« 上一頁繼續 »
IN THE SENATE of THE UNITED STATEs, March 2, 1863.
Resolved, by the Senate of the United States, (the House of Representatives concurring.) That in order to enable the “Joint Committee on the Conduct of the War” to complete their investigations of certain important matters now before them, and which they have not been able to complete, by reason of inability to obtain important witnesses, be authorized to continue their sessions for thirty days after the close of the present Congress, and to place their testimony and reports in the hands of the Secretary of the Senate.
Resolved, further, That the Secretary of the Senate is hereby directed to cause to be printed, of the reports and accompanying testimony of the Committee on the Conduct of the War, 5,000 copies for the use of the Senate, and 10,000 copies for the use of the House
of Representatives. Attest: J. W. FORNEY, Secretary.
- IN THE House of REPRESENTATIVEs, March 2, 1863. Resolved, That the House concur in the foregoing resolutions of the Senate to continue
the sessions of the “Joint Committee on the Conduct of the War” for thirty days, and to
direct the Secretary of the Senate to cause the printing of the reports, &c., with the fol
lowing amendment: insert at the end the words: “of the present Congress.”
IN THE SENATE of THE UNITED STATEs, March 2, 1863. Resolved, That the Senate concur in the foregoing amendment of the House of Represen
tatives to said resolution.
Attest: J. W. FORNEY, Secretary.
APRIL 6, 1863. Mr. WADE, from the Joint Committee on the Conduct of the War, in accordance with the preceding resolution, placed in the hands of the Secretary of the Senate the follow
ing report in three parts.
PART 2.-BULL RUN–BALL’S BLUFF.
JOINT COMMITTEE ON THE CONDUCT OF THE WAR. PART I.—ARMY OF THE Potomac.
The joint committee on the conduct of the war submit the following report, with the accompanying testimony:
CONDUCT OF THE WAR.
In December, 1861, a joint committee of the two houses of Congress, consisting of three members of the Senate and four members of the House of Representatives, was appointed, with instructions to inquire into the conduct of the present war. Your committee proceeded to the discharge of the duty devolved upon them, and have labored zealously and, they trust, faithfully for that purpose. As evidence of that, they would refer to the large mass of testimony taken by them upon many subjects and herewith reported. The subject of inquiry referred to them was one of the utmost importance and magnitude. Upon “the conduct of the present war” depended the issue of the experiment inaugurated by our fathers, after so much expenditure of blood and treasure—the establishment of a nation founded upon the capacity of man for self-government. The nation was engaged in a contest for its very existence; a rebellion, unparalleled in history, threatened the overthrow of our free institutions, and the most prompt and vigorous measures were demanded by every consideration of honor, patriotism, and a due regard for the prosperity and happiness of the people. Your committee could perceive no necessity for recommending any particular legislation to is. Its previous course showed that no such recommendation was required. When Congress met the preceding July, fresh from the people—called upon to provide for the safety of the government and the maintenance of the national }. and existence—the representatives of the people gave full evidence that they comprehended the duty devolved upon them, and had the courage and will to fully discharge it. The administration called by the people to the head of the government, in this the most critical period of the nation's history, was more promptly and fully supported than that of any other government of which history has preserved any record. The call of the President for money and men had been more than complied with ; no legislation which he had deemed necessary had been denied by Congress, and the
people had most nobly and generously supported and sustained what their representatives had promised in their name. The same Congress, fresh from their constituents, had again met, and there could be no doubt that as they had before acted so would they continue to act. It needs but to refer to the history of the Congress just closed, its prompt and thorough action, clothing the executive with the fullest power, o at his disposal all the resources of men and money which this nation possessed, to prove that your committee judged rightly that Congress needed no prompting from them to do its entire duty. to Not upon those whose duty it was to provide the means necessary to put so down the rebellion, but upon those whose duty it was to rightfully apply those
- R’ means, and the agents they employed for that purpose, rested the blame, if any,
that the hopes of the nation have not been realized, and its expectations have
of the Potomac. The result of their investigation your committee submit in a separate report. our committee have also investigated the disaster at Ball's Bluff, that battle being the first conflict of any extent in which any of the troops of the army of the Potomac were engaged after its reorganization. A separate report of that disaster is also submitted. Immediately upon the organization of your committee, and before proceeding to the taking of any testimony, they addressed to General McClellan, who, by the retirement of General Scott, had become general-in-chief of the army, the following communication:
“WASHINGTON, D.C., December 21, 1861.
“Sir : You are aware that a joint committee has been appointed by the Senate and House of Representatives to inquire into ‘the conduct of the war.' Our committee, at a meeting held this morning, unanimously expressed a desire, before proceeding in their official duties, to have an interview with you at our room at the Capitol, at such time as may suit your convenience, in view of your pressing engagements.
“Our place of meeting is the room of the Committee on Territories of the Senate.
“I remain, very respectfully, yours,
“Major General Geo. B. McClella N, o -
“General Commanding Army United States.”
While fully appreciating the dignity and power with which they were clothed by the concurrent action of both houses of Congress, they deemed it but just to award to his position the consideration of asking him to confer with them in relation to the best method of fulfilling those expectations which the people had a right to hope for from an administration upon which they had, through their representatives, conferred such plenary powers. A reference to the journal of your committee will show that ill health prevented General McClellan from immediately complying with this invitation. The necessities of the case, however, were so pressing and urgent that your committee concluded to proceed at once to the taking of testimony.
ARMY OF THE POTOMAC.
Soon after the battle of Bull Run, in July, 1861, General McDowell was superseded, and General McClellan was called by the President to the command of the army of the Potomac. The campaign in Western Virginia, the credit of which had been generally ascribed to General McClellan; the favor with which it was understood he was regarded by General Scott, then generalin-chief of the army of the United States; even his comparative youth, holdin out the promise of active and rigorous measures; all these considerations tende to infuse hope into the public mind, and to remove the gloom and despondency which had followed the disastrous issue of the campaign just ended.
Every energy of the government and all the resources of a generous and patriotic people were freely and lavishly placed at the disposal of General McClellan to enable him to gather together another army and put it in the most complete state of efficiency, so that offensive operations might be resumed at the earliest practicable moment. The army of the Potomac became the object of special care to every department of the government, and all other military movements and organizations were made subordinate to the one great purpose of collecting at Washington, and organizing there, an army which should overpower the forces of the enemy, and forever crush out any hope of success which the