errors of judgment in the Gettysburg Campaign
, and that these contributed not a little to the Confederate
Unfortunately, these recent publications of Col. Mosby
are of such a character that it is necessary to reopen this painful subject, and to speak as plainly as that writer has done.
This is the more necessary because his argument is so plausible, and is stated with so much dialectical skill, that only the very careful reader is likely to detect its fallacies.
first impeaches the accuracy of both of Gen. Lee
's Reports of the Battle of Gettysburg
(of July 31st, 1863, and January, 1864), in several important statements made therein, viz.: 1.
That Gen. Lee
was in ignorance of Hooker
's movements until the night of June 28th, 1863, when Gen. Longstreet
's scout reported his army approaching South Mountain
That Gen. Lee
then, and therefore, changed his plan and ordered his army to concentrate east of South Mountain
That it had been Lee
's intention to concentrate at Harrisburg
and that he ordered Hill
to that place after reaching Chambersburg
That ‘the absence of the Cavalry rendered it impossible to obtain accurate information’ of the movements and position of the Federal Army
This serious impeachment of Gen. Lee
's accuracy in regard to the particulars of his own campaign, is largely based on a letter taken from Gen. Lee
's Official Letter Book, and dated at Chambersburg
, June 28th, 7:30 A. M., in which Gen. Lee
says to Gen. Ewell
‘I wrote you last night
stating that Gen. Hooker
was reported to have crossed the Potomac
and is advancing by way of Middletown
, the head of his column being at that point in Frederick county
I directed you in my letter to move your forces to this point.’
declares that this letter refutes ‘every word’ of the statements of Gen. Longstreet
, Col. Marshall
, Gen. Long
, Col. Waiter Taylor
, Gen. Fitz Lee
and Gen. Lee
's own report in regard to the compaign in the particulars above named.
He further says that Gen. Well
's and Gen. Early
's reports show that the movement against Harrisburg
was arrested on June 27th, and thus agree with the statements of the letter of June 28th, which he quotes.