War of the Rebellion: Serial 015 Page 0103 Chapter XXIV. GENERAL REPORTS.

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The recorder repeated the following question, propounded yesterday and held by the witness under consideration:

Question by General MCDOWELL. Does the witness remember what troops General McClellan designated at that time as those he intended should form the defense of Washington?

Answer. To the best of my remembrance he spoke of some troops then in the Shenandoah Valley as one portion, and another portion were unattached regiments in the neighborhood of Washington; that is, regiments that had not been attached to any corps, and I think he referred to other troops expected to arrive in Washington, but not in definite terms.

Question by General MCDOWELL. What was the resolution adopted by the corps commanders at Fairfax Court-House as to the force to be left for the defense of Washington?

Answer. It was resolved by the corps commanders, at a meeting at Fairfax Court-House, held about the 12th of March, that all the forts on the Virginia side of the Potomac, right bank, must be fully garrisoned and all the forts on the Washington side occupied, and that there should be in addition a covering force or movable force of 25,000 troops on the Virginia side. This was the opinion of three of the corps commanders; that is, McDowell, Heintzelman, and myself. General Sumner's opinion was that the whole number of troops to be left for the defense of Washington, including the forts, should be 40,000.

Question by General MCDOWELL. What were the duties imposed on the corps commanders by the President with reference to the movement of the Army of the Potomac and the force to be left for the defense of Washington?

Answer. The President imposed upon the corps commanders the duty of making definite arrangements for the defense of the capital, and he required that they should specify the force to be left behind-not the definite regiments, but the amount of force. I understood he required this arrangement to be made before he would permit the army to change its base.

Question by General MCDOWELL. After the occasion you refer to at Fairfax Court-House, were the corps commanders ever assembled as a body for consultation, advice, or other purpose?

Answer. They were not-before moving to the Peninsula.

Question by General MCDOWELL. Were the corps commanders ever as a body informed as to action taken or to be taken by General McClellan with a view to a fulfillment of the orders of the President concerning the amount of force to be left behind for the defense of Washington?

Answer. They were not.

Question by General MCDOWELL. How long have you known General McDowell intimately? What are his habits as to the use of intoxicating liquors?

Answer. I've known him intimately since the month of June, 1844. His habits, so far as I have ever seen or known or heard, until recently, were those of total abstinence from the use of intoxicating liquors. Recently I have seen in the papers and have heard it said that he drank too much; but this change, if there be such a change, is entirely unknown to me.

Question by General MCDOWELL. What was the feeling expressed in the Peninsula concerning General McDowell for his not coming form Fredericksburg to join the Army of the Potomac before Richmond?

This question was objected to by a member, as tending to elicit matter not essential to the defense of General McDowell.

General McDowell stated, at the instance of a member of the court, that he had been maligned and abused in the Army of the Peninsula; that there existed a strong feeling against him, and that for months the