was alone; his most trusted subordinates besought him to change his plans, while his superiors were astounded at his temerity and strove to interfere.
Soldiers of reputation and civilians in high place condemned, in advance, a campaign that seemed to them as hopeless as it was unprecedented.
If he failed, the country would concur with the government and the generals.
knew all this, and appreciated his danger, but was as invulnerable to the apprehensions of ambition as to the entreaties of friendship, or the anxieties, even of patriotism.
That quiet confidence in himself which never forsook him, and which amounted indeed almost to a feeling of fate, was uninterrupted.
Having once determined in a matter that required irreversible decision, he never reversed, nor even misgave, but was steadily loyal to himself and his plans.
This absolute and implicit faith was, however, as far as possible from conceit or enthusiasm; it was simply a consciousness, or conviction, rather, which brought the very strength it believed in; which was itself strength, and which inspired others with a trust in him, because he was able thus to trust himself.
At midnight of the 3d, he turned his back on the Mississippi river
, and started for Hankinson
Directions were given at once, for the supply of the entire force with three days rations, and several days were spent in bringing Sherman
's corps across the river to Grand Gulf
, and preparing for the march.
Supplies had to be hauled sixty miles, from Milliken
's bend to Hard Times, and then ferried across the river and hauled eighteen miles further, to Hankinson
's ferry, or wherever else the army lay. Every hour