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[358] great chances of success; but with raw troops panics and unforeseen accidents were always to be apprehended, and might jeopardize all the results already obtained. Pennsylvania protected, Washington freed from danger, and the invasion definitely repulsed, the Union general was not willing to run this risk. His duty as a commander and a citizen required him thenceforth to strike only when certain of success; for as he himself said, ‘one battle lost, and almost all would have been lost.’ The army of the Potomac was greatly reduced, not only by the absence of soldiers killed, wounded or captured, but especially by the disorganization of the corps which had suffered most in battle. Thus, Hooker's, which, out of fourteen thousand eight hundred and fifty-six men, had two thousand six hundred and nineteen disabled, only numbered on the morning of the 18th six thousand seven hundred and twenty-nine ready for action. Important reinforcements were, moreover, expected, which had to be waited for. The two divisions of Couch and Humphreys joined the army in the course of the morning. As soon as they made their appearance, McClellan, feeling henceforth certain of success, gave orders for attacking the Confederates on the morning of the 19th, in the positions they had occupied since the battle.

His prudent adversary, however, did not wait for him. He also had received a reinforcement during the day of the 18th, consisting of the last division, which had been left at Harper's Ferry; these fresh troops, however, did not compensate him sufficiently for his losses. The campaign on the left bank of the Potomac was ended, and could not be renewed. From that moment it was useless to persist in maintaining himself in the angle between this river and the Antietam, where so much blood had already been shed to no purpose for the Confederate cause. This would have been to expose himself without object to an attack which might degenerate into a disaster. During the night of the 18th-19th the whole of Lee's army, taking advantage of the low water in the Potomac, crossed silently into Virginia. It left behind in Maryland, besides a large number of its best soldiers killed or wounded, many disappointed hopes and dispelled illusions. The Confederates, however, left this region, which had proved so fatal to them, like gallant soldiers, leaving

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