previous next
[63] the war, proves that the Confederacy was too weak for offensive warfare, and is very strong evidence in favor of the course against which Southern writers have declaimed vehemently.

The authors of Alfriend's “Life of Jefferson Davis” seem to regard this tone of the Southern press as evidence of Southern opinion on this question, and claim that “Mr. Davis was far from approving the inaction which followed Manassas. He confidently expected a different use of the victory.... Indeed, before leaving Manassas, President Davis favored the most vigorous pursuit practicable.... The evidences of disorganization upon which General Johnston dwells with such force and emphasis were indeed palpable, but Mr. Davis confidently believed that an efficient pursuit might be made by such commands as were in comparatively good condition. Such were his impressions then; and that he contemplated immediate activity, as the sequel of Manassas, is a matter of indisputable record” (pp. 812-314).

These assertions are accompanied by no proofs, by no orders, nor even suggestions to the commander of the army by the President while he was at Manassas Junction, nor correspondence on the subject after his return to Richmond. The author cannot assume for him, as he does for Jackson, that “his sense of official propriety sealed his lips.” He came to the army as President — to give instructions-and, if necessary, orders in such a crisis.

If he had been “far from approving the inaction that followed Manassas,” he would have required action.

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)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Manassas, Va. (Virginia, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

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.
Jefferson Davis (4)
A. S. Johnston (1)
T. J. Jackson (1)
Alfriend (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: