Tag Archives: Henry A. Wise

Grant Devises a Bold New Strategy

June 6, 1864 – Lieutenant General Ulysses S. Grant proposed moving the massive Federal Army of the Potomac across the James River, and a Federal opportunity to capture Petersburg was squandered.

Lt Gen U.S. Grant | Image Credit: Wikimedia.org

After the Federal defeat at Cold Harbor, the marching and fighting that had taken place for nearly 30 straight days briefly stopped. The Federals had sustained over 50,000 casualties in the past month, and criticism of Grant’s strategy was getting louder within the army. However, President Abraham Lincoln remained supportive, telling a group of New Yorkers on the day after the Cold Harbor repulse, “My previous high estimate of Gen. Grant has been maintained and heightened by what has occurred in the remarkable campaign he is now conducting…”

The Federals were now closer to Richmond than they had been since June 1862. They had also inflicted losses on General Robert E. Lee’s Confederate Army of Northern Virginia that could not be replaced. But they had not destroyed Lee’s army, and they had not captured Richmond. And they had run out of room to maneuver north of the James River. Previous Federal commanders had fallen back to regroup and come up with a new strategy, but Grant would not. He wrote to Chief of Staff Henry W. Halleck on the 5th:

“A full survey of all the ground satisfies me that it would be impracticable to hold a line north-east of Richmond that would protect the Fredericksburg Railroad to enable us to use that road for supplying the army… My idea from the start has been to beat Lee’s army if possible north of Richmond; then after destroying his lines of communication on the north side of the James River to transfer the army to the south side and besiege Lee in Richmond, or follow him south if he should retreat.

“I now find, after over 30 days of trial, that the enemy deems it of the first importance to run no risks with the armies they now have. They act purely on the defensive, behind breastworks, or feebly on the offensive immediately in front of them, and where in case of repulse they can instantly retire behind them. Without a greater sacrifice of human life than I am willing to make all cannot be accomplished that I had designed outside of the city. I have therefore resolved upon the following plan.

“I will continue to hold substantially to the ground now occupied by the Army of the Potomac, taking advantage of any favorable circumstance that may present itself until the cavalry can be sent west to destroy the Virginia Central Railroad from about Beaver Dam for some 25 or 30 miles west. When this is effected I will move the army to the south side of James River, either by crossing the Chickahominy and marching near to City Point, or by going to the mouth of the Chickahominy on north side and crossing there. To provide for this last and most possible contingency, several ferry-boats of the largest class ought to be immediately provided…

“The feeling of the two armies now seems to be that the rebels can protect themselves only by strong intrenchments, whilst our army is not only confident of protecting itself without intrenchments, but that it can beat and drive the enemy wherever and whenever he can be found without this protection.”

Disengaging from the Confederate army and moving 100,000 men across the wide James River was a major gamble because the Confederates could attack and destroy the Federal army as it crossed. Also, Grant could expect no more reinforcements to replace his losses, as Halleck notified him on the 6th, “I inclose a list of troops forwarded from this department to the Army of the Potomac since the campaign opened–48,265 men. I shall send you a few regiments more, when all resources will be exhausted till another draft is made.”

Grant therefore planned three diversions from the main crossing:

  • Major General Philip Sheridan would lead two cavalry divisions to raid the Virginia Central Railroad in the Confederate rear.
  • Major General Benjamin F. Butler’s Federal Army of the James would try breaking out of Bermuda Hundred below the James.
  • A portion of the Army of the Potomac would feign another attack on Cold Harbor.

Moving south of the James River would cut Lee’s supply line coming into Richmond from the south. It would also threaten the vital railroad town of Petersburg. If the Federals captured Petersburg, Richmond would most likely follow. As Lee said, “We must destroy this army of Grant’s before he gets to the James River. If he gets there, it will become a siege, and then it will be a mere question of time.”

General P.G.T. Beauregard, commanding the Confederates bottling up Butler’s Federals at Bermuda Hundred, warned the Confederate high command that Grant may next target Petersburg. President Jefferson Davis discounted this in a message to Lee: “Our scouts give no information as to the arrival of troops from below, and if none have come I cannot believe the attack to be of much force.” Lee acknowledged that Grant might consider such a move, but he did not believe Grant could pull it off without detection.

Meanwhile, Butler prepared his part of Grant’s diversion. Butler’s original plan called for Federal cavalry under Brigadier General August V. Kautz to break through Beauregard’s line and raid Petersburg. But Major General Quincy A. Gillmore, commanding X Corps, insisted that since he was the senior officer, he should lead his infantry in the attack, with Kautz’s cavalry in support. Butler agreed.

The Federal infantry crossed the Appomattox River at 3:40 a.m. on the 9th, which was more than three hours behind schedule. The cavalry remained several more hours behind. Brigadier General Henry A. Wise defended Petersburg with just 1,000 Confederates, most of whom were either convalescents or prisoners freed from the local jail. Although the Federals outnumbered them four-to-one, Gillmore ordered frequent halts in the advance that gave the Confederates time to organize as strong a defense as possible.

As Gillmore stopped to consolidate his troops, Kautz’s troopers rode to within 150 yards of Petersburg. Wise shifted his defenders to hold off Kautz, leaving a path into the city wide open for the Federal infantry. But by the time Gillmore realized this, Beauregard was sending reinforcements from Bermuda Hundred to close the gaps. The Confederates easily repelled the half-hearted Federal attack in what became known as the “Battle of the Patients and the Penitents.”

Butler, who had constantly feuded with Gillmore, relieved him of command and ordered him arrested for disobedience and incompetence. Gillmore demanded a military tribunal to clear his name, but before it could be convened, Grant canceled Butler’s charges and reassigned Gillmore to another department.

Beauregard notified Richmond, “This movement must be a reconnaissance connected with Grant’s future operations. Without the troops sent to General Lee I will have to elect between abandoning lines on Bermuda Neck and those of Petersburg. Please give me the views of the Government on the subject.” Lee, still thinking that Grant’s main effort would be against Richmond, believed the attack on Petersburg was just a feint.

Davis asked Lee if he could spare any men to send to Petersburg, but Lee could not. Lee wrote, “The pause in the operations of Gen. Grant induces me to believe that he is awaiting the effect of movements in some other quarter.” But what Lee thought was a “pause” was really Grant creating diversions while preparing for his main movement across the James River.

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References

Anderson, Nancy Scott; Anderson, Dwight, The Generals: Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee (New York: Vintage Books, 1987), p. 492; Angle, Paul M., A Pictorial History of the Civil War Years (New York: Doubleday, 1967), p. 175; CivilWarDailyGazette.com; Davis, William C., Death in the Trenches: Grant at Petersburg (Alexandria, VA: Time-Life Books, 1983), p. 19-20, 27, 33-54; Denney, Robert E., The Civil War Years: A Day-by-Day Chronicle (New York: Gramercy Books, 1992 [1998 edition]), p. 421-22; Foote, Shelby, The Civil War: A Narrative: Volume 3: Red River to Appomattox (Vintage Civil War Library, Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Kindle Edition, 2011), Loc 6212-22, 6232-42, 6301-21, 6340-60, 6426-65; Fredriksen, John C., Civil War Almanac (New York: Checkmark Books, 2007), p. 450; Freeman, Douglas Southall, Lee (Scribner, Kindle Edition, 2008), Loc 7460; Long, E.B. with Long, Barbara, The Civil War Day by Day (New York: Da Capo Press, Inc., 1971), p. 514-15, 518; Sommers, Richard J., Historical Times Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Civil War (New York: Harper & Row, 1986, Patricia L. Faust ed.), p. 177

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The Fall of Roanoke Island

February 8, 1862 – The Federal army-navy effort to seize North Carolina’s Outer Banks continued, with the potential reward being a strengthening of the naval blockade and the opening of an invasion route into southern Virginia.

Gen. Ambrose Burnside | Image Credit: Wikispaces.com

Gen. Ambrose Burnside | Image Credit: Wikispaces.com

Brigadier General Ambrose E. Burnside and Flag Officer Louis M. Goldsborough launched an army-navy expedition against Roanoke Island in January. The island guarded the back door to Richmond, commanded naval passage between Pamlico and Albemarle sounds, and overlooked the North Carolina coast from Cape Lookout to Virginia.

The Federal effort to take Roanoke Island had been bogged down by bad weather, with sandbars providing another impediment for Federal warships and troop transports to enter Hatteras Inlet into Pamlico Sound. After a channel had finally been cleared, the last Federal vessel cleared the bar on February 4.

The next morning, the 65 Federal ships and 13,000 troops that had survived the past month’s harsh frustrations began heading northward up Pamlico Sound, with Goldsborough’s warships leading the way. The fleet anchored for the night about 10 miles from Roanoke Island, poised to attack the following day. However, heavy fog stalled the Federal advance.

Meanwhile, Brigadier General Henry A. Wise commanded just 2,300 Confederate defenders at Roanoke Island. Wise had gone to Richmond to plead for reinforcements to no avail. He had also failed to recruit “free negro laborers” to help build defenses. Wise then fell ill with pneumonia and was replaced by Colonel Henry M. Shaw, a man distrusted by Confederates for his New England upbringing and his lack of military experience.

In addition to the Confederate garrison, three sand forts bearing 32 total guns protected the northwestern section of Roanoke Island. This was hardly an ideal position since the Federals would be coming from the south. The Confederates also had Flag Officer William F. Lynch’s “mosquito” fleet of seven naval vessels, each with just one gun. The island itself contained a redoubt across its center road, with swamps guarding the garrison’s flanks.

When the fog lifted on the morning of the 7th, Goldsborough’s fleet began the advance. The 16 gunboats, bearing 64 guns, led the way in line of battle, with the troops and supply ships behind them. Aboard Burnside’s flagship the Picket, signalmen conveyed to the armada a quote from Lord Nelson before the 1805 Battle of Trafalgar: “Today, the country expects every man to do his duty.”

Moving northward, the fleet approached Fort Bartow, at Pork Point in Croatan Sound, west of Roanoke Island. Confederates at Bartow fired a signal shot around 11:30 a.m., as the vessels split between attacking the fort and confronting Lynch’s fleet. Lynch quickly pulled his ships back out of firing range, burning the C.S.S. Curlew to prevent her capture.

The Federals then turned on the Confederate water batteries and Fort Bartow. Many cannon were easily knocked out of commission, as Goldsborough directed his gunboats to move as close to the fort as possible so that Confederate artillerists could not depress their guns low enough to fire on them. With the Confederates in the forts and fleet occupied, Burnside began preparing to land his troops on Roanoke Island.

Burnside selected Ashby Harbor, in the island’s southwestern corner, as the landing point based on the advice of a local fugitive slave. The war’s first successful large-scale amphibious landing occurred when the Federal troop transports began debarking two miles south of Goldsborough’s gunboats around 4 p.m. The ships protected the landing by repelling one last desperate attack from the “mosquito” fleet.

The Roanoke Island Landing | Image Credit: learnnc.org

The Roanoke Island Landing | Image Credit: learnnc.org

Steamers sent surf-boats and rowing craft filled with troops and artillery toward the island, and the Federals waded the rest of the way to shore. Over the next nine hours, some 10,000 Federals in three brigades under Brigadier Generals Jesse Reno, John G. Parke, and John G. Foster landed at Ashby’s Harbor. Colonel Shaw dispatched 450 Confederates to contest the landing, but they retreated after observing the overwhelming force coming ashore. Shaw hurriedly prepared to make a stand at the island’s main redoubt.

The Federals quickly secured the island’s southern half, then huddled in freezing rain until the next day’s scheduled attack. On the morning of the 8th, the troops advanced upon the Confederate defenses in the northern section of Roanoke Island. They moved in three columns on the causeway that crossed the island’s vast swampland. The Federals encountered no resistance until they reached a clearing about halfway up the 12-mile island. About 1,500 entrenched Confederates and three cannon covered that point.

Shaw placed his men behind strong earthworks, hoping to draw the Federals into open ground. The swamps in the clearing also threatened to slow any attack long enough for the Confederates to pour fire into the attackers and drive them off.

One Federal brigade advanced head-on up the causeway, led by the 9th New York Zouaves. The other two brigades conducted simultaneous flank attacks, advancing knee-deep through mud and swampland. The overwhelmed Confederates quickly abandoned their trenches and fled toward the island’s northern end.

The Federals chased them to the sea, where a Confederate officer asked Foster for capitulation terms. Foster replied, “None but those of unconditional surrender.” This message was relayed to Shaw, who thought for a moment and said, “I must surrender.” Foster soon arrived to receive Shaw’s sword, and Roanoke Island belonged to the Federals.

The Federals sustained 264 casualties (37 killed, 214 wounded, and 13 missing) while the Confederates lost 85 (23 killed and 62 wounded), along with 2,675 surrendered. Wise’s son was killed in action, but Wise himself overcame his illness long enough to escape to Poplar Branch, 20 miles north.

This was the first significant Federal land victory of the war, much greater than the victory at Fort Henry two days before. Burnside reported that he had “complete possession of this island, with five forts, mounting thirty-two guns, winter quarters for some 4,000 troops, and 3,000 stand of arms, large hospital buildings, with a large amount of lumber, wheelbarrows, scows, pile-drivers, a mud dredge, ladders, and other appurtenances for military service…”

Although this battle was small compared to future engagements, the Confederate government considered the loss of Roanoke Island a great disaster. This exposed northeastern North Carolina to a potential Federal drive to Norfolk or even Richmond. It also gave the Federals control of North Carolina’s inland seas, which would strengthen the blockade and alarm all coastal defenders. The loss greatly harmed southern morale and led many to wonder why the Davis administration did not work harder to ensure the island’s security.

By around 4 p.m., Goldsborough’s Federal gunboat fleet had removed the Confederate obstructions to Albemarle Sound; the “mosquito” fleet offered little resistance. Goldsborough followed up this victory by advancing up the Pasquotank River toward Elizabeth City to confront Lynch’s small squadron. A two-day bombardment of Fort Bartow led to the Confederates evacuating the place on the 9th.

News of Roanoke Island’s capture was celebrated throughout the North. Horace Greeley wrote in his New York Tribune: “It now requires no far-reaching prophet to predict the end of this struggle.” Meanwhile, gloom pervaded the Confederacy, with an article in the Richmond Examiner calling the defeat “certainly the most painful event of the war.”

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References

Chaitin, Peter M., The Coastal War: Chesapeake Bay to Rio Grande (Alexandria, VA: Time-Life Books, 1983), p. 24, 26-27, 30-31; CivilWarDailyGazette.com (multiple dates); Denney, Robert E., The Civil War Years: A Day-by-Day Chronicle (New York: Gramercy Books, 1992 [1998 edition]), p. 121-23; Foote, Shelby, The Civil War, A Narrative: Fort Sumter to Perryville (New York: Vintage Books, 1958), p. 227, 229-30; Fredriksen, John C., Civil War Almanac (New York: Checkmark Books, 2007), p. 107-08; Freeman, Douglas Southall, Lee (Scribner, Kindle Edition, 2008), Loc 3091; Long, E.B. with Long, Barbara, The Civil War Day by Day (New York: Da Capo Press, Inc., 1971), p. 167-69; McPherson, James M., Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era (Oxford History of the United States Book 6, Oxford University Press, Kindle Edition, 1988), p. 372; McPherson, James M., War on the Waters: The Union and Confederate Navies, 1861-1865 (Littlefield History of the Civil War Era, University of North Carolina Press, Kindle Edition, 2012), p. 51; Pollard, Edward A., Southern History of the War (New York: The Fairfax Press, 1990), p. 234; Stanchak, John E., Historical Times Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Civil War (New York: Harper & Row, 1986, Patricia L. Faust ed.), p. 636

The Roanoke Island Campaign

January 5, 1862 – Federal forces embarked on a joint army-navy operation to capture a key point on the North Carolina coast.

Gen. Ambrose Burnside | Image Credit: Wikispaces.com

Gen. Ambrose Burnside | Image Credit: Wikispaces.com

President Abraham Lincoln, General-in-Chief George B. McClellan, and Navy Secretary Gideon Welles had approved a plan developed by Brigadier General Ambrose E. Burnside to load army troops onto navy transports and, with naval warship support, capture Roanoke Island. This guarded both Albemarle and Pamlico sounds, along with many rivers, canals, and railroads.

Taking Roanoke Island, along with the Federal occupation of Hatteras Inlet, would enable the Federals to stop blockade-running in the waters of Pamlico Sound between the North Carolina coast and the Outer Banks. It would also gain them access to many of the waterways flowing from North Carolina’s interior, as well as the numerous Unionists said to reside in that area.

The 12,829 Federal troops of Burnside’s “Coast Division” consisted mostly of New Englanders accustomed to working on the water. Burnside had recruited the men himself, which were grouped into three brigades commanded by his West Point friends: Brigadier Generals John G. Foster, Jesse L. Reno, and John G. Parke. Bands played and snow fell as the troops boarded transports at Annapolis, Maryland, to embark on what became known as the “Burnside expedition.”

Flag Officer Louis M. Goldsborough, commander of the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron, led the naval armada. It included about 100 vessels varying from makeshift barges, coal steamers, steamboats, and warships. As they pulled out of Annapolis, Burnside later recalled, “The whole fleet seemed to be under a mixed influence of excitement and contentment.”

Both the northern and southern press speculated on the fleet’s secret destination, with the Richmond Dispatch correctly guessing that it was Pamlico Sound. However, the press greatly underestimated the size of the massive armada, which steamed south toward North Carolina on January 11.

Burnside set up headquarters on the Picket, one of the least seaworthy gunboats in the fleet, to show his men that he was with them. They all suffered through a ferocious two-day storm that featured severe winds and high waves off Cape Hatteras. Burnside noted that “the men, furniture, and crockery below decks were thrown about in a most promiscuous manner.”

Roanoke Island | Image Credit: nps.gov

Roanoke Island | Image Credit: nps.gov

The Federals finally arrived off Roanoke Island on the 13th. The smaller ships began entering Pamlico Sound that morning, and the Picket led the larger ships in around 12 p.m. However, rough waves and the shallow bar made it extremely difficult for these ships to pass. The Pocahontas was destroyed, losing 100 horses. The steamer City of New York foundered, losing over $200,000 worth of supplies and equipment. The captain and crew were rescued after lifeboats could finally be sent over the breakers; they had hung from the rigging for nearly two days.

Awaiting the Federals at Roanoke Island were just 1,400 “undrilled, unpaid, not sufficiently clothed and quartered, and miserably armed” Confederates according to their commander, Brigadier General Henry A. Wise. A “mosquito” fleet of seven gunboats under Flag Officer William F. Lynch also aided in defense. Wise notified Secretary of War Judah P. Benjamin that the island was “utterly defenceless” and estimated that even without Burnside’s troops, the Federal armada was “amply sufficient to capture or pass Roanoke Island in any 12 hours.”

