McCellan and Lee.
“Won’t you buy a splendid portrait of Gen. Grant?” asked a most intelligent peddler, six months from England, of a country friend at one of the New York hotels a few days since.
“No, Sir, I do not want it.”
“Ah! then you will this of Gen. McClellan!”
“No, no; I wouldn’t have that any how.”
“Ah, Sir,” resumed the peddler, waxing confidential, “I sell more of McClellan now than I do of Grant; but if I only had Gen. Lee, I could sell ten times as many of him as I can of McClellan—and to the same men.”
Grant and McClellan
The great capital point in the improvement of our leadership is that the chief leader is Lieutenant General Grant, and not Major General McClellan. The army under the latter, two years ago, never fought a battle on the offensive. Not in a single instance was it allowed to assume the offensive. Its business to wait attack, to hold its ground if it conquered, to fall back if it were vanquished—Even when it repelled its foes, and swept in upon their broken ranks, as it did two years ago this very day at Fair Oaks, it was not permitted to take advantage of its success, but was held in check; though it is almost certain, that had an immediate pursuit been ordered, according to the desires of some of the corps commanders, Richmond would have been captured with little or no fighting.—All this absurd system of crying through a great aggressive campaign on defensive principles, have given place to policy as completely the reverse as can be conceived. It is a policy of motion, not rest; of attack, not defense. Grant’s dominating element is vigor, McClellan’s caution. Grant’s disposition is to make the best of what he has; McClellan’s to worry about what he has not. Grant scorns an excuse; McClellan delights in them. Grant has the sublime self-reliance that is always inspired by genius. Without fear, he moves away from the base, and cuts clear of it altogether, and in all his strategy and tactics shows an independence of book maxims that has characterized all the greatest commanders.—McClellan, though he can put himself on paper with a good deal of aplomb, in action invariably magnified danger or difficulty, always shrank before it, and was never known, in a single instance, to deviate from the most timid military methods. The difference in the mental and moral constitution of the two men is perfectly illustrated in the simple fact that, while it has taken Grant only twenty-seven days to reach his present position, through an almost continuous storm of battle, and in the face of line on line of most elaborate earthworks, it took McClellan over fifty days to reach the same neighborhood, though finding in his way nothing but the weak works of Yorktown, defended by a few thousand only, yet besieged for a month; and the works at Williamsburg, which, in the absence of McClellan, were rendered untenable by Hooker and Hancock, after a few hours’ fighting, and which, in fact, might have been turned without any fighting at all.
In view of all these undeniable facts, the conclusion is pretty safe that this campaign will be no such failure as the other.—N. Y. Times.
Here’s an interesting article from the Chattanooga Times-Free Press about alcohol and the U.S. Civil War: Whiskey and the war: Alcohol played a role in the Civil War.