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Crittenden (search for this): chapter 20
was due to his own reflections and good judgment, or to the weight of criticism and influence to which he had been subjected, must forever remain an unsettled question. Fortunately for the country, Grant was not a general to remain long idle or in doubt. On June 7th Dana reported, with many other details, that Sheridan had set out at 3 A. M. to destroy the railroads north and west of Richmond; that Grant is now nearly ready to strike for the James. Later the same day he reported that Crittenden had asked to be relieved because his division is not equal to his rank ; that certain transports were not clean enough for wounded soldiers; and that one of them was serving beef to wounded soldiers so fat and gristly that even the well could not eat it. On June 8th, at 4 P. M., Dana reported to Stanton, among other things, that two divisions of Warren's corps had taken position to the left of Hancock near Botton's Bridge; that two officers of Grant's staff were with Butler, making prep
Official Records (search for this): chapter 20
on of the army itself had been controlled by Grant and was in every way satisfactory to him, Dana had but little occasion to comment upon the leading officers. All of Dana's despatches, something over seventy in number, are set forth in the Official Records just as they were sent. Dana, Recollections of the Civil War, p. 189 et seq. Whenever necessary for the purposes of this narrative, I have quoted from them, but much the larger part of what I have said is drawn from other sources. In thel be thoroughly destroyed as far south as practicable, then, if necessary, the Army of the Potomac may . . . move upon the Danville road, leaving its base of supplies here to be guarded by its fortifications and the forces of General Butler. Official Records, Dana to Stanton, July 20, 1864-5 P. M. This statement, it will be observed, is most important, as it clearly shows that Grant's plan on that day was to break up the Confederate railroads, and force his way by the left flank to the Appom
d have put the discreditable rumor to rest forever. Dana's despatches show that he remained at Cold Harbor till the afternoon of June 12th with Grant; that the long halt of the army was at an end, and that the great movement by the left, apparently against Richmond, but really to cross the James River at Bermuda Hundred, was to begin that night. His last act before breaking camp that afternoon was to call the attention of the Secretary of War to the misconduct of Generals Ward, Owen, and Eustis, and to the fact that General Grant desired General Slocum, who was making war against a den of thieves at Vicksburg, should be left in command at that place. His first act after getting into camp that night four miles beyond Long Bridge was to report everything going on perfectly; ... troops moving rapidly; ... weather splendid. During the entire day of June 13th Dana appears to have been engaged in riding from point to point, for the purpose of watching and reporting the movement of th
terest as to who was responsible for it all. After having attacked Lee's left flank in rear, I closed in upon the infantry, and for the first time in ten days found myself within reach of Grant's headquarters. Dana made his way to my bivouac on the evening of June 4th, and after dining with me on coffee, hardtack, roasted wheat, and fried bacon, told me the story of the marches and battles as he had learned it from personal observation. On the 7th, after conference with Grant, Meade, and Humphreys, I had conversations with Rawlins, Dana, Comstock, Porter, and Babcock, during which each gave me interesting details of what had taken place. On the afternoon of the 8th Dana and Rawlins came to my camp near Long Bridge and remained to dinner, during which they took me completely into their confidence. They not only told me the story of the marches and battles substantially as I have condensed it above, but they did more: they gave me their innermost views of the campaign, its successe
use. They describe in sufficient detail the operations of Hancock's corps on the right in the neighborhood of Corbin's Bridgents; the failure to support his movement; the transfer of Hancock's corps from the extreme right to a position between Wrighrform the part assigned to him, Wright, Smith, Warren, and Hancock had all been engaged and had suffered heavy loss; and thatostponed it on account of heat and dust and the fatigue of Hancock's men till 4 A. M. the next day. Dana gives a full acco and abortive. The order of battle from left to right was Hancock, Wright, Smith, Warren (in single line), with Burnside mases, and could see what was necessary to get through them. Hancock reported that in his front it could not be done. Wright wront, but it would be difficult to make much by it, unless Hancock and Smith could also advance. Smith thought he could carrisions of Warren's corps had taken position to the left of Hancock near Botton's Bridge; that two officers of Grant's staff w
D. Appleton (search for this): chapter 20
