Buell Closing in on Bragg, About to Bag all the Rebels?

October 15, 1862 (Wednesday)

“Bragg’s army is mine!” shouted Don Carlos Buell, the typically grim Federal commander of the Army of the Ohio. After several days of slacking and lackadaisical pursuit of the Confederate Army of Mississippi, commanded by Braxton Bragg, Buell was absolutely certain that he not only knew where the Rebel commander was going, but that he could bag him here, in central Kentucky.

An incredibly sad looking General Buell

Bragg, thought Buell, was moving upon Nashville. The Rebels had retreated to Harrodsburg following the battle of Perryville, then to Bryantsville. On the night of the 14th, Buell had pushed his troops towards Stanford, the next town on the road to Nashville, hoping to cut off Bragg’s column. Throughout the day, they skirmished with Confederate cavalry, but had not yet engaged the main body.

On the 14th, Bragg’s force divided itself. One wing, under Kirby Smith, headed in a more easterly direction, while the other, commanded by Bragg himself, moved towards Crab Orchard and Mount Vernon, along the Wilderness Road that eventually led to Cumberland Gap.

It was at Crab Orchard that Buell wanted to cut him off, and accompanied General Thomas Crittenden’s corps to hurry them along.

When they entered the town, for some reason Buell believed that Bragg was his. The town itself was wrecked by the Confederates. He had missed them. By his own reckoning, the Rebels were headed southwest through the relatively open spaces of Kentucky. If true, there was little doubt in his mind that he could catch them.

Today’s approximate map.

However, soon it was discovered that Bragg was not moving on Nashville, but falling back through Cumberland Gap. The Wilderness Road was macadamized heading south until it reached Crab Orchard. After that, it became a nasty little winding dirt road. When Buell finally figured out that Bragg had not done what he had expected, he realized that catching the enemy might not be quite so easy.

Halting two of his corps at Crab Orchard, Buell sent Crittenden’s troops forward, hoping that they’d somehow get close enough to force Bragg to turn and give battle. The road from Crab Orchard to Mount Vernon descended into a gorge after about four miles. All through that narrow passage, Rebels had blocked the road with felled trees. Each man with an ax, more than likely “borrowed” from Kentucky farmers, chopped down as many trees as they could.

Rather than clearing Wilderness Road, Crittenden ordered a new road to be cut. This turned out to be faster and by nightfall, the Federals were within a couple of miles from Mount Vernon, where the Confederate army was encamped for the night.1

  1. Sources: Days of Glory by Larry J. Daniel; Perryville by Kenneth W. Noe; Episodes of the Civil War by George Washington Herr; The Army of the Cumberland, Volume 7 by Henry Martyn Cist; The Battle Rages Higher: The Union’s Fifteenth Kentucky Infantry by Kirk C. C. Jenkins. []

With No Chance of Victory, Bragg Begins the Withdrawal from Kentucky

October 14, 1862 (Tuesday)

General Bragg’s March wasn’t quite so Grand this time around.

It had been nearly a week since the Kentucky battle of Perryville, where the smaller Confederate force drove back what they later found out to be pretty much the entire Union army. With only half of Braxton Bragg’s Rebel command at hand for the attack, the Federal Army of the Ohio, under Don Carlos Buell, fell back until night put and end to the fighting.

The day after the engagement, Bragg discovered that his small band of 16,000 had attempted to rout as many as 50,000 Federals. Though the battle was a clear Rebel victory, it was only so because Buell’s handling of his men was abysmal at best. Bragg understood that if the Federals figured out just how few Confederates were in their front, he wouldn’t stand a chance. So, by the 9th, he was in full withdrawal, moving his men towards Harrodsburg to unite with the right wing of his command under Kirby Smith, who was en route.

The next day, Smith urged Bragg to attack the Federals, who had closely followed. But Bragg had already sent his wing east, towards Bryantsville. At Harrodsburg, his troops had occupied some fine defensive ground. If Buell would only attack him, they could end this campaign and hopefully claim Kentucky for the Confederacy.

Buell, however, wasn’t about to attack. His command, while large, was still hurting from Perryville. An entire corps, one-third of his army, was wrecked. There would be no Union attack.

With the joined wings of Bragg’s Rebel army, his numbers would have come close to, and possibly even exceeded, those of Buell’s. The problem was that Buell could potentially whip Bragg without much of a fight – all he would have to do is slip behind Bragg, getting in between the Rebel force and their line of retreat towards Cumberland Gap.

In fact, Buell seemed to be doing just that, edging his troops ever closer to Danville, twenty miles south of Bragg’s army. As the days slipped away, so did the Rebel chances of taking Kentucky. Rumors abounded that a large Federal force dropping south from Cincinnati was about to join Buell.

This map approximately shows the approximate routes of both approximate armies.

To counter, Bragg sent his entire command, including Kirby Smith, across Dick’s River and set himself up in another fine defensive position, hoping against hope that Buell would attack.

Again, Buell did not acquiesce. He did not have to.

By the 11th, rumors of a different sort were circulating around camp. Bragg had ordered scouts to find water along the roads to the south Bryantsville. This could only mean one thing – the Confederates were about to retreat. The next day brought the word. The campaign was to be abandoned.

The news in the Confederate West was bad. Bragg had counted upon Generals Sterling Price and Earl Van Dorn, commanding forces in Mississipppi, to steamroll through Tennessee and join them in Kentucky. But as word reached him of their defeat at Corinth, he knew there would be no reinforcements.

Aside from all of this, supplies were running dangerously low. They had rations for only four more days. The Federals had picked the country clean and there was scant left for Bragg and his troops. Also, while the Union troops could receive reinforcements and supplies from Louisville and Cincinnati, embarrassingly few Rebel recruits that Bragg had hoped would materialize once they entered the Bluegrass State actually showed up.

Kirby Smith

The next day, the 13th, began the retreat. Only combined for a handful of days, Bragg and Smith retreated to Lancaster, where, on this date, they again split.

Bragg’s Army of Mississippi would retreat towards Tennessee through Mount Vernon, sticking close to Dick’s River. Kirby Smith’s Army of Kentucky would more or less go back the way they came, through Paint Lick and then south, rejoining with Bragg around Barboursville.

By the end of the month, Bragg and Smith would be in Knoxville. Buell would follow Bragg towards London, but would break off the pursuit, believing the true Confederate destination to be Nashville.1

  1. Sources: Perryville by Kenneth W. Noe; Army of the Heartland by Thomas Lawrence Connelly; War in Kentucky by James Lee McDonough; OR, Series 1, Vol. 16, Part 2. []

The Battle of Perryville – A Lunchtime Surprise

October 8, 1862 (Wednesday)

The morning in Perryville, Kentucky was one of relative quiet. Two armies arrayed themselves mere miles from their counterparts. Only static and anticipation filled the air where may otherwise have been lead and iron. From his headquarters at Harrodsburg, ten miles northeast, Confederate General Braxton Bragg waited for the sounds of battle. As late as the previous evening, he held little faith that the Union Army of the Ohio, under Don Carlos Buell, would attack his Left Wing at Perryville. The silence hung ominous as he wondered whether his orders to attack at dawn were ever received by his wing commander Leonidas Polk.

A peaceful Perryville morning.

But Polk had indeed received them. A council of war was called, and the commanders discussed how the Union infantry seemed to be centering on Perryville. Though Bragg could not hear it from so far away, light skirmishing had erupted south and west of town. The Confederate commanders elected not to attack, but to wait and see how the Federals developed. The Rebel force was but 16,000-strong. They did not know it, but the Federals before them numbered close to 60,000.

Polk vaguely informed Bragg of the situation, but sought no reinforcements. He reiterated that they would defeat the enemy and then join the Right Wing under Kirby Smith near Versailles, another twenty miles beyond Harrodsburg. Bragg and Smith both believed that the main Federal body was heading toward Versailles. Polk simply didn’t know where it was. In truth, the main body was about to fall upon Perryville.

At least, that was the plan. Don Carlos Buell wanted his three Federal corps to attack, probably from right to left, around 7am. For whatever reason, the orders didn’t reach two of his corps commanders until 3am. In the dark, there was much confusion and traffic in reaching their proper positions. His First Corps, under Alexander McCook, finally showed up around 10:30. All the while, he had feared an attack would be made against his unsupported Third Corps, commanded by Charles Gilbert. He breathed a heavy sigh of relief when McCook, though late, arrived just in time.

The problem was that he had heard nothing from Thomas Crittenden, commanding the Second Corps or George Thomas, his (Buell’s) second in command. Until he heard from them, he refused to advance. Word had come in that only the Left Wing of the Rebel army was holding Perryville, that Kirby Smith was to the north. Still, Buell decided to wait it out.

