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Illinois (Illinois, United States) (search for this): chapter 16
ide when I first favored the raising of colored regiments; but they have proved their efficiency, and I am glad they have kept pace with the white troops in the recent assaults. When we wanted every able-bodied man who could be spared to go to the front, and my opposers kept objecting to the negroes, I used to tell them that at such times it was just as well to be a little color-blind. I think, general, we can say of the black boys what a country fellow who was an old-time abolitionist in Illinois said when he went to a theater in Chicago and saw Forrest playing Othello. He was not very well up in Shakespeare, and didn't know that the tragedian was a white man who had blacked up for the purpose. After the play was over the folks who had invited him to go to the show wanted to know what he thought of the actors, and he said: Waal, layin‘ aside all sectional prejudices and any partiality I may have for the race, derned ef I don't think the nigger held his own with any on 'em. The We
Fader Abraham (search for this): chapter 16
of the Eighteenth Corps was soon reached, and a scene now occurred which defies description. They beheld for the first time the liberator of their race — the man who by a stroke of his pen had struck the shackles from the limbs of their fellow-bondmen and proclaimed liberty to the enslaved. Always impressionable, the enthusiasm of the blacks now knew no limits. They cheered, laughed, cried, sang hymns of praise, and shouted in their negro dialect, God bress Massa Linkum! De Lord save Fader Abraham! De day ob jubilee am come, shuah. They crowded about him and fondled his horse; some of them kissed his hands, while others ran off crying in triumph to their comrades that they had touched his clothes. The President rode with bared head; the tears had started to his eyes, and his voice was so broken by emotion that he could scarcely articulate the words of thanks and congratulation which he tried to speak to the humble and devoted men through whose ranks he rode. The scene was aff
een sent back from Butler's front to the Army of the Potomac, and Martindale's command had been returned to Butler, so that Meade's and Butler's armies were again complete. Meade's corps were disposed as follows, from right to left of the line: Burnside, Warren, Birney (Hancock's), Wright. On the morning of June 22, Wright's and Birney's corps moved westward with a view to crossing the Weldon Railroad and swinging around to the left; but they were vigorously attacked and forced back some dinxious about the fate of the cavalry and the progress of Wright's corps, which had been sent to Reams's Station to Wilson's relief, but did not reach there in time. He rode out to the Petersburg front with his staff, held interviews with Meade, Burnside, and Smith, and visited the lines to make a personal inspection of the principal batteries. He became impressed with the idea that more field-artillery could be used to advantage at several points, and when we returned to headquarters that even
Breckinridge (search for this): chapter 16
were seated in a rocking-chair. When we reached headquarters the general dismounted in a manner which showed that he was pretty stiff from the ride. As he touched the ground he turned and said with a quizzical look, Well, I must acknowledge that animal is pretty rough. Sheridan had arrived on June 20 at White House, on his return from the expedition to the north side of the North Anna River, upon which he had been sent on the 7th. As soon as Lee learned of Hunter's success he sent Breckinridge's troops to oppose him; and hearing that Sheridan had started, he ordered Hampton's and Fitzhugh Lee's cavalry commands to move against our cavalry. They were to attack Sheridan during the night of the 10th and surprise him; but that officer was not to be caught napping. He advanced promptly toward Trevilian's Station, and in a well-conceived and brilliantly executed battle defeated the Confederate cavalry, and then effectually destroyed several miles of the Virginia Central Railroad.
