previous next

[549] in the depots for want of time to distribute them. Cavalry horses were still wanting. Most of the new regiments which were to be brigaded with the old organizations had not arrived. But a regard for higher orders did not admit of any further delay in taking the field. The waters of the Potomac having risen, Mc-Clellan had nothing more to fear for the safety of Maryland, and he intended to follow the eastern slope of the Blue Ridge, so as to menace the communications of his adversary while covering the capital, and receiving the reinforcements which had been promised him in case he should adopt this plan. It was the one that Mr. Lincoln had recommended to him three weeks before, so that it was approved at the White House without any difficulty.

On the 25th of October a bridge of boats was thrown across the Potomac at Berlin. Higher up, at Harper's Ferry, there were two others, one over the Potomac, the other over the Shenandoah. The crossing of the river began the day following. The organization of the army was the same as at the battle of Antietam, but the bullets of the enemy had caused many changes in the personnel of the generals. Burnside was still in command of the First and Ninth corps; Reynolds had superseded Hooker, wounded, and Wilcox occupied the post in which Reno had met his death. The Second and Twelfth, under the orders of Sumner, had seen their two commanders, Richardson and Mansfield, fall on the borders of Antietam; they had been replaced by Couch and Slocum. The Fifth and Sixth corps, each reinforced by a new division, had remained under the orders of Franklin and Porter, and two divisions, commanded by Stoneman and Whipple, were not incorporated into any army corps. The movable portion of the garrison of Washington was composed of the two corps of Heintzelman and Siegel, with a division of cavalry commanded by Bayard.

McClellan left the Twelfth corps on the borders of the Potomac; Slocum, who commanded it, was ordered to occupy Harper's Ferry and its environs with the largest portion of that corps, about ten thousand men. Morrell, with detachments drawn from various points, forming three brigades of infantry and one of cavalry, was charged to guard the Upper Potomac from Cumberland to the mouth of the Antietam.

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.
Harper's Ferry (West Virginia, United States) (2)
Maryland (Maryland, 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.
Slocum (2)
Wilcox (1)
Whipple (1)
Sumner (1)
Stoneman (1)
Siegel (1)
Richardson (1)
Reynolds (1)
Reno (1)
Fitzjohn Porter (1)
Morrell (1)
McClellan (1)
Mansfield (1)
Lincoln (1)
Hooker (1)
Heintzelman (1)
Franklin (1)
Couch (1)
Burnside (1)
Bayard (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
October 25th (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: