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    Description

    George McClellan Printed Order Issued the Day Following Approval for His Peninsula Campaign. One page of a bifolium, 5" x 8", Fairfax Court House, Virginia; March 14, 1862. A proclamation by McClellan to his troops, in which he professes his esteem for the army and motivates them for the battles to come. It reads, in part:

    "Soldiers of the Army of the Potomac! For a long time I have kept you inactive, but not without a purpose: you were to be disciplined, armed and instructed; the formidable artillery you now have, had to be created; other armies were to move and accomplish certain results. I have held you back that you might give the death-blow to the rebellion that has distracted our once happy country. The patience you have shown, and your confidence in your General, are worth a dozen victories. These preliminary results are now accomplished. I feel that the patient labors of many months have produced their fruit; the Army of the Potomac is now a real Army, - magnificent in material, admirable in discipline and instruction, excellently equipped and armed; - your commanders are all that I could wish. The moment for action has arrived, and I know that I can trust in your to save our country...I am to watch over you as a parent over his children; and you know that your General loves you from the depths of his heart. It shall be my care, as it has ever been, to gain success with the least possible loss; but I know that, if it is necessary, you will willingly follow me to our graves, for our righteous cause. God smiles upon us, victory attends us, yet I would not have you think that our aim is to be attained without a manly struggle. I will not disguise it from you: you have brave foes to encounter, foemen well worthy of the steel that you will use so well. I shall demand of your great, heroic exertions, rapid and long marches, desperate combats, privations, perhaps. We will share all these together; and when this sad war is over we will all return to our homes, and feel that we can ask no higher honor than the proud consciousness that we belonged to the Army of the Potomac." Accompanying the printed order is a George McClellan carte de visite, 2.5" x 4", a lithographic portrait of General McClellan.

    In early March 1862, President Lincoln, who had become impatient with McClellan's slowness and his insubordination, demoted the general from general-in-chief to commander of the Army of the Potomac. Later that month, McClellan began his Peninsula Campaign, which had as its mission to march Richmond. As the Union general moved closer to his destination, Robert E. Lee and his much larger force, which consisted of over 55,000, met McClellan in a series of battles known as the Seven Days Battles beginning at the end of June. The final battle occurred at Gaines' Mill, along the Chickahominy River in eastern Virginia, where the Union faced another defeat. The loss unnerved McClellan, and he all but decided to abandon his march toward Richmond. The relationship between McClellan and Lincoln deteriorated even further, and in November, Lincoln removed McClellan from command following the Battle of Antietam.

    Condition:
    The order has flattened folds and creasing at the corners. Light toning at the edges, and minor soiling on verso. The CDV has light toning and soiling, and the corners are very worn at the bottom.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2019
    26th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 220

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