty-fifth of November broke beautifully
clear, and the whole scene of action remained in full view all day
long. Fearful of being cut off from their main body on Missionary
Ridge the Confederates had left Lookout Mountain under cover of
the dark. But by destroying the bridges across the Chattanooga
River, which ran through the valley between the Mountain and the
Ridge, they delayed Hooker till late that afternoon, thus saving
their left from an even worse disaster than the one that overtook
their center and their right.

Sherman had desperate work against their right, as Bragg massed
every available gun and man to meet him. This massing, however,
was just what Grant wanted; for he now expected Hooker to appear
on the other flank, which Bragg would either have to give up in
despair or strengthen at the expense of the center, which Thomas
was ready to charge. But with Hooker not appearing, and Sherman
barely holding his own, Grant slipped Thomas from the leash. The
two centers then met hand to hand. But there was no withstanding
the Federal charge. Back went the Confederates, turning to bay
at their second line of defense. Here again they were overborne
by well-led superior numbers and soon put to flight. Sheridan,
of whom we shall hear again in '64, took up the pursuit. Bragg
lost all control of his men. Stores, guns, and even rifles were
abandoned. Thousands of prisoners were taken; and most of the others
were scattered in flight. The battle, the whole campaign, and even
the war in the Tennessee sector, were won.

Vicksburg meant that the trans-Mississippi South would thenceforth
wither like a severed branch. Chattanooga meant that the Union
forces had at last laid the age to the root of the tree.




CHAPTER VIII

GETTYSBURG: 1863

On the fifth of May we left Lee victorious in Virginia; but with
his indispensable lieutenant, Stonewall Jackson, mortally wounded.

Though thoroughly defeated at Chancellorsville, Hooker soon recovered
control of the Army of the Potomac and prepared to dispute Lee's
right of way. Lee faced a difficult, perhaps an insoluble, problem.
Longstreet urged him to relieve the local pressure on Vicksburg by
concentrating every available man in eastern Tennessee, not only
withdrawing Johnston's force from Grant's rear but also depleting
the Confederates in Virginia for the same purpose. Then, combining
these armies from east and west with the one already there under
Bragg, the united Confederates were to crush Rosecrans in their
immediate front and make Cincinnati their great objective. Lee,
however, dared not risk the loss of his Virginian bases in the
meantime; and so he decided on a vigorous counter-attack, right
into Pennsylvania, hoping that, if successful, this would produce
a greater effect than any corresponding victory could possibly
produce elsewhere.

On the ninth of June a cavalry combat round Brandy Station, in
the heart of Virginia, made Hooker's staff feel certain that Lee
was again going up the Valley and on to Maryland. At one time,
for want of supplies, Lee had to spread out his front along a line
running eighty miles northwest from Fredericksburg to Strasburg.
Hooker, on the keen alert, implored the Government to let him attack
the three Confederate corps in detail. Success against one at least
was certain. Lincoln understood this perfectly. But the nerves of his
colleagues were again on edge; and no argument could persuade them
to adopt the best of all possible schemes of defense by destroying
the enemy's means of destroying them. They insisted on the usual
shield theory of passive defense, and ordered Hooker to keep between
Lee and Washington whatever might happen. This absurd maneuver was
of course attended with all the usual evil results at the time.
Equally of course, it afterwards drew down the wrath of the wiseacre
public on their own representatives. But wiseacre publics never stop
to think that many a government is forced to do foolish and even
suicidal things in war simply because it represents the ignorance
and folly, as well as the wisdom, of all who have the vote.

Yet both the loyal public and its Government had some good reasons
to doubt Hooker's ability, even apart from his recent defeat; and
Lincoln, wisest of all--except in applying strategy to problems
he could not fully understand--felt almost certain that Hooker's
character contained at least the seeds of failure in supreme command.
"He talks to me like a father," said Hooker, on reading the letter
Lincoln wrote when appointing him Burnside's successor. This remarkable
letter, dated January 26, 1863, though printed many times, is worth
reading again:


I have placed you at the head of the Army of the Potomac. Of course
I have done this upon what appears to me to be sufficient reasons,
and yet I think it best for you to know that there are some things
in regard to which I am not quite satisfied with you. I believe
you to be a brave and skillful soldier, which, of course, I like.
I also believe you do not mix politics with your profession, in
which you are right. You have confidence in yourself, which is
a valuable, if not an indispensable, quality. You are ambitious,
which, within reasonable bounds, does good rather than harm; but
I think that during General Burnside's command of the army you
have taken counsel of your ambition, and thwarted him as much as
you could, in which you did a great wrong to the country and to a
most meritorious and honorable brother officer. I have heard, in
such way as to believe it, of your recently saying that both the
army and the Government needed a Dictator. Of course it was not
for this, but in spite of it, that I have given you the command.
Only those generals who gain successes can set up dictatorships.
What I now ask of you is military success, and I will risk the
dictatorship. The Government will support you to the utmost of
its ability, which is neither more nor less than it has done and
will do for all commanders. I much fear that the spirit which you
have aided to infuse into the army, of criticizing their commander
and withholding confidence from him, will now turn upon you. I
shall assist you as far as I can to put it down. Neither you nor
Napoleon, if he were alive again, could get any good out of an army
while such a spirit prevails in it. And now, beware of rashness,
but with energy and sleepless vigilance go forward, and give us
victories.


Then came Chancellorsville, doubts at Washington, interference by
Stanton, ill-judged orders from Halleck, and some not very judicious
rejoinders from Hooker himself, who became rather peevish, to Lincoln's
alarm. So when, on the twenty-seventh of June, Hooker tendered his
resignation, it was promptly accepted. With Lee in Pennsylvania
there was no time for discussion: only for finding some one to
trust.

Lee, as usual, had divined the political forces working on the
Union armies from Washington and had maneuvered with a combination
of skill and daring that exactly met the situation. Throwing his
left forward (under Ewell) in the Shenandoah Valley he had driven
Milroy out of Winchester on the fourteenth of June and next day
secured a foothold across the Potomac. Then the rest of his army
followed. It was so much stretched out (to facilitate its food
supply) that Lincoln again wished to strike it at any vulnerable
spot. But the Cabinet in general (and Stanton in particular) were
still determined that the Union army should be their passive shield,
not their active sword. On the twenty-fourth Ewell was already
beginning to semicircle Gettysburg from the Cumberland Valley. On
the twenty-eighth, the day on which Meade succeeded Hooker in the
Federal command, the Confederate semicircle, now formed by Lee's
whole army, stretched from Chambersburg on the west, through Carlisle
on the north, to York on the east; while the massed Federals were
still in Maryland, near Middletown and Frederick, thirty miles
south of Gettysburg, and only forty miles northwest of nervous
Washington.

Hooker's successor, George G. Meade, was the fifth defender of
Washington within the last ten months. Luckily for the Union, Meade
was a sound, though not a great, commander, and his hands were
fairly free. Luckily again, he was succeeded in command of the Fifth
Corps by George Sykes, the excellent leader of those magnificent
regulars who fought so well at Antietam and Second Manassas. The
change from interference to control was made only just in time
at Washington; for three days after Meade's free hand began to
feel its way along the threatened front the armies met upon the
unexpected battlefield of Gettysburg.

Lee in Pennsylvania was in the midst of a very hostile population
and facing superior forces which he could only defeat in one of
two difficult ways: either by a sudden, bewildering, and unexpected
attack, like Jackson's and his own at Chancellorsville, or by an
impregnable defense on ground that also favored a victorious
counter-attack and the subsequent crushing pursuit. But there was
no Jackson now; and the nature of the country did not favor the
bewildering of Federals who were fighting at home under excellent
generals well served by a competent staff and well screened by cavalry.
So the "fog of war" was quite as dense round Lee's headquarters as
it was round Meade's on the first of July, when Lee found that his
chosen point of concentration near Gettysburg was already occupied
by Buford's cavalry, with infantry and some artillery in support.
The surprise--and no very great surprise--was mutual. The Federals
were found where they could stand on their defense in a very strong
position if the rest of their army could come up in time. And Lee's
only advantage was that, having already ordered concentration round
the same position, he had a few hours' start of Meade in getting
there.

Each commander had intended to make the other one attack if possible;
and Meade of course knew that Lee, with inferior numbers and vastly
inferior supplies, could not afford to stay long among gathering
enemies in the hostile North without decisive action. The Confederates
must either fight or retreat without fighting, and make their choice
very soon. So, when the two armies met at Gettysburg, Lee was
practically forced to risk an immediate action or begin a retreat
that might have ruined Confederate morale.

Gettysburg is one of those battles about which men will always
differ. The numbers present, the behavior of subordinates, the
tactics employed, were, and still are, subjects of dispute. Above
all, there is the vexed question of what Lee should or should not
have done. We have little space to spare for any such discussions.
We can only refer inquirers to the original evidence (some of which
is most conflicting) and give the gist of what seems to be indubitable
fact. The numbers were a good seventy thousand Confederates against
about eighty thousand Federals. But these are the approximate grand
totals; and it must be remembered that the Confederates, having
the start, were in superior numbers during the first two days.
On each side there was an aggrieved and aggrieving subordinate
general, Sickles on the Federal side, Longstreet on the other.
But Sickles was by far the less important of the two. In tactics
the Federals displayed great judgment, skill, and resolution. The
Northern people called Gettysburg a soldiers' battle; and so, in
many ways, it was; for there was heroic work among the rank and
file on both sides. But it most emphatically was not a soldiers'
battle in the sense of its having been won more by the rank and
file than by the generals in high command; for never did so many
Federal chiefs show to such great advantage. No less than five
commanded in succession between morning and midnight on the first
day, each meeting the crisis till the next senior came up. They
were Buford, Reynolds, Howard, Hancock, Meade. Hunt also excelled in
command of the artillery; and this in spite of much misorganization
of that arm at Washington. Warren was not only a good commander
of the engineers but a good all-round general, as he showed by
seizing, on his own initiative, the Little Round Top, without which
the left flank could never have been held.

Finally, there is the great vexed question of what Lee should or
should not have done. First, it seems clear that (like Farragut and
unlike Grant and Jackson) he lacked the ruthless power of making
every subordinate bend or break in every time of crisis: otherwise
he would have bent or broken Longstreet. Next, it may have been
that he was not then at his best. Concludingly, it may be granted
to armchair (and even other) critics that if everything had been
something else the results might not have been the same.


Lee, having invaded the North by marching northeast under cover of
the mountains and wheeling southeast to concentrate at Gettysburg,
found Buford's cavalry suddenly resisting him, as they formed the
northwest outpost of Meade's army, which was itself concentrating
round Pipe Creek, near Taneytown in Maryland, fifteen miles southeast.
Gettysburg was a meeting place of many important roads. It stood at
the western end of a branch line connecting with all the eastern
rails. And it occupied a strong strategic point in the vitally
important triangle formed by Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and Washington.
Thus, like a magnet, it drew the contending armies to what they
knew would prove a field decisive of the whole campaign.

The Federal line, as finally held on the third of July, was nearly
five miles long. The front faced west and was nearly three miles
long. The flanks, thrown back at right angles, faced north and
south. Near the north end of the front stood Cemetery Hill, near
the south the Devil's Den, a maze of gigantic bowlders. Along the
front the ground was mostly ridged, and even the lower ground about
the center was a rise from which a gradual slope went down to the
valley that rose again to the opposite heights of Seminary Ridge,
where Lee had his headquarters only a mile away. The so-called
hills were no more than hillocks, the ridges were low, and most
slopes were those of a rolling country. But the general contour
of the ground, the swelling hillocks on the flanks (Culp's Hill
on the right, the Round Tops on the left) and the broad glacis up
which attackers must advance against the center, all combined to
make the position very strong indeed when held by even or superior
numbers.

The first day's fight began when A. P. Hill's Confederates, with
Longstreet's following, closed in on Gettysburg from the west to
meet Ewell's, who were coming down from the north. Buford's Federal
cavalry resisted Hill's advanced brigades successfully till Reynolds
had brought the First Corps forward in support and ordered the
two other nearest corps to follow at the double quick. Reynolds
was killed early in the day; but not before his well trained eye
had taken in the situation at a glance and his sure judgment had
half committed both armies to that famous field.

The full commitment came shortly after, when Meade sent Hancock
forward to command the three corps and Buford's cavalry in their
attempt to stem the Confederate advance. Howard was then the senior
general on the field, having taken over from Doubleday, who had
succeeded Reynolds. But he at once agreed that such a strong position
should be held and that Hancock should proceed to rectify the lines.
This was no easy task; for Ewell's Confederates had meanwhile come
down from the north and driven in the Federal flank on the already
hard-pressed front. The front thereupon gave way and fell back
in confusion. But Hancock's masterly work was quickly done and
the Federal line was reestablished so well that the Confederates
paused in their attack and waited for the morrow.

The Confederates had got as good as they gave, much to their disgust.
Archer, one of their best brigadiers, felt particularly sore when
most of his men were rounded up by Meredith's "Iron Brigade." When
Doubleday saw his old West Point friend a prisoner he shook hands
cordially, saying, "Well, Archer, I _am_ glad to see you!" But
Archer answered, "Well, I'm not so glad to see _you_--not by a
damned sight!" The fact was that the excellent Federal defense had
come as a very unpleasing surprise upon the rather too cocksure
Confederates. Buford's cavalry and Reynolds's infantry had staunchly
withstood superior numbers; while Lieutenant Bayard Wilkeson actually
held back a Confederate division for some time with the guns of
Battery G, Fourth U. S. Artillery. This heroic youth, only nineteen
years of age, kept his men in action, though they were suffering
terrible losses, till two converging batteries brought him down.

He was well matched by a veteran of over seventy, John Burns, an
old soldier, whom the sound of battle drew from his little home like
the trumpet-call to arms. In his swallow-tailed, brass-buttoned,
old-fashioned coatee, Burns seemed a very comic sight to the nearest
boys in blue until they found he really meant to join them and
that he knew a thing or two of war. "Which way are the rebels?"
he asked, "and where are our troops? I know how to fight--I've
fit before." So he did; and he fought to good purpose till wounded
three times.

Late in the evening Meade arrived and inspected the lines by moonlight.
Having ordered every remaining man to hasten forward he faced the
second day with well-founded anxiety lest Lee's full strength should
break through before his own last men were up. His right was not
safe against surprise by the Confederates who slept at the foot of
Culp's Hill, and his left was in imminent danger from Longstreet's
corps. But on the second day Longstreet marked his disagreement
with Lee's plans by delaying his attack till Warren, with admirable
judgment, had ordered the Round Tops to be seized at the double
quick and held to the last extremity. Then, after wasting enough
time for this to be done, Longstreet attacked and was repulsed;
though his men fought very well. Meanwhile Ewell, whose attack
against the right was to synchronize with Longstreet's against
the left, was delayed by Longstreet till the afternoon, when he
carried Culp's Hill.

This was the only Confederate success; for Early failed to carry
Cemetery Hill, the adjoining high ground, which formed the right
center, and the rest of the Federal line remained intact; though
not without desperate struggles.

The third was the decisive day; and on it Meade rose to the height
of his unappreciated skill. This was the first great battle in
which all the chief Federals worked so well together and the first
in which the commander-in-chief used reserves with such excellent
effect, throwing them in at exactly the right moment and at the
proper place. But these indispensable qualities were not of the
kind that the public wanted to acclaim, or, indeed, of the kind
that they could understand.

Meade was determined to clear his flanks. So he began at dawn to
attack Ewell on Culp's Hill and kept on doggedly till, after four
hours of strenuous fighting, he had driven him off. By this time
Meade saw that Lee was not going to press home any serious attack
against the Round Tops and Devil's Den on the left. So the main
interest of the whole battle shifted to the center of the field, where
Lee was massing for a final charge. The idea had been to synchronize
three cooeperating movements against Meade's whole position. His left
was to have been held by a demonstration in force by Longstreet
against the Devil's Den and Round Tops, while Ewell held Culp's
Hill, which seemed to be at his mercy, and which would flank any
Federal retreat. At the same time Meade's center was to have been
rushed by Pickett's fresh division supported by three attached
brigades. But though the central force was ready before nine o'clock
it never stepped off till three; so great was Longstreet's delay
in ordering Pickett's advance. Meanwhile the Federals had made
Culp's Hill quite safe against Ewell. So all depended now on the
one last desperate assault against the Federal center.

This immortal assault is known as Pickett's Charge because it was
made by Pickett's division of Longstreet's corps supported by three
brigades from Hill's--Wilcox's, Perry's, and Pettigrew's. The whole
formed a mass of about ten thousand men. If they broke the Federal
line in two, then every supporting Confederate was to follow, while
the rest turned the flanks. If they failed, then the battle must
be lost.

Hour after hour passed by. But it was not till well past one that
Longstreet opened fire with a hundred and forty guns. Hunt had
seventy-seven ready to reply. But after firing for half an hour
he ceased, wishing to reserve his ammunition for use against the
charging infantry. This encouraged the Confederate gunners, who
thought they had silenced him. They then continued for some time,
preparing the way for the charge, but firing too high and doing
little execution against the Federal infantry, who were lying down,
mostly under cover. Hunt's guns were more exposed and formed better
targets; so some of them suffered severely: none more than those of
Battery A, Fourth U.S. Artillery. This gallant battery had three
of its limbers blown up and replaced. Wheels were also smashed to
pieces and guns put out of action, till only a single gun, with
men enough to handle it, was left with only a single officer. This
heroic young lieutenant, Alonzo H. Cushing (brother to the naval
Cushing who destroyed the _Albemarle_), then ran his gun up to
the fence and fired his last round through it into Pickett's men
as he himself fell dead.

Pickett advanced at three o'clock, to the breathless admiration
of both friend and foe. He had a mile of open ground to cover. But
his three lines marched forward as steadily and blithely as if the
occasion was a gala one and they were on parade. The Confederate
bombardment ceased. The Federal guns and rifles held their fire. Fate
hung in silence on those gallant lines of gray. Then the Federal
skirmishers down in the valley began fitfully firing; and the waiting
masses on the Federal slopes began to watch more intently still.
"Here they come! Here comes the infantry!" The blue ranks stirred
a little as the men felt their cartridge boxes and the sockets of
their bayonets. The calm warnings of the officers could be heard
all down the line of Gibbon's magnificent division, which stood
straight in Pickett's path. "Steady, men, steady! Don't fire yet!"

For a very few, tense minutes Pickett's division disappeared in
an undulation of the ground. Then, at less than point-blank range,
it seemed to spring out of the very earth, no longer in three lines
but one solid mass of rushing gray, cresting, like a tidal wave, to
break in fury on the shore. Instantly, as if in answer to a single
word, Hunt's guns and Gibbon's rifles crashed out together, and
shot, shell, canister, and bullet cut gaping wounds deep into the
dense gray ranks. Still, the wave broke; and, from its storm-blown
top, one furious tongue surged over the breastwork and through
the hedge of bayonets. It came from Armistead's brigade of stark
Virginians. He led it on; and, with a few score men, reached the
highwater mark of that last spring tide.

When he fell the tide of battle turned; turned everywhere upon
that stricken field; turned throughout the whole campaign; turned
even in the war itself.

As Pickett's men fell back they were swept by scythe-like fire
from every gun and rifle that could mow them down. Not a single
mounted officer remained; and of all the brave array that Pickett
led three-fourths fell killed or wounded. The other fourth returned
undaunted still, but only as the wreckage of a storm.

[Illustration: CIVIL WAR CAMPAIGNS OF 1863]

Lee's loss exceeded forty per cent of his command. Meade's loss
fell short of thirty. But Meade was quite unable to pursue at once
when Lee retired on the evening of the fourth. The opposing cavalry,
under Pleasonton and Stuart respectively, had fought a flanking
battle of their own, but without decisive result. So Lee could
screen his retreat to the Potomac, where, however, his whole supply
train might have been cut off if its escort under the steadfast
Imboden had not been reinforced by every teamster who could pull
a trigger.


Gettysburg and Vicksburg, coming together, of course raised the
wildest expectations among the general public, expectations which
found an unworthy welcome at Government headquarters, where Halleck
wrote to Meade on the fourteenth: "The escape of Lee's army has
created great dissatisfaction in the mind of the President." Meade
at once replied: "The censure is, in my judgment, so undeserved
that I most respectfully ask to be immediately relieved from the
command of this army." Wiser counsels thereupon prevailed.

Lee and Meade maneuvered over the old Virginian scenes of action,
each trying to outflank the other, and each being hampered by having
to send reinforcements to their friends in Tennessee, where, as
we have seen already, Bragg and Rosecrans were now maneuvering in
front of Chattanooga. In October (after the Confederate victory of
Chickamauga) Meade foiled Lee's attempt to bring on a Third Manassas.
The campaign closed at Mine Run, where Lee repulsed Meade's attempted
surprise in a three-day action, which began on the twenty-sixth
of November, the morrow of Grant's three days at Chattanooga.


From this time forward the South was like a beleaguered city, certain
to fall if not relieved, unless, indeed, the hearts of those who
swayed the Northern vote should fail them at the next election.




CHAPTER IX

FARRAGUT AND THE NAVY: 1863-4

The Navy's task in '63 was complicated by the many foreign vessels
that ran only between two neutral ports but broke bulk into
blockade-runners at their own port of destination. For instance,
a neutral vessel, with neutral crew and cargo, would leave a port
in Europe for a neutral port in America, say, Nassau in the Bahamas
or Matamoras on the Rio Grande. She could not be touched of course
at either port or anywhere inside the three-mile limit. But
international law accepted the doctrine of continuous voyage, by
which contraband could be taken anywhere on the high seas, provided,
of course, that the blockader could prove his case. If, for example,
there were ten times as many goods going into Matamoras as could
possibly be used through that port by Mexico, then the presumption
was that nine-tenths were contraband. Presumption becoming proof
by further evidence, the doctrine of continuous voyage could be
used in favor of the blockaders who stopped the contraband at sea
between the neutral ports. The blockade therefore required a double
line of operation: one, the old line along the Southern coast,
the other, the new line out at sea, and preferably just beyond
the three-mile limit outside the original port of departure, so
as to kill the evil at its source. Nassau and Matamoras gave the
coast blockade plenty of harassing work; Nassau because it was
"handy to" the Atlantic ports, Matamoras because it was at the
mouth of the Rio Grande, over the shoals of which the Union warships
could not go to prevent contraband crossing into Texas, thence up
to the Red River, down to the Mississippi (between the Confederate
strongholds of Vicksburg and Port Hudson) and on to any other part
of the South. But what may be called the high-seas blockade was no
less harassing, complicated as it was by the work of Confederate
raiders.

The coast blockade of '63 was marked by two notable ship duels and
three fights round Charleston, then, as always, a great storm center
of the war. At the end of January two Confederate gunboats under
Commodore Ingraham attacked the blockading flotilla of Charleston,
forced the _Mercedita_ to surrender, badly mauled the _Keystone
State_, and damaged the _Quaker City_. But, though some foreign
consuls and all Charleston thought the blockade had been raised
for the time being, it was only bent, not broken.

At the end of February the Union monitor _Montauk_ destroyed the
Confederate privateer _Nashville_ near Fort McAllister on the Ogeechee
River in Georgia. In April nine Union monitors steamed in to test the
strength of Charleston; but, as they got back more than they could
give, Admiral Du Pont wisely decided not to try the fight-to-a-finish
he had meant to make next morning. Wassaw Sound in Georgia was
the scene of a desperate duel on the seventeenth of June, when
the Union monitor _Weehawken_ captured the old blockade-runner
_Fingal_, which had been converted into the new Confederate ram
_Atlanta_. The third week in August witnessed another bombardment
of Charleston, this time on a larger scale, for a longer time,
and by military as well as naval means. But Charleston remained
defiant and unconquered both this year and the next.

Confederate raiders were at work along the trade routes of the
world in '63, doing much harm by capture and destruction, and even
more by shaking the security of the American mercantile marine.
American crews were hard to get when so many hands were wanted
for other war work; and American vessels were increasingly apt to
seek the safety of a neutral flag.

Slowly, and with much perverse interference to overcome in the
course of its harassing duties, the Union navy was getting the
strangle-hold that killed the sea-girt South. By '64 the North had
secured this strangle-hold; and nothing but foreign intervention
or the political death of the Northern War Party could possibly
shake it off. The South was feeling its practical enislement as
never before. The strong right arm of the Union navy held it fast
at every point but three--Wilmington, Charleston, and Mobile; and
round these three the stern blockaders grew stronger every day.
The Sabine Pass and Galveston also remained in Southern hands;
and the border town of Matamoras still imported contraband. But
these other three points were closely watched; and the greatly
lessened contraband that did get through them now only served the
western South, which had been completely severed from the eastern
South by the fall of Vicksburg and Port Hudson. The left arm of
the Union navy now held the whole line of the Mississippi, while
the gripping hand held all the tributary streams--Ohio, Cumberland,
and Tennessee--from which the Union armies were to invade, divide,
and devastate the eastern South this year.


Several Southern raiders were still at large in '64. But the most
famous or notorious three have each their own year of glory. The
_Florida_ belongs to '63, the _Shenandoah_ to '65. So the one great
raiding story we have now to tell is that of the _Alabama_, the
greatest of them all.

The _Alabama_ was a beautiful thousand-ton wooden barkentine, built
by the Lairds at Birkenhead in '62, with standing rigging of wire,
a single screw driven by two horizontal three-hundred horse power
engines, coal room for three hundred and fifty tons, eight good
guns, the heaviest a hundred-pound rifle, and a maximum crew of
one hundred and forty-nine--all ranks and ratings--under Captain
Raphael Semmes, late U. S. N. Semmes was not only a very able officer
but an accomplished lawyer, well posted on belligerent and neutral
rights at sea.

For nearly two years the _Alabama_ roved the oceans of the Old
World and the New, taking sixty-six Union vessels valued at seven
million dollars, spreading the terror of her name among all the
merchantmen that flew the Stars and Stripes, and infuriating the
Navy by the wonderful way in which she contrived to escape every
trap it set for her. She was designed for speed rather than for
fighting, and, with her great spread of canvas, could sometimes
work large areas under sail. But, even so, her runs, captures,
and escapes formed a series of adventures that no mere luck could
have possibly performed with a fluctuating foreign crew commanded
by ex-officers of the Navy. Her wanderings took her through nearly
a hundred degrees of latitude, from the coast of Scotland to St.
Paul Island, south of the Indian Ocean, also through more than
two hundred degrees of longitude, from the Gulf of Mexico to the
China Sea. She captured "Yankees" within one day's steaming of
the New York Navy Yard as well as in the Straits of Sunda. West
of the Azores and off the coast of Brazil her captures came so
thick and fast that they might have almost been a flock of sheep
run down there by a wolf. Finally, to fill the cup of wrath against
her, she had sunk a blockader off the coast of Texas, given the
slip to a Union man-of-war at the Cape of Good Hope, and kept the
Navy guessing her unanswered riddles for two whole years.

Imagine, then, the keen elation with which all hands aboard the
U. S. S. _Kearsarge_ heard at their berth off Flushing that the
_Alabama_ was in port at Cherbourg on the Channel coast of France,
only one day's sail southwest! And there she was when the _Kearsarge_
came to anchor; and every Northern eye was turned to see the ship
of which the world had heard so much. The Kearsarges hardly dared
to hope that there would be a fight; for they had the stronger
vessel, and now the faster one as well. The _Alabama_ had been
built for speed; but she had knocked about so much without a proper
overhaul that her copper sheathing was in rags, while she was more
or less strained in nearly every other part. The _Kearsarge_, on
the other hand, was in good order, with mantlets of chain cable
protecting her vitals, with one-third greater horse power, with
fourteen more men in her crew, and with two big pivot guns throwing
eleven inch shells with great force at short ranges. Moreover,
the _Kearsarge_, with her superior speed and stronger hull, could
choose the range and risk close quarters. The Alabamas were also
keen to estimate respective strengths. But the French authorities
naturally kept the two ships pretty far apart; so the Alabamas
never saw the chain mantlets which the Kearsarges had cleverly
hidden under a covering of wood that appeared to be flush with the
hull.

The Kearsarges had a second and still more elating surprise when they
heard the _Alabama_ was coming out to fight. Semmes was apparently
anxious to show that his raider could be as gallant in fighting a
man-of-war as she was effective in sinking merchant vessels; so
he wrote his challenge to the Confederate Consul at Cherbourg, who
passed it on to the U. S. Consul, who handed it to Captain Winslow,
commanding the _Kearsarge_. Still, four days passed without the
_Alabama_; and the Kearsarges were giving up hope, when, suddenly,
on Sunday morning, the nineteenth of June, just as they had rigged
church and fallen in for prayers, out came the _Alabama_. The
_Kearsarge_ thereupon drew off, so that the _Alabama_ could not easily
escape to neutral waters if the duel went against her. Cherbourg,
of course, was all agog to see the fight; and many thousands of
people, some from as far as Paris, watched every move. An English
yacht, the _Deerhound_, kept an offing of about a mile, ready to
rescue survivors from a watery grave. Its owner, with his wife
and family, had intended to stay ashore and go to church. But,
when they heard the _Alabama_ was really going out, he put the
question to the vote around the breakfast-table, whereupon it was
carried unanimously that the _Deerhound_ should go too.

When the deck-officer of the _Kearsarge_ sang out, "_Alabama!_"
Captain Winslow put down his prayer-book, seized his speaking-trumpet,
and turned to gain a proper offing, while the drum beat to general
quarters and the ship was cleared for action, with pivot-guns to
starboard. The weather was fine, with a slight haze, little sea,
and a light west breeze. Having drawn the _Alabama_ far enough to
sea, the _Kearsarge_ turned toward her again, showing the starboard
bow. When at a mile the _Alabama_ fired her hundred-pounder. For
nearly the whole hour this famous duel lasted the ships continued
fighting in the same way--starboard to starboard, round and round
a circle from half to a quarter mile across. Each captain stood
on the horse-block abreast the mizzen-mast to direct the fight.
Semmes presently called to his executive officer: "Mr. Kell, use
solid shot! Our shell strike the enemy's side and fall into the
water" (after bounding off the iron mantlets Winslow had so cleverly
concealed). The _Kearsarge's_ gunnery was magnificent, especially
from the after-pivot, which Quartermaster William Smith fired with
deadly aim, even when three of his gun's crew had been wounded by
a shell. These three, strange to say, were the only casualties
that occurred aboard the _Kearsarge_. But at sea the stronger side
usually suffers much less and the weaker much more than on land.
The _Alabama_ lost forty: killed, drowned, and wounded.

The Kearsarges soon saw how the fight was going and began to cheer
each first-rate shot. "That's a good one! Now we have her! Give her
another like the last!" The big eleven-inchers got home repeatedly
as the range decreased; so much so that Semmes ordered Kell to keep
the _Alabama_ headed for the coast the next time the circling brought
her bow that way. This would bring her port side into action, which
was just what Semmes wanted now, because she had a dangerous list
to starboard, where the water was pouring through the shot-holes.
Kell changed her course with perfect skill, righting the helm,
hoisting the head-sails, hauling the fore-try-sail-sheet well aft,
and pivoting to port for a broadside delivered almost as quickly
as if there had not been a change at all. But at this moment the
engineer came up to say the water had put his fires out and that
the ship was sinking. At the same time a strange thing happened.
An early shot from the _Kearsarge_ had carried away the _Alabama's_
colors; and now the _Alabama's_ own last broadside actually announced
her own defeat by "breaking out" the special Stars and Stripes
that Winslow had run up his mizzenmast on purpose to break out
in case of victory. A cannon ball had twitched the cord that held
the flag rolled up "in stops."

Semmes sent his one remaining boat to announce his surrender; threw
his sword into the sea; and jumped in with the survivors. The
_Deerhound_, on authority from Winslow, had already closed in to
the rescue, followed by two French pilot boats and two from the
_Kearsarge_; when suddenly the _Alabama_, rearing like a stricken
horse, plunged to her doom.


Long before the _Alabama's_ end the Navy had been preparing for the
finishing blows against the Southern ports. Farragut had returned
to New Orleans in January, '64, hoping for immediate action. But
vexatious delays at Washington postponed his great attack till
August, when he crowned his whole career by his master-stroke against
Mobile. Grant was equally annoyed by this absurd delay, which was
caused by the eccentric, and therefore entirely wasteful, Red River
Expedition of '64, an expedition we shall ignore otherwise than
by pointing out, in this and the succeeding chapters, that it not
only postponed the overdue attack on Mobile but spoilt Sherman's
grand strategy as well as Farragut's and Grant's. Banks commanded
it. But by this time even he had learnt enough of war to know that
it was a totally false move. So he boldly protested against it.
But Halleck's orders, dictated by the Government, were positive.
So there was nothing for it but to suffer a well-deserved defeat
while trying to kill the dead and withering branches of Confederate
power beyond the Mississippi, in order to "show the flag in Texas"
and say "hands off!" to Mexico and France in the least effective
way of all.

During this delay the Confederate ram _Albemarle_ came down the
Roanoke River, hoping to break through the local blockade in Albemarle
Sound and so give North Carolina an outlet to the sea. Two attempts
against Newbern, which closed the way out to Pamlico Sound, had
failed; but now (the fifth of May) great hopes were set upon the
_Albemarle_. At first she seemed impregnable; and the Federal shot
and shell glanced harmlessly off her iron sides. But presently
Commander Roe of the _Sassacus_ (a light-draft, pair-paddle,
double-ender gunboat) getting at right angles to her, ordered his
engineer to stuff the fires with oiled waste and keep the throttle
open. "All hands, lie down!" shouted Roe, as the throbbing engines
drove his vessel to the charge. Then came an earthquake shock: the
_Sassacus_ crashed her bronze beak into the _Albemarle's_ side.
Both vessels were disabled; a shell from the _Albemarle_ burst the
boilers of the _Sassacus_, scalding the engineers. But the rest
fought off the attempt made by the Albemarles to board. Presently
the furious opponents drifted apart; and the _Albemarle_, unable
to face her other enemies, took refuge upstream. There, on the
twenty-seventh of October, she was heroically attacked and sunk by
Lieutenant W. B. Cushing, U. S. N., with a spar torpedo projecting
from a little steam launch. Cushing himself swam off through a
hail of bullets, worked his way through the woods, seized a skiff
belonging to one of the enemy's outposts, and reached the flagship
half dead but wholly triumphant.


Between the _Albemarle's_ two fights Farragut took Mobile after
a magnificent action on the fifth of August. There were batteries
ashore, torpedoes across the channel, the _Tennessee_ ram and other
Confederate vessels waiting on the flank: three kinds of danger to
the Union fleet if one false movement had been made. But Farragut's
touch was sure. He sent his ironclads through next to the batteries,
which were only really dangerous on one side. This protected the
wooden ships against the batteries and the ironclads against the
torpedoes; for the Confederates had to leave part of the fairway
clear in order to use it themselves. Through this narrow channel
the four strongly armored monitors led the desperate way, a little
ahead and to starboard of the wooden vessels, which followed in
pairs, each pair lashed together, with the stronger on the starboard
side, next to Fort Morgan.

The Confederates in Fort Morgan, and in the small and distant Fort
Powell on the other side, hardly reached a thousand men. Their force
afloat was also comparatively small: the ironclad ram _Tennessee_
and three side-wheeler gunboats. But the great strength of their
position and the many dangers to a hostile fleet combined to make
Farragut's attack a very serious operation, even with his four
monitors, eight screw sloops, and four smaller vessels. The Union
army, which took no part in this great attack, was over five thousand
strong, and lost only seven men in the land bombardment later on.

Farragut crossed the bar in the _Hartford_ at ten past six in the
morning with the young flood tide and a westerly breeze to blow
the smoke against Fort Morgan. All his ships ran up the Stars and
Stripes not only at the peak, as usual, but at each mast-head as
well. Farragut himself at first took post in the port main rigging.
But as the smoke of battle rose around him he climbed higher and
higher till he got close under the maintop, where a seaman, sent
up by Captain Drayton, lashed him on securely.

All went well amid the furious cannonade till the monitor _Tecumseh_,
taking the wrong side of the channel buoy in her anxiety to ram
the _Tennessee_, ran over the torpedoes, was horribly holed by the
explosion, and plunged headforemost to the bottom, her screw madly
whirling in the air. Nor was this the worst; for the _Tecumseh's_
mistake had thrown the other monitors out of their proper line-ahead,
athwart the wooden ships, which began to slow and swing about in
some confusion. The Confederates redoubled their fire. Ahead lay
the fatal torpedoes. For a moment Farragut could not decide whether
to risk an advance at all costs or to turn back beaten. He was
a very devout as well as a most determined man; and his simple
prayer, "O God, shall I go on?" seemed answered by the echo of
his soul, "Go on!" So on he went, not in unreflecting exaltation,
but in exaltation based on knowledge and on skill. Like Cromwell,
he might well have said, "Trust in the Lord and keep your powder
dry!" For he had done all that naval foresight could have done
to ensure success. And now, in one lightning flash of genius, he
reviewed the situation. He knew the torpedoes of his day were often
unreliable, that they exploded only on a special kind of shock,
that those which did explode could not be replaced in action, that
they were all fixed to their own spots, and that if one ship was
blown up her next-astern would get through safely.

The _Brooklyn_, his next-ahead, was in his way. So he ordered the
flagship _Hartford_ and her lashed-together consort, the double-ender
_Metacomet_, to use, the one her screw, the other her paddles, in
opposite directions, till he had cleared the _Brooklyn's_ stern.
As he drew clear and headed for the danger-channel a shout went up
from the _Brooklyn's_ deck--"'ware torpedoes!" But Farragut, his
mind made up, instantly roared back--"Damn the torpedoes!" Then,
turning to the _Hartford's_ and _Metacomet's_ decks, he called
his orders down: "Four bells! Captain Drayton, go ahead! Captain
Jouett, full speed!" In answer to the order of "four bells" the
engines worked their very utmost and the two vessels dashed ahead.
Torpedoes knocked against the bottom and some of the primers actually
snapped. But nothing exploded; and Farragut won through.

Inside the harbor the _Tennessee_ fought hard against the overwhelming
Union fleet. But her low-powered engines gave her no chance at
quick maneuvers. Three vessels rammed her in succession; and she
was forced to surrender.

After this purely naval victory on the fifth of August, General
Granger's troops invested Fort Morgan, which, becoming the target
of an irresistible converging fire from both land and sea on the
twenty-second, surrendered on the twenty-third.

The next objective of a joint expedition was Fort Fisher, which
stood at the end of a long, low tongue of land between the sea and
Cape Fear River. Fort Fisher guarded the entrance to Wilmington
in North Carolina, the port, above all others, from which the
Confederate armies drew their oversea supplies. Lee wrote to Colonel
Lamb, its commandant, saying that he could not subsist if it was
taken. Lamb had less than two thousand men in the fort; but there
were six thousand more forming an army of support outside. The
Confederates, however, had no naval force to speak of, while the
Union fleet, commanded by Admiral Porter, was the largest that
had ever yet assembled under the Stars and Stripes. There were
nearly sixty fighting vessels of all kinds, including five new
ironclads and the three finest new frigates. The guns that were
carried exceeded six hundred.

There was also a mine ship, the old _Louisiana_, stuffed chock-a-block
with powder to blow in the side of the fort. The Washington wiseacres
set great store on this new mine of theirs. It was, of course, to
end the war. But naval and military experts on the spot were more
than doubtful. On the night of the twenty-third of December the
_Louisiana_ was safely worked in near the fort by brave Commander
Rhind, who fired the slow match and escaped unhurt with his devoted
crew of volunteers. A tremendous explosion followed. But, as there
was nothing to drive the force of it against the walls, it simply
resulted in an enormous flurry of water, mud, sand, earth, and
bits of flaming wreckage.

Next morning the fleet bombarded with such success as to silence
many of the guns opposed to them. But on Christmas Day General
Weitzel reported that an assault would fail; whereupon General
Butler concurred and retreated, much to the rage of the fleet, which
thought quite otherwise.

