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[198] Gordonsville and Fredericksburg, and Huger's three brigades from Petersburg. General Webb absurdly estimates Branch's and Anderson's brigades at 12,000 (p. 86). They actually numbered possibly as many as 5,500. (See Branch's order, Southern Historical papers, vol. VIII, page 103, which shows his strength did not exceed 3,000, and Taylor's Four Years with General Lee, page 50, where Anderson's strength is given at from 2,000 to 2,300 in the seven days battles.) Huger's brigades may have numbered 6,000 at this time. Thus the Confederates were able to concentrate about 65,000 men to oppose the 150,000 which were about to unite against them.

It would be hard to find a finer illustration of the adage, that “fortune favors the brave” than occurred at this juncture. Stonewall Jackson, after defeating Fremont's advance in the mountains of West Virginia, and while he was supposed to be one hundred and fifty miles away, suddenly surprised Banks at Front Royal and Winchester, and driving him in confusion and route across the Potomac, advanced to Harper's Ferry. Jackson and his 16,000 men created a marvelous panic at Washington and throughout the North, the accounts of which at this day read like the pages of a romance. The Federal Capitol was believed to be in danger, 300,000 men were called for by the President, the militia of whole States were ordered out, and the proclamations of Governors as far away as Ohio and Massachusetts would not have seemed tame to the Romans after Cannae. The most important result of Jackson's dash was the stoppage of McDowell, who had already begun the movement that in three days would have united him with McClellan. A large part of McDowell's army was ordered back after Jackson, and the remainder was held for the time at Fredericksburg.

Relieved by Jackson's success of the fear of McDowell's forces from the North, Johnston, who had determined to attack McClellan before the junction, if possible, postponed his attack until the advance of a part of the latter's army on the south side of the Chickahominy should give the Confederates a chance of concentrating against one of the Federal wings. Meantime General Fitz John Porter gained an advantage which had no important results, at Hanover Court-house, where, with 12,000 men he attacked and defeated Branch with 4,000. Here again General Webb greatly exaggerates the Confederate force. (P. 96--see Branch's order above referred to.)

At the last of May Johnston thought the time to strike had come. Two of McClellan's corps lay on the south side of the Chickahominy along the Williamsburg road, their advance having been pushed as far as Seven Pines. The remainder of the Federal army was on the north

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