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Ch. X.]

DAVIS'S INAUGURAL AND MESSAGE.

127

the monument erected to commemorate to subjugate us, has already attained his heroic virtues, and those of his com- such fearful dimensions as will subject patriots, we have assembled to usher them to burthens which must continue into existence the permanent govern- to oppress them for generations to ment of the Confederate States. come. Through this instrumentality, under the “Never has a people evinced a more favor of Divine Providence, we hope to determined spirit than that now animatperpetuate the principles of our revo-ing men, women, and children in every lutionary fathers. The day, the me- part of our country. Upon the first mory, and the purpose seem fitly as- call men fly to arms; and wives and sociated.

When a mothers send their husbands and sons long course of class legislation, directed to battle without a murmur of regret. not to the general welfare, but to the “We are in arms to renew such saaggrandizement of the northern section crifices as our fathers made to the holy of the Union, culminated in a warfare cause of constitutional liberty. At the on the domestic institutions of the darkest hour of our struggle the provissouthern states—when the dogmas of ional gives place to the permanent gov- . a sectional party, substituted for the ernment. After a series of successes provisions of the constitutional com- and victories, which covered our arms pact, threatened to destroy the sover- with glory, we have recently met with cign rights of the states, six of those serious disasters. But, in the heart of states, withdrawing from the Union, a people resolved to be free, these dis. confederated together, to exercise the asters tend but to stimulate to increasright and perform the duty of institut- ed resistance.” ing a government which would better

In his message to the Confederate secure the liberties for the preservation. Congress (see p. 100), Davis admitted of which that Union was established. that “events have demonstrated that Whatever of hope some may have enter the government had attempted more tained, that a returning sense of justice than it had power successfully to would remove the danger with which achieve. Hence, in the effort to protect, our rights were threatened, and render by our arms, the whole territory of the it possible to preserve the Union of the Confederate States, seaboard and inland, Constitution, must bave been dispelled we have been so exposed as recently by the malignity and barbarity of the to encounter serious disasters.” His northern states in the prosecution of allusion was to the losses of Fort Donthe existing war.

elson, Roanoke Island, etc.; but, not “Although the tide for the moment is deeming it possible “ that anything so against us, the final result in our favor insane as a persistent attempt to subis not doubtful. The period is near at jugate these states could be made,” he hand when our foes must sink under the did not disguise the strong probability, immense load of debt which they have that the war will be continued through incurred; a debt which, in their effort a series of years." Without undertak.

1862.

ing to present "an accurate statement” activity into the “Confederacy.” It of the confederate military strength, he was now a matter of life or death. It said that it was some 400 regiments of was evident that the loyal states were infantry, with a proportionate force of resolutely determined to crush the re

cavalry and artillery, making in bellion at any cost; and that Davis and

all about half a million of men. those who worked with him were In regard to finances, Davis spoke in equally determined not to submit, so highly congratulatory terms, asserting long as they were able to make any rethat the expenditure for the past year sistance whatsoever. Terrible alternawas only $170,000,000, and that the tive! There was no help for it; the enemy bad wasted three times as much battle had to be fought out, even to the in vainly striving to conquer the con- bitter end; and the awful responsibilifederacy.

ty for shedding of blood, for carnage, With such sentiments as these, mak- cruelty, suffering, distress, and the thouing such representations as the above, sand evils attendant upon war, must and well understanding that the strug: rest upon the men who, without any gle was no light one in which he was en just or reasonable cause, began the regaged, Davis tried to sustain his own bellion of 1861, and persevered in it for hopes and to infuse additional life and four weary, desolating years.

CHAPTER XI.

186.

MILITARY OPERATIONS IN VIRGINIA: THE MERRIMAC AND THE MONITOR.

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Genera. McClellan's preparations — Delays— War order for the campaign - McClellan's plan — Army corps

ordered — Jackson's attack on our troops at Hancock - Lander's success - Col. Geary's march-Winchester evacuated — Rebels fall back — Manassas abandoned — Our troops occupy it - Public feeling - McClellan relieved of command-inc-hief — New departments formed — McClellan's address to the troops - Advance by way of Fortress Monroe determined on — Importance of the contest between the Merrimac and the Monitor - The arming of the Merrimac- Inactivity of the navy department - Merrimac's attack on our ships — Success — Fearful blow of the ram - The Cumberland sunk, colors flying - The Congress surrenders — Set on fire and blown up — The Minnesota not attacked that day - Gloomy Saturday night - The Monitor arrives — Peculiarity of build, etc. — Reappearance of the Merrimac, Sunday morning — The Monitor meets her — The encounter — The victory - Gen. Shields's success over Jackson at Winchester — Troops embarked for the Peninsula — McClellan's expectations as to his force — Disappointment — His plan in general — Movements — McDowell's corps detached – McClellan's views Question as to number of the troops — Siege of Yorktown - President's letter to McClellan — Gen. W.F. Smith's exploit - Fredericksburg taken — New Market also Rebels determine to evacuate Yorktown, and retire in safety.

GEN. MOCLELLAN, in following the engaged, as we have seen (page 92—3). plans which he had adopted in regard in making vast and extensive preparato offer :ive operations in Virginia, wastions for a campaign early in 1862.

CH, XI.]

MCCLELLAN'S PLAN OF CAMPAIGN.

