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I sincerely regret that I cannot still rest upon that letter. But I have been so repeatedly and so rancorously assailed by those whose intimacy with the Commanding-General in that battle gave an apparent importance to their assaults, that I feel impelled by a sense of duty to give to the public a full and comprehensive narration of the campaign from its beginning to its end; especially when I reflect that the publication of the truth cannot now, as it might have done then, injure the cause for which we fought the battle. The request that I furnish this history to the Times comes opportunely, for the appeal just made through the press by a distinguished foreigner for all information that will develope the causes of the failure of that campaign has provoked anew its partisan and desultory discussion, and renders a plain and logical recital of the facts both timely and important. After the defeat of Burnside at Fredericksburg in December, it was believed that active operations were over for the winter, and I was sent
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