previous next

[176] be criticised; of course, after the arrival of his chief, all responsibility was taken from Ewell in not ordering the troops forwardit was assumed by and is to be placed upon General Lee.

While the capture of Cemetery Hill on the 1st would have probably thrown Meade back on the already selected line of Pipe Clay creek, in gaining it we would have shattered the Twelfth corps-possibly portions of two others-and the Federal army offering battle with three or more of its corps beaten, would have been a less formidable antagonist than we found it on the 2d, from Culps' Hill to Round Top. The Confederates, too, would have sufferred an additional loss; but the victor, in most instances, loses less in proportion to the vanquished, except in an attack on fortified places. General Hancock, the opposing commander, does not enumerate this as one of those.

To the operations of the 2d of July I now direct attention, not with the view of going over the whole ground, because it has been fully covered by official reports of the higher officers operating there and by recent papers, some of them bearing exhaustively upon the subject, but for the purpose of examining some of the statements contained in General Longstreet's article, written for and published by the Philadelphia Times in its issue of November the 3d, 1877. It is charged by persons, particularly from the North, that Longstreet's political apostacy, since the war, has made his comrades forget his services during that period. Upon that point, whilst I believe, as General Lee once said to me, in Lexington, (referring to a letter he had received from General Longstreet, asking an endorsation of his political views,) that “General Longstreet has made a great mistake,” I concede the conscientious adoption of such opinions by General Longstreet. The fact that he differs widely, and has not acted politically with the great majority of his old comrades since the war, has nothing to do with his undoubted ability as a soldier during the contest. I saw him for the first time on the 18th of July, 1861, at Blackburn's Ford, on the Bull Run, and was impressed with his insensibility to danger. I recollect well my thinking, there is a man that cannot be stampeded. For the last time I saw him the night before the surrender at Appomattox Courthouse, and there was still the bull-dog tenacity, the old genuine sang froid about him which made all feel he could be depended upon to hold fast to his,

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)
hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
James Longstreet (5)
Fitzhugh Lee (2)
Round Top (1)
Gederal Meade (1)
Winfield Hancock (1)
Ewell (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
November 3rd, 1877 AD (1)
July 18th, 1861 AD (1)
July 2nd (1)
2nd (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: