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[256] the cause, and as a brigadier and division commander a hard fighter and successful officer. There is, however, a marked difference between a chief and subordinate commander, and Lee had never known him otherwise than as a subordinate. It is true that Lee was finally compelled to remove him, and we may presume it was his reluctance to wound that caused him to unwillingly take the step which soon became necessary. This forbearance was in keeping with Lee's general character, as known to those who served under him. It is so well expressed by Colonel W. H. Taylor of his staff, in his book entitled ‘Four Years with General Lee,’ that we can but quote from him. He says:

If it shall be the verdict of posterity that General Lee in any respect fell short of perfection as a military leader it may perhaps be claimed: First, that he was too careful of the personal feelings of his subordinate commanders, too fearful of wounding their pride, and too solicitous of their reputation. Probably it was this that caused him sometimes to continue in command those of whose personal fitness for their position he was not convinced, and often avowedly or tacitly assumed responsibility for mishaps clearly attributable to the inefficiency, neglect or carelessness of others.

Through the courtesy of the family of General Ramseur, I am placed in the possession of a personal letter from R. R. Hutchinson, an able and accomplished officer, who before the battle of Cedar Creek had long served as major and acting adjutant-general to the division. Major Hutchinson was with General Ramseur when he received his fatal wound, was captured while endeavoring to remove him from the field, and by his bedside during his last moments.

His account of the sad occasion is so vivid and touching that no apology is deemed due for introducing his letter in this monograph:

dear Madam: I do not know how to write to you; how to express my deep sympathy in your grievous affliction; but the Christian soldier who has gone before us to that other world has asked me to do it, and I must not shrink from the performance of this duty, however painful. I am writing by the side of him whose last thought was of you and his God, his country and his duty. He died this day at twenty-seven minutes past 10 o'clock A. M., and

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