129

A ma

Estimating the rebel forces at 150,000, The president put various queries to and supposing them to be well discip- McClellan in regard to the comparative lined and thoroughly entrenched and values of the two plans, his and Mcsupplied with artillery (see p. 94), Mc- Clellan's ; to which the general-in-chief Clellan was unwilling to advance upon answered in a lengthy paper, February Manassas during the early part of the 3d, given in his Report, urging strongly winter, notwithstanding severe censure that the base of operations by the was cast upon him for delay and in Lower Chesapeake “afforded the short. explicable tardiness. The president est possible route to Richmond, and did not pretend to know inuch, if any, struck directly at the heart of the thing, about military science, and the enemy's power in the east.” secretary of war, though bred to the jority of the general officers, who met law and full of zeal and spirit, was not at McClellan's headquarters, approved probally better able to judge than Mr. of his plans to move by the Chesapeake Lincoln of the reasons which weighed and Rappahannock, ascending to so strongly with the general-in-chief Urbana on the Rappahannock, and against what he considered to be pre. thence crossing to Richmond, between mature, unprepared action.

forty and fifty miles westwardly. Although the roads previously had Mr. Lincoln, at one time convinced been good, yet towards the close of by interviews with McClellan that the December, 1861, they became unfavor- plans of the latter were the best, at anable, and grew more and more so as the other quite confident that his own and season advanced. Early in February, his secretary's were preferable, hesitatMcClellan, affirming that he could ed in his action, and seemed to assent “fix no definite time for an advance," with reluctance to any of the proposideclared that “the roads have gone tions of the general-in-chief. On the from bad to worse; nothing like their 8th of March, the president issued his present condition was ever known here“ General War Order No. 2;" by which before; they are impassable at present.” | it was directed that the Army of the About the middle of January, McClellan Potomac be organized into four army recovered from a severe illness, and corps. The first, consisting of four soon learned how anxious the govern. divisions, was assigned to Gen. Mc

ment was for an immediate Dowell; the second, consisting of three

movement. The general-in. divisions, to Gen. Sumner; the third chief wished to attack Richmond by and the fourth, consisting each of three the Lower Chesapeake; which, how. divisions, to Gens. Heintzelman and ever, Mr. Lincoln did not approve, and Keyes. Gen. Wadsworth was placed issued a special war order, January in command of the troops for the de31st, directing that a point on the rail. fence of Washington; and a fifth army road southwest of Manassas Junction corps, consisting of two divisions, was be seized and occupied, the troops to assigned to Gen. Banks.* On the same move on or before February 22d.

1862.

* Gen. McClellan complains, in his Report, that this

VOL. IV.-17.

day, a third war order was issued, re- Dunning, at Romney, made an attack quiring that no operations be entered on the enemy stationed at Blue's Gap, a upon without leaving Washington strong position, sixteen miles distant, entirely secure, and without clearing on the road to Winchester, and routed the navigation of the Potomac from the them completely. Lander joined Kelly enemy's batteries and other obstruc- at Cumberland, and went thence to tions. The movement upon the Chesa- Romney; but finding that Jackson had peake, as McClellan wished, was also nearly surrounded him with a large ordered to move, as early as the 18th force, he marched all night to Springof March, or earlier, it possible. field. Jackson did not follow him, but

Meanwhile, events, some of them of retired to Winchester. Subsequently, great importance, had occurred at vari- Moorfield was captured; and by a spiritous points in Virginia, since the begin. ed dash upon the rebel position at ning of the war. These may properly Bloomery Gap, Lander took the enemy here be noted, as having, to a consider completely hy surprise, several officers able extent, modified Gen. McClellan's and men, in all seventy-five, being made plan of the campaign.

prisoners. On the 11th of February, Early in January, the rebel Gen. Lander telegraphed to McClellan that Jackson, who had been purposing for the district was cleared of the enemy. some time to move from Winchester to The war department (February 17th)

the northwest, left that place, acknowledged the activity and valuable

and advanced towards Hancock, services of Gen. Lander; but he was some forty miles distant. Arriving at compelled to resign on account of ill Bath, through a pitiless storm of snow health, and died on the 2d of March. and hail, he drove out four companies On the 24th of February, Colonel of our troops, who retreated to Han. Geary (of Banks's command,) crossed cock, across the Potomac, and made a the Potomac, and took possession of stand on receiving reinforcements there. Harper's Ferry, which, half-burned and Jackson followed and demanded the plundered by the rebels, was mostly surrender of the town; but Gen. deserted by its inbabitants. The Lander, who was in command, refused heights being secured, a strong force oc. peremptorily. Firing across the river cupied Charlestown on the 28th, on the was tried by both parties, but to little advance to Winchester. Martinsburg, purpose. Jackson moved westwardly, an important town on the Baltimore and Lander made his preparations to and Ohio Railroad, was occupied on cross into Virginia soon after. Colonel the 3d of March, and Smithfield on the

6th. The enemy, in the direction of order was issued hastily, without consultation at all with him. He affirms that he had always been in Winchester, were evidently falling favor of the principle of organization into army back ; and it was expected that a stand corps, but he did not think that the time had come as yet for this. “ These views had been frequently ex

would be made at that place by Jack. pressed by me to the president and members of the son. Geary, meanwhile, advanced with cabinet ; it was therefore with as much regret as sur

his force and occupied Lovettsville, and

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prise that I learned the existence of this order."

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