Telegram To Halleck Mcclellan's Struggle In Washington

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Unity was not emboldening the Union Army leadership. In Washington, many important figures were continuing to plot McClellan’s downfall. The Secretary of War was brazenly seeking statements from anyone that help build his case that the general was at fault for the defeat by not completing his assault on Richmond. As well, the secretary was criticizing his withdrawal as “being made dilatory fashion.” The withdrawal had nothing to do with the general; in fact he protested his orders from Washington the entire month of August. There was a slight delay; in fact, between the time Halleck ordered the sick and sounded to be evacuated and the time the full withdrawal from Harrison’s Landing took place. This led to Halleck complaining that the general “had not obeyed orders ‘with the promptness I expected and the national safety, in my …show more content…
Al sick will be away by tomorrow night. Everything being done to carry out your orders.” Although many in Washington would have hoped to see the Army of the Potomac falter as they had done in the campaign, McClellan evacuated the army in a quick and timely manner. Washington began receiving accounts regarding the army’s admirable progress. A wire sent by Major General John A. Dix on August 16th read, “ from all accounts the movement is progressing rapidly and successfully.” While General Thomas’ update read “the movement was progressing finely and will be successful. The army is in… splendid fighting order…no one could have made the movement more skillfully or in less time.” These reviews by generals in the field were not what officials wanted to hear. Instead of weakening McClellan’s position he was being presented in a good light. On August 20th General Burnside received a letter from McClellan telling of the successful retreat without losing any soldiers on the way and successfully avoiding leaving anything behind the Confederates would be able to

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