His first despatch was to General Halleck, the general-in-chief at Washington, and read: Have just arrived; I will write to-morrow.
Please approve order placing Sherman in command of Department of the Tennessee, with headquarters in the field.
He had scarcely begun to exercise the authority conferred upon him by his new promotion when his mind turned to securing advancement for Sherman, who had been his second in command in the Army of the Tennessee.
It was more than an hour later when he retired to bed in an adjoining room to get a much-needed rest.
As he arose and walked across the floor his lameness was very perceptible.
Before the company depart to me after a time, he said, Perhaps you might like to read what I am sending.
I thanked him, and in looking over the despatches I found that he was ordering up Sherman's entire force from Corinth to within supporting distance, and was informing Halleck of the dispositions decided upon for the opening of a line of supplies, and a
ghting it, when General Grant offered him his flint and steel, which overcame the difficulty.
The general always carried in the field a small silver tinder-box, in which there was a flint and steel with which to strike a spark, and a coil of fuse which was easily ignited by the spark and not affected by the wind.
The French would call it a briquet. While the two generals were talking, and a number of staff-officers sitting by listening, telegrams were received from Washington saying that Sherman had advanced in Georgia, Butler had ascended the James River, and Sigel's forces were moving down the valley of Virginia.
These advances were in obedience to General Grant's previous orders.
He said: I don't expect much from Sigel's movement; it is made principally for the purpose of preventing the enemy in his front from withdrawing troops to reinforce Lee's army.
To use an expression of Mr. Lincoln's, employed in my last conversation with him, when I was speaking of this general policy
, I am heartily tired of hearing about what Lee is going to do. Some of you always seem to think he is suddenly going to turn a double somersault, and land in our rear and on both of our flanks at the same time.
Go back to your command, and try to think what we are going to do ourselves, instead of what Lee is going to do.
The officer retired rather crestfallen, and without saying a word in reply.
This recalls a very pertinent criticism regarding his chief once made in my presence by General Sherman.
He said: Grant always seemed pretty certain to win when he went into a fight with anything like equal numbers.
I believe the chief reason why he was more successful than others was that while they were thinking so much about what the enemy was going to do, Grant was thinking all the time about what he was going to do himself.
Hancock came to headquarters about 8 P. M., and had a conference with the general-in-chief and General Meade.
He had had a very busy day on his front, and w
utler had reached the junction of the James and Appomattox rivers the night of the 5th, had surprised the enemy, and successfully disembarked his troops, and that Sherman was moving out against Johnston in Georgia, and expected that a battle would be fought on the 7th.
All preparations for the night march had now been completed throw the Union army between him and Richmond.
At noon a package of despatches from Washington reached headquarters, and were eagerly read.
They announced that Sherman's columns were moving successfully in northwestern Georgia, that Resaca was threatened, and that Joe Johnston was steadily retreating.
A report from Butler, datee up the Shenandoah Valley and try to connect with Crook.
General Grant did not express any particular gratification regarding these reports, except the one from Sherman, and in fact made very few comments upon them.
Hancock had crossed the Po, and was now threatening Lee's left.
On the morning of the 10th Hancock found the e
se services had contributed conspicuously to the victory.
He wrote a communication to the Secretary of War, in which he urged the following promotions: Meade and Sherman to be major-generals, and Hancock a brigadier-general, in the regular army; Wright and Gibbon to be major-generals of volunteers; and Carroll, Upton, and McCandlon the field, but this promotion had to be confirmed at Washington.
He said in his letter: General Meade has more than met my most sanguine expectations.
He and Sherman are the fittest officers for large commands I have come in contact with.
An animated discussion took place at headquarters that day regarding General Meade's somsupplies in West Virginia.
Butler reported that he had captured some works near Drewry's Bluff, on the James River.
The next day, the 16th, came a despatch from Sherman saying that he had compelled Johnston to evacuate Dalton and was pursuing him closely.
Sheridan reported that he had destroyed a portion of the Virginia Central
through General Grant what news he had from that quarter.
