skill, of inexhaustible resources,. unfaltering persistency, and who, with the confidence of a fatalist, knew no such thing as defeat.
never supposed such a thing as defeat possible, though he never placed his army in a position from which his skill could not extricate it in case of necessity.
His eye and his thoughts were always turned towards the front and on his own aggressive movements, and he found.
no time to direct them to the rear.
He took care that the quartermasters, with ample supplies, should always be there, and that was the only reason for keeping his communications open, for he never thought of return.
It would have taken a terrible defeat to make Grant
believe it, so strong was his faith in success.
At the battle of the Wilderness
, when the rebels, massing heavily against Hancock
's corps, pressed it back, an aid brought word to Grant
that the corps had suffiered serious disaster.
“I don't believe it,” said the general, with something more of vehemence than usual; and he sent the aid back for further reports, which proved that the first accounts were greatly exaggerated.
The nature of the country where the battle of the Wilderness
was fought was such as to make it but little better than a fight in the dark.
A thick, low growth of wood on a wide plain, with only moderate elevations, concealed the movements of both friend and foe, except where they were actually engaged, and it was impossible for the commanding general
or his subordinates to direct the movements of the troops, width the precision which had been shown at Chattanooga
Though the rebels could see no better, the ground was more familiar to