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β€˜ [386] not hesitate in making any changes in commanders you think necessary.’ He always held that a general, like a workman, should choose his tools; and, even if the superior was mistaken in his judgment, he must be allowed to relieve a subaltern with whom he was dissatisfied. The military service, indeed, does not pretend to spare, or hardly to consider, the feelings of individuals; it is the success of the cause only which it can regard; and soldiers, who constantly risk their lives, must expect sometimes to put even their reputations in jeopardy.

On the 25th, Grant said to Halleck: β€˜It is well enough to occupy Georgetown until Sherman is in communication with the sea-coast. It is barely possible, though not probable, he may require supplies from Georgetown. I expect nothing of the kind, however.’

Nothing was more remarkable during these entire operations than the manner in which, while absolutely ignorant of Sherman's actual movements, obtaining his only information for more than a month through rebel sources, Grant still endeavored to support his great lieutenant, and co-operate with the column of whose position he was unaware. Schofield was now at Wilmington, Gillmore on the South Carolina coast, Stoneman was ordered to come in from Tennessee, and Sheridan had started from the Valley, all aiming to communicate with Sherman, to supply him, to aid him, to combine with him, if events allowed; moving from the most opposite directions into the rebel territory, yet no commander knowing exactly where his forces would strike the marching army he was in search of.

On the 26th of February, the general-in-chief enquired

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