When word came from Thomas, it was only to tell Buell that he couldn’t report in person. A regiment of Confederate cavalry had started skirmishing and that needed his attention. Thomas was clearly blowing off Buell – some petty retaliation for a small rebuke from the day before. Around that same time, Buell learned that Crittenden’s Corps was mostly up. But still he waited.

During all this waiting, General McCook rode to Buell’s headquarters, leaving his Corps in the less-than-adequate hands of Lovell Rousseau, who immediately advanced the entire Corps 800 yards closer to enemy lines. He had apparently seen a column of dust and, hoping to take nearby Doctor’s Creek so his men could fill their canteens, he ordered an advance. Soon, artillery was booming away.

When McCook returned, he found his artillery firing wildly at Confederates he could not see, and ordered them to stop. With that, he had time to look over the new line. He liked it and threw out skirmishers and began to realign his divisions. As he did, the Rebels attacked.

Something had clicked in Braxton Bragg’s head. Maybe it was the pregnant silence from Perryville. Something should have happened by now. He had plans to join Kirby Smith at Versailles, but instead made haste for Polk’s command. When he arrived, he saw for himself how poorly the Confederate line was laid. A simple move by the Federals around their right flank would cut Polk off from Smith, splitting Bragg’s army in two. Bragg immediately ordered the leftmost division, under Benjamin Cheatham, to move to the rightmost position, protecting the flank.

The attack came more by chance than by anything else. When Cheatham’s men arrived, they tossed back McCook’s Federal skirmishers near Doctor’s Creek. They ran so well, Bragg decided to push it.

Around this time, Don Carlos Buell and Charles Gilbert, away from his Corps, were lunching together. The booms of artillery prompted Buell to send a note to Philip Sheridan, commanding the Corps while Gilbert was away, to “stop that useless waste of powder.” They continued their meal uninterrupted.

When Cheatham’s Rebels hit the Federals, Bragg ordered William Hardee’s division, the next in line, to add to the confusion. They came from the woods lining the creek, across the valley, yelling with fury and firing as they moved. The attack swirled around the Federal artillery, which emptied round after round of canister into the butternut forms. For an hour, this melee continued, until the guns withdrew, leaving the infantry to handle things themselves. McCook threw in his last reserves, but it was too late.

By this time, Hardee’s Division had joined in the Rebel attack. The Union line could not hold. With their comrades in retreat on their left, the Federals in the center gave way. As Gilbert, their commanding general, still away, there was nobody to lead. Sheridan was in command, but the other division commanders never came to his aid. When Gilbert learned about the attack, he downplayed and dismissed it. General Crittenden, on the Union left, heard the noise and inquired from Gilbert what it was all about. Gilbert replied that “his children were all quiet and by sunset he would have them all in bed, nicely tucked in, as we used to do at Corinth.”

But his children were anything but quiet. They were dying or running for their lives. It wasn’t until 4pm, three hours after the attack, that Buell realized he was commanding a battle. He sent word to his right, ordering the sulking General Thomas to attack.

Dusk was fast approaching. The Federal line on the left had reformed about a mile behind its original position. They put up a fine resistance, but it was all too late. They were disorganized and whipped. Two of their Generals had been killed and many officers wounded.

The message Buell sent to Thomas on his right did not arrive until 6:30. Night had fallen and Thomas wasn’t sure if Buell wanted a night attack or one for the next morning. Despite the confusion, there was some attempt made on the Confederate left, but it too failed, being unsupported.

That night at dinner, Philip Sheridan and Charles Gilbert, finally convinced that his men were not at all quiet, did their best to convince Buell that a fairly major battle had just happened. Rousseau arrived later, preaching the same gospel. Finally, by the time Thomas rolled in, around 10:30pm, Buell saw the light and was converted, but blamed McCook for the whole thing.

McCook, convinced that he would be attacked the next dawn, begged Buell for more men. Buell refused, believing that no attack would come. In this, he was right. Before the dawn, the Confederate columns began their march to Harrodsburg, where Bragg hoped to finally link up with Kirby Smith.