Wise called on his superior, Major General Benjamin Huger, for reinforcements and arms. Huger denied the request, even though he had 13,000 men standing by at nearby Norfolk. Huger instead recommended that Wise demand “hard work and coolness among the troops you have, instead of more men.” When Wise went to Richmond to personally request reinforcements, Benjamin peremptorily ordered him to return to his post and hold the island at all costs, despite being outnumbered almost nine-to-one.

Lynch reported to Navy Secretary Stephen R. Mallory that from the C.S.S. Sea Bird at Hatteras Inlet, he “saw a large fleet of steamers and transports.” Lynch reminded Mallory of Roanoke Island’s importance: “Here is the great thoroughfare from Albemarle Sound and its tributaries, and if the enemy obtain lodgements or succeed in passing here he will cut off a very rich country from the Norfolk market.”

Meanwhile, Goldsborough informed Welles of the ongoing difficulties in getting the fleet, particularly the troop transports, across the Pamlico Sound sandbar. The move took several weeks, during which time the Federals reconnoitered the Confederate positions on Roanoke Island and its surrounding forts. As the channel was deepened to enable the ships to enter the sound, the men remained aboard their vessels suffering from a growing lack of drinking water. The sound passage continued into February.

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References

Chaitin, Peter M., The Coastal War: Chesapeake Bay to Rio Grande (Alexandria, VA: Time-Life Books, 1983), p. 17, 21-23; CivilWarDailyGazette.com (multiple dates); Denney, Robert E., The Civil War Years: A Day-by-Day Chronicle (New York: Gramercy Books, 1992 [1998 edition]), p. 108, 111, 115, 117-18; Foote, Shelby, The Civil War, A Narrative: Fort Sumter to Perryville (New York: Vintage Books, 1958), p. 226-28; Fredriksen, John C., Civil War Almanac (New York: Checkmark Books, 2007), p. 96-98, 101-02; Long, E.B. with Long, Barbara, The Civil War Day by Day (New York: Da Capo Press, Inc., 1971), p. 158-60, 163; Longacre, Edward G., Historical Times Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Civil War (New York: Harper & Row, 1986, Patricia L. Faust ed.), p. 536; McPherson, James M., Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era (Oxford History of the United States Book 6, Oxford University Press, Kindle Edition, 1988), p. 372; Pollard, Edward A., Southern History of the War (New York: The Fairfax Press, 1990), p. 238-39

Western Virginia: Floyd and Wise Part Ways

September 30, 1861 – Confederates fell back in southwestern Virginia as the long dispute between Confederate Generals John B. Floyd and Henry A. Wise finally came to a bitter end.

Generals Wise (L) and Floyd (R), with General Lee in the middle | Image Credit: Wikimedia.org

Generals Wise (L) and Floyd (R), with General Lee in the middle | Image Credit: Wikimedia.org

Since the engagement at Carnifex Ferry, the Confederate Army of the Kanawha had fallen back about 20 miles to the Big Sewell Mountain. However, the army remained divided between hostile rivals John B. Floyd and Henry A. Wise. Floyd set up camp atop the mountain, while Wise’s Legion camped a mile and a half further east on a bluff he believed was easier to defend.

Floyd, the overall commander, directed Wise to post cavalry so that Floyd “may be reliably and speedily informed of the advance of the enemy.” Floyd worried that the Federal forces under Generals William S. Rosecrans and Jacob D. Cox would link and attack him. When Wise displayed a reluctance to comply, Floyd registered another angry complaint about him with President Jefferson Davis.

Floyd told Davis that it was “impossible for me to conduct a campaign with General Wise attached to my command. His presence with my force is almost as injurious as if he were in the camp of the enemy with his whole command… (the) petty jealousy of General Wise; his utter ignorance of all military rule and discipline; the peculiar contrariness of his character and disposition, are beginning to produce rapidly a disorganization which will prove fatal to the interests of the army if not arrested at once.” But then Floyd acknowledged that arresting Wise “would not have cured the evil, for he has around him a set of men extremely like himself, and the demoralization of his corps I incline to think is complete.”

The enmity between Floyd and Wise had been steadily growing for nearly two months, and now Floyd clearly implied that Davis would have to replace one of them. While the letter was in transit, Floyd and Wise met at a council of war at 5 p.m. on September 16. When Floyd expressed concern that the Federals would attack his positions, Wise stated that Floyd’s positions were “indefensible” while Wise’s were “almost impregnable.”

Wise advised Floyd to fall back and link with the Legion in a line anchored on the New River. Floyd said that he would consider the proposal, but almost immediately after the conference ended, he sent a message to Wise stating that “it has been determined to fall back to the most defensible point between Meadow Bluff (25 miles east) and Lewisburg (40 miles east).”

Floyd announced that he would put “his column in motion at once,” and ordered Wise to keep his “command in readiness to bring up the rear.” Wise, recalling how Floyd had condemned him for retreating out of the Kanawha Valley, announced to his troops, “Men, look who is retreating now? John B. Floyd, God-damn him, the bullet-hit son of a bitch, he is retreating now!”

Wise ignored Floyd’s order, keeping his men at what became known as Camp Defiance. When Floyd questioned why Wise had not moved, Wise explained that Floyd had merely ordered him to “hold his command in readiness to bring up the rear,” which Wise was doing. Wise assured Floyd that he could easily hold off 4,000 Federals from his entrenchments on the Big Sewell Mountain and asked Floyd to send him reinforcements.

Floyd replied that he had “been aware for several days of the advance of the enemy,” and he had withdrawn to Meadow Bluff because he guessed that Rosecrans and Cox would link there. Floyd then admonished Wise: “I regret exceedingly that you did not think proper to bring up my rear, but on the contrary chose to advance in the direction from which I had come.” Since keeping the army separate could have “disastrous consequences,” Floyd again asked Wise “to join my force and make a stand against the enemy at this point.”

General Robert E. Lee, the unofficial commander of Confederates in western Virginia, traveled 100 miles to Floyd’s headquarters at Meadow Bluff on September 21. Lee initially took Floyd’s side in the dispute, urging Wise to come join him. However, Lee personally inspected Wise’s positions and found them militarily sound and strong.