The general said, Sherman is advancing upon Rome, and ought to have reached that place by this time.
Th who proved to be the mother-in-law of the younger one, said very sharply: General Sherman will never capture that place.
I know all about that country, and you have n't an army that will ever take it. We all know very well that Sherman is making no headway against General Johnston's army.
We could see that she was entertainnce of the true progress of the war. General Grant replied in a quiet way: General Sherman is certainly advancing rapidly in that direction; and while I do not wish n a courier rode up with despatches from Washington containing a telegram from Sherman.
General Grant glanced over it, and then read it to the staff.
It announced that Sherman had just captured Rome.
The ladies had caught the purport of the communication, although it was not intended that they should hear it. The wife burst i
he enemy would turn him, and if he should weaken his lines to make a reserve they would be broken. This is a confirmation of the fact that Grant had succeeded in compelling Lee to stretch out his line almost to the breaking-point, and a proof that if our attacking columns had penetrated it, Lee would have been found without reserves, and( the damage inflicted upon him would have been irreparable.
There were critics who were severe in their condemnation of what Grant called hammering and Sherman called pounding ; but they were found principally among the stay-at-homes, and especially the men who sympathized with the enemy.
A soldier said one night, when reading by a camp-fire an account of a call issued by a disloyal newspaper at home for a public meeting to protest against the continued bloodshed in this campaign: Who's shedding this blood, anyhow?
They better wait till we fellows down here at the front hollo, Enough!
The soldiers were as anxious as their commander to fight th
We learned something at Shiloh about the way in which the reports of losses are sometimes exaggerated in battle.
At the close of the first day's fight Sherman met a colonel of one of his regiments with only about a hundred of his soldiers in ranks, and said to him, Why, where are your men?
The colonel cast his eyes sa wiped a tear from his cheek, and replied in a whimpering voice: We went in eight hundred strong, and that's all that's left of us.
You don't tell me!
exclaimed Sherman, beginning to be deeply affected by the fearful result of the carnage.
Yes, said the colonel; the rebs appeared to have a special spite against us.
Sherman passSherman passed along some hours afterward, when the commissary was issuing rations, and found that the colonel's men were returning on the run from under the bank of the river, where they had taken shelter from the firing; and in a few minutes nearly all of the lost seven hundred had rejoined, and were boiling coffee and eating a hearty meal w
Grant as a writer
Grant Devotes attention to Sherman
Grant's treatment of his Generals
Grant's etach some of his forces and send them against Sherman.
Sherman is at a long distance from his baseent to Early or to Johnston, who was opposing Sherman; but the rumor was soon found to be groundlesgiving constant attention to the movements of Sherman.
That officer had been repulsed in making hie Chattahoochee River on July 4.
On the 17th Sherman crossed that river and drove the enemy into h defenses about Atlanta.
It now looked as if Sherman would be forced to a siege of that place; andere would be vigorous movements made to break Sherman's communications.
In a despatch to Halleck Gcy, and in case the enemy felt convinced that Sherman was so far from his base of supplies that he al Hood put in command of the army opposed to Sherman.
General Grant said when he received this innessee.
His death will be a terrible loss to Sherman, for I know that he will feel it as keenly as[5 more...]
sending any forces to Hood to be used against Sherman.
Mrs. Grant had come East with the childrthe campaign in Georgia, a despatch came from Sherman announcing the capture of Atlanta, which had minutes, and uttering many words in praise of Sherman, the general wrote the following reply: I havg to the fullest extent.
Grant then wrote to Sherman: I feel that you have accomplished the most gbe opened with the south coast.
On August 13 Sherman communicated with Grant about the practicabilsh cigar, and began a conversation by saying: Sherman and I have exchanged ideas regarding his nextow my views thoroughly, and can answer any of Sherman's questions as to what I think in reference table by daylight.
Being anxious to reach General Sherman with all despatch, I started forward that
Upon reaching Atlanta, I went at once to General Sherman's headquarters.
My mind was naturally wrand nearly choke with merriment.
That day Sherman wrote to Grant: I have the honor to acknowled[17 more...]