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to strengthen the defenses. General Huger had striven to keep his men employed; and they, at least, did not despise the enemy that frowned at them from Fort Monroe, and frequently sent messages of compliment into their camps from the lips of the Sawyer gun. The echo of the paeans from Manassas came back to them, but softened by distance and tempered by their own experience-or want of it. In Western Virginia there had been a dull, eventless campaign, of strategy rather than action. General Wise had taken command on the first of June, and early in August had been followed by General John B. Floyd--the ex-U. S. Secretary of War. These two commanders unfortunately disagreed as to means and conduct of the campaign; and General R. E. Lee was sent to take general command on this-his first theater of active service. His management of the campaign was much criticised in many quarters; and the public verdict seemed to be that, though he had an army of twenty thousand men, tolerably
good enough for his selection. Suddenly, on the 7th of February, Roanoke Island fell! Constant as had been the warnings of the press, unremittingly as General Wise had besieged the War Department, and blue as was the mood of the public — the blow still fell like a thunder-clap and shook to the winds the few remaining shreds of hope. General Wise was ill in bed; and the defense-conducted by a militia colonel with less than one thousand raw troops — was but child's play to the immense armada with heaviest metal that Burnside brought against the place. Roanoke Island was the key to General Huger's position at Norfolk. Its fall opened the Soundsof the untrained garrison; by a plucky and determined fight of the little squadron under Commodore Lynch; and by the brilliant courage and death of Captain 0. Jennings Wise — a gallant soldier and noble gentleman, whose popularity was deservedly great. But, the people felt that a period must be put to these mistakes; and so gr<