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January, 1864 AD (search for this): chapter 19
of the year. After four days, which he spent in studying the situation and in giving detailed instructions for the campaign against Longstreet, he left for Nashville. The entire journey, which took seven days, was made on horseback from Moundsville, through Cumberland Gap, Barboursville, London, and Frankfort, to Lexington. The journey from Lexington through Louisville to Nashville was made by rail. Grant's headquarters were established at the last-mentioned place about the middle of January, 1864, and remained there till he was called East to take general command of all the National armies. Immediately after the holidays Dana returned to the War Department, where he not only participated in the multifarious duties connected with the administration and maintenance of the army, but for the first time had an opportunity to observe and study the great secretary as he showed himself in the midst of his daily and nightly work. On January 11, 1864, he wrote to me from his desk in th
Chapter 18: Dana in the War Department Conferences with Lincoln and Stanton plan of campaign in Alabama letters to Wilson extraordinary capacity for work supervision of army contractors Grant Lieutenant-General Rawlins chief of staff estimate of Lincoln Dana arrived at Washington about the middle of December. On the 19th he informed me that as yet he had seen no one in authority, and I reported the fact to General Grant, who had gone to Nashville on the 18th for the purpose of completing arrangements for pushing the campaign in east Tennessee. Rawlins had gone North to be married. On December 21, 1863, at 6 P. M., Dana telegraphed General Grant in substance that after a detailed explanation the President, the Secretary of War, and General Halleck had fully approved his project of a winter campaign in Alabama, not only because it would keep the army active during the rainy season, but because it appears to have been well conceived and certain of producing the d
nor violent, every one, civilian and soldier alike, having business with any of the bureaus, took it by preference to him, and never by any chance to the secretary, if he could be avoided. Thus it will be seen that Dana was at once the breakwater and the channel to that imperious official; but with all Dana's suavity and skill, it will be readily perceived that his position was by no means an enviable one. It was to this five months tour of duty in the War Department, during the winter of 1863-64, that Dana was indebted for his intimate acquaintance with Stanton. Previously their meetings were casual, but now official business brought them daily and sometimes hourly in contact with each other. As the assistant secretary was always master over his own temper, and never overawed or confused by the furious outbursts which at times so sadly marred the secretary's behavior, these frequent meetings gave Dana an opportunity to study the character and idiosyncrasies of his chief under co
e channel to that imperious official; but with all Dana's suavity and skill, it will be readily perceived that his position was by no means an enviable one. It was to this five months tour of duty in the War Department, during the winter of 1863-64, that Dana was indebted for his intimate acquaintance with Stanton. Previously their meetings were casual, but now official business brought them daily and sometimes hourly in contact with each other. As the assistant secretary was always master cian. Indeed, he regarded him as easily the first American in that class, and mainly because he had an extraordinary knowledge of human nature. He appears to have taken Dana into his inmost confidence in such matters during the earlier months of 1864, and to have consulted him fully about the amendment to the Constitution to legalize the abolition of slavery, about the admission of Nevada as a State, and generally about where to get the necessary votes in Congress to carry through the various
January 1st (search for this): chapter 19
was at that time in any given case, or in any given direction with the powers in Washington, Dana prudently closed his despatch with the following sentences: As yet, however, nothing has been decided upon, and you will understand that I have somewhat exceeded my instructions from the Secretary of War in this communication, especially in the second branch of it, but it seems to me necessary that you should know all these particulars. I leave for New York to-night to remain until after New Year's. Dana to Grant, December 21, 1863-6 P. M. This was one of the most interesting despatches Dana ever sent, for it not only shows that the President, the Secretary of War, tie General-in-Chief, and General Grant were at that time in accord with reference to several of the leading generals and their employment, but that they all favored Grant's suggestion as submitted by Dana for a campaign against Mobile. This plan was originally brought forward by W. F. Smith, and as it promised to ke
Chapter 18: Dana in the War Department Conferences with Lincoln and Stanton plan of campaign in Alabama letters to Wilson extraordinary capacity for work supervision of army contractors Grant Lieutenant-General Rawlins chief of staff estimate of Lincoln Dana arrived at Washington about the middle of December. On the 19th he informed me that as yet he had seen no one in authority, and I reported the fact to General Grant, who had gone to Nashville on the 18th for the purpose of completing arrangements for pushing the campaign in east Tennessee. Rawlins had gone North to be married. On December 21, 1863, at 6 P. M., Dana telegraphed General Grant in substance that after a detailed explanation the President, the Secretary of War, and General Halleck had fully approved his project of a winter campaign in Alabama, not only because it would keep the army active during the rainy season, but because it appears to have been well conceived and certain of producing the d
January 11th, 1864 AD (search for this): chapter 19
t-mentioned place about the middle of January, 1864, and remained there till he was called East to take general command of all the National armies. Immediately after the holidays Dana returned to the War Department, where he not only participated in the multifarious duties connected with the administration and maintenance of the army, but for the first time had an opportunity to observe and study the great secretary as he showed himself in the midst of his daily and nightly work. On January 11, 1864, he wrote to me from his desk in the department. Omitting purely personal passages, the letter runs as follows: Yesterday I had the happiness of sending the general a despatch much more important because more decisive than that referred to in yours of the 24th.... The general is authorized to go ahead according to his own judgment. There are very great complaints here in the quartermaster-general's office respecting the impossibility of getting supplies for General Banks down
January 24th (search for this): chapter 19
cretary. He could not wait a day, but decided to reorganize the bureau at once, and directed Dana to take the matter in hand. The latter thereupon suggested my detail for the work, and, in pursuance of the secretary's authority, issued the necessary orders directing me to report at the War Department for duty as soon as I could settle my business as a member of General Grant's staff. I was notified at the time that my new assignment would last till spring only. I arrived at Washington January 24th, and after taking charge of my office at once resumed my relations with Dana. We had rooms together, boarded at the same house, and were closely associated till the spring campaign of the Army of the Potomac began, when we both returned to the field, he to become again the eyes of the government at Grant's headquarters, and I to command a division of cavalry under Sheridan. During our stay in Washington it was our custom to get to work at nine o'clock and close our desks at five o'clo
December 21st, 1863 AD (search for this): chapter 19
ne to Nashville on the 18th for the purpose of completing arrangements for pushing the campaign in east Tennessee. Rawlins had gone North to be married. On December 21, 1863, at 6 P. M., Dana telegraphed General Grant in substance that after a detailed explanation the President, the Secretary of War, and General Halleck had fullyt, but it seems to me necessary that you should know all these particulars. I leave for New York to-night to remain until after New Year's. Dana to Grant, December 21, 1863-6 P. M. This was one of the most interesting despatches Dana ever sent, for it not only shows that the President, the Secretary of War, tie General-in-Ch is important because it also shows, when taken with Halleck's despatch of the next day to Grant, Official Records, Serial No. 56, p. 458, Halleck to Grant, December 21, 1863. that Halleck would not permit Grant to carry out his plan for a campaign in Alabama till Longstreet was driven entirely from east Tennessee. As Longstreet
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