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Edward Porter Alexander, Military memoirs of a Confederate: a critical narrative, Chapter 2: the battle of Bull Run (July, 1861) (search)
several batteries. We came to it about a year later, but meanwhile our batteries had been isolated and attached to infantry brigades. So they fought singly, and in such small units artillery can do little. On July 2, I arrived at Manassas, reported to Beauregard, was assigned to duty upon his staff, and ordered to install the system of signals for use in the coming battle. It was certain that a battle must be fought soon. Federal armies were being collected in West Virginia under McClellan; on the upper Potomac threatening Winchester, under Patterson; at Alexandria under McDowell; and, at Fortress Monroe, under Butler. These armies were mostly raw troops, but among them were the 75,000 three-months men, first called out in April, and they were now fairly well disciplined. Their terms of service would begin to expire soon after the middle of July, and it was sure that some use would sooner be made of them. For we were then less a military nation than ever before or since
Edward Porter Alexander, Military memoirs of a Confederate: a critical narrative, Chapter 3: fall and winter of 1861 (search)
Richmond ordnance Bureau. secret service. McClellan's secret service. military situation. a cos know our strength, remains a mystery. But McClellan had a bureau under Pinkerton to estimate forl handled either on a march or in action. McClellan, though unfit to command in battle, had no sal at their head, as was abundantly shown by McClellan's subsequent career, it is entirely possiblen. Stone on the Maryland shore. On Oct. 19, McClellan had sent out a strong reconnaissance toward scarcely extended half-way to Leesburg, but McClellan thought that it might alarm Evans and cause hreatening lodgment upon our right flank. McClellan's apparent apathy in this matter, taken in cns without a big army to hold them. So when McClellan proposed to make his next advance upon Richm at Manassas in his first battle. Second. McClellan set out from Fortress Monroe via the York Ri taken Blenker's division of 10,000 men from McClellan, and now, on April 4, he took also McDowell'[6 more...]
Edward Porter Alexander, Military memoirs of a Confederate: a critical narrative, Chapter 4: Yorktown and Williamsburg (search)
as that offered McDowell at Bull Run was here offered to McClellan, who could have rushed the position anywhere. He contentIt was just at this juncture, when a great success was in McClellan's grasp, had he had the audacity to risk something, that mond of all forces from Virginia to Georgia. With these McClellan's force should be attacked when it came near Richmond. conclusion to reach, only in view of the cautiousness of McClellan. Johnston had already begun sending some reenforcementas to be something better than that of 1861. Meanwhile McClellan was preparing for Yorktown a terrific bombardment by whicd Richardson's, were also to have been sent by water, and McClellan remained in Yorktown to see them loaded and despatched. us to get his troops ahead to meet the forces he expected McClellan to send by water to West Point. To hold the enemy in cting in the vicinity. It had been a special feature of McClellan's strategy that on our retreat from Yorktown we should be
Edward Porter Alexander, Military memoirs of a Confederate: a critical narrative, Chapter 5: Seven Pines or fair Oaks (search)
l's army, still at Fredericksburg with 31,000 men, had again been assigned to McClellan. He only awaited the arrival of Shields, marching to join him with 11,000 moe Richmond, it must be done before McDowell arrived. It was not likely that McClellan would himself seek battle when such a large reenforcement was near. Johnstono at once recognized that he must now attack before McDowell could unite with McClellan. The latter had moved so cautiously as to offer no favorable opportunity uof a respite, and an opportunity to consider as an alternative an attack upon McClellan's left. The strength of the position at Beaver Dam Creek made any direct attf affairs. He asked me what I thought it was proper to do. I answered that McClellan should be attacked on the other side of the Chickahominy before he matured his were given, he says, for the concentration of 23 of our 27 brigades against McClellan's left wing. Yet nowhere were ever over four brigades in action at one time.
Edward Porter Alexander, Military memoirs of a Confederate: a critical narrative, Chapter 6: Jackson's Valley campaign (search)
d to join McDowell at Fredericksburg, where the latter would await it before advancing to join McClellan before Richmond. This reduced Banks's force to about 10,000, and he had been withdrawn down t. Its great object was to break up McDowell's proposed march from Fredericksburg to reenforce McClellan in front of Richmond. This, it will be seen, was fully accomplished by the help of the folloetary of War, on account of the day. When it is remembered that the distance to unite with McClellan could have been easily covered within three marches, one is impressed with the influence of smcCall's, had been held at Fredericksburg, and, about June 6, it had been sent by water to join McClellan upon the Peninsula. On the 8th orders were sent for McDowell himself with Shields's and Ord'sy about Front Royal until June 20. This delay took away his last possible chance to reenforce McClellan before Lee took the offensive. Indeed, the movement to Fredericksburg, resumed about June 20,
Edward Porter Alexander, Military memoirs of a Confederate: a critical narrative, chapter 7 (search)
Ives predicts Lee's audacity. Lee's plan. McClellan's delay. Lee's opportunity. Lee's order. The chances of a successful campaign against McClellan had increased greatly when Johnston fell, wondeed, doing his utmost in each direction. McClellan seemed to have been subconsciously aware thae capture or destruction of the remainder of McClellan's army, during their retreat to the James Riosed intent to attack Mc-Clellan's flank. McClellan wired the story to Stanton, and also sent out it cut small figure among the rumors which McClellan was receiving from his detective bureau. He late and at Gaines Mill, three miles nearer McClellan's main army, thus losing the opportunity to 's force, and it was recognized at once that McClellan's army was in a very critical condition. He made in advance. The matter was decided in McClellan's mind during that night, though no orders wpare over the size of its task. Indeed, had McClellan reenforced Porter as he should have done, wi[6 more...]
Edward Porter Alexander, Military memoirs of a Confederate: a critical narrative, chapter 8 (search)
artially torn up, and to press directly upon McClellan's rear with his whole force. This comprisedability that Lee might be able to force upon McClellan the disadvantage of having to take the offen in superintendence of their execution. Had McClellan massed his whole force in column and advancerapevine bridge over the Chickahominy, which McClellan's forces had used in their retreat and destral force had crossed the White Oak Swamp and McClellan had accomplished one-half his retreat safelyhout a head. On the 29th, 30th, and July 1, McClellan, on each day, left his army without placing ir reasonable expectations, the criticism of McClellan would have been very severe. On the Confere passing many of the 5000 wagons composing McClellan's trains. No target is more attractive to a Fredericksburg on Sunday, and thus broke up McClellan's campaign, as has been told. (See p. 101.)day for both commanders, but especially for McClellan. With consummate skill he had crossed his v[2 more...]
Edward Porter Alexander, Military memoirs of a Confederate: a critical narrative, chapter 9 (search)
ties. Lee's report. Stuart shells a camp. McClellan writes. Stuart's report. attack abandoned.ical form and ample area, which would enable McClellan to arrange his 350 field guns, tier above tin of Malvern Hill and presumed to say, If Gen. McClellan is there in force, we had better let him aut necessity, led him to make the circuit of McClellan's army, June 11-15. The result was that McCMcClellan was prepared to change his base to the James as soon as he found Lee threatening his communiced the enemy to come over and occupy them. McClellan's 50,000 men would then have had the task ofthe effort so earnestly urged by Stuart, for McClellan would never have dared a counterstroke, had de in Holmes's division. For a week after McClellan had established himself at Westover, he neglunately for us, Lincoln and Halleck recalled McClellan and his army to Washington without ever realizing them; although McClellan had tried hard to impress them upon his superiors. Fortunately, too[1 more...]
Edward Porter Alexander, Military memoirs of a Confederate: a critical narrative, Chapter 10: Cedar Mountain (search)
, Heintzelman, and all the major-generals of McClellan's army. But Fremont protested, asked to be ice. Meanwhile, after the discomfiture of McClellan, Mr. Lincoln felt the want of a military adv been, at that time, a difficult operation. McClellan had 90,000 men available, for he could have alling his army. All of this time, however, McClellan was still representing to his government thal historian of the war, asserts that neither McClellan nor Halleck believed this preposterous storys as Lee and Jackson. Halleck had visited McClellan on the James soon after his arrival in Washi correspondence afterward for some weeks. McClellan ended with a strong appeal, pointing out thahealthy in the fall months, and that most of McClellan's leading generals favored the withdrawal of realized that the immediate danger was that McClellan should be reenforced and renew his campaign rference with the contemplated withdrawal of McClellan's force from the Peninsula. On Aug. 6, Po[10 more...]
Edward Porter Alexander, Military memoirs of a Confederate: a critical narrative, Chapter 11: second Manassas (search)
ply. Gen. Lee had arrived at Gordonsville early on Aug. 15, and taken command. On the 13th McClellan had abandoned his camp at Harrison's Landing and marched for Fortress Monroe. Lee now left at Gordonsville for an aggressive campaign against Pope. He now occupied interior lines between McClellan and Pope, and it behooved him to crush Pope before McClellan's forces could join him. Lee undeMcClellan's forces could join him. Lee understood this thoroughly, and Halleck and Pope understood it equally well; but Pope, perhaps inspired by his own boast that he was about to seek the adversary and beat him when he was found, and tempteseven days, he could bring Pope to battle upon open ground. For, already, two of the corps of McClellan's army, the 3d and the 5th, and with Reynolds's Pa. Reserves, in all 20,000 men, were within tere about to supersede Pope, and place Stevens in command of the now united armies of Pope and McClellan. He had graduated at the head of Halleck's class at West Point in 1839, and Halleck was well
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