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The Memoirs of General W. T. Sherman, v2 by William T. Sherman

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I then told Johnston that he must be convinced that he could not
oppose my army, and that, since Lee had surrendered, he could do
the same with honor and propriety. He plainly and repeatedly
admitted this, and added that any further fighting would be
"murder;" but he thought that, instead of surrendering piecemeal,
we might arrange terms that would embrace all the Confederate
armies. I asked him if he could control other armies than his own;
he said, not then, but intimated that he could procure authority
from Mr. Davis. I then told him that I had recently had an
interview with General Grant and President Lincoln, and that I was
possessed of their views; that with them and the people North there
seemed to be no vindictive feeling against the Confederate armies,
but there was against Davis and his political adherents; and that
the terms that General Grant had given to General Lee's army were
certainly most generous and liberal. All this he admitted, but
always recurred to the idea of a universal surrender, embracing his
own army, that of Dick Taylor in Louisiana and Texas, and of Maury,
Forrest, and others, in Alabama and Georgia. General Johnston's
account of our interview in his "Narrative" (page 402, et seq.) is
quite accurate and correct, only I do not recall his naming the
capitulation of Loeben, to which he refers. Our conversation was
very general and extremely cordial, satisfying me that it could
have but one result, and that which we all desired, viz., to end
the war as quickly as possible; and, being anxious to return to
Raleigh before the news of Mr. Lincoln's assassination could be
divulged, on General Johnston's saying that he thought that, during
the night, he could procure authority to act in the name of all the
Confederate armies in existence we agreed to meet again the next
day at noon at the same place, and parted, he for Hillsboro' and I
for Raleigh.

We rode back to Durham's Station in the order we had come, and then
I showed the dispatch announcing Mr. Lincoln's death. I cautioned
the officers to watch the soldiers closely, to prevent any violent
retaliation by them, leaving that to the Government at Washington;
and on our way back to Raleigh in the cars I showed the same
dispatch to General Logan and to several of the officers of the
Fifteenth Corps that were posted at Morrisville and Jones's
Station, all of whom were deeply impressed by it; but all gave
their opinion that this sad news should not change our general
course of action.

As soon as I reached Raleigh I published the following orders to
the army, announcing the assassination of the President, and I
doubt if, in the whole land, there were more sincere mourners over
his sad fate than were then in and about Raleigh. I watched the
effect closely, and was gratified that there was no single act of
retaliation; though I saw and felt that one single word by me would
have laid the city in ashes, and turned its whole population
houseless upon the country, if not worse:

[Special Field Orders, No. 56.]


The general commanding announces, with pain and sorrow, that on the
evening of the 14th instant, at the theatre in Washington city, his
Excellency the President of the United States, Mr. Lincoln, was
assassinated by one who uttered the State motto of Virginia. At
the same time, the Secretary of State, Mr. Seward, while suffering
from a broken arm, was also stabbed by another murderer in his own
house, but still survives, and his son was wounded, supposed
fatally. It is believed, by persons capable of judging, that other
high officers were designed to share the same fate. Thus it seems
that our enemy, despairing of meeting us in open, manly warfare,
begins to resort to the assassin's tools.

Your general does not wish you to infer that this is universal, for
he knows that the great mass of the Confederate army world scorn to
sanction each acts, but he believes it the legitimate consequence
of rebellion against rightful authority.

We have met every phase which this war has assumed, and must now be
prepared for it in its last and worst shape, that of assassins and
guerrillas; but woe onto the people who seek to expend their wild
passions in such a manner, for there is but one dread result!

By order of Major-General W. T. Sherman,

L. M. DAYTON, Assistant Adjutant-General.

During the evening of the 17th and morning of the 18th I saw nearly
all the general officers of the army (Schofield, Slocum, Howard,
Logan, Blair), and we talked over the matter of the conference at
Bennett's house of the day before, and, without exception, all
advised me to agree to some terms, for they all dreaded the long
and harassing march in pursuit of a dissolving and fleeing army--
a march that might carry us back again over the thousand miles that
we had just accomplished. We all knew that if we could bring
Johnston's army to bay, we could destroy it in an hour, but that
was simply impossible in the country in which we found ourselves.
We discussed all the probabilities, among which was, whether, if
Johnston made a point of it, I should assent to the escape from the
country of Jeff. Davis and his fugitive cabinet; and some one of my
general officers, either Logan or Blair, insisted that, if asked
for, we should even provide a vessel to carry them to Nassau from

The next morning I again started in the cars to Durham's Station,
accompanied by most of my personal staff, and by Generals Blair,
Barry, Howard, etc., and, reaching General Kilpatrick's
headquarters at Durham's, we again mounted, and rode, with the same
escort of the day, before, to Bennett's house, reaching there
punctually at noon. General Johnston had not yet arrived, but a
courier shortly came, and reported him as on the way. It must have
been nearly 2 p.m. when he arrived, as before, with General Wade
Hampton. He had halted his escort out of sight, and we again
entered Bennett's house, and I closed the door. General Johnston
then assured me that he had authority over all the Confederate
armies, so that they would obey his orders to surrender on the same
terms with his own, but he argued that, to obtain so cheaply this
desirable result, I ought to give his men and officers some
assurance of their political rights after their surrender. I
explained to him that Mr. Lincoln's proclamation of amnesty, of
December 8, 1863, still in force; enabled every Confederate soldier
and officer, below the rank of colonel, to obtain an absolute
pardon, by simply laying down his arms, and taking the common oath
of allegiance, and that General Grant, in accepting the surrender
of General Lee's army, had extended the same principle to all the
officers, General Lee included; such a pardon, I understood, would
restore to them all their rights of citizenship. But he insisted
that the officers and men of the Confederate army were
unnecessarily alarmed about this matter, as a sort of bugbear. He
then said that Mr. Breckenridge was near at hand, and he thought
that it would be well for him to be present. I objected, on the
score that he was then in Davis's cabinet, and our negotiations
should be confined strictly to belligerents. He then said
Breckenridge was a major-general in the Confederate army, and might
sink his character of Secretary of War. I consented, and he sent
one of his staff-officers back, who soon returned with
Breckenridge, and he entered the room. General Johnston and I then
again went over the whole ground, and Breckenridge confirmed what
he had said as to the uneasiness of the Southern officers and
soldiers about their political rights in case of surrender. While
we were in consultation, a messenger came with a parcel of papers,
which General Johnston said were from Mr. Reagan,
Postmaster-General. He and Breckenridge looked over them, and,
after some side conversation, he handed one of the papers to me.
It was in Reagan's handwriting, and began with a long preamble and
terms, so general and verbose, that I said they were inadmissible.
Then recalling the conversation of Mr. Lincoln, at City Point, I
sat down at the table, and wrote off the terms, which I thought
concisely expressed his views and wishes, and explained that I was
willing to submit these terms to the new President, Mr. Johnson,
provided that both armies should remain in statu quo until the
truce therein declared should expire. I had full faith that
General Johnston would religiously respect the truce, which he did;
and that I would be the gainer, for in the few days it would take
to send the papers to Washington, and receive an answer, I could
finish the railroad up to Raleigh, and be the better prepared for a
long chase.

Neither Mr. Breckenridge nor General Johnston wrote one word of
that paper. I wrote it myself, and announced it as the best I
could do, and they readily assented.

While copies of this paper were being made for signature, the
officers of our staffs commingled in the yard at Bennett's house,
and were all presented to Generals Johnston and Breckenridge. All
without exception were rejoiced that the war was over, and that in
a very few days we could turn our faces toward home. I remember
telling Breckenridge that he had better get away, as the feeling of
our people was utterly hostile to the political element of the
South, and to him especially, because he was the Vice-President of
the United States, who had as such announced Mr. Lincoln, of
Illinois, duly and properly elected the President of the United
States, and yet that he had afterward openly rebelled and taken up
arms against the Government. He answered me that he surely would
give us no more trouble, and intimated that he would speedily leave
the country forever. I may have also advised him that Mr. Davis
too should get abroad as soon as possible.

The papers were duly signed; we parted about dark, and my party
returned to Raleigh. Early the next morning, April 19th, I
dispatched by telegraph to Morehead City to prepare a fleet-steamer
to carry a messenger to Washington, and sent Major Henry Hitchcock
down by rail, bearing the following letters, and agreement with
General Johnston, with instructions to be very careful to let
nothing escape him to the greedy newspaper correspondents, but to
submit his papers to General Halleck, General Grant, or the
Secretary of War, and to bring me back with all expedition their
orders and instructions.

On their face they recited that I had no authority to make final
terms involving civil or political questions, but that I submitted
them to the proper quarter in Washington for their action; and the
letters fully explained that the military situation was such that
the delay was an advantage to us. I cared little whether they were
approved, modified, or disapproved in toto; only I wanted
instructions. Many of my general officers, among whom, I am almost
positive, were Generals Logan and Blair, urged me to accept the
"terms," without reference at all to Washington, but I preferred
the latter course:


General H. W. HALLECK, Chief of Staff, Washington, D. C.

GENERAL: I received your dispatch describing the man Clark,
detailed to assassinate me. He had better be in a hurry, or he
will be too late.

The news of Mr. Lincoln's death produced a most intense effect on
our troops. At first I feared it would lead to excesses; but now
it has softened down, and can easily be guided. None evinced more
feeling than General Johnston, who admitted that the act was
calculated to stain his cause with a dark hue; and he contended
that the loss was most serious to the South, who had begun to
realize that Mr. Lincoln was the best friend they had.

I cannot believe that even Mr. Davis was privy to the diabolical
plot, but think it the emanation of a set of young men of the
South, who are very devils. I want to throw upon the South the
care of this class of men, who will soon be as obnoxious to their
industrial classes as to us.

Had I pushed Johnston's army to an extremity, it would have
dispersed, and done infinite mischief. Johnston informed me that
General Stoneman had been at Salisbury, and was now at Statesville.
I have sent him orders to come to me.

General Johnston also informed me that General Wilson was at
Colmbia, Georgia, and he wanted me to arrest his progress. I leave
that to you.

Indeed, if the President sanctions my agreement with Johnston, our
interest is to cease all destruction.

Please give all orders necessary according to the views the
Executive may take, and influence him, if possible, not to vary the
terms at all, for I have considered every thing, and believe that,
the Confederate armies once dispersed, we can adjust all else
fairly and well. I am, yours, etc.,

W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General commanding.


Lieutenant-General U. S. GRANT, or Major-General HALLECK,
Washington, D. C.

GENERAL: I inclose herewith a copy of an agreement made this day
between General Joseph E. Johnston and myself, which, if approved
by the President of the United States, will produce peace from the
Potomac to the Rio Grande. Mr. Breckenridge was present at our
conference, in the capacity of major-general, and satisfied me of
the ability of General Johnston to carry out to their full extent
the terms of this agreement; and if you will get the President to
simply indorse the copy, and commission me to carry out the terms,
I will follow them to the conclusion.

You will observe that it is an absolute submission of the enemy to
the lawful authority of the United States, and disperses his armies
absolutely; and the point to which I attach most importance is,
that the dispersion and disbandment of these armies is done in such
a manner as to prevent their breaking up into guerrilla bands. On
the other hand, we can retain just as much of an army as we please.
I agreed to the mode and manner of the surrender of arms set forth,
as it gives the States the means of repressing guerrillas, which we
could not expect them to do if we stripped them of all arms.

Both Generals Johnston and Breckenridge admitted that slavery was
dead, and I could not insist on embracing it in such a paper,
because it can be made with the States in detail. I know that all
the men of substance South sincerely want peace, and I do not
believe they will resort to war again during this century. I have
no doubt that they will in the future be perfectly subordinate to
the laws of the United States. The moment my action in this matter
is approved, I can spare five corps, and will ask for orders to
leave General Schofield here with the Tenth Corps, and to march
myself with the Fourteenth, Fifteenth, Seventeenth, Twentieth, and
Twenty-third Corps via Burkesville and Gordonsville to Frederick or
Hagerstown, Maryland, there to be paid and mustered out.

The question of finance is now the chief one, and every soldier and
officer not needed should be got home at work. I would like to be
able to begin the march north by May 1st.

I urge, on the part of the President, speedy action, as it is
important to get the Confederate armies to their homes as well as
our own.

I am, with great respect, your obedient servant,

W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General commanding.

Memorandum, or Basis of agreement, made this 18th day of April, A.
D. 1865, near Durham's Station, in the State of North Carolina, by
and between General Joseph E. JOHNSTON, commanding the Confederate
Army, and Major-General William T. SHERMAN, commanding the army of
the United States in North Carolina, both present:

1. The contending armies now in the field to maintain the statu
quo until notice is given by the commanding general of any one to
its opponent, and reasonable time--say, forty-eight hours--allowed.

2. The Confederate armies now in existence to be disbanded and
conducted to their several State capitals, there to deposit their
arms and public property in the State Arsenal; and each officer and
man to execute and file an agreement to cease from acts of war, and
to abide the action of the State and Federal authority. The number
of arms and munitions of war to be reported to the Chief of
Ordnance at Washington City, subject to the future action of the
Congress of the United States, and, in the mean time, to be needed
solely to maintain peace and order within the borders of the States

3. The recognition, by the Executive of the United States, of the
several State governments, on their officers and Legislatures
taking the oaths prescribed by the Constitution of the United
States, and, where conflicting State governments have resulted from
the war, the legitimacy of all shall be submitted to the Supreme
Court of the United States.

4. The reestablishment of all the Federal Courts in the several
States, with powers as defined by the Constitution of the United
States and of the States respectively.

5. The people and inhabitants of all the States to be guaranteed,
so far as the Executive can, their political rights and franchises,
as well as their rights of person sad property, as defined by the
Constitution of the United States and of the States respectively.

6. The Executive authority of the Government of the United States
not to disturb any of the people by reason of the late war, so long
as they live in peace and quiet, abstain from acts of armed
hostility, and obey the laws in existence at the place of their

7. In general terms--the war to cease; a general amnesty, so far
as the Executive of the United States can command, on condition of
the disbandment of the Confederate armies, the distribution of the
arms, and the resumption of peaceful pursuits by the officers and
men hitherto composing said armies.

Not being fully empowered by our respective principals to fulfill
these terms, we individually and officially pledge ourselves to
promptly obtain the necessary authority, and to carry out the above

W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General,
Commanding Army of the United States in North Carolina.

J. E. JOHNSTON, General,
Commanding Confederate States Army in North Carolina.

Major Hitchcock got off on the morning of the 20th, and I reckoned
that it would take him four or five days to go to Washington and
back. During that time the repairs on all the railroads and
telegraph-lines were pushed with energy, and we also got possession
of the railroad and telegraph from Raleigh to Weldon, in the
direction of Norfolk. Meantime the troops remained statu quo, our
cavalry occupying Durham's Station and Chapel Hill. General
Slocum's head of column was at Aven's Ferry on Cape Fear River, and
General Howard's was strung along the railroad toward Hillsboro';
the rest of the army was in and about Raleigh.

On the 20th I reviewed the Tenth Corps, and was much pleased at the
appearance of General Paines's division of black troops, the first
I had ever seen as a part of an organized army; and on the 21st I
reviewed the Twenty-third Corps, which had been with me to Atlanta,
but had returned to Nashville had formed an essential part of the
army which fought at Franklin, and with which General Thomas had
defeated General Hood in Tennessee. It had then been transferred
rapidly by rail to Baltimore and Washington by General Grant's
orders, and thence by sea to North Carolina. Nothing of interest
happened at Raleigh till the evening of April 23d, when Major
Hitchcock reported by telegraph his return to Morehead City, and
that he would come up by rail during the night. He arrived at 6
a.m., April 24th, accompanied by General Grant and one or two
officers of his staff, who had not telegraphed the fact of their
being on the train, for prudential reasons. Of course, I was both
surprised and pleased to see the general, soon learned that my
terms with Johnston had been disapproved, was instructed by him to
give the forty-eight hours' notice required by the terms of the
truce, and afterward to proceed to attack or follow him. I
immediately telegraphed to General Kilpatrick, at Durham's, to have
a mounted courier ready to carry the following message, then on its
way up by rail, to the rebel lines:


General JOHNSTON, commanding Confederate Army, Greensboro':

You will take notice that the truce or suspension of hostilities
agreed to between us will cease in forty-eight hours after this is
received at your lines, under the first of the articles of

W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General.

At the same time I wrote another short note to General Johnston, of
the same date:

I have replies from Washington to my communications of April 18th.
I am instructed to limit my operations to your immediate command,
and not to attempt civil negotiations. I therefore demand the
surrender of your army on the same terms as were given to General
Lee at Appomattox, April 9th instant, purely and simply.

Of course, both these papers were shown to General Grant at the
time, before they were sent, and he approved of them.

At the same time orders were sent to all parts of the army to be
ready to resume the pursuit of the enemy on the expiration of the
forty-eight hours' truce, and messages were sent to General
Gillmore (at Hilton Head) to the same effect, with instructions to
get a similar message through to General Wilson, at Macon, by some

General Grant had brought with him, from Washington, written
answers from the Secretary of War, and of himself, to my
communications of the 18th, which I still possess, and here give
the originals. They embrace the copy of a dispatch made by Mr.
Stanton to General Grant, when he was pressing Lee at Appomattox,
which dispatch, if sent me at the same time (as should have been
done), would have saved a world of trouble. I did not understand
that General Grant had come down to supersede me in command, nor
did he intimate it, nor did I receive these communications as a
serious reproof, but promptly acted on them, as is already shown;
and in this connection I give my answer made to General Grant, at
Raleigh, before I had received any answer from General Johnston to
the demand for the surrender of his own army, as well as my answer
to Mr. Stanton's letter, of the same date, both written on the
supposition that I might have to start suddenly in pursuit of
Johnston, and have no other chance to explain.


Lieutenant-General GRANT.

GENERAL: The memorandum or basis agreed upon between General
Sherman and General Johnston having been submitted to the
President, they are disapproved. You will give notice of the
disapproval to General Sherman, and direct him to resume
hostilities at the earliest moment.

The instructions given to you by the late President, Abraham
Lincoln, on the 3d of March, by my telegraph of that date,
addressed to you, express substantially the views of President
Andrew Johnson, and will be observed by General Sherman. A copy is
herewith appended.

The President desires that you proceed immediately to the
headquarters of Major-General Sherman, and direct operations
against the enemy.

Yours truly,

EDWIN M. STANTON, Secretary of War.

The following telegram was received 2 p.m., City Point, March 4,
1865 (from Washington, 12 M., March 3,1865)



Lieutenant-General GRANT:

The President directs me to say to you that he wishes you to have
no conference with General Lee, unless it be for the capitulation
of Lee's army or on solely minor and purely military matters.

He instructs me to say that you are not to decide, discuss, or
confer upon any political question; such questions the President
holds in his own hands, and will submit them to no military
conferences or conventions.

Meantime you are to press to the utmost your military advantages.

EDWIN M. STANTON, Secretary of War.

WASHINGTON, D.C. April 21, 1865.

Major-General W. T. SHERMAN, commanding Military Division of the

GENERAL: The basis of agreement entered into between yourself and
General J. E. Johnston, for the disbandment of the Southern army,
and the extension of the authority of the General Government over
all the territory belonging to it, sent for the approval of the
President, is received.

I read it carefully myself before submitting it to the President
and Secretary of War, and felt satisfied that it could not possibly
be approved. My reason for these views I will give you at another
time, in a more extended letter.

Your agreement touches upon questions of such vital importance
that, as soon as read, I addressed a note to the Secretary of War,
notifying him of their receipt, and the importance of immediate
action by the President; and suggested, in view of their
importance, that the entire Cabinet be called together, that all
might give an expression of their opinions upon the matter. The
result was a disapproval by the President of the basis laid down; a
disapproval of the negotiations altogether except for the surrender
of the army commanded by General Johnston, and directions to me to
notify you of this decision. I cannot do no better than by sending
you the inclosed copy of a dispatch (penned by the late President,
though signed by the Secretary of War) in answer to me, on sending
a letter received from General Lee, proposing to meet me for the
purpose of submitting the question of peace to a convention of

Please notify General Johnston, immediately on receipt of this, of
the termination of the truce, and resume hostilities against his
army at the earliest moment you can, acting in good faith.

Very respectfully your obedient servant,

U. S. GRANT, Lieutenant-General.


Lieutenant-General U. S. GRANT, present.

GENERAL: I had the honor to receive your letter of April 21st, with
inclosures, yesterday, and was well pleased that you came along, as
you must have observed that I held the military control so as to
adapt it to any phase the case might assume.

It is but just I should record the fact that I made my terms with
General Johnston under the influence of the liberal terms you
extended to the army of General Lee at Appomattox Court-House on
the 9th, and the seeming policy of our Government, as evinced by
the call of the Virginia Legislature and Governor back to Richmond,
under yours and President Lincoln's very eyes.

It now appears this last act was done without any consultation with
you or any knowledge of Mr. Lincoln, but rather in opposition to a
previous policy well considered.

I have not the least desire to interfere in the civil policy of our
Government, but would shun it as something not to my liking; but
occasions do arise when a prompt seizure of results is forced on
military commanders not in immediate communication with the proper
authority. It is probable that the terms signed by General
Johnston and myself were not clear enough on the point, well
understood between us, that our negotiations did not apply to any
parties outside the officers and men of the Confederate armies,
which could easily have been remedied.

No surrender of any army not actually at the mercy of an antagonist
was ever made without "terms," and these always define the military
status of the surrendered. Thus you stipulated that the officers
and men of Lee's army should not be molested at their homes so long
as they obeyed the laws at the place of their residence.

I do not wish to discuss these points involved in our recognition
of the State governments in actual existence, but will merely state
my conclusions, to await the solution of the future.

Such action on our part in no manner recognizes for a moment the
so-called Confederate Government, or makes us liable for its debts
or acts.

The laws and acts done by the several States during the period of
rebellion are void, because done without the oath prescribed by our
Constitution of the United States, which is a "condition

We have a right to, use any sort of machinery to produce military
results; and it is the commonest thing for military commanders to
use the civil governments in actual existence as a means to an end.
I do believe we could and can use the present State governments
lawfully, constitutionally, and as the very best possible means to
produce the object desired, viz., entire and complete submission to
the lawful authority of the United States.

As to punishment for past crimes, that is for the judiciary, and
can in no manner of way be disturbed by our acts; and, so far as I
can, I will use my influence that rebels shall suffer all the
personal punishment prescribed by law, as also the civil
liabilities arising from their past acts.

What we now want is the new form of law by which common men may
regain the positions of industry, so long disturbed by the war.

I now apprehend that the rebel armies will disperse; and, instead
of dealing with six or seven States, we will have to deal with
numberless bands of desperadoes, headed by such men as Mosby,
Forrest, Red Jackson, and others, who know not and care not for
danger and its consequences.

I am, with great respect, your obedient servant,

W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General commanding.


Hon. E. M. STANTON, Secretary of War, Washington.

DEAR SIR: I have been furnished a copy of your letter of April 21st
to General Grant, signifying your disapproval of the terms on which
General Johnston proposed to disarm and disperse the insurgents, on
condition of amnesty, etc. I admit my folly in embracing in a
military convention any civil matters; but, unfortunately, such is
the nature of our situation that they seem inextricably united, and
I understood from you at Savannah that the financial state of the
country demanded military success, and would warrant a little
bending to policy.

When I had my conference with General Johnston I had the public
examples before me of General Grant's terms to Lee's army, and
General Weitzel's invitation to the Virginia Legislature to
assemble at Richmond.

I still believe the General Government of the United States has
made a mistake; but that is none of my business--mine is a
different task; and I had flattered myself that, by four years of
patient, unremitting, and successful labor, I deserved no reminder
such as is contained in the last paragraph of your letter to
General Grant. You may assure the President that I heed his
suggestion. I am truly, etc.,

W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General commanding.

On the same day, but later, I received an answer from General
Johnston, agreeing to meet me again at Bennett's house the next
day, April 26th, at noon. He did not even know that General Grant
was in Raleigh.

General Grant advised me to meet him, and to accept his surrender
on the same terms as his with General Lee; and on the 26th I again
went up to Durham's Station by rail, and rode out to Bennett's
house, where we again met, and General Johneton, without
hesitation, agreed to, and we executed, the following final terms:

Terms of a Military Convention, entered into this 26th day of
April, 1865, at Bennett's House, near Durham's Station., North
Carolina, between General JOSEPH E. JOHNSTON, commanding the
Confederate Army, and Major-General W. T. SHERMAN, commanding the
United States Army in North Carolina:

1. All acts of war on the part of the troops under General
Johnston's command to cease from this date.

2. All arms and public property to be deposited at Greensboro',
and delivered to an ordnance-officer of the United States Army.

3. Rolls of all the officers and men to be made in duplicate; one
copy to be retained by the commander of the troops, and the other
to be given to an officer to be designated by General Sherman.
Each officer and man to give his individual obligation in writing
not to take up arms against the Government of the United States,
until properly released from this obligation.

4. The side-arms of officers, and their private horses and
baggage, to be retained by them.

5. This being done, all the officers and men will be permitted to
return to their homes, not to be disturbed by the United States
authorities, so long as they observe their obligation and the laws
in force where they may reside.

W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General,
Commanding United States Forces in North Carolina.

J. E. JOHNSTON, General,
Commanding Confederate States Forces in North Carolina.


U. S. GRANT, Lieutenant-General.

I returned to Raleigh the same evening, and, at my request, General
Grant wrote on these terms his approval, and then I thought the
matter was surely at an end. He took the original copy, on the
27th returned to Newbern, and thence went back to Washington.

I immediately made all the orders necessary to carry into effect
the terms of this convention, devolving on General Schofield the
details of granting the parole and making the muster-rolls of
prisoners, inventories of property, etc., of General Johnston's
army at and about Greensboro', North Carolina, and on General
Wilson the same duties in Georgia; but, thus far, I had been
compelled to communicate with the latter through rebel sources, and
General Wilson was necessarily confused by the conflict of orders
and information. I deemed it of the utmost importance to establish
for him a more reliable base of information and supply, and
accordingly resolved to go in person to Savannah for that purpose.
But, before starting, I received a New York Times, of April 24th,
containing the following extraordinary communications:

[First Bulletin]


Yesterday evening a bearer of dispatches arrived from General
Sherman. An agreement for a suspension of hostilities, and a
memorandum of what is called a basis for peace, had been entered
into on the 18th inst. by General Sherman, with the rebel General
Johnston. Brigadier-General Breckenridge was present at the

A cabinet meeting was held at eight o'clock in the evening, at
which the action of General Sherman was disapproved by the
President, by the Secretary of War, by General Grant, and by every
member of the cabinet. General Sherman was ordered to resume
hostilities immediately, and was directed that the instructions
given by the late President, in the following telegram, which was
penned by Mr. Lincoln himself, at the Capitol, on the night of the
3d of March, were approved by President Andrew Johnson, and were
reiterated to govern the action of military commanders.

On the night of the 3d of March, while President Lincoln and his
cabinet were at the Capitol, a telegram from General Grant was
brought to the Secretary of War, informing him that General Lee had
requested an interview or conference, to make an arrangement for
terms of peace. The letter of General Lee was published in a
letter to Davis and to the rebel Congress. General Grant's
telegram was submitted to Mr. Lincoln, who, after pondering a few
minutes, took up his pen and wrote with his own hand the following
reply, which he submitted to the Secretary of State and Secretary
of War. It was then dated, addressed, and signed, by the Secretary
of War, and telegraphed to General Grant:

WASHINGTON, March 3, 1865-12 P.M.

Lieutenant-General GRANT:

The President directs me to say to you that he wishes you to have
no conference with General Lee, unless it be for the capitulation
of General Lee's army, or on some minor or purely military matter.
He instructs me to say that you are not to decide, discuss, or
confer upon any political questions. Such questions the President
holds in his own hands, and will submit them to no military
conferences or conventions.

Meantime you are to press to the utmost your military advantages.

EDWIN M. STANTON, Secretary of War.

The orders of General Sherman to General Stoneman to withdraw from
Salisbury and join him will probably open the way for Davis to
escape to Mexico or Europe with his plunder, which is reported to
be very large, including not only the plunder of the Richmond
banks, but previous accumulations.

A dispatch received by this department from Richmond says: "It is
stated here, by respectable parties, that the amount of specie
taken south by Jeff. Davis and his partisans is very large,
including not only the plunder of the Richmond banks, but previous
accumulations. They hope, it is said, to make terms with General
Sherman, or some other commander, by which they will be permitted,
with their effects, including this gold plunder, to go to Mexico or
Europe. Johnston's negotiations look to this end."

After the cabinet meeting last night, General Grant started for
North Carolina, to direct operations against Johnston's army.

EDWIN M. STANTON, Secretary of War.

Here followed the terms, and Mr. Stanton's ten reasons for
rejecting them.

The publication of this bulletin by authority was an outrage on me,
for Mr. Stanton had failed to communicate to me in advance, as was
his duty, the purpose of the Administration to limit our
negotiations to purely military matters; but, on the contrary, at
Savannah he had authorized me to control all matters, civil and

By this bulletin, he implied that I had previously been furnished
with a copy of his dispatch of March 3d to General Grant, which was
not so; and he gave warrant to the impression, which was sown
broadcast, that I might be bribed by banker's gold to permit Davis
to escape. Under the influence of this, I wrote General Grant the
following letter of April 28th, which has been published in the
Proceedings of the Committee on the Conduct of the War.

I regarded this bulletin of Mr. Stanton as a personal and official
insult, which I afterward publicly resented.


Lieutenant-General U. S. GRANT, General-in-Chief, Washington, D. C.

GENERAL: Since you left me yesterday, I have seen the New York
Times of the 24th, containing a budget of military news,
authenticated by the signature of the Secretary of War, Hon. E. M.
Stanton, which is grouped in such a way as to give the public very
erroneous impressions. It embraces a copy of the basis of
agreement between myself and General Johnston, of April 18th, with
comments, which it will be time enough to discuss two or three
years hence, after the Government has experimented a little more in
the machinery by which power reaches the scattered people of the
vast country known as the "South."

In the mean time, however, I did think that my rank (if not past
services) entitled me at least to trust that the Secretary of War
would keep secret what was communicated for the use of none but the
cabinet, until further inquiry could be made, instead of giving
publicity to it along with documents which I never saw, and drawing
therefrom inferences wide of the truth. I never saw or had
furnished me a copy of President Lincoln's dispatch to you of the
3d of March, nor did Mr. Stanton or any human being ever convey to
me its substance, or any thing like it. On the contrary, I had
seen General Weitzel's invitation to the Virginia Legislature, made
in Mr. Lincoln's very presence, and failed to discover any other
official hint of a plan of reconstruction, or any ideas calculated
to allay the fears of the people of the South, after the
destruction of their armies and civil authorities would leave them
without any government whatever.

We should not drive a people into anarchy, and it is simply
impossible for our military power to reach all the masses of their
unhappy country.

I confess I did not desire to drive General Johnston's army into
bands of armed men, going about without purpose, and capable only
of infinite mischief. But you saw, on your arrival here, that I
had my army so disposed that his escape was only possible in a
disorganized shape; and as you did not choose to "direct military
operations in this quarter," I inferred that you were satisfied
with the military situation; at all events, the instant I learned
what was proper enough, the disapproval of the President, I acted
in such a manner as to compel the surrender of General Johnston's
whole army on the same terms which you had prescribed to General
Lee's army, when you had it surrounded and in your absolute power.

Mr. Stanton, in stating that my orders to General Stoneman were
likely to result in the escape of "Mr. Davis to Mexico or Europe,"
is in deep error. General Stoneman was not at "Salisbury," but had
gone back to "Statesville." Davis was between us, and therefore
Stoneman was beyond him. By turning toward me he was approaching
Davis, and, had he joined me as ordered, I would have had a mounted
force greatly needed for Davis's capture, and for other purposes.
Even now I don't know that Mr. Stanton wants Davis caught, and as
my official papers, deemed sacred, are hastily published to the
world, it will be imprudent for me to state what has been done in
that regard.

As the editor of the Times has (it may be) logically and fairly
drawn from this singular document the conclusion that I am
insubordinate, I can only deny the intention.

I have never in my life questioned or disobeyed an order, though
many and many a time have I risked my life, health, and reputation,
in obeying orders, or even hints to execute plans and purposes, not
to my liking. It is not fair to withhold from me the plans and
policy of Government (if any there be), and expect me to guess at
them; for facts and events appear quite different from different
stand-points. For four years I have been in camp dealing with
soldiers, and I can assure you that the conclusion at which the
cabinet arrived with such singular unanimity differs from mine.
I conferred freely with the best officers in this army as to the
points involved in this controversy, and, strange to say, they were
singularly unanimous in the other conclusion. They will learn with
pain and amazement that I am deemed insubordinate, and wanting in
commonsense; that I, who for four years have labored day and night,
winter and summer, who have brought an army of seventy thousand men
in magnificent condition across a country hitherto deemed
impassable, and placed it just where it was wanted, on the day
appointed, have brought discredit on our Government! I do not wish
to boast of this, but I do say that it entitled me to the courtesy
of being consulted, before publishing to the world a proposition
rightfully submitted to higher authority for adjudication, and then
accompanied by statements which invited the dogs of the press to be
let loose upon me. It is true that non-combatants, men who sleep
in comfort and security while we watch on the distant lines, are
better able to judge than we poor soldiers, who rarely see a
newspaper, hardly hear from our families, or stop long enough to
draw our pay. I envy not the task of "reconstruction," and am
delighted that the Secretary of War has relieved me of it.

As you did not undertake to assume the management of the affairs of
this army, I infer that, on personal inspection, your mind arrived
at a different conclusion from that of the Secretary of War. I
will therefore go on to execute your orders to the conclusion, and,
when done, will with intense satisfaction leave to the civil
authorities the execution of the task of which they seem so
jealous. But, as an honest man and soldier, I invite them to go
back to Nashville and follow my path, for they will see some things
and hear some things that may disturb their philosophy.

With sincere respect,

W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General commanding.

P. S.--As Mr. Stanton's most singular paper has been published, I
demand that this also be made public, though I am in no manner
responsible to the press, but to the law, and my proper superiors.
W. T. S., Major-General.

On the 28th I summoned all the army and corps commanders together
at my quarters in the Governor's mansion at Raleigh, where every
thing was explained to them, and all orders for the future were
completed. Generals Schofield, Terry, and Kilpatrick, were to
remain on duty in the Department of North Carolina, already
commanded by General Schofield, and the right and left wings were
ordered to march under their respective commanding generals North
by easy stages to Richmond, Virginia, there to await my return
from the South.

On the 29th of April, with a part of my personal staff, I proceeded
by rail to Wilmington, North Carolina, where I found Generals
Hawley and Potter, and the little steamer Russia, Captain Smith,
awaiting me. After a short pause in Wilmington, we embarked, and
proceeded down the coast to Port Royal and the Savannah River,
which we reached on the 1st of May. There Captain Hoses, who had
just come from General Wilson at Macon, met us, bearing letters for
me and General Grant, in which General Wilson gave a brief summary
of his operations up to date. He had marched from Eastport,
Mississippi, five hundred miles in thirty days, took six thousand
three hundred prisoners, twenty-three colors, and one hundred and
fifty-six guns, defeating Forrest, scattering the militia, and
destroying every railroad, iron establishment, and factory, in
North Alabama and Georgia.

He spoke in the highest terms of his cavalry, as "cavalry,"
claiming that it could not be excelled, and he regarded his corps
as a model for modern cavalry in organization, armament, and
discipline. Its strength was given at thirteen thousand five
hundred men and horses on reaching Macon. Of course I was
extremely gratified at his just confidence, and saw that all he
wanted for efficient action was a sure base of supply, so that he
need no longer depend for clothing, ammunition, food, and forage,
on the country, which, now that war had ceased, it was our solemn
duty to protect, instead of plunder. I accordingly ordered the
captured steamer Jeff. Davis to be loaded with stores, to proceed
at once up the Savannah River to Augusta, with a small detachment
of troops to occupy the arsenal, and to open communication with
General Wilson at Macon; and on the next day, May 2d, this steamer
was followed by another with a fall cargo of clothing, sugar,
coffee, and bread, sent from Hilton Head by the department
commander, General Gillmore, with a stronger guard commanded by
General Molineux. Leaving to General Gillmore, who was present,
and in whose department General Wilson was, to keep up the supplies
at Augusta, and to facilitate as far as possible General Wilson's
operations inland, I began my return on the 2d of May. We went
into Charleston Harbor, passing the ruins of old Forts Moultrie and
Sumter without landing. We reached the city of Charleston, which
was held by part of the division of General John P. Hatch, the
same that we had left at Pocotaligo. We walked the old familiar
streets--Broad, King, Meeting, etc.--but desolation and ruin were
everywhere. The heart of the city had been burned during the
bombardment, and the rebel garrison at the time of its final
evacuation had fired the railroad-depots, which fire had spread,
and was only subdued by our troops after they had reached the city.

I inquired for many of my old friends, but they were dead or gone,
and of them all I only saw a part of the family of Mrs. Pettigru.
I doubt whether any city was ever more terribly punished than
Charleston, but, as her people had for years been agitating for war
and discord, and had finally inaugurated the civil war by an attack
on the small and devoted garrison of Major Anderson, sent there by
the General Government to defend them, the judgment of the world
will be, that Charleston deserved the fate that befell her.
Resuming our voyage, we passed into Cape Fear River by its mouth at
Fort Caswell and Smithville, and out by the new channel at Fort
Fisher, and reached Morehead City on the 4th of May. We found
there the revenue-cutter Wayanda, on board of which were the Chief-
Justice, Mr. Chase, and his daughter Nettie, now Mrs. Hoyt. The
Chief-Justice at that moment was absent on a visit to Newbern, but
came back the next day. Meantime, by means of the telegraph, I was
again in correspondence with General Schofield at Raleigh. He had
made great progress in parolling the officers and men of Johnston's
army at Greensboro', but was embarrassed by the utter confusion and
anarchy that had resulted from a want of understanding on many
minor points, and on the political questions that had to be met at
the instant. In order to facilitate the return to their homes of
the Confederate officers and men, he had been forced to make with
General Johnston the following supplemental terms, which were of
course ratified and approved:


1. The field transportation to be loaned to the troops for their
march to their homes, and for subsequent use in their industrial
pursuits. Artillery-horses may be used in field-transportation, if

2. Each brigade or separate body to retain a number of arms equal
to one-seventh of its effective strength, which, when the troops
reach the capitals of their states, will be disposed of as the
general commanding the department may direct.

3. Private horses, and other private property of both officers and
men, to be retained by them.

4. The commanding general of the Military Division of West
Mississippi, Major-General Canby, will be requested to give
transportation by water, from Mobile or New Orleans, to the troops
from Arkansas and Texas.

5. The obligations of officers and soldiers to be signed by their
immediate commanders.

6. Naval forces within the limits of General Johnston's command to
be included in the terms of this convention.

J. M. SCHOFIELD, Major-General,
Commanding United States Forces in North Carolina.

J. E. JOHNSTON, General,
Commanding Confederate States Forces in North Carolina.

The total number of prisoners of war parolled by
General Schofield, at Greensboro', North Carolina,
as afterward officially reported, amounted to ........ 38,817

And the total number who surrendered in Georgia
and Florida, as reported by General J. H. Wilson,
was .................................................. 52,458

Aggregate surrendered under the capitulation of
General J. E. Johnston ............................... 89,270

On the morning of the 5th I also received from General Schofield
this dispatch:


To Major-General W: T. SHERMAN, Morehead City:

When General Grant was here, as you doubtless recollect, he said
the lines (for trade and intercourse) had been extended to embrace
this and other States south. The order, it seems, has been
modified so as to include only Virginia and Tennessee. I think it
would be an act of wisdom to open this State to trade at once.

I hope the Government will make known its policy as to the organs
of State government without delay. Affairs must necessarily be in
a very unsettled state until that is done. The people are now in a
mood to accept almost anything which promises a definite
settlement. "What is to be done with the freedmen?" is the
question of all, and it is the all important question. It requires
prompt and wise notion to prevent the negroes from becoming a huge
elephant on our hands. If I am to govern this State, it is
important for me to know it at once. If another is to be sent
here, it cannot be done too soon, for he probably will undo the
most that I shall have done. I shall be glad to hear from you
fully, when you have time to write. I will send your message to
General Wilson at once.

J. M. SCHOFIELD, Major-General.

I was utterly without instructions from any source on the points of
General Schofield's inquiry, and under the existing state of facts
could not even advise him, for by this time I was in possession of
the second bulletin of Mr. Stanton, published in all the Northern
papers, with comments that assumed that I was a common traitor and
a public enemy; and high officials had even instructed my own
subordinates to disobey my lawful orders. General Halleck, who had
so long been in Washington as the chief of staff, had been sent on
the 21st of April to Richmond, to command the armies of the Potomac
and James, in place of General Grant, who had transferred his
headquarters to the national capital, and he (General Halleck) was
therefore in supreme command in Virginia, while my command over
North Carolina had never been revoked or modified.

[Second Bulletin.]


To Major-General DIX:

The department has received the following dispatch from Major-
General Halleck, commanding the Military Division of the James.
Generals Canby and Thomas were instructed some days ago that
Sherman's arrangements with Johnston were disapproved by the
President, and they were ordered to disregard it and push the enemy
in every direction.

E. M. STANTON, Secretary of War.

RICHMOND, VIRGINIA, April 26-9.30 p.m.

HON. E. M. STANTON, Secretary of War:

Generals Meade, Sheridan, and Wright, are acting under orders to
pay no regard to any truce or orders of General Sherman respecting
hostilities, on the ground that Sherman's agreement could bind his
command only, and no other.

They are directed to push forward, regardless of orders from any
one except from General Grant, and cut off Johnston's retreat.

Beauregard has telegraphed to Danville that a new arrangement has
been made with Sherman, and that the advance of the Sixth Corps was
to be suspended until further orders.

I have telegraphed back to obey no orders of Sherman, but to push
forward as rapidly as possible.

The bankers here have information to-day that Jeff. Davis's specie
is moving south from Goldsboro', in wagons, as fast as possible.

I suggest that orders be telegraphed, through General Thomas, that
Wilson obey no orders from Sherman, and notifying him and Canby,
and all commanders on the Mississippi, to take measures to
intercept the rebel chiefs and their plunder.

The specie taken with them is estimated here at from six to
thirteen million dollars.

H. W. HALLECK, Major-General commanding.

Subsequently, before the Committee on the Conduct of the War, in
Washington, on the 22d of May, I testified fully on this whole
matter, and will abide the judgment of the country on the
patriotism and wisdom of my public conduct in this connection.
General Halleck's measures to capture General Johnston's army,
actually surrendered to me at the time, at Greensboro', on the 26th
of April, simply excited my contempt for a judgment such as he was
supposed to possess. The assertion that Jeff. Davis's specie-
train, of six to thirteen million dollars, was reported to be
moving south from Goldsboro' in wagons as fast as possible, found
plenty of willing ears, though my army of eighty thousand men had
been at Goldsboro' from March 22d to the date of his dispatch,
April 26th; and such a train would have been composed of from
fifteen to thirty-two six-mule teams to have hauled this specie,
even if it all were in gold. I suppose the exact amount of
treasure which Davis had with him is now known to a cent; some of
it was paid to his escort, when it disbanded at and near
Washington, Georgia, and at the time of his capture he had a small
parcel of gold and silver coin, not to exceed ten thousand dollars,
which is now retained in the United States Treasury-vault at
Washington, and shown to the curious.

The thirteen millions of treasure, with which Jeff. Davis was to
corrupt our armies and buy his escape, dwindled down to the
contents of a hand-valise!

To say that I was merely angry at the tone and substance of these
published bulletins of the War Department, would hardly express the
state of my feelings. I was outraged beyond measure, and was
resolved to resent the insult, cost what it might. I went to the
Wayanda and showed them to Mr. Chase, with whom I had a long and
frank conversation, during which he explained to me the confusion
caused in Washington by the assassination of Mr. Lincoln, the
sudden accession to power of Mr. Johnson, who was then supposed to
be bitter and vindictive in his feelings toward the South, and the
wild pressure of every class of politicians to enforce on the new
President their pet schemes. He showed me a letter of his own,
which was in print, dated Baltimore, April 11th, and another of
April 12th, addressed to the President, urging him to recognize the
freedmen as equal in all respects to the whites. He was the first
man, of any authority or station, who ever informed me that the
Government of the United States would insist on extending to the
former slaves of the South the elective franchise, and he gave as a
reason the fact that the slaves, grateful for their freedom, for
which they were indebted to the armies and Government of the North,
would, by their votes, offset the disaffected and rebel element of
the white population of the South. At that time quite a storm was
prevailing at sea, outside, and our two vessels lay snug at the
wharf at Morehead City. I saw a good deal of Mr. Chase, and
several notes passed between us, of which I have the originals yet.
Always claiming that the South had herself freed all her slaves by
rebellion, and that Mr. Lincoln's proclamation of freedom (of
September 22, 1862) was binding on all officers of the General
Government, I doubted the wisdom of at once clothing them with the
elective franchise, without some previous preparation and
qualification; and then realized the national loss in the death at
that critical moment of Mr. Lincoln, who had long pondered over the
difficult questions involved, who, at all events, would have been
honest and frank, and would not have withheld from his army
commanders at least a hint that would have been to them a guide.
It was plain to me, therefore, that the manner of his assassination
had stampeded the civil authorities in Washington, had unnerved
them, and that they were then undecided as to the measures
indispensably necessary to prevent anarchy at the South.

On the 7th of May the storm subsided, and we put to sea, Mr. Chase
to the south, on his proposed tour as far as New Orleans, and I for
James River. I reached Fortress Monroe on the 8th, and thence
telegraphed my arrival to General Grant, asking for orders. I
found at Fortress Monroe a dispatch from General Halleck,
professing great friendship, and inviting me to accept his
hospitality at Richmond. I answered by a cipher-dispatch that I
had seen his dispatch to Mr. Stanton, of April 26th, embraced in
the second bulletin, which I regarded as insulting, declined his
hospitality, and added that I preferred we should not meet as I
passed through Richmond. I thence proceeded to City Point in the
Russia, and on to Manchester, opposite Richmond, via Petersburg, by
rail. I found that both wings of the army had arrived from
Raleigh, and were in camp in and around Manchester, whence I again
telegraphed General Grant, an the 9th of May, for orders, and also
reported my arrival to General Halleck by letter. I found that
General Halleck had ordered General Davis's corps (the Fourteenth)
for review by himself. This I forbade. All the army knew of the
insult that had been made me by the Secretary of War and General
Halleck, and watched me closely to see if I would tamely submit.
During the 9th I made a full and complete report of all these
events, from the last report made at Goldsboro' up to date, and the
next day received orders to continue the march to Alexandria, near

On the morning of the 11th we crossed the pontoon-bridge at
Richmond, marched through that city, and out on the Han over
Court House road, General Slocum's left wing leading. The right wing
(General Logan) followed the next day, viz., the 12th. Meantime,
General O. O. Howard had been summoned to Washington to take charge
of the new Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, and,
from that time till the army was finally disbanded, General John A.
Logan was in command of the right wing, and of the Army of the
Tennessee. The left wing marched through Hanover Court House, and
thence took roads well to the left by Chilesburg; the Fourteenth
Corps by New Market and Culpepper, Manassas, etc.; the Twentieth
Corps by Spotsylvania Court-House and Chancellorsville. The right
wing followed the more direct road by Fredericksburg. On my way
north I endeavored to see as much of the battle-fields of the Army
of the Potomac as I could, and therefore shifted from one column to
the other, visiting en route Hanover Court-House, Spotsylvania,
Fredericksburg, Dumfries, etc., reaching Alexandria during the
afternoon of May 19th, and pitched my camp by the road side, about
half-way between Alexandria and the Long Bridge. During the same
and next day the whole army reached Alexandria, and camped round
about it; General Meade's Army of the Potomac had possession of the
camps above, opposite Washington and Georgetown. The next day (by
invitation) I went over to Washington and met many friends--among
them General Grant and President Johnson. The latter occupied
rooms in the house on the corner of Fifteenth and H Streets,
belonging to Mr. Hooper. He was extremely cordial to me, and
knowing that I was chafing under the censures of the War
Department, especially of the two war bulletins of Mr. Stanton, he
volunteered to say that he knew of neither of them till seen in the
newspapers, and that Mr. Stanton had shown neither to him nor to
any of his associates in the cabinet till they were published.
Nearly all the members of the cabinet made similar assurances to me
afterward, and, as Mr. Stanton made no friendly advances, and
offered no word of explanation or apology, I declined General
Grant's friendly offices for a reconciliation, but, on the
contrary, resolved to resent what I considered an insult, as
publicly as it was made. My brother, Senator Sherman, who was Mr.
Stanton's neighbor, always insisted that Mr. Stanton had been
frightened by the intended assassination of himself, and had become
embittered thereby. At all events, I found strong military guards
around his house, as well as all the houses occupied by the cabinet
and by the principal officers of Government; and a sense of
insecurity pervaded Washington, for which no reason existed.

On the 19th I received a copy of War Department Special Order No.
239, Adjutant-General's office, of May 18th, ordering a grand
review, by the President and cabinet, of all the armies then near
Washington; General Meade's to occur on Tuesday, May 23d, mine on
Wednesday, the 24th; and on the 20th I made the necessary orders
for my part. Meantime I had also arranged (with General Grant's
approval) to remove after the review, my armies from the south side
of the Potomac to the north; both for convenience and because our
men had found that the grounds assigned them had been used so long
for camps that they were foul and unfit.

By invitation I was on the reviewing-stand, and witnessed the
review of the Army of the Potomac (on the 23d), commanded by
General Meade in person. The day was beautiful, and the pageant
was superb. Washington was full of strangers, who filled the
streets in holiday-dress, and every house was decorated with flags.
The army marched by divisions in close column around the Capitol,
down Pennsylvania Avenue, past the President and cabinet, who
occupied a large stand prepared for the occasion, directly in front
of the White House.

I had telegraphed to Lancaster for Mrs. Sherman, who arrived that
day, accompanied by her father, the Hon. Thomas Ewing, and my son
Tom, then eight years old.

