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ant himself, feeling doubtful of its success, had feared for a while that he might be obliged to go to the White House to make his crossing certain, that he meant to fight in that neighborhood if he had a fair chance, without running his head against heavy works, and that at any rate he would remain there over the next day to give time for the cavalry to break up the railroads and destroy the bridges over Little River and the South Anna. Notwithstanding the heavy fighting which began on May 30th, Dana took time, at Grant's special request, to call the Secretary of War's attention to the fact that at New Orleans, and perhaps elsewhere, a custom had grown up of paying commutation for fuel and quarters to officers lodged in the houses of rebels, and recommending that a general order should be issued prohibiting the practice everywhere within the limits of the rebellious States. In the same despatch Dana called attention to the serious mismanagement of all the administrative departmen
management of all the administrative departments of the Ninth army corps: that the men were without rations and the animals without forage, that the artillery horses had not had their harness taken off for nine days, that their shoulders and backs were sore, and that a thousand new horses were wanted immediately to supply the waste. He closed his despatch with the statement that this lamentable condition of affairs was known to Grant, and ought to be known to the War Department also. On May 31st he noted the fact that the enemy was holding fast on the Cold Harbor road, that the cavalry could not finish the destruction of the railroad and bridges and rejoin before to-morrow night, that Smith, with reinforcements from Butler's army, was delayed at New Castle, and had been directed not to begin his march towards Cold Harbor till he had everything ready. On June 1st Dana reported that Sheridan, after heavy fighting, had male good his hold on Cold Harbor; that if Wright had been ther
that this lamentable condition of affairs was known to Grant, and ought to be known to the War Department also. On May 31st he noted the fact that the enemy was holding fast on the Cold Harbor road, that the cavalry could not finish the destruction of the railroad and bridges and rejoin before to-morrow night, that Smith, with reinforcements from Butler's army, was delayed at New Castle, and had been directed not to begin his march towards Cold Harbor till he had everything ready. On June 1st Dana reported that Sheridan, after heavy fighting, had male good his hold on Cold Harbor; that if Wright had been there to support him, they might have 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 unpleasant it may be to make it, but I doubt whether he will really attempt to apply so extreme a remedy. This despatch, dated 5 P. M., praised Sheridan a
o 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 cont they did more: they gave me their innermost views of the campaign, its successes and its failures, concealing nothing and extenuating nothing. During this conversation they made it known to me, substantially as set forth in Dana's despatch of June 4th-7 P..A., that our infantry had begun regular siege approaches to the rebel works; that Sheridan had been ordered to destroy the railroad from Richmond through Gordonsville to Lynchburg, as an indispensable element in Grant's plan; that Grant exp
did more: they gave me their innermost views of the campaign, its successes and its failures, concealing nothing and extenuating nothing. During this conversation they made it known to me, substantially as set forth in Dana's despatch of June 4th-7 P..A., that our infantry had begun regular siege approaches to the rebel works; that Sheridan had been ordered to destroy the railroad from Richmond through Gordonsville to Lynchburg, as an indispensable element in Grant's plan; that Grant expectedwn 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
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 preparatory arrangements for the movement of this army to Bermuda Hundred, and that-possibly the march may begin to-morrow night. From the sane despatch it appears that the correspondent of a Cincinnati newspaper had given currency to the report that General Meade, after
a Cincinnati newspaper had given currency to the report that General Meade, after the battle of the Wilderness, had favored the withdrawal of the army to the north side of the Rappahannock, and that Grant had prevented it. It also appears that Meade, incensed by this report, had that day caused the provost-guard to arrest the offender, and, after parading him through the camps with large placards on his breast and back inscribed Libeller of the press, had expelled him from the lines. On June 9th Dana reported the army as still at Cold Harbor, working under General Barnard's direction at a line of inner intrenchments to cover its withdrawal, which would probably take place the next night; that Meade was much troubled at the report that after the battle of the Wilderness he had counselled retreat; that this report was entirely untrue, and that Meade had not shown any weakness of that sort, nor had he once intimated a doubt as to the successful issue of the campaign. As this despatch
of the Wilderness he had counselled retreat; that this report was entirely untrue, and that Meade had not shown any weakness of that sort, nor had he once intimated a doubt as to the successful issue of the campaign. As this despatch was sent with Grant's knowledge and approval, it gave great comfort to both Meade and the administration at the time, end should 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
e 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 the army by the left flank towards Fort Powhatan on the James. The next day he crossed the James to Butler's headquarters at Bermuda Hundred, and the day afterwards went to City Point. His despatches for that period cover all the important operations in that field, and show that All goes on like a miracle ; that the weather is cloudy, threatening rain, but I think we
hting had not been equal to our previous fighting, owing to our heavy loss in superior officers ; that Grant, who was responsible for the first day's fighting, while Meade had ordered that of the second and third days, had finally declared that no more assaults should be made, and that he would now maneuver. It also appeared that Sheridan's attempt to destroy the railroads north of Richmond had not been entirely successful, and that Ewell's corps had gone to Lynchburg. In his despatch of June 20th Dana says, Meade is ordered to devote himself to swinging his army around upon the south and southwest of Petersburg, with the view of cutting both the Weldon and Lynchburg railroads, and resting his left flank on the Appomattox. He adds: As the object is to get possession of the railroad and enclose the enemy, fighting will not be sought for, though of course it will not be avoided. Once extended to the Appomattox, the railroad will be thoroughly destroyed as far south as practica
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