1862: “You Must Act”

Washington, April 9, 1862

Major General McClellan.

My dear Sir.

Your dispatches complaining that you are not properly sustained, while they do not offend me, do pain me very much…

…After you left, I ascertained that less than twenty thousand unorganized men, without a single field battery, were all you designed to be left for the defence [defense] of Washington, and Manassas Junction; and part of this even, was to go to Gen. Hooker’s old position. Gen. Banks’ corps, once designed for Manassas Junction, was diverted, and tied up on the line of Winchester and Strasburg… This presented…a great temptation to the enemy to turn back from the Rappahannock, and sack Washington. My explicit order that Washington should, by the judgment of all the commanders of the Army corps, be left entirely secure, had been neglected. It was precisely this that drove me to detain McDowell… Continue reading