Chapter 21: reorganization and rest for both armies.
- The Confederates appoint seven Lieutenant -- Generals -- the Army of Northern Virginia organized in corps -- General McClellan relieved, and General Burnside appointed commander of the Army of the Potomac -- a lift for the South -- McClellan was growing -- Burnside's “three Grand divisions” -- the campaign of the Rappahannock -- getting ready for Fredericksburg -- Longstreet occupies Fredericksburg -- the town called to surrender by General Sumner -- Exodus of the inhabitants under a threat to shell the town.
Under an act not long before passed by the Confederate Congress authorizing the appointment of seven lieutenant-generals, the authorities at Richmond about this time sent commissions to Lieutenant-Generals Longstreet, Polk, Holmes, Hardee, E. K. Smith, Jackson, and Pemberton, and made appointments of a number of major-generals. Under these appointments General Lee organized the Army of Northern Virginia into corps substantially as it subsequently fought the battle of Fredericksburg.1 The Confederate army rested along the lines between the Potomac and Winchester till late in October. On the 8th, General Stuart was ordered across to ride around the Union army, then resting about Sharpsburg and Harper's Ferry. His ride caused some excitement among the Union troops, and he got safely to the south side with the loss of a few men slightly wounded, on the 12th. On the 26th, General McClellan marched south and crossed the Potomac east of the Blue Ridge. Jackson was assigned the duty of guarding the passes. I marched south, corresponding with the march of the Army of the Potomac.  A division crossed at Ashby's Gap to Upperville to look for the head of McClellan's army. He bore farther eastward and marched for Warrenton, where he halted on the 5th of November. The division was withdrawn from Upperville and marched for Culpeper Court-House, arriving at that point at the same time as McClellan's at Warrenton,--W. H. F. Lee's cavalry the day before me. Soon after the return to Culpeper Court-House, Evans's brigade was relieved of duty with the First Corps and ordered south. Hood had a brush with a cavalry force at Manassas Gap, and part of McLaws's division a similar experience at the east end of Chester Gap. I reached Culpeper Court-House with the divisions of McLaws, R. H. Anderson, and Pickett. Hood's division was ordered behind Robertson River, and Ransom to Madison Court-House, General Jackson with the Second Corps remaining in the Shenandoah Valley, except one division at Chester Gap of the Blue Ridge. The Washington authorities issued orders on the 5th of November relieving General McClellan of, and assigning General Burnside to, command of the Army of the Potomac. On the 9th the army was put under General Burnside, in due form. When informed of the change, General Lee expressed regret, as he thought that McClellan could be relied upon to conform to the strictest rules of science in the conduct of war. He had been McClellan's preceptor, they had served together in the engineer corps, and our chief thought that he thoroughly understood the displaced commander. The change was a good lift for the South, however; McClellan was growing, was likely to exhibit far greater powers than he had yet shown, and could not have given us opportunity to recover the morale lost at Sharpsburg, as did Burnside and Hooker. General Burnside, soon after assuming command, and while waiting at Warrenton, made a radical change in the  organization of the army by consolidating the corps into three “Grand divisions” as follows:
- the right Grand division, General Sumner Commanding.-Second Army Corps, General D. W. Couch; Ninth Army Corps, General O. B. Wilcox.
- centre Grand division, General Joseph Hooker Commanding. --Third Army Corps, General George Stonemall; Fifth Army Corps, General Daniel Butterfield.
- left Grand division, General W. B. Franklin Commanding. --First Army Corps, General J. F. Reynolds; Sixth Army Corps, General W. F. Smith.
- cavalry division.--General Alfred Pleasonton.
- Artillery, siege, and field batteries, 370 guns, General Henry J. Hunt, Chief.
The officers who received the call, by consent of General Patrick, who delivered it, referred the paper to my Headquarters. I asked the civil authorities to reply that the city would not be used for the purposes complained of; but that neither the town nor the south side of the river could be occupied by the Union army except by force of arms. General Sumner ordered two batteries into position commanding the town, but in a few hours received the following reply from the mayor:
To this General Sumner responded the same day,--
As the inference from the correspondence was that the shelling was only postponed, the people were advised to move with their valuables to some place of safety as soon as possible. Without complaint, those who could, packed their precious effects and moved beyond reach of the threatened storm, but many preferred to remain and encounter the dangers rather than to leave their homes and valuables. The fortitude with which they bore their trials quickened the minds of the soldiers who were there to defend them. One train leaving with women and children was fired upon, making some confusion and dismay among them, but the two or three shells did no other mischief, and the firing ceased.