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of military telegraph line had been con.
“DARNESTOWN, Oct. 20, 1861. structed in connexion with the operations “Sir: The signal station at Sugar Loaf of the army, and the number of operatives telegraphs that the enemy have moved and builders employed was about two away from Leesburg. All quiet here. hundred, (200.)
“R. M. COPELAND, To Prof. Lowe, the intelligent and en
Assist. Adj. Gen. terprising æronaut, who had the manage “Gen. Marcy.” ment of the balloons, I was greatly indebted for the valuable information obtained
Whereupon I sent to Gen. Stone, at during his ascensions.
Pools ville, the following telegram : I have more than once taken occasion to
“CAMP Grifrin, Oct. 20, 1861. recommend the members of my staff, both
nd the members of my staff both! “Gen. McClellan desires me to inform general and personal, for promotion and you that Gen. McCall occupied Drains. reward. I beg leave to repeat these ville yesterday, and is still there. Will recommendations, and to record their send out heavy reconnissances to-day in all names in the history of the army of the directions from thut point. The general Potomac, as gallant soldiers, to whom their desires that you will keep a good look-out country owes a debt of gratitude still un-upon Leesburg, to see if this movement paid, for the courage, ability, and untiring has the effect to drive them away. Perhaps mal they displayed during the eventful a slight demonstration on your part would campaigns in which they bore so prominent have the effect to move them. & gart.
“A. V. COLBURN,
Assist. Adj. Gen. CHAPTER II.
" Brig.-Gen. C. P. Store, Poolsville.”
Deeming it possible that Gen. McCall's On the 15th day of October the main
| movement to Drainsville, together with the body of the army of the Potomac was in the immediate vicinity of Washington,
subsequent reconnoissances, might have
by the effect of inducing the enemy to with detachments on the left bank of the abandon Leesburg and the despatch from Potomac as far down as Liverpool point, and as far up as Williamsport and its
| Sugar Loaf appearing to confirm this view,
| I wished Gen. Stone, who had only a line vicinity. The different divisions were posted as follows: Hooker at Budd's ferry,
of pickets on the river, the mass of his
troops being out of sight of, and beyond Lower Potomac; Heintzelman at Fort Lyon and vicinity; Franklin near the
range from, the Virginia bank, to make Theological Semivary; Blenker near Hun
some display of an intention to cross, and
also to watch the enemy more closely than ter's chapel; McDowell at Upton's bill
usual. I did not direct him to cross, nor and Arlington ; F. J. Porter at Hall's and
did I intend that he should cross the river Miner's hills; Smith at Mackall's hill;
in force for the purpose of fighting. McCall at Langley; Buell at Tenallytown,
The above despatch was sent on the 20th, Meridian Hill, Emory's chapel, &c., on the
and reached Gen. Stone as early as 11 a. left bank of the river ; Casey at Washing
m. of that day. I expected him to acton ; Stoneman's cavalry at Washington ; Hunt's artillery at Washington; Banks at
complish all that was intended on the same
day; and this he did, as will be seen from Darnestown, with detachments at Point of
the following despatch, received at my Rocks, Sandy Hook, Williamsport, &c., Stone at Poolesville; and Dix at Baltimore,
| headquarters in Washington from Pools
fly | ville on the evening of October 20: with detachments on the Eastern Shore.
“Made a feint of crossing at this place On the 19th of October, 1861, Gen.
: this afternoon, and at the same time started McCall marched to Drainesville with his
a reconnoitring party towards Leesburg division, in order to cover reconnoissances
from Harrison's island. to be made in all directions the next day,
pickets retired to intrenchments. Report for the purpose of learning the position of the enemy, and of covering the operations
of reconnoitring party not yet received.
I have means of crossing one hundred and of the topographical engineers in making
twenty-men once in ten minutes at each of maps of that region. On the 20th, acting in concert with Gen.
two points. River falling slowly. McCall, Gen. Smith pushed strong parties
“C. P. STONE, to Freedom hill, Vienna, Flint hill, Peacock
“Brig.-Gen. hill, &c., to accomplish the same purpose
“Maj.-Gen. McCLELLAN." in that part of the front. These recon As it was not foreseen or expected that poissances were successful.
| Gen. McCall would be needed to co-operate On the morning of the 20th I receive with Gen. Stone in any attack, he was the following telegram from Gen. Bank's directed to fall back from Drainsville to headquarters :
his original camp, near Prospect hill, as noon as the required reconnoissances were carefully and rapidly removed ; and Gorcompleted.
man's wing is being cautiously withdrawn Accordingly he left Drainsville, on his Any advance from Drainsville must be return, at about 8 A.M. of the 21st, reaching made cautiously. his old camp at about 1 P. M.
“ All was reported going well up to In the mean time I was surprised to hear Baker's death, but, in the confusion fol. from Gen. Stone that a portion of his lowing that, the right wing was outflanked. troops were engaged on the Virginia side In a few hours I shall, unless a night of the river, and at once sent instructions attack is made, be in the same position as to Gen. McCall to remain at Drainsville, if last night, save the loss of many good men. he had not left before the order reached
“C. P. STONE, Brig. Gen. him. The order did not reach him until his !
“Maj. Gen. MCCLELLAN.” return to his camp at Langley. He was Although no more fully informed of the then ordered to rest his men, and hold his state of affairs, I had, during the afternoon, division in readiness to return to Drains- as a precautionary measure, ordered Gen. ville at a moment's notice, should it become Banks to send one brigade to the support necessary. Similar instructions were given of the troops at Harrison's island, and to to other divisions during the afternoon. move with the other two to Seneca mills,
The first intimation I received from ready to support Gen. Stone if necessary. Gen. Stone of the real nature of his move- The 9.30 P. M. despatch of Gen. Stope did ments was in a telegram, as follows: not give me an entire understanding of the
ståte af the case. “ Edward's Ferry, Oct. 21–11.10 A. M.
Aware of the difficulties and perhaps “The enemy have been engaged opposite fatal consequences of recrossing such a Harrison's island; our men are behaving river as the Potomac after a repulse, and admirably. “C. P. STONE, Brig. Gen. from these telegrams supposing his whole “Maj. Gen. McClellan."
| force to be on the Virginia side, I directed At 2 P. m. Gen. Banks's Aju. Gen. sent
Gen. Stone to intrench himself, and hold the following:
the Virginia side at all hazards until re
enforcements could arrive, when he could “DARNESTOWN, Oct. 21, 1861–2 P. M. safely withdraw to the Maryland side, or
“Gen. Stone safely crossed the riger | hold his position on the Virginia side, this morning. Some engagements have should that prove advisable. taken place on the other side of the river--| Gen. Banks was instructed to move the how important is not known.
rest of his division to Edwards's ferry, and "R. M. COPELAND, Act. Assist. Ad. to send over as many men as possible Gen.
before daylight to re-enforce Stone. He “ Gen. R. B. Marcy.”
did not arrive in time to effect this, and Gen. Stone sent the following despatches
was instructed to collect all the canal. on the sanie day at the hours indicated :
| boats he could find, and use them for
crossing at Edwards's ferry in sufficient. Edward's FERRY, Oct. 21, 1861—2 P. M. , force to enable the troops already there to
« There has been sharp firing on the hold the opposite side. right of our line, and our troops appear to On the 22d I went to the ground in perbe advancing under Baker.' The left, son, and reaching Poolsville, learned for under Gorman, has advanced its skirmish the first time the full details of the affair. ers nearly one mile, and, if the movement. The following extract from the evidence continues successful, will turn the enemy's of Gen. Stone before the “Committee on right. C. P. STONE, Brig. Gen. the Conduct of the War" on the 5th of “ Maj. Gen. MCCLELLAN.".
January, 1862, will throw further light on
this occurrence. “Edward's FERRY. Oct. 21, 1861- 4 P. M. Gen. Stone says he received the order
“Nearly all my force is across the river. from my headquarters to make a slight Baker on the right; Gorman on the left. demonstration at about 11 o'clock A. M. on Right, sharply engaged.
| the 20th, and that, in obedience to that i C. P. STONE, Brig. Gen. order, he made the demonstration on the "Gen. MCCLELLAN.”
evening of the same day. “Edward's Ferry, Oct. 21, 1861–9.30 P.M. 21st, which resulted in the battle of Ball's
In regard to the reconnoissance on the “I am occupied in preventing further Bluff, he was asked the following quesdisaster, and try to get into a position to tions : redeem. We have lost some of our best Qucs. “ Did this reconnoissanca originate commanders-Baker dead, Cogswell a pris- with yourself, or had you ordert from the oner or secreted. The wounded are being general-in-chief to make it ?"
To which he replied, “It originated with chief and general command of the armies myself—the reconnoissance."
of the Union. The direction and nature Ques. “The order did not proceed froin of this coast expedition, therefore, were Gen. M:Clellan ?”
somewhat changed, as will soon appear in Ans. “I was directed the day before to the original plan submitted to the Secmake a demonstration; that demonstra- retary of War, and the letter of instructions tion was made the day previous,"
later issued to Gen. Burnside, its comQues. “Did you receive an order from mander. The whole country indeed, had the general-in-chief to make the recon now become the theatre of military opnoissance ?" Ans. “No, sir."
erations from the Potomac to beyond Making a personal examination on the the Mississippi, and to assist the navy in 23d, I found that the position on the perfecting and sustaining the blockade, Virginia side at Edwards's ferry was not it became necessary to extend these opea tenable one, but did not think it wise to rations to points on the sea-coast, Roawithdraw the troops by daylight. I there- noke island, Savannah, and New Orleans, fore caused more artillery to be placed in it remained also to equip and organize the position on the Maryland side to cover the i armies of the west, whose condition was approaches to the ground held by us, and little better than that of the army of the crossed the few additional troops that the Potomac had been. The direction of the high wind permitted us to get over, so as campaigns in the west, and of the opera to be as secure as possible against any tions upon the seaboard, enabled me to attack during the day. Before nightfall enter upon larger combinations and to all the precautions were taken to secure an accomplish results, the necessity and adorderly and quiet passage of the troops vantage of which had not been unforeseen, and guns.
but which had been beyond the ability of The movement was commenced soon the single army formerly under my comafter dark, under the personal supervision mand to effect. of Gen. Stone, who received the order for The following letters, and a subsequent the withdrawal at 7.15 P. M.
paper addressed to the Secretary of War, By 4 A. M. of the 24th everything had sufficiently indicate the nature of those reached the Maryland shore in safety. combinations to minds accustomed to res
A few days afterwards I received infor son upon military operations : mation which seemed to be authentic, to the effect that large bodies of the enemy
“HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE Potovac, had heen ordered from Manassas to Lees.
“Washington, Sep. 6, 1861. burg, to cut off our troops on the Virginia “Sir: I have the honor to suggest the side. Their timely withdrawal had proba- | following proposition, with the request bly prevented a still more serious disaster. that the necessary authority be at once
I refer to Gen. Stone's report of this given me to carry it out: to organize a force battle, furnished the War Department, of two brigades of five regiments each, of and his published testimony before the New England men, for the general service, “Committee on the Conduct of the War" but particularly adapted to coast servicefor further details.
the officers and men to be sufficiently The records of the War Department conversant with boat service, to manage show my anxiety and efforts to assume ac- steamers, sailing vessels, launches, barges, tive defensive operations in the fall and surf-boats, floating batteries, &c. To char. early winter. It is only just to say, how- ter or buy for the command a sufficient ever, that the unprecedented condition of number of propellers or tug-boats, for the roads and Virginia soil would have transportation of men and supplies, the delayed an advance till February, had the machinery of which should be amply prodicipline, organization, and equipment of tected by timber; the vessels to have the army been as complete at the close of permanent experienced officers from the the fall as was necessary, and as I desired merchant service, but to be manned by deand labored against every impediment to tails from the command. A vaval officer make them.
to be attached to the staff of the comWhile still in command only of the army manding officer. The flank companies of of the Potomac, namely, in early Septem- each regiment to be armed with Dahlgren ber, I proposed the formation of a corps boat guns, and carbines with water-proof of New Englanders for coast service in the cartridges; the other companies to have bays and inlets of the Chesapeake and such arms as I may hereafter designate; Potomac, to co-operate with my own com- to be uniformed and equipped as the Rhode mand, from which most of its material was Island regiments are. Launches and float drawn.
ing batteries with timber parapets of sufOn the first of November, however, I was ficient capacity to land or bring into action called to relieve Lieut Gen. Sett in the the entire force.
“ The entire management and organiza- | by which, in connexion with a rapid moretion of the force to be under my control, ment of the gunboats to the northern ex. and to form an integral part of the army tremity, as soon as the marsh battery is of the Potomac.
reduced, it may be hoped to capture the “The immediate object of this force is entire garrison of the place. Having ocfor operations in the inlets of Chesapeake cupied the island and its dependencies, bay and the Potomac; by enabling me you will at once proceed to the erection thus to land troops at points where they of the batteries and defences necessary are needed, this force can also be used in to hold the position with a small force. conjunction with a naval force operating Should the flag-officer require assistance against points on the sea-coast. This in seizing or holding the debouches of the coast division to be commanded by a gene- canal from Norfolk, you will please afford ral officer of my selection; the regiments | it to him. to be organized as other land forces; the | “The commodore and yourselt having disbursement for vessels, &c., to be made completed your arrangements in regard to by the proper department of the army Roanoke island, and the waters north of upon the requisitions of the general com- it, you will please at once make a descent manding the division, with my approval. upon Newbern, baving gained possession
“I think the entire force can be orga- of which and the railroad passing through nized in thirty days, and by no means the it, you will at once throw a sufficient force least of the advantages of this proposition upon Beaufort, and take the steps necesis the fact that it will call into the service sary to reduce Fort Macon and open that a class of men who would not otherwise port. When you seize Newbern, you will enter the army.
endeavor to seize the railroad as far west “You will immediately perceive that as Goldsborough, should circumstances the object of this force is to follow along favor such a movement. The temper of the coast, and up the inlets and rivers, the people, the rebel force at hand, &c., the movements of the main army when it will go far towards determining the quesadvances. “I am res'y, your ob’t serv't, tion as to how far west the railroad can
“G. B. MCCLELLAN, be safely occupied and held. Should cir.
Major-Gen. Commanding. cumstances render it advisable to seize “ Flop. Simon Cameron, Secretary of War. and hold Raleigh, the main north and south
Owing chiefly to the difficulty in procu. I line of railroad passing through Goldsboring the requisite vessels, and adapting rough should be so effectually destroyed them to the special purposes contempla
for considerable distances north and south ted, this expedition was not ready for ser-1 of that point, as to render it impossible vice until January, 1862. Then in the i for the rebels to use it to your disadvanchief command. I deemed it best to send / tage. A great point would be gained, in it to North Carolina, with the design indi any event, by the effectual destruction of cated in the following letter.
tho Wilmington and Weldon railroad.
"I would advise great caution in moving “HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY,
so far into the interior as upon Raleigh, « Washington, Jan. 7, 1862. | Having accomplished the objects men.' “General: In accordance with ver- tioned, the next point of interest would bal instructions heretofore given you, you probably be Wilmington, the reduction of will after uniting with Flag-officer Golds- which may require that additional means borough at Fort Monroe, proceed under shall be afforded you. I would urge great his convoy to Hatteras inlet, where you caution in regard to proclamations. In no will in connection with him take the most case would I go beyond a moderate joint prompt measures for crossing the fleet proclamation with the naval commander, over the Bulkhead into the waters of the which should say as little as possible about sound. Under the accompanying general politics or the negro; merely state that order constituting the department of the true issue for which we are fighting is North Carolina, you will assume command the preservation of the Union, and upholdof the garrison at Hatteras inlet, and ing the laws of the general government, make such dispositions in regard to that and stating that all who conduct themplace as your ulterior operations may ren- selves properly will, as far as possible, be der necessary, always being careful to pro- protected in their persons and property. vide for the safety of that very important “You will please report your operations station in any contingency.
1 as often as an opportunity offers itself. “ Your first point of attack will be Roa- "With my best wishes for your success, boke island and its dependencies. It is I am, &c., &c., “G. B. MCCLELLAN, presumed that the navy can reduce the “Maj. Gen. Commanding in Chief. batteries on the marshes and cover the “Brig. Gen. A. E. BURNSIDE. landing of your troops on the main island, I
“ Coinmanding Expedition.”
The following letters of instruction were | trial all officers who have in any way viosent to Gens, Halleck, Buell, Sherman, and lated their duty to the government. In Butler; and I also communicated verbally regard to the political conduct of affairs, to these officers my views in full regarding you will please labor to impress upon the the field of operations assigned to each, inhabitants of Missouri and the adjacent and gave them their instructions as much States that we are fighting solely for the in detail as was necessary at that time: integrity of the Union, to uphold the power "HEADQUARTERS OF TAE ARMY,
of our national government, and to restore
| to the nation the blessings of peace and "Washington, D. C., Nov. 11, 1861. good order. “GENERAL: In assigning you to the com. * With respect to military operations it mand of the department of Missouri, it is is probable, from the best information in probably unnecessary for me to state that my possession, that the interests of the I have intrusted to you a duty which re- government will be best served by fortifyquires the utmost tact and decision. ing and holding in considerable strength,
“You have not merely the ordinary Rolla, Sedalia, and other interior points, duties of a military cominander to per- | keeping strong patrols constantly moving form ; but the far more difficult task of from the terminal stations, and concentra reducing chaos to order, of changing pro- ting the mass of the troops on or near the bably the majority of the personnel of the Mississippi, prepared for such ulterior staff of the department, and of rcducing operations as the public interests may deto a point of economy, consistent with the mand. interests and necessities of the State, a “I would be glad to have you make, as systein of reckless expenditure and fraud, soon as possible, a personal inspection of perhaps unheard of before in the history all the important points in your departof the world.
ment, and report the result to me. I can"You will find in your department many not too strongly impress upon you the general and staff officers holding illegal absolute necessity of keeping me constantly commissions and appointments, not recog-advised of the strength, condition, and lonised or approved by the President or Sec- cation of your troops, together with all retary of War. You will please at once facts that will enable me to maintain that inform these gentlemen of the nullity of general direction of the armies of the their appointment, and see that no pay or United States which it is my purpose to allowances are issued to them until such exercise. I trust to you to maintain time as commissions may be authorized by thorough organization, discipline, and the President or Secretary of War.
economy throughout your department. “If any of them give the slightest trou- Please inform me as soon as possible of ble, you will at once arrest them and send everything relating to the ganboats now in them, under guard, out of the limits of process of construction, as well as those your department, informing them that if completed. they return, they will be placed in close “l'he militia force authorized to be raised confinement. You will please examine into by the State of Missouri for its defence the legality of the organization of the will be under your orders. troops serving in the department. When “I am, general, &c., &c., you find any illegal, unusual, or improper
GEO. B. MCCLELLAN. organizations, you will give to the officers
Maj. Gen. Commanding U.S. A. and men an opportunity to enter the legal “Maj. Gen. H. W. HALLECK, U. S. A. military establishment under general laws « Commanding Department of Missouri.” and orders from the War Department; reporting in full to these headquarters any
HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY, officer or organization that may decline.
Washington, Nov. 7, 1862. “ You will please cause competent and “ GENERAL: In giving you instructions reliable staff officers to examine all exist for your guidance in command of the deing contracts immediately, and suspend all partment of the Ohio, I do not design to payments upon them until you receive the fetter you. I merely wish to express report in each case. Where there is the plainly the general ideas which occur to slightest doubt as to the propriety of the me in relation to the conduct of operations contract, you will be good enough to refer there. That portion of Kentucky west of the matter, with full explanation, to these the Cumberland river is by its position so headquarters, stating in each case what closely related to the States of Illinois and would be a fair compensation for the ser- Missouri that it has seemed best to attach vices or materials rendered under the con- it to the department of Missouri. Your tract. Discontinue at once the reception operations there, in Kentucky, will be con. of material or services under any doubtful fined to that portion of the State east of contract. Arrest and bring to prompt the Cumberland river. I trust I need not