[2] district, and his headquarters were established within musket-shot of Fort Loudoun. He had been made Major General on October 7 for his services at the first battle of Manassas, and was now assigned to this important command because of the expectations formed of his capacity, and because of his acquaintance with the country. His district embraced the territory bounded north by the Potomac, east by the Blue Ridge, and west by the Alleghanies. Born and reared in Western Virginia, and filled with a patriot's devotion to the land of his birth, he had manifested a strong desire to be employed in the operations in that region, and had cherished the ambition of freeing his former home from hostile domination. The Confederates, during the summer, had in that region been unsuccessful. General Robert Garnett had been forced to retreat by General McClellan, and had then met defeat and death at Corrick's Ford on Cheat river, July 13th. This gave the Federals control of the greater part of Virginia west of the Alleghanies, and the subsequent efforts of Generals Floyd and Wise, and still later of General Lee, availed only to prevent further encroachments of the enemy — not to regain the lost territory.

When, therefore, General Jackson assumed command of the Valley of Virginia, the enemy had possession of all the State north of the Great Kanawha and west of the Alleghanies, and had pushed their outposts into that mountain region itself, and in some cases eastward of the main range. Thus, General Kelly had captured Romney, the county seat of Hampshire, forty miles west of Winchester, and now occupied it with a force of 5,000 men.1 This movement gave the Federals control of the fertile valley of the south branch of the Potomac. Another, though much smaller force, occupied Bath, the county seat of Morgan, forty miles due north of Winchester, while the north bank of the Potomac was everywhere guarded by Union troops. The Baltimore and Ohio railroad was open and available for the supply of the Federal troops from Baltimore to Harper's Ferry, and again from a point opposite Hancock westward. The section of this road of about forty miles from Harper's Ferry to Hancock, lying for the most part some distance within the Virginia border, had been interrupted and rendered useless by the Confederates, but this gap was now supplied by the Chesapeake and Ohio canal, which was open all the way from Cumberland, Maryland, to Georgetown in the District of Columbia.

1 Rosecrans' testimony before “Committee on the conduct of the war,” volume III, 1865, page 14.

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 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.
Henry A. Wise (1)
Rosecrans (1)
John T. Morgan (1)
Henry B. McClellan (1)
Fitzhugh Lee (1)
D. C. Kelly (1)
T. J. Jackson (1)
W. S. Hancock (1)
Robert Garnett (1)
Floyd (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
1865 AD (1)
October 7th (1)
July 13th (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: