On the 28th of April, Jackson
applied to General Lee
, then acting as commander-in-chief under President Davis
, for a reinforcement of five thousand men, which addition to his force he deemed necessary to justify him in marching out and attacking Banks
Next day he was informed that no troops could be spared to him beyond the commands of Ewell
and of Edward Johnson
, the latter of whom was seven miles west of Staunton
, at West View, with one brigade.
Jackson at once decided upon his plan of campaign, and the very next day began to put it in execution.
This campaign, so successful and brilliant in its results, and now so renowned, shows in its conception the strong points of Jackson
's military genius, his clear, vigorous grasp of the situation, his decision, his energy, his grand audacity.
It recalls the Italian
campaign of 1796, when Napoleon
astonished, baffled and defeated the armies of Beaulieu
, Wurmser, and Alvinzy in succession.
was now, with about six or seven thousand men, at the base of the Blue ridge
, some thirty miles northeast of Staunton
, with an equal force, was in the vicinity of Gordonsville
, twenty-five miles in his rear, and east of the mountains.
was seven miles west of Staunton
with three thousand five hundred men. Such was the Confederate
On the other hand, Banks
, with the main body of his forces, of about twenty thousand men, occupied Harrisonburg
, twelve or fifteen miles in Jackson
, commanding Fremont
's advance of six thousand men, were in front of Edward Johnson
, their pickets already east of the Shenandoah mountain
and on the Harrisonburg and Warm Spring turnpike
was preparing to join them from the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad with ten thousand men-making the total of Fremont
's force some fifteen thousand men. McDowell
, with thirty thousand men, had drawn away from the Upper Rappahannock
, and was concentrating at Fredericksburg
This movement of McDowell
had released Ewell
and left him free to aid Jackson
, who, with a force of about sixteen thousand men (including Ewell
and Edward Johnson
), had on his hands the thirty-five thousand under Banks
The Warm Springs turnpike
a ready mode of uniting with Milroy
, in which case Staunton
would be any easy capture.
was already preparing to move in that direction.
determined to anticipate such a movement, if possible, by uniting his own force to that of Johnson
, and falling upon Milroy
Then he would join Ewell
and with all his strength attack Banks