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Fitzhugh Lee, General Lee, Chapter 7: Atlantic coast defenses.-assigned to duty in Richmond as commander in chief under the direction of the Southern President. (search)
tching the country in front of Johnston's left. To make this attack certain, General Fitz John Porter was given twelve thousand men, and partially accomplished the object of the expedition by defeating Branch and destroying the bridges and railroads in the vicinity of Ashland. Slowly but surely McClellan was diminishing the distance between the lines of his army and the Southern capital, and his big Parrott guns were now nearly in a position to throw shot within the walls of the city. On May 23d the Fourth Corps, under Keyes, crossed the Chickahominy at Bottom's Bridge and took position at a place called Seven Pines, some five miles from the city; the Third Corps, under Heintzelman, followed. The Chickahominy now divided McClellan's army into two parts. Two of his corps were on the south, and three-Sumner's, Franklin's, and Porter's — on the north side, McClellan's headquarters being at Gaines Mill. The Chickahominy River rises some twelve miles northwest of Richmond, flows in