In a few days General Terry arrived with the same white troops
reinforced by two small colored brigades, making a total of eight
thousand men. To these Porter, strongly reinforced, added a naval
brigade, two thousand strong, that volunteered to storm the sea
face of Fort Fisher. These gallant men had only cutlasses and
pistols--except the four hundred marines, who carried bayonets and
rifles. They were a scratch lot, from the soldier's point of view,
never having been landed together as a single unit till called upon
to assault the most dangerous features of the fort. Yet, though
they were repulsed with considerable loss, they greatly helped
to win the day by obliging the defenders to divide their forces.
As Terry's army was, by itself, four or five times stronger than
Lamb's entire command the military stormers succeeded in fighting
their way through every line of defense and compelling a surrender.
They did exceedingly well. But their rear was safe, because Bragg
had withdrawn the supporting army for service elsewhere; while,
in their front, the enemy defenses had been almost torn out by
the roots in many places under the terrific converging fire of six
hundred naval guns for three successive days.

When Fort Fisher surrendered on the fifteenth of January (1865)
the exhausted South had only one good port and one good raider
left: Charleston and the _Shenandoah_.




CHAPTER X

GRANT ATTACKS THE FRONT: 1864

On March 9, 1864, at the Executive Mansion, and in the presence of all
the Cabinet Ministers, Lincoln handed Grant the Lieutenant-General's
commission which made him Commander-in-Chief of all the Union armies--a
commission such as no one else had held since Washington. On April
9, 1865, Grant received the surrender of Lee at Appomattox; and
the four years war was ended by a thirteen months campaign.


Victor of the River War in '63, Grant moved his headquarters from
Chattanooga to Nashville soon before Christmas. He then expected
not only to lead the river armies against Atlanta in '64 but, at
the same time, to send another army against Mobile, where it could
act in conjunction with the naval forces under Farragut's command.

He consequently made a midwinter tour of inspection: southeast to
Chattanooga, northeast to Knoxville and Cumberland Gap, northwest to
Lexington and Louisville, thence south, straight back to Nashville.
This satisfied him that his main positions were properly taken and
held, and that a well-concerted drive would clear his own strategic
area of all but Forrest's elusive cavalry.

It was the hardest winter known for many years. The sticky clay
roads round Cumberland Gap had been churned by wheels and pitted by
innumerable feet throughout the autumn rains. Now they were frozen
solid and horribly encumbered by debris mixed up with thousands
upon thousands of perished mules and horses. Grant regretted this
terrible wastage of animals as much in a personal as in a military
way; for, like nearly all great men, his sympathies were broad
enough to make him compassionate toward every kind of sentient
life. No Arab ever loved his horse better than Grant loved his
splendid charger Cincinnati, the worthy counterpart of Traveler,
Lee's magnificent gray.

Summoned to Washington in March, Grant, after one scrutinizing
look at the political world, then and there made up his steadfast
mind that no commander-in-chief could ever carry out his own plans
from any distant point; for, even in his fourth year of the war,
civilian interference was still being practiced in defiance of naval
and military facts and needs, and of some very serious dangers.

Lincoln stood wisely for civil control. But even he could not resist
the perverting pressure in favor of the disastrous Red River Expedition,
against which even Banks protested. Public and Government alike
desired to give the French fair warning that the establishment of
an Imperial Mexico, especially by means of foreign intervention,
was regarded as a semi-hostile act. There were two entirely different
ways in which this warning could be given: one completely effective
without being provocative, the other provocative without being in
the very least degree effective. The only effective way was to win
the war; and the best way to win the war was to strike straight at
the heart of the South with all the Union forces. The most ineffective
way was to withdraw Union forces from the heart of the war, send them
off at a wasteful tangent, misuse them in eccentric operations just
where they would give most offense to the French, and then expose
them to what, at best, could only be a detrimental victory, and to
what would much more likely be defeat, if not disaster.

Yet, to Grant's and Farragut's and every other soldier's and sailor's
disgust, this worst way of all was chosen; and Banks's forty thousand
sorely needed veterans were sent to their double defeat at Sabine
Cross Roads and Pleasant Hill on the eighth and ninth of April, while
Porter's invaluable fleet and the no less indispensable transports
were nearly lost altogether owing to the long-foretold fall of
the dangerous Red River. The one success of this whole disastrous
affair was the admirable work of Colonel Joseph Bailey, who dammed
the water up just in time to let the rapidly stranding vessels
slide into safety through a very narrow sluice.

Even the Red River lesson was thrown away on Stanton, whose interference
continued to the bitter end, except when checked by Lincoln or countered
by Grant and Sherman in the field. When Grant was starting on his
tour of inspection he found that Stanton had forbidden all War
Department operators to let commanding generals use the official
cipher except when in communication with himself. There were to
be no secrets at the front between the commanding generals, even
on matters of immediate life and death, unless they were first
approved by Stanton at his leisure. The fact that the enemy could
use unciphered messages was nothing in his autocratic eyes. Nor
did it prick his conscience to change the wording in ways that
bewildered his own side and served the enemy's turn.

When Grant took the cipher Stanton ordered the operator to be dismissed.
Grant thereupon shouldered the responsibility, saying that Stanton
would have to punish him if any one was punished. Then Stanton gave
in. Grant saw through him clearly. "Mr. Stanton never questioned
his own authority to command, unless resisted. He felt no hesitation
in assuming the functions of the Executive or in acting without
advising with him.... He was very timid, and it was impossible
for him to avoid interfering with the armies covering the capital
when it was sought to defend it by an offensive movement against
the army defending the Confederate capital. The enemy would not
have been in danger if Mr. Stanton had been in the field."

Stanton was unteachable. He never learnt where control ended and
disabling interference began. In the very critical month of August,
'64, he interfered with Hunter to such an extent that this patriotic
general had to tell Grant "he was so embarrassed with orders from
Washington that he had lost all trace of the enemy." Nor was that the
end of Stanton's interference with the operations in the Shenandoah
Valley. Lincoln's own cipher letter to Grant on the third of August
shows what both these great men had to suffer from the weak link
in the chain between them.

I have seen your despatch in which you say, "I want Sheridan put
in command of all the troops in the field, with instructions to put
himself south of the enemy, and follow him to the death. Wherever
the enemy goes, let our troops go also." This, I think, is exactly
right, as to how our forces should move. But please look over the
despatches you may have received from here, even since you made
that order, and discover, if you can, that there is any idea in the
head of any one here of "putting our army _south_ of the enemy,"
or of "following him to the _death_" in any direction. I repeat
to you it will neither be done or attempted unless you watch it
every day, and hour, and force it.

The experts of the loyal North were partly comforted by knowing that
Davis and his ministers had interfered with Jackson, that during
the present campaign they made a crucial mistake about Johnston,
and that they failed to give Lee the supreme command until it was
too late. But no Southern Secretary went quite so far as Stanton,
who actually falsified Grant's order to Sheridan at the crisis
of the Valley campaign in October. Here are Grant's own words:
"This order had to go through Washington, where it was intercepted;
and when Sheridan received what purported to be a statement of
what I wanted him to do it was something entirely different."

Nor was Stanton the only responsible civilian to interfere with Grant.
There was no government press censorship--perhaps, in this peculiar
war, there could not be one. So the only safety was unceasing care,
even in cases vouched for by civilians of high official standing.
When Grant was beginning the great campaign of '64 the Honorable
Elihu B. Washburne, afterwards United States Minister to France,
introduced one Swinton as the prospective historian of the war. On
this understanding Swinton accompanied the army. One night Grant
gave verbal orders to the staff officer on duty. Three days later
these orders appeared in a Richmond paper. Shortly afterwards, in
the midst of the Wilderness battle, Swinton was found eavesdropping
behind a stump during a midnight conference at headquarters. Sent
off with a serious warning, he next appeared, in another place, as
a prisoner condemned to death for spying. Grant, satisfied that
he was not bent on getting news for the enemy in particular, but
only for the press in general, released and expelled him with such
a warning this time that he never once came back.


The Union forces at the front were about twice the corresponding
forces of the South. Sherman, who commanded the river armies after
Grant's transfer to Virginia, says: "I always estimated my force at
about double, and could afford to lose two to one without disturbing
our relative proportion." In Virginia the Army of the Potomac under
Meade and the new Army of the James under Butler, both under Grant's
immediate command, totaled over a hundred and fifty thousand men
against the ninety thousand under Lee. These odds of five to three
remained the same when a hundred and ten thousand Federals went
into winter quarters against sixty-six thousand Confederates at
Petersburg. But, when the naval odds of more than ten to one in
favor of the North are added in, the general odds of two to one are
reached on this as well as other scenes of action. In reserves the
odds were very much greater; for while the South was getting down
to its last available man the North began the following year with
nearly one million in the forces and two millions on the registered
reserve. Thus, even supposing that half the reserves were unfit for
active service, the man-power odds against the South were these:
two to one in arms at the beginning of the great campaign, five to
one at the end of it, and ten to one if the fit reserves were all
included. The odds in transportation by land, and very much more
so by water, were even greater at corresponding times; while the
odds in all the other resources which could be turned to warlike
ends were greater still.

The Southern situation, therefore, was not encouraging from the
naval and military point of view. The border States had long been
lost, then the trans-Mississippi; and now the whole river area was
held as a base by the North. Only five States remained effective:
Alabama, Georgia, the Carolinas, and Virginia. These formed an
irregular oblong of about two hundred thousand square miles between
the Appalachians and the sea. There were a good eight hundred
Confederate miles from the Shenandoah Valley to Mobile. But the
three hundred miles across the oblong, even in its widest part,
were everywhere threatened and in some places held by the North.
The whole coast was more closely blockaded than ever; and only
three ports remained with their defenses still in Southern hands:
Wilmington, Charleston, and Mobile. Alabama was threatened by land and
sea from the lower Mississippi and the Gulf. Georgia was threatened
by Sherman's main body in southeastern Tennessee. The Carolinas
were in less immediate danger. But they were menaced both from the
mountains and the sea; and if the Union forces conquered Virginia and
Georgia, then the Carolinas were certain to be ground into subjugation
between Grant's victorious forces on the north and Sherman's on
the south.

Grant fixed his own headquarters with the Army of the Potomac at
Culpeper Court House, north of the Rapidan. Lee's Army of Northern
Virginia was at Orange Court House, over twenty miles south. Grant,
taking his own headquarters as the center, regarded Butler's Army
of the James as the left wing, which could unite with the center
round Richmond and Petersburg. The long right wing ran through
the whole of West Virginia, Kentucky, and Tennessee, clear away to
Memphis, with its own headquarters at Chattanooga. There Sherman
faced Johnston, who occupied a strong position at Dalton, over
thirty miles southeast. The great objectives were, of course, the
two main Southern armies under Lee and Johnston, with Richmond
and Atlanta as the chief positions to be gained.

All other Union forces were regarded as attacking the South from
the rear. Wherever coast garrisons could help to tighten the blockade
or seriously distract Confederate attention they were left to do
so. Wherever they could not they were either depleted for the front
or sent there bodily. The principal Union field force attacking
from the rear was to have been formed by Banks's forty thousand
veterans in conjunction with Farragut's fleet against Mobile. But
the Red River Expedition spoilt that combination in the spring
and postponed it till August, when Farragut did nearly all the
fighting, and the cooeperating army was far too late to produce the
distracting effect that Grant had originally planned.

General Franz Sigel was sent to the upper Shenandoah Valley, both
to guard that approach on Washington and to destroy the resources on
which Lee's army so greatly relied. General George Crook was given
a mounted column to operate from southern West Virginia against
the line of rails running toward Tennessee through the lower end
of the Valley.

The most notable new general was Philip H. Sheridan, whom Grant
selected for the cavalry command. Sheridan was thirty-three, two
years older than his Southern rival, Stuart, and, like him, a young
regular officer who rose to well-earned fame the moment his first
great chance occurred.

Sherman we have met from the very beginning of the war and followed
throughout its course. He was continually rising to more and more
responsible command; but it was only now that he became the virtual
Commander-in-Chief of all the river armies and the chosen cooeperator
with Grant on a universal scale. He was of the old original stock,
his first American ancestors having emigrated from England in 1634.
An old regular, with special knowledge of the South, and in the
fullness of his powers at the age of forty-four, he had developed
with the war till there was no position which he could not fill
to the best advantage of the service.

Grant fixed the fourth of May for the combined advance of all the
converging forces of invasion. There were two weak points where
the Union armies failed: one in the farthest south, where, as we
have so often seen, Banks could not attack Mobile owing to his
absence at Red River; the other in the farthest north, where Sigel
was badly beaten and replaced by Hunter. Here, after much disabling
interference at the hands of Stanton, Hunter was succeeded by Sheridan,
whom Grant himself directed with consummate skill. There were also
two Confederate thorns in the Federal side: Forrest's cavalry in
Sherman's rear, Mosby's cavalry in Grant's. Forrest roved about the
river area, snapping up small garrisons, cutting communications,
and doing a good deal of damage right up to the Ohio. Mosby, with
a much smaller but equally efficient force, actually raided to and
fro in Grant's immediate rear; and on one occasion nearly captured
Grant himself just on the eve of the opening move. As Grant's unguarded
special train from Washington pulled up at Warrenton Junction, where
there was only one Union official, Mosby's men had just crossed
the track in pursuit of some Federal cavalry.

But neither these two Confederate thorns in the side nor the more
serious Federal failures could stop the general advance. Nor yet
could Butler's lack of success on the James. Butler had seized
and fortified an exceedingly strong defensive position at Bermuda
Hundred on a peninsula, with navigable water on both flanks and in
rear, and a very narrow neck of land in front. The only trouble
was that it was as hard for him to surmount the Confederate front
across the same narrow neck as it was for the enemy to surmount
his own. He was, in fact, bottled up, with the cork in the enemy's
hands. He did send out cavalry from Suffolk to cut the rails south
of Petersburg. But no permanent damage was done there. Petersburg
itself, which at that time was almost defenseless, was not taken. And
in the middle of the month Beauregard attacked Butler so vigorously
as to make the Army of the James rather a passive than an active
force till it was presently, absorbed by Grant when he arrived
before Richmond in June.

Grant felt perfect confidence only in four prime elements of victory:
first, in his ability to wear Lee down by sheer attrition if other
means failed; next, in his own magnificent army; then in Sherman's;
and lastly in Sheridan's cavalry. His supply and transport services
were nearly perfect, even in his own most critical eyes. "There
never was a corps better organized than was the quartermaster's
corps with the Army of the Potomac in 1864." His field engineering
and his signal service were also exceedingly good. At every halt
the army threw up earth and timber entrenchments with wonderful
rapidity and skill. At the same time the telegraph and signal corps
was busy laying insulated wires by means of reels on muleback.
Parallel lines would be led to the rear of each brigade till quite
clear, when their ends would be joined by a wire at right angles,
from which headquarters could communicate with every unit at the
front. Sherman's army was equally efficient, and Sheridan's cavalry
soon proved that sweeping raids could be carried out by one side
as well as by the other.

Crossing the Rapidan at the Germanna Ford, Grant marched south
through the Wilderness on the fifth of May. The Wilderness was
densely wooded; the roads were few and bad; the clearings rare
and too small for large units. When Lee attacked from the west
and Grant turned to face him the fighting soon became desperate,
close, and somewhat confused. Neither side gained any substantial
advantage on the first day. Next morning Grant, preparing to attack
at five, was forestalled by Lee, who wished to keep him at arm's
length till Longstreet came up on the southern flank. Again the
opposing armies closed and fought with the greatest determination
for over an hour, when the Confederates fell back in some confusion.
Then Longstreet arrived and restored the battle till he was severely
wounded. After this Lee took command of his right, or southern, wing
and kept up the fight all day. Meanwhile Sheridan had countered
the Confederate cavalry under Stuart, which had been trying to
swing round the same southern flank. The main bodies of infantry
swayed back and forth till dark, with the woods and breastworks
on fire in several places, and many of the wounded smothering in
the smoke.

On the seventh reassuring news came in from Sherman and Butler,
Sheridan drove off the Confederate cavalry at Todd's Tavern, and
the southward march continued. As Grant and Meade rode south that
evening, past Hancock's corps, and the men saw they were heading
straight for Richmond, there was such a burst of cheering that
the Confederates, thinking it meant a night attack, deluged the
intervening woods with a heavy barrage till they found out their
mistake.

The race for Richmond continued on the eighth, each army trying to
get south of the other without exposing itself to a flank attack.
Grant had sent his wagon trains farther east, to move south on
parallel roads and keep those nearest Lee quite clear for fighting.
This movement at first led Lee to suspect a Federal retirement on
Fredericksburg, which caused him to send Longstreet's corps south
to Spotsylvania. The woods being on fire, and the men unable to
bivouac, the whole corps pushed on to Spotsylvania, thus forestalling
Grant, who had intended to get there first himself.

This brought on another tremendous battle in the bush. Lee formed
a semicircle, facing north, round Spotsylvania, in a supreme effort
to stem, if not throw back, Grant's most determined advance. Grant,
on the other hand, indomitably pressed home wave after wave of attack
till the evening of the twelfth. The morning of that desperate day
was foggy; and the attack was delayed. The Federal objective was
a commanding salient, jutting out from the Confederate center,
and now weakened by the removal of guns overnight to follow the
apparent Federal move toward the south. The gray sentries, peering
through the dripping woods, suddenly found them astir. Then wave
after wave of densely massed blue dashed to the assault, swarming
up and over on both sides, regardless of losses, and fighting hand
to hand with a fury that earned this famous salient the name of
Bloody Angle. Back and still back went the outnumbered gray, many of
whom were surrounded by the swirling currents of inpouring blue. But
presently Lee himself came up, and would have led his reinforcements
to the charge if a pleading shout of "General Lee to the rear!"
had not induced him to desist. Every spare Confederate rushed to
the rescue. From right and left and rear the gray streams came,
impetuous and strong, united in one main current and dashed against
the blue. There, in the Bloody Angle, the battle raged with
ever-increasing fury until the rising tide of strife, bursting
its narrow bounds, carried the blue attackers back to where they
came from. But they were hardly clear of that appalling slope before
they reformed, presented an undaunted front once more, and then
drew off with stinging resistance to the very last.

After five days of much rain and little fighting Grant made his
final effort on the eighteenth. This was meant to be a great surprise.
Two corps changed position under cover of the night and sprang
their trap at four in the morning. But Lee was again before them,
ready and resolute as ever. Thirty guns converged their withering
fire on the big blue masses and seemed to burn them off the field.
These masses never closed, as they had done six days before; and
when they fell back beaten the fortnight's battle in the Wilderness
was done.

During it there had been two operations that gave Grant better
satisfaction: Sheridan's raid and Sherman's advance. As large bodies
of cavalry could not maneuver in the bush Grant had sent Sheridan
off on his Richmond Raid ten days before. Striking south near
Spotsylvania, Sheridan's ten thousand horsemen rounded Lee's right,
cut the rails on either side of Beaver Dam Station, destroyed this
important depot on the Virginia Central Railroad, and then made
straight for Richmond. Stuart followed hard, made an exhausting
sweep round Sheridan's flank, and faced him on the eleventh at
Yellow Tavern, six miles north of Richmond. Here the tired and
outnumbered Confederates made a desperate attempt to stem Sheridan's
advance. But Stuart, the hero of his own men, and the admiration
of his generous foes, was mortally wounded; and his thinner lines,
overlapped and outweighed, gave ground and drew off. Richmond had
no garrison to resist a determined attack. But Sheridan, knowing he
could not hold it and having better work to do, pushed on southeast
to Haxall's Landing, where he could draw much-needed supplies from
Butler, just across the James. With the enemy aggressive and alert
all round him, he built a bridge under fire across the Chickahominy,
struck north for the Army of the Potomac, and reported his return
to Grant at Chesterfield Station--halfway back to Spotsylvania--on
his seventeenth day out.

In the course of this great raid Sheridan had drawn off the Confederate
cavalry; fought four successful actions; released hundreds of Union
prisoners and taken as many himself; cut rails and wires to such an
extent that Lee could only communicate with Richmond by messenger;
destroyed enormous quantities of the most vitally needed enemy
stores, especially food and medical supplies; and, by penetrating
the outer defenses of Richmond, raised Federal prestige to a higher
plane at a most important juncture.

