previous next
[162] Grant's own. It was he who was responsible for its success or failure; it was he who authorized it; it was he who must provide supplies for one army and reinforcements for the other; who must direct the movements all over the continent, of Canby and Foster and Rosecrans, as well as of Meade and Butler and Sheridan, so that all should contribute to the safety of the imperilled armies; it was he whose downfall was certain, if either campaign proved disastrous; it was he who, seated in his hut at City Point, balanced the armies, and put his troops first into one scale and then into the other, according as emergency required; it was he to whom the nation turned in its agony, knowing that it had committed its destinies into his hands, trusting him as men trust the master of a ship in a storm, as they trust an unknown power when they themselves are helpless—trying hard to hope, but full of anxiety and alarm.

And at no moment during the war was the crisis more tremendous, the responsibility more appalling. Success in both of the great operations now ordered would go far to terminate the rebellion, but failure in either appeared irreparable: the defeat of Thomas would open the entire region north of the Ohio to invasion, while the destruction of the splendid and gallant army of Sherman would shock and dishearten the country beyond measure. And there seemed imminent danger of each catastrophe. Hood was threatening and bold, and Thomas had not yet collected his forces; while the bare idea of an army plunging, as Sherman was about to do, into the interior of a hostile country, without base, or communications, or supplies,

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
City Point (Virginia, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
George H. Thomas (2)
William T. Sherman (2)
P. H. Sheridan (1)
Rosecrans (1)
Meade (1)
Hood (1)
Butler Grant (1)
Foster (1)
E. R. S. Canby (1)
Butler (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: