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with my whole force, and assail the enemy's flank and rear.
I must do one or the other at daylight. Which shall it be ?
I incline to the latter." And General Halleck, replying at
eleven o'clock that night, says f that he thinks the latter of
the two propositions the best. Pope thereupon, at 2.20 a.m.
of the 23d, requests % Halleck to order all the troops coming
up the river from Fredericksburg to cross the Eappahannock
at the various fords, and march rapidly on Stevensburg and
Brandy Station ; and that his movement will be made the
next day, as soon as he finds that the enemy has passed a
sufficient number of his troops over the river.

It was during this night of the 22d and 23d — an anxious
night, doubtless, for General Pope, and a wakeful one, for he
seems to have been up at all hours of it — that he received
from Sigel the despatch of which, he speaks in his report,
notifying him that the enemy had crossed near Sulphur
Springs, and suggesting that his corps should be withdrawn
to Bealeton. In his reply, which was doubtless an immedi

* P. &., p. 127. t lb., P. 127. t lb., P. 128.


ate one, he orders * him, as he says in his report, to stand
firm, and let the enemy develop toward Warrenton, and
that he desired the enemy to cross as large a force as he
pleased in the direction of "Warrenton. This seems to settle
the question, what was the plan in General Pope's mind
when he was writing to Sigel. The more troops of the
enemy on our side of the river, the fewer there would be for
Pope to fight on the other side. Had he intended at that
time to overwhelm those who had crossed, he would hardly
have thus given them permission to cross as many as they
liked. The matter is not of any particular importance, ex-
cept as showing that the intention of attacking on our side
of the river, if it was entertained at first, was soon aban-
doned for the plan of recrossing the river.

But the next morning, the 23d, it was found that the rise
in the river had rendered this project of a counter-attack im-
practicable. It was perhaps quite as well that it was not at-
tempted; no army that had not been thoroughly trained,
and that was not under officers accustomed for years to act
with each other, would have had much chance of success in
such a dangerous operation. Pope's army had just been or-
ganized. As for those troops on which he must have relied
to guard the railroad during this incursion on the other side
of the river, they had not yet even reported for duty.

Still, the freshet which put a stop to this plan, rendered
it possible to capture that part of Jackson's command which
had crossed near the Springs. Accordingly, on the morning
of the 23d, Sigel, whose corps had been posted hetween
Beverly and Freeman's Fords, was ordered to move up the
river to Sulphur Springs, and thence toward Waterloo
Bridge, and to attack whatever force of the enemy he might

* Pope to Sigel, August 33; P. B., p. 129.


find on our side of the river. Nothing, however, came of
this expedition. Early had retired behind Great Bun, one
of the affluents of the Bappahannock, which was so much
swollen by the rain that Sigel was delayed till too late in
getting across it. But this was no fault of General Pope's.

In this attempt to capture those of the enemy's troops that
had crossed the river, Pope did not hesitate to uncover for
the time being the lower fords of the Eappahannock. Owing
to the freshet, the danger of a crossing by the enemy at
these fords had very greatly diminished, if it had not entirely
disappeared, for the bridges had been swept away and the
fords were gone, and then there were the troops of Heintzel-
man and Porter, now arriving from Alexandria and Aquia
Creek, who would furnish for the moment a sufficient de-
fence. He, therefore, on the morning of the 23d, ordered *
General Sigel upon Sulphur Springs, as has just been stated,
and thence, if he did not find the enemy, upon Waterloo
Bridge, some few miles higher up the river. He ordered f
Banks and Keno to support Sigel, and he pushed McDowell's
corps to Warrenton, where he fixed his own headquarters.
To Warrenton he also directed J Beynolds, who had come
up on the 23d from Aquia Creek, with his fine division of
Pennsylvania reserves \ — 6,000 strong — the first arrival from
the Army of the Potomac — and which he attached to
McDowell's command, to which it had, as we have seen,
originally belonged. He also, on the 23d, abandoned his
works beyond the river at Bappahannock Station and with-
drew the troops ; he destroyed the bridge there ; and for the
time being, at any rate, he renounced [| his plan of recrossing
the river. These movements were certainly wise, and they
were ordered with commendable promptitude.

* P. E., p. 129. t Pope to BankB ; P. R., p. 131. J P. E., p. 132.

| Syphers' Hist, Penn. Eeserves, p. 356 ; but see P. P.., p. 124.
I Though not definitely. Pope to Halleck ; P. E., 135.


While this was going on in our army, General J. E. B,
Stuart, the celebrated cavalry officer, whose enterprise
and audacity were justly famous, on the night of the 22d,
conducted an expedition of 1,500 horse or thereabouts, to
our rear, striking the railroad at Catlett's Station. The
weather was horrible, and the march exceedingly severe, but
the object of the expedition was in part attained, for baggage,
despatches, and prisoners were taken. The trestle bridge
across Cedar Eun, however, could not be destroyed. Still,
the moral effect of this raid, so far as it went, was of course
favorable to the enemy.

On the 24th Early succeeded in rejoining his corps.
Sigel, who arrived near Sulphur Springs on the night of
the 23d, having marched from Freeman's Ford, was delayed,
as we have said, at Great Bun, till the morning of the 24th.
Whether he could not have accomplished more than he did
is still an unsettled question. Between his corps and that
of Jackson there was an artillery duel all that day. Buford,
with his cavalry, had pushed out to Waterloo in the forenoon
of the 24th. Pope directed him to destroy the bridge
there, but for some reason this was not done. Sigel was or-
dered to support him, and Milroy's brigade, constituting the
advance of his corps, reached Waterloo late in the afternoon
of the same day.

In the evening of the 24th Jackson retired to Jefferson, a
place about four miles west of Sulphur Springs, and his po-
sitions on the river were occupied by the corps of Longstreet.
That evening, Pope's headquarters were at Warrenton ; Sigel
was on the river from Waterloo to the Springs ; below him,
on the river, was the corps of Banks; the two divisions
of Beno were a short distance east of the Springs ; Bicketts'
division of McDowell's corps was partly between Warrenton
and Waterloo, and King's division was between Warrenton



and the Springs. Reynolds was near Warrenton. Buford's
cavalry observed the extreme right beyond Waterloo. Every-
thing was ready to repel another attempt at crossing either
at the Springs or at Waterloo Bridge.

Gum Spring



Jackson's March.

General Lee had been delayed longer than he expected on
the banks of the Rappahannock. He had not succeeded in
surprising General Pope. Wherever he had attempted a
passage of the river, he had been met with adequate resist-
ance. He now determined on the bold step of sending


Jackson round our right by way of Orleans, Salem, White
Plains, and Thoroughfare Gap, to cut our railroad communi-
cations at Manassas ; a move which, if successful, would
necessarily bring about a withdrawal of our army from the
line of the Bappahannock. It was a dangerous move, and
one which could have been entrusted to no one but Stone-
wall Jackson ; and it was so dangerous that even he came
within an ace of being totally defeated. Moreover, the ob-
ject proposed was not worth the risk. It was not supposed
by anybody that Pope's army could be materially injured by
this expedition. There was nothing in the world to prevent
Pope and his whole army from retiring safely behind. Bull
Bun and there meeting fresh supplies and reinforcements,
and there was great probability, that, on the way there, he
would have an opportunity to crush Jackson before Lee
could possibly rejoin him, not to speak of the possibility of
Jackson's encountering large bodies of troops of the Army
of the Potomac. On this march Jackson started on the
morning of the 25th from Jefferson,* passing through
Amissville, and crossing Hedgman's Biver, as the Bappa-
hannock above Waterloo Bridge is called, at Hinson's Mills,
and thence marching by way of Orleans and reaching Salem
at night.

The march of this column could not of course be kept a
secret. Everyone saw it — the clouds of dust were plainly
visible — the signal officers reported its strength, but where

* General Pope is in error when he states, as he does in his report, p. 181, that
w during the day of the 24th a large detachment of the enemy, numbering thirty-
six regiments of infantry, with the usual number of batteries of artillery and a
considerable cavalry force, marched rapidly to the north, in the direction of Keo-
tortown." There was no force that marched in that direction but Jackson's, and
that did not leave Jefferson till the morning of the 25th ; see Reports of Lee,
Jackson, Early, Taliaferro, Hill, Stuart, and BoBwelL Eep. A. N, V., vol. i., p.
SI ; vol. ii., pp. 92, 124, 140, 142, 179, 199, and 393.


Jackson was going was the doubtful question. He might be
going into the Valley of the Shenandoah on another raid.
From Orleans his troops could pass through Chester Gap.
At Salem he attained the Manassas Gap Railroad, which led
through Front Royal to Strasburg. On the other hand,
from Salem he could follow the track in the other direction,
marching through "White Plains and Thoroughfare Gap, and
strike our rear at Gainesville and Manassas Junction. Which
was he intending to do ? A third course was also possible,
namely, a sudden dash south from White Plains upon War-

Whichever of these courses he might choose to take, how-
ever, it was clearly the policy of General Pope to retire
promptly to the line of Thoroughfare Gap, Gainesville, and
Manassas Junction. He should, the moment he suspected
the movement to have begun, say, in the afternoon of the
25th, have retired as quickly as he did from the Rapidan to
the Rappahannock a few days before. Even if the enemy
were going into the valley, he could not detain him by re-
maining at Warrenton, and confronting the heavy bodies of
troops that still remained opposite Sulphur Springs and
Waterloo; while if Jackson had either of the two other
plans in his mind, Pope would certainly be taken at a great
disadvantage. It needs no argument to show that the pos-
session of unembarrassed lines of communication is an es-
sential requisite for the successful conduct of a campaign.

In this emergency General Pope, as we shall see, made
the mistake of trusting to the Washington authorities to
preserve his line of supplies. He remained where he was,
manceuvering in the neighborhood of Warrenton, Sulphur
Springs, and Waterloo Bridge, directing General Haupt, who
had charge of the transportation, to post a strong division at
Manassas Junction, and requesting General Halleck to push


Franklin's corps with all speed to Gainesville. It may well
be that he did not like the notion of retreating further ; yet
anything was preferable to a reliance upon officers who had
not even reported for duty. There is no doubt, as his dis-
patches * clearly show, that he inclined to the theory that
the enemy were making for the Shenandoah Valley by way
of Front Eoyal, but what sound objection could there be to
his taking the safer course, and, by occupying Thoroughfare
Gap and Gainesville with his own troops, forestall a possible
surprise and loss ? But we are anticipating a little.

On the morning of August 25th, before Jackson's move-
ment had been observed, General Pope issued a General
Order f for the formation of a new line running substantially
north and south. McDowell's corps was to be on the right,
at Warrenton ; Sigel on his left, at Fayetteville ; then Banks,
from Bealeton to a creek near the river ; and, finally, Beno
at Kelly's Ford. These officers were ordered to throw out
troops in the direction of the river to observe the enemy.

McDowell was already in position. Beno, by some mis-
take, retired to Warrenton Junction. Banks fell back to
the neighborhood of Bealeton Station, or was between that
place and Fayetteville. Sigel, who was about to retire from
Waterloo and Sulphur Springs to Fayetteville, received J a
verbal order from General Boberts, of Pope's staff, direct-
ing him to hold his position at Waterloo Bridge at all
hazards, and advising him that McDowell would support
him on the right and Banks on the left. This seems to
have been a repetition by Boberts of his culpable conduct
on the day of Cedar Mountain, when he took upon himself
to vary the orders of the commanding officer by intimating
to Banks that Pope expected him to fight a battle. Sigel

* Pope to McDowell, P. B., p. 187 ; Pope to Sigel, lb., p. 137.

+ Pope's Virginia Campaign, McDowell's Report, p. 37. t P. V. C, p. 81.


found the enemy assuming a very threatening aspect ; he
sent to find McDowell and Banks, but they were neither of
them in the position in which Roberts had said they were ;
in this emergency he is about to fall back on the aforesaid
General Order to retire to Fayetteville, when he receives an
order from Pope directing him to march to Warrenton, in-
stead of to Fayetteville, at once. This he does, first setting
fire to Waterloo Bridge, and arriving at Warrenton at two
o'clock in the morning of the 26th.

Before the 25th General Heintzelman, with two divisions
of the Third Corps, of the Army of the Potomac, under Gen-
erals Hooker and Kearny, had reported for duty. His
command numbered about ten thousand five hundred men.
He had come direct by rail from Alexandria. On the night
of the 25th he was at Warrenton Junction.

General Fitz John Porter also, with the two excellent di-
visions of the Fifth Corps of the Army of the Potomac, under
Generals Morell and Sykes, who had come via Aquia Creek
and Falmouth, and had been under the orders of General
Burnside, who commanded at Falmouth, watching the lower
fords of the Bappahannock for two or three days, reported
for duty on the 26th. His corps numbered rather less than
nine thousand men.* On the night of the 25th Morell was
at Kelly's Ford, and Sykes east of it a few miles.

