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Fitzhugh Lee, General Lee, Chapter 6: the campaign in West Virginia. (search)
of the Potomac. The headquarters of the Department of the Ohio were established at Buckhannon, and from this point McClellan determined to attack the force on Rich Mountain, and advanced and deployed in front of the opposing army, which he found strongly intrenched. He promptly resorted to the only method left in military operatireatening his front, while a column should proceed, if possible, around one of his flanks and assault his rear — a plan similar to that adopted by McClellan at Rich Mountain. The greatest difficulty in a campaign of this description is to discover suitable routes or paths over the rocks and precipitous mountain sides for the trattacks. In a private letter to Governor Letcher, dated September 17, 1861, he simply states that he was sanguine of success in attacking the enemy's works on Rich Mountain ; that the troops intended for the surprise had reached their destination, having traversed twenty miles of steep and rugged mountain paths, and the last day t