Meanwhile Sherman, whose own main body included a hundred thousand
men, had started from Chattanooga at the same time as Grant from
Culpeper Court House. In Grant's opinion "Johnston, with Atlanta,
was of less importance only because the capture of Johnston and
his army would not produce so immediate and decisive a result in
closing the rebellion as would the possession of Richmond, Lee, and
his army." Sherman's organization, supply and transport, engineers,
staff, and army generally were excellent. So skillful, indeed,
were his railway engineers that a disgusted Confederate raider
called out to a demolition party: "Better save your powder, boys.
What's the good of blowing up this one when Sherman brings duplicate
tunnels along?"

Sherman had double Johnston's numbers in the field. But Johnston,
as a supremely skillful Fabian, was a most worthy opponent for this
campaign, when the Confederate object was to gain time and sicken
the North of the war by falling back from one strongly prepared
position to another, inflicting as much loss as possible on the
attackers, and forcing them to stretch their line of communication
to the breaking point among a hostile population. Two of Sherman's
best divisions were still floundering about with the rest of the
Red River Expedition. So he had to modify his original plan, which
would have taken him much sooner to Atlanta and given him the support
of a simultaneous attack on Mobile by a cooeperating joint expedition.
But he was ready to the minute, all the same.

Dalton, Johnston's first stronghold, was cleverly turned by McPherson's
right flank march; whereupon Johnston fell back on Resaca. Here,
on the upon the fifteenth of May, the armies fought hard for some
hours. But Sherman again outflanked the fortified enemy, who retired
to Kingston. Then, after Sherman had made a four days' halt to
accumulate supplies, the advance was resumed, against determined
opposition and with a good deal of hard fighting for a week in the
neighborhood of New Hope Church. The result of the usual outflanking
movements was that Johnston had to evacuate Allatoona on the fourth
of June. Sherman at once turned it into his advanced field base;
while Johnston fell back on another strong and well-prepared position
at Kenesaw Mountain.

Grant, favored in a general way by Sherman and in a special way
by Sheridan, had meanwhile enjoyed a third advantage, this time
on his own immediate front, through the sickness of Lee, who could
not take personal command during the last ten days of May. On the
twenty-first half of Grant's army marched south while half stood
threatening Lee, in order to give their friends a start toward
Richmond. This move was so well staffed and screened that perhaps
Lee could not have seen his chance quite soon enough in any case.
But when he did learn what had happened even his calm self-control
gave way to the exceeding bitter cry: "We must strike them! We must
never let them pass us again!" On the thirtieth he was horrified
at getting from Beauregard (who was then between Richmond and
Petersburg) a telegram which showed that the Confederate Government
was busy with the circumlocution office in Richmond while the enemy
was thundering at the gate. "War Department must determine when
and what troops to order from here." Lee immediately answered:
"If you cannot determine what troops you can spare, the Department
cannot. The result of your delay will be disaster. Butler's troops
will be with Grant tomorrow." Lee also telegraphed direct to Davis
for immediate reinforcements, which arrived only just in time for
the terrific battle of Cold Harbor.

With these three advantages, in addition to the other odds in his
favor, Grant seemed to have found the tide of fortune at the flood
in the latter part of May. But he had many troubles of his own.
No sooner had half his army been badly defeated on the eighteenth
than news came that Sigel was in full retreat instead of cutting
off supplies from Lee. Then came news of Butler's retreat from
Drewry's Bluff, close in to Richmond. Nor was this all; for it was
only now that definite news of the Red River Expedition arrived
to confirm Grant's worst suspicions and ruin his second plan of
helping Farragut to take Mobile. But, as was his wont, Grant at
once took steps to meet the crisis. He ordered Hunter to replace
Sigel and go south--straight into the heart of the Valley, asked the
navy to move his own base down the Rappahannock from Fredericksburg
to Port Royal, and then himself marched on toward Richmond, where
Lee was desperately trying to concentrate for battle.

The two armies were now drawing all available force together round
the strategic center of Cold Harbor, only nine miles east of Richmond.
On the thirty-first Sheridan drove out the enemy detachments there,
and was himself about to retire before much superior reinforcements
when he got Grant's order to hold his ground at any cost. Nightfall
prevented a general assault till the next morning, when Sheridan
managed to stand fast till Wright's whole corps came up and the
enemy at once desisted. But elsewhere the Confederates did what
they could to stave the Federals off from advantageous ground on
that day and the next. The day after--the fateful third of June--the
two sides closed in death-grips at Cold Harbor.

On this, the thirtieth day of Grant's campaign of stern attrition
and would-be-smashing hammer-strokes at Lee, these were his orders
for attack: "The moment it becomes certain that an assault cannot
succeed, suspend the offensive. But when one does succeed, push it
vigorously, and, if necessary, pile in troops at the successful
point from wherever they can be taken." The trouble was that Grant
was two days late in carrying on the battle so well begun by Sheridan,
that Warren's corps was two miles off and entirely disconnected,
and that the three remaining corps formed three parts and no whole
when the stress of action came.

At dawn Meade's Army of the Potomac (less Warren's corps) began
to take post for the grand attack that some, more sanguine than
reflecting, hoped would win the war. When it was light the guns
burst out in furious defiance, each side's artillery trying to
beat the other's down before the crisis of the infantry assault.
There was no maneuvering. Each one of Meade's three corps--Hancock's,
Wright's, and Smith's (brought over from Butler's command)--marched
straight to its front. This led them apart, on diverging lines, and
so exposed their flanks as well as their fronts to enemy fire. But
though each corps thought its neighbor wrong to uncover its flanks,
and the true cause was not discovered till compass bearings were
afterwards compared, yet each went on undaunted, gaining momentum
with every step, and gathering itself together for the final charge.

Then, surging like great storm-blown waves, the blue lines broke
against Lee's iron front. In every gallant case there was the same
wild cresting of the wave, the same terrific crash, the same adventurous
tongues of blue that darted up as far as they could go alive, the same
anguishing recession from the fatal mark, and the same agonizing
wreckage left behind. In Hancock's corps the crisis passed in just
eight minutes. But in those eight dire minutes eight colonels died
while leading their regiments on to a foredoomed defeat. One of
these eight, James P. McMahon of New York, alone among his dauntless
fellows, actually reached the Confederate lines, and, catching the
colors from their stricken bearer, waved them one moment above
the parapet before he fell.

Flesh and blood could do no more. Under the withering fire and crossfire
of Lee's unshaken front the beaten corps went back, re-formed, and
waited. They had not long to wait; for Grant was set on swinging
his three hammers for three more blows at least. So again the three
assaults were separately made on the one impregnable front; and again
the waves receded, leaving a second mass of agonizing wreckage with
the first. Yet even this was not enough for Grant, who once more
renewed his orders. These orders quickly ran their usual course,
from the army to the different corps, from each corps to its own
divisions, and from divisions to brigades. But not a single unit
stirred. From the generals to the "thinking bayonets" every soldier
knew the limit had been reached. Officially the order was obeyed by
a front-line fire of musketry, as well as by the staunch artillery,
which again gave its infantry the comfort of the guns. But that
was all.

Thus ended the battle of Cold Harbor, the last pitched battle on
Virginian soil. Grant reported it in three short sentences; and
afterwards referred to it in these other three. "I have always
regretted that the last assault [_i.e._, the whole battle of the
third of June] was ever made. No advantage whatever was gained
to compensate for the heavy loss. Indeed, the advantages, other
than those of relative losses, were on the Confederate side." Even
these, however, were also on the Confederate side, as Grant lost
nearly thirteen thousand, while Lee lost less than eighteen hundred.
Cold Harbor undoubtedly lowered Union morale, both at the front
and all through the loyal North. It encouraged the Peace Party,
revived Confederate hopes, and shook the army's faith in Grant's
commandership. Martin McMahon, a Union general, writing many years
after the event, of which he was a most competent witness, said:
"It was the dreary, dismal, bloody, ineffective close of the
lieutenant-general's first campaign with the Army of the Potomac."


Cold Harbor caused a change of plan. Reporting two days later Grant
said: "I now find, after thirty days of trial, the enemy deems it
of the first importance to run no risks with the armies they now
have. Without a greater sacrifice of human life than I am willing
to make all cannot be accomplished that I had designed outside of
the city [of Richmond]. I have therefore resolved upon the following
plan," which, in one word, involved a complete change from a series
of pitched battles to a long-drawn open siege.

The battles lasted thirty days, the siege three hundred. Therefore,
from this time on for the next ten months, Lee had to keep his living
shield between Grant's main body and the last great stronghold
of the fighting South, while the rising tide of Northern force,
commanding all the sea and an ever-increasing portion of the land,
beat ceaselessly against his front and flanks, threw out destroying
arms against his ever-diminishing sources of supply, and wore the
starving shield itself down to the very bone.

Grant's losses--forty thousand killed and wounded--were all made
good by immediate reinforcement; as was his other human wastage
from sickness, straggling, and desertion: made good, that is, in
the quantities required to wear out Lee, whose thinning ranks could
never be renewed; but not made good in quality; for many of the best
were dead. The wastage of material is hardly worth considering on
the Northern side; for it could always be made good, superabundantly
good. But the corresponding wastage on the Southern side was unrenewed
and unrenewable. Food, clothing, munitions, medical stores--it was
all the same for all the Southern armies: desperate expedients,
slow starvation, death.

Consternation reigned at Richmond on the twelfth of June, the day
the fitful firing ceased around Cold Harbor. There was danger in
the Valley, where Hunter had won success at Staunton, and where
Crook's and Averell's Union troops were expected to arrive from West
Virginia. Sheridan, too, was off on a twenty-day raid. He cut the
Virginia Central rails at Trevilian, did much other damage between
Richmond and the Valley, and, toward the end of June, rejoined Grant,
who had reached the James nearly a fortnight before. Always trying
to overlap Lee's extending right, Grant closed in on Petersburg
with the Army of the Potomac while the Army of the James held fast
against Richmond. This part of the front then remained comparatively
quiet till the end of July.

But the beleaguered Confederates made one last sortie out of the
Valley and straight against Washington. At the beginning of July
the Valley was uncovered owing to the roundabout flank march that
Hunter was forced to make back to his base for ammunition. The
enterprising Jubal Early took advantage of this with some veteran
troops and made straight for Washington. On the ninth Lew Wallace
succeeded in delaying him for one day at the Monocacy by an admirably
planned defense most gallantly carried out with greatly inferior
numbers and far less veteran men. This gave time for reinforcements
to pour into Washington; so that on the twelfth, Early, finding
the works alive with men, had to retreat even faster than he came.

In the meantime Grant's extreme right wing was steadily pressing
the invasion of Georgia, where we left Sherman and Johnston face
to face at Kenesaw in June. Here again the beleaguered Confederates
had been making desperate raids or sorties, trying to cut Sherman
off from his base in Tennessee and keep back the Federal forces
in other parts of the river area. "Our Jack Morgan," whom we left
as a prisoner of war after his Ohio raid of '63, had escaped in
November, fought Crook and Averell for Saltville and Wytheville
in May, and then, leaving southwest Virginia, had raided Kentucky
and taken Lexington, but been defeated at Cynthiana and driven back
by overwhelming numbers till he again entered southwest Virginia
on the twentieth of June. Forrest raided northeastern Mississippi,
badly defeated Sturgis at Brice's Cross Roads in June, but was
himself defeated by A. J. Smith at Tupelo in July.

Meanwhile Sherman had been tapping Johnston's fifty miles of
entrenchments for three weeks of rainy June weather, hoping to find
a suitable place into which he could drive a wedge of attack. On
the twenty-seventh he tried to carry the Kenesaw lines by assault,
but failed at every point, with a loss of twenty-five hundred--three
times what Johnston lost.

By a well-combined series of maneuvers Sherman then forced Johnston
to fall back or be hopelessly outflanked. Johnston, with equal skill,
crossed the Chattahoochee under cover of the strongly fortified
bridgehead which he had built unknown to Sherman. But Sherman, with
his double numbers, could always hold Johnston with one-half in front
while turning his flank with the other. So even the Chattahoochee
was safely crossed on the seventeenth of July and the final move
against Atlanta was begun. That same night Johnston's magnificent
skill was thrown to the winds by Davis, who had ordered the bold
and skillful but far too headlong John B. Hood to take command
and "fight."

Five days later Hood fought the battle of Atlanta. Just as Sherman
was closing in to entrench for a siege Hood attacked his extreme
left flank with the utmost resolution, driving it in and completely
enveloping it. But Sherman was not to be caught. Knowing that only
a part of Hood's army could be sent to this attack while the rest
held the lines of Atlanta, Sherman left McPherson's veteran Army
of the Tennessee to do the actual fighting, supported, of course,
by the movement of troops on their engaged right. McPherson was
killed. Logan ably replaced him and won a hard-fought day. Hood's
loss was well over eight thousand; Sherman's considerably less
than half.

On the twenty-eighth Hood attacked the extreme right, now commanded
by General O. O. Howard in succession to McPherson, whose Army of
the Tennessee again did most distinguished service, especially
Logan's Fifteenth Corps near Ezra Church. The Confederates were
again defeated with the heavier loss. After this the siege continued
all through the month of August.

While Hood was trying to keep Sherman off Atlanta Grant was trying
to make a breach at Petersburg. Grant gave Meade "minute orders
on the 24th [of July] how I wanted the assault conducted," and
Meade elaborated the actual plan with admirable skill except in one
particular--that of the generals concerned. Burnside was ordered
to use his corps for the assault, and he chose Ledlie's division to
lead. The mine was on an enormous scale, designed to hold eight tons
of powder, though it was only charged with four, and was approached
by a gallery five hundred feet long. On the twenty-ninth Grant
brought every available man into proper support of Burnside, whose
other three divisions were to form the immediate support of Ledlie's
grand forlorn hope.

In the early morning of the thirtieth the mine blew up with an
earthquaking shock; the enemy round it ran helter-skelter to the
rear; a crater like that of a volcano was formed; and a hundred
and sixty pieces of artillery opened a furious fire on every square
inch near it. Ledlie's division rushed forward and occupied the
crater. But there the whole maneuver stopped short; for everything
hinged on Ledlie's movements; and Ledlie was hiding, well out of
danger, instead of "carrying on." After a pause Confederate
reinforcements came up and drove the leaderless division back.
"The effort," said Grant, "was a stupendous failure"; and it cost
him nearly four thousand men, mostly captured.

August was a sad month for the loyal North. It was then, as we
have seen, that Lincoln had to warn Grant about the way in which
his orders were being falsified in Washington. It was then that
Sherman asked for reinforcements, so as to be up to strength before
and after the taking of Atlanta. And it was then that Halleck warned
Grant to be ready to send some of his best men north if there should
be serious resistance to the draft. Nor was this all. Thurlow Weed,
the great election agent, told Lincoln that the Government would
be defeated; which meant, of course, that the compromised and
compromising Peace Party would probably be at the helm in time
to wreck the Union. With so many of the best men dead or at the
front the whole tone of political society had been considerably
lowered--to the corresponding advantage of all those meaner elements
that fish in troubled waters when the dregs are well stirred up.
There were sinister signs in the big cities, in the press, and
in financial circles. The Union dollar once sank to thirty-nine
cents. To make matters worse, there was a good deal of well-founded
discontent among the self-sacrificing loyalists, both at the home
and fighting fronts, because the Government apparently allowed
disloyal and evasive citizens to live as parasites on the Union's
body politic. The blood tax and money tax alike fell far too heavily
on the patriots; while many a parasite grew rich in unshamed safety.

Mobile was won in August. But the people's eyes were mostly fixed
upon the land. So a much greater effect was produced by Sherman's
laconic dispatch of the second of September announcing the fall of
Atlanta. The Confederates, despairing of holding it to any good
purpose, had blown up everything they could not move and then retreated.
This thrilling news heartened the whole loyal North, and, as Lincoln
at once sent word to Sherman, "entitled those who had participated
to the applause and thanks of the nation." Grant fired a salute
of shotted guns from every battery bearing on the enemy, who were
correspondingly depressed. For every one could now see that if
the Union put forth its full strength the shrunken forces of the
South could not prevent the Northern vice from crushing them to
death.

September also saw the turning of the tide on the still more conspicuous
scene of action in Virginia. Grant had sent Sheridan to the Valley,
and had just completed a tour of personal inspection there, when
Sheridan, finding Early's Confederates divided, swooped down on
the exposed main body at Opequan Creek and won a brilliant victory
which raised the hopes of the loyal North a good deal higher still.

Exactly a month later, on the nineteenth of October, Early made a
desperate attempt to turn the tables on the Federals in the Valley
by attacking them suddenly, on their exposed left flank, while
Sheridan was absent at Washington. (We must remember that Grant
had to concert action personally with his sub-commanders, as his
orders were so often "queered" when seen at Washington by autocratic
Stanton and bureaucratic Halleck.) The troops attacked broke up
and were driven in on their supports in wild confusion. Then the
supports gave way; and a Confederate victory seemed to be assured.

But Sheridan was on his way. He had left the scene of his previous
victory at Opequan Creek, near Winchester, and was now riding to the
rescue of his army at Cedar Creek, twenty miles south. "Sheridan's
Ride," so widely known in song and story, was enough to shake the
nerves of any but a very fit commander. The flotsam and jetsam of
defeat swirled round him as he rode. Yet, with unerring eye, he
picked out the few that could influence the rest and set them at
work to rally, reform, and return. Inspired by his example many
a straggler who had run for miles presently "found himself" again
and got back in time to redeem his reputation.

Arriving on the field Sheridan discovered those two splendid leaders,
Custer and Getty, holding off the victorious Confederates from what
otherwise seemed an easy prey. His presence encouraged the formed
defense, restored confidence among the rest near by, and stiffened
resistance so much that hasty entrenchments were successfully made
and still more successfully held. The first rush having been stopped,
Sheridan turned the lull that ensued into a triumphal progress by
riding bareheaded along his whole line, so that all his men might
feel themselves once more under his personal command. Cheer upon
cheer greeted him as his gallant charger carried him past; and
when the astonished enemy were themselves attacked they broke in
irretrievable defeat.

This crowning victory of the long-drawn Valley campaigns, coming
with cumulative force after those of Mobile, Atlanta, and Opequan
Creek, did more to turn the critical election than all the speeches
in the North. The fittest at the home front judged by deeds, not
words, agreeing therein with Rutherford B. Hayes (a future President,
now one of Sheridan's generals) who said: "Any officer fit for
duty who at this crisis would abandon his post to electioneer for
a seat in Congress, ought to be scalped."

The devastation of everything in the Valley that might be useful
to Lee's army completed the Union victory in arms; while Lincoln's
own triumph in November completed it in politics and raised his
party to the highest plane of statesmanship in war.

From this time till the early spring the battle of the giants in
Virginia calmed down to the minor moves and clashes that mark a
period of winter quarters; while the scene of more stirring action
shifts once more to Georgia and Tennessee.




CHAPTER XI

SHERMAN DESTROYS THE BASE: 1864

Sherman made Atlanta his field headquarters for September and October,
changing it entirely from a Southern city to a Northern camp. The
whole population was removed, every one being given the choice of
going north or south. In his own words, Sherman "had seen Memphis,
Vicksburg, Natchez, and New Orleans, all captured from the enemy,
and each at once garrisoned by a full division, if not more; so
that success was actually crippling our armies in the field by
detachments to guard and protect the interests of a hostile population."
In reporting to Washington he said: "If the people raise a howl
against my barbarity and cruelty, I will answer that war is war,
and not popularity seeking. If they want peace, they and their
relatives must stop the war." He also excluded the swarms of
demoralizing camp-followers that had clogged him elsewhere. One
licensed sutler was allowed for each of his three armies, and no
more. Atlanta thus became a perfect Union stronghold fixed in the
flank of the South.

The balance of losses in action, from May to September, was heavily
against the South: nearly nine to four. The actual numbers did
not greatly differ: thirty-two thousand Federals to thirty-five
thousand Confederates. (And in killed and wounded the Federals
lost many more than the Confederates. It was the thirteen thousand
captured Confederates that redressed the balance.) But, since Sherman
had twice as many in his total as the Confederates had in theirs, the
odds in relative loss were nine to four in his favor. The balance
of loss from disease was also heavily against the Confederates,
who as usual suffered from dearth of medical stores. The losses in
present and prospective food supplies were even more in Sherman's
favor; for his devastations had begun. Yet Jefferson Davis was
bound that Hood should "fight"; and Hood was nothing loth.

