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The occupation of Memphis by the enemy was a serious disaster to the South, although it did not open the Mississippi; for it gave him extraordinary facilities for almost daily reinforcements of men and supplies, and for the preparation of expeditions to penetrate to the heart of the Confederacy.
But the enemy received a check on the Mississippi where he had least expected it. On the 24th of June, his combined fleet retired, and abandoned the siege of Vicksburg, without accomplishing any thing, after a siege of six weeks. No injury was sustained by any of the batteries at Vicksburg. The number of shells thrown into the city and at the batteries amounted to 25,000. The casualties in the city were one woman and one negro man killed, and among the soldiers on guard and at the batteries there were twenty-two killed and wounded. The lower bombarding fleet, under command of Coms. Farragut and Porter, consisted of 18 gun and mortar boats, 5 sloops-of-war and 70 transports; the upper fleet consisted of 11 gunboats and rams, and 13 transports, under command of Com. Davis.
The people of the South found in the defence of Vicksburg a splendid lesson of magnanimity and disinterested patriotism. For several weeks the city had resisted successfully the attack of the enemy's gunboats, mortar fleets, and heavy siege guns. She was threatened by powerful fleets above and below, and yet, with unexampled spirit, the Queen City of the Bluffs sustained the iron storm that was rained upon her for weeks with continued fury. .
New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Natchez, and Memphis were in the hands of the Yankees, and their possession by the enemy might have furnished to Vicksburg, in its exposed and desperate situation, the usual excuses of timidity and selfishness for its surrender. But the brave city resisted these vile and unmanly excuses, and gave to the world one of the proudest and most brilliant illustrations of the earnestness and devotion of the people of the South that had yet adorned the war.
The fact that but little hopes could be entertained of the eventual success of the defence of Vicksburg against the powerful concentration of the enemy's navy heightened the nobility of the resistance she made. The resistance of the enemy in circumstances which afford but a feeble and uncertain pros
pect of victory requires a great spirit; but it is more invaluble to us than a hundred easy victories; it teaches the enemy that we are invincible and overcomes him with despair; it exhibits to the world the inspirations and moral grandeur of our cause; and it educates our people in chivalry and warlike virtues by the force of illustrious examples of selfdevotion.
But the people of the South had the satisfaction of witnessing an unexpected issue of victory in the siege of Vicksburg, and had occasion to learn another lesson that the history of all wars indicates, that the practical test of resistance affords the only sure determination whether a place is defensible or not. With a feeling of inexpressible pride did Vicksburg behold two immense fleets, each of which had been heretofore invincible, brought to bay, and unable to cope with her, kept at a respectful distance, and compelled to essay the extraordinary task of digging a new channel for the Mississippi.
In the month of July occurred the remarkable expedition of the celebrated John Morgan into Kentucky. The expedition of this cavalier was one of the most brilliant, rapid, and successful raids recorded in history. Composed of a force less than one thousand, consisting of Morgan's own regiment, with some partizan rangers from Georgia, and a Texas squadron, to which was attached two companies of Tennessee cavalry, it penetrated as far as Cynthianna. It was Morgan's intention to make a stand at Richmond, Kentucky, to await reinforcements, as he was persuaded that nearly the whole people of that State was ready to rise and join him; but finding that the enemy were endeavoring to envelope him with large bodies of cavalry, he was compelled to fall back. On reaching Somerset, he took possession of the telegraph, and very coolly countermanded all the previous orders that had been given by Gen. Boyle at Louisville to pursue him.
He had left Knoxville on the fourth day of July with nine hundred men, and returned to Lexington on the 28th with nearly twelve hundred. In twenty-four days he had penetrated two hundred and fifty miles into a country in full possession of the Yankees; captured seventeen towns; met, fought, and captured a Yankee force superior to his own in numbers; captured three thousand stand of arms at Lebanon; and, from
first to last, destroyed during his raid military stores, railroad bridges, and other property to the value of eight or ten millions of dollars. He accomplished all this, besides putting the people of Cincinnati into a condition, described by one of their newspapers, as "bordering on frenzy," and returned to Tennessee with a loss in all his engagements of not more than ninety men in killed, wounded and missing.
While some activity was shown in extreme portions of the West, we shall see that our military operations from Greenbrier county, Virginia, all the way down to Chattanooga, Tennessee, were conducted with but little vigor. On the boundaries of East Tennessee, Southwestern Virginia and Kentucky, we had a force in the aggregate of thirty thousand men, confronted by probably not half their number of Yankee troops; yet the Southwestern counties of Virginia and the valley of the Clinch, in Tennessee, were entered and mercilessly plundered by the enemy in the face of our troops.
