On the 26th of September, he said to Sherman
‘I will give them another shake here before the end of the week;’ and the next day he sent word to Sheridan
: ‘No troops have passed through Richmond
to reinforce Early
. . . I shall make a break here on the 29th.’
Like all his undertakings, however, this one was designed to be more than co-operative.
's idea of a demonstration always was that it might be converted into an absolute success; and he made his preparations and issued his orders so that the movement he now contemplated should be susceptible of being carried, if necessary, to the inside of Richmond
The operation resembled in many respects his previous manoeuvres on the James
was directed to hold Bermuda Hundred
with artillery and some new regiments which had just arrived, so that the entire Tenth and Eighteenth corps might be available.
The troops were to cross the river by night and be ready on the morning of the 29th, to start from Deep Bottom
and the Aiken House
, and assault the enemy's lines.
‘The object of the movement,’ said Grant
, ‘is to surprise and capture Richmond
, if possible.
This cannot be done if time is given to the enemy to move forces to the north side of the river. . . Should the outer line be broken, the troops will push for Richmond
with all promptness. . . It is known that the enemy has entrenched positions back of the river, between Deep Bottom
, such as Chapin's Farm, which are garrisoned.
If these can be captured in passing, they should be held.’
Then, with his usual determination, he added: ‘Should you succeed in getting to Richmond