and I finally assented that the Pennsylvania
campaign might be brought to a successful issue if he could make it offensive in strategy, but defensive in tactics.
This point was urged with great persistency.
I suggested that, after piercing Pennsylvania
and menacing Washington
, we should choose a strong position, and force the Federals
to attack us, observing that the popular clamor throughout the North
would speedily force the Federal
general to attempt to drive us out. I recalled to him the battle of Fredericksburg
as an instance of a defensive battle, when, with a few thousand men, we hurled the whole Federal army back, crippling and demoralizing it, with trifling loss to our own troops; and Chancellorsville
as an instance of an offensive battle, where we dislodged the Federals
, it is true, but at such a terrible sacrifice that half a dozen such victories would have ruined us. It will be remembered that Stonewall Jackson
once said that “we sometimes fail to drive the enemy from a position.
They always fail to drive us.”
I reminded him, too, of Napoleon
's advice to Marmont
, to whom he said, when putting him at the head of an invading army, “Select your ground, and make your enemy attack you.”
I recall these points, simply because I desire to have it distinctly understood that, while I first suggested to General Lee
the idea of an offensive campaign, I was never persuaded to yield my argument against the Gettysburg campaign
, except with the understanding that we were not to deliver an offensive battle, but to so maneuvre that the enemy should be forced to attack us-or, to repeat, that our campaign should be one of offensive strategy, but defensive tactics.
Upon this understanding my assent was given, and General Lee
, who had been kind enough to discuss the matter with me patiently, gave the order of march.
The movement was begun on the 3d of June.
' Division of my corps moved out of Fredericksburg
, for Culpepper Court-House, followed by Ewell
's Corps, on the 4th and 5th of June.
's Division and Stuart
's cavalry moved at the same time.
On the 8th, we found two full corps (for Pickett
's Division had joined me then), and Stuart
's cavalry, concentrated at Culpepper Court-House.
In the meantime a large force of the Federals
, cavalry and infantry, had been thrown across the Rappahannock
, and sent to attack General Stuart
They were encountered at Brandy Station
, on the morning of the 9th, and repulsed.
says of this engagement: “On the 9th, a large force of Federal cavalry, strongly supported by infantry, crossed the Rappahannock
at Beverly's ford, and attacked General Stuart
A severe engagement ensued, continuing from early in the morning until late in the afternoon, when ”