During the afternoon and night of the 23d, the Fifteenth, Seventeenth,
and Twentieth Corps, crossed Long Bridge, bivouacked in the
streets about the Capitol, and the Fourteenth Corps closed up to
the bridge. The morning of the 24th was extremely beautiful, and
the ground was in splendid order for our review. The streets were
filled with people to see the pageant, armed with bouquets of
flowers for their favorite regiments or heroes, and every thing was
propitious. Punctually at 9 A.M. the signal-gun was fired, when in
person, attended by General Howard and all my staff, I rode slowly
down Pennsylvania Avenue, the crowds of men, women, and children,
densely lining the sidewalks, and almost obstructing the way. We
were followed close by General Logan and the head of the Fifteenth
Corps. When I reached the Treasury-building, and looked back, the
sight was simply magnificent. The column was compact, and the
glittering muskets looked like a solid mass of steel, moving with
the regularity of a pendulum. We passed the Treasury building, in
front of which and of the White House was an immense throng of
people, for whom extensive stands had been prepared on both sides
of the avenue. As I neared the brick-house opposite the lower
corner of Lafayette Square, some one asked me to notice Mr. Seward,
who, still feeble and bandaged for his wounds, had been removed
there that he might behold the troops. I moved in that direction
and took off my hat to Mr. Seward, who sat at an upper window. He
recognized the salute, returned it, and then we rode on steadily
past the President, saluting with our swords. All on his stand
arose and acknowledged the salute. Then, turning into the gate of
the presidential grounds, we left our horses with orderlies, and
went upon the stand, where I found Mrs. Sherman, with her father
and son. Passing them, I shook hands with the President, General
Grant, and each member of the cabinet. As I approached Mr.
Stanton, he offered me his hand, but I declined it publicly, and
the fact was universally noticed. I then took my post on the left
of the President, and for six hours and a half stood, while the
army passed in the order of the Fifteenth, Seventeenth, Twentieth,
and Fourteenth Corps. It was, in my judgment, the most magnificent
army in existence--sixty-five thousand men, in splendid physique,
who had just completed a march of nearly two thousand miles in a
hostile country, in good drill, and who realized that they were
being closely scrutinized by thousands of their fellow-countrymen
and by foreigners. Division after division passed, each commander
of an army corps or division coming on the stand during the passage
of his command, to be presented to the President, cabinet, and
spectators. The steadiness and firmness of the tread, the careful
dress on the guides, the uniform intervals between the companies,
all eyes directly to the front, and the tattered and bullet-riden
flags, festooned with flowers, all attracted universal notice.
Many good people, up to that time, had looked upon our Western army
as a sort of mob; but the world then saw, and recognized the fact,
that it was an army in the proper sense, well organized, well
commanded and disciplined; and there was no wonder that it had
swept through the South like a tornado. For six hours and a half
that strong tread of the Army of the West resounded along
Pennsylvania Avenue; not a soul of that vast crowd of spectators
left his place; and, when the rear of the column had passed by,
thousands of the spectators still lingered to express their sense
of confidence in the strength of a Government which could claim
such an army.

Some little scenes enlivened the day, and called for the laughter
and cheers of the crowd. Each division was followed by six
ambulances, as a representative of its baggage-train. Some of the
division commanders had added, by way of variety, goats, milch-
cows, and pack-mules, whose loads consisted of game-cocks, poultry,
hams, etc., and some of them had the families of freed slaves
along, with the women leading their children. Each division was
preceded by its corps of black pioneers, armed with picks and
spades. These marched abreast in double ranks, keeping perfect
dress and step, and added much to the interest of the occasion. On
the whole, the grand review was a splendid success, and was a
fitting conclusion to the campaign and the war.

I will now conclude by a copy of my general orders taking leave of
the army, which ended my connection with the war, though I
afterward visited and took a more formal leave of the officers and
men on July 4, 1865, at Louisville, Kentucky:



The general commanding announces to the Armies of the Tennessee and
Georgia that the time has come for us to part. Our work is done,
and armed enemies no longer defy us. Some of you will go to your
homes, and others will be retained in military service till further

And now that we are all about to separate, to mingle with the civil
world, it becomes a pleasing duty to recall to mind the situation
of national affairs when, but little more than a year ago, we were
gathered about the cliffs of Lookout Mountain, and all the future
was wrapped in doubt and uncertainty.

Three armies had come together from distant fields, with separate
histories, yet bound by one common cause--the union of our country,
and the perpetuation of the Government of our inheritance. There
is no need to recall to your memories Tunnel Hill, with Rocky-Face
Mountain and Buzzard-Roost Gap, and the ugly forts of Dalton

We were in earnest, and paused not for danger and diffculty, but
dashed through Snake-Creek Gap and fell on Resaca; then on to the
Etowah, to Dallas, Kenesaw; and the heats of summer found us on the
banks of the Chattahoochee, far from home, and dependent on a
single road for supplies. Again we were not to be held back by any
obstacle, and crossed over and fought four hard battles for the
possession of the citadel of Atlanta. That was the crisis of our
history. A doubt still clouded our future, but we solved the
problem, destroyed Atlanta, struck boldly across the State of
Georgia, severed all the main arteries of life to our enemy, and
Christmas found us at Savannah.

Waiting there only long enough to fill our wagons, we again began a
march which, for peril, labor, and results, will compare with any
ever made by an organized army. The floods of the Savannah, the
swamps of the Combahee and Edisto, the "high hills" and rocks of
the Santee, the flat quagmires of the Pedee and Cape Fear Rivers,
were all passed in midwinter, with its floods and rains, in the
face of an accumulating enemy; and, after the battles of
Averysboro' and Bentonsville, we once more came out of the
wilderness, to meet our friends at Goldsboro'. Even then we paused
only long enough to get new clothing, to reload our wagons, again
pushed on to Raleigh and beyond, until we met our enemy suing for
peace, instead of war, and offering to submit to the injured laws
of his and our country. As long as that enemy was defiant, nor
mountains nor rivers, nor swamps, nor hunger, nor cold, had checked
us; but when he, who had fought us hard and persistently, offered
submission, your general thought it wrong to pursue him farther,
and negotiations followed, which resulted, as you all know, in his

How far the operations of this army contributed to the final
overthrow of the Confederacy and the peace which now dawns upon us,
must be judged by others, not by us; but that you have done all
that men could do has been admitted by those in authority, and we
have a right to join in the universal joy that fills our land
because the war is over, and our Government stands vindicated
before the world by the joint action of the volunteer armies and
navy of the United States.

To such as remain in the service, your general need only remind you
that success in the past was due to hard work and discipline, and
that the same work and discipline are equally important in the
future. To such as go home, he will only say that our favored
country is so grand, so extensive, so diversified in climate, soil,
and productions, that every man may find a home and occupation
suited to his taste; none should yield to the natural impatience
sure to result from our past life of excitement and adventure. You
will be invited to seek new adventures abroad; do not yield to the
temptation, for it will lead only to death and disappointment.

Your general now bids you farewell, with the full belief that, as
in war you have been good soldiers, so in peace you will make good
citizens; and if, unfortunately, new war should arise in our
country, "Sherman's army" will be the first to buckle on its old
armor, and come forth to defend and maintain the Government of our

By order of Major-General W. T. Sherman,

L. M. DAYTON, Assistant Adjutant-General.

List of the Average Number of Miles marched by the Different Army
Corps of the United States Forces under Command of Major-General W.
T. SHERMAN, United States Army, during his Campaigns: 1863-'64-'65.

4th 14th 15th 16th 17th 20th
Corps. Corps. Corps. Corps Corps. Corps.

Miles: 110 1,586 2,289 508 2,076 1,525



Having thus recorded a summary of events, mostly under my own
personal supervision, during the years from 1846 to 1865, it seems
proper that I should add an opinion of some of the useful military
lessons to be derived therefrom.

That civil war, by reason of the existence of slavery, was
apprehended by most of the leading statesmen of the half-century
preceding its outbreak, is a matter of notoriety. General Scott
told me on my arrival at New York, as early as 1850, that the
country was on the eve of civil war; and the Southern politicians
openly asserted that it was their purpose to accept as a casus
belli the election of General Fremont in 1856; but, fortunately or
unfortunately, he was beaten by Mr. Buchanan, which simply
postponed its occurrence for four years. Mr. Seward had also
publicly declared that no government could possibly exist half
slave and half free; yet the Government made no military
preparation, and the Northern people generally paid no attention,
took no warning of its coming, and would not realize its existence
till Fort Sumter was fired on by batteries of artillery, handled by
declared enemies, from the surrounding islands and from the city of

General Bragg, who certainly was a man of intelligence, and who, in
early life, ridiculed a thousand times, in my hearing, the threats
of the people of South Carolina to secede from the Federal Union,
said to me in New Orleans, in February, 1861, that he was convinced
that the feeling between the slave and free States had become so
embittered that it was better to part in peace; better to part
anyhow; and, as a separation was inevitable, that the South should
begin at once, because the possibility of a successful effort was
yearly lessened by the rapid and increasing inequality between the
two sections, from the fact that all the European immigrants were
coming to the Northern States and Territories, and none to the

The slave population m 1860 was near four millions, and the money
value thereof not far from twenty-five hundred million dollars.
Now, ignoring the moral side of the question, a cause that
endangered so vast a moneyed interest was an adequate cause of
anxiety and preparation, and the Northern leaders surely ought to
have foreseen the danger and prepared for it. After the election
of Mr. Lincoln in 1860, there was no concealment of the declaration
and preparation for war in the South. In Louisiana, as I have
related, men were openly enlisted, officers were appointed, and war
was actually begun, in January, 1861. The forts at the mouth of
the Mississippi were seized, and occupied by garrisons that hauled
down the United States flag and hoisted that of the State. The
United States Arsenal at Baton Rouge was captured by New Orleans
militia, its garrison ignominiously sent off, and the contents of
the arsenal distributed. These were as much acts of war as was the
subsequent firing on Fort Sumter, yet no public notice was taken
thereof; and when, months afterward, I came North, I found not one
single sign of preparation. It was for this reason, somewhat, that
the people of the South became convinced that those of the North
were pusillanimous and cowardly, and the Southern leaders were
thereby enabled to commit their people to the war, nominally in
defense of their slave property. Up to the hour of the firing on
Fort Sumter, in April, 1861, it does seem to me that our public
men, our politicians, were blamable for not sounding the note of

Then, when war was actually begun, it was by a call for seventy-
five thousand "ninety-day" men, I suppose to fulfill Mr. Seward's
prophecy that the war would last but ninety days.