Davis went about denouncing Johnston for his magnificent Fabian
defense; and added insult to injury by coupling the name of this
very able soldier and quite incorruptible man with that of Joseph
E. Brown, Governor of Georgia, who, though a violent Secessionist,
opposed all proper unification of effort, and exempted eight thousand
State employees from conscription as civilian "indispensables."
Then, when Sherman approached, Brown ran away with all the food
and furniture he could stuff into his own special train; though
he left behind him all arms, ammunition, and other warlike stores,
besides the confidential documents belonging to the State.

Brown had also weakened Hood's army by withdrawing the State troops
to gather in the harvest and store it where Sherman afterwards used
what he wanted and destroyed the rest. Yet Hood kept operating
in Sherman's rear, admirably seconded by Forrest's and Wheeler's
raiding cavalry. Late in October Forrest performed the remarkable
feat of taking a flotilla with cavalry. He suddenly swooped down on
the Tennessee near Johnsonville and took the gunboat _Undine_ with
a couple of transports. Hood had meanwhile been busy on Sherman's
line of communications, hoping at least to immobilize him round
Atlanta, and at best to bring him back from Georgia for a Federal
defeat in Tennessee.

[Illustration: _GENERAL W. T. SHERMAN_
Photograph by Brady. In the collection of L. C. Handy, Washington]

On the fifth of October the last action near Atlanta was fought thirty
miles northwest, when Hood made a desperate attempt on Allatoona with
a greatly superior force. Twelve miles off, on Kenesaw Mountain,
Sherman could see the smoke and hear the sounds of battle through the
clear, still, autumn air. But as his signalers could get no answer
from the fort he began to fear that Allatoona was already lost, when
the signal officer's quick eye caught the faintest flutter at one of
the fort windows. Presently the letters, C--R--S--E--H--E--R, were
made out; which meant that General John M. Corse, one of the best
volunteers produced by the war, was holding out. He had hurried
over from Rome, on a call from Allatoona, and was withstanding more
than four thousand men with less than two thousand. All morning long
the Confederates persisted in their attacks, while Sherman's relief
column was hurrying over from Kenesaw. Early in the afternoon the
fire slackened and ceased before this column arrived. But Sherman's
renewed fears were soon allayed. For Corse, after losing more than
a third of his men, had repulsed the enemy alone, inflicting on
them an even greater loss in proportion to their double strength.

Corse was still full of fight, reporting back to Kenesaw that though
"short a cheek bone and an ear" he was "able to whip all hell yet."
Sherman thanked the brave defenders in his general orders of the
seventh for "the handsome defense made at Allatoona" and pointed
the moral that "garrisons must hold their posts to the last minute,
sure that the time gained is valuable and necessary to their comrades
at the front."

The situation at the beginning of November was most peculiar. With
the whole Gulf coast blockaded and the three great ports in Union
hands, with the Mississippi a Union stream from source to sea,
and with Sherman firmly set in the northwest flank of Georgia,
Hood made the last grand sortie from the beleaguered South. It was
a desperate adventure to go north against the Federal troops in
Tennessee, with Kentucky and the line of the Ohio as his ultimate
objective, when Lincoln had been returned to power, when Grant
was surely wearing down Lee in Virginia, and when Sherman's
preponderance of force was not only assured in Georgia but in Tennessee
as well. Moreover, Thomas, the "Rock of Chickamauga," had been sent
back to counter Hood from Grant's and Sherman's old headquarters
at Nashville on the Cumberland. And Thomas was soon to have the
usual double numbers; for all the Western depots sent him their
trained recruits, till, by the end of November, his total was over
seventy thousand. Hood's forty thousand could not be increased or
even stopped from dwindling. Yet he pushed on, with the consent
of Beauregard, who now held the general command of all the troops
opposed to Sherman.

The next moves were even more peculiar than the first. For while
Hood hoped to close the breach in Georgia by drawing Sherman back,
and Sherman expected that when he went on to widen the breach he
would draw Hood back, what really happened was that each advanced
on his own new line in opposite directions, Hood north through
Tennessee, Sherman southeast through Georgia. So firm was the grip
of the Union on all the navigable waters that Hood could only cross
the Tennessee somewhere along the shoals. He chose a place near
Florence, Alabama, got safely over and encamped. There, for the
moment, we shall leave him and follow Sherman to the sea.


The region of the Gulf and lower Mississippi being now under the
assured predominance of Union forces, Grant, with equal wisdom
and decision, entirely approved of Sherman's plan to cut loose
from his western base, make a devastating march through the heart
of fertile Georgia, and join the eastern forces of the North at
Savannah, where Fort Pulaski was in Union hands and the Union navy
was, as usual, overwhelmingly strong.

Sherman's March to the Sea at once acquired a popular renown which
it has never lost. This, however, was chiefly because it happened
to catch the public eye while nothing else was on the stage. For
its many admirable features were those about which most people
know little and care less: well-combined grand strategy, perfection
in headquarter orders and the incidental staff work, excellent
march discipline, wonderful cooerdination between the different
arms of the Service and with all auxiliary branches--especially
the commissariat and transport, and, to clinch everything, a
thoroughness of execution which distinguished each unit concerned.
As a feat of arms this famous march is hardly worth mentioning.
There were no battles and no such masterly maneuvers as those of
the much harder march to Atlanta. Nor was the operational problem
to be mentioned in the same breath with that of the subsequent march
through the Carolinas. Sherman himself says: "Were I to express
my measure of the relative importance of the march to the sea, and
of that from Savannah northward, I would place the former at one,
and the latter at ten--or the maximum."

The Government was very doubtful and counseled reconsideration.
But Grant and Sherman, knowing the factors so very much better,
were sure the problem could easily be solved. Sherman left Atlanta
on the fifteenth of November and laid siege to Savannah on the tenth
of December. He utterly destroyed the military value of Atlanta and
everything else on the way that could be used by the armies in the
field. Of course, to do this he had to reduce civilian supplies to
the point at which no surplus remained for transport to the front;
and civilians naturally suffered. But his object was to destroy the
Georgian base of supplies without inflicting more than incidental
hardship on civilians. And this object he attained. He cut a swath
of devastation sixty miles wide all the way to Savannah. Every
rail was rooted up, made red-hot, and twisted into scrap. Every
road and bridge was destroyed. Every kind of surplus supplies an
army could possibly need was burnt or consumed. Civilians were
left with enough to keep body and soul together, but nothing to
send away, even if the means of transportation had been left.

Sherman's sixty thousand men were all as fit as his own tall sinewy
form, which was the very embodiment of expert energy. Every weakling
had been left behind. Consequently the whole veteran force simply
romped through this Georgian raid. The main body mostly followed the
rails, which gangs of soldiers would pile on bonfires of sleepers.
The mounted men swept up everything about the flanks. But nothing
escaped the "bummers," who foraged for their units every day, starting
out empty-handed on foot and returning heavily laden on horses or
mules or in some kind of vehicle. If Atlanta had been a volcano
in eruption, and the molten lava had flowed to Savannah in a stream
sixty miles wide and five times as long, the destruction could
hardly have been worse, except, of course, that civilians were
left enough to keep them alive, and that, with a few inevitable
exceptions, they were not ill treated.

The fighting hardly disturbed the daily routine. Sherman was never
in danger; though wiseacre Washington, supposing that he ought to
be, used to pester Lincoln, who always replied: "Grant says the
men are safe with Sherman, and that if they can't get out where
they want to, they can crawl back by the hole they went in at."
This seemed to allay anxiety; though the truth was that Sherman's
real safety lay in going ahead to the Union sea, not in retracing
his steps over the devastated line of his advance.

On approaching Savannah a mounted officer was blown up by a land
torpedo, his horse killed, and himself badly lacerated. Sherman
at once sent his prisoners ahead to dig up the other torpedoes
or get blown up by those they failed to find. No more explosions
took place. Savannah itself was strongly entrenched and further
defended by Fort McAllister. Against this fort Sherman detached
his own old Shiloh division of the Fifteenth Corps, now under the
very capable command of General William B. Hazen. As the day wore
on Sherman became very impatient, watching for Hazen's attack, when
a black object went gliding up the Ogeechee River toward the fort.
Presently a man-of-war appeared flying the Stars and Stripes and
signaling, _Who are you?_ On getting the answer, _General Sherman_,
she asked, _Is Fort McAllister taken?_ and immediately received the
cheering assurance, _No; but it will be in a minute._ Then, just
as the signal flags ceased waving, Hazen's straight blue lines
broke cover, advanced, charged through the hail of shot, shell,
and rifle bullets, rushed the defenses, and stood triumphant on
the top.

Before midnight Sherman was writing his dispatches on board the
U.S.S. _Dandelion_ and examining those received from Grant. He
learned now, from Grant's of the third (ten days before), that
Thomas was facing Hood round Nashville and that the Government,
and even Grant, were getting very impatient with Thomas for not
striking hard and at once. A week later the Confederate general,
Hardee, managed to evacuate Savannah before his one remaining line
of retreat had been cut off. He was a thorough soldier. But men
and means and time were lacking; and the civil population hoped
to save all that was not considered warlike stores. Thus immense
supplies fell into Sherman's hands. Savannah was of course placed
under martial law. But as the wax was now nearing its inevitable
end, and the citizens were thoroughly "subjugated," those who wished
to remain were allowed to do so. Only two hundred left, going to
Charleston under a flag of truce.

[Illustration: CIVIL WAR CAMPAIGNS OF 1864]

The following official announcement reached Lincoln on Christmas
Eve.

                 Savannah, Georgia, December 22, 1864.

TO HIS EXCELLENCY PRESIDENT LINCOLN,
         WASHINGTON, D. C.

I beg to present you as a Christmas gift the city of Savannah,
with one hundred and fifty heavy guns and
plenty of ammunition,
also about twenty-five thousand bales of cotton.
          W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General.


In the meantime Hood's desperate sortie had struck north as far
as Franklin, Tennessee. Here, on the last of November, General
John Schofield, commanding the advanced part of Thomas's army,
gallantly withstood a furious attack. On this the closing day of
a lingering Indian summer the massed Confederates charged with
the piercing rebel yell, and charged again; re-formed under cover
of the dense pall of stationary smoke; and returned to the charge
again and again. Many a leader met his death right against the
very breastworks. Another would instantly spring forward, only
to fall in his turn. Thirteen times the gaunt gray lines rushed
madly through the battle smoke and lost their front ranks against
the withering fire before the autumn night closed in. Schofield then
fell back on Brentwood, halfway on the twenty miles to Nashville.
He had lost over two thousand men. But Hood had lost three times
as many; and Hood's were irreplaceable except by a very few local
recruits.

Hood now concentrated every available man for his final attack on
Thomas, who had odds of twenty thousand in his favor. Hood marched
his thirty-five thousand up to Nashville, where he actually invested
the fifty-five thousand Federals. By this time even Grant was so
annoyed at what seemed to him unreasoning delay that he sent Logan
to take command at once and "fight." But on the fifteenth of December
Thomas came out of his works and fought Hood with determined skill
all day. Having gained a decisive advantage already he pressed it
home to the very utmost on the morrow, breaking through Hood's
shaken lines, enveloping whole units with converging fire, and
taking prisoners in mass. After a last wild effort Hood's beaten
army fled, having lost fifteen thousand men, five times as much
as Thomas.

The battle of Nashville came nearer than any other to being a really
annihilating victory. Out of the forty thousand men Hood had at
first in Tennessee not half escaped; and of the remainder not nearly
half were ever seen in arms again. As an organized force his army
simply disappeared. The few thousands saved from the wreckage of
the storm found their painful way east to join all that was left
for the last stand against the overwhelming forces of the North.




CHAPTER XII

THE END: 1865

By '65 the Southern cause was lost. There was nothing to hope for
from abroad. Neither was there anything to hope for at home, now
that Lincoln and the Union Government had been returned to power.
From the very first the disparity of resources was so great that
the South had never had a chance alone except against a disunited
North. Now that the North could bring its full strength to bear
against the worn-out South the only question remaining to be settled
in the field was simply one of time. Yet Davis, with his indomitable
will, would never yield so long as any Confederates would remain
in arms. And men like Lee would never willingly give up the fight
so long as those they served required them. Therefore the war went
on until the Southern armies failed through sheer exhaustion.

The North had nearly a million men by land and sea. The South had
perhaps two hundred thousand. The North could count on a million
recruits out of the whole reserve of twice as many. The South had no
reserves at all. The total odds were therefore five to one without
reserves and ten to one if these came in.

The scene of action, for all decisive purposes, had shrunk again,
and now included nothing beyond Virginia and the Carolinas; and
even there the Union forces had impregnable bases of attack. When
Wilmington fell in January the only port still left in Southern
hands was Charleston; and that was close-blockaded. Fighting
Confederates still remained in the lower South. But victories like
Olustee, Florida, barren in '64, could not avail them now, even
if they had the troops to win them. The lower South was now as
much isolated as the trans-Mississippi. Between its blockaded and
garrisoned coast on one side and its sixty-mile swath of devastation
through the heart of Georgia on the other it might as well have
been a shipless island. The same was true of all Confederate places
beyond Virginia and the Carolinas. The last shots were fired in
Texas near the middle of May. But they were as futile against the
course of events as was the final act of war committed by the
Confederate raider _Shenandoah_ at the end of June, when she sank
the whaling fleet, far off in the lone Pacific.

For the last two months of the four-years' war Davis made Lee
Commander-in-Chief. Lee at once restored Johnston to his rightful
place. These two great soldiers then did what could be done to
stave off Grant and Sherman. Lee's and Johnston's problem was of
course insoluble. For each was facing an army which was alone a
match for both. The only chance of prolonging anything more than a
mere guerilla war was to join forces in southwest Virginia, where
the only line of rails was safe from capture for the moment. But this
meant eluding Grant and Sherman; and these two leaders would never
let a plain chance slip. They took good care that all Confederate
forces outside the central scene of action were kept busy with
their own defense. They also closed in enough men from the west
to prevent Lee and Johnston escaping by the mountains. Then, with
the help of the navy, having cut off every means of escape--north,
south, east, and west--they themselves closed in for the death-grip.

By the first of February Sherman was on his way north through the
Carolinas with sixty thousand picked men, drawing in reinforcements
as he advanced against Johnston's dwindling forty thousand, until
the thousands that faced each other at the end in April were ninety
and thirty respectively. On the ninth of February (the day Lee
became Commander-in-Chief) Sherman was crossing the rails between
Charleston and Augusta, of course destroying them. A week later he
was doing the same at Columbia in the middle of South Carolina.
By this time his old antagonist, Johnston, had assumed command;
so that he had to reckon with the chances of a battle, as on his
way against Atlanta, and not only with the troubles of devastating
an undefended base, as on his march to the sea. The difficulties of
hard marching through an enemy country full of natural and artificial
obstacles were also much greater here than in Georgia. How well these
difficulties could be surmounted by a veteran army may be realized
from a recorded instance which, though it occurred elsewhere, was
yet entirely typical. In forty days an infantry division of eight
thousand men repaired a hundred miles of rail and built a hundred
and eighty-two bridges.

Sherman took a month to advance from Columbia in the middle of
South Carolina to Bentonville in the middle of North Carolina.
Here Johnston stood his ground; and a battle was fought from the
nineteenth to the twenty-first of March. Had Sherman known at the
time that his own numbers were, as he afterwards reported, "vastly
superior," he might have crushed Johnston then and there. But,
as it was, he ably supported the exposed flank that Johnston so
skillfully attacked, won the battle, inflicted losses a good deal
larger than his own, and gained his ulterior objective as well
as if there had not been a fight at all. This objective was the
concentration of his whole army round Goldsboro by the twenty-fifth.
At Goldsboro he held the strategic center of North Carolina, being
at the junction whence the rails ran east to Newbern (which had
long been in Union hands), west to meet the only rails by which
Lee's army might for a time escape, and north (a hundred and fifty
miles) to Grant's besieging host at Petersburg. Sherman's record is
one of which his men might well be proud. In fifty days from Savannah
he had made a winter march through four hundred and twenty-five
miles of mud, had captured three cities, destroyed four railways,
drained the Confederate resources, increased his own, and half
closed on Lee and Johnston the vice which he and Grant could soon
close altogether.

Nevertheless Grant records that "one of the most anxious periods
was the last few weeks before Petersburg"; for he was haunted by
the fear that Lee's army, now nearing the last extremity of famine,
might risk all on railing off southwest to Danville, the one line
left. Lee, consummate now as when victorious before, masked his
movements wonderfully well till the early morning of the twenty-fifth
of March, when he suddenly made a furious attack where the lines
were very near together. For some hours he held a salient in the
Federal position. But he was presently driven back with loss; and
his intention to escape stood plainly revealed.

The same day Sherman railed down to Newbern over the line repaired
by that indefatigable and most accomplished engineer, Colonel W. W.
Wright, took ship for City Point, Virginia, and met Lincoln, Grant,
and Admiral Porter there on the twenty-seventh and twenty-eighth.
Grant explained to Lincoln that Sheridan was crossing the James
just below them, to cut the rails running south from Petersburg
and then, by forced marches, to cut those running southwest from
Richmond, Lee's last possible line of escape. Grant added that
the final crisis was very near and that his only anxiety was lest
Lee might escape before Sheridan cut the Richmond line southwest to
Danville. Lincoln said he hoped the war would end at once and with
no more bloodshed. Grant and Sherman, however, could not guarantee
that Davis might not force Lee and Johnston to one last desperate
fight. Lincoln added that all he wanted after the surrender was
to get the Confederates back to their civil life and make them
good contented citizens. As for Davis: well, there once was a man
who, having taken the pledge, was asked if he wouldn't let his
host put just a drop of brandy in the lemonade. His answer was:
"See here, if you do it unbeknownst, I won't object." From the
way that Lincoln told this story Grant and Sherman both inferred
that he would be glad to see Davis disembarrass the reunited States
of his annoying presence.

This twenty-eighth of March saw the last farewells between the
President and his naval and military lieutenants at the front.
Admiral Porter immediately wrote down a full account of the
conversations, from which, together with Grant's and Sherman's
strong corroboration, we know that Lincoln entirely approved of
the terms which Grant gave Lee, and that he would have approved
quite as heartily of those which Sherman gave to Johnston.

Next morning the final race, pursuit, defeat, and victory began.
Grant marched all his spare, men west to cut Lee off completely.
He left enough to hold his lines at Petersburg, in case Lee should
remain; and he arranged with Sherman for a combined movement, to
begin on the tenth of April, in case Johnston and Lee should try
to join each other. But he felt fairly confident that he could
run Lee down while Sherman tackled Johnston.

On the first of April Sheridan won a hard fight at Five Forks,
southwest of Petersburg. On Sunday (the second) Lee left Petersburg
for good, sending word to Richmond. That morning Davis rose from
his place in church and the clergyman quietly told the congregation
that there would be no evening service. On Monday morning Grant
rode into Petersburg, and saw the Confederate rearguard clubbed
together round the bridge. "I had not the heart," said Grant, "to
turn the artillery upon such a mass of defeated and fleeing men,
and I hoped to capture them soon." On Tuesday Grant closed his
orders to Sherman with the words, "Rebel armies are now the only
strategic points to strike at," and himself pressed on relentlessly.

Late next afternoon a horseman in full Confederate uniform suddenly
broke cover from the enemy side of a dense wood and dashed straight
at the headquarter staff. The escort made as if to seize him. But
a staff officer called out, "How d'ye do, Campbell?" This famous
scout then took a wad of tobacco out of his mouth, a roll of tinfoil
out of the wad, and a piece of tissue paper out of the tinfoil. When
Grant read Sheridan's report ending "I wish you were here" (that
is, at Jetersville, halfway between Petersburg and Appomattox),
he immediately got off his black pony, mounted Cincinnati, and
rode the twenty miles at speed, to learn that Lee was heading due
west for Farmville, less than thirty miles from Appomattox.

