The March of Lew Wallace's division to Shiloh.
Circumstances and character of the order.As General Grant passed up from Savannah on the Tigress on the 6th of April to the battle-field of Shiloh, he found General Lew Wallace awaiting him at Crump's Landing, the troops of his division having been ordered under arms at the sound of the battle. [For General Grant's statements, see pages 467-8.] General Wallace in his official report places the hour at which General Grant reached Crump's at about 9, while General Grant gives the hour of his arrival at Pittsburg Landing as about 8. Grant left Wallace a direction to hold himself in readiness for orders. In anticipation of the receipt of them, a horse was saddled at Crump's for the use of the expected messenger, the First Brigade having been already sent from Crump's to join the Second at Stony Lonesome (marked A on the map), General Wallace following about 9:15. To this point, at an hour which has been variously stated by the officers of the command at from 11 o'clock to noon (Wallace says, “exactly 11:30” ), came Captain A. S. Baxter, quartermaster on Grant's staff, with the order. Concerning the time, dispatch, and character of this order there is much disagreement. General Grant says that the order was verbal; that it was given after riding out to the front, and that Baxter made a memorandum of it, though he does not say that he saw Baxter. Furthermore Rawlins says that the order was taken by him back to the Landing, half a mile away, and given verbally to Baxter, and afterward dictated to him, at the latter's request, and that Baxter started on the steamer not later than 9 o'clock. Rowley states that Grant gave the order verbally and in person to Baxter at once upon arriving at the Landing, and then rode immediately to the front. Wallace states that Baxter delivered an unsigned order and said that “it had been given to him verbally, but that in coming down the river he had reduced it to writing.” Concerning the circumstances and character of the order Captain Baxter made the following statement in the New-York Mail and Express for November 4th, 1886:
I will give my own recollection of the event at Pittsburg Landing. On Sunday, between the hours of 8 and 9 o'clock A. M., April 6th, 1862, Adjutant-General Rawlins, of General Grant's staff, requested me to go to Crump's Landing (five miles below) and order General Lew Wallace to march his command at once by the River Road to Pittsburg Landing, and join the army on the right. At the same time General Rawlins dictated the order to General Wallace, which was written by myself and signed by General Rawlins. On meeting General Wallace I gave the order verbally, also handed to him the written order. General Wallace said he was waiting for orders, had heard the firing all the morning, and was ready to move with his command immediately-knew the road and had put it in good order. My stay with Lew Wallace did not exceed three minutes. I had no further conversation with him, and I returned immediately to Pittsburg Landing.As to the character of the order: General Grant's statement (see page 468) is that the order as given was “to march immediately to Pittsburg by the road nearest the river.” Captain Rowley says, “to march with his division up the river, and into the field on the right of our line, as rapidly as possible.” Rawlins says it read “substantially as follows” : “Major-General Wallace: You will move forward your division from Crump's Landing, leaving a sufficient force to protect the public property at that place, to Pittsburg Landing, on the road nearest to and parallel to the river, and form in line at right angles with the river, immediately in rear of the camp of Major-General C. F. Smith's division on our right [W. H. L. Wallace's], and there wait further orders.” General Wallace says, that as received, it directed him “to come up and take position on the right of the army, and form my line of battle at a right angle with the river,” and “to leave a force to prevent surprise at Crump's Landing.” Colonel James R. Ross says, “I very distinctly remember that this order directed you to move forward and join General Sherman's right on the Purdy Road, and form your line of battle at right angles with the river, and then act as circumstances would dictate.” 1 General Fred. Knefler says, “It was a written order to march and form a junction with the right of the army.” 2 Captain Addison Ware says it was “to move your division up and join General Sherman's right on the road leading from Pittsburg Landing to Purdy.” 3 General Knefler adds, “The order was placed in my hands as Assistant Adjutant-General; but where it is now, or what became of it, I am unable to say. Very likely, having been written on a scrap of paper, it was lost.” 4
Route and limit of the March.All reports agree that the march of the two brigades began at 12 o'clock, along the road “A B C”. Wallace not arriving at Pittsburg Landing, General Grant sent Captain Rowley of his staff to hurry him forward. Rowley went by the River Road almost to Crump's Landing, and then “a distance of between five and six miles,” when he reached the rear of Wallace's division by the road A B C, and passing the resting troops continued to the head of the column, where he found Wallace and delivered the orders, and gave him the first information that the right of the army had been driven back. Wallace then ordered a counter-march of the troops. The point at which this turning took place is fixed by General Wallace at D, half-way between the Purdy crossing and the Owl Creek bridge. (This identification is fully confirmed by letters of October 5th and 6th, 1887, written by Generals Fred. Knefler and G. F. McGinnis, Captains Thomas C. Pursel and George F. Brown, and Dr. S. L. Ensminger, all of whom took part in the march, and the last two of whom examined the ground in 1884 to determine the point.) In the Official Records is a sketch map, without scale, by Colonel James B. McPherson, placing the 