The officers of the Army of the Potomac, who had joined
General Pope, were among the best in that army. General
Beynolds, who brought up the Pennsylvania Eeserves, was
in all respects an admirable soldier. He fell at the head of
his corps — the First — on the bloody field of Gettysburg.
General Meade, who commanded the army there, was one of
his brigadiers. General Heintzelman, of the Third Corps,

* Piatt's brigade, of Sturgis' division, was added to it on the S7th, raising the
total to nearly or quite ten thousand men.


was a gallant old veteran, and his lieutenants, Kearny and
Hooker, were men of known activity, skill, and daring.
Kearny fell in the course of the campaign. Hooker rose to
the command of the army. General Porter, who commanded
the Fifth Corps, was an officer of the highest character, and
had recently distinguished himself at the battle of Malvern
Hill. His division commanders, Morell and Sykes, were ex-
cellent men. Sykes afterward for a long time commanded
this corps, and led it at Gettysburg in the successful strug-
gle for the possession of Little Bound Top.

These were all the reinforcements which General Pope
got from the Army of the Potomac, until after the battle of
Manassas. They numbered in all, including Piatt's brigade,
only 23,000 men.



The reports of the signal-officers of the march of Jackson's
column to our right during the day of the 25th, made such
an impression on General Pope's mind, that he, on that
evening, changed his plan as indicated in the General Order
of that morning. He ordered McDowell to make a recon-
noissance as early as possible on the next morning, the 26th,
with his whole corps (except Eeynolds' division, which was
to be left at Warrenton), and ascertain what was beyond the
river at Sulphur Springs ; and he ordered Sigel to force the
passage of the river at Waterloo Bridge at daylight, and see
what was in front of him. This order reached Sigel just as
he was entering Warrenton at two o'clock in the morning,
after the fatiguing night march from Waterloo, which had
succeeded to the perplexities and contradictory orders of the
afternoon. He sent word that his men could not execute
the order till they had rested, and Pope allowed him to put
them in camp for a day. McDowell moved with prompti-
tude early in the morning of the 26th, bringing Eicketts
from his position on the Warrenton and Waterloo road
toward Sulphur Springs, so as to support King, who, hav-
ing been posted on the road from Warrenton to the Springs,
had a shorter distance to march, and was in the advance.
Pope, when he found that his orders could not be carried
out by Sigel, notified McDowell to use his discretion about
3— IV.


crossing at Sulphur Springs, and requested him also to as-
certain, if he could, what was passing at Waterloo Bridge.
McDowell very wisely, thereupon, contented himself with
observing the enemy at the Springs with King's division, and
returned Ricketts' division to the position it had occupied in
the morning. King's division had a cannonade with the
enemy all the afternoon. King ascertained from a flag of
truce that he had Anderson's division in front of him.

McDowell also ordered Buford, with all the available force
of Sigel's cavalry, and some guns, and with three days cooked
rations, to march at dawn of the 27th toward Chester Gap,
and ascertain the direction which Jackson's force was taking.
Pope also ordered a cavalry regiment to be sent from Ma-
nassas to scout the railroad as far as the Gap. Reports
came in from scouts that the enemy was marching for
Thoroughfare Gap. With the exception of these orders, no
steps were taken in consequence of this information. It was
expected, perhaps, that General Halleck would be able to
provide for the safety of the communications.

At the close of this day — August 26th — the positions of
the troops were substantially as follows : Buford with Ms
cavalry, was on the right, near Waterloo, preparing for his
expedition. Ricketts was on the road between Waterloo
and Warrenton, about four miles from Warrenton. King was
on the road between Warrenton and Sulphur Springs, with
one brigade near the Springs. Reynolds was in Warrenton.
Sigel was in camp near Warrenton. Banks was at Fayette-
ville. Reno and Heintzelman were near Warrenton Junc-
tion, where were General Pope's headquarters. Of Porter's
corps, one division, Morell's, was at Kelly's Ford, and the
other division, Sykes', five or six miles east of Bealeton Sta-