When Lee suggested that the Federals may attack Floyd at Meadow Bluff, Wise called it “simply absurd” and insisted that Rosecrans was moving against Wise’s Legion: “I tell you emphatically, sir, the enemy are advancing in strong force on this (the James River & Kanawha) turnpike.” Lee stated that Wise could make a stand if he wished, but if the Federals attacked at Meadow Bluff, “General Floyd cannot advance to your aid, but may have to retire.”

The strain of dealing with these bickering commanders while under Federal military pressure in the harsh western Virginia climate began getting to Lee. When a lieutenant in Wise’s Legion asked Lee where the ordnance chief was, the general snapped:

“I think it very strange, Lieutenant, that an officer of this command, which has been there a week, should come to me, who am just arrived, to ask who his ordinance officer is and where to find his ammunition. This is in keeping with everything else I find here—no order, no organization; nobody knows where anything is, no one understands his duty; officers and men alike are equally ignorant. This will not do.”

Although Lee condemned the disorganization among Wise’s Legion, he acknowledged that the men held strong defenses. Lee notified Floyd that Wise’s line “was a strong point, if they fight us here… they can get no position for their artillery, and their men I think will not advance without it…” Lee asked Floyd to send reinforcements. He could not order Floyd to do so because Wise had disobeyed Floyd by staying at the Big Sewell Mountain in the first place.

This dilemma would finally be settled on September 25, by which time Floyd’s letter of complaint had reached Richmond. Confederate officials had already blamed Wise for failing to reinforce Floyd at Carnifex Ferry, and now they moved to settle the quarrel once and for all. Acting Secretary of War Judah P. Benjamin issued two messages. The first went to Floyd, complimenting his handling of the Carnifex Ferry engagement in spite of Wise’s lack of support. The second went to Wise:

“Sir: You are instructed to turn over all the troops heretofore immediately under your command to General Floyd, and report yourself in person to the Adjutant-General in this city (Richmond) with the least delay. In making the transfer to General Floyd you will include everything under your command. By order of the President: J.P. BENJAMIN.”

The order reached Wise as he was directing fire against Federal skirmishers. Wise, who did not want to relinquish command “immediately” since his men were in combat, consulted Lee, who advised him to “obey the President’s order.” That evening, Wise wrote a farewell address to his men:

“It is not proper here to inquire into the reasons of this order. It is in legal form, from competent authority, and it could not have been foreseen by the President that it would reach me inopportunely whilst under the fire of the enemy… But the order is imperative, requiring the least delay, and prompt obedience is the first duty of military service, though it may call for the greatest personal sacrifice.”

Wise left his command on the morning of the 26th in torrential rain. Lee, assuming temporary command of Wise’s Legion, continued holding the Big Sewell Mountain as Rosecrans and Cox joined forces against him. Lee and Rosecrans now held opposing spurs on the mountain, separated by a mile-wide valley.

Advance elements of General William W. Loring’s Confederate Army of the Northwest, after participating in the failed Cheat Mountain operation, reinforced Lee on Big Sewell. However, the force still proved ineffective due to rain, illness, the harsh terrain, and Federal strength. Moreover, Floyd’s command remained separate, ready to defend Meadow Bluff.

Nevertheless, Lee wrote to Floyd on the 30th, “I begin to fear the enemy will not attack us. We shall therefore have to attack him.” Lee planned to move around Rosecrans’s flank and attack his rear, but only if he could first get a week’s rations. This would prove extremely difficult because rain had turned the James River & Kanawha Turnpike, which both Lee and Rosecrans used to collect supplies, into what Floyd called “the worst road in Virginia.”

Consequently, Lee had to pull supplies from Lewisburg (25 miles east) and Staunton (100 miles east), while Rosecrans’s supplies had to be shipped up the Kanawha River from Charleston to be taken by wagon from Gauley Bridge to Big Sewell. Meanwhile, officers and men alike suffered grievously in the bitter cold and rain of mountainous western Virginia.

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References

CivilWarDailyGazette.com; Fredriksen, John C., Civil War Almanac (New York: Checkmark Books, 2007), p.67-68; Freeman, Douglas Southall, Lee (Scribner, Kindle Edition, 2008), Loc 2849-72, 2896-919; Long, E.B. with Long, Barbara, The Civil War Day by Day (New York: Da Capo Press, Inc., 1971), p. 121; McPherson, James M., Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era (Oxford History of the United States Book 6, Oxford University Press, Kindle Edition, 1988), p. 302; Pritchard, Russ A., Historical Times Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Civil War (New York: Harper & Row, 1986, Patricia L. Faust ed.), p. 407

The Battle of Carnifex Ferry

September 10, 1861 – Federals led by Brigadier General William S. Rosecrans won a minor victory that strengthened their foothold in western Virginia.

By this time, several different commands operated in western Virginia, coveted for its extensive salt and lead works, coal mines, and niter deposits. Brigadier General Jacob D. Cox’s Federal brigade held Gauley Bridge, which effectively controlled the important Kanawha River Valley. Cox faced two main Confederate threats:

  • Brigadier General Henry A. Wise, former Virginia governor, commanded his “Legion” at Hawks Nest, east of Gauley Bridge.
  • Brigadier General John B. Floyd, former Virginia governor and U.S. secretary of war, commanded his 2,000-man Army of the Kanawha at Carnifex Ferry, a strategic crossing on the northern bank of the Gauley River, northeast of Cox.

Cox feared that Floyd would attack from the north while Wise attacked from the east. Luckily for Cox, Floyd and Wise detested one another, which made coordinating their efforts nearly impossible.

Meanwhile Rosecrans, commanding all Federal forces in western Virginia, led three Ohio brigades totaling about 6,000 men southward from Clarksburg to reinforce Cox at Gauley Bridge. To get there, Rosecrans had to push through Floyd at Carnifex Ferry. Floyd called on Wise to reinforce him upon learning of Rosecrans’s approach, but Wise resisted breaking up his Legion and sent him just a token force. Wise also warned Floyd against camping with his back to the river, but Floyd ignored him.

Rosecrans’s Federals occupied Summersville, about 10 miles north of Carnifex Ferry, on the morning of the 10th. Local Unionists informed Rosecrans where Floyd had stationed his troops, and Rosecrans resolved to either “whip or pass” Floyd to reach Cox. The Federals advanced to Cross Lanes by 1 p.m., scouted the area, then continued forward around 2:30.

Floyd had his troops positioned on a bend in the Gauley River. The right flank was anchored at the river, the center (which included the road to Carnifex Ferry) was protected by artillery, while the left flank was open. Cliffs and the river were in the Confederate rear. Floyd thought the positon impregnable and did not order his men to build a bridge in case of emergency. Colonel Henry Heth, one of Floyd’s subordinates, built a rope bridge anyway.

As the Federals advanced into the woods, their visibility was obstructed until the Confederates fired into them. The Federals wavered, but one bullet from their modest return fire hit Floyd in the arm. Rosecrans ordered all his men forward, determined to take the Confederate breastworks by frontal assault.

The Battle of Carnifex Ferry | Image Credit: CivilWarDailyGazette.com

The Battle of Carnifex Ferry | Image Credit: CivilWarDailyGazette.com

The mass Federal attack occurred just before nightfall and dislodged the Confederates’ right flank from the river. The Federals captured many supplies, but darkness prevented them from breaking the enemy line. Rosecrans fell back, planning to renew the assault the next day.

Floyd regrouped his men into a strong defensive line at the ferry and awaited another attack. However, Heth advised him that the Confederate left flank, being open, would be vulnerable to a renewed assault. Floyd, who seemed bewildered by combat and his wound, sent orders for Wise to reinforce him, but then opted to retreat without informing Wise. The Confederates used the ferry and Heth’s rope bridge to cross the river, destroying both after crossing to prevent a Federal pursuit. They marched south to link with Wise’s Legion.

On the morning of the 11th, Wise received Floyd’s order to reinforce him. When his Legion was halfway to Carnifex Ferry, Wise received another message ordering him to return to his original position and await the arrival of Floyd’s army. Floyd and Wise met at Dogwood Gap, where Floyd still seemed perplexed by the previous day’s events and issued no further orders for the time being.

Meanwhile, Rosecrans learned of Floyd’s retreat and settled his troops in Floyd’s old camp until they were able to cross the river in pursuit. The engagement at Carnifex Ferry cost the Federals 17 killed and 141 wounded, while the Confederates lost 20 men. The Confederates held against the Federal assaults, but Floyd’s retreat made this a minor Federal victory.

Wise actually received more blame for this setback than Floyd because of his persistent reluctance to join forces with Floyd’s army. This engagement tightened the Federal grip on western Virginia, and responsibility for breaking that grip devolved to the other Confederate force in the region, led by General Robert E. Lee to the north.

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References

CivilWarDailyGazette.com; Clark, Champ, Decoying the Yanks: Jackson’s Valley Campaign (Alexandria, VA: Time-Life Books, 1983), p. 72; Denney, Robert E., The Civil War Years: A Day-by-Day Chronicle (New York: Gramercy Books, 1992 [1998 edition]), p. 74-75; Fredriksen, John C., Civil War Almanac (New York: Checkmark Books, 2007), p. 63; Freeman, Douglas Southall, Lee (Scribner, Kindle Edition, 2008), Loc 2849; Guelzo, Allen C, Historical Times Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Civil War (New York: Harper & Row, 1986, Patricia L. Faust ed.), p. 113-14; Long, E.B. with Long, Barbara, The Civil War Day by Day (New York: Da Capo Press, Inc., 1971), p. 116-17; Pollard, Edward A., Southern History of the War (New York: The Fairfax Press, 1990), p. 171; Pritchard, Russ A., Historical Times Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Civil War (New York: Harper & Row, 1986, Patricia L. Faust ed.), p. 407

Operations in Southwestern Virginia

September 6, 1861 – Confederate Brigadier General John B. Floyd sent reinforcements to Brigadier General Henry A. Wise but soon realized that he needed them back to defend against an approaching Federal force under Major General William S. Rosecrans.

Generals Rosecrans, Floyd, Cox, and Wise | Image Credit: Wikimedia.org

Generals Rosecrans, Floyd, Cox, and Wise | Image Credit: Wikimedia.org

As September began, Wise led the main portion of his “Legion” from Dogwood Gap to reinforce Floyd’s Confederate Army of the Kanawha at Carnifex Ferry. Wise had already made the 17-mile march in August, only to be sent back by Floyd upon arriving. But now Floyd called him up again, fearing that the Federals at Gauley Bridge might be massing to attack him.

As Wise’s Confederates reached the cliffs overlooking the Gauley River, Wise received a message from Floyd:

“From more recent information I think it doubtful whether the movements of the enemy require at this time the union of your force with mine, as embraced in my last order to you late in the evening. You will therefore retain your forces in camp until further orders.”

Furious about having to countermarch a second time, Wise wrote to Confederate Secretary of War Judah P. Benjamin: “I was so disgusted by these vacillating and harassing orders, that I determined at once with promptitude and dispatch to drive the enemy as far as possible back upon the turnpike towards their camp at Gauley Bridge.” Wise’s Legion returned to Dogwood Gap on the night of September 1, where Wise began planning to attack Cox’s advance guard.

Meanwhile, Cox observed Wise’s activity about 15 miles east. Cox also observed two Confederate militia units nearby, one southwest of him in Boone County and one about 15 miles southeast of him at Fayette Court House. Cox issued orders for a detachment to confront the Boone County militia because they threatened his communication lines to Ohio.

On the 2nd, Cox’s detachment clashed with the militia at Boone County Court House, where the Federals drove the enemy off after the militia burned the town. Federals suffered six casualties; Cox estimated Confederate losses at 50 but they were probably fewer.

Meanwhile, Wise led his Legion westward to attack Cox. Federal pickets sporadically fired at them before withdrawing toward Gauley Bridge. Wise arrived at Hawks Nest and seized the bridge spanning Turkey Creek by the night of the 2nd. Wise hoped to join forces with the militia at Fayette Court House, but Floyd ordered that unit to move west toward Charleston.

Wise’s 900 Confederates advanced on about 1,250 Federals in defensive positions near Big Creek on September 3. Wise drove the Federal advance guard over a steep mountain as he deployed 300 troops to move around the Federal flank. Atop the mountain, Wise prepared to fire into the Federal camps below when he learned that his flanking force had gotten lost. This compelled him to withdraw his Legion back to Hawks Nest.

While Wise pushed the Federals from the east, the Confederate militia harassed the Federals from the other side of the New River. This convinced Cox that Wise and the militia were acting in concert, even though the dual attack was merely coincidental. Cox also believed that Floyd was leaving Carnifex Ferry to reinforce Wise, when Floyd was actually gathering reinforcements to hold his position.