The earlier steps by our political Government were extremely
wavering and weak, for which an excuse can be found in the fact
that many of the Southern representatives remained in Congress,
sharing in the public councils, and influencing legislation. But
as soon as Mr. Lincoln was installed, there was no longer any
reason why Congress and the cabinet should have hesitated. They
should have measured the cause, provided the means, and left the
Executive to apply the remedy.

At the time of Mr. Lincoln's inauguration, viz., March 4, 1861, the
Regular Army, by law, consisted of two regiments of dragoons, two
regiments of cavalry, one regiment of mounted rifles, four
regiments of artillery, and ten regiments of infantry, admitting of
an aggregate strength of thirteen thousand and twenty-four officers
and men. On the subsequent 4th of May the President, by his own
orders (afterward sanctioned by Congress), added a regiment of
cavalry, a regiment of artillery, and eight regiments of infantry,
which, with the former army, admitted of a strength of thirty-nine
thousand nine hundred and seventy-three; but at no time during the
war did the Regular Army attain a strength of twenty-five thousand

To the new regiments of infantry was given an organization
differing from any that had heretofore prevailed in this country--
of three battalions of eight companies each; but at no time did
more than one of these regiments attain its full standard; nor in
the vast army of volunteers that was raised during the war were any
of the regiments of infantry formed on the three-battalion system,
but these were universally single battalions of ten companies; so
that, on the reorganization of the Regular Army at the close of the
war, Congress adopted the form of twelve companies for the
regiments of cavalry and artillery, and that of ten companies for
the infantry, which is the present standard.

Inasmuch as the Regular Army will naturally form the standard of
organization for any increase or for new regiments of volunteers,
it becomes important to study this subject in the light of past
experience, and to select that form which is best for peace as well
as war.

A cavalry regiment is now composed of twelve companies, usually
divided into six squadrons, of two companies each, or better
subdivided into three battalions of four companies each. This is
an excellent form, easily admitting of subdivision as well as union
into larger masses.

A single battalion of four companies, with a field-officer, will
compose a good body for a garrison, for a separate expedition, or
for a detachment; and, in war, three regiments would compose a good
brigade, three brigades a division, and three divisions a strong
cavalry corps, such as was formed and fought by Generals Sheridan
and Wilson during the war.

In the artillery arm, the officers differ widely in their opinion
of the true organization. A single company forms a battery, and
habitually each battery acts separately, though sometimes several
are united or "massed;" but these always act in concert with
cavalry or infantry.

Nevertheless, the regimental organization for artillery has always
been maintained in this country for classification and promotion.
Twelve companies compose a regiment, and, though probably no
colonel ever commanded his full regiment in the form of twelve
batteries, yet in peace they occupy our heavy sea-coast forts or
act as infantry; then the regimental organization is both necessary
and convenient.

But the infantry composes the great mass of all armies, and the
true form of the regiment or unit has been the subject of infinite
discussion; and, as I have stated, during the civil war the
regiment was a single battalion of ten companies. In olden times
the regiment was composed of eight battalion companies and two
flank companies. The first and tenth companies were armed with
rifles, and were styled and used as "skirmishers;" but during 'the
war they were never used exclusively for that special purpose, and
in fact no distinction existed between them and the other eight

The ten-company organization is awkward in practice, and I am
satisfied that the infantry regiment should have the same identical
organization as exists for the cavalry and artillery, viz., twelve
companies, so as to be susceptible of division into three
battalions of four companies each.

These companies should habitually be about a hundred one men
strong, giving twelve hundred to a regiment, which in practice
would settle down to about one thousand men.

Three such regiments would compose a brigade, three brigades a
division, and three divisions a corps. Then, by allowing to an
infantry corps a brigade of cavalry and six batteries of
field-artillery, we would have an efficient corps d'armee of
thirty thousand men, whose organization would be simple and most
efficient, and whose strength should never be allowed to fall below
twenty-five thousand men.

The corps is the true unit for grand campaigns and battle, should
have a full and perfect staff, and every thing requisite for
separate action, ready at all times to be detached and sent off for
any nature of service. The general in command should have the rank
of lieutenant-general, and should be, by experience and education,
equal to any thing in war. Habitually with us he was a major-
general, specially selected and assigned to the command by an order
of the President, constituting, in fact, a separate grade.

The division is the unit of administration, and is the legitimate
command of a major general.

The brigade is the next subdivision, and is commanded by a

The regiment is the family. The colonel, as the father, should
have a personal acquaintance with every officer and man, and should
instill a feeling of pride and affection for himself, so that his
officers and men would naturally look to him for personal advice
and instruction. In war the regiment should never be subdivided,
but should always be maintained entire. In peace this is

The company is the true unit of discipline, and the captain is the
company. A good captain makes a good company, and he should have
the power to reward as well as punish. The fact that soldiers
world naturally like to have a good fellow for their captain is the
best reason why he should be appointed by the colonel, or by some
superior authority, instead of being elected by the men.

In the United States the people are the "sovereign," all power
originally proceeds from them, and therefore the election of
officers by the men is the common rule. This is wrong, because an
army is not a popular organization, but an animated machine, an
instrument in the hands of the Executive for enforcing the law, and
maintaining the honor and dignity of the nation; and the President,
as the constitutional commander-in-chief of the army and navy,
should exercise the power of appointment (subject to the
confirmation of the Senate) of the officers of "volunteers," as
well as of "regulars."

No army can be efficient unless it be a unit for action; and the
power must come from above, not from below: the President usually
delegates his power to the commander-in-chief, and he to the next,
and so on down to the lowest actual commander of troops, however
small the detachment. No matter how troops come together, when
once united, the highest officer in rank is held responsible, and
should be consequently armed with the fullest power of the
Executive, subject only to law and existing orders. The more
simple the principle, the greater the likelihood of determined
action; and the less a commanding officer is circumscribed by
bounds or by precedent, the greater is the probability that he will
make the best use of his command and achieve the best results.

The Regular Army and the Military Academy at West Point have in the
past provided, and doubtless will in the future provide an ample
supply of good officers for future wars; but, should their numbers
be insufficient, we can always safely rely on the great number of
young men of education and force of character throughout the
country, to supplement them. At the close of our civil war,
lasting four years, some of our best corps and division generals,
as well as staff-officers, were from civil life; but I cannot
recall any of the most successful who did not express a regret that
he had not received in early life instruction in the elementary
principles of the art of war, instead of being forced to acquire
this knowledge in the dangerous and expensive school of actual war.

But the vital difficulty was, and will be again, to obtain an
adequate number of good soldiers. We tried almost every system
known to modern nations, all with more or less success--voluntary
enlistments, the draft, and bought substitutes--and I think that all
officers of experience will confirm my assertion that the men who
voluntarily enlisted at the outbreak of the war were the best,
better than the conscript, and far better than the bought
substitute. When a regiment is once organized in a State, and
mustered into the service of the United States, the officers and
men become subject to the same laws of discipline and government as
the regular troops. They are in no sense "militia," but compose
a part of the Army of the United States, only retain their State
title for convenience, and yet may be principally recruited from
the neighborhood of their original organization: Once organized,
the regiment should be kept full by recruits, and when it becomes
difficult to obtain more recruits the pay should be raised by
Congress, instead of tempting new men by exaggerated bounties. I
believe it would have been more economical to have raised the pay
of the soldier to thirty or even fifty dollars a month than to have
held out the promise of three hundred and even six hundred dollars
in the form of bounty. Toward the close of the war, I have often
heard the soldiers complain that the "stay at-home" men got better
pay, bounties, and food, than they who were exposed to all the
dangers and vicissitudes of the battles and marches at the front.
The feeling of the soldier should be that, in every event, the
sympathy and preference of his government is for him who fights,
rather than for him who is on provost or guard duty to the rear,
and, like most men, he measures this by the amount of pay. Of
course, the soldier must be trained to obedience, and should be
"content with his wages;" but whoever has commanded an army in the
field knows the difference between a willing, contented mass of
men, and one that feels a cause of grievance. There is a soul to
an army as well as to the individual man, and no general can
accomplish the full work of his army unless he commands the soul of
his men, as well as their bodies and legs.

The greatest mistake made in our civil war was in the mode of
recruitment and promotion. When a regiment became reduced by the
necessary wear and tear of service, instead of being filled up at
the bottom, and the vacancies among the officers filled from the
best noncommissioned officers and men, the habit was to raise new
regiments, with new colonels, captains, and men, leaving the old
and experienced battalions to dwindle away into mere skeleton
organizations. I believe with the volunteers this matter was left
to the States exclusively, and I remember that Wisconsin kept her
regiments filled with recruits, whereas other States generally
filled their quotas by new regiments, and the result was that we
estimated a Wisconsin regiment equal to an ordinary brigade. I
believe that five hundred new men added to an old and experienced
regiment were more valuable than a thousand men in the form of a
new regiment, for the former by association with good, experienced
captains, lieutenants, and non-commissioned officers, soon became
veterans, whereas the latter were generally unavailable for a year.
The German method of recruitment is simply perfect, and there is no
good reason why we should not follow it substantially.

On a road, marching by the flank, it would be considered "good
order" to have five thousand men to a mile, so that a full corps of
thirty thousand men would extend six miles, but with the average
trains and batteries of artillery the probabilities are that it
would draw out to ten miles. On a long and regular march the
divisions and brigades should alternate in the lead, the leading
division should be on the road by the earliest dawn, and march at
the rate of about two miles, or, at most, two and a half miles an
hour, so as to reach camp by noon. Even then the rear divisions
and trains will hardly reach camp much before night. Theoretically,
a marching column should preserve such order that by simply halting
and facing to the right or left, it would be in line of battle; but
this is rarely the case, and generally deployments are made
"forward," by conducting each brigade by the flank obliquely to the
right or left to its approximate position in line of battle, and
there deployed. In such a line of battle, a brigade of three
thousand infantry would oconpy a mile of "front;" but for a strong
line of battle five-thousand men with two batteries should be
allowed to each mile, or a division would habitually constitute a
double line with skirmishers and a reserve on a mile of "front."

