American Civil War : 1862

In January 1862 the Union Army began to push the Confederates southward. The following month Ulysses S. Grant took his army along the Tennessee River with a flotilla of gunboats and captured Fort Henry. This broke the communications of the extended Confederate line and Joseph E. Johnston decided to withdraw his main army to Nashville. He left 15,000 men to protect Fort Donelson on the Cumberland River but this was not enough and Grant had no difficulty taking this prize as well. With western Tennessee now secured, Abraham Lincoln was now able to set up a Union government in Nashville by appointing Andrew Johnson as its new governor.

General George McClellan appointed Allan Pinkerton to employ his agents to spy on the Confederate Army. His reports exaggerated the size of the enemy and McClellan was unwilling to launch an attack until he had more soldiers available. Under pressure from Radical Republicans in Congress, President Lincoln decided in January, 1862, to remove the conservative Simon Cameron as Secretary of War, and replace him with Edwin M. Stanton.

Soon after this Lincoln ordered George McClellan to appear before a committee investigating the way the war was being fought. On 15th January, 1862, McClellan had to face the hostile questioning of Benjamin Wade and Zachariah Chandler. Wade asked McClellan why he was refusing to attack the Confederate Army. He replied that he had to prepare the proper routes of retreat. Chandler then said: "General McClellan, if I understand you correctly, before you strike at the rebels you want to be sure of plenty of room so that you can run in case they strike back." Wade added "Or in case you get scared". After McClellan left the room, Wade and Chandler came to the conclusion that McClellan was guilty of "infernal, unmitigated cowardice".

As a result of this meeting Abraham Lincoln decided he must find a way to force McClellan into action. On 31st January he issued General War Order Number One. This ordered McClellan to begin the offensive against the enemy before the 22nd February. Lincoln also insisted on being consulted about McClellan's military plans. Lincoln disagreed with McClellan's desire to attack Richmond from the east. Lincoln only gave in when the division commanders voted 8 to 4 in favour of McClellan's strategy. However, Lincoln no longer had confidence in McClellan and removed him from supreme command of the Union Army. He also insisted that McClellan left 30,000 men behind to defend Washington.

Albert S. Johnston and Pierre T. Beauregard reunited their Confederate armies near the Tennessee-Mississippi line. With 55,000 men they now outnumbered the forces led by Ulysses S. Grant. On 6th April the Confederate Army attacked Grant's army at Shiloh. Taken by surprise, Grant's army suffered heavy losses until the arrival of General Don Carlos Buell and reinforcements.

During the fighting Albert S. Johnston was killed and the new commander, Pierre T. Beauregard, decided to retreat to Corinth, Mississippi. Shiloh was the greatest battle so far of the Civil War. The Union Army suffered 13,000 casualties and the Confederates lost 10,000. However, the Union Army, with the arrival of General Henry Halleck and his troops, were now the stronger and had little difficulty driving Beauregard out of Corinth.

The difference in manpower between the two sides was now becoming more noticeable. Whereas the Union consisted of 23 states and 22,000,000 people, the Confederacy had only 9,000,000 people (including 3,500,000 slaves). President Jefferson Davis now announced that the South could not win the war without conscription. In April the Confederate Congress passed the Conscription Act which drafted white men between eighteen and thirty-five for three years' service.

In May, 1862 General David Hunter began enlisting black soldiers in the occupied districts of South Carolina. He was ordered to disband the 1st South Carolina (African Descent) but eventually got approval from Congress for his action. Hunter also issued a statement that all slaves owned by Confederates in the area were free. Lincoln quickly ordered Hunter to retract his proclamation as he still feared that this action would force slave-owners in border states to join the Confederates.

Radical Republicans were furious and John Andrew, the governor of Massachusetts, said that "from the day our government turned its back on the proclamation of General Hunter, the blessing of God has been withdrawn from our arms." The actions of General David Hunter and Lincoln's reaction stimulated a discussion on the recruitment of black soldiers in the Northern press. Wendell Phillips asked, "How many times are we to save Kentucky and lose the war?" This debate was also taking place in the Cabinet, as Edwin M. Stanton was now advocating the creation of black regiments in the Union Army.

Horace Greeley, editor of the New York Tribune, one of the leaders of the anti-slavery movement, urged Lincoln to "convert the war into a war on slavery". Lincoln replied that he would continue to place the Union ahead of all else. "My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave, I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves, I would do it; and if I could do it by freeing some and leaving others alone, I would also do that."

The federal fleet under David Farragut captured the forts guarding the New Orleans in April, 1862. The following month General Benjamin F. Butler and his troops took control of the city. Butler was accused of treating Rebels very harshly and after ordering the execution of a man who had torn down the United States flag, he was nicknamed the "beast". Alexander Walker, a pro-Confederate journalist who was one of those arrested, complained that the prisoners were: "closely confined in portable houses and furnished with the most wretched and unwholesome condemned soldiers' rations." He added that some were "compelled to wear a ball and chain, which is never removed."

President Jefferson Davis accused General Butler of "inciting African slaves to insurrection" by arming them for war. Davis issued a statement ordering that Butler "no longer be considered or treated simply as a public enemy of the Confederate States of America, but as an outlaw and common enemy of mankind, and that, in the event of his capture, the officer in command of the captured force do cause him to be immediately executed by hanging."

