War of the Rebellion: Serial 107 Page 0492 MD., E. N. C., PA., VA., EXCEPT S. W., & W. VA. Chapter LXIII.

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He, however, had hardly entered upon his new duties when, encouraged to communicate directly with the President and certain members of the cabinet, he in a few days forgot that he had any intermediate commander, and has now long prided himself in treating me with uniform neglect, running into disobedience of orders.

Of the smaller matters-neglects-though in themselves grave military offenses, I need not speak in the face of the following.

First. To suppress an irregularity more conspicuous in Major-General McClellan than in any other officer I published the following:



Washington, D. C., September 16, 1861.

There are irregularities in the correspondence of the Army which need prompt correction. It is highly important that junior officers on duty be not permitted to correspond with the General-in-Chief or other commander on current official business except through intermediate commanders; and the same rule applies to correspondence with the President direct or with him through the Secretary of War, unless it be by the special invitation or request of the President.

By command of Lieutenant-General Scott:


Assistant Adjutant-General.

With this order fresh in his memory, Major-General McClellan addressed two important communications to the Secretary of War on, respectively, the 19th and 20th of the same month, over my head, and how many since to the Secretary, and even to the President direct, I have not inquired, but many, I have no doubt, besides daily oral communications with the same high functionaries-all without my knowledge.

Second. To correct another case of gross neglect I the same day caused to be addressed to Major-General McClellan the following order:


Washington, D. C., September 16, 1861.

Major-General McCLELLAN, U. S. Army,

Commanding Department of the Potomac:

The commanding general of the Army of the Potomac will cause the positions, State, and numbers of troops under him to be reported at once to general headquarters, by divisions, brigades, and independent regiments or detachments, which general report will be followed by reports of new troops as they arrive, with the dispositions made of them, together with all material changes which may take place in the same army.

By command of General Scott:


Assistant Adjutant-General.

Eighteen days have now elapsed and not the slightest respect has been shown to either of those orders by Major-General McClellan. Perhaps he will say, in respect to the latter, it has been difficult for him to procure exact returns of divisions, brigades, &c. No doubt; but why not have given me proximate returns; such as he so eagerly furnishes the President and certain Secretaries?

Has, then, a senior no corrective power over a junior officer in case of such persistent neglect and disobedience? The remedy by arrest and trail before acourt-martial would probably soon cure the evil. But it has been feared that a conflict of authority near the head of the Army would be highly encuraging to the enemies and depressing to the friends of the Union; hence my long forbearance; and, continuing (though but nominally) on duty, I shall try to hold out till the arrival of Major-General Halleck, when, as his presence will give me increased