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[139] not up to the proposed standard. It must be remembered that this was during the first year of the war, into which the Confederacy entered without an army.

In another part of the paper it is stated that there was hope and expectation that, before the end of the winter, arms would be introduced into the country, and that then we could successfully invade that of the enemy; but this supply of arms, however abundant, could not furnish ‘seasoned soldiers,’ and the two propositions are, therefore, inconsistent. In one place it is written that ‘it was felt it might be better to run the risk of almost certain destruction fighting upon the other side of the Potomac, rather than see the gradual dying out and deterioration of this army during a winter,’ etc.; but when it was proposed to cross into Eastern Maryland on a steamer in our possession for a partial campaign, difficulties arose like the lion in the path of the sluggard, so that the proposition was postponed and never executed. In like manner the expedition into Westtern Virginia was projected and achieved by Gen. T. J. Jackson, who was not of this council.

We are not informed who it was that ‘ felt’ that stern desire and purpose dread to go forth at ‘the risk of almost certain destruction,’ but from the foregoing and other indications, including the decision of the conferees that twice the force available was necessary for the contemplated movement across the Potomac, it is to be inferred that elsewhere than among the three generals the described feeling must have existed. It is true that to some extent, quite short of the dire extremity of ‘destruction,’ a desire to cross the Potomac in 1861 was expressed by other officers, who thought the risk should be taken with the means then possessed. For instance, there were those who thought it feasible, by using the steamboat, then at the mouth of Aquia creek, to cross into Eastern Maryland, and, by a rapid movement, to perform a valuable service in that region; another example of daring and desire to use the power then available was the request, sent through Gen. W. N. Pendleton, of the artillery, by Brigadier-General T. J. Jackson, that his brigade should be detached and permitted to cross the Potomac and attack the enemy at his capital.

To return to the paper now under review: In one place it is

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