During the summer of 1862, George McClellan and the Army of the Potomac, took part in what became known as the Peninsular Campaign. The main objective was to capture Richmond, the base of the Confederate government. McClellan and his 115,000 troops encountered the Confederate Army at Williamsburg on 5th May. After a brief battle the Confederate forces retreated South.

McClellan moved his troops into the Shenandoah Valley and along with John C. Fremont, Irvin McDowell and Nathaniel Banks surrounded Thomas Stonewall Jackson and his 17,000 man army. First Jackson attacked John C. Fremont at Cross Keys before turning on Irvin McDowell at Port Republic. Jackson then rushed his troops east to join up with Joseph E. Johnston and the Confederate forces fighting McClellan in the suburbs the city. General Johnson with some 41,800 men counter-attacked McClellan's slightly larger army at Fair Oaks. The Union Army lost 5,031 men and the Confederate Army 6,134. Johnson was badly wounded during the battle and General Robert E. Lee now took command of the Confederate forces.

On 26th June, 1862, Major General John Pope, was appointed the commander of the new Army of Virginia. Pope soon made it clear he intended to develop an aggressive approach to the war. Soon after taking command he issued a proclamation to his troops: "I have come to you from the West, where we have always seen the backs of our enemies; from an army whose business it has been to seek the adversary, and to beat him where he was found; whose policy has been attack and not defense. I presume that I have been called here to pursue the same system and to lead you against the enemy. It is my purpose to do so, and that speedily."

Major General Pope was instructed to move east to Blue Ridge Mountains towards Charlottesville. It was hoped that this move would help McClellan by drawing Robert E. Lee away from defending Richmond. Lee's 80,000 troops were now faced with the prospect of fighting two large armies: McClellan (90,000) and Pope (50,000) Joined by Thomas Stonewall Jackson, James Longstreet, and George Pickett, the Confederate troops attacked McClellan at Gaines Mill. and on 27th June. After severe fighting the Union Army losses were 893 killed, 3,107 wounded and 2,836 missing. Whereas the Confederate Army had 8,751 killed and wounded.

George McClellan wrote to President Abraham Lincoln complaining that a lack of resources was making it impossible to defeat the Confederate forces. He also made it clear that he was unwilling to employ tactics that would result in heavy casualties. He claimed that "every poor fellow that is killed or wounded almost haunts me!" On 1st July, 1862, McClellan and Lincoln met at Harrison Landing. McClellan once again insisted that the war should be waged against the Confederate Army and not slavery.

In July, 1862, John Pope decided to try a capture Gordonsville, a railroad junction between Richmond and the Shenandoah Valley. Pope selected Nathaniel Banks to carry out the task. Robert E. Lee considered Gordonsville to be strategically very important and sent Thomas Stonewall Jackson to protect the town. On 9th August, Jackson defeated Banks at Cedar Run. George McClellan and army based at Harrison's Landing was told to join Pope's campaign to take the railroad junction. When Lee heard this news he brought together all the troops he had available to Gordonsville.

On 29th August, troops led by Thomas Stonewall Jackson and James Longstreet, attacked Pope's Union Army at Manassas, close to where the first battle of Bull Run had been fought. Pope and his army was forced to retreat across Bull Run. The Confederate Army pursued the Army of Virginia until they reached Chantilly on 1st September. The Union Army lost 15,000 men at Bull Run. Pope was blamed for the defeat. A staff officer later recalled that "Pope was entirely deceived and outgeneralled. His own conceit and pride of opinion led him into these mistakes." Relieved of his command Pope was sent to Minnesota to deal with a Sioux uprising.

The government was now seriously concerned about the poor performance of the Union Army and Salmon Chase (Secretary of the Treasury), Edwin M. Stanton (Secretary of War) and vice president Hannibal Hamlin, who were all strong opponents of slavery, led the campaign to have George McClellan sacked. Unwilling to do this, Abraham Lincoln decided to put McClellan in charge of all forces in the Washington area.

George McClellan became a field commander again when the Confederate Army invaded Maryland in September. McClellan and Major General Ambrose Burnside attacked the armies of Robert E. Lee and Thomas Stonewall Jackson at Antietam on 17th September. Outnumbered, Lee and Jackson held out until more troops arrived. It was the most costly day of the war with the Union Army having 2,108 killed, 9,549 wounded and 753 missing.

Although far from an overwhelming victory, Lincoln realized the significance of Antietam and on 22nd September, 1862, he felt strong enough to issue his Emancipation Proclamation. Lincoln told the nation that from the 1st January, 1863, all slaves in states or parts of states, still in rebellion, would be freed. However, to keep the support of the conservatives in the government, this proclamation did not apply to border slave states: Delaware, Maryland, Kentucky and Missouri that had remained loyal.

Lincoln now wanted George McClellan to go on the offensive against the Confederate Army. However, McClellan refused to move, complaining that he needed fresh horses. Radical Republicans now began to openly question McClellan's loyalty. "Could the commander be loyal who had opposed all previous forward movements and only made this advance after the enemy had been evacuated" wrote George W. Julian. Whereas William P. Fessenden came to the conclusion that McClellan was "utterly unfit for his position".

Frustrated by McClellan unwillingness to attack, Abraham Lincoln recalled him to Washington with the words: "My dear McClellan: If you don't want to use the Army I should like to borrow it for a while." On 7th November Lincoln removed McClellan from all commands and replaced him with Ambrose Burnside.

Throughout the autumn of 1862 the Confederate Army continued to make progress in Kentucky. However, in September, General E. Kirby Smith was halted by Union troops led by General Don Carlos Buell in Covington. The following month General Braxton Bragg installed a Confederate government in Frankfort, Kentucky. However, this was short-lived and on 8th October, 1862, Bragg came under attack at Perryville (Chaplin Hills). During the battle Don Carlos Buell lost 4,211 men (845 killed, 2,851 wounded, and 515 missing) whereas Braxton Bragg lost 3,396 (510 killed, 2635 wounded and 251 missing). After the battle Bragg was forced to retreat back to Tennessee.

General Ambrose Burnside had replaced George McClellan as commander of the Army of the Potomac on 7th November, 1862. After complaints that had been made by President Abraham Lincoln and the Secretary of War, Edwin M. Stanton, about the inaction of the Union Army, Burnside was determined to immediately launch an attack on the Confederate Army. With a force of 122,000, Burnside, Joseph Hooker, Edwin Sumner, William Franklin attacked General Robert E. Lee and his army of 78,500, at Fredericksburg, Virginia, on 13th December. Sharpshooters based in the town initially delayed the Union Army from building a pontoon bridge across the Rappahnnock River.

After clearing out the snipers the federal forces had the problem of mounting frontal assaults against troops commanded by James Longstreet. At the end of the day the Union Army had 12,700 men killed or wounded. The well protected Confederate Army suffered losses of 5,300. Ambrose Burnside wanted to renew the attack the following morning but was talked out of it by his commanders.

Primary Sources

(1) George Julian, speech in the Senate on the American Civil War (14th January, 1862)

This rebellion is a bloody and frightful demonstration of the fact that slavery and freedom cannot dwell together in peace. Why is it, that in the great centres of slavery treason is rampant, while, as we recede into regions in which the slaves are few and scattered, as in Western Virginia, Delaware, and other border States, we find the people loyally disposed toward the Union?

I know it was not the purpose of this administration, at first, to abolish slavery, but only to save the Union, and maintain the old order of things. Neither was it the purpose of our fathers, in the beginning of the Revolution, to insist on independence. The policy of emancipation has been born of the circumstances of the rebellion, which every hour more and more plead for it. I believe the popular demand now is, or soon will be, the total extirpation of slavery as the righteous purpose of the war, and the only means of a lasting peace.

When General Fremont proclaimed freedom to the slaves of rebels in Missouri, it was greeted with almost universal joy throughout the free States. The popular instinct at once recognized it as a blow struck at the heart of the rebellion. The order that rebels should be shot did not carry with it half the significance of this proclamation of freedom of their slaves. But the President at once modified it, so far as its anti-slavery features went beyond the Confiscation Act. Their slave property must be held as more sacred than any other property; more sacred than their lives; more sacred even than the life of the Republic. Could any policy be more utterly suicidal?

(2) In his autobiography published in 1907 General Oliver Howard commented on the way that Abraham Lincoln treated General George McClellan during the early months of 1862.

Mr. Lincoln evidently had begun to distrust McClellan. There was growing opposition to him everywhere for political reasons. Think of the antislavery views of Stanton and Chase; of the growing antislavery sentiments of the congressional committee on the conduct of war; think of the number of generals like Fremont, Butler, Banks, Hunter, and others in everyday correspondence with the Cabinet, whose convictions were already strong that the slaves should be set free; think, too, of the Republican press constantly becoming more and more of the same opinion and the masses of the people really leading the press. McClellan's friends in the army had often offended the Northern press. In his name radical antislavery correspondents had been expelled from the army.

(3) John Worsham wrote about his experiences in the Confederate Army under Thomas Stonewall Jackson in his book One of Jackson's Foot Cavalry.

One afternoon the whole division was ordered out to witness the execution of three Confederate soldiers from, another division. They were to be shot for some violation of the laws of the army. The division formed three sides of a hollow square, the forth being open. Three stakes were fixed in the ground about the centre of this open side. Soon after our formation, an officer and a guard appeared with the prisoners. The condemned were made to kneel with their backs to the stakes to which they were securely tied. The guns had already been loaded. It is said that six had balls and six did not - so no man would know whether he killed one of the prisoners. The twelve men took their places about thirty feet in front of the three prisoners. The order to fire was given and, at the report of the guns, two men were killed - the balls going through each. The third man, while shot, was not killed. One of the detail was ordered to place another gun against the man's breast and to fire. The shot killed him instantly.

(4) John Worsham served under General Thomas Stonewall Jackson. After the war he explained how the Confederate Army was always short of weapons.

At the commencement of the war, the Southern army was as poorly armed as any body of men ever had been. In the infantry, my own regiment as an example, one company had Springfield muskets, one had Enfield, one had Mississippi rifles, the remainder the old smooth bore flint-lock musket that had been altered to a percussion gun. The cavalry was so badly equipped that hardly a company was uniform in that particular; some had sabres, nothing more, some had double-barrel guns, some had nothing but lances. It did not take long for the army of Northern Virginia to arm itself with better material. When Jackson's troops marched from the Valley to Richmond to join Lee in his attack on McClellan, they had captured enough arms from the enemy to replace all that were inferior, and after the battles around Richmond all departments of Lee's army were as well armed.

(5) Reverend George F. Noyes, was a supporter of the Radical Republicans and on 4th July, 1862, preached a sermon to the Union Army based at Fredericksburg, Virginia.

When a man puts a knife at my throat, and I succeed in conquering and hand-cuffing him, shall I be so foolish as at once to restore him to his former position, knife and all? Let every man's own common sense answer this question. The idea with some even at the North is, that the South is to be acknowledged as an equal nation if triumphant, while, if she is subdued after the great and fearful struggle, she is at once to be invited into a front seat, and at once admitted to all her old privileges.

(6) Carl Schurz served as an officer under General John Fremont during the American Civil War. He wrote about him in his autobiography.

I joined General Fremont's army at Harrisonburg, Virginia, on June 10th, 1862, and reported myself for duty. At the beginning of the Civil War I heard him spoken of in Washington as one of the coming heroes of the conflict, in most extravagant terms. I remember especially Mr. Montgomery Blair, the Postmaster General in Mr. Lincoln's administration, insisting that Mr. Fremont must at once be given large and important military command, and predicting that the genius and energy of this remarkable man would soon astonish the country. Fremont was, indeed, promptly made a major general in the regular army, and entrusted with the command of the Department of the West, including the State of Illinois and all the country from the Mississippi to the Rocky Mountains, with headquarters at St. Louis. But he sorely disappointed the sanguine expectations of his friends. He displayed no genius for organization. Fremont's headquarters seemed to have a marked attraction for rascally speculators of all sorts, and there was much scandal caused by the awarding of profitable contracts of persons of bad repute.

(7) Ulysses Grant, wrote about the Battle of Shiloh in his autobiography published in 1885.

Some two or three miles from Pittsburgh landing was a log meeting house called Shiloh. It stood on the ridge which divides the waters of Snake and Lick creeks, the former emptying into the Tennessee just north of Pittsburgh landing, and the later south. This point was the key to our position and was held by Sherman. His division was at that time wholly raw, no part of it ever having been in an engagement; but I thought this deficiency was more than made up by the superiority of the commander.

The nature of this battle was such that cavalry could not be used in front; I therefore formed ours into line in rear, to stop stragglers - to whom there were many. When there would be enough of them to make a show, and after they had recovered from their fright, they would be sent to reinforce some part of the line which needed support, without regard to their companies, regiments or brigades.

General Albert Sidney Johnson, who commanded the Confederate forces at the beginning of the battle, was disabled by a wound on the afternoon of the first day. This wound, as I understood afterwards, was not necessarily fatal, or even dangerous. But he was a man who would not abandon what he deemed an important trust in the face of danger and consequently continued in the saddle, commanding, until so exhausted by the loss of blood that he had to be taken from his horse, and soon after died.

General Beauregard was next in rank to Johnson and succeeded to the command, which he retained to the close of the battle and during the subsequent retreat on Corinth, as well as in the siege of that place. His tactics have been severely criticized by Confederate writers, but I do not believe his fallen chief could have done any better under the circumstances. Some of these critics claim that Shiloh was won when Johnson fell, and that if he had not fallen the army under me would have been annihilated or captured.

Our loss in the two days' fight was 1,754 killed, 8,408 wounded and 2,885 missing. Of these, 2,103 were in the Army of the Ohio. Beauregard reported a total loss of 10,699, of whom 1,728 were killed, 8,012 wounded and 957 missing. This estimate must be incorrect. We buried, by actual count, more of the enemy's dead alone than is here reported, and 4,000 was the estimate of the burial parties for the whole field.

(8) William Sherman wrote about the Battle of Shiloh in his memoirs that were published in 1875.

Probably no single battle of the war gave rise to such wild and damaging reports. It was publicly asserted at the North that our army was taken completely by surprise; that the rebels caught us in our tents; bayoneted the men in their beds; that General Grant was drunk; that Buell's opportune arrival saved the Army of the Tennessee from utter annihilation, etc. The controversy was started and kept up, mostly to the personal prejudice of General Grant, who as usual maintained an imperturbable silence.

The rebel army, commanded by General Albert Sidney Johnson, was, according to their own reports and admissions, forty-five thousand strong, had the momentum of attack, and beyond all question fought skillfully from early morning till about 2 p.m. when their commander-in-chief was killed by ball in the calf of his leg, which penetrated the boot and severed the main artery. There was then a perceptible lull for a couple of hours, when the attack was renewed, but with much less vehemence, and continued up to dark.

Beauregard afterward reported his entire loss at 10,699. Our aggregate loss, made up from official statements, shows 1700 killed, 7,495 wounded and 3,022 prisoners; aggregate, 12,217, of which 2,167 were in Buell's army, leaving for that of Grant 10,050.

(9) After the war Ambrose Bierce wrote an article, What I Saw of Shiloh, about arriving with General Don Carlos Buell after the Battle of Shiloh.

There were men enough; all dead, apparently, except one, who lay near where I halted my platoon to await the slower movements of the line - a federal sergeant, variously hurt, who had been a fine giant in his time. He lay face upward, taking in his breath in convulsive, rattling snorts, and blowing it out in sputters of froth which crawled creamily down his cheek, piling itself alongside his neck and ears. A bullet had clipped a groove in his skull, above the temple; from this the brain protruded in bosses, dropping off in flakes and strings.

