Fitzhugh Lee, General Lee, Chapter 13: campaign in Virginia.-Bristol Station.-mine Run.-Wilderness. (search)
a soldier in Grant's, for the latter's losses equaled in numbers the strength of the former's command.
Colonel Taylor, General Lee's able adjutant general, places the number of re-enforcements Lee received in the thirty days campaign at fourteen thousand four hundred men, which, added to his original strength, gives seventy-eight thousand four hundred as the aggregate of all troops under his command from the Wilderness to Cold Harbor.
And to Grant, Taylor assigns fifty-one thousand during the same period, giving him an aggregate under his command from the Wilderness to Cold Harbor of one hundred and ninety-two thousand one hundred and sixty men. This is a marvelous monument to the skill of Lee and the courage of his troops.
Grant's hammering process was expensive in time and men. It took him thirty days to march seventy-five miles, at a loss of sixty odd thousand men, and then he was only on ground reached by McClellan without firing a gun, if we except the affair at Williamsburg.
The supposed thunder, heard down the river yesterday, turns out to have been artillery.
A fight has occurred at Bethel, and blood.-Yankee blood-has flowed pretty freely.
Magruder was assailed by some five thousand Yankees at Bethel, on the Peninsula.
His force was about nine hundred; but he was behind intrenchments.
We lost but one man killed and five wounded. The enemy's loss is several hundred.
That road to Richmond is a hard one to travel!
But I learn there is a panic about Williamsburg.
Several young men from that vicinity have shouldered their pens and are applying for clerkships in the departments.
But most of the men of proper age in the literary institutions are volunteering in defense of their native land.
Gen. Lee has been or is to be created a full general in the Confederate army, and will be assigned to duty here.
He is third on the list, Sydney Johnston being second.
From all I can see and infer, we shall make no attempt this year to invade th
ar, that Virginia, and, perhaps, a sufficient number of the States to form a new constitution, will meet in convention and form a new government.
Gen. Stark, of Mississippi, who fell at Sharpsburg, was an acquaintance of mine.
His daughters were educated with mine at St. Mary's Hall, Burlington, N. J.-and were, indeed, under my care.
The papers this morning contain accounts of the landing of Yankees at White House, York River; and of reinforcements at Williamsburg and Suffolk.
They might attempt to take Richmond, while Lee's army is away; for they know we have no large body of troops here.
A battery passed through the city this morning early, at doublequick, going eastward.
Yesterday Congress passed an act, supplemental and amenda tory to the Conscription Act of last April, authorizing the President to call into the military service all residents between the ages of thirty-five and forty-five.
The first act included only those between the
on us for burning cotton and tobacco belonging to British subjects, where there is danger that they may fall into the hands of the enemy.
Thus the British government do not even claim to have their subjects in the South favored above the Southern people.
But Mr. Benjamin is more liberal, and he directed the Provost Marshal to save the tobacco bought on foreign account.
So far, however, the grand speculation has failed.
Gen. Wise was countermanded in his march against Williamsburg, by Major-Gen. Gustavus W. Smith.
He had 2700 men, the enemy 1500, and he would have captured and slain them all. Gen. Wise was the trusted and revered Governor of Virginia, while Smith was the Street Commissioner in New York.
A strong letter from Vice-President Stephens is published today, in which it is successfully maintained that no power exists, derived either from the Constitution or acts of Congress, for the declaration of martial law. He says all punishments inflicted by mili
fighting than at the battle of the Seven Pines, where his brigade retrieved the fortunes of the day; for at one time it was lost.
He was also at Yorktown and Williamsburg; and he cannot yet cease condemning the giving up of the Peninsula, Norfolk, etc. Gen. Johnston did that, backed by Randolph and Mallory.
We have all been was a failure.
The monitor which assaulted the fort sustained so much injury, that it had to retire for repairs.
Several blockade-runners between this and Williamsburg were arrested and sent to Gen. Winder to-day by Lieut. G. D. Wise. Gen. W. sent them to Gen. Rains. Mr. Petit and Mr. James Custis (from Williamsburg) came witWilliamsburg) came with them to endeavor to procure their liberation.
Gen. Rains sent them back to Gen. W., with a note that he had no time to attend to such matters.
Such business does not pertain to his bureau.
I suppose they will be released.
Major Lear, of Texas, who was at the capture of the Harriet Lane, met on the captured steamer his mor
Proposed fixture of prices.
depreciation in the North.
