nandoah Valley campaign
April to July, 1861.
The United States arsenal and armory at Harper's Ferry, at the junction of the Shenandoah and Potomac rivers, was the coveted object that first led to military operations in the Shenandoah valley in 1861. Ex-Governor Wise, early in April, urged the authorities at Richmond, by letter, to press forward on three points, the first, Harper's Ferry, to cut off. the West, to form camp for Baltimore and point of attack on Washington from the west.
In Rent to expel you.
Patterson replied that he considered the occupation of Harper's Ferry, with his small force, as hazardous, and that not less than 20,000 men were needed to hold it against a formidable enemy.
The Shenandoah valley campaign of 1861—three months long, to a day—though marked by no brilliant achievements, was full of substantial advantage to the Confederacy. (1)The capture of the arsenal and armories at Harper's Ferry gave it a large number of arms, when most needed, and the ma
Review of military conditions, Spring of 1862.
In the spring of 1862 the Federal and Confederate armies in northeastern Virginia held nearly the same relative positions as in the early autumn of 1861.
The former had, February 7th, again occupied the line of the South branch of the Potomac, which Jackson, by order, had abandoned, and Gen. Edward Johnson, after his victory of December 1 3, 1861, on Alleghany mountain, had fallen back to Shenandoah mountain; but the Confederate army of Northern Virginia still had its center, in command of Gen. Joseph E. Johnston, on the field of its victory at Manassas, while its right rested at Fredericksburg, in command of General Holmes, and Jackson held its left in the lower Shenandoah valley.
Practically its pickets patroled the Potomac from Chesapeake bay up to within the mountains.
Not satisfied with a condition of military affairs that still held north of the Potomac the great army—on its rolls, March 1, 1862, 222,000