Part IX

The General Array Of Forces Early In 1862.

       The Federal lines covering the land borders of the Confederacy, extending from the mouth of the Chesapeake and passing by the amply protected capital, ran through Maryland, West Virginia, Kentucky, Missouri and on to the mouth of the Rio Grande. At Fortress Monroe, under Butler and Wool, were 15,000 men; on the southern Potomac, Hooker's division of 10,000; immediately in charge of Washington, 160,000 men under McClellan; in the Shenandoah valley, Banks with 16,000, and Rosecrans in western Virginia with 20,000. General Buell had united the scattered Federal forces in Kentucky into an army of 100,000, and Halleck was in Missouri with a similar number. A force of 20,000 was put in readiness to operate from Kansas to the Gulf of Mexico, and another army was assembled at Cairo under Generals Grant and C. F. Smith to campaign in co-operation with gunboats along the Mississippi and Cumberland rivers.
       The United States naval operations in the beginning of the second year of the invasion contemplated the blockade of the entire coast, so as to cut off the communications of the Confederacy with other nations. The reduction of all ports, and their occupation by the military as points from which various overland incursions might be made, was also a part of the general plan. For these purposes several squadrons were organized--the North Atlantic, Admiral Goldsboro, on the Virginia and North Carolina coasts; the South Atlantic, Admiral DuPont, covering South Carolina, Georgia and northeast Florida; the Eastern Gulf, Flag Officer McKean, and the Western Gulf, Admiral Farragut, on the gulf coast. Three flotillas were employed--the Potomac, Commodore Hardwood; the James River, Commodore Wilkes, and the Mississippi, Admiral Foote--each of which operated as its name indicates. The numbers of vessels in service were about 250 steamers carrying 1,500 guns, and 100 sailing vessels--frigates, sloops-of-war, mortar fleets, barks, brigs and ships-with 1,400 guns.
       The Confederate States confronted this formidable array of military and naval forces with a general long interior line. At Norfolk and Yorktown were a small force of infantry, well fortified, and some vessels of the little navy. The main army in Virginia rested its right on the Rappahannock below Fredericksburg, and stretching its fortified line by Centreville and Manassas rested the left in the mountains beyond Leesburg. Beyond this point there were other brigades at Martinsburg, Winchester and in parts of western Virginia. This long line was under the command of Gen. Joseph E. Johnston and confronted McClellan. In Kentucky the Confederate divisions were chiefly in the lower half of the State, from Bowling Green to Columbus, also occupying Forts Donelson and Henry. The main army in Missouri, commanded by Price, was stationed near Springfield, facing the Federal forces, whose headquarters was at St. Louis. In Tennessee the Confederate troops were encamped preparatory to active campaigning at various positions, including Cumberland Gap, Chattanooga, Nashville and Memphis. Fort Pillow, Island No. 10 and Vicksburg were occupied with strong defensive works, and in Arkansas the military of that State were posted so as to operate with Price, or be sent into Tennessee. Thus the eastern and northern fronts of the Confederacy were curtained with the Southern armies to resist the threatening advances of the Federals. Turning attention from these to the Southern coast line, the defenses are found to consist of well-fortified positions defending the harbors, and small but vigorous fleets that had been rapidly constructed. Confederate privateers were also boldly adventuring on the seas and doing great damage to the shipping of the enemy.

This Page last updated 02/10/02

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