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As a host, he was
hospitable, and practica'ly kept open house. generous, liberal and free. We can't help but admire such a character. No one likes a man who is close, mean and stingy. No one likes the company of a man who is sullen, morose and taciturn. We are delighted to meet a warm-hearted, whole-souled, hale-fellow-wellmet style of man like Mr. Petigru.
In his home life Mr. Petigru was in every way a model. He was devoted to his mother, wife and other members of his household, and in return received their warmest love and affection. His wife was for many years an invalid, and it is touching to see how delicate and tender he was in his attention to her. Oftentimes he himself would go to the market to procure something suited to her taste.
We have reserved for the last the great, over-shadowing feature of Mr. Petigru's character, namely, his politics and stand on public questions. Here he stands out conspicuously in his devotion to principle and duty. He was no time-server. He did not trim his sails to catch the popular breeze. He had the courage of his convictions. He believed in doing right, let the consequences be what they may. He was no demagogue. He would not condescend to lower his standard to gain office. He would not pander to the public taste, and he was far above appealing to the prejudices and lower elements of our nature. He was all his life on the minority side of politics. He was a Union man and was opposed to nulification and secession. In Carolina at that time his was an exceedingly unpopular stand to take. Indeed South Carolina was the leader in both these movements. Our people had but little sympathy for those who entertained opposite ideas on these subjects. And yet there were a few men in the State who, especially in the secession movement, dared to run counter to the prevailing sentiment, cost what it might. Among them I may name Gov. B. F. Perry, Judge J. B. O'Neal, Gov. James L. Orr and Mr. Petigru. These constituted in several respects a remarkable group of men. In the first place they were beginning to reach the shady side of life, with the exception of Mr. Orr, who was then in his prime. In the second place they were calm, cool-headed men, and conservative in their ideas and views. In the third place they were men of high character, wide experience and more than average ability. They loved South Carolina. She was their native State and was as dear to them as the apple of the eye. Around and about her were centered their affections and interests. They well knew that their own fate was united and interwoven with the destiny of their beloved commonwealth. They knew
too that it was suicidal to attempt to stem the public current. Το face the issue to brave public opinion would cost them much in political and possibly in social life. But they loved the Union and loved it with the supremest affection. From early childhood they had learned to sing its praises, to study the lives and emulate the example of its long line of illustrious men, and no less distinguished women. To point with pride to its star spangled banner, its battlefields and long list of heroes and heroines, and with an enthusiastic ardor which knew no bounds to proclaim its greatness and boast of its grand and glorious past. And yet they were devoted to their State. To them secession was not simply a bitter pill, it was a grievous mistake and a national calamity. Grave, earnest, serious, sad men were these. They turned their faces skyward and read in the stars gloomy auguries. They came before the people and foretold war, ruin and desolation, and only too true did their prophecies prove. And they asked the people over and over again the question, why secede? What cause for separation exists? Having done the best they could to stem the tide, but in vain, they quietly and sadly determined to share the fate of their people whatever that fate might be.
To the credit of Carolinians be it said they honored and respected these noble old men to the last. It was no new thing for Mr. Petigru, however, to find himself upon the unpopular side of politics. That was usually his fate. But under all circumstances throughout his life, though generally on the minority, he boldly avowed his views and had at least the consciousness of knowing that he had his own self-respect.
And as I have already said, he commanded the respect of his people to the last. He was appointed to codify the laws of the State. He was made President of the South Carolina Historical Society, and at the time of his death he was also an honorary member of the Massachusetts' Historical Society.
But Mr. Petigru was not perfect. He too had his faults. He was fond of joking, and his jokes were sometimes too coarse and broad in their character. And then too, like George Washington, he would occasionally swear, both to his own hurt and that of his reputation. These were blemishes upon his character. A great man cannot be too careful in his conduct. Others will observe him closely and oftentimes follow in his footsteps.
And now that we have reached a conclusion, how shall we sum up his life? Judge Samuel McCowan, formerly a member of the Su
preme Court of South Carolina, who knew Mr. Petigru well, in speaking of him to the writer, said that he was a great man, that he was honest and charitable, and that he was loyal to his friends. Hon. Daniel Pope, a professor of law in the University of South Carolina, in an address upon his life, ascribes to him genius, wit, magnetic oratory, and quaint originality.
Judge John Belton O'Neall, showed the high estimate he put upon Mr. Petigru by dedicating to him his own great work, O'Neall's Bench and Bar of South Carolina. I will close by saying that Mr. Petigru was a fine lawyer, a great statesman, that he was loyal to his convictions of duty, his friends and his country, and that he was a brave, honest, generous, noble-souled man.
WALTER L. MILLER,
Abbeville, S. C.
[The Times, Richmond, Va., June 6, 1897.]
SOME OF THE CLEAR DEDUCTIONS FROM THE RECORD.
General Lee Suffered for Want of Proper Information-Just Enough to Mislead Brought on the Battle-The Reports.
I think it is now generally conceded that if the Gettysburg campaign had been successful it would have secured the independance of the Confederacy. The failure to accomplish this, or any result favorable to the Confederacy, has centred upon it the most minute scrutiny, and yet I have not seen written anywhere what appears to me to be some of the clear deductions from the records. I propose to outline some of these deductions.
General Lee having transferred his army from in front of Fredericksburg to the Lower Valley, without a single mishap, and having captured there all the artillery, and either captured or dispersed all the Union troops occupying it, during which time General Hooker had conformed the movements of the Army of the Potomac to his, without attempting to disconcert his plans, and that army was then in the counties of Loudoun and Fairfax (between him and the Capi
tol), on the 22d day of June, 1863, ordered Lieutenant-General Ewell to move his corps to the line of the Susquehannah—one division to cross over the mountain and pass through Gettysburg to York, Pa., with a view of indicating a movement upon Baltimore, as he writes in his first report (p. 307): In order to retain it (the Union Army), on the east side of the mountains, after it should enter Maryland, and thus leave open our communications with the Potomac through Hagerstown and Williamsport, General Ewell had been instructed to send a division eastward from Chambersburg to cross the South Mountain. Early's division was detached for this service. and proceeded as far east as York." Ewell, with the other two divisions was directed to proceed north, up the Valley, through Chambersburg to Harrisonburg, which place, General Ewell says in his report, he was ordered to capture.
THE FIRST ERROR.
Longstreet and Hill crossed the Potomac on the 26th, and reached Chambersburg on the evening of the 27th. The same day Ewell with his two divisions reached Carlisle, and Early with the other, the neighborhood of York. The infantry was now admirably arranged for an advance upon Harrisburg, and from there, upon Philadelphia and New York, with nothing in that direction to oppose it but hastily gathered militia. The army had found, in the country occupied, abundant supplies of subsistance and forage, as well as horses and other quartermaster supplies.
Unfortunately, General Lee had, before leaving Virginia given his consent that Stuart, with three brigades of his cavalry, should pass around in rear of Hooker's army and cross the Potomac between it and Washington, whilst the other two brigades were left to guard the mountain passes in Virginia, and observe the movements of Hooker's army, with orders to make reports directly to General Lee or Longstreet. Nothing was heard from either division until Stuart reported at Gettysburg in the afternoon of July 2nd, and Robertson on the 3rd. The consequences of that error were soon apparent, for to it was due the fact that General Lee assumed the aggressive against Meade's army and attacked it in position as will
On the 28th, General Lee, thinking from not hearing from the cavalry that Hooker had not left Virginia-writes (p. 307): "Preparations were now made to advance upon Harrisburg; but on the night of the 28th, information was received from a scout that the
Federal army, having crossed the Potomac, was advancing northward, and that the head of the column had reached the South Mountain. As our communications with the Potomac were menaced, it was resolved to prevent his further progress in that direction by cencentrating our army on the east side of the mountains. Accordingly, Longstreet and Hill were directed to proceed from Chambersburg to Gettysburg, to which point General Ewell was also instructed to march from Carlisle."
THE ADVANCE ARRESTED.
Again, in his later and more carefully considered report, after the reports from all the different parts of the army had been received by him, he writes (p. 316): "The advance upon Harrisburg was arrested by intelligence received from a scout on the night of the 28th, to the effect, that the army of General Hooker had crossed the Potomac, and was approaching the South Mountain. In the absence of the cavalry it was impossible to ascertain his intentions; but to deter him from advancing further west and intercepting our communications with Virginia, it was determined to concentrate the army east of the mountains.'
Acting under the impression produced by the scout's information, that the Union army was moving westward towards Hagerstown, on the line of his communications with Virginia, it must have been a great surprise to him, when his leading divisions approached Gettysburg, to find Meade's advance was there ahead of him.
It had evidently been General Lee's plan to operate west of the South Mountain range, and keep General Meade east of it, as the sending Early east of it to threaten Baltimore clearly indicates. In case the Union army crossed over in spite of his manœuvres to prevent it, he relied upon the fact that the concentration of his army at Gettysburg would place him nearer to Baltimore than it, and unless his move was quickly responded to by it, he could interpose his army between Baltimore and Washington on the one side and the Union army on the other. He was in error in supposing that contingency had arisen, though it appears from the fact on the morning of the 28th, three of the seven corps of the Union army were in the Catoctin Valley, near Middleton, and one other at Knoxville, with the passes in the South Mountain heavily guarded, that it was Hooker's purpose to have crossed over as General Lee supposod he was doing.