, and in December that commander was relieved, while Smith
reported to Thomas
All these operations were almost independent of Grant
He sent a few orders, and forwarded troops when he could spare them; but it was impossible and undesirable to direct in detail operations so far away, and so disconnected with the great campaigns east of the Mississippi
, or indeed with the principal strategic objects of the war. When, however, a positive movement was ordered by Grant
from the Gulf of Mexico
, in co-operation with his other plans and other armies, he at once assumed different relations with Canby
, and gave him directions of that peculiar and personal character which distinguished his instructions to his principal commanders.
General W. F. Smith
was at this time serving, but not with troops, in the Department of the Gulf, and an effort was made to give him command of a corps; but on the 20th of February, Grant
wrote: ‘It will not do for Canby
to risk Smith
with any military command whatever.
The moment Canby
should differ with him in judgment as to what is to be done, and he would be obliged to differ or yield to him entirely, he would get no further service out of him, but, on the contrary, he would be a clog.
continue on the same duty he has been detailed for.’
was never willing to try again a subordinate whom he had once definitely relieved.
He bore with a man whose characteristics would have been intolerable to some superiors, and put up with even ill-success or insubordination sometimes too long; but if once he determined to free himself from