That same evening Stonewall Jackson was at Bristoe Sta-


tion with his whole force, consisting of the divisions of
Taliaferro, A. P. Hill, and Ewell, numbering some twenty-
five thousand men. He had marched all day from Salem,
through White Plains, Thoroughfare Gap, and Gainesville,
and had nowhere met with the smallest opposition. He had
marched all that afternoon some fifteen miles in rear of our
army with his twenty-five thousand men, and our army knew
nothing about it. It is hardly necessary to say that this was
the result of great negligence. Enough was known to de-
mand the sending of parties of observation to the road which
Jackson took; nay, enough was suspected of the intentions
of the enemy to make a reasonably prudent officer detach
ten thousand men to Thoroughfare Gap. And what was the
object in mamtaining such a forward position with the army ?
Why was it not the wisest course, in view of the possible
movement of Jackson through Thoroughfare Gap, to fall
back to that line with the whole army ?

General Pope, indeed, tells us in his report (p. 140) that he
confidently expected that by the afternoon of the 26th
Franklin would have been at or near Gainesville ; and that
the forces under Sturgis and Cox would have been at War-
renton Junction. There may, undoubtedly have been a time
when he did expect this.* But he certainly did not on the
evening of the 26th suppose that Franklin was at Gainesville,
for we find him writing to Porter at seven o'clock that even-
ing this : " Franklin, I hope, with his corps, will, by day
after to-morrow night, occupy the point where the Manassas
Gap Railroad intersects the turnpike from Warrenton to
Washington City," i.e., Gainesville. And in this letter he tells

* On the 24th General Haupt telegraphed him from Alexandria that thirty
thousand troops, or more, demanded transportation ; and on the 25th, that he
expected to send on all the troops now there, and all that were expected to ar-
rive that day. F. R., p. 133.


him what he expects about Cox and Sturgis, who have not
yet joined him, namely, that Cox will join him in the after-
noon of to-morrow, and that Sturgis will move forward the day
after to-morrow. Pope, it is perfectly evident, knew, on the
night of the 26th, that neither Gainesville nor the Gap were
guarded. It must be remarked that the above statement
in his report is misleading, as are also others on page 142.
The truth is just this : he knew perfectly well, on the even-
ing of the 26th, that there was no force of our army at the
Gap, or near it, but he did not suppose that Jackson was
coming through the Gap.

On the evening of the 26th * Pope determined to form a new
line running substantially East and West between Warren-
ton and Gainesville. He wrote McDowell at eight p.m., that
he thinks the fight should be made at Warrenton. Sigel
was already there. It was not necessary, of course, to issue
any special orders to McDowell for the concentration of his
own divisions. Banks, too, at Fayetteville, was in a good po-
sition to support the new line. Reno was ordered to move
from Warrenton Junction at daylight to the neighborhood of
Warrenton, and McDowell was directed, as soon as he got
near Warrenton, to send frim to Greenwich, a village nearly
east of Warrenton, and about as far from Warrenton as War-
renton is from Warrenton Junction. Why Reno was to make
this fatiguing march it is not easy to see. Greenwich is
nearer the Junction than Warrenton is. Arrived at Green-
wich, Eeno was to throw forward four regiments and a bat-
tery to Gainesville. Heintzelman, who was at the Junction,
was ordered to send Kearny's division to Greenwich.
Hooker was to remain near the Junction. Porter was ordered

* The statement in his Report, p. 139, that he came to this determination on
the evening of the 35th, is an error. The orders to Reno and Porter dated
on the evening of the 36th.


to march through. Fayetteville to the vicinity of Warrenton.
Of his two divisions, Morell's was at Kelly's Ford and below,
and Sykes' was five miles east of Bealeton Station, as has
been stated.

While writing these orders General Pope was informed
that the enemy's cavalry had interrupted the railroad near
Manassas. He at once ordered Heintzelman " to put a regi-
ment on a train of cars and send it down immediately to
Manassas to ascertain what had occurred, repair the tele-
graph wires, and protect the railroad there until further
orders." Pope evidently did not at this moment suppose
this interruption to be a matter of very great consequence.
But at midnight he writes to McDowell that the question
whether the whole force of the enemy or the larger portion
of it " has gone round (i.e., through Thoroughfare Gap) is a
question which we must settle instantly, so that we may deter-
mine our plans." During the night, he made up his mind
to take the most prudent course and throw the main body
of the army upon Gainesville, a thing which the direction
he had the evening before given to his columns enabled
him to do without difficulty. This decision was a wise
one, and it was taken with General Pope's customary promp-

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