I must acknowledge that animal is pretty rough. Sheridan had arrived on June 20 at White House, on his retuckinridge's troops to oppose him; and hearing that Sheridan had started, he ordered Hampton's and Fitzhugh Lee to move against our cavalry. They were to attack Sheridan during the night of the 10th and surprise him; but gallantly and successfully defended on its way by Sheridan's cavalry. On the 26th Sheridan came in personSheridan came in person to Grant's headquarters, and had an interview with him in regard to the results of his expedition and the furndertake at once on the south side of Petersburg. Sheridan was cordially greeted on his arrival by the genera The general, after learning all the details of Sheridan's expedition, told him that he fully approved his babilities were that it would be detained there by Sheridan for some days, it was decided to send Wilson's div. The destruction of communications by Hunter, Sheridan, and Wilson gave the enemy serious alarm; but by
the scenes encountered in visiting both Butler's and Meade's commands were most interesting. Mr. Lincoln wore ndale's command had been returned to Butler, so that Meade's and Butler's armies were again complete. Meade's Meade's corps were disposed as follows, from right to left of the line: Burnside, Warren, Birney (Hancock's), Wright. pied the night before, which was more advantageous. Meade had sent frequent messages to Grant, who was this damand of the Second Corps. It was quite natural that Meade should ask Grant to come in person to the lines in flf, and two others of the staff. In discussing with Meade and some of the corps commanders the events of the the had ordered now began to arrive from Washington. Meade was told that they would be sent to him immediately,now intense, and the men were in much need of rest. Meade gave Grant and his staff a comfortable lunch, and laetersburg front with his staff, held interviews with Meade, Burnside, and Smith, and visited the lines to make
Rufus Ingalls (search for this): chapter 16
esperate fighting had far surpassed any campaign in modern or ancient military history. In view of the important operations which were to be conducted from City Point, General Grant made some changes in the organization of the staff. General Rufus Ingalls, who had distinguished himself by the exhibition of signal ability as chief quartermaster of the Army of the Potomac, was assigned to duty as chief quartermaster upon the staff of the general-in-chief. Grant and he had been classmates at West Point, and were on terms of extreme intimacy. Ingalls was exceedingly popular in the army, and both officially and personally was regarded as an important acquisition to the staff. Lieutenant-colonel M. R. Morgan, an efficient and experienced officer of the commissary department, was added to the staff of the general-in-chief as chief commissary; thirty years after he became commissary-general of the army. Soon after General M. R. Patrick was made provost-marshal-general, and General
Shakespeare (search for this): chapter 16
hey have kept pace with the white troops in the recent assaults. When we wanted every able-bodied man who could be spared to go to the front, and my opposers kept objecting to the negroes, I used to tell them that at such times it was just as well to be a little color-blind. I think, general, we can say of the black boys what a country fellow who was an old-time abolitionist in Illinois said when he went to a theater in Chicago and saw Forrest playing Othello. He was not very well up in Shakespeare, and didn't know that the tragedian was a white man who had blacked up for the purpose. After the play was over the folks who had invited him to go to the show wanted to know what he thought of the actors, and he said: Waal, layin‘ aside all sectional prejudices and any partiality I may have for the race, derned ef I don't think the nigger held his own with any on 'em. The Western dialect employed in this story was perfect. The camp of the colored troops of the Eighteenth Corps was
stment of that place by leaving a portion of his forces to defend our works, while he moved out with the other portion against the railroads, with the design of cutting off Lee's communications in that direction. Wright's entire corps had been sent back from Butler's front to the Army of the Potomac, and Martindale's command had been returned to Butler, so that Meade's and Butler's armies were again complete. Meade's corps were disposed as follows, from right to left of the line: Burnside, Warren, Birney (Hancock's), Wright. On the morning of June 22, Wright's and Birney's corps moved westward with a view to crossing the Weldon Railroad and swinging around to the left; but they were vigorously attacked and forced back some distance. They advanced again in the evening, but nothing important was gained. On June 23, Birney and Wright again moved out. There was great difficulty in preserving the alinement of the troops, as they had to pass through dense woods and almost impenetr
Amos Webster (search for this): chapter 16
d experienced officer of the commissary department, was added to the staff of the general-in-chief as chief commissary; thirty years after he became commissary-general of the army. Soon after General M. R. Patrick was made provost-marshal-general, and General George H. Sharpe was assigned to duty as his assistant. The latter officer rendered invaluable service in obtaining information regarding the enemy by his employment of scouts and his skill in examining prisoners and refugees. Captain Amos Webster was placed on duty as assistant quartermaster. Assistant Surgeon E. D. W. Breneman, U. S. A., was assigned to look after the health of those at headquarters; but the particularly robust condition of nearly all the officers he was prepared to attend made his work exceedingly light. In discussing at this time the large amount of rations which had to be supplied by the subsistence department, and the system required in its management, General Grant said: When I first had an independ
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