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Both positions were naturally very strong. The Confederate force being greatly inferior to that of the Federals, and General Rosecrans having assumed the offensive, General Lee naturally expected to be attacked before Loring could come up; he, therefore, actively employed his skill as an engineer in adding to the natural strength of his position. Rosecrans, discovering the formidable preparations of the Confederates, prudently forebore attacking them. The arrival of General Loring, on the 9th, placed General Lee's force almost on an equality with that of the Federals. The force of General Lee now amounted to about fifteen thousand men. The troops were in fine spirits, and anxious to be led to the attack; but the General, ever mindful of the safety of his men, restrained their ardor. On one occasion, when several of the commanders were urging an attack, he remarked: I know, gentlemen, you could carry the enemy's lines; but we cannot spare the brave men who would lose their liv
A. L. Long, Chief of Artillery; Captain Corley, Chief Quartermaster; Captain Cole, Chief Commissary; Lieutenant Matthews, Aide-de-camp, and Colonel Starks, volunteer Aide-de-camp; and, as the country was full of enthusiasm on account of the recent victory at Manassas, he was about to enter upon his new field of operations under the most favorable auspices. General Loring, accompanied by his staff, left Richmond on the 22d of July, the day after the battle and victory of Manassas. On the 24th he arrived at Monterey, a small village about sixty miles west of Staunton; there he found Jackson, who informed him that on arriving at the Greenbrier river he had found Cheat Mountain Pass so strongly occupied by Federals that he deemed it inadvisable to attempt to carry it by a direct attack. So he retired, leaving Colonel Edward Johnston, with the Twelfth Georgia Regiment and Anderson's Battery to occupy the Alleghany Mountain Pass, and posting Rust's Arkansas Regiment and Baldwin's Vir
ck without waiting for Rust; but General Anderson thought that he must be governed by the letter of his instructions, and declined granting the request of his men. Thus we see a plan that offered every prospect of success come to naught by the failure of a subordinate officer to come up to the expectations of his commander. Anderson and Donaldson, finding that their situation was becoming critical-being liable to discovery, and being between two superior forces-rejoined General Loring on the 29th. On the same day, Colonel Rust reported in person his operations, which amounted to this: he heard nothing of General Anderson; his heart failed him; he passed the day watching the Federals, and then retired. When Colonel Rust rendered his report, General Lee, perceiving the deep mortification he felt at the great blunder he had committed, permitted him to rejoin his regiment. A council of war was then held, in which it was decided that the position of the Federals was too strong to be at
nfederate Colonel Porterfield was sent with a few companies to operate on the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad; but this force was too small, and illy provided with the essentials for service, so that it could effect nothing. Shortly afterward, General Robert Garnett was sent by the Confederate authorities to seize the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, and to confirm the Northwestern Virginians in their allegiance to the State. Garnett, with a force of about five thousand men, reached the railroad in June, and occupied Laurel Hill. About the same time, General McClellan crossed the Ohio into Northwestern Virginia, with the view of gaining the adherence of its inhabitants to the Federal Government, and to protect the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. Having a greatly superior force, he made it his first object to attack Garnett before that general could be reinforced (Colonel Pegram, with a considerable detachment, being defeated by General Rosecrans, with a part of McClellan's force), and was ob
July 15th (search for this): chapter 7
ing the doubtful or indifferent to give their adhesion to the Federal Government. The Confederate authorities, being aware of the importance of Western Virginia at that time, both in a political and military point of view, determined to send them a force sufficiently strong to re-occupy and retain possession of it. There had been assembled in the neighborhood of Staunton five or six thousand men for the purpose of reinforcing General Garnett. These troops were ordered to advance, on the 15th of July, under the command of General Henry R. Jackson, on the Parkersburg turnpike, to re-enter Western Virginia, and to occupy some convenient position until the remainder of the forces intended to operate in that quarter should arrive. Loring, whom we have seen assigned to the command of the Army of Northwestern Virginia, was an officer of considerable reputation. He had served with distinction in the Mexican war, had subsequently become colonel of a regiment of mounted rifles, and for sever