|Map of the routes by which General Grant was reenforced at Pittsburg Landing. Authorities: (1.) The Official or Thom map (p. 508), for roads and distances on the south side of Snake Creek; (2.) the Union Camp map (pp. 496-7), for the location of camps morning of April 5th, 1862; (3.) the Shiloh map in General Badeau's Military history of U. S. Grant, for the main roads on the north side of Snake Creek, that map also agreeing with General McPherson's sketch map without scale in Official Records, Vol. X., p. 183; (4.) General Wallace's statement to the editors, 1887, based on investigations and measurements in 1884, by Captain George F. Brown and Dr. S. L. Ensminger, for the roads from G to C and from C to E, and for the point D as the limit of the march toward Owl Creek. N. B.-No detailed survey appears to have been made. Key to routes of Wallace's division: Route of First Brigade, morning of April 6th-F A. Route of First and Second brigades to the battlefield, afternoon-A B C D C H E K. Route of Third Brigade, afternoon — G C H E K.|
Selecting a road that led directly to the right of the lines, as they were established around Pittsburg Landing on Sunday morning, my column started immediately, the distance being about six miles. The cannonading, distinctly audible, quickened the steps of the men. Snake Creek [Owl Creek], difficult of passage at all times on account of its steep banks and swampy bottoms, ran between me and the point of junction. Short way from it [Owl Creek] Captain Rowley, from General Grant, ... overtook me. ... It seemed, on his representation, most prudent to carry the column across to what is called the “River Road.” ... This movement occasioned a counter-march, which delayed my junction with the main army until a little after nightfall.
Character of the March.Rowley, McPherson, and Rawlins report that they represented the need of haste, and that the march was slow:
Of the character of the march, after I overtook General Wallace, I can only say that to me it appeared intolerably slow, resembling more a reconnoissance in the face of an enemy than a forced march to relieve a hard-pressed army. So strongly did this impression take hold of my mind, that I took the liberty of repeating to General Wallace that part of General Grant's order enjoining haste. [Rowley.]
After I had reached the head of the column, I must say it seemed to me that the march was not as rapid as the urgency of the case required. Perhaps this arose in a great measure from my impatience and anxiety to get this force on the field before dark. ... [McPherson ]
Colonel McPherson and I came up to him about 3:30 o'clock P. M. He was then not to exceed four or four and a half miles [two and a half miles?] from the scene of action; the roads were in fine condition; he was marching light; his men were in buoyant spirits, within hearing of the musketry, and eager to get forward. He did not make a mile and a half an hour, although urged and appealed to, to push forward. Had he moved with the rapidity his command were able and anxious to have moved after we overtook him, he would have reached you [Grant] in time to have engaged the enemy before the close of Sunday's fight. [Rawlins.]General Wallace denies this last conclusion and the statement about the condition of the road. General Knefler says [letter to Wallace]: “After some hard marching over execrable roads, we reached our position about dusk.” Col. James R. Ross says [letter to Wallace, January 25th, 1868]: “We had to march over the worst road I ever remember to have seen. In many places it was almost impossible to get artillery through.” The head of the column did not arrive at K until after dark, probably at 7:15, sunset being at6 : 30. The total time of the march was about 7 hours. The total distance traveled to the lower bridge (K) was, according to our map, 11 miles. It is possible that a detailed survey of the field would indicate the distance as somewhat greater. General Wallace estimates it as “over 14 miles, of which quite 5 miles were through mire so deep that the axles of my guns left wakes behind them as if mud-scows had been dragged that way.” Captain Brown, who studied the route in 1884, estimates it at between 13 and 14 miles. Not considering the comparative difficulties of the two marches, the map indicates little difference in the speed of Wallace's division and that of Nelson's leading brigade (Ammen) from Savannah to Pittsburg Landing (1:30 to 5). Ammen in his diary dwells on the extreme difficulties of his route, which lay largely through swamps impassable by artillery.
Documents submitted by General Wallace.
I.Letter found on the person of General W. H. L. Wallace, after he had received a mortal wound at Shiloh, and sent by his widow to General Grant [see foot-note, page 468; printed also in the Century and in the Personal memoirs of U. S. Grant ]:
General Wallace says: “As I was ignorant of the position of W. H. L. Wallace's camp, this letter was sent by way of Owl Creek. I knew Wallace, and did not know Sherman, whose camp was nearer.”
Ii.--Letter from General Grant to General Lew Wallace, in 1868, after examining statements by the latter and by the following officers of his command, touching the character of the order and march: Generals Fred. Knefler, George F. McGinnis, Daniel Macauley, John A. Strickland, John M. Thayer, Colonel James R. Ross, and Captain Addison Ware:
Iii.--Letter from General Wallace to General Grant, in 1884, referring to the whole controversy. The omissions are made by the editors, for lack of space: