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 an aggregate of 155,224, or more than double the sickness in proportion in Lee's army than in Grant's. General Lee himself gives a vivid and sad picture of the suffering of his army at this time in a dispatch to the Secretary of War. Under date of 8th February, 1865, he says: ‘Yesterday, the most inclement day of the winter, the troops had to be maintained in line of battle, having been in the same condition two previous days and nights. I regret to be compelled to state that under these circumstances, heightened by the assaults and fire of the enemy, some of the men have been without meat for three days, and all are suffering from reduced rations and scant clothing, exposed to battle, cold and rain. Their physical strength, if their courage survives, must fail under this treatment. Our cavalry has to be dispersed for want of forage. Taking these facts, in connection with the paucity of numbers, you must not be surprised if calamity befalls us.’ About the same time he notified the War Department that ‘the cavalry and artillery are scattered for want of forage, and the amunition trains are absent in North Carolina and Virginia collecting provisions,’ and adds, ‘you see to what straits we are reduced, but I trust to work out.’ In a secret session of the Confederate Congress about that time the condition of the Confederate commissariat was given as follows: (1) There was not enough meat in the Southern Confederacy for the armies it had in the field; (2) there was not in Virginia either meat or bread enough for the armies within her limits; (3) the supply of bread for those armies to be obtained from other places depended absolutely upon keeping open the railroad connections to the South; (4) the meat must be obtained from abroad through seaport towns; (5) the transportation was not now adequate, from whatever cause, to meet the necessary demands of the service; (6) the supply of fresh meat to General Lee's army was precarious, and if the army fell back from Richmond and Petersburg, there was every probability that it would cease altogether. It might have been added that the track and rolling-stock of the railroads entering Richmond and Petersburg and their connections were so worn that they could hardly do more than haul from day to day the necessary supplies of food and military stores to keep Lee's army in readiness for the field, much less supply the wants of the
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