previous next

[60] surprise the enemy. But a division, which should have been in position at three o'clock in the morning, or early dawn, was detained until three in the afternoon by the mistakes of the guide. The enemy thus became informed of the movement, and no surprise could be effected. General Beauregard commenced the removal of his sick, preparatory to an evacuation, on May 26th; on the next day arrangements for falling back were made, and the work completed on the 29th. So complete was the evacuation that not only was the army successfully withdrawn, but also every piece of ordnance, only a quantity of damaged ammunition being left behind. The retreat was continued to Tupelo, without any serious conflict with the enemy; during the retreat seven locomotives were reported to be lost by the burning of a bridge, however, and a number of cars, most of which were loaded with stores, were ordered to be burned.

On June 14th orders were sent to General Bragg, from Richmond, to proceed to Jackson, Mississippi, and temporarily to assume command of the department then under command of General Lovell. The order concluded as follows:

After General Magruder joins, your further services there may be dispensed with. The necessity is urgent and absolute.


On application to General Beauregard for the necessary order, he replied:

You can not possibly go. My health does not permit me to remain in charge alone here. This evening my two physicians were insisting that I should go away for one or two weeks, furnishing me with another certificate for that purpose, and I had concluded to go—intending to see you to-morrow on the subject, and leave you in command.

The certificate of the physicians was as follows:

headquarters, Western Department, Tupelo, June 14, 1862.
We certify that, after attendance on General Beauregard for the past four months, and treatment of his case, in our professional opinion he is incapacitated physically for the arduous duties of his present command, and we urgently recommend rest and recreation.

R. L. Brodie, Surgeon, P. A. C. S. Sam Choppin, Surgeon, P. A. C. S.

These facts were telegraphed to me at once by General Bragg. Soon after, I sent a second dispatch to him, renewing the order and expressing my surprise that he should have hesitated to obey, when the original order stated ‘the necessity is urgent and absolute.’ Before this second

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.
Tupelo (Mississippi, United States) (2)
Jackson (Mississippi, 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.
P. G. T. Beauregard (3)
Braxton Bragg (2)
A. C. S. Sam (1)
John B. Magruder (1)
M. Lovell (1)
Jefferson Davis (1)
Sam Choppin (1)
R. L. Brodie (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.
June 14th, 1862 AD (1)
June 14th (1)
May 26th (1)
29th (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: