By Lawrence A. Kreiser Jr.
Reasonable Oaks, the Seven Days, Antietam, Fredericksburg, Gettysburg, chilly Harbor, Petersburg—the record of important battles fought through the second one Corps, military of the Potomac, is a protracted and special one. This soaking up heritage of the second one Corps follows the unit's production and upward push to prominence, the battles that earned it a name for challenging combating, and the legacy its veterans sought to take care of within the years after the Civil warfare. greater than an account of battles, Defeating Lee will get to the guts of what encouraged those males, why they fought so not easy, and the way they sustained a lively protection of reason and kingdom lengthy after the weapons had fallen silent. (2011)
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Extra info for Defeating Lee: A History of the Second Corps, Army of the Potomac
11 But drill could hardly replicate the chaos of battle, and, more important, Sumner’s men fought well because of their devotion to unit and comrade. 12 Captain Henry Lyons of the 34th New York went into battle on the evening of May 31. ” Private Herbert Willand of the 5th New Hampshire survived equally brutal combat the next morning. The Confederate line of battle was so close that Willand and his comrades could hear the rebel commands. ” Soldiers began to fall killed and wounded, including the private on Willand’s immediate right.
In private, however, McClellan was scathing. 18 McClellan seemingly had a point. 19 In fairness, however, Sumner was the best of the four newly appointed officers. The career of Irvin McDowell was on the wane when he assumed command of the First Corps, after the disastrous Union defeat at Bull Run. McDowell held command in the East only through the end of the summer, when he received transfer to a succession of backwater departments. In the Third Corps, Samuel Heintzelman had compiled nearly as many years in the regular army as Sumner.
The previous night’s storm had washed away all but the Grapevine Bridge, to the front of Sedgwick’s men. A nearby engineering officer warned Sumner not to attempt to cross the structure, lest it collapse from the muddy currents already overlapping the causeway. Sumner was in no mood to argue, determined to reach the sound of the guns. The infantry crossed with water swirling around their knees, while the artillery creaked along “hub-deep” in the water. 8 Infantry and artillery soldiers pushed toward the Union right at Fair Oaks Station, about three miles distant.