July 22nd (search for this): chapter 7
rienced officers-Colonel Carter Stevenson, Adjutant General; Major A. L. Long, Chief of Artillery; Captain Corley, Chief Quartermaster; Captain Cole, Chief Commissary; Lieutenant Matthews, Aide-de-camp, and Colonel Starks, volunteer Aide-de-camp; and, as the country was full of enthusiasm on account of the recent victory at Manassas, he was about to enter upon his new field of operations under the most favorable auspices. General Loring, accompanied by his staff, left Richmond on the 22d of July, the day after the battle and victory of Manassas. On the 24th he arrived at Monterey, a small village about sixty miles west of Staunton; there he found Jackson, who informed him that on arriving at the Greenbrier river he had found Cheat Mountain Pass so strongly occupied by Federals that he deemed it inadvisable to attempt to carry it by a direct attack. So he retired, leaving Colonel Edward Johnston, with the Twelfth Georgia Regiment and Anderson's Battery to occupy the Alleghany M
d over the rocks, he suddenly burst upon the unsuspecting trio, when lo! to his amazement, General Lee stood before him. To add to the difficulties of a campaign in the mountains, the rainy season set in; it began to rain about the middle of August, and continued without much cessation for several weeks; in the meantime, the narrow mountain roads became saturated and softened, so that the passage of heavy trains of wagons soon rendered them almost impassable; while the wet weather lasted, a, Lee, Munford, Maney, Hatten and Savage were worthy of the gallant fellows that it had fallen to their lot to command. We will now examine into the condition of affairs on the line of the Kanawha. General Floyd entered the Kanawha Valley in August. General Cox was then near Charleston. After some maneuvring, Floyd fell back to the junction of the New river and the Gauley, where he was joined by General Wise. Floyd's force now numbered between eight and ten thousand men. Being uncertain w
August 1st (search for this): chapter 7
d advance by the Pass that Colonel Gilliam had been directed to occupy, to the rear of the enemy's position on Cheat Mountain. He therefore directed General Jackson to advance his whole force, which at this time amounted to six thousand men, to the Greenbrier river and hold himself in readiness to co-operate when the advance was made from Huntersville, and then proceeded to that place to make arrangements for the proposed movement. When General Loring arrived at Huntersville, about the 1st of August, he found already there Maney's, Hatten's, and Savage's Tennessee Regiments, Campbell's Virginia Regiment, a battalion of Virginia regulars, four hundred strong, commanded by Colonel Munford, Major W. H. F. Lee's squadron of cavalry, and Marye's and Stanley's batteries of artillery. Colonel Gilliam was at Valley Mountain Pass, fifteen miles west of Huntersville, with two regiments, and two other regiments. Burk's Virginia and Colonel —‘s Georgia Regiment were en route from Staunton.
August 12th (search for this): chapter 7
he inhabitants and his scouts that the road to Beverly was unoccupied. But within the last day or two, a force of the Federals had advanced within less than a mile of his front, and then retired. General Lee at once busied himself about gaining information respecting the position of the enemy. He soon learned that the Federals had taken possession of a strong Pass, ten miles in front of Valley Mountain, and were actively engaged in fortifying it. When General Loring arrived, about the 12th of August, the Federals had been reinforced, and this position had been so greatly strengthened that General Lee deemed it unadvisable to attempt a direct attack, so the only course now to be pursued was to gain the Federal flank or rear, and strike them when they least expected an attack. General Lee had been distinguished in the Mexican war as a reconnoitering officer, and General Scott had been mainly indebted to his bold reconnoissance for the brilliant success of his Mexican campaigns. R
September (search for this): chapter 7
order Wise failed to obey, and Floyd was left to receive alone the attack of a greatly superior force, which, however, he succeeded in repulsing with considerable loss; but, being still unsupported by Wise, he was obliged to retire. Among the casualties on the side of the Confederates, General Floyd received a painful wound in the arm. General Wise having finally joined Floyd, they fell back to a position on the James river and Kanawha turnpike, near the Hawk's Nest. About the last of September General Rosecrans, having reinforced Cox, took command in person and advanced on the James River and Kanawha turnpike, gradually pushing back Floyd and Wise in the direction of Lewisburg, it being his intention to turn the Confederate position on Valley Mountain and the Greenbrier river. Such was the condition of affairs on the line of the Kanawha at the close of the Valley Mountain campaign. General Lee, perceiving that the operations on the Kanawha were not progressing favorably, dete
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