On Thursday the sixth, Lee, closely beset in flank and rear, lost
seven thousand men at Sailor's Creek, mostly as prisoners. The
heroes of this fight were six hundred Federals, who, having gone
to blow up High Bridge on the Appomattox, found their retreat cut
off by the whole Confederate advanced guard. Under Colonel Francis
Washburn, Fourth Massachusetts Cavalry, and Colonel Theodore Read,
of General Ord's staff, this dauntless six hundred charged again
and again until, their leaders killed and most of the others dead
or wounded, the rest surrendered. They had gained their object
by holding up Lee's column long enough to let its wagon train be
raided.

Grant, now feeling that his hold on Lee could not be shaken off,
wrote him a letter on Friday afternoon, saying: "The results of
the last week must convince you of the hopelessness of further
resistance." That night Lee replied asking what terms Grant proposed
to offer. Next morning Grant wrote again to propose a meeting,
and Lee answered to say he was willing to treat for peace. Grant
at once informed him that the only subject for discussion was the
surrender of the army. That evening Federal cavalry under General
George A. Custer raided Appomattox Station, five miles southwest of
the Court House, and held up four trains. A few hours later, early
on Sunday, the famous ninth of April, 1865, Lee's advanced guard was
astounded to find its way disputed so far west. It attacked with
desperation, hoping to break through what seemed to be a cavalry
screen before the infantry came up; but when Lee's main body joined
in, only to find a solid mass of Federal infantry straight across
its one way out, Lee at once sent forward a white flag.

Grant, overwrought with anxiety, had been suffering from an excruciating
headache all night long. But the moment he opened Lee's note, offering
to discuss surrender, he felt as well as ever, and instantly wrote
back to say he was ready. Pushing rapidly on he met Lee at McLean's
private residence near Appomattox Court House. There was a remarkable
contrast between the appearance of the two commanders. Grant, only
forty-three, and without a tinge of gray in his brown hair, took
an inch or two off his medium height by stooping keenly forward,
and had nothing in his shabby private's uniform to show his rank
except the three-starred shoulder-straps. When the main business
was over, and he had time to notice details, he apologized to Lee,
explaining that the extreme rapidity of his movements had carried
him far ahead of his baggage. Lee's aide-de-camp, Colonel Charles
Marshall, afterwards explained that when the Confederates had been
obliged to reduce themselves simply to what they stood in, each
officer had naturally put on his best. Hence Lee's magnificent
appearance in a brand-new general's uniform with the jeweled sword
of honor that Virginia had given him. Well over six feet tall,
straight as an arrow in spite of his fifty-eight years and snow-white,
war-grown beard, still extremely handsome, and full of equal dignity
and charm, he looked, from head to foot, the perfect leader of
devoted men.

Grant, holding out his hand in cordial greeting, began the conversation
by saying: "I met you once before, General Lee, while we were serving
in Mexico.... I have always remembered your appearance, and I think
I should have recognized you anywhere." After some other personal
talk Lee said: "I suppose, General Grant, that the object of our
present meeting is fully understood. I asked to see you in order
to ascertain on what terms you would receive the surrender of my
army." Grant answered that officers and men were to be paroled
and disqualified from serving again till properly exchanged, and
that all warlike and other stores were to be treated as captured.
Lee bowed assent, said that was what he had expected, and presently
suggested that Grant should commit the terms to writing on the
spot. When Grant got to the end of the terms already discussed
his eye fell on Lee's splendid sword of honor, and he immediately
added the sentence: "This will not embrace the side-arms of the
officers, nor their private horses or baggage." When Lee read over
the draft he flushed slightly on coming to this generous proviso
and gratefully said: "This will have a very happy effect upon my
army." Grant then asked him if he had any suggestions to make;
whereupon he said that the mounted Confederates, unlike the Federals,
owned their horses. Before he had time to ask a favor Grant said
that as these horses would be invaluable for men returning to civil
life they could all be taken home after full proof of ownership.
Lee again flushed and gratefully replied: "This will have the best
possible effect upon the men. It will be very gratifying and do
much toward conciliating our people."

While the documents were being written out for signature Grant
introduced the generals and staff officers to Lee. Then Lee once
more led the conversation back to business by saying he wished
to return his prisoners to Grant at the earliest possible moment
because he had nothing more for them to eat. "I have, indeed, nothing
for my own men," he added. They had been living on the scantiest
supply of parched corn for several days; and this famine fare,
combined with their utter lack of all other supplies--especially
medicine and clothing--was wearing them away faster than any "war
of attrition" in the open field. After heartily agreeing that the
prisoners should immediately return Grant said: "I will take steps
at once to have your army supplied with rations. Suppose I send
over twenty-five thousand; do you think that will be a sufficient
supply?" "I think it will be ample," said Lee, who, after a pause,
added: "and it will be a great relief, I assure you."

Then Lee rose, shook Grant warmly by the hand, bowed to the others,
and left the room. As he appeared on the porch all the Union officers
in the grounds rose respectfully and saluted him. While the Confederate
orderly was bridling the horses Lee stood alone, gazing in unutterable
grief across the valley to where the remnant of his army lay. Then,
as he mounted Traveler, every Union officer followed Grant's noble
example by standing bareheaded till horse and rider had disappeared
from view.

Grant next sent off the news to Washington and, true to his sterling
worth, immediately stopped the salutes which some of his enthusiastic
soldiers were already beginning to fire. "The war is over," he
told his staff, "the rebels are our countrymen again, and the best
sign of rejoicing after the victory will be to abstain from all
demonstrations in the field."

In the meantime Lee had returned to his own lines, along which he
now rode for the last time. The reserve with which he had steeled
his heart during the surrender gave way completely when he came
to bid his men farewell. After a few simple words, advising his
devoted veterans to become good citizens of their reunited country,
the tears could no longer be kept back. Then, as he rode slowly
on, from the remnant of one old regiment to another, the men broke
ranks, and, mostly silent with emotion, pressed round their loved
commander, to take his hand, to touch his sword, or fondly stroke
his splendid gray horse, Traveler, the same that had so often carried
him victorious through the hard-fought day.


North and South had scarcely grasped the full significance of Lee's
surrender, when, only five days later, Lincoln was assassinated. "It
would be impossible for me," said Grant, "to describe the feeling
that overcame me at the news. I knew his goodness of heart, and
above all his desire to see all the people of the United States
enter again upon the full privileges of citizenship with equality
among all. I felt that reconstruction had been set back, no telling
how far." "Of all the men I ever met," said Sherman, "he seemed to
possess more of the elements of greatness, combined with goodness,
than any other."

On the very day of the assassination Sherman had written to Johnston
offering the same terms Grant had given Lee and Lincoln had most
heartily approved. Three days later, on the seventeenth, just as
Sherman was entering the train for his meeting with Johnston, the
operator handed him a telegram announcing the assassination. Enjoining
secrecy till he returned, Sherman took the telegram with him and
showed it to Johnston, whom he watched intently. "The perspiration
came out on his forehead," Sherman wrote, "and he did not attempt to
conceal his distress. He denounced the act as a disgrace to the age
and hoped I did not charge it to the Confederate Government. I told
him I could not believe that he or General Lee or the officers of the
Confederate army could possibly be privy to acts of assassination."
When Sherman got back to Raleigh he published the news in general
orders, and experienced the supreme satisfaction of finding that
not one man in all that mournful army had to be restrained from
a single act of revenge.

After much misunderstanding with Washington now in lesser hands,
the surrender of Johnston's and the other Confederate armies was
effected. Each body of troops laid down its arms and quietly dispersed.
One day the bugles called, the camp fires burned, and comrades
were together in the ranks. The next, like morning mists, they
disappeared, thenceforth to be remembered and admired only as the
heroes of a hopeless cause.


It was a very different scene through which their rivals marched
into lasting fame with all the pride, pomp, and circumstance of war.
On the twenty-third and twenty-fourth of May, in perfect weather,
and in the stirring presence of a loyal, vast, enthusiastic throng,
the Union armies were reviewed in Washington. For over six full
hours each day the troops marched past--the very flower of those
who had come back victorious. The route was flagged from end to
end with Stars and Stripes, and banked with friends of each and
every regiment there. Between these banks, and to the sound of
thrilling martial music, the long blue column flowed--a living
stream of men whose bayonets made its surface flash like burnished
silver under the glorious sun.


Then, when the pageantry was finished, and the volunteers that formed
the vast bulk of those magnificent Federal armies had again become
American civilians in thought and word and deed, these steadfast
men, whose arms had saved the Union in the field, were first in
peace as they had been in war: first in the reconstruction of their
country's interrupted life, first in recognizing all that was best
in the splendid fighters with whom they had crossed swords, and
first--incomparably first--in keeping one and indivisible the reunited
home land of both North and South.




BIBLIOGRAPHICAL NOTE

Thousands of books have been written about the Civil War; and more
about the armies than about the navies and the civil interests
together. Yet, even about the armies, there are very few that give
a just idea of how every part of the war was correlated with every
other part and with the very complex whole; while fewer still give
any idea of how closely the navies were correlated with the armies
throughout the long amphibious campaigns.

The only works mentioned here are either those containing the original
evidence or those written by experts directly from the original
evidence. And of course there are a good many works belonging to
both these classes for which no room can be found in a bibliography
so very brief as the present one must be.

_The War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records
of the Union and Confederate Armies_, 128 vols. (1880-1901), and
_Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of
the Rebellion_, 26 vols. (1894-), form two magnificent collections
of original evidence published by the United States Government.
But they have some gaps which nothing else can fill. _Battles and
Leaders of the Civil War_ (1887-89), written by competent witnesses
on both sides, gives the gist of the story in four volumes (published
afterwards in eight). _The Rebellion Record_, 12 vols. (1862-68),
edited by Frank Moore, forms an interesting collection of non-official
documents. _The Story of the Civil War_, 4 vols. (1895-1913), begun by
J. C. Ropes, and continued by W. R. Livermore, is an historical work
of real value. Larned's _Literature of American History_ contains an
excellent bibliography; but it needs supplementing by bibliographies
of the present century. Inquiring readers should consult the
bibliographies in volumes 20 and 21 (by J. K. Hosmer) in the _American
Nation_ series.

There are many works of a more special kind that deserve particular
attention. General E. P. Alexander's _Military Memoirs of a Confederate_
(1907), the _Transactions of the Military Historical Society of
Massachusetts_, Major John Bigelow's _The Campaign of Chancellorsville_
(1910), and J. D. Cox's _Military Reminiscences_, 2 vols. (1900),
are admirable specimens of this very extensive class.

The two greatest generals on the Northern side have written their
own memoirs, and written them exceedingly well: _Personal Memoirs
of U. S. Grant_, 2 vols. (1885-86), and _Memoirs of General W. T.
Sherman_, 2 vols. (1886). But the two greatest on the Southern
side wrote nothing themselves; and no one else has written a really
great life of that very great commander, Robert Lee. Fitzhugh Lee's
enthusiastic sketch of his uncle, _General Lee_ (1894), is one of
the several second-rate books on the subject. Colonel G. F. R.
Henderson's _Stonewall Jackson and the American Civil War_, 2 vols.
(1898), is, on the other hand, among the best of war biographies.
Henderson's strategical study of the Valley Campaign is a masterpiece.
Two good works of very different kinds are: _A History of the Civil
War in the United States_ (1905), by W. Birkbeck Wood and Major J.
E. Edmonds, and _A History of the United States from the Compromise
of 1850_, 8 vols. (1893-1919), by James Ford Rhodes. The first
is military, the second political. Mr. Rhodes has also written a
single volume _History of the Civil War_ (1917). _American Campaigns_
by Major M. F. Steele, issued under the supervision of the War
Department (1909), deals chiefly with the military operations of
the Civil War.

The naval side of this, as of all other wars, has been far too
much neglected. But that great historian of sea-power, Admiral
Mahan, has told the best of the story in his _Admiral Farragut_
(1892).

An interesting contemporary account of the war will be found in
the five volumes of Appleton's _American Annual Cyclopoedia_ for
the years from 1861 to 1865. B. J. Lossing's _Pictorial History of
the Civil War_, 3 vols. (1866-69), and Harper's _Pictorial History
of the Rebellion_, 2 vols. (1868), give graphic pictures of military
life as seen by contemporaries. Personal reminiscences of the war,
of varying merit, have multiplied rapidly in recent years. These
are appraised for the unwary reader in the bibliographies already
mentioned. Frank Wilkeson's _Recollections of a Private Soldier in
the Army of the Potomac_ (1887), George C. Eggleston's _A Rebel's
Recollections_ (1905), and Mrs. Mary B. Chestnut's _Diary from
Dixie_ (1905) are among the best of these personal recollections.

The political and diplomatic history has been dealt with already
in the two preceding _Chronicles_. _Abraham Lincoln: a History_,
by John G. Nicolay and John Hay, in ten volumes (1890), and _The
Complete Works of Abraham Lincoln_, in twelve volumes (1905), form
the quarry from which all true accounts of his war statesmanship
must be built up. Lord Charnwood's _Abraham Lincoln_ (1917) is an
admirable summary. To these titles should be added Gideon Welles's
_Diary_, 3 vols. (1911), and, on the Confederate side, Jefferson
Davis's _The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government_, 2 vols.
(1881), and Alexander H. Stephens's _A Constitutional View of the
Late War Between the States_, 2 vols. (1870). The best life of
Jefferson Davis is that by William E. Dodd in the _American Crisis
Biographies_ (1907). W. H. Russell's _My Diary North and South_
(1863) records the impressions of an intelligent foreign observer.

The present _Chronicle_ is based entirely on the original evidence,
with the convenient use only of such works as have themselves been
written by qualified experts directly from the original evidence.




INDEX

Alabama, secedes; in 1864; threatened
_Alabama_, Confederate raider; _Kearsarge_ and; and _Hatteras_
_Albatross_, ship
_Albemarle_, Confederate ram, Cushing destroys
Albemarle Sound, command lost
Alexandria (Louisiana), State Seminary of Learning and Military Academy
Allatoona (Georgia), Johnston evacuates; Corse's defense of
"Anaconda policy"
Anderson, Colonel Charles, quotes Lee
Anderson, Major Robert, commands at Fort Moultrie; at Fort Sumter;
  surrender; leaves Fort Sumter; appointed to Kentucky command;
  superseded by Sherman
Annapolis, Union troops at
Antietam (Maryland), battle
Apache Canon, fight in
Appomattox Court House (Virginia), Lee's surrender
Appomattox Station, Custer raids
Aquia, McClellan's troops at
Archer, J. T., Confederate brigadier
Arizona, "War in the West"
Arkansas secedes,
_Arkansas_, Confederate ram
Arkansas Post, capture of
Arlington, home of General Lee
Armstrong, Commodore, at Pensacola
Army, Confederate, Act providing for enlistment; at Harper's Ferry;
  Jackson and; lack of equipment; advantages; conscription; munitions;
  relations with Federals at Vicksburg; Army of Northern Virginia;
  unrenewable wastage; number of troops (1865); Lee's farewell to
Army, Federal, enlistments; Congress votes troops and money;
  McDowell's; regulars in; number of troops; conscription; organization;
  Grant's (1862); Army of the Cumberland; Army of the Mississippi; Army
  of the Ohio; well equipped; Army of the Potomac; Army of the Tennessee;
  Army of Virginia; relations with Confederates at Vicksburg; Army of the
  James; reviewed in Washington
Army Act, Provisional Confederate Congress passes
Ashby, Turner, Confederate cavalry leader; at Harrisonburg; Valley raid;
  death
Ashby's Gap, Johnston crosses Blue Ridge at
Ashland (Virginia), Jackson at
Atlanta, Southern cannon made at; Northern objective; battle; Sherman
  announces fall of; effect of victory; Sherman's headquarters; last
  action near
_Atlanta_, Confederate ram captured by _Weehawken_
Averell, W. D., cavalry leader

Bailey, Colonel Joseph
Bailey, Captain Theodorus
Balloons
Baltimore, Secessionists at Fort Sumter; Massachusetts troops mobbed in;
  Jackson's plan to occupy
Baltimore and Ohio Railway, Jackson destroys workshop
Banks, General N. P., supersedes General Butler; on the Mississippi
  (1862); (1863); commands in Shenandoah Valley; in Shenandoah campaign;
  incapacity; commands Red River Expedition
Barrancas Barracks
Bartow, General F. S., Bull Run; killed
Baton Rouge, Union Arsenal at; Farragut captures; Confederate attack;
  Union Navy wins way to
"Battle above the Clouds," Lookout Mountain
Baylor, Captain J. R., proclaims himself Governor of New Mexico
Beauregard. General P. G. T., sons at Louisiana Military Academy; and
  Fort Sumter; on the Potomac; at Bull Run; preparation for Shiloh;
  battle of Shiloh; Corinth; and Confederate plans; attacks Butler;
  telegram to Lee; command of troops opposed to Sherman
Beauregard, Fort
Beaver Dam Creek (Virginia), Porter's front at Mechanicsville
Bee, General B. E., Bull Run; killed
Bell, Commodore H. H.
Belmont (Missouri), Grant attacks
Benjamin, J. P., Confederate Secretary of War
_Benton_, flagship
Bentonville (North Carolina), battle
Bering Sea, _Shenandoah_ in
Bermuda Hundred (Virginia), Butler seizes
Beverly (West Virginia), Confederates retire to
Big Black River (Mississippi), Grant's victory at
Birge, H. W., and sharpshooters
Bixby, Mrs., letter to
Blackburn's Ford (Virginia), McDowell at
Blair, General F. P., fight for Missouri; as a general
Blockade, declared; effectiveness; blockade-runners; on Mississippi;
  attempts to break; double line necessary
Bloody Angle, salient in Spotsylvania action
Bonham, General M. L., Bull Run
Boonville (Missouri), battle
Boston Mountains, Confederates hold
Bowling Green (Kentucky), Johnston at; Johnston abandons
Brackett, Colonel A. G., quoted
Bragg, General Braxton; at Baton Rouge; preparations for Shiloh; succeeds
  Beauregard; invasion of Kentucky; march on Nashville; sends out Morgan;
  Chickamauga; Chattanooga; Missionary Ridge
Brandy Station (Virginia), cavalry combat at
Brentwood (Tennessee), Schofield at
Brice's Cross Roads (Mississippi), Forrest defeats Sturgis at
Bristoe Station (Virginia), bridge burned
_Brooklyn_, fight with _Manassas_; against Fort Morgan
Brown, John
Brown, J. E., Governor of Georgia
Bruinsburg (Louisiana), Grant lands force at
Buchanan, Commodore Franklin
Buckingham, General C. P., and McClellan
Buckner, General S. B., as a general; Fort Donelson; surrender; and Grant
Buell, General D. C., commands in West; and Halleck; preparations
  for Shiloh; battle of Shiloh; commands Army of the Ohio; end of service
Buford, John, cavalry leader at Gettysburg
Bull Run, First campaign; public clamor for action; disposition of forces;
  Confederate problem; Falling Waters; Federal preparations; Blackburn's
  Ford; McDowell advances; Confederate preparations and plans; Federal
  advance; Confederate rout; Confederates rally; Stuart's charge; Federal
  retreat; losses; importance; number of troops
Bull Run, Second campaign, maneuvering for; battle
Burns, John, at Gettysburg
Burnside, General A. E.; failure in Virginia; succeeds McClellan; as a
  general; at Fredericksburg; "Mud March"; Knoxville; at Petersburg
Butler, General Benjamin, Bull Run; in North Carolina; Mississippi
  campaign; Banks supersedes; against Fort Fisher; commands Army of the
  James; at Bermuda Hundred; retreat from Drewry's Bluff