A standoff ensued, both between the Confederates and Cox at Gauley Bridge, and between Wise and Floyd. Floyd remained at Carnifex Ferry, while Wise remained at Hawks Nest and Miller’s Ferry. Confederate militia operated on the other side of the New River from Wise, giving Cox three forces to guard against. However, Major General William S. Rosecrans, commanding all Federals in western Virginia, was moving from Clarksburg with 5,000 men to reinforce Cox.

On the 6th, Wise planned to use the reinforcements that Floyd sent him to attack Cox, even though Floyd warned Wise that the reinforcements could be recalled at any time. Wise countered by informing Floyd that the troops “will not be removed at all from this road.” Meanwhile, Rosecrans issued orders for his Federals to move out from Sutton “in the direction of Summersville” and Floyd’s supposedly secure position at Carnifex Ferry, 45 miles south. With the other forces in motion, Cox reported to Rosecrans on the 7th: “Everything remains as it was. No news as yet.”

When Floyd learned that Rosecrans’s Federals were within about 15 miles of Carnifex Ferry, he sent a message to Wise at 8:30 a.m. on the 9th recalling the reinforcements. Floyd had just 1,600 Confederates to stand against Rosecrans’s 5,000. Wise sent just one regiment, refusing to give back all the men that Floyd had given him. Wise then wrote to General Robert E. Lee, the Confederate military advisor in western Virginia, complaining about Floyd.

Wise had written many similar letters, and Lee had given similar responses in each instance. Once again he reminded Wise “how necessary it is to act upon reports touching the safety of troops, and that even rumors must not be neglected.” Lee expressed concern about Floyd’s position, but then he urged Wise to stop asking to be separated from Floyd. Lee wrote, “There must be a union of strength to drive back the invaders. I beg you will act in concert.”

That evening, Floyd again requested that Wise send him reinforcements upon learning from scouts that the Federals were advancing near Summersville, or “this side of Powell’s Mountain.” Rosecrans would arrive opposite Carnifex Ferry the next day.

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References

CivilWarDailyGazette.com; Long, E.B. with Long, Barbara, The Civil War Day by Day (New York: Da Capo Press, Inc., 1971), p. 116; White, Howard Ray, Bloodstains, An Epic History of the Politics that Produced and Sustained the American Civil War and the Political Reconstruction that Followed (Southernbooks, Kindle Edition, 2012), Q361

The Western Virginia Military Situation: August 1861

August 26, 1861 – Confederates won a minor clash in southwestern Virginia, while General Robert E. Lee continued struggling to coordinate the movements of several stubborn commanders in the region.

Lee had come to western Virginia as a military advisor to President Jefferson Davis. Although he had no authority to issue orders to the Confederate commanders, he hoped to persuade them to work together against the Federals rather than operating independently. By this month, there were three different commands:

  • The Army of the Northwest under General Henry R. Jackson, soon to be replaced by General William W. Loring. This force was divided between Monterey and Huntersville.
  • The Army of the Kanawha under General John B. Floyd near Sweet Springs.
  • Brigadier General Henry A. Wise’s “Legion” near Lewisburg, which was actually a portion of the Army of the Kanawha.
L to R: Robert E. Lee, William W. Loring, John B. Floyd, Henry A. Wise | Image Credit: Wikipedia.org

L to R: Robert E. Lee, William W. Loring, John B. Floyd, Henry A. Wise | Image Credit: Wikipedia.org

Lee urged Floyd and Wise to join forces and take back the Kanawha River Valley after relinquishing it to the Federals in July. Wise resisted because he did not get along with Floyd. Lee urged Loring to consolidate his army and advance northward to Cheat Mountain. Loring resisted because he had outranked Lee in the U.S. army and did not appreciate his advice. Adding to this was the unrelenting rains and unforgiving terrain of western Virginia.

Floyd proposed linking with Wise and raising another 10,000 recruits, informing President Davis that he had “never witnessed a better spirit than seems to be almost universal” in the area. The force would then move northward and attack Cheat Mountain, or even possibly invade Ohio. However, Wise reported that the Kanawha Valley was overrun by Unionists, and his men needed rest before they could join Floyd.

On August 6, the first council of war between Floyd and Wise took place at White Sulphur Springs. Wise delivered a two-hour speech tying American history into his current situation, describing his “retrograde movement” (i.e., retreat) from Charleston to the Gauley Bridge. Wise then asked Floyd where he wanted to go. Floyd said, “Down the road.” Wise asked what then, and Floyd replied, “Fight.” The commanders made no strategy decisions.

To the north, the Confederates remained stationary as Loring disagreed with Lee’s plan to confront the Federals at Cheat Mountain. On the Federal side, General-in-Chief Winfield Scott, anticipating Lee’s plan, directed Major General William S. Rosecrans, who had replaced Major General George B. McClellan in command of western Virginia, to “push forward rapidly the fortifications ordered by General McClellan” in July.

Rosecrans responded by beginning to consolidate his forces at various points. He also sent reinforcements to the force under Brigadier General Jacob D. Cox at Gauley Bridge, which threatened the Confederates of Floyd and Wise. When McClellan at Washington ordered Rosecrans to hold Gauley Bridge with Cox’s men, Rosecrans decided to reinforce Cheat Mountain while having Cox take up defensive positions.

The Confederate threat in western Virginia was made to look worse than it truly was when Unionist politician John S. Carlisle wrote to Secretary of War Simon Cameron: “For God’s sake, send us more troops and a general to command, or else we are whipped in less than ten days.” Carlisle estimated enemy strength at 20,000 men, with 8,000 at Monterey and 8,000 west of Huntersville, as well as an army of “considerable size” under Floyd and Wise advancing on Wheeling.

Although the Confederates truly did outnumber the Federals, they only had 12,000 men east of the Federal positions at Cheat Mountain. And Floyd and Wise were nowhere near Wheeling, and if they ever joined forces, they would still have only 3,800 effectives to confront Cox’s Federals, who would soon be reinforced. And most importantly, torrential rains had slowed active operations almost to a halt.

During this lull, Rosecrans sought to ease Unionist fears by issuing a proclamation to “The Loyal Citizens of Western Virginia” from his Clarksburg headquarters. He urged the people to obey the law and oppose secessionists: “Their tools and dupes told you you must vote for secession as the only means to insure peace, that unless you did so, hordes of abolitionists would overrun you, plunder your property, steal your slaves, abuse your wives and daughters, seize upon your lands, and hang all those who opposed them… (secessionists) have set neighbor against neighbor and friend against friend; they have introduced a warfare only known among savages.

