McCLELLAN'S campaign began its unhappy course under the worst possible auspices. Even before the big question of the defence of Washington there were omens of trouble to come. Lincoln had frankly doubted the advisability of the scheme, and very properly asked questions about it; but once he gave approval he was bent on making it a success. McClellan could not and would not understand this; it seemed to him that questions about his plans only showed the ignorance and stupidity of the questioner; the administration at Washington was the 'enemy in his rear'; even a consultation appeared to him like a reflection on his infallibility; he avoided meeting Lincoln.
The Head of the State has the right to expect the full confidence of his subordinate, but as the subordinate showed every sign of objecting to consultations, the General in Chief of the Union issued some orders without consulting him.
In the first place he restricted McClellan to the command of the Army of the Potomac, which was destined for the Peninsula. The forces remaining in Virginia were divided into three departments: (1) Western Virginia, under Fremont, (2) the Shenandoah Valley under Banks, (3) from the Blue Ridge to the coast; McDowell was later on appointed to this. It would be absurd to suppose that a general, face to face with the enemy in the Peninsula, could give proper attention to the whole theatre of war which extended through Virginia and Kentucky to the Mississippi, let