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Morgan, Charles Hale (1834-1875) to Henry Jackson Hunt

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC02382.001 Author/Creator: Morgan, Charles Hale (1834-1875) Place Written: s.l. Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 25 May 1862 Pagination: 3 p. ; 20.2 x 25.1 cm.

Written on Head Quarters, 2d Corps d'Armée stationery. Morgan encloses a note (no longer present) from General Hancock, and explains that "Thinking it within the range of probabilities that our lines may be attacked Gen Hancock & Gen Meade and others selected a defensive line this morning - There are a great many guns needed…" Hunt's autograph note of the same day, 5 p.m., on verso, states that he has forwarded Col. Doull's information to General Hooker, who "directs me to reply that the enemy has been at work on his rifle pits, and it would be singular if the two armies were fortifying at the same time - he declines a compliance with the request of Gen Hancock." Transcript available.

Written on the same day that Union general Nathaniel Banks was routed by Confederate general Stonewall Jackson at the First Battle of Winchester. Secretary of War Stanton sent a circular letter to Union governors asking for more troops as intelligence indicated there was now "no doubt that the enemy in great force are advancing upon Washington." Banks's loss to Jackson meant that Union troops intended to converge on Richmond were instead diverted to the Shenandoah Valley and, as this letter indicates, to the defenses of Washington. In May 1862, Meade was a brigadier general in command of the 2nd Brigade of the 2nd Division of the Department of the Rappahannock, left behind to protect Washington during McClellan's Peninsula Campaign. Morgan, an 1857 graduate of West Point, was captain of the 4th Artillery; he later served as Hancock's artillery chief and chief of staff and, at the close of the war, was made a full brigadier general of volunteers. At the time of this letter, Morgan was assigned to the defenses of Washington.

Morgan, an 1857 graduate of West Point, was the Captain of the 4th Artillery. Hunt served as Chief of the Artillery for the Army of the Potomac during the Civil War.

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