“Citizens of Western Virginia,” Rosecrans concluded, “your fate is mainly in your own hands. If you allow yourselves to be trampled under foot by hordes of disturbers, plunderers, and murderers, your land will become a desolation. If you stand firm for law and order and maintain your rights, you may dwell together peacefully and happily as in former days.”

Also during this time, Lee sent a message to Brigadier General John J. Reynolds, commanding Federals at Cheat Mountain: “With a view of alleviating individual distress I have the honor to propose an exchange of prisoners. If you will cause to be forwarded a list of those in your hands including those placed on parole an equal number of U. S. troops, man for man or similar grade, will be sent to the point most convenient to their present abode. An exchange in this manner can be conveniently effected. Very respectfully, R. E LEE, General, Commanding.”

Reynolds responded the next day: “SIR: Your proposition inviting an exchange of prisoners is cheerfully acceded to. A list of prisoners in our possession including those paroled will be delivered at the house in Tygarts Valley where this note is written on the 9th instant. Very respectfully, J.J. REYNOLDS, Brigadier-General, Commanding.”

However, Reynolds did not get permission from Rosecrans first, instead requesting retroactive approval: “Now, first, is this action on my part approved, and secondly, can it be effected here?” Rosecrans did not approve. Since most Confederate prisoners were from western Virginia, Rosecrans worried that they would not only reinforce Lee’s army, but they would know the Federals’ positions. Conversely, most Federal prisoners had been taken in the Battle of Bull Run, so they would most likely return to northern Virginia and not help Rosecrans. While the plan was held up for soldiers, both sides agreed to exchange two non-combatants each.

Meanwhile, the bickering between Floyd and Wise continued, with Wise asking Lee to keep their forces separated and Floyd wanting them to unite and take the offensive. Lee urged Wise to work with Floyd, or else it could “destroy the prospect of the success of the campaign in the Kanawha District.” Floyd went over Lee’s head to Davis, alleging “great disorganization amongst the men under General Wise’s command,” and hoping to “remedy the evil.” Floyd then announced that since he outranked Wise, he would assume overall command of both his and Wise’s men.

Wise initially resisted Floyd’s orders to join his force, arguing that his men were plagued with typhoid and measles; a regimental officer told Wise that the “troops are now decimated by disease and casualties occurred by weeks of exposure” to rain and cold. Wise then instructed his men to disregard any orders coming from Floyd unless approved by Wise first. Floyd countered by ordering Wise’s cavalry to join him, adding, “Any orders whatever in any way conflicting with this I hereby revoke.” Floyd then told Davis that Wise’s “unwillingness to co-operate… is so great that it amounts practically almost to open opposition.”

When Wise finally advanced his man on a 17-mile march to Carnifex Ferry as ordered, Floyd decided to advance his force there as well without telling him. Since Cox’s Federals had abandoned the place, both Confederates forces were not needed there, so Floyd ordered Wise to countermarch back to his original position. This enraged Wise, who complied nonetheless.

On August 23, Floyd reported to Secretary of War LeRoy Walker that his force had captured Carnifex Ferry and cut communications between Cox and Rosecrans. This enabled him to, “when sufficiently strong, either to attack General Cox in his flank or rear, on the Kanawha River, or to advance against the flank of General Rosecrans, should General Lee so direct.” Floyd then requested “three good regiments… to replace the Legion of General Wise, which can be used to better advantage by General Lee.” Since Wise’s legion consisted of three regiments, Floyd’s request essentially meant that he did not want to advance any further unless the Confederate government replaced Wise’s entire command.

Meanwhile, Cox fell back to Gauley Bridge after advancing to Carnifex Ferry and Cross Lanes. The 7th Ohio, a regiment in Cox’s command under Colonel Erasmus Tyler returning to the main force, inadvertently camped within a half-mile of Floyd’s Confederates on the night of the 25th. Floyd consulted with one of his officers, Colonel Henry Heth, who advised, “There is but one thing for you to do, attack them at daylight tomorrow morning.”

The next day, Floyd’s 2,000 Confederates routed Tyler’s green 7th Ohio at Cross Lanes. The inexperienced Tyler had failed to post pickets to warn of Floyd’s advance. The Federals began wavering upon the sight of the enemy troops and then panicked when the Confederates fired into them. Quickly outflanked, the Federals fled in a rout, suffering 15 killed, 50 wounded, and up to 100 taken prisoner. Survivors straggled back to Cox’s main force at Gauley Bridge. This engagement emboldened Floyd and increased his animosity toward Wise.

Wise continued asking to be permanently separated from Floyd, prompting Lee to respond that Floyd’s “Army of Kanawha is too small for active and successful operation to be divided at present. I beg, therefore, for the sake of the cause you have so much at heart, you will permit no division of sentiment or action to disturb its harmony or arrest its efficiency.”

By the end of August, Cox’s Federals held Gauley Bridge, with Wise’s Legion to the east at Dogwood Gap and Floyd’s Confederates to the northeast at Carnifex Ferry. Floyd expected Cox to retreat back into the Kanawha Valley, but he received intelligence on the 31st that Cox was advancing to confront his force. Floyd responded by ordering Wise to reinforce him. When Wise discovered that this intelligence was false, he ignored Floyd’s order. The hostility between Floyd and Wise continued until finally boiling over in September.

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References

CivilWarDailyGazette.com; Denney, Robert E., The Civil War Years: A Day-by-Day Chronicle (New York: Gramercy Books, 1992 [1998 edition]), p. 62-63; Fredriksen, John C., Civil War Almanac (New York: Checkmark Books, 2007), p. 53, 56, 58, 60; Freeman, Douglas Southall, Lee (Scribner, Kindle Edition, 2008), Loc 2733, 2826-37; Guelzo, Allen C, Historical Times Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Civil War (New York: Harper & Row, 1986, Patricia L. Faust ed.), p. 113-14; Long, E.B. with Long, Barbara, The Civil War Day by Day (New York: Da Capo Press, Inc., 1971), p. 103-04, 108; Pritchard, Russ A., Historical Times Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Civil War (New York: Harper & Row, 1986, Patricia L. Faust ed.), p. 407