ers, he held that officer primarily responsible for the useless loss of life, and criticised his generalship in unmeasured terms. It was in allusion to these attacks, and the absence of any provision whatever to make them successful, or even to take advantage of such success as chance might give to them, that the young but experienced Upton frankly confessed that there was no position in connection with that army to which he did not aspire. Life and letters of Major-General Emory Upton. D. Appleton & Co. It was in connection with the costly series of battles from the Pamunkey to the Chickahominy that the newspapers now joined in the flood of criticism, which, for the first time, was concentrated upon Grant rather than upon Meade. To those who took part in the campaign, it at once became a question of absorbing interest as to who was responsible for it all. After having attacked Lee's left flank in rear, I closed in upon the infantry, and for the first time in ten days found mysel
ave dispersed Lee's army; that both Grant and Meade were intensely disgusted with the failure of Wright and Warren; and finally that Meade says a radical change must be made, no matter how unpleasa details of carrying his orders into effect to Meade and his corps commanders, he held that officer, was concentrated upon Grant rather than upon Meade. To those who took part in the campaign, itaper had given currency to the report that General Meade, after the battle of the Wilderness, had ft Grant had prevented it. It also appears that Meade, incensed by this report, had that day caused would probably take place the next night; that Meade was much troubled at the report that after thege and approval, it gave great comfort to both Meade and the administration at the time, end shouldesponsible for the first day's fighting, while Meade had ordered that of the second and third days,burg. In his despatch of June 20th Dana says, Meade is ordered to devote himself to swinging his a[3 more...]
Abraham Lincoln (search for this): chapter 20
ted a most interesting period. While the Confederacy had received its death-blows at Vicksburg, Gettysburg, and Missionary Ridge, the Mississippi had been opened and the Union army had established its sway over vast areas of the border States. Lincoln, although greatly encouraged, was far from happy. His re-election was near at hand, but by no means conceded. Many strong men, both in Congress and out of it, thought that he should step aside and allow a stronger one to take his place. Hisevery resource of the government was placed at the disposal of Grant. The forward movement in Virginia began on May 4th, with an effective force of one hundred and twenty thousand men, and only two days after that the desire of both Stanton and Lincoln for the fullest details of the marches and battles became irresistible. Grant, who was habitually reticent, had no time for details, and hence they sent for Dana, who was found at a reception, but who made haste to present himself, although in
ad pronounced the war a failure, and so long as Lee remained unvanquished there was a show of reasohether it would not do so again. Grant had met Lee and had fought him two days without gaining a s his capacity to lead them successfully against Lee and his hitherto invincible veterans. I founof Warren and Wright to the left; the rumors of Lee's retirement; the prevalence of rain; the fatigm Fredericksburg to Richmond; the withdrawal of Lee's trains to Guiney's Station; a full statement nd tie prompt and unerring precision with which Lee interposed his army between him and Richmond, Ictory. Even our officers have ceased to regard Lee as an invincible military genius. On part of ts claimed to have gained substantial advantage, Lee still held fast to the battle-field. Fierce anefore reaching the Chickahominy to have crushed Lee's army by fair fighting and completed this workent and combination to carry it into effect. Lee's detachment of Ewell, also mentioned for the f[12 more...]
y; the arrival of Longstreet at that place with two divisions of infantry that had marched all night; Grant's order for Warren to attack them with the support of Sedgwick; the death of Sedgwick, and the failure of these two corps to attack as ordered. He also reported Grant's orders to detach Sheridan with the cavalry corps, to oSedgwick, and the failure of these two corps to attack as ordered. He also reported Grant's orders to detach Sheridan with the cavalry corps, to operate against Lee's communications, and, after doing all possible damage, to march to the James River and communicate with Butler. This was followed by the statement that General Hobart Ward is under arrest for running away from the battle in the Wilderness, and that General H. G. Wright had succeeded to the command of Sedgwick'Sedgwick's corps. The next sixteen despatches, from the 10th to the 18th inclusive, relate to battles for the possession of Spottsylvania Court-House. They describe in sufficient detail the operations of Hancock's corps on the right in the neighborhood of Corbin's Bridge; the departure of Sheridan with the cavalry, leaving the army wi
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