Both sides sustained heavy losses. Buell’s command lost 845 killed, 2,851 wounded, with 515 captured or missing. It was nearly a quarter of those engaged. Bragg lost 510 killed, 2,635 wounded, and 251 missing, or about twenty percent of his entire force.1

  1. Sources: The Army of Tennessee by Stanley F. Horn; Days of Glory by Larry J. Daniel; All for the Regiment by Gerald Prokopowicz; Braxton Bragg and Confederate Defeat, Vol. 1 by Grady McWhiney; Banners to the Breeze by Earl J. Hess; Army of the Heartland by Thomas Lawrence Connelly. []

The Federal Ruse in Kentucky Working Better than Expected

October 7, 1862 (Tuesday)

John Austin Wharton

Col. John Austin Wharton, a cavalier from Texas, had been ordered by General Leonidas Polk to take his small brigade to Lebanon to gather supplies. Lebanon was a railroad town thirty miles west of Danville, where Polk was sitting with with Braxton Bragg’s Army of Mississippi.

Following the gathering at Lebanon, Wharton and his men rode towards Perryville, a small crossroads fifteen miles west of Danville. Just after they got started, they received new orders from Polk. General Polk, typically in command of a division, had taken the reigns of Bragg’s army, while Bragg was trying to install a new secessionist governor. Polk had disobeyed a couple of orders and retreated the army fifty some miles east to Danville. To cover his left flank (and then some), he dispatched Wharton’s cavalry, ordering them to remain in Lebanon.

Wharton turned his crew around and headed back. When he got there, he received a different set of orders sent by Bragg. More concerned with matters a bit farther north, he ordered Wharton to Harrodsburg. Wharton wrote to General William Hardee for clarification. Hardee, who commanded the Left Wing of the Army of Mississippi at Perryville, wasn’t Wharton’s superior, but since Wharton was on the army’s left, he probably thought that if anybody knew what was going on, it would be Hardee.

William Hardee

But Hardee had not a clue what Wharton was about and referred the matter back to Bragg. This time, Bragg decided that Wharton should go to Perryville – the place he was originally planning on going anyway. This whole mess tied up the cavalry on the 6th and 7th, leaving Bragg with no reconnaissance.

This was a pretty big deal since the Confederates were operating in a vacuum. Coming towards them was the Union Army of the Ohio, Don Carlos Buell commanding. The only problem (well, not the only problem) was that nobody had a clue just how many were on their way and from whence they were coming. Typically, sussing this out would be a job for the cavalry.

I think you should take a look at this.

Buell’s Federals, numbering some 82,000, were concentrating on Perryville. Five roads led into the town, and so it was a convenient place to gather. Originally, he had left Louisville in four columns. The column farthest to the north was a ruse, sent forward to throw Bragg off the real Union target. It went swimmingly.

Bragg’s army had been separated for the entire campaign. Once he discovered that Buell was coming, however, he decided to concentrate, selecting Harrodsburg as a logical location. Neither of his commanding officers, Leonidas Polk and Kirby Smith, agreed.

Polk thought that Danville was a better place, and though ordered specifically not to go there, he did anyway. Smith believed that the Federals were aiming for Lexington and so stopped at Versailles, twenty-five miles northeast of Harrodsburg. While Bragg was furious with Polk, he believed Smith’s cautionary tail and his many pleas and beggings for help. The whole Union army was apparently streaming his way.

He ordered Polk to abandon whatever it was that he was doing in Perryville and Danville and move to Smith’s aid. Polk, who had no more of an idea where the Federal army was, had little to report. General Hardee at Perryville, however, wasn’t just being paranoid when he thought he was being followed in the retreat to Perryville from their previous camp at Bardstown.

Without giving a reason, Hardee requested Polk send him another division. Polk forwarded the request up the chain to Bragg. But Bragg, who already made up his mind that Polk and Hardee were too far south, reiterated that everyone was moving north to Versailles. Hardee would simply have to brush away whatever force was supposedly following him.

And then, in the afternoon of this date, things became a whole lot clearer to Bragg. Reports came in of two separate Federal columns moving on Lawrenceburg, a stone’s throw away from Versailles. Another column was supposedly at Frankfort, to the northwest. Bragg was now absolutely confident that he had made the right decision. The entire Union army was seemingly about to attack his right wing and he would be ready for them.

The lack of reports from Polk and Hardee bolstered this certainty. Apparently, whatever Federals that had been sneaking towards Perryville had turned northward for Lawrenceburg. Hardee’s lack of communication wasn’t due to lack of news. Joseph Wheeler’s cavalry had been tangling with their Union counterparts all morning. They had seen long lines of infantry and reported that Buell’s main thrust was coming their way. Hardee seemed to dismiss this.

