we learn from Captain DeKay, handed it to one of his generals present, saying-
There is something for you to sleep on-
not something that you are to prepare to execute - not something which announces that the army with which we were connected is threatened by great perils, which we must make extraordinary efforts to meet, but "something for you to sleep on." The whole tone of that conversation was to the last degree saddening and discouraging for those who believe that in the prosecution of this war much vigor is much wisdom.
Again, General Griffin, called by the accused, testified that, after having marched about a mile with his brigade, he came to a halt, and remained there until two hours after daylight, and the remainder of the forces, no doubt, did the same. This explains why the arrival at Bristoe Station was not until twenty minutes past 10. No reason that deserves a moment's consideration is given for this long delay. It is true that General Griffin says:
I know the artillery which followed the brigade - that is, a carriage or two of the artillery which followed the brigade - got stuck in the mud, or in a little creek, and had trouble in getting out.
When more closely questioned as to the cause of the halt, he said:
I halted because I found, when I got to the point where I did, that I had only a portion of my brigade with me. In the darkness, by some accident or other, we had become separated, and I halted to get by brigade together. And the artillery, I presume, is what detained us there until we started again. That is my impression. I do not know that positively. General Morell was in command of the division.
This may explain the halt, but not the delay until the late hour mentioned. It was in summer and a season of drought, as appears from the clouds of dust which are continually brought to our notice by the testimony; and we cannot be misled as to the amount of obstacle the mud in such a stream, at such a season, would offer to the onward march of soldiers determined to do their duty.
Again. When the forces were in motion, there was not haste or vigor displayed. Captain DeKay says:
The march was at the rate at which troops would move if there was no necessity for a rapid movement.
And he adds:
They could have moved fester than they did.
General Pope deposed:
I sent back several officers to try and see General Porter, and request him to hurry up and report to me where his troops were, as I was very apprehensive that after day had dawned we should have an attack upon us from the enemy. I think they all returned. The report made to me was, that General Porter was coming along very slowly, and was pushing the wagons out of the road.
Whatever may be thought of the difficulties in the way of the night march required by this order, it was the manifest duty of the accused to make a sincere and determined endeavor to overcome them. If, after having promptly and vigorously made this effort, and started as ordered, he had failed to arrive at Bristoe Station at daylight, either from the exhaustion of his troops, the darkness of the night, or the character of the road, the responsibility of the failure would not have been charged upon him. The contemptuous and unfriendly feelings disclosed in the dispatch to General Burnside -which was written but about five hours and a half before this order was received - will probably furnish a more satisfactory solution of the question why this effort was not made than can be found in the nature of the obstacles themselves.
Nor is it believed that the conduct of the accused finds my shelter in