A statement was made in some of the Yankee
newspapers, apparently upon the authority of Gen. Meade
, that Gen. Lee
's losses in the battle of Gettysburg
amounted to 33,000 men!
A more monstrous falsehood was never published even in a Yankee newspaper.
It contradicts itself, and is so plainly contradicted by subsequent events that it scarcely deserves the trouble of investigation; yet as there are persons among us who, though well meaning, are weak-hearted, and prone to believe the worst, if the loss of Gen. Lee
was so great, how comes it that a single man of his army was allowed to cross the Potomac
Why was it not pursued sword in hand, and either killed or captured by the innumerable cavalry which Meade
had at hand?
Why did the Yankees
first leave the field of battle, and leave it in possession of an army which had suffered so much?
Why was Gen. Lee
allowed to withdraw without the loss of a gun or a caisson?
The loss of 33,000 men would occasion the destruction of any army under 100,000 men strong, in such weather as we have had, and in the face of a force numerically so superior as that of Meade
's. It would have been routed beyond the possibility of rallying.
It would have dissolved like a snow wreath in the warm rains of Spring.
It would have become totally demoralized, and could not have been rallied to the colors.
in 1815 with 122,400 men. He carried into the battle of Waterloo
the 2d and 5th corps of the French
army, numbering, after their losses in the battles of Ligny
and Lee Quatre Bras, 68,650 men. Of the rest 12,000 had been put hors de combat
by the battles above mentioned, 34,500 were with Grouchy
and did not come up, and 8,000 were left on the field of Ligny
The rout of Waterloo
was the most completes recorded in modern history.
Yet the French
lost only 29,000 men--4,000 less than the Yankees
affirm that Lee
lost in the battle of Gettysburg
, while it is certain that Lee
did not carry 120,000 with him into Pennsylvania
Like most habitual liars, these Yankees prove too much.
If they killed and wounded such a number of men for Lee
as they represent, they must have been the most miserable of all cowards to let him get off.
But the Yankee
army were not cowards.
They did not follow Lee
because they could not. They had been so badly beaten that pursuit was impossible.
The true loss of Gen Lee
did not probably reach 12,000 men, while their own as probably doubled that figure.--They were therefore in no condition to molest Gen. Lee
in any movement he might choose to make.
We are sorry to see Confederate letter writers exaggerating our losses almost as much as the Yankees
What do they propose to effect by such statements?