The only thing that Hardee said that could be wildly construed as a proper interpretation of reality was the message he sent to Bragg in the late afternoon. Wheeler had been engaged in some artillery fighting and that he expected a fight the next day. He asked Bragg for more men, but only if they were not “pressed in another direction.” Of course, Bragg believed they were more than pressed in another direction and couldn’t send a single regiment.

Braxton Bragg - "The Yankees are wherever I say they are!"

Finally, in a fit of annoyance that the Federals were spoiling his plans, Bragg ordered Polk to send Hardee the division he had asked for, dispose of the Yankees in his front and tear off for Versailles immediately. Through the evening, Bragg received even more reports of Federal columns descending upon his Right Wing.

There was a bit of a hiccup, however. The more reports that flowed in, the farther south it placed the Yankees. First, it was Frankfort, and then it was Taylorsville. Finally, it was Mackville, forty miles southwest of Versailles and due west of Harrodsburg. If Bragg ever considered that the Federals might actually be moving south through Taylorsville and Mackville away from Versailles (as the reports suggested), he never let it interfere with his belief that the Federals were moving towards Versailles.

By midnight, roughly 16,000 Rebels were arrayed at Perryville. Not too far away, 55,000 Federals under the command of Alexander McCook, Thomas Crittenden, and Charles Gilbert were planning on following Don Carlos Buell’s orders to attack at dawn. The only Union forces anywhere near the Confederate Right Wing were 20,000 mostly green troops under Joshua Sill – the diversionary corps who did their job all too well.1

  1. Sources: Army of the Heartland by Thomas Lawrence Connelly; Braxton Bragg and Confederate Defeat, Vol. 1 by Grady McWhiney; Perryville by Kenneth W. Noe. []

Bragg Tries to Set Up a Kentucky Government on the Eve of Battle; Lincoln’s Visit

October 2, 1862 (Thursday)

Braxton Bragg

In Kentucky, things weren’t going so well for General Braxton Bragg. He, along with Kirby Smith, had invaded the Union-held state, threatened both Cincinnati and Louisville, but had been unable to win any kind of decisive victory that would wrest the state from Federal hands.

Bragg and Smith’s Rebel forces had entered the state separately, but the time had been right to combine the two armies into one. Smith, at first, agreed, but then demurred in an attempt to track down a Union division under George Morgan. This wayward division had been at Cumberland Gap and Smith was hoping to find and destroy it. Morgan, however, gave him the slip, and by October 1, Smith, head held high with his tail between his legs, wandered back to Braxton Bragg in Frankfort.

The main army was in Bardstown, left in the care of Leonidas Polk, but the General was in Lexington for another purpose. Not really knowing what General Don Carlos Buell was up to, Bragg issued very discretionary orders to Polk to move his force out of Bardstown, creating an arc to cover any roads that his adversary might use if he should leave Louisville – a very slim chance, thought Bragg.

Don Carlos Buell

Since entering the state, Bragg had proclaimed, announced, bellowed from the rooftops and begged the brave boys of Kentucky to sign up with his Confederate army. Some came, mostly joining up with Kirby Smith. But many, many more did not.

With the Federal forces gathering in unbelievable numbers along the Ohio River, Bragg needed tens of thousands of reinforcements to win a victory. But it was doubtful that these men would join without such a victory to bolster their spirits.

Even without a victory, believed Bragg, thanks to the prodding of several Kentucky politicians, it might still be possible to convince the secessionist Kentuckians to join. What they feared, argued the politicos, was losing everything to Union retaliation should the Confederate armies retreat.

If Bragg would to issue a Conscription Act for Kentucky, then these retaliations might be less as the new recruits would not be volunteers. But to issue a such an act required a Confederate governor. Since Kentucky still believed itself in the Union, that was an uphill climb.

Richard Hawes

Bragg, however, cared little for climbing and insisted upon installing Richard Hawes as provisional Governor immediately. Just as all this political pomp in Frankfort was about to occur, Buell’s men began to stir from their trenches around Louisville.

Rather than calling upon Kirby Smith to meet the threat, joining with the troops at Bardstown, he instead ordered Smith’s army to protect the inauguration ceremony. Bragg believed that General Polk alone could best Buell – or at least hold him until Hawes was governor and a Conscription Act could be slammed through whatever Confederate Congress he believed Kentucky had. The inauguration itself would take place on the 4th, so it was with great surprise that Bragg learned Buell was moving at a greater clip than expected.

