the hour of conflict ‘took counsel of his fears’—counselors that never make a successful soldier.
These, as the sequence of events revealed, constantly in imagination, doubled the number of his foes and helped the success of their strategic movements.
's plan of campaign was to hold back Lee
's widely-scattered forces by the armies of observation that his numbers permitted him to place before Johnson
, while he landed his great army for active invasion on the peninsula, and, brushing aside Magruder
, and Huger
, pushed rapidly forward to capture Richmond
could there concentrate men enough to successfully impede his progress to victory.
With the sea power at hand to supply the wants of his army, there were abundant reasons why he should succeed.
, the acknowledged first soldier of the old Federal army, who had been tendered by Lincoln
and urged to accept the command of the Union
army the very day before he resigned his commission and offered his services to Virginia
, his native State and that of his ancestors, had a most serious and difficult problem to solve, when, on the memorable 13th of March, before referred to, he assumed command of the Confederate armies in the field and ‘sat down to count the cost’ of the imminent conflict that, in Virginia
, he must at once become the leader of on the Confederate
He knew then, or soon thereafter, as he always did, the numbers and intentions of his adversary; he also knew, as few men of the South
did, or realized, the great disparity of the contending nations in men and in resources.
The soldiers at his command were, comparatively, few in numbers; they were also widely scattered; some a hundred miles or more, as the crow flies, to the southeast from his headquarters at Richmond
; others 175 miles to the northwest, and others from 75 to 100 miles to the north and northeast, and with but limited means of transportation at his call should he desire to concentrate them.
More than this, he knew that in a few days the period of the enlistment of most of these men, which had been but for a year, would expire, and no man could tell what they would do now that the stern experiences of war, in camp and field, had dulled the edge of their patriotic fervor.
Even if nearly all re-enlisted, he realized that they were poorly clad, badly equipped, ill fed, and, to all human appearances, even leaving out the