with not less than 150,000 sabers and bayonets, eagerly awaited the long-expected permission to prove itself but fairly represented in that casual detachment which had fought and won at Dranesville
In every other quarter, our arms were in the ascendant.
The blow well struck by Butler
, had never been retaliated.
The Rebels' attempt to cut off Brown
's regiment at Chicamicomico had resulted in more loss to them than to us. Du Pont
's triumph at Port Royal
had dealt a damaging blow to our foes, and inflicted signal injury on the original plotters of treason, without loss to our side.
In West Virginia
, the campaign was closing with the prestige of success and superiority gilding our standards, and with at least nine-tenths of the whole region securely in our hands.
, Gen. Fremont
-though vehemently reproached for not advancing and fighting sooner, and though never enjoying facilities for obtaining arms, munitions, or any material of war, at all comparable to those at all times eagerly accorded to McClellan
— had collected, organized, armed, and provided, a movable column of nearly 40,000 men, at whose head he had pushed Price
--one of the very ablest of the Rebel
chieftains — to the furthest corner of the State
, and was on the point of hunting him thence into Arkansas
or eternity, when the order which deprived him of his command was received at Springfield
on the 2d of November.
Yet then and throughout the Winter, Gen. McClellan
, who had been called to command at Washington
on the same day that Fremont
left New York for St. Louis
, stood cooped up and virtually besieged in the defenses of Washington, holding barely ground enough in Virginia
to encamp and maneuver his army; while the Rebels
impudently obstructed the navigation of the lower Potomac, on one hand, by batteries erected at commanding points on the Virginia
shore, while the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad was dismantled and obstructed by them at Harper's Ferry
and further west on the other; leaving the city of Washington
, as well as his vast army, dependent on the single track of the Branch Rail-road for all their subsistence and supplies, throughout the tedious Winter that followed.
The Confederates had not yet enforced a general Conscription; and, though volunteering was widely stimulated by Police discipline and Lynch
law, while the more ignorant and ill-informed young women of many slaveholding localities were envenomed Secessionists, refusing to give any but the most furious countenance to young men who hesitated to enlist, yet the white population of the States actually controlled by the Rebels
was so very far inferior in numbers to that of the loyal North and West, that the Rebel
armies were necessarily and vastly the less numerous likewise.
, indeed, appears to have estimated their numbers in Eastern Virginia
at 150,000; but the information on which he acted differed