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stones down the mountain side as we approached. A third time I dispatched one of my staff to explain fully in regard to the situation, and to suggest that you had better come and look for yourself. I selected, in this instance, my adjutantgeneral, Colonel Harry Sellers, whom you know to be not only an officer of great courage, but also of marked ability. Colonel Sellers returned with the same message: Gen'l Lee's orders are to attack up the Emmettsburg road. Almost simultaneously, Col. Fairfax, of your staff, rode up and repeated the above orders. After this urgent protest against entering into battle at Gettysburg according to instructions — which protest is the first and only one I ever made during my entire military career — I ordered my line to advance and make the assault. As my troops were moving forward, you rode up in person; a brief conversation passed between us, during which I again expressed the fears above mentioned, and regret at not being allowed to attac
e the commencement of the war. Had my cavalry been in place my plans would have been very different, and I think the result very different. In speaking of the fight of the 3d of July at Gettysburg, General Lee said: I shall ever believe if General Pender had remained on his horse half an hour longer we would have carried the enemy's position. After Pender fell the command of his division devolved on an officer I am perfectly satisfied that General Lee did not intend by his remark to cast Pender fell the command of his division devolved on an officer I am perfectly satisfied that General Lee did not intend by his remark to cast the slightest censure upon the officer referred to. He simply stated a fact which all military men will understand and appreciate. General Lee and the Army of Northern Virginia had full confidence in this officer's skill. His courage was known to the entire army. unknown to the division; hence the failure of Pickett's receiving the support of this division. Our loss was heavy at Gettysburg; but in my opinion no greater than it would have been from the series of battles I would have been compe
ecting your corps to move to the support of General Lee was received about the time General Hooker to this effect: We must obey the orders of General Lee. I then rode forward with my line under a his fact entered very largelyin determining General Lee to make the attack on the 3d of July, at Gedier in the Army of Northern Virginia, from General Lee to the drummer boy, who did not believe, what as soon as the latter (Meade) began to move, Lee, who had undertaken nothing but a raid on too l will not be contradicted, I am satisfied. General Lee, had he seen fit, could have assumed a defes battle-field. On the 29th of June, 1863, General Lee's army was disposed as follows: Longstreet'hem against Rodes. I reported this fact to General Lee and again requested to be permitted to atta should not have been made at all. I Was by General Lee's side when this attack was made, and the tstronghold; and such I believe to have been General Lee's views after the fight, as he remarked to [37 more...]
tysburg, 186362,000 Field return, Army of Northern Virginia, May 31, 1863: Infantry, 54,356; artillery, 4,460; cavalry, 9,563. Total, 68,352. From this total must be deducted Ewell's loss at Winchester, the details left on the south side of the Potomac to guard persons and property captured at Winchester, and also the loss in the cavalry. It must be borne in mind that the cavalry did not join General Lee at Gettysburg until late in the evening of July 2.112,000 Hooker telegraphs to Staunton, June 27, 1863: Strength of rank and file, 105,000; adding commissioned officers not included in above, 7,000. Total, 112,000. Wilderness, 186463,981141,160 It has been said that the morale of an army is to numbers as three to one. If this be correct the Army of Northern Virginia was never stronger than on entering Pennsylvania, and I am perfectly satisfied in my own mind, that this fact entered very largelyin determining General Lee to make the attack on the 3d of July, at Gettysbu
severe wound received at Gettysburg, your corps (excepting Pickett's division) was ordered to join General Bragg, in the westll whip us. You thought it better to await the arrival of Pickett's division-at that time still in the rearin order to make ng; he wishes me to attack; I do not wish to do so without Pickett. I never like to go into battle with one boot off. Thun — about three o'clock--it was decided to no longer await Pickett's division, but to proceed to our extreme right, and attacentire army. unknown to the division; hence the failure of Pickett's receiving the support of this division. Our loss was heave been at all; whether the attack on the third, known as Pickett's charge, should have been made, or, whether the failure oimate fruits of a victory. The attack on July 3, known as Pickett's charge, made by Pickett's division, numbering some fortyPickett's division, numbering some forty-five hundred strong, and my own shattered division, under General Pettigrew, numbering about forty-three hundred muskets, un
