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[451] not only without the President's orders, but without his knowledge. The line of the Chickahominy was not taken, nor would the President's order have compelled me to take it; for, by offering our right flank to the enemy, it would have put us at his mercy.

We did not “fall back to Richmond” because McClellan “came up,” but took that position in expectation of his transferring 1 his base to James River. We crossed the Chickahominy on the 15th--he not until the 22d.

I did not add to the fortifications of Richmond, because they were sufficient-planned and constructed by the ablest engineer in the Confederacy, Colonel Andrew Tallcott.

4. McClellan placed not a division, but two corps of his army, “on our side of the Chickahominy.” We attacked them, and were successful until night interrupted the action. That the combat was successful is evidence that the dispositions for it were not very faulty. “Tangible results” were not secured, because the action was not continued2 next day, as it would have been, but for my desperate wound. In Alfriend's3 “Life of Jefferson Davis,” there is an elaborate attempt to show that Mr. Davis took an active part in the battle. If so, it could have been in no secondary one, but only as commander. This would make him responsible for the want of results.

General Lee had not acquired the confidence of the army and people, then. His great fame was acquired subsequently, at the head of that army. Mr. Davis can claim no merit for the selection, for

1 See pages 127, 128.

2 See page 138.

3 See page 408.

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