Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 33.djvu/140

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136 Southern Historical Society Papers.

North, and a cry of peace; and it might bring recognition by foreign powers, and a close of the war. All things pointed to the invasion, conditions compelled it; and General Lee, knowing the odds which were against him and the perils of the movement, had the audacity to undertake it.

The reorganization of the Army of Northern Virginia brought General Longstreet with two divisions, Hoods' s and Pickett's, from the Southside of Virginia. With Longstreet in command of the First Corps, General Ewell returning from long sick leave was put in command of the Second Corps succeeding General Jackson; and General A. P. Hill in command of the Third, newly organized. All were men of high class, graduates of the Military Academy at West Point, soldiers of experience and officers of renown. Organi- zation and preparation were speedily made. Thirty days after Chancellorsville, May 31, 1863 the Army of Northern Virginia was again an organized force of 54,356 infantry, 9,563 cavalry and 4,460 artillery, a total of 68,352 officers and men, with over two hundred field guns. It was a compact, mobile army, well officered, somewhat equipped with arms and stores imported and captured, and in spendid morale. On that day, May 31, General Lee writes, "I pray that our merciful Father in Heaven may protect and direct us. In that case I fear no odds and no numbers."


On June 2nd, Ewell' s corps began the advance and moved by Germanna to Culpeper Courthouse, and two days later Longstreet' s corps followed, General Lee with it, while General A. P. Hill was left on the lines at Fredericksburg to watch Hooker and to follow. With less than 20,000 troops, Hill was now between Hooker and Richmond, sixty miles away. The Washington authorities would not consent to Hookers adavance. "Lee's army, not Richmond, is your true objective point," Mr Lincoln said. In one of his pictu- resque dispatches to Hooker, he said: "I would not take any risk of being entangled upon the river like an ox jumped half over the fence and liable to be torn by dogs front and rear without a fair chance to gore one way or kick the other."

On June gth, the Federal cavalry, making a reconnoisance in force, attacked Stuart and his cavalry in Culpeper and fought the memorable cavalry engagement of Brandy Station. On the ioth, General Ewell passed through the Blue Ridge and crossed the