m we loved, admired and trusted in, as much as we did, in any opinion entertained by our great Commander. I will state General Lee's views in regard to the invasion of Pennsylvania, as given by him to me and to another. A short time before General Grant crossed the Rapidan, in the spring of 1864, General Lee said to me: If I could do so-unfortunately I cannot — I would again cross the Potomac and invade Pennsylvania. I believe it to be tur true policy, notwithstanding the failure of last yeip them at Gettysburg, and it will be seen for the next six months that that army will be as quiet as a sucking dove. The Army of the Potomac made no aggressive movement, saving the fiasco known as Mine Run, from the 3d of July, 1863, until General Grant crossed the Rapidan in May, 1864, precisely ten months afterward. Whatever opinions may be entertained in regard to the details of the Battle of Gettysburg, whether if Stonewall Jackson had been in command of Hill's corps on the first day
Bushrod Johnson (search for this): chapter 18
here I was again so seriously wounded as to cause the loss of a limb. These severe wounds in close successsion, in addition to the all-absorbing duties and anxieties attending the last year of the war, prevented me from submitting, subsequently, a report, as likewise one after the battle of Chickamauga, in which engagement-whilst you led the left wing--I had the honor of commanding your corps, together with the three divisions of the Army of Tennessee, respectively under A. P. Stewart, Bushrod Johnson, and Hindman. Thus, the gallantry of these troops, as well as the admirable conduct of my division at Gettysburg, I have left unrecorded. With this apology for seeming neglect, I will proceed to give a brief sketch from memory of the events forming the subject of your letter: My recollection of the circumstances connected with the attempt, whilst we were lying in front of Suffolk, to reach General Lee in time to participate in the battle of Chancellorsville is very clear. The
contradicted, I am satisfied. General Lee, had he seen fit, could have assumed a defensive position, and popular opinion in the Northern States would have forced the commander of the Federal army to attack. And further, to corroborate the fact that General Lee was not compelled to attack Meade where Meade chose to wait for him, 1 will show, I am confident, that the Battle of Gettysburg was the result purely of an accident, for which I am probably, more than any one else, accountable. Napoleon is said to have remarked that a dog fight might determine the result of a great battle. Almost as trivial a circumstance determined the Battle of Gettysburg being fought at Gettysburg. It is well known that General Meade had chosen another point as his battle-field. On the 29th of June, 1863, General Lee's army was disposed as follows: Longstreet's corps, at or near Chambersburg; Ewell's corps, which had been pushed east as far as York, had received orders to countermarch and concentrate
Harry Sellers (search for this): chapter 18
mountain side as we approached. A third time I dispatched one of my staff to explain fully in regard to the situation, and to suggest that you had better come and look for yourself. I selected, in this instance, my adjutantgeneral, Colonel Harry Sellers, whom you know to be not only an officer of great courage, but also of marked ability. Colonel Sellers returned with the same message: Gen'l Lee's orders are to attack up the Emmettsburg road. Almost simultaneously, Col. Fairfax, of youColonel Sellers returned with the same message: Gen'l Lee's orders are to attack up the Emmettsburg road. Almost simultaneously, Col. Fairfax, of your staff, rode up and repeated the above orders. After this urgent protest against entering into battle at Gettysburg according to instructions — which protest is the first and only one I ever made during my entire military career — I ordered my line to advance and make the assault. As my troops were moving forward, you rode up in person; a brief conversation passed between us, during which I again expressed the fears above mentioned, and regret at not being allowed to attack in flank ar
dericksburg; our loss was severe, and again we had gained not an in inch of ground and the enemy could not be pursued. After the battle of Chancellorsville matters stood thus: Hooker in my front, with an army more than a hundred thousand strong; Foster preparing to advance into North Carolina; Dix preparing to advance on Richmond from Fortress Monroe; Tyler in the Kanawha Valley preparing to unite with Milroy, who was in the Valley of Virginia, collecting men and material for an advance on Stauwhich must ultimately have ended in surrender, or to invade Pennsylvania. I chose the latter. Milroy was in my route; I crushed him, and as soon as the First corps of my army crossed the Potomac, orders were issued countermanding the advance of Foster and Dix. As soon as my Second corps crossed Hooker loosened his hold, and Old Virginia was freer of Federal troops than she had ever been since the commencement of the war. Had my cavalry been in place my plans would have been very different, and
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