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Fitzhugh Lee, General Lee, Chapter 6: the campaign in West Virginia. (search)
gning from the United States Army his first service in the South was as adjutant general of the Virginia forces. He was considered an excellent officer, a rigid disciplinarian, and, in consequence of many soldierly traits, had at one time been appointed commandant of the Cadet Corps at West Point. In June this officer occupied, with a force of about five thousand men, Laurel Hill, thirteen miles south of Philippi, on the turnpike leading to Beverly, in Randolph County. McClellan reached Grafton on the 23d of the same month, and on the same day issued a proclamation to the inhabitants of West Virginia, and on the following day another to the soldiers of the Army of the West, both in the bombastic, inflated style followed by officers on each side in the early days of the war. He called his enemies hard names and charged them with grave offenses, and in many ways differed from the same McClellan who afterward commanded the Army of the Potomac. Soldiers, said he, I have heard there wa