Cairo (Illinois), Grant in command at
Caldwell, Lieutenant, of the _Itasca_
California, invasion of
Cameron, Simon, Secretary of War; and Sherman; Stanton succeeds
Canby, Colonel E. R. S., at Valverde
Carolinas, danger from West Virginia; secede; effective for South (1864);
  menace to; Sherman's march through; scene of action (1865); _see also_
  North Carolina, South Carolina
_Carondelet_, Federal gunboat
Castle Pinckney
Catlett's Station (Virginia) Shields at; Banks near
_Cayuga_, Federal gunboat
Cedar Creek (Virginia), Sheridan's ride to
Cedar Run (Virginia), battle
Cemetery Hill (Gettysburg), Early fails at
Centreville (Virginia), in Bull Run campaign; Confederate base; McDowell's
  corps at
Chambersburg (Pennsylvania), Federals at; Stuart's raid
Champion's Hill (Mississippi), fight of
Chancellorsville (Virginia), battle of; plans; Federal defeat
Charleston (South Carolina), forts; beginning of hostilities; United States
  Arsenal seized; surrender of Fort Sumter; menaced; naval combats around;
  bombardment; defenses in Southern hands; Savannah citizens go to
Charlestown (West Virginia), Patterson advances to
Charlotte (North Carolina), Southern cannon made in
Chase, S. P., Secretary of Treasury
Chase, Colonel W. H.. demands surrender of Fort Pickens
Chattahoochee River, Johnston crosses
Chattanooga, Buell's objective; Bragg's base; Confederates retire on; Bragg
  at (1863); key to strategic area; battles on Missionary Ridge and Lookout
  Mountain; significance of victory; Grant moves headquarters from; Grant
  inspects; Federal headquarters; Sherman starts from
Chestnut, James, Confederate officer at Fort Sumter
Chickamauga (Georgia), battle; result of Federal defeat
Chickasaw Bluffs (Mississippi), Sherman's assault
Cincinnati, Grant's charger
Cincinnati (Ohio), Confederate objective
City Point (Virginia), Union leaders meet at
Civil control _vs._ civil interference
Clarksburg (West Virginia), Jackson born at
Cold Harbor (Virginia), Battle of; result
Columbia (South Carolina), Sherman at
Columbus (Kentucky), Confederates at
Commerce, importance to South; protection of; Confederate raiders
  interfere with
Congress, Confederate, passes Army and Navy Acts
Congress, United States, vote for army; Welles's report to; authorizes
  Promotion Board
_Congress, Merrimac_ and
Conscription; Act
Contraband, importation into South
Cooke, General, pursues Stuart
Copperheads; _see also_ Pacifists
Corinth (Mississippi), Confederate railway junction at; Johnston's line at;
  Beauregard retires after Pittsburg Landing; importance of position;
  Beauregard at; Federal advance on; Confederate objective; Rosecrans
  defeats Van Dorn at
Corse, General J. M., at Allatoona
Cox, General J. D., Kanawha campaign; newspaper lies about
Craig, Fort, Valverde near
Crocker, General M. M.
Crook, General George, cavalry commander
Cross Keys (Virginia), battle
Culpeper, Johnston retires to; Lee at; Grant's headquarters
Culp's Hill (Gettysburg), Confederate victory on
_Cumberland, Merrimac_ and
Cumberland Gap, Johnston threatened at; Federal brigade against;
  winter (1864)
Cummings Point (South Carolina), batteries at
Curtis, General S. R., at Pea Ridge; compared with Halleck
Cushing, Lieutenant A. H., Pickett's Charge
Cushing, Lieutenant W. B., destroys _Albemarle_
Custer, General G. A., at Cedar Creek; raids Appomattox Station
Custis, Mary, wife of Lee
Cynthiana (Kentucky), Morgan defeated at

Dalton (Georgia), Johnston at
_Dandelion_, U. S. S., Sherman on
Darrow, Mrs., and Lee; quoted
Davis, Flag-Officer C. H., Mississippi flotilla under; succeeds Foote
Davis, Jefferson, President of Confederacy, 11; personal characteristics;
  as executive; interference in military matters; stands for "Independence
  or extermination"; military mistakes; plans flight from Richmond; and
  Lee; and Johnston; Lincoln on; receives word of Southern defeat (April
  2, 1865)
_Deerhound_, English yacht; rescues crew of _Alabama_
Donaldsonville (Louisiana), Confederate attack on
Donelson, Fort, Johnston holds; Confederates from Fort Henry start for;
  importance; Grant before; Floyd and Pillow escape from; surrender;
  results of surrender; number of troops
Doubleday, General Abner, succeeds Reynolds; at Gettysburg
Drayton, Captain, of the _Hartford_
Drewry's Bluff (Virginia), Confederate defenses at; Federal gunboats
  stopped at; Butler's retreat from
Du Pont, Admiral S. F., Port Royal expedition; at Charleston

Eads, J. B., shipbuilder
Early, General Jubal, advance toward Washington; attack at Cedar Creek
Eaton, John, quoted
Elkhorn Tavern and Pea Ridge, battle of
Ellet, Colonel Charles, civil engineer
Emancipation, Lincoln and
Ericsson, John, shipbuilder
_Essex_, gunboat before Fort Henry
Ewell, General R. S., in Jackson's Valley campaign; in Shenandoah
  Valley; Gettysburg
Ezra Church (Georgia), battle

Fair Oaks (Virginia), battle
Fairfax Court House (Virginia), Confederate conference at
Falling Waters (West Virginia), battle in Bull Run campaign
Farragut, Admiral D. G.; efficiency; commands squadron at Ship Island;
  ancestry; age; fleet; and his subordinates; New Orleans; at Fort St.
  Philip; orders; on to Vicksburg; captures Baton Rouge; returns to New
  Orleans; Gulf blockade; becomes ranking admiral; again at New Orleans;
  occupies Galveston; success of 1862; Lincoln and; prepares to attack
  Port Hudson; and Banks; goes up Mississippi; again to New Orleans;
  leaves for New York; and the Navy (1863-64); and Mobile; takes Fort
  Morgan; at Fort Fisher
Farrand, Captain, demands surrender of Fort Pickens
Ferragut, Don Pedro, ancestor of Farragut
_Fingal_, blockade-runner converted into ram
Fisher, Fort, bombardment; surrender
Five Forks (Virginia), battle
Florence (Alabama), Hood near
Florida, beginning of war in; secedes; Confederate troops withdrawn from
_Florida_, Confederate raider
Flournoy, Colonel T. S., leader of Virginians in Valley campaign
Floyd, J. B., Secretary of War; Kanawha campaign; Fort Donelson; escape
Foote, Flag-Officer A. H., ability; Fort Henry; Fort Donelson; wounded;
  Island Number Ten; Davis succeeds
Forrest, General N. B., and Grant; cavalry raids
Foster, Lieutenant H. C.
Fox, G. V., Assistant Secretary of Navy
France, intervention in Mexico
Franklin (Tennessee), Hood reaches
Frayser's Farm, battle
Frederick (Maryland), McClellan's army at
Fredericksburg (Virginia), McDowell at; Burnside's headquarters; battle;
  "Mud March"; result of battle; menace to Richmond from; Lee suspects
  Federal retirement on
Fremont, General J. C., commands "Western Department"; in West Virginia;
  and Jackson's Valley campaign; dismissal; replaced by Sigel
Front Royal (Virginia), Banks at; battle; McDowell arrives at; Jackson
  destroys Federal stores at
Frost, Brigadier-General D. M., at Camp Jackson; surrenders

Gaines's Mill, battle
Galveston (Texas), occupied by Farragut; again in Confederate hands,
Gardner, Colonel, Anderson replaces at Charleston
Garfield, Colonel J. A., at Prestonburg
Garnett, General R. S., killed
Georgia, secedes; beginning of war in; effective for South (1864); Sherman
  threatens; scene of action; Sherman's March to the Sea
Getty, General G. W., at Cedar Creek
Gettysburg campaign; Lee's defeat; cavalry combat; government interference;
  Meade succeeds Hooker; battle; Little Round Top; importance of location;
  first day; second day; third day; Pickett's Charge; Lee's retreat
Gilman, Lieutenant, in Florida; at Fort Pickens
Gloucester Point (Virginia), Federals fail to take fort at
Goldsboro (North Carolina), Sherman at
_Governor Moore_, Confederate vessel
Grafton (West Virginia), Federal line at
Grand Gulf (Mississippi), Grant's objective
Granger, General Gordon, at Fort Morgan
Grant, Jesse, father of General Grant
Grant, Matthew, ancestor of General Grant
Grant, Noah, great-grand-father of General Grant
Grant, Solomon, great-granduncle of General Grant
Grant, General U. S.; and Lyon; at Belmont (Missouri); age; River war
  of 1863; commands at Cairo; at Fort Henry; ancestors; early life;
  appearance; Fort Donelson; as a soldier; "unconditional surrender";
  desire to push South; ordered arrested for insubordination; at
  Pittsburg Landing; Shiloh; made second in command; relations with
  Halleck; as a leader; commands Army of the Tennessee; Vicksburg as
  objective; holds Memphis-Corinth rails; "most anxious period of the
  war"; Holly Springs; returns to Memphis; on the Mississippi; and
  Lincoln; lies about; given chief command; refuses Presidential
  candidacy (1864); his generals; and Banks; on action of Navy in
  Vicksburg campaign; quoted; naval operations help; lands army at
  Bruinsburg; supplies for army; Port Gibson: at Grand Gulf; victories in
  rear of Vicksburg; siege of Vicksburg; surrender of Vicksburg; given
  supreme command; Chattanooga; and Red River Expedition; campaign (1864);
  Lieutenant-General; midwinter tour; summoned to Washington; and Stanton;
  and Swinton; force in Virginia; headquarters at Culpeper Court House;
  plans advance; Confederate cavalry raids against; elements of victory;
  Wilderness; Spotsylvania; Sheridan's raid; Sherman's advance; Cold
  Harbor; losses; Petersburg; approves Sherman's plans; Nashville; closes
  in on Lee; at meeting at City Point (Virginia); Lincoln approves terms
  to Lee; quoted; letter to Lee; surrender of Lee; terms of Lee's
  surrender; on assassination of Lincoln
Greeley, Horace, defection of
Grigsby, Colonel, Jackson and

Hagerstown (Maryland), Longstreet at
Halleck, General H. W., Federal commander in West; as a general; Grant
  and; after Shiloh; at Corinth; General-in-Chief; military adviser at
  Washington; reprimands Banks; censures Meade; orders Red River
  Expedition
Hampton Roads, _Monitor_ and _Merrimac_ in
Hancock, General W. S.; at Gettysburg; at Cold Harbor
Hanover Court House (Virginia), Cooke pursues Stuart from
Hardee, General W. J., evacuates Savannah
Harney, General W. S., commands Department of the West
Harper's Ferry, Federal forces abandon; Jackson at; strategic point;
  Virginia militia at; Johnston takes command at; Union forces on Potomac
  near; Johnston retires from; Banks at; troops gather at; Jackson and
_Harriet Lane_, U. S. S.
Harris, Colonel, Confederate leader
Harrisburg (Pennsylvania), Banks at
Harrison's Landing (Virginia), in Seven Days' battle; McClellan
  moves from
_Hartford_, Federal man-of-war, at Ship Island; New Orleans forts; in
  Vicksburg campaign; Mobile Bay
Haskins, Major, at Baton Rouge
_Hatteras_, Alabama sinks
Hatteras Island, taken
Haxall's Landing (Virginia), Sheridan at
Hayes, R. B., quoted
Hazen, General W. B., takes Fort McAllister
Helena (Arkansas), force joins Grant; Confederate attack repulsed
Henry, Fort, Johnston at; blocks Federal advance; attack on; surrender;
  Federal march from; Grant ordered to remain at
Hill, General A. P., at Beaver Dam Creek; at Gaines's Mill; Gettysburg
Hill, General D. H.
Hilton Head (South Carolina), fleet action off
Holly Springs (Mississippi), Grant at
Hood, General J. B., battle of Atlanta; number of troops; Nashville;
  attacks Schofield
Hooker, General Joseph, failure in Virginia; Second Bull Run; supersedes
  Burnside; discipline; as a general; on deserters; joins Grant; at
  Wauhatchie; Lookout Mountain; Chancellors ville; Washington interferes
  with; Lincoln's letter to; resignation
"Hornets' Nest"
Howard, General O. O., Gettysburg campaign; at Chancellorsville; commands
  Army of the Tennessee
Huger, General Benjamin, against Butler
Hunter, General David, and Washington interference; Sigel replaced by;
  succeeded by Sheridan; success at Staunton; and Early
Hurlbut, General S. A., at Shiloh

Imboden, General J. D., at Bull Run; describes Jackson; Gettysburg
Indiana, Morgan's Raid
Indians, part in Civil War
Ingraham, Commodore D. N., attacks blockade at Charleston
"Iron Brigade," Meredith's
Island Number Ten, Confederates hold; attack on; Pope's operations
_Itasca_, Federal gunboat
Iuka (Mississippi), battle

Jackson, Governor Claiborne
Jackson, General T. J.; and negroes; personal characteristics; at Harper's
  Ferry; as disciplinarian; Johnston takes command from; commands First
  Shenandoah Brigade; at Martinsburg; at Falling Waters; guards while
  soldiers sleep; at Bull Run; origin of nickname "Stonewall"; Imboden
  describes; as a general; age; McClellan's failure against; maneuvering
  in Virginia; as strategist; campaign (1862-63); Lee and; Kernstown;
  Banks designs net for; forces; Valley campaign; McDowell; rout of Banks;
  summary of fortnight's work; Port Republic; pursuit of; planned attack
  on McClellan; attends Lee's conference; Seven Days; again pursued;
  Cedar Run; plans against Pope; marches north; slips away; at Manassas
  Junction; preparations for battle; Second Bull Run; in the Valley;
  against Hooker; wounded; death; Grant marches on; government interference
  with
Jackson (Mississippi), Grant wins at
Jackson, Camp (Missouri), Frost establishes; Lyon takes
Jackson, Fort, guards New Orleans
James Island, Fort Johnson on
Jefferson City (Missouri), Confederate recruiting at; Lyon at
Jetersville (Virginia), Grant goes to
Johnson, General Edward, commands near Staunton
Johnson, Fort, Charleston
Johnston, General A. S., commands in West; Logan's Cross Roads; Nashville;
  Pope cuts line; plans attack on Grant; Shiloh; death
Johnston, General J. E., commands at Richmond; at Harper's Ferry; Federal
  problem of attack; destroys stores at Harper's Ferry; eludes Patterson;
  joins Beauregard; Bull Run; immediate superior of Jackson; Davis and;
  retires to Culpeper; against McClellan; Seven Pines; wounded; Vicksburg;
  government mistake concerning; Dalton; Sherman against; Resaca; New Hope
  Church; evacuates Allatoona; at Kenesaw Mountain; Bentonville; terms of
  surrender

Kanawha campaign; _see also_ West Virginia
Kansas, Southern sympathy in
Kearny, General Philip, Second Bull Run
_Kearsarge_, U. S. S., and _Alabama_
Kenesaw Mountain (Georgia), Johnston at; battle; Sherman watches Allatoona
  engagement from
Kenly, Colonel, at Front Royal
Kennon, Confederate naval officer
Kentucky, opinions divided in; neutral; Southern sympathy in; Confederates
  lose hold of eastern; Federals conquer; Bragg's invasion of; Morgan's
  raid; Grant's army in; Hood's objective
Kernstown (Virginia), battle
_Keystone State_, Confederate gunboats attack
Kingston (Georgia), Johnston retires to
Knoxville (Tennessee), Burnside occupies; Longstreet sent against;
  dependent upon Chattanooga; Bragg's connection cut; Grant's inspection of

Lacy, chaplain at Jackson's headquarters
Lamb, Colonel commands Fort Fisher
Lancaster (Ohio), Sherman at
Lebanon (Missouri), General Curtis at
Lebanon Springs, Jackson at
Lee, Fitzhugh, Stuart and
Lee, General R. E.; at San Antonio; military career; decision for South;
  resignation from U. S. Army; commands Virginia forces; Kanawha campaign;
  military adviser at Richmond; prevision; as a leader; age; McClellan
  against; maneuvering in Virginia; made Commander-in-Chief; in 1862-63;
  and Jackson; plans Valley campaign; appointed to command in eastern
  Virginia and North Carolina; plan against McClellan; Seven Days;
  McClellan foils; sends Jackson against Pope; entrains Longstreet for
  Gordonsville; as strategist; divides army; Second Bull Run; and
  Longstreet; invasion of Maryland; again divides army; at Antietam; at
  Culpeper; Fredericksburg; Burnside tries to surprise; Hooker against;
  quoted; Chancellorsville; defeat at Gettysburg; no part in Chattanooga
  strategy; plans counter-attack in Pennsylvania; Brandy Station;
  position before Gettysburg; Gettysburg; retreat; attempt to bring on
  Third Manassas; on importance of Wilmington; at Orange Court House;
  Wilderness; Spotsylvania; illness; prepares for Cold Harbor; at Cold
  Harbor; losses; siege; losses; Petersburg; insoluble problem; leaves
  Petersburg; Sailor's Creek; asks terms of Grant; surrenders; terms of
  surrender; farewell to army
Lexington (Kentucky) Grant inspects; Morgan's raid
Lexington (Missouri), Price takes
Lick Creek, Grant's forces at
Lincoln, Abraham, Inaugural; declares blockade; and Lee; calls for
  Missouri's quota of volunteers; general call for volunteers; and civil
  control; on evaders of service; reelection; and Grant; as war statesman;
  birth; education; appearance; personal characteristics; appointments;
  quoted; and Vallandigham; Emancipation; foreign policy; Cabinet; as
  Commander-in-Chief; and McClellan; stories; letter to a bereaved mother;
  Second Inaugural quoted; military orders; halts McDowell; and Hooker;
  and Stanton; cipher letter to Grant; and Sherman; meets Union leaders;
  assassination; approves terms of surrender; bibliography
Little Sorrel, Jackson's horse
Logan, General J. A.; replaces McPherson at Atlanta; Ezra Church; Nashville
Logan's Cross Roads, Confederates at; Thomas's victory at
Longstreet, General James, entrains for Gordonsville; Jackson's march
  against Pope; Second Bull Run; obstructs Lee's plans; at Hagerstown;
  leaves Lee; reinforces Bragg; Wauhatchie; urges help for Vicksburg;
  Gettysburg; Wilderness; wounded
Lookout Mountain, _see_ Chattanooga
Louisiana, Union forces in; Sherman in; secedes
_Louisiana_, Confederate ironclad; as mine ship
Louisville (Kentucky), Bragg at; Grant inspects
_Louisville_, at Fort Donelson
Lovell, General Mansfield, evacuates New Orleans
Lyon, General Nathaniel, commands at St. Louis; fight for Missouri; Fremont
  and; Wilson's Creek; killed

