Today in History:

29 Series I Volume XLVII-I Serial 98 - Columbia Part I


cheerfulness and harmony of action reflects upon all concerned quite as much real honor and fame as "battles gained" or "cities won," and I therefore commend all--generals, staff, officers, and men--for these high qualities, in addition to the more soldierly ones of obedience to orders and the alacrity they have always manifested when danger summoned them "to the front. "

I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,


Major-General, Commanding.

Major General H. W. HALLECK,

Chief of Staff, Washington City, D. C.

In the Field, City Point, Va., May 9, 1865.

GENERAL: My last official report brought the history of events, as connected with the armies in the field subject to my immediate command, down to the 1st of April, when the Army of the Ohio, Major General J. M. Schofield commanding, lay at Goldsborough with detachments distributed so as to secure and cover our routes of communication and supply back to the sea at Wilmington and Morehead City; Major General A. H. Terry, with the Tenth Corps, being at Faison's Depot; the Army of the Tennessee, Major General O. O. Howard commanding, was encamped to the right and front of Goldsborough, and the Army of Georgia, Major General H. W. Slocum commanding, to its left and front; the cavalry, Bvt. Major General J. Kilpatrick commanding, at Mount Olive. All were busy in repairing the wear and tear of our then recent and hard march from Savannah, and in replenishing clothing and stores necessary for a further progress.

I had previously, by letter and in person, notified the lieutenant-general commanding the Armies of the United States that the 10th of April would be the earliest possible moment at which I could hope to have all things in readiness, and we were compelled to use our railroads to the very highest possible limit in order to fulfill that promise. Owing to a mistake in the railroad department in sending locomotives and cars of the five-foot gauge we were limited to the use of the few locomotives and cars of the four-foot-eight-and-a-half-inch gauge already in North Carolina, with such of the old stock as was captured by Major-General Terry at Wilmington and n his way up to Goldsborough. Yet such judicious use was made of these, and such industry displayed in the railroad management by Generals Easton and Beckwith and Colonel Wright and Mr. Van Dyne, that by the 10th of April our men were all reclad, the wagons reloaded, and a fair amount of forage accumulated ahead.

In the meantime Major General George Stoneman, in command of a division of cavalry operating from East Tennessee in connection with Major General George H. Thomas, in pursuance of my orders of January 21, 1865, had reached the railroad about Greensborough, N. C., and had made sad havoc with it, and had pushed along it to Salisbury, destroying en route bridges, culverts, depots, and all kinds of rebel supplies, and had extended the break in the railroad down to the Catawba bridge.

This was fatal to the hostile armies of Lee and Johnston, who depended on that road for supplies and as their ultimate line of retreat. Major General J. H. Wilson, also in command of the Cavalry Corps, organized