1891 review of the war

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1891 review of the war - wstmrnsm 1877-new series. WASHINGTON. D. 0.....
wstmrnsm 1877-new series. WASHINGTON. D. 0.. THURSDAY, APRIL 9, 1S9L-TWELVE PAGES. VOL. X-NO. 36 -whole; M. $m. A STUDY OF BOLL RUN. '- ' The Wsd (tal Mth of -the War of A mtBiQlO FIELD. "Worn uy rtfls SMMmr and Lot iy tilts 'Oiflflioors. VMHLW3ft2r GilLOTRAXiS. Th uJjiaitwa Amy, Soifzad with Vmvm. BJIolv ifaa. Rout. by rsMiinr . nen to w)is.,vrABiixTN. N iftgkin the baitlos of lib o rohoUion over a g r i n , piocu reeqne owttora and writers have reoetrtly painted Gettysburg and Chickamaujia ih hucIi high colors as io greatly obsourc other events of the war; so much so, indeed, as to leave actual doubt in the minds of many of the new generation if any others aic really of enfiieient magnitude to warrant historical it r.rf- mention. Uudoubt- odly Geuywtiiug, a great and stirring theme, worthy any tongue or pen, hut it should not tempt compatriots to entirely ignore Antiataiu, another battle-ground sear Washington, from whonee the rebel invader wac repulsed and turned hack across the Potomac. No apodal champions have risen to aggraudttte Antiotam in story and in song, yet tfhe crisis was as dangerous, the conduct of the troops as glorious, and the victory about as decisive as at Gettysburg. Cbiekaniauga was eorUmily a most deanorate triruiaibs, but the saute may be said of Shiloh and Bume liivor, of Bull Hun nnd Chancellors ilks all similar ia owe marhod reaped to Chk'lcatnnttgu, in thai tboy decided nothing, and wre ipntotioalfy only more tests of the tremendous fighting capacity of the opposite armies. Timm ibongbta load up to some observations ooncercing the nearly-forgotten and utU-rly-uegleoUd battlefield of Bull Run, ou tbe ridges and in the valleys of which fully 25,(W0 soldiers ft 11 in vain, almost in aiftht of t!be National Capital. Corn and clover now luxuriate aud oat Lie and horses find uuiet pasturage on the ground ovor which tbe infantry charged and the musketry aranhed 38 years ao. I aid the field a long-modilated visit last Summer, mid lor the sftaoe of a day wattdorod to and fro tberooq, specalattitg iqwn the firBt ooiJSaion oi tb civil war, so KttMAltKAJUJlt IX A1JI. ITS AJiTHCTS, and the gtat soldiors ou loth bides who grew mn out of k. lit was the Arst time I bad ctood upon hk grouud aiaoc the hatUe of Julj- SI, IUQ&, to whiok 2 ibore part as a priva4ooldier. From ibv Homy Ullotms pl4oau ihe cttUre field of itbe firot Ulall lllua Is in oa view, m well as moat of the ground on which the Mrcoml ImUle was fought, Aug. 98, 29, and 30, IMS. It is a 'beautiful, roUing oountry of held sad jjgrevos and streams, and contemplating tbe allent agricultural landscape of Ut-Amy it is very difficult for one to conjure up bc txaortal atrile Chat elibod and flowed iwre in the battle times. Mr. H. IF. memy, wba is Uie present owner of tbeaoii, was bora here 76 years age and " ramed " ou the pbtee, and his mother before tiim was bom within a mile of this spot 110 yar ago. Ttise lacts are oalculated to etHfger otm wba ibas gone "Went and grown up with die country several times. At tbe outbtaak of tlhe oja-W war Mr. Henry was teaching nofcool an Alenandria, and was not an origmal fisoassioniirt. lie foelc no bitter-Btt towrn d tbe victors in the war, yet one detect a Sfbund pride in his tone and inan-xhnt as be roeounts tbe exploits of tbe brave Virginians on itbese ftolds. Mr. Honrj informs mm that nearly all the promtoeat rionand Conlederaie oJBoeni who were otigagad Sum, nnd many others, have vfciiod Li uooar ainoe tbe war. 11m Henry Hlonsc of the ltUo disappeared soon after -torn down to make shehor for ConwdttMle aotdien) wbo oamped fa that vicinity ttm ibliowing Winter. It was an uupaeUtuttous, untainted wooden uflair, of perhis ifonr or live rooms, la Oris old wMtber-beateu tMnme, riddrnd by the Union oauiKMMmot and shells, oocurred, on the Slat of July, 1661, wkoTOn! ft4uEr TUkoenim or zmm war. It was oocupied by tb widow Judith Henry, xioHmt of 4lm ipvswntt Mr. limij bedridden woman of 96. She -was mortally wonnioijny an exploding sbdll, and was btirmi In tihe yard, on (be west tods of tbe lien liease whidn nnrneaded tbe eld. Over her urave tins a piaiu Sab with a suiuhle iuaoriptioa. Ait ibe cbme of fine battle, near the old roadway front vrttich tb Jederak charged toward the faattwt, t wm uArtuaately made prisoner by a soldier of Hampton's IiOgion, nnd taken u to tbo Henry House. Them I nw (Jon. Beguregwd, who was riding hf wtA Itis ataff, uppaotitly very modi stated over tiw ncipected turn affairs ! bad 4nken, and at ifce time and under the I cironmalnwnm be duly impressed me as (be "earning num." He evidently thought so hiwsdt XtMide the bouse 1 mw tbe dead woman, nnd oatsnSe a grant many dcid and wonndnd notdkrc of )totk aides lying about. Anmng otbnr Otlnmi 3 luotlood was a Incge wrimingwtUawr 4fe, atbant liaif out thnongb nsar Ann fltonad tiffin. in)oooU!q, xncbabfy K ?& ( from Carlisle'a 30-poundor Parrott rifle On my recent visit I ashed Mr. Jltury about thin scarred tree. Of course, it had long since disappoarod, but ho eagerly pointed out the roots, which still remained. The locality Joohs perfectly natural, cveu to the house, which stands on identically the same ground, and is uow almost identical in appearance with the old. Compared with Gettysburg, Bull Ran was but a secondary affair, yet it caused more oxoitoruout throughout the civilized world than any olhor action of the rebellion, and the reason for this ia plain. All eyes had boon for months focused on the storm-center near Washington. The North, observing the gathering of "the "Grand Army" on the Potomac, impatiently longed for action, perfectly secure in the conviction that the rebellion would be suppressed in 90 days. The Southern people, wild with Beauregard's bloodless but successful pyrotechnics at Sumter; educatod from youth to boliovo ONE SOUTHKKXEIt COUU) Willi' SEVERAL YAKKK1W, and swelliug with the inspiration that they were fightinjr for " liberty " nnd in defense of their very hotnos, were only loo ready for the tost of arms. The excitomont and anxiety North and South were intense, and the battle was a real loliof to overcharged feelings. After all, at Ball Kun history only repeated itself. Revolutions nnd rebellions have rarely failed of success on the field of battle at the outset. Very few have been suppressed in their incipiency, if at alb The last British insurrection in 1745, under the leadership of Churl cs Ed waid, the Pretend or, was consolidated by the victory at Prostonpsns, his first battle, only to be orusb(d later on by the terrible blow of Cnlloden. The American Revolution was successfully lanchod at Lexington. The Polish rebels of 1830, without Generals worthy the name, easily beat the Russians in all the earlier ongagements, but finally succumbed to overwhelming power. In 1348 the Hungarians in their earlier battles with the Austrians were victorious everywhere, and wore at last only conquered through treachery. So in our own rebellion, the first victory was with the enemies of the Govornment, giving them great hope .r cj CAUOE OF THK HlOIILANDEItS. of ultimate sncc. But after Bull Run came Appomattox, with n miscellaneous assortment of battles wore or less bloody and indecisive sandwiched in between, and the roliols laid down their arms. After Ball Ran the astonished North awoke with a shock from the delusive belief that repressing the icbellion was only ashort job of 00 days, and deliberately gathered itelf together for a long and sustained effort. And while tbe victory still farther encouraged tbe Sculh in some of its hallucinations, the battle at least settled one thing the " erring sisters w oould not " go in peace," and that there would be a war. And m the work of hilling and blood-letting steadied down to a systematic, determined business. The oonfiagratioB rapidly spread, and soon the thunder of cannon was hoard on the Ohio, the Missouri, and the Miseihbippi; along the seaeoasts, and all the linos of advance and retreat throughout the South. For fear years the guns wore never silent, and hardly a day passed that did not bring some account of CAXVAdR AXI) DliiTJtUCTION'. tjou. McDowell bad been chosen to command the Union forces, and he moved for ward from the Potomac July 10, 1661, with 4 regiments of volunteer infantry, two battalions of Regular infantry, eight companies of Regular cavalry, and 10 batteries ol artillery, organized into 23 brigades and five divisions. All told, bis force amounted to 37,821 men. His division commanders were Brig.-Geu. Tybsr and Runyon, and Cols. Hunter, Hciutisclmau end Miles, and tho Mgades were led by Brig.-Gen. Sehenck, Cols. Key os, Sherman, Richardson, Porter, Burnside, FrankUs, Willoox, Howard, Blanker, and Davics. New York furnished 19 regiment. New Jersey mtvan, Michigan four, Maine fear, Massachusetts three, Connecticut three, Ohio two, Rhode Island two, Pennsylvania oae, New Hampshire one, Ver mont one, Minnesota one, and Wisconsin one. With three exceptions Sehenck, Runyon and Btanker tbe division and brigade commanders wore all West Point men, and many of tbe volunteer regiments and battalions were commanded by educated soldiers like Slocnm, MeCMk, Qaiuby, Kykec, Montgomery, Pock, and others. Almost without exception the staff and artillery officers of this army were profeasional soldiers. By the 18th the Fcdaral ndvanco had ontorod Centervillc without opposition. On itoat day Richardson's Brigade and Ayres's battery, with some cavalry, supported by Sherman's Brigade, all of Tyler's Division made a rcconuoiasance to Bull Run,'aud had a lively actioa at Mitchell's Ford, commonly called tbe "battle of Blackburn's Ford." Richardson was repulsed by Longslreot's Brigade and tbe Washington Artillery, but tbe bulk of the rebel array was near at hand In osse of need. Tho Foderals lost 57 and the Confederates 06 men killod and woundod in this preliminary engagement. This brought McDowell's army to a stand, and it A DIPLOMATIC tK f fill L-T? WMn WimvM'l )W way was thoreupon encamped in aud around Centorvillo until the morning of the 21st. IN BRINGING ON THIS AVFAIB Tyler acted against McDowell's specific directions. But in initiating and maintaining the fiht Tyler manifested an energy which would have given us the victory if displayed in the battle three days later. In bringing down supports to Richardson, he doublo-quickid Sherman's brigade from Centervillo to Bull Run, quite threo miles, on a hot July day! Itwa$a merciless and useless requirement. The check was unfortunate and had a bad effect upon the Federal army. The Confederate army, under Gens. Johnston audJJeau regard, lying along the south side of Bull Run, abont 35,000 Btrong, was composed of 53 regiments of infantry, parts of four of cavalry, with 49 guns, formed into 11 brigades. Eight regiments were not brigaded. These brigades were under the command of Brig.-Gens. Jackson, Bee, Holmes, Bonham, Longstrcet, Ewell and Jones, and Cols. Cocke, Early, Bartow and Elzey with one or two exceptions all West Point graduates. The artillery and staff officers were likewise nearly all from West Point. Virginia furnished 19 regimen Is, Son Ik Carolina seven, Mississippi four, Louisiana four, Georgia three, North Carolina three, Alabama three, Tennessee three, Kentucky two, Maryland one, Arkansas one, and seven unknown. Manassas Junction was the objective of the campaign. According to Gen. Scott this fortified place was to be "turned and stormed." It appears that tho original plan of attack, probably evolved at Washington, was to cross Bull Run ut aud below Blackburn's Ford and turn the rebel right For Tarioue reasons McDowell found it advisable to abandon that lino of attack. After deliberating and reconnoiteringmore than two days, tho Commanding General finally resolved to strike the rebel left by crowing above at Sudley's Spring Ford. This plan j of attack was well conceived, and has met with the approval of the ablest military critics. THE HAWNKSS OF THE TROOPS, unused to marching, accounts in a measure for much of the dilatorinoss of this campaign, hot this defect dor-a not explain the two days lobt at Centervillc, and tho critical btudent of the battle must inevitably arrive at the conclusion that McDowell was personally rcponhible for that delay. It is clear theie was great irresolution at the Union headquarters after Tyler's fiasco of the 18th. There are indications that McDowell partially realized the value of time at this juncture, na, after the plan wa settled upon, he wished to move the evening of the 20th, but finally acceded to the opinion of the others that an early advance the following morning would do as well. This ready yielding of his judgment to subordinates shows that McDowell lacked ono of the essential elements of a successful commander, for his reports show that he was well awsre that every hour was adding to the strength of his enemy. This delay of a few bonis in itself was perhaps fatal. The loss of more than tvo daya' time between the 38th aud 21st dearly accounts for the loss of the battle, as it is well known that most of tho Joe Johnston's Army joined Beaure-gard after Tylei's attack on July 18, aud some of the rebel troops which turned tho tide of battle actually arrived on the field during its progress. Tho Yital point in the new plnn was to secure a crossing before the enemy could concentrate to oppose it. Tyler was to advance down the Warrenton pike, nnd take position along Bull Run, threatening Stone Bridge. Col. Hunter's Division was to follow Tyler along the pike, across Cub Run, to the intersection of a by-road on the right, which be was to pursue up the river to Sudley's Ford. After crossing at SudleyV, (about three miles above tho Warrenton pike crossing at Stone bridge, which was supposed to be strongly guarded by the rebels), Hunter was to turn down stream on the south side, STRIKE THE EEnnLS IN FLANK", and brush away whatever force came in his way, until he uncovered the other fords nnd Stone Bridge to Heinlzelman nnd Tyler's troops. Col. Heintzelman's Division was to follow and join this movement by way of the lower crossfngs as Hunter's udvnnco ou the other Bide opened them. Col. Miles's Division remained in reserve nt Centervillc, and Gen. Runyon's was Btill further in the rear, guarding tho road to Washington, while Col, RJcliardson'8 Brigade, of Tyler's Dlvis- The way tho Italian went In, and the r Italian went way ion, watched tho Blackburn and Mitchell Fords below. In accordance with orders for these dispositions, about two hours after midnight, on the morning of the 21ntt Gen. Tyler began his advance from the vicinity of Centervillc. Hismoveraentwasinexpressibly slow and tedious; he was at least four hours making n distance of lewi than three miles nndgettingintopositionnlong Bull Run. His occupation of the road long impelled Hunter's maich ; indeed, Hunter had not yet left the Warrenton pike upon the old by-road at 6 o'clock, when he should have been across Sudicy's Ford and already at the Confederates. Gen. Tyler must be held accountable for much of this tardiness, to characterize it mildly; bnt no judgment or energy, seemingly, was displayed on the part of any superior officer in the management of the troops on this short march. There was serious delay on Hunter's part, even after he got clear of Tyler, notwithstanding McDowell accompanied this column at least part of tho way in person. The troops dawdled along the road, drinking nnd filling their canteens at the crossing and resting, though his entiro march was only about eight miles. It was tally 10:30 o'clpck before Hunter, whoue Ironing was entirely unopposed, commenced the attack, and at least four hours after it should ami could have been delivered. The wisdom of the movement was demonstrated by its immediate suceess in opening the fords below Sudley's and uncovering Stone Bridge. Slow as he was coming into action, once engaged, Hunter's column accomplished everything expected of it. Gen. Tyler ought now to have manifested THE SAME ENEKOY AND STOMACH FOR FIGHT he did on the 18th, and promptly pnshed his three brigades ncross the river in support of the flank nioement. The Confederate reports of tho battle prove that the moment Hunter's pressure was felt from above nearly the entire rebel line in front of Tyler along the ruu was abandoned in order to meet tho flank attack, and even Stone Bridge ikelf was left guarded by only a few companies of troops It is probable Tyler could easily have crossed two or three hours earlier than he finally did. His vacillation, hesitation, timidity whatever we may call it on this day was in strange contrast with the rash temerity of the 18th, when he tried with two brigades, unsupported, to force a passage In presence of nearly the entire rebel ivrniy, agaiust the orders of his commander. On the 21st, of his three brigades in the immediate vicinity one did not cross the run nt all; nnother, after effecting a crossing, was feebly directed in aimless wanderings along and under the bluffs of Bull Run, when most needed elsewhere, and only one, Col. Sherman's, taking any considerable part in the battle. His brigade got across about 12:30 p.m., joined in the thick of the light, and lost more men killed and wounded than any other engaged. Gen. Sherman afterward cloverly said that Bull Run was tho " best plauned and worst fought buttle of the war." I agree with him, and make his meaning more clear perhaps by explaining that tho execution of the plan was feeble, and the manner of tho fight fatal to ultimate success. At the time it was the fashion in army circles to ascribe the loss of the battle to the misconduct of the "raw and undipciplined" volunteers. Bnt tho official reports aud all contemporaneous testimony show, on the contrary, that at ono period the battle HAD BEEN REALLY WON BY THE BANK AND FILE, and our advantages subsequently lost through the bungling, fumbling maladroit-ness of the iuexperk-nced ofltcors, who nt that early date were yet imperfect in tho high art of effectively sustaining n successful attack. Undoubtedly McDowell's Regular officers understood, theoretically, the science of war thoroughly, bnt they wofully failed in the application of the knowledge of the art of war on a real field of battle were as "raw," Jn fact, as the "undisciplined :' soldiers themselves. That the Union troops fought measurably well is folly attested by the Confederate losses, the 8th Ga. alouo having 200 killed and wounded, and several others nearly as many. McDowell's strategy was good, and his Iroov-a for houis on a hot day behaved admirably in action, but he was not energetically sustained by his most trusted subordinates. There was no leadership,in short, und when the rank aud file eventually dis & jsl ys&&L FISOBE. & fcT'V,. he came out. covered it to be a sort of " free-for-all " fight, with everybody for himself, they became disheartened. Gen. James B. Fry, of McDowell's staff, gays it was intended that Tyler's Division should do the principal fighting. In that case, I think McDowell committed a great fault, perhaps a fatal one, in not remaining with Tyler in person, instead of accompanying the Hunter-Heintzelman movement, clearly intended only as a diversion. Fry iaa strong and accurate military writer. All must agree with him as to Tyler's culpable conduct at Bull Run; bnt It is fair to say that Tyler would perhaps have done better under the immedtato eye of his chief. It is euiy to criticize after the event, but there is no gainsaying that the Union tactics on the field v. ere disastrous. Instead of being a battle between two armies, Bull Run was really only a series of isolated skirmishes by regimental fronts. No continuous line of battle was formed any where by either side. If Hunter's succesfi had been achieved earlier, and if McDowell in person had then put Tyler's Division in line of battle on the south hide of Bull Run and ordered a general advance, speedy and final victory must have been certain. But in the irresolute, irrelative, heterogeneous ptyle the officers conducted this fight piecemeal, as it were 50,000 troops would have had no more weight or effect than McDowell's 18.000. AND THE I1EIIELS WERE NO BETTER HANDLED than the Northern troops Beauregard's report, written three months afterward, notwithstanding. The minor Confederate officers showed more energy tuul zeal, perhaps, than were displayed on the Union side, but ithey wisely and instinctively clung to the nnturnl defenses thehills,brush and woods, and did the best they could without much order. And being on the defensive they were thus enabled to lie in wait until their enemy chose to attack, a decisive advantage nearly always in a fight between green troops. The Union success up to about 3 o'clock had been decided, but the bravest and coolest of the mob of discomfitted Confederates bad about this time rallied in a broken nnd confuted sort of way, with tbe newly-arrived fresh troops, near the Henry House, nearly Thk Movement to the Reak. three miles from Sudley's Ford, on some high, partially-wooded ground, from which they were delivering upon the advancing Federals a pretty warm artillery nnd musketry fire. Several Union regiments were here pushed up to the front und repulsed one after another. When one was stopped and driven back, nnother was brought forward, and no two were led against the enemy at the'same lime. The result of this system of attack was to afford the enemy free opportunity to concentrate all his force upon small fragments, and in detail on the same ground whip the entire Union force. This is why I say the manner of the fight was bad for the Federals. A line of battle even half a mile long, well supported, would have completely outflanked and enveloped this position, and made it untenable. This was the opinion of Joseph E. Johnston very good authority. No idea of forming such a liue and making a general advance seems to have entered anybody's head. Let us see how the official reports describe this part of the contest. Heintzclman says: "As soon as they (the Zonaves) came up, I led them forward. AT THE FIRST FIRE THEY BROKE, and tho greater portion fled to the rear. I then led up the 1st Minn., which was also repulsed, but retired in tolerably good order. Next was led forward the 1st Mich., which was also repulsed. The Brooklyn 14th then appeared on the tit, XiS- fJ. S) 1 lrJSir"r ground, coming forward in golmat style. Soon after tbe Iria commenced tbe regiment broke ami ran," oUr. Sherman's experience was similar. H says: "This regimeat (21 Wia.) rallied again, passed the brow of the hill a eesond time, but was again repulsed in disorder. By this time the 7fHh N. Y. bad chmed up. The 79th rallied several times under Ire, but finally broke and gained tbe eover of the hill. This left the field open to the G9th, which hekl the gronnd for some time, but finally fell baek in disorder." Other commanders make similar reports. Those reports tell tbe whole story of bad tactics no united, sustained effort in continuous line, sneh as we saw in subsequeut battles. After these isolated repulses, the disorganized troops gradually fell away in further retreat; as Col. Sherman says, " talking and in great confusion," thongh this confusion ww not caused by any immediate advance or connter-ehnrga of the rsboR Nobody knows where it began, but suddenly a wild impulse of terror seemed to seize the entire Union army, aud it went to pieees io utter rout. Everything waa flung away that could impede rapid flight. Maay sol-diera and some officers reached Washington by daylight on the morning of the 22d. In this stampede to the rear, in one night they covered the distance which it had required three days to march on the advance. It was printed at the time, and is probably true, that many of the Zouaves dhl not stop until they reached New York. INCREDIBLE A3 THIS 1AXIC NOW AP-FJCAES, it happened, notwithetaodiag thero were at least 12,000 troops in reserve who neither saw a rebel nor fired a gun on that day. In fact,8ome of these latter promptly joined in the rush when it reached them, five miles away, and were, many of them,ftrstinto Washington. The rebels, fortnnately, made no pnr-tsnit to speak of, or the entire Union force could certainly have been captured, and itis probable that Washington itself would have fallen without th least resistance. The main flight was covered by Blenker's and Richardson's Brigades and a fw other troops, in measurably good order. Col. James Cameron, 7&th N.Y., brother of the Secretary of War, Col. John S. Slocum, and Maj. Sullivan Ballon, 2d R.I.,aad Lieut-Col. Haggerty, 60 th N. Y., were killed in the buttle. Hunter and Heintzelman were wounded ; Corcoran was taken prisoner while trying to rally his Irishmen ; Wilkox and Ricketts were both wounded and captured, and with Corcoran, Congressman Ely and others remained prisoners in Libby and eleewhere in the South mnay weary months. Mrs. Ricketts somehow got through the lines and nursed her husband in Riebmoed. A curious feuturo of this early battle was the presence of a number of distinguished civilian spectators on both sides. Gov. Wm. Spraue was on the battlefield, looking after the two regiments from Rhode Island, as an Acting Brigadier. He afterward married Kate Chone, and became a Senator. Congressman kaac N. Arnold, one of President Lincoln's intimate friends, took port in the battle as an Aid on Col. Hunter's staff. John A. Logan was another Representative on the field as a spectator. Congressman Alfred Ely, of the Rochester (N. Y.) District, was taken prisoner by Serg't-Maj. W. S. Mullins, of Col. Cash's 8th S. C. Many other Congressmen and prominent civilians accompanied the Uniou army. If they dreamed McDowell's advance was to be a mere Sammer day's promenade to Richmond, the scene at Bull Run must have rudely dissipated the illusion. Jefferson Davis rode upon the field about 4 o'clock p. m., after the unaccountable Federal rout, and sent dispatches to Richmond ANNOUNCING A OREAT VICTORY; and, considering what he saw, what that victory probably meant to him personally and to the South, and the consequent natural elation, I call them models of moderation and good sense. It may be parenthetically remarked that in his public utterances Davis generally exhibited more dignity than most of hi3 hotheaded coadjutors. Messrs. Preston, Manning, Chesnnt, Miles, Rice, Hay ward and Chisbolm acted as volunteer Aids on Beauregard's staff. Edmund Ruffin, a venerable Virginia fire-eater, who signalized his zeal for a slave-holding Republic by firing the first gun at Sumter, was also an onlooker at Bull Run. It is not recorded if he fired any guns at Appomattox. Since its publication several reports and returns have been found among the dnsty records in W i-hingtou and collated by Mr. Joseph W. Kirkley, the industrious statistician of- tho War Department, which make aome changes iu the totals of strength of tho two armies engaged, and Union losaea as they appear in Vol. II., War Records, issued 10 years ago. McDowell says he passed over Ball Run with "about 18,000 men." The records fix the number at 13,572. The Union reports show losses in killed and wounded in 36 regiments nnd battalions and seven batteries. The Union army lost 460 officers and men killed and 1,124 officers and men wounded, or a total of 1,584. Iu addition the revised reports show the loss of 1,312 prisoners, Borne of whom were wounded. Beauregard claimed 1,460 prisoners captured. Like the Union army, not all the rebel force wao engaged. The number actually engaged was just about equal to McDowell's, viz., 18,053 of all arms. But a larger force was immediately available. The figures I give for both armies of strength and losses are now, I believe, accepted by GENS. JOHNSTON AXD EKAURE0AED, and all other participants and commentators Union and Confederate as practically correct. The Southern reports show losses in 35 different regiments nnd battalions and four batteries. The total rebel loss was 387 officers and men killed and 1,582 oflkcrs ami men wounded, or a total of 1,960385 in excess of the Federals. The heaviest Federal regimental losses wore: 1st Minn., 155; 11th N. Y. (Zouaves), 109; 69th N. Y. (Irish), 97; 2d Wis., 38; 79th N. Y. (Scotch), 63; 14th Brooklyn, 73; 27th N. Y., 72; 2d K. I., 72. The Conedorat regiments suffering the moot were: Sbh Ga., 200; lib Am., 137; 4th Va.,131 ; Hampton's (S. a) Legion, 1 19 ; 21 iCim, 107w (See Vol. II., War Rieorri, page 370.) BosWao tho prisoners, the rehab) captured 2S pieees of artillery, n few caissons and smaH-anns and some stores. Tbe vietery otherwise was a very bnrien one. Among other plunder soma aandoeffa worn sskl to have bsoa picked up, probably used by the Frovesfc-Cmafd a army bummers, and tho cry was at one mbsal that wgon-kads of handsua were brought rmhs; bytfeo Yankees to wrrrxn "sovTKnn patriots." Snch was tho rot with whieh the Southern heart was fired. Gen. Johnston was honest enough to my that ha saw no handenfla at Boll Sun, aad met nobody who claimed to bavn soen any. BeHuregard'9 report f the battle written thrnu Hiontbs after the event, aad in tho Hjjhi of Northern newspaper accounts aad Federal official reports was n palpable effort to boom himfKf as a military aenioe. It showed a aiMxniAceuk army of strategical combinations aad tactical maanvers to meet evsry possible offensive conception en McDowell's part. If wa may believe him, the Confederates woro prepared with lines aad support to meet the Federal advance nt any and all points, and hnrl tbo " ruthless invader" back. Such pretense is idle, besange it in exploded by the record. The rebel army was not concentrated at the point of attack, bat was scattered 378 mU down Boll Jtan,.iHd even meditating aoj oilensive on McDowell's rear at Centervillo Tbe field of battle, in short, was decided b McDowell and not Bfanreaard. Hunter's movement, slow as it wae. caught tbeir weak-ened left una wares and whipped it into amass ef fugitives, and his attack completely upset Bonuregnrd'i plans. Thero was no general lino whatever formed on the rebel side, and the fight was made by detachments and regiments as fast as they could be brought up, nnder gallant etBeers of tbe stamp ef Bee, E?ans, Jack-sou. H.impton and Bartow. Like many another Southern success, it is undeniable that this victory was more the rosult of the happy accident of fighting ou tbe dofenstva than to superior generalship or bravery of tho troopa. Even th ih would hava failed Beauregard, In tho scattered comhtkm of his army, BBT OR TYLER'S HWITAJTCT. The rebel leader was lucky in having resolntcj zealous subordinates, who retrieved his blunders, whereas some ef McDowell's were vacillating incapable, wholly lacking in the elemonJ of grip and gather." Beauregard's report was, in fact, written to catch the popular ear. It la thia very report, by tho way, which first excited Mr. Davis's watchful jealousy of the hero of Sumter, and ho had it quietly suppressed from the newspapers, much to Beauregard's chagrin. Soon there was a great clamor In the South at the inadequacy of the victory the deplorable failure of their Generate to pursue, and to capture Washington, This clamor threatened to snow somebody ander. Who was blamablo, even if there was any fault, never will be positively known, but certain it is a controversy aroso between President Davis and the two Generals concerning this matter, which continued throughout the war, and to this day hi not much allayed, although Davis and Johnston are dead. It was a quarrel that grew in heat and intensity, and eventually so widened in scope as to include the great question of who was responsible for the final sollapaa of tbe Coniederaey. 2fa doubt the jealousy on-geudared Ux bjh quartern by this Bull Bun. episude made Northern success the moro easy aud certain. President David, Gens. Johnston, Beauregard and Hoed and others after the war entered the literary field ostensibly to historically review the entire poriod, but really to record war-time grievances; to enter personal explanations; to filo with the world specisl claims to statesmanship or military distinction, and to attack thoso ef others in a series or intensely fascinating autobiographical books. Davis, in his "Rise and Fall," holds Beauregard and Johnston in large meaeure responsible for the defeat of the South ; while they lit turn ascribe to his IMPLACABLE PXBSONAL JCALXOJnTT and inscrutable statesmanship the cause of all their ill-advised policies and disastrous mllN tary enterprises from beginning to end. All those books make mighty interesting reading) would that we had more of them. A great many good, l-ad and indifferent Generate wore graduated from tho oiHcers who led tho Union army at Bull Enn ; among them William T. Sherman, who commanded my brigade in tho battle. He was not only a capable General, bnt an earnest patriot ono of the first to point out that rough aud cruel fighting with cannon, musket and sword waa the only method to ho pursued with a truculont foo like the South, lie began early, and ran a wonderful professional career, succeeding Gcn Grant as full General in command of all tho armies of a united country. Since this paper was written Gen. Sherman has died in New York at tho ago of 71. Asido from Sherman, the Bull Run otlioore, high and low, who becamo Major-Oeiierats ware: Brig.-Gens. Irvin McDowell and Bohert G. Sehenck ; Cols. A.3IcD. McCook, 1st Ohio; David Hunter, 3d U. S. Cav.; Wm. B. Franklin, 12th U. S. Inf.; S. P. Heintzelman, 17th U. S. Inf.; E. D. Keyes, 11th U. S. Inf.; Oliver O. Howard, 3d Me.; Alfred H. Terry, 2d Conn.; Hiram G, Berry, 4th Me.; Israel B. Richardson, 2d Mich.; Henry W. Slocnm, 27th N. Y.; Ambrose E. Burnside, 1st B. I.; Lieut.-Col. Julius Stahcl, 8th N. Y.; Maj. George Sykoc, 14th U. 8. Inf.; Capts. H. G. Wright and Amiel W. Whipple, U. S. Esigs.; Charles GrilHn, 5th U. S. Art., and James B. Ricketts, 1st U. S. Art, and Lieut. George C. Strong, of tho Ordnance Department: Tho list includes some of tho meet conspicuous names develop! in the war. There are only six of these Generals now living. Richardson was killed at Antietam, Sept. 17, 1S62; Berry and A. W. Whipple at Chan-collpravillo, May 3, 1S62, and Strong at tho assault on Furt Wagner. Sherman, McDowell, Burnside. Sehenck, Manter, lieintaelman, Griffin, Ricketts, Sykes and Terry have all died since the war; Sherman. Terry and Schonok within the present year. Howard and McCook are still in the active service, and Wright Is on tho Retired List. Keyes and Stahol KKSIGXKD BECABSK OF DISSATISFACTION duriug its progress, and Slocum and Franklin after tho oloto of the war. McDowell, Burnside, Heintselman, Hunter, Slocnm, Howard, Sehenck, Wright aud Terry, all at different times became Department or Army Commanders, and some of them performed glorious feats of arms. Bumsido commanded tho Army of tho Potomac. Terry captured Fort Fishor. Howard and Slocum "marched down to the sen" with Sherman. Wright made a name as commander of the Sixth Corps after Sodgwick; was killed. Griffin was put at tbe bead of tho Fifth Corps when Shendau removed Warren after the battle of Five Forks. Huuter won the battle ef Piedmont. After Pope's unfortunate Second Bnll Run campaign, in 1808, McDowell disappeared nB n participant in active Hold opomtions. The Bull Ruu field was fatal to him. And it may not bo amiss to remark that Bull Run waa also fatal to Gen. Tyler, who cud but a small figure in the war thereafter. Gen. Ruayon also dropped out of sight soon after. Col. Dixon S. Mi lest, who fell nnder a cloud iu this bottle, was killed in September, 16U3, at tho DISdttACKFUL SURIlBN'DgH OT HAUPJStt'S FXRY. Cote. Andrew Porter, 16th U. S. Inf.; Lonls Bleiiker, 8th N. Y.; Wm. R. Montgomery, la4 N. J.; Orkmdo B. Willco.v, 1st Mich.;. Iaoao F. Quinby, 13th N. Y.; John V. Hartranft, 4th Ph.; Oilman M;trton. 2d J?. H.; Thos. A. Davies, lth N. Y.; Adorph Yon Steinwehr, 20th IT. Y.i Michael Ceraoran, fiobh N. Y.; Willis A. Gorman, 1st MHiio.; Geo. W. Taylor, 3d N. Jj Robert Cbwdfn, 1st? 2IU33.; Q. E. Pratt, ,31st X,

Clipped from
  1. The National Tribune,
  2. 09 Apr 1891, Thu,
  3. Page 1

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  • 1891 review of the war

    kenace1950 – 08 Dec 2014

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