War of the Rebellion: Serial 017 Page 1131 Chapter XXIV. CAMPAIGN IN NORTHERN VIRGINIA.

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presence of the enemies of his country. General McDowell, as a soldier and a commander, deposed that it was the duty of the accused to have attacked the enemy on the 29th, and it would seem this duty was so manifest and so clearly the result of his position that no order could have added much, if anything, to its force and urgency. What General McDowell prescribed for his associate in arms he unhesitatingly accepted for himself. He had no summons to arouse him, and no guide to conduct him but the sound of the cannon, following which, he, with his command, found his way to the battle-field, where his instincts as a soldier told him both his duty and his honor required him to be. And it is, no doubt, to his timely arrival participation in the conflict that we are largely indebted for General Roberts' declaration that at the close of the day the advantages were decidedly on the side of the Federal troops. Had the accused, obeying the same impulse that carried General McDowell up the Sudley Springs road, made a movement upon the enemy with the vigor and heroism which the occasion demanded, it is altogether probable that the glory of Richepanse would have been his, and the fate of the Austrian that of the rebel army. After carefully considering all the impediments which have been so elaborately arrayed as in the way of the accused on the night of the 27th, and throughout the day of the 29th, we cannot but realize that they shrink away and are scarcely to be named beside those obstacles of darkness, and tempest, and snow, and morass, and Alpine precipices, and frowning batteries which the warriors of other times and lands have unhesitatingly confronted and bravely overcome.

But there is one feature of the inaction of the accused on the 29th which it is especially sorrowful to contemplate. How, unrestrained as he was, and with the cannonade of the battle in his ears, and its smoke and the dust of the gathering forces before his eyes, he could, for seven and a half or eight hours, resist the temptation to plunge into the combat, it is difficult to conceive. But this alone is not the saddest aspect in which his conduct presents itself. This aspect is distinctly set forth in the third specifications of the second charge. Colonel Marshall states that from the cheering and peculiar yells of the enemy heard on the evening of the 29th, he and every man of his command believed that General Pope's army was being driven from the field. General Morell also says that from the sound of the artillery the battle Federal forces. The accused, in his note to Generals McDowell and King, speaking of the enemy, says:

As they appear to have driven our forces back, the firing of the enemy having advanced and our retired, I have determined to withdraw to Manassas;

and, in further justification of this step, he adds:

They have gathered artillery and cavalry and infantry, and the advancing masses of dust show the enemy coming in force.

In the afternoon, then, of the 29th, it is clear that the conviction was entertained by the accused and his officers that our forces were being driven before the enemy - a confection which, in tones above even the roar of artillery, should have appealed to his soldier's heart to rush to the rescue. But, heedless of the summons, he turned, not toward, but away, from his struggling companions in arms, in the direction of Manassas.

Must we seek an explanation of this want of sympathy with the brave men who were doing battle that day in the feelings, as shown by his dispatches, which unhappily possessed him in reference to the Army of