has become a consecrated name, and among all the long array of those who fell there, John Fulton Reynolds
will forever stand out foremost.
A soldier by profession, he won a reputation that gave promise of achievement, not fully realized by reason of his early death.
A native of Pennsylvania
, it was eminently fitting that he should lead the van of the Army of the Potomac, when it hurried to the defense of the State
in which he was born.
Singularly beloved by his comrades in the army, from his West Point
days, through his campaigns in Florida
, his services on the frontier, his life upon the Plains
, he was admired by his volunteer soldiers, and by the great number of civilians with whom he was brought into intimate relationship in the two campaigns in Pennsylvania
, in which he was prominently engaged.
Free from any personal ambition, he devoted himself to his duty in every post in which he was placed, and he won the confidence alike of subordinates and superiors, so that his name was constantly suggested for the very highest command.
His modest preference for Meade
as the chief of the Army of the Potomac, when Hooker
was relieved, no doubt brought Reynolds
to the spot where he found his death; but it was characteristic of his life, and he undoubtedly preferred to serve in the immediate command of the lesser body of troops, that he might inspire them with his own example of courage, rather than to take upon himself responsibilities without adequate power.
Impetuous without rashness, rapid without haste, ready without heedlessness, he liked better to be at the head of a compact corps than to command a scattered army.
In no instance of the many supplied by West Point
, was there