The woods had caught fire and the bodies had been cremated. They lay, half buried in ashes; some in the unlovely looseness of attitude denoting sudden death by the bullet, but by far the greater number in postures of agony that told of the tormenting flames. Their clothing was half burnt away - their hair and beard entirely; the rain had come too late to save their nails. Some were swollen to double girth; others shriveled to manikins. According to degree of exposure, their faces were bloated and black or yellow and shrunken. The contraction of muscles which had given claws for hands had cursed each countenance with a hideous grin.

(10) In his autobiography Oliver Howard describes the aftermath of a battlefield during Peninsular Campaign.

As we approached the front a thick mist was setting in and a dark cloudy sky was over our heads, so that it was not easy at twenty yards to distinguish a man from a horse. Miles, guiding us, remarked: "General, you had better dismount and lead your horses, for the dead and wounded are here.

A peculiar feeling crept over me as I put my feet on the soft ground and followed the young officer. Some stretchers were in motion. A few friends were searching for faces they hoped to find. There were cries of delirium, calls of the helpless, the silence of the slain, and the hum of distant voices in the advancing brigade, with the intermittent rattle of musketry, the neighing of horses, and the shriller prolonged calls of the team mules, and soon the moving of lanterns guiding the bearers of the wounded to the busy surgeons.

I remember that the call of one poor fellow was insistent. He repeatedly cried: "Oh, sir! Kind sir! Come to me!" I walked over to where he lay and asked: "What regiment do you belong to?"

He answered: "The Fifth Mississippi."

I then said: "What do you want?"

He replied: "Oh, I am cold!"

I knew it was from the approach of death, but noticing that I had a blanket over him I said: "You have a good warm blanket over you." He looked toward it and said gently: "yes, some kind gentleman from Massachusetts spread his blanket over me, but, sir, I'm still cold."

A Massachusetts soldier had given his only blanket to a wounded man - a wounded enemy.

(11) John Worsham served under General Thomas Stonewall Jackson. After the war he explained how the Confederate Army was always short of weapons.

At the commencement of the war, the Southern army was as poorly armed as any body of men ever had been. In the infantry, my own regiment as an example, one company had Springfield muskets, one had Enfield, one had Mississippi rifles, the remainder the old smooth bore flint-lock musket that had been altered to a percussion gun. The cavalry was so badly equipped that hardly a company was uniform in that particular; some had sabres, nothing more, some had double-barrel guns, some had nothing but lances. It did not take long for the army of Northern Virginia to arm itself with better material. When Jackson's troops marched from the Valley to Richmond to join Lee in his attack on McClellan, they had captured enough arms from the enemy to replace all that were inferior, and after the battles around Richmond all departments of Lee's army were as well armed.

(12) Sarah E. Edmonds was at Fair Oaks in June, 1862.

The "hospital tree" was an immense tree under whose shady, extended branches the wounded were carried and laid down to await the stimulant, the opiate, or the amputating knife, as the case might require. The ground around the tree was several acres in extent was literally drenched with human blood, and all the men were laid so close together that there was no such thing as passing between them; but each one was removed in their turn as the surgeons could attend to them. Those wounded, but not mortally - how nobly they bore the necessary probings and needed amputations.

(13) In his autobiography General Oliver Howard describes how he was ordered to reinforce Brigadier General Wiiliam French at Fair Oaks on 29th May, 1862.

Just as we were ready to advance, the enemy's fire began to meet us, cutting through the trees. My brown horse was wounded through the shoulder, and I had to dismount and wait for another. Turning toward the men, I saw that some had been hit and others were leaving their ranks. This was their first experience under fire. I cried out with all my might: "Lie down!" Every man dropped to the ground. In five minutes I had mounted my large grey horse, my brother (Charles Howard) riding my third and only other one, a beautiful zebra.

In order to encourage the men in a forward movement I placed myself, mounted, in front of the 64th New York, and Lieutenant Charles H. Howard, in front of the 61st New York. Every officer was directed to repeat each command. I ordered: "Forward!" and then "March!" I could hear the echo of those words and, as I started, the 64th followed me with a glad shout up the slope and through the woods.

Before reaching French's line I was wounded through the right forearm by a small Mississippi rifle ball. Lieutenant Howard just then ran to me on foot and said that the Zebra horse was killed. He took a handkerchief, bound up my arm, and then ran back to the 61st.

As the impulse was favorable to a charge I decided to go on farther, and, asking Brooke's regiment on French's left to lie down, called again: "Forward!" And on we went, pushing back the enemy and breaking through the nearest line. We pressed our way over uneven ground to the neighborhood of the crossroads.

The rear of their line was rapidly firing. My grey had his left foreleg broken and, though I was not aware of it, I had been wounded again, my right elbow having been shattered by a rifle shot. Lieutenant Howard was missing. Lieutenant William McIntyre seized me, and put me in a sheltered place on the ground. I heard him say: "General, you shall not be killed." McIntyre himself was slain near that spot, giving his life for mine. The bullets were just then raining upon our men, who without flinching were firing back.

(14) After being badly wounded at Fair Oaks, General Oliver Howard was taken to a large house that had been converted into a Union Army hospital.

Dr. Hammond, my personal friend, met me near the house, saw the blood, touched my arm, and said: "General, your arm is broken." The last ball had passed through the elbow joint and crushed the bones into small fragments. He led me to a negro hut, large enough only for a double bed. Here I lay down, alarming an aged negro couple who feared at first that some of us might discover and seize hidden treasure which was in that bed.

My brigade surgeon, Dr. Palmer, and several others soon stood by my bedside in consultation. At last Dr. Palmer, with serious face, kindly told me that my arm had better come off. "All right, go ahead," I said.

"Not before 5 p.m., general." "Why not?" "Reaction must set in." So I had to wait six hours. I had received the second wound about half-past ten. I had reached the house about eleven, and in some weakness and discomfort occupied the negro cabin till the hour appointed. At that time Dr. Palmer came with four stout soldiers and a significant stretcher. The doctor put around the arm close to the shoulder the tourniquet, screwing it tighter and tighter above the wound. They then bore me to the amputating room, a place a little gruesome with arms, legs, and hands not yet all carried off, and poor fellows with anxious eyes waiting their turn.

On the long table I was nicely bolstered; Dr. Grant, who had come from the front, relieved the too-tight tourniquet. A mixture of chloroform and gas was administered and I slept quietly. Dr. Palmer amputated the arm above the elbow. When I awoke I was surprised to find the heavy burden was gone.

(15) Army surgeons normally used chloroform to send soldiers asleep while they amputated their limbs. James Winchell, a soldier in the Army of the Potomac, recorded after the war how he had his arm amputated while he was fully conscious.

Surgeon White came to me and said: "Young man, are you going to have your arm taken off or are you going to lie here and let the maggots eat you up?" I asked if he had any chloroform or quinine or whisky, to which he replied "No, and I have no time to dilly-dally with you." I said it was hard, but to go ahead and take it off. He got hold of my arm, pulled the bandage off, pushed his thumb through the wound and told me to "come on", and helping me up we walked to the amputation table. They put me on the table, cut off blouse and shirt sleeves filled with maggots, and after a lot of preliminary poking and careless feeling around my arm and shoulder they made me sit up in a chair, and wanted to hold my legs, but I said "No, I won't kick you." I set my teeth together and clinched my hand into my hair, and told them to go on. After cutting the top part of my arm and taking out the bone, they wanted me to rest an hour or so; to which I refused. I wanted but one job to it. Then they finished it, while I grasped for breath and the lower jaw dropped in spite of my firm clinch. I was then led away a short distance and left to lie on the hot sand.

(16) The New York Times on and exhibition of photographs taken by Matthew Brady, Alexander Gardner , James Gardner, George Barnard and Timothy O'Sullivan (21st July, 1862)

Brady's artists have accompanied the army on nearly all its marches, planting their sun batteries by the side of our Generals' more deathful ones, and taking towns, cities and forts with much less noise and vastly more expedition. The result is a series of pictures christened Incidents of War, and nearly as interesting as the war itself: for they constitute the history of it, and appeal directly to the great throbbing hearts of the north.

(17) Sarah E. Edmonds wrote about her experiences at the first Battle of Bull Run in her book Nurse and Spy in the Union Army (1865)

Our surgeons began to prepare for the coming battle, by appropriating several buildings and fitting them up for the wounded - among others the stone church at Centreville - a church which many a soldier will remember, as long as memory lasts.

The first man I saw killed was a gunner. A shell had burst in the midst of the battery, killing one and wounding three men and two horses. Now the battle began to rage with terrible fury. Nothing could be heard save the thunder of artillery, the clash of steel, and the continuous roar of musketry.

I was sent off to Centreville, a distance of seven miles, for a fresh supply of brandy, lint, etc. When I returned, the field was literally strewn with wounded, dead and dying. Men tossing their arms wildly calling for help; there they lie bleeding, torn and mangled; legs, arms and bodies are crushed and broken as if smitten by thunderbolts; the ground is crimson with blood.

(18) In 1862 Henry Villard met General David Hunter. He wrote about him in his Memoirs: Journalist and Financier (1904)

In the early spring of 1862, Major General Hunter was assigned to the chief command of the Department of the South. Hunter soon attracted general attention by the famous order he issued on May 9, 1862, announced that "slavery and martial law in a free country are incompatible." This act was nothing less than the abolition of slavery by military authority. His strong anti-slavery convictions doubtless prompted him to adopt this radical measure. General Hunter had no special authority from the War Department to issue the order, but promulgated it by virtue of his absolute powers as military ruler over territory under martial law.

(19) Abraham Lincoln, speech on 12th July, 1862.

General Hunter is an honest man. He was, and I hope, still is, my friend. I valued him none the less for his agreeing with me in the general wish that all men everywhere, could be free. He proclaimed all men free within certain states and I repudiated the proclamation. Yet in repudiating it, I gave dissatisfaction, if not offence, to many whose support the country can not afford to lose. And that is not the end of it. the pressure, in this direction, is still upon me, and is increasing.

(20) Horace Greeley, letter to President Abraham Lincoln (19th August, 1862)

I do not intrude to tell you - for you must know already - that a great proportion of those who triumphed in your election, and of all who desire the unqualified suppression of the rebellion now desolating our country, are solely disappointed and deeply pained by the policy you seem to be pursuing with regard to the slaves of the Rebels.

We think you are strangely and disastrously remiss in the discharge of your official and imperative duty with regard to the emancipating provisions of the new Confiscation Act. Those provisions were designed to fight slavery with liberty. They prescribe that men loyal to the Union, and willing to shed their blood in the behalf, shall no longer be held, with the nation's consent, in bondage to persistent, malignant traitors, who for twenty years have been plotting and for sixteen months have been fighting to divide and destroy our country. Why these traitors should be treated with tenderness by you, to the prejudice of the dearest rights of loyal men, we cannot conceive.

Fremont's Proclamation and Hunter's Order favoring emancipation were promptly annulled by you; while Halleck's Number Three, forbidding fugitives from slavery to Rebels to come within his lines - an order as unmilitary as inhuman, and which received the hearty approbation of every traitor in America - with scores of like tendency, have never provoked even your remonstrance.

(21) President Abraham Lincoln, letter to Horace Greeley (22nd August, 1862)

If there be those who would not save the Union unless they could at the same time destroy slavery. I do not agree with them. My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave, I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves, I would do it; and if I could do it by freeing some and leaving others alone, I would also do that.

(22) Braxton Bragg and senior officers in the Army of Tennessee sent a letter to General Samuel Copper about the need for fresh troops (25th July, 1862)

We, the undersigned officers of the Confederate Army, being deeply impressed with the belief that unless the ranks are speedily replenished our cause will be lost, and being thoroughly satisfied that there are enough able-bodied young men out of the service to accomplish that object, would earnestly implore the president of the Confederate States to take prompt measures to recruit our wasted armies by fresh levies from home.

We especially deplore the unfortunate provision of the exemption bill which has allowed more than 150,000 soldiers to employ substitutes, and we express our honest conviction that not 1 in 100 of these substitutes is now in the service. In numerous instances, fraudulent papers were employed; in others, diseased men were presented and accepted but not to be discharged; in still more cases, vicious and unprincipled substitutes were brought up but to desert at the first favorable moment.

(23) After seeing the photographs taken by Alexander Gardner at of the battle at Antietam, the writer, Oliver Wendell Holmes recorded his views on the nature of war.

Let him who wishes to know what war is look at this series of illustrations. It is so nearly like visiting the battlefield to look over these views that all the emotions excited by the actual sight of the stained and sordid scene, stewed with rags and wrecks, come back to us, and we buried them in the recesses of our cabinet as we would have buried the mutilated remains of the dead they too vividly represented. The sight of these pictures is a commentary on civilization such as the savage might well triumph to show its missionaries.

(24) The New York Times on the photographs of Matthew Brady (20th October, 1862)

Mr. Brady has done something to bring home to us the terrible reality and earnestness of war. If he has not brought bodies and laid them on our dooryard and along the streets, he has done something very like it. It seems somewhat singular that the same sun that looked down on the faces of the slain, blistering them, blotting out from the bodies all the semblance to humanity, and hastening corruption, should have thus caught their features upon canvas, and given them perpetuity for ever.

(25) General Oliver Howard fought at Antietam in September, 1862. In his autobiography published in 1907, he compared the military achievements of the two opposing commanding officers, George McClellan and Robert E. Lee.

Lee's generalship at Antietam could not be surpassed; but while McClellan's plans were excellent, the tactical execution was bad. Had all of the right column been on the spot where the work was to begin, Sumner, seizing Stuart's heights by the Potomac, could have accomplished the purpose of his heart - to drive everything before him through the village of Sharpsburg and on to Burnside's front. Of course, Burnside's move should have been vigorous and simultaneous with attacks on the right. McClellan so intended. we had, however, a technical victory, for Lee withdrew after one day's delay and recrossed the Potomac.

(26) Benjamin F. Butler, statement about the occupation of New Orleans (24th December, 1862)

I saw that this Rebellion was a war of the aristocrats against the middling men, of the rich against the poor; a war of the land-owner against the laborer; that it was a struggle for the retention of power in the hands of the few against the many; and I found no conclusion to it, save in the subjugation of the few and the disenthrallment of the many. I therefore felt no hesitation in taking the substance of the wealthy, who had caused the war, to feed the innocent poor, who had suffered by the war.

(27) President Jefferson Davis, statement about the occupation of New Orleans (December, 1862)

Repeated pretexts have been sought or invented for plundering the inhabitants of a captured city, by fines levied and collected under threats of imprisoning recusants at hard labor with ball and chain. The entire population of New Orleans have been forced to elect between starvation by the confiscation of all their property and taking an oath against conscience to bear allegiance to the invader of their country.

The African slaves have not only been incited to insurrection by every license and encouragement, but numbers of them have actually been armed for a servile war - a war in its nature far exceeding the horrors and most merciless atrocities of savages. Officers under Benjamin F. Butler have been in many instances, active and zealous agents in the commission of these crimes, and no instance is known of the refusal of any one of them to participate in the outrages.

I, Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederate States of America, and in their name, do pronounce and declare the said Benjamin F. Butler to be a felon, deserving of capital punishment. I do order that he shall no longer be considered or treated simply as a public enemy of the Confederate States of America, but as an outlaw and common enemy of mankind, and that, in the event of his capture, the officer in command of the captured force do cause him to be immediately executed by hanging.