The "feeding" of an army is a matter of the most vital importance,
and demands the earliest attention of the general intrusted with a
campaign. To be strong, healthy, and capable of the largest
measure of physical effort, the soldier needs about three pounds
gross of food per day, and the horse or mule about twenty pounds.
When a general first estimates the quantity of food and forage
needed for an army of fifty or one hundred thousand men, he is apt
to be dismayed, and here a good staff is indispensable, though the
general cannot throw off on them the responsibility. He must give
the subject his personal attention, for the army reposes in him
alone, and should never doubt the fact that their existence
overrides in importance all other considerations. Once satisfied
of this, and that all has been done that can be, the soldiers are
always willing to bear the largest measure of privation. Probably
no army ever had a more varied experience in this regard than the
one I commanded in 1864'65.

Our base of supply was at Nashville, supplied by railways and the
Cumberland River, thence by rail to Chattanooga, a "secondary
base," and thence forward a single-track railroad. The stores came
forward daily, but I endeavored to have on hand a full supply for
twenty days in advance. These stores were habitually in the
wagon-trains, distributed to corps, divisions, and regiments, in
charge of experienced quartermasters and commissaries, and became
subject to the orders of the generals commanding these bodies.
They were generally issued on provision returns, but these had to
be closely scrutinized, for too often the colonels would make
requisitions for provisions for more men than they reported for
battle. Of course, there are always a good many non-combatants
with an army, but, after careful study, I limited their amount to
twenty-five per cent. of the "effective strength," and that was
found to be liberal. An ordinary army-wagon drawn by six mules may
be counted on to carry three thousand pounds net, equal to the food
of a full regiment for one day, but, by driving along beef-cattle,
a commissary may safely count the contents of one wagon as
sufficient for two days' food for a regiment of a thousand men; and
as a corps should have food on hand for twenty days ready for
detachment, it should have three hundred such wagons, as a
provision-train; and for forage, ammunition, clothing, and other
necessary stores, it was found necessary to have three hundred more
wagons, or six hundred wagons in all, for a corps d'armee.

These should be absolutely under the immediate control of the corps
commander, who will, however, find it economical to distribute them
in due proportion to his divisions, brigades, and even regiments.
Each regiment ought usually to have at least one wagon for
convenience to distribute stores, and each company two pack-mules,
so that the regiment may always be certain of a meal on reaching
camp without waiting for the larger trains.

On long marches the artillery and wagon-trains should always have
the right of way, and the troops should improvise roads to one
side, unless forced to use a bridge in common, and all trains
should have escorts to protect them, and to assist them in bad
places. To this end there is nothing like actual experience, only,
unless the officers in command give the subject their personal
attention, they will find their wagon-trains loaded down with
tents, personal baggage, and even the arms and knapsacks of the
escort. Each soldier should, if not actually "sick or wounded,"
carry his musket and equipments containing from forty to sixty
rounds of ammunition, his shelter-tent, a blanket or overcoat, and
an extra pair of pants, socks, and drawers, in the form of a scarf,
worn from the left shoulder to the right side in lieu of knapsack,
and in his haversack he should carry some bread, cooked meat, salt,
and coffee. I do not believe a soldier should be loaded down too
much, but, including his clothing, arms, and equipment, he can
carry about fifty pounds without impairing his health or activity.
A simple calculation will show that by such a distribution a corps
will-thus carry the equivalent of five hundred wagon-loads--an
immense relief to the trains.

Where an army is near one of our many large navigable rivers, or
has the safe use of a railway, it can usually be supplied with the
full army ration, which is by far the best furnished to any army in
America or Europe; but when it is compelled to operate away from
such a base, and is dependent on its own train of wagons, the
commanding officer must exercise a wise discretion in the selection
of his stores. In my opinion, there is no better food for man than
beef-cattle driven on the hoof, issued liberally, with salt, bacon,
and bread. Coffee has also become almost indispensable, though
many substitutes were found for it, such as Indian-corn, roasted,
ground, and boiled as coffee; the sweet-potato, and the seed of the
okra plant prepared in the same way. All these were used by the
people of the South, who for years could procure no coffee, but I
noticed that the women always begged of us some real coffee, which
seems to satisfy a natural yearning or craving more powerful than
can be accounted for on the theory of habit. Therefore I would
always advise that the coffee and sugar ration be carried along,
even at the expense of bread, for which there are many substitutes.
Of these, Indian-corn is the best and most abundant. Parched in a
frying-pan, it is excellent food, or if ground, or pounded and
boiled with meat of any sort, it makes a most nutritious meal. The
potato, both Irish and sweet, forms an excellent substitute for
bread, and at Savannah we found that rice (was)also suitable, both for
men and animals. For the former it should be cleaned of its husk
in a hominy block, easily prepared out of a log, and sifted with a
coarse corn bag; but for horses it should be fed in the straw.
During the Atlanta campaign we were supplied by our regular
commissaries with all sorts of patent compounds, such as desiccated
vegetables, and concentrated milk, meat-biscuit, and sausages, but
somehow the men preferred the simpler and more familiar forms of
food, and usually styled these "desecrated vegetables and
consecrated milk." We were also supplied liberally with
lime-juice, sauerkraut, and pickles, as an antidote to scurvy, and
I now recall the extreme anxiety of my medical director, Dr. Kittoe,
about the scurvy, which he reported at one time as spreading and
imperiling the army. This occurred at a crisis about Kenesaw, when
the railroad was taxed to its utmost capacity to provide the
necessary ammunition, food, and forage, and could not possibly
bring us an adequate supply of potatoes and cabbage, the usual
anti-scorbutics, when providentially the black berries ripened and
proved an admirable antidote, and I have known the skirmish-line,
without orders, to fight a respectable battle for the possession of
some old fields that were full of blackberries. Soon, thereafter,
the green corn or roasting-ear came into season, and I heard no
more of the scurvy. Our country abounds with plants which can be
utilized for a prevention to the scurvy; besides the above are the
persimmon, the sassafras root and bud, the wild-mustard, the
"agave," turnip tops, the dandelion cooked as greens, and a
decoction of the ordinary pine-leaf.

For the more delicate and costly articles of food for the sick we
relied mostly on the agents of the Sanitary Commission. I do not
wish to doubt the value of these organizations, which gained so
much applause during our civil war, for no one can question the
motives of these charitable and generous people; but to be honest I
must record an opinion that the Sanitary Commission should limit
its operations to the hospitals at the rear, and should never
appear at the front. They were generally local in feeling, aimed
to furnish their personal friends and neighbors with a better class
of food than the Government supplied, and the consequence was, that
one regiment of a brigade would receive potatoes and fruit which
would be denied another regiment close by: Jealousy would be the
inevitable result, and in an army all parts should be equal; there
should be no "partiality, favor, or affection." The Government
should supply all essential wants, and in the hospitals to the rear
will be found abundant opportunities for the exercise of all
possible charity and generosity. During the war I several times
gained the ill-will of the agents of the Sanitary Commission
because I forbade their coming to the front unless they would
consent to distribute their stores equally among all, regardless of
the parties who had contributed them.

The sick, wounded, and dead of an army are the subjects of the
greatest possible anxiety, and add an immense amount of labor to
the well men. Each regiment in an active campaign should have a
surgeon and two assistants always close at hand, and each brigade
and division should have an experienced surgeon as a medical
director. The great majority of wounds and of sickness should be
treated by the regimental surgeon, on the ground, under the eye of
the colonel. As few should be sent to the brigade or division
hospital as possible, for the men always receive better care with
their own regiment than with strangers, and as a rule the cure is
more certain; but when men receive disabling wounds, or have
sickness likely to become permanent, the sooner they go far to the
rear the better for all. The tent or the shelter of a tree is a
better hospital than a house, whose walls absorb fetid and
poisonous emanations, and then give them back to the atmosphere.
To men accustomed to the open air, who live on the plainest food,
wounds seem to give less pain, and are attended with less danger to
life than to ordinary soldiers in barracks.

Wounds which, in 1861, would have sent a man to the hospital for
months, in 1865 were regarded as mere scratches, rather the subject
of a joke than of sorrow. To new soldiers the sight of blood and
death always has a sickening effect, but soon men become accustomed
to it, and I have heard them exclaim on seeing a dead comrade borne
to the rear, "Well, Bill has turned up his toes to the daisies."
Of course, during a skirmish or battle, armed men should never
leave their ranks to attend a dead or wounded comrade--this should
be seen to in advance by the colonel, who should designate his
musicians or company cooks as hospital attendants, with a white rag
on their arm to indicate their office. A wounded man should go
himself (if able) to the surgeon near at hand, or, if he need help,
he should receive it from one of the attendants and not a comrade.
It is wonderful how soon the men accustom themselves to these
simple rules. In great battles these matters call for a more
enlarged attention, and then it becomes the duty of the division
general to see that proper stretchers and field hospitals are ready
for the wounded, and trenches are dug for the dead. There should
be no real neglect of the dead, because it has a bad effect on the
living; for each soldier values himself and comrade as highly as
though he were living in a good house at home.

The regimental chaplain, if any, usually attends the burials from
the hospital, should make notes and communicate details to the
captain of the company, and to the family at home. Of course it is
usually impossible to mark the grave with names, dates, etc., and
consequently the names of the "unknown" in our national cemeteries
equal about one-half of all the dead.

Very few of the battles in which I have participated were fought as
described in European text-books, viz., in great masses, in perfect
order, manoeuvring by corps, divisions, and brigades. We were
generally in a wooded country, and, though our lines were deployed
according to tactics, the men generally fought in strong
skirmish-lines, taking advantage of the shape of ground, and of
every cover. We were generally the assailants, and in wooded and
broken countries the "defensive" had a positive advantage over us,
for they were always ready, had cover, and always knew the ground
to their immediate front; whereas we, their assailants, had to
grope our way over unknown ground, and generally found a cleared
field or prepared entanglements that held us for a time under a
close and withering fire. Rarely did the opposing lines in compact
order come into actual contact, but when, as at Peach-Tree Creek
and Atlanta, the lines did become commingled, the men fought
individually in every possible style, more frequently with the
musket clubbed than with the bayonet, and in some instances the men
clinched like wrestlers, and went to the ground together.

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