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[508] and exercised his judgment. His advisers, Stanton and Halleck, dominated by jealousy and hatred of McClellan, had united to destroy him, and during the second battle of Manassas had left him at Alexandria, within hearing of Lee's guns, his troops ordered to Pope, and himself without even the troop of cavalry, his customary escort.

Lee disappeared from the front of Washington on the 3d of September. That he bad fallen back into Virginia was incredible. That he was marching up the south bank of the Potomac was entirely probable. Whither was he going? What were his intentions? Would he cross above Washington, and with his army of 40,000 veterans capture the disorganized mass of 160,000 men there cowering under the heavy guns of the engineers' forts, expel the Federal officials from Washington, plant the battle flag of the Confederacy on the capitol of the United States, conquer an acknowledgement and recognition by the Powers, and achieve the independence of the South? Or would he cross the Blue Ridge, pass the Potomac beyond that barrier of mountains, and hold their defiles, while reinforcements poured down the Valley of the Shenandoah, and his victorious columns swept through Pennsylvania, and laid Philadelphia under contribution, and thus transfer the seat of war to Union territory and conquer a peace there? These were the terrible possibilities of the hour to the Union chiefs.

On the 1st of September the President sought an interview with General McClellan, who was then absolutely without a command, and told him that he had reason to believe that the Army of the Potomac was not cheerfully cooperating with and supporting General Pope; that ‘he had always been a friend of mine,’ says McClellan in his report, ‘and asked him as a special favor to use his influence in correcting this state of things; to telegraph Fitz John Porter or some other of his friends, and try to do away with any feeling that might exist; that he could rectify the evil, and that no one else could.’

This picture of the Commander-in-Chief of the armies of a great nation, interceding with his subordinate, whom he had permitted to be disgraced within the preceding week, to use his personal influence to persuade soldiers to do their duty, is certainly an interesting one. It proves that they knew and feared McClellan's power.

On the next day, September 2d, Mr. Lincoln verbally directed McClellan to take command of the army.

He proceeded at once with extraordinary energy to re-organize it. He constituted his right wing, under command of Major-General

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