But we shall have occasion to notice the campaign in the West on a broader arena. We shall see how movements in this direction pressed back the discouraged and retreating foe. We shall see how these movements of the Confederates were intended to repossess the country previously occupied by them and to go forward to the redemption of the State of Kentucky, and the attack of one or more of the leading cities of the West; how, in the prosecution of this plan, North Alabama and Mississippi were speedily cleared of the footsteps of the foe; how all of Tennessee, save the strongholds of Memphis and Nashville, and the narrow districts commanded by them, were retrieved, and, by converging armies, nearly the whole of Kentucky was occupied and held-and how, at last, all these achievements were reversed in a night's time, and the most valuable and critical points abandoned by our troops, or rather by the will of the unfortunate general who led them.
But our narrative does not yet open on the chequered page of the West. That important part of our history is prefaced by the brilliant story of the summer campaign of the upper Potomac, and is relieved by dazzling lights of glory on the old battle-grounds of Virginia.
Effect of McClellan's Defeat in the North.-Call for more Troops.--Why the North was not easily dispirited.-The War as a Money Job.--Note: Gen. Washington's Opinion of New England.-The Yankee Finances.-Exasperation of Hostilities.-The Yankee Idea of a "Vigorous Prosecution of the War."-Ascendancy of the Radicals. -War Measures at Washington.-Anti-Slavery Aspects of the War.-Brutality of the Yankees. The Insensibility of Europe.-Yankee Chaplains in Virginia.-Seizures of Private Property.-Pope's Orders in Virginia.-Steinwehrs Order respecting Hostages.-The Character and Services of Gen. John Pope.-The "Army of Virginia."Irruption of the Northern Spoilsmen.-The Yankee Trade in Counterfeit Confederate Notes.-Pope's "Chasing the Rebel Hordes."-Movement against Pope by "Stonewall" Jackson.-BATTLE OF CEDAR MOUNTAIN.-McClellan recalled from the Peninsula.-The Third Grand Army of the North.-Jackson's Surprise of the Enemy at Manassas.-A Rapid and Masterly Movement.-Change of the Situation.-Attack by the Enemy upon Bristow Station and at Manassas Junction.-Marshalling of the Hosts. Longstreet's Passage of Thoroughfare Gap.-The Plans of Gen. Lee.-Spirit of our Troops.-Their Painful Marches.-THE SECOND BATTLE OF MANASSAS.-A terrible Bayonet Charge.-Rout of the Enemy.-A hideous Battle-field.-Gen. Lee and the Summer Campaign of Virginia.-Jackson's Share in it.-Extent of the Great Victory of Manassas.-Excitement in Washington.-The Yankee Army falls back upon Alexandria and Washington.-Review of the Situation.-Rapid Change in our Military Fortunes.-What the South had accomplished.-Comparison of Material Strength between North and South.-Humiliating Result to the Warlike Reputation of the North.
THE effect of the defeat of McClellan before Richmond was received at the North with ill-concealed mortification and anxiety. Beneath the bluster of the newspapers, and the affectations of public confidence, disappointment, embarrassment and alarm were perceptible. The people of the North had been so assured of the capture of Richmond, that it was difficult to reanimate them on the heels of McClellan's retreat. The prospects held out to them so long, of ending the war in "sixty days," "crushing out the rebellion," and eating victorious dinners in Richmond, had been bitterly disappointed and were not to be easily renewed. The government at Washington showed its appreciation of the disaster its arms had sustained by making a call for three hundred thousand additional troops;*
The Army Register, published at Washington, in its statement of the organization of the regular army, enumerates as its force si regiments of cavalry, five of artillery, ten of infantry (old army), and nine of infantry (new army).
and the people of the North were urged by every variety of appeal, including large bounties of money, to respond to the stirring call of President Lincoln.
There is no doubt but that the North was seriously discouraged by the events that had taken place before Richmond. But it was a remarkable circumstance, uniformly illustrated in the war, that the North, though easily intoxicated by triumph, was not in the same proportion depressed by defeat. There is an obvious explanation for this peculiarity of temper. As long as the North was conducting the war upon the soil of the Sonth, a defeat there involved more money expenditure and more calls for troops; it involved scarcely any thing else; it had no other horrors, it did not imperil their homes; it might easily be repaired by time. Indeed, there was some sense in the exhortation of some of the Northern orators, to the effect that defeat made their people stronger than ever, because, while it required them to put forth their energies anew, it enabled them to take advantage of experience, to multiply their means of success, and to essay new plans of campaign. No one can doubt but that the celebrated Manassas defeat really strengthened the North; and doubtless the South would have realized the same consequence of the second repulse of the enemy's movements on Richmond, if it had been attended by the same conditions on our part of inaction and repose.
It is curious to observe how completely the ordinary aspects of war were changed and its horrors diminished, with reference to the North, by the false policy of the South, in keeping
The strength of this branch of the service in men, may be thus stated:
The figures which are collected below, to show the organization of the volunteer army of the North, refer to the date of the Register, August 1, 1862.
It appears that at this date there were in the volunteer army of the North seventy regiments of cavalry, seventy of artillery, and eight hundred and sixty regiments of infantry.
These startling official figures give the following result:
Total commissioned officers,