(28) Carl Schurz served under General Ambrose Burnside during the American Civil War. He wrote about the battle of Fredericksburg in December, 1862.

When McClellan at last had crossed the Potomac and Richmond, the President removed him from his command and put General Burnside in his place. The selection of Burnside for so great a responsibility was not a happy one. He was a very patriotic man whose heart was in his work, and his sincerity, frankness, and amiability of manner made everybody like him. But he was not a great general, and he felt, himself, that the task to which he had been assigned was too heavy for his shoulders. The complaint against McClellan having been his slowness to act. Burnside resolved to act at once. The plan of campaign he conceived was to cross the Rappahannock at Fredericksburg, and thence to operate upon Richmond.

The battle began on December 13th, 1862, soon after sunrise, under a gray wintry sky. Standing inactive in reserve, we eagerly listened to the booming of the guns, hoping that we should hear the main attack move forward. At eleven o'clock Burnside ordered the assault from Fredericksburg upon Marye's Heights, Lee's fortified position. Our men advanced with enthusiasm. A fearful fire of artillery and musketry greeted them. Now they would stop a moment, then plunger forward again.

Through our glasses we saw them fall by hundreds, and their bodies dot the ground. As they approached Lee's entrenched position, sheet after sheet of flame shot forth from the heights, tearing fearful gaps in our lines. There was no running back of our men. They would sometimes stop or recoil only a little distance, but then doggedly resume the advance. A column rushing forward with charged bayonets almost seemed to reach the enemy's ramparts, but then to melt away.

Here and there large numbers of our men, within easy range of the enemy's musketry, would suddenly drop like tall grass swept down with a scythe. They had thrown themselves upon the ground to let the leaden hail pass over them, and under it to advance, crawling. It was all in vain. The enemy's line was so well posted and protected by a canal and a sunken road and stone walls and entrenchments skillfully thrown up, and so well defended, that it could not be carried by a front assault.

The early coming of night was most welcome. A longer day would have been only a prolonged butchery. And we, of the reserve, stood there while daylight lasted, seeing it all, burning to go to the aid of our brave comrades, but knowing also that it would be useless. Hot tears of rage and of pitying sympathy ran down many a weather-beaten cheek. No more horrible and torturing spectacle could have been imagined.

General Burnside bore himself like an honorable man. During the battle he had proposed to put himself personally at the head of his old corps, the Ninth, and to lead it in the assault. Reluctantly he desisted, yielding to the earnest protests of his generals. After the defeat he unhesitatingly shouldered the whole responsibility for the disaster. He not only did not accuse the troops of any shortcomings, but in the highest terms he praised their courage and extreme gallantry. He blamed only himself.

(29) General Oliver Howard fought at Fredericksburg in December, 1862. He later wrote about how General Ambrose Burnside reacted to the defeat.

At first, Burnside, saddened by the repulse of his attacks in every part of his lines, planned another battle for the 14th. His heart naturally went out to the old Ninth Corps that he had but lately commanded.

On the 14th, while matters were in suspense, I went up into a church tower with Couch, my corps commander, and had a plain view of all the slope where the severest losses of the preceding day had occurred. We looked clear up the suburban street or deep roadway and saw the ground literally strewn with the blue uniforms of our dead.

Burnside closed this remarkable tragedy by deciding to move the night of December 15, 1862, his brave but beaten army to the north side of the Rappahannock. That work of removal was accomplished without further loss of men or material

(30) Sarah E. Edmonds was present at Fair Oaks (May, 1862), Bull Run (August, 1862), Antietam (September, 1862) and Fredericksburg (December, 1862).

How shall I describe the sights which I saw and the impressions which I had as I rode over those fields! There were men and horses thrown together in heaps above ground; others lay where they had fallen, their limbs bleaching in the sun without the appearance of burial. There was one in particular - a cavalryman; he and his horse both lay together, nothing but the bones and clothing remained; but one of his arms stood straight up, or rather the bones and the coatsleeve, his hand had dropped off at the wrist and lay on the ground; not a finger or joint was separated but the hand was perfect.

(31) Walt Whitman worked in a Union Army camp hospital during the battle of Fredericksburg in December, 1862.

21st December, 1862: Spend a good part of the day in a large brick mansion on the banks of the Rappahannock, used as a hospital since the battle - seems to have received only the worst cases. Out doors, at the foot of a tree, within ten yards of the front of the house, I noticed a heap of amputated feet, legs, arms, hands, etc., a full load for one-horse cart. Several dead bodies lie near, each covered with its brown woolen blanket. In the door-yard, towards the river, are fresh graves, mostly of officers, their names on pieces of barrel-staves or broken boards, stuck in the dirt.

23 December, 1862: The results of the late battle are exhibited everywhere about here in thousands of cases. Hundreds die every day, in the camp, brigade and division hospitals. These are merely tents, and sometimes very poor ones, the wounded lying on the ground, lucky if the blankets are spread on layers of pine or hemlock twigs, or small leaves. No cots; seldom even a mattress. Once in a while some youngster holds on to me convulsively, and I do what I can for him; at any rate, stop with him and sit near him for hours, if he wishes it.