The Union Army of the Ohio, 82,000-strong, began their march to Bardstown with a feign, hoping to throw Bragg off his mark. It worked. Upon learning that Buell was moving, Bragg assumed Polk at Bardstown could handle it. Buell, he thought, was in no position to leave Louisville so early. As the messages rolled in, however, Bragg learned that his troops in Shelbyville had barely gotten away before the town was taken by the Federals.

Map showing approximate troop positions on Oct 2.

This was big. Bragg figured that if Buell moved at all, he would move upon Polk at Bardstown. But now it seemed as if Buell was moving upon Smith and the inauguration at Frankfort. Soon, the Rebels that were defending Shelbyville would be pouring into town. To Bragg, it seemed that Buell was ignoring Polk and gunning for the capital.

That was not so. The feign had worked. Buell’s main force was advancing in three separate columns to sever the two Rebel forces. The march, which started on the 1st, went poorly. The diversionary forces kept a slow, almost meandering pace, while the main body was filled with boys still half-drunk from the Louisville nights preceding. On this day, a rain storm soaked the roads, turning them to rivers of mud.

Still, they moved swiftly enough, reaching the Salt River. Bragg, while not slow to act, was preoccupied with setting up a government. Believing that there were not Federals in Polk’s front, he ordered him to fall upon the flank of the advancing enemy. But Polk, of course, had problems of his own.1


Lincoln Drops By for a Visit

President Lincoln, accompanied by a small entourage of politicians, officers and Ward Hill Lamon, arrived at Harpers Ferry the previous afternoon. Following the Confederate withdrawal after the Battle of Antietam, General George McClellan ordered Ambrose Burnside to move his IX Corps and occupy the town. Shortly after, McClellan moved his entire army to the ground between the battlefield and the Potomac River opposite Harpers Ferry.

Ward Hill Lamon

And it was here that Lincoln found them. McClellan appears to have little to no prior knowledge that Lincoln was dropping by for a visit, but on the first, he rode into Harpers Ferry to say hello. Together, they reviewed the troops on Bolivar Heights.

The President, attired in his typical black frock coat and tall, stovepipe hat, rode with General McClellan, jumped up in parade dress. For most of the soldiers, this was a rare and excited experience. They had never seen the President before. Though arrayed at full attention, each turned their heads and squinted, trying to get a better look at the gaunt looking man.

Before nightfall, McClellan went back to his tent, closer to the battlefield and Lincoln had a look around the town. As reporters followed, he took a peek into the US Arsenal used by John Brown in a failed attempt to start a great slave rebellion. Here, to many, was where the war started.

In the morning of this date, Lincoln, accompanied by General Edwin Sumner, reviewed the troops at Louden and Maryland Heights south across the Shenandoah River and east across the Potomac. And then it was time to formally visit General McClellan.

McClellan held no real desire to see Lincoln. Officially, the President’s reason for the tarriance was to see the troops and visit the battlefield, but McClellan believed he knew the true reason. “I incline to think,” he wrote his wife, “the real purpose of his visit is to push me into a premature advance into Virginia.” He allowed that he could be mistaken, but he thought not.

John Brown's Fort (circa 1888ish)

His vast army, numbering over 80,000 in the field, was, “not fit to advance – the old regiments are reduced to mere skeletons and are completely tired out – they need rest and filling up.” Additionally, the troops from General John Pope’s old army were in even worse shape. The new regiments simply weren’t ready. The Cavalry and artillery were both broken down.

It was not Lincoln’s fault that he was unaware of this. “These people don’t know what an army requires,” reasoned McClellan, “and therefore act stupidly.”

That night, Lincoln set up his own headquarters next to McClellan’s. They arrived too late to do much sightseeing. For the next several days, Lincoln would review the troops, see the battlefield, and try his best to convince General McClellan to cross the Potomac and fight the Rebels.2

  1. Sources: Army of the Heartland by Thomas Lawrence Connelly; Perryville by Kenneth W. Noe; Days of Glory by Larry J. Daniel; The Army of Tennessee by Stanley F. Horn; Braxton Bragg and Confederate Defeat Vol. 1 by Grady McWhiney. []
  2. Sources: Lincoln and McClellan by John C. Waugh; Six Years of Hell by Chester G. Hearn; Recollections of Abraham Lincoln by Ward Hill Lamon; The Civil War Papers of George McClellan edited by Stephen W. Sears. []