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[583] road nearly down1 to Louisa C. H.; but, soon finding the Rebels too numerous and pressing, he retraced his steps to Trevilian's, where he had a sharp, indecisive, sanguinary fight, and then drew off; making his way to Spottsylvania C. H., and thence by Guiney's station to White House, and so rejoined Gen. Grant. His raid was less effective than had been calculated, because Gen. hunter, who was expected to meet him at Gordonsville, had taken a different direction, leaving more foes on Sheridan's hands than lie was able satisfactorily to manage. His total loss, mainly in the last fight at Trevilian's, was 735, whereof some 300 were prisoners. He brought out 370 prisoners. The Rebel loss in killed and wounded was at least equal to ours, and included Gen. Rosser and Col. Custer, wounded, and Col. McAllister, killed.

Gen. Grant now decided to pass the Chickahominy far to Lee's right, and thence move across the James to attack Richmond from the south. It was a bold resolve, especially as the authorities at Washington had a settled and reasonable repugnance to a movement which seemed to place the Federal City at the mercy of Lee. Taking up the rails from the Chickahominy to White House, and shipping them around for use south of the James, Smith's corps was likewise embarked2 and returned to Butler; while the Army of the Potomac was put in motion3 for the passage of the James: Wilson's cavalry, in advance, crossing the Chickahominy at Long bridge, followed by Warren's corps; which was passed at Long bridge by Hancock's, which struck the James at Wilcox's wharf, between Charles City C. H. and Westover. Wright and Burnside, crossing the Chickahominy at Jones's bridge, moved thence to Charles City C. H.; our trains, for safety, taking roads still farther to the east. The enemy made some attempts at annoying our right flank during the march, but to no purpose. Pontoons and ferry-boats being at hand, the passage was promptly and safely made;4 and very soon our guns were thundering at the southern approaches to the Rebel capital.

This is not a military history, and its author makes no shadow of pretension to other military knowledge, than that which is necessarily gained by all students of history; while no one who carefully reads this volume will accuse him of partiality or special admiration for Gen. Grant. Yet the criticisms which have been leveled at that commander's advance to Richmond seem so unjust as to demand exposure.

“ Why not embark his army at once for City Point?” has been triumphantly asked, “and establish it there at a cost of a few hundred men, instead of fifty or sixty thousand?” The question not only ignores the Rebel losses in the course of this movement — losses which were at least as large in proportion to their resources as ours — but ignores also the obvious fact that Lee's army around Richmond, hard pressed by a superior force, was no peril to Washington and the loyal States; whereas, to leave it on the Rapidan and take ship for the James was either to make the enemy a present of our capital, with

1 June 12.

2 June 12-13.

3 June 12.

4 June 14-15.

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