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Strategic points.

Their value in the war between the States, 1861-1861, and how fiercely they were fought for.

In reasoning from cause to effect we must not conclude that accident was the reason why great battles were more than once fought over the same fields during the great civil war in this country.

Examining carefully for the cause, we arrive at the conclusion that such points must have had within them some special value, and an analysis of this, deducts the conclusion that these places were ‘Strategic Points.’

There are several objective points, in the Old Dominion, over whose bosom the pendulum of war oscillated for four cruel years, where the contending armies crashed, that had in them this strategic value, and the fact that battles were fought more than once on these fields proves that the armies did not collide upon them by accident. Gettysburg was a battle-field of accident. Had Stuart been in touch with Lee, and the Confederate commander furnished with the information the cavalry are supposed to acquire, it is now considered more than doubtful that this little Pennsylvania town would have assumed conspicuous prominence in American history.

But strategic points is the subject of this paper, and it will be best to treat them in the order of their dates.

Beauregard's selection of Bull Run as his line defence showed his wisdom as an engineer. His outposts extended from Leesburg, through Drainesville, Fairfax and Wolf Run Shoals, to Acquia creek, with reserves at Centreville. This was in the early summer of 1861.

McDowell was organizing the Grand Army around a splendid nucleus of regulars. This army was not for the defence of Washington solely, but also for aggressive purposes.

There was a supreme authority in the Federal States which became director general, which gave orders to commanders and moved armies. This power was public clamor, and all through the four

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J. E. B. Stuart (1)
J. C. S. McDowell (1)
Fitz Lee (1)
Fairfax (1)
G. T. Beauregard (1)
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