Inside Lincoln's Cabinet: The Civil War Diaries of Salmon P. Chase

By David Donald; Salmon P. Chase | Go to book overview

3
The End of Pope [JULY 21-DECEMBER 10, 1862]

T HE FIRST Of July saw Union forces in the East disorganized and demoralized. McClellan's Army of the Potomac huddled on the James River under the protection of Federal gunboats. Troops in central and western Virginia were worn ragged by their unsuccessful pursuit of Jackson. Lincoln thought it time for new leaders to take over, and he summoned generals from the West, where Union troops had been more successful. Chase did not know the new commanding general, but Henry Wager Halleck's reputation as "Old Brains" and his equally fictitious responsibility for Federal victories at Pea Ridge, Forts Henry and Donelson, and Corinth gave the Secretary new hope. Even more acceptable was John Pope, named to head the regrouped forces in central Virginia. The swaggering Pope was the last major military leader to confide in Chase, and the Secretary enthusiastically approved both his loudly trumpeted plans to take the offensive and his announced hostility toward slavery.

Pope pushed directly forward into Virginia, against Stonewall Jackson's forces, and the Federals at least held

-93-

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