Chapter 13: invasion of Maryland and Pennsylvania-operations before Petersburg and in the Shenandoah Valley.
- Another invasion of Maryland, by the Confederates, 341.
-- Confederates raiding and plundering, 342.
-- General Lewis Wallace at Baltimore
-- measures for saving Washington City, 343.
-- the battle of the Monocacy, 344.
-- how the National capital was saved, 345.
-- Baltimore and Washington threatened, 346.
-- retreat of the Confederates
-- the Nationals in pursuit, 347.
-- the Confederates in the Shenandoah Valley, 348.
-- the burning of Chambersburg
-- retreat of the Confederates across the Potomac, 349.
-- the Army of the Potomac before Petersburg, 350.
-- Richmond seriously menaced
-- Lee much concerned, 351.
-- a mine under Confederate forts at Petersburg, 352.
-- the advantages of its explosion not used
-- movements against Richmond on the north side of the James, 353.
-- seizure of the Weldon railroad, 355.
-- battle at Reams's Station 356.
-- the Dutch Gap Canal, 357.
-- capture of Confederate works on New Market Heights, 358.
-- a struggle for Richmond
-- movement on Grant's left, 359.
-- the Nationals attack the Confederate right, west of the Weldon road, 360.
-- battle of the Boydton road, 361.
-- Grant's campaign for 1864 and its results, 362.
-- Sheridan in the Shenandoah Valley, 363.
-- his advance on Winchester, 364.
-- battle of Winchester, 365.
-- battle of Fisher's Hill, 366.
-- ravages in the Shenandoah Valley, 367.
-- events at and near Cedar Creek, 368.
-- battle of Cedar Creek, 369.
-- Sheridan's ride from Winchester, 370.
-- defeat of the Confederates, and their disastrous flight to Fisher's Hill, 371.
-- the author's visit to the Shenandoah Valley, 372, 373.
It has been observed that the authorities at Washington
feared a visit from Lee
's troops when the Army of the Potomac should be placed on the south side of the James River
At about the time we are considering — the midsummer of 1864--these fears were realized.
Finding the pressure of his antagonist very severe, and the dangers to his army at and around Richmond
hourly increasing, Lee
sought to avert impending calamity by diverting so much of the Union
army to some distant point, as to practically relieve Petersburg
That contemplated point of diversion was the National Capital
, the most feasible way to which, by Confederate troops, seemed to be by the Shenandoah Valley and across the Potomac
, taking it in reverse.
eagerly watched an opportunity for the movement.
It was offered when Hunter
fled from before Lynchburg
into Western Virginia
, with an exhausted and broken army,2
and left the Shenandoah Valley, and its door opening into Maryland
at Harper's Ferry
, guarded only by a moderate force under General Sigel
, posted at Martinsburg
, in command of troops in the upper part of the Valley
, was directed by Lee
to gather to his own all the troops in that region, and move rapidly to and across the Potomac
, with the threefold object, it appears, of drawing National troops from before Petersburg
, procuring supplies, and attempting the capture of Washington City
Early quickly obeyed.
With from 15,000 to 20,000 troops of all arms,3
he swept rapidly down the Valley
, too weak to resist the avalanche, fled
, with a heavy loss of stores, and General Weber
, in command at Harper's Ferry
, retired to Maryland Heights
, meanwhile, had directed Hunter
, who was then on the Kanawha
, to hasten to Harper's Ferry
with all possible dispatch; but insuperable obstacles kept him back until it was too late to be of essential service, and Early
found no troops at hand to oppose his invasion, except a few in the Middle Department, commanded by General Lewis Wallace
, whose Headquarters were at Baltimore
Early crossed the river at Williamsport
, accompanied by Bradley T. Johnson4
as commander of a brigade, and a notorious guerrilla leader named
both bitter Maryland
rebels, who now, as the chosen guides and assistants of the chief of the invaders, brought war with all its horrors to the doors of their neighbors and friends.
Early pushed on to Hagerstown
where he levied a contribution on the inhabitants of $20,000, and then swept over the country toward the Pennsylvania
line, plundering friend and foe alike of horses, cattle, provisions and money.6
Vague rumors had reached General Wallace
, at Baltimore
, concerning the perils of Sigel
Then came positive information of the passage of the Potomac
by the Confederates
, and their raiding within the borders of General Couch
's Department; and finally, on the 5th of July, he was informed that their movements indicated an intention to march upon Baltimore
in heavy column.
Finding his Department thus threatened,