McAllister, Fort, naval conflict near; Hazen's attack
McClellan, General G. B., in West Virginia; recalled to Washington; bubble
  reputation; former career; "Young Napoleon of the West"; newspaper
  publicity; force in Virginia; telegram to Grant delayed; Federal invasion
  of Virginia under; dismissal; Lincoln and; Democratic candidate for
  President (1864); plan of campaign; Peninsula Campaign; at Fortress
  Monroe; base at White House; in Chickahominy swamps; government
  interference with; Jackson aids against; awaits McDowell; number of
  troops; exaggerates number of enemy; Seven Pines; Stuart's ride around;
  Lee and; changes base to Harrison's Landing; Malvern Hill; plans to
  take Richmond; ordered to Aquia; Pope and; discovers Lee's plans; lets
  opportunity slip; Antietam; superseded by Burnside; popularity
McClernand, General J. B., Grant's second-in-command; fails to meet Banks;
  battle on own account; at Fort Donelson; Shiloh; Arkansas Post; as a
  general; breach of discipline; dismissal
McCulloch, General Benjamin at Wilson's Creek; killed at Pea Ridge
McDowell, General Irvin, assists Scott; crosses Potomac; Bull Run;
  President reviews army of; number of troops; difficulties encountered;
  quoted; wastage in forces; people lose confidence in; kept from
  reinforcing McClellan; strike at Richmond; ordered to Valley; Jackson
  and; McClellan awaits
McDowell (Virginia), battle
McGuire, Dr. Hunter
McIntosh, General James, killed at Pea Ridge
McMahon, J. P., at Cold Harbor
McMahon, General Martin, quoted
McPherson, General J. B., killed at Atlanta
Macon (Georgia), Southern cannon made at
Maffitt, Commander J. N., commands _Florida_
Magruder, General J. B., and Butler; Yorktown; holds Richmond
Mallory, S. R., Confederate Secretary of Navy
Malvern Hill (Virginia), battle
Manassas, Johnston at; Jackson at; location; Federal base; base destroyed;
  Battle of Second; _see also_ Bull Run
_Manassas_, Federal ram
Marshall, Colonel Charles, Lee's aide-de-camp
Marshall, General H. M., with Johnston in Kentucky
_Martha Waskington_, story of Lincoln on board
Martinsburg (West Virginia), Jackson marches on; Patterson occupies;
  Confederates reach; Jackson destroys Federal stores at
Maryland, border slave State; Confederate hope for; Southern sympathy in;
  sea-power keeps for Union; Jackson's plan to enter; Confederate invasion;
  Federals massed in
Mason, Fort, Lee from
Matamoras, contraband imported into
Matthews Hill, battle of Bull Run
Meade, General G. G., quoted; as a general; succeeds Hooker in command;
  Gettysburg; Lincoln's dissatisfaction with; Army of Potomac under; headed
  for Richmond; Cold Harbor; Petersburg
Mechanicsville (Virginia), battle
Memphis, Confederate rams lost at; Confederate fleet at; Grant in command
  at; Sherman's army from; Grant returns to; Grant leaves; Grant considers
  retirement on
_Mercedita_, Confederate gunboats attack
Meredith, Solomon, "Iron Brigade" at Gettysburg
_Merrimac_, only Confederate man-of-war; duel with _Monitor_; destroyed
Mesilla (New Mexico), Baylor establishes capital at
_Metacomet_ against Fort Morgan
Mexican War, Grant serves in
Mexico, France warned from intervention in
Middle Creek (Kentucky), Garfield occupies line of
Mill Springs (Kentucky), Confederates at; battle
Milroy, R. H., in Jackson's Valley campaign; driven from Winchester
Mine Run (Virginia), battle
_Minnesota, Merrimac_ attacks
Missionary Ridge, _see_ Chattanooga
Mississippi, secedes; conflicting authorities balk navy
_Mississippi_, Confederate ship; burnt at New Orleans
Mississippi River, Union power on; Federal problem; River War (1862); River
  War (1863); Federals hold,
Missouri, saved for Union; Southern sympathy in; River campaign (1862);
  Curtis in
Missouri River, made Federal line of communication; last Confederate
  foothold on
Mitchel, General O. M., raid
Mobile, fleet drawn from; in Southern hands; Farragut against; Fort Morgan;
  army sent against; Sherman desires attack on; Grant's plan to help
  Farragut; taken
_Monitor_, duel with _Merrimac_; Lincoln on plans for
Monocacy River, Wallace delays Early at
Monroe, Fortress, Federal forces at; _Monitor_ at; McClellan's plan for
  position at; McClellan at; McClellan leaves
_Montauk_, Union monitor
Montgomery (Alabama), provisional Confederate Congress
Morgan, J. H., Raid; surrender; Kentucky raid
Morgan, Fort Farragut against
Mosby, J. S., Confederate cavalry leader
Moultrie, Fort
Mount Pleasant battery
"Mud March," Burnside's; Mulligan, Colonel James, at Lexington (Missouri)
Murfreesboro (Tennessee), Buell at

Nashville, Buell reinforces Grant from; Buell defends; Grant's
  headquarters; Thomas sent from; Thomas faces Hood at; battle
_Nashville_, Confederate privateer
Navy, Confederate, sea-power of South; poor administration; _see also_
  Navy, United States
Navy, United States, stands by Union; keeps command of sea; size (1861);
  Welles's report on; Fox as Assistant Secretary of Navy; Promotion Board;
  training; growth; Naval War (1862); fivefold duty of; Farragut and;
  blockade-runners complicate task of; part in River War (1862)
Navy Act
Negroes, fidelity to South; North uses as troops; New York draft riots;
  _see also_ Emancipation, slavery
Nelson, William, at Shiloh
New Hope Church (Georgia), fighting near
New Madrid (Missouri), Pope at; _Carondelet_ arrives at
New Mexico, as base of California invasion; Baylor proclaims himself
  Governor; Sibley in
New Orleans, Confederate rams lost at; attack conceived; strategic
  importance; joint expedition necessary; Farragut commands enterprise;
  Welles's orders; Farragut's plan; _Mississippi_ burned at; preparations;
  passing of forts; taken; Farragut at; Baton Rouge garrison withdrawn to
New York, _Monitor_ launched; draft riot
Newbern (North Carolina), expedition against; Richmond menaced from;
  attempt against; in Union hands; meeting of Union leaders at
Norfolk Navy Yard, Federal abandonment of
North, peace parties; _see also_ Pacifists; population (1861); resources;
  transport facilities; sea-power; _see also_ Navy, United States;
  commerce; total forces; conscription; conduct of soldiers; Lee's
  invasion; conditions in 1864
North Carolina, blockade; defeat at Hatteras Island; loses defenses; _see
  also_ Carolinas

Ohio, Morgan's Raid; Vallandigham case
Olustee (Fla.), victory of
_Oneida_, Confederate ship
Opequan Creek (Virginia), Sheridan's victory at
Orange Court House (Virginia), Lee at
Ord, General E. O. C., Read on staff of

Pacifists, in North; Peace party encouraged by Cold Harbor
Paducah (Kentucky), Grant forestalls enemy at; Grant's position at
Pamlico Sound (North Carolina), joint expedition against
Patterson, General Robert, commands on Potomac; and plans for Bull Run;
  Falling Waters; occupies Martinsburg; advance; and Johnston
Pea Ridge (Arkansas), battle
Pemberton, General J. C., escapes Federal trap; Chickasaw Bluffs; commander
  at Vicksburg; plans escape; surrender
Pensacola (Florida), beginning of war; evacuation; South uses garrison to
  reinforce Virginia; Farragut directs Gulf blockade from
_Pensacola_, Confederate ship
Peninsula Campaign, McClellan plans; campaign
Pendleton, Major A. S., member of Jackson's staff
Perryville (Kentucky), battle
Petersburg (Virginia), strategic rail gap at; winter quarters; Butler fails
  to take; Grant at; Lee leaves
Philippi (West Virginia), battle
Pickens, Fort
Pickett, G. E., charge at Gettysburg
Pillow, General G. J., at Fort Donelson; escape
Pillow, Fort, Federal vessels rammed at
Pinckney, Castle, _see_ Castle Pinckney
_Pinola_, Federal gunboat
Pipe Creek, Meade's army at
Pittsburg Landing, _see_ Shiloh
_Pittsburgh_, Federal ironclad at Fort Donelson; at Island Number Ten
Pleasant Hill, battle
Pleasonton, General A., cavalry leader
Point Pleasant (Ohio), Grant born at
Pope, General John, Grant declines patronage of; Island Number Ten;
  reinforces Halleck at Pittsburg Landing; transfer to Virginia; quoted;
  within reach of Jackson and Lee; retires safely; Jackson captures
  dispatches of; Lee divides army against; Jackson's plan against; Jackson
  marches around; reinforcement; Jackson eludes; Second Bull Run
Port Gibson (Mississippi)
Port Hudson (Louisiana)
Port Republic (Virginia)
Port Royal (South Carolina), Confederate defeat; Grant moves base to
Porter, Admiral D. D., conceives idea of attack on New Orleans; on
  Mississippi; succeeds Davis; capture of Arkansas Post; Vicksburg
  campaign; Mississippi command; attacks Fort Fisher; on Red River; at
  City Point conference,
Porter, FitzJohn, position; Beaver Dam Creek; Gaines's Mill; Second Bull
  Run; Pope's order
Porter, J. L., Naval Constructor to Confederate States
Porter, Commander W. D., at Fort Henry
Potter, Captain R. M., on Lee's decision
Powell, Fort
_Powhatan_, U. S. S., Porter commands
Prentiss, General B. M., at Shiloh
Press, perverts public opinion; no government censorship
Prestonburg, Garfield defeats Marshall near
Price, Sterling, becomes Confederate general; takes Lexington (Missouri);
  Grant prevents reinforcements for; attacks Curtis in Missouri; against
  Grant; defeated at Iuka
Privateers
Profiteers
Pulaski, Fort

_Quaker City_, Confederate gunboats attack

Rations, before Vicksburg; Grant supplies Lee's army
Rawlins, J. A., Grant's chief staff officer
Raymond (Mississippi), battle
Read, Colonel Theodore, at Sailor's Creek
Red River Expedition (1864)
Reno, General L. J., Second Bull Run
Renshaw, Commander, in charge of blockade
Resaca (Georgia), battle
Reynolds, General J. F., Second Bull Run; Gettysburg; killed
Rhind, Commander, fires mine-ship _Louisiana_
Rich Mountain (Virginia), battle
Richmond, plan to raid Harper's Ferry arranged at; Federal objective;
  Tredegar Iron Works; Grant and Lee at grips around; McClellan threatens;
  plan to evacuate; change of plan; Jackson starts for; Magruder to hold;
  saved; Sheridan's raid; Grant marches toward; consternation after Cold
  Harbor; Army of the James against
_Richmond_, Federal ship
"River Defense Fleet"
River War (1862); (1863)
Roanoke Island captured
"Rock of Chickamauga," nickname for General Thomas
Rodgers, Commander John, and first flotilla on Mississippi
Roe, Commander of the _Sassacus_
Rosecrans, General W. S., succeeds McClellan; Army of Mississippi under;
  holds Memphis-Corinth rails; replaces Buell; victory at Corinth;
  commands Army of Cumberland; Stone's River; maneuvers Bragg south;
  Thomas supersedes; Confederate plan to crush; Chattanooga

Sabine Cross Roads (Louisiana), Banks's defeat at
Sabine Pass (Texas), in Confederate hands
Sable Island, Butler's troops at
Sailor's Creek (Virginia), Lee's defeat at
St. Louis, Haskins goes to; Lyon commands at; Lyon marches prisoners
  through; Harney makes peace; conference; Fremont's headquarters; Fremont
  fortifies; Halleck's headquarters
_St. Louis_, Federal gunboat
St. Philip, Fort
Salem Church (Virginia), Jackson reaches
San Antonio (Texas), surrender to State; Lee at; Sibley's retreat
San Carlos, Fort
Santa Rosa Island, Slemmer defends
_Sassacus_, fight with _Albemarle_
Savannah (Georgia), South holds; Sherman plans march to; Sherman reaches;
  Hardee evacuates
Savannah (Tennessee), in Shiloh campaign
Schofield, General John, Nashville campaign
Scott, General Winfield, General-in-Chief, orders to Slemmer; and Lee;
  military adviser at Washington; civilian interference with; Grant's
  admiration for; prevision; "Anaconda policy"
Seddon, J. A., Confederate Secretary of War
Sedgwick, General John, Virginia campaign
Selma (Alabama), Southern cannon made at
Seminary Ridge, Lee's headquarters
Semmes, Captain Raphael of _Alabama_
Seven Days' Battle; balloon used in
Seven Pines (Virginia), battle
Seward, W. H., Secretary of State; on McClellan
Sharpsburg, _see_ Antietam
_Shenandoah_, Confederate raider
Shenandoah Brigade, First, Jackson in command of
Shenandoah Valley, Johnston in; Sheridan's raid; Kernstown; positions
  (April, 1862); forces; Jackson's maneuvers; McDowell; Front Royal;
  Winchester; pursuit of Banks; summary of Jackson's accomplishment in;
  pursuit of Jackson; Cross Keys; Port Republic; Jackson's strategy;
  Ewell in; Stanton's interference; Sigel in; Hunter's retreat; Early
  in; Sheridan in; Opequan Creek; "Sheridan's Ride"; Cedar Creek; Federal
  victory
Sheridan, General P. H., raid helps Lincoln's reelection; Chattanooga;
  Stanton falsifies Grant's order to; as a general; Grant and; Todd's
  Tavern; Richmond raid; Cold Harbor; raid; Trevilian; Opequan Creek;
  "Sheridan's Ride"; in Washington; later operations; Five Forks
Sherman, General W. T., colonel in Louisiana State Military Academy; leaves
  Louisiana; and Lyon; assists Scott; account of McDowell's march; as a
  leader; Port Royal expedition; age; attempt to take Vicksburg; Kentucky
  command; reported insane; diffident about rise; Shiloh; joins Grant;
  Chickasaw Bluffs; and Lincoln; Vicksburg campaign; commands Army of
  Tennessee; Chattanooga; Red River Expedition spoils strategy of; and
  Stanton; on relative forces in South; threatens Georgia; Dalton; fitness
  for command; advance; Resaca; New Hope Church; at Allatoona; at Kenesaw;
  maneuvers Johnston; battle of Atlanta; asks reinforcements; announces
  fall of Atlanta; Lincoln's reply to; campaign (1864); quoted; at Atlanta;
  Hood's attempt on Allatoona; preponderance of force; March to the Sea;
  presents Savannah to Lincoln; march through Carolinas; conference at City
  Point (Virginia); terms of surrender to Johnston; on Lincoln
Shields, General James, Kernstown; at Catlett's Station; Port Republic
Shiloh, Grant's army assembles near; Confederate preparations; Grant's
  position and force; battle; losses; outcome; result
Shine, Elizabeth, mother of Farragut
Ship Island, taken; Farragut at
Sibley, General H. H., in New Mexico
Sickles, General D. E., at Gettysburg
Sigel, General Franz, Wilson's Creek; Second Bull Run; command in
  Shenandoah Valley; Hunter replaces
Simpson, Grant's mother's name
Slavery, Lee and; _see also_ Emancipation, Negroes
Slemmer, Lieutenant, command at Pensacola; defends Fort Pickens
Smith, General A. J., at Tupelo
Smith, Captain C. F., Grant's admiration for; as a leader; Fort Donelson;
  ordered by Halleck to command expedition; Shiloh
Smith, General G. W., and Jackson's plan
Smith, Giles, Chattanooga
Smith, General Kirby, Bull Run
Smith, William, quartermaster on _Kearsarge_
Sons of Liberty
South, seceding States of; war party in; population (1861); resources;
  transportation; sea-power; _see also_ Navy, Confederate; reason for
  fighting; advantages; raiders; situation (1864); losses (1864); cause
  lost; number of troops
South Carolina, secedes; defeat at Port Royal; _see also_ Carolinas,
  Charleston
South Mountain, Stuart at
Spotsylvania (Virginia), battle
Stanton, E. M., Secretary of War; and Lincoln; military interference; and
  Lee; Cameron succeeded by; Banks and; orders McClellan to Aquia; and
  Hooker; forbids use of cipher; and Grant's orders
_Star of the West_, merchant vessel fired on at Charleston
Staunton (Virginia), Jackson at; Hunter's success at
Steinwehr, General Adolph, atrocities under
Stone's River (Tennessee), battle
Strasburg (Virginia), Banks's retreat from
Stringham, Flag-Officer, expedition against Hatteras forts
Stuart, J. E. B.; Confederate cavalry leader, Martinsburg; Bull Run; raid
  around McClellan; against Pope; at South Mountain; second raid around
  McClellan; and Lee's retreat; age; Sheridan encounters; Yellow Tavern;
  killed
Sturgis, defeat at Brice's Cross Roads
Suffolk (Virginia), menace to Richmond from
Sumter, Fort, location; Anderson goes to; fall of
_Sumter_, Confederate raider
_Supply_, vessel at Fort Pickens
Swift Run Gap (Virginia), Jackson at
Swinton, William, war correspondent
Sykes, General George, succeeds Meade

Taylor, Captain Jesse, destroys Confederate reports at Fort Henry
_Tecumseh_, sunk in Mobile Bay
Tennessee, mountain folk Unionist; secedes
_Tennessee_, Confederate ram
Terry, General A. H., at Fort Fisher
Texas, State militia seize army posts; General Twiggs surrenders posts;
  secedes; contraband enters; Red River Expedition; last shots fired in
Thomas, General G. H., Mill Springs; "Rock of Chickamauga";
  Chattanooga; Nashville campaign
Thoroughfare Gap (Virginia), Jackson's expedition
Tilghman, General Lloyd, surrenders Fort Henry
Tod, Judge, Jesse Grant in home of
Todd's Tavern (Virginia), battle
Transportation; means of communication in Virginia campaign
Traveler, Lee's horse
Tredegar Iron Works
Trevilian (Virginia), Sheridan at
Tunstall's Station (Virginia), Stuart's raid
Tupelo (Mississippi), Forrest defeated at
Twiggs, General D. E., surrenders Texas garrisons

_Undine_, gunboat taken with cavalry
Union Mills (Virginia), ford defended
United States, population (1861); _see also_ North, South

Vallandigham case
Valley Campaign, Jackson's; _see_ Shenandoah Valley
Valverde (New Mexico), Canby's defeat at
Van Dorn, General Earl, Confederate commander of trans-Mississippi troops;
  Pea Ridge; reinforces Beauregard; tries to reconquer Memphis-Corinth
  rails; replaced by Pemberton; at Holly Springs
_Varuna, Governor Moore_, destroys
Vicksburg, Farragut's expedition; importance of position; Sherman's
  attempt; _see also_ Chickasaw Bluffs; Grant's operations preceding;
  Grant's objective; Holly Springs; Confederates hold; Grant's position;
  generals at; Navy at; Grant's maneuvers; Federal force; Confederate
  force; scene of action; army rations at; siege; surrender; significance
  of victory; effect of victory
"Vicksburg Oak," Grant meets Pemberton under
Vinton. Major, Union officer at San Antonio
Virginia, Lee's loyalty to; blockade; secedes; Lee given chief command
  in; West Virginia part of; issues call for volunteers; West Virginia
  separates from; mountain folk Unionists; Federals hold western part
  of; Farragut from; Pope transferred to; Burnside's invasion of; Grant
  transferred to; campaign (1864); Wilderness; Todd's Tavern;
  Spotsylvania; Sheridan's raid; Cold Harbor; losses; campaign (1865);
  Petersburg; Five Forks; Sailor's Creek; Lee's surrender; _see also_
  Peninsula campaign
_Virginia, Merrimac_ renamed
Virginia Military Institute, Jackson at; cadets join Jackson

Walke, Henry, commands _Carondelet_
Walker, Fort
Wallace, General Lew, as a leader; at Fort Donelson; Shiloh; and Early
Wallace, General W. H. L., killed
Warley, A. F., commands Manassas
Warren, G. K., Gettysburg; defection at Cold Harbor
Washburn, Colonel Francis, at Sailor's Creek
Washburne, E. B., introduces Swinton
Washington, capture of rolling stock hampers; desire to defend; sea-power
  saves; Southern plans against; reserve corps at; Pope's army retires to;
  Early makes for; Union troops reviewed in
Wassaw Sound, duel between _Weehawken_ and _Atlanta_ in
Wauhatchie (Tennessee), battle
Weed, Thurlow, election agent
_Weehawken_, duel with _Atlanta_
Weitzel, General Godfrey, at Fort Fisher
Welles, Gideon, Secretary of Navy; report to Congress; orders concerning
  New Orleans
West, settlers beyond reach of war
West Virginia, part of Virginia; Jackson from; becomes separate State;
  campaign in; Fremont in
_Westfield_, Renshaw refuses to surrender
Wheeler, General Joseph, Confederate cavalry leader
White House (Virginia), McClellan's base
White Oak Swamp (Virginia), battle
Whitman, Walt, on Lincoln
Wilcox, General C. M., Pickett's Charge
Wilderness, battle
Wilkeson, Lieutenant Bayard, Gettysburg
Wilkeson, Frank, _Recollections of a Private Soldier in the Army of the
  Potomac_
Williams, General Thomas, at Vicksburg with Farragut; killed
Wilmington (North Carolina), rail connections threatened; in Confederate
  hands; Fort Fisher guards entrance to; captured
Wilson's Creek (Missouri), battle
Winchester (Virginia), Johnston retires to; Banks refuses to retreat to;
  forces at; Ewell drives Milroy out of
Winslow, Captain, commands _Kearsarge_
Wise, H. A., ex-Governor of Virginia
Worden, Captain J. L., commands _Monitor_
Wright, Colonel W. W., engineer
_Wyandotte_, vessel at Pensacola

Yazoo River, Porter on
Yellow Tavern, Stuart and Sheridan at
Yorktown, Confederates hold; evacuated

Zouaves under Stuart






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