Gen. Hooker in command of the U. S. Forces.
Lee thinks Charleston will be attacked.
Congress does nothing.
some fears for Vicksburg.
Wise dashes into Williamsburg.
rats take food from my daughter's hand.
Lee wants the meat sent from Georgia to Virginia, where the fighting will be.
Gen. Winder uneasy about my Diary.
Gen. Johnston asks to be relieved in the West.
The Virginia Legislat
The iron-clad gun-boat, which got past Vicksburg, has been up the Red River spreading devastation.
It has taken three of our steamers, forty officers on one, and captured large amounts of stores and cotton.
Gen. Wise made a dash into Williamsburg last night, and captured the place, taking some prisoners.
Custis (my son) received a letter to-day from Miss G., Newbern, via underground railroad, inclosing another for her sweet-heart in the army.
She says they are getting on tolerably
sinking the merchant steamer Leopard, having 40,000 pairs of shoes, etc. on board for our soldiers.
It is supposed they will reappear before Wilmington; our batteries there are ready for them.
Gen. Wise assailed the enemy on Saturday, at Williamsburg, captured the town, and drove the Federals into their fortMa-gruder.
The President was ill and nervous, on Saturday.
His wife, who lost her parent at Montgomery, Ala., a month ago, and who repaired thither, is still absent.
Congress sto the retention of diplomatic agents in London, etc. And the Enquirer, edited by John Mitchel, the fugitive Irishman, opens its batteries on the Sentinel. So we go.
We have nothing additional from Gen. Wise's expedition against Williamsburg; but it was deprecated by our people here, whose families and negroes have been left in that vicinity.
They argue that we cannot hold the town, or any portion of the Peninsula in the neighborhood; and when the troops retire, the enemy will su
ered only 12,000, Grant's three times that number.
Something decisive must occur before Vicksburg in a few days.
Mr. J. W. Henry writes from New's Ferry, that parties of cavalry, going about the country, professing to belong to our Gen. Stuart's corps, are probably Yankee spies making observations preparatory for another raid.
The city councils are organizing the citizens for local defense, thinking it probable another dash may be made.
Gen. Dix threatens to hang the citizens of Williamsburg if they co-operate with Gen. Wise in his frequent attacks on the Federals.
Gen. Wise replies, threatening to hang Gen. Dix if he carries his threat into execution, and should fall into his hands, in a more summary manner than John Brown was hung for making his raid in Virginia.
Butter is worth $4 per pound.
A sheep is worth $50. A cow $500.
There was a rumor on the street last ntght that Gen. Johnston had telegraphed the President that it would be necessary to evacuat
t spectacle of the war to see men in such condition move forward with such cheerfulness and alacrity, in the recent pursuit of the enemy.
He deprecates sending any of his regiments to West Virginia and East Tennessee, and thinks Gen. Sam Jones has not evinced sufficient energy and judgment in that quarter, He says it would be better to send reinforcements to Chattanooga, where it is practicable to conduct a winter campaign.
He could drive the enemy from the Peninsula, Gloucester Point, Williamsburg, and Yorktown, but to keep them away Lee would have to station an army there.
If North Carolina be menaced, he advises that the troops at Richmond and Petersburg be sent thither, and he will replace them with troops from his army.
He thinks it the best policy not to disperse troops in Virginia.
From this letter it is easy to perceive that the Secretary of War, in the absence of the President, has been making suggestions to Gen. Lee, none of which does he deem it good policy to adopt
nt, refugees, etc. My friend James G. Brooks, Clay Street, informed me this morning that he got half a bushel there.
He is rich!
Clear, with hot sun.
Last evening there was some fighting on Lee's right, and 125 prisoners were sent in.
This morning cannon and musketry could be distinctly heard east of my dwelling; but at 3 P. M. I have not been able to learn the extent of it or the result.
But the great battle is imminent.
Troops have been coming over from the south side (Beauregard's) for twenty hours, and marching down Main Street toward the Williamsburg road.
It is doubtless a flank movement of Beauregard, and an attack on Grant may be expected any hour; and must occur, I think, tomorrow at furthest.
I have not learned that Butler has retired from his positionand if not, our communications must be in peril.
But no matter, so Grant be beaten.
All the local troops are ordered